Tag Archives: socialism

Mark Caserta: National security no flippant matter

5 Jun

CIA  obama

Jun. 05, 2014 @ 12:00 AM

Admittedly, every administration leaks its share of classified information. But it seems Team Obama has raised the bar.

Last week, in one of Washington’s “Friday afternoon” information dumps, the White House admitted it had revealed the name of the CIA’s top officer in Kabul, Afghanistan, to some 6,000 journalists on a list provided to news organizations of senior U.S. officials participating in the president’s surprise visit with U.S. troops.

Upon learning of the error, the administration issued a revised list that didn’t include the individual who had been identified on the initial release as the “Chief of Station” in Kabul, a designation used by the CIA for its highest-ranking spy in a country.

“It shouldn’t have happened,” deputy national security advisor Tony Blinken told CNN. “We’re trying to understand why it happened. The chief of staff, Denis McDonough, asked White House counsel to look into it, to figure out what happened and make sure it won’t happen again.”

Now while an internal investigation will likely satisfy Obama supporters, it’s a far cry from the bitter tone used years ago when the Bush administration leaked Valerie Plame’s identity. At that time, words like “traitor” and “treason” were used to describe Bush officials involved in the controversy.

But the leaks from the Obama administration stretch back for years and are some of the more notable in recent history.

Shortly after the successful raid that killed Osama Bin Laden, the Obama administration revealed the classified identity of SEAL Team Six, Special Operations Force behind the raid, placing a target on the backs of the team members as well as their families.

Speaking at an event two days following the raid, Vice President Joe Biden, apparently giddy over the mission’s success, publicly identified the unit that tracked down and killed America’s foremost enemy, giving jihadists a clear target to avenge the death of Bin Laden.

The Obama administration would then go on to “out” the Pakistani doctor who helped the CIA track down Bin Laden. Dr. Shakil Afridi, a Pakistani physician who helped the CIA confirm Osama Bin Laden’s presence in the city, was sentenced to 33 years by the Pakistani government for his role in the attack.

Even allied nation’s secrets apparently aren’t safe with this administration.

In December 2012, the Obama administration “accidentally” revealed extensive details about a top-secret missile base the U.S. planned to build for Israel to host a new ballistic-missile defense system called the Arrow 3. Israeli military officials were shocked when they learned that the U.S. revealed details of the project in documents it published seeking contractor bids.

Now many folks aren’t sure if this administration’s reckless disclosure of our nation’s secrets is for political gain or simply from sheer incompetence. I believe it may be both.

But it’s time for Obama to end his flippant approach to national security — before it results in catastrophic loss of life.

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

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: Liberals value progressivism over the truth

15 May

progressive movmt

May. 15, 2014 @ 12:00 AM

Why do you suppose liberals refuse to ever hold Barack Obama accountable for the lies and poor decisions he’s perpetrated on the American people?

It’s interesting how they refuse to call the president out on any mistake no matter who gets hurt or how great the loss. Instead they resort to diversions and tactics designed to devalue his involvement, unless of course it was one of those “rare” photo op, publicist’s moments. One might think Obama did everything short of firing the shot that killed Osama bin Laden — but he wasn’t even in the situation room during the attack on our consulate in Benghazi.

And if anyone disagrees with the president, well, it must be racism. In fact, it’s been suggested more than once on this very opinion page that the reason West Virginians don’t support Obama has nothing to do with dwindling jobs or the president’s war on coal. It’s because he’s black.

It’s time liberals learn incompetence comes in all shapes, sizes and colors. Playing the race card is simply indicative of an inability to defend the facts related to Obama’s failures.

One such failure emanates from the president’s unschooled foreign policy. His perceived lack of strength and strategic savvy prohibits him from competing on the world stage while his policies of appeasement and accommodation are prompting rogue leaders across the world to successfully rattle their sabers against the U.S.

But liberals share no conviction over Obama’s failures and aren’t interested in truth.

Liberals aren’t even interested in finding the truth about the terrorist attack in Benghazi and in fact have referred to any such pursuit as “drivel” and “old news” and prompted by politics.

Let me be clear. No true American patriot would ever refer to the unexplained death of four brave Americans serving their country as “drivel.” I doubt the families of Ambassador Stevens, computer specialist Sean Smith and former Navy Seals Tyrone Woods and Glen Doherty would agree with such an insensible remark.

And I submit that liberals, not conservatives, are playing politics. Conservatives seek the truth for the healing of a nation. Liberals only seek closure of the investigation before a smoking gun is located.

And liberals don’t mind the president telling an occasional lie if it serves the “higher” progressive purpose.

It doesn’t bother liberals that the president knowingly misled the nation about the true nature of the terrorist attack in Benghazi, blaming it on an obscure anti-Muslim video.

It’s insignificant that Obama repeatedly lied to Americans about being able to keep their healthcare plan if they liked it and that millions are losing their existing plans.

It doesn’t matter that he lied about lowering annual insurance premiums for families by $2,500 with his signature healthcare initiative.

Liberals never attempt to defend any of these falsehoods. They simply believe the end justifies the means.

In fact, when it comes to Barack Obama, liberals value his contribution to the progressive movement far beyond truth, and they will go to any length to protect him.

The rest simply doesn’t matter.

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

Mark Caserta: Progressives repudiate founding principles

8 May

progressives

May. 08, 2014 @ 12:00 AM

Today’s progressive movement and the liberal policies it has generated arose from a conscious repudiation of the principles on which our nation was founded.

Americans must be keenly aware of the progressive yearning to fundamentally transform society into one which imposes no “concrete” sanctions for immorality and no restrictions within which we should live our lives. We are in a sense “gods” within ourselves able to transcend through reason.

Progressive confutation stems from their view that society is changing and “intelligent” people must adapt accordingly. They claim Christians are archaic in their beliefs and “modern” Christianity should be tolerant of varying lifestyles. And precepts by the Bible’s writers or our nation’s founders were penned without “clairvoyance” of the future — discrediting any possible unction by an omnipotent God.

But God’s Word says in Matthew 7:13, “Enter through the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it.”

Now, the progressive movement hasn’t “broadened” the road overnight. Its tenacious approach calls for constant pressure against the “status quo” designed to move the parameters of acceptance further and further to the left.

But unchecked, where will it end?

The single largest barrier facing liberalism is God’s Word and the influence of Christianity in our society. It’s imperative for liberal “theologians” to question the plausibility and intent of biblical scripture to uproot preconceived notions of morality or principle.

Some recall Barack Obama’s June 2007 rant against the “Christian Right” for hijacking religion and using it to divide the nation:

“Somehow, somewhere along the way, faith stopped being used to bring us together… Part of it’s because of the so-called leaders of the Christian Right, who’ve been all too eager to exploit what divides us,” Obama said.

In retrospect, this quote should be added to Obama’s growing list of infamous accolades as the single most “hypocritical” statement ever made.

Liberals want us to believe our nation wasn’t founded on Christian principles. But Thomas Jefferson, our third U.S. President and drafter and signer of the Declaration of Independence said:

“God who gave us life gave us liberty. And can the liberties of a nation be thought secure when we have removed their only firm basis, a conviction in the minds of the people that these liberties are of the Gift of God?”

Liberals want us believe we’re not a nation blessed of God. But in Genesis 12:3, God told Abram, “I will bless those who bless you, and whoever curses you I will curse…” God is referring to Abram’s descendents, the nation of Israel, with whom our relationship must be symbiotic. Our nation’s obedience to God has heretofore secured His blessings according to the 28th chapter of Deuteronomy.

But I believe as progressives promulgate disobedience to God’s Word, those blessings will be revoked accordingly.

There’s one more “biblical reference” found in Matthew 12:36 which is apropos for the progressive movement.

“But I tell you that everyone will have to give account on the day of judgment for every empty word they have spoken.”

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

Mark Caserta: Now is the time to defend Capitalism, not change it.

17 Apr

putin

Note: A column from 2008: Somewhat prophetic in its scope.

These past few weeks have been very disconcerting with regard to the path our government has chosen in these troubling economic times, although often in times of crisis, leaders expose deeply embedded beliefs as they frantically search for solutions to an overwhelming problem. I’m concerned our government may be out of answers and we’re going down a road that could change our economic system as we know it.

Winston Churchill once said, “The inherent vice of capitalism is the unequal sharing of blessings; the inherent vice of socialism is the equal sharing of miseries.”

Capitalism is an economic system in which the free enterprise of investment and ownership provides production of a product and/or service, distribution and the exchange of wealth between private individuals or corporations. Its success is directly relative to the productivity of its components. It’s an economic system characterized by a free market for goods and services under the control of private entities.

Capitalism is designed to reward those who work hard; however, it has equal consequences for those who decide not to pull their weight. Although capitalism clearly results in different levels of economic success, it also clearly provides equality in opportunity and promotes the entrepreneurial spirit. The people are in control of their future.

Socialism is the economic theory of “collective ownership” and administration of the means of production and distribution of goods. Socialists believe that capitalism unfairly provides power and wealth to only a small segment of society that controls the major flow of capital. Socialists advocate a system whereby wealth and power are distributed more evenly by the government in an effort to eliminate class warfare. Socialism is designed to balance the economic worth of each citizen and for the government to provide for the needs of the people. The government is in control of your future.

Karl Marx, often referred to as the “father of socialism,” said, “From each according to his abilities; to each according to his needs.” Socialism suppresses the entrepreneurial spirit by eliminating the incentives for productivity, while capitalism rewards productivity and creates consequences for fiscal “slothfulness.”

Or is the equation changing?

The government’s bailout of businesses that knowingly breeched the faith of the people is setting a very dangerous and unjust precedent. Most assuredly, the government has shown its down card, and the fact that these lending institutions were not allowed to suffer any consequences for their actions is unfathomable and unfair to hard-working Americans.

Probably the most tragic result of this “economic nightmare” of a decision made by our government is that it truly showed the will of the American people really doesn’t matter, and our nation’s political leaders, who were elected to represent the people, truly do not.

Is capitalism in danger? Is there a resolve among our nation’s leaders to take the problem out of the hands of the people? Are we headed for a major change to our economic system?

Karl Marx also said, “Democracy is the road to socialism.”

Only if our leaders decide to take that path.

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

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