Popular Lies

Earlier this week, I was watching the news fill in some of the details, as they were guessed at, about the raid on Casa del Tonto Muerto, when one of the ABC anchors claimed that the death of Osama bin Laden during the Obama Administration would “define his presidency“.

I chuckled at that arrogance, and wondered if President Obama was naïve enough to believe his own spin.  Granted, it was a talking hairpiece that spouted that fairy tale, not the President, but Obama has exaggerated his accomplishments before, and Democrats in particular like to pretend they are war heroes.   If he has decided to run with this latest fantasy, Mr. Obama might want to stop and consider the examples of G.H.W. Bush and Harry Truman, other presidents from the past who were riding high after military success, but who could not turn that moment of glory into re-election.  And quite frankly, no one is seriously going to think of Barack Obama as an action hero or decisive leader.  He’s not a ‘take charge’ kind of guy, so much as he’s a ‘point finger’ kind of guy.    So far Obama has handled the event just about right, but anyone who thinks this ‘defines’ the Obama Presidency is lying to themselves.


Which got me thinking.  There are a lot of false claims out there these days, and some of them are real whoppers, yet they sometimes become popular.  So, I figured I’d shoot down some of the popular lies that are making the rounds these days.


“Al Qaeda will consider the death of Osama bin Laden a provocation, and will retaliate against the U.S. and her allies with a terrible act.”


Look, they’re terrorists.  Al Queso considers all kinds of things to be provocations.  No Qurans for detainees at Gitmo?  Provocation!  Marines hand Qurans to Gitmo inmates?  Still a provocation, the infidels touched it!  You get the idea.  These losers are going to hate America no matter what, and in the last three decades, no one’s found a way to turn terrorists back in human beings and get them to like and respect us.  All kinds of people tried to reason with terrorists, others tried to appease them.  By now, even the French have figured out that the only language that is effective in negotiating with radical Muslims involves expending ammunition.  Heavy use of ammunition.   They will hate us until either they or we are dead.  The raid that killed bin Laden sent the right message.      


“Killing bin Laden is a major victory against Terrorism.”


Mostly wrong.  Killing Osama was definitely a great victory for the U.S. and her allies, but terrorists are not known to shut down just because someone greased their boss.   And in bin Laden’s case, the guy had basically retired and would toss out the occasional video every so often, in hopes people would not forget him completely.  AQ’s operational capability is essentially unchanged.



“The death of Osama bin Laden is too late to mean anything.” 


The death of Osama bin Laden sends, for the first time since the Bush Administration, the vital message to terrorists that we can and will reach them.  Taking a leadership role in a terror organization makes you a very visible, and permanent, target for U.S. intelligence and military.  The raid on bin Laden makes it clear that once you attack Americans as a terrorist, you can never relax again.  Ever.



“This news just got Obama re-elected.”


I’m sure he’d like it to be that easy, but no.  Most elections are about the economy, and since Obama not only made the economy his top issue in 2008 to get elected, but also blew through every sane budget limit he faced since taking office without helping the economy, not to dwell on his war against drilling companies, his desire to punish small business, and Obama’s sheer inability to take the debt crisis seriously he’s got some heavy lifting to do to get another term. 



“Obama is not an American.”


There’s just no evidence to back that claim up, and a bit that goes the other way.  Yes, Obama is an idiot and a jerk.  But as an example, Donald Trump is clearly an American, and you’d be hard-pressed to find a bigger jerk than The Donald.  As for dumb, Trump’s casino once filed for bankruptcy.  Do you know how dumb you have to be to lose money owning a casino?   Yes, Obama loves big government and can’t speak coherently without a prompter.  So that just puts him at Katie Couric’s level.



“Bush didn’t care about getting bin Laden”


Context is a tough concept for a lot of lefties, especially when they only hear what they want to hear in the first place.  The thing to remember about Osama bin Laden, is that he had zero operational value; the man funded Al Qaeda, made introductions to patrons and protectors, and made statements for the group.  Handy, in that he gave the group a face and name that appealed to Muslims, but bin Laden was a figurehead.  President Bush understood quickly that catching or killing bin Laden would be meaningless without a strong response against Al Qaeda; hence his line about bin Laden not being first and foremost in his priorities.  Bush wanted bin Laden, all right, but Bush understood the stakes better than most people, then and now.


“I gave the order” (President Obama)


Maybe not?   (ht: PBunyan)

Journalist laments bin Laden death
The Prisoner Dilemma