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Wednesday, October 31, 2012

October 31, 2012 - Morning Headlines - Happy Halloween!

- For some, the recovery from Hurricane Sandy is beginning (ABC News):

- Help for the storm victims comes from all sources as the head of the Islamic charity Jamaat-ud-Dawa has offered to send doctors, supplies, food, and medicine to the US (CNN):

- Former GOP presidential candidate John McCain rips into President Obama for his handling of the conflict in Libya (NBC News):

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  1. Just an observation I wanted to throw out there to see what your thoughts are. I think Sandy is a huge help to Obama's re-election campaign. He (Obama) seems to be handling the aftermath very well which will have him with favorable view going into the election next week. Generally, when this country sees a disaster and POTUS handles it well, there is an approval ratings bump associated with it and people tend to focus on that issue without regard for others. Also, Obama out there glad handing with Chris Christie, a GOP heavyweight, it will increase the view of Obama. Also, with the suspensions of the campaign it puts only Obama in the spotlight and makes Mitt virtually disappear. Does Sandy make the Romney campaign almost impossible to win?

    1. Whatsamattusa....glad to see you made it through the storm OK. Hopefully you didn't sustain any damage to your property.

      Yeah I saw where 0bama said, "But America is tougher, and we’re tougher because we pull together. We leave nobody behind. We make sure that we respond as a nation and remind ourselves that whenever an American is in need, all of us stand together to make sure that we’re providing the help that's necessary."

      That sure does sound Presidential. Problem is, just a few weeks ago in Benghazi, he did leave 4 Americans behind and he failed to provide any support for them. Just more empty words from the empty suit. Unless of course, you feel that an investigation (after you are killed) is the "help that's necessary" as you are under attack from al-Qaeda.

      However, in 0bama's defense, we didn't leave those 4 Americans behind. We did go get them... after they were raped, tortured, and murdered.

      Too bad the SEALs can't count on 0bama like 0bama can count on the SEALs.

      Anyway, like I said, glad you and your family made it through the storm.

    2. Good morning whatsamattausa - I'm glad you and your family are safe.

      I think you have a very fair assessment. I think this disaster, yes, it's tragic and shouldn't be politicized - but it will be, will make Obama look good. Even if he performed poorly, the realization of that wouldn't occur until after the election. In the time being, he will be on the ground doing the right things (as he should be), to take care of what needs to be taken care of. Additionally, I do believe the media will assist in this, and they will be the wind behind Obama's back through this crisis. It's sad, but I do think that this will significantly help him in the election.

    3. Not to mention, the views Romney expressed on FEMA in the past may also come back to haunt him.

      On the other hand though, most of the states effected by this disaster are blue, so it might not come into play all that much.

      It will be interesting to see how that works out.

    4. Glad to hear you're okay, too, RKen :-)

      I have to interject here. What views on FEMA are you referring to? (I'm asking this intentionally :-) )

    5. During the primaries, Romney responded to a question on FEMA's funding with his opinion that the program should be ended at the federal government level and given to the individual states, or even more ideally should be privatized.

      I of course understand that argument and find it to be a reasonable point, but I don't think that this idea will sit very well with the people who need the help most right now.

      I also disagree with the argument itself. FEMA shouldn't be treated much different than national security, in my view. It would be ridiculous to ask the states to fund their own independent military/intelligence/anti-terrorism efforts, for a number of reasons. Right? One of the bigger ones being that it would be impossible to properly fund and prepare for something so unknown that can potentially cause so much devastation. A state could have 100 years of no incidents at all, but then a single catastrophic attack could do hundreds of billions of damage and break the system completely. It just isn’t realistic.

      I don't see natural disasters as any different. There's no way for a state to properly prepare and/or fund for that once-a-century+ type of disaster.

      Further, is that in cases where FEMA is called upon this is more than simply about buildings, property, and the environment. This is people’s lives and livelihood; and I don’t see any reason to take this any less serious than our national security.

      All of that said, I am of course for cracking down on fraudulent and wasteful use of the funds. But I don't think that it should just be given-up on; not on a federal level.

    6. I don't remember him saying to "end" it (even though that's what I favor), but I do remember him saying that it should be pushed to the states. I think there is a distinction here that needs to be explained. He has said this with many costly, often-mismanaged, federal programs (like Medicare). He believes, as most conservative federalists do, that the gov't shouldn't be handling these kinds of problems. That if the federal government does handle these kinds of programs, it shouldn't actively manage or run them. It if collects money to run these programs, it should simply allocate the money back to the states and let the states run them. As far as ending the program, I cannot find any information that shows this is what he meant.

      I glad, RKen, though not surprised because you never run off with the fringe arguments, that you're not engaging in the over-hyperbolic "Romney wants to destroy FEMA and hurt people" dancing. I do think that the issue of how the federal government should handle these kinds of programs is a fair debate (I'm a HUGE state's rights person - for example, why should people in North Dakota be taxed to cover hurricane disasters in Florida), but I also think it's sad that so many people simply believe misinformation about what was truly said (not you). If a federal program IS needed, like how the military is needed as a national defense, I do believe in the government being the collector and "allocator" of resources, but not the end all manager of the program.

    7. I could see that approach working too LME, where the government is the collector/allocator of the resources but the states are in charge of managing it and how they’re used. I might even agree that it would be more efficient this way.

      My issue with your example in how North Dakota should be taxed to help with hurricane disasters in Florida, is again similar logic to how our military is setup. On some level, one could even argue, why should all the states be taxed to provide extra protection to NYC or help rebuilt after 9/11? Or why should inland states have to pay for a navy? Or why should states without national boarders pay to protect boarders?

      But I think we’d all agree that it wouldn’t be ideal to change those things.

      And while the national security and national disasters are very different, I again feel that they essentially should be approached in the same manner. It more or less evens out anyway; North Dakota might not have hurricanes, but they certainly have snowstorms. California may not have either of those, but they will have earthquakes. Kansas might not have any of those, but they will have Tornados. Etc.

    8. I've gotta drop this in here between handing out candy:

      This is precisely what I'm talking about when I refer to how disgusting the media truly is. These two were permitted to go on live TV and expand something from concept to falsehood. This is a glaring example of how the media does it.


    1. I get the feeling this may have been directed at me. :)

      My fault for not clarifying more, but I simply meant that his wishes to push FEMA to the states and/or privatize it may not sit well with people dealing closely with this disaster.

      I wasn't aware of anyone attempting to say he called it immoral. I certainly don't agree with that accusation.