Obama Administration’s Delayed Response to the Oil Spill: Look for the Union Label

Remember when the Dutch offered not only their skimmers, but crews experienced in cleaning up oil spills mere days after the Deepwater Horizon well blew out?

The Obama administration initially turned down the offer because the skimmers didn’t live up to EPA regs (the filtered water they’d spit back into the gulf would still contain a small fraction of oil — oh the horror).

Now the Obama administration has allowed the skimmers, but not experience Dutch crews to operate them. Why? As with every decision this administration makes, it has something to do with labor unions:

The Americans, overwhelmed by the catastrophic consequences of the BP spill, finally relented and took the Dutch up on their offer — but only partly. Because the U.S. didn’t want Dutch ships working the Gulf, the U.S. airlifted the Dutch equipment to the Gulf and then retrofitted it to U.S. vessels. And rather than have experienced Dutch crews immediately operate the oil-skimming equipment, to appease labour unions the U.S. postponed the clean-up operation to allow U.S. crews to be trained.

From day one we’ve been putting big labor before people and the environment!”

(h/t Instapundit)

Robert Byrd Dies

Robert Byrd, the longest serving US Senator, has died.

Last night I wrote at Michelle Malkin’s blog the West Virginia rules for filling a vacant Senate seat. The long and short of it is if the West Virginia Governor declares the seat vacant before this coming Saturday, there will be a special election in November to decide who will fill the remaining two years of Byrd’s term. If the seat is declared vacant after this coming Saturday, the appointee will serve the remainder of Byrd’s term until 2012 and presumably run for re-election then.

Remember that the West Virginia Governor is a Democrat with possible Senate aspirations of his own, so the odds that the seat will be declared vacant (unless there’s a law I’m unaware of that would compel him to do so) before Saturday, which would give the Republicans a shot at winning the seat in November, are slim and none.

Byrd served 51 years in the Senate, so this should also lead to a discussion about term limits.

Also, like JWF, I can’t help but wonder, given Byrd’s rather infamous past, if the media would be referring to him as a “respected Senator” if he’d have been a Republican.

Surprisingly Enough, Reverend Wright Still Not Happy With America, White Folks & Jews

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In 2008, there were many people on the right (or center-right) who endorsed Barack Obama — Christopher Buckley, Colin Powell, Scott McClellan, William Weld, etc — and you just know that a good portion of them did so because they thought Obama’s election would help shut up crazies like the Reverend Wright.

They were, of course, wrong:

During a five-day seminar Wright taught last week at the University of Chicago, he was back at it, claiming that whites and Jews are controlling the flow of worldwide information and oppressing blacks in Israel and America.

“White folk done took this country,” Wright said. “You’re in their home, and they’re gonna let you know it.”

White folk must have done took Wright’s sanity decades ago.

After his speech, Wright went back to his million-dollar home, called his former parishioner, the African-American president of the United States, and openly bashed white people and Jews for oppressing them so much.

It’s great hearing a lecture about how oppressive “white folks” are coming from somebody who sports a far more opulent lifestyle than most “white folks” could ever dream of.

The Long-Awaited Computer Animation of Al Gore’s Alleged Sexual Assault

Yes, it just had to happen. They say that the camera adds ten pounds, but lucky for Al it looks like animation takes off at least 50 pounds.

Thank goodness the animator didn’t include the alleged part where Gore’s alleged DNA ended up on the alleged pants of the allged masseuse (I don’t believe for one second, by the way, that Gore worked for Clinton for eight years and didn’t learn not to do that):

I don’t really believe any of it. There’s no way Gore would have been able to avoid seducing her with his global warming poem.

(h/t Weasel Zippers)

Cross-Dressing Taliban Leader Killed; 72 Virgins Fighting Over Who Gets His Clothes

Another supremely “brave” Taliban jihadist not only hiding behind women and children, but blending in with them as best he could, has gone on to his eternal reward as the inspiration for a Middle-East remake of To Wong Foo, Thanks for Everything Julie Newmar.

From the AFP:

A SENIOR Taliban commander disguised in women’s clothes was killed by Afghan and international forces when he fired on troops trying to catch him south of Kabul.

NATO and Afghan security forces cornered Ghulam Sakhi at a compound in Logar province’s Puli Alam district, and called for women and children to leave the building, a coalition statement said.

“As they were exiting, Sakhi came out with the group disguised in women’s attire and pulled out a pistol and a grenade and shot at the security force,” the statement by NATO’s International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) said.

“When Afghan and coalition forces shot him, he dropped the grenade and it detonated, wounding a woman and two children,” it said.

If the grenade detonated between his legs, his 72 virgins will merely think there’s a 73rd virgin in the smoked-jihadist waiting-room. Sorry pal.

Hang in There, Gulf Coast Residents — The IRS is Coming to the Rescue!

There have been complaints about a lack of “coordinated reponse” to the Gulf oil spill, but rest assured, the IRS response will be very coordinated:

WASHINGTON (AP) – The Internal Revenue Service wants its cut from oil spill victims who receive BP payments for lost wages.
The agency says that under current law, BP payments for lost wages are taxable—just like the lost wages would have been.
[…]
The IRS is planning to hold forums in seven cities in the Gulf region on July 17 to help oil spill victims with tax troubles or questions.

Because nothing will help lift the spirits of people who have lost their livelihoods better than a day at an IRS tax seminar and later trying to figure out how to write off tar balls as dependents.

Jumping on the cash as BP dumps it in the area before the money has a chance to get away is known in IRS circles as a “top kill.” Couldn’t the IRS have its agents at least wash a turtle or something useful while they’re down there?

The government has sent a team of attorneys from the Justice Department and some thumb-screw weilding collectors from the Internal Revenue Service to the Gulf, and yet the leak hasn’t yet been plugged. Better send more bureaucrats!

Update: And the hits keep on coming: Joe Biden will travel to the gulf on Tuesday. Can Plugs plug the hole? Now that would be a “big f-in deal.”

Congress Pulls All-Nighter to Pass Financial ‘Reform’; America ‘Dodd on Arrival’

Just like Nancy Pelosi’s pitch for Obamacare (“we have to pass it to know what’s in it”), Congress has set new financial rules and nobody will know how it will work until they’re implemented:

Key House and Senate lawmakers agreed on far-reaching new financial rules early Friday after weeks of division, delay and frantic last-minute deal making. The dawn compromise set up a potential vote in both houses of Congress next week that could send the landmark legislation to President Obama by July 4.

Lawmakers pulled an all-nighter, wrapping up their work at 5:39 a.m. — more than 20 messy, mind-numbing, exhaustive hours after they began Thursday morning.

“It’s a great moment. I’m proud to have been here,” said a teary-eyed Sen. Christopher J. Dodd (D-Conn.), who as chairman of the Senate Banking Committee led the effort in the Senate. “No one will know until this is actually in place how it works. But we believe we’ve done something that has been needed for a long time. It took a crisis to bring us to the point where we could actually get this job done.”

I want to get these slimy jerks on an airplane, lock them in, tell them the plane was manufactured by a bunch of guys with a history of shady dealings, no experience in the airline industry and who were up all night, tell them “nobody knows if this will work until we’re airborne” and see how many of these worms wet themselves when the plane starts taxiing down the runway.

It’s okay to do the economic equivalent to the rest of us though.

Drudge has an unsettling photo taken after the all-nighter:

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Barney hasn’t looked that frumpled and exhausted-yet-satisfied since he exited the Castro Theater after a marathon screening of La Cage au Folles in 3-D.

The tentative plan is to have the “Dodd-Frank” bill ready for Obama’s signature on July 4th. So let the fireworks start early.

Chris Dodd and Barney Frank — two of the many reasons we’re in such financial trouble — are also the architects of the effort to “fix” the problem. “Hope & Change!”

Of Course: Obama Picks Critic of Immigration Enforcement to Head Immigration Enforcement Office

Personally I thought Obama would choose this idiot to head up Immigrations & Customs Enforcement, but this guy is the next best thing — in a wildly counterproductive kind of way:

The Obama administration has tapped an outspoken critic of immigration enforcement on the local level to oversee and promote partnerships between federal and local officials on the issue.

Harold Hurtt, a former police chief in Houston and Phoenix, has been hired as the director for the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Office of State and Local Coordination. Starting July 6, Hurtt will supervise outreach and communication between ICE, local law enforcement agencies, tribal leaders and representatives from non-governmental organizations.
[…]
But as a police chief, Hurtt was a supporter of “sanctuary city” policies, by which illegal immigrants who don’t commit crimes can live without fear of exposure or detainment because police don’t check for immigration papers.

He also, during his tenure as Houston police chief, criticized ICE’s key program that draws on local law enforcement’s support.

It’s a $180,000 a year gig. Our money will be well spent once again.

Next, look for Cindy Sheehan to get the nod for Secretary of Defense.

Milwaukee County Supervisor Supports Boycotting Arizona as Energetically as She Boycotted Geography Class

Milwaukee, Wisconsin, like some other cities, is considering boycotting Arizona over its immigration law. One of the people debating the issue is a genius named Peggy West, who is a Democrat County Supervisor, and proud to be the “first Latino/Hispanic American to be elected to the Milwaukee County Board.”

From the “meet the people who cancel your vote out” file, here’s Peggy, completely unaware that Arizona borders Mexico. Oddly enough though, I’ll bet she’s just as knowledgeable of the actual content of Arizona’s immigration law as Eric Holder is:

A guy at the end tries to straighten her out, but the frustrating thing about idiots is that nobody can ever convince them that they’re idiots — which is why they’re idiots.

(h/t Weasel Zippers)