Sunday, March 29, 2015

Obama Caves to the Mullahs

Is President Barack Obama obsessed with getting a nuclear agreement with Iran, no matter what the cost? Or is he an Iranian agent? Is he chasing what he thinks will be his legacy, or is he working to help Iran get nuclear weapons? Look at the way the P5+1 talks with Iran have gone; it pretty much has to be one or the other. It's just like the Ramirez cartoon.

Look at what's happened just this week. The news headline screamed "U.S. Caves to Key Iranian Demands as Nuke Deal Comes Together". With this, Iran wouldn't even have to disclose the nuclear research it's already been doing. And it would be able to continue its nuclear weapons research. It looks like the situation is, at best, just like the cartoon. Intransigence pays. Otherwise, either the "negotiations" are a sham — a Kabuki theater — or Obama simply doesn't care if Iran gets nuclear weapons. But he probably realizes he needs to seem to care.

But then it gets worse: An Iranian reporter, Amir Hossein Motaghi, a close media aide to Iranian President Hassan Rouhani, resigned and defected while reporting on the nuclear talks. In a televised interview, he said he no longer saw any sense in being a "reporter" any longer as he could only write what he was told. He also said “The US negotiating team are mainly there to speak on Iran’s behalf with other members of the 5+1 countries and convince them of a deal.” Is that because Obama wants an agreement, no matter what? Or is it as Motaghi makes it sound, that Obama and those acting for him are agents of Iran?

And so we see France taking the toughest line at the Iran nuclear talks. French diplomats are emphasizing the need for reliable verification before sanctions are lifted, and the need to insure Iran's nuclear research work is actually constrained by the agreement to avoid a quick "breakout" in Iran's nuclear weapons development. They are concerned, too, over Iran's failure to be forthcoming with verification data required under existing nuclear agreements with the United Nations.

It appears France isn't the only participant in the talks objection go Obama's decision. I guess that's why it was reported that the Obama Administration was threatening US allies for disagreeing with Obama's position in the Iran nuclear talks. The Administration doesn't care what anyone else thinks. It is desperate for a deal.

It may all be for nought. Iran has come up with a new demand. Saudi Arabia must stop bombing Iran's proxies in Yemen, they say, or no deal. But US and Saudi interests are aligned with each other in Yemen, so acceding to Iran's new demand requires abandoning both an ally and our own interests. Or "the U.S. could simply make more concessions to the mullahs as compensation for the dastardly action taken by the Saudis to support an American-backed government in a terrorist-infected state." Either way, it's not a pretty picture.

Perhaps President Obama shouldn't be so single-mindedly focused — so obsessed — with getting this agreement.

Friday, March 20, 2015

The New Mexico Legislature

New Mexico does not have a full-time legislature. Legislative sessions are 60 days long beginning in January following an election and 30 days long in the alternate years.

The House of Representatives has been doing its job this year, passing a significant number of bills. As of Wednesday — 56 days into the 60 day session — the Senate had passed (I think) just two: the "feed bill" providing their own pay for the session (always the first bill passed) and a bill to keep New Mexico permanently on Daylight Savings Time. (!) They seem to be sitting on (killing, tabling, etc.) everything else. They can't even pass a budget!

The cartoonist at the Albuquerque Journal describes this perfectly.

(The Roundhouse sitting on top of the basket is our beloved New Mexico capital building.)

Start the Rumor ...

"If we could convince the Chinese that Jihadists’ testicles are an aphrodisiac, in 10 years they could be extinct ... "
Makes perfect sense to me, but probably has something in it to insult just about everyone.