Saturday, November 20, 2010

Obama And America: Harsh View From China


   This article comes to you by way of  WatchingAmerica, which happens to be my favorite go-to site when I wish to know what the rest of the world thinks about the United States and the things that we do.

Lianhe Zaobao, Singapore
Obama’s Dimwittedness
and America’s Anxiety

By Xin Yishan
It is so obvious that America is a dying superpower. There’s no need to hurry a dying man to his grave, so let America play any trick it wants. Anxiety has deeply disturbed America’s bearing, and as long as China sticks firmly to its principles and steers away from the temptation of quick success and instant benefit, then America is powerless.
Translated By Qu Xiao
15 November 2010

Edited by Heidi Kaufmann

Singapore - Lianhe Zaobao - Original Article (Chinese)
Obama used to be quick-witted and eloquent before he became the president, but his intellectual cadre seems to have declined in recent months. At the G-20 summit in Korea, when facing Rui Chenggang, an unexpected journalist from China, we can clearly see Obama’s clumsiness — being caught in embarrassment and not able to come up with a clever-enough response to prove true to his name as a veteran politician and an elected president. Maybe he worried that the Chinese journalist would raise some tough questions, or he didn’t expect a Chinese journalist to be so bold as to press the president of America for an answer.
Obama went to India and promised to let India enter the United Nations Security Council. Then Obama landed in Japan and also promised Japan a ticket into the Security Council. What did he take the U.N. for? Besides, such a trick of throwing empty promises around can hardly fool a kid; yet, Obama keeps using it. We can say that Obama indeed has become dimwitted.
In fact, Obama hasn’t changed. It is the environment around him that has changed. Being a president, naturally he would have to consider the interests of his country, and it is not an easy task, because to achieve such a tough goal, first there must be plans for the whole situation. So whatever he does, Obama has to follow the instructions of his think tank.
Inevitably, a presidential candidate who played it by ear before the election would turn into a more clumsy and dimwitted order-follower after taking office. If Obama can just be himself, then not even 10 Chinese journalists like Rui Chenggang teaming up together would make any trouble for him. But if Obama’s think tank told him not to talk about China too much for fear of leaking information regarding America’s plots against China, then Obama’s unwillingness to take Rui Chenggang’s question could then be understood.
In addition, promising the moon and stars for someone would make him happy, but hardly anyone would believe such a promise. Although it’s not as hard as delivering the moon and stars to absorb new members into the Security Council, it’s still very unlikely to be achieved. After all, there are still four other big nations who hold veto power. Yet, Obama keeps fooling India and Japan with his promises. Why? It’s not that Obama is really a dimwit playing children’s games. He’s merely following the orders of his think tank, and only by acting like this can the Chinese people be tricked, and it has worked. Previously, it was just a little trick that had stirred up Japan’s hatred and jealousy toward China, and accordingly, China has paid a high price and used many diplomatic resources in objecting to Japan’s entry into the Security Council. Now the intention of Obama’s trip to India is to incite the deterioration of the relationship between India and China, a trick based on his earlier successful experience with Japan. The Americans think that it worked before, and that it will still work this time.
In fact, being the member that has used its veto power the most, America least wants to lose its privilege in the U.N., and its power would be greatly weakened if any more novices were to enter the Security Council. So why would America — the member who least favors any newcomers into the Security Council — run around the world and show a supportive gesture to other countries? Because America thought China was narrow-minded, and as long as America is supporting its neighbors, China would definitely stomp its feet and protest. Such is America’s thinking. In this regard, however, America has already succeeded once at sabotaging the friendly progress between China and Japan, which is the truth. America is now digging up this old trick and wants to use it again. So naturally the general public in China thinks Obama is acting like a fool — very dimwitted indeed.
And through Obama’s “intellectual degradation,” we can see that the American think tank is not bearing any good will toward China. Whatever America does, it does to make sure that no other country will surpass America. But when facing China, all the tricks and plots have failed. Military interventions like the Korean War, the Vietnam War and military relations with Taiwan failed; trying to lure China to take the path of the USSR’s downfall failed. In desperation, America can only pull some dirty tricks. So it is obvious that America is anxious.
The first cause of America’s anxiety is China’s rapid development and the prediction that China will surpass America shortly. Second, America is feeling powerless because of its economic downturn. What’s more, America has felt that its international influence has slumped, and the days when America could command whomever it wanted are long gone. Besides, the financial crisis has overwhelmed America with huge fiscal difficulties and slow economic recovery. All this has put an almost unbearable burden on the U.S. government, which can be easily seen from Obama’s hair — turning grey within two years of taking office. The American president’s anxiety, of course, is also the American government’s anxiety. And China doesn’t bother at all and ignores the U-shaped or C-shaped encirclement around its neighborhood. After all, what is the use?
Apparently, they are useless tricks. This is like a lame chess player, hurrying to attack his opponent when he has yet to build up his own line of defense, and the result is undoubtedly a clean loss. China has gone through all kinds of difficulties throughout its history, so America’s trick will not work on China. Besides, if we view things like a game on a chess board, then it would be one move on each side, so whatever America’s move is, China would make its countermove. Therefore, America should be anxious, and this shows it is ill-intentioned.
Obama makes a lot of promises, but not many of them are actually fulfilled, and a broken promise may incur hatred. This is something the trick-player rarely considers.
China can totally remain calm and peaceful, paying no notice of whatever farce America is putting on, as long as China itself keeps a watchful eye and makes sure not to step into America’s trap. As for the encirclement around China, it is quite impossible to do any damage, so we can just ignore it. As for America’s intention to start a fight between China and its neighbors, it can also be easily solved if we firmly stick to the Five Principles of Peaceful Coexistence. No country is so stupid as to sacrifice its own interests just to make America happy. So America is probably throwing good money after bad.
America now is like a clay idol fording a river — hardly able to save itself. America’s national wealth is closely linked to the stock market, and what if another crisis strikes? Where will its money go then? If America can maintain itself 10 more years without going downhill, then I’ll have no more to say. But it is so obvious that America is a dying superpower. There’s no need to hurry a dying man to his grave, so let America play any trick it wants. Anxiety has deeply disturbed America’s bearing, and as long as China sticks firmly to its principles and steers away from the temptation of quick success and instant benefit, then America is powerless.
On the one hand, America has a high ambition to undermine China; on the other hand, America’s economy couldn’t fund such a whim. It still has its political influence in the world, but its economic influence has been largely crippled. America only gave several million dollars in charitable funds to Indonesia, which is enough to show that its economy could no longer hold up its status of global domination. In contrast, China gave $1.6 billion in charitable funds to Cambodia. Make the comparison yourself, and you will see what I mean. Now China is doing whatever pleases it without any outsider’s interference. Let the Americans be anxious.



Friday, November 19, 2010

Friday Funnies


   Okay, it has been a rough week, especially if you are one of those political junkies who have sat back and watched President Obama and most of the other Democrats doing their best to give the Republicans and their wealthy friends an extension of those Bush tax cuts. You know, the ones that helped get you and I into the economic mess that we now face every day.

   So I decided that it was time for a little bit of comedy when it comes to looking at some of the dumb stuff going on in America. We’ll start first with getting felt up at the airport.


                  Copyright © 2010 Universal Press Syndicate


Cagle Cartoons


                   Copyright © 2010 Universal Press Syndicate


                       CartoonArts International


Jay Leno-"Sunday night was the debut of the reality show, 'Sarah Palin's Alaska.' It got huge ratings. Even people over in Russia were watching and they didn't need TVs. They could see it from their porch. "

"Nancy Pelosi has now been elected the new House minority leader. She was smiling from ear to ear, which is pretty impressive considering how far her ears have been pulled back."

Conan O'Brien-"Former President George W. Bush's new memoir has already sold 800,000 copies. In other news, the new Bush presidential library just purchased its first 800,000 books."


Thursday, November 18, 2010

Rep. Dennis Kucinich: Rising From The Ashes?


    I am sure that you political junkies all remember the Ohio Representative  Dennis Kucinich, the one member of the Democrat Party who the Republicans have pretty much labeled as a fruit because of his stands on certain issues in the past. this man has always been at odds with the Republicans, and even with his own party at times. This is one of the reason that I like the man so much. He also happens to be one of the few men in the Obama administration who brings his balls to work with him every day and he has no problem voicing his opinion to either side when it becomes warranted.

   In fact, back in 2007 he was one of the few politicians to voice concern over the bailouts of the mortgage industry, saying that the bailouts would just postpone the crisis which was looming in our midst.

    He also thinks that the government should make any corporation with an American name pay their taxes here.   Source

   Now Rep.Kucinich has decided to make a play for the top spot on the Democratic side of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, in effect challenging the current leader (Representative Edolphus Towns) for the spot.

    I myself see Rep.Towns as a wimp who has done nothing but play kiss-up to the Republicans all of the time. He has no voice when it comes to disputing Republican claims against the Obama Administration, which is pretty much what he is paid to do.

    I’ll take Rep. Kucinich over Towns any day of the week. Kucinich has already started warning certain Republicans.

In a letter to his Democratic colleagues announcing his bid, Kucinich called the choice of the OGR ranking slot "perhaps the most important vote" in organizing for the next Congress. "This is because [Issa] has already made wild and unsubstantiated charges which threaten to turn the principal oversight committee of the House into a witch hunt," Kucinich wrote.

Kucinich also alleged that Issa "reveals a lack of restraint and basic fairness. ... We cannot simply stand by idly and hope that such a reckless approach to the use of the power of the Chair will not happen, especially since it is not only being promised, but demonstrated by the person who will hold the gavel."                                       Washington Post


Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Do Something Democrats While you Still Have Time


   This is aimed at the Democrats that we put into office a few years ago. GET OFF of your ASSES and pass some of those 400 and some odd bills that you have still sitting on a desk up in the Senate! You have 6 weeks or so to show the American public that you aren’t the pussies that we have come to believe that you are. Now is not the time to be concerned with Republican filibusters or their crying fowl if you happen to put one over on those asswipes.

Michael Moore

Tue Nov 16, 2010 at 02:59:41 AM PST

Dear Congressional Democrats:

Welcome back to our nation's capital for your one final session of the 111th Congress. Come January, the Republicans will take over the House while the Democrats will retain control of the Senate.

But Dems -- here's something I don't understand: Why do you look all sullen and depressed? Clearly you're not aware of one very important fact: YOU ARE STILL COMPLETELY, TOTALLY, LEGALLY IN CHARGE! When (and if, mostly if) you wake up to the reality that you can do whatever you want for the next seven weeks, you will realize that you have two clear options:

  1. You can continue your "Sit Quietly and Hope No One Hits Me" strategy and thus lay the groundwork for an even bigger ass-kicking two years from now;   


  1. You can actually use the power you hold for the next seven weeks and have the Senate pass the legislation that the House has already passed! 

Wake up, Democrats! You are in an awesome position right now. The House of Representatives, in this current session of Congress, has already passed an astounding 420 bills since January of 2009 -- 420 bills that are just sitting there on the Senate leader's desk. The Senate has refused to take up these House bills because they've been afraid of a Republican filibuster. Well, Dems, here's the truth: You can pass all of these bills and turn them into law RIGHT NOW, TODAY, by simply calling for a majority vote of 50 Senators (plus Vice President/President of the Senate Joe Biden). Yes, you will need to change the filibuster rules. So do it. You have the votes! And yes, the Republicans will scream bloody murder -- so let them! Make them. Let America see them in all their hateful, spiteful ways -- it will act as a beautiful coming attraction trailer for all the world to see. Let all of America watch the Republicans as they try to derail democracy by holding up a bunch of bills that nearly every American I know would want to see as the law of the land. Many of these bills are so safe, so innocuous, I have a hard time understanding what the heck the problem was in the first place. Like the bill that's already passed the House to name a post office after Jimmy Stewart. I know, I know, the idea of a post office named after Jimmy Stewart is really, really, incredibly controversial and divisive and somebody on the other side of the aisle might yell at you. Be brave, Democrats!   

There's a whole slew of these bills the House has passed. Some are no-brainers; others are absolutely necessary. You can pass them in the next seven weeks. And because you Dems seem to have a problem with properly naming your bills and communicating effectively with the average American, I have helpfully renamed them for you so they sound like what they actually are -- things people would really want. Here's a partial list of the bills the House has already passed and are now just in need of approval by the U.S. Senate:

• The "Give Mom a Raise Act," officially known as the "Paycheck Fairness Act," which addresses pay gaps between men and women. Now, who out there still believes women should be paid less than men? I REALLY want to see Republicans try to stop this one.   

• The "Don't Amputate Our Feet Act," aka the "Eliminating Disparities in Diabetes Prevention Access and Care Act of 2009." Which Republican will stand to speak out in favor of diabetes?   

• The "Pay Up, BP Act," aka the "Audit the BP Fund Act," which makes sure BP is paying people hurt by the Gulf oil spill as quickly as possible -- and makes BP pay the cost of keeping track of where the money’s going. 

• The "Stop Foreigners From Hitting Grandma Act," aka the "Elder Abuse Victims Act." This doesn't really have anything to do with foreigners, but our fellow Americans seem to automatically dislike people from other countries, so this should help just in case the Republicans think an "elders abuse victims act" doesn't sound patriotic enough.   

• The "Let's Try Not to Destroy Planet Earth Act" (aka Cap and Trade, a lousy half-way measure to begin with, but about the best you can expect from you Democrats these days).   

• The "National Bombing Prevention Act" (it's actually already called that, which is hard to improve on).

And while those of you in the Senate are taking care of all that, the House can come up with a better version of Michelle Obama’s "Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act" to improve child nutrition. The Senate has already passed this bill. (The House should fix it so that it isn't paid for by cutting food stamps to poor people. Yes, you, a Democratic Senate, did that.)

Then there are also things that neither the House or Senate has dealt with. These would take more work during the next two months, but that's what highly-caffeinated "energy" drinks are for.   

Jenni Suri of Ligonier, Indiana, has set up a petition with a good list, which anyone can sign here to tell the Congressional leadership to get started. Among the "to do" items on the list: 

• Extend emergency unemployment benefits 

• Repeal Don't Ask, Don't Tell 

• Pass the DREAM Act (to provide young immigrants with a path to citizenship) 

• Pass the Disclose Act to force corporations to say what politicians they're giving money to 

• Pass the Employee Free Choice Act, so we can have unions again in the U.S. 

• Pass Rep. Donna Edwards' constitutional amendment that -- in the wake of the Citizens United decision -- would give Congress the power to regulate corporate spending on elections 

So what do you say, Democrats? What's the worst that could happen -- you'd lose an election? You already did that! C'mon, here's your one last gutsy chance to show us that you're made of something other than wish and wash.

Michael Moore

P.S. Be sure to let the Democrats in Congress know right now you expect action from them during this next month. You can call your Senators and Representative at (202) 224-3121 or find their direct number and email at


Obama To Continue Bush Tax Cuts For Wealthy…


…and that should not come as any sort of surprise to you.

    Actually, President Obama has said that he is willing to compromise with the Republicans on extending the Bush tax cuts even though he knows that it will put our deficit and our economy  in an even deeper hole than it is in already.

    Once again. Why is the President even thinking about compromise with the Republicans in the first place?  Those asshats do not have their newly won seats in the House till January, so they really do not have to much say so over those tax cuts for the rich, yet. President Obama, let the damned cuts expire at the end of the year!

Congressional budget analysts estimate that making the lower- and middle-income tax cuts permanent would add a little more than $3 trillion to the national debt over the next decade.

Extending tax cuts for the wealthy would cost an additional $700 billion and that, Obama said, "would be fiscally irresponsible." He noted that Republicans are saying "their number one priority is making sure that we deal with our debt and our deficit."                     Source

       President Obama is looking at a compromise only because he will need GOP backing in order to get any permanent tax cuts for the lower and middle income citizens.

    Hey, Mr.  President. If you and the rest of the Democrats in office had actually beaten back the lies put out by the Republicans before the mid-terms and set the record straight before the voters, you guys might have kept control of the House and you wouldn’t have to worry about “compromise” with the enemy on the other side of the table.


Sunday, November 14, 2010

Europeans: What Were American Voters Thinking?


   See, even folks living overseas have been questioning the American voters intelligence after this past mid-term election fiasco when the people once again let the Republicans back into their government. And then there is the Tea Party which has made a few inroads into the daily political grind. Most of the people across the ocean are wondering, as am I, how the United States could vote for more of the same Bush policies that they voted out back in 2008.


Published on Saturday, November 13, 2010 by

Europe Ponders U.S. Elections Results

by Steven Hill

For several weeks before the recent U.S. election, there was much nervous speculation among Europeans as they watched the fluctuations of the poll numbers. Now that the results are in, Europeans are perplexed by this turn back toward the politics of the Bush-Cheney era.

Like the rest of the world, Europe cheered the election of Barack Obama as a change from the economic and foreign policy disasters of his predecessor. Yet just two years later the US government is returning to Bush-lite. How could this be, Europeans are wondering? The American electorate is looking like a coyote with its leg caught in a trap, chewing its own leg off to get out of the trap.

Europeans are puzzled by the success of the populist Tea Party movement, which seemingly wants to roll back the last two years and return to how things were at the end of the Bush-Cheney years. Even conservatives in Europe are scratching their heads over their transatlantic allies -- "Americans don't want health care??? How can these Tea Party people say ‘Get government out of my Medicare' -- don't they know Medicare IS a government program???"

While participating in a conference in Budapest in September, where prominent conservative leaders and thinkers were in attendance, including the president of the European Parliament and two prime ministers, some of the most eye-opening comments had to do with new perceptions about America. One speaker, Christian Stoffaes, who is chairman of the Center for International Prospective Studies based in Paris, stated the "United States is in disarray, extremely polarized. It is practically a civil war there, and you can't count on it."

This theme was echoed by others speakers, who went even further. One said "We need to shift our emphasis eastward (towards Asia) and not wait for the Obama administration." I found these statements to be surprising, and even vaguely alarming, given the importance of the transatlantic relationship in the post-World War II era. But there was a widespread view that the US is being consumed by the severity of the Great Recession, brought on by a broken Wall Street capitalism, as well as by the quagmires of the Iraq and Afghanistan conflicts, and an inability to change course.

Previously, Obama's failure at the Copenhagen summit on climate change to deliver a serious commitment to that agenda, and instead to strike a deal with the Chinese to do next to nothing, was a real wakeup call to the Europeans. It was as if they suddenly "got" it, that it wasn't George W. Bush who was the problem, but something more profound about America's broken political system that prevents any leader, even one as talented as Obama, from delivering. That political system is marinated in money, is paralyzed by a "filibuster-gone-wild" Senate that has allowed a minority of Senators to obstruct all legislation, and is hamstrung by a sclerotic, winner-take-all, two-party electoral system that has left voters poorly represented and deeply frustrated.

Keep in mind that these were the conservatives of Europe venting at this conference, who currently are in control of the European Parliament, the European Commission, as well as the governments in Germany, France, Britain, Sweden and elsewhere. The European right is nowhere near as conservative as the Tea Partiers or GOP Congress members. Indeed, in most ways the European right is to the left of the Democratic Party, which is fairly startling to contemplate. If European conservatives were allowed to vote in America's November 2 election, there is no doubt how they would have voted.

Now, in the aftermath of the recent election, the European media landscape is screaming with headlines like: "Is the American Dream Over?", "A Superpower in Decline," "Deep divisions across political map," "Power gridlock looms between parties," "Washington turns into a battleground," and "Elections tarnish Obama's world image." The recent move by the Federal Reserve to jumpstart the U.S. economy by taking steps that will result in the devaluing of the dollar has been met with great skepticism in Europe. Germany's Finance Minister Finance Minister Wolfgang Schäuble has said the Fed's action shows U.S. policy makers are "at a loss about what to do." The American growth model, he said, is stuck in a deep crisis. "The USA lived off credit for too long, inflated its financial sector massively and neglected its industrial base."

The predictable American reaction has been, "Europe is one to talk. Have they gotten their PIIGS back in the pen yet?" Certainly Europe has its own challenges. But to the extent that the election of Barack Obama represented an American rejuvenation in the eyes of the world, this recent election represents a further loss of American mojo. Americans may shrug their shoulders and say, "We don't care what the rest of the world thinks"-- but that will only reinforce what the rest of the world thinks.

Steven Hill is an American author and columnist whose most recent book is "Europe's Promise: Why the European Way is the Best Hope in an Insecure Age" ( He is blogging about his current 12-nation, 20-city European speaking tour at "Dispatches from Europe" which is linked at