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International Affairs
  • Quote Unquote: Ubeki-beki-beki-beki-stan-stan

    Herman Cain on the limits of his knowledge

    "I’m ready for the 'gotcha' questions and they’re already starting to come. And when they ask me who is the president of Ubeki-beki-beki-beki-stan-stan I’m going to say, you know, I don't know. Do you know? And then I’m going to say how’s that going to create one job?"

    It's so true! Nobody ever created an American job by placing a value on knowing things about stuff.

    Tags: Herman Cain, International Affairs, Primaries, Quote Unquote, Republicans, Unemployment, Uzbekistan
  • Michele Bachmann Is Like Margaret Thatcher, And Other Lies

    Since an overwhelming fear of science prevents the Republicans from developing technology that would reanimate Ronald Reagan's corpse, GOP presidential hopefuls are sometimes forced to associate themselves with other conservative icons. For Michele Bachmann, no one less than Britain's Iron Lady will do

    Bachmann pointed repeatedly in the address to Great Britain, which she said was as an example of a country that was restored to its role of world leader after electing former Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher, who pursued an aggressive foreign policy, including the Falklands War (which she inaccurately said happened in 1992, rather than 1982).

    "We find ourselves today in search of another Margaret Thatcher to restore our great country to the thriving nation I believe we can be again," Bachmann said. "The good news is we can take our country back because the principles that make our country great lie here in this hall today."

    Of course, by the time Maggie Thatcher was Bachmann's age, she had already served 21 years in the House of Commons, been appointed to the Cabinet as Secretary of State for Education and Science, was elected Leader of the Conservative Party and was widely respected for her sharp wit and command of facts. Michele Bachmann was elected to Congress in 2006, has declared war on lightbulbs, blamed Hurricane Irene on God, and proclaimed The Lion King to be gay propaganda, so yes, there are some minute differences in the resumes if you're going to be nitpicky about it.

    To be fair, Bachmann never explicitly compared herself to Thatcher in her prime. Perhaps a comparison to the elderly Thatcher battling dementia is more apt? During the same address in which she transported the Falklands War into another decade, Bachmann claimed that socialist Obamacare would undermine the even-more-socialist care provided to military families by TRICARE and the Veterans Administration, which should not be intended as a factual statement, according to the factmongers at the Congressional Budget Office.

    Photo by Darren McCollester/Getty Images News/Getty Images

    Tags: Health Care, International Affairs, Margaret Thatcher, Michele Bachmann, Veterans
  • Mitt Romney Bashes Wimpy Harvard Elites Like Mitt Romney

    President Obama may have almost tripled the number of troops stationed in Afghanistan since the end of the Bush administration, ordered Osama bin Laden killed, directed a not-war in Libya and crafted a massive stimulus package for Americans who happen to work in drone and munitions factories, but Mitt Romney’s positronic brain can see through the bomb wreckage to the bitter reality: our Muslim president is nothing but an appeaser beholden to foreign policy "experts."

    At a speech before the Veterans of Foreign Wars convention, Romney derided Obama's dangerous reliance on people who know things about the world

    And so, on the other hand, that leaves us with the belief that America should become a lesser power. It flows from the conviction that if we are weak, tyrants will choose to be weak as well; that if we could just talk more, engage more, pass more U.N. resolutions, that peace will break out. That may be what they think in that Harvard faculty lounge, but it’s not what they know on the battlefield!

    Of course a man like Romney–who did not go to school in Boston, but just outside Boston–knows a little something about those weak-kneed tweedy professors

    Not only is Harvard a major player in Massachusetts, the state Romney led for four years as governor, but it also is the school from which he received the business and law degrees that helped propel him toward his highly lucrative venture capital career.

    It is success in that arena, he says now, that makes him best equipped to replace President Obama as the country's leader.

    This may sound like hypocrisy (or as they say just outside Boston, "pahk the cah in Hahvahd Yahd"), but it's not.

    Mitt Romney was drawing a clear distinction between the smoking-jacket-wearing, sherry-sipping, Yeats-loving types in the Harvard faculty lounge and the real men on the battlefield. And let's make one thing perfectly clear: Mitt Romney has never taught at Harvard.

    He did his time on the battlefields of the Harvard Law School and the Harvard Business School, where he narrowly survived heavy cum laude-ing and a veritable minefield of footnotes.

    Photo by Bill Clark/CQ-Roll Call Group/Getty Images

    Tags: Barack Obama, International Affairs, Mitt Romney, Rick Perry
  • Meet Christine Lagarde, Your IMF Prom Queen

    Congratulations, Humans of the World! According to a Wednesday press conference in some fancypants foreign country, the International Monetary Fund's presumptive Prom Queen is noted French lady Christine Lagarde. But not everybody is as psyched as she is about her future role as the high priestess of Teh Moniez (TM).

    Because we are America's greatest journalists, we've already covered the rising clamor among developing nations dissatisfied with Europe's perpetual leadership of the IMF. Now let's hear Chrissy's response

    Declaring her candidacy at a news conference that was called only the night before, Ms. Lagarde said that being European should not disqualify her, and that it might be an advantage since Europe's sovereign debt crisis is the biggest problem facing the fund. She said she would travel over the next few weeks to listen to and seek support from other I.M.F. members.

    "Being a European shouldn't necessarily be a plus, but it shouldn’t be a minus, either," she said. European leaders have also pointed to the Continent's debt problems as a reason to keep a European at the helm.

    Of course, one might argue that problems other than Europe's sovereign debt crisis might qualify as a bigger deal, like all the malnourished, dying children with distended bellies in developing countries. But that would require the International Monetary Fund to care about poor people, which is never going to happen.

    So, Christine will triumph, and those kids will die of starvation, and the status quo will remain the same. Better luck next life, soon-to-be dead kids! And enjoy your presumed assumption to the throne, Christine. Our #1 piece of advice for the new job: Don't rape any hotel maids.

    Photo by Bertrand Langlois/AFP/Getty Images

    Tags: France, International Affairs, Money
  • Ron Paul Speculates on a Hypothesis About America Maybe Not Supporting Evil Dictators Anymore

    Secretary of State Hillary Clinton's response is something along the lines of, "Well, that's not going to happen, so, you know…"

    Tags: Hillary Clinton, House of Representatives, International Affairs, Obama Administration, Ron Paul