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A Fight Obama Wants Picked

President Obama pushed back hard against Dick Cheney's contention that his policies have made the country less safe during an interview that aired this morning, a move that provides further evidence that the White House relishes the idea of a back and forth with the former vice president.

"When it comes to Dick Cheney, he and I have a deep disagreement about what's required to keep the American people safe," Obama told CBS's Harry Smith. "And I think that disagreement has been amply aired and certainly he has the right to voice his opinions."

Obama's confidence -- simplify the above quote and you get "We won, you lost" -- is rooted in scads of polling data that shows an American public broadly supportive of him and roundly dismissive of Cheney.

The new NBC/Wall Street Journal poll paints this contrast starkly. Six in ten Americans view Obama in a favorable light while just 29 percent regarded him unfavorably. Cheney, on the other hand, was seen favorably by just 26 percent of the NBC/WSJ sample while 48 percent viewed him unfavorably.

As long as the Obama White House can cast the choice before the American people as one centered on personalities -- Obama vs. Cheney, Obama vs. Bush, Obama vs. Palin -- they will win.

If the choice becomes less about personalities and more about policies, then Obama is on far shakier ground. In a series of recent polls (including the NBC/WSJ survey), the president's personal favorabilty ratings are far higher than the approval numbers for his policies.

Health care is the looming test of Obama's ability to turn a policy battle into a personality fight -- leveraging his personal connection to the American people against the unpopular figureheads that represent the Republican party.

But, without a Cheney to play off of -- as Obama has on national security matters -- that task is made more difficult. Paging Newt Gingrich...

By Chris Cillizza  |  June 22, 2009; 2:10 PM ET
Categories:  White House  
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Comments

I was so glad to learn the truly heartwarming news that Mr. Cheney, perhaps the greatest vice-president in history, will be publishing his memoirs.
I sincerely hope he will not be too modest in explaining how he applied his towering wisdom to keeping us all safe from terrorist attacks, and I also hope his abiding kindness will not hold him back from explaining in depth just how traitorous democrats are.

Posted by: ronaldoroso | June 23, 2009 10:38 PM | Report abuse

Republicans are hoping that the Ensign story will be gone by 2012...lol.

The husband should be writing a book, about Ensign and his wife, and payment of U.S. tax dollars, to his wife, to be Ensign's mistress.

Posted by: opp88 | June 23, 2009 2:30 PM | Report abuse

2009 Republican Leaders continue to ill-advise President Barack Obama on domestic and foreign issue's.

John Boehner, Lindsey Graham, John McCain, Eric Cantor? Health Care, Energy, Unemployement, North Korea, Iraq, Afghanistan, Iran all none substance rhetoric.

Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., ignored questions about Ensign, who stepped down last week as chairman of the Republican Policy Committee.

Sen. Johnny Isakson, a Georgia Republican and vice chairman of the Ethics Committee, said he couldn't discuss any potential investigation.

Groups Want Ethics Probe of Ensign Affair

And still can't take care of their own home business.

Posted by: opp88 | June 23, 2009 2:29 PM | Report abuse

This is a high risk fight to pick. There is the likelihood of small polling gains, because Cheney is unpopular. There is, however, the possibility of cataclysmic polling disaster. If there is a major terrorist attack during Obama's term, he does not want people to conclude that it happened because of his policy. A high profile disagreement with Cheney, especially if it proves long-running, could contribute to such an impression. This is sure to apply whether or not there is any ACTUAL link between Obama's policy and any future terrorist attack. The mere fact of a long-running debate will create the impression of a major change in policy, even if the actual changes are relatively minor.

Posted by: qlangley | June 23, 2009 4:38 AM | Report abuse

"He eventually tried #3 but meanwhile he seemed to wring his hands in grief and and give singular daily attention to everything Iran said. That, to me, empowered the mullahs, who would have been better dealt with by stony silence and sanctions.
----------------------------
Do I remember this now as through a glass darkly? Perhaps. Anybody else remember this very differently?

Posted by: mark_in_austin"

Well, sort of. I was on a frigate sailing out of Yokosuka and got the Stars and Stripes version of what was happening, but I do remember that the real offensive work on our part was to seriously isolate Iran, to the point where they would have sued for peace, when emissaries of the other party got to him with the message, "Hold on until November, we can work with you."

Carter stayed out of a shooting war at great loss to his reputation, but what he bought with his suffering was the lives of GI's we would have thrown away using option # 1. Even the Delta Force fiasco was really against his better judgment, he actually knowing how to read a map and all that. Based on Bo Grits scenario for the rescue mission, I wouldn't let that man tell me how to get from the Serpentine wall in Cincinnati to the Public Landing. (They sit side by side.)

Posted by: ceflynline | June 22, 2009 9:19 PM | Report abuse

2009 Republican Leaders continue to ill-advise President Barack Obama on domestic and foreign issue's.

John Boehner, Lindsey Graham, John McCain, Eric Cantor? Health Care, Energy, Unemployement, North Korea, Iraq, Afghanistan, Iran all none substance rhetoric.

Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., ignored questions about Ensign, who stepped down last week as chairman of the Republican Policy Committee.

Sen. Johnny Isakson, a Georgia Republican and vice chairman of the Ethics Committee, said he couldn't discuss any potential investigation.

Groups Want Ethics Probe of Ensign Affair

And still can't take care of their own home business.


Posted by: opp88 | June 22, 2009 9:18 PM | Report abuse

Maybe obambi is still just too afraid of Fox news still to know to deal with Iran and Korea. Cowering in the basement at least gave the TelePrompTer a long needed break.

Posted by: king_of_zouk | June 22, 2009 8:26 PM | Report abuse

I wonder how meek the obambi folks will end up at the hands
Of Korea. Supplication and submission and may be fine for chrissuxcox but it is not proper for Americans or thier leaders.

Posted by: king_of_zouk | June 22, 2009 8:18 PM | Report abuse

At fault the McCain campaign for not sending her to frindly interviews like Rush and Sean Hannity to help het get her sea legs before being sent to the wolves who were waiting to devour her.

Posted by: vbhoomes

==

Yeah, wolves like Katie Couric. Are you nuts?

Palin couldn't even handle softballs like "what's your favorite color." I mean, not one newspaper?!? She needed to be prepped for that?

And how does a little warmup from Limbaugh make up for the sort of mush-brain that would call proximity to Russia a foreign policy insight?

You're just not being serious. I mean, really, Palin is a bimbo. She doesn't have any brains. Her shortcomings can't be made up for by any amount of "homework."

Posted by: chrisfox8 | June 22, 2009 7:21 PM | Report abuse

I think drivl hates Sarah because she is everything the moonbat is not: intelligent, pretty, succesful, moral, liked.

Chrissuxcox is afraid of women. A self-loathing anti American snobbish arrogant prick with delusions of intellect. How opposite of a human can you be?

No wonder only cats will have you. And only if you feed them.

Posted by: king_of_zouk | June 22, 2009 7:19 PM | Report abuse

Mark I think you are being little hard on Sarah, I don't believe she thought she would ever be picked, so she wasn't boning up and doing her homework. At fault the McCain campaign for not sending her to frindly interviews like Rush and Sean Hannity to help het get her sea legs before being sent to the wolves who were waiting to devour her.

Posted by: vbhoomes | June 22, 2009 7:13 PM | Report abuse

I see chrissuxcox and liberal moonbat drivl have sufficiently polluted this blog with thier inane idiocy.

Betwen the two of them they post 80 percent of the volume, 0 percent of the intellect and 90 percent of the garbage.

Don't you two "ladies" have some cats to feed?

Posted by: king_of_zouk | June 22, 2009 6:57 PM | Report abuse

If the argument and discussion is on its merits and facts, President Obama wins. The advancements in Nuclear Weapons in Iran and North Korea occurred on the watch of George Bush and Dick Cheney. Being a bit harsh the attacks on America happened on their watch as well.

Essentially the entire US Army has been deployed and fighting in Iraq for 6 years and the enhanced security of the US given the developments in Korea and Iran certainly blunt the argument of us being safer and it is doubtful that even Newt can win that argument.

The only Republican I see who could or would have his voice heard above the whining and shrill is Joe Scarbough.

If Palin, Rush and Cheney continue to babble the GOP will have a audience smaller than "my mother the car."

Posted by: oldgeek143 | June 22, 2009 6:23 PM | Report abuse

McC picked her because his handlers said that people like Bartol and JakeD were the base of the party, and they needed to "excite" the base. That Palin did, but for all the wrong reasons.

==

I don't think there are any right reasons. There is no conceivable way to appeal to the GOP base without alienating everyone else. The GOP base is essentially barbaric, if not savage, brutal when on the ascendant and nihilistic when on the wane. That's the essence of the predicament the GOP finds itself in.

McCain lurched from appealing to the moderate center to appealing to the base, and lost votes with each lurch. He couldn't win. Choosing Palin just made it clear how he was going to lose, which was "without dignity."

Posted by: chrisfox8 | June 22, 2009 6:09 PM | Report abuse

President Obama has signed the Family Smoking Prevention & Tobacco Control Act., giving the FDA authority to regulate tobacco. We will soon see an end to many deceptive marketing practices, possibly even a limit on the addiction-enhancing additives that make tobacco so compelling.

Without being addicted, why would anyone smoke?

This is one fight I'm glad to see we the people won. Sen. Gramm, please go straight to hell.

Posted by: chrisfox8 | June 22, 2009 5:53 PM | Report abuse

"I think in 2007, 25% of respondents to a poll said that the Rapture would occur within the year!

Posted by: DDAWD

==

Probably a very high correlation with approving of Cheney, and an ever higher correlation with being "pro-life.""

I think the point of the thing was to look at Bush's approval rating and see what other crazy categories had a similar percent membership. I people with mental disorders was on the list as well as people who believed the rapture would occur that year.

Posted by: DDAWD | June 22, 2009 5:48 PM | Report abuse

McC picked her because his handlers said that people like Bartol and JakeD were the base of the party, and they needed to "excite" the base. That Palin did, but for all the wrong reasons. The fact that McC chose her immediately disqualified him to be president. If he cared about anything more than winning the election, he could have chosen from hundreds of more qualified Repugs.

Posted by: windroad | June 22, 2009 5:34 PM | Report abuse

I could not imagine why McC picked her.

Posted by: mark_in_austin

==

He probably had some idea that she would siphon female voters away from Obama, that there was some groundswell of disgruntled Hillary supporters who would forget all about principle if they had a chance to vote for a woman.

With the right woman, it might have gotten McCain some votes. Palin wasn't the right woman.

It boggles the mind that even having heard her speak, even after she's made it as clear as can be that she's an empty vessel, some uh people still support her.

But I'm sticking with "inside a week." She would not be a passive president, she'd want to use nukes, she'd want to bring about some Christian apocalypse or something.

Posted by: chrisfox8 | June 22, 2009 5:30 PM | Report abuse

chrisfox8, Calvin Coolidge proved we could operate for years without a president. 1929 happened on the watch of the very bright and engaged earth scientist and engineer, Herbert Hoover. Coolidge left, unscathed.

The SHP presidency would be a shipwreck, but it would take longer than weeks. :-)

Bhoomes, I remember when I bought the PR that she was a reform governor [2007], but as soon as I heard her speak I knew that there was no "there" there. And it only got worse, interview after painful interview. And they were softball interviews! I could not imagine why McC picked her.

Posted by: mark_in_austin | June 22, 2009 5:25 PM | Report abuse

Not to mention that large numbers of the Alaskan populace are transplanted Okies and Texans, social conser.vative pro-life types, with entire towns consisting of single-wides. If anyone there ever reads books they're probably reading Tim LaHaye.

All you have to do to get votes from knucklewalkers like that is make Christian-sounding noises, which Sarah does all the time.

In addition to being dumb as a bag of hair, she's a really nasty piece of work, given to pettiness and punitive behavior.

If by some grotesque fluke she did end up as president, we would have major disaster of some kind inside a week.

Posted by: chrisfox8 | June 22, 2009 5:18 PM | Report abuse


Indeed, how hard can it be to get the votes of a bunch of lumberjacks and oilfield workers when you look like Barbie and hand out checks taken from Big Oil profits?

Posted by: mikeinmidland | June 22, 2009 5:13 PM | Report abuse

Sarah Palin, last I checked, has already run and been elected to a fairly high office. She's the governor of the largest state in the country, pal. And she's statistically the most popular governor in the country to boot.

Sounds like you MIGHT be the nitwit around here.

Posted by: Barno1 | June 22, 2009 4:56 PM | Report abuse

The largest state in the country? You are overly impressed by acreage, Bartol. A more important measure - obviously - is the population. In fact, Alaska is about as big as Memphis, TN. Do you really think that any mayor of any mid-size city is qualified to be president? Besides that, like some mid-east nations, Alaska is awash in oil, so much so that it doesn't even need an income tax. Plus there are no large cities, and a quite homogeneous populace. It is the easiest state in the nation to govern, bar none. Palin is pretty and gives good sound bite. If you think she is qualified to run this country, well, let's just say you are not a very impressive thinker.

Posted by: windroad | June 22, 2009 5:08 PM | Report abuse

She's the governor of the largest state in the country, pal.

==

A state with fewer people than a medium-sized city, "pal," and a stupid woman who thinks that being able to see Russia far away in the mists counts as foreign policy credentials.

She has the brains of a dead hearing-aid battery, she's probably illiterate, and she's a fundamentalist. Not exactly stellar qualifications to lead the nation.

But hey you take your cigar box to a Coinstar machine and you send her a big donation if you think she's the right stuff.

Posted by: chrisfox8 | June 22, 2009 5:03 PM | Report abuse

"She's the governor of the largest state in the country, pal."

Also 47th out of 50 in population. Most popular among who--polar bears and caribou?

Posted by: mikeinmidland | June 22, 2009 5:01 PM | Report abuse

IMO, Carter's big mistake was to wait too long and go in with too small of a force (at least should have had more backup equipment). I don't recall specifics of any negotiations, but Carter's style was always a little too cautious, so he was probably giving the Iranians too much deference.

Reagan did get the hostages out alive, but the whole-arms-for-hostages deal certainly wasn't our finest hour. So, what is the going rate for the US to sell it's principles? 440 Americans? 3000?

Posted by: mikeinmidland | June 22, 2009 4:57 PM | Report abuse

They're also the sort of nitwit who think Palin should run for high office ...

Posted by: chrisfox8 | June 22, 2009 4:40 PM | Report abuse

Sarah Palin, last I checked, has already run and been elected to a fairly high office. She's the governor of the largest state in the country, pal. And she's statistically the most popular governor in the country to boot.

Sounds like you MIGHT be the nitwit around here.

Posted by: Barno1 | June 22, 2009 4:56 PM | Report abuse

m_i_a: what I recall is that America's reaction under Reagan was notably petty, that we supported Saddam in a war that was more a personality clash between Khomenei and Saddam, arming one of the region's nastier dictators in an "enemy of my enemy" play. And while taking the hostages was indeed a provocation tantamount to an act of war, once they were returned, having not been mistreated in any notable way, to continue to seek revenge lowered our maturity level. We acted like a child who'd gotten his feelings hurt.

Probably the most unfortunate piece of the whole episode was the rescue attempt, the extraordinary bit of bad luck with the copters crashing into each other on takeoff. Though no fault of his, that reflected on Carter's leadership and to this day he's named by the righties as an ineffectual and weak president.

Not that the rescue could possibly have gone all that well anyway .. Iran's military is very strong, very well-trained, and any attack would have met with heavy casualties.

In the end, the hostages came home. A little late, of course, because Reagan wanted to get the credit.

Posted by: chrisfox8 | June 22, 2009 4:56 PM | Report abuse

ceflynline recalls JC and Iran and makes the point that JC said too much.

JC correctly [IMO] went to the Hague for a declaration that the Embassy seizure was an unlawful act. After that, however, it seems to me that he lost his footing.

The seizure of the Embassy was also an act of war. That is why we still do not have diplomatic relations with Iran.
But at the time, JC had unpleasant options.

1. Attack Iran.
2. Ignore Iran except to enlist broad support for sanctions.
3. Plan a special forces rescue while doing #2.
-----------------------------
He eventually tried #3 but meanwhile he seemed to wring his hands in grief and and give singular daily attention to everything Iran said. That, to me, empowered the mullahs, who would have been better dealt with by stony silence and sanctions.
----------------------------
Do I remember this now as through a glass darkly? Perhaps. Anybody else remember this very differently?

Posted by: mark_in_austin | June 22, 2009 4:42 PM | Report abuse

They're also the sort of nitwit who think Palin should run for high office ...

Posted by: chrisfox8 | June 22, 2009 4:40 PM | Report abuse

I think in 2007, 25% of respondents to a poll said that the Rapture would occur within the year!

Posted by: DDAWD

==

Probably a very high correlation with approving of Cheney, and an ever higher correlation with being "pro-life."

Posted by: chrisfox8 | June 22, 2009 4:36 PM | Report abuse

Obama's personality is going to be a factor in any debate, but the facts are more important. Unfortunately, the facts are complicated, and the American people are simple. So long as the Repugs can "convince" people by calling names ("socialist," "takeover," government-run," etc.) and the media doesn't have the space, time, or inclination to let the Democrats explain why those short, emotional, misleading slogans are wrong, the Repugs are going to be able to scare, confuse, and anger people who are afraid of change, ie conservatives.

Posted by: windroad | June 22, 2009 4:30 PM | Report abuse

"Uh, more than a quarter of Americans have no concept of current events or even technology; they think we're at war with the Soviet Union in spaceships with steering wheels, they think gas stations are pumping their product out of the ground, they think that cutting taxes increases revenue, they think that the Rapture is coming."

I think in 2007, 25% of respondents to a poll said that the Rapture would occur within the year!

Posted by: DDAWD | June 22, 2009 4:29 PM | Report abuse

What the rightwingers don't understand, are too simple to comprehend, is that what the mullahs in Iran want more than anything is for the US to take a strong stand for the dissenters -- so the mullahs can CHANGE THE SUBJECT and say that the strife is being caused by american meddling, instead of their own people. They can then crack down on them with impunity.

luckily, Obama is smarter than the neocons and knows that we can't allow ourselves to be played as fools by the Iranian government.

Posted by: drindl | June 22, 2009 4:29 PM | Report abuse

* On November 15, 2005 journalist Bob Woodward of The Washington Post revealed that "a government official with no axe to grind" leaked to him the identity of outed CIA officer Valerie Plame in mid-June 2003. According to an April 2006 Vanity Fair article (published March 14, 2006), former Washington Post executive editor Ben Bradlee said in an interview "that Armitage is the likely source is a fair assumption," though Bradlee later told the Post that he "[did] not recall making that precise statement" in the interview.[10]

* On March 2, 2006, bloggers discovered that "Richard Armitage" fit the spacing on a redacted court document, suggesting he was a source for the Plame leak.[11]

* On August 21, 2006, the Associated Press published a story that revealed Armitage met with Bob Woodward in mid-June 2003. The information came from official State Department calendars, provided to The Associated Press under the Freedom of Information Act.[12]

* In the September 4, 2006 issue of Newsweek magazine, in an article titled "The Man Who Said Too Much", journalist Michael Isikoff, quoting a "source directly familiar with the conversation who asked not to be identified because of legal sensitivities", reported that Armitage was the "primary" source for Robert Novak's piece outing Plame. Armitage allegedly mentioned Ms. Wilson's CIA role to Novak in a July 8, 2003 interview after learning about her status from a State Department memo which made no reference to her undercover status.[13] Isikoff also reported that Armitage had also told Bob Woodward of Plame's identity in June 2003, and that special counsel Patrick Fitzgerald investigated Armitage's role "aggressively", but did not charge Armitage with a crime because he "found no evidence that Armitage knew of Plame's covert CIA status when he talked to Novak and Woodward".

Posted by: Barno1 | June 22, 2009 4:21 PM | Report abuse

Valerie Plame was never outed. Not by Cheney, not by Scooter Libby, not by Robert Novak, not by anyone. This is not my opinion, this is the opinion of the court. Get your head out of your *ss and pay attention to the news, you might learn something.

==

"these are not maggots"
-- Ship's Doctor Smirnov "Potemkin" (Eisenstein, 1929)

Posted by: chrisfox8 | June 22, 2009 4:20 PM | Report abuse

Dick Cheney is the director of the treasonous conspiracy to out covert CIA agent Valerie Plame Wilson.

Outing a covert CIA agent is TREASON.

Dick Cheney deserves jail, or a firing squad, depending on the outcome of his coming trial.

...Its gonna take time but Cheney is going to prison for his crimes. The more he talks and trys to convince the public he's right the more evidence of his guilt he reveals, and thus increases pressure to try him.

Stand by.

Posted by: onestring | June 22, 2009 3:31 PM | Report abuse

Valerie Plame was never outed. Not by Cheney, not by Scooter Libby, not by Robert Novak, not by anyone. This is not my opinion, this is the opinion of the court. Get your head out of your *ss and pay attention to the news, you might learn something.

Posted by: Barno1 | June 22, 2009 4:11 PM | Report abuse

On the rest, I think you undervalue the potential risks of a formal US position backing the protestors & overvalue the impact of such actions.

Posted by: bsimon1

==

"that's a reflex action"
-- Ashe (Ian Holm) "Alien"

Democracy good, mullahs bad. VBH is trying to rewrite history again, recasting the Iranian Revolution as a battle between freedom and its enemies. If a lion were analyzing the revolution he would see it in terms of catching prey.

Fact of the matter is that Americans are a little preoccupied with freedom, and fail to see that it's not an unalloyed good thing and not everyone sees it as paramount as we do. Freedom is a good thing, make no mistake, but our view of it is unbalanced and we routinely advocate against our own self-interest by elevating freedom above all else.

It's literally incomprehensible to an American of the right that people might value anything else more than freedom, but some do. Yeah the Shah was pushing western ideas onto Iran, but freedom wasn't really one of them, he was a tyrant for God's sake, and he was overthrown for that reason and because Iranians didn't want the foreign values he was trying to make them accept. It's inconceivable to a right-wing American that women would *want*- the veil and the hijab. It's inconceivable that people would want their religion, intolerance and all, over the vote. It's inconceivable that people would choose stability over the ballot box.

Democracy in Iran will come when the foundation is laid. Bush thought he could bring freedom to Iraq by just having elections. And they had elections, and they voted on sectarian lines.

It's hard to read about the protesters in Iran, their amazing courage, their passion to have their voices heard, and not want to do something to help, to have our government do something on their behalf. But there are limits to power, and anyone who hasn't learned that yet is really not paying attention. Iran doesn't want foreign interference. They've had way too much.

Posted by: chrisfox8 | June 22, 2009 4:02 PM | Report abuse

"I am surprised you haven't heard about the Iranian revolution had lot to do with the Shah to aggressidvely pushing western values"

Yes, that was the Ayatollah's motivation, that was not the motivation for all the participants in the revolution.

On the rest, I think you undervalue the potential risks of a formal US position backing the protestors & overvalue the impact of such actions.

Posted by: bsimon1 | June 22, 2009 3:47 PM | Report abuse

" Now, if they should shut down the Straits of Hormuz, I imagine most countries would use their navy to opened it back up. Anytime our vital interests are threaten, you have to be ready to use the military. Posted by: vbhoomes"

Should Iran decide to close the Straights of Hormuz, the Straights will be closed and there aren't enough warships afloat to open them against Iran's wishes. It's easy to sit here in the West and mutter inanities like yours, but much harder to get the results you so cavalierly expect.

Since EVERY one of the men who were allowed to run in the election are fellow travelers in the 79 revolution, there is not a whole lot of difference in who will be running the country when the dust is cleared and the bodies laid to rest. Trying to decide whom to support in this case is quite unwise, all things considered.

Sitting there clucking his tongue is about the limit of the Options Barack has presently, and he is well qualified and well schooled in the vocabulary of clucks.

Like KOZ and JakeD, you should carefully consider the results of the actions you recommend, because, as you wish to remind us of the results of 1979, remember that Jimmie Carter undertook your suggested course of actions, IMMEDIATELY acknowledging the results of the revolution and trying to open a communications channel. His reward was to see our embassy seized in a deliberate act of war by Islamists trying to provoke U. S. military action.

Patience and Laconic rhetoric are the best course of action at present.

Posted by: ceflynline | June 22, 2009 3:39 PM | Report abuse

I have been getting emails from the WH starting last week with Father's Day message from Michelle. I guess they finally found my name on their donor list back in Feb 2007(I only wanted him to defeat HRC, now I regret it) Its obvious nobody in th Obama administration reads "The Fix" or they would know better. CC, I will expect more clout from you in the future.

Posted by: vbhoomes | June 22, 2009 3:37 PM | Report abuse

Cheney's been in the public eye much longer than Obama, yet a quarter of Americans can't express an opinion on him.

==

Uh, more than a quarter of Americans have no concept of current events or even technology; they think we're at war with the Soviet Union in spaceships with steering wheels, they think gas stations are pumping their product out of the ground, they think that cutting taxes increases revenue, they think that the Rapture is coming.

About 17% have IQs under 90, you know, about 3% under 80. It's not remarkable that a sizeable percentage doesn't have an opinion on Cheney, even when he was in office they probably didn't know his name.

Posted by: chrisfox8 | June 22, 2009 3:34 PM | Report abuse

Blow-up dolls. Man on dog sex. Kinky torture. Man, rightwingers are into weird stuff... and they just can't stop talking about it.

Posted by: drindl | June 22, 2009 3:33 PM | Report abuse

In other words, bhoomes, we should do provocative things to ensure that Iran shuts down the straits so we can bomb them.

It always comes back to that.

Posted by: drindl | June 22, 2009 3:32 PM | Report abuse

Dick Cheney is the director of the treasonous conspiracy to out covert CIA agent Valerie Plame Wilson.

Outing a covert CIA agent is TREASON.

Dick Cheney deserves jail, or a firing squad, depending on the outcome of his coming trial.

...Its gonna take time but Cheney is going to prison for his crimes. The more he talks and trys to convince the public he's right the more evidence of his guilt he reveals, and thus increases pressure to try him.

Stand by.

Posted by: onestring | June 22, 2009 3:31 PM | Report abuse

Every Republican with any foreign policy credibility at all (e.g., Lugar, Kissinger, etc.) thinks Obama's stance on Iran is correct.

Posted by: nodebris | June 22, 2009 3:30 PM | Report abuse

Interesting that those favorable/unfavorable ratings show that about 11% have a neutral or no opinion on Obama while a full 26% are neutral or have no opinion on Cheney. Cheney's been in the public eye much longer than Obama, yet a quarter of Americans can't express an opinion on him.

Hmmmm.

Posted by: dognabbit | June 22, 2009 3:29 PM | Report abuse

vbhoomes: you sound you have little sense of proportion or perspective here. You say we should disregard the consequences to Iranians and to the world and just push for democracy and freedom without consideration of circumstances, and if our push has bad consequences we should be ready to use force to get our way.

Sounds like the same sort of blustery, aggressive, ham-handed incompetent thinking that got us into the many messes we're in now.

Given Iran's ample history of foreign interference I think the worst thing we could do for Iranian democracy in the long term would be to legitimize the tyrrany, which is exactly what your prescription would do.

Posted by: chrisfox8 | June 22, 2009 3:26 PM | Report abuse

"We're so safe they're firing missiles at Hawaii. Posted by: king_of_zouk "
"Exactly, KOZ. Obama will be on even "shakier ground" if terrorists hit us hard and Cheney is proven right (again). Posted by: JakeD "

Since we know that North Korea is (apparently) planning some kind of long range missile test, and have prepared for it, on the aggregate one would assume that we are a bit safer, unlike Bush et cie knowing al Quaeda was up to something and then deliberately NOT preparing for it to get an excuse to invade Iraq, on the whole it would appear that we are safer doing it Obama's way, and not Cheney's.

Still, this bunch of B(ush)C(heney) echoes would have us do something about North Korea, what they don't say, immediately. As long as they are part of the security team at the Joint Security Area, and therefore part of the sacrificial detail that pays the initial price of the war they are demanding, I give them credit for bravery, even if it is foolhardy.

Of course if it is as alledged, that they are hiding in their mothers' basements, they are just Republican loudmouths, chickenhawks cackling at the sight of bugk to peck.

Cheney has chosen a not uncommon posture for a man under shadow of indictment and conviction, bluster and threaten. Goering was real good at it. Does Cheney have his cyanide capsule well hidden in case of Nuremberg Tribunals?

Posted by: ceflynline | June 22, 2009 3:23 PM | Report abuse

Thats a lot of questions BSIMON, I will try to respond to a few of them. !st, I am surprised you haven't heard about the Iranian revolution had lot to do with the Shah to aggressidvely pushing western values(all be it, not political freedom)This was mention often in weekly peridicals like Newsweek, Time, ect, and I remember reading about it at the time, plus watching the news. No, we should not military intervene in Iran, but we slould voice moral support for the demonstrators why also refusing to do business with an illegtimate regime. Now, if they should shut down the Straits of Hormuz, I imagine most countries would use their navy to opened it back up. Anytime our vital interests are threaten, you have to be ready to use the military.

Posted by: vbhoomes | June 22, 2009 3:21 PM | Report abuse

FairlingtonBlade:

Yup : )

Posted by: JakeD | June 22, 2009 3:20 PM | Report abuse

WHEN WILL POTUS REALIZE THAT THE GREATEST THREAT TO AMERICAN DEMOCRACY COMES FROM HIS SECURITY SERVICES WITHIN?

***

FED SECURITY AGENCIES FUND, OVERSEE NATIONWIDE VIGILANTE 'GESTAPO"

• Civilian volunteers fronted by federally-funded organizations such as Citizen Corps, Infragard and USA on Watch stalk, harass unjustly "targeted" persons and families with covertly implanted GPS tracking devices.

• Reports of torture, disabling injury from silent microwave radiation "directed energy weapons" widely deployed to local law enforcement under various federal programs from agencies that include the Justice Department.

• Feds, locals refuse to investigate victim complaints in nationwide cover-up of alleged atrocities -- an American social genocide/politicide.

WHEN WILL CONGRESS AND THE OBAMA ADMINISTRATION WAKE UP AND RESTORE THE RULE OF LAW IN AMERICA?

http://nowpublic.com/world/gestapo-usa-govt-funded-vigilante-network-terrorizes-america

OR (if link is corrupted / disabled):

http://NowPublic.com/scrivener

Posted by: scrivener50 | June 22, 2009 3:20 PM | Report abuse

I am sure President Obama doesn't care a hoot about dick cheney.
And the press shouldn't give Cheney the platform to strut out every 2 weeks to say something.
(((like hillary says: "the limo pulls up and darth vader emerges)).
He comes around every 2 weeks and yaks it up.
He should eat the lettuce......(shades of the lunch scene in "W").

Posted by: TheBabeNemo | June 22, 2009 3:17 PM | Report abuse

You still have hair, Jake?

:-)

BB

Posted by: FairlingtonBlade | June 22, 2009 3:13 PM | Report abuse

vbhoomes writes
"The revolution of 1979 had more to do with the Shah moving to fast to introduce Western Culture in Iran. The mullahs and religionist extremist team up with other Iranians sick of the Shahs abuse of civil rights."

Well, was it the disappearing people, dictatorial behavior and secret police - which you roll up into 'abuse of civil rights' or was it the introduction of western culture? Your claim is the first I've heard the latter argument; Iran was one of the more westernized countries in the middle east at the time; and its urban populations still are, though to a more limited degree, thanks to the 79 revolution. The revolution was conducted by both pro-western, pro-democracy members of the populace as well as the theocrats that eventually gained power.

Regarding Iran today: what risks should be be willing to take in getting more involved in the current protests? If there is more backlash against the protestors - and they are killed or imprisoned at a higher rate than currently, what do we do about it? If Iran cuts off oil shipments - or blocks the Straits of Hormuz - what do we do about it? If Iran gets more actively involved in the failed states that are their neighbors - Iraq & Afghanistan - what do we do about it? Are you ready to get into another war over this?

Posted by: bsimon1 | June 22, 2009 3:08 PM | Report abuse

Perhaps Obama sees that Iran has its own Bush now and will self-implode.

Posted by: JRM2 | June 22, 2009 3:08 PM | Report abuse

Cheney is worried about going to prison. Any honest accounting of the last eight years would lead perforce to prosecutions of dozens of Bush administration officials and it would only be squeamishness about the sanctity of high office that would let the top two guys skate. There is little doubt that our invasion of Iraq was the greatest crime in our history and the manufacture of grounds for invasion our greatest deception.

Dick Cheney is a gravely ill old man with only a few years left to live, and he should spend those few years in prison. He's "campaigning" to die in bed. He needs to be denied that. And the Wolfowitzes and Abrahms and Bremers all need to go to prison for the remainder of their worthless lives.

Posted by: chrisfox8 | June 22, 2009 3:06 PM | Report abuse

CC wrote:

"Health care is the looming test of Obama's ability to turn a policy battle into a personality fight... ."

On that front, the Prez has made two separate points.

1. Aggregate health costs are spiraling upward too fast.

2. Many Americans cannot afford health insurance.

The Ds in Congress only seem to respond to #2.

I think the Prez would better lend his personal appeal to #1. The "deal" with the drug industry on pricing is good. Paying off the loans for docs and nurses who in return commit time to public health and intake general practice is good. Campaigning for dietary reform in the public schools using the available USDA food program is good. Cheap, long range aggregate cost reducers.

The problem with the focus on #2 is that without monopsony savings it offers aggregate cost increases, on its own [according to CBO]. Monopsony savings occur when there is a powerful single buyer, like Medicare, or VA, or like Kaiser-Permanente, or like a mass buying pool for pharmaceuticals. So far, the only nod to monopsony in any bill is the call for "exchanges".

So chalk it up to my fear of deficits, but I think that raising the supply of front-end providers over the next few years is the fastest way to lower aggregate costs, followed by an actually leaner and healthier populace.

I am mindful of the plight of those who cannot afford health care and know that Congress will respond to it [probably poorly] no matter what the Prez does, so he should stake out his priority as #1 - the economy will founder if aggregate health care costs are not brought into line with other inflation factors.

Posted by: mark_in_austin | June 22, 2009 3:02 PM | Report abuse

Its the moral thing for this country to always support freedom and democracy without worrying upsetting the current thugs now running Iran.

==

It'd be a little easier to pull off if we could offer a better example of freedom and democracy in action ourselves. Our own example doesn't really inspire. Not when it can turn out a pair of sadists as chief executives, not when we're operating torture shops and invading other countries for no reason, not when our "free market" is such a shabby sh*thole.

Posted by: chrisfox8 | June 22, 2009 2:56 PM | Report abuse

Wow this thread is like flypaper for the GOP kooks.

They all want to see missiles flying, explosions and bombs and blood and death, and they think something's amiss if we're not killin' a whole buncha people every day.

YEE HAW

Ugh.

But openly hoping for disaster and calamity is just disgusting and it's a measure of how depraved the Repubicans, elected officials and voters alike, have become in defeat that they openly yearn for an attack on our nation. You guys are disgusting.

Obama needs to do a better job explaining the deficits and explaining his healtcare initiative. A good speech with a few graphs and pie charts would do it.

Posted by: chrisfox8 | June 22, 2009 2:52 PM | Report abuse

I think Chris is on shakier grounds. His Obama-idoltry is getting more weird every day. Dude -- get a blow up doll! I can't wait to see the public reaction to Obama and the dems exempting unions from paying for cadillac health care plans. Do you want to see approval ratings plummet?

Posted by: Cornell1984 | June 22, 2009 2:49 PM | Report abuse

It's funny how you wingers can't decide whether you want to bomb Iran or help the people.

Let's see -- bomb them, help them, bomb them, help them, hmm...

Posted by: drindl | June 22, 2009 2:49 PM | Report abuse

The revolution of 1979 had more to do with the Shah moving to fast to introduce Western Culture in Iran. The mullahs and religionist extremist team up with other Iranians sick of the Shahs abuse of civil rights. Little did they know until it was too late, they were losing even more freedom. Its the moral thing for this country to always support freedom and democracy without worrying upsetting the current thugs now running Iran.

Posted by: vbhoomes | June 22, 2009 2:47 PM | Report abuse

More on the actual SUBSTANCE of whether Obama is saying / doing enough re: Iran:

http://voices.washingtonpost.com/44/2009/06/22/obama_defends_iran_stance_--_q.html#comments

Posted by: JakeD | June 22, 2009 2:41 PM | Report abuse

I am, of course, NOT breathlessly praying for another attack on the U.S. I would say that my hair is on fire about it though ; )

Posted by: JakeD | June 22, 2009 2:34 PM | Report abuse

A brief history of the last Iranian revolution, for those who think we should get more involved (courtesy of Wikipedia):

"The first major demonstrations against the Shah began in January 1978. Between August and December 1978 strikes and demonstrations paralyzed the country. The shah left Iran for exile in mid-January 1979, and two weeks later Ayatollah Khomeini returned to Tehran to a greeting by several million Iranians. The royal regime collapsed shortly after on February 11 when guerrillas and rebel troops overwhelmed troops loyal to the Shah in armed street fighting."

Of course, that time we were on the losing end, having propped up the shah from 1953 to 1979. The important point is that revolution doesn't happen overnight. For the US to become prominently involved in supporting the demonstrators is high-risk, low reward. The Iranian people are the group that needs to follow through; for us to get involved could easily backfire & be detrimental to our interests there.

Posted by: bsimon1 | June 22, 2009 2:30 PM | Report abuse

For this month CC, his polls are dropping every week, let us see about running against Bush & Cheney by this fall. I feel less safe unless Obamas got the gonads to interdict that NK ship by the USS John McCain. If Obama blinks, the NK's are going to have a field day shooting missiles at us.

Posted by: vbhoomes | June 22, 2009 2:29 PM | Report abuse

There goes Jake again, like cheney, breathlessly praying for another attack on the US.

"Just wait!" he says. It's funny how aroused the wingers get talking about death and torture.

Posted by: drindl | June 22, 2009 2:28 PM | Report abuse

Too bad that Bush-Cheney are not running for office anymore ; )

Posted by: JakeD | June 22, 2009 2:22 PM | Report abuse

Obama flaunts his disagreement with Cheney more than he says anything about IRAN!!!

Posted by: JakeD | June 22, 2009 2:15 PM | Report abuse

Exactly, KOZ. Obama will be on even "shakier ground" if terrorists hit us hard and Cheney is proven right (again).

Posted by: JakeD | June 22, 2009 2:14 PM | Report abuse

We're so safe they're firing missiles at Hawaii.

Posted by: king_of_zouk | June 22, 2009 2:12 PM | Report abuse

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