Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Never Again.



  1. Some people are getting a little bit nervous.

    I would argue that anyone with two brain cells to rub together should be getting a little bit nervous.

    We do not need to be running around like chickens with our heads cut off, but we must acknowledge the obvious and the obvious is the Iran will have the bomb within a decade, or thereabouts, if not considerably sooner.

    This is creating a strange alliance of convenience between Israel, Saudi Arabia, and Egypt on one side and Iran and the Obama administration on the other.

    Welcome to interesting times.

    1. At least Obama's shelf life is less than 2 years. At this point he can't leave office soon enough for me. As I'm sure you've noticed, election season is now under way. As the media begins to spend more time on that what is your feeling about Obama becoming more and more irrelevant, i.e., truly becoming a lame duck?

    2. That's an interesting question, Jeff, and thank you for asking it.

      I think that one of my main concerns with Barack Obama is that he will have succeeded in reorienting American policy toward Israel and making support for Israel partisan in terms of American politics.

      I am struck by the fact that in 2008 - when I voted for Obama - he had 80 percent American Jewish support.

      In 2012 - much to my horror - he held 70 percent support among American Jews.

      Currently, according to reports, he is down to 50 percent.

      At the same time Republican support for Israel is around double Democratic support.

      Someone like Volleyboy1, I think that it is fair to say, would argue that it was conservatives or Republicans that turned Israel into a partisan issue.

      I honestly do not know who is to blame for this, but I certainly spy, with my little eye, the Obama administration.

      Oh, and yes, Hillary is running!

      It's going to be a circus and I very much hope the SNL has a good time.

      Every four years I count on either Jon Stewart or SNL to get me through this horrendous misery.

      Stewart is gone and I haven't really watched SNL in years.

      I may have to go it alone and I am ascared!


    3. Who is responsible for Israel becoming a more partisan issue?

      Let's break it down.

      1) Republicans have always been pushing this, but never really gained much traction until ....

      2) President Obama (not CANDIDATE Obama who was by far a way better person). Obama has succeeded in doing what the ultra-left and his muslim friends and family have wanted for decades! It isn't spouting right-wing claptrap to state obvious facts that Obama was raised in the muslim faith and his father is a muslim. Somehow acknowledging this fact is right-wing. On that I call BS. Just because facts don't back your party of choice doesn't mean you should ignore them. Ignoring facts because they don't reflect what you want leads to error-ed outcomes. And the outcome of ignoring Obama's muslim ties and love has cost us in the following ways

      a) Less support from Israel from the Democratic party. He has pushed and shown it to be acceptable to crap on Israeli leaders and her people.

      b) The US supporting the enemies of Israel (Iran, "palestinians"). Setting a path where Iran will eventually have a nuke is just irresponsibly at the least, and F'ING DANGEROUS at its worst. (Plus with all the concessions, Iran will be able to break out sooner, nuclear speaking that is)

      So yes, the republicans have been pushing to make Israel a partisan issue, but they have never had much success in that until Obama came along!

    4. Mike,

      When you say " much to my horror..."
      do you mean you would have wished to see fewer American Jews supporting Obama by that time?

      I don't think the term ' lame duck president ' is relevant now. Obama may be nearing the end of his presidency, and have done very badly in the mid-terms. If he is, as we know he is, prepared to use executive orders, vetoes, etc to govern, then in what way is he 'weakened'? He is more powerful now than he has ever been. He doesn't care what his political opponents think of what he does, and he doesn't seem to care if he has weakened the position of people on his own side. He doesn't care if the American people don't approve of what he does. He has "a pen and a phone" and that's all he needs.
      He seems in some ways to prefer to be able to cast himself as the ' David' to the
      republicans' supposed ' Goliath '. It suits him. He can just lob insults at anyone who disagrees with him. Make them out to have very bad motives. Or to be ( one of his favourite expressions) " on the wrong side of history". Whatever that means.
      Most of the time, his so-called 'opponents' end up giving him what he wants anyway. Even with the difficulties over the Iran deal, there is no chance it will not be done. And, almost certainly, be done in whatever way the Iranian regime wants.
      His plan was always to change America's relationship with Israel. And through that, Israel's relationship with the world. We know that from David Axelrod's book. ( Apart from everything else.) He needed to prepare the ground for it, and then, if he won a second term, to go all the way. That's what he is doing.
      Since the 'failure' of the mid-terms: Amnesty. Cuba. Iran. Israel. There's a lot more to come. He is ideologically driven, and fearless. He has no opposition that matters. None.

      This is about him, and his shared ideology with the international progressive left. The republicans are a sideshow.
      On some matters, most particularly on some foreign policy issues, the republicans' position ( plus a couple of democrats) is, now, saner, more considered, and less dangerous than Obama's. A lot of Americans seem to find that difficult to accept. It goes against the grain. Other Americans - the ones that don't support Obama's policies- don't take an interest in what is happening. Or, simply,don't care.
      That helps.

      It will be fascinating to see how Hillary Clinton's campaign goes. She seems to have no opposition from within her own party. There are, however, serious people on the left who want some other candidate. Someone more to the left than Clinton. Warren, maybe?

    5. k, yes, I was disappointed to see such a small erosion of support among American Jews for Barack Obama by 2012. I voted for him in 2008, but by 2012 realized that he was acting in cross-purposes to the well-being of the Jewish State of Israel and, therefore, in cross-purposes to the well-being of the Jewish people, more generally.

      You are right to suggest that supporting Republicans among American Jews "goes against the grain" but, hell, I have been going against the grain for years now.

      Y'know, there are people who insist that I am a partisan Republican, which I just find odd. I feel reasonably certain that in order to actually be a Republican - much like being a Freemason or a member of the Loyal Order of Waterbuffaloes - one must actually join the organization to be considered part of the organization.

      But, I do want to hear what Marco and Jeb have to say.

      I am particularly curious about the young upstart.

      As for Hillary, my suspicion is that the media is going to turn her campaign into the most ridiculous political circus in American history since... since... I don't know!

      A long time!

    6. Mike,

      It is extraordinary that politics has become so tribal. In America, and here in the UK. To be wedded to a political party because of what it used to stand for, and to be unwilling to see what it
      has come to stand for seems very common. Perhaps, the idea of what one thinks one is supporting is overriding the reality. For many American Jews, it seems the belief that being
      'liberal', and, therefore, voting Democrat is central to their identity and to their sense of being a good person..
      It is the same here, but changing, a bit.
      You, are not a member of the Republican party. It does not mean that you are not prepared to listen to what a representative from that party has to say. That is important. It matters more what people are actually saying now than what their counterparts have said in the past.
      I think, that is also true of the parties of the left. The Labour party in Britain is a very different party than it was 20/30 years ago. I, now, cannot support it. For a variety of reasons. If I were in America, I would not be able to vote for the Democratic party. That doesn't mean I would vote Republican, but I would want to hear what they have to say. With any party you get a mixed bag.
      Maybe, it comes down to priorities. Also, to a realisation about how the party that has claimed the moral high ground, might, in truth, have lost it.
      This is very much how I feel about the Labour party. In our upcoming election, I will not be able to vote. I am not going to vote Tory.
      However, at the moment I am conflicted about whether I do, or don't wish to see another Tory- led government.
      That is entirely because there are parts of Labour's agenda which I am very frightened of. And others, which I have come to seriously dislike. I am fed up with being told that if people are 'on the left', then that means they are 'nice', or
      'compassionate'. That doesn't seem to me to be true. Maybe it used to be.

      I, too, am interested in what Marco and others have to say. It will matter to people beyond America. The world has changed too much not to be aware that it is more important what people / parties stand for, than what they happen to be called.

      The 'circus' of the Hillary campaign, and its accompanying media coverage, will be something to see. Who knows what will happen with that. It's already fascinating. I think Elizabeth Warren stands waiting in the wings, somewhere.
      The editorial board of the NYT has gone into gear. And so have others. It will be interesting to see whether anyone is prepared to take on the might of the Clinton machine.

      At least we know Hillary can eat a burrito!

  2. In 2 or 3 years at the most, at least one European nation will make Holocaust denial the law. Mentioning the Shoah happened at all will get you in hot water with the cops. That's already true in some venues in the UK and France, certainly in public schools.

  3. Jay,

    Those pictures are wonderful!
    I haven't seen some of them before.
    Aren't people amazing?