The Not-War War

Political Cartoons by Lisa Benson

Orwell at it’s finest:

The White House has officially declared that what’s happening in Libya is not “hostilities.”

It depends on what your definition of War (or “hostilities”)  is is. 🙂

A Democrat will scream and yell when a Republican is President, but now, eh, so what…

And the Media? They are ok with it.

But at the Pentagon, officials have decided it’s unsafe enough there to give troops extra pay for serving in “imminent danger.”

The Defense Department decided in April to pay an extra $225 a month in “imminent danger pay” to service members who fly planes over Libya or serve on ships within 110 nautical miles of its shores.

That means the Pentagon has decided that troops in those places are “subject to the threat of physical harm or imminent danger because of civil insurrection, civil war, terrorism or wartime conditions.” There are no U.S. ground troops in Libya.

President Obama declared last week that the three-month-old Libyan campaign should not be considered “hostilities.” That word is important, because it’s used in the 1973 War Powers Resolution: Presidents must obtain congressional authorization within a certain period after sending U.S. forces “into hostilities.”

Obama’s reasoning was that he did not need that authorization because U.S. forces were playing a largely supportive and logistical role, and because Libyan defenses are so battered they pose little danger. U.S. drones are still carrying out some strikes against Libyan targets.

Overall, the White House reasoned, “U.S. military operations [in Libya] are distinct from the kind of ‘hostilities’ contemplated by the resolution.”

Imminent Danger Non-Hostilities are bombing Civilians and Military on foreign soil but it’s not a War because the Left says so.

I want to see the next Republican President get away with this. 🙂

Orwell’s “blackwhite”: Applied to an opponent, it means the habit of impudently claiming that black is white, in contradiction of the plain facts. Applied to a Party member, it means a loyal willingness to say that black is white when Party discipline demands this. But it means also the ability to believe that black is white, and more, to know that black is white, and to forget that one has ever believed the contrary. This demands a continuous alteration of the past, made possible by the system of thought which really embraces all the rest, and which is known in Newspeak as doublethink.

Doublethink: To know and not to know, to be conscious of complete truthfulness while telling carefully constructed lies, to hold simultaneously two opinions which cancelled out, knowing them to be contradictory and believing in both of them, to use logic against logic, to repudiate morality while laying claim to it, to believe that democracy was impossible and that the Party was the guardian of democracy, to forget, whatever it was necessary to forget, then to draw it back into memory again at the moment when it was needed, and then promptly to forget it again, and above all, to apply the same process to the process itself — that was the ultimate subtlety; consciously to induce unconsciousness, and then, once again, to become unconscious of the act of hypnosis you had just performed. Even to understand the word ‘doublethink’ involved the use of doublethink.

First, the mainstream media is irreparably slanted in its coverage and story selection.  Hypothetical: Let’s say President Bush had conspicuously dismissed typically-binding legal analyses, opting instead to stack the deck in favor of cherry-picked opinions, all in an effort to justify carrying on a war he’d started without Congress’ consideration, let alone approval.  Would the media treat such an audacious power play as anything other than a Constitutional crisis of the highest order?  He’s trampling on the Constitution!  Imperial presidency!  Lawlessness!  Separation of powers!  But this president is named Barack Obama, and he’s a Democrat. (townhall.com)

So if a Republican, Like George W. Bush goes to Congress and get approval for War and gets it he “lied to Congress” as in “Bush lied people died” and it’s an “illegal war”.

But a Democrat President starts a war on people who haven’t attacked us and we have no interest, that War is not a war because they say it’s not a war. It’s not even “hostilities”.

But spending $1 Billion dollars to drop drones and kill people in a foreign country is not War!

Why? because a Democrat started it.

Orwell would be proud of you my son.

On a message board I posted a question, “If George Bush would have just lobbed missiles at Saddam and that was all he did would they have been happy with that like they are with Obama?”

Response: crickets. Then I was attacked as “repuke” (the far left’s term for a republican).

It was predictable.

This time, because he almost certainly knew that they’d tell him that he was in violation, he bypassed the normal procedures to avoid a binding ruling and treated the Office of Legal Counsel as if it was just one lawyer among many. He rigged the game because he knew what the probable outcome would be if he didn’t.

Just like he won’t go to Congress for authorization because he will fail and he knows it.

So lets obfuscate and play word games. And the Liberal media is happy to go along with it.

Second, forget the media for a moment and consider the precedent Obama is embracing.  According to his reading of the law, a president can initiate hostilities against a foreign nation, deploy American troops and resources abroad for months, hand off operations to a virtually wholly-owned US subidiary (NATO), then have his political team issue a ruling that the hostilities aren’t really hostilities, thus circumventing any checks from the people’s branch.

“Frankly, I think cutting off funding in the middle of a military operation when we have people engaged is always a mistake,” Defense Secretary Gates told “Fox News Sunday.”

But it’s not a War! it’s not even “hostilities” but it is a “military operation” that is not subject to oversight by anyone. Well, at least it was upgraded from what it used to be: A time- and scope- limited kinetic military action. 🙂

Rejoice.

And these are the guys you want in charge of your Health Care!! 🙂

Michael Ramirez Cartoon

Government Awesomeness

This is one of the single funniest videos EVER:

 

My Prediction on Obama’s Speech tonight: Orwell says “Mission Accomplished” 🙂

I won’t see the speech. I will be working to pay my bills and the bills of the 48% of people who don’t pay any. 😦

Not that the word “war” will pass his lips, most likely. In press briefings last week, our Libyan campaign was euphemized into a “kinetic military action” and a “time-limited, scope-limited military action.” (The online parodies were merciless: “Make love, not time-limited, scope-limited military actions!” “Let slip the muzzled canine unit of kinetic military action!”) Advertising tonight’s address, the White House opted for “the situation in Libya,” which sounds less like a military intervention than a spin-off vehicle for the famous musclehead from MTV’s “Jersey Shore.” (Ross Douthat)

Gotta love Orwellian gibberish. 🙂

President Obama is proud of how he put together the Libyan operation. A model of international cooperation. All the necessary paperwork. Arab League backing. A Security Council resolution. (Everything but a resolution from the Congress of the United States, a minor inconvenience for a citizen of the world.)

It’s war as designed by an Ivy League professor. True, it took three weeks to put this together, during which time Moammar Gadhafi went from besieged, delusional thug losing support by the hour to resurgent tyrant who marshaled his forces, marched them to the gates of Benghazi and had the U.S. director of national intelligence predicting that “the regime will prevail.” (Charles Krauthammer).

They will protect civilians by not going after the guy who will kill them, Qaddafi! 🙂

And the reports that Al-Qaeda is supporting “the rebels”. No big deal. Qaddafi is evil. We just won’t do anything about him.

Obama is hoping the rebels will kill him so he doesn’t have to do it himself. But the rebels wouldn’t have this opportunity without the air strikes authored by him.

So now that NATO (which primarily US) has taken over, “Mission Accomplished”!!

Ta Da! Isn’t he awesome! 🙂

NEW TAX IDEA: Tax Driving!

Not feeling Taxed enough. You’re a Liberal who wants to stick it to the people. Well, the CBO has a new tax scheme for you.

And, of course, most importantly, it’s “fair”! 🙂

The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) has a suggestion for raising money to fix the nation’s highways: tax drivers based on how many miles they drive each year.

The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) this week released a report that said taxing people based on how many miles they drive is a possible option for raising new revenues and that these taxes could be used to offset the costs of highway maintenance at a time when federal funds are short.

The report discussed the proposal in great detail, including the development of technology that would allow total vehicle miles traveled (VMT) to be tracked, reported and taxed, as well as the pros and cons of mandating the installation of this technology in all vehicles.

CBO’s report stressed it was making no recommendations but seemed to support a VMT tax as a more accurate way of having drivers pay for the costs of highway maintenance. The report said miles driven is a larger factor in highway repairs than fuel consumption and suggested that having drivers pay for the real costs of highways “would involve imposing a combination of fuel taxes and per-mile charges.”

“About 25 percent of the nation’s highways, which carry about 85 percent of all road traffic, are paid for in part by the federal government….” reads the opening line of the paper. In other words, why should the federal government, already so strapped for cash, keeping paying so much for the highway while those who use them get a free ride?
The rest of the lead paragraph is just as baneful:
Federal spending on highways is funded primarily by taxes on gasoline and diesel fuel, but those and other taxes paid by highway users do not yield enough revenue to support either current federal spending on highways or the higher levels of spending that have been proposed by some observers. Although raising those taxes would bring in a larger amount of revenue, a more fundamental issue would remain: By themselves, fuel taxes cannot provide a strong incentive for people to avoid overusing highways — that is, to forgo trips for which the costs to themselves and others exceed the benefits. This study examines broad alternatives for federal funding of highways, focusing on fuel taxes and on taxes that could be assessed on the basis of the number of miles that vehicles travel.
As usual, the bureaucrats’ tactic is to create a problem (too many people “overusing highways”) then propose a solution (higher fuel taxes and taxes “assessed on the basis of the number of miles that vehicles travel”).
Just to be fair, the CBO assures the Senate that it (the CBO) isn’t alone in reckoning that taxing drivers for miles traveled is the most equitable method of closing the highway funding gap. They’ve got an impressive chorus backing up their taxing tune.
A consensus view of many transportation experts and economists is that a system of taxes on vehicle-miles traveled should be viewed as the leading alternative to fuel taxes as a source of funding for highways.
See? Lots of people (a “consensus”) agrees with the plan so it can’t be all bad.
And we all know it’s important to have “consensus” of “experts” before it crammed up your ass and down your throat for “your own good”.
It will be “fair”. 🙂
One possibility discusses by the CBO is the “pay at the pump” option for collecting the tax.
Implementation costs of a VMT system would depend heavily on its scope and scale but also would be affected by some choices about specific technologies. For example, initial capital costs might be higher but operational costs might be lower if the VMT taxes were collected “at the pump,” the method tested in the Portland pilot study and already used for collecting fuel taxes, rather than through periodic invoicing from a central office to individual users, the approach tested in the Puget Sound study. If VMT taxes were collected at the pump, each time fuel was purchased, information would be sent from a device in the vehicle to a device at the filling station. The data would identify the accumulated charges themselves or list miles traveled (identified if necessary by times and locations) since the previous purchase. The appropriate amount of taxes would be collected as part of the fuel- purchasing transaction.
Basically, “a device in the vehicle” would send data to the gas station, then onto, one assumes, the appropriate taxing agency, and the cost per gallon would be increased according to the VMT data collected.
Check your mail for the time and place of your appointment to have your car retrofitted with the government-approved VMT monitor.
Just Like ObamaCare, it’s for your own good!
To be fair (equitable), if you want smooth roads and you want to do the right thing and pay your fair share of the maintenance,  then the least you can do is surrender your privacy and let the government strap a VMT measuring device on your car. It’s the right thing. (New American-KFYI)
Now don’t you feel better. 🙂
Don’t worry about the trucking industry and all those goods that are transported across the country. It won’t impact your grocery bill and other products at all!
And will this go for jet fuel next? Imagine those thousands of gallons…
THE BORDER HAS NEVER BEEN SAFER
So with that Big Sis, Homeland Insecurity Secretary Janet Napalitano:
The Obama Administration has dedicated historic levels of manpower, technology, and infrastructure to the Southwest border to ensure the safety of border communities, and these resources have made a significant impact. Some of America’s safest communities are in the Southwest border region, with border city crime rates staying steady or dropping over the past decade. 

The security of our border communities strengthens the prosperity of the region. From San Diego, California to Brownsville, Texas, hundreds of billions of dollars of commerce come across the border each year, supporting hundreds of thousands of jobs. Thanks in part to the administration’s major investments to improve border infrastructure at our land ports of entry, the value of the trade crossing the Southwest border increased 22 percent in fiscal year 2010 alone.

Yet, local leaders in border communities say misinformation about the safety of the Southwest border is hurting their communities, driving potential visitors away and hurting local businesses.

The reality is that the Southwest border is open for business. El Paso, Texas is one of the best examples. Not only have crime statistics shown it to be one of the safest big cities in the country, but the value of imports crossing into the United States through El Paso has risen 40 percent just in the last year.

In fact, today I was in El Paso to meet with local officials and business leaders to discuss ways that we can help strengthen trade and travel in the region and help set the record straight about the safety and economic opportunities in their communities.

We all agree that the challenges at the border are real – but so is the progress we’ve made over the last two years. I’m proud to join with our border communities in spreading the word that the Southwest border is, indeed, open for business.

Janet Napolitano (DHS website)

Now is that special! 🙂
I know I feel better about government.

“If you want a vision of the future, imagine a boot stamping on a
human face – forever.”– George Orwell