Wednesday, July 21, 2010
AN ADMIRAL'S INSUBORDINATION AND OTHER EXTRAORDINARY EVENTS
By Ivan G. Goldman
Here's something extraordinary: Mike Mullen, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, recently echoed the tea-partiers' claim that the greatest threat to our nation is its national debt, meaning that we must kill all programs conservatives don’t like, including Social Security.
Remarkably, no one in the big-time media or the Obama Administration noticed the significance of Mullen’s remarkably insubordinate, gratuitous statement. Apparently this guy's setting up a political campaign inside the Pentagon.
It's also extraordinary that Obama has followed in Nixon's footsteps by expanding a pointless, hopeless war that he inherited from a predecessor, particularly since it's clear if we leave Afghanistan 10 days from now or 10 years from now the result will be the same.
It's extraordinary that the Obama Administration expects Afghans to place faith in Hamid Karzai, someone they’ve watched bungle, cheat, and lie for nine years.
It's extraordinary that Karzai has the chutzpah to demand that all U.S. aid be channeled through him. Can he account for any of the money we’ve given him so far?
It's extraordinary that Karzai would steal over a million votes in an election in which citizens risked their lives to cast ballots.
It's extraordinary that our administration appears to be telling the Brits they’re not giving it enough time when they let it be known that they’d like to pull out of Afghanistan by 2015, which would make it a 13-year commitment.
It's extraordinary that we still have troops in Iraq, Okinawa, and Germany. Is there ever a place we pull out of?
It's extraordinary that Larry Summers and Timothy Geithner call the shots on banking and economic policy. It's like hiring Jesse James to drive the train.
It's extraordinary that the Obama Administration still places its faith in WTO and NAFTA agreements that are nearly bereft of protections for workers and are beating us into the ground by importing junk and exporting jobs.
And remarkably, our tax code still subsidizes corporations that send U.S. jobs overseas.
It's extraordinary that conservative lawmakers believe they can gain votes and support by torturing unemployed people and withholding their benefits. Remarkably, in many congressional districts these lawmakers have gauged their constituents correctly.
It's extraordinary that no one in the media asks conservatives who demand that jobless benefits be offset by cuts elsewhere why they have no trouble voting for crazy boondoggles (Star Wars, for example, 19 years after the collapse of the USSR) and outright gifts to the super-wealthy (killing the estate tax, for example).
It's extraordinary that we must wait four more years for “pre-existing condition” to be wiped out of the insurance-industry vernacular.