Tag Archives: POTUS

This Romney – Obama debate moment now haunting the president! 45 seconds

23 Jul

http://conservativetribune.com/romney-makes-obama-foolish/romney obama

Mitt Romney saw this coming a long time ago, according to a video posted on IJ Review. “Russia does continue to battle us in the U.N. time and time again,” he said to Obama during the third presidential debate in 2012. “I have clear eyes on this. I’m not going to wear rose-colored glasses when it comes to Russia or Mr. Putin. I’m certainly not going to say to him, ‘I’ll give you more flexibility after the election.’ ”

Romney predicted exactly how Putin would respond to such attempts at appeasement: “After the election, he’ll get more backbone.”

Hindsight is always twenty-twenty, of course. There are many pundits who claim now to have seen all along what would happen in U.S. – Russia relations under a continued Obama presidency, just as there are many who predicted then that only Obama could keep the peace between the two countries.

Obama’s response, that Romney wanted to return the U.S. to the Cold War is equally telling. The Cold War had been “over for 20 years,” as Obama said. The president seems to forget, however, that it was Ronald Reagan’s policy of dealing with the Soviet Union from a position of strength that ended the Cold War.

Just as Obama’s appeasement seems poised to start it up all over again.

Mark Caserta: Taliban trade may mar Obama legacy

12 Jun

Bergdahl

Jun. 12, 2014 @ 12:00 AM

The Obama administration just released arguably the five most dangerous Taliban leaders detained at Guantanamo Bay in exchange for Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl. And it appears the president knowingly and willingly broke the law in doing so.

Under the National Defense Authorization Act, signed into law by Obama last year, the administration was required to notify Congress 30 days in advance of any such action. And even if the president can somehow find “legal” justification for what he did, he did not abide by the law.

Even Senate Intelligence Chairwoman Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., said that it was “very disappointing” that President Obama decided not to alert Congress about the deal, suggesting a low “level of trust” at the White House.

Taliban leaders are reportedly hailing the release of the five prisoners as a major victory over Obama and the U.S.

A senior member of the Afghan Taliban described the exchange for Bergdahl as an “historic moment for us.” He went on to tell NBC News this was the first time its “enemy” had “officially recognized our status.”

President Obama was defiant in his remarks that he will “make no apologies” for a trade in which he openly admitted the possibility that these leaders may “return to activities that are detrimental to us,” despite families who still mourn the loss of six brave American troops who died while searching for Bergdahl after he went missing five years ago.

So who were these five Taliban leaders Obama released?

One was Abdul Haq Wasiq, a Taliban deputy minister of intelligence who reportedly used his office to support al-Qaida and to “assist Taliban personnel in eluding capture.” Wasiq has been accused by Human Rights Watch of mass killings and torture.

Mullah Norullah Noori, a senior Taliban military commander, is described as a military mastermind who engaged in hostilities “against U.S. and Coalition forces.” Noori has been implicated in the murder of thousands of Shiites in northern Afghanistan and reportedly “does not express any regret” for his actions.

Mullah Mohammad Fazi, a former Taliban deputy defense minister, was held at Guantanamo after being identified as an enemy combatant by the United States. He’s also wanted by the United Nations on war crimes for the murder of thousands of Shiite Muslims in Afghanistan.

Mullah Khairullah Khairkhwa, the former governor of the Herat province, once had close ties with Osama Bin Laden. He “represented the Taliban during meetings with Iranian officials seeking to support hostilities against the U.S. and coalition forces.”

Mohammad Nabi Omari, a senior Taliban leader, once held multiple leadership roles in various terror-related groups. Nabi reportedly helped al-Qaida operatives smuggle missiles in Pakistan for use against the U.S. and coalition forces.

So what would prompt Obama to bypass Congress to trade these Taliban militants for a questionable soldier and risk retribution against the U.S.?

The president’s argument that “we don’t leave our men or women in uniform behind” is pretty hollow given his failure to act in Benghazi.

This is one decision which may return to haunt the Obama legacy.

Mark Caserta is a conservative blogger, a Cabell County resident and a regular contributor to The Herald-Dispatch editorial page.

Bergdahl release arrangement could threaten the safety of Americans, Republicans say

1 Jun

G BAY

By Karen Tumulty, Published: May 31

Amid jubilation Saturday over the release of U.S. Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl from captivity by the Taliban, senior Republicans on Capitol Hill said they were troubled by the means by which it was accomplished, which was a deal to release five Afghan detainees from the military prison in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.

Top Republicans on the Senate and House armed services committees went so far as to accuse President Obama of having broken the law, which requires the administration to notify Congress before any transfers from Guantanamo are carried out.

“Trading five senior Taliban leaders from detention in Guantanamo Bay for Bergdahl’s release may have consequences for the rest of our forces and all Americans. Our terrorist adversaries now have a strong incentive to capture Americans. That incentive will put our forces in Afghanistan and around the world at even greater risk,” House Armed Services Committee Chairman Howard P. McKeon (R-Calif.) and the ranking Republican on the Senate Armed Services Committee, James M. Inhofe (Okla.), said in a joint statement.

Lawmakers were not notified of the Guantanamo detainees’ transfer until after it occurred.

The law requires the defense secretary to notify relevant congressional committees at least 30 days before making any transfers of prisoners, to explain the reason and to provide assurances that those released would not be in a position to reengage in activities that could threaten the United States or its interests.

Before the current law was enacted at the end of last year, the conditions were even more stringent. However, the administration and some Democrats had pressed for them to be loosened, in part to give them more flexibility to negotiate for Bergdahl’s release.

A senior administration official, agreeing to speak on the condition of anonymity to explain the timing of the congressional notification, acknowledged that the law was not followed. When he signed the law last year, Obama issued a signing statement contending that the notification requirement was an unconstitutional infringement on his powers as commander in chief and that he therefore could override it.

“Due to a near-term opportunity to save Sergeant Bergdahl’s life, we moved as quickly as possible,” the official said. “The administration determined that given these unique and exigent circumstances, such a transfer should go forward notwithstanding the notice requirement.”

Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) said that the detainees transferred from Guantanamo to Qatar, where they are to stay for at least a year, “are hardened terrorists who have the blood of Americans and countless Afghans on their hands. I am eager to learn what precise steps are being taken to ensure that these vicious and violent Taliban extremists never return to the fight against the United States and our partners or engage in any activities that can threaten the prospects for peace and security in Afghanistan.”

Beyond this individual instance, some raised the larger question of whether it is sound policy for the United States to have, in the words of House Intelligence Committee Chairman Mike Rogers (R-Mich.), “negotiated with terrorists.”

Rogers said the action marked a “fundamental shift in U.S. policy.”

Mark Caserta: Does Obama see a crisis or opportunity?

29 May

crisis mode

May. 29, 2014 @ 12:00 AM

Crisis management is a familiar term for any organization providing a service to the public.

Very simply, it’s the process by which an organization deals with a major event that threatens to harm the organization, its stakeholders or the general public.

The size and scope of a crisis management team will vary depending on a particular organization’s product and the potential impact of a breakdown in the service it provides. And there are certain foundational principles by which they operate.

First, there is a pipeline of communication established which enables information to travel rapidly and efficiently from the source to the appropriate team member. This “rapid response” system is usually tested periodically to ensure its efficiency.

After a potential crisis is reported, the team immediately begins “information gathering.” It’s critical to have the facts to address the issue effectively.

Once the situation has been properly assessed, a determination is made whether to “go public” with a statement. Unqualified personnel are always restricted from communicating to the press and are directed to defer questions to a responsible party.

Most crisis management failures result in the first few hours of an incident. Any indication an organization is being less than forthright about the details of the event can result in catastrophe.

An example of an effective crisis management effort was the Deepwater Horizon oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. Despite being considered the largest marine oil spill in history, the initial response and ongoing effort by BP officials to communicate responsibly to the public enabled the company to survive.

An example of poor crisis management would be the Elk River chemical spill where a dangerous chemical used to wash coal and remove impurities was released into the Elk River. Freedom Industry officials did a poor job providing answers to the public, and the company was forced into insolvency eight days after the spill.

Now due to the nature of politics, crisis management techniques are deeply embedded in our nation’s government. Crises have long been leveraged politically, and rest assured every governmental department of consequence employs a team charged with averting crisis.

But there is a noticeable distinction between crisis management teams with which most are familiar and the strategies employed by the Obama administration. This administration appears to see them as opportunities rather than setbacks.

Some recall in 2008, when during an interview, then Obama Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel said:

“Rule one: Never allow a crisis to go to waste. They are opportunities to do big things.”

This capricious view of tragedy aligns perfectly with the Obama administration’s inability to bring resolution to even a single crisis involving his administration. It brings to question whether it’s the president’s goal to fix the crisis or leverage it to fulfill his agenda.

Actually, the only effective crisis management I’ve observed is not designed to protect the country, but rather to protect this president.

Americans will do well to remain vigil and alert to this strategy in the coming months leading up to elections.

Mark Caserta is a conservative blogger, a Cabell County resident and a regular contributor to The Herald-Dispatch editorial page.

Mark Caserta: Obama policies force dependence upon government

1 May

food stamp pres

May. 01, 2014 @ 12:00 AM

Life under the Obama administration has gotten very expensive for Americans — on both sides of the ledger. The lack of good paying jobs combined with higher prices is literally changing the way America does business.

First, a look at the “income” side of the ledger.

At just under 63 percent, our nation’s labor participation rate is the lowest it’s been since 1978, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, and is projected to continue to fall over the next decade. As the nation’s workforce declines, the government safety net becomes comparatively filled with folks dependent upon government.

In fact, a record-setting 47 million people now depend on food stamps for sustenance, 13 million more than when Obama took office.

That metric alone should frighten all Americans.

Sadly, nearly 70 percent of the government’s discretionary and non-discretionary spending goes to programs which frequently trap individuals and families in long-term government dependence, according to the “2013 Index of Dependence on Government” publication by The Heritage Foundation.

Understand many of these people are hard-working Americans who’ve simply become casualties of Obama’s failing policies, which not only fail to provide a path out of poverty, but actually penalize success!

For those Americans fortunate enough to be working, the average workweek continues to decline with private, nonfarm payrolls now at 34.5 hours. I predict this weekly average will continue to fall as the Obamacare employer mandate kicks in requiring all businesses with over 50 full-time employees (employees who average 30 hours or more) to provide health coverage or pay a fine.

Frankly, this administration either doesn’t understand or isn’t willing to acknowledge the impending storm. Many employers will be financially forced to cap hiring below 50 employees, keep the employee’s average hours below 30, or pay the fine — whichever is least expensive. And with many of these jobs being low-paying retail positions, people will be forced into working multiple jobs simply to survive.

Now let’s look at the “expense” side of the ledger.

According to the U.S. Energy Information Administration, the average price of a gallon of regular unleaded gasoline in the U.S. was $1.83 the day before Obama took office. During his presidency it has risen over 96 percent to an average price last week of $3.68. And gasoline prices are a serious concern for individuals considering returning to the workforce versus staying home.

Retail food prices under the Obama administration are also skyrocketing due to commodity and fuel prices, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture. From 2010 to 2011 alone, beef prices are up 10 percent, eggs and pork over 8 percent while fish and seafood are up over 6 percent, just to name a few staples.

Even a liberal should be able to understand that fewer good paying jobs combined with higher prices will result in increased dependence upon government, which in turn, will use the tax revenue from those employed to subsidize government programs supporting the unemployed — sort of taking from those who “have” for those who “have not.”

Hmm … that sounds like redistribution of wealth.

Mark Caserta is a conservative blogger, a Cabell County resident and a regular contributor to The Herald-Dispatch editorial page.

Mark Caserta: Obamacare more about power than healthcare

29 Apr

Barack%20Obama-JTM-046564

Dec. 26, 2013 @ 12:00 AM

Americans have been given a false choice regarding healthcare reform.

There were many viable alternatives for making healthcare more available and affordable in America that didn’t require tearing down the entire system and replacing it with a mandate that all Americans “bow” at the altar of the Department of Health and Human Services or the Internal Revenue Service.

Yet Democrat leadership failed to pursue reasonable solutions which studies have shown would significantly improve healthcare in the U.S. while maintaining an individual’s right to choose the coverage which best suits their needs.

Americans struggling to make ends meet should receive tax breaks commensurate with their income enabling them to afford quality healthcare for themselves and their family. I would personally like to see the money our government sends to other nations outside of humanitarian needs redirected to subsidize healthcare coverage for Americans at or below our nation’s poverty level. America must stay strong to help others!

People with pre-existing conditions shouldn’t be left out in the cold. But we can’t expect insurance companies to simply “absorb” these additional costs. Again, our government should re-allocate foreign aid funding, as well as eliminate their own irresponsible spending, to cover these additional costs in the form of a tax subsidy.

We must allow insurance companies to sell their policies across state lines. We have every reason to believe that healthy competition will reduce costs and provide more options for Americans just as every other U.S. industry.

Tort reform on medical malpractice is needed. Our current system increases costs both directly, in the form of higher malpractice insurance premiums, and indirectly, in the form of defensive medicine when medical services are prescribed simply to circumvent liability rather than benefit the patient.

Employers should be encouraged to offer Health Savings Accounts (HSAs) to their employees. HSAs allow individuals to set aside money from each paycheck, before taxes, for future medical care. The American people are much more frugal and conscientious with their money than the government! An HSA may also be an excellent fit with a high-deductible insurance plan.

Pre-Obamacare, according to the Congressional Budget Office, (CBO) there were around 15 million uninsured Americans in the U.S. But based on CBO projections, once Obamacare is fully implemented, and working smoothly, that number climbs to 30 million in 2023!

I submit the Obamacare journey, which has cost our nation billions of dollars, has never really been about providing health coverage for all Americans, but something entirely different.

President Obama and Democrats sold Obamacare on a series of lies knowing it would result in a base of voters not only dependent upon government, but subject to extortion of their tax dollars if they defied the mandate.

A defining characteristic of this administration is to arrogantly operate within the narrowest definition of executive power and outside of the people’s consent.

The fact that Obamacare shifts power away from the people and to government challenges the fundamental belief that government must derive its “just powers from the consent of the governed”.

Obamacare isn’t about healthcare. It’s about power.

Obama acts is if he’s above the law; he’s not

29 Apr

one bill at at time

Feb. 27, 2014 @ 12:00 AM

What liberals refer to as “obstructionist” tactics by Republicans in blocking the socialist policies of Barack Hussein Obama, conservatives call “preserving the Constitution.”

It’s interesting that while the president has often referred to himself as a “constitutional law professor,” the title is somewhat gratuitous. While never a full-time or tenured professor, he did teach courses in constitutional law at the University of Chicago as a “senior lecturer.”

Unfortunately, rather than use his knowledge to adhere to its provisions, the president has chosen to test the boundaries of our government’s founding document.

Article II, Section 3 of the U. S. Constitution, sometimes known as the “Faithful Execution Clause,” is best read as a duty that qualifies the president’s executive power. By virtue of this power, the president is required to “take care” that our nation’s laws are “faithfully executed.”

But not only has Obama been derelict in his duty to protect our laws, he’s an offender.

As Democrats are so fond of reminding Republicans, Obamacare is now the law of the land.

But despite the fact The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act was indeed signed into law in 2010 and ultimately upheld by the Supreme Court, President Obama believes it’s within his power to make changes without Congressional action!

Our Constitution clearly grants legislative powers to Congress. The president does not have the authority to arbitrarily “alter” legislation signed into law.

The employer mandate, which requires businesses employing 50 or more full-time employees to provide health insurance or pay a fine, was scheduled to take effect in 2014, but has been delayed entirely or in part, twice, by the president!

The fact that Obamacare is poor legislation doesn’t grant the president powers exceeding those afforded him by the Constitution.

And in the first case of its kind, the Supreme Court is now arguing the legality of four “recess” appointments made by President Obama to the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) and the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau in 2012. The Constitution allows the president to make temporary appointments to those positions that otherwise require Senate confirmation, but only when the Senate is in recess. The problem is — the Senate was not in recess!

Three federal appeals courts have already ruled that Obama overstepped his authority in these appointments.

It’s obvious the president is following the “executive version” of the liberal playbook which calls for continuous contestation of preconceived limitations designed to “progressively” tilt the scales of totalitarian power to the left.

President Obama is arguably the most liberal president in our nation’s history. If he’s successful in these attempts to bypass our nation’s laws, what leftist policies will he pursue in his remaining years in office?

The U.S. Constitution is not merely a guideline to be consulted by those it was written to regulate. It’s the supreme law of the land written to protect the rights of all Americans and must be protected.

It’s time Americans “tether” President Obama to the Constitution and hold him accountable for adhering to its precepts.

This president is not above the law.

Mark Caserta is a Cabell County resident and a regular contributor to The Herald-Dispatch editorial page.

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