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Barack "Both Ways" Obama Rides Again

One theme I've picked up on Barack Obama is his innate need to take both sides of an issue, and then argue that his simultaneously holding opposing viewpoints is in no way a contradiction or a paradox. And I'm not the only one -- last night I saw my first Republican-aligned attack ad that harped on the same theme.

Well, Senator Both Ways has pulled it off again, with his recent trip to Germany.

When Obama first sought permission to speak at the Brandenburg Gate in Berlin, he reassured his hosts that it was not a campaign event. That didn't work, so he moved on to another Berlin landmark, the Tiergarten. And Obama clearly said that he wasn't there as a candidate:

"Tonight, I speak to you not as a candidate for President, but as a citizen - a proud citizen of the United States, and a fellow citizen of the world."

So it wasn't a campaign event. Fine.

Then, at the last minute, Obama canceled a trip to visit American troops at Rammstein and Landstuhl. Landstuhl, it should be noted, is where a lot of Americans wounded in Iraq and Afghanistan end up for treatment. Why did Obama blow off this opportunity to meet with the troops?

Well, at first it was because of scheduling conflicts. They didn't have time.

That excuse held up just long enough for Obama to announce that since his trip had some "down time," he wanted to play tourist around Berlin.

That's when excuse #2 was trotted out. Since the bill for Obama's trip was being footed by his campaign, it would have been "inappropriate" for him to visit the troops -- that would have come across as a political move, and he wouldn't want to do that.

But... but... but... I thought he wasn't there as a candidate, and the Germany speech wasn't a campaign event. Obama himself said so!

So the Germany trip was a campaign event when it got him out of visiting the troops, but it wasn't when he was seeking permission from the Germans to make his grand speech.

I think Obama needs a little sign around his neck, like one of Harry Mudd's androids, that says "campaigning." It can light up when he's doing stuff related to his campaign, and stays dark when he is doing other stuff.

No, strike that. We're in the midst of an energy crisis. It'd be lit up almost all the time. Make it read "not campaigning." He'll save a fortune on batteries.

(Ed Morrissey has more details here)


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Comments (50)

Ole "Both Ways Barack" stri... (Below threshold)

Ole "Both Ways Barack" strikes again. No surprise with his not visiting the troops. The left despises the military. Always has, and always will. The troops are just props to them. ww

Whatever BO is doing ya got... (Below threshold)

Whatever BO is doing ya gotta admit it's working right now. And will continue to work as long as the press stays with him.

"Harry Mudd's androids".... (Below threshold)
DJ Drummond:

"Harry Mudd's androids"...

Sad point 1 - you used a Star Trek reference, expecting the average reader to recognize it in the context of the article,

Sad point 2 - I recognized the reference right away.

This one doesn't bother me ... (Below threshold)

This one doesn't bother me much. Everyone KNOWS this is a campaign trip, no matter what's being said to who. And it would be inappropriate for any candidate to use troops, a base, or any other mil resource as a campaign stop.

As for the rest of his "inclusive" points of view. He's beginning to make John effing Kerry look downright decisive.

DJ & JT:LOL! Righ... (Below threshold)

DJ & JT:

LOL! Right there with you on Harry Mudd...

You guys are mean. He need... (Below threshold)

You guys are mean. He needs time to eat all those waffles.

"So it wasn't a campaign ev... (Below threshold)

"So it wasn't a campaign event. Fine."

Then the other reason stuff.

"I thought he wasn't there as a candidate, and the Germany speech wasn't a campaign event."

If his speech was not a campaign event, which you accept (unless your first quote is sarcasim). And as you imply visiting troops would be a campaing event then your second quote is accurate.

What would you have said if he did visit troops?

You are trying to have it both ways. He did not visit troops that is bad. If he had visited troops that would have been bad.

You do not have to have the... (Below threshold)

You do not have to have the press with you when you visit the troops. That simple knucklehead. ww

WorldCitizen -If h... (Below threshold)

WorldCitizen -

If he'd visited the troops instead of playing tourist, I'd have had a lot more respect for him. He'd have gotten some more respect from the military as well.

Hillary would have gone. She knows she needs to show a softer side, and could have used the votes if she were the candidate at this stage.

McCain? Certainly HE would have gone.

Obama? About all I can figure is he thinks he doesn't need to worry about the military vote.

Having spent 23 years in - that was a slap in the face. He wants to be CinC, but won't visit wounded troops? Yeah, that'll endear him to the military.

Now watch. I'll predict that ANY very close state will have hordes of lawyers descend - and the first thing they'll try to toss out as disqualified are the military absentee ballots.

JLawson,Having spe... (Below threshold)


Having spent 4 years in - I would not want an entourage of press and politicians traipsing through my hospital ward.

Why? Because everyone would know that it was just for show. I will grant that all politicians are not pure callousness and have sympathetic feelings for the military and its personnel, and if that is the case I would prefer a handwritten card rather than a handshake in front of cameras.

My point was that J was criticizing Obama for not making wounded troops a political prop.

Good Lord. All he has to d... (Below threshold)

Good Lord. All he has to do is say, "No Press."

Indeed. But he couldn't DO... (Below threshold)

Indeed. But he couldn't DO that, Oyster.

No need for an entourage - just slip in, visit a few wards, spend some time with the troops - would it have killed him to be away from reporters for a couple of hours?

There was nothing whatsoeve... (Below threshold)

There was nothing whatsoever to prevent Obama from visiting Landstuhl. The fact that he couldn't treat it as a photo-op, thus canceling a visit stands as another example of the left's "regard" for our military.

"There was nothing whatsoev... (Below threshold)

"There was nothing whatsoever to prevent Obama from visiting Landstuhl." - Gramps

Except the Pentagon. http://tpmelectioncentral.talkingpointsmemo.com/2008/07/pentagon_confirms_that_it_told.php

"It's unclear how Obama could have made the visit at all, given the Pentagon's directives. No Senate staff was on the trip, and the Obama camp says they received the Pentagon's directives on Wednesday, after they were already abroad."

Keep fightin' the good fight, J.

max:You left out the... (Below threshold)

You left out the real reason.

"A Pentagon spokesperson confirms to me that because of longstanding Department of Defense regulations, Pentagon officials told Obama aides that he couldn't visit the base with campaign staff."

He could have gone. He just couldn't go with his huge campaign staff. Since he couldn't make it a huge photo op (with a horde of handlers around to cover up his larger gaffes and select the more photogenic and ethnically-sorted soldiers for the press coverage), he decided that the troops were much less important than shopping.

The fact that he would have had to rely on military videographers and photographers, instead of the fawning press or his own "beauty shot" photogs? Just icing on the cake.

You're kidding right?... (Below threshold)

You're kidding right?

The DoD said it would be viewed as a campaign stop. Sen. McCain would have called it a campaign stop and a shaimless one at that (old man yells at cloud)!

If Sen. Obama were anywhere near as bad as you are attempting (feebly) to make him out, he would have made the visit with press in tow and a marching band.

Give me a break!

look you argument makes no ... (Below threshold)
rookie LT:

look you argument makes no sense
Statement: Obama is not on a campaign trip
Situation: Visiting troops is a campaign event.
Decision: Don't visit the troops or you lied about campagning!

What is wrong with that?

As 2LT who hopes to have many years in the military ahead of him, John McCain is one of the biggest enemies of the military. and it makes no sense, this man should be the biggest supporter of us as he was a war hero who gotten tortured!

Sadly McCain opposes health care for vets and wants to decrease funding for education of vets when they get back from the war. I guess bc America turned its back on him after Nam, he thinks he should turn his back on the troops now.

McCain and GW Bush for that... (Below threshold)

McCain and GW Bush for that matter have many times visited the troops in Walter Reed without anyone knowing. Obama could have and should have done the same thing, since he is running to be Commander and Chief. His priorities are the camera's and gushing followers. What probably went through Obama's head when deciding to be a tourist or visit the troops, "Screw the troops. If I can't make an event out of it, who cares." I do. Any veteran should. ww

Obama well knows the rules ... (Below threshold)

Obama well knows the rules and protocol for visiting wounded troops and vets:


It was not politically expedient for him to do it yesterday, so he ignored them.

<a href="http://www.politic... (Below threshold)


"We believed that based on the information we received that any presence, even his own and only his own, would get into a back and forth on whether his own presence was a campaign event," Gibbs said.

And J. would've busted his balls for campaigning at a military base.

Besides, apparently Cindy McCain hates the troops as well.

"Trying to make clear that this was not an attempt to undercut the Democratic nominee, Morrell also noted that when McCain officials asked the Pentagon for permission to let Cindy McCain visit the massive U.S. hospital ship, the U.S.N.S. Comfort, the request was rejected."

By the way, Willie, if what... (Below threshold)

By the way, Willie, if what you say is true, "McCain and GW Bush for that matter have many times visited the troops in Walter Reed without anyone knowing," then how do YOU know? And how do you know Obama hasn't done the same?

WorldCitizen -And ... (Below threshold)

WorldCitizen -

And you hit it. Barack will not go anywhere he might have to speak off the cuff.

No matter how good the reason is.

Read the comments here, ... (Below threshold)

Read the comments here, and I'll say this--I don't give a tin shit about how the denials are spun, or WHO spins them, there was NO reason that Obama could not have taken the time to visit those troops at Landstuhl.

I know it and so does any one here with 2 functional brain cells, that these troops mean NOTHING to Obama, or ANY leftwit, unless they can be seen as a political advantage for them.

Speaking here from experience-I served proudly from 61-67, with a year-long vacation in sunny Southeast Asia.

Upon reading many of the bl... (Below threshold)

Upon reading many of the blogs posted here, I must clarify something.
Most Americans agree with the lofty words and visions for world peace that Obama so eloquently pontificates in his speeches ... It's Obama we don't trust. those of you who hypnotically fawn over Obama take everything he says as gospel. But, you don't even know the man. You assume that because his words are worthy, he is trustworthy. People they are just words! Obama, the man who is speaking those words has a horrible track record. He did nothing as a senator. He spent the last 20 years accepting an anti-American racist as his mentor. His associations have been with extremely unsavory people. However, you Obamabots keep trying to characterize the rest of us as disagreeing with what Obama says ... when it's Obama himself we don't trust ... nor should you!

JLawson,I think wh... (Below threshold)


I think what you said last was a hopeful mischaracterization.

I try not to indulge in hyperbole like saying things like McCain never makes his own coffee. Or anybody who would vote for McCain wants to see the Constitution ripped to shreds.

These are not an accurate reflection of reality.

I am constantly stunned how well bin Ladin's tactics are working. Divide and conquer is one of the easiest to see being played out. Keep the people of the US at each other's throats so that no real coordinated effort can be launch against his organization. Imagine if we all thought we had a common enemy? Rather than constantly taking pot shots at each other.

Live free or die.

Didn't get a chance to see ... (Below threshold)

Didn't get a chance to see Obamamessiah in Berlin, but from what I understand, the Germans showed that they are understandably excited about Him. With a couple hundred thousand people showing up, I wouldn't have gotten a good view anyway.

back I go to The Underground.

WorldCitizen -Obam... (Below threshold)

WorldCitizen -

Obama's skills at being unable to talk in public without a teleprompter are starting to become legendary. And with far more reason, I think, than Ford's supposed clumsiness, or Quayle's inability to spell...

JLawson,I guess I ... (Below threshold)


I guess I have not heard the ledgend yet. Is this a swing single issue? Public speaking skills? You couldn't have voted for Bush if speaking in public is a criteria for electability.

Shorter Gramps: "I don't ca... (Below threshold)

Shorter Gramps: "I don't care what the facts are, you kids get off my lawn!"

And, with all due respect, your experiences in the 60's are irrelevant.

"You couldn't have voted... (Below threshold)
Les Nessman:

"You couldn't have voted for Bush if speaking in public is a criteria for electability."

Compared to robotic Gore, Bush isn't that bad at speaking in public.
Compared to snooty Kerry, Bush wasn't that much worse, either.

Neither of Bush's prez opponents were great orators, so public speaking wasn't a factor.

Obama's supposed to be this gee-whiz mesmerizing orator. When I actually listen to his gabfests, I'm not that dazzled. Especially when he doesn't have a teleprompter.

"So this - you know, the... (Below threshold)

"So this - you know, these aren't folks who are working for me," Obama said. "They're not people, you know, who I have assigned to a job in a future administration and, you know, ultimately my assumption is that, you know, this is a discreet task that they're going to be performing for me over the next two months."

You know.

max says:<i... (Below threshold)

max says:

Shorter Gramps: "I don't care what the facts are, you kids get off my lawn!"

And, with all due respect, your experiences in the 60's are irrelevant.


His experience in the 1960's is very relevant.

Millitary experience has always been an issue in campaigns. The 2004 Democratic candidate made his millitary experience the center piece of his campaign; the tacit understanding among Democrats was that his opponent's lack of combat experience would be an advantage for the Democratic candidate.

The same issue was raised by Democrats in the 2000 election.

Republicans raised the issue in 1988, 1992 and 1996.

On the other hand,the only thing relevant about your opinion, max, is the question of whether you are a troll fishing for the chickenhawk debate or just a classless, disrespectful, moron that condescends to tell men who served in Vietnam that they are "irrelevant".

Stop prefacing your insults to veterans with mealy mouthed comments like "with all due respect" when you clearly have no intention of showing same.

You've kept your eyes prett... (Below threshold)

You've kept your eyes pretty closed lately, haven't you, WC? Obama's so subtle, so nuanced, he needs interpreters to explain what he said when he meant to say something about what he said, when he said something, which he might not have said, unless he said something else.

The guy would be lost without his handlers and his teleprompter.

And last I checked - Bush isn't running. Obama is. I take each candidate as I find them - and with Obama, I find a candidate not ready for City Council, much less President.

Here's a fun fact about Oba... (Below threshold)

Here's a fun fact about Obama's speech: The term "citizen of the world" was, before the 20th century, often applied to prisoners of war as justification for removing all obligations they had to their country while in captivity (thus, there was no such thing as a duty to escape, for instance). Conclusions from this fact that Obama views himself as having no obligations to the United States are, naturally, racist.

Ooooh! Look everybody! It's... (Below threshold)

Ooooh! Look everybody! It's Jay Tea parroting swiftboat-style talking points! Score one for original and independent thinking!

At least Sen. Obama in this... (Below threshold)

At least Sen. Obama in this international vacation tour get some experience about international politics. I think he was TOO FAR acting as elected President when hasn't get the appropiete nomination from his party. It was more self personality Show than an image of someone as a candidate ready to confront the big crisis of his country. He is going to feeling the results back to USA after 9 days absent. I am more in favor to McCain now!

Ooooh! Look everyb... (Below threshold)
Ooooh! Look everybody! It's Jay Tea parroting swiftboat-style talking points! Score one for original and independent thinking!

"swiftboat-style" talking points?

You mean everything Jay said is true about Obama is true? :-O

I find your use of the words "talking points", in this case, to be amusing.

Yes, we have heard the comments about Obama made in Jay's piece before and from multiple sources. Obama has moved past "flip flopping" (which I personally have not been as concerned with as others) to a whole new way of work.

He doesn't just change his positions based on new information, new circumstances or being convinced of a better arguement. He adds additional positions on the same issue - ones that are often 180 degrees different from his previous statements - and continues to espouse all his positions depending on the crowd listening.

When occasionally called on it, his response is like that of a wife-beater. He blames everyone but himself - "they" did not listening well-enough, "they" are too stupid (or "bitter") to understand his brilliance, or, when all else fails, "they" must be a racist.

But Jay's comments (and the others who hold the same view) are specific to Obama. They do not make the accusation of "having it both ways" (holding multiple opposing opinions as the same time) against every Democrat or every candidate.

Compare that opinion to the "talking points" we hear from some on the left.

McCain is too old

We have posters here even who use that argument often and on virtually any issue where McCain is being discussed.

McCain is in his early 70's and he is old. I doubt that he would argue with that point. I know many people (myself included) not willing to commit to him until and unless we feel comfortable with his VP choice because of his age. But that alone doesn't make him "too" old to be president.

But they aren't calling just him "too old", they are saying that "72" is too old by definition.

Those who hold that particular position equate "72" with senility, being cranky, grouchy, and every other negative age-related stereotype.

We never hear of the wisdom that age can bring or the life experiences that can teach us, that something we have seen a crisis in our 30's, is actually "no big deal" when your life is looked at in totality.

Not just John McCain but every person that is John McCain's age is being attacked in that "talking point". Suddenly ageism is "sexy" and acceptable apparently.

The problem, of course, is that a significant portion of the population who are politically committed are just around the corner from their "70's". And this group of people are active and involved often in their second careers as entreprenuers and/or community activists. They don't take kindly to being called "senile" just because of their age.

In an effort to criticize one man not because of his viewpoints, his resume, and his individual accomplishments but because of the "category" that he fits into, those who repeat that particular "talking point" are risking a whole generation of votes. Those "cranky and senile nearly 70's" may not vote for McCain instead of Obama, but they have a number of other candidates to pick from if they want to avoid Obama. It is still a vote Obama won't get.

Not the greatest campaign strategy I've every heard of and gives the appearance that they are simply seeking to cover up what they can see as their own candidate's well-known weaknesses on the issues an on his resume.

Really funny stuff! The ri... (Below threshold)
Holly B.:

Really funny stuff! The right-wingers were slathering, rubbing their hands together, preparing to diss Obama for visiting our injured troops, claiming he wanted to use "our fighting men and women" as a crass part of his campaign.

Obama would have wanted to visit them. He didn't, because he already knew what the far right would have to say about it. It was they, and their malevolence, which kept him from going. He's able to anticipate what his detractors will say and do, and he adjusted his actions to take the wind out of their sails. Now they're able to say he's not patriotic, or doesn't care about our troops.

Double standard, thy name is Republican.

When he decided it would not be appropriate, they dissed him anyway - including McCain, that "great war hero" who abandoned his co-prisoners in Nam - who said it is "never inappropriate" to visit our troops. This, said only AFTER Obama decided to adhere to the standard of keeping his campaign out of such things while overseas. He hadn't fallen into the trap; they had to punish him somehow.

If McCain or Hillary had visited the troops on such a trip, how'd they keep the media away? Would either of THEM even try to?

Right-wingers are so linear.

So when Obama returns, if he visits our injured troops there, McCain, from the depths of his linear thinking, won't be able to say boo about it. Cut his own foot off, he did!

Obama's damned if he does, damned if he doesn't - that's the kind of minset found most commonly on the right. Playing fair is never a morality that has been known to bother them in the least. Nor is honesty.

Swiftboating got used up in the '04 campaign. Having nothing ELSE to use against Obama, however, the right has no choice but to fall back on it yet again, transparent though it is.

McCain isn't even subtle about his total apathy for our veterans; his voting record - always against the interests of vets - makes that indisputably clear. Yet he bleats, almost reverentially, about our troops in Iraq. The fakery of it is right upfront, for all to see, even if you overlook his contradictory body language and that plastic smile he pastes on his face. Every time he coos and rhapsodizes over our troops, I remember his voting record. Guess people on the right lack that ability.

He lies like a rug, and his constituents think it's just as fine as paint. After all, better him than an "N" in the White House, right?

He says he isn't "another Bush," but it seems he's willing to define Patriotism the same way. He said Obama would rather lose a war than his campaign. That was despicable; a Bush-ism. But, as with most right-wingers, Patriotism is defined by being just like themselves; anyone else is a virtual "infidel" and doesn't love his own country. Such is the depths of evil of which the right alone is capable of publicly touting.

Can you blame the people of America - or of the world itself - for being negative about McCain and exhilarated at the prospect of Obama? And when the public is this exhilarated, who are the right-wingers to tell the media they shouldn't give it coverage? That's their JOB.

Sorry, dudes, it won't wash - I'm no hypnotically fawning Obama supporter. I'm a genuine Norwegian-type Freethinker, and recognize him as one like myself. He has to work hard to be objective - unless you've tried it, you have no idea how hard - and often downright painful - the disciplines of Freethinking really are. It is this discipline which makes me watch or read everything I can of what McCain has to say - and I look for any genuine merit in it that I can find, too. As I said, it's often painful. But required.

A Freethinker, by the way, does NOT take pride in the rigidity of his thinking. He knows that circumstances change, and values being flexible; a trait that few in the GOP can be accused of having. Since they denigrate flexibility, of course they would naturally see it as a character flaw. Truly pitiable.

In examining Obama, I see clarity of thought, a man who does his homework. His judgment is sensible, well thought out, but flexible. His attitudes are mature, balanced and entirely egalitarian. I find none of these virtues in McCain, who doesn't even do enough homework on Iraq to know Sunni from Shiite, or to know that Czechhoslovakia no longer exists, or that there's a whole country between the borders of Afghanistan and Iraq. THIS would be our Commander in Chief? THIS is the man you would trust to wage this - or any - war? His flat ignorance says he's a blatant incompetent. You can have years of experience at something and still do a lousy job, especially if your underlying attitudes stink.

McCain doesn't give two puffs of comet gas about our vets.

It's kind of entertaining to watch the right squirming and struggling to find something - ANYTHING! - to denigrate Obama. He's too clean. That was their worst fear, and that is why the right wanted to have Hillary to chew on instead. There was more meat there for them. They tried to call Obama a Muslim - some pitiful slobs still do - and it came back to bite them. Yet some still think his middle name is somehow some kind of criminal conviction, some kind of "valid" ammunition to use against Obama. Dohh.

They've tried many other ploys, like goading him into going to Iraq, then dissing him for doing so. Especially because his huge popularity came as a shock to them. It shouldn't have. People everywhere - not just in Europe - have had a bellyful of the American right's lousy attitudes and policies. No wonder they're thrilled to see a mature and wise, well-balanced man running for president. No wonder the press gives him so much coverage - he's not only genuine news, but he also has substance in what he says.

I watch every video I can of McCain. Even though doing so is boring, so nauseatingly repetitious, and so duplicitous (look it up). It's about as entertaining and gripping as a party given by your CEO, where the high point of the event was counting the folds in the draperies.

If the right-wingers weren't so malevolent, racist and dishonest, I might even be able to pity them.

Obama doesn't have to tell people on the right that they're racist - they tell us, themselves, with their thinly-veiled "criticisms" which literally scream "I'm a racist" at us all. They're not as subtle as they think they are. When their racist mask has been seen through, they get mad and defensive. Tough rocks.

Obama doesn't have to say it, nor does his campaign; I, and scores of his supporters already know he isn't a racist, and are happy to tell you so.

McCain? Ah, now let's talk a bit about HIS racism, sexism, etc., shall we? Anyone willing to start off? Shall we begin with calling his wife a "C"? Shall we mention his sociopathic temper?

Sorry, folks, but tossing out absentee ballots is an entirely GOP trait. I live in Mexico. My home county is rabidly neocon, and were gracious enough to send me my '04 absentee ballot - a YEAR after the election. Wouldn't surprise me if they do it this time, too. So don't tell ME who likes to throw out peoples' absentee ballots, pals. I was personally deprived of my Constitutional right to vote - not by Dems - by the GOP.

But accusing your opponents of what you do yourself is one of the oldest - and lamest - ways of trying to "win" a campaign. It's baldfaced propaganda, but it still sometimes works, especially on the ignorant. In America, voting frauds and cheats are almost the exclusive province of the GOP.

Nor is anyone going to want to toss out military absentee ballots on Obama's side of the fence. He genuinely DOES care about them, where McCain's fakery is well known to our vets. All too well. Military folks tend to be more conservative on the whole, but they know they've been kicked hard by McCain already. They're hardly likely to want to vote for more of the same. Still, some may vote McCain anyway - particularly the racists among them.

McCain's age isn't all that important, nor would I call his ignorance about Shiites and Sunnis, etc. senility, either. I just call it what it is - "ignorant and proud." A putz, by any other name...

I notice that almost all comments here are coming from the right - I realize I'm hardly "preaching to the choir." No matter. Bigots and haters, narrowminded, linear thinkers, need to be called out. If this isn't published because it doesn't fit the "accepted mindset" for this site, so be it; there are plenty of other places to do it.

After thorough consideration and analysis, I've concluded that, if politicians were violins, Obama would be a Stradivarius.

I just want to point out so... (Below threshold)

I just want to point out something I've noticed on a bunch of different blogs. People who don't like a certain candidate (in this case Barack) will find ANY reason not to like him.

Take the Hospital "controversy." Obama gets slammed b/c he didn't go at the "suggestion" (the pentagon never just suggests) of the pentagon. However, if he had gone, the same people would be railing on him for visiting soldiers as a plubicity stunt. Had he first said that the pentagon told him not to, the same people would be railing on him for throwing the Pentagon under the bus (and for the record, the only report I've heard or seen of the incident is that the Pentagon told him not to).

Why can't we focus on the policies (and so forth)... you know... things that will actually affect the country.

The 'real' story is that Ob... (Below threshold)

The 'real' story is that Obama could have visited the wounded soldiers, but the Pentagon said not with the huge entourage and media circus ... however, Obama supporters are now trying to mislead the American people by enabling Obama to now blame the Pentagon for HIS bad decision. This is a typical form of damage control that the Obama and his people have used throughout his campaign. If Obama does something right, they shower credit upon him ... if he does something wrong, they blame it on someone else, or they tell us we misinterpreted what happened.

HughS, are you drunk? Or ju... (Below threshold)

HughS, are you drunk? Or just stupid? I was talking to irongrampa who seemed to think his military experience in the 60's was relevant to this discussion. I'm pretty sure he's not running for president, so what the hell are you talking about? And just to clarify, military experience is also irrelevant for presidential candidates. Regardless of which side of the aisle they come from.

So, Hugh, with all due respect, until you pull your head out of your ass and learn to read, I cordially invite you to go have intercourse with yourself. Fool.

from Holly B.:<blockq... (Below threshold)

from Holly B.:

After all, better him than an "N" in the White House, right?

Interesting that you were the only person to use that word in reference to Obama.

Claim all you want that you are the tolerant one. That sentence tells us a different story.

My home county is rabidly neocon, and were gracious enough to send me my '04 absentee ballot - a YEAR after the election.

When I lived in Chile, my absentee ballot arrived the day after the election. My home county is Democratic and the president at the time was Jimmy Carter.

Oddly, instead of descending into paranoid conspiracy theories, I just assumed that I should have taken the responsibility to request it sooner.

#38 "Norwegian-type Fre... (Below threshold)

#38 "Norwegian-type Freethinker"? Sorry, child, the only thing you omitted was adopting the Hussein middle name. Try taking that drivel over to Kos, or Huffpo.

No, max, the reference to p... (Below threshold)

No, max, the reference to personal millitary experience was relevant to the discussion in the thread.

One of the topics in the post,

Then, at the last minute, Obama canceled a trip to visit American troops at Rammstein and Landstuhl. Landstuhl, it should be noted, is where a lot of Americans wounded in Iraq and Afghanistan end up for treatment. Why did Obama blow off this opportunity to meet with the troops?

introduced the relevancy. A commenter referencing personal experience related to an element of the post topic is not irrelevant.

Peter:You want to ... (Below threshold)


You want to talk policies? Policies, in the end, are dependent on the politician who proposes them to actually fulfill them. This requires several things - first, a requirement or need. Second, a clearly deliniated way to fulfill that need. Third, a commitment to actually implementing the way to fill the need, regardless of obstacles.

Obama's real good at speeches, but they're pretty much content-free. You're left with the impression he said something profound and wonderful... but looking at the transcripts you won't find it.

So he's got a great stage presence. Big whoop. He should have been an actor, because I think he's a firm believer of image over substance. He says one thing to one group, another to another, and people like you seem to have absolutely no problem contorting themselves into pretzels to reconcile both views into some coherent whole - which may or may not be what Obama said or meant in the first place.

If that's what's supposed to be 'nuanced' thinking, I'll take something a bit less opaque.

My impression of the man at this point is that he's got no core principles, no actual ideas beyond what sounds good at the moment, and little to no respect at all for the military.

WHY, in heaven's name, would I vote for someone with virtually no relevant experience, little constancy, and nothing more than vaporware for policies?

C'mon, Hugh, you're smarter... (Below threshold)

C'mon, Hugh, you're smarter than that.

How is,

"I served proudly from 61-67, with a year-long vacation in sunny Southeast Asia."

relevant to,

"Then, at the last minute, Obama canceled a trip to visit American troops at Rammstein and Landstuhl. Landstuhl, it should be noted, is where a lot of Americans wounded in Iraq and Afghanistan end up for treatment. Why did Obama blow off this opportunity to meet with the troops?"

Of course, I'd also expect you to be smart enough to realize that I never referred to irongrampa himself as irrelevant, just his argument, but maybe I'm wrong.

maxI'll admit to b... (Below threshold)


I'll admit to being quick to defend the service of vets, particularly Vietnam War vets. And I think the 60's are very relevant in today's political debate.

You said:

And, with all due respect, your experiences in the 60's are irrelevant.

I took that to be a personal attack, not a rebuttal of his argument. If I'm wrong on that you have my apology.

Frankly, I'd say irongrampa... (Below threshold)

Frankly, I'd say irongrampa's experience of the 60's is COMPLETELY relevant ... since history seems to be repeating itself here.

A word of thanks to those... (Below threshold)

A word of thanks to those of you who rose in defense of me. Much appreciated.

History won't be repeating itself--not THIS war, not THESE troops-NOT THIS TIME.

For those who think that ir... (Below threshold)

For those who think that irongrampa's invocation of the 1960's is irrelevant this campaign season, might I suggest you Google up two words:

"Recreate '68."

It's more relevant than ever before.







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