The Other McCain

"One should either write ruthlessly what one believes to be the truth, or else shut up." — Arthur Koestler

Obama Has Learned Nothing

Posted on | June 21, 2012 | 40 Comments

“The slow-rising central horror of ‘Watergate’ is not that it might grind down to the reluctant impeachment of a vengeful thug of a president whose entire political career has been a monument to the same kind of cheap shots and treachery he finally got nailed for, but that we might somehow fail to learn something from it.”
Hunter S. Thompson, “Memo from the Sports Desk & Rude Notes from a Decompression Chamber in Miami,” Rolling Stone, Aug. 2, 1973 (collected in The Great Shark Hunt: Strange Tales from a Strange Time)

“A third-rate gun-running operation?
“The claim from the left is that this is just a case of ‘criminalizing policy differences.’
“But that’s absurd. Does either wing of American politics support giving assault weapons to Mexican druglords?”

Ace of Spades, June 21, 2012

Ace’s allusion to Watergate — famously dismissed at the time as a “third-rate burglary” — caught my eye, as my recent bedtime reading has included The Great Shark Hunt, and Thompson’s savage denunciations of Nixon were fresh in my mind.

Of course, Nixon wasn’t as bad as his left-wing enemies (like Thompson) thought he was, and neither is Obama as bad as his right-wing enemies think he is. But this is not a situation where finely calculated degrees of moral virtue are really relevant. Rather, what we are witnessing is the consequence of hubristic arrogance, and the failure to learn the lessons of history.

The president and his aides obviously knew the Watergate-era maxim about such scandals: “It’s not the crime, it’s the cover-up.” But maybe they thought it did not apply to them.

Obama’s henchmen seem to have believed they could stonewall Congress and dishonestly deny knowledge of basic facts in the “Fast and Furious” scandal, and never have to face the music.

Once congressional committees start subpoenaing documents and questioning witnesses under oath, however, what would in other contexts be mere lies become potential crimes.

Partisan finger-pointing and P.R. spin can’t solve a problem like this. The fact that Bill Clinton was acquitted by the Senate after he was impeached in 1998 may be of some comfort to Obama, but on the other hand, Monica Lewinsky’s blowjobs didn’t kill two Americans and dozens of Mexicans. However, the pro-Obama media, after ignoring the Fast and Furious scandal for months, continues to play along with the administration and pretend that what’s going on here is mere political gamesmanship:

A Pointless Partisan Fight
New York Times

Grayson: Fast and Furious ‘circus’
will backfire on Republicans

Raw Story

Failure to take the scandal seriously, and then attempting to portray it as a partisan fight, is going to leave Obama’s media apologists looking foolish because, as Paul Meringoff says, those documents must be dynamite. Whatever happened to common sense in the news business, huh? Can’t all those overpaid network superstars put two and two together and see that, if Obama’s willing to assert executive privilege to keep Congress from getting the Fast and Furious documents, there must be some very serious stuff in those documents?

Attention NBC, ABC and CBS: Katie Pavlich wrote a book called, Fast and Furious: Barack Obama’s Bloodiest Scandal and the Shameless Cover-Up. Maybe you could try reading that, OK? And there’s another incipient scandal you might want to stop ignoring, too.



40 Responses to “Obama Has Learned Nothing”

  1. If It Walks Like A Coverup, And Talks Like A Coverup.... - The POH Diaries
    June 21st, 2012 @ 4:39 pm

    […] is the consequence of hubristic arrogance, and the failure to learn the lessons of history.”- Stacy McCain, June 21, […]

  2. GAHCindy
    June 21st, 2012 @ 4:54 pm

    ” neither is Obama as bad as his right-wing enemies think he is” Oh yes, he is. 😉

  3. Bob Belvedere
    June 21st, 2012 @ 5:14 pm

    Thank you.

    She’s 100% correct and I dare anyone to try and prove us wrong.

  4. Supe
    June 21st, 2012 @ 5:42 pm

    “… as Paul Meringoff says, those documents must be dynamite. Whatever happened to common sense in the news business, huh?”

    Wouldn’t common sense suggest they aren’t? 
    You know, because this has been under investigation for several years and there’s so far nothing to suggest that. 
    A quick recap of what Issa’s document discoveries and testimony have revealed so far:
    1. This is at least the 3rd time the same ATF office has run this operation without direction from anywhere else to do so.
    2. This is the second administration they ran it under.
    3. Nobody who testified has claimed that Holder was even informed of this operation’s tactics.

    If I investigate you for a couple of years and can find no evidence you were even aware of something, common sense says there’s a document that will support you being behind it? Really?

    How is that not just you letting wishful thinking make you write delusional things?

  5. Joseph Fein
    June 21st, 2012 @ 5:43 pm

    The Karma of  Democratic hatred is about to run into their own Dogma.

    Can you taste the tears?

  6. Supe
    June 21st, 2012 @ 5:58 pm

    “But that’s absurd. Does either wing of American politics support giving assault weapons to Mexican druglords?”
    – Ace of Spades, June 21, 2012
    How many minutes do you think it’s going to take after the first restrictions brought against sellers in the wake of all this publicity you sought to answer that question?

    Or if you don’t want to wait that long we could just skip to the part where sellers in border states being required to register multiple semi-auto rifle sales with the feds got the reaction it did….

    Which party do you think we are going to find members of railing against that on behalf of the NRA and attempting to block it?

    Again, it’s odd that you’re looking for that to become an issue put in front of the public on the off chance it will damage some not-the-POTUS guy in Washington more than it damages your own interests.

    There is no Democrat politician, liberal blog or even crazed activist that’s put anywhere near as much effort into forcing the public to look at gun controls like you guys have over this thing.

  7. Adobe_Walls
    June 21st, 2012 @ 6:01 pm

    If he’s half as bad as I think he is, he’s twice as bad as most on the right think he is.

  8. Wombat_socho
    June 21st, 2012 @ 6:03 pm

     This “common sense”, I do not think it means what you think it means.

  9. Adjoran
    June 21st, 2012 @ 6:16 pm

    The FACT is that the privilege claim on “deliberative process” (any claim on “Presidential communication” fails directly) is ludicrous, which is why Holder’s letter fails to even mention the controlling authority, the Espy case.  The privilege may NOT be used to cover the facts or who knew them or when, but ONLY communications on strategy or evaluation intended eventually for the President or his covered staff.

    This is settled law.  Contempt or not, now that the assertion of privilege has been made, Issa should head straight to court and ask for an expedited hearing.

  10. King Shamus
    June 21st, 2012 @ 6:24 pm

    Obamster Administration self-inflicted wound…….98.2% complete.

  11. Adobe_Walls
    June 21st, 2012 @ 6:24 pm

    “1. This is at least the 3rd time the same ATF office has run this operation without direction from anywhere else to do so.”

    Incorrect they had direction

    2. This is the second administration they ran it under.

    Operation wide receiver was much smaller in scope and far less stupid in execution, assuming of course that Fast and Furious wasn’t solely designed to get as many American guns as possible into the cartel’s hands. It’s no less speculative to assume it went exactly according to plan. The previous program was ended when it was realized that even with efforts to make the guns trackable and attempting to coordinate with Mexican law enforcement the weapons were slipping away. The only lesson learned seems to have been that attempting to track the guns was pointless but not that allowing weapons to slip across the border was a bad idea in the first place. I submit that Fast and Furious was a success from the administration’s point of view until it got reported in the press. 

    3. Nobody who testified has claimed that Holder was even informed of this operation’s tactics.

    Obtuseness is not a virtue.

  12. Adobe_Walls
    June 21st, 2012 @ 6:28 pm

    “Desperate men do desperate things, and stupid men do stupid
    things. We are in for a desperately stupid summer.”
    Hunter S. Thompson:

  13. Al Garcia
    June 21st, 2012 @ 6:29 pm

    Meanwhile, Obama’s poll numbers keep improving. Nice job, Republicans for nominating the incredibly inefficient Mitt Romney. Nobody ever talks UP Mitt Romney…

  14. JeffWeimer
    June 21st, 2012 @ 6:37 pm

    One small correction, Stacy: It’s Paul Mirengoff, not Meringoff.

    And supe? All he’s trying to do is point to the lack of MSM coverage as justification for little MSM coverage.

  15. Bob Belvedere
    June 21st, 2012 @ 6:43 pm

    Sounds like supe is a Dupe.

  16. KenPrescott
    June 21st, 2012 @ 6:48 pm

    Watergate didn’t have a body count. Then again, Obama probably considers 300 dead Mexicans to be “shovel-ready jobs.”

  17. Evi L. Bloggerlady
    June 21st, 2012 @ 6:53 pm
  18. Adobe_Walls
    June 21st, 2012 @ 6:58 pm

    Not surprising really they came to teach not to learn.

  19. GlenWishard
    June 21st, 2012 @ 7:05 pm

    This is an unfair comparison.  How many people were killed when they broke into the Watergate hotel?   How many Mexican police helicopters did G. Gordon Liddy shoot down?

  20. Rep. Ann Marie Buerkle Read Statement From Brian Terry’s Family Prior to Holder Contempt Vote | The Lonely Conservative
    June 21st, 2012 @ 7:05 pm

    […] Is Obama’s executive privilege illegal in this matter?Update: Be sure to read The Other McCain’s post on the scandal.google_ad_client = "ca-pub-1395656889568144"; /* 300×250, created 8/11/08 */ […]

  21. Wombat_socho
    June 21st, 2012 @ 7:32 pm

     I’m tired of having to read comments by people of his sort.

  22. ombdz
    June 21st, 2012 @ 7:38 pm

    Good post.  We’re a lot closer to the beginning than the end of this one.  Among Obama’s biggest problems is that, to quote Arthur Miller, he’s
    “liked, but not well liked.” 

    If this scandal starts to gain steam, he’s going to find few people ready to die on a hill for him.  And when your reservoir of
    good will is a bit shallow, it rarely ends very well …

  23. richard mcenroe
    June 21st, 2012 @ 8:01 pm

     I have kitchen sponges that are deeper than Obama’s reservoir of good will.

  24. Evi L. Bloggerlady
    June 21st, 2012 @ 8:23 pm

    They make you dumber for having looked at them.  

  25. Evi L. Bloggerlady
    June 21st, 2012 @ 8:24 pm

    And that is when Holder is sacrificed.  

  26. sablegsd
    June 21st, 2012 @ 8:27 pm

    Ovomit can’t learn.  He’s stupid.

  27. Steve in TN
    June 21st, 2012 @ 8:48 pm

    He is WORSE.

    ” neither is Obama as bad as his right-wing enemies think he is” Oh yes, he is. ;-)(Just thought I’d say it before somebody else did.)

  28. TWB
    June 21st, 2012 @ 8:49 pm

    I shall not now, nor will I ever take that dare.

  29. TWB
    June 21st, 2012 @ 8:50 pm


  30. Tennwriter
    June 21st, 2012 @ 9:03 pm

    The Left makes up their own standards to fit the situation, and then when it suits them, they abandon those standards.  The idea of ‘its not the crime, its the coverup’ is one of the temporary standards.

  31. Steven L Parker
    June 21st, 2012 @ 9:10 pm

    Alan Grayson — deranged squirral

  32. Adjoran
    June 21st, 2012 @ 9:27 pm

     Gallup showed his 3-day rolling average approval rating back down to 43% among adults (a far more Democratic pool than, say, “likely voters” would be) and Romney is now tied in Michigan. 

    And in fact, most Republicans have been pleasantly surprised by the deftness of the Romney campaign so far. 

    The ignorance of some observers, unfortunately, was quite expected.

  33. Adjoran
    June 21st, 2012 @ 9:30 pm

    Hindraker also has a grand fisking of the Holder letter asserting the privilege here:

    After that, there is nothing left to argue, really.

  34. DISGRACE: Obama Spokesman Can’t Even Remember Brian Terry’s Name » American Glob
    June 22nd, 2012 @ 12:20 am

    […] FURTHER READING: Obama Has Learned Nothing. […]

  35. Charles
    June 22nd, 2012 @ 12:43 am

    Or maybe this is another birth certificate ploy.

  36. robertstacymccain
    June 22nd, 2012 @ 5:16 am

    The man was endlessly aphoristic.

  37. Adjoran
    June 22nd, 2012 @ 5:16 am

     Me too – but I throw them out when they begin to smell like “OccupyWS”

  38. Adjoran
    June 22nd, 2012 @ 5:17 am

     He knows too much.

  39. Before It's News
    June 22nd, 2012 @ 6:44 am

    […] Carney Flubs Pretty Much Everything: LaneObama has learned nothing: RSMPelosi: Justice For Brian Terry Isn’t As Important As Jobs: […]

  40. CPAguy
    June 23rd, 2012 @ 11:46 am

    Excellent post on the matter.  It is not what they did, but trying to cover it up.

    I think both sides have made this a political issue, rather than a law enforcement issue, to the detriment of our nation.