Two Liberal Dishonesties Revealed
Two articles this morning caught my eye: the first one dealt with the strange case of President Obama making an interim appointment of a new Health-care Czar. Apparently the reason for this underhanded and unprecedented move is to avoid, during the normally-required confirmation hearing, any public discussion of Obamacare and of this Czar’s extreme positions and pronouncements.
The second article concerned the whitewashing of the group mainly exposed by Climategate – the revealing of the data falsified by dishonest, so-called scientists who are global warming alarmists. The whitewash was carried out by the University of East Anglia in Britain investigating itself – the same East Anglia where the data was falsified.
Both articles reveal the continuing proclivity of liberals to avoid factual confrontations, relying mainly on dissembling, distortions, outright lies and on attacking the personalities of those who oppose them.
Dodging a health-care fight
By JOHN PODHORETZ July 8, 2010 New York Post (Excerpts)
"On Tuesday, the Obama administration decided to do something rather peculiar, somewhat shocking and politically fascinating: It circumvented the process by which the Senate advises and consents on executive-branch nominees.
The move, which seems unprecedented in subtle but important ways, promises increased chaos in Washington -- but also hope on health care.
President Obama wants a distinguished doctor named Donald Berwick to head up the office that administers Medicare and Medicaid -- two of the most expensive programs in the federal government. Ordinarily, the nomination would have gone through the process known as "confirmation," with a hearing before the Senate Finance Committee followed by a full vote of all 99 senators. (One seat is vacant due to the death of West Virginia's Robert Byrd.)
Instead, Obama decided to invoke his constitutional authority to appoint Berwick (and two other officials of lesser moment) to his post without having to be confirmed by the Senate. This is possible only when Congress is not in session, as is the case right now, and it's called a "recess appointment." It is designed to be temporary; it is valid only until that session of the Congress adjourns, which in this case will come at year's end.
Past presidents have resorted to recess appointments when they believe a nominee's appointment has been subjected to unjust political and ideological gamesmanship. And the White House said it was resorting to the recess appointment because of Republican recalcitrance.
"Many Republicans in Congress have made it clear in recent weeks that they were going to stall the nomination as long as they could, solely to score political points," Communications Director Dan Pfeiffer said on the White House blog Tuesday.
That was astoundingly untrue. The only way Republicans, who have 41 votes in the Senate compared to 58 for the Democrats, could have "stalled" the nomination would have been to organize a filibuster, and that would happen only when the nomination came to the Senate floor.
They couldn't have blocked a favorable vote on Berwick's nomination from the Senate Finance Committee, which has 13 Democrats and 10 Republicans.
As ABC's Jake Tapper reported yesterday, "Republicans were not delaying or stalling Berwick's nomination. Indeed, they were eager for his hearing, hoping to assail Berwick's past statements about health-care rationing and his praise for the British health-care system."….
So what's going on here?
First, it appears Obama likes to muscle things through. It makes him feel like he's cutting through the nonsense and getting things done.
This unorthodox and questionable move is of a piece with his administration's bullying of Chrysler creditors last year -- insisting, in contravention of eight centuries of common law, that the contracts those creditors signed with Chrysler should simply be ignored so as to get the United Auto Workers the deal it wanted.
But procedure, precedent and tradition exist for good reason; ignoring and undermining them blazes a path to political disorder.
Second, this is as glaring an admission as there is that Obama and his people know they've lost the public on health care. Rather than using these hearings to bolster popular support for the landmark legislation they rammed through in the spring, they can't bear to submit to public questioning about it.
By running away from this fight, Obama is signaling that the possibility of repealing the health-care monstrosity before it really begins to sink its teeth into the American system by 2014 is very real indeed."
Climategate: reinstating Phil Jones is good news – the CRU brand remains toxic
By Gerald Warner July 8th, 2010 Telegraph Co/UK (Excerpt)
> “Move along now, please… Nothing to see here…” was the predictable burden of Sir Muir Russell’s investigation into Climategate. Are we surprised? Any other conclusion would have made world headlines as a first for the climate change establishment. This is the third Climategate whitewash job and it would be tempting to see it as just as futile as its predecessors. That, however, would be to underrate its value to the sceptic cause, which is considerable.
This is because Russell’s “Not Guilty” verdict has been seized upon as an excuse to reinstate Phil Jones at the University of East Anglia CRU, this time as Director of Research. That is very good news. It spells out to the world that the climate clique looks after its own; that there is no more a culture of accountability and job forfeiture for controversial conduct in AGW circles than there is in parliamentary ones; that it is business as usual for Phil and his merry men. Or, to put it more bluntly, the brand remains toxic.
Apart from Michael “Hockeystick” Mann, there is no name more calculated to provoke cynical smiles in every inhabited quarter of the globe than that of Phil Jones. The dogs in the street in Ulan Bator know that he and his cronies defied FOI requests and asked for e-mails to be deleted and that people only do that if they have something to hide. Every time some UN-compliant government or carbon trading interest group tries to scare the populace witless with scorched-earth predictions of imminent climate disaster and cites research from the East Anglia CRU – of which Phil Jones is Director of Research – it will provoke instant scepticism….
So, this is an important and encouraging development for everybody dedicated to blowing the AGW scam out of the water. It means one of the principal pillars of the IPCC that might have been cosmetically repaired now remains irretrievably compromised. The next few years will be critical for the survival of the AGW superstition: it is now, partly due to Climategate and partly to the global recession, fighting for survival. This latest blunder significantly lessens its prospects of pulling through. A big thank you to Professor Edward Acton and the climate establishment at the University of East Anglia and elsewhere, without whose purblind sense of entitlement the eventual overthrow of this false orthodoxy might not have been possible.