Tuesday, June 30, 2009

So Much for the Carter Comparisons

Back in the 70's, Pres. Carter drew criticism for undercutting "friendly" Latin American dictators like Chile's Pinochet and Nicaragua's Somoza. He earned even more criticism for transferring control of the Panama Canal to Panama. Taken all in all, I don't believe the criticism was justified. I think the United States should promote democracy. Sometimes this means making common cause with dictators (see e.g. Stalin, WW2) but U.S. support for Pinochet and Somoza had been pretty egregious. Keeping them in power did nothing for U.S. influence in the region. Ortega and the Sandanistas hurt Nicaragua far worse than they hurt the U.S. Also, transferring control of the Canal helped defuse charges of Yanqui imperialism in that country and in the broader region. In my opinion, Carter's Latin American policy was a net good.

Now comes Pres. Obama, who agrees with Venezuela's Chavez and Cuba's Castro that Zelaya must be reinstated as Honduran President, even though Zelaya was clearly maneuvering to install himself as dictator-for-life.

I never thought I'd want Pres. Obama to be more like Pres. Carter, but here's an instance where I do.

(h/t Insta and Fausta)

Presidental Tracking Numbers

Via Instapundit, I see Rasmussen is reporting that "31% of the nation's voters now Strongly Approve of the way that Barack Obama is performing his role as President. Thirty-three percent (33%) Strongly Disapprove giving Obama a Presidential Approval Index rating of -2."

They also link this handy chart of the trend in Pres. Obama's approval rating...

What explains the drop in approval? Have the Republicans been more effective than anyone realizes? Has the press turned on the President? Republicans have decided not to attack the President directly, so that can't be it. While there are some in the national press beginning to question the Administration's policies, we haven't seen any questioning comparable to what Pres. Bush experienced.

So maybe the progressive agenda isn't as popular as the President thought? Or maybe it's not the agenda, but the aggressive manner in which the agenda is being pushed?

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Why I Didn't Vote for McCain

Jeff Zeleny and Helene Cooper of the NY Times report...
“[Pres. Obama] should speak out that this is a corrupt, flawed sham of an election,” Mr. McCain said in an interview on NBC’s “Today.” “The Iranian people have been deprived of their rights. We support them in their struggle against a repressive, oppressive regime.”
How does he know the election is corrupt? Has he revealed some source of information that the rest of us don't have? Also, he seems to assume the protesters want full-on revolution: how does he know that?

Bottom line: I'm not happy with much of Pres. Obama's policies, but when it comes to temperament he's light years ahead of Sen. McCain.

Monday, June 15, 2009

What Do They Know?

The Iran election protests are everywhere.

Remember Eason Jordan's "The News We Kept to Ourselves"? Here's what I want to know: what do the major news agencies know about Iran and the ruling regime that they haven't reported? Are reporters from these agencies tracking the regime's behavior now, and if so are they reporting it? All of it?