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February 03, 2009

Comments

Sue

Awww...Petraeus won't let Obama leave Iraq. I guess it is back to General Betrayus. Someone had to go under the bus, doncha know?

bio mom

Another Obama nominee has withdrawn his name due to "tax problems". At least this one has withdrawn!! Chief Performance Officer nominee apparently.

clarice

So will the one year deadline on closing Gitmo, not that the left will notice that either.

Ranger

I seem to recall that Obama said before the election in an interview with a British paper that he might not even get to begin serious planning of a draw down until after the first 100 days. My guess is that the Gates and the Generals have Obama by the short hairs on this one. If he sticks to his unrealistic and dangerous demands, they can simply resign and really embarass him. I wonder how much of a hit his approval ratings would take if that happened?

Also, sorry for mucking up the 1040DEM post with this other war related stuff. I'll repost it here where it is more applicable:

This is just unbeleavable:

http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=100160836&ft=1&f=1001>U.S. Officials: Al-Qaida Leadership Cadre 'Decimated'

Morning Edition, February 3, 2009 · CIA-directed airstrikes against al-Qaida leaders and facilities in Pakistan over the past six to nine months have been so successful, according to senior U.S. officials, that it is now possible to foresee a "complete al-Qaida defeat" in the mountainous region along the border with Afghanistan.

I thought the Dem position was that Bush administration policy was making us less safe, and the al Qaeda was stronger than ever?

Funny how this comes out just weeks into an Obama administration, and seems to 'validate' his 'strong stand' on attacking al Qaeda in Pakistan. Of course people forget, and the media will ignore, that the Bush administration started this policy almost over 2 years before Obama bravely suggested we start doing it.

Just for the record, we started using Predators to attack targets in Pakistan in http://abcnews.go.com/WNT/Investigation/story?id=755961>May of 2005.

Obama made his speech about taking the war to al Qaeda in Pakistand in http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/20070536>August, 2007.

So, the question is, does this indicate an effort to justify cutting and running from Afghanistan in a year or two?

Or, is this an effort to shut up the anti-war base about ending these Predator strikes?

boris

TM the uppercase ?CID=X is not working anymore (with IE anyway).

The lower case ?cid=x is still working.

EG for this thread.

Danube of Thought

I absolutely love it when the loons begin to bray about "treason." There are few things that so warm the cockles of my dark heart.

Ranger

Et tu Guardian?

http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2009/feb/03/comment-iraq-elections>Democratic dawn in Iraq
Polling was peaceful, the results encouraging

The anti-war left's group of friends is growing thin indeed.

PeterUK

All this is analogous to withdrawing from Europe in 1945 and letting the Red Army roll West.
This time it will be Iran.

narciso

Ah, Gareth Porter, I remember something about a piece, that came out shortly before
Petraeus's testimony on the surge, with Admiral Fallon, belittling his abilities. Not too long after that, Admiral Fallon, talked himself right out of a job, thanks to Esquire; leaving the way open for Petraeus at CENTCOM

Amused bystander

What in the dickens is a Chief Performance Officer?

(beside more evidence of title inflation at the middle management layer)

MayBee

If there was going to be a coup, it would have happened on inauguration day. Gates was the designated cabinet member to continue the government if something would have happened. A few tanks and the Defense Department would have owned the government.

PeterUK

"Chief Performance Officer"

Who will require a Deputy Chief Performance Officer two Assistant Deputy Chief Performance Officers each needing an office,secretaries and a full staff.

clarice

If you have to ask,AB...Maybe it's the gal who checks out Pelosi's STD stimulus program.

narciso

That's the title the presidency had pre 2009, amused.

bgates

Who will require a Deputy Chief Performance Officer two Assistant Deputy Chief Performance Officers each needing an office,secretaries and a full staff.
The CPO's Deputy Chief (or Chief(2)) may need a staff, but by the time you get down to the Chief(3)PO all he needs is an irritable sidekick.

At that level you don't work on much besides protocols anyway.

Amused bystander

Clarice: actually, it had occurred to me that it might have something to do with Michelle.

(hope they keep track of receipts)

Amused bystander

Actually, a CPO or two in the white house would be an altogether good thing.

(I mean of the naval variety).

Honestly, Chief Performance Officer?

Really now.

It is like they are running a little web startup in Berkeley or a winery in Napa. Or something. Completely lost in their little elite liberal dream world. Completely cut off from the rest if us. How can this end but extremely badly.

If I was your CEO and I told you I needed 150K to hire a "Chief Performance Officer" you would show me the door. What absolute amateurish silliness.

Children dressing up in adult clothes.
faux-buniess and faux-government

Does Obama think that this is how "corporations" work?

Wait, don't answer that...

Amused bystander

buSiness*

Rick Ballard

Himmelfarb on Burke (via Brothers Judd). The piece needs to be read in conjunction with the excellent Lasky AT piece.

Burke:

"a ferocious dissoluteness in manners, an insolent irreligion in opinions and practices, … laws overturned, tribunals subverted, industry without vigor, commerce expiring … a church pillaged … civil and military anarchy … national bankruptcy."


Himmelfarb:

All this, one must remember (it is sometimes hard to remember), was said in November 1790, three years before the Reign of Terror, which Burke was so presciently describing.

The Endarkenment googoos never learn. If the gutters fill with blood here, theirs will be the first to flow.

Amused bystander

Maybee: in case you hadn;t noticed, there was a coup on that day.

Soylent Red

(I mean of the naval variety)

This guy. You hockeypuck.

Seriously...

If this is an oversight position, WTF is Obama for? Just curious, since narciso aptly alluded to it. Is he somehow too busy, doing God knows what, to actually fulfill the role of Chief Executive? How many hours a day does it take to go to the gym and let the press hump your leg?

As for Gen. Petraeus and Gen. Odierno...

These guys are pros. They, like nearly every military officer, would never consider mutiny under anything but the most dire circumstances.

Having said that, once you achieve 0-8-ness and above, you quit having a commanded/commander relationship with the President and become more of an advisor. They will still follow his orders, but they are in a position to try to head off bad decisions. Perhaps the left would like Obama to start selecting bombing targets, like Johnson?

Again, we refer back to the 1975 Lefty playbook, where in it is written: All military officers are power mad and will seek to rise up if not kept in their place.

That's the same Lefty playbook that we will be referring to over the next four years for the upcoming memes:

All veterans are psychopaths;

All psychopathic veterans are victims of warmongering Republican politicians; and

We would have less psychopathic veterans if only we would give peace a chance.


narciso

Seriously, Soylent, everything really is
'above his paygrade'. I kind of feel a little sad about Kelleher, she had the sense to retreat, then again why apply once you saw that 67 question application. Who vetted any of these people, was it Caroline, again. When it comes to details, like the Gitmo declaration, he had to refer to Craig, on other issues he hasn't given really any details, we find out about his retreat from BMD, and/or Iran/Syria negotiations

Soylent Red

Narciso:

What the hell was the 67 question application for if not to prevent these kinds of scandals? Did Daschle, et. al. think that maybe it wasn't serious, or that the answers didn't matter? Maybe there weren't any questions about not paying taxes?

That questionnaire was for show. If was an actual piece of serious vetting, these errors would have come up. It was a purely false move designed to add public credibility to the Potemkin Hope and Change movement.

matt

I am now wondering if things within the administration are spinning out of control. I cannot recall any predecessor having so many nominees with such ethical issues. 2 weeks ago, Daschle was lecturing hospital administrators on his new socialized medicine agenda. What now? Geithner is damaged goods as well. The world is pretty much on notice that this administration is somewhat out of control already.

Obama's Middle East outreach program does not seem to be coming from the Department of State, but rather his own personal initiatives. The Iranians have already thumbed their noses at him. next, someone will take a shot with a shoe. The Turks are up in arms about our support of the Kurds, whether a reasonable assumption or not. Peres apparently embarassed himself in Davos. The North Koreans are rattling their sabers at the South. Things globally don't look so hot.

The "stimulus" bill is coming under increasing criticism. Hints of protectionism are being dropped. The unions are basically telling the Big 3 to pound sand.There are a lot of bad vibes out there and we're only 2 weeks into this experiment in democracy.

What is interesting, though to me is that, in the electronics industry, business is down, but by no means out. It's scary, but people are still ordering and have contracts. Obama may be creating a crisis of confidence on top of it all.

Amused bystander

Soylent:
Come on now, you are cherry picking here. (OK, shark picking--but will point out that he too wsa acting the part. talk about n=muudying the waters...)

Jeez, what are you the DDoD? (Donut Officer of the Day).

My points still stand about CPO's (of both sorts) and the WH.

I will point out that, as yet, no one else here seems to know what a Chief Performance Officer is either.


What the hell was the 67 question application for if not to prevent these kinds of scandals?

Maybe that is something for the new CPO to check out.

Amused bystander

DOoD*

K

I hope no General acts against Obama. It would be utterly futile even if justified.

And it certainly has not been justified.

Several will be by retirement) rather than follow policies they abhor.

And any others who as much as frown or seem doubtful will be purged.

The O man and his team are not people who will tolerate differing viewpoints.

Amused bystander

Matt: what about peres and davos?

Tom Maguire

TM the uppercase ?CID=X is not working anymore (with IE anyway).

Thanks, he groaned...

Amused bystander

Obama will purge the Services anyway, he cannot afford a palace revolution, resistance to the draft or anyone that would buckle at using the troops on US citizens.

Beside, he loathes America and thus detests any potent symbol of her.

Let us hope that those heading leave behind some resistance fighters somewhere in the senior officer ranks.

If things really get bad and it really get loony, we mayyet need them.

Given how brazen and open they are in their corruption, nothing would surprise me about the democrats now. They have become unanchored from reality.

matt, this might be part of what you are feeling, just a complete break. It is not just Obama, the congress is getting pretty loopy too.

I wonder if he is really in charge? Is there and internal struggle behind the puppet masters or are they finding out that the world is smarter and more stubborn than they are.

I wonder if the puppet masters themselves have been played.
But yes, things seem to be falling apart.

Danube of Thought

I would be extremely surprised if any active-duty senior officer publicly expresses any disagreement with the president. Any who do should be fired, and probably would be. Odierno and Petraeus will make their case forcefully but privately; it will be the White House releasing juvenile shots like the one about "thinking he was still dealing with George Bush instead of Barack Obama."

Soylent Red

I will point out that, as yet, no one else here seems to know what a Chief Performance Officer is either.

I will further point out that several months ago none of us knew what a community organizer was either.

And look how well that is turning out for us.

/sarcasm

Amused bystander

Soylent: well, in my dictionary community organizer=commissar.

You must have an older edition.

Elliott

"...our hope -- our prayer -- is that this President will finally listen. Listen to the Generals."

--Harry Reid, January 19, 2007.

MayBee

Thank you, Elliott.

I was just thinking about how Murtha, when he called to withdraw to Okinawa, was supposed to be speaking for the Pentagon.

An influential House Democrat who voted for the Iraq war called Thursday for the immediate withdrawal of U.S. troops, another sign of growing unease in Congress about the conflict.....

First elected to Congress in 1974, Murtha is known as an ally of uniformed officers in the Pentagon and on the battlefield. The perception on Capitol Hill is that when the congressman makes a statement on military issues, he's talking for those in uniform.

Bill in AZ

What the hell was the 67 question application for if not to prevent these kinds of scandals?

I'll bet that none of them have any guns.

davod

"Obama's Middle East outreach program does not seem to be coming from the Department of State, but rather his own personal initiatives. The Iranians have already thumbed their noses at him. next, someone will take a shot with a shoe. The Turks are up in arms about our support of the Kurds, whether a reasonable assumption or not. Peres apparently embarassed himself in Davos. The North Koreans are rattling their sabers at the South. Things globally don't look so hot."

Sorry Mate: This looks exactly like a State Department Foreign Policy

glasater

I wonder if he is really in charge? Is there and internal struggle behind the puppet masters or are they finding out that the world is smarter and more stubborn than they are.

AB~
I believe Clarice mentioned in a previous post/comment that Zero has set up his administration to be in continual conflict.

Danube of Thought

Great find, Elliott. I pirated it and posted it on one of the leftist blogs under another moniker.

MayBee

What the hell was the 67 question application for if not to prevent these kinds of scandals?

To make it look like they were really vetting people. Their vetting was supposed to look soooo tough, nobody would need to ask questions after they'd been nominated.
And almost nobody did.

davod

"Peres apparently embarassed himself in Davos."

Don't believe everything the commentarians say. If you have any interest in the Middle East you should watch the full video (Peres starts at the 40 minute mark) http://atlasshrugs2000.typepad.com/&feature=player_embedd
ed"> Davos Epiphany? Simple Shimon Reads Hamas Charter to Mas-Kom-Ya Erdogan, Et Al

Peres spoke after Turkish Prime Minister Mas-kom-ya Erdogan, UN Secretary-General Ban-Ki-moon and Palestinian President Abbas.

Peres embarrassed all three with his rebuttal of their remarks (including pointing out 6000 rockets and 1000 Israeli dead since 2002, with not a word from the world)and a spirited defence of Israel's attempts to find a partner for peace.

Amused bystander

well I do not buy that "setup for continual conflict" but. If he did, he is an extreme masochist.

In fact i do not think that he is setting it up. I'd bet he is not managing anything at all. Rahm is just "playing" manager. All the factions around and behind Obama clawing around and Rahm playing traffic cop and putting on his best "manager scrowl" is what it seems like to me. They are just winging it and pretending that they are clever. It is like trust fund kids running a startup. Sooner or later the old dogs down a level will manipulate it to their personal goals. the exec level will not figure it out until years later how they have been played.

People with this stuff on their resume have a goldmine on their hands if they play it right. And people like Hillary? goodness gracious, what they can get up to.
The exec level here have no idea how to deal with that one way or another.

I think it is just really bad management.

I've managed large groups, much larger than this, at least an order of magnitude larger, and from my experience it just seems like amateur night to me.

On the basis of what experience would Obama even know how to set this up this sort of thing? Out of what experience might he even think to desire it? How would they even figure out the requirements, let alone a solution?

I might buy that Rahm might want this just as a power play and ego trip, and might be able figure out how to do it, but his experience is pretty limited too when it comes to management. Maybe a consultant talked them into it. It is a method I have never heard of a consultant suggest, just the opposite. Michelle?

but it is extremely stupid.

If you think that there is some sort of "power" in adjudicating and herding that crowd though all that conflict you have another thought coming. In fact there is responsibility with out power. All the deal making--the tit for tat--just paralyzes you as a manger. It is one of the first things one has to learn to not do.

This is not the 1950's, you know. I do not know if any of you have had to manage young people lately, but with them there is more than enough conflict as it is, and more so with a room full of Ivy League liberals with innate political aptitudes. No need to design it in, and every need to design it out.

A flatter delegation model built on competence, transparency and trust is better here. You have to manage areas in which you have no competency. That is the the toughest thing (GWB and Cheney were GREAT at this).

So I do not buy it.

narciso

L'Chaim, on Peres, calling out Erdogan, Abbas & Moon, on their hypocrisy. There's the old Defense chief, godfather of their nuclear program.

Daddy

Well I for one hope they do not close Gitmo anytime soon. We are going to need the prison space if they ever decide to start prosecuting all these Dem tax cheats.

Rick Ballard

AB,

We should consider that Emanuel may be a bit concerned about the Blago tapes in Fitz's hands. I believe him to be the strongest liaison to the SEIU thugs and I'll bet that's revealed on tape. I'd also bet that he was buying someone off in Africa re Obama's background or relationship with someone or something very unsavory. Emanuel was also the Dem liaison with the MoveOn trash in the Dems success in '06.

Rich mentioned something the other day which went pretty much unremarked. It concerned polysci profs granting credit for Obama campaign work. There is a SEIU/ACORN/MoveOn nexus that combined in a polysci driven early vote effort in '08 that is going to have to be overcome in the next two elections.

The incompetence demonstrated by the Obama team to date probably relates to the fact that they are already focused on the next campaign - same as the Clintons were in '93. We should never look for day to day competence from this gutter trash - they are in it for power and money first, last and in between.

The operations model that matches the Obama Administration's procedures can be determined by a careful review of the Sopranos - or by watching Chavez in Venezuela, which is roughly the same thing.

PD

I will point out that, as yet, no one else here seems to know what a Chief Performance Officer is either.

Someone to tell you, "Gosh, Mr. President, that was a great performance you put on today."

Amused bystander

RB: Well, Rick i have dealt with these sort of governments and regimes, and trust me, they work differently, at least at this point. Remember, I am talking about the direct operational WH crew-- the "160" plus i would guess another 300 of consultants, support, cabinet and their directs, etc. These are mostly a bunch of young, scrubbed Ivy leaguers and some old dem pros (Clintonistas and Chicago brats). Most will be Liberal true believers and not a bunch of out right mobsters.

Those people will be vetting people and ideas, handling media, working out tactics to match strategy, executing things that fall outside of the cabinet secs purviews, etc., for "legitimate" WH management functions. I am not talking about the huge mass that sits under the cabinet secretaries, and I am not talking about the inner circle of crooks and knaves that work at the "strategic" level (i realize it is hard to separate strategy and tactics with this bunch, but go with me here for a sec).


Aside from the cabinet people, Obama old hands and some key managers and staff, all of whom will keep their yaps shut, most of those folks will never know of most of the corruption and truely evil stuff. Even a lot of the cabinet side will not know of some of it, at least lower than the secretaries themselves (and even some secretaries will be playing it straight). If the "normal" WH staff actually saw some of the real nasty stuff, they would be mortified. They would tell their Mommies, and oh what parents they have. These staffer/middle level managers are just Obama-lobotimized, not really crooks (yet).

They just cannot run a crooked business with everything out in the open at the staff level. You cannot even run a legitimate business that way when the business relies on sensitive information and relationships. Expectation, perception and information must be managed.

So Pending more information, I'd bet my initial assessment is right. Amateur Night.

And it is not funny, for we will have some very serious crises, particularly overseas.

We sure do not want Seoul nuked, for example.

I agree with the idea that they are already on the next campaign, but I have different notions about how that works. I will get back to you about that.

Amused bystander

PD: or maybe: "Aw, Mrs. President, please don't make me do that again!"

clarice

AB,I believe he is doing a variation on the Clinton model. If you recall Clinton had a Potemkin cabinet--all of the actual decision making and communications were between the WH and the Deputy Secretaries whom Clinton appointed with no imput from the Secretaries.

O is setting up a duplicate shadow cabinet in the WH which will be calling the shots.

I agree this is amateur hour management, but I also believe that this means that there will be conlficts galore and stasis on very many important matters. But then Stasis really should be O's middle name.

Rick Ballard

"Aside from the cabinet people, Obama old hands and some key managers and staff, all of whom will keep their yaps shut, most of those folks will never know of most of the corruption and truly evil stuff."

Don't forget the Clinton retreads at the middle level - the shiny faces definitely won't catch on for a while. The retreads will have the pork from the stimulus doled out before the shiny faces find the restrooms.

I agree that Obama is basically clueless, aside from his desire to pay off the SEIU, ACORN and teacher's union debts as quickly as possible. I just think the confusion we're seeing is mostly Emanuel having to deal with a plate that Fitz filled so full that Emanuel can't balance it and perform efficiently as CoS. Emanuel is Obama's minder and he has a pretty dumb ward. Fitz put a pretty thick stick in the spokes and the bicycle is wobbling badly at the moment.

Elliott

Thanks, DoT. I have no doubt you struck precisely the right tone in reminding the left of their ever-evolving standards.

Daddy

Davod,

Thank you for the link to Peres at Davos. Well worth the time to watch. I watched from minute 40 to the end and in no way whatsoever did Peres embarrass himself from what I saw.

Amused bystander

Clarice: I essentialy agree with you here.

RB: yes, you are right. Personally I do not thing that Rahm is the genius he is painted as.

More of a Capo than any sort of gifted manager or strategist.

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