Hey POTUS: Foreign Policy Magazine Just Called Your Foreign Policy Advisor an Asshole

May 1, 2012 - Air Force One - President BARACK OBAMA works on his address to the nation with BEN RHODES, Deputy National Security Advisor for Strategic Communication, aboard Air Force One before landing in Afghanistan. President Barack Obama marked the anniversary of Osama bin Laden's death with a speedy trip to Afghanistan, signing a strategic pact with Kabul on Wednesday and delivering an election-year message to Americans that the war is winding down. Shortly after arriving under the cover of darkness, Obama and Afghan President Hamid Karzai signed a strategic partnership agreement at the Afghan leader's palace that sets out a long-term U.S. role in Afghanistan, including aid and advisers..(Credit Image: © Pete Souza/The White House/ZUMAPRESS.com) (Newscom TagID: zumaamericasfive761628.jpg) [Photo via Newscom]

‘Kind of like McGeorge Bundy meets Lee Atwater’

Thomas E. Ricks writes: The profile of one Ben Rhodes running in Sunday’s New York Times Magazine is not unsympathetic, which makes it all the more devastating.

Perhaps the key sentence is this: “His lack of conventional real-world experience of the kind that normally precedes responsibility for the fate of nations — like military or diplomatic service, or even a master’s degree in international relations, rather than creative writing — is still startling.”

“Most of the outlets are reporting on world events from Washington. The average reporter we talk to is 27 years old, and their only reporting experience consists of being around political campaigns. That’s a sea change. They literally know nothing.”

Rhodes comes off like a real asshole. This is not a matter of politics — I have voted for Obama twice. Nor do I mind Rhodes’s contempt for many political reporters: “Most of the outlets are reporting on world events from Washington. The average reporter we talk to is 27 years old, and their only reporting experience consists of being around political campaigns. That’s a sea change. They literally know nothing.”


“Obama’s hasn’t been an original foreign policy as much as it has been a politicized foreign policy. And this Rhodes guy reminds me of the Kennedy smart guys who helped get us into the Vietnam War. Does he know how awful he sounds? Kind of like McGeorge Bundy meets Lee Atwater.”

But, as that quote indicates, he comes off like an overweening little schmuck. This quotation seems to capture his worldview: “He referred to the American foreign policy establishment as the Blob. Read the rest of this entry »

‘None of this will have Any Meaningful Effect on the Planet’s Climate’


Another Overreach from Obama’s EPA

“A few things are going on here. One is that the president is positioning himself to ride into Paris on a white charger when world leaders convene there to negotiate a broad emissions treaty — a treaty that the U.S. Senate under Republican control is unlikely to ratify. The ratification of the treaty is not the object; the rejection of the treaty is the object, giving Democrats a low-cost opportunity to engage in moral preening on the environment and to tsk-tsk Republicans and their purportedly anti-science attitudes. The second thing that this accomplishes is that coal companies, business organizations in coal-heavy states, and their political allies — not habitual friends of the progressive wing of the Democratic party — will be obliged to spend millions or billions of dollars and countless man-hours defending themselves against the new mandate, while hedge-funders long on politically connected green-energy companies — prominent sponsors of many Democratic endeavors — will be enriched.”

Read more…

National Review Online

Bloomberg Report: Hillary Counting On Media to Bail Her Out of Email Scandal


John Nolte reports: A fine piece of reporting from Jennifer Epstein of Bloomberg Politics informs us that Hillary Clinton has a pretty brilliant strategy to get her out of her current email scandal: Wait for America’s unbiased, objective, not-at-all liberal media to bail her out. The strategy is a smart one that worked throughout Bill Clinton’s presidency. It also depends exclusively on the cooperation of a willing national media.


Clinton and her team are aware that her tactics will only hold out for so long and that she’ll eventually have to answer questions about her e-mail practices, but she and her advisers are aiming to delay that moment, ideally until she formally announces she’s running for president. At that point, they hope, the controversy will have subsided to the point where her campaign launch will be a much bigger headline than her response to a month-old scandal. An added benefit to the approach: the potential for Republicans to overreach and overreact while Clinton stays silent.

The strategy is simple and, as Epstein points out, “time-tested.”

  1. Hunker down and refuse to answer questions until the media loses interest and moves on.
  2. Hope the media accuses a Republican — any Republican, of “overreaching” on the scandal. The Narrative around the scandal can then turn to those mean, wild-eyed Republicans.

Despite all the national security and ethical issues surrounding the use of an email server located in her own home,  despite the fact that we will probably never know if we are seeing all of a former-Secretary of State’s emails, Clinton Land is certain that in the end none of this will matter to the media.


Rather than fearing the media will run the story to ground and demand she give a full accounting, Clinton is counting on being able to wait out the media and the fact that the media is always eager to find a way to blowback the story on any Republican that can be accused of “overreach.”

The media is already eager to pounce on overreach…

…the media is also circling the wagons by shaming aggressive reporters as stalkers. Read the rest of this entry »