UPDATED: Media Finally Coming Around: Benghazi Raises Questions of Obama’s Fitness to Lead

UPDATE: In the wee hours last night after posting this article two important events were brought to my attention:

1. CBS just released the rest of the 60 Minutes interview with President Obama the day after the Benghazi attack. See what it says here at Fox in a post by Brett Baier, who I gave kudos to below. In it the president refused to call the attacks terrorism, notwithstanding his statement at the debate he’d called it that from day 1. It shows the president did not, in fact, take that position until much later, vindicating Mitt Romney in the debate and showing the president deceived the American people (with Cindy Crawley’s help). Byron York and Ari Fleischer both tweeted to ask “why sit on this information until now?” Makes me want to watch the Caddell video again…

2. I received a tweet last night pointing me to the website for Congressman Kelly of Pennsylvania. He’s a co-signer, along with over fifty other members of the House, of a letter sent to the president Friday demanding answers about Benghazi. More evidence people are starting to ask the right questions.

ORIGINAL POST:

As Vic Lundquist reported, some in the media (Fox) have not let this go. Brett Baier in particular has done a great job. And I was moved when I saw Pat Caddell’s comments (video in Vic’s post, and re-included here below).

But today I finally, finally saw a headline that gave me a glimmer of hope about our media and Benghazi. Two mainstream papers are asking the right questions about what happened and why.

The Wall Street Journal and Washington Post have just, in the last two days, asked some pointed questions to the administration about what happened. Do we expect an answer before Tuesday? I don’t. And for that it’s difficult to forgive the media, as Pat Caddell says. They sat on this too long to allow the truth to get out in time for it to have an impact on people’s choices Tuesday. Unless you vote for Mitt and don’t let the president off the hook for hiding the ball.

In the Washington Post piece, the editorial board asks the reasons why the facility was so under-prepared when the threats of violence were so obvious?

Fox News reported this week that a secret cable described an Aug. 15 “emergency meeting” at the consulate, at which the State Department’s regional security officer “expressed concerns with the ability to defend Post in the event of a coordinated attack due to limited manpower, security measures, weapons capabilities, host nation support and the overall size of the compound.”

Fox reported that the cable, dispatched to Washington, said the emergency meeting included a briefing about al-Qaeda training camps in the Benghazi area and Islamist militias, including those that allegedly carried out the Sept. 11 attack. In another cable on Sept. 11, hours before the attack, Mr. Stevens described “growing problems with security” in Benghazi and “growing frustration” with the local militias and police, to which the State Department had entrusted the consulate’s defense. Separately, according to a report on ForeignPolicy.com, Mr. Stevens may have dispatched a letter to Benghazi authorities, complaining that a policeman assigned to guard the consulate was photographing it on the morning of Sept. 11.

Even if you believe what the Post is willing to, that the ultimate US response was all that could be mustered (there seems to be evidence to the contrary due to assets being available in Italy and a drone flying overhead), they still ask the key question:

…why [were] the various agencies … not better prepared for such an emergency, given the clear warnings. Did the Obama administration’s political preoccupation with maintaining a light footprint in Libya lead to an ill-considered reliance on local militias, rather than on U.S. forces? Given the region’s instability, why were no military rapid-reaction assets — such as Special Forces or armed drones — within reach of Northern Africa?

While the agencies separately defend themselves — or not — the White House appears determined to put off any serious discussion of Benghazi until after the election. Sooner or later, however, the administration must answer questions about what increasingly looks like a major security failure — and about the policies that led to it.

Yes, it appears to be a major security failure, resulting from seriously flawed policies. But “sooner or later” is not really satisfactory to me, since I firmly believe that how the Obama administration planned for, responded to, and reported about this event is highly relevant to whether we should be voting for President Obama’s re-election.

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Incredible Lies, Piling On, and the Sad State of the Mainstream Media

The following is cross-posted here at MRC with permission by the author, Michael Bush. Michael runs the website Mitt: The Man aimed at showing the more personal side of Governor Romney that many don’t get to see. Michael Bush has also had the rare honor to be a companion to Mitt Romney in 1966 as they served missions for the LDS church in France. You can find Michael Bush on twitter at @Bush46 (retweet this post and give him a follow!) ~Nate G.

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I had heard of the recent campaign event where Mitt had corrected a crowd who had supposedly been chanting, “Ryan! Ryan! Ryan!” by telling them to change their chant to “Romney, Ryan! Romney, Ryan! Romney, Ryan!”

Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan at recent campaign event

Knowing Mitt, I was incredulous. In fact, anyone who knows Mitt would know that he would never do what he was accused of doing. So I set it aside and went on to other of life’s pressing concerns. Earlier this afternoon, however, while listening to a recording of Rush Limbaugh’s program from yesterday, I heard a caller set things straight. Timmy from Columbus had attended the event in Ohio and told Rush about the report on MSNBC on the event To him it seemed to be an apparent attempt to achieve maximum embarrassment for Mitt.

Timmy described to Rush what he had actually witnessed, stating that the crowd had chanted “Romney! Romney! Romney!” Timmy assured Rush that it was very clear to anyone there that Mitt was seeking to extend the crowd’s enthusiasm to Ryan. Rush added that this would be more in keeping with the sort of person that Mitt is.

Wanting to know more, I searched out the MSNBC video and saw where the video editors had posted “Ryan! Ryan! Ryan!” as a subtitle on the screen. You can see for yourself here as Mika Brzezinski introduces their version on Morning Joe. You can also see supposed conservative, Joe Scarborough react as described by Business Insider, which seemed to take some perverse delight in describing Joe’s reaction:

“Oh, sweet Jesus,” Scarborough said.

“Sadly, I say this about Mitt Romney: He’s a great man. He’s a great father. He’s a great husband. He’s a great businessman. He’s a great turnaround guy,” Scarborough continued.

“He’s just a horrible politician. One of the worst.”

How big of a deal is this? Jazz Shaw at HotAir.com says not so big:

If you really think Scarborough is trying to get Obama reelected, I honestly don’t know what to say to you. This was really a case of nothing to see here… move along.

Huh? Joe Scarborough does not need to be trying to get Barack Obama elected to be doing a crummy job! What Scarbough should be doing is to deliver news and commentary in a way that reflects reality rather than some perspective that he has arrived at by swimming in the partisan sewage that seems to be flowing through MSNBC these days. Conservative Joe? I don’t think so!

What Scarborough failed to see is that this is all absolutely bogus and is just one more attempt to make Mitt into a gaffe machine, all this to solidify that meme in the minds of American voters.

Finally, in addition to Rush Limbaugh’s caller Timmy, who was at the event, Dan Gainor at Fox News has also called out MSNBC for their faulty reporting. Gainor added in his analysis that a reporter who had been at the event had contacted Huffington Post, which had initially reported the event, and wanted to clarify that “the crowd was chanting Romney’s name, not Ryan’s, and that Romney added his running mate’s name to the chant, not the other way around.”

Update: Joe Scarborough doubles down on his assessment of what happened at the Romney/Ryan rally. As reported on Strokes of Candor:

See, the real version of the rally does not fit Joe’s narrative of Romney being a fool and a horrible politician, and since he tweeted Friday night those opposing MSNBC’s version of the events were liars before the embedded journalists came forward to clear the record, he stuck to his guns. The Blaze broke the story that MSNBC misled viewers with the video but Breitbart ran with it making Morning Joe the topic of conversation Friday afternoon by thousands on Twitter.

Update #2: Scott Johnson at Power Line describes the situation a bit more elegantly than I did. Where I wrote of Scarborough’s “swimming in the partisan sewage that seems to be flowing through MSNBC,” Scott describes Scarborough as “the predictable Stockholm Syndrome effect, as David Brooks’s tenure at the New York Times has had on him,” (Note: See Wikipedia, which describes the syndrome as “a psychological phenomenon in which hostages express empathy and have positive feelings towards their captors”). Attorney and Power Line writer Johnson summarizes:

I think Joe Scarborough is less a perpetrator than a victim in this matter. He is a victim of MSNBC’s own shoddy partisanship and propaganda. He hangs around with a bad crowd. He wants to be liked.

But character is fate. His pathetic response to the controversy suggests that he needs some help. He needs the kind of friend who could pull off an intervention before he terminally embarrasses himself. Or does MSNBC mean never having to say you’re sorry?

Democrat Pat Caddell: “Truth You Are Not Allowed to Know!”

If only I could show this video to every American 15 years and older! Rather than quote Pat Caddel here, you need to see his delivery. Every second of this four minute clip is extraordinary candor and truth. Key segments are at times 0:55, 1:20, 2:10, and 2:40. The segment that is the most terrifying to me is at 2:40 when he becomes infuriated at the fact the media has determined what truth we as Americans will hear and what truth we are not allowed to hear.

How do we get this to every Democrat, Independent, and undecided voter in America? Do they care that the founders’ creation of checks and balances of an unrestricted press is being thwarted by a press that has left “the ramparts” to join one side?

Folks, this is truly scary in my opinion. If we are to stop this, we must do everything we can in the next four weeks to take action to help elect Mitt Romney in the battleground states!


American Values: “In God We Trust” — “Liberty” — “E Pluribus Unum”

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IN BED WITH OBAMA: CNN Uses Heavily Weighted Polling Sample to Pretend Obama is Leading

A new poll out from CNN shows Romney losing to Obama overall by 6 percentage points. That result would be fine and dandy if the breakdown of the polling sample showed an equal part of Democrats and Republicans with any number of Independents. Curiously, CNN hasn’t released a breakdown of the sample they polled.

The real eye-opener here is this: although the poll shows Romney down by 6 overall, it also shows him leading among independents by a whopping 14%. Only in skewed polling results can a candidate be crushing his opponent among indies but lose overall.

Christian Heinze of GOP2012 was the first to report on the discrepancy:

But here’s a very curious internal.

Romney leads among independents, 54%-40%. That’s a blowout number. Both candidates get 96%-97% of their respective parties, so this means that this sample must have leaned Democratic big-time.

And of course, CNN didn’t release the sampling breakdown.

There’s no doubt Obama got a convention bounce, but the independent number indicates a pretty severe oversample among Democrats in this poll.

Shame on CNN for trying to create the perception that Obama has this thing in the bag.
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Mitt Romney’s Thoughts & Liberal Fairness

Doug Stevens

I have finally reached another ‘melting’ point after a smorgasbord of too many liberal news ‘commentators’ or as I call them, propagandists. How dare they presume to know what Governor Romney thinks or believes when it comes to any issue?

The turning point for me was on poor Americans. I have heard talking head after talking head say how he just can’t understand the plight of (fill in the gap),of the poor, of the middle class, and of every other income bracket except the very rich. They have cited how he certainly couldn’t understand the plight of a poor mother that can’t work to support her children. That is as ridiculous as saying that an occupy protester cannot understand the circumstances of a rich banker (which I believe actually has more chance of being right). It doesn’t take a depth of experience or learning to be empathetic. It just takes a listening ear and a modicum of concern. Both of which seem in short supply with the liberal media. Who declares that an elected official must have experienced all walks of life in order to govern? Who sets the standard for empathy or understanding? It clearly isn’t the liberal media who seem to have a hot line to Governor Romney’s mind and intentions. Can’t we leave it to the candidates to tell us how they think, feel and will govern?

As we now are in the ‘silly’ season of general election campaigning, can we not take a deep breath and let the candidates define their positions, set their agendas, explain their strategy and philosophy and let their statements and past actions be weighed in the balance? Why is every media pundit a mind reading psychologist that somehow is able to lay out Governor Romeny’s inner thoughts and unspoken feelings? I am not sure who, in some dark corner at the dawn of enlightenment, said if you say anything enough it will become true. That appears to be the overriding strategy not only of the Obama campaign, but also the liberal media. I do believe that repetition is the mother of all learning, but it can also be the mother of all lying when it is not used with accuracy. To the media, stop telling us that Governor Romney cannot or will not understand anyone that he doesn’t know, have a relationship with or has the same financial background as he does. I would rather hear a discussion of how both candidates, Governor Romney and President Obama handle diversity of opinion in their decision making, listen to and understand problems and challenges and how they delegate, lead and compromise divergent ideas for progress. Isn’t that the heart of the issue? Don’t we want to know how a prospective President will govern? Happily we have three plus years of record with which to judge President Obama, and numerous activities with which to judge Governor Romney (business, Olympics, State of Massachusetts, etc.).

How about we let the candidates debate, exchange positions, explain their prior agendas and their corresponding results and let voters make up their own minds. I know I can’t force others to do anything, but for me, that is how I am going to proceed.

There is one more liberal notion that sends me into fits. How is it that fairness can be invoked and applied to any situation without being even somewhat true to its definition. My dictionary lists the first definition of fair as, ‘an adjective, as free from bias, dishonesty, or injustice.’ Fairness is applied to taxes (pay your fair share), to love and marriage, and to any ‘politically correct concept’ nowadays. I am getting tired of fairness as being the reason any idea, reasonable or not is to be accepted and followed. Can someone help me here? Shouldn’t ideas stand on their own merits, not someone’s standard of fairness (eye of the beholder)? Rather, polls, spin and oratory are the current tools of reasoning. (see impact of liberals’ “fairness”).

I am looking for the good old days when ideas, political positions, programs, and yes even government budgets, would be debated on their respective merits and not using the liberal ‘fairness’ doctrine. Again, I for one am going to continue to listen to both sides of an issue, apply my own sense of reason and try and reach a conclusion that maybe, just maybe might be viewed as ‘fair’ by someone else. I am not going to hope to make a judgment that would be politically popular, or bolster up a political agenda. Principle over spin? Perhaps this is not practical in today’s world.

I end where I began, let’s judge candidates on what they say and do (or have done), and not on what they should be thinking based on our interest in pegging them as unfit. Who will join me?

Mr. Stevens lives in Laguna Niguel, CA with his wife Susan. He has over 30 years of sales, sales management, marketing and business development experience. He graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in Mathematics from University of Utah and earned a Masters of Arts in Applied Mathematics from the University of California, Los Angeles.

“It Begins With Us?” President Obama Launches Re-Election Campaign by Copying Mitt… Again

I wake up this morning and President Obama has already announced his re-election campaign via Youtube. Right before finishing this post, Mitt Romney welcomes President Obama to the 2012 race with this tweet:

@barackobama I look forward to hearing details on your jobs plan, as are 14m unemployed Americans

Almost no one remembers this, but Gov. Mitt Romney was actually the first candidate to use “Change” as a slogan during the 2008 primaries. The following videos are early campaign ads just to illustrate my point (the original videos from 2007 are no longer online, so we posted copies that were uploaded later).

The media was in such a tizzy to cover President Obama and Hillary Clinton that Mitt never got the coverage he should’ve gotten during the campaign. Had Mitt received equal coverage, more people would’ve know President Obama piggybacked off Mitt’s campaign theme of change.

Notably, President Obama borrowed without asking the first word of Mitt’s “Change begins with us” slogan in 2008 and now has stolen the rest for 2012. Unfortunately for the electorate, President Obama has chosen to maintain his tradition of ambiguity. Mitt Romney didn’t shy away from explaining what kind of change Washington needed in 2008, and even a quick browse through “No Apology” will show Mitt’s specifics for how he plans to reform government.

Without further ado, here’s the video that launched President Obama’s 2012 Re-Election campaign just minutes ago this morning:


(While you’re watching the video, might as well log into YouTube and give it a thumbs down ;)