Critics of Obama way off base on this one

Yes — the not-so-bright, would-be terrorist from Nigeria got though international and domestic security mechanisms supposed to have stopped him long before the jerk lit his underwear afire before landing in Detroit.  And yes — the incident happened during the administration of President Barack Obama.  But the sniping at the president by Republicans, including former Vice President Cheney, and by conservative radio and TV commentators, borders on — if not passing into — asinine.

The criticism has included such childishness as blasting Obama for waiting a few days before making a national speech on the incident.  For heaven’s sake, the president was briefed on the incident from the moment it occured; he made statements almost immediately indicating his concern and that he was being regularly briefed; he took time to gather the facts and meet with his national security team; and then he appeared publicly to give a rational, measured, but hard-hitting response.  And for this, a former vice president criticizes him.

Partisanship truly has pervasively infected our political system when a reasonable, measured, factual, timely and substantive response by a president to a single security incident — the roots of which clearly indicate long-simmering problems that predated his tenure in office — is publicly blasted as irresponsible.  In point of fact, those levelling such counterproductive attacks are the ones engaging in irresponsible behavior.

822 comments Add your comment

JT

January 7th, 2010
2:16 pm

Whatever happened to the ole partisan, Democrat cheer, “It is PATRIOTIC to Dissent”, screeched by Hilary Clinton not many moons ago?? Didn’t hear many Democrats whining about that then!

D-bag

January 7th, 2010
2:16 pm

With all due respect, congressman, the problem is not that the incident occurred, but rather the response. On the day that obama called him an isolated extremist, al Q took credit for the attack. it is a sad day in America when al Q has more credibility than the president. Then you have Napolitano all over the sunday shows saying multiple times that the system worked. And then there is the fact that they read him his rights right away and gave him the rights of a criminal defendant. This is outrageous. So no, Mr. Barr it is not unreasonable to criticise the President for these transgressions. Sure, an attack can happen under any president’s watch. what matters is how they respond, and obama gets something less than a B+ for his response.

Oh and one more thing, it was reported that Obama wasnt informed until 3 hours after the plane was on the ground so, no, he was not briefed the moment it happened.

KB

January 7th, 2010
2:16 pm

You are soooo right, Barr. Wrongly placed criticism is totally the biggest issue facing our country. Whew. And I thought all those yahoos in Washington had their priorities mixed up.

Kile Anderson

January 7th, 2010
2:17 pm

I don’t see how any level headed person can accuse the Republicans of being the sole source or even the instigator in the incivility we see on the political stage. Democrats, especially Pelosi and Reid, are the most evil, vile, name calling group on the planet. They are the ones who love to throw around words such as Nazi, racist, and hate. If you ask me, Democrats are the textbook example of projection. If you want to know what is in their hearts, simply look at what they accuse others of.

BigDon

January 7th, 2010
2:17 pm

So a year into it and it comes down to it is still Bush’s fault. You are part of the reason
print is dead. You have chosen sides between the Republicans and Democrats when the
only real option is the American People. Question the government on everything it does
and allow them no slack. Hopefully you will come back to the side of the American Citizen
soon and stop making excuses for the President you most likely voted for.

JeffW

January 7th, 2010
2:18 pm

I seem to recall the left going off the deep end because President Bush, when notified of the 9/11 attack, continued reading to those kids (and thereby not startling them) before he responded. So it’s ok to bash him for that but not bash President Obama for not cancelling his vacation for this? I give him credit, he interuppted his golf game when the child of a friend got hurt. A leader would not have waited to get all the fact before addressing a nervous public. They needed reassurance and did not get it for 3 days. He could have easily addressed the public and stated that all the facts were not known yet but promised to get to the bottom of this. He did not. Sometime being a leader means being a calming presence and letter others know you don’t have the answers yet and to broadcast to those listening that you will find out who was responsible and hold them accountable. Not wait 3 days until you can figure out how to put a political spin on it and point fingers.

Hondo

January 7th, 2010
2:18 pm

Barr Obama is a national security fraud. If Bush was Pres he won’t have stopped his Vacation got on TV te reasure that the Government was doing eveything the can to extract info from the pathetic Terrorist water boarding etc. But Obama didn’t respond, he jilly jacked around did nothing. Obama is the security, since his an unvetted Kenyan Born Indonisian citizen uncostiutional President that is subject of black mail from the people who funded Obamas campaign Hammas Iran all the other terror group wh donated money 1 billion dollars was raised by a a do nothing half term not a acomplishment why, he was a bought and paid for, Obama Foreign Born Traitor to the USA!

Kanchuk

January 7th, 2010
2:18 pm

In my years, I have seen many people like this Bob Barr person. They lack the genitalia to stay true to their convictions. We should always remember, whether you are a Republican, a Democrat, or even a tree hugging hippie loser like most of the State of Oregon… if you don’t stand for something, you’ll fall for anything… That’s what happened to middle America during the last election, thereby giving this neophyte, street thug politician, the powerful job in the history of mankind…

Jim

January 7th, 2010
2:18 pm

This just sounds like CIA protecting its own.

Independent

January 7th, 2010
2:18 pm

Do you remember all the vitriol spewed at Pres. Bush? Moveon and DailyKos were never criticized or muzzled by the Democratic party. As an independent, I see it as child like behavior. To stop this acrimony, both parties have to step up and take the high road. The majority party should take the lead if they want to earn respect from voters. I don’t see this happening with the current majority leaders of the House and Senate based on their past and current remarks.

Hobbs

January 7th, 2010
2:19 pm

Dems continue to be stupid and spend out of control but don’t fool yourself, Republicans are just as stupid and would be spending out of control just as much…only on different things.

To be fair to Obama, he did start out treating the terrorist like a bank robber but was quick to change his tune within a day. There is no doubt he wants to deminish the War which is one of the reasons he won’t call it what it is and why he will continue to look weak on Terror.

The fact we already read this terrorist his maranda rights is absurb. It’s time we stop using our Constitution to protect our enemies. I guarantee you our forefathers had no intention of it being used for that.

Al_Idaho

January 7th, 2010
2:19 pm

Wow! THIS is something to berate conservatives or others that do not agree with how obummer and the dimocrats use/view military and intelligence. Bob, YOU have gone a long way from when I admired you a LOT!

Greg

January 7th, 2010
2:21 pm

You are just one of those folks who can only see one side of things. I bet you also think that the President and Congress are also fulfilling their pledges to be the most transparent they have ever been???? these folks are just common thieves and liars at best.

plady

January 7th, 2010
2:21 pm

My my my…how quickly we forget. The left jumped into Bush’s case with both feet…and for less than this. Let he who is without sin cast the first stone.

Dave

January 7th, 2010
2:22 pm

This is Bob Barr we are talking about here, he’s a joke!

gfmucci

January 7th, 2010
2:22 pm

I don’t know who you are, Bob. I’ve never heard of you before, so we start out even. Whenever ANY president handcuffs our nation’s security efforts as much as Obama has done, any and all criticisms are justified. And when a secuity lapse occurs, the guy in power has responsibility. That should rightfully compound the ciriticism, because, you see, Bob, Obama has lowered our defenses, lapses have started to occur, and he rightfully should take lots of blame. Obama has been in office almost a year, now. Most CEOs of huge corporations are expected to make major progress in a few months. So “time in office” cannot remain an excuse. Obama has made major progress all right – in areas most Americans disagree with. But the problem is Obama has dwelt on all the wrong priorities. National security should be FIRST, not last. Bob, I would bet you are 1 in 1000 who believe it is unfair of us to shower Obama with tons of criticism and expect accountability. It is amazing and unfortunate that there are that many of you who believe this way. Accountability and national security are wonderful things, Bob. And Obamas actions, which mean more than his rhetoric, are telling a dismal tale.

TRE

January 7th, 2010
2:23 pm

Mr. Barr,
I know you are intelligent enough to know where President Obama is taking this country. Yet, the fact you ask to give him a break on any issue shows a certain level of ignorance on your part.

Lou Wallace

January 7th, 2010
2:23 pm

Gee Bob. I didn’t know that you were a RINO. Guess that’s why you are not in office now. Political correctness and lax attitudes is what caused this. If we don’t get tough on the rugheads soon, they are going to bring one down…you can count on it.

Swede Atlanta

January 7th, 2010
2:23 pm

Curt,

First of all who cares what you call this intent to harm us? People seem so focused on calling it terrorism and using the word terror. I don’t care if we call it mud. It is what it is. The important this is what you do to address the problem. You can’t see the forest for the trees.

You complain he took forever to make a decision. Actually I am glad that he has taken time to get various points of view, ask questions, etc. BEFORE he commits additional troops. If you recall he was given several proposals and he rejected all of them and asked his team to come back. That is exactly what he should do. Acting quickly doesn’t make you strong. It leads to poor decisions and makes you appear reactive.

Greg

January 7th, 2010
2:23 pm

The problem with most every comment on this post is the same. People, NEITHER party cares about the real interests of the American people. Sure, there are a handful on each side that are genuine, but you can probably combine them and still count them all on both hands. Until you stop blindly supporting whatever your party says and REALLY focus on what they do, we will continue to be the idiots that keep them in office. Your neighbor could lie to your face today and you would have no issue with failing to trust them in the future. But, your President or Congressman can lie to you repeatedly, you KNOW it, and you will continue to make excuses for them because you are just as partisan as they are. WAKE UP.

MICHAEL S.

January 7th, 2010
2:24 pm

Why wasn’t the media making these kinds of excuses for Bush? He inheirited the Clinton’s mess. Bush never blamed anyone else, he just dealt with it. Look at O’s reaction after he was forced to do speak, he went and played golf. He sped home faster for a friend’s son cut forehead than he did for his country. Stop drinking Kool-Aid, too many chemicals people

Sir William

January 7th, 2010
2:25 pm

Sure, let’s let the Libs play Chicago style politics while we’re “professional”, “courteous”, “diplomatic”, “tactful”, etc. etc. ad nauseum.

Joe

January 7th, 2010
2:25 pm

Has anyone else failed to realize that no matter what happens it doesn’t matter since the world is just gonna blow itself up in a few years when all common sense is totally gone (the majority has already flown the coop).

Doug

January 7th, 2010
2:25 pm

To Jake: Jake, nobody is saying that muslim=terrorist, what people say is that all hijackers, market, school, nightclub bombers, train bombers, etc. are muslim terrorists. Until our stupid security systems wise up and begin profiling individual’s behaviors like they do in Israel, this will happen again and again and everyone’s liberities will be further erroded. We do not have unlimited funds or time to have 100% checks, so we must use our brains to give extra screening to where it is required. The people hijacking planes are muslims, those should get extra screening, not 5 year old kids, not 90 year old grandmas, not Sweedish bikini models. Being PC already cost a lot of soldiers their lives at Ft. Hood. The next time a city might be smoldering from a WMD. PC is killing this country…fast.

Bob Barr Not

January 7th, 2010
2:26 pm

Bobby: You’re a homo and a douche bag. ‘Nuff said.

Rroy

January 7th, 2010
2:26 pm

Sorry Mr Barr, but boo-hoo! That’s life. In the last year, the Pres has worked very hard in speeches and in personal appearances throughout the world to try to be nice and “kiss a–” to the people and to the countries that have no interest in whether or not we have “partisanship” (which doesn’t exist) and/or our US culture. Some of these countries know we are at war. Strange to relate, our Pres does not. Now, hopefully, someday, the Pres will start acting like one and do what needs to be done to protect our citizens.
But – no worries – if he fails, you can blame any/all failures on what “predated his tenure” (aka Bush). It is guaranteed the Pres and his cabinet will do that!
Really, Mr Barr…wake up.

P.F. Undit

January 7th, 2010
2:28 pm

Hey, Bob. How’s that libertarian gig working out for you? Are you achieving all your goals? Love those trendy glasses too. As for your commentary, no of course we shouldn’t criticize the government. They know what they’re doing, they’ve demonstrated their competence time and time again. Right, Bob?

Earl Dumarest

January 7th, 2010
2:28 pm

Took time to gather the facts? Like “he acted alone”? Barr is a joke.

rockman2257

January 7th, 2010
2:28 pm

Barr got the coverage he wants by siding with the dems here. Hey Bob, you will be used as a tool by the leftists. The Republicans shut up all the time, where does it get them? HMMM? The Democrats RUN OVER Republicans all the time, and WE have to shut up? W got reamed by Michael Moore for not moving for 5 minutes after 911, even though he was reading in front of children at the time. They CRUSHED Lott for an insinuation!!! WTF??

Beesman

January 7th, 2010
2:29 pm

If in the final analysis Obama’s attention and focus was so keen and on point, why is he still, still, using “allegedly” and “suspect” and why on God’s green earth would he let this guy lawyer up?
The immediate reaction would be forgivable if the contemplated course didn’t justify our mistrust of his ultimate approach.

RF Xaver

January 7th, 2010
2:29 pm

Comes around goes around? C;mon, folks, let’s grow up. We can only judge an instance on its own merits -Katrina, “mission accomplished,” the Christmas attack that almost was. None of these things excuses or justifies anything beyond its own context.

Paul

January 7th, 2010
2:30 pm

Barack Obama’s response wan not reasonable, measured, factual, timely or substantive. You’re the the one off base Mr. Barr. Since taking office attacks against Americans are on the rise and I like most American’s understand that his demonstrated weakness on the matter and capitulation are primary factors. This isn’t August 2001 and nobody can claim ignorance about the threats we face so when they successfully carry out a major attack we will hold Barack Obama and Eric Holder responsible for not doing at that was possible to prevent it.

O. Hicks

January 7th, 2010
2:30 pm

Washington D.C. is one big sewage pond. No need to try to sort out which is the most corrupt. And Bob Barr…your skirts are soiled as well! Give me a break.

Vinnie the Shark

January 7th, 2010
2:31 pm

Gee, is this what it takes for the MSM to love you again, knifing your party in the back? You’re disgusting. You make me sick. Obama is a filthy beast as his appointment of sex fiend and freak Kevin Jennings, would show, if you took your head out of his butt long enough to examine your surroundings. Obama is trying to destroy this economy on purpose as is stated in the “Cloward Piven” strategy which is like a bible to a liberal nutbag. You cannot cut 500b from Medicare and cover 47 mil more people while somehow “reducing” costs. He is a LIAR and anyone who follows him is either a liar as well or as Rick from Casablanca would say, “uniformed”.
Obama is liberal scum who thinks that five year olds need to know what SODOMITES like Barney Frank do to his male prostitutes. And he thinks that his daughters would be “Punished” with a baby should they fail to kill it. He is a liberal pantywaist who is AFRAID of the terrorists and will close GITMO in the ludicrously vain hope of APPEASING them. He has eliminated the words “WAR ON TERROR” and changed it to “Overseas Contingency Operation” he has eliminated the words “Islamic Terrorist” and replaced it with “Man Caused Disaster”. You should KICK YOUR OWN ASS for your mewling pathetic cry for attention. To support such a man leaves your own character suspect. But then again, we’ve always had a few questions about you , haven’t we?

JD

January 7th, 2010
2:31 pm

Agreed. My problem is with this Administration’s actions after the incident. This guy should be in a military prison, and should have already been interrogated. He should not be in a federal prison, as they say, “all lawyered up”. On this, the republicans, and the talk show hosts, are correct.

TB

January 7th, 2010
2:32 pm

Put the scotch glass down, Bob. You’ve had enough.

Jilli

January 7th, 2010
2:32 pm

Joel Edge

January 7th, 2010
7:16 am
True. But I hope you remember the attacks W faced after Katrina. What’s good for the goose, etc. A group of dedicated fanatics have an advantage over all of the well meaning government employees. Profiling would seem to be the only answer. But we’re not gonna do that.

Time for a little reality check Joel – Pres. Bush had to be given a DVD of news coverage of Katrina days after the event – this is in no way shape or form comparable. Bushs non-reaction to Katrina was pathetic – and the criticsm was deserved – in fact, it should have been louder and stronger. Bushs failure to head the warnings and PDB’s on terrorist threats is also unexcusable to all thinking humans. It was a failure he never accepted responsibility for and should have.

Would it have made you simpering cowards feel better if the current president thumped his chest and spouted some nonsensical bumpersticker slogans? It seems that the reaction from the right is giving the terrorists exactly the reaction they’re striving for – they don’t necessarilly need to inflict damage – their goal is to terrorize the country – and the republicans have played right into their hands. Much the same way Bush/Cheney did.

When did such a large portion of our population lose their spines? The right reflects a cowardly posture, and the terrorists win. Their reaction is pathetic and unAmerican – raising money off a terrorist attempt? It’s pathetic. It never ceases to amaze me how low the republicans are willing to go to score some cheap political points with the ignorant.

Well done Mr. Barr, perhaps you’ve convinced a few to stand erect again and stop cowering in fear at every turn.

Joe Jericho

January 7th, 2010
2:33 pm

I could go with the column if cetain basic facts were not ignored: 1) Obama initially said that this was an isolated incident, essentially not connected to a larger network. That was apparently “way off.” 2) The Homeland Security Secretary, Janet Napolitano, initially said the system worked in dealing with this terrorist threat. Sounds like that was “way off” as well as she had to walk that comment back, substantially, the next day.

Framer of the Constitution

January 7th, 2010
2:34 pm

Bob Who? Bobs been wrong so many times, why stop now?

Jake

January 7th, 2010
2:34 pm

Fine, you’re right; in fact how about we round up all the muslims and put them into, lets say camps; then we could guarantee no more terrorist attacks. Then after that we can round up anybody who is intimately aquatinted with a muslim (friend, spouse, in-law) and put them into camps. Ooh and after that we can round up anybody who knows a muslim and put them into camps. Would you feel safe on a plane then????

Mike

January 7th, 2010
2:34 pm

The problem is not the delay in communication, it’s a concern that the administration is in denial that the country is at war and are treating the event like a gas station robbery and not an attempt at mass murder to further deteriorate the economy and erode American will.

Colby

January 7th, 2010
2:34 pm

Hey genius! You fixed a few of your misspelled words but still have 2 incorrectly spelled words in this article. Why should anyone buy into your crap if you can’t even spell? That is a lot of misspelled words for 3 paragraphs! I would suggest taking some college refresher courses or at least see if your local high school has room in its English literature class for you.

Mark

January 7th, 2010
2:34 pm

chbeyer, apparently you do not remember Richard Reid (the shoe bomber) who was tried in American courts under the Bush adminstration? Is there a difference?

MIchael

January 7th, 2010
2:35 pm

This administration is so lost in the sauce, and so determined to avoid being in any way shape or from like the Bush administration that they refuse to undestand that President Bush was right about the need for stringent security measures and even in the face of idiotic BS from the worthless ACLU and the nut cases at code pink or MSNBC, Bush kept this country safe. We are now experiencing the danger of a left wing too soft on security president. . . Wake up America. . .

Ps. Watch Glen Beck tonight he has great information pertaining to this.

Tyler

January 7th, 2010
2:35 pm

No wonder you’re now a columnist and no longer a US Representative. We are all safer for that. Thank you people of Georgia.

If you hired a new security firm to protect your house, and somebody broke in one night to burn your house down, and you caught them because they incompetently lit themselves on fire, what would you expect from your new security firm?

What if someone had already successfully burned down your house before, killing one of your children, and you had hired the original security firm because arson was becoming common in your neighborhood?

Let’s say the security company CEO was on vacation during this latest attack and when you demanded to know how someone could get in your house and attempt this again, he called you three days later by telephone explaining that they were looking into it and that he’ll get back to you (and that you shouldn’t jump to any conclusions). How would you judge the CEO after receiving a call two days earlier from the the operations manager of the local security office saying everything worked as expected and you shouldn’t worry? What would you do when you found out the the head of security intelligence responsible for tracking arsonists in your area was skiing during the attack, and in response, continued skiing?

I’d argue you wouldn’t just fire this security firm. First you’d sue them, then try to have them prosecuted for gross negligence.

“…roots of which clearly indicate long-simmering problems that predated his tenure in office” Mr. Barr, you can’t be serious. What an embarrassment. Please remain a columnist.

You Distort, We Deride

January 7th, 2010
2:35 pm

Bush was in office on 9/11. As much as the chorus here loves to deflect the criticism to Clinton or the Democratic Congress or the liberal media, the greatest attack on Americans on American soil took place under the lackadaisical and unfocused regime of George W. Bush.

A fact is a fact is a fact.

James

January 7th, 2010
2:35 pm

Have you lost your mind, Bob?

Obama has gutted the structure that prevented terrorist attacks for the last 8 years.

Of COURSE this is Obama’s fault.

Frank

January 7th, 2010
2:35 pm

it’s great to hear about obama taking time to gather his facts and measured response during the biggest travel weekend of the year people were waiting at airports to go home from the holidays, undoubtly s@*%ing there pants. a word of encouragement from the big guy would not have hurt. if it was President Bush the d’s would still be talking about it and demanding an investigation and calling for the removal of Vice Presidnt Cheney. clearly amatuer hour in the white house.

YO

January 7th, 2010
2:36 pm

Bob -

This just in…….You’re lame.

laughing at you barr

January 7th, 2010
2:36 pm

What a seriously delusional frumpy and unhappy spreading of poison journalism masquerading as opinion. Why would your opinion count when all I see is knee jerk reactionism on your part. Sadly that is the tool of the left for the tools of the left.

Conservatives put up with the entire media and 8 years of “murder Bush movies and attacks and the left cant take the heat of one criticism ? What fecund and petulant behavior from one of the “enlightened” left. Which is why I abhor them for their asinine sanctimoniousness, Among other things their Jeremiah Johnson is broke and that’s all I have to say about that.

Have a nice life you poor misguided and bitter man…. and your pot and kettle are showing that you are the partisan one blinded and unable to see reason. Fair is fair, suck it up, man up and don’t be a damn whiner.