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Barack Obama

Photos: President Obama's Motorcade passes through Genesee County

By Timothy Walton

Earlier today, the motorcade of President Barack Obama passed through Genesee County. These photos, submitted by Jordan Difilippo, show the motorcade passing through Genesee County on the Thruway. The photos were taken from Keiffer Road in Pembroke.

A helicopter was first to pass by, followed by New York State Troopers, Genesee County Sheriffs, several law enforcement motorcycles, then more State Troopers, Secret Service SUVs, the President's bus, more Secret Service SUVs, two other buses, more State Troopers, more motorcycles and then more State Troopers in the back. 

Photos: President Obama's Motorcade passes through Genesee County

By Timothy Walton

Earlier today, the motorcade of President Barack Obama passed through Genesee County. These photos, submitted by Jordan Difilippo, show the motorcade on the I-90 headed towards Buffalo. The photos were taken from Keiffer Rd in Pembroke. The exact route was not made clear, but it's rumored he took the I-490 to the I-90.

A helicopter was first to pass by, followed by New York State Troopers, Genesee County Sheriffs, several law enforcement motorcycles, then more State Troopers, Secret Service SUVs, the President's bus, Secret Service SUVs two other buses, more State Troopers, more motorcycles and then more State Troopers in the back. 

When it comes to keeping quotes in context, Collins should heed his own advice to Hochul

By Mark Brudz

Publisher's Note: A few weeks ago, Mark Brudz discussed the idea of regularly fact checking the candidates for the NY-27 Congressional District, much like a site like does on a national level. We believe this is the first such post with more to come in this campaign. We hope to encourage both candidates to run more honest and truthful campaigns than is usually seen in this highly partisan era.

If Mr. Collins is going to cry foul for Mrs. Hochul cherry-picking his words and not keeping them in full context, he should also hold himself to the same standard.

A Collins For Congress email sent Saturday afternoon used a statement by President Obama to attack Hochul.

Obama: "If you got a business, you didn't build it. Somebody else made that happen."

The email then went on with the subtitle: "Kathy Hochul's Presidential Candidate Slams Small Businesses."

Yes, the president did in fact say that, however, it was taken out of context in a excerpt from a campaign rally speech in Roanoke, Va., on Friday July 13. The Collins team included in their email a quote from the Washington Times article written by Walter Cooler.

"There are a lot of wealthy, successful Americans who agree with me -- because they want to give something back. They know they didn’t -- look, if you’ve been successful, you didn’t get there on your own. You didn’t get there on your own. I’m always struck by people who think, well, it must be because I was just so smart. There are a lot of smart people out there. It must be because I worked harder than everybody else. Let me tell you something -- there are a whole bunch of hardworking people out there."

The president's entire statement however, was not exactly a slam toward small business. In full context, the president more specifically expressed his belief in infrastructure and that successful business people rely on that infrastructure to grow their business. Additionally, President Obama stated that successful business people have achieved but also relied upon teachers and mentors to reach their goals.

All in all, there was much fodder for Mr. Collins with the statement in full context because it becomes more of philosophical discussion where Chris Collins actually can make some issue-based arguments.

It is no different than the flap earlier this month between Collins and Kathy Hochul. (See The Batavian; NY-27 race shaping up as a war over words.)  Hochul jumped on a Collins statement that he made in answer to a question during an interview for The Batavian. Clearly Mrs. Hochul took Mr. Collins out of context in order to obtain the upper hand when there was plenty in that interview that she could have taken issue with in full context.

What we need from both Collins and Hochul at this point is more statement of what they intend to do in Congress and less of the carefully choreographed talking points that are typical in today's politicians.

This is President Obama's statement in full context:

There are a lot of wealthy, successful Americans who agree with me -- because they want to give something back. They know they didn’t -- look, if you’ve been successful, you didn’t get there on your own. You didn’t get there on your own. I’m always struck by people who think, well, it must be because I was just so smart. There are a lot of smart people out there. It must be because I worked harder than everybody else. Let me tell you something -- there are a whole bunch of hardworking people out there. (Applause.)

If you were successful, somebody along the line gave you some help. There was a great teacher somewhere in your life. Somebody helped to create this unbelievable American system that we have that allowed you to thrive. Somebody invested in roads and bridges. If you’ve got a business -- you didn’t build that. Somebody else made that happen. The Internet didn’t get invented on its own. Government research created the Internet so that all the companies could make money off the Internet.

The point is, is that when we succeed, we succeed because of our individual initiative, but also because we do things together. There are some things, just like fighting fires; we don’t do on our own. I mean, imagine if everybody had their own fire service. That would be a hard way to organize fighting fires.”

It would be very appropriate for Chris Collins to take the president to task on the entire statement in context, likewise it would also be appropriate for him to question Mrs. Hochul's position on this statement, should she actually have made one. In Chris Collins email, there were several bullet points where he did in fact state his strengths and there was a legitamate question posed as to Mrs. Hochul's private sector business knowledge and experience.

I say let them both go at it from that point and may the best candidate win. But spare us the talking points and the he said/she said game this time around. If you want my vote, spell out your agenda and let me decide.

After the jump, the complete press release from the campaign of Chris Collins (click on the headline to read more):

Press release:

Obama: "If you got a business, you didn't build it. Somebody else made that happen."

Kathy Hochul's Presidential Candidate Slams Small Businesses

(Clarence, NY) - Yesterday, President Obama issued a stunning declaration regarding America’s small businesses owners, saying “If you’ve got a business -- you didn’t build that. Somebody else made that happen.” The remarks came during the President’s appearance at a campaign event in Roanoke, Virginia.

A link to the video can be seen here.

“This is the problem when you elect leaders who haven’t spent a day in the private sector or created a single job. Typical politicians like Barack Obama and Kathy Hochul don’t understand what it takes to create jobs, because they’ve spent their entire careers on the public payroll. They simply can’t comprehend the sacrifice, hard work and determination it takes to make a small business succeed,” said Collins.

“When was the last time Kathy Hochul or Barack Obama skipped a paycheck to make payroll? When was the last time they signed the front of a paycheck, not just the back? When was the last time they went without any pay to ensure that their small business succeeded? The answer is never. And this shows just how out of touch Barack Obama and Kathy Hochul are with our broken economy,” said Collins.

President Obama made his remarks at an event in Virginia Saturday afternoon, saying:

"There are a lot of wealthy, successful Americans who agree with me -- because they want to give something back. They know they didn’t -- look, if you’ve been successful, you didn’t get there on your own. You didn’t get there on your own. I’m always struck by people who think, well, it must be because I was just so smart. There are a lot of smart people out there. It must be because I worked harder than everybody else. Let me tell you something -- there are a whole bunch of hardworking people out there. " (Original Story)

As a small business owner, Collins has spent the last 36 years rescuing failed companies and making them successful. He has created over 500 jobs, and has mentored dozens of other successful small businesses as part of the University at Buffalo’s Center For Entrepreneurial Leadership Program.

“Our economy is broken for one simple reason - the people in office like Barack Obama and Kathy Hochul don’t have the first idea on how to fix the economy or create jobs because they only answer they’ve ever known is more government, more spending and higher taxes. The real world knows better and that’s why it’s time for a change in Washington,” said Collins.

Statement: Hochul responds to Obama's State of the Union speech

By Howard B. Owens

Press release:

“Tonight, President Obama reported on the state of the nation and laid out his plan to move our economy forward. While we’ve seen some progress, we need to continue to invest in America, ensuring Americans have good jobs to go to every day.

“The President’s proposal to revitalize our manufacturing community, invest in American infrastructure, and focus on job training at community colleges, like ECC, NCCC, GCC, and MCC, will keep America competitive and bring jobs back to the United States. It’s time we stop rewarding those companies that ship jobs overseas, and start rewarding companies that create jobs right here in America.

“I, however, would have liked to hear more about the President’s plan to cut the deficit and reduce our national debt. This is why I supported the Balanced Budget Amendment that requires Congress to balance its finances in the same way Western New York families do every day; and why I support efforts to streamline government, eliminate waste, and be more responsive to the needs of American businesses.

“Right now is the time for us to come together and work with one another to strengthen our nation and give Americans the chance to get back to work. We have the best ideas, the finest universities, and the hardest working people in the world – now we must create an economy that benefits the working families of America.

“Like the President said, every American just wants a fair shot at achieving the basic American promise; having a good paying job, buying a home, and raising a family. Our country is strongest when every American is contributing their fair share, but this can only happen when we’re all given that fair shot.”

Imagine, a President encouraging students to take personal responsibility gets blasted by the right

By Howard B. Owens

Who would ever have thunk that the idea of a President of the United States speaking to the nation's students on the first day of school could be controversial, but in the days leading up to the speech, Obama was accused of attempting to subvert school kids, turning them all into socialists, or worse, Democrats, and/or of using the speech to push a policy agenda through Soviet-style propaganda.

Who would have thunk that a simple message: Do your homework and stay in school could be seen as an inappropriate message from the President.

Imagine, a President proclaiming the virtues of personal responsibility being blasted by the opposition party.

“At the end of the day, we can have the most dedicated teachers, the most supportive parents, and the best schools in the world – and none of it will matter unless all of you fulfill your responsibilities,” Obama said in the speech.

“Unless you show up to those schools; pay attention to those teachers; listen to your parents, grandparents and other adults; and put in the hard work it takes to succeed. And that’s what I want to focus on today, the responsibility each of you has for your education,” Obama said.

The speech didn't stir much notice in Genesee County. Only two districts were in session today -- Elba and Pembroke. The other schools start tomorrow.

Elba Superintendent Joan Cole spoke with WBTA this morning and said use of the president's speech in the class room was optional for teachers.

"We haven't had any concerns expressed by any of our parents," Cole said

Watch the video above for yourself, in which Obama makes such supposedly un-American statements as:

And even when you’re struggling, even when you’re discouraged, and you feel like other people have given up on you – don’t ever give up on yourself. Because when you give up on yourself, you give up on your country.

The story of America isn’t about people who quit when things got tough. It’s about people who kept going, who tried harder, who loved their country too much to do anything less than their best.

Everybody wanted health care reform. So what happened?

By Howard B. Owens

One of my favorite blogs about rural issues, the Daily Yonder, carries this:

What promised to be a consensus-building search for solutions for American’s unsustainable fragmented health problems has turned into a debacle. Make no mistake about it, this is the fault of the President — no one else.  I say this as a supporter of President Obama. I’m a lifelong Democrat. I voted for Barack Obama with enthusiasm and I still have his bumper sticker on my car and pickup truck.


I can tell you that his first mistake was to discount the good advice he was getting from rural Senators on both sides of the aisle. Obama is an urban president and he’s been looking to the coasts for direction. He should be looking more to the Plains.

Read the whole thing.  It's a disappointing and disturbing assessment. If the president really screwed the pooch on health care, it will cast a pall on the next three years of his presidency. That's not good for the country, whether you like the president or not or are a localist or a nationalist or not.

NPR reports Obama apparently backing away from promise for rural summit

By Howard B. Owens

Early in his campaign for president, Barack Obama promised to call Republican and Democratic leaders together within his first 100 days for a rural summit.

NPR's Howard Berkes reports that the Obama White House seems to be backing away from that promise.

Inouye then cited rural initiatives in the stimulus bill and Obama's proposed budget. "His administration is taking affirmative steps to help strengthen rural America."

As to the pledge of a rural summit in the first 100 days, Inouye said, "[Obama] is working with his Cabinet, advisers and congressional allies to form a comprehensive rural agenda, and is planning on hosting a forum to discuss those ideas."

That's a commitment to do something, but not in the first 100 days, and not in the form of a summit in Iowa.

Yes, a lot has changed since Obama made his pledge, and it doesn't appear that Obama's administration is completely forgetting rural towns.  And I'm not even sure, frankly, what a rural summit would accomplish.

But it's good that reporters like Berkes are out there looking after rural America's interest.

Poll: Getting your thoughts on President Obama's inaugural address

By Philip Anselmo

Well, folks, we start the day with a new president this morning. Hopefully, you're invigorated by that, no matter what your political affiliation. There's no knowing where we'll go from here, but it feels like we've got a chance to climb back up and out of this ditch. President Barack Obama yesterday delivered his inaugural address from the steps of the Capitol. Much was said of how far we've come and how far we have yet to go.

This is the meaning of our liberty and our creed—why men and women and children of every race and every faith can join in celebration across this magnificent mall, and why a man whose father less than sixty years ago might not have been served at a local restaurant can now stand before you to take a most sacred oath.

Whatever else this president may turn out to be, I'm glad to find him a skilled speaker, who knows not only how to turn a phrase but also how to instill it with meaning.

Our challenges may be new. The instruments with which we meet them may be new. But those values upon which our success depends—hard work and honesty, courage and fair play, tolerance and curiosity, loyalty and patriotism—these things are old. These things are true. They have been the quiet force of progress throughout our history. What is demanded then is a return to these truths. What is required of us now is a new era of responsibility—a recognition, on the part of every American, that we have duties to ourselves, our nation, and the world, duties that we do not grudgingly accept but rather seize gladly, firm in the knowledge that there is nothing so satisfying to the spirit, so defining of our character, than giving our all to a difficult task.

This is the price and the promise of citizenship.

So today we opt for the obvious poll. We would like to hear your thoughts on the presidential inaugural address. Please, feel free to leave comments once you've voted. This is worth a discussion. We have left in the "Didn't listen to it" option. However, we will also include this link to the complete text of the inaugural address in the hopes that maybe you will read it and then vote.

What did you think of President Obama's inaugural speech?
( polls)

Once you've finished voting, if you're looking for a laugh nd yet further proof that we live in an age of farce, please check out the article in the Financial Times about China's attempt at real-time censorship of the address. It is mentioned in that article that China's central Internet news hub, in its translation of the inaugural address, did not include the phrase: ”To those who cling to power through corruption and deceit and the silencing of dissent, know that you are on the wrong side of history, but that we will extend a hand if you are willing to unclench your fist.” Coincidentally, their fists aren't the only the only parts of their body that need to be unclenched.

Video: Thoughts on the inauguration

By Philip Anselmo

We had a great time this morning and afternoon at T.F. Brown's, where The Batavian crew hosted an inauguration party. We were happy to see some new faces come down, as well as some friends we;ve known since we first arrived here in Batavia. We would like to extend a big thanks to all who came out, especially those of you who were willing to stand in front of the camera and share your thoughts. Speaking of those folks...

Congressman Lee congratulates President Obama

By Philip Anselmo

From the Office of U.S. Rep. Chris Lee (NY - 26):

Congressman Chris Lee (NY-26) today commented on Barack Obama’s inauguration as the 44th President of the United States:

“It is inspiring to see Americans from all walks of life come together to mark this historic moment for our country. Today is certainly much more than another orderly transfer of power.

“President Obama’s inaugural address set the right tone for the work that lies ahead in repairing our economy and restoring the public’s trust in their government. I am hopeful that today marks the beginning of an era of progress grounded in a commitment to bipartisan solutions.

“I know my constituents join me in congratulating our new president, vice president, and their families.”

Inauguration party Tuesday at TF Brown's sponsored by The Batavian

By Howard B. Owens

Join The Batavian and your friends and neighbors Tuesday for the inauguration of Barack Obama as president of the United States.

Whether you're a Republican, Democrat or independent, you're surely mindful of historic event we'll witness Tuesday as Obama takes the oath of office and delivers his First Inaugural Address.

The Batavian will supply some appetizers/finger foods.  Guests will be responsible for the purchase of any lunches or beverages.

The Inauguration Party starts at 11:30 and will run until shortly after Obama completes his speech.  Obama takes the oath at noon.

We look forward to seeing you Tuesday at TF Brown's, 214 East Main Street.

Health Care Meeting: Wednesday Night!

By Daniel Jones

From December 15th-30th, communities across the country will be holding meetings to discuss local ideas for improving health care policy.  December 17th at 7PM at the Batavia City Centre (in the community meeting room) Genesee County will get its chance to be part of the effort.  Those who attend will be part of a group that will come up with a set of reccomendations which will be turned into a position paper.  That position paper, like the others being submitted nation-wide, will be reviewed by the Obama-Biden transition team and will help shape national health care policy in the next administration.

The event is free and all in the community are welcome to attend and share their ideas, stories and thoughts.  This is our chance to make a difference on a pressing national issue.

Check out or contact me at for more information.

Obama's Plan for Rural America, and our food supply

By Howard B. Owens

The blog Ethicurean, a site dedicated to healthy, locally produced food, put together a post about President-Elect Barack Obama's farm and food policies as detailed during his campaign.

Since Genesee County is a rural farming community, it is probably useful to look at some of the key issues raised by Obama in his speeches and policy statements.

Here's the key point of the post:

So what might we expect from an Obama administration when it comes to food policy? Maybe quite a bit. In his plan for rural America, he lays out a number of policy positions that are a departure from the status quo. Obama:

  • Supports subsidies as a safety net, but calls for a $250,000 payment limitation and closing of loopholes, so that the program supports family farmers, not corporate agribusiness.
  • Supports regulation of CAFOs (factory livestock operations).
  • Wants to enforce anti-trust laws that so that smaller farmers can compete against large-scale meatpackers.
  • Wants to cap the size of agricultural businesses that can receive government funds for environmental cleanup so that taxpayers don’t subsidize cleanup for large, polluting corporations.
  • Supports Country of Origin Labeling (COOL) for meat, a critical issue as we learn how widespread melamine contamination of animal feed is in countries like China.
  • Wants to increase support for organic agriculture and local food systems by helping farmers with organic certification/compliance costs.
  • Wants to provide incentives to encourage and support new farmers, land conservation, renewable energy on the farm, and microenterprise for farmers and other rural Americans.
  • Calls for greater food safety surveillance and communications.
  • Plans to encourage local foods in schools.
  • Supports providing farmers with incentives that will prevent agricultural runoff.

From his campaign web site, here is Obama's Plan for Rural America.

Liberalism has changed to Socialism

By Guy Gabbey Jr


"From each, according  to his ability; to each, according to his need"

"I think  when you spread the wealth around, it's good for everybody."

One  of these quotes I heard this morning, and immediatly thought of  the  other. The problem with them is that its straight from the  Karl Marx book of  Socialism.

So many times in this campaign  for president, Obama has said things much to  this effect and has  not been called out on it in any main stream media outlet.  Handing  the reins of this country to him would send America into a tailspin  of  which we may not be able to recover from.

Stepping  away from the Marxist  view of "spreading the wealth," lets look  at the tax plan for a minute.

In  his plan, only companies making $250,000 or more would  see a tax  rate. That seems great for you and me right? We make up the 95%  who  wont see a tax increase. WRONG!

Big  buisness is something that we all use everyday. Whether it be at  the gas station, or at Wal-Mart, Wendy's. When Obama's new tax  plan goes into  affect, these companies will immediatly raise their  prices. CORPORATIONS DO NOT  PAY TAXES! WE, WE PAY THEIR TAXES!  Coporations will not take a hit on their  profits. They need to  pay everyone down the line as well. So much for not seeing  an  increase.

Small business wont escape  the taxes either. First of all,  Obama's number of $250,000 is  too vague. Does that mean gross or net business  income. Does that  include the inventory that any store needs to carry?

That  not withstanding. Small companies have to buy from big companies.  Therefore, they'll be paying more. I like going to my local gun  store. Its  small, and costs a little more than the big box store,  but the tips and advice I  get make up the difference. When these  companies have to pay more for their  product, how are they going  to make up for it?

They can raise their prices. However,  that will make more people go to the  bigger stores, and forgo  the advice aspect for the deal. They could lay off  employees.  However, that will add to the unemployment numbers, and drive up  number of people having to rely more on the government.

How  about that. Even when Obama is trying not to show is socialism,  it comes  out in the end. The more people that have to rely on  the government, the more  power the government has over the people.

We've already given $700 billion to Wall St. Lets not let  socialism take over  anymore.

I'm Guy, a lifelong conservitive,  and I'll be voting against Socialism


Palin growls at Obama for ties to former radical

By Howard B. Owens

How desperate is the McCain campaign getting? They're getting silly with attacks on Obama because of tenuous ties to a former 1960s radical once accused of being involved in anti-Vietnam bomb attacks.

Palin made the chargers today.

(CNN) -- Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin on Saturday slammed Sen. Barack Obama's political relationship with a former anti-war radical, accusing him of associating "with terrorists who targeted their own country."

Palin's attack delivered on the McCain campaign's announcement that it would step up attacks on the Democratic presidential candidate with just a month left before the November general election.

"This is not a man who sees America as you and I do: as the greatest force for good in the world," Palin said at a fundraising event in Colorado, according to a statement released by the McCain-Palin campaign. "This is someone who sees American as imperfect enough to pal around with terrorists who targeted their own country."

The Washington Post fact checked these chargers when Hillary Clinton raised them during the primary (so not only is McCain/Palin sliming, they're sliming with old news).

The only hard facts that have come out so far are the $200 contribution by Ayers to the Obama re-election fund, and their joint membership of the eight-person Woods Fund Board. Ayers did not respond to e-mails and telephone calls requesting clarification of the relationship. Obama spokesman Bill Burton noted in a statement that Ayers was a professor of education at the University of Illinois and a former aide to Mayor Richard M. Daley, and continued:

Senator Obama strongly condemns the violent actions of the Weathermen group, as he does all acts of violence. But he was an eight-year-old child when Ayers and the Weathermen were active, and any attempt to connect Obama with events of almost forty years ago is ridiculous.


But the Obama-Ayers link is a tenuous one. As Newsday pointed out,

Obama's ties to Ayers are no more meaningful than McCain's ties to Ho Chi Minh. They are the kind of ties that two people who share some overlap in political belief and live in the same neighborhood, caring about the same local issues, are likely to form. The only thing you can fault Obama for is planting the early stages of is political career in Chicago.

The politics of attack and destruction are bad for America. Clearly, Palin was hired to be the attack dog. That decision does not reflect well on McCain.

Barack Obama: Kinder, gentler neoconservative

By Howard B. Owens

This is not a post telling you: Don't vote for Barack Obama. It's simply a warning that if you're one of those people with a bumper sticker that turns the "O" in Obama into a peace sign, you're mistaken to think Obama is the Peace candidate.

First, it's important to remember that while the Obama campaign has made much of his opposition to the Iraq invasion, the historical record suggests that Obama's position wasn't necessarily clear cut. Consider this post from Rep. Jim McGovern.

Talking about how he would have voted on the '02 authorization, Mr. Russert flashed a quote from then-State Senator Obama on the screen that said: "I'm not privy to Senate intelligence reports. What would I have done? I don't know." In response, Senator Obama said it was probably the wrong time for him to speak out on the war.

I simply disagree. I don't believe there has ever been a wrong time to oppose this war.

Mr. Russert also reminded Senator Obama about this comment he made in July of 2004: "There's not much of a difference between my position on Iraq and George Bush's position at this stage."

Obama's has never said he opposed over throwing Saddam Hussein (taking out Saddam was also an unrealized goal of the Clinton administration).  He's only said it was "the wrong war at the wrong time," which isn't a ringing endorsement for peace.

He isn't necessarily opposed to pre-emptive war, as Robert Kagan, writing for Washington Post, makes clear.

Obama never once says that military force should be used only as a last resort. Rather, he insists that "no president should ever hesitate to use force -- unilaterally if necessary," not only "to protect ourselves . . . when we are attacked," but also to protect "our vital interests" when they are "imminently threatened." That's known as preemptive military action. It won't reassure those around the world who worry about letting an American president decide what a "vital interest" is and when it is "imminently threatened."

In the most dangerous post-Iraq conflict the U.S. faces, Obama has made it clear that he's ready to go to war with Iran.  This from The Nation:

But Obama has refused to rule out going to war against Iran, in the event that Tehran moves forward with its nuclear program in defiance of international opposition. Even if it was a grudging nod to political expediency, his June 4 speech to the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) impressed hawkish Jewish leaders. "I will do everything in my power to prevent Iran from obtaining a nuclear weapon. Everything in my power... everything," he said, adding, "I will always keep the threat of military action on the table."

Obama has also said that if the U.S. had reliable, actionable intelligence on the location of Bin Laden, who is likely in Pakistan, he would launch a unilateral attack on the location, with or without Pakistan's permission -- a far bolder policy than even the Bush administration has been willing to pursue.

As for nation building, while Obama says he opposes "imposing" democracy on other nations, he's also said the U.S. has an obligation to spread freedom.

More from Kagan:

There is more to building democracy than "deposing a dictator and setting up a ballot box." We must build societies with "a strong legislature, an independent judiciary, the rule of law, a vibrant civil society, a free press, and an honest police force." We must build up "the capacity of the world's weakest states" and provide them "what they need to reduce poverty, build healthy and educated communities, develop markets, . . . generate wealth . . . fight terrorism . . . halt the proliferation of deadly weapons" and fight disease. Obama proposes to double annual expenditures on these efforts, to $50 billion, by 2012.

Writing for Reason, David Weigel notes that Obama's intervention tendancies are far reaching, writing, "He has called for, or retroactively endorsed, interventions in Zimbabwe, Pakistan, and Sudan."

The senator believes in humanitarian intervention so deeply that he's already blundered by interfering in the affairs of troubled states. Two years ago, on his first senatorial visit to Kenya, his father's birthplace, Obama delivered a speech at the University of Nairobi that blistered the country's rulers for corruption. Graft, Obama said, is "a crisis that's robbing an honest people of opportunities they have fought for." The speech emboldened the country's opposition, which nearly won the 2007 elections. When reformers didn't win and rioting voters cried theft, Obama begged for calm. "Despite irregularities in the vote tabulation," he said, now is not the time to throw that strong democracy away."

Kagan also notes the Obama wants to do more than redeploy troops from Iraq to other hot spots around the world. He wants to increase the size of the military.

With the United States $11 trillion in debt, Obama wants to increase the Pentagon's budget.  Again, from The Nation:

Obama's foreign policy team uniformly dismisses the idea that the Pentagon's bloated budget can be cut, even though, not counting spending on Iraq and Afghanistan, it has nearly doubled since 2000 and is roughly equal to the military spending of all other countries combined. "Are we or are we not relying on the Pentagon for an increased role? Of course we are," says McDonough. "I don't see how, given the challenges we have on the horizon, we can talk about reducing Pentagon spending."

Democrats have spent six years blasting neoconservatives, but I'm having a hard time seeing how Obama is anything but a neocon.  He believes strongly in U.S. intervention abroad, in spreading democracy, in preventive attacks on rogue nations and in building up the U.S. military. While Obama preaches diplomacy, completely absent from his foreign policy pronouncements are any mention of the U.N. Security Council, and he seems quite willing to go unilateral, if in his judgment it's necessary.

How does any thing Obama say about America's role in the world differ from the positions of much derided neocons like Paul Wolfowitz, Richard Perle, William Kristol, Norman Podhoretz?

But as I said at the start of the post, I'm not telling you to vote against Barack Obama.  John McCain is an imperialist hawk, as well. I'm just saying, don't be fooled into thinking Barack Obama is the peace candidate.

Letter to the editor flat out wrong about Senator Obama

By Philip Anselmo

When an editor or a reporter at the Daily News—or any newspaper for that matter—makes a mistake, the error is routinely corrected in a subsequent edition of the paper. That's how it works. That same striving for accuracy should equally apply to Letters to the Editor and any other content of the so-called "Opinion" page. If the newspaper prints something it knows to be false or misleading in a letter to the editor—something it should know in advance of the printing—the letter ought to be appended with a note saying so.

Such was not the case with a letter to the editor today that amounts to little more than hatemongering. In that letter, Frank M. VanApeldorn writes:

National chastening is taking place in America today for long-standing immoralities and because of the removal of almighty God's laws from the land. ... Today, Senator Obama, a born Muslim, may be God's instrument to bring this professed Christian nation to its just rewards for turning their back on God.

Senator Obama's membership of a church in Chicago, whose pastor is known to visit with Muslims in foreign countries that are haters of America, should open our eyes. Osama and Obama sound a lot alike to me. ... I believe our Lord Jesus Christ is warning us to wake up from our sleep before we are taken over by Islam.

Aside from the preposterous rhetoric of such lines as "Osama and Obama sound a lot alike to me," the author of this letter is fundamentally misinformed. Senator Barack Obama is not a Muslim. He has never been a Muslim. This issue has been covered extensively by media across the nation. You can read some of those articles as well as Senator Obama's statements on the issue at his campaign Web site.

The Daily News has made a serious mistake here by printing this letter without amending it with a clarification to situate this individual's commentary in the context of real events. Instead, the Daily News displays a hands-off policy that amounts to no less than the propagation of lies and misinformation.

Hate and misstate sound alot alike to me.

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