Patterico's Pontifications


Obama’s Secret Stick

Filed under: Obama,Terrorism,War — DRJ @ 10:18 pm

[Guest post by DRJ]

The Bush Doctrine expressly authorized preemptive military action against America’s enemies and potential enemies, and President Bush was relentlessly pilloried by Democrats for his public stand. But now it turns out President Obama may talk sweetly but he’s using a bigger and more controversial preemptive secret stick:

“Beneath its commitment to soft-spoken diplomacy and beyond the combat zones of Afghanistan and Iraq, the Obama administration has significantly expanded a largely secret U.S. war against al-Qaeda and other radical groups, according to senior military and administration officials.”

The moral is President Obama gets to have his cake and eat it, too … at least until someone decides to call his bluff.


Happy Birthday, Your Highness

Filed under: International,Obama — DRJ @ 10:02 pm

[Guest post by DRJ]

The diplomatic whiz-kids in the Obama Administration strike again:

“The State Department has conceded committing a diplomatic faux pas by sending birthday greetings to Britain’s Queen Elizabeth II a week early.”

I wonder how many times the Brits will have to say “No offense was taken” before Obama leaves office?


Israel Boards the Rachel Corrie

Filed under: International — DRJ @ 9:30 pm

[Guest post by DRJ]

Apparently the boarding was peaceful:

“At about 5:50 am on Saturday, the first reports came in over Twitter that the ‘Rachel Corrie’ had been boarded close to Gaza. Earlier the activists reported that their radar had been jammed, however their Twitter accounts continued to operate.”

That’s the good news. The bad news is the Guardian has inflammatory news about the dead on the Gaza flotilla:

“Nine Turkish men on board the Mavi Marmara were shot a total of 30 times and five were killed by gunshot wounds to the head, according to the vice-chairman of the Turkish council of forensic medicine, which carried out the autopsies for the Turkish ministry of justice today.”


John Wooden (1910-2010)

Filed under: Sports — DRJ @ 8:30 pm

[Guest post by DRJ]

UCLA Basketball coach and legend John Wooden has died at age 99 in Los Angeles.



New DNI James Clapper

Filed under: Obama,Terrorism — DRJ @ 7:34 pm

[Guest post by DRJ]

President Obama has named retired Air Force General and current Pentagon intelligence official James Clapper to be director of national intelligence.

The report says there is bipartisan opposition to a former military man heading the civilian intelligence gathering. Nevertheless, if Clapper’s nomination is approved, he has my best wishes and I hope he does an outstanding job keeping America and Americans safe.


Michelle Obama’s School Chefs

Filed under: Education,Obama — DRJ @ 7:02 pm

[Guest post by DRJ]

At the White House today, First Lady Michelle Obama welcomed 500 everyday and celebrity chefs from 37 states who are joining to fight childhood obesity. Their goal is to increase the use of healthy foods in school lunches, pair chefs with local schools to collaborate on healthier menus, and reduce reliance on junk food in school cafeterias. That’s a worthwhile goal, both now and in 2005 when British celebrity chef Jamie Oliver pioneered it in his Feed Me Better school campaign.

It’s good to involve chefs but I don’t agree that chefs necessarily know a lot about nutrition, healthy foods, and how to plan economical menus. Chefs know taste, as evidenced by some of the hefty chefs (who will remain unnamed here) in our communities and on TV. Then again, perhaps health-focused chefs like Jamie Oliver will be more interested in this program and more likely to sign up for it.

So kudos to Michelle Obama for trying to improve school food in our communities with volunteer chefs. And kudos to Jamie Oliver for actually doing it.


BP Live Feeds, Interrupted?

Filed under: Environment — DRJ @ 4:56 pm

[Guest post by DRJ]

It’s my understanding that BP is using 6 robots with 2 live feeds each to monitor the Deepwater Horizon wellsite. BP’s website says the feeds “are live streams and may freeze or be unavailable from time to time.” I watch the feeds now and then and they’ve been available with few interruptions. I don’t recall any time when all the feeds were unavailable as they are now.

I wonder if this is a coincidence, normal maintenance, a routine interruption, or if something is happening.

UPDATE: Never mind. Some are back and a few have good resolution, too.


Althouse Poll

Filed under: Obama — DRJ @ 2:59 pm

[Guest post by DRJ]

Ann Althouse is polling your reaction to President Obama singing “Hey, Jude” with Paul McCartney:

Love it? Hate it? Don’t care? All the choices are at the link.


The Rachel Corrie

Filed under: International — DRJ @ 2:01 pm

[Guest post by DRJ]

The Free Gaza Movement plans to try again Saturday to break the Israeli blockade. Le-gal In-sur-rec-tion has more on the Free Gaza Movement’s ship, the Rachel Corrie:

“The MV Rachel Corrie is a cargo ship named after an American anti-Israeli activist (photo right burning a mock U.S. flag) killed while trying to prevent Israeli bulldozers from operating in Gaza in 2003.

The Free Gaza movement operating the ship has announced that it will not stop if approached by Israeli ships, even though the Israelis offered to have the supplies transported by land to Gaza, setting up another confrontation at sea.

While it was rumored that Turkey would send a warship to escort the ship, creating the likelihood of a military clash, I have seen no confirmation of that.

Nonetheless, the increasing level of insult being hurled by the Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan at Israel indicates that further confrontations are coming. Having created the crisis, Erdogan is stoking it for political gain at home and abroad.”

The links say the Rachel Corrie will reach Gaza sometime Saturday. As I post this, it is just after Midnight on Saturday morning in Gaza. (Here is a link to the current time in Gaza.)

We may be just hours away from another confrontation.


Big 12, Big 10, Pac-10

Filed under: Sports — DRJ @ 1:44 pm

[Guest post by DRJ]

Here’s what I’ve heard:

  • Nebraska and Missouri will move to the Big 10, and/or
  • The Pac-10 will invite anywhere from six to all twelve Big 12 schools to join.
  • Some Texas sportswriters are hoping any remaining Texas teams will form a Texas version of the old Southwest Conference. I’d like that.

    What have you heard?

    — DRJ

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