Friday, May 28, 2010

Personal Asides: Did Liz Get Fired or Did She Resign? Search Me says Obama Although He’s in Charge (Supposedly). More.

        Feast of St. Augustine of Canterbury*  
       [Note: I didn’t post yesterday because my two computers, the big one in the basement and the lap-top went out at exactly the same time.] 
                                 Barry,  Liz Was Fired.
      From now on, I’m totally in charge Barack Obama told his news conference yesterday.  Well, came a question, the top administration official in charge of stanching the oil leak is Elizabeth Birnbaum, director of the Mineral Management Service of Interior…a Harvard law grad, former editor ofThe Harvard Environmental Law Review—no Bush holdover but an Obama appointment circa 2009.  Question:  Was Liz fired or did she resign? asked Jackie Calmes of The New York Times.  Obama, the man in charge, didn’t know.  Well, Barry,  she was fired nicely-nicely  by Ken Salazar.  He called her in and said sorry, but somebody’s gotta be the goat and unfortunately it’s you.   
       Obama followed the age-old formula pursued by governmental liberals when they’re under attack for delay in response…and that’s to itemize all the people involved in response, all the supplies that were sent. Just as Janet Napolitano answered the Arizona immigration mess.  No direct answer,actually, just a list of things that were done.  And the concluding statement that the government’s regarded this as Job 1.  
       Look for Liz to take a big job with BP next with a big raise: that’s the way Washington has always worked.  
        For those who don’t understand that lethargy in government response is a bipartisan thing, here are the things the Barry people didn’t do ala Karl Rove in the Wall Street Journal yesterday. They 
      …haven’t moved  on setting up barrier berms, temporary little islands that could block the oil flow from flooding the fragile wetlands and marshes.  It requires  okays from the Corps of Engineers and the U. S. Fish and Wildlife Service. Louisiana asked permission May 11—no answer as yet…meanwhile oil is flooding the shores. 
      …haven’t decided a thing on dispersants, the chemicals used to break up the oil on the surface and speed its evaporation. On May 8, Louisiana sent an urgent request to BP asking it not to use the dispersants as it would kill the fish. EPA countermanded the state and told BP the dispersants could be used 4,000 feet below the surface.  No communication with Louisiana officials who found out about it in the newspapers. BP still refuses to do it; now EPA agrees.   
     …still haven’t acted on Louisiana’s request to mobilize all boats to deploy booms and containment devices.  Result: Lousiana had to go to the locals.   
    Then there’s the p. r. aspect of it. Most times No Drama Obama looks good by not getting flustered, the way John McCain did during the economic meltdown…temporarily ending the campaign, running around like a chicken with its head cut off…then re-entering the campaign.  Obama was calm all the way.  This time, calmness seems to register insouciance. 
                      Then there’s the 1,200 Guardsmen to Arizona.
        In the news conference, Obama made it seem as though it was in the works all the time.  If it was, why didn’t he tell the lawmakers he met with on the same day it was announced? The fact is they’re only temps and will hold down desk jobs freeing law enforcement to do the job.  But for how long?   
                     Followed by Joe Sestak (D-Pennsylvania).
          Obama said there will be a federal report issued shortly clearing up the question of whether the Democratic senatorial nominee was really offered a job to get out of the way for Arlen Specter or not—saying that when it comes out, everything will be hunky-dory.  Odds are strongly that Emanuel (now in Israel for his son’s bar mitzvah) was not vague.  But Sestak will likely say what he should have said all along after he won the nomination—hey, we all say things during the heat of battle. Forget it. 
                   Finally, the Drive to Get Rid of “Don’t Ask Don’t Tell.” 
          The Botox, wide-eyed witch from San Francisco, is putting the heat on…just as she did with ObamaCare…to ditch “Don’t ask, don’t tell” and has mobilized a fierce pincers drive on the secretary of defense and the chairman of the joint chiefs of staff to bow in response to powerful gay pressure, gays being one of the key special interest groups in the Democratic party.  The defense secretary wants to wait for a Pentagon report on its effect, but Botox Nancy can’t wait: too many impatient ones in San Francisco and elsewhere.  Doesn’t matter if it wrecks the military services—which it assuredly will.  She pushed the House yesterday to approve abolition of don’t ask, don’t tell…which will probably result in her secular canonization enabling them to put her photo with accompanying vigil light next to that of Tab Hunter in the Gay Galaxy Hall of Fame, San Francisco.  
       *: St. Augustine of Canterbury [circa AD 604]. The Italian who is one of the prime saints of England; a pupil of Felix, bishop of Messana and a companion of Gregory, later to become pope.  Augustine was a monk, later prior of St. Andrew’s monastery on the Celian Hill, Rome. Having known Gregory before he was pope, he was tapped to head a mission to evangelize the Brits.   The party wanted to scrub it at first (not Augustine) but Augustine laid down the law and they were augmented by French priests—now 40 in number—when they landed at Ebbsfleet, Kent in 597.  They were greeted coldly by  King Ethelbert of Kent who was overlord of the other tribes south of the Humber—but he gave them a house in Canterbury while he thought over whether or not he wanted to be baptized. 
      Eventually Ethelbert gave in and with his leadership many Brits volunteered to be baptized.  Augustine built the first cathedral at Canterbury, founded the monastery of Saints Peter and Paul just  outside C
Canterbury’s walls and another church at Rochester. Augustine grew close to King Ethelbert and helped him draft the first draft of Anglo-Saxon laws which still survives.  Gregory, one of the great popes,  was undeniably the prime apostle to the Angles but he gave Augustine a lot of leeway and Augustine ranks second in that hierarchy. 

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