Gov. Haley ‘Seab Cooley’ Barbour Will Not Run For President

Republican Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour says he will not run for president in 2012. 

And since the south is not in doubt for a Republican nominee it is also safe to assume that Barbour will not be on the national ticket in 2012.

This is just all good news for those of us who do listen and follow the news and speeches of candidates.

I strongly suspect that there are many who could not listen for very long to the southern drawl that Haley Barbour seemingly can not seem to move beyond.   He sounds like some actor trying out for a bit part who is trying to hype the deep southern style of talking.  That might be cute for a movie, but from the national stage it would soon grow tiresome. 

If you think about it Barbour is not far from the southern sheriff in the James Bond film, “Live And Let Die.”

Worse yet it gives a bad image to much of the south that is more refined and intelligent than Haley Barbour sounds.  I can’t be the only one who thinks Barbour a throw-back to a time that was not really so grand in the south.

Every time I see Barbour, or hear him speak I can only think of the character Seab Cooley found in the “Advise and Consent” series written by Allen Drury.  If you are familiar with the character Seab Cooley, the racist southern senator who offers an old-fashioned stem-winding filibuster….back when filibusters actually meant something….you will know this is not a flattering statement.

This news about Barbour not being able to mount a presidential campaign might be the best news of the day.

Senator Rob Cowles 6th Republican Facing Recall Election!

Emily Mills made my day when I read this news nugget she posted on Dane 101.

A recall petition against Cowles will be submitted to the Government Accountability Board this Thursday, putting the number of Republican senators facing recall elections at six after signatures were delivered against Alberta Darling on April 21. Three Democratic senators – Dave Hansen, Robert Wirch, and Jim Holperin – have also hadrecall petitions filed against them.

That puts the total number of Wisconsin senators now facing recall elections at nine. There have only been four recall elections in the history of the state up to this point.

Does Donald Trump Have Deals In Chicago That Needs To Be Greased?

Snicker.  At least Donald Trump knows he can’t make it without Democrats to help him out.

Real estate billionaire Donald Trump gave Chicago mayoral candidate Rahm Emanuel  (former White House Chief of Staff for President Obama)$50,000 in December 2010, just months before hinting to the media he is seriously contemplating a bid to be the Republican Party’s 2012 presidential nominee.

President Obama’s Foreign Policy

This whole article will either catch your interest or bore you.

I offer the summation here.

This spring, Obama officials often expressed impatience with questions about theory or about the elusive quest for an Obama doctrine. One senior Administration official reminded me what the former British Prime Minister Harold Macmillan said when asked what was likely to set the course of his government: “Events, dear boy, events.”

Obama has emphasized bureaucratic efficiency over ideology, and approached foreign policy as if it were case law, deciding his response to every threat or crisis on its own merits. “When you start applying blanket policies on the complexities of the current world situation, you’re going to get yourself into trouble,” he said in a recent interview with NBC News.

Obama’s reluctance to articulate a grand synthesis has alienated both realists and idealists. “On issues like whether to intervene in Libya there’s really not a compromise and consensus,” Slaughter said. “You can’t be a little bit realist and a little bit democratic when deciding whether or not to stop a massacre.”

Brzezinski, too, has become disillusioned with the President. “I greatly admire his insights and understanding. I don’t think he really has a policy that’s implementing those insights and understandings. The rhetoric is always terribly imperative and categorical: ‘You must do this,’ ‘He must do that,’ ‘This is unacceptable.’ ” Brzezinski added, “He doesn’t strategize. He sermonizes.”

The one consistent thread running through most of Obama’s decisions has been that America must act humbly in the world. Unlike his immediate predecessors, Obama came of age politically during the post-Cold War era, a time when America’s unmatched power created widespread resentment. Obama believes that highly visible American leadership can taint a foreign-policy goal just as easily as it can bolster it. In 2007, Obama said, “America must show—through deeds as well as words—that we stand with those who seek a better life. That child looking up at the helicopter must see America and feel hope.”

In 2009 and early 2010, Obama was sometimes criticized for not acting at all. He was cautious during Iran’s Green Revolution and deferential to his generals during the review of Afghanistan strategy. But his response to the Arab Spring has been bolder. He broke with Mubarak at a point when some of the older establishment advised against it. In Libya, he overruled Gates and his military advisers and pushed our allies to adopt a broad and risky intervention. It is too early to know the consequences of these decisions. Libya appears to be entering a protracted civil war; American policy toward Mubarak frightened—and irritated—Saudi Arabia, where instability could send oil prices soaring. The U.S. keeps getting stuck in the Middle East.

Nonetheless, Obama may be moving toward something resembling a doctrine. One of his advisers described the President’s actions in Libya as “leading from behind.” That’s not a slogan designed for signs at the 2012 Democratic Convention, but it does accurately describe the balance that Obama now seems to be finding. It’s a different definition of leadership than America is known for, and it comes from two unspoken beliefs: that the relative power of the U.S. is declining, as rivals like China rise, and that the U.S. is reviled in many parts of the world. Pursuing our interests and spreading our ideals thus requires stealth and modesty as well as military strength. “It’s so at odds with the John Wayne expectation for what America is in the world,” the adviser said. “But it’s necessary for shepherding us through this phase.”

I Am Glad Katie Couric Ending Her Time At CBS Evening News

Who will be the next anchor of the CBS Evening News?  That is the big question that many are asking these days in light of the news that Katie Couric will soon be departing from the anchor desk.  I am hoping and trusting that a new anchor will be found that will be the opposite of the one being replaced.

This week, Katie Couric is finally planning to acknowledge she is leaving the CBS Evening News after five years.   Couric is in London this week, where she will be anchoring the network’s coverage of the royal wedding of Prince William and Kate Middleton.  Next week CBS will announce her successor.

I admit to not liking Couric as the anchor of the CBS Evening News, and so am looking forward to a new chapter at the network.  I have been critical of Couric for a number of years and for a variety of reasons. 

In July 2006 I was critical of Couric’s statement that she would not report from the ‘hot spots’ in the Middle East.

When  Wisconsin Assembly Republican Minority Leader Betty Jo Nelson told her colleagues many years ago that she did not want to extend the legislative floor period in December as it would cut into her cookie baking time she gave women in her profession a black eye. When Katie Couric stated that she would not go to the Middle East war zone as CBS News anchor due to family reasons she not only gave women journalists a black eye, but sent all news professionals into chills.

There is a duty as a journalist to go where the news is and often times that means into the lion’s den.  When Frank Reynolds, Dan Rather, Edward R Murrow, and countless other news reporters ventured into war zones and international hot spots they all had loved ones they worried about.  They had personal responsibilities to attend, but knew as reporters they all had a duty to the truth.  To see the truth of war you need to see the action, talk with the combatants, and understand the nuances of the conflict that can’t be understood by sitting in a safe studio in New York.

During the opening night in September 2006 of her run as CBS News anchor I was floored when international news stories were dropped so that she could offer photos during the newscast of  Tom Cruise’s baby!

Couric did lead off with Afghanistan which featured a female reporter and allowed more time than usual for the story to be told.  But after that, there appeared to be no other international news taking place.  (In reality Calderon was announced to be the new leader of our neighbor, Mexico.  The United Nations had strong words for the Sudanese government over the Darfur crisis, and British politicians were talking like crazy over when Prime Minister Blair was set to sail from 10 Downing Street)

Couric did not have time for those stories because Tom Cruise spawned a child and I supposedly wanted to see photos.  Whatever that “photo’ part of the newscast is all about I predict it will soon be jettisoned.  It was like a Led Zeppelin song during Sunday morning services.  I have already posted my thoughts on having a commentator segment during the news, and while I applaud that move, I do think there has to be some requirement for “gravitas” and not open it up for just every person with a wedgie. 

I understand the evening news broadcasts have changed and morphed from what they once were when I was a teenager.  But I would hope that the ones making the decisions at the Tiffany Network might recall what they once were, and what they once represented, and let that guide them when making the call about the next anchor of the CBS Evening News.