The Council Has Spoken – Watcher’s Council Results

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The Council has spoken, the votes have been cast, and the results are in for this week’s Watcher’s Council match up.

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This week’s winning essay,Joshuapundit’s -The Burning Man And The Walking Dead is my look at Islamic State, the recent immolation of a Jordanian Pilot, the reaction of certain western leaders and the uncomfortable truths of what they all signify.

Here’s a slice:

By now, the burning alive of captured Jordanian pilot Moaz al-Kasasbeh by Islamic State has become common knowledge.

His captors imprisoned him in a cage, doused it with gasoline, and made a trail of gas leading to it, so that he could see the flames approaching. They then lit it on fire, filmed his agony as it spread to the cage and engulfed it and then put out a slick,professionally produced video of the whole thing, released by Islamic State’s Al-Furqan media center. The video was titled ‘Healing the Believers’ Chests,’ which has a meaning worth exploring it detail.

The video itself started with footage of Jordan’s King Abdullah essentially declaring war on Islamic State and announcing his support for the anti-IS coalition. It then interspersed shots of al-Kasasbeh sitting in a darkened room and giving details on the air strikes he participated in against Islamic state with TV-style news reports showing the results of the airstrikes. And of course, an emphasis on scenes dead and dying child victims. It then cuts to the immolation of al-Kasasbeh.

The reaction from the West was illuminating. Both UK PM David Cameron and British Foreign Secretary Philip Hammond referred to this as ‘murder’. President Barack Hussein Obama’s statement didn’t even go that far:

“You know, I just got word of the video that had been released. I don’t know the details on the confirmation. Should in fact this video be authentic, it’s just one more indication of the viciousness and barbarity of this organization. And I think we will redouble the vigilance and determination on the part of global coalition to make sure that they are degraded and ultimately defeated. It also indicates the degree to which whatever ideology they are operating off of, it’s bankrupt. We’re here to talk about how to make people healthier and make their lives better. And this organization appears only interested in death and destruction. Thank you very much, everybody.”

Both PM Cameron and President Obama’s remarks reveal a great deal about their mindset. To Cameron and Hammond, this is a ‘murder’ carried out by criminals. President Obama didn’t even go that far, just seeing IS as some malcontents who need ‘increased vigilance’ and ‘determination’ to be thwarted. That’s how they see it..not as war, or as terrorism or, mercy no, anything to do with Islam, but just a band of criminals.

Want to know how Islamic State sees it?

As a wartime execution, as tactics, as fully justified by Islam and not as murder at all. And as barbaric as they are, they have a point. Murder, after all, has a personal element, for sex, for money or to shut someone up. This wasn’t murder.

Perhaps it’s worth remembering that Islamic State was originally armed and trained by the Obama Administration,  and that their enemies were Hezbollah, the Syrian forces of Basher Assad and the corrupt Shi’ite Iraqi government and its troops. They did not attack U.S. forces or those of any European country. The way they see it, we declared war on them, and without formally announcing it as the Qu’ran mandates. And it was the U.S. that intervened with air strikes, that has put together a loose coalition of Sunni autocrats to attack them and has been allowing Shi’ite Iran to intervene directly and wage war on them.

Of course, after the brutality Islamic State has made its trademark, especially  on any non-Muslims like Christians and Yazidis, a case could be made for going to war against them. But it wasn’t and we haven’t. All we’ve done is supply some arms and advisers to the Kurds and the Iraqi Shi’ite army and perform some air strikes and drone attacks.

Because to actually go to war against Islamic State might also involve certain problems, since literally everything Islamic State is doing is fully justified by the Qu’ran. That’s why the Obama Administration and UK PM David Cameron are ever so careful not even to whisper the word ‘Islam’  where IS is concerned.

Now, Jordan, being an Arab Muslim State did declare war on IS, and publicly. That’s exactly why Islamic State showed that footage of the King doing so in their video, why they were careful to include the Jordanian pilot’s confession of participating in the bombing attacks and why they were careful to show a number of brutalized children that IS  claimed were victims of those attacks.

You see, they learned this tactic from Hamas and Hezbollah. And while they probably may have figured out by now that it only works in creating an uproar in places like Europe and in the UN if it’s Israel defending itself, it will likely have that desired effect on many Muslims.

In fact some Arab members of the coalition were already easing themselves out, although the White House is claiming that they’re all still committed to defeating Islamic State and were just taking a breather.We’ll see, but it’s a fact right now that only Jordan is now more committed than it was after Moaz al-Kasasbeh’s death. That’s why the United Arab Emirates (UAE), a big part of the coalition,  just sent a squadron of F-16s to Jordan that the  Obama Administration just gifted the UAE as a ‘reward’ for joining up .

King Hussein’s renewed commitment can be understood because Jordan is a U.S. client state heavily dependent on foreign aid, and because al-Kasasbe’s death has been a unifying issue in an increasingly disunified kingdom. How long that lasts is anyone’s guess.

The Sunni autocrats are wary for a couple of reasons. First, as they see the Obama Administration becoming increasingly closer to Iran, they also understand now that the Sunni forces of Islamic State represent one of the few checks to Iran in the region.

Obama allowing Iranian backed Shi’te rebels to overthrow a Sunni ally of America in Yemen and essentially okaying an Iranian colony and a brand new strategic threat to the Saudis and the UAE to emerge was a major wake up call. The Saudis are now bracketed by Iranian client states from the north in Iraq and from the south by Yemen, and they fear being surrounded and overwhelmed.

The second reason is that the Saudis and the other Sunni autocracies are gradually becoming leery of fighting Islamic state has to do with their need to placate conservative religious constituencies in their own kingdoms. However barbaric Islamic State seems to us, their ideology isn’t ‘whatever it is’  to quote President Obama but a mainstream fundamental reading of the Qu’ran and Sharia.

Which of course, is the core of the matter.

Much more at the link.

In our non-Council category, the winner was former deputy assistant secretary of defense and former senior director of the National Security Council Michael Doran’s essay in Mosaic MagazineObama’s Secret Iran Strategy submitted by Joshuapundit.

What he’s done here is a must read. His premise – and I largely agree with him – is that President Obama’s appeasement of Iran isn’t merely inexperience. It’s not so much that there is no strategy in place, but that there has indeed been a consistent strategy, one based on this president’s malignant ideology that has been his goal since day one. And thus far more dangerous.

Here are this week’s full results. Only Ask Marion was unable to vote this week,but was not subject to the normal 2/3 vote penalty for not voting:

Council Winners

Non-Council Winners

See you next week!

Make sure to tune in every Monday for the Watcher’s Forum. and every  Tuesday morning, when we reveal the weeks’ nominees for Weasel of the Week!

And remember, every Wednesday, the Council has its weekly contest with the members nominating two posts each, one written by themselves and one written by someone from outside the group for consideration by the whole Council. The votes are cast by the Council, and the results are posted on Friday morning.

It’s a weekly magazine of some of the best stuff written in the blogosphere, and you won’t want to miss it...or any of the other fantabulous Watcher’s Council content.

And don’t forget to like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter..’cause we’re cool like that, y’know?

Our Weasel Of The Week!

It’s time to present this week’s statuette of shame, The Golden Weasel!!

Every Tuesday, the Council nominates some of the slimiest, most despicable characters in public life for some deed of evil, cowardice or corruption they’ve performed. Then we vote to single out one particular Weasel for special mention, to whom we award the statuette of shame, our special, 100% plastic Golden Weasel. This week’s nominees were all slime-worthy and disgusting,but in the end the overwhelming winner was….the envelope please…

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Superhero, Medal of Honor Winner,Captain Of The Starship Enterprise And Now Former NBC Newscaster Lyin’ Brian Williams!!

 The Right Planet : Brian Williams claimed the helicopter he was aboard was forced down after being hit by an RPG (rocket-propelled grenade) during the Iraq invasion in 2003. But military personnel who were there at the time claim Williams was not in the Chinook helicopter that received shrapnel damage from the RPG. Brian Williams then admitted his “mistake” in a lengthy Facebook post, blaming the ‘fog of memory over 12 years.’ Now, there are a number of allegations going around claiming Williams has a history of embellishing his experiences, including saving puppies from a fire, seeing dead bodies float down a river during Hurricane Katrina, and Katyusha rockets whistling past his helicopter while he reported from Israel in 2006. Maureen Dowd recently wrote NBC execs were warned a year ago Brian Williams was “constantly inflating his biography.” Interestingly, some so-called “insiders” allege Williams has been lying for years, and NBC knew all about it. If true, why did NBC choose to do nothing about it?

 Virginia Right! : My nomination this week is Lyin’ Brian Williams the NBC News Anchor who prefers to embellish the news and be the news rather than just read it.

I’m not sure what it is about the Middle East. All the Liberals seem to have delusions of grandeur and feel the need to put themselves in harm’s way, but only in their minds.

NBC already had credibility problems and replacing Williams will not be easy. There is no such thing as an honest left wing journalist. There are only those that have been caught lying and those who have yet to be caught lying.

Let’s have some fun and look at a few of the other Lyin’ Brian snapshotz:

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Now, all this does sort of make you stop and think. OK, Brian Williams has told a heckuva lot of lies,but then he’s not really a journalist – he just plays one on TV. He’s really just an actor hired for his ability to sell the Leftist narrative anyway. So why does he catch all kinds of hell and lose his job when those whom tell  lies that do real damage, like President Obama , the Clintons, and a host of others get a pass..usually by people like Brian Williams?

I think I understand why.

Think of the Left and its ideas as one big seedy carny, where the rubes and their wallets are lured by loud, impressive carnival barkers with a swift line of gab to patronize third rate acts and rigged games where it’s next to impossible to win any of the flashy prizes on display. Impossible, that is unless you’re a paid shill working for the carny to ‘win’ something and draw a crowd of people whom swallow the con and line up to try their luck.

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Ever been to one of those?

Now, if people really thought about it, they’d realize that the cooch dancer in the tent they bought  $5 tickets to see do her erotic snake dance wasn’t really a young, sexy blond like  the barker said but probably someone’s bored middle aged overweight wife whose act was nothing worth anywhere near that much. And they’d realize that they might be able to buy some of those stupid prizes at the games outright for far less than playing them for 20 minutes or a half hour was going to cost them, and in the end, they’d actually have something for their money instead of a sheepish grin and an empty wallet.

What reeled them in, of course, was belief, belief that they were actually going to get something special. Belief stoked by the barkers and the shills.

And that’s why Brian Williams got slammed.

You see,   Brian Williams was one of the barkers, the guy selling the con.  If one of those screws up and gets caught, well, you simply  hire another one, and maybe recycle somebody like Brian Williams a few months down the road when everybody’s forgotten all about what happened. Meanwhile, he can sweep up or clean out the concession stands or something else  backstage to make himself useful until his ‘comeback.’  

But  Hillary Clinton, Barack Obama, the other usual suspects and the crap they’re peddling are the con, and that’s very different. They’re the tawdry merchandise barkers like Williams, the crowd at MSNBC and the New York Times are selling. It’s one thing to axe a salesman or a shill who got clumsy and got caught. It’s another thing entirely when the rubes find out the product is garbage, the acts aren’t nearly as appealing as they were told they were and that all important  belief gets suspended. Then the marks stop showing up with money in hand, the whole carny is merely seen as the predatory animal it is and the show could go out of business.

So let’s award Brian Wilson his well-earned Golden Weasel.. If anything, what happened is that he forgot he was just the carnival barker rather than the talent itself. Trying to stretch things so that he was the show rather than just another shill was where he went wrong.

 Well, there it is! 

Check back next Tuesday to see who next week’s nominees for Weasel of the Week are!

Make sure to tune in every Monday for the Watcher’s Forum, and  remember, every Wednesday, the Council has its weekly contest with the members nominating two posts each, one written by themselves and one written by someone from outside the group for consideration by the whole Council. The votes are cast by the Council, and the results are posted on Friday morning.

It’s a weekly magazine of some of the best stuff written in the blogosphere, and you won’t want to miss it...or any of the other fantabulous Watcher’s Council content.

And don’t forget to like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter..’cause we’re cool like that, y’know?

Watcher’s Council Nominations – Toaster Edition

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Welcome to the Watcher’s Council, a blogging group consisting of some of the most incisive blogs in the ‘sphere, and the longest running group of its kind in existence. Every week, the members nominate two posts each, one written by themselves and one written by someone from outside the group for consideration by the whole Council.Then we vote on the best two posts, with the results appearing on Friday morning.

Council News:

This week, Seraphic Secret, The Political Commentator, The Pirate’s Cove and The People’s Cube earned honorable mention status with some great articles.

You can, too! Want to see your work appear on the Watcher’s Council homepage in our weekly contest listing? Didn’t get nominated by a Council member? No worries.

To bring something to my attention, simply head over to Joshuapundit and post the title and a link to the piece you want considered along with an e-mail address (mandatory, but of course it won’t be published) in the comments section no later than Monday 6PM PST in order to be considered for our honorable mention category. Then return the favor by creating a post on your site linking to the Watcher’s Council contest for the week when it comes out on Wednesday morning

Simple, no?

It’s a great way of exposing your best work to Watcher’s Council readers and Council members while grabbing the increased traffic and notoriety. And how good is that, eh?

So, let’s see what we have for you this week….

Council Submissions

Honorable Mentions

Non-Council Submissions

Enjoy! And don’t forget to like us on Facebook and follow us Twitter..’cause we’re cool like that!And don’t forget to tune in Friday for the results!

Our Weasel Of The Week Nominees!!

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It’s time once again for the Watcher’s Council’s ‘Weasel Of The Week’ nominations, where we pick our choices to compete for the award of the famed Golden Weasel to a public figure who particularly deserves to be slimed and mocked for his or her dastardly deeds during the week. Every Tuesday morning, tune in for the Weasel of the Week nominations!

Here are this weeks’ nominees….

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Gun Confiscator And Progressive Zombie Senator Chris Murphy ( D-CT)

The Noisy Room : I am nominating Sen. Chris Murphy (D-CT) who along with gun-hating nuts Sen. Richard Blumenthal (D-CT) and Sen.Robert Menendez (D-NJ) joined bill co-sponsor Rep. Elizabeth Esty (D-CN)to announce a bill that would limit magazine capacity to 10 rounds nationally.

Murphy stressed that he has not met ‘a single hunter or a single person who hunts for sport’ who needs more than 10 rounds. And being the Progressive whacko he is, Murphy is promoting an agenda to disarm the American people and he needs to obscure the facts. As such, he went to the old standard of demonizing lawful gun owners.

He said those who wanted high-capacity magazines were more interested in ‘arming against the government.’

So, Murphy is equating people who choose to exercise their Constitutional rights with militants who desire an armed insurgency. He’s saying that having a 30-round mag is the same thing as joining ISIS. The truth is nearly every gun owner in America is a responsible citizen, including the millions who own modern sporting rifles and 30-round magazines. It’s a pity for weasely Murphy that the darned Constitution keeps getting in his way.

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Superhero, Medal of Honor Winner,Captain Of The Starship Enterprise And Yes, NBC Newscaster Brian Williams!!

 The Right Planet : Brian Williams claimed the helicopter he was aboard was forced down after being hit by an RPG (rocket-propelled grenade) during the Iraq invasion in 2003. But military personnel who were there at the time claim Williams was not in the Chinook helicopter that received shrapnel damage from the RPG. Brian Williams then admitted his “mistake” in a lengthy Facebook post, blaming the ‘fog of memory over 12 years.’ Now, there are a number of allegations going around claiming Williams has a history of embellishing his experiences, including saving puppies from a fire, seeing dead bodies float down a river during Hurricane Katrina, and Katyusha rockets whistling past his helicopter while he reported from Israel in 2006. Maureen Dowd recently wrote NBC execs were warned a year ago Brian Williams was “constantly inflating his biography.” Interestingly, some so-called “insiders” allege Williams has been lying for years, and NBC knew all about it. If true, why did NBC choose to do nothing about it?

 Virginia Right! : My nomination this week is Lyin’ Brian Williams the NBC News Anchor who prefers to embellish the news and be the news rather than just read it.

I’m not sure what it is about the Middle East. All the Liberals seem to have delusions of grandeur and feel the need to put themselves in harm’s way, but only in their minds.

NBC already had credibility problems and replacing Williams will not be easy. There is no such thing as an honest left wing journalist. There are only those that have been caught lying and those who have yet to be caught lying.

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 Bookworm Room: Yes, yes, I know he’s been nominated a dozen times before, but President Barack Hussein Obama is the weasel-gift that just keeps giving. I mean, honestly, can you imagine any president before Obama going before the National Prayer Breakfast, a primarily Christian function, and castigating its members for being associated in some way with Crusades that took place a thousand years before? Because he’s not a member of the clergy, it was amazingly arrogant and disrespectful. Because he’s an ignoramus, it was amazingly factually wrong. And because he’s a Leftist, it attempted to deflect attention from present-day depredations by practitioners of the religion that shall not be named, by strongly implying that the religion that shall not be named is simply acting out a reasonable response to Christian provocation (a thousand years ago).

Frankly, for this one, Obama should get a special “Weasel into Eternity” award.

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Rep. G.K. Butterfied (D-NC), Cop Hater And Anti-Israel Head Of The
Congressional Black Caucus.

 JoshuaPundit: G.K. Butterfield is the head of the Black Congressional Caucus. Now,  he could be nominated for his campaign to have all shootings where a black person is killed in an altercation with police judged not by local  prosecutors but by a ‘special prosecutor’ appointed by the Obama Justice Department (because of course, the entire justice system is racist).

But this week, the weasel merits my attention for another reason. He’s a willing tool to bash Israel and support an anti-Israel president.

President Obama, in his continuing efforts to make Israel a partisan issue has been urging Democrats to boycott Israeli PM Benyamin Netanyahu’s upcoming speech on Iran’s nuclear weapons program…and one of the first calls went out to Butterfield, the head of the CBC, whom eagerly complied. So far, there are 11 other members who are boycotting the speech, including Maxine Waters, John Lewis, Muslim members Keith Ellison and Andre Carson, ex-Black Panther Bobby Rush, James Clyburn, Eddie Bernice Johnson, Barbara Lee, Charlie Rangel, Gregory Meeks, and there are at least 12-14 others I could name whom will probably follow along like John Conyers and Sheila Jackson Lee based on what they share with the ones who have already agreed to boycott, including Butterfield….their stridently  anti-Israel voting records.

In the grand scheme of things, it makes little difference. It’s not like Israel is losing any friends here, if you get my meaning. But some of these people ought to be ashamed of themselves, especially the older ones like John Lewis and Charlie Rangel. They’ve conveniently chosen to forget and ignore  that without Jewish funding, advocacy and help in organizing the civil rights movement, it might very well have taken many years more for the Civil Rights movement’s successes, if they happened at all. It remains a long overdue debt.

Perhaps it’s too much to expect even a  bit of gratitude, especially since there are several anti-Israel Leftist  Jews also boycotting the speech to give these members of the CBC cover. But I’d expect at least a little shame deep inside, for what little that’s a worth. Of course even  that won’t exist, since most of  the CBC will gladly follow Butterfield’s urging, and become willing soldiers in Obama’s anti-Israel campaign.

This  is truly despicably weasel behavior. And I hope in the end the inevitable payback hits them all hard and unmercifully.

Well, there it is. What a despicable group of Weasels…ANY OF THEM COULD WIN! Check back Thursday to see which Weasel walks off with the statuette of shame!

Make sure to tune in every Monday for the Watcher’s Forum.

And remember, every Wednesday, the Council has its weekly contest with the members nominating two posts each, one written by themselves and one written by someone from outside the group for consideration by the whole Council. The votes are cast by the Council, and the results are posted on Friday morning.

It’s a weekly magazine of some of the best stuff written in the blogosphere, and you won’t want to miss it...or any of the other fantabulous Watcher’s Council content.

 And don’t forget to like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter..’cause we’re cool like that, y’know?

Forum: Is Journalism Dead?

Every week on Monday morning , the Council and our invited guests weigh in at the Watcher’s Forum, short takes on a major issue of the day, the culture, or daily living. This week’s question : Is Journalism Dead?

 The Independent Sentinel : If journalism isn’t dead, it’s critically wounded. People are going to blogs more-and-more for their information out of desperation.

Journalists by-and-large are no longer reporting the news, they are manipulating it.

They aren’t journalists any longer, they are commentators, inventors of the news, and political operatives. They no longer serve as watchdogs and they aren’t embarrassed by that fact.

Journalists who don’t go along are brought into line or they are out the door.

Brian Williams is NBC’s Walter Mitty but there are far more dangerous posers out there who are transforming the way Americans think, when they are not dumbing them down that is.

Dan Rather is still revered.

We accept all these liars and there is no accountability when they lie.

Simply Jews : Journalism as a profession isn’t  dead and will never be dead. As any profession it requires professional education, extensive support (both on the ground and in the back office, including professional fact checking and, not to be forgotten nowadays, legal support). The tools and the means do change with time and technology progress, but it doesn’t mean that citizens journalism will be ever able to fully replace the professional one. At the best it will serve as a watchdog and as a complementary tool, but not as a replacement.

As for cases of sloppy or politically (or otherwise) skewed journalism: these are probably inevitable, as long as the live people, with all their conflicting motivations and all their strange impulses continue to work in the field. Why should, to take one example, Brian Williams signify the end of the journalism, when we had a much earlier example of Walter Duranty? And, not being a scholar of journalism history, I bet that such examples go many years back, way before Duranty. Rotten apples are an inevitable presence in any bushel of apples. And the fact that cases like these are discovered and aired by the fellow journalists is the best warranty of the general health of that profession. It is a keeper.

 JoshuaPundit : Journalism itself isn’t dead, but it’s become  rare, and more often than not an unpaid (or poorly paid) pursuit. The process started, I think,  when the Left took over most of the major journalism schools and having the proper ideology became increasingly important when it came to getting hired.. And as the the Left began increasingly using news as political propaganda at  institutions they controlled like the New York Times and the Associated Press wire services, which allow ‘reporters’ to simply rewrite whatever these organs put out and disperse it without actually questioning it or investigating it further.

It was the Left’s control of most of the mainstream media that led to alternative channels like FOX, the conservative blogosphere and talk radio. Would Rush Limbaugh have 23 million people listening to him every day if the major newspapers and the alphabet networks on TV were actually practicing journalism? If they hadn’t been caught in so many deliberate lies and misstatements? And the practice has never stopped.

There is still a market for journalism..in fact, I think people are hungry for it. But the Left isn’t going to give up its megaphone any time soon, nor do I see proper standards of  journalism or a differentiation between news reporting and commentary emerging in the near term.

GrEaT sAtAn”S gIrLfRiEnD : Gotta go with Mikey G on this here topic

What difference does this make? For many conservatives, the “mainstream media” is an epithet. Didn’t the Internet expose the lies of Dan Rather? Many on the left also shed few tears, preferring to consume their partisanship raw in the new media.

Most cable news networks have forsaken objectivity entirely and produce little actual news, since makeup for guests is cheaper than reporting. Most Internet sites display an endless hunger to comment and little appetite for verification. Free markets, it turns out, often make poor fact-checkers, instead feeding the fantasies of conspiracy theorists from “birthers” to Sept. 11, 2001, “truthers.” Bloggers in repressive countries often show great courage, but few American bloggers have the resources or inclination to report from war zones, famines and genocides.

The democratization of the media — really its fragmentation — has encouraged ideological polarization. Princeton University professor Paul Starr traced this process recently in the Columbia Journalism Review.

After the captive audience for network news was released by cable, many Americans did not turn to other sources of news. They turned to entertainment. The viewers who remained were more political and more partisan. “As Walter Cronkite prospered in the old environment,” says Starr, “Bill O’Reilly and Keith Olbermann thrive in the new one. As the diminished public for journalism becomes more partisan, journalism itself is likely to shift further in that direction.”

Cable and the Internet now allow Americans, if they choose, to get their information entirely from sources that agree with them — sources that reinforce and exaggerate their political predispositions.

And the whole system is based on a kind of intellectual theft. Internet aggregators (who link to news they don’t produce) and bloggers would have little to collect or comment upon without the costly enterprise of newsgathering and investigative reporting.

The old-media dinosaurs remain the basis for the entire media food chain. But newspapers are expected to provide their content free on the Internet. A recent poll found that 80 percent of Americans refuse to pay for Internet content.

There is no economic model that will allow newspapers to keep producing content they don’t charge for, while Internet sites repackage and sell content they don’t pay to produce.

Professional journalism is not like the buggy-whip industry, outdated by economic progress, to be mourned but not missed. This profession has a social value that is currently not reflected in its market value.

The Right Planet : Is Journalism dead? At first glance, it certainly looks that way. But, to be fair, there are some who attempt to do honest journalism (former CBS investigative reporter Sharyl Attkisson comes to mind). But they appear to be a dying breed.

So just what is journalism? As one who studied journalism in college, I was taught to simply ask the who, what, why, where, when and how, minus the editorializing. I’ve long been of the opinion the major networks (i.e. ABC, CBS, NBC, etc.) abandoned journalism long ago, replacing it with political advocacy masquerading as journalism–specifically, shilling for “progressive” causes and the Democrats. I’ve heard people on the right, and even the left (see Kirsten Powers), refer to the major news networks as “state-run media.” That says it all, if you ask me. So much for a free press, huh! I’ve noticed, at least in my own experience, that the mere act of simply asking the who, what, why, where, when and how is enough to send a number of leftist political advocates masquerading as journalists into an apoplectic fit. It’s as if many so-called journalists have merely become “narrative readers” shilling for all things progressive. Anything deviating from the leftist narrative is ridiculed, mocked, dismissed, marginalized, demonized, etc.

Syndicated columnist Ruben Navarrette, Jr., who writes for CNN, recently came out and unambiguously stated he believes there is a strong bias at the major networks (including CNN) that favors Democrats, while constantly demonizing Republicans. As far as what can be done to remedy the situation, I’m a big fan of competition. There’s a new news network called One America News Network (OANN) that appears to be trying to do some honest journalism, separating editorial content from reporting. I wish them success. I think we need more OANN’s right now. The leftist leanings of many so-called news organizations is undeniable, in my opinion. And those who would state otherwise are simply being disingenuous, or suffering from a severe case of denial.

The Glittering Eye : Journalism is alive and well. It’s committed on a regular basis by our very own Tom of Virginia Right! and Greg of Rhymes With Right. However, there are a number of aspects of journalism as it has been practiced that are extinct, on life support, or endangered that include:

- the 5Ws style of reporting
- beat reporters
- foreign bureaus
- copy writers
- big city dailies
- newspaper conglomerates financed with debt

The 5Ws style of reporting (who, what, where, when, why) has been considered obsolete for a generation. It has been replaced with the “point of view” style–something that used to be eschewed as editorialization. If you find it difficult to tell the difference between the news section and the opinion section that’s why. Only the largest newspapers have foreign bureaus anymore. They’ve been replaced with foreign stringers or the wire services and I hold that responsible for the very low quality of the reporting about what’s going on outside our borders. Beat reporters, too, are becoming increasingly rare.

The big noise in newspaper writing today is the automation of writing routine stories. Basically, copy writers and, largely, editors are becoming things of the past. They’ll be replaced by a computer program.

Big city dailies have collapsing for the last half century. In 1960 Chicago had a dozen different daily newspapers. Now it has two and those are both parts of large media conglomerates.

Something I’ve been predicting for some time is the decline of the debt-financed newspaper conglomerate. For thirty years we saw newspaper after newspaper gobbled up by one conglomerate or another, the purchase financed with debt, the newspapers themselves saddled with the debt, in essence paying for their own purchase, and the conglomerate taking cash out of the deal. It sounds like a good plan until you factor in the competition newspapers are getting from the Internet in general and Craiglist in particular. Nowadays the margins are so slim in the newspaper business it’s hard for the newspapers to service their debt. Small highly local newspapers are still doing okay. They don’t have the debt problems and their owners don’t expect to lead lifestyles of the rich and famous, much as stereotype of the newspaper business has been for over a century, when Joe Pulitzer invented the newspaper conglomerate.

These are all subjects I’ve written about from time to time over at The Glittering Eye. Before he landed a job as a lawyer my dad worked as an editorial writer for the old St. Louis Star and the insights he conveyed to me about the nature of the newspaper business seventy-five years ago have given me an interest in and a distinct viewpoint on the developments in the business today.

  Well, there you have it!

Make sure to tune in every Monday for the Watcher’s Forum. and every  Tuesday morning, when we reveal the weeks’ nominees for Weasel of the Week!

And remember, every Wednesday, the Council has its weekly contest with the members nominating two posts each, one written by themselves and one written by someone from outside the group for consideration by the whole Council. The votes are cast by the Council, and the results are posted on Friday morning.

It’s a weekly magazine of some of the best stuff written in the blogosphere, and you won’t want to miss it...or any of the other fantabulous Watcher’s Council content.

And don’t forget to like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter..’cause we’re cool like that, y’know?

The Council Has Spoken! Our Watcher’s Council Results

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The Council has spoken, the votes have been cast, and the results are in for this week’s Watcher’s Council match up.

“Islam isn’t in America to be equal to any other faith, but to become dominant. The Koran…should be the highest authority in America, and Islam the only accepted religion on Earth.” – CAIR co-founder Omar Ahmad

“Mohamed Akram, explained that the Brotherhood “must understand that their work in America is a kind of grand Jihad in eliminating and destroying the Western civilization from within and ‘sabotaging’ its miserable house by their hands and the hands of the believers so that it is eliminated and Allah’s religion is made victorious over all other religions.” – Robert Spencer, Muslim Brotherhood in America

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This week’s winning essay,The Noisy Room’sThe Muslim Brotherhood Calls For “A Long, Uncompromising Jihad” In Egypt After Meeting With US State Department is a well written account showing yet again how the Obama Administration empowers and supports Islamist at every turn. Here’s a slice:

It couldn’t be more obvious to me that Obama and his Administration are in bed with the Muslim Brotherhood. This past week, they held a confab at the State Department concerning their ongoing efforts to oppose the current government of President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi of Egypt, who rose to power following the overthrow of Mohamed Morsi, an ally of the Brotherhood, in 2013. And that just pissed Obama off to no end. Not hard to tell where his allegiances lie and they certainly aren’t with Israel.

Waleed Sharaby, who is a secretary-general of the Egyptian Revolutionary Council and a spokesman for Judges for Egypt, a group reported to have close ties to the Brotherhood, posed for a selfie in front of the State Department emblem while showcasing the Muslim Brotherhood Rabia four-finger sign. The caption under the pic says, “Now in the U.S. State Department. Your steadfastness impresses everyone.” The sign is named after Rabia Square in Cairo, where a large anti-coup sit-in was held for about forty days before it was dispersed. The sign is meant to express solidarity with the thousands wounded, killed and burnt by the Egyptian army during the dispersal and persistence of the anti-coup movement, whereas pro-coup activists, figures and media consider the sign to be a terrorist sign. Or should that be called an ‘armed insurgent’ sign since we are not allowed to call the Muslim Brotherhood, the Taliban or CAIR the scum bag terrorists they are? Confusing, huh? Only certain terrorists are actually terrorists according to Obama. Only the ones he doesn’t snuggle with. Actually, doing away with the word ‘terrorist’ altogether is straight out of CAIR’s playbook. Radical Islamists of a feather and all that.

The delegation not only included Sharaby, it also had on board Gamal Heshmat, a leading member of the Brotherhood and Abdel Mawgoud al-Dardery, a Brotherhood member who served as a parliamentarian from Luxor as part of its makeup. Maha Azzam, who was also part of the delegation, proclaimed that the talks were ‘fruitful.’ Yeah, I bet they were. Azzam was speaking at the Center for the Study of Islam and Democracy (CSID). This is yet another group accused of having close ties to the Brotherhood. Azzam also declared that the State Department expressed openness to engagement. Quoi? Engage in what precisely? So, does this mean that the Brotherhood is now just another arm of our State Department? It’s sure beginning to look that way.

Any fool can see that Obama is still supporting putting the Muslim Brotherhood in power in Egypt and wants al-Sisi dealt with and gone. State Department officials would not comment on the content of the talks, several of which consisted of public get-togethers (by invitation) in Maryland and Virginia last week. I’m sure they had cocktails, while discussing the ouster of al-Sisi and the destruction of Israel.

From Patrick Poole:

Patrick Poole, a terrorism expert and national security reporter, said the powwow at the State Department could be a sign that the Obama administration still considers the Brotherhood politically viable, despite its ouster from power and a subsequent crackdown on its members by Egyptian authorities.

“What this shows is that the widespread rejection of the Muslim Brotherhood across the Middle East, particularly the largest protests in recorded human history in Egypt on June 30, 2013, that led to Morsi’s ouster, is not recognized by the State Department and the Obama administration,” Poole said.

“This is a direct insult to our Egyptian allies, who are in an existential struggle against the Muslim Brotherhood, all in the pursuit of the mythical ‘moderate Islamists’ who the D.C. foreign policy elite still believe will bring democracy to the Middle East,” Poole said.

Two days after the delegation meeting, the Muslim Brotherhood called for “a long, uncompromising Jihad” in Egypt. They released an official statement calling on their supporters to “prepare” for Jihad, according to an independent translation of the statement first posted on Tuesday.

In typical Muslim Brotherhood fashion, the releases in Arabic and English contradicted each other. Look to the Arabic translation for their true intentions. The English release is propagandic taqiyya for the infidels and nothing but lies:

A call for “a long, unrelenting Jihad” appeared on the Brotherhood’s Arabic language website Tuesday. The statement, first reported Friday by the Washington Free Beacon’s Adam Kredo, starts by invoking a passage from the Quran: “And prepare against them whatever you are able of power and of steeds of war by which you may terrify the enemy of God and your enemy and others besides them whom you do not know but whom Allah knows. And whatever you spend in the cause of God will be fully repaid to you, and you will not be wronged.”

On its English language website Friday, the Brotherhood struck a dramatically different tone in an article in which it “Reiterates Commitment to Non-Violence.”

[…]

The English posting says Brothers who stray from non-violence “no longer belong in the Brotherhood, and the group no longer accepts them, no matter what they do or say.”

As the IPT has shown, offering mixed messages in Arabic and English is routine for the Brotherhood.

Much more at the link.

In our non-Council category, the winner was Michael Totten with a great piece in the City JournalChris Kyle wasn’t a savage; he killed savages. submitted by Joshuapundit. The film “American Sniper” seems to have sparked a visceral reaction in the Left, regardless of whatever cinematic or artistic merits it might or might not have. Michael Totten, as usual, cuts to the very bone of the matter. Recommended.

Here are this week’s full results. Only Ask Marion was unable to vote this week, but was nit subject to the usual 2/3 vote penalty for not voting.:

Council Winners

Non-Council Winners

See you next week!

Make sure to tune in every Monday for the Watcher’s Forum. and every  Tuesday morning, when we reveal the weeks’ nominees for Weasel of the Week!

And remember, every Wednesday, the Council has its weekly contest with the members nominating two posts each, one written by themselves and one written by someone from outside the group for consideration by the whole Council. The votes are cast by the Council, and the results are posted on Friday morning.

It’s a weekly magazine of some of the best stuff written in the blogosphere, and you won’t want to miss it...or any of the other fantabulous Watcher’s Council content.

And don’t forget to like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter..’cause we’re cool like that, y’know?

Our Weasel Of The Week!!

Fanfare, everyone!It’s time to present this week’s statuette of shame, The Golden Weasel!!

Every Tuesday, the Council nominates some of the slimiest, most despicable characters in public life for some deed of evil, cowardice or corruption they’ve performed. Then we vote to single out one particular Weasel for special mention, to whom we award the statuette of shame, our special, 100% plastic Golden Weasel. This week’s nominees were all slime-worthy,but in the end the winner by a nose was….the envelope please…

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Obama Consigliere And Puppet master Valerie Jarrett!

Virginia Right! : Valerie Jarrett for being the driver of hate behind Obama’s animosity towards Israel and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

Western Journalism wrote:

The real questions are: Who is pushing this agenda? Who is pushing for Iran to go nuclear? And, who is so scared of Netanyahu briefing Congress and the American people on what Iran is up to?

The answer is Valerie Jarrett, Obama’s Rasputin. This is where the anger from the White House is coming from.

 Most people know she was born in Iran. This in itself does not disqualify her from advising the president, but it does open her agenda to scrutiny. There have been reports that she has been secretly negotiating with Iran on the nuclear issue, but the White House has vehemently denied it.

I, for one, don’t trust a thing this administration says.

Now, the Jerusalem Post is reporting that the Obama administration has already given Iran eighty percent of what it has demanded in the negotiations.  The “deal” to be reached will leave Iran within months of going nuclear if they decide to move forward. All of the centrifuges will remain under their control.

Well, there it is! 

Check back next Tuesday to see who next week’s nominees for Weasel of the Week are!

Make sure to tune in every Monday for the Watcher’s Forum, and  remember, every Wednesday, the Council has its weekly contest with the members nominating two posts each, one written by themselves and one written by someone from outside the group for consideration by the whole Council. The votes are cast by the Council, and the results are posted on Friday morning.

It’s a weekly magazine of some of the best stuff written in the blogosphere, and you won’t want to miss it...or any of the other fantabulous Watcher’s Council content.

And don’t forget to like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter..’cause we’re cool like that, y’know?

Watcher’s Council Nominations – ‘Who’s A Terrorist?’ Edition

Michael Ramirez Cartoon

Welcome to the Watcher’s Council, a blogging group consisting of some of the most incisive blogs in the ‘sphere, and the longest running group of its kind in existence. Every week, the members nominate two posts each, one written by themselves and one written by someone from outside the group for consideration by the whole Council.Then we vote on the best two posts, with the results appearing on Friday morning.

Council News:

The Council In Action!!

  • Tom White of VA Right continues his rise to blogging stardom..this week, he was the subject of a major feature in the Richmond Times Dispatch, as well as appearing on WLEE Mewstalk 990 AM for an interview on the Brother Craig show, which broadcasts during prime drive time. Talk about making waves!
  • My latest is up at the Times of Israel. If I can be permitted a small boast, it’s currently their most read story as I write this.
  • This week, Le·gal In·sur·rec·tion, The People’s Cube, The Pirate’s Cove and Seraphic Secret earned honorable mention status with some great articles.
  • You can, too! Want to see your work appear on the Watcher’s Council homepage in our weekly contest listing? Didn’t get nominated by a Council member? No worries.

    To bring something to my attention, simply head over to Joshuapundit and post the title and a link to the piece you want considered along with an e-mail address (mandatory, but of course it won’t be published) in the comments section no later than Monday 6PM PST in order to be considered for our honorable mention category. Then return the favor by creating a post on your site linking to the Watcher’s Council contest for the week when it comes out on Wednesday morning

    Simple, no?

    It’s a great way of exposing your best work to Watcher’s Council readers and Council members while grabbing the increased traffic and notoriety. And how good is that, eh?

    So, let’s see what we have for you this week….

    Council Submissions

    Honorable Mentions

    Non-Council Submissions

    Enjoy! And don’t forget to like us on Facebook and follow us Twitter..’cause we’re cool like that!And don’t forget to tune in Friday for the results!

    Our Weasel Of The Week Nominees!

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    It’s time once again for the Watcher’s Council’s ‘Weasel Of The Week’ nominations, where we pick our choices to compete for the award of  the famed Golden Weasel to a public figure  who particularly deserves to be slimed and mocked for his or her dastardly deeds during the week. Every Tuesday morning, tune in for the Weasel of the Week nominations!

    Here are this weeks’ nominees….

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    CBS ’60 Minutes’ TV Personality, Wascally Wacist and Sleazeball Steve Krofts!!

     The Noisy Room : My nominee this week is 60 Minute’s Steve Kroft for not only being a
    cheating slime bucket, but for also being uber paranoid of right-wing zealots catching him and being dumb enough to actually get caught. Let’s also not forget he’s racist – he didn’t want to be seen with Harvard
    educated Lisan Goines, because she was black and the differences between them would be too ‘noticeable.’ Good enough to dance between the sheets, but not good enough for public appearances.

    An absolute Obama suck up, Kroft bragged of being best buds with Obama and how Obama actually hates Eric Holder. Now that’s journalism for ya!

    Oh yeah, baby

    The Manhattan mistress of married ’60 Minutes’ newsman Steve Kroft
    sent him sexy lingerie photos during their affair, but he insisted
    she dress low-key ‘like Laura Bush’ with him in public to keep
    things hush-hush, according to newly revealed texts.

    A source close to Kroft’s lover told The Post that the TV hotshot
    was ‘really paranoid about right-wing zealots finding out about
    their affair’ and using the tawdry details to try to destroy his
    career and CBS.

    The sexts between Kroft and Lisan Goines (obtained exclusively by
    The Post)include a nude selfie of the lusty lawyer that she sent
    to her much-older lover. Other photos show her wearing a red thong
    and busting out of a black bra.

    But “dress in Washington is Either professional or Laura Bush,”
    Kroft messaged his illicit squeeze in advance of their September
    2011 play date at the Park Hyatt on 24th and M streets in DC.

    “Don’t dress like Beyonce,” Kroft warned the Harvard-educated
    beauty, according to the source.

    In addition to fearing the zealots, Kroft, 69, was “beyond
    terrified” that his wife of 23 years, fellow journalist Jennet
    Conant, would find out about the affair, the source added.

    Kroft needed absolutely no help in destroying himself. He excelled at
    it. You’d think a 69 year-old would know better. His wife is going to
    literally kill him and it serves the weasel right. Now, I have to go
    bleach my eyes and knock myself unconscious hoping I can forget this
    slug’s sexcapades.

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    Hack Writer And Rebel Without A Clue Sheldon Richman!!

    The Independent Sentinel : Reason writer Sheldon Richman has some stellar weasel qualities.

    First he compared American hero Chris Kyle with the mad shooter of Sandy Hook, Adam Lanza, saying Kyle ‘went to a place he had no right to be, heavily armed, and murdered people who never threatened him at home.’ He added that the victims were ‘defenseless like Lanza’s victims’.

    Not satisfied with this idiocy, he out-weasled even himself with several responses to tweets. He was asked in a tweet, ‘So, to be clear. You are saying that if it came down to an Iraqi or #ChrisKyle, you would rather Kyle have been killed?’

    He tweeted back, several times, “If that’s the only choice, yes. He invaded, trespassed.”

    He followed up by tweeting he was ‘no kind of capitalist’.

    No surprises there!

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     Seattle Seahawks Coach Pete Carroll!

      Bookworm Room : He presides over what may be the most boorish team in the league, he’s probably a Truther, and he made the worst call in Super Bowl history.  None of that will change the course of the world, but he sure is weaselly.

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    Obama Consigliere And Puppet master Valerie Jarrett!

    Virginia Right! : Valerie Jarrett for being the driver of hate behind Obama’s animosity towards Israel and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

    Western Journalism wrote:

    The real questions are: Who is pushing this agenda? Who is pushing for Iran to go nuclear? And, who is so scared of Netanyahu briefing Congress and the American people on what Iran is up to?

    The answer is Valerie Jarrett, Obama’s Rasputin. This is where the anger from the White House is coming from.

     Most people know she was born in Iran. This in itself does not disqualify her from advising the president, but it does open her agenda to scrutiny. There have been reports that she has been secretly negotiating with Iran on the nuclear issue, but the White House has vehemently denied it.

    I, for one, don’t trust a thing this administration says.

    Now, the Jerusalem Post is reporting that the Obama administration has already given Iran eighty percent of what it has demanded in the negotiations.  The “deal” to be reached will leave Iran within months of going nuclear if they decide to move forward. All of the centrifuges will remain under their control.

     Well, there it is. What a despicable group of  Weasels…ANY OF THEM COULD WIN! Check back Thursday to see which Weasel walks off with the statuette of shame!

    Make sure to tune in every Monday for the Watcher’s Forum.

    And remember, every Wednesday, the Council has its weekly contest with the members nominating two posts each, one written by themselves and one written by someone from outside the group for consideration by the whole Council. The votes are cast by the Council, and the results are posted on Friday morning.

    It’s a weekly magazine of some of the best stuff written in the blogosphere, and you won’t want to miss it...or any of the other fantabulous Watcher’s Council content.

    And don’t forget to like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter..’cause we’re cool like that, y’know?

    Forum: Who Will Be The 2016 Nominees? Whom Would You Like To See?

    Every week on Monday morning , the Council and our invited guests weigh in at the Watcher’s Forum, short takes on a major issue of the day, the culture, or daily living. This week’s question: Who Will Be The 2016 Nominees? Whom Would You Like To See?

    GrEaT sAtAn”S gIrLfRiEnD : WI Gov Scott Walker will run, fight and win with an insurgent campaign that will take him to the top of the ticket.

    As best understood, the Dem party’s nod is all HRC’s to lose – and she will lose it again. Not to any fresh, articulate speaker from out of nowhere, but to the avuncular VP au courrant – Joe Biden

    Way too early to cite any polls and national polls won’t mean much as we have no national primary. Just a precog fueled by Raman noodles, premium moonshine, Xanex, vaping and decaff Earl Grey tea by Twinnings.

    Laura Rambeau Lee,Right Reason : With Romney dropping out of the 2016 presidential race the media wants us to believe Jeb Bush is the GOP frontrunner.

    It is still very early to make any predictions. I would like to see a current or former governor get the nomination and for me Governor Scott Walker would be an excellent candidate. He has been tried and tested and successfully turned around the state of Wisconsin. If he had any skeletons in his closet they surely would have surfaced by now. We know the media will be relentless in their pursuit of anything to topple the conservative candidate. As a progressive, Jeb Bush will not be scrutinized so intently.

    One of the names being bandied about is Senator Marco Rubio, and I am taking this opportunity to share why he should not be the nominee.

    In 2010 Rubio courted tea party conservatives in Florida, who volunteered and worked tirelessly to get him elected to the Senate. He said the right things and convinced us he was the real deal, a true conservative. Once elected, however, he quickly immersed himself in the GOP establishment and has proven to be a big government progressive. His work with the Gang of 8 in support of comprehensive immigration reform, a/k/a amnesty, without first focusing on sealing the borders, pretty much sealed it for us.

    Recently, Marco Rubio made an appearance on The Daily Show with Jon Stewart. The “crown prince” of the Tea Party movement is making the rounds feeling out a potential run for president in 2016. He is also promoting his book, ‘American Dreams: Restoring Economic Opportunity for Everyone’.

    On the show, he proposed that the Earned Income Tax Credit should be expanded. Currently this is a government subsidy awarding thousands of dollars to families if they qualify when filing their yearly income tax returns. Senator Rubio suggested it should be a wage enhancement for those who earn under a certain amount of money, whether they have families or are single, and that it should be included in every paycheck. This sounds more like a corporate bailout and a way to make people comfortable in their current economic status. Corporations like happy drones and Senator Rubio seems to have found the answer through government largesse.

    We know the 21st century presents serious economic challenges, but conservatives also know bigger government and wealth redistribution is not the answer, unless the question is socialism.

    When questioned by Jon Stewart, Senator Rubio asserted what he proposed does not go against the conservative beliefs of the tea party. He said he was taking limited government and free enterprise and moving it into the 21st century to answer the challenges of the 21st century.

    To this and his other “limited government” proposals, Jon Stewart told Senator Rubio “In your heart you’re a Democrat.”

    Not only should Rubio not be considered as a potential presidential candidate in 2016, he should lose any bid for reelection as senator from Florida.

    JoshuaPundit : Early days,perhaps but here’s how I see it,with an eye not only towards winning but towards what the next president is going to be faced with handling after 3 poor to abysmal presidents in a row, especially this last one.

     Mitt Romney dropping out was a good sign. As I said about him from day one, he’s an extremely decent man who would have made a better than average president. Unfortunately, his decency worked against him. He was an abysmal candidate in2012 and would have been awful in 2016.

    I will not even discuss the likes of Jeb Bush or Chris Christy. Either would be awful, as candidates or as presidents.

    To my mind, while I like some of  Marco Rubio’s positions, anyone green and naive enough to let Chuck Schumer play him the way Jimi Hendrix used to play his strats is not someone I want in the Oval Office.

    Ted Cruz is an absolutely brilliant man, a charismatic speaker and someone I think would make an outstanding president..with one unfortunate caveat. A president must also be a better than average politician. Senator Cruz will undoubtedly get there fairly soon,but his public life thus far has seen a number of public spats and confrontations with other Republicans that would have been better handled smoothing things over behind closed doors. Reagan was a master at this. Although I’d vote for him, I don’t see him getting the nomination in 2016, but he would make a superb VP, with four years on the job to learn this necessary skill and take over eight years later.

    A lot of people underestimate Mike Huckabee. But remember that he put together a viable candidacy on a shoestring and won in Iowa as a virtual unknown. His biggest strengths are the way he comes across in person and on the air, coupled with his populist economic stance that’s a natural winner. And after 4 years as a regular FOX commentator, he’s now no longer an unknown.

    While I have my differences with some of his positions, he also has executive experience as a governor, solid principles, a fair amount of drive and self-discipline ( not just anybody could lose over 100 pounds without lipo or a bypass and keep it off) and he has surprising amount of  common sense on foreign policy, being one of the few candidates who understands the global jihad. Definitely not the worst out there,and his stint on FOX has given his communications skills a decent polish.

    I would have loved to see Sarah Palin run in 2012. She would have destroyed Barack Obama and been one of America’s great presidents. That aside, I think her target in 2016 isn’t the White House, but Lisa Murkowski’s Alaska senate seat.

    I like Rand Paul.He is definitely not his father, he has a fair amount of courage and a decent sense of humor (the Aqua Buddah LOL!), and a lot of commonsense ideas on getting  government off our backs. In spite of his presumed isolationist stance, based on legislation he’s proposed and comments he made while he was in Israel that I heard about directly from people whom were there,  I don’t think he’s at all adverse to pulling the trigger when he feels it’s needed. He merely wants to think before he goes in and wants wars (as opposed to preemptive strikes) declared the way we used to do it – by congress. I agree with him.

    Scott Walker is the latest rage when it comes to Republican candidates, and deservedly so. He’s been a courageous, successful  governor who not only understood that the Left needs to be fought, not accommodated. And he  won,  in a state that by no means is pure Red. He’s been an outstanding governor, he’s fiscally sound, he seems to have overcome some of his charisma challenges and he’s definitely ready for prime time. One major negative point for me is his stance on illegal aliens.  While he’s for firm border control, he also favors allowing most of the aliens already here to stay. In a way, this actually  helps him because it gives him a certain stance as a ‘compromise’ candidate the GOP can unify behind.

    Another question I have about Scott Walker concerns his views on foreign policy, which I haven’t heard him speak about too much. National security is going to rear its ugly head in 2016 as an issue, so we’ll see.

     The Razor :At this point let me tell you who I DO NOT want to see.

    Jeb Bush – Another Bush? This is the best the GOP can do? Really? After all the governorships the GOP has controlled, we’re going with another Bush? Why? To recycle bumper stickers?

    Mike Huckabee – Hasn’t Jesus told him not to run yet? I’m sure he’d make a great preacher, but as president of an agnostic (on my best days) I’d rather he avoided this bully pulpit.

    Donald Trump – A man who starts companies who then file for bankruptcy is the last thing we need at the helm of our country. Besides we don’t need 4 years of the Apprentice in the White House after having an amateur spend 8 there.

    Ben Carson – A straight talker who would likely make a great Surgeon General until President Rand Paul cut the position. Doesn’t have the experience for the presidency, and 8 years of Obama has proven the importance of having a pro in the Oval Office. I’d have him as my GP in a heartbeat, but my president? Sorry Dr. Ben…

    Sarah Palin – I like Sarah Palin. I like her a lot, and she drives Democrats absolutely wackadoodle, and watching the party dedicated against the “war on women” declare a “war on a woman” makes for good schadenfreude, so good it should become a flavor of Ben & Jerry’s ice cream. But unfortunately being mayor of a small Alaskan town and a RINO’s VP candidate makes for a pretty thin resume. I’m tired of the White House being treated as a learning experience.

    Which leaves me with:
    Rick Perry – A bit dottering but so was early Reagan. Texas has become America’s Germany while California and New York look increasingly like Greece.

    Rand Paul – A sane version of his father, and a fellow libertarian who would free the GOP from social conservatives. But senators aren’t governors and the best leaders our nation has had come from state capitals.

    Finally, my current favorite – Scott Walker. As Rich Cromwell noted in his November Federalist piece, Scott Walker doesn’t seem very exciting on the exterior, but he does “sit on a throne made of the skulls of his enemies,” and that more than anything is what our party needs in 2016. No gimmicks. No tricks. Just victory.

     Well, there you have it!

    Make sure to tune in every Monday for the Watcher’s Forum. and every  Tuesday morning, when we reveal the weeks’ nominees for Weasel of the Week!

    And remember, every Wednesday, the Council has its weekly contest with the members nominating two posts each, one written by themselves and one written by someone from outside the group for consideration by the whole Council. The votes are cast by the Council, and the results are posted on Friday morning.

    It’s a weekly magazine of some of the best stuff written in the blogosphere, and you won’t want to miss it...or any of the other fantabulous Watcher’s Council content.

    And don’t forget to like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter..’cause we’re cool like that, y’know?