Nemo me impune lacessit

No one provokes me with impunity


No Title of Nobility shall be granted by the United States: And no Person holding any Office of Profit or Trust under them, shall, without the Consent of the Congress, accept of any present, Emolument, Office, or Title, of any kind whatever, from any King, Prince, or foreign State.

Article 1, Section 9, Constitution of the United States

If this is the law of the land...why in a republic (little r) and as republicans, do we allow mere POLITICIANS to the right to use a "title of office" for the rest of their lives as if it were de facto a patent of nobility. Because, as republicans, this should NOT be the case...just saying...

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Wednesday, December 09, 2009

Obama Administration Slighting the British?

Since the early part of World War 2, the United States and the United Kingdom have had a "special relationship." Diplomatically, militarily as well as on the level of state intelligence. The British are the only nation with whom our government has shared, nearly without limit, intelligence on potential enemies. We have for more than 70 years been allies of the closest sort.

That relationship began with Sir Winston Churchill and FDR. The principals have changed, Ron & Maggie, Bush & Blair, but the closeness has always been consistently there. American satellite and reconnaissance aircraft overflights permitted the United Kingdom to defeat the Argentines in the Falklands War of the early 1980's, while Eisenhower's opposition to the 1956 conflict certainly didn't damage the informal agreements. However, when Mr. Obama gave his speech at the USMA, West Point there was one very important contribution that was ignored...that of the United Kingdom. They have the 2nd largest troop presence in Afghanistan. That oversight has miffed our allies "across the pond" to the point that relations are definitely cooling. From a British point of view this means...
Given the level of sacrifice by British troops, it was the most extraordinary and insulting oversight.
Had this been a one-off omission, it might have been overlooked as a careless mistake by a president preoccupied with trying to sell a difficult message to his own people. But it wasn't.

In all the speeches Obama has made since becoming President - indeed, in all the speeches he made when on the campaign trail, too - neither Britain nor the special relationship have merited a single mention.

The only conclusion that can be drawn is that while the special relationship may not be dead yet, it's certainly dying, a fact that should be enormously worrying to politicians - and voters - on both sides of the Atlantic.

And yet Obama seems strangely oblivious to the dangerous path he has embarked on, becoming the first U.S. President in modern times to place no importance on the historic relationship between the U.S. and Britain. This is a watershed moment in the political evolution of our two countries.

This, after all, is a man who, within days of being sworn in as President, ordered that a bust of Winston Churchill - a gift from the British people to the U.S. in the dark days that followed 9/11 - be removed from the Oval Office.

It now languishes, apparently totally unappreciated by its recipient, in the British Embassy in Washington.

Unlike so many of his predecessors, Obama is certainly a man with no close family ties to this country. He never attended a university here and has no great political affinity with Britain either.

His Kenyan grandfather, however, was reportedly mistreated under British colonial rule during that country's Mau Mau rebellion - an event to which he devotes 35 pages of his memoir, Dreams From My Father.

Small wonder that his relationship with Gordon Brown borders upon the disastrous.
Even some of our Prime Minister's sternest critics - myself among them - thought he was appallingly treated by the Obama administration when he visited Washington in March.

Denied the traditional honour of a joint press conference in the Rose Garden of the White House, Brown was treated more like a Third World dictator than the Prime Minister of Great Britain. His farewell present from the U.S. President of 25 DVDs can have done nothing to repair the damage. {more to the point...those DVD's are formatted for American DVD players, NOT the UK...another blunder, ed.}

Nor have things improved since, with Obama apparently keener on sitting down with President Ahmadinejad of Iran, or cosying up to his new friends in France or Germany than he is on spending time with the Prime Minister. Indeed, he singularly failed to do just that when both men were in New York in September for the United Nations' General Assembly.

Once again, Obama's refusal to grasp that opportunity to stress the special relationship was seen as an insult to Britain.
This from the President who is supposed to get the world to love America because of his Ascension to the highest office of the land...after "He is The One We've Been Waiting For"...He is the first President in 70 years not to meet with the Prime Minister when the PM has come to address the UN.
Britain needs America - of that there is no doubt. But recent history shows that America needs Britain, too. Barack Obama needs to wake up to that; before it's too late.

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