You are currently browsing the daily archive for October 29, 2012.

Kevin DuJan at HillBuzz has revealed that Walt Disney World ‘imagineers’ are hard at work preparing to update their Hall of Presidents (emphases mine):

Walt Disney World (WDW) is indeed working on an update of the Hall of Presidents attraction to feature Mitt Romney as the 45th President of the United States beginning in 2013. Imagineers are that certain Romney will win the election and that his likeness will be needed to update the attraction in early 2013 so it will be ready in time for the park’s summer tourist season.

The Romney addition to the Hall of Presidents was just recently fast tracked and monies were shifted in the budget to accommodate this suddenly necessary change …

For those who don’t follow the company, Disney is incredibly cheap and does not invest time or resources on anything that’s not definitely needed in the near and immediate future.  The entity that oversees WDW is called “Team Disney Orlando” (TDO) and pinches pennies tighter than Scrooge McDuck.  They actually allow attractions to rot to near-ruin before springing for necessary maintenance and replacements…and they don’t do things at WDW just because it would be fun to spend time and money on something “just in case”

Excellent news!

Peggy Noonan, notable author of George Bush the Elder’s ‘Thousand Points of Lights’ speech, sold out to the Democrats in 2008.

I heard Bush deliver the speech in 1988 and it was inspiring, pointing a vision towards an even greater post-Reagan America.

Therefore, it was surprising to find that, in 2008, Noonan was no longer a part of that stellar galaxy. Indeed, she embraced the other side.

McCain-Palin couldn’t do anything right in Noonan’s eyes; the Republicans were consistently wrong. Meanwhile, Hillary Clinton’s more conservative supporters — the blue dog PUMAs — were campaigning for the Republican ticket in their vehement opposition to Barack Obama.

The PUMAs questioned the coverage the Republicans were receiving from Fourth Estate, the media. For a bit of history on how the press — now the mainstream media — derived its name, Wikipedia explains (emphases mine):

Fourth Estate” most commonly refers to the news media; especially print journalism or “The Press”. Thomas Carlyle attributed the origin of the term to Edmund Burke, who used it in a parliamentary debate in 1787 on the opening up of Press reporting of the House of Commons of Great Britain.[1] Earlier writers have applied the term to lawyers, to the British queens consort (acting as a free agent, independent of the king), and to the proletariat. The term makes implicit reference to the earlier division of the three Estates of the Realm

In Burke’s 1787 coining he would have been making reference to the traditional three estates of Parliament: The Lords Spiritual, the Lords Temporal and the Commons.[4] If, indeed, Burke did make the statement Carlyle attributes to him, the remark may have been in the back of Carlyle’s mind when he wrote in his French Revolution (1837) that “A Fourth Estate, of Able Editors, springs up; increases and multiplies, irrepressible, incalculable.”[5] In this context, the other three estates are those of the French States-General: the church, the nobility and the townsmen.[4] …

By 1835, when William Hazlitt (another editor of Michel de Montaigne—see below) applied the term to an individual journalist, William Cobbett, the phrase was well established.[9][10]

Oscar Wilde wrote:

In old days men had the rack. Now they have the Press. That is an improvement certainly. But still it is very bad, and wrong, and demoralizing. Somebody — was it Burke? — called journalism the fourth estate. That was true at the time no doubt. But at the present moment it is the only estate. It has eaten up the other three. The Lords Temporal say nothing, the Lords Spiritual have nothing to say, and the House of Commons has nothing to say and says it. We are dominated by Journalism.[11]

Indeed, this is where we find ourselves today, not only in the United States but in the Western world as a whole.

The media claim they are reporting the facts. Only a few decades ago, journalists such as Edward R Murrow tirelessly plumbed the depths to reveal hidden truths. Murrow was one of my mother’s favourite journalists. You could agree or disagree with the facts he uncovered, but at least he made one think.

Peggy Noonan — or ‘Pegs’, as Lame Cherry often referred to her in 2008 — did Senator McCain and Governor Palin no favours in 2008. She said their campaign was unexciting. This clashed sharply with what PUMAs reported from having attended McCain-Palin rallies. One in Florida had over 20,000 in attendance. Palin, in particular, energised what Americans now refer to in electoral terms as ‘the base’. Of course, the Fourth Estate reported that only a few thousand people were in attendance. Meanwhile, residents of the complex which accommodated the rally said that they were overwhelmed with Republican supporters — a mixed blessing under the circumstances for the small community of conservative residents.

It seems that everywhere Governor Palin went, people flocked. Another rally in Pennsylvania or Ohio attracted another 10,000 or 15,000 people. Others who had hoped to attend that event gave up in the end. They hadn’t left their houses early enough and were caught in a traffic jam only to find out that there were no more parking spaces. Wherever Governor Palin went, men and women followed.

Did Pegs Noonan recognise Palin’s power to attract votes for McCain in 2008? No.

Did she recognise Obama’s emptiness at all between 2008 and the current 2012 election cycle?

Only on Friday, October 26, 2012. In the Wall Street Journal, she discussed the Denver debate, the first of the presidential candidates’ direct encounters earlier that month:

in some utterly new way the president was revealed, exposed. All the people whose job it is to surround and explain him, to act as his buffers and protectors—they weren’t there. It was him on the stage, alone with a competitor. He didn’t have a teleprompter, and so his failure seemed to underscore the cliché that the prompter is a kind of umbilical cord for him, something that provides nourishment, the thing he needs to sound good. He is not by any means a stupid man but he has become a boring one; he drones, he is predictable, it’s never new. The teleprompter adds substance, or at least safety.

Most of us saw this in 2009. There is even a blog written from the standpoint of the Teleprompter, which satirises many of the ‘presidential’ (I use the term advisedly) announcements.

The Urban Dictionary has this definition of TPOTUS:

TelePrompTer of the President of the United States. An electronic device that tells President Obama what to say. The president rarely speaks in public without the aid of this device, despite the widely held belief that he is highly intelligent and extremely articulate.

Yet, even though many others could see this, incredibly, Noonan and her fellow journos could not. Why is that? Is she that much of a ‘Beltway insider’ [referring to the inner core of Washington, DC]? Is she that fawning and feigning? Are her fellow associates?

Suddenly and inexplicably, a fortnight before the 2012 election, perhaps some of the Thousand Points of Light have now dawned. Noonan now says of the incumbent in the WSJ, dated October 26 (italics in the original):

Was it the catastrophic execution of an arguably sound strategy? …

Was it the catastrophic execution of a truly bad strategy? …

But maybe these questions are all off. Maybe what happened isn’t a mystery at all.

That, anyway, is the view expressed this week by a member of the U.S. Senate who served there with Mr Obama and has met with him in the White House. People back home, he said, sometimes wonder what happened with the president in the debate. The senator said, I paraphrase: I sort of have to tell them that it wasn’t a miscalculation or a weird moment. I tell them: I know him, and that was him. That guy on the stage, that’s the real Obama.


No kidding, Pegs. PUMAs knew that in 2008. Did you bother interviewing them or at least reading their blogs? Did you take the time to talk to the McCain-Palin team about the challenges they faced then? Did you talk in depth to any of the Romney-Ryan crew this year?

Ms Noonan, all that many of us know is that you helped to conceal the truth — directly or indirectly — about the man who calls himself Barack Obama. We still don’t know much about him, although he has served — or ‘ruled’, in Valerie Jarrett’s words — since 2008.

It seems to us that you ignored all that, especially the word ‘ruled’. The United States does not have a ruler. They have a President who serves the nation, at the nation’s pleasure, by way of universal suffrage. The Constitution establishes the word of law. There are three branches concerned, each of which offers a check against the other: executive, legislative and judicial.

Where the media — as Fourth Estate — fit in with this, is now unclear, particularly as they seem to have sided in with the Executive. This is a most dangerous coupling indeed.

What is even more incredulous in Noonan’s same editorial is her review of Bob Woodward’s new book, The Price of Politics.  It is good that she mentions the latest from the investigative journalist who, along with his partner Carl Bernstein, examined hundreds of hours of the Watergate tapes and other relevant communiqués. However, it is astonishing to find out that, only now, four years later Noonan discovers that Obama is

portrayed as having the appearance and presentation of an academic or intellectual while being strangely clueless in his reading of political situations and dynamics. He is bad at negotiating—in fact doesn’t know how. His confidence is consistently greater than his acumen, his arrogance greater than his grasp.

Who knew? I, along with many PUMAs and Republicans, could have told her that four years ago. She refused to vet Barack Obama the way Woodward and Bernstein investigated Richard Nixon and his administration.

Peggy Noonan’s failure — and that of her fellow journalists — to investigate and reveal the truth in the manner of Murrow raises many questions. Each of them will have to answer for those sins of omission individually. The day of reckoning is surely coming with Benghazigate, which only Fox is covering.

Might does not make right, as almost all the journalistic pack so often have reminded us over the years. Yet, over the course of four years, they clearly forced the public to fall for the empty unknown quantity that is Barry Soetoro Soebarkah Barack Obama.  They heaped scorn upon those who did not.

May God have mercy on those journalists who so shamelessly hopped on the Hope’n’Change bus in 2008.

And may He bring the sordid truth of the Fourth Estate to light.

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