Thursday, July 31, 2008

Tale of two memoir writers


Perhaps the most audacious and virtually the sole claim to fame that Barack “Hubris” Obama has is publication of not just one, but two memoirs. Lordy, the man hasn’t completed his first and only term in national office and he’s already written two memoirs? What life experiences does he have to write about? His claim of “foreign policy experience” includes living in foreign countries when he was 6-10 years old? That’s audacity.

On the other hand, we have John McCain, who not only has years of experience in the U.S. House and Senate, he’s also had a U.S. Navy career. I’ve been waiting for McCain to use Reagan’s famous line when Obama hints his opponent is “too old.” Obama’s short resume is tailor-made for Reagan’s crack which turned the tables on Mondale by saying “I promise not to hold my opponent’s youth and inexperience against him.”

David Ignatius of The Washington Post compares the candidates, writing about McCain’s memoir of his Navy career in McCain's True Voice

…If you want a reminder of why McCain should be a formidable candidate, take another look at his remarkable 1999 autobiography, "Faith of My Fathers."

McCain's account is as revealing as Barack Obama's memoir, "Dreams From My Father." Both candidates have written powerful accounts of their formative experiences. Each tale is woven around the universal theme of fathers and sons. Given the psychological torments that often drive politicians, it's a blessing to have two candidates who have examined their lives carefully and appear to understand their inner demons.

But these two memoirists couldn't have more different stories to tell, and that's what should make the 2008 campaign so interesting. Where Obama describes a quest for an absent father and an African American identity, McCain's early story is about learning to accept the legacy of a famous family where both his father and grandfather were four-star admirals.

McCain was a wild man in his youth, drinking and chasing women like a renegade prince of Navy royalty. He is brutally frank in his description of this protracted adolescence, describing his years at the Naval Academy as "a four-year course of insubordination and rebellion."

McCain's burden, and ultimately his salvation, was the military code of honor that his forefathers embodied. He was from a family of professional warriors, as far back as he could trace his ancestors, and he says this gave him a "reckless confidence" and a sense of fatalism. But it also produced an unshakable bond with his fellow officers and enlisted men -- and to the nation they had pledged to serve. Leadership, the art of guiding men courageously in war, was the family business.

The McCain story converges on his 5 1/2 years as a prisoner of war in North Vietnam. In the conventional telling, it is a tale of heroism -- how McCain refused an offer of early release, how he braved torture year after year, how he turned his insolent anger against his captors.

Certainly all those heroic details are present in McCain's memoir, and in his political appeal this year. The Vietnam legacy of steadfastness motivated him to resist American failure in Iraq and to agitate, sometimes almost alone, for what came to be called the "surge" of U.S. troops. When he says he preferred political defeat for himself to military defeat for his country, he is telling the truth. With an ex-POW's stubbornness, he could not abide the notion of failure and dishonor for U.S. forces.

But what makes McCain's account of his captivity truly remarkable is not the heroism but the humility. In page after page, he praises men who he insists were braver than he was. Though even the toughest prisoners were broken by torture, he cannot forgive himself for signing his own confession: "I shook, as if my disgrace were a fever." He survived through solidarity with other prisoners who were "a lantern of courage and faith that illuminated the way home with honor."

That’s the bedrock difference between the two candidates. One has actually been a leader for 30 years. The other has played one on TV.

McCain and Letterman 'pick on' Obama

I think McCain’s campaign has finally found its legs. The New York Times reports McCain Tries to Define Obama as Out of Touch

WASHINGTON — After spending much of the summer searching for an effective line of attack against Senator Barack Obama, Senator John McCain is beginning a newly aggressive campaign to define Mr. Obama as arrogant, out of touch and unprepared for the presidency.

On Wednesday alone, the McCain campaign released a new advertisement suggesting — and not in a good way — that Mr. Obama was a celebrity along the lines of Britney Spears and Paris Hilton. Republicans tried to portray Mr. Obama as a candidate who believed the race was all about him, relying on what Democrats said was a completely inaccurate quotation.

The Washington Post reports McCain Campaign Manager Steve Schmidt said of Obama, "There's no dispute that he's become the biggest celebrity in the world. The question that we are posing to the American people is this: Is he ready to lead yet?"

Ace has the McCain ad and demonstrates his usual way with words, headlining his post: New McCain Ad: Obama Is A Skanky Blonde Bimbo

The NYT also reports the Republican National Committee began an anti-Obama Web site called “Audacity Watch,” a play on the title of Mr. Obama’s book “The Audacity of Hope.” And, in a concerted volley of television interviews, news releases and e-mail, campaign representatives attacked him on a wide range of issues, including tax policies and energy proposals.

The Democrats’ response? The Democratic National Committee called Mr. McCain “McNasty.” What’s next? Calling McCain “McRude”? McMean? Why the nerve of that nasty old man, picking on a mere child like Obama. Maybe they should report him to Social Services for child abuse?

Obama's response? He calls McCain a racist. Again. As my daddy used to say, the hit dog hollers.

Comic David Letterman has also joined the gang picking on Obama, with Obama’s overconfidence the topic of Letterman's Top 10 list. Ouch.

The Politico reports: “The examples included Obama proposing to change the name of Oklahoma to ‘Oklobama,’ and measuring his head for Mount Rushmore.”

My personal favorite is: “1. Been cruising for chicks with John Edwards.” Oops. I forgot. We’re not supposed to talk about the Edwards affair. Oh. Anne Coulter wrote about it, so I guess now it's OK. And my local paper, The Charlotte Observer, is also writing about it, so the embargo is officially off.

Meanwhile, The WaPo reports on Obama’s “audacity tour” in the “Show me” state Missouri to try to show concern for small-town issues.

It was no accident that Obama's first campaign stop designed for the general election was in Cape Girardeau, a conservative Mississippi River community that is Rush Limbaugh's home town.

Rep. Jo Ann Emerson (R-Mo.) hinted at the problems Obama still might face here when she suggested that he "has some making up to do" with small-town America after his comments about "bitter" Americans clinging to guns and religion. "What rural Missourians don't like is a candidate who dismisses whole communities out of hand," she said.

I gotta give the man credit, it takes audacity or hubris or big brass gonads or all three to kick off what they called “first campaign stop designed for the general election” in Rush’s hometown. That’s smack dab in the middle of bitter, backwoods, guns-and-God-clinging rednecks. I spent a couple of years in Missouri during college and outside of St. Louis and Kansas City, that’s redneck country and they do not suffer fools gladly.

So what does Obama do in Missouri to show he’s not foolish to the small-town voters? He makes a statement that’s beyond foolish to idiocy.

Obama saith: “There are things you can do individually, though, to save energy. Making sure your tires are properly inflated — simple thing. But we could save all the oil that they’re talking about getting off drilling — if everybody was just inflating their tires? And getting regular tune-ups? You’d actually save just as much!”

Wow! Why didn’t I think of that? Just pump up my tires and get a tune-up and presto! America no longer needs any Arab oil. Man’s a genius!

Meanwhile, “President” Obama continues his “transition” planning, floating a list of leading cabinet appointments for his coming administration.

U.S. News reports: “There's lots of buzz about whom Sen. Barack Obama might pick for his top cabinet jobs. Among them: Sen. Hillary Clinton as head of Health and Human Services. Her allies suggest she might be interested if the job were elevated to the top tier of agencies and if she were allowed to push healthcare reform. Other names: Sen. John Kerry as secretary of state, former Sen. Tom Daschle as White House chief of staff... and exiting Republican Sen. Chuck Hagel at Defense.”

What a list of losers. That’s their chief qualification, losing elections.

As usual, Ace says it so much better than I can:

Barack Obama's Cabinet? Like the Legion of Doom, Minus the Blazing Intellects. A Murderer's Row of Stupid. A Rock 'n Roll Hall of Fame All-Star Jam of Liberal Pissants.”

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Russian 'Onion' mocks Barack

Mercy, now everybody's getting into the act of mocking Barack. Even the Russians are doing it. Or more specificially a site called The People's Cube, which quotes Rush on it's homepage banner calling it, "The Stalinist version of the Onion."

The mock Barack page is titled Obama Lowers Sea Levels, But Sadly Discovers Atlantis

Despite the predictions that Barack Obama would not act on his promise to lower the sea levels until he officially becomes President, the presumptive Democratic nominee went ahead and lowered the oceans last month in a hectic attempt to boost his own shrinking poll numbers. However, the resulting growth of landmass turned into a mixed blessing when it unexpectedly revealed the lost world of Atlantis with a history so shocking and controversial that Obama is now contemplating re-sinking the island by returning the seas to their previous levels.

What the artifacts of Atlantis have told the world, is a story of the demise of a once great nation whose citizens grew spoiled and apathetic as they forgot the reasons for their success and allowed a sense of entitlement and self-loathing to set in.

I stole this from Thomas Lifson at American Thinker. It's delicious. Read the whole thing.

Lifson says "The candidate who must not be laughed at endures some outrageous satire at The People's Cube, an anti-communist website published by a Russian emigre to America." Is this a great country or what?

I particularly love the graphics. Clicking over is worth it for the photoshops alone. This guy is giving Slublog a run for his money on Obama photoshops.

Obama’s MSM honeymoon over

When even the cutline under a photo “cuts,” that’s a pretty good sign some members of the mainstream media have fallen out of love or lust or whatever it was with “President” Obama (AKA the presumptive Democratic nominee formerly known as candidate Barack Hussein Obama).

The photo of Obama in today’s Washington Post waving to members of Congress while they smile and applaud is identified thusly: “Congress offers adulation to the self-elected president. (By Linda Davidson -- The Washington Post)”

Washington Post columnist Dana Milbank writes the “cutting” story with the photo, titled: President Obama Continues Hectic Victory Tour

Mercy. Even the headline cuts. Milbank’s report is so delicious, I’m going to take the liberty to quote almost the whole thing, with boldface applied to the best turns of phrase, IMHO.

Barack Obama has long been his party's presumptive nominee. Now he's becoming its presumptuous nominee.

Fresh from his presidential-style world tour, during which foreign leaders and American generals lined up to show him affection, Obama settled down to some presidential-style business in Washington yesterday. He ordered up a teleconference with the (current president's) Treasury secretary, granted an audience to the Pakistani prime minister and had his staff arrange for the chairman of the Federal Reserve to give him a briefing. Then, he went up to Capitol Hill to be adored by House Democrats in a presidential-style pep rally.

Along the way, he traveled in a bubble more insulating than the actual president's. Traffic was shut down for him as he zoomed about town in a long, presidential-style motorcade, while the public and most of the press were kept in the dark about his activities, which included a fundraiser at the Mayflower where donors paid $10,000 or more to have photos taken with him. His schedule for the day, announced Monday night, would have made Dick Cheney envious:

The schedule is blank, with all events marked “En route TBA.

Ouch. When the mainstream media starts comparing a candidate to Vice President Dick Cheney, it is not a compliment. Cheney is second only to President Bush in the low esteem of the MSM and the left-wing nutroots in general (pardon my repetition). The only distinction between the two, so far as I’ve heard, is that some members of the MSM, like Milbank and a handful of others, have awoke from Obama’s acid Kool-aid. Last I heard, the nutroots are still in full swoon, but I don’t read the nutroots’ blogs, so I could be wrong about that. Have to plead ignorance there.

Milbank continues:

The 5:20 TBA turned out to be his adoration session with lawmakers in the Cannon Caucus Room, where even committee chairmen arrived early, as if for the State of the Union. Capitol Police cleared the halls -- just as they do for the actual president. The Secret Service hustled him in through a side door -- just as they do for the actual president.

Inside, according to a witness, he told the House members, "This is the moment . . . that the world is waiting for," adding: "I have become a symbol of the possibility of America returning to our best traditions."

As he marches toward Inauguration Day (Election Day is but a milestone on that path), Obama's biggest challenger may not be Republican John McCain but rather his own hubris.

Some say the supremely confident Obama -- nearly 100 days from the election, he pronounces that "the odds of us winning are very good" -- has become a president-in-waiting. But in truth, he doesn't need to wait: He has already amassed the trappings of the office, without those pesky decisions.

The Atlantic's Marc Ambinder reported last week that Obama has directed his staff to begin planning for his transition to the White House, causing Republicans to howl about premature drape measuring. Obama was even feeling confident enough to give British Prime Minister Gordon Brown some management advice over the weekend. "If what you're trying to do is micromanage and solve everything, then you end up being a dilettante," he advised the prime minister, portraying his relative inexperience much as President Bush did in 2000.

On his presidential-style visit to the Western Wall in Jerusalem last week, Obama left a written prayer, intercepted by an Israeli newspaper, asking God to "help me guard against pride and despair." He seems to have the despair part under control, but the pride could be a problem.

One source of the confidence is the polling, which shows him with a big lead over McCain. But polls are fickle allies: A USA Today-Gallup poll released Monday found McCain leading Obama by four percentage points among likely voters. Another reason for Obama's confidence -- the press -- is also an unfaithful partner. The Project for Excellence in Journalism reported yesterday that Obama dominated the news media's attention for a seventh straight week. But there are signs that the Obama campaign's arrogance has begun to anger reporters.

In the latest issue of the New Republic, Gabriel Sherman found reporters complaining that Obama's campaign was "acting like the Prom Queen" and being more secretive than Bush. The magazine quoted the New York Times' Adam Nagourney's reaction to the Obama campaign's memo attacking one of his stories: "I've never had an experience like this, with this campaign or others." Then came Obama's overseas trip and the campaign's selection of which news organizations could come aboard. Among those excluded: the New Yorker magazine, which had just published a satirical cover about Obama that offended the campaign.

And then Milbank makes the unkindest cut of all, the supreme insult: He compares Obama to President Bush and finds him worse. Double ouch!

Even Bush hasn't tried that. But then again, Obama has been outdoing the president in ruffles and flourishes lately. As Bush held quiet signing ceremonies in the White House yesterday morning, Obama was involved in a more visible display of executive authority a block away, when he met with Pakistani Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gillani at the Willard. A full block of F Street was shut down for the prime minister and the would-be president, and some 40 security and motorcade vehicles filled the street.

Later, Obama's aides issued an official-sounding statement, borrowing the language of White House communiques: "I had a productive and wide-ranging discussion. . . . I look forward to working with the democratically elected government of Pakistan."

It had been a long day of acting presidential, but Obama wasn't done. After a few hours huddling with advisers over his vice presidential choice, Obama made his way to the pep rally on the Hill. Moments after he entered the meeting with lawmakers, there was an extended cheer, followed by another, and another.

"I think this can be an incredible election," Obama said later. "I look forward to collaborating with everybody here to win the election."

Win the election? Didn't he do that already?

OK, time for a wrapup. Milbank’s awakening from Obama’s acid Kool-aid follows closely on these other members of the MSM who in recent days also came out from under the haze: The New York Times op-ed writer David Brooks, Washington Post columnist Howard Kurtz, Chicago Tribune columnist John Kass, and critical editorial opinions from both The Washington Post and USA Today. The rightwing blogs and other members of the Vast Rightwing Conspiracy (of which I have been a proud member long since before Hillary noticed it) have been hammering away at Obama for at least the past year. But when members of the MSM join the chorus of naysayers, not only is Obama’s honeymoon over, the end may be nigh.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Will we see our lost pets in heaven?

Will Rogers used to say, “If there are no dogs in heaven, I want to go where the dogs went.” The most-often asked Bible Question I get is “Will see our lost pets in heaven?” Below is my response to that question. Other Bible questions and answers are in my online archive. If you have a Bible question, check my Bible Q&A archive first and if I haven’t answered your question, send me an email and I will research it and respond.

Bible Answer: I have taught before that man is the only creature with a soul, while animals do not have souls, based on the ending of this one verse in the King James, Gen. 2:7, “and man became a living soul.” But that is not what this verse really says.

W.E. Vine’s "An Expository Dictionary of New Testament Words" says the Greek word translated “soul" is psuche, which means “an animate creature, human or other.”

The Hebrew word used here for soul is “nepesh,” according to "Vine’s Complete Expository Dictionary of Old and New Testament Words," which says, “The KJV alone uses over 28 different English terms for this one Hebrew word. The problem with the English term “soul” is that no actual equivalent of the term or the idea behind it is represented in the Hebrew language.”

Vine says the use of “soul” in Gen. 2:7 is “an unfortunate mistranslation of the term.”

"The KJV Parallel Bible Commentary" says this about the KJV use of “living soul” in this verse, “A better translation would be ‘a living creature or person,’ as the phrase (identical) is also used of animals (Genesis 1:21, 24). Thus, soul is not a reference to the concept of body, soul/spirit, but rather to the fact man became a living being. Man is distinguished from animals by being created in the image of God.”

So, do animals have a “soul”? When Adam sinned, the penalty of death came upon the entire creation, so does that mean we can assume animals did not die until that time?

Romans 8:19-22 refers to when man will be redeemed with new, spiritual bodies, and says the other parts of God’s creation will be delivered also, referring to all other life.

19For the earnest expectation of the creation eagerly waits for the revealing of the sons of God. 20For the creation was subjected to futility, not willingly, but because of Him who subjected it in hope; 21because the creation itself also will be delivered from the bondage of corruption into the glorious liberty of the children of God. 22For we know that the whole creation groans and labors with birth pangs together until now.”

Does that mean animals will be resurrected into new life, like humans? I don’t know.

Perhaps the writer is accurate who wrote, “Heaven is the place where when we first arrive, we will be greeted by every animal we’ve ever loved.”

It is certainly within the power to God to resurrect any of His creations, man or animal. Heaven will certainly be a perfect place where we shall want for nothing.

(John Myers has been a Christian lay speaker, Sunday School adult teacher and avid student of the Bible for more than 30 years.)

Stocking up on guns

I’m one of those bitter, backwoods rednecks whom Obama referred to earlier in the campaign as clinging to my God and my guns. And I gotta admit I hope the BATF ain’t hovering over my house in a black helicopter because I’ve bought a few firearms recently (Steyr M357-A1 pictured), at least partially due to the possibility of there being a real honest-to-God President Obama instead of just the current pretend version (or a President Hillary either. Lord, deliver us!).

And I’m not alone, as more than a few of my gun-nut buddies have told me they’re doing the same, too. But who needs an excuse to buy guns?

David Paulin at American Thinker reports the prospect of a “President Obama” is already creating an economic stimulus with Gun sales up in Texas

This summer, sales at McBride's Guns in Austin are 10 percent higher, compared with the same time last year.

"Our regular client base is very concerned about anti-gun legislation if the wrong people get elected," said Joe McBride, owner of McBride's Guns, adding "what they see as the wrong people."

AJC Sports Inc., which is based in Clute and sells firearms at gun shows in Austin, has seen strong sales for more than a year, said Alan Jones, the company's president. About mid-February every year, Jones said, sales drop off until the store gets busier in August, right before hunting season. But in February 2007, sales didn't go down as usual, he said, and sales have increased 60 percent since then.

A year ago, Jones said, consumers were worried because they thought Sen. Hillary Clinton would clinch the Democratic nomination, and if elected, might push for stricter gun laws.

Keith Hetz, who sometimes helps a friend sell firearms at the Saxet Gun Show at the Crockett Center, said he worries about new laws limiting how many firearms people can own or how much ammunition they can buy. In the past year, Hetz said he has stocked up on ammunition and bought two handguns and a shotgun.

Now there’s some change you can believe in.

McCain vs. Obama

I have yet to see a McCain for President bumper sticker around here in bitter, backwoods country. But according to the pundits, this election is not so much about McCain's positives as Obama's negatives. So here’s a bumper sticker for us non-Obama fans.

R. Emmett Tyrrell, Jr., editor-in-chief of The American Spectator, compares and contrasts the two Presidential candidates and provides the most complete bio I have read to date to explain why Sen. John McCain should be the next President in Captain McCain. You might be surprised to learn a lot about McCain that isn’t commonly known. I’m impressed and even more convinced McCain belongs in the White House.

Senator McCain brings with his candidacy a life spent in public service, on which I shall presently elaborate with insights from Grover Norquist, former Solicitor General Ted Olson, and another longtime AmSpec colleague, former Secretary of the Navy John Lehman. McCain's public service, however, is not of the kind bragged about by so many conventional Washington figures, which is to say, a life of personal hustle, shameless self-promotion, but with one's muzzle deep in the public trough and one's paw outstretched to every passing lobbyist. Public service for McCain began in the United States Navy following the exemplary careers of his father and grandfather. Then in 1982 he won a House seat. Then he replaced the retiring Senator Goldwater.

…Interviewed for this piece, Lehman told me of one of their earlier disagreements that reveals the senator's peculiar sense of public service. It was February 1981. Lehman had just become secretary of the Navy. Captain McCain dropped by his office to tell him he was quitting to run for Congress. Lehman objected, telling him he was certain to be promoted to admiral in the autumn and was on track to reach four stars. The young officer who had just been so effectual in reviving the military rejected the stars, stars his father and grandfather had won. He wanted to enter Congress, saying, as Lehman recalls: "The Navy's in good shape, but I have never seen such a f -- -ed up organization as Congress. I can do more to help the country there."

SENATOR OBAMA too brings with his candidacy a life of public service. He claims it is a different kind of public service than that of "the status quo in Washington," though it looks like status quo Washington to me -- at least as lived by the Clintons, the Gores, and every Kennedy ever heard of. Obama has been a political hustler throughout his adult life, so much so that by the end of his 2004 election to the Senate he was sending aides to Iowa to test his presidential prospects. That was a mere four years ago! Before that he spent eight years as an Illinois state senator, and before that he was a "community organizer."

Read the whole thing. Then make up your mind who to vote for. You might just come away with a different view of McCain vs. Obama.

And if you’ve noticed the McCain campaign has come to life lately with sharper attacks on Obama, guess why? His nickname is Sgt. Schmidt.

Jennifer Rubin at Pajamas Media reports the arrival of ex-Bush campaign wiz Steve Schmidt has breathed new life into the candidate's moribund efforts in The New and Improved John McCain

Mocking the messiah?

Byron York at National Review says it has finally become OK to Go Ahead, Laugh at Obama

Just a few weeks ago, it seemed nobody could make a joke about Barack Obama. The New York Times published a front-page story declaring that “there has been little humor” about Obama because “there is no comedic ‘take’ on him, nothing easy to turn to for an easy laugh.” Television comedy writers fretted that audiences didn’t want to hear anything even slightly negative about the Democratic nominee. The political press corps went nuts over a satirical New Yorker cover that wasn’t even directed at Obama.

And this was about a man who made up his own pretend presidential seal and motto, Vero Possumus; a man who, upon securing the Democratic nomination, said, “I am absolutely certain that generations from now, we will be able to look back and tell our children that this was the moment when the rise of the oceans began to slow and our planet began to heal”; a man who has on a number of occasions seemed to forget that he is not, or at least not yet, the President of the United States, who has misstated the number of states in his own country, who has forgotten on which committees he serves in the U.S. Senate. Professional comedians — and their audiences — couldn’t find anything funny about any of that?

Now, after Obama’s world tour, there are already cracks in the Times-imposed conventional wisdom. Confronted with something of an official ban on Obama humor, there is emerging a new strain of Obama humor — zings at the candidate’s hauteur, his presumptuousness, and, especially, his most zealous admirers in the press.

Last week, Jon Stewart on The Daily Show got an enthusiastic reception from his audience with a routine about Obama’s media entourage. Stewart tossed to the team of reporters who were said to be traveling with the Obama campaign, some of whom had abandoned John McCain to cover the more exciting Democrat. They were positively giddy about Obama.

“The commander-in-chief,” said one.

“Did you see when the president hit that three-pointer?” asked another.

“Nothing but net,” said a third.

Stewart interrupted. “He’s not the president.” Pause. “Barack Obama’s not the president.”

A confused silence. “Are you sure?” the reporters asked.

Larry Thornberry at American Spectator tosses in a good zinger on Obama’s “Let’s Play President” world tour in Ich Bin Ein Pretender

The fact that 200,000 people turned out in Berlin to hear Obama sing a couple of choruses of "We Are the World" only demonstrates that Europeans, who have long since lost the taste both for liberty and for hard work, have a lot of time on their hands and are not very discriminating in the entertainment they choose. For a long time it has been no secret that Obama and his brand of socialist, pacifist politics have been very popular in Old Europe. Perhaps it's time we traded Obama to the EU for two croissants and a used Volvo. (It would be one of those trades that benefit both teams. Europe would get a guy they adore, and we would get something of value.)

Wesley Pruden, editor emeritus of The Washington Times, also had a good zinger on Obama’s Berlin speech in When snake oil was in season

By inviting comparison to Ronald Reagan and JFK, he invited close inspection. Kennedy's use of "Berliner," local slang for a jelly doughnut, risked ridicule, but he made it work. Barack Obama was wise not to make his speech in Hamburg, where he might have been ridiculed as a nothingburger. Worse, in Frankfurt, he would have revealed himself as an ambitious hot dog.

Cal Thomas strikes a more serious note, comparing Obama’s Great Expectations to the promises of the second coming of the real Messiah.

There is a reason the psalmist warned, "Put not your trust in princes, nor in the son of man, in whom there is no help." (Psalm 146:3)

…It is a truism in politics that you are supposed to lower expectations in order to boost your political stock should you exceed them. Sen. Obama has done precisely the opposite. He has raised expectations so high there is only one way he can exceed them following his nomination in Denver. That is to climb to the top of a mountain peak, there to be transfigured and ascend into Heaven. No wonder Jon Stewart lampooned his messianic personae on "The Daily Show," saying that while in Israel, Obama made a short visit to the manger in Bethlehem where he was born.

In his Berlin speech, Obama promised to tear down more walls than Joshua did at Jericho. He's going to destroy walls separating black from white; walls between Jews, Muslims and Christians; walls dividing rich from poor, and East from West. Prior to the advent of Obama, such powers were reserved for the Messiah, who, we are promised, will beat swords into ploughshares and spears into pruning hooks, make the lion lie down with the lamb and we will study war no more.

No politician can live up to such great expectations.

One last Obama mockery. Columnist Frank Rich is the Chris “Thrill up my leg” Matthews of The New York Times and offers a laughable for apparently serious defense of Obama’s presidential pretentions in How Obama Became Acting President

IT almost seems like a gag worthy of “Borat”: A smooth-talking rookie senator with an exotic name passes himself off as the incumbent American president to credulous foreigners. But to dismiss Barack Obama’s magical mystery tour through old Europe and two war zones as a media-made fairy tale would be to underestimate the ingenious politics of the moment.

Read the rest if your stomach can take it.

Monday, July 28, 2008

Tygrrr Express at Laugh Factory

My young Republican Jewish friend Eric, who blogs at Tygrrr Express, recently did a standup comedy act at The Laugh Factory. Here's a sample:
“The world is upside down. We now have a world where the President of France is more pro-American than half the people living in the United States. We live in a world where the leader of France wants to fight, and people wanting to lead America want to surrender. France is laughing at us because they want to act like us, and we are becoming them.”

“People are carping from the sidelines that we need to withdraw from Iraq. All I hear from democrats is withdrawal, withdrawal, withdrawal. I wish they would apply that philosophy to their sex lives, then there would be less democrats.”

“Then we can move on to gun control. Liberals favor it, and conservatives are against it. We should take the guns away from the liberals and give them to us. That way if there is ever a controversial election like 2000 that can’t be resolved peacefully, we will win, because we will have all the guns.”
There is hope for the next generation. Good show, Eric.

Don't play with my pistol!

video
What's a gun nut supposed to do when his wife won't listen to his warning not to play with his pistol?

“President” Obama’s demise?

There’s a catch-phrase here in the Bible belt used by preachers of the so-called gospel of health and wealth: “Name it and claim it!” A fellow Christian who’s a car salesman (yes, there is such a thing as an honest, Christian car salesman) told me about one local woman who apparently was taking such a preacher at his word. She showed up on his car lot one morning, sat herself down behind the wheel of a new car and informed him that “God has given me this car.” She confidently sat there all day, waiting for God to show up with the cash. Alas, neither God nor His money arrived by closing time and the woman was forced to abandon her claimed prize. Methinks that amongst his other strange doctrines of Black Liberation, that perhaps the now-supposedly-retired Rev. Jeremiah Wright is also a proclaimer of the so-called health and wealth gospel.

I say that because Barack (Don’t call me “Hussein” even though that is my middle name, just call me “President”) Obama, who absorbed the strange doctrines of Wright’s preaching for 20 years, has obviously already named and claimed the title of President of the United States. One campaign flack even disclosed Obama is already making plans for the “transition” from candidate to occupant of the Oval Office.

John Tabin at American Spectator writes in Barack Hubris Obama:

McCain's surrogates have to be reminded that there's still an election on, as a senior Obama foreign policy adviser had to be after asserting that "When the president of the United States goes and gives a speech [overseas], it is not a political speech or a political rally."
"But he is not president of the United States," a reporter noted.

Maybe not, but he sure acts like he is. Obama has already ordered his staff to put together his transition team to prepare for his move into the White House.

William Kristol reports a German editor, following Obama’s triumphal speech in Berlin in front of the Victory Column, has declared victory in the Presidential election by referring to the candidate as President No. 44. The huge majority of the mainstream media in the U.S. has also already made the same leap of faith.

Carl Cannon writes that "having a candidate travel abroad as the presumptive President-elect before he's been formally nominated is a strange new wrinkle" in presidential campaigns.

Candidate John McCain recognized Obama’s presumptuousness in Berlin with a campaign statement:

“While Barack Obama took a premature victory lap today in the heart of Berlin, proclaiming himself a ‘citizen of the world,’ John McCain continued to make his case to the American citizens who will decide this election. Barack Obama offered eloquent praise for this country, but the contrast is clear. John McCain has dedicated his life to serving, improving and protecting America. Barack Obama spent an afternoon talking about it.”

Jennifer Rubin of Pajamas Media adds another sign of the presidential wannabe’s blind ego:

Obama’s mega-gaffe in snubbing the wounded troops in Germany (with the excuse he wouldn’t want to use campaign funds for such a visit) left even the MSM scratching their heads. There could be no more perfect example of the argument McCain has been making: this is a callow man whose ego blinds him to the sacrifice of military service. Coming on the heels of news that Obama is already planning his White House transition, it seemed to put new emphasis on the question the McCain camp has been implicitly asking, “Who does he think he is?

J.R. Dunn at American Thinker describes the “too presumptuous” campaign of “President Obama” with The Operative Term is 'Hubris' and boldly predicts his blind ego will eventually lead to his demise. I can only hope…

He has a seat on his campaign aircraft marked "president". He has taken a shot at creating his own presidential seal, complete with Latin motto. He has laid claim to personal control over the world's oceans and seas. He has repeatedly attempted to dictate how and on what level he, his ideas, and his activities may be discussed. He has encouraged a portrayal of himself as a messianic figure, including a portrait of himself as Christ, complete with halo. He is even now completing a triumphant grand tour of the old world, during which he attempted to shanghai an ancient monument for personal use without consulting the host government.

…Obama continues his charade, awarding himself foreign triumphs, posing as a figure of world-historical stature, as if the election, perhaps even the inauguration, were merely a ritual. In his own mind, Obama is already president, behaving as he believes a president should, while the voters look on in bewilderment and growing disquiet.

Obama is too proud and too blind. He will continue in his solipsistic dance until the machinery of fate intervenes. What form it will take is impossible to say. These situations build up grain by grain until a critical mass is at last reached. Obama is piling up those grains daily, with each display of aloofness, refusal to obey established protocol, and assumption of powers that do not yet belong to him. The final straw could be the most trivial of incidents, blown up all out of proportion to its importance simply due to its being the end of a series (recall one recent political powerhouse whose destruction was encompassed by a complaint over his seat on an airplane - an airplane he shouldn't have been aboard in the first place).

What we can be sure of is that Obama will not avoid the final reckoning. The last, and strangest, characteristic of the victim of hubris is that he appears to welcome his fate, almost embracing it, cooperating in his own downfall. So it will be with Barack Obama. But he must not be allowed to take the country with him.

Amen, Brother Dunn, preach on.

Sunday, July 27, 2008

Obama's hype

Perhaps it was jet lag catching up with him, but Obama committed a little-noticed gaffe as he talked with Jeff Zeleny of the New York Times on his campaign jet between Paris and London. The headline says it all: Going for that Presidential Look, but Trying Not to Overdo It.
LONDON — He stood in the shadow of the Temple of Hercules, held forth at the Élysée Palace and convened a one-man news conference here on Saturday outside No. 10 Downing Street, all with a simple aim: to make a one-term senator from Illinois look presidential to voters back home in America. But along the way to appearing presidential, did Senator Barack Obama cross a political line — as he and his advisers quietly feared, and some Republicans hoped — by coming across as too presumptuous?
He left out the part about Obama inviting himself to Berlin to "look Presidential" while giving a speech supposedly like JFK and Reagan, but lets not talk about that because that might come across as "too presumptuous?"
Leaning forward in his chair aboard a campaign plane freshly emblazoned with his logo, he added, “We thought it was worth the risk.”
So there's a bald-face admission: "We" as in the royal personage himself, calculated the politics of the entire trip with the aim of Obama "appearing presidential" and decided that though it might be presumed as "too presumptuous" by some for a mere candidate to put himself where two real honest-to-God Presidents had made speeches at pivotal moments in history, and for the mere candidate with nothing accomplished as yet to make other-worldly claims as being the great world leader we all have been waiting for, "was worth the risk."

And then way at the end, where you might have missed it had you not plowed on through this self-serving tripe, was the biggest gaffe:
“We don’t buy our own hype,” Mr. Obama said.
A political gaffe is when a politician slips up and actually speaks the truth. If Obama doesn't buy his own hype, why should we?

But we, the voters, are supposed to buy the hype, all the way until the first Tuesday in November. After that, he won't need us anymore.

But Obama doesn't even see his "hype" admission as a gaffe. After all, he's the messiah, and messiahs never make mistakes, right? He repeated almost the same words to Maureen Dowd, New York Times op-ed columnist, for the Sunday edition.

Dowd: How does he like the McCain camp mocking him as “The One”?

Obama: “Even if you start believing your own hype, which I rarely do, things’ll turn on you pretty quick anyway,” he said. “I have a fairly steady temperament that has at times been interpreted as, ‘Oh, he’s sort of too cool.’ But it’s not real."

"Not real." Now there's a description of Obama by Obama that I can believe in.