Archives for FUBAR

Obama tries damage control

President Barack Obama concedes his words — that a white police officer "acted stupidly" when he arrested a black university scholar in his own home — were ill-chosen. But, while he invited both men to visit him at the White House, Obama stopped short of publicly apologizing for his remark.


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Is Hillary pushing her own agenda?

Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton set off tremors in the Middle East this week when she said a nuclear Iran could be contained by a U.S. "defense umbrella" — an offhand remark that appears to have emerged from obscure Washington policy debates and her own presidential campaign rhetoric.

Clinton's comments raised eyebrows because they seemed to go beyond the Obama administration's current thinking on Iran, which has been strictly focused on preventing the country from acquiring nuclear weapons.


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Swine flu could hit 40 percent in U.S.

In a disturbing new projection, health officials say up to 40 percent of Americans could get swine flu this year and next and several hundred thousand could die without a successful vaccine campaign and other measures.

The estimates by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention are roughly twice the number of those who catch flu in a normal season and add greater weight to hurried efforts to get a new vaccine ready for the fall flu season.


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Bush considered sending troops into Buffalo

The Bush administration in 2002 considered sending U.S. troops into a Buffalo, N.Y., suburb to arrest a group of terror suspects in what would have been a nearly unprecedented use of military power, The New York Times reported.

Vice President Dick Cheney and several other Bush advisers at the time strongly urged that the military be used to apprehend men who were suspected of plotting with al Qaida, who later became known as the Lackawanna Six, the Times reported on its Web site Friday night. It cited former administration officials who spoke on condition of anonymity.
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Obama health plan: Now what?

Oh dear. After President Obama's news conference on health care/health insurance reform, I am more confused than ever about whether it will -- or should -- pass this year.

I buy the argument that health care is tied directly to the economic health of the United States. One of every six dollars generated in America goes for health care, yet 47 million people have no insurance and many who do don't have enough coverage in case of serious illness or injury. Too often pre-existing conditions are not covered.


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Obama tries to explain away Gates gaffe

President Barack Obama said Thursday he was surprised by all the hubbub over his comments that a white police officer in Cambridge, Mass., had acted "stupidly" in arresting a prominent black scholar for disorderly conduct. The president didn't take back his words, but he allowed that he understood the sergeant who made the arrest is an "outstanding police officer."


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Obama should have kept his mouth shut

President Obama's prime-time press conference was making little news but moving along smartly, on schedule not to run over into "America's Got Talent," until the last question, from a reporter for a Chicago newspaper who has covered Obama since he came to Washington.

She asked about the arrest of Harvard scholar Henry Louis Gates Jr., perhaps the nation's leading expert on the history of race relations in America. Obama noted that "Skip" Gates was a friend of his, "so I might be a little biased here." So far, so good.


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Jobs? What jobs?

The phrase, "jobless recovery" is gaining traction in Washington these days, as the stock market has turned decidedly bullish, home sales are no longer tanking, at least not at last year's rates, corporate profits are materializing and yet the number of out of work Americans continues to rise.

The Federal Reserve Board of San Francisco launched the talk by issuing an Economic Letter in early June that began as follows:


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Citizens group attacks government secrecy

A public interest group is trying to use the Freedom of Information Act to crack more than three decades of secrecy surrounding how the government deals with wrongdoing by intelligence agencies.

The Electronic Frontier Foundation, an open government advocacy group, sued in federal court Wednesday in San Francisco to force U.S. spy agencies to reveal any activities during the Bush administration that the agencies themselves acknowledge may have violated laws, presidential orders or the Constitution.


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America is losing the long war

In 1993, R. James Woolsey, about to become President Bill Clinton's first director of Central Intelligence, remarked to a Senate committee on the defeat of international communism: "We have slain a large dragon" He then added: "But we live now in a jungle filled with a bewildering variety of poisonous snakes. And in many ways, the dragon was easier to keep track of."


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