Monthly Archives: October 2012

The US State Department And The Benghazi Attack

I’m giving the podcast thing another try. The audio isn’t perfect yet but it’s better than last time.

I spoke with Robert Caruso (@robertcaruso), he’s worked on physical, operational and crypological issues while serving in the Navy and in the Office of the Secretary of Defense. He’s also worked for the Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction (SIGAR), the office charged with preventing and uncovering waste, fraud and abuse in US reconstruction programs across Afghanistan. Robert has also consulted with the State Department on matters of diplomatic security.

The interview focuses on how an attack like this could happen and the role the culture and structure of the State Department may have played in the multiple failures leading up to the tragic death of four Americans on September 11, 2012 in Benghazi Libya.

Also note that interview was conducted on Wednesday afternoon before today’s revelations.

A Confirmed Romney Hater’s Reaction To Last Night’s Debate

Last night Mitt Romney shocked the political world with his debate performance and energized conservatives across the country. POTUS Predictor 2012 let’s you predict how the debate shook  up the race for the White House. Make your predictions and share them with friends and family via Twitter and facebook. No matter what kind of device you have we have you covered with Apple, Droid and Kindle versions. Get it now!
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I think my anti-Romney bona fides are pretty well established by this point. Google “I hate Mitt Romney” and this is the fifth link that shows up.  So I went into last night’s debate with a mixture of dread at how he might fold to Obama and nausea about what attacks he’d leave on the table. I came out of it laughing and ODing on schadenfreude thanks to MSNBC (especially Chris Matthews’ epic meltdown).

Romney was in command of the facts and the stage, he was engaging (the opening joke about Obama spending his anniversary with Mitt set the tone for the night), he refused to back down or concede an inch on anything, he stuck to his guns and was forceful yet respectful. The only segment that I thought Romney had any trouble was on health care where the differences between his approach and Obama’s aren’t all that he makes them out to be (but conservatives have already priced that in to life with Romney). Other than that, it’s hard to think of misstep he made all night.

Most of the criticism from the left was that moderator Jim Lehrer didn’t jump in enough to either save Obama or demand “specifics”. Both of these criticisms are exceptionally weak and damning to Obama.

It’s not the moderator’s job to pull one candidate off another. Obama implored Lehrer to do so (“you may want to move on to another topic”) when the heat got to be too much but Romney simply, firmly and politely refused to let up. Barack Obama is President of the United States of America. If he needs Jim Lehrer to save him from Mitt Romney he has no business representing this country against the likes of Vladimir Putin. For liberals to admit this is astonishing.

As for demanding specifics from Romney two thoughts.

One, for Obama partisans to demand specifics after their man won 4 years ago based on “Hope”, “Change” and “Yes We Can” is a bit rich.

More importantly, Romney laid out specifics as to his approach to problems. He did not, nor should have laid out his bargaining positions. Sure some of it is hiding unpopular positions (much like Obama did when he opposed the individual mandate in 08 before agreeing to one) but there are practical reasons as well.  Romney would have lost his shirt if he entered negotiations by laying his cards on the table before the negotiation starts but he didn’t. No one does that, especially not someone who has been wildly successful in the cut throat world of buyouts and investing like Romney has.

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Last night Mitt Romney shocked the political world with his debate performance and energized conservatives across the country. POTUS Predictor 2012 let’s you predict how the debate shook up the race for the White House. Make your predictions and share them with friends and family via Twitter and facebook. No matter what kind of device you have we have you covered with Apple, Droid and Kindle versions. Get it now!
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Most of Obama’s and the Democratic Machine Media (DMM) frustration with Romney’s lack of “specifics” is simply based on their underlying disagreement with his philosophical approach. Obama latched on to the idea that Romney wants a $5 trillion tax cut which would lead to an equal sized hole in the federal budget. What Romney is proposing is a cut in tax rates that will be paired with decreases in deductions, credits, etc and economic growth to match the “lost” revenue. Liberals simply don’t credit this idea as real and therefore dismiss it. They insist that only their definitions and expectations about how the economy works are “real” and anything else is simply fantasy.

That is an argument only voters can decide not DMM figure citing the supposedly “non-partisan” Tax Policy Center (which is a joint venture of two liberal organizations, the Brookings Instiution and the Urban Institute).

Last night Romney laid out his case for his side of that argument without accepting Obama’s or the DMM’s terms. That is what has outraged them so much.

Are all of Romney’s proposals conservative orthodoxy? Of course not. The idea of Mitt as “a severe conservative” is one he tired to create to win the nomination and one the DMM has adopted because they think it hurts him. Conservatives are smarter than that. We know our beliefs and who has fought for them better than the DMM. We know it’s not Romney but that’s not the point. Obama is the point. And as he has nearly every day of the last four years he showed himself to be woefully unprepared for the presidency.

Romney didn’t win the election last night. Far from it. The DMM will be back and hitting him harder than ever now. Obama will courageously lie and attack Romney in ways he didn’t have the guts to do to his face last night and Romney will always be Romney.

There will be enormous pressure on CNN’s Candy Crowley to do what Lehrer supposedly failed to do last night. Romney will  enter the next debate with sky high expectations and he’ll have to do even better (in a townhall forum) than he did last night. He surprised most people with last night’s performance, does he have another big surprise in him?

Still, Romney introduced himself to a lot of people who hadn’t seem him talk that much and unfiltered before. There’s simply no doubt he made a good impression and earned more consideration. After running for nearly 6 years straight, Romney’s campaign really began last night.

As someone who really doesn’t like the guy, I hope he keeps it going.

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Last night Mitt Romney shocked the political world with his debate performance and energized conservatives across the country. POTUS Predictor 2012 let’s you predict how the debate shook up the race for the White House. Make your predictions and share them with friends and family via Twitter and facebook. No matter what kind of device you have we have you covered with Apple, Droid and Kindle versions. Get it now!
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