Posts Tagged 'Benghazi'

Grumpy Old Men

Has anyone else noticed the resemblance between Clint Eastwood and John McCain?

Dirty Hairy was, at one time, my hero.  Didn’t give a shit about the rules.  Just went after the bad guys,  ignored protocol and left political niceties to politicians.  He cleaned up on the evil doers and crooked cops.  I couldn’t wait for his next movie, and a big fist in the mouth or a 45 magnum for anyone who crossed him.  A real American idol.

John flew planes for his country, shot bad guys out of the air, got caught in Nam, spent serious time in the worst of all places and came home a hero.  He found his way to Washington and became a maverick who only cared about what was right and honorable.  Party politics be damned, he tweaked the noses of his own colleagues.  I’d probably have voted for him.

How things have changed.  Both Clint and John have become grumpy old men.

Clint at 82 probably plays the same role in the movies that he does in real life.  His latest run of pictures depict someone who is all too ready to thumb his nose at anyone who gets in his way.   His character, Walt Kowalski, spits on his next door neighbors in Gran Torino while his Gus Lobel smart mouths the baseball world in Trouble With the Curve.   As further evidence of Clint’s grumpy man metamorphosis, he occasionally speaks incoherently  to empty chairs.

John at 76 hasn’t recovered from the 2008 election when he and the Snow Queen were decimated by the Black Guy.  Finding his vision of the world moving further into obscurity, he has become the Senate minority standard-bearer responsible for carrying out Banzai attacks on the guy who bested him four years ago.  No surrender for John.  Instead, a last desperate attack before he falls on his sword.

But there is one important difference between Clint and John.  We can avoid Clint by not buying his movie tickets.  But we’re stuck with John in our face until at least 2016.

John’s current grumpiness is reflected in his dogged determination to show that Obama was the guy who led the attack on the Benghazi embassy.  Raising the terrorist event to the level of the sinking of the Lusitania, the attack on Pearl Harbor and the destruction of the Twin Towers,  John insists that not enough information has been provided to allow him to declare that the Black Guy was not, in fact, the perpetrator of the event.

He also warns that he will block the nomination of Susan Rice to the position of Secretary of State, a nomination that has not and may not occur.  Blaming Ms. Rice, currently our U.N. ambassador, for providing false information on Benghazi, John  offers to temper his approach only if Susan will publicly reveal that the Black Guy was in fact responsible for supplying arms to the terrorists, pointing them in the direction of Benghazi, and giving them the spare key to the embassy.

Seeking the pole position on administration harassment, John insists that a Watergate style inquisition be started immediately.  The lack of credible information and probable complicity by the Black Guy seemed an appropriate start to Obama’s second presidential term of office.  Visions of impeachment, ala the Clinton and Monica show, float like sugar plums through John’s head.  Failing to achieve Mitch McConnell’s stated goal of a one term presidency, maybe this is the answer to hobbling the Black Guy for the next four years.

Alas, John got off to a poor start.  First he holds a news conference blasting the White House for not being forthcoming.  But then given the opportunity to attend a bi-partisan briefing on the Benghazi caper, John chose to thumb his nose at it.  When CNN reporter Ted Barrett asked why he missed the briefing, John said “I have no comment about my schedule and I’m not going to comment on how I spend my time to the media.”  Asked why he wouldn’t comment, McCain huffed “Because I have the right as a senator to have no comment and who the hell are you to tell me I can or not?”

So, rather than focusing on our real problems, the grumpy guy tries to hobble the black guy while the rest of us say…get a life, John.”

Smirker in Chief

One unforgettable morning eleven years ago, I turned on the TV near my rowing machine and was confronted with burning buildings and the greatest calamity to befall our nation since Pearl Harbor.  I stood in front of the TV and didn’t know what to do except stare at the unbelievable devastation.

Eleven years later plus a day, I was again staring at the TV getting ready to cajole my much older bones to rise to the occasion when I saw Hillary Clinton talking about another attack on our citizens.  Her words were well-chosen as she sought to memorialize those who died this time in Benghazi and to seek some calm  after another turbulent event half a world away.

After watching the emerging story of the events in Libya, I was treated to a press conference featuring that foreign relations guru, Mitt Romney.  Quickly offering his condolences to the families of the murdered embassy officials, Mitt launched into a denunciation of the comments from the U.S. embassy in Cairo, the Obama administration and anyone else remotely resembling a Democrat.  The Romney campaign had earlier offered this statement from Mitt…

I’m outraged by the attacks on American diplomatic missions in Libya and Egypt and by the death of American consulate worker in Benghazi. It’s disgraceful that the Obama Administration’s first response was not to condemn the attacks on our diplomatic missions, but to sympathize with those who waged the attacks.


Even Republican senators knew better.  A joint statement on Fox News by John McCain, Lindsay Graham and which-way-is-the-wind-blowing Joe Lieberman took no political punches at the administration.

Mitt’s press conference doubled down and  bordered on an immediate declaration of nuclear war on those yet-to-be identified perpetrators of the attack on the Benghazi embassy, and offered a denunciation of Obama’s failure to draw and quarter the framers of a message delivered by the Cairo staff.  How dare Mr. Obama, he said, be so willing to support the audacity of the Cairo staff that both condemned the Benghazi attack and denounced the asinine video that may have incited the attackers.  No matter that the Cairo embassy was trying to quell a protest outside its own gates by being what ambassadors are paid to do…be ambassadorial.

Ever willing to seize the low ground, the Mitt decided that it was more important to embrace diversity to make political points rather than to encourage solidarity and unity.  His prepared remarks led to a series of questions posed by his traveling press corps.  As the reporters bore down and focused on what he would do differently and whether his remarks were intended to simply purchase political capital, his once firm facial expression degenerated into a smirk signifying his discomfort with the questions and an unwillingness to offer specifics.  A face becoming all too familiar.

The more I watched and listened, the more I was reminded of that other “shoot first and ask questions later” proponent.  The smirky man from Texas who didn’t let the absence of facts deter him.  The one who took us to Iraq, lost more than 4,000 of our soldiers and facilitated the annihilation of thousands of Iraqis.  The one that even Republicans shun.

The as yet unconfirmed creator of the video randomly condemning Islam for everything including the sinking of the Titanic and global warming, Sam Bacile, was aided and abetted by pastor Terry Jones, the same moron who previously graced the news in 2010 with his proclamation of “Burn A Koran Day.”

As the NY Times  reported later in the day…as an adviser to the campaign who worked in the George W. Bush administration said on Wednesday, Mr. Romney’s accusation that Mr. Obama had invited the attacks because he had weakened America looked like “he had forgotten the first rule in a crisis: don’t start talking before you understand what’s happening.”

So there you have it.  First, two imbeciles promote a vicious video falsely condemning all of Islam, and second you have a point-seeking presidential candidate condemning the President for recognizing and acknowledging the impact of that monstrous lie.  And smirking at the same time.


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