Obama, Clinton, Kerry inaction in Syria caused by Russian blackmail

Syria is a place where the Islamic State thrives but where the USA has been unwilling to go. There are even rumblings, purportedly from Foreign Service officers, that the USA ought to change strategies in Syria, including ousting Assad as ruler of Syria along with taking the fight to the Islamic State. VP Biden has said that we don’t dare do that because no one has a crystal ball to show how such a story would end. It could end quite badly, with a failed state (chaos) in a strategic location.  Nonetheless, with the Islamic State taking credit for violence in Bangladesh overnight, and an airport bombing in Istanbul just a couple of days ago, and a mass shooting in an Orlando nightclub, on top of still-seared-in-our-memory attacks in Brussels, San Bernadino, and Paris, the USA’s actions against the Islamic State confined to just Iraqi territory, do not appear to be bringing an end to the terror.  Russia has taken some actions against terrorists on Syrian soil, but Russia is also interested in protecting Assad, a useful pawn, just as Iran has, for many decades, been a useful proxy for Russia.

I ran across a video clip from MSNBC’s Morning Joe on Friday, July 1, 2016 wherein the pundits just acted bewildered over the Obama administration’s ineptitude in countering the Islamic State.  The plan appears to be to leave all Syrian-territory campaigns against the Islamic State in the hands of the Assad government (which is allied with and militarily aided by Russia and Iran).  The pundits on Morning Joe, in their bewilderment, surmise that the Obama administration is too risk-averse to do what needs to be done in Syria: Extinguish the Islamic Stand and depose Assad.

Click the following to open up the Morning Joe segment referenced above:


I’m not at all bewildered.  Russia has all the leverage.  They are blackmailing the Obama administration.  How do I deduce that?  I think if I just connect a couple of dots for you, I think you’ll be able to connect them with other dots so that you can see a bigger picture emerging.

When Syria crossed the red line of using chemical weapons, instead of punishing Assad, Secretary of State John Kerry negotiated with the Assad regime so that chemical weapons would be dismantled.  This is a clear signal that the USA did not envision anyone leading an independent Syria other than Assad.  So, despite the various factions jockeying for power in Syria, and despite the fact that we may feel sympathetic to one or more of the factions fighting to topple Assad, Kerry’s agreement reached with Assad underlines that the Obama administration will not seek regime change in Syria.  I am not surprised by this.  As for the reason why I am not surprised at this stance, it flows from a postmodern ideology (which I don’t agree with).  I don’t plan on delving into the ideology in this blog post.  It is sufficient to merely connect the dots to show Obama had no intention of toppling Assad or mobilizing our military in Syria.

But I will go further to say that not only does Obama have no intention of intervening in Syria, the Russians will make sure that Obama does not change his mind.

Remember that Clinton email server controversy?  Oh, yeah!  It’s all over the news!  The FBI has been investigating it!  Right?  But oftentimes, when key witnesses have been deposed, not only do the witnesses lawyer up as they head into these depositions, but the State Department and Justice Department have also, from time to time, sent their own lawyers.  Why?  To limit the scope of what questions the FBI asks.  So, connect this dot.  What does it mean when the State Department and the Justice Department (of which the FBI is a part!!!) see to it that the FBI inquiries are very narrow?  It’s one thing when questions go unanswered (and some witnesses have pled the 5th Amendment).  We, the public, are only permitted transcripts, so even our window into whatever little answers there are is a very narrow window.  It’s entirely another thing when question after question that the FBI would like to ask is considered out-of-bounds.  I say that the dots connected here are that the integrity of both the State Department and the Justice Department could be compromised if all questions could be asked and were answered.  If all facts came to light, it would devastate more than just Hillary Clinton.  State and Justice have skin in the game.

Hillary Clinton, for her part, wanted to be sure that any personal communications were to be safeguarded on the private server.  Never mind the classified top secret government information, for concern over leakage of that would be secondary to leakage over Clinton’s personal communications.

The mainstream media, for the most part, have been downplaying the Clinton’s private email server as a mistake.  The server could have been successfully hacked, but we don’t know that, so says the MSM.  So as long as we don’t know if the server was hacked, this mistake is forgivable and no harm has been done?

What if, on the other hand, the server was successfully hacked and Russia possesses ALL of the information that was on it, not just the top secret classified stuff, which might include troubling info about State and Justice, but Hillary’s personal stuff, too.  Since the Reagan administration, the Bush family, the Clinton family, and the Obama family have safeguarded each other’s White House secrets.  Though Republican voters had very little interest in a Jeb Bush POTUS candidacy, I think the Obamas and the Clintons were very much depending on a Bush nomination.  If Bush had been the presumptive nominee, his interest would have probably been confined to winning, not exposing Clinton or Obama, for they could expose two former Bush presidents.  If Russia possessed ALL of that information, Bush would probably suppress as much of the information as he could.  The mood of the electorate, though, has been for outsiders to oust the insiders.  If we, the voters, could trade places with an “outsider” candidate, like Trump, and we, as the outsider candidate, became dimly aware that the Russians possessed ALL of that information, would we want it?  Somewhere in that information that Russia would have is something that is “Kryptonite” to not only Hillary, but to the Justice Department, and to the State Department, for that’s what we can infer by all the lawyering up and the narrow limits placed upon the FBI inquiries.  So, if we as the outsider candidate, were aware that records exist of scandal and corruption, would we, unlike a Jeb Bush, have an appetite to expose it?  Such a scenario, then, would strengthen the hand of the Russians, for Clinton and Obama are in a more precarious situation than if they were running against Jeb.

The only way to wipe out the Islamic State is to get Russia and Iran to do it, for the Assad regime is not powerful enough to repel the Islamic State, nor will Russia allow anyone to interfere with Assad or Iran.  They have blackmailed the Obama administration with all that they know about our government’s corruption and scandals at the highest levels.  Obama cannot change course on Syria even if he wanted to (but he doesn’t).

How bad could the corruption, the scandals, possibly be?  For now, I leave those dots for you, the readers, to connect.  You’ve been hearing bits and pieces of things, haven’t you?

By the way, Saudi Arabia:  For all the influence that you think you bought by donating to the Clinton Global Initiative, you are not as protected from Iran as you think you are.  Russia poses an existential threat to Clintonian power, so that means Iran has more leverage than you.


Partial listing of 2011 Lincoln Day Dinners in Ohio counties

I’ve noticed that recent traffic to my website came as a result of searches for the term “Lincoln Day Dinner.” The problem is that the search yields a list from last year. I consulted the website of the Ohio Republican Party to cull what information I could find about Lincoln Day Dinners being held this year. The ones I found listings for show only dates in February and March, thus, for April and beyond, I guess your best bet is to search this county-by-county directory of Republican Party chairs (sometimes showing links to the county’s GOP website) so that you can contact your county’s party chair directly. Even if your county’s Lincoln Day Dinner appears on the February-March calendar, you should contact county party leaders anyway because dates, places, and times for these events can (and sometimes do) change, even as the listed date fast approaches. In addition, many of the listings have incomplete information, so, by all means, contact the county chair or someone in the county party leadership that will keep you informed about these events.

Holmes County Lincoln Day Dinner

  • Monday 2/14/2011 6 pm
  • Carlisle Village Inn, 4949 Walnut St, Walnut Creek
  • Contact:  Rob Hovis

Knox County Lincoln Day Dinner

  • Saturday 2/19/2011 5:30 pm reception and 6:30 pm dinner
  • Dan Emmett Conference Center, 160 Howard St, Mt. Vernon
  • Contact:  Chip McConville
  • Guest Speaker:  Ohio Auditor Dave Yost

Hancock County Lincoln Day Dinner

  • Monday 2/21/2011 5:30 pm
  • Senior Center, 339 E. Melrose Ave, Findlay
  • Contact:  Mark Miller

Hamilton County Lincoln-Reagan Day Dinner

  • Wednesday 2/23/2011 5 pm
  • Duke Energy Center, 525 Elm St, Cincinnati
  • Contact:  Maggie Nuellmer
  • Guest Speaker:  Indiana Governor Mitch Daniels

Clinton County Lincoln Day Dinner

  • Monday 2/28/2011 6:30 pm
  • Expo Center at the Fairgrounds, Wilmington
  • Contact:  Geoff Phillips
  • Guest Speaker:  Ohio Senate President Tom Niehaus

Muskingum County Lincoln Day Dinner

  • Monday 2/28/2011 6 pm reception and 7 pm dinner
  • Prophets Park Amrou Grotto, 2560 Old River Rd, Zanesville
  • Contact:  Pat Hennessey

Ashtabula County Lincoln Day Dinner

  • Saturday 3/5/2011 5 pm reception and 6 pm dinner
  • Dorset Community Center, 2681 State Route 193, Dorset
  • Contact:  Charlie Frye
  • Guest Speaker: State Rep. Casey Kozlowski

Athens County Lincoln Day Dinner

  • Thursday 3/10/2011 5:30 pm reception and 6:30 pm dinner
  • American Legion, 520 W. Union St, Athens
  • Contact:  Pete Couladis
  • Guest Speaker:  Ohio Auditor Dave Yost

Morrow County Lincoln Day Dinner

  • Saturday 3/12/2011 6 pm reception and 6:30 pm dinner
  • Trinity United Methodist Church, Mt. Gilead
  • Cost:  $15 per person
  • Contact:  Tom Wiston (419) 560-1595
  • Guest Speaker:  Ohio Secretary of State Jon Husted

Washington County Lincoln Day Dinner

  • Friday 3/18/2011 5:30 pm reception and 6:30 pm dinner
  • Shrine Building, 249 Pennsylvania Ave, Marietta
  • Contact:  Marilyn Ashcraft
  • Guest Speaker:  U.S. Rep. Bill Johnson

Monroe County Lincoln Day Dinner

  • Saturday 3/19/2011 6:30 pm
  • Midway Community & Senior Citizens Center, 37358 State Route 800, Sardis
  • Contact:  Roger Claus

Lorain County Lincoln Day Dinner

  • Saturday 3/26/2011
  • DeLuca’s Place In the Park, 6075 Middle Ridge Rd, Lorain
  • Contact:  Helen Hurst
  • Guest Speaker:  Ohio House Speaker Bill Batchelder

Scioto County Lincoln Day Dinner

  • Tuesday 3/29/2011 6 pm
  • Friends Center, 1202 18th St, Portsmouth
  • Contact:: Kay Reynolds

Comrades, welcome to the U.S.S.S.A.

The Socialist Revolution is complete, comrades!  Comrades Tiberi, Schmidt, and Sutton proved to the rebellion that they are turncoats, and the glorious United Soviet Socialist States of America has been christened by our Politburo.  The delegation to the Politburo from the Soviet Socialist State of Ohio proudly announces that Comrades Tiberi, Schmidt, and Sutton joined with Comrades Boehner, Pryce, Hobson, Regula, Space, Wilson, Ryan, Voinovich, and Brown to secure the success of The Socialist Revolution!  Let us not forget those who were foolhardy enough to resist The Socialist Revolution.  LaTourette, Chabot, Turner, Latta, Jordan, Kaptur, and Kucinich: Let these names be engraved in infamy!

Again, supporting the Soviet Socialist State of Ohio in our Politburo:

Voinovich (R)

Brown (D)

Boehner (R)

Pryce (R)

Hobson (R)

Regula (R)

Tiberi (R)

Schmidt (R)

Space (D)

Sutton (D)

Ryan (D)

Wilson (D)

Traitors of the S.S.S. of Ohio in the Politburo of the U.S.S.S.A

Jordan (R)

Latta (R)

LaTourette (R)

Turner (R)

Chabot (R)

Kaptur (D)

Kucinich (D)

Kicking and screaming (I’m back)

I love to travel.  Right after I announced that this blog would be on hiatus (brief?  OK, that turned out to be a lie), I traipsed through ten states of the USA plus a province and a territory of Canada.  I enjoyed my vacation.  I enjoyed it so much, I wanted to continue the escapism, hence the hiatus of the Buckeye RINO blog was extended so much longer than I had originally intended.

I certainly wasn’t happy about political developments prior to the hiatus.  The Marc Dann scandal, in particular, had me all bent out of shape.  Though Dann was replaced in the Ohio AG office in short order,  there was a lingering distaste that made me think about ignoring politics.

Being the person I am, though, I really can’t ignore politics.  All I could really do was procrastinate resuming my blog about politics.  In that sense, I felt like Jonah, of the Old Testament, who tried to dodge his responsibility to warn Ninevah.  He had to face up to his duty eventually, and I’ve had to extricate myself from the whale I’d been swallowed up in and sound the clarion call at Buckeye RINO.

So many new political developments have occurred during my absence that I found it daunting (overwhelming is probably the more appropriate term) to update my blog.  So perhaps I won’t try to update everything.  Perhaps, to make the task less daunting, I’ll just begin with where things stand right now and write as though someone pinch-hit for me during my absence, keeping everyone up to date.

So, I’ve dragged myself back to the computer keyboard (kicking and screaming the whole way) to resume my ramblings at this blog.  Sorry for the delays.  Thanks for your patience.

Putting Rev. Wright on the spot

I don’t fear liberation theology. I’ve spent many Sundays in predominantly black churches. For a whole year before I moved out of Columbus back to northern Ohio, I attended Bethel Missionary Baptist Church on the Near East side of Columbus. For a whole year before leaving to teach English in South Korea, I attended Mt. Zion Baptist Church in Oberlin. I’ve visited a number of other predominantly black churches, too. I can assure you that black churches are definitely not all alike, though many do draw upon liberation theology when relating scripture to our day. But though a great many of them draw upon liberation theology, I would say only a very tiny percentage of the pastors teach that America invented AIDS to commit genocide against African-Americans. In fact, I’d never heard any pastor other than Wright preach that message.

And of course, Wright can preach what he wants to preach. I’m not going to urge him to be politically correct. He can decide for himself what he says. He’s protected by the First Amendment to our Constitution.

I think many pundits misunderstand liberation theology. It may be worthwhile for the news media to investigate liberation theology, because journalists, on the whole, are among the most clueless when it comes to religion.

Some pundits have taken issue with an agenda within predominantly black churches that’s very Afro-centric. These pundits try to equate this Afro-centrism with David Dukes racism, saying that if the words “black community” were taken out of the agenda and replaced with “white community,” blacks would have a problem with it.

I have a totally different interpretation of the Afro-centric agenda, a much more harmless one, from what I have absorbed while attending predominantly black churches. The Afro-centric agenda acknowledges that the black community lags behind the white community in several respects. The Afro-centric agenda serves the purpose of closing that gap. It is a pro-active approach. A self-reliant approach. A pull-themselves-up-by-the-bootstraps approach. A Booker T. Washington approach, if you will. If the Afro-centric agenda succeeds, the black community can be a beacon to other communities. Others, who aren’t black, would do well to put many of these practices to use in their own lives, too.

If liberation theology is an evil concept, then we should eliminate Kwanzaa. Kwanzaa is not religious per se. But Kwanzaa does highlight principles (Umoja=unity; Kujichagulia=self-determination; Ujima=collective work and responsibility; Ujamaa=cooperative economics; Nia=purpose; Kuumba=creativity; and Imani=faith) that lend themselves to an agenda of improvement within the black community, and there are commonalities between the celebration of Kwanzaa and liberation theology. I see no harm in embracing these principles and creating an agenda around it within the black community.

Among the works I studied in my African-American literature class at Ohio State, were three slave narratives. A quarter at Ohio State is only 10 weeks long, so the professor decides what he wishes to emphasize during that 10 weeks, as there isn’t enough time to cover everything in depth. The professor decided to emphasize the earliest African-American literature, slave narratives. As you can imagine this literature described some very inhumane conduct by slave owners. After Emancipation, a share-croppers life was still filled with horrors. Life with Jim Crow was no walk in the park either.

But my African-American literature professor put it all into perspective for the class. He said that though American history was not kind to the black community, and though racism still exists in modern America, he said that the United States of America was the greatest nation on earth. He pointed out that blacks can enjoy a better quality of life and rise to greater heights in America than anywhere else on the globe. He challenged the students this way: “If you think that there is some other country better than the United States of America, then you just haven’t traveled enough.” The professor said he loved to travel, and that he had traveled to more than 60 countries on 5 continents (I think Australia and Antarctica were the two continents he hadn’t visited). But as much as he loved to travel, he was always glad that he could call America his home, and he always looked forward to returning home.

I think, really, that’s what’s unsettling about what we’re hearing from Rev. Wright. He offers such scathing criticisms of America, but hasn’t talked about the silver lining behind the cloud. Even in the slave narratives, one is struck by the positive frame of mind the writers were in. They saw the silver lining in every cloud. Rev. Wright is now retired, and he is wealthy enough to move practically anywhere on this globe that he wants to move to. Somebody needs to put Rev. Wright on the spot. Someone needs to ask him why he lives in America.

Rev. Wright . . . why do you live in America? This isn’t a question to try to demean your religion at all, this is a question about your personal preference. After all, you have the means. You can go anywhere. You don’t seem to like our nation, based on what we’ve been hearing out of your mouth. Is there some reason you’re still here? So please tell us . . . why do you live in America?

So far, I haven’t heard any journalist put that question to him. I think his response would be newsworthy. Wouldn’t you want to hear what Rev. Wright has to say about that?

Better yet, Barack Obama could finally put the rancor over Rev. Wright behind him if he were the one that publicly asked this question. Envision a huge crowd of 30,000 gathered in an arena to hear Barack Obama give one of his electrifying speeches. Imagine him taking the stage and uttering these words:

“Rev. Wright, I’m sure you’ll hear this speech, so I have a question to ask of you. I said publicly that I suppose I really didn’t know you as well as I thought I did. I just want to know one thing. Why do you live in America? You have the means to live the rest of your life anywhere you want on this planet. I want to know why you live in America. **pause** As you all know from my tax returns, which I made public, I also have the means to live wherever I want. Let me tell you why I live in America. Let me tell you why I speak of hope when I speak of America. Let me tell you of the beauty that I see in America. . . (insert powerfully inspirational patriotic speech like only Obama can deliver here).”

Like Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick, I give Obama permission to plagiarize the words I have just written. Senator Obama, if you give this speech, not only will you put Rev. Wright behind you, you’ll probably put the San Francisco remarks behind you, and most importantly, you’ll probably put Hillary Clinton behind you.

Now, all you bloggers in the Obama camp, forward this advice to Obama, because he needs to gain some traction with voters once more, and he needs to do it fast.