Friday, August 13, 2010

Friday the 13th and What a Week in Obamaville

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This was one wild week in the land of Oz, or Obamaville, whichever you choose to embrace.




The Democrats Corruption Scandal:


First on our list of highlights or low lights was the Charlie Rangel and Maxine Waters ethics cases. Good old Charlie first ruined Nancy Pelosi's House vote on the "teacher bailout", or "let's make a deal vote Washington style" when he used an obscure House rule to take control of the press filled chamber to seek dignity over his treatment on ethics charges.


It was a passionate plea for something and an invitation to his birthday bash on Thursday night at the most expensive place in New York City, the Plaza Hotel. Not exactly the image one might want when fighting charges you stole money from the taxpayers but Charlie was able to get over his blues at the party while a handful of Democrats and NYC Mayor Bloomberg shared the night.




The ethics panel set his trial for the day before the fall election, November 1 which was a bit strange unless you were Pelosi and wanted to make sure it was too late to impact on the Obama referendum which it is. So at least she won that battle. Preacher Sharpton made his case to canonize Charlie after his resurrection which was a nice Biblical way to disguise corruption and he pleaded the case for dignity. I am a little confused on how someone who stole hundreds of thousands of dollars while presiding over the taxation of all American citizens deserves dignity but the Democrats seem to have a different way of looking at the world.


As for Maxine, she is intent on more discussion of her charges and seems content letting the probe focus on what her chief of staff, her son, did and how she was not aware. If she wants to throw her son under the wheels of the ethics bus that's okay but I worked for several congressmen and it is the job of their staff to keep the congressman informed of everything good and bad going on. You would think she had better communication with her own son unless his role was to insulate her from prosecution.


The Teacher Bailout Bill:


In the meantime Pelosi did get her $26 billion teacher bailout thus rewarding the teachers unions for their campaign support but the explanation for how it was paid for this year with food stamp money from 2014 and why she did not let the governors decide how to use the money instead of telling them what to do makes George Bush, Sr. and his "voodoo economics" seem lame by comparison. When the Obama spending spree is measured by an increase of trillions and trillions of dollars in our national debt, what is $26 billion more.




Obama Press Secretary Gibb's Meltdown:


This week also saw the meltdown of Gibb's during a White House interview. During an interview with The Hill in his West Wing office, White House press secretary Robert Gibbs blasted liberal naysayers, whom he said would never regard anything the president did as good enough.


“I hear these people saying he’s like George Bush. Those people ought to be drug tested,” Gibbs said. “I mean, it’s crazy.”


The press secretary dismissed the “professional left” in terms very similar to those used by their opponents on the ideological right, saying, “They will be satisfied when we have Canadian healthcare and we’ve eliminated the Pentagon. That’s not reality.”


Of those who complain that Obama caved to centrists on issues such as healthcare reform, Gibbs said: “They wouldn’t be satisfied if Dennis Kucinich was president.”


Gibbs said the professional left is not representative of the progressives who organized, campaigned, raised money and ultimately voted for Obama.


Since he is as close to Obama and Rahm Emanuel as anyone we must assume he was parroting their attitude toward the left. So now they have alienated the far left and much of the Democrats base for support not to mention the Independents and Republicans w3ho supported Obama..






Obama Vacation Mania:


The first family is still stinging from the criticism over Michelle Obama's "private" vacation with her daughter to Spain for a few hundred thousand in tax dollars and no one has explained why she was vacationing at a five star Spanish resort instead of being with Barack at his birthday party in Chicago. Of course why they needed ten vacations this year might also be a good question.




The Colorado Primary:


Several states held their primary elections this week and in Colorado it was an Obama boy against a Bill Clinton boy in the race for Senate. Obama won and the Washington media declared the fall election over, that Obama was now going to beat back the challenge. Fat chance though the Republicans sure have not earned the right to wallop Obama. Luck for them they happen to have lost two straight elections to the Democrats. The people, as I discussed in two previous articles, will do what the politicians and news media will not, they will clean out the swamp in our nation's capitol.


Why the News Media is on Life Support:


Finally, if you want to see proof the news media is long past it's prime consider this strange sequence of news coverage. At the beginning of this week we learned that ten humanitarian workers were executed in Afghanistan including six Americans. The slaughter was done in one day. People who had dedicated their lives to help others and were volunteers in the war zone gave up life to serve.


Yet by Monday night Charlie Rangel's rant on the House floor was the headline. Come Tuesday little boy JetBlue stole the show by mouthing off to passengers, stealing a couple of beers and jumping down the escape slide of an airplane, making him the new media folk hero.


His story carried the media until Obama's non-victory in Colorado Wednesday, then back came the sky pilot Thursday and Rangel's Plaza party Thursday night and Friday. This is what dominated the news this week in America.




Here are the ten people who died in Afghanistan and whose story was lost by the stupid entertainment stories in the national news.


-- Mahram Ali, 50: Wardak, Afghanistan


Ali worked as a watchman at the National Organisation for Ophthalmic Rehabilitation's (NOOR) maintenance workshop, a position he had held since 2007, the mission said. "He stayed behind guarding the vehicles in Nawa when the rest of the team walked over the pass into Nuristan." He is survived by his wife and three young children.


-- Cheryl Beckett, 32: Ohio, United States


Cheryl Beckett had been working in Afghanistan since 2005 with a focus on nutritional gardening and mother-child health.


As a student at Indiana Wesleyan University, Beckett, a minister's daughter, developed a global passion for justice and love during her travels to Honduras, Mexico, Kenya and Zimbabwe, according to her obituary.


The IAM said she was a Pashto speaker who had been asked to assist the medical team in translating for women patients. She had been working in Afghanistan since 2005 with a focus on nutritional gardening and mother-child health. She worked in a clinic in Pul-e Charkhi on the outskirts of Kabul. She is survived by her parents and three siblings.


"Cheryl loved and respected the Afghan people. She denied herself many freedoms in order to abide by Afghan law and custom," said a statement from her family released by the Woodlawn Christian Church in Knoxville, Tennessee, where Beckett's father is pastor, according to CNN affiliate WVLT.


"She was honored to be included in this most recent three-week medical journey to the remote populations of Northern Afghanistan. ...Those who committed this act of terror should feel the utter shame and disgust that humanity feels for them."


-- Daniela Beyer, 35: Chemnitz, Germany


Beyer was a linguist and translator in German, English and Russian who also spoke Dari and was learning Pashto, the IAM said. She worked for the organization between 2007 and 2009 doing linguistic research and joined the eye camp so she could translate for women patients. She is survived by her parents and three siblings.


-- Brian Carderelli, 25: Pennsylvania, United States


Carderelli was a professional freelance videographer who worked with a number of Afghan development and humanitarian organizations throughout the nation, the IAM said. "Brian quickly fell in love with the Afghan people and culture and hoped to stay within the country for another year."


-- Jawed, 24: Panjshir, Afghanistan


Jawed was a cook at the Ministry of Public Health's Eye Hospital in Kabul, and had been released in order to attend the Eye Camp as the team's cook. He also assisted with dispensing eyeglasses, the IAM said. He is survived by his wife and three young children. "Jawed had been on several eye camps into Nuristan in the past, and was well loved for his sense of humor," the organization said.


-- Dr. Thomas Grams: Durango, Colorado, United States


Grams was a dentist and a friend of team leader Tom Little, the IAM said.


He had been working with Global Dental Relief for 10 years, and had been to Afghanistan several times, as well as in Nepal, said Katy Shaw, an administrator with the group.


He was a general dentist who gave up his private practice to do relief work, Shaw said. Grams started as a volunteer with the group, which provides dental care for impoverished children, but later became a team leader.


-- Glen D. Lapp, 40: Lancaster, Pennsylvania, United States


Glen D. Lapp, 40, of Lancaster, Pennsylvania, worked for a charity that provides eye care and medical help.


On Sunday morning, Lapp's family received confirmation of his death from the U.S. Embassy, said the Mennonite Central Committee. Lapp worked for the International Assistance Mission, the Mennonite Central Committee's partner organization, which provides eye care and medical help in Afghanistan.


Lapp was trained as an intensive-care nurse and had worked in Lancaster, New York, and Supai, Arizona, the IAM said. He also was a response worker after hurricanes Katrina and Rita struck the Gulf Coast. He came to Kabul in 2008, and worked at the IAM headquarters. After five months of Dari language training, Lapp began working with the National Organisation for Ophthalmic Rehabilitation. He was responsible for organizing mobile eye camps in the remote areas of Afghanistan.


-- Tom Little, 61: New York, United States


Tom Little, here with his wife Libby, had recently become involved in a program to eradicate preventable blindness.


Little, the team leader, was an optometrist who was affectionately known as "Mister Tom" among staff at the National Organization for Ophthalmic Rehabilitation, the IAM said. He arrived in Afghanistan in 1976 with his family and worked as NOOR's optometrist and manager, setting up clinics and workshops.


"He was much loved by both foreigners and Afghans, and was the inspiration for other IAM team members coming to Afghanistan," the IAM said. He is survived by his wife, Libby, and three daughters.


Little's wife, Libby, confirmed the death. She said she knew the worst had happened when she didn't hear from her husband after 24 hours. She described a system they established years ago -- he would give her a short, 30-second call every 12 hours to let her know he was okay. When two cycles went by without a call from her husband, she said she knew something was wrong.


Little had recently become involved in a program to eradicate preventable blindness by the year 2020, his wife said.


"He would come back to the States and get throw-away optical equipment, then refurbished it, then would send it over to set up a little optical manufacturing factory, so they could make their own eyeglasses there," Libby Little said about her husband.


-- Dan Terry, 63: Wisconsin, United States


Terry came to Afghanistan in 1971, the IAM said, and "had a heart for the rural areas of Afghanistan." He worked for many years in the Lal-wa Sarjangal district of the country. "Dan specialized in relating to local communities and liaising with aid organizations and the government to improve services in remote areas," IAM said. He is survived by his wife, three daughters and one granddaughter.


-- Dr. Karen Woo, 36: Britain


The British Foreign Office confirmed Woo's death Sunday. The IAM said she was a general surgeon who joined the Nuristan Eye Camp to be the team's doctor and to help promote maternal health care in Nuristan communities.


Woo's friend, Firuz Rahimi, confirmed her death to CNN and said his friend gave up a comfortable life in London to work in Afghanistan.


Rahimi said he spoke with Woo three weeks ago, while she was packing for a trip with the assistance mission to Nuristan province.


He told CNN that Woo had medicine and medical equipment procured after a period of fundraising. Woo was excited about the trip but was fully aware of the risks she faced making this kind of journey, he said.


MAY THEIR SUPREME SACRIFICE FOR OTHERS NOT GO FORGOTTEN!


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