State of the Union

Obama's State of the Union's Most Despicable Moment: Using Wounded Vets as Props

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The most emotionally powerful moment in Barack Obama's State of the Union address was also its most morally dubious. The nation's commander in chief drew attention to a wounded warrior while eliding any responsibility for placing the young man in harm's way.

A record number of Americans – 60 percent – think the government is too powerful, says Gallup, which also finds a near record low percentage trusts the government "to do what is right." Who can blame us? The government under Republican and Democratic presidents has spent virtually the entire 21st century sending young men and women to fight in ill-defined and unsuccessful elective wars. That's bad enough, but then to use them as props in political speeches? That's positively obscene….

[Army Ranger Cory] Remsburg's sacrifice is plain to see: He has a long, visible scar on his head and, the president  explained, he "is still blind in one eye" and "still struggles on his left side." Regardless of political affiliation and ideological positioning, all Americans can appreciate Remsburg's willingness to serve while questioning whether President Obama is right to use such a soldier as an applause line in a political speech….

What exactly was Remsburg – or any of his fellow soldiers – fighting for in Afghanistan? The president didn't offer any explanation in his State of the Union address and you'd search his past speeches in vain for a clear and compelling reason, too.

That's from my newest piece at Time.com's Ideas sections.

Read the whole thing here.

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  1. …still struggles on his left side.

    If you buy into the talk about their anti-war beliefs, then so does Obama.

    1. Using wounded war vets to set up his pun was the most despicable moment of Fist’s comment.

      1. He’s a self aggrandizing monster.

        1. Let me know when he lies us into a war.

          1. He tried, asshat, remember Syria? But even his most sycophant ass kissers, like you, wouldn’t go along with it and couldn’t convince the American people.

            1. No, chemical weapons were used in fact. He never really wanted war there and Putin gave him an out clause.

              Just like the warmongers in the GOP won’t accept the nuke drawdown in Iran Obama wants. They are nuts and you support the worst like John Bolton and the Bushpigs.

              1. I support John Bolton and the Bushpigs?

                Do you have some documentation of that, you know, when I said that?

                Lamest.comeback.ever.

                And any US president who has to wait for the Russian president to make his decisions for him is way lower than lame.

                You really don’t have any sort of valid excuses for you dear leader, do you?

                1. Look, by any calculation Obama is easily better than Bush.

                  We happen to be talking about war/foreign policy where Iraq is the mistake of my lifetime – not even close. The cost, the fabrication of the causus belli, the crappy ‘Bush Doctrine’, and the death toll is far worse than any US war since the 60s.

                  Admit that. Just that. It is self-evident.

                  1. Look, by any calculation Obama is easily better than Bush.

                    Meh, you bore me too much. That is all.

                  2. So you were born after Vietnam?

                  3. “Look, by any calculation Obama is easily better than Bush.”

                    Obama is Bush in black-face.

              2. He never really wanted war there and Putin gave him an out clause.

                LMAO…no he didn’t really mean anything he said. If you only knew Barry like us you could see what he really means.

                1. Obama never wanted a war. He never actually wants anything that would require him to make a decision/lead/be the President.

                  He was solely concerned with getting elected, twice, now he is solely concerned with his legacy. Nothing else. He will end the Afghanistan war just before the 2014 elections. He is keeping it going now so he can announce it before the elections and look like a hero. He will not discuss it with the Generals. He will do it by Executive Order.

              3. Palin’s Buttplug|1.29.14 @ 9:48AM|#
                …”He never really wanted war there and Putin gave him an out clause.”
                Go fuck your daddy.

              4. No, chemical weapons were used in fact.

                Just not, as far as we can tell, by the Syrian government. Read a story (too lazy to google a link) that they analyzed the fragments from the scene, and Syrian positions would have been out of range to use that particular rocket.

                I guess “Obama lied, people yawned” is an improvement over “Bush lied, people died.”

              5. Wow, you must suffer from permanent vertigo given all the spinning you engage in.

                He made clear he wanted to go into Syria.

              6. No, chemical weapons were used in fact.

                Nobody knows who actually used them.

          2. 8 hot dogs of choice
            One package of 8 crescent rolls
            Two slices of deli American cheese

            Slice hot dogs lengthwise. Insert sliver of cheese. Roll each dog in one crescent roll triangle. Bake at 375*F until roll is golden brown. Let stand for a couple of minutes before serving.

          3. Uh, I was talking about Fist.

            1. Dammit threading I was posting a recipe in response to Shrike…

            2. Besides, to it, every reference is a coded attack on his God King… it is understandable the it would miss the obvious.

          4. He was talking about Fist, you fucking moron. Although the fact that you saw the phrase “self aggandizing monster” and immediately assumed Tim was talking about your man-crush is telling.

          5. Right, because Libya never happened. But I guess that was just humanitarian kinetic no-fly zones. I guess Quaddafi’s palace shouldnt have been flying in the no-fly zone, because we totes werent out to watch him get knife-sodomised, right?

            But at least it all worked out and Libya is now a safe and stable haven of democracy wherein no US interests will ever be attacked.

      2. And I choose to bypass you ineffectual commenters.

        1. Shrike thinks you have the authority and power to lie us into a war? Nice! Oh wait, he’s talking about his King of Kings, Bringer of Light to the Universes. Got it.

  2. “What exactly was Remsburg ? or any of his fellow soldiers ? fighting for in Afghanistan?”

    If Obama had to admit defeat, it might effect his popularity ratings and have some kind of negative impact, however small, on the Democrats in the midterms.

    And isn’t that what’s really important?

    1. Those weapons contracts don’t write themselves you know.

      1. See!

        And here you people thought that American troops were suffering and dying in Afghanistan for no reason.

  3. Palin’s Buttplug|1.28.14 @ 10:19PM|#

    OK, enough of using the poor fool as a prop.

    1. He could be the next Joe the Plumber, or Fluke the Slut.

      Cory the Scarred Tribute to Obama’s Persistent Imperial War-footing.

      1. No, no, Fluke was concerned about using birth-control pills to cure cancer or something, not as birth control.

        1. Sure, but the persona she played for the Democrats ended up being a crude caricature, much like Joe the Plumber’s.

    2. I wouldn’t call that hero a fool.

      And you know what makes it so easy for Obama to keep doing what he’s doing in Afghanistan, Shrike?

      It’s that there are so many people out there who buy Obama’s excuse that this is Bush’s war–and believe it!

      Afghanistan is Bush’s fault, isn’t it Shrike? You can’t blame Obama for what happens in Afghanistan because he’s just continuing what Bush did–it’s all Bush’s fault, isn’t it Shrike?

      So, all the political risk for Obama is in admitting defeat, isn’t it? Because Obama has convinced so many gullible, stoopid people that Bush having done something stupid somehow makes it okay for Obama to keep doing the same stupid thing, too!

      You wouldn’t happen to know anything about that kind of thinking, would you Shrike?

      1. According to Robert Gates the Pentagon loves the Afghan War and Obama only weakly supported it to placate them.

        1. He’s the Commander-in-Chief.

          He’s been that for more than five years.

          He’s been fighting the War in Afghanistan for longer than World War II lasted.

          You think he’s not responsible for the War in Afghanistan under his watch because it’s the Pentagon’s fault?

          If Obama is working for the Pentagon, if Obama is afraid of the Pentagon, then he has no business being the president.

        2. Obama only weakly supported it to placate them.

          Then he’s a fucking pussy and a pathetic manager. And that does not relieve him of responsibility.

          1. Exactly. Which is it bozo (Palin)? Obama is no leader.

        3. Palin’s Buttplug|1.29.14 @ 9:51AM|#
          “According to Robert Gates the Pentagon loves the Afghan War and Obama only weakly supported it to placate them.”

          He WANTS to do good! (soob) But those mean men around him (soob)! The fuehrer didn’t know about these things! (soooob)
          Go fuck your daddy

        4. That’s a great reason…

        5. That makes it better. The guy is fucked up because Obama wanted to placate subordinates at the Pentagon.

        6. According to Robert Gates the Pentagon loves the Afghan War and Obama only weakly supported it to placate them.

          As someone who has lost several friends in Afghanistan, fuck you, and fuck him too.

        7. I agree with this. Everything he does is weak.

          But, he holds the most important and powerful position in the history of the world (other than if he were the Fed Chairman, of course) and he does things weakly, by your own admission. This shouldn’t be the case.

          What is with your name, by the way? Palin’s Buttplug? Is that like Prince Charles wanting to be Camilla’s tampon?

      2. I disagree.

        What makes it so easy for Obama to keep doing what he’s doing in Afghanistan is this notion that any criticism of the war is criticism of the troops.

        This notion that the troops believe in what they are doing, but what they are doing is misguided, is not allowed.

        Nope. If you don’t think we have any business deploying troops in Asia, then you hate the troops.

        1. “What makes it so easy for Obama to keep doing what he’s doing in Afghanistan is this notion that any criticism of the war is criticism of the troops.”

          When you look at what Tony and Shrike say in this thread, you should really believe them.

          What they’re saying is what they really believe, and what they believe is that Obama isn’t responsible for what happens in Afghanistan while he’s president because Bush started the Afghanistan War.

          1. When you look at what Tony and Shrike say in this thread

            I try not to.

          2. Obama is responsible for Afghanistan.

            Pentagon/Joint Chiefs – “We believe in this war and Pakistan is next door and the most dangerous country in the Middle East.” Obama – “You have until 2014 to finish the mission.”

            1. I can’t hear the inflection in your voice through text–are you suggesting that means President Obama isn’t responsible for what happens in Afghanistan under his watch?

              Or are you conceding the point that Obama is responsible?

      3. Anything to shuffle blame off the guy who started it. Are you even aware of how much of a Bush/Cheney poodle you sound like?

        Obama would never have started that war and has never been enthusiastic about it. But of course you know better than both the president and the military brass how best to end a quagmire started by someone else.

        1. You’re such a stupid troll, Tony.

          You make the left look so stupid.

          1. You make the left look so stupid

            As if they needed more help.

            1. I’m telling you guys…

              If a libertarian genius stayed up all night trying to think of a better way to make the left look like unthinking idiots to average people, he couldn’t come up with anything better than Tony.

              The only reason we know Tony isn’t an elaborate plot to make the left look even dumber than they are? Is that if a genius libertarian wanted to make the left look stupid, he’s set Tony loose on an MSM website–not a libertarian one.

              But have you seen anything that makes the left look dumber than Tony’s arguments? Does anybody do a better job than Tony of making the left look stupid?

              Just think about it for a second: Hitchens and Tony are coming from the same direction. If Hitchens and Tony were on the same debating team, Hitchens would have to devote all his time at the podium to undoing all of Tony’s damage to the leftist cause.

              1. Well, PB comes to mind, though it is less structured in its rantings.

              2. Yeah but at least I’m not a jerkoff libertarian. Nobody takes you guys seriously; you do realize that, right?

                1. Yeah but at least I’m not a jerkoff libertarian. Nobody takes you guys seriously; you do realize that, right?

                  Okay, so there is no point for you to be here arguing with us since no one takes us seriously.

                  1. The point of my being here will be revealed in time.

                    1. The point of my being here will be revealed in time

                      If the point was to demonstrate the mendaciousness and special pleading of the progressive mindset in real time, you’ve done a great job.

                    2. Y’all know he’s a Reason plant to make this site a fun place to come and throw mud around, right?

                    3. Every reason author takes turns being Tony. It’s their way to get back at us for being such a critical audience.

                    4. The point of my being here will be revealed in time.

                      No smoky, dimly-lit altar leading to the secret chamber where the Ephors interpret the pronouncement of the Oracle? I am disappoint.

                2. If by ‘nobody’ you mean left-wing clowns then so be it. I’m cool with that.

                3. Yeah but at least I’m not a jerkoff libertarian. Nobody takes you guys seriously; you do realize that, right?

                  “Nobody” seems to go through a lot of effort in waging war on libertarian ideas through the use of straw men, ad hominems, and other logical fallacies.

                  If the only way to take down libertarian ideas is with fallacies, then it seems to me that “nobody” is full of shit.

        2. But of course you know better than both the president and the military brass how best to end a quagmire started by someone else.

          TOP. MEN.

          1. But of course you know better than both the president and the military brass how best to end a quagmire started by someone else.

            Apparently, I do. Its called “withdraw all US forces”, because at this point, what difference do they make?

            1. Why not withdraw them from Germany too?

              Is Hitler threatening to rise from the dead?

        3. Obama would never have started that war and has never been enthusiastic about it.

          Oh, he’s unenthusiastic about it. Well that makes it all better then!

          But of course you know better than both the president and the military brass how best to end a quagmire started by someone else.

          Yes. Leave.

          1. “Obama would never have started that war and has never been enthusiastic about it.”

            If Obama wouldn’t have responded to a terrorist attack by going after the perpetrators, then he would have been woefully incompetent.

            Invading Iraq was a mistake. Occupying Iraq compounded the mistake times 100.

            Invading Afghanistan wasn’t a mistake–it was a legitimate response to being attacked by another country (even if we weren’t recognizing the Taliban government for political reasons). Staying in Afghanistan by way of an occupation, after it no longer became in our interests to do so, was another huge mistake.

            “But of course you know better than both the president and the military brass how best to end a quagmire started by someone else.”

            Tony is such a fucking idiot, he doesn’t know what an appeal to authority is. But that’s how he lives his whole Moonie life!

            The smart people tell him what to do and think, and he does and thinks it. And he doesn’t understand why libertarians think it’s alright to think for themselves.

            What a pathetic, critical thinking impaired, piece of shit you are, Tony.

            1. It really is amazing how Tony now miraculously has unwavering faith in the wisdom of military leadership now that his guy is running things. Well, nominally running things, if the defenses offered in this thread are any indication.

              1. Tony’s whole personality is an appeal to authority.

                The reason he seems to have no idea what we’re talking about is because in his world view, critical thinking is inconceivable.

                The whole idea of critical thinking is wrong in his ignorant little world.

            2. Afghanistan didn’t invade us. Why was invading them the correct response to 9/11? If you really think you can combat terrorism, I think the more targeted special forces actions and such have proven to be more worthwhile. Starting a war with a bunch of poor Muslims seems like a good way to make more terrorism, actually. Both wars were stupid.

              1. Starting a war with a bunch of poor Muslims seems like a good way to make more terrorism, actually. Both wars were stupid.

                Wait, a second. I thought the wisdom of the president and military brass was unquestionable by us mere mortals.

                1. It’s just that I don’t trust libertarians from their armchairs to be fair or nuanced in their thinking, exactly. Libertarians are simpletons. They believe what they do because they are incapable of explaining the world or offer prescriptions for it in ways that don’t fit in a fortune cookie.

                  1. Libertarians from their armchairs are, in moral terms, more “well-seated” than the men in thrones they criticize.

        4. Tony|1.29.14 @ 9:57AM|#
          “Anything to shuffle blame off the guy who started it.”

          You slimy turd, he’s been running this war and others for five years, and if a tin-pot dictator didn’t save his ass, he’d have us in one more.

          1. “Anything to shuffle blame off the guy who started it.”

            From 2003, when this site started, to the end of Bush’s presidency, I’ve got a post on this site, almost every day, skewering the Bush Administration for their stupid and horrible decisions.

            But Tony can’t imagine that. He’s a complete moron.

          2. He sure has no problem taking credit for killing Bin Laden though, right Tony?

            Right.

            Disingenuous clowns who hedge their intellectual bets for political expediency.

        5. you mean Obama was not enthusiastic about what he called “the good war”? He was not enthusiastic about the war in which he approved an Iraq-like surge? Hmmm. So, all those dead troops. What’s the point then?

          1. So, all those dead troops. What’s the point then?

            To get elected, of course. Most voters supported the Afghan war in 2008, so he had to pretend to support it too in order to get elected. And then he had to order the surge because he didn’t want to appear weak. All those troops that have died in Afghanistan the last 5 years died so that Obama could save face politically.

            1. Every dead soldier is one less likely Republican overseas ballot not to count. Pretty easy really.

          2. I think the point is “at this point”

            and the question is “what difference does it make”

        6. Obama could have ended it in 2009.

        7. Obama would never have started that war and has never been enthusiastic about it.

          Riiiight, that’s why he called Afghanistan “the good war” and was all for increasing troop levels there back in 2008.

          Or are you saying he was lieing back then? It wouldn’t surprise me if he was, afterall his mouth was open and words were coming out of it, so it’s a pretty safe bet that he was lieing.

          1. The surge. They conveniently forgot the surge.

            Through Tony you see why liberalism/socialism has been the scourge of history since 1848!

            1. True liberalism is nothing like socialism.

        8. OK Who started it… should we blame the CIA for training and funding al queda, should we blame Charlie Wilson for illegally procuring tax dollars to supply our future enemies with advanced weaponry and , should we blame Stalin and the commies for not finishing their war and impovershing afghanistan with communist economic policies that have still not been eradicated because of the massive control it gives the central corrupt government? was it booshes fault for being a dumb figurehead for an increasingly totalitarian government, when the democrat controlled congress voted for war in iraq and afghanistan. or do we blame Barry who could end all the pain suffering and death my brothers deal with today with the stroke of a pen but refuses to without any reason. whodunit tony? who?

          1. Carter funded the mujehedeen.

        9. You act according to your genuinely held beliefs. You don’t led others subordinate to you lead you around because you don’t want to look bad in some way. Can’t you get that?

          Anyway, I got news for you Tony…any President would have gone to war after 9/11, anyone – Gore/Clinton/Obama/Carter, and so on. America goes to war. The whole world knows this. You got attacked, someone was going to pay.

  4. We invaded the stone age, and the stones won.

    1. Personally, I don’t think Afghanistan is a loss; I think Bush did set the bar too high for victory.

      If the only way victory could come was by establishing an American style democracy in Afghanistan and seeing it flourish, then that was a ridiculous standard.

      If the Object was to depose the Taliban, give the Afghans a chance at something better than they had, kill Osama bin Laden, disrupt the network that attacked us on 9/11, and demonstrate that we will not sit back and suffer terrorism unanswered, then the war was a wild success.

      It should also be noted that many of the people who call themselves “Al Qaeda” today, that persist in various places in the world, from the Maghrib to the Levant, is not the same Al Qaeda that attacked us on 9/11.

      The Afghanistan War really was a war of self-defense, and it only stopped being a war we should support when defending the U.S. from those that attacked us was no longer the central mission or fighting the war against insurgents from Pakistan was no longer effective.

      Oh, and we should consider the people of the region warned. If they ever harbor enemies who attack us on our own soil again, we should consider nuking them from space next time–it’s the only way to be sure.

      We certainly shouldn’t apologize for trying to do things the humanitarian way first–and they can’t say we didn’t try.

  5. What is it that escapes libertarians about the sacrifices our heroes have made for us? We must parade the virtuous heroes of our glorious military at every opportunity. You think we should just respect them privately and let them live free and independent lives? That cruel and selfish view is why we can’t have your radical brand of freedom in a just society.

    1. Not vociferously and publicly declaring your love for the troops is condemnation.

    2. I was sitting at a train station in western MD this summer. It’s one of those old locomotive rides through the mountains that wifey and I had decided to do.

      There was an older couple sitting beside us and I assume their son, who was dressed in military stuff. And as always, someone had to run up and say ‘Thank you for your service’. Then the proud mother says something to the effect of. ‘Well, that’s what young men are supposed to do, go over there and fight for our country’. Everyone in the conversation agreed unanimously, that this is the sole purpose of young men in our society. To got get killed in some pointless foreign war that our sociopathic political class have gotten us bogged down in.

      The mindset of too many Americans is hopeless obedience to authority.

      1. People confuse patriotism and nationalism.

      2. The “thank you for your service” line irritates me. They should be thanking me for subsidizing their chosen way of life. I feel sympathy for exactly one group of veterans: those who were drafted and forced to fight in a war. And to them, it always seems like “I’m sorry that happened to you” is a more appropriate response than thanking them for their bullshit service, although it seems like those guys usually don’t feel like discussing it anyways.

        1. The “thank you for your service” line irritates me.

          Yeah, same here, and I tend to support the military. Its the brainless, automatic (and therefor thoughtless and worthless) nature of the statement that sandpapers my, err, sensibilities.

    3. You think we should just respect them privately and let them live free and independent lives? That cruel and selfish view is why we can’t have your radical brand of freedom in a just society.

      Right on waffles, and +1 sarcams.
      Just treat me as fairly as you would any other, let us get on about our lives without the fake fawning and adulation. If there must be hysterics, let nubile patrician ladies shower us with gold and their willing, thankful bodies, and some land as well. Preferably somewhere in Hibernia or Gaul.

      1. *sarcasms. P.S. Good grief, I need some coffee and then I need to mull some of the latest blackberry mead and drink it as punishment.

    4. I respect military members but I also realize they chose their profession. I absolutely hate politicians who use troops as props for advancing whatever agenda is in play.

    5. Is this a troll or do you just like pissing off vets?

  6. Why do you hate the troops, Nick?

  7. 73% of Afghanistan casualties have occurred under Obama. Last month Congressman Dana Rorhabacher asked three of Obama’s top Afghanistan “specialists” if they knew the number of casualties that have occurred in Afghanistan in the last 5 years.

    None of them could answer.

    http://blogs.wsj.com/washwire/…..s-stumped/

    1. It’s almost as if they don’t care at all about the troops. How can that be!?

    2. Six years ago, HuffPo and the rest of the progletariat would have been broadcasting that shit 24/7 and turned it into a meme. Now that it’s their guy in office, suddenly no progressive can figure out how many have died in Afghanistan in the last 5 years, nor how much it has cost, even though they have someone in the CRS that researched this shit as recently as 2011.

      http://www.fas.org/sgp/crs/natsec/RL33110.pdf

      1. the progletariat

        I’m stealing that. Thanks.

      2. That’s because more important issues have arisen, like minimum wage and plastic bags.

  8. There are some seriously deranged people on the FB link bashing this cat like it was his fault, or saying that we willingly sign up to be tools of abuse for the state. Most that I had the honor to serve with swore that Oath to afford the people who decide how we are used the freedom from aggression to peaceably fix this fucking mess. SMH
    Don

    1. There are some seriously deranged people on the FB

      1. Yeah. I blame the that Captain Obvious part on the still-high fever from the flu, along with the Vicodin and wake-and-bake that helps the nerve damage (and my state of mind) from the TBIs…

        1. Feel your pain, bro. I had the flu last week and had to do antibiotics to get rid of the sore throat.

          I blame it on this global warming.

          1. Me too. Shoveling snow right by Ft. Bragg. My trees are looking wan, I think I need to go burn some premium in the 440+6 just because trees need to breathe too.

            P.S. I think I am engaged with a different breed of “libertarian” on that FB thread. I disagree with everyone here at some point, but it remains civil and respectful and valid points are usually considered. That thread makes me feel dirty from the hateful and arrogant stridency. Too sick to deal with it.

  9. Did teleprompter jesus tell us how he is going to stop putting our troops in harms way for all the wrong reasons? And bring home the ones that are already in that situation?

  10. “The government under Republican and Democratic presidents has spent virtually the entire 21st century sending young men and women to fight in ill-defined and unsuccessful elective wars.”

    that’s funny… i only remember coffins coming back from these wars filled w/ men.

    the girls must fight harder?

    oh, that’s right, they are too busy being bunk bunnies and fucking their CO’s for extra rations.

    *facepalm*

    stop being PC w/ issues that clearly only effect men.

    -FFM

    1. You’re absolutely full of shit. I was the SCMO for a Soldier who was killed on her last day in Baghdad, you fucking asshole.

      1. You must be wrong. This guy has inspected every single coffin returning from war zones.

        1. “extra rations” was the tip off that fucko up there has no idea what he’s talking about. WTF does anything for “rations”, something we don’t even have any more and a word most Armed Forces members would never use?

    2. virtually the entire 21st century sending young men and women to fight in ill-defined and unsuccessful elective wars

      I don’t think we fought any unsuccessful wars until Vietnam, maybe Korea. Accuracy should not be sacrificed to hyperbole, lest credibility be lost.

      1. 21st century. 20th obviously had a few successful and well defined wars.

    3. Yeah, I’ll be sure to let a female Combat Medic friend in SOCOM know all about that shit FFM. I’m sure she can still flip you the arm that she didn’t lose in a firefight, protecting the guy whose life she saved while helping fend off a serious assault.

  11. He was a prop but it’s not like he was used to promote war. All Obama talked about was ending war. “Live by this guy’s example” is saccharine but hardly worth calling obscene.

    1. Tony|1.29.14 @ 9:53AM|#
      “He was a prop but it’s not like he was used to promote war.”…

      Yeah, that lying bastard in the WH just used him to buy votes. Much nicer, right?

    2. All Obama talked about was ending war.

      you realize he’s the fucking commander in chief, right? He can do more than talk about ending a war; he can actually do it.

      1. No shit. Nearly two years after Bin Laden bit the dust, and we’re still jerking around there. The Afghans are practically begging us to get out at this point.

        It’s rather telling that Obama’s willing to push the envelope of executive authority when it comes to his slap-fests with the House, but is completely unwilling to execute the one legitimate use of his power as commander in chief that would make him popular beyond his wildest dreams.

        1. Correction–nearly three years.

        2. But if we just stick with it for a little while longer, Afghanistan will magically become a peaceful and prosperous liberal democracy.

        3. It just occurred to me, he will end the Afghan war just before the 2014 elections. It is obvious.

          He is keeping it going right now because he wants the press just before election time.

          It is unbelievable when you think about it. You have a psychopath for a President.

        4. It just occurred to me, he will end the Afghan war just before the 2014 elections. It is obvious.

          He is keeping it going right now because he wants the press just before election time.

          It is unbelievable when you think about it. You have a psychopath for a President.

      2. Which is what he’s doing, and he said so last night.

        1. Saying is not the same as doing, Tony.

          1. It is in Progletariatville, where he lives.

            1. Tony doesn’t live in Progletariatville, but in the lower class suburb Potemkin Heights.

        2. He’s being trying to get Karzai to agree to the US staying until at least 2024.

    3. Agreed; it’s hardly surprising when politicians behave like politicians.

      The fact that his audience didn’t stand on their chairs hooting in response to the moronic display is what pisseds me off.

  12. I actually agree with the jacket here. Obama is totally unwilling to make the moral case for the Afghan war. He continues the war for reasons that remain unexplained and somehow relate to his pride at being good at killing people. Given that he won’t make the case for the war, what is the point of using the wounded soldier as a prop? Unless you are willing to explain and defend the cause he sacrificed for, you are just pointing to him as a cheap prop. Obama might as well have had Michelle or Mao Mao or his other daughter holding a kitten and pointed to that and said “isn’t that cute”. He showed the same level of respect to this soldier.

      1. I do all my naked masturbating a chick-fil-a.

        1. Police charged the New Jersey man with DUI but in terms of any public lewdness charge, he got off.

          *facepalm* Really, Breitbart?! REALLY!?

          1. That should have been in response to sarc’s comment. I blame the skwirrelz.

    1. Everything the guy says is just empty rhetoric.

    2. It just hit me. He will end the war just before the 2014 elections. For the press it will give the Democratic party.

      He is a psychopath.

  13. Oh great PB AND Tony. Awesome.

  14. Did I hear Obama call Remburg a Staff Sergeant during his introduction? Those look like SFC stripes.

    1. At least he didn’t call him a a “corpse-man”.

  15. Hey, at least we didn’t get the Potemkin doctors and poor people with 10 kids on minimum wage. And he only waved one bloody shirt.
    I wonder if his handlers told him it was enough or if the others were too ashamed to show their faces with the asshole.

    1. Funny how he didn’t have someone up there who got insurance thanks to his signature achievement. Is Obama just too modest to want to talk about his signature achievement?

  16. FWIW, I’m sick of seeing this cheap and tawdry trick in just about everything. Slimy pol photo ops, sporting events, hardware store openings, etc. Just. Fucking. Stop.

    If I see that insipid and cloying Zillow ad, one more fucking time….

    1. You mean this ad? Why do you hate the troops?

      1. GAAAAAHHHH!!

        [Begins to climb bell tower]

  17. I’m guessing the main point Obama was trying to make was that we should all be willing to take shrapnel to the head if it serves the greater good.

  18. I find this truth to be self evident…

    That the more the government intervene in fixing things, the worse they become.

    I guess thats why Thomas Paine said that government is “a necessary evil at best”

    When will we stop looking to the government as the savior to all of our problems? Cant you see they only compound them?

    We are a free and strong people being held down by the chains of our own government… God only knows the extent to which our prosperity, and the prosperity of our children is being stolen.

  19. What exactly was Remsburg ? or any of his fellow soldiers ? fighting for in Afghanistan?

    How will we know when victory is at hand?

  20. SAY WHAT?! “Placing the young man in harm’s way”? “Eluding responsibility”? SAY WHAT?! Don’t forget that it was Bush and Cheney who sent our Armed Forces to Assghanistan, not Obama. When he took office he tended to want to get out of that Central Asian armpit and stink hole. However, a bunch of second rate Generals (who might have made Major at tops in World War II) sucked him into to staying there. All that pushed by a bunch of right wing war hawk politicians who probably never served one second in the Armed Forces.

    Come to thing of it, our former Vice President who thinks of himself as a military genius, was instrumental in pushing our crusade there (three times as long now as the U.S. was involved in World War II). In fact our former VP “opted out” of Vietnam at least 3 times legally so he could finish his PhD (if he really finished it).

    Blasting Obama on this is a cheap (and stupid shot) when it is the job of Presidents to send people in “harm’s way”. Perhaps that weekend warrior Bush and the power broker Cheney should have been up on the “altar” last light to explain why they left our forces there in the first place.

    1. Obama has been President for 5 years. Yet, here we are still in Afghanistan. It is, at this point, very much Obama’s war.

      1. That’s not how it works. The Bush devil messed things up so bad that our savior the Holy King will require at least 500 years to apply a fix. Therefore, he has at least 494 more years to justly blame the Bush devil for all which is due to his own incompetence.

        ..snicker..

        1. Don’t worry. We will have a new President in 2017.

      2. Reread my post. I think you have reading comprehension problems. Even if he pulled out now completely he would still be blasted by a bunch of war mongers for not staying there longer. His original intention was to get out until he was “held for ransom” by a bunch of right wing ass chunks who implied that to leave Assghanistan was unpatriotic and so on.

        In any event, he will be blasted no matter what he does simply because he is Obama. The U.S. should never have gone there in the first place. We are probably as vulnerable today to another terrorist attack on our soil as we were before 9/11. Those fools Bush and Cheney got us into this damn mess.

        Our first priority after 9/11 should have been to prevent another attack on our own ground instead of wasting billions of dollars f—ing around on someone else’s ground. You can call it whatever the hell you want, Floopty Doo’s War or Floopty Dee’s war. It’s the same pile of pig shit know matter how you see it.

        1. His original intention was to get out until he was “held for ransom” by a bunch of right wing ass chunks who implied that to leave Assghanistan was unpatriotic and so on.

          In other words, he chose to continue the war because ending it would have been politically difficult. Smilin’ Joe Fission was correct. Obama owns it.

        2. “His original intention was to get out until he was “held for ransom” by a bunch of right wing ass chunks”

          Yeah, you pathetic excuse for humanity, the commander in chief was ‘held for ransom’.
          What other excuses can we laugh at? Go away, twit.

          1. Sevo,

            I guess my post is really shitty. So why don’t you fold, spindle, and mutilate it and then ram it up you asshole where it will become even more shitty. Have a nice day ass chunk.

    2. Go shove some more snackcakes in your piehole, Mary.

      1. Red Rocks

        As usual another retarded person who is too undereducated to refute any argument because he/she is too stupid. Your bowel movement in print tells me nothing except that you are another stupid person farting online. By the way, are you an abortion who lived? Looks like you will have to shove those snack cakes up your rosy red rectum doesn’t it?

        1. “As usual another retarded person who is too undereducated to refute any argument because he/she is too stupid”

          If you ever presented an argument, you might get refuted.

          1. Sevo,

            Just curious, but are you an abortion who lived? Anyway, I guess if you don’t like my posts you will just have to go f yourself.

    3. Obama could have ordered a full withdrawal at any point between January 20th, 2009 and now. He’s the commander in chief of the military, that means it’s his call to make. If his “second rate generals” didn’t like it, too fucking bad. BOOSHHITLERCHIMPYMCHALLIBURTAN may have started the war, but after 5 years it’s Obama’s war now. But I know, I know, everything bad that’s ever happened is BOOSH’S fault, right? Go suck some more Obamacock

      1. Have you attempted to suck your own private member?

        1. “Have you attempted to suck your own private member?”

          Hmm:
          As usual another retarded person who is too undereducated to refute any argument because he/she is too stupid.
          Get screwed with a farm implement, asshole.

          1. Ram it up your bung hole you piece of leftover shit!!

  21. Let’s be clear here. The standing ovation was for the serviceman being honored — and by extension, for all of his fellow servicemen and -women — not for the President. I don’t find the inclusion of this moment in the SOTU address morally dubious in any way: Our veterans should be honored for their service. Whatever his motivations, Mr. Obama did the right thing here. I do echo Gillespie’s lament that the President did not admit more culpability in prolonging and exacerbating the circumstances that contributed to the injuries of this soldier or others as badly injured (or killed outright). Let’s face it, we would rather have had the President give the speech that John Stossel gave in his critical recap show last night (plus an extra paragraph or two on our current shooting wars)… but of course, he didn’t.

    1. You’d be right, if not for that pesky reality-based context.

      It was done for aggrandizement, to make the Big Zero look like a fucking hero, not to honor the stage prop.

      1. Reality is what happens, which is rarely what or how the actors involve intend or perceive. Say what you want about Mr. Obama’s intentions — and I am the last one to defend him or any other political criminal — it was right that the serviceman be honored, and the people who stood mostly did so in respect of the service and sacrifice (or in order to appear to be respecting same ;-). You can call a flag a stage prop, too, but there are quite a few people who stand in respect of what the symbol represents, regardless of any cynical, manipulative purposes of the flag-wavers. We know about the cynicism and duplicity of the “honorable hosts.” We don’t care, and we are careful not to let the honor of the guest (or the prestige of the flag) rub off on the undeserving opportunists.

        1. You can call a flag a stage prop, too, but there are quite a few people who stand in respect of what the symbol represents, regardless of any cynical, manipulative purposes of the flag-wavers.

          Well, that’s your problem, then.

          If you want to be taken advantage of and have your happy buttons pushed by a slimy pol for his purposes, be my guest. If the servicemen don’t mind being trotted out like a potted plant on show and tell day, that’s fine by me too.

          I’ll stand here and be a thinking person and recognize that no one demanding that I show some respect to this nationalist dog and pony show has any of my interests at heart, and that their *only* goal is to manipulate the viewer.

    2. All of these guys are professionals, they do what they do because they like to do it.

      They are in fact mercenaries who cynically enlisted and then re-uped solely because they thought it was in their best interest at the moment.

      1. Exactly.

        While I’m sorry that he has to go through the rest of his life disfigured and disabled, my sympathy is limited by the fact that he voluntarily signed up for military service, knowing that this was a significant risk.

        No idea if he re-upped and went back, but still, the risk remains.

  22. Our despotic king merely would like us to know what a glorious thing it truly is to sacrifice ourselves in his royal, and holy name.

    1. You’re truly delusional!

  23. Not a thing has changed in 50 years.

    “Well come on all of you big strong men
    Uncle Sam needs you help again . . .”

    Country Joe and the Fish – Viet Nam Song:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xuUBCF3KKxc

    I feel sorry for Sgt. Remsburg. He took his chances and lost. But honoring him is like honoring a mercenary, it is just not done in polite society.

    1. I’m pretty sure there are reasons beyond money that cause people to serve in the military.

  24. I have no problem with mercenaries. They’re honest, which is more than the Community-Organizer-in Chief can say.

  25. If by “despicable” you mean “commonplace” then, yes, I agree. I mean, really, a US President appealing to authority by trotting out the military? How shocking.

    I don’t really care for the US military and don’t think they’ve advanced my freedom in the last 65 years or so, but criticizing a sitting President (or any national leader, for that matter) for showcasing the military. I think that’s hardly a scandal.

    Nick, its nice that you are all onboard and antiwar and stuff. It might have been nice to see you in an antiwar demonstration back in the day instead of debating the merits of the Iraq War at CATO back in 2004 or allowing this https://reason.com/archives/200…..-one-state to be published while you were an editor. How come paleoconservatives or, you know, socialists like me were so much more reliably antiwar than the marquee website of libertarianism?

    1. If by “despicable” you mean “commonplace” then, yes, I agree. I mean, really, a US President appealing to authority by trotting out the military? How shocking.

      So your defense is that everyone does it. Tu quoque. Fail.

      1. For the love of Christ stop using logic 101 vocab words when you don’t understand what they mean. It’s an infantile way to debate and it makes you look like an idiot.

        Nick generally has his panties twisted, but AS is right that it’s hardly a scandal (or “despicable”) for a president to use soldiers as props. At least Obama wasn’t doing it to in the service of starting another war.

        1. Tony|1.29.14 @ 5:22PM|#
          “For the love of Christ stop using logic 101 vocab words when you don’t understand what they mean. It’s an infantile way to debate and it makes you look like an idiot.”
          “Tu Quoque is a very common fallacy in which one attempts to defend oneself or another from criticism by turning the critique back against the accuser.”
          Seems the definition is a bit beyond your understanding? Not surprising; much is.

          “Nick generally has his panties twisted, but AS is right that it’s hardly a scandal (or “despicable”) for a president to use soldiers as props.”
          Yes, it is despicable; and of course if a GOP pres had done so, you as a slimy turd would be screaming to high heaven.

          “At least Obama wasn’t doing it to in the service of starting another war.”
          No, he was doing it to continue a war he swore to end a long time back. And your innuendo fails; even Bush didn’t use one to start a war.

  26. all Americans can appreciate Remsburg’s willingness to serve while questioning whether President Obama is right to use such a soldier as an applause line in a political speech

    I don’t appreciate soldiers choosing to serve in a military financed with stolen money fighting offensive wars of choice. I might not hold any rancor for them as individuals, since they might not yet have had an epiphany about the evil they do — they may mean well — but results are results.

  27. War in AMerica seems to be beyond the power of the President.

  28. What the prex did was no more than Reagan did and it seems every chief executive since has been doing. But no one is asked to take 10 tours in some 10 years, so the guy must be a lunatic and the army to blame for letting him do it. And secondly, I see only 3 years of overseas bars on his tunic.

  29. Hypocrites like you Nick, think it was only ok for Bush to do the exact same thing!

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