Posts Tagged ‘Freedland

14
Dec
11

evening all

****

Time: …. Admiral William McRaven speaks respectfully of Bush as Commander in Chief, saying he “made some very, very tough decisions.” About Obama, without a question to prompt him, he waxes lyrical and at length. The planning and decision-making for the bin Laden raid, he volunteers, “was really everything the American public would expect from their national leadership.”

“The President was at all times presidential,” he says. “I would contend he was the smartest guy in the room. He had leadership skills we’d expect from a guy who had 35 years in the military.”

Full article here

****

TPM: …. in a new poll from Public Policy Polling President Obama bests former Mitt Romney 48 percent to 42 and Newt Gingrich 50 to 43 in Virginia … Only 31 percent see Gingrich favorably against 55 percent, and it’s nearly as bad for Romney at 33 – 52.

****

Mediaite

Crikey, Fox really don’t like Romney, do they?

****

****

Jonathan Freedland (The Guardian): Whoever wrote the political rulebook needs to start rewriting it …. in the US Barack Obama is mired in horrible numbers – except for the ones showing him beating all-comers in the election now less than 11 months away. Even though the US economy is slumped in the doldrums, some of the country’s shrewdest commentators make a serious case that Obama could be heading for a landslide victory in 2012.

How to explain such a turnaround? In the United States, at least, there is one compellingly simple, two-word answer: Fox News.

…. it is Fox that is, in effect, picking the party’s nominee to face Obama next November …. If one is to flourish rather than wither in the Fox spotlight, there are several articles of faith to which one must subscribe – from refusing to believe in human-made climate change, and insisting that Christians are an embattled minority in the US, persecuted by a liberal, secular, bi-coastal elite, to believing that government regulation is always wrong, and that any attempt to tax the wealthiest people is immoral. Those who deviate are rapidly branded foreign, socialist or otherwise un-American.

….It was this process that led the former speechwriter David Frum to declare last year: “Republicans originally thought that Fox worked for us – and now we’re discovering we work for Fox.”

…. The extremism, anger, paranoia and sense of victimhood that Fox incubates are all unhealthy for the United States. But it’s inflicting particular damage on the Republican party, which could well lose a winnable election because of its supine relationship to a TV network. It turns out it is not liberals who should fear the Fox – it’s conservatives.

Full article here

03
May
11

‘obama’s rivals now look like lilliputians to his gulliver’

Jonathan Freedland (The UK Guardian): Last week, when Barack Obama released his birth certificate to silence those who had long questioned his American identity, he explained that he did not normally respond to such nonsense because “you know, I’ve got other things to do”. Now we know that those “other things” included meticulous planning for an event that could well transform his presidency, reshaping both the way he is seen and the foreign policy he pursues.

… the success of the operation in Abbottabad now makes Obama’s rivals look small indeed, Lilliputians chasing wild fantasies while Gulliver deals with the things that matter. He has rendered even more laughable Donald Trump’s declaration that “I feel proud of myself” for flushing out the proof of Obama’s Hawaiian birth. The president has shown what a true achievement looks like.

For, like it or not, no trophy mattered more to American public opinion … Obama’s role in slaying the dragon may not make him a national hero, but it will take a special kind of stupidity for Republicans to question his patriotism now.

The killing in Pakistan will bury another criticism, rarely articulated explicitly: the suggestion that Obama was somehow insufficiently tough, insufficiently macho, to be America’s commander-in-chief … Crude though it may be, Obama just passed that test with flying colours of red, white and blue.

He did it, though, his own way … he avoided the crass cowboy talk that was a hallmark of the previous administration: the official statement of Saddam’s capture began with the words “We got him”. Obama’s style was, by contrast, measured and steady, recalling 9/11 and speaking movingly of the images of “that September day” that the world did not see, starting with “The empty seat at the dinner table”.

From now on Obama will be viewed slightly differently at home and abroad, his coolness understood to be unflappable and poker-faced, rather than chilly and professorial. One former foreign minister who has seen the president up close believes that Bin Laden’s scalp will lead other world leaders to conclude that, to paraphrase Teddy Roosevelt, “Obama may speak softly – but he carries a big stick”…

…he has scored a valuable victory, one that lifts his own standing but also arrests the gloomy, declinist mood that has gripped some in his country, convinced that American power is on the slide. He has done in two years what his predecessor failed to do in eight. But Bush’s “Mission Accomplished” banner should stay in the White House basement: al-Qaida remains, the war in Afghanistan is not over, and there is still so much more work to do.

Full article here

13
Jan
11

‘tucson speech rose to the moment and transcended it’

Jonathan Freedland (UK Guardian): Throughout his presidency a doubt about Barack Obama has lingered…. the fear was that – for all his oratorical brilliance – Obama somehow lacked empathy, that he was a slightly chilly, aloof figure, that he struggled to connect emotionally.

We’ll hear much less of that talk now.

For the address he gave at last night’s memorial service was elegiac, heartfelt and deeply moving. It both rose to the moment and transcended it: after days of noise and rancour, he carved out a moment of calm.

Much of the speech was dedicated to its core function: to commemorate the dead and comfort those in mourning … in all this, he spoke less like a politician than a pastor or priest comforting a grieving community. The focus on those who had saved lives was an attempt to offer hope amid the sadness…

….This was meant to be the Republicans’ week … instead they look small – as well as defensive, fending off accusations that it was the violent rhetoric of the right that fuelled the current toxic political environment. None smaller than the de facto leader of today’s Republican party, Sarah Palin, who preceded the Tucson address with an aggressive, self-regarding and petty-minded videotaped message that claimed she had been the victim of a “blood libel”. The contrast between the two performances could not have been sharper.

Obama looks the bigger person, calling for a discourse that heals not wounds. That puts him in the place all presidents covet: above the fray, beyond mere Democrat or Republican….

But such thoughts are for later. What will be remembered today are moments like those when he told his audience that Gabrielle Giffords had opened her eyes for the first time – moments when only the most cold-hearted would not have felt a tear. What we saw from Obama in Tucson will be a defining, even cherished moment in his presidency.

Full article here




@POTUS

@BarackObama

@WhiteHouse

@FLOTUS

@MichelleObama

@PeteSouza

Enter your email address to receive notifications of new posts by email.

@TheObamaDiary

@NerdyWonka

RSS Obama White House.gov

  • An error has occurred; the feed is probably down. Try again later.

RSS WH Tumblr

  • An error has occurred; the feed is probably down. Try again later.

Categories

Archives

Blog Stats

  • 41,017,987 hits
October 2018
M T W T F S S
« Sep    
1234567
891011121314
15161718192021
22232425262728
293031