Posted by Peter Carpenter, a resident of the Atherton: Lindenwood neighborhood, on Jun 5, 2012 at 7:24 am Peter Carpenter is a member (registered user) of Almanac Online
""I don't think that we ought to get in the position where we say this is bad work. This is good work!"
That is different than recognizing that this 'good work' had bad consequences for many of the people who had been employed by companies that Bain Capital forced to 'restructure'. If you want to take credit for your successes than you also need to take responsibility for your failures.
Posted by cherry clafouti, a resident of the Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park neighborhood, on Jun 5, 2012 at 9:09 am
Hank's cherry picking again, must be ready to bake his clafouti.
Glad to know Hank, like all Americans, respects Bill Clinton, the man who gave George Bush a BUDGET SURPLUS, only to see Bush DEVASTATE the economy on his way to doubling the national debt.
Take the quotes IN CONTEXT:
"I think he had a good business career. The -- there is a lot of controversy about that. But if you go in and you try to save a failing company, and you and I have friends here who invest in companies, you can invest in a company, run up the DEBT, LOOT it, sell all the assets, and force all the people to LOSE THEIR RETIREMENT AND FIRE THEM."
Thanks Hank, for bringing up how the VULTURE capitalism at Bain (vs legitimate venture capital) is disastrous.
Who else besides the great Bill Clinton recognize it? How about theses top tier Republicans:
- "It's the ultimate insult when Mitt Romney comes to South Carolina and tells you he feels your pain—because he caused it. [...] There is something inherently wrong when getting rich off failure and sticking it to someone else is how you do your business. I happen to think that is indefensible." —Rick Perry
- "Governor Romney has claimed to have created over 100,000 jobs at Bain, and people are wanting to know: is there proof of that claim? And was it U.S. jobs created for United States citizens? [...] And that's fair, that's not negative campaigning." —Sarah Palin
Posted by Dave Hand, a resident of the Atherton: Lloyden Park neighborhood, on Jun 5, 2012 at 9:20 am
Too french for me Hank, I like good ol' American cherry pie.
And Bill Clinton, just like you.
Yesterday, Bill said:
Electing the Republican nominee would be "calamitous for our country and the world" Clinton said ... "I don't think it's important to re-elect the president, I think it's essential to re-elect the president."
Good to know we're all on the same page here - Bill Clinton rocks.
Posted by Hank Lawrence, a resident of the Menlo Park: Sharon Heights neighborhood, on Jun 5, 2012 at 9:54 am
It seems that the only person running for president who is calamitous for the economy is Barack Obama. This is nothing more than Bill Clinton backpeddling after the White House excoriated him for his brief moment of candor.
Steven Stanley of Pierpoint Securities said
"The economy is shifting from 'muddling through' to paralysis"
The Mercury News, a liberal California Newspaper (albeit not as far to the left as the Almanac) remarked on Obama's dismal performance in this news article
Posted by Hank Lawrence, a resident of the Menlo Park: Sharon Heights neighborhood, on Jun 5, 2012 at 10:56 am
Matt Rhoades is Governor Romney's campaign manager and he has not h9red Karl Rove. Karl Rove is not part of the campaign team. He is the head of a Super Pac that happens to favor Capitalism over Socialism.
To say Karl Rove is part of the Romney Campaign Team is like saying George Clooney and Sarah Jessica Parker are part of the Obama Campaign Team.
For further information on the Romeny for President Campaign team read this article
Posted by Oh Please!, a resident of another community, on Jun 5, 2012 at 12:33 pm
CHERRY CLAFOUTI--Interesting how you conveniently quote those Republicans whom you would otherwise disdain, and whose opinions you would otherwise minimize and scorn, until they say something you want to use to your advantage. Then they are geniuses. The fact is that Bain went into companies who were failing anyway, and used their own money and that of private investors, and did what they could to salvage those companies. More often than not, those companies were too far gone to salvage, but at least he did save some of them, and some of the related jobs. The others would have met the same fate of job losses, but at least an effort was made. Sure they got tax breaks. Sure they made money. What have you done, and how much of your own money have you risked, to that end? Obama, on the other hand, threw a half billion dollars of taxpayer money at a company that even Bain wouldn't have touched, and was shuttered in a matter of months.
Posted by cherry clafouti, a resident of the Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park neighborhood, on Jun 5, 2012 at 1:00 pm
oh, please: "The fact is that Bain went into companies who were failing anyway"
Bain also went into lots of companies that were doing well, loaded them up with debt, just to take that money and pay Bain back, then suffered, often into bankruptcy. Look at Steel Technology, GST, etc..
Bain's targets also frequently used tax payer bailouts.
As far as Solyndra - Romney showed up there last week just to spread a LIE about an inspectors general report that doesn't exist. He has yet to apologize to America for the lie, and still runs the lie on a tv ad. Want a link on that one too?
You think Romney wouldn't touch Solyndra? You're crazy. Romney would touch it. It was money from a Bush era program, with most of the application and approval done before Obama came into office.
Romney has his own Solyndras as governor of Massachusetts, handing out favors to his donors.
* "A Massachusetts solar company to which Mitt Romney personally delivered a $1.5 million loan when he was governor has gone belly up, leaving him vulnerable to the same "picking winners and losers" charges that he's been lobbing at President Barack Obama over Solyndra." Web Link
* "In January 2003, just less than three weeks into his term as governor, Romney handed a check to Konarka executives during a news conference that also involved giving out subsidies to four other renewable energy companies. One of the other winners announced that day — Evergreen Solar — has already undercut Romney's Solyndra attacks by filing last year for bankruptcy protection."
The other two companies that were chosen as 'winners' by Romney, were backed by big Romney donors: "...when Romney was governor, the state handed out $4.5 million in loans to two firms run by his campaign donors that have since defaulted, leaving taxpayers holding the bag."
Haven't heard of these handouts to Romney's donors on Fox, have you?
* "The two companies — Acusphere and Spherics Inc. — stiffed the state on nearly $2.1 million in loans provided through the state’s Emerging Technology Fund, a $25 million investment program created while Romney was governor in 2003.
Acusphere, a biotechnology firm headed by a Romney campaign donor, got $2 million in 2004..."
* "Together, the two companies’ investors and executives donated more than $7,000 to Romney’s past campaigns."
Oh, my. Oh, please....
Did Hank invite you over for some clafouti?
You can discuss this quote over a slice of clafouti... from one of Mitt's campaign co-chairs:
"Mr. McCain also went after Mr. Romney for his work as head of Bain Capital, a leveraged-buyout firm. "As head of his investment company he presided over the acquisition of companies that laid off thousands of workers.""
Posted by cherry clafouti, a resident of the Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park neighborhood, on Jun 5, 2012 at 1:03 pm
"-Interesting how you conveniently quote those Republicans "
Interesting how the topic started with Hank quoting President Clinton, yet that didn't seem to bother you.
Must be because of your deep respect for the great president who gave America 2 consecutive surpluses and 23 million new jobs. As is asked often around herre, without an answer being offered, who was the last republican president to have two budget surplus's?
Posted by Hank Lawrence, a resident of the Menlo Park: Sharon Heights neighborhood, on Jun 5, 2012 at 1:09 pm
By all means vote for Obama. We have 47 million people on food stamps, 11 million under water on their mortgages, 16 trillion in debt, a senate that has failed to produce a budget in 1,135 days, 40 straight months of unemployment above 8%, the lowest labor force participation rate in 30 years; but we should vote for hope and change.
And the best change we can vote for is the change of the occupant in the White House. What a dummkopf!
Posted by Oh Please oh Pretty Please, a resident of the Menlo Park: Allied Arts/Stanford Park neighborhood, on Jun 5, 2012 at 1:14 pm
Please oh please, cherry clafouti, keep posting. You not only know what you're talking about (a welcome breath of fresh air on this thread), but your wit and style have been making my difficult day tolerable. Cheers to cherry!
Posted by Hank Lawrence, a resident of the Menlo Park: Sharon Heights neighborhood, on Jun 5, 2012 at 1:25 pm
it's interesting to see Clinton's record promoted as having generated a surplus. It never happened. There was never a surplus and the facts support that position. All you need to do is go to the U.S. Treasury Website and plug in the numbers
4 million new private sector jobs created once the Bush job loss fiasco was ended.
You have yet to comment on the job chart from March an 2008 to date.
"By all means vote for Obama." I will, thank you. And you will vote for Mitt, who just this week appointed asomeone to head his trasition team (no hubris there, eh?) who supports the Affodable Care Act.
His transition team head helped pass ObamaCare!
awww, Hank, that's gotta hurt....
"Mitt Romney’s choice of Michael O. Leavitt as his transition chief has spurred loud opposition from some conservatives over Mr. Leavitt’s support of a crucial part of President Obama’s health care plan. Mr. Leavitt, a former governor of Utah who was secretary of health and human services in George W. Bush’s cabinet, is now a health care consultant who advises states on how to implement Mr. Obama’s health law.
In an speech to the National Governors Association last year, Mr. Leavitt said that the health care “exchanges” at the heart of what conservatives call “Obamacare” were a good idea and should be implemented by state officials.
The exchanges, he told the governors, are “a very practical solution to a problem that needs to be solved.”"
Wow. (yes, hank, let's ignore that it's yet another Bushie on the Mott team.)
The AUTHOR of ObamaCare (Mitt) chooses an Obamacare fan to run his transition team (again, ignoring the hubris of the position.)
Man, oh, man, the Etch-S-Sketch is going to be busy!
Posted by Ethan, a resident of the Menlo Park: University Heights neighborhood, on Jun 5, 2012 at 1:48 pm
"Obama on the other hand, threw a half billion dollars of taxpayer money at a company that even Bain wouldn't have touched.."
Yeah, what "Obama" (i.e., the government) did was dabble in venture capitalism. That's way too risky. Better the government should have gone the Bain leveraged-buyout route. That is, buy out Solyndra with junk bonds and then have Solyndra pay back the bonds, plus generate a tidy return for the government, by taking on even more debt. After that, it wouldn't matter that Solyndra went bankrupt. The government would have its profit. Everybody wins (well, not exactly everybody). Then, on to the next investment.
On the other hand, the government could just take the half billion and buy three F-35 fighter planes. They don't do much for the economy, but it's really cool how the deluxe models can take off straight up in the air. You can see it on YouTube.
Posted by Solyndra Starter, a resident of the Menlo Park: other neighborhood, on Jun 5, 2012 at 2:04 pm
I believe "W" (as in George W Bush) was the one who started the government looking at investing in Solyndra in the first place.
Compared to what the Chinese are doing to support clean tech and solar startups, the range of investments we are making is not only understandable and appropriate, but essential or else the chinese will eat our lunch.
That's why Bush as well as Obama and others all saw the value in such investments, most of which have done pretty well -- we don't expect them all to. That's not possible.
Posted by Steve, a resident of the Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park neighborhood, on Jun 5, 2012 at 2:13 pm
Sorry to gang up on you but Cherry's right. Obama's the president but the deficits accruing under his watch are almost entirely the result of George W. Bush's failed policies - be it his ruinous tax cuts, his unfunded wars, or the deregulation that allowed Wall Street to drive the economy over the cliff.
The resulting economic downturn (mostly on Bush's watch but bleeding into Obama's) reduced tax revenue and increased federal outlays to cover unemployment, increased food stamps, etc.
This chart makes Bush's responsibility for the current and future deficits quite clear so I expect you won't want to look at it Hank since it might clash with you ideological predilections. Web Link
The sad part is that the chart also shows what the federal deficit would have been had George Bush never been elected and it's so small it's hard to read at this scale.
This is a case where the world actually would have been better off if George B. had never been born (or at least had a better guardian angel).
Posted by Hank Lawrence, a resident of the Menlo Park: Sharon Heights neighborhood, on Jun 5, 2012 at 2:16 pm
Another Liberal Lie!
The Bush Administration examined the Solyndra proposal and by a unanimous 9-0 decision voted against the loan. That was in January of 2009. The Bush Administration killed it deader than a door nail. 4 Months later the brilliant Obama Adminstration approved it. What a bunch of feckless fools!
Posted by cherry clafouti, a resident of the Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park neighborhood, on Jun 5, 2012 at 2:33 pm
Oh, Hank. Seriously? The CBO is just "liberal folklore"?
Hank, ya lost this one by cherry picking a snipet of Bill Clinton's talk. When you get spanked like that, just quit and start another thread. To see you sink to this depth is sad, just sad.
I can list dozens of sources on Clinton's great economy, the 23 million new jobs and/or his two budget surpluses.
Instead let's look at Hank's own words:
"Hank Lawrence, a resident of the Menlo Park: Sharon Heights neighborhood, on Aug 9, 2011 at 2:36 pm - Neither Clinton nor Gingrich and the Republican Congress deserve the credit. The credit goes to Ronald Regan <sic> ...."
"If you want to read an inciteful account of who should get the credit for the balanced budgets go to this url"
Less than a year ago, hank agrees Clinton had surpluses, but they belong to Reagan.
Now, the surpluses (actual black letter history) never happened.
Posted by Steve, a resident of the Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park neighborhood, on Jun 5, 2012 at 3:10 pm
I wouldn't want to accuse you of lying when you said that the Bush Administration voted 9-0 against investing in Solyndra so let's just say that you weren't in possession of all the facts. The facts are clearly laid out at Web Link
It provides a timeline of the Solyndra loan guarantee, which start in the 2005 when Bush signed the Energy Policy Act of 2005 into law, creating the 1703 loan guarantee program that eventually would fund a loan to Solyndra. However, the section pertinent to your claim of how the Bush Administration viewed the loan to Solyndra however is:
"January 2009: In an effort to show it has done something to support renewable energy, the Bush Administration tries to take Solyndra before a DOE credit review committee before President Obama is inaugurated. The committee, consisting of career civil servants with financial expertise, remands the loan back to DOE “without prejudice” because it wasn’t ready for conditional commitment."
"March 2009: The same credit committee approves the strengthened loan application. The deal passes on to DOE’s credit review board. Career staff (not political appointees) within the DOE issue a conditional commitment setting out terms for a guarantee."
So Hank, it's clear from this timeline that the Bush administration pushed to have the Solyndra loan approved before they left office but career civil servants (bureaucrats to you) insisted that standard procedures be followed. When they were, the loan was approved. Nothing nefarious, nothing even particularly political. It was just one of hundreds of loans made to get Green Energy off the ground in this country, something that everyone agreed is a good thing. And of all the green energy loan guarantees made under this law, only Solyndra (1.3% of the total) was deemed a failure.
Not a bad percentage if you ask me.
And much as it pains me to say it, the Bush administration deserves much of the credit for getting this loan program up and running.
Posted by Hank Lawrence, a resident of the Menlo Park: Sharon Heights neighborhood, on Jun 6, 2012 at 6:52 am
Again Democrats engage in a deliberate misrepresentation of the facts regarding Solyndra.
Republicans on the House Energy and Commerce Committee released a Jan. 13, 2009 email in which Bush Energy official Lachlan Seward wrote:
"After canvassing the (DOE credit) committee it was the unanimous decision not to engage in further discussions with Solyndra at this time."
Then on March 20, 2009 Solyndra CEO and founder, Dr. Chris Gronet said:
“The leadership and actions of President Barack Obama, Energy Secretary Steven Chu and the U.S. Congress were instrumental in concluding this offer for a loan guarantee”
The Dr. Gronet further said
“The DOE Loan Guarantee Program funding will enable Solyndra to achieve the economies of scale needed to deliver solar electricity at prices that are competitive with utility rates. This expansion is really about creating new jobs while meaningfully impacting global warming.”
Posted by Steve, a resident of the Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park neighborhood, on Jun 6, 2012 at 10:11 am
Nothing you wrote disagrees with the timeline I referenced.
"After canvassing the (DOE credit) committee it was the unanimous decision not to engage in further discussions with Solyndra at this time."
says pretty much the same thing as the quote from the timeline
"The committee, consisting of career civil servants with financial expertise, remands the loan back to DOE “without prejudice” because it wasn’t ready for conditional commitment."
The only difference is that the timeline noted that the loan was being hurried through by the Bush Administration, perhaps in order to burnish their environmental legacy. The credit committee held the line and waited a few months until a strengthened loan application was submitted and it was then approved.
You resist accepting this factual timeline because it doesn't fit your ideology. However it's clear that both Bush and Obama administrations considered the Solyndra loan to be a worthwhile investment as part of a much larger green energy package that, on the whole, has performed quite well.
You and others are simply using this one loan failure (1.3% of the total loan package) to beat up on Obama, without acknowledging that this was an investment originally proposed to the Bush Dept. of Energy and that was supported by the Bush administration.
I'm not saying that it's Bush's fault. On the contrary it was the right thing to do and the Bush Administration deserves credit for supporting it.
Posted by Hank Lawrence, a resident of the Menlo Park: Sharon Heights neighborhood, on Jun 6, 2012 at 10:31 am
The loan was not be hurried by the Bush Administration. That is a lie! The Bush Adminstration examined the loan application and the DOE Credit Committee unanimously denied it because it was too risky.
Then when Obama took over it applied undue influence to pressure the DOE credit Committee to reverse its decision.
The Bush Administration applied no pressure whatsover on the committee and allowed it to review the Solyndra application. It was the corrupt Obama Adminstration with its reckless disregard for fiscal responsibly that exerted undue influence on the DOE Credit Committee.
The Obama Administration is the most corrupt administration in the history of our country.
Posted by Steve, a resident of the Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park neighborhood, on Jun 6, 2012 at 10:59 am
A bit over the top aren't you? Guess you don't remember the Grant administration.
But more to the point, can you provide any real evidence to support those claims? Thought not.
Well here's evidence from Media Matters that shows that you're wrong:
"At a congressional hearing, Jonathan Silver, the Executive Director of Department of Energy's Loan Programs Office, testified that the Bush administration's DOE [Department of Energy] selected Solyndra from 143 submissions to move forward in the process:
SILVER: "The 2006 solicitation resulted in 143 submissions. The loan program staff and others at the department reviewed those for eligibility, which is a thinner review than the full due diligence, and recommended 16 applications to file a full application. A dozen did so. Solyndra was one of those."
"During the final days of the Bush administration, the Department of Energy's loan guarantee credit committee, consisting of career officials, said that although the Solyndra project "appears to have merit," the committee needed more information in several areas before it could recommend approval of a conditional commitment. The committee "remand[ed]" the loan "without prejudice" for "further development of information."
Note Hank that this previous paragraph clearly disproves your statement "The Bush Administration examined the loan application and the DOE Credit Committee unanimously denied it because it was too risky".
"After the credit committee remanded the project for further information, officials at the Department of Energy under the Bush Administration developed a schedule for due diligence on the Solyndra project, envisioning completion in March 2009."
"The same credit committee [consisting of career civil servants with financial expertise] approves the strengthened loan application. The deal passes on to DOE's credit review board - political appointees within the DOE issue a conditional commitment setting out terms for a guarantee."
"In his testimony, DOE's Silver stated that the credit committee that remanded the project during the Bush administration "is also exactly the same credit committee that then approved the transaction several months later."
Note Hank that the article makes no mention of "undue influence to pressure the DOE credit Committee to reverse its decision" as you claim. Any evidence to support your serious allegation? Or is slander & innuendo OK with you?
Sorry to burst your vituperative bubble Hank but the Solyndra loan application was a boring bureaucratic exercise, not an example of political malfeasance that you & Rush so clearly want to make it out to be.
Posted by cherry clafouti, a resident of the Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park neighborhood, on Jun 6, 2012 at 11:29 am
"The Obama Administration is the most corrupt administration in the history of our country."
"The presidency of Ronald Reagan in the United States was marked by multiple scandals, resulting in the investigation, indictment, or conviction of over 138 administration officials, the largest number for any US president."
Hank - open a new thread to compare Solyndra with the taxpayer money Governor Romney funneled to his campaign donors at these companies - Konarka, Evergreen Solar, Acusphere and Spherics Inc.
Romney was a failure as a governor, an abject failure ranking 47th in job creation.
He was so bad he had to quit instead of running for reelection.
Posted by Hank Lawrence, a resident of the Menlo Park: Sharon Heights neighborhood, on Jun 6, 2012 at 3:10 pm
Governor Romney created jobs in both the private and public sectors. Obama has a net loss of 1,663,000 jobs since he became president.
Source of the data Politifact. In fact since 1945 all of the presidents
9. Bush 41,
10. Clinton, and
11. Bush 43
all created jobs during their presidencies. Obama is the only president since 1945 who has not created jobs. Obama is a complete miserable failure. Yes I know its Bush's fault that Obama is a miserable failure.
Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of the Menlo Park: other neighborhood, on Jun 6, 2012 at 3:54 pm
a repeated lie is still a lie. It doesn't become the truth no matter how many times you repeat it. Obama inherited the recession and it's decline in jobs from Bush. Since then it has turned around and there has been positive job growth. There simply has not been enough time for Obama to undo the damage Bush did. Seriously Hank, I agree with you on a lot of things, but your continued spin and lies on this subject are starting to piss me off and I am no fan of Obama. Just stop lying. Tell the truth. And please don't point the finger at the other side and say they're the ones lying. Maybe they are, but you should be man enough to tell the truth no matter what it is.
Posted by Joe, a resident of the Menlo Park: Allied Arts/Stanford Park neighborhood, on Jun 6, 2012 at 4:23 pm
A full and complete picture based on an appreciation of facts and their associated nuances is anathema to right-wing apologists today. If they repeat their flawed assertions enough times, if they repeat them loudly and with withering scorn, their points can acquire a patina of authority that uninformed listeners are open to.
Black-and-white arguments that also invoke highly emotional responses are much easier to explain and make hay from than the comparatively complex views that involve long-term thinking and the advocacy for a society's general well being, including the least among them.
Exhibit A for the right is Europe. The right is accomplishing one thing for sure: a reason to be deeply embarrassed for this country.
Posted by Steve, a resident of the Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park neighborhood, on Jun 6, 2012 at 5:36 pm
PolitiFact looked into Romney's (and Hank's) claim that "More Americans have lost their jobs under Barack Obama than any president in modern history."
They found that Romney's (and Hank's) claim is mostly false but that it depends on when one starts counting:
PolitiFact "found that Obama is indeed the only president to have a net job loss if you count from inauguration day until the end of the presidency. But it’s not necessarily fair to credit or blame presidents for jobs created or lost during the first year on the job, since the president’s policies have not had time to take effect."
"Instead, if you start the count at one year into a president's term and end it one year -- a somewhat arbitrary method, but a defensible one -- it turns out that the Obama administration has presided over a net increase in jobs. So using this method, the premise of the Romney claim -- that the net jobs change for the nation as a whole under Obama was negative -- evaporates. In fact, using this method means that Obama’s predecessor, George W. Bush, becomes the only president to lose jobs on his watch."
For the full PolitiFact evaluation check out Web Link but their bottom line is that Romney's claim (and Hank's) is "Mostly False".
Posted by Hank Lawrence, a resident of the Menlo Park: Sharon Heights neighborhood, on Jun 7, 2012 at 6:58 am
Then using your twisted logic then 9/11 is entirely Bill Clinton's fault. For God sakes man up. Bush didn't blame Clinton for 9/11. In fact he never spoke ill of Clinton. Yet you have Obama crying like a 3 year old spoiled brat in a day care center "Waaah its Bush's fault".
The main reason Obama is going to lose in November is that the American people want a President who leads and not duck responsibility for every mistake he makes. Obama is widely ridiculed by the World Leaders. Did you see the picture of Obama in Paris walking down the stairs turning his head to stare at some woman's posterior and Sarkozy is at the top of the stairs laughing at him? How embarassing for the United States. That picture was published world wide! Even Bill Clinton has the good sense not to misbehave in public.
Obama is a fool and fortunately enough people will realize it and vote him out of office. If there was ever a person that was not ready for prime time it is Barack Obama. I pity him and I pity the people who have misplaced their trust in this incompetent man.
Posted by Steve, a resident of the Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park neighborhood, on Jun 7, 2012 at 9:30 am
Excuse me but it's not my logic - twisted or otherwise - it's the logic provided by Media Matters in analyzing the question of when policies of a new administration can be expected to have impacts on slow moving statistics like unemployment numbers.
Bush may have left office on Jan 20, 2009 but his failed regulatory policies continued to produce high levels of job losses for months afterwards. Obama didn't get his stimulus bill passed until April and it took many months for it to be implemented and begin to have an effect.
Media Matters simply took this obvious fact into account in trying to determine when job losses/gains should be applied to the new administration.
As for 9/11, it's quite clear that Bush's lack of interest in anti-terrorism issues was largely responsible for not detecting the Al-Qaeda plots. This was made clear in books & testimony by Richard Clarke, who served as chair of the Counter-terrorism Security Group under both Clinton and Bush. He wrote:
"in the summer of 2001, the intelligence community was convinced of an imminent attack by al Qaeda, but could not get the attention of the highest levels of the Bush administration."
"Clarke charged that before and during the 9/11 crisis, many in the Administration were distracted from efforts against Osama bin Laden's Al-Qaeda organization by a pre-occupation with Iraq and Saddam Hussein. Clarke had written that on September 12, 2001, President Bush pulled him and a couple of aides aside and "testily" asked him to try to find evidence that Saddam was connected to the terrorist attacks."
When you talk about incompetent fools who are not ready for prime time, it seems to me you're confusing Obama with George W. Bush.
And of course you are wrong about Obama's world image. Andrew Kohut of the Pew Research Center found in a poll of global opinion that "President Barack Obama has largely retained huge popularity among most of the world's publics" and that "Obama's popularity has significantly improved Washington's image around the world."
Once again your ideology has blinded you to the actual facts.
Posted by Steve, a resident of the Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park neighborhood, on Jun 7, 2012 at 9:38 am
One more thing.
You call Obama incompetent. Did you not read about the killing of Abu Yahya al-Libi in a drone strike in Pakistan on Tuesday. He was 2nd in command in Al-Qaeda and only one of many Al-Qaeda leaders, including Bin Laden, to be eliminated by the policies of this "incompetent" president.
Bush tried for 8 years to get Bin Laden without success. If this is incompetence, let's elect more incompetent leaders cause they're the ones who seem to be getting things done.
Posted by cherry clafouti, a resident of the Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park neighborhood, on Jun 7, 2012 at 10:25 am
First you parse the Clinton statement, merrily cherry-picking the words you want to see. Now you're off on some wild tangents, rewriting history as you go.
Bush was warned in the Aug 6 2001 PDB "Bin Ladin Determined TO Strike In US" and stayed on vacation in Crawford, after that and fifty other warnings.
Don't ya love the video of Condi revealing the name of the PDB under oath, then trying to spin it as a historical document? Required viewing.
Then Condi tries to blame everyone else for 9/11, when it was her and her 'husband' (her claim in 2004) Bush's job to defend America.
Condi, trying to rewrite history (is this where Hank learned it?) Sept 2006: "Nobody organized this country or the international community to fight the terrorist threat that was upon us until 9/11. … We were not left a comprehensive strategy to fight al-Qaida."
Condi's comprehensive strategy was to hang out in Crawford in August 2001 reading PDB's to the Bush and then they went off merrily together to clear shrubs. Or brush. Or bush, or hedges or something.
Bush himself, in Aug 2005, said that Reagan, Clinton and other former Presidents set him up for Bush's failure to protect America because they didn't go after the "wah on terrah" earlier: "They looked at our response after the hostage crisis in Iran, the bombings of the Marine barracks in Lebanon, the first World Trade Center attack, the killing of American soldiers in Somalia, the destruction of two U.S. embassies in Africa, and the attack on the USS Cole. They concluded that free societies lacked the courage and character to defend themselves against a determined enemy."
So yeah, Hank, the Bushies used Fox and AM radio to spread the word to the faithful that Dubya wasn't responsible for the worst attack on America, even though he was warned dozens of times.
It's really Reagan's fault for running away after the Marine barracks bombing.
That Dubya, such a cut-up!
Funny that the big "War on Terror" guy who claimed he would get bin Ladin dead or alive, just 6 months later said he didn't care whetherr he got bin ladin at all.
What ever happened to Bin Ladin, after all that? Oh, yeah, right, the guy you call incompetent promised to get him (the 2008 version of flipflop Mitt said Obama was wrong). And Obama got him.
Hey Hank - I heard that Dubya endorsed your guy Mitt... a big speech, pomp and circumstance, etc...
Posted by Hank Lawrence, a resident of the Menlo Park: Sharon Heights neighborhood, on Jun 7, 2012 at 11:33 am
WOuld you like to make a $1,000 bet on the outcome of the general election. If you win I write a check for $1,000 in your name to the ACLU and if I win you write a check for $1,000 in my name to the Wounded Warriors. It's about time you put your money where your mouth is.
Posted by Oh Please oh Pretty Please, a resident of the Menlo Park: Allied Arts/Stanford Park neighborhood, on Jun 7, 2012 at 12:59 pm
Hank, Very noble to want to help Wounded Warriors, but maybe we should start a collection for you too. Would could call it "Wounded Credibility," or "Wounded Pride." I don't think anything can heal your credibility problem at this point, but maybe you could put your pride aside for a few moments and try to address the content of cherry clafouti's arguments. Evasion isn't pretty.
Posted by Jim Long, a resident of the Menlo Park: Sharon Heights neighborhood, on Jun 7, 2012 at 1:18 pm
It seems "somebodys" hit some nerves but entertaining to read. I'm disgusted with both parties and both candidates but our problem is 80%+ the Congress anyway. Making an issue about Solyndra is disgusting too since Government support for tech is the main reason we have Silicon Valley in the first place. I say burn your party cards and become an independent and focus on individual politicians who believe in practical solutions to the whole mess who also put the Country first over special interests, parties or politicians. Yes, dream on......Unless Intellectual Honesty makes a comeback our kids are screwed. They will live longer with a lower quality of life although less longer than most other Western countries.
Posted by Hank Lawrence, a resident of the Menlo Park: Sharon Heights neighborhood, on Jun 7, 2012 at 1:28 pm
Actually 9/11 is partially Clinton's and partially Bush's fault. I have to give Obama partial credit for allowing the military to bring Osama bin Laden down when we acquired the target. But the main credit goes to
1) Jose Rodriguez former CIA deputy Director of Operations for gathering the target intelligence, and
2) VADM William McCraven who commanded the Seal team Op in country.
President Bill "I loathe the Military" Clinton chickened out. When he asked Secretary of State Madeleine Albright her opinion as to whether he should go ahead with eliminating the target Albright responded "we can't do that Muslims will hate us". You have to admire Clinton's courage.
Posted by Steve, a resident of the Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park neighborhood, on Jun 7, 2012 at 1:42 pm
You ask Clafouti "WOuld you like to make a $1,000 bet on the outcome of the general election."
I certainly wouldn't take you up on your bet. With the FOX propaganda machine spreading lies and distortions about Obama and with Citizens United freeing the hand of SuperPACS funded by rich Republicans like the Koch brothers to blanket the airwaves with even more hateful lies about him, there's very good reason to think Obama could lose, despite his generally good performance under very trying circumstances - trying circumstances left him by a failed Bush administration and exacerbated by a completely partisan and ideological Republican Party.
Despite some shortcomings I still support Obama and find his rational and measured approach to problem solving infinitely preferable to the bombast and far-right conservative ideology that characterizes the Republican Party and that you are a shining example of.
Posted by incredible, a resident of the Portola Valley: Ladera neighborhood, on Jun 7, 2012 at 1:58 pm
Why are you all arguing with Hank Lawrence of all people? When I see his name on anything I vote the other way (don't tell him that)
So, Bill Clinton was supposed to kill Osama BEFORE 9/11? For what?
Let's not forget who trained Osama.
Nor should we forget who's daddy was meeting with Osama's daddy and who make sure that the Bin Ladens all got out of our country before we could all hold them and torture THEM to find out where their son was. Too big a rush to get into a war that was NOT about oil that left 67% of the oil fields in Iraq under the oil companies control. Chenney said they would pay us back... and when it that going to happen?
Weopons of mass destruction? On "W"'s watch N. Korea produced PLUTONIUM not 20% enriched uranium. Yellow Cake? Where. Spies turned over to the press..
Oh... but hey.. yeah... OBAMA's the bad president! Agreed! He's allowed 40 Senators cart blanche to rule this country!
How's that missile shield that Daddy Bush's company put in working? Ten billion a year on that Sigfried line of the modern era.
Let's not forget Haliburton and all the other war profiteering. Then again, those folks are still looting our country. Great business when you can make your own contracts and then have them awarded to you "no bid" and no oversight due to "national security"
Shock and Awe folks.. Read "Shock Therapy". We're the ones that they had in their "free market" sites from day one.
So Clinton was not courageous, I'm sure in your next breath you'll condemn Obama for using drones to kill "bad people"
I must remember that the ALMANAC is a left leaning paper... that would never ever print the sort of propaganda that Hank would want printed. Nice out of context quote! Very Karl Rove!
Posted by Independent, a resident of the Woodside: Mountain Home Road neighborhood, on Jun 7, 2012 at 8:05 pm
As a fellow independent I hear what you're saying. It's just stunning isn't it, to read these posts from a non-biased view-point? These poor party followers can't think for themselves - they pick the one news channel to watch and most don't read different newspapers, let alone one newspaper. They can't even begin to consider other datapoints. It leaves the elections to be decided by independent,analtical, critical thinkers.
Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of the Menlo Park: other neighborhood, on Jun 8, 2012 at 7:21 am
you are right on. Perfect example of why our political system is all screwed up. The two parties have allowed themselves to be hijacked by the far left and far right wingnuts of their party. Neither the Democratic or Republican parties bear any resemblance to what they were 30 years ago. You know, when the government actualy functioned and got things done.
Posted by Steve, a resident of the Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park neighborhood, on Jun 8, 2012 at 10:58 am
I disagree with your claim that the Dems and Repubs are equally extreme and therefore both equally culpable. This is a false equivalence argument that Paul Krugman, among many others, has shown to be false.
While I agree that the Republicans have been pulled to the far right by the ideologues of the Tea Party, the Dems have, if anything, become more centrist as they attempt to respond to this conservative shift. Some have described them as Republican lite and indeed, several DEMS routinely vote with the Republicans on house votes. To say that they have become more left-wing is to not really understand what the most progressive end of the Democratic spectrum is all about. Certainly those on the far-left are very critical of the lack of conviction & action on the part of Democrats.
The evidence shows that Democrats have been much more willing to compromise in both the House & Senate and Obama's gotten the reputation as wishy-washy for his repeated attempts at bipartisanship in the face of complete Republican obstructionism.
The Republican party is just a ghost of what it was even 20 years ago - call it the Tea Party because that more accurately reflects its positions. You just know that if the DEMS didn't change an iota and we had the Republican party we had in the 1990's that this Congress would be much more productive and not the "do-nothing" Congress that it has become.
Posted by Hank Lawrence, a resident of the Menlo Park: Sharon Heights neighborhood, on Jun 8, 2012 at 3:07 pm
Bill Clinton is the gift that keeps giving. In a CNN interview with Wolf Blitzer Bill Clinton argued for an extension of the Bush Tax Cuts for all but the top 2% of wage earners.
"Those rates -- the problem with that and why I think they should be extended for the bottom 98% is that median income, after inflation, is lower than it was the day I left office"
"So those people who would be affected by that, many, many of them have had no income increases in a decade while their costs have gone up. So you really would have a contractionary economic impact. It would be very bad for the economy if those folks in the bottom 98% had to shoulder a tax increase"
The only hope the Democrats have now to hang on to the White House is for Obama to release his pledged delegates at the Charlotte Convention to Hillary Clinton. She is way smarter than Obama and has some decent organization skills to boot.
Meanwhile, the inside the beltway talk is that Obama is in way over his head and has been so since the beginning of his term. Political Pundits speculate that the Democrats can't force Obama to release his delegates and can only appeal to his sense of responsibility to step aside so that Democratic Party to hold on to the White House. But Obama's desire to hang on to the Presidency at all costs will prevent him from swallowing his pride and doing the right thing. Obama's hubris will cause the White House to change hands on January 20, 2013.
I welcome soon to be President Romney. He has his work cut out for him after the disatrous destruction Obama has caused this county. But he is up to the task.
Posted by cherry clafouti, a resident of the Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park neighborhood, on Jun 8, 2012 at 4:06 pm
"Meanwhile, the inside the beltway talk is that Obama is in way over his head and has been so since the beginning of his term. Political Pundits speculate that the Democrats can't force Obama to release his delegates and can only appeal to his sense of responsibility to step aside so that Democratic Party to hold on to the White House. "
Seriously, that is some wicked 'medication' you are on. Whatever you are smoking or drinking, I want some.
But not till after five o'clock.
Obama wants to extend the Bush/Obama tax cuts for the middle class, always has. No news here.
The only news is the GOP will hold something hostage to keep their masters happy and keep the deficit busting tax cuts for millionaires and billionaires in place.
Posted by Hank Lawrence, a resident of the Menlo Park: Sharon Heights neighborhood, on Jun 8, 2012 at 5:40 pm
[Portion removed; poster knows why.]
Obama is all talk on the tax cuts. They are expiring in January and he won't get anything done. But it doesn't matter. He will be getting his pink slip in November and one of the first things Romney will do as President is to resume the Bush tax cuts retroactive to January 1. All we need to do is pick up 3 senate seats. The President of the Senate will be a Republican for any tie breakers.
One of the things the pleasntly surprised JFK is when he cut the tax rate tax revnues increased enormously. It still surprises liberals as they are largely ignorant about economics; especially tax elasticities.
Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of the Menlo Park: other neighborhood, on Jun 8, 2012 at 8:54 pm
pull your head out. Romney doesn't stand a chance. It will be a close election, yes, but Romney win? No way. I will be hating and loving you eating your words when Obama wins. Obama isn't my ideal, but Romney is a joke. Of course, you being a right wingnut, you can't possibly see that as a reality.
Posted by Menlo Voter, a resident of the Menlo Park: other neighborhood, on Jun 8, 2012 at 9:01 pm
sorry, but I don't have time to get into the details, but the Dems are just as reluctant to "deal" as the pugs. They both own this mess and no amount of denial will change that. As a brief example, the dems totally refused to cooperate with anything the Bush administration tried to do. Not because he was wrong, but becasue the pugs had gone after Clinton in the Lewinski scandal/impeachment. It wasn't until the house changed hands to the pugs that Bush was able to get anything done. I'm guessing you're a dem. Can't see the forest for the trees any more than your counterpart Hank can. Those of us in the middle just look at you two and shake our heads.
Posted by Steve, a resident of the Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park neighborhood, on Jun 8, 2012 at 9:54 pm
If only "the dems totally refused to cooperate with anything the Bush administration tried to do" we'd not be in quite the mess we're in. While the DEMS were the minority party for most of the Bush years, many of Bush's worst decisions were accomplished with the votes of many or most of the DEMS. To wit:
-decision to invade Afghanistan - passed House 420-1 & Senate 98-0
-authorize the invasion of Iraq - 82 House & 29 Senate DEMS vote yes
-Patriot Act passed with big majorities in both houses (Pelosi too)
-Bush Tax Cuts - supported by 28 House DEMS and 12 Senate DEMS
As I recall, even though he'd virtually stolen the 2000 election, Bush & his cohorts argued vociferously that he had a mandate and that Congress must pass his Tax cuts. The Dems obliged for some unknown reason.
Then Obama, who legitimately could claim a mandate, found nothing but opposition and obstructionism from the Repugs, especially after 2010.
Not equivalent at all - particularly since the Repugs transmogrified into the Tea Party (or vice versa).
Posted by Hank Lawrence, a resident of the Menlo Park: Sharon Heights neighborhood, on Jun 9, 2012 at 7:48 am
Interesting comment. "Since Bush virtually stole the election". Translated "We Democrats are totally pissed that the RNC did not allow us to steal the election".
If Al Gore had not fire Larry Tribe and replaced him with the DOJ shakedown artist David dBoies then he would not have followed Boies lousy advise to cherry pick the counties for the recount. Of course the highly biased Florida Supreme Court was chatized not once but twice by the U.S. Supreme Court for violating the 14th Amendment.
And the U.S. Supreme Court ruled 7 to 2 that what the Florida Supreme Court did was wrong and only ruled 5-4 on the remedy.
President Bush won that election fair and square and I want to thank Ralph Nader from the bottom of my heart for delivering Florida to President Bush. Ralph Nader received 97,000 votes in Florida.
Dems, doesn't that make you want to cry. If Ralph Nader was not on the Florida ballot then Al Gore would have most certainly been elected President and he too could have received Oval Office special "stress relieving treatments" rather than having to go to massage parlors in Portland Oregon to relieve his stress.
Posted by cherry clafouti, a resident of the Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park neighborhood, on Jun 9, 2012 at 10:17 am
Amazing that you officially represent the Republican Party of San Mateo County. Web Link
Keep talking. Guaranteed to drive independents to keep California blue. The editor saves your bacon by deleting your most egregious bile, like this from above "[Portion removed; poster knows why.]"
Have a great weekend, Hank, it's beautiful out here, in blue California.
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Oh, yeah, Bush v Gore.... the consortium of major media outlets' study (including the Wall St Journal) recounted all the ballots, using different scenarios. Being released post-9/11, even the members of the consortium spun it the way you like.
"The study, dubbed a "double check on democracy" by the St. Petersburg Times (11/11/01), was spearheaded by a consortium of six major news organizations--the New York Times, Washington Post, Wall Street Journal, Tribune Co. (parent of the L.A. Times), Associated Press and CNN--plus two Florida papers, the Palm Beach Post and St. Petersburg Times. In an effort costing nearly $1 million in pooled funds and some 10 months' work, the group rounded up uncounted ballots from all 67 Florida counties, then commissioned the University of Chicago's nonpartisan National Opinion Research Center to examine them. "
Candidate outcomes based on potential recounts in Florida presidential election 2000
(outcome of one particular study)
Review method - Winner
1. Review of all ballots statewide (never undertaken)
• Standard as set by each county canvassing board during their survey - Gore by 171
• Fully punched chad and limited marks on optical ballots - Gore by 115
• Any dimples or optical mark - Gore by 107
• One corner of chad detached or optical mark - Gore by 60
2. Review of limited sets of ballots (initiated but not completed)
• Gore request for recounts of all ballots in Broward, Miami-Dade, Palm Beach, and Volusia counties - Bush by 225
• Florida Supreme Court of all undervotes statewide - Bush by 430
• Florida Supreme Court as being implemented by the counties, some of whom refused and some counted overvotes as well as undervotes - Bush by 493
Odd that Hank wanted to delve that deeply into Bush, based on a short remark by Steve.
Can't imagine, Hank, that it's official GOP policy to keep defending Bush, the guy who took a SURPLUS in 2001 and ended up with America's first trillion dollar deficit, doubling the national debt.
Who gave Bush two years of SURPLUS to squander? Your man - Bill Clinton, that you love so much you starrted a thread on his sage words for Romney: "I think he had a good business career. The -- there is a lot of controversy about that. But if you go in and you try to save a failing company, and you and I have friends here who invest in companies, you can invest in a company, run up the DEBT, LOOT it, sell all the assets, and force all the people to LOSE THEIR RETIREMENT AND FIRE THEM."
Posted by Hank Lawrence, a resident of the Menlo Park: Sharon Heights neighborhood, on Jun 9, 2012 at 11:49 am
Imagine that! Potential recounts is the operative word. I go for facts and the facts are that during the recounts Bush led each time. Only when the Floriday Supreme Court ratified David Boies ridiculous argument of only recounting some counties did the U.S. Supreme COurt come in and slam the Florida Supreme Court by 7 to 2.
You should read your U.S. Constitution. Popular vote doesn't count only the electoral college vote. And the electoral college will be here to stay. That is not going to change.
Posted by Hank Lawrence, a resident of the Menlo Park: Sharon Heights neighborhood, on Jun 9, 2012 at 1:06 pm
That is like saying the San Francisco Giants beat the Los Angeles Dodgers 10 to 8 and a Dodgers fan proudly boasting the Dodgers got 18 hits and the Giants only got 16. Who the hell cares? The only thing that matters is who won the game. And it is wonderful Ralph Nader's pinch hit homer in extra innings drove in 2 runs to break the tie. Bush won the election and Gore had a lot of runners stranded on base! Game Over! Gore's a loser.
Posted by Steve, a resident of the Menlo Park: Central Menlo Park neighborhood, on Jun 11, 2012 at 2:12 pm
On the contrary, Gore's become quite wealthy after "losing" to Bush in 2000. Won a Nobel prize too I heard.
The real loser was the American electorate - stuck with 2 wars Bush couldn't finish, a medicare drug benefit Bush didn't pay for, and a nearly $12 Trillion dollar debt Bush left for Obama to deal with.