Mid-day Tuesday, mostly Bergdahl round-up and Open Thread

Victorian posy of pansiesWith every new scandal emanating from the Obama administration, conservatives think “This is the one. This is the straw that will break the camel’s back.” We’ve been wrong every time.

Fast & Furious, which saw an American border guard and no-one-know-how-many Mexican citizens killed? Boring and kind of confusing. The IRS scandal? Those conservatives had it coming to them. The NSA scandal? Hey, we always knew the government was spying, so it’s no biggie. Benghazi? Just a bunch of hysterical Republicans trying to say our lie wasn’t true. What difference, at this point, does it make? The VA scandal? Bush did it do, so just ignore Obama’s promise to right Bush’s wrongs, as well as the fact that he made things worse. The staggering economy? Bush’s fault. Egypt’s rapid plunge into starvation and anarchy? Yeah, whatever.

I’m here to report something very sad to you: The Bergdahl scandal, while it’s exiting the conservative blogosphere, will have just as much — or, more accurately just as little — impact as all of the others. It won’t even have a cumulative effect, because for most voters, nothing’s really accumulating.

Yes, the Bergdahl prisoner release is another sign that Obama is an utterly lawless president. What he and others know, though, is that because he’s been reelected and, as the first black president, cannot be impeached, he will do whatever he damn well pleases and we’ll take it.

The reality is that things won’t change unless everyone, not just conservatives, but everyone is outraged. And I can tell you from my real-me Facebook, which is populated primarily by DemProgs, along with a bunch of “I don’t care” people thrown in for good measure, none of them care.

If you said Bergdahl to these folks, some would echo MSNBC’s line that, when Obama does it, conservatives are against bringing people home.  They’ll also say that, if Obama did it, it was a good deal. Those less politically engaged will offer a variant of  “A Bergdahl? What is that? A kind of flamingo or something?”

Nothing will change. Nevertheless, I find the story interesting, so I’ll start this round-up with a bunch of good articles about Bergdahl’s release and the implications flowing from the way in which the Obama administration brought it about.

***

Mona Charen says that, even Bergdahl had been a hero, not a deserter (and possible traitor), the trade was a bad deal. I don’t disagree, although I think people would have been more sanguine, and more accepting of the increased risks to America and Americans, if someone wonderful and honorable had come back to us.

Indeed, we’ve seen an example of that just recently with the Gilad Shalit exchange: Israelis understood that Shalit was “every man.” In a country of conscripts, he could have been any one of their sons or daughters. He wasn’t a deserter or a traitor, he was a kidnap victim and one, moreover, who was clearly kept in terrible circumstances.

***

To further compare Shalit and Bergdahl, the latter’s whereabouts were no secret. It’s just that, until Obama decided to exchange him for five of the worst and most powerful anti-American Talibanis, no one thought it was worth the death of even more Americans to rescue him. That tells you something about all the secret information the military had on Bergdahl, because our troops don’t normally mind taking risks to ensure that no member of the American military get left behind.

***

And make no mistake: Bergdahl was a deserter, and Americans died trying to recover him.  I’ll add something else: I’m as certain as I can be without hearing it from Bergdahl himself that he sought out the Taliban and offered himself to them.

When Bergdahl deserted, he told his fellow troops (some of whom died looking for him) that he was going to start a new life — in the middle of nowhere. Given that fact where the heck was he supposed to go when he ran other than to the enemy? Moreover, as Bergdahl’s emails to his bizarre father showed, he hated America. He didn’t hate being in the military (dangerous, boring, hard work); he hated his country.

***

And about Daddy Dearest…. Biancaneve observed that Bob Bergdahl seems to be “suffering from Stockholm Syndrome by proxy.” That is, I think, a quite brilliant observation, given that Bob clearly identifies deeply with the Taliban, much more so than with his own country and her troops. It would be interesting to know, of course, if he was already this way when Bowe jumped ship.

***

Bret Stephens minces no words: Bergdahl, by being a deserter, betrayed America. Obama, by handing over five terribly dangerous Taliban leaders (a practical as well as propaganda victory for the Taliban), then compounded that betrayal. The real dishonor is that too many Americans have bought into Obama’s inverted world view, one that says it’s a good thing when we abandon our principles, our prosperity, and our security.

Paul Mirengoff sounds the same note, talking about Obama’s peculiar approach to American exceptionalism.

***

I Own The World noticed something horribly creepy about that Rose Garden ceremony. We’ve talked here about the fact that Bob “Stockholm Syndrome” Bergdahl, after bizarrely claiming that his son has forgotten his native tongue, addressed his son (and, of course, the world) in Arabic. Yeah, weird right? What he said was even worse, insofar as it was a Muslim prayer sanctifying and claiming the House behind him (that would be the White House) for Allah. (More about that in a second.)

All of that’s bad. What’s worse is Obama’s face when he hears that prayer:

I’m sure there’s an innocent explanation for that quick, joyful quirk of his lips:  (1) Obama could have been happy for a father welcoming his son home. (2) Obama could have been happy in an aesthetic sense to hear “one of the prettiest sounds on earth.” (3) Obama could have been happy that Bob’s clearly wrapping up his speech and will stop stealing the spotlight from happy. (4) Obama could have been suffering from a nervous twitch.

Yeah, that’s right, those are the reasons Obama smiled when he heard that triumphant Muslim prayer. That’s the ticket.

(Andrea Shea King adds one more reason Obama can smile: He doesn’t care about the slings and arrows following his outrageous misfortunes and missteps.  He’s just doing his job, and we’re not talking about the job the American people thought they were electing him to do.)

***

A word about Bergdahl, Sr. “claiming the White House” for Islam. Many years back, there was a big kerfuffle when Jews learned that the Mormon church was retroactively baptizing the Holocaust dead into the Mormon faith. What the Mormons did could be seen as disrespectful, but I saw it as an act of kindness: the Mormon’s genuinely believe in their congenial afterlife, one that sees everyone united with beloved relatives.  By baptizing the Holocaust dead, the Mormons were doing the best to reunite families torn apart by war.

Looked at it from the Jewish side, it’s important to understand that Jews don’t believe in the Mormon faith.  To a believing Jew, a Mormon baptism is about as effective as tossing salt over your shoulder. It changes nothing for either the living or the dead. The most that one could say was the Mormon’s acted insensitively about a sensitive subject.  And the Jews, tested and made sensitive by 2,000 years of persecution, overreacted

But sanctifying the White House? That’s different. It’s different because, while you and I don’t think the White House has been claimed for Islam, Muslims do, and they will act accordingly. If their actions took the form of prayers, no big deal. But we’ve learned something about Islamists in the last few years. Their actions invariably involve bombs, bullets, knives, and lots of blood. Bergdahl Sr. therefore did something terribly dangerous for the American people, by informing Islamists around the world that the White House is now a Muslim structure and must be purged of infidels.

***

A powerful cartoon is just as good, maybe better, than a long, often numbing, essay. With a few words and a picture, Terminal Lance sums up everything that’s wrong with Obama’s approach to Bowe Bergdahl, to terrorism, to imprisoned Marines, and to the troops generally.

As for U.S. Marine Sgt. Andrew Tahmooressi, currently imprisoned in Mexico on gun charges after he was lost on a one-way street that took him inexorably to Mexico, I continue to believe that Obama would move heaven and earth to free him if he’d just announce that he’s gay.  It would be even more effective if Tahmooressi added that he is on the receiving end of homophobic abuse.  (Bad pun intended.)

***

And now on to other things….

***

Andrew Klavan makes a nice distinction between gays and homofascism. The former are neighbors whom the Bible tells us to love (although I differ with Klavan who would give them marriage, while I would give everyone civil unions, and leave marriage to religion). The latter are dangerously totalitarian and should be crushed before they accrue too much power.

***

I don’t know how he did it, but Richard Fernandez apparently got hold of the original draft of Obama’s West Point speech, before his handlers told Obama to tone it down a little so that no one would scrutinize the vast chasm between Obama’s words and actions.  Let’s just say that Obama’s not so pretty when he’s telling the truth…. (Kudos to Fernandez for superior political satire.)

***

For a brief while, there was some doubt about whether Elliot Rodgers was taking psychotropic drugs, since his parents reportedly tried to treat his mental illness “holistically.” Well, it turns out he was taking them, having become addicted to Xanax, a powerful tranquilizer. My understanding is that, if he was indeed a schizophrenic, there’s only a narrow range of drugs that controls the symptoms. Xanax (or, at least, Xanax on its own) is not one of those drugs.

Put another way, Rodgers now shares several things in common with the murders who get the Left excited: young, white-ish, male, DemProg leaning, reasonably affluent, and on psychotropic drugs. He has only three things in common with those in America who are most likely to kill or be killed by guns: black men. Like Rodgers, they’re young, male, and, if they voted, would vote DemProg. But because they’re not white and affluent, and their victims are black, not white, the media and DemProgs (but I repeat myself) ignore them assiduously.

***

Everyone’s been fussing (appropriately) about the fact that Obama broke the law when he released the Gitmo Five in exchange for a deserter. Obama’s poised to break another law, insofar as he’s said that he’ll negotiate with the new Palestinian Hamas “Unity” government. Our man Obama’s not allowed by law to deal with, or extend aid to, terrorists. He doesn’t care, though. As I pointed out above, he’s untouchable and he’ll be able to continue isolating and, I’m sure he hopes, destroying Israel. For Obama, it’s all roses.

***

As the American Left gets bolder, it’s much more open to embracing one of the most toxic aspects of the European political and social culture — antisemitism. Europe is still worse, because of the melding of historic antisemitism, Leftism, Islamism, and the anger Europeans still feel towards the Jews because of Auschwitz.

Nevertheless, here at home, on every college campus and every DemProg rally, the DemProgs pursue a drip, drip, drip strategy of cultivating Jew hatred. And of course, the Leftists and those they indoctrinate cannot be blind to the Jew hatred in the White House. Management, even bad management, has a trickle-down effect.

***

And from the same government that conducted the Tuskegee syphilis experiment, comes a story about a little bit of secret experimenting with preemies.

Remind me again why the DemProgs continuously encourage us to put our faith in government?  I’m pretty sure it’s not because the DemProgs are nice people who want the rest of us to be happy.

***

How do you protect against inflation? Link the dollar to gold, says Steve Forbes.

***

One of the primary distinctions between Hitler’s fascist government and Stalin’s communist government was the fact that the latter had the state abolish privately-owned industries, placing all property and production in the state’s hands. Hitler, by contrast, allowed industrialists to keep their factories. He simply controlled them and kept money flowing to the industrialists to keep them supporting him.

Hitler therefore created the illusion of market-based capitalism, while the reality was government control. I thought of Hitler’s fascism when I read about Obama’s deal with the insurance companies.

***

Victor Davis Hanson says that Obama is returning us to 1979, the year when the reins fully and finally slipped from Carter’s hands, leaving America an internationally weak paper tiger with a destructive home economy. The serous difference between then and now, though, is that, back then at least, Carter was still a patriot and he tried to back-pedal when he realized how disastrous things were. Ships of state turn slowly, but he tried.

Obama, however, is continually and, seemingly, intentionally worsening America’s situation, both in terms of world standing and the home economy. And he’s got more time than Carter did, not to turn the ship of state around, but to damn the torpedoes and go full speed ahead.

***

Dennis Prager says what I’ve been saying all along — that the Left is the racist party in America — only he says it so much better than I ever could.

***

Austin, Texas, likes to boast that it’s the Berkeley of the Southwest. It’s an accurate boast. Austin is only slightly tempered by the intelligent conservativism that exists in the rest of Texas. If there’s a Left cause, Austin embraces it.

One of those causes is taxes. And that’s why it’s funny to hear one Austin resident proudly boast that she voted for every tax that came along, only to lapse into maudlin despair that she actually has to pay those taxes.

***

And what’s a round-up without a picture? Nothing! So here’s a picture:

Trade for the Marine in Mexico

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  • http://ymarsakar.wordpress.com Ymarsakar

    So… who thinks US Civil War I will never happen, that it’s just some crazy talk?

    • http://ymarsakar.wordpress.com Ymarsakar

      II. Extra one.

  • jj

    With every new scandal that erupts from that cesspool by the Potomac, if what you say is true and conservatives keep thinking this time is it, then they are both naive and stupid.  There is no ‘this is it’ moment: such moments have to be engineered.  That will require someone with some nous, and a head engaged in what’s going on.   Think New Gingrich in 1994, who recognized the problem and devised a way to conquer it: he nationalized the congressional elections through the simple utilization of so-called ‘special order’ speeches after hours, so every American who turned on CSPAN of an evening was treated to a republican pointing to a problem and offering a solution.  Every night – for over a year.  
     
    That kind of thinking ain’t what we got.  I think both Boehner and McConnell are hopelessly dishonest old hacks who ought to be sealed into bottles and sent out with the goddam Atlantic Drift.  The fact that they consider their real enemy to be the Tea Party indicates how far up their asses their heads are wedged, and they’re not what we need.
     
    That’s why Obama gets away with it, and gets away with it, and gets away with… and will always get away with it.  There is no one who ever expects/demands any accountability.  Boehner will tell you there’s nothing he can do because anything he tries will be stopped by the excrescence Reid – BS.  Every night, John, every goddam night, in special order speeches you can have your boys and girls laying out the case, pointing out the problems, pointing out the law (the actual law, not the Law of the Jug-eared People) and where it’s been flung down and danced upon, and offering remedies for the good of the country.  Every night, from now until November at the very least.  You don’t even have to think of it, Boehner: Gingirch did that and blue-printed it for you twenty years ago.
     
    Being led by half-wits, no accountability will be demanded,, we are going to win nothing, and Madame Fat-Ass will be the next president.

  • http://photoncourier.blogspot.com David Foster

    The quality of Republican political marketing is just abysmal.  I have often gotten something claiming to be a “2014 Republican Platform” survey, which DEMANDS on the envelope that it be returned even if not filled out.  It is very poor direct marketing, even if sent to a past Republican contributor (like me)…if sent to someone who has not contributed to or supported Republicans (like my mom, so far), it is worse than useless.
     
    Meanwhile, “progressives” are making very good use of Facebook, distributing easily-digestible memes and sharing them widely.

  • http://ymarsakar.wordpress.com Ymarsakar

    “conservatives think “This is the one. This is the straw that will break the camel’s back.”
     
    I don’t remember thinking that. Are you sure you aren’t projecting your own ideas across, here?
     
    ” none of them care.”
     
    Did you really expect zombies to care? They are zombies. Once you accept that, things become clear.
     

  • http://vinnysrants.blogspot.com vinny

    Wishful thinking is the explanation why some people say that this is the last straw for Americans.
    Whatever that private Bergdahl is, the trade wasn’t so much about bringing him home and more about releasing future Afghani rulers free. This administration wants to cozy up to the Taliban and that’s why these murderes were set loose.  Bergdahl is essentially an excuse to free them, and it is fitting that Susan Rice is out there talking about what a wonderful man he is. He’s the Mohamed video in this rehashed version of Obama’s play.

  • Charles Martel

    I agree with Book that Obama’s cascading scandals may have us conservatives standing knee-deep in a froth of indignation. But many of our fellow Americans, all ducks, are letting The Gelding’s crap slide off their feathers. It’s what good ducks do. I mentioned to my yellow-dog Democrat wife today that the punk whom Obama illegally traded five terrorists for is a deserter. I got back the usual vacant-eyed blink, as in, “What the f**k are you going on about?” Multiply her by 200 million.
     
    So we’re at that stage in Zen instruction where our guru, aka Reality, hauls off and bitch slaps the loudmouthed novice for not addressing what the hell is going on here and now. What’s going on in the here and now is a collapsing economy, an already collapsed educational system, a totally corrupted press, and gathering war clouds.
     
    I don’t believe for a second that when these calamities finally hit us hard that the low-info dolts will suddenly understand what brought them about. They’ll wonder around in a daze, like ants dimly wondering if the grasshoppers might have been right all along. Unfortunately for them, they will not know how to steal from armed grasshoppers after the collapse of the rackets—federal government, press, academy, crony capitalists—that sustained them up to the moment the guru delivered his slap. 

  • Danny Lemieux

    I’m not so sure that Obama will continue with consequence-less reign.  The pressure behind the dam is building and will continue to do so exponentially for the next 2-1/2 years. I suspect a point will come where it all comes crashing through at once. This is the nature of “black swan” events…nobody sees it coming except in hindsight. 
     

  • MacG

    Sargent Bergdahl was apparently Private Bergdahl when he walked off. He was promoted in “abstentia”…Someting’s rotten in Demark
    Note the dates Obama has been trying to do this for sometime…
     
    http://www.snopes.com/politics/military/bergdahl.asp 
     

    • MacG

      ‘Demark’ is not a typo. No offense to the Danes :)