Monday, October 20, 2008

One liberal likes another liberal, yawn

WASHINGTON - Former Secretary of State Colin Powell endorsed Sen. Barack Obama, D-Ill., for president on Sunday, criticizing his own Republican Party for what he called its narrow focus on irrelevant personal attacks over a serious approach to challenges he called unprecedented.

Powell, who for many years was considered the most likely candidate to become the first African-American president, said in an interview on NBC’s “Meet the Press” that he was not supporting Obama because of his race. He said he had watched both Obama and his Republican opponent, Sen. John McCain of Arizona, for many months and thought “either one of them would be a good president.”

But he said McCain’s choices in the last few weeks — especially his selection of Gov. Sarah Palin of Alaska as his vice presidential running mate — had raised questions in his mind about McCain’s judgment.

[. . .]

Powell also told NBC’s Tom Brokaw that he was “troubled” by Republicans’ personal attacks on Obama, especially false intimations that Obama was Muslim and the recent focus on Obama’s alleged connections to William Ayers, a co-founder of the radical ’60 Weather Underground.

Stressing that Obama was a lifelong Christian, Powell denounced Republican tactics that he said were insulting not only to to Obama but also to Muslims.

“The really right answer is what if he is?” Powell said, praising the contributions of millions of Muslim citizens to American society.

Where to start?

I have heard that the reason that McCain has placed an absolute ban on any mention of Jeremiah Wright within his campaign is due to the fact that he was earnstly desiring Colin Powell's endorsement.

Any person whose endorsement would be jeopardized by criticisms of Jeremiah Wright is not a man whose endorsement would be worth anything.

While I do not doubt Colin Powell's ability as an Army officer and his uniformed service to his country the fact remains that during the greatest test he faced as an officer he performed very poorly. As Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff during the first Gulf War Powell begged (literally begged, people who were there said that Powell was trembling and his voice was quavering like he was just barely fighting back tears) George H.W. Bush to call off the attack on Iraq before our forces entered Baghdad and to leave Saddam Hussein in power. His stated reason for this was his fear that if the war lasted more than a few days the American public would turn against it and his soldiers would be spit upon when they returned home, just like he was when he got back from Vietnam.

Powell's council was the largest factor in President Bush's decision to make what he as subsequently called the biggest mistake of his presidency - leaving Hussein in power in Iraq.

As Secretary of State Powell was also a major disappointment. It was at his absolute insistence that we dithered for around 14 months attempting to gain the approval of France and Germany (whose leaders we now know were on Saddam Hussein's payroll and were never going to support using force to remove him from office) for military operations in Iraq. It was Powell who was instrumental in allowing enough time for the infrastructure of terrorist operations in Iraq to be built prior to our invasion and occupation.

It was also during Powell's tenure as Secretary of State that an illegal and treasonous shadow government was formed , centered in the State Department and the CIA, whose single-minded purpose was to undermine, and if possible destroy, the Bush presidency. It was, after all, the Powell protege Richard Armitage at State who leaked Valerie Plame's name to the press and it was Powell who ordered Armitage not to reveal this fact publicly so as not to derail the independent council's politically motivated investigation into the Bush Administration.

None of this should come as a surprise to anyone who has been watching Powell since his entrance onto the public stage. Powell has described himself as a "New Deal kid" which means that he is at the very best "socialist-lite" and at worst an out-and-out Marxist in the Obama mold. His primary and perhaps only reason for joining the Republican party and serving in a Republican administration was that as a career Army man he deeply opposes (or opposed since his endorsement of Obama will bring that event closer to happening) gays being able to serve openly in the military and a Republican administration seemed to be the best way to keep that from happening.

What about Powell's stated reasons for turning his back on McCain? He has said that he was "troubled" by McCain's choice of Sarah Palin. OK, this tells us something important about Mr. Powell. He is turned off by the choice of an authentic Reagan conservative for the VP slot.

He also says that he is concerned about what kind of judges another Republican administration would appoint to the Supreme Court. Well, no one who isn't a frothing left-wing kook has the slightest problem with Justices Roberts or Alito and conservatives almost unanimously believe that Thomas and Scalia are the best men to ever serve on the High Court so what - exactly - is Powell's problem?

What are Powell's real reasons for endorsing Obama? There are three and they are all equally important. One is that Powell is a liberal. He was willing to work for George W Bush because Bush is not a true conservative. He said that he thought McCain would make a good president because McCain is also not a conservative, but he changed his mind because of McCain's conservative running-mate.

The second reason is that Obama is black and Powell likes the idea of seeing the first black president.

The third reason is to indulge in a bit of payback over the way he feels that he was ill used by the Bush administration. Powell was required as Secretary of State to go before the UN and make the USA's case for war with Iraq. Of the more than 20 reasons justifying war (any one of which should have been sufficient by itself) one was that Hussein was maintaining stockpiles of chemical weapons which he could use against his neighbors - including Israel.

It is known that there were stockpiles of chemical weapons because Hussein used them against the Iranians and against Iraqi Kurds and we found some of them during our first war against Iraq. It is possible that Hussein ordered those stockpiles destroyed after the Gulf War (and then kept that fact a closely guarded state secret) or (thanks to the year of dithering that Powell insisted upon) he and his Russian and European allies may have successfully removed them from Iraq during the buildup to the current war.

Whatever the reason for the absence of WMD's in Iraq Powell feels that he was made to go before the UN and lie. And since Powell is a liberal he respects the UN and values "world" opinion more than the opinion of the American people so this "lie" is - in his mind - a stain upon his personal honor.

With more than two weeks to go before the election and a large chunk of voters still undecided there is enough time for the McCain campaign to begin to exploit Jeremiah Wright and the other deeply troubling connections to Obama that opening the "Wright door" will reveal. Like the fact that Obama is the preferred candidate of lunatic antisemite Louis Farrakhan (who calls Obama the messiah without irony).

Rubbing the American electorate's face in the fact that Obama's preferred friends and partners have always been the very worst elements of humanity (the people who work in the Communist Party - USA headquarters are all wearing Obama buttons) is a strategy which is working. Obama's lead is shrinking. Put enough doubts in enough minds and McCain will be seen as the "safe, if boring" choice by a majority come election day.

And in the meantime Colin Powell's name can be stricken off the list of people whose opinion should be accorded the slightest weight whatsoever.

Oh, I almost forgot. By his own admission Obama has not been a "lifelong Christian". He was converted in his 20's by the ministry of Jeremiah Wright who led Obama into "Black Liberation Theology" which is not orthodox Christianity. This means that either Powell has not bothered to learn anything about the man he is endorsing for the presidency or that he doesn't know the difference between true and false forms of Christianity or that he is simply rationalizing his decision to support the black guy who also happens to be a left-liberal.

My vote is on the latter. Powell looks at Obama and doesn't see anything beyond his skin color and his left-wing politics and that's good enough for him.