It seems especially ironic that the man touted to be the second most powerful man in the Administration is not the Vice President – who appears to be a genial boob given to making verbal gaffes and outrageous comments; but a diminutive, white, Jewish iconoclast who was a former ballet dancer. Once again, indicating that President Barack Obama appears to be an intelligent, telegenic and well-spoken empty suit with attention deficit disorder – clearly illustrating the perennial triumph of style over substance. And proving, once again, that you can fool a majority of the people most of the time. At least enough to cobble together a coalition to support the far-left liberal democrats who appear to be all about money, politics, revenge and the mean-spirited pursuit of everlasting power. Democrats, many of whom are nothing more than corrupt, demagogues and petty dictators. Not exactly a pleasant scenario as they are playing with billions of dollars in taxpayer funds.
According to the New York Times …
“Mr. Emanuel is arguably the second most powerful man in the country and, just a few days into his tenure, already one of the highest-profile chiefs of staff in recent memory. In recent months, he has played a critical role in the selection and courtship of nearly every cabinet member and key White House staff member.”
“Renowned as a fierce partisan, he has been an ardent ambassador to Republicans, including Mr. Obama’s defeated rival, Senator John McCain. He has exerted influence on countless decisions; in meetings, administration officials say, Mr. Obama often allows him to speak first and last.”
“ ‘You can see how he listens and reacts to Rahm,’ said Ron Klain, the chief of staff to Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr. ‘You can see that his opinion is being shaped.’”
“How will the feisty, bombastic and at times impulsive former congressman blend with the cool, collegial and deliberate culture of Obama World? And one that is trying to foster bipartisanship? This is someone who once wrote in Campaign and Elections magazine that ‘the untainted Republican has not yet been invented’ and who two years ago — according to a book about Mr. Emanuel (“The Thumpin’ ” by Naftali Bendavid) — announced to his staff that Republicans are ‘bad people who deserve a two-by-four upside their heads.’”
A makeover …
“It is clear to friends and colleagues that Mr. Emanuel is trying to rein himself in, lower his voice, even cut down on his use of profanity.”
“ ‘As chief of staff, you take on the aura and image and, in some instance, the political values of the person you work for,’ said the former congressman Ray LaHood, an Illinois Republican who is now secretary of transportation. ‘I think he’s beginning to morph himself into the Obama image.’”
Perhaps this observed change is designed to mute the obvious: that it is Emanuel’s opinion that is shaping policy and that Obama may be a marginal player – a titular figurehead – in his own Administration. With an image of thoughtfully listening to all arguments, weighing the situation at hand and then becoming the “decider,” as President Bush so aptly described.
“Mr. Emanuel acknowledged in an interview that stereotypes of him as a relentless hothead had some factual basis. But it is an exaggerated or outdated picture, he said.”
“ ‘I’m not yelling at people; I’m not jumping on tables,’ he said. ‘That’s a campaign. Being the chief of staff of a government is different. You have different tools in your toolbox.’”
“Still, his high profile and temperament are at odds with that of some past White House chiefs of staff: They were often low-key types who put the ‘staff’ part of their job titles before ‘chief’ — as Andrew H. Card Jr., the longtime chief of staff to former President George W. Bush, suggested to Mr. Emanuel last month.”
“Mr. Emanuel, who had hopes of becoming the next speaker of the House, has stepped into a job characterized by short tenures — just under two and a half years, on average — high burnout rates and the need to subjugate personal ambitions to the service of the president.”
Even if Obama does not serve a second term in office, there is no doubt that Emanuel will continue to play a part in partisan politics. His future is tied to one person, and that person is not Barack Obama, it is Rahm Emanuel.
“He is not accustomed to fading discreetly into the background. As a staff member in the Clinton White House, a three-term House member from Chicago and the chairman of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, he was viewed by many as a consummate purveyor of a crass, kneecapping brand of politics.”
Roasting Emanuel …
Mr. Obama acknowledged as much at a 2005 roast for Mr. Emanuel, who is a former ballet dancer, during which Mr. Obama credited him with being “the first to adopt Machiavelli’s ‘The Prince’ for dance” (a number that included “a lot of kicks below the waist”). When Mr. Emanuel lost part of his middle finger while cutting meat at an Arby’s as a teenager, Mr. Obama joked, the accident “rendered him practically mute.”
“The video of that roast has become a recent sensation on the Internet and buttressed a view among some Republicans that Mr. Emanuel’s appointment was, in the words of the House minority leader, Representative John A. Boehner, ‘an ironic choice for a president-elect who has promised to change Washington, make politics more civil.’”
Rather than highlighting the fact that, like all pragmatic politicians, Obama often says one thing and does another, one might consider that Rahm Emanuel was the perfect choice. Especially considering the number of Clintonistas who may still owe their allegiance to the former president, Hillary Clinton and a the number of hated Republicans who are still serving in the Obama Administration. One needs a heavy-handed enforcer to keep these people in line – and that role suits Emanuel to a tee.
“Mr. Obama had settled on his fellow Chicagoan to be his chief of staff well before he was elected. He was drawn to Mr. Emanuel’s experience in both the White House and Congress and called him ‘the whole package’ of political acumen, policy chops and pragmatism. He is also a skilled compromiser. ‘He knows there is a time in this business to drop the switchblades and make a deal,’ said Representative Adam H. Putnam, Republican of Florida.”
Not to mention that Emanuel is steeped in the dirty politics of the Chicago machine and understands, probably better than most, where the mines that could potentially sidetrack Obama are buried.
The promises of real power …
“Mr. Emanuel initially resisted taking the job. But he came around after Mr. Obama kept insisting, saying that these were momentous times and that the awesome tasks he faced required Mr. Emanuel’s help. The then president-elect also assured Mr. Emanuel that the position would be the functional equivalent of ‘a No. 2’ or ‘right-hand man,’ according to a person familiar with their exchanges.”
“Since taking the job, Mr. Emanuel spent endless hours reaching out to lawmakers. Mr. Reid gave out Mr. Emanuel’s personal cellphone number — with Mr. Emanuel’s blessing — at a caucus meeting of about 40 Senate Democrats earlier this month. (“He seems to speak to every senator every day,” said Senator Charles E. Schumer, Democrat of New York.)”
“He has been equally solicitous of Republicans in Congress (who also have been given access to Mr. Emanuel’s private contact information). On days he does not swim, he works out — and conducts business — at the House gym: 25 minutes on the bike, 20 minutes on the elliptical, 120 sit-ups, 55 push-ups and many sweaty conversations with his former colleagues. In a recent encounter there, for instance, with Representative Peter Hoekstra, Republican of Michigan, Mr. Emanuel secured his support for Leon E. Panetta to become director of the Central Intelligence Agency.”
Actions speak louder than words …
“So far, Mr. Emanuel has been more chief than staff in performing his job, according to several officials. He advocated fiercely for posts for fellow Clinton administration alums like Hillary Rodham Clinton and Mr. Panetta; not so much for the outgoing Democratic National Committee chairman, Howard Dean, with whom he had clashed while at the Congressional Campaign Committee. (‘He was never negative about Dean,’ said the Obama transition head, John Podesta, who added, “I wouldn’t characterize it as the other way, either.’)”
“Mr. Emanuel has also served as the administration’s chief headhunter. When the Office of Management and Budget director, Peter R. Orszag, had doubts about taking the job, Mr. Emanuel went into his default mode — jackhammering away at him, tracking him down in Hong Kong. “You can’t sit on the sidelines; you’ve got to come inside,” Mr. Emanuel told him.
“Asked if ‘relentless’ would be a fair characterization of Mr. Emanuel’s recruitment method, Mr. Orszag said, simply: ‘He’s Rahm. Come on.’”
Many a truth is spoken in jest …
“At a White House gathering with Mr. Obama and a bipartisan team of lawmakers on Friday, the House majority leader, Steny Hoyer, joked that Mr. Emanuel was too busy to talk to him, so he called the president instead. Mr. Obama said he was always happy to take calls for his chief of staff — a reference to an incident a few weeks ago when Mr. Hoyer called Mr. Emanuel, who was in the back of a car and claimed he was too busy to talk, so he handed the phone to Mr. Obama.”
“In meetings, it is not uncommon for Mr. Obama and Mr. Emanuel to engage in teasing banter. One White House official recalls an exchange last week in which Mr. Obama said something to the effect of, ‘Well, I was going to do that, but I didn’t want Rahm to mope for a half-hour.’”
Just asking …
Why did the journal of the new socialist left, the New York Times, paint such an unflattering portrait of Rahm Emanuel?
Certainly not to inform the public.
Might it be that the New York Times is worried that Emanuel’s pragmatic political sense may actually be holding a more radical Obama in check; and that the Times is openly advocating for more socialistic behaviors?
Or, it might be that the New York Times is flexing its editorial muscle in order to remind the politicians that they are still relevant – even though their circulation numbers and finances tend to indicate that they have lost a significant amount of their audience when they started to abandon their journalistic ethics and become hyper-partisan shills for Obama and the democrat party.
Or perhaps they are setting the stage for some form of corporate bailout? How embarrassing is it to have a Mexican national, Carlos Slim, bail out the newspaper that touts itself as the “national record” from their self-induced financial difficulties – and at loan shark rates?
And how embarrassing is it to be accused of editorial interference in not covering the rumors that a high profile potential Senate Appointee, Caroline Kennedy Schlossberg, might allegedly be having an affair with the man that heads the New York Times – even though both are married to other people.
Bottom line – the United States is stronger for having Rahm Emanuel in the White House …
Say what you will about Emanuel’s partisanship or choice of political party, relatively few have claimed Emanuel to be a shrill ideologue, overt socialist or one who hates his Country. No one has ever doubted that Rahm Emanuel would not do everything in his power to protect Israel from annihilation. Truth be told, Rahm Emanuel is Barack Obama’s Dick Cheney – a man who is more qualified to assume the presidency than his boss.
What can YOU do?
Continue to watch the New York Times with a jaundiced eye. They have proven that they have compromised their journalistic ethics to become partisan cheerleaders. They can no longer be relied on to separate corporate and editorial interests and that one suspects that their ability to “tell truth to power” has been severely compromised.
Consider that Rahm Emanuel may be the right person, in the right place and at the right time. A moderating pragmatic force that will keep President Obama from catering to the loony leftists who are hell-bent on socializing America as they weaken her economy and military for a strategic global advantage for those who do not wish America well.
While I would much rather have had a conservative Republican in office (certainly not McCain who now appears to be a Judas Goat leading the Republican Party further astray), I am encouraged that a Emanuel/Obama team may take good enough care of the country to keep it from further disintegration and a poor enough job to allow a conservative Republican to be elected in 2010.
Let us not forget that we need re-build the Republican party from the ground up. To sidetrack the North Eastern effete liberals (who now find themselves completely without Congressional power) in favor of Reagan conservatives. Get involved in your local Republican organization. Money is essential – but so are a committed group of volunteers who can bring forth the conservative message.
Quote of the day: To modify a Sarah Palin quip … “What is the difference between an ex-ballet dancer and a pit bull?” “Nothing – just as Rahm Emanuel”
A reminder from OneCitizenSpeaking.com: a large improvement can result from a small change…
The object in life is not to be on the side of the majority, but to escape finding oneself in the ranks of the insane. -- Marcus Aurelius
“Nullius in verba.”-- take nobody's word for it!
“Beware of false knowledge; it is more dangerous than ignorance.”-- George Bernard Shaw
“Progressive, liberal, Socialist, Marxist, Democratic Socialist -- they are all COMMUNISTS.”
“The key to fighting the craziness of the progressives is to hold them responsible for their actions, not their intentions.” – OCS "The object in life is not to be on the side of the majority, but to escape finding oneself in the ranks of the insane." -- Marcus Aurelius “A people that elect corrupt politicians, imposters, thieves, and traitors are not victims... but accomplices” -- George Orwell
“The key to fighting the craziness of the progressives is to hold them responsible for their actions, not their intentions.” – OCS
"The object in life is not to be on the side of the majority, but to escape finding oneself in the ranks of the insane." -- Marcus Aurelius
“A people that elect corrupt politicians, imposters, thieves, and traitors are not victims... but accomplices” -- George Orwell