Diary

Morning Briefing for March 29, 2011

RedState Morning Briefing
For March 29, 2011

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1. Obama’s Not Just Bombing Libya: The Main Course Speech That Felt More Like an Appetizer

You might have heard that President Obama (finally) gave a speech about the shelling of Libya he ordered well over a week ago. Or, you might not have; he’s been trying pretty hard to keep our involvement in it out of the public eye, despite the US having the leading role in every phase of this “kinetic military action” except (1) decision-making, and (2) actually talking publicly about what the heck it is that we’re doing there.The speech can be boiled down into five basic phrases, four of which carry qualifiers:(1) It’s the U.S.’s role to intervene anywhere that there are atrocities or persecution going on, unless there’s a vital national interest there and/or they have the ability to shoot back at us in any meaningful form whatsoever;(2) Our goal is not to depose Qaddafi, whatever I may have said yesterday, last week, etc., except when it is our goal, which is whenever it isn’t not our goal to do so;(3) This will not be like the Iraq kinetic military action, because that one wasn’t referred to by such a clever, lawyerly phrase, and because that “regime change…took 8 years” [Note: This supposed history savant is only off by about 7 years and 11 months on that figure], except that regime change isn’t our goal (see #2 above);(4) The U.S. will prevail in Libya, except that we won’t be the ones doing it – NATO will – and, to ensure that this is true, we’re going to refrain from consistently communicating any goals whatsoever for our mission there, even as we send pilots (and, not at all unlikely, specialized ground forces) into harm’s way in pursuit of some nebulous objective which, again, we’re not going to bother telling you about; and,(5) To quote Jim Geraghty, “Look, I realize none of you understand my decision making, but at the end of the day, you can rest easy knowing I’m right.”Please click here for the rest of the post.

2. Regime Change for Sissies

Now let me be clear?—?I suffer no illusions about Saddam Hussein. He is a brutal man. A ruthless man. A man who butchers his own people to secure his own power. He has repeatedly defied UN resolutions, thwarted UN inspection teams, developed chemical and biological weapons, and coveted nuclear capacity.He’s a bad guy. The world, and the Iraqi people, would be better off without him.But I also know that Saddam poses no imminent and direct threat to the United States. . . .Barack Obama in 2002.

This was perhaps the most vapid and shallow Presidential speech on a military engagement since . . . well . . . I don’t know when.The President said we were against regime change in Libya, but made clear that regime change is the goal. He wants to be engaged without being engaged. He says we are passing the whole operation off to NATO as if we’ll suddenly become only involved in an ancillary capacity. This left Ambassador John Bolton to exclaim on Fox News that Barack Obama may be the only man in the whole world who does not know that we, the United States, run NATO.The President failed in any way, shape, or form to show how our national interests are at stake. Likewise, in his explanation of why we are in LIbya, the explanation fits Yemen, Syria, and Iran.As Joe Scarborough asked on twitter, are Libyan lives more valuable than those of Syria, Yemen, or Iran?Please click here for the rest of the post.

3. The Stupid Party Prepares to Get Down Right Dumb

While we’ve all been focused on the Administration’s schizophrenia over Libya, there is another political battle being fought in the halls of Congress over the budget.The starting point for this is this report from Emily Miller at Human Events. The key take away is that “the Senate Republicans are preparing to tell President Obama that they want a Balanced Budget Amendment (BBA) to the Constitution passed in Congress in exchange for raising the statuary debt ceiling above $14.2 trillion.”We can now turn to my friend Dan Mitchell who explains exactly how stupid this GOP strategy is. The GOP, in exchange for increasing the debt ceiling, is not saying “give us the BBA or no debt ceiling increase.” The GOP is instead saying “give us a vote on it.”Well, as Dan further points out, the GOP already got a vote on the BBA on March 2nd and it failed. So, the GOP is saying, “Let us lose another vote on the BBA in exchange for a debt ceiling increase or else.” Or else what?This is stupid for a variety of reasons.Please click here for the rest of the post.

4. More Libya Muddling from the White House (and from President Obama)

The “handover to NATO” bit that Obama has been promising for the last week hasn’t completely happened yet (though in fairness, it hasn’t just been NATO; they’re just the only ones who’ve actually agreed to hold a portion of this hot potato that Obama has been trying like crazy to pass off ever since the American T-LAMs started flying from the Med into Libya), as American aircraft flew well over half of this past weekend’s sorties against Qaddafi’s military and air defense installations.Further, contra what General Ham said a week ago today (which I’m sure was the best translation he could accomplish of the ridiculously mixed signals coming out of the nation’s center of power at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, as well as from President Obama), not only is the US not backing off its operational tempo over Libya, but, according to reports, including this one from the AP, those weekend sorties included offensive missions flown by A-10s and AC-130s.Please click here for the rest of the post.

5. The Left Riots Because It Works Like Perdition

Leftists riot against austerity budgets for the same reasons Radical Islamists attempt terrorist attacks against American targets. They both lost any semblance of rational argument against the conditions they face in the modern world. Furthermore, the Greek Austerity riots, like the 9-11 Attacks, worked like Perdition. When in doubt, you call the last play that scored you a touchdown.Please click here for the rest of the post.

6. California Moving to Strip Secret Ballots from Farm Workers, Fine Employers

With the hallucinogenically-named Employee Free Choice Act “basically dead” for now, union bosses are still finding ways to try to fill their coffers with new members any way they can. At the state level, since agricultural workers are excluded from the National Labor Relations Act, the United Farm Workers is using the farm worker exemption to its advantage—and counting on newly-elected Democrat Governor Jerry Brown to help it.On Sunday, while small marches took place around California commemorating Cesar Chavez Day, the United Farm Workers (the union that the late Cesar Chavez co-founded and led) issued a press release announcing their ongoing push for California SB 104, the “Fair Treatment for Farm Workers Act.”Please click here for the rest of the post.

7. No More Extensions of Unemployment Benefits

Amidst record long-term unemployment, Democrats are trying to extend unemployment welfare yet again. Will Republicans continue to obediently follow them in accelerating more creeping socialism? Or will last December serve as the Republicans’ final act to perpetuate unemployment welfare?Beware the doomsday TARP coalition of Republicans. Conservatives must be ever vigilant of those Republicans who are willing to vote for an entitlement program one last time with the alleged purpose of precluding an economic apocalypse.Please click here for the rest of the post.