Tuesday, July 16, 2013

LIZ CHENEY ANNOUNCES WYOMING SENATE BID

Liz Cheney's team has announced that she will run for the Wyoming Senate seat currently held by Mike Enzi (Republican).

Politico picked up the story, and was sure to use the most flattering picture they could find of the 46 year old Republican.

Here's to a spirited primary in Wyoming!

-rj

Friday, June 14, 2013

50 Shades of CIA


I, personally, find myself getting to the point where I am no longer upset with the Obama Administration.  Rather, I am starting to feel bad for them.

With the spotlight on the Intelligence Community following the NSA leak regarding the PRISM program, the myriad instances of spying on reporters, and now the recent resignation of Deputy Director Michael Morell, President Obama doesn't seem to be able to catch a break.  However, he's not really doing anything to help himself, either.

The administration has tapped someone from, surprise, the White House, to head across the Potomac and become the #2 chief of the Central Intelligence Agency.  Ms. Avril Haines will be that woman, but there's no answer as to whether or not she is going to rehash "erotic literature night" while at the Agency.  Perhaps the NSA has to data mine the rest of us because we just aren't as open as Ms. Haines about what floats our boat or finds our lost remote.

This selection is disturbing for a number of reasons.  First of all, Ms. Haines has absolutely no intelligence experience.  CIA Director John Brennan has already come out and tried to defend Ms. Haines' selection:
Brennan emphasized that Haines, 43, has worked closely with senior national security officials. “She has participated in virtually every Deputies and Principals Committee meeting over the past two years and chairs the Lawyers’ Group that reviews the Agency’s most sensitive programs,” the statement said.
Of course, those working in the CIA have also expressed their doubts to the Washington Post:


“Avril is extremely talented but obviously doesn’t come out of the intelligence community. The ability of outsiders to work in the community is always an open question.”
The Post goes on to point out:
Previous directors, including Leon E. Panetta and David H. Petraeus, began their tenures as CIA outsiders and selected deputies who could help navigate internal politics and cement relationships with the operational and analytic directorates.

Here is the second problem.  Not only did the administration select someone without an ounce of intelligence experience, their motivation seems to be more political than anything.  She is also, of course, the daughter of "Dr. Thomas Haines, a liberal activist and noted chemist, on the Upper West Side of New York," according to The Daily Beast.  Obama chooses to stay hyper-political, more political than any administration in the history of the United States, when choosing the second-in-command at the world's largest spy agency.

Finally, one has to feel for the culture at the CIA right now.  After the untimely resignation of David Patraeus following his public affair last year, the folks at the CIA have to deal with another sensual scandal before their Deputy Director even starts.  Was Ms. Haines an erotic reader at her bookstore in Baltimore?  Yes.  At this point, however, that should be the least of our worries.

-rj


Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Deputy Director of the Central Intelligence Agency, Michael Morell, Resigns


Deputy Director of the Central Intelligence Agency has just resigned:

http://www.npr.org/blogs/thetwo-way/2013/06/12/191061035/reports-cia-deputy-director-michael-morell-resigns

The deputy director of the Central Intelligence Agency, Michael Morell, has resigned.
"As much as I would selfishly like to keep Michael right where he is for as long as possible, he has decided to retire to spend more time with his family and to pursue other professional opportunities," CIA Director John Brennan said in a statement.
Michael Morell served 33 years in the agency and was the acting head of the CIA, before John Brennan was confirmed for the post.
"I am passionate about two things in this world — the Agency and my family," Morell said in a statement. "And while I have given everything I have to the Central Intelligence Agency and its vital mission for a third of a century, it is now time for me to give everything I have to my family."

...Per NPR.

-rj

Monday, June 3, 2013

Liz Cheney and Forward-Looking Conservatism

Technically, this website never went anywhere; however, I did.  I left the DC-area and moved back to Texas, and in the process, made a job change that took me away from politics (and brought me into the fold with actual productive members of society). 

All joking aside, a lot has transpired during Draft Liz’s absence, including the 2012 elections that gave a country which originally hoped for change, more of the status quo.  Nevertheless, we have to look forward to the future instead of dwelling on a past we can visit but not change.

Speaking of looking forward, it would also behoove the conservative movement to work on popularizing a message that my friend Tom calls, “Forward-looking Conservatism.”  The movement needs to shake the perception that it is comprised of stuffy, old, fat, white men hell-bent on not just, “stand[ing] athwart History yelling, ‘STOP;’” but also, steering parts of History in certain directions so we can both revisit tried and true institutions that have helped keep western civilization stable for thousands of years, while at the same time reforming things that have not worked so well. 

People like to put each other in figurative boxes (as opposed to literal boxes, which we’ll reserve for Kevin Spacey) because it makes it easier to turn everything into “black and white” when the world’s gray.  Conservatism is dynamic because it is not even an ideology, but a bit of a persuasion, as Irving Kristol once described.  Liz Cheney is dynamic, because she breaks ranks at times, while at the same time remaining as the most staunch supporter of conservative thought.

It was with these things in mind that I decided to push for someone whom I admire greatly to step into the fray (even though she has always been in the fray) and run for office, no matter what office it might be.  I do not agree with Liz Cheney on everything.  I don’t know a single person in the world with whom I do agree with on everything.  Nevertheless, Liz Cheney would be a valuable statesman, and a true fighter for forward-looking conservatism. 


-rj

Sunday, June 2, 2013

Getting Back in the Action


We've been dormant for a while, and I apologize for that.  Nevertheless, we are getting things rolling again thanks to some interesting insider-thoughts regarding Wyoming's Senate seats.

Here's Draft Liz Cheney's twitter account to stay up-to-date: https://twitter.com/DraftLiz2014

Also, our favorite National Security Hawk was on Hannity the other day.  You can watch her here:

http://video.foxnews.com/v/2416542589001/is-the-enemy-really-everywhere/

-rj

Monday, July 16, 2012

Thoughts on the Passing of Joseph Cropsey

Originally posted at TheLobbyist.  Unfortunately, there are some formatting issues going on there.



I hope I’m not doing a disservice by writing these brief remarks as late as I am; however, the passing of Professor Joseph Cropsey warranted some small mention of appreciation from one of the many people Dr. Cropsey influenced.  Dr. Cropsey was introduced to me when my college professor thrust History of Political Philosophy into my hands and said, “If you truly appreciate political philosophy, get this.  It is the ‘bible.’”  My copy (third edition; still looking to grab one of the earlier ones as well) sits beside my laptop as I type.  It is a thick tome.  The thoughts and writings inside, edited by Drs. Strauss and Cropsey, even thicker; requiring concentration and thought as you read, and re-read, and underline, and read once more. 

News of Dr. Cropsey’s passing immediately spurred thoughts of Goethe’s passing in my mind.  Goethe was on his deathbed with his daughter-in-law sitting by his side.  Wanting another shutter in his room opened by one of the servants, Goethe is said to have called, “more light!” before his ties to this world were severed by Father Time’s scythe. 


“More light!”


Allan Bloom said, “Education is the movement from darkness into light.”  Joseph Cropsey spent his life helping pilgrims on their way from darkness into light.  He started out much more economically-minded by writing at lengths about Adam Smith and Karl Marx.  His writings on Plato, however, are considerable food for thought.  Very, very rich food.  Some people can stomach it, others might prefer something lighter.  Nevertheless, one of the subjects Cropsey looks at is the human condition, as Peter Lawler stated in his comments on Postmodern Conservative, “our wondering and our wondering” in Plato’s World: Man’s Place in the Cosmos.  Here’s to hoping that his departure gave him what all philosophers long for:  More Light!

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Holder to Liz and KAS, "Reprehensible"

Attorney General Eric Holder took his turn in front of the Senatorial talking-points firing squad (also known as a “Senate Committee Hearing,” where Senators don’t bother with what could be regarded as inquiry and instead try to fit as many one-liner rhetorical pot-shots they can during their allotted time) Wednesday. Interestingly enough, the New York Times reported the event in a considerably concise manner: touching upon the concerns Republicans (and Democratic New Yorkers) had with the idea of the Justice Department holding terrorist trials in New York, or in the United States period. The Times is also sure to point out the small spat between Senator Jeff Sessions (R – AL) and Mr. Holder, while de-emphasizing Mr. Holder’s respectable ability to quibble his way around Senator Session’s questions and points. In the end, even Senator Schumer (D – NY) pointedly registered his view that New Yorkers’ had developed a fairly strong consensus against any terrorist trial being held in the state.

Of course, I write for this website that encourages Liz Cheney in a direction that would land her in some sort of public office. With that in mind, I had to journey into forbidden waters to find what truly interested followers of Draft Liz Cheney, which was the part of the testimony where the Attorney General goes out of his way to address his contempt for Keep America Safe’s campaign to elucidate the nine lawyers working on terrorism cases that had defended ‘suspected’ terrorists in the past. Fortunately, the HuffingtonPost does a fair and balanced article on the Attorney General’s scornful remarks:

"There has been an attempt to take the names of the people who represent Guantanamo detainees and to drag their reputations through the mud," he said, when pressed to disclose more information about these lawyers by Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa). "There were reprehensible ads in essence to question their patriotism. I'm not going to allow these kids... I'm not going to be a part of this effort."
Holder continued: "Their names are out there now. I'm simply not going to be a part of that effort. I would not allow good, decent lawyers who have followed the best traditions of American jurisprudence... I will not allow their reputations to be besmirched. I will not be a part of that."


Had Mr. Holder answered the questions raised regarding the Justice Department’s employment of attorneys that had been involved in terrorist defense cases, no one's reputation would have been “dragged through the mud.” Furthermore, it was not for the purpose of dragging through the mud that Senators (before Keep America Safe even became involved) asked the Attorney General for those names in November to begin with, it was in the interest of full disclosure and transparency: these two nefarious notions that the Obama Administration promised would be at the forefront of their Administration. When the Justice Department ducked and dived, Keep America Safe stepped up to the plate and Liz Cheney called Attorney General Holder out on it.

I find it interesting that Holder's lawyers are “good” and “decent,” while the Bush Administration’s lawyers faced possible indictments the entire year following Bush 43’s ride into the sunset. What is killing the Obama Administration is the knowledge that they might be able to kick around Sarah Palin and a few others by calling them stupid or letting SNL do their dirty work for them; but they cannot do the same with Liz Cheney. This is what makes her such a force inside the beltway, and why we need to push her in that direction.

-rj