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People who say it cannot be done should not interrupt those who are doing it. Welcome to From On High.

Tuesday, May 01, 2012

More On Snakes

As a follow-up to yesterday's story about snakes this time of year lurking in the rafters, I can add this:

I came home last night and Paula told me that she had gone to the garage earlier in the day and started to raise the garage door when suddenly a snake fell from above and bounced (?) off her head and landed on the driveway.  A garter snake, as it turned out.

The little guy slithered off and everyone had a nice day.

What fun we have here in Snake Central.

Problem? What Problem?

I'm at the point where I'd be pleased if our president simply avoided inflicting further damage.

But pleased he's not going to make me.

So what's Obama's newest crusade (to avoid any discussion about his Number One priority) all about? "Obama Pushes Low-Rate Student Loans." A neat idea if (a) the government were a bank and (b) the government actually had any money to lend.

But it isn't and it doesn't.

So where does he expect to get that cash to keep the interest payments on student loans low? From our children and grandchildren, of course. Hey, that's what the national debt is for, right?

Well, that and Social Security, a self-funding ... uh, skip that.

The truth?

Frightening.:

Social Security Deficits are Permanent and Growing



Student loans. Social Security. ObamaCare.

Doom.

Chart courtesy of the Social Security Administration (OASI and DI Trust Fund Data and 2011 Trustees Report)

As Presidents Go ...

.... ours is pretty pathetic.

Michael Mukasey (in "Obama and the bin Laden Bragging Rights") contrasts the current president with those from the past:
While contemplating how the killing of bin Laden reflects on the president, consider the way he emphasized his own role in the hazardous mission accomplished by SEAL Team 6:

"I directed Leon Panetta, the director of the CIA, to make the killing or capture of bin Laden the top priority . . . even as I continued our broader effort. . . . Then, after years of painstaking work by my intelligence community I was briefed . . . I met repeatedly with my national security team . . . And finally last week I determined that I had enough intelligence to take action. . . . Today, at my direction . . ."

That seems a jarring formulation coming from a man who, when first elected, was asked which president he would model himself on and replied, Lincoln.

Abraham Lincoln, on the night after Gen. Robert E. Lee's surrender ended the Civil War, delivered from the window of the White House a speech that mentioned his own achievements not at all, but instead looked forward to the difficulties of reconstruction and called for black suffrage—a call that would doom him because the audience outside the White House included a man who muttered that Lincoln had just delivered his last speech. It was John Wilkes Booth.

The man from whom President Obama has sought incessantly to distance himself, George W. Bush, also had occasion during his presidency to announce to the nation a triumph of intelligence: the capture of Saddam Hussein. He called that success "a tribute to our men and women now serving in Iraq." He attributed it to "the superb work of intelligence analysts who found the dictator's footprints in a vast country. The operation was carried out with skill and precision by a brave fighting force. Our servicemen and women and our coalition allies have faced many dangers. . . . Their work continues, and so do the risks."

He did mention himself at the end: "Today, on behalf of the nation, I thank the members of our Armed Forces and I congratulate them."

That is not to say that great leaders, including presidents, have not placed themselves at the center of great events. But generally it has been to accept responsibility for failure.

Dwight Eisenhower is famous for having penned a statement to be issued in anticipation of the failure of the Normandy invasion that reads in relevant part: "My decision to attack at this time and place was based upon the best information available. The troops, the air and the Navy did all that bravery and devotion to duty could do. If any blame attaches to the attempt it is mine alone."

A week later, when the success of the invasion was apparent, Eisenhower saluted the Allied Expeditionary Forces: "One week ago this morning there was established through your coordinated efforts our first foothold in northwestern Europe. High as was my preinvasion confidence in your courage, skill and effectiveness . . . your accomplishments . . . have exceeded my brightest hopes.

Eisenhower did mention himself at the end: "I truly congratulate you upon a brilliantly successful beginning. . . . Liberty loving people everywhere would today like to join me in saying to you, 'I am proud of you.'"

Such examples are worth remembering every time President Obama claims bin Laden bragging rights.
Obama. A small man walking in very large footprints.