The Right Coast

Editor: Thomas A. Smith
University of San Diego
School of Law

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Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Obama's secret plea to Russia is a big deal
Tom Smith

If I saw this story on World Net Daily, Free Republic or some such place, I would just assume it was the product of some right wing fever dream.  Oh come on --  The President of the United States says to the President of Russia, whose office he is about to  hand over to a former KGB thug (whose little bitch he is), on whose hands the blood of who knows how many journalists and human rights activists is still wet -- says, in effect, yeah, I want to weaken our defenses, but you really have to give me some time to do so -- the crucial thing is to wait until after the elections.  Well, I just wouldn't believe it.  I would honestly not think even our current young President was capable of this.  If Obama were the president of a public corporation and he was referring to his shareholders rather than to the people of the United States, is there any plaintiff's attorney who could not just tear him apart for disloyalty?  No, forget that.  He would be forced to resign;  the shareholders would just have him out.  

Who exactly is the President supposed to be representing when he speaks to the Russians?  I thought, well, us.  To speak as he evidently did (is anyone claiming Obama did not really say the words attributed to him?  That they are somehow out of context?) suggests not so much, or rather just, weakness, as a profound failure to understand where he is and whom he is dealing with, a man way, way out of his depth, and whose heart is not even in the right place, not remotely.  Let's be clear -- Putin is a mass killer, a tyrant and demagogue with nothing like a normal human conscience, one of the last products of one of the most vile and feared (and rightly so) secret police machines in the history of the world, who has at his disposal a nuclear arsenal more than adequate for destroying life on earth, a man who longs for the days of the great Soviet empire, and who has no love for us, or freedom, or anything evidently besides his own power and grotesque ego.  A deeply evil, profoundly dangerous man.  So Obama proposes to run a game with him against the American people, as if he and Obama both know better what is good for America and its security than what the American people would themselves, in sacred spaces of our voting booths assembled, countenance?  Just Putin-and-Obama's little secret? As if the terrible Republicans and various bitter clingers are less to be trusted than the ruthless Czar of a decaying empire? I mean, WTF?  What does this say about our President's view of our, you know, the American, form of government?  Perfect it ain't, but surely it deserves more respect than this, to be held in mutual disregard before a bloody tyrant's errand boy?  What, like they can both agree what ridiculous bothers elections are, just one tyrant who holds the ruled in contempt to another?  This is honestly just horrible.  Not funny, just really alarming and upsetting.  Who is this guy?  What have we done?  For all that I think Obama has been a disastrous President, I would simply never have suspected he was capable of expressing this sort of sentiment about us to our at best near-enemies.  Not in a legal sense, but in a moral sense, isn't it sort of, well, a betrayal?  A word I hesitate to use, because it's one much loved by nut cases, but it seems disturbingly appropriate, and if overstated, only by a distressingly small margin.  That his words seem to come from his lips so casually suggests to me merely that the President lacks moral depth.  I feel like we've elected an atheist as Pope.

Unless this turns out to be some sort of confusion, that there is some (I can't imagine what) unrevealed context that explains his words, then one really must conclude he is unfit for his office.  Someone who evidently takes this attitude toward democracy and his office has no business being where he is.  How could one possibly think, given this, that he is fit for our trust, we whom he seems to hold in such contempt?  Still, I don't underestimate his supporters ability to brush it aside.  "Whatever" covers a lot of ground.

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Telling the foreign leader that you need to play to the gallery is pretty routine. You think Netanyahu might have been saying one thing to Israel, another thing to journalists, and a third thing to US officials? Ditto for Pakistan, and US official no doubt do say one thing publicly, a second thing to the Pakistani military, a third thing to Zardari, and probably a fourth thing to the Taliban contact. Do you think maybe there are communications with Iran that fail to match our public pronouncements?

I don't thing this is a right wing treason gotcha moment so much as run of the mill foreign policy elitism. You could argue that foreign policy could use a hell of a lot more sunshine, but I suspect that Obama sincerely believes that missile defense destabilizes MAD and is basically a GOP jobs program that he wants to axe anyway. He is asking the Russians to help him help them.

As for Putin, he's a thug who is willing to kill for personal agrandizement. The reason I think our foreign policy elites are idiots is that when I was an undergrad my Russian studies professor, who had met the movers and shakers during the transition period sincerely believed that Putin would turn over power. I asked her that specifically, expressing doubts. Two years later during East European studies she was uncomprehending that the newly liberated East Europeans would kick out the reformers in the mid 90s who took away their pensions and sold all the state assets since shock therapy was such a success according to her economics textbooks. In another decade this woman would have been a white house policy advisor.

Posted by: molly | Mar 27, 2012 7:49:55 PM

Barack and Putin sitting in a tree k-i-s-s-i-n-g!

Posted by: JMS | Mar 28, 2012 6:08:34 AM

But, but, but...dismantling all our defense would pay a lot of $3000 per year contraceptive bills

Posted by: krm | Mar 28, 2012 9:04:09 AM

"I feel like we've elected an atheist as Pope." It's not often that you compare modern times to the Renaissance.

Posted by: dearieme | Mar 28, 2012 6:53:28 PM

You really owe it to yourself to listen to Obama's interview with ESPN's Bill Simmons

Obama seems amiable and friendly, but I thought he is really very full of himself. He thinks he is "world-class" at everything.

Here are a few of his statements, but you really need to listen to the whole thing to appreciate the depth of his self-absorption.

Obama: I knew about Jeremy [Lin} NBA NY Knicks guard] before you did, or everybody else did... I can’t take credit for [“Linsanity”], but I’m just saying I was there early.

Obama: Yes, we played a game of HORSE. Now, Maya [Moore of the Connecticut Huskies basketball team] is always annoyed that I point out that I beat her.

Obama: Chris [Paul - guard for the NBA LA Clippers] was one of the guys who played [in Obama's own little All-Star Game at the White House]. And I did a little crossover on him. He didn’t know I had that move on me.
Bill Simmon: So you surprised him with it?
Obama: I did, yes. Yes. My crossover is solid.

Posted by: Hank Archer | Mar 28, 2012 7:15:27 PM

This really is unbelievable.

Posted by: TheCrankyProfessor | Mar 29, 2012 7:08:19 AM

Renaissance popes -- actually atheists or just evil men? (I am just going by Jeremy Irons in The Borgias.)

Posted by: Tom Smith | Mar 29, 2012 10:47:23 AM

Let's see if the Republicans have the b@11s to go after the Effendi where he lives. They didn't last time, which is why the blame for lame falls mainly on McCain.

This is a very big deal. It's one thing to tell the Canadians that you're only talking about protectionism to play the rubes, another matter altogether to suck up to the FSU.

Posted by: Lou Gots | Mar 29, 2012 3:36:50 PM

If I recall, Reagan was actively making a deal with the Ayatollah during an election to stick it to Carter, and the Ayatollah was holding Americans hostage at the time. Granted, he was a better actor than our current president.

Posted by: molly | Mar 29, 2012 8:50:10 PM

This article ( is a good examination of the Reagan-Iran “secret deal” as a classic conspiracy theory. Seems that the notion was first fielded by Lyndon LaRouche and then pushed by Gary Sick, a Carter Admin. official. It was debunked by reports undertaken by both the House and Senate -- but it lives on with Molly!

Posted by: Marianne | Mar 30, 2012 11:35:55 AM