It's difficult to say they haven't earned it:  When it comes to public trust in media, the U.S. stands…
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Image of the Day: U.S. Public Trust in Media Lowest in the World

It's difficult to say they haven't earned it:  When it comes to public trust in media, the U.S. stands lower than any other nation:

[caption id="" align="alignleft" width="691"] U.S. Claims Lowest Public Trust in Media[/caption]


May 30, 2023 • 04:59 PM

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Barack Obama’s Foreign Policy Failings: A World Tour Print
By Troy Senik
Thursday, June 26 2014
Indeed, when the story of this tumultuous era of the Middle East is told in future generations, it will be impossible to ignore the Obama Administration’s complicity in the slide towards chaos.

It’s not unusual for American presidents to spend their second terms — a time when they’ve usually exhausted public good will and seen the ranks of the opposition party swell in Congress — pursuing a legacy in foreign policy. God help us if Barack Obama decides to go down that road. With more than half of his second stint in office still remaining, this president has already inflicted a career’s worth of damage abroad. If there’s anything more terrifying than his sweeping ambitions at home, it may be his fecklessness overseas. Consider the evidence, region by region.

Start at the border. Which one? Your choice.

Obama, who has a gift for unnecessarily tormenting allies, has put Canada through the ringer with his politically motivated delay of approval for the Keystone XL pipeline (a project that his own State Department has advised presents no serious environmental risks).

He hasn’t done much better to the south either, a fact put into sharp relief by the tens of thousands of child immigrants now warehoused throughout the Southwest after having come to America for the promise of legal status — a promise made by Obama himself.

Yes, many members of this diaspora came as the result of a misunderstanding of the president’s actual policy — de facto amnesty for child immigrants who arrived in the country prior to June 15, 2007. But even so, this ought to settle, once and for all, the argument about whether special treatment for existing illegal immigrants acts as a magnet to attract new ones.

Then there’s Latin America. Obama has been bolloxing up this region since the earliest days of his presidency, when he famously held a photo-op with Venezuelan despot Hugo Chavez and, less famously — though even more damagingly — intervened in a constitutional crisis in Honduras by supporting that nation’s president (who was engaged in an illegal attempt to rewrite the national constitution and extend his time in office) over those who supported the rule of law.

The President has an unfortunate inability to stand up to the region’s dictators, a trend further exemplified by his handshake with Cuban strongman Raul Castro at Nelson Mandela’s funeral (a matter not nearly as benign as some Administration apologists would have you believe — such moments don’t happen by chance when a President of the United States is involved).

Add to that list his response to a nearly hour-long anti-American rant by Nicaragua’s Daniel Ortega at the Summit of the Americas in 2009. Obama, for whom any issue is salient only to the extent it reflects on him, responded to Ortega’s criticisms only by noting that most of the Nicaraguan president’s complaints stemmed from a time “when I was three months old.” All throughout the region, the president has been hapless.

In Europe, Obama has been similarly at sea. The frequency and sheer juvenility of his regular insults to our staunch allies in Britain, which range from the simply gauche (giving the queen an iPod full of his own speeches) to the downright scandalous (leaking secret information about the British nuclear arsenal to the Russians) have left one of America’s most durable diplomatic relationships hobbled.

Obama has been a similarly faithless friend to Poland and The Czech Republic, abandoning plans for missile defense systems in those countries. That was one of several moves that surely played into Vladimir Putin’s calculation that there was precious little cost to aggression in the region.

The resulting chaos in Ukraine — in which the Obama Administration responded with little more than pearl-clutching rhetoric about Russia’s “19th century behavior” — is likely to be only the opening salvo of Putin’s expansionism, with Obama’s timidity calling into question whether NATO will have the will to resist further incursions from Moscow.

No part of the world has seen more chaos during the Obama years than North Africa and the Middle East. Our “leading from behind” approach to Libya may have led to Muammar Gaddafi’s downfall, but it also left the country swimming in weaponry and dogged by chaos — the ultimate cost of which was the life of an American ambassador and three other US citizens in the terrorist attack on Benghazi. Country by country, we’ve seen similar incompetence.

In Egypt, Obama helped kick President Hosni Mubarak — nobody’s idea of an enlightened liberal ruler, but someone who had at least kept the peace — to the curb. In the aftermath, Obama didn’t think twice about supporting the radical Muslim Brotherhood’s rise to power in Cairo.

In Iran, he refused to support the uprising against the mullahs lest it damage his ability to negotiate with Tehran (negotiations that have done nothing but buy time for the country to construct a nuclear weapon). For all of the president’s posturing about the sophistication of his diplomatic style, Iran is closer to a nuclear weapon than ever before.

In Syria, the president pledged American intervention if Bashar al-Assad used chemical weapons on his own people; yet when Assad caused over 1,000 deaths through the use of sarin gas, Obama hedged and eventually let Damascus off the hook with nothing but a Moscow-brokered deal to give up the weapons — one that no expects to be honored.

In Iraq, Obama’s failure to secure a residual American presence has now led to a conflict that may well bleed into a region-wide Sunni-Shia war. Indeed, when the story of this tumultuous era of the Middle East is told in future generations, it will be impossible to ignore the Obama Administration’s complicity in the slide towards chaos.

Taking all of these events into consideration, it becomes apparent that President Obama doesn’t need to go shopping for a foreign policy legacy during his final days in office. He already has one: suffering for our allies and succor for our enemies.  That wing of the presidential library should be interesting.

Notable Quote   
"The U.S. Supreme Court on Thursday dealt another setback to organized labor by making it easier for employers to sue over strikes that cause property destruction in a ruling siding with a concrete business in Washington state that sued the union representing its truck drivers after a work stoppage.The 8-1 decision overturned a lower court's ruling that said the lawsuit filed by Glacier Northwest…[more]
— John Kruzel, Reuters
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