Obama, bin Laden, and the media: Telling the story, controlling the images

Appearing on 60 Minutes, President Obama told Steve Kroft that the mission to kill Osama bin Laden was “a 55/45 [percent odds] situation. I mean we could not say definitively that bin Laden was there. Had he not been there, then  there would have been some significant consequences.” The President noted that “the most difficult part [of the mission to kill bin Laden was]  always the fact that you’re sending guys into harm’s way and there are a lot of things that could go wrong. So my biggest concern was if I’m sending those guys in and Murphy’s Law applies and something happens, can we still get our guys out?”

There was a certain symmetry to the President’s appearance on 60 Minutes. It was one week since his dramatic announcement, last Sunday night, of the overseas mission and its success. And the choice of media venue was significant: At a time when network news shows are supposed to be declining in popularity, 60 Minutes remains a safe haven for any newsmaker of a certain stature who wants to get his or her message across with the maximum audience and the minimum of reportorial interference.

The Obama interview occupied all but the Andy Rooney segment of 60 Minutes, and while fascinating, it was also obvious that there were, as in most TV news interviews of this kind, topics agreed upon in advance that would not be discussed.

Since the killing of bin Laden, certain indelible images — as well as the lack of them — have begun to shape this story, and therefore its history, and this 60 Minutes interview became a part of this ongoing narrative.

There was, for example, the widely scrutinized photograph taken in the White House Situation Room as the President, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, and Vice President Joe Biden, among others, watched the operation in real-time.

Much was made of the ferociously intense stare Obama was giving the screen; even more of the hand-to-mouth posture of Clinton, which was widely interpreted as a gesture of horrified interest, or some other sort of emotional reaction. Clinton was subsequently quoted as saying she may have simply been suppressing a cough.

The point is, we invest images with meanings we bring to them, to fit what we’d like to believe is happening. In that case, some of us want to think that the tension in the Situation Room was almost unbearable, with a slight subtext of sexism — i.e., it’s the woman in the room who reacted with the most emotion.

The Saturday release of videos confiscated from bin Laden’s Pakistan hideout are mesmerizing, and only partly for their lack of audio (our government decided to delete the verbal content, not wanting to spread the inflammatory messages they are said to contain). They show a bin Laden with a gray beard, and thus emerged the factoid that he dyed it black to tape his propaganda appearances, a vanity move to make himself look more youthfully vital than he was.

The desultory clicking of the TV remote, flicking back and forth between taped images of himself and glimpses of our president suggest… what? That bin Laden was keeping tabs on American policy toward his terror network? That he was indulging in some self-criticism about his own TV appearances?

Then there is the absence of certain images, which yields its own, often contradictory, implications. The decision by the government to deny public release of any photographic evidence of bin Laden’s corpse with the stated idea that such images might, as the President said on 60 Minutes, “serve as an incitement, a propaganda tool, [and present] some national security risk.”

Predictably, however, this withholding of the photographs, along with the burial of bin Laden at sea, has inevitably provoked conspiracy theorists — “deathers,” Glenn Beck has called them. All this past week, Beck used his Fox News Channel show to make disgraceful comments, such as asserting that our government’s decision to give bin Laden a burial at sea was “like Timothy McVeigh being buried in Arlington Cemetery.” And on Thursday, what did he call the President’s visit to New York, to speak with police officers, fire-fighters, and families of people who had relatives die on 9/11? Beck called the visit “a national tragedy” and “despicable.” This man cannot leave the air too soon.

One purpose of the President’s interview on 60 Minutes would have been to quell such foolishness. But more significantly, it filled in a few more details in a story about which we cannot get enough, a true tale of bravery and success on the part of both our military and our government. It also served another media function — it helps to re-set the news agenda, to push to the margins, if only for a little while, so much of the petty domestic political squabbling that dominated the news before last Sunday.

Twitter: @kentucker

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  • LOL

    GOP fears Obama.

    • Lee Harvey

      America is proud to have a real president in charge.

      • WOO!!!

        I was a little skeptical of Obama at first, but a good deal of his decision making while not popular at the time seem to pan out. Making the popular decision the people want is often the wrong one, good for him for doing what he thinks is right. The GOP does not have a chance, he will be re-elected.

      • Nobama 2012

        :) We shall see… its all about the economy stupid

      • GOP 2012

        We shall see wont we :)

        It is all about the economy stupid

      • Nancy

        If I have to look at osama’s face in the media for one more day…. make it stop.

      • frank wright

        IT’S THE ECONOMY , STUPID.

      • Dart

        Glen Beck must have forgotten Abu Ghraib. You don’t release inflammatory pictures that Al Quaeda can use a recruitment tool and put our tools in harms way. Becks fat behind never spent a day in the field as a soldier; Beck obviously doesn’t care about our soldiers or he wouldn’t advocate to release pictures that will swell the ranks of very enemy we’re trying to defeat.

      • Rob Low

        I am so proud and have so much confidence in our President. He’s conducted himself with dignity, intelligence, compassion and grace. He’s done more positive things for the Country than any President I can remember and I’m in my 60’s. Thank you, President Obama, for all you’ve done for us. I can’t wait to see what you accomplish in the next four years.

      • Alyssa

        Yeah…I dont think we should get cocky, but the GOP is very weak and very laughable right now. And it seems they hurt their image even more every-time they open their traps, of course they have tea party leaders and birthers on their side with diarrhea of the mouth so that maybe hard to control. But yeah so far President Obama’s Vegas odds look good. And the economy has gone up-slowly but surely.

      • Dicazi

        It IS the economy….and alot of the economy depends on us feeling safer. With less terrorism.

      • Lovelegalimmigration

        LOL. Get with the program. Nobama’s ratings keep going down. He does not stand a chance. He will not be re-elected. 09/11/11

    • joblo

      This doesn’t make sense. Republicans have been almost unanimously supportive of Obama’s actions in taking out OBL. You know who is not? People like Michael Moore: http://www.mediaite.com/tv/michael-moore-america-lost-something-of-our-soul-in-killing-osama-bin-laden/

      • CR

        Michael Moore is his own species of person. I wouldn’t equate Democrats or Liberals to MM. At times what he says rings true for Dems, but even a stopped clock is right twice a day.

      • Patty

        I tend to be to the left…and I usually always disagree with Michael Moore. He exaggerates, when the facts speak more powerfully by themselves. I have no respect for someone who doesn’t respect the truth.

      • joblo
      • Lois

        Moore wanted a public trial for bin Laden, and says it would have lead to his execution anyway. That would have been the ideal situation, to show that we treat even our worst enemies with the same ideals America was founded on, and therefore makes us better. But the information we had was that bin Laden was always armed and that he wanted to be killed by his own hands/people rather than by America. I wouldn’t second guess the Navy Seals on whether they thought he was reaching for a weapon. They have to make split-second decisions, and did what they thought was best.
        I do think it was good that the US buried him with a Muslim service, to show we respect all people, but bin Laden respected no one. The President is right, we treated him better than he treated the people he killed on 9/11. That’s why we are better.
        Bin Laden’s killing may get some new recruits for the terrorists, but the people in the Middle East and Northern Africa are rising up showing they want democracy. Bin Laden’s ideas are already losing in the Muslim world.

      • alpg49

        Capturing bin Laden alive would have been a risky business. His cohorts would do anything to free him – including kidnapping or killing any American they saw. Sometimes the moral high ground is on another planet altogether.

    • john_c

      Obama should be the one who fears if the gas price is still close to $4 next year and the unemployment is around 9%.

      It is the economy stupid! People will forget UBL in a few months.

      • john_c

        Love it!!

        I hope Herman Cain would run against Obama as the GOP candidate in 2012. Then no one will use the race card anymore.

      • Vince from NYC

        Gas prices went up due to recent unrest in the Middle East.. How is that Obama’s fault? The President is one man, he can’t wave a magic wand and make gas prices go down. As for unemployment, most of the crash that resulted in job losses occured during the Bush Admin. Since Obama has been president there has been a steady increase in jobs created. April had the most in 7 years. The reason the unemployment rate is still rising is because those who gave up looking for a job have renewed hope due to the current administrations great work.

      • Loni

        Hey Vince, if Obama just gave the ok to start more drilling in Alaska and the Gulf, instead of keeping his ridiculous ‘moratorium’, then gas prices would immediately drop because the speculators (who Obama is blaming for the gas prices) would see that in future we’ll have a bigger supply so of course prices will go down. But instead of us investing in our own oil, we’re sending money to Brazil so they can drill theirs for us. We need to drill our own! It’s such a no-brainer because it would be so much cheaper and we wouldn’t be financing the Middle East regimes.

        As for you claiming Obama has ‘created’ jobs, that’s only true when you consider how much government he’s made so he’s only created more jobs that the private sector have to pay for. And the private sector is obviously struggling so the extra cost of government puts even more pressure on ‘Main Street America’ as Obama puts it.

        The unemployment numbers are actually considerably higher than what the government reports because they don’t count all of those who have given up looking for a job. So considering after three years we’re trillions more in debt, the dollar is in peril and many people are still out of work, I don’t really think you’re super justified in saying the administrations done a ‘great work’.

      • Zakry

        Loni, if we started drilling right this second it wouldn’t affect gas prices for months. Check your facts.

      • Bob

        Loni is 100% correct. Those facts are correct depsite Zakry being a nasty little internet troll. In the meantime open up the oil reserve to lower the prices. You still fail Z.

      • Savonarola

        @Loni– Oil is a fungible commodity. If you have some to sell, you sell it at the going price. Because of the artificially restricted flow of mid-east oil it doesn’t matter where new oil is discovered because the price is controlled by a cartel. Not to mention that half of all oil wells ever dug in the world have been drilled in the U.S. And not to mention that U.S. Oil companies already own large oil fields outside the U.S. No amount of U.S. production is going to budge the price or reduce our dependence.

      • Alyssa

        Vince,Zakry and Savonarola are right. Besides Easter was not to long ago and we are heading into summer, Holidays and summer equal high gas prices. But whats more is most if not all oil tycoons are Republicans-the president just doesn’t say ” this week I want it to be, $4.53″ Its a process.

      • Vince from NYC

        Q Loni ” I don’t really think you’re super justified in saying the administrations done a ‘great work’.”
        The stimulus plans worked, the bial-outs worked. We still have an American auto idustry major American banks did not go belly-up. That’s pretty great work..

      • john_c

        Vince

        You forgot to add the fact that we are 14 trillion dollars in debt.

        If you believe this is great work, there is no point of arguing.

      • asher

        @Loni – I completely disagree with your assessment re: our oil. We need to be putting money towards developing alterative energy resources. Why the heck would the President want to drill in the Gulf after the awful spill last year? Why would he want to chance screwing up the environment of Alaska, too? More drilling may help in the short-term, but in the long-term its only going to put more strain on our environment, and our environment deserves better than that. It has sustained us for thousands of years, and we owe it to the Earth to take better care of it, even if it effects how we travel.

      • Lois

        john_c
        you forgot that Bush is responsible for most of that debt. Not only did he build up an enormous debt, but Bush never added the cost of the wars to the debt. Once Obama added the cost of the wars, it made it look like he increased it, but in reality he was only giving an accurate account of the debt Bush left behind.

      • john_c

        Lois,

        You want to blame on Bush. Please go ahead. It is getting very tiresome.

        Obama only knows how to blame Bush and achieve nothing.

        Obama needs to wake up and face the reality.

      • Vince from NYC

        Thanks Lois.. I was too busy to respond.. But yey John, Obama added some to the debt, but he inherited 10 trillion and added another 4 as investment to try and dig us out of the hole. The 10 bush racked up were tax breaks for the rich and wars we did not need to get into.

      • Elliott

        @jon_c,

        “You want to blame on Bush. Please go ahead. It is getting very tiresome.
        Obama only knows how to blame Bush and achieve nothing.
        Obama needs to wake up and face the reality.”

        You’re entitled to say that only after you admit Bush had nothing to do with the death of bin Laden. Until then, feel free to keep your mouth shut unless you want to bring any facts or rationality to the table.

        But, of course, you’re a right wing troll who will never let facts get in the way of a good talking point.

        And FYI, we have less than FOUR YEARS worth of oil located on American soil. Drilling here will do nothing to solve the gas crisis in the short term (because it takes years and millions to get a drilling site up and running) or the long term (because it will run out in less than five years). The Wall Street speculators are smart enough to understand that. Why can’t you?

        But thanks for playing, guys.

      • Jill

        The gas price rise is NOT the president. It’s Wall Street still doing their speculating and hedging crap; the billions of dollars the oil companies are raking in is the evidence, while lobbyists and Republicans won’t allow the govt. to end tax breaks/subsidies for the oil companies raking in the billions of dollars, in which they can use to pay for said taxes they’re not paying now.

    • street smart

      @Nobama2012—a pity you didnt feel that way when Dubya was Pres

    • Lovelegalimmigration

      LOL. Get with the program. Nobama’s ratings keep going down. He does not stand a chance. He will not be re-elected. 09/11/11

  • Tina

    Loved what Seth Meyers said on SNL, this is the FIRST time that a Black man has to prove he actually killed someone! Stupid “deathers”. I still think he can release the photos. On regular network tv we see horrible images. There is nothing that the photo can show us that we haven’t see on network tv. Also all Osama’s followers will still hate America even if they do or don’t see the photos.

    • Beauty

      The people who don’t believe it happened are never going to believe it happened even if they see pics!

    • Anne

      I believe that Beauty is absolutely right…
      On top of that, someone like that insane Florida preacher Terry Jones could take those photos and cause an awful lot of damage. He burned a Quran and was indirectly responsble for the deaths of 10 innocent UN workers. Imagine the additional danger that nut or anyone like him would put our troops in if he had those photos!

    • Kate

      Releasing the photos isn’t a problem of what the American public can handle- it is more about what kind of retaliation such a public display of Bin Laden’s death might provoke.

      I would also add that Beauty is probably right, releasing the photos won’t convince any conspiracy theorists that Bin Laden is dead, they’ll just say they are doctored.

      • Lorie

        Exactly!

      • john_c

        You think killing UBL is not provocative.

        You are so naive.

      • Mike

        Of course killing Bin Laden is provocative. Kate said releasing the photos is provocative (or if you care to compare the two, additional provocation).

      • Mainer

        well, and correctly, said.

      • john_c

        How do you quantify additional provocation? I am not sure how you can draw the line.

    • JClark

      Birthers, Deathers. No matter. You can never convince these people of anything, because if you take away their conspiracy, they have nothing. One needs only to check into Trump’s Facebook page to see that the birthers are still alive and well, after all that’s happened lately. Truly humorous and also sad that we have such unintelligent people in the US.

      • gypzyjedi

        What struck me, is the history of the event. This is what it must have felt like when our grandparents learned Hitler was dead. Happy that the monster is gone, but bitterness over so many loved ones lost along the way. President Obama made history with descisive victory-using the stealth intelligence, technology, and American resolve. I am afraid to linger over the ten-year bloody, expensive, and questionable detours our country took to get this result. This operation was so ninja-like, efficent, and effective. How many thousands of lives could have been spared? (Not to mention how much money.) Where would our countries progress at home and in the global market place have been without the Iraq and Afghan Wars?

  • Beauty

    This is exactly why those pics should not be released. People criticize every little thing. Now the situation room pics are sexist because Hillary was covering her mouth? You gotta be kidding me. It amazes me how people manage to make contoversy out of any and everything. Even the article states as a fact that certain things were not allowed to be discussed! Give me a break.

    • K

      Seriously, releasing the photos won’t do any good whatsoever; if people aren’t already convinced he’s gone, the photos won’t be enough proof anyway. And I hadn’t heard anyone calling the Situation Room photo sexist; I thought that maybe some people were being sexist in their interpretation of Clinton’s gesture, if at all. Honestly, I didn’t think about that gesture (which I initially read as an expression of concern for what was happening on the scene) as a typical emotional expression for a woman. I just thought “Man, I bet I’d feel the same way if I were watching that.” It’s not like Obama looked any less tense and concerned. I wouldn’t have been surprised to see any of the men covering their mouths like that. It just seemed like a normal human reaction, outside of any gender stereotypes. I’m not sure what you mean in your last two sentences, though. Are you accusing Ken of criticizing the program? I didn’t think that’s what he was doing. He merely said that from watching the interview, it sure seemed like there were some topics that were off-limits, that this is nothing new in these kinds of interviews, and he left it at that. I didn’t think he was passing judgment; merely discussing that as one way in which Obama used his media appearance to sort of re-set and straighten out the dialogue about bin Laden, to try to pull viewers back from the crazier conspiracy theory discussions of the news and talk some sense about the mission. Ain’t nothing wrong with that.

    • Lois

      Clinton has been asked why she had her hand over her mouth & what was she thinking at that exact moment. The press is subjecting her to a scrutiny that the males in the room are not getting.

      • Jill

        I’m surprised she’s also not being scrutinized for what she’s wearing or how her hair looks. It’s absolutely mind boggling how the media in this country can portray women, when men would get a pass. Very shameful! We’re still far off from an egalitarian society.

      • Klaudia

        Before misdirecting your anger at the US, it might be time for the Arab world to take a look at iletsf and the leaders it has produced.Hafez Assad: In 1982 Assad slaughtered between 10,000 and 20,000 of its own citizens in Hama, Syria. We will never know the exact count because the press was kept away from Hama.. Also the Arab world seemed to be obsessed pinning direct guilt on Israel for the Sabra and Shatilla massacres committed by the Phalangists. He was only replaced by his son, whose power has not been tested. The US did not created that regimeSaddam Hussein: Gassed, shot, burned, tortured tens of thousands of Kurds and Shiite Muslims. Anyone who opposed him found an early graveThe Current Saudi monarchy that makes Iran seem like a liberal paradiseWe now can look at Lebanon and it faux Cedar Revolution. Hezbollah, a force greater that the Lebanese army is waiting the wings to seize powerLet’s look at Mubarak and his current regime. It really is a typical past Egyptian regimes under Soviet sponsored Nasser and Sadat. Maybe there were a few symbolic reforms. The US did not invent the current system, not did to prop it up. Mubarak comes for the same pedigree as the two previous leaders.As for the teeth necklace comment, that truly sickens me coming for someone who fails to see the demons within the Arab world. After decades of independence and collectively lots of resources, one would think that political stability could be established in te Arab world without oppression and bloodshed.I do pray for Egypt for the sake of the Egyptian people and Middle East stability. Hopefully the will make the right choice and embrace true Democracy

  • MaryJane

    They could show a video of Osama having his head blown off and there’d STILL be naysayers. If he were alive, do you not think there would be another cave video, of him saying nah nah nah you missed me! LOL I think this just proves, again, that we’re BETTER. We don’t behead people on TV and brag about it. We (oops I’m Canadian, I mean you!) executed a mass murderer but we’re civilized and don’t have to parade his head around on a spike.

    • MWeyer

      Even al Queda has admitted he’s dead, think that should put it to bed.

      • DTO

        If Al Qaeda freely owns up to the fact that their leader/spokesperson is dead, why can’t it be enough for these “deathers”? He finally does something that all Americans should be able to agree is a good thing and they still won’t give him his due credit. Heck, even though I was a Bush critic who had a problem with his reasons for the Iraq War, I could not say it was a bad thing when he bagged Saddam Hussein. People can’t look past ideology at all anymore.

      • Zakry

        exactly. Releasing photos won’t serve any purpose other than satisfying the morbid curiousity of certain people. OBL is dead. There is lots of unphotographic proof. Even Al Qaeda says he is dead. You don’t need pictures.

      • Alyssa

        I agree with all of you, but there are still birthers who say ” He released a fake birth certificate”. OMFG! Give it a rest people. I wrote in article in my local newspaper and said for a nation that claims to be ” Real Americans” ” True Christians”-some of us. We sure dont act like it. Have faith in other people.

    • Vikrant

      Ari:I am a colleague and frnied of Mike Maday in CO Springs, CO, whom you mentioned in your book. Some insights that appear to be going unnoticed in CO and especially the bellwether county El Paso County, CO where even though Republicans own a 2-to-1 registered voter base but where El Paso also holds the 2nd highest number of Democrats in the state of CO. 2010 Midterm saw that Bennet won the unaffiliated (independents) in the county 51% to 25% going to the collection of 3rd Party candidates (4 being rightwingers, 2-o-1 in that pool) and Buck receiving 23% of that vote. Furthermore a State Senator, Dem majority leader Morse won re-election with a similar fashion in the county, (actually Morse carried 55% of the unaffiliated’s in his district) and won by 1.1%. Dem’s indeed turned out at a 82% rate in the early vote stage that included the mail votes. Election day voting was way down at 32% of all remaining voters, where Dem’s lost a few percentage points discounting the theory of a late surge. What this is telling me is that independents in CO and El Paso County rejected the Tea Party candidacies 7.5-to-2.5 in a state where there are supposedly more Tea Party affiliated voters. Furthermore the Maes-Tancredo vote has demonstrated a real fragmenting of the Republican brand and party where it appears only 190,000 Republicans are real party loyalists, (same number that McGinnis got in the Rep primary). This represents about 11% of the entire electorate that voted and about 25% or less of the entire registered Republican base in the state. What this means is foretelling going forward. In the end Donkeys remain herded, but the Elephants are splitting up.

  • tg

    Glenn Beck is a hate spreader and fear monger. And an all around idiot.

    • Hi – I am a liberal

      Tg is a liberal. Therefore an all around idiot. I bet I know what the next insult is… it comes from the typical liberal handbook! When you have no facts, start hating. When that doesnt work, play the race card. Never under any circumstance actually use common sense or have facts to back up anything.

      Go team fail! Goooo liberals!

      • Marcy Runkle

        It doesn’t matter whether you’re a liberal, conservative, or whig: Glenn Beck is a hate spreader and fear monger Get a grip.

      • Lois

        And the Winner of “The Unintentional Irony Award” is:
        “Hi – I am a liberal”

    • Alyssa

      ^^^OH I hate to inform you, Heck I love to inform you that you are doing exactly what you are telling “tg” not too.

      Typical Republican handbook. And who is ” TEAM FAIL”??? its not us. Your party is in the hurtbag friend. Its on a life support machine.

      • Bob

        2010 Elections = democratic butt kicking. Yes GOP is clearly hurting….

        Again get your head out of your butt and face the real world

    • Jim

      When will his 15 minutes be up?

  • Cool_Blue

    It would have been funny if they showed Osama watching The Kardashians or something.

    • CandaceTX

      LMAO

    • Amy

      Hahahah thanks for that unexpected laugh.

    • whatevs

      Not if you’re against torture.

    • Unknownian

      Poor OBL. He couldn’t even afford a Flat Screen. Well… at least he has a Remote..unless that’s a Vibrator or a Beard Trimmer.

      • Lois

        The wives and kids were probably watching the giant flatscreen downstairs, and they were tired of watching daddy on tv. Daddy was stuck watching himself on the maid’s TV

    • anonymous

      The Simpsons!

  • bob

    I love how every chance he gets, Ken Tucker uses this clearly liberal leaning “entertainment” website to bash Glenn Beck. I am not a fan of Beck at all but Ken’s obsession with the man is getting old too…

    • Glenn Beck is a douchebag… and so are you Bob

      nuff said

      • bob

        Wait – I almost cared what some liberal troll wrote on the internet but the moment passed.

        Why are you so mad bro?

      • DTO

        It’s not your politics. It’s the fact that you’re one of those guys who says “bro” that arouses the animosity. Go back to the frat house and watch more ENTOURAGE or Dane Cook or something.

      • Redeyecat

        I agree with Bob. What makes Ken Tucker think we care about his politics? He insists on showing his liberal bias in nearly every review on seemingly every show. Frankly he doesn’t bring much to the table on discussing tv so it’s no surprise his politics are even less compelling. Either get him to stick to tv or find a competent replacement, EW. On further thought, just replace him.

      • @Redeyecat

        Or… You stop reading his column, you idiot… I mean BRO… sorry

      • Vince from NYC

        What was so liberal about what he said? He merley stated that what Beck said about McVeigh in Arlington and equating The President’s visit to ground zero to a national tragedy was follish.. Which it was.. What Beck said wasn’t right or left, it was just hateful and dumb.

      • @DTO

        The fact that you are targetting in on one little word and getting so angry about it amuses me much.

        Chillax son and come back with your big boy pants on.

    • Elizabeth

      Anyone who takes a second to defend Glenn Beck needs a check up from the neck up…

    • @Bob

      It is not about being liberal or conservative. Any human being should stand up and say that Glenn Beck is a disgraceful human being. What is the difference in the way he uses his show from the way OBL used his videos? Just saying, bro. (while wearing my big pants and totally chillaxed)

      • gypzyjedi

        There is guy who come out on public access in my town, at 1 in the morning. He is crying, holding the Bible ( or a book, he claims in the Bible), and where a polester plaid suit circa 1970 and a blond, curly, wig. I should record him and send it to Fox for Beck’s replacement. (cept they take jokes too seriously and give them their own shows.) I tried watching them this weekend. I swear, Al Queda doesn’t need to bother broadcasting their hatred for America- they do it for them. Save your money Al- Queda- Fox News is already on hte job!

  • anna

    Nobama please 2012

    • Jules

      Who would you prefer? And please don’t retort with “anyone is better than Obama.”

    • Elizabeth

      No, she just saw it on a bumper sticker and thought it was clever.

      • SLB

        Too bad the republicans weren’t ‘clever’ enough to not re-elect Bush.

      • Alyssa

        I bet the wouldnt have now, Bush has ruined the image of the Republicans longer than they realize.

      • Lois

        Congressman Paul Ryan’s Medicare killing budget is putting the final nail into the GOP’s plans for 2012.

  • Ray

    Obama 2012

    • anna

      Nobama 2012

      • Ray

        Anna is original.

      • anna

        Thank you Ray!

      • ltchy

        Alabama 2012?

      • john_c

        Love it!!

      • jim

        Anna, you are one stupid and ignorant lady. Have you no conscience?

    • Nobama 2012

      Yes vote for Obama and raise the $14 trillion debt… no big deal.

      Also $5 gallon gas, high unemployment, bad foreign policy (other than pulling the trigger on OBL), HUGE government growth, massive spending waste, and otherwise crappy economy is no big deal right?

      Also dear libs, you cant blame Bush anymore for Obama’s failures. Hes been in office long enough so he can actually take some blame.

      Start the name calling in 3…2….1

      • ltchy

        Yup, ‘cuz the state of affairs before he took Office were in perfect order after Bush left…

        Oh, and that OBL thing? Yeah, you’re right, no big deal.

      • Geoff

        It’s wrong to blame the debt on Obama. The stimulus and TARP were necessary. Obama did those for a specific reason.

        But when he came in to office the debt was already 10 Trillion. Bush left Obama a huge mess. He’s been trying to fix a problem he didn’t create….

      • kahuna

        Bush left the country on the brink of a great depression. Obama did what was neccesary to prevent a depression from taking hold. Sad that too many Americans are too dumb to realize it.

      • Denise

        The economy was bad and it all started with the housing disaster started by the Dems – mainly Barney Franks and Chris Dobb. Obama worked with Franks to stop Bush from reigning in Fannie May and Freddy Mac. Franks even wrote a letter to the White House stating the fact that Bush cared more about the financial stability of the country then cheap housing loans.
        It’s hard to fight a group that for years MADE banks give out bad loans or face penalty.

      • Alyssa

        @NObama 2012, history is history you cant take the facts back and put in different ones. Bush spent our ENTIRE SURPLUS, this has nothing to do with party now, this is all of Americans. 2 Wars cost alot of money, actually ALOT doesnt cover it. Bush was in office 8 years, damage, severe damage was done to our economy under him-and you don’t like the debt? you have no one to blame BUT BUSH.

  • Obama is a rockstar!

    Obama killed Osama. Obama did what Bush could NOT do. Bush was so scared of Bin Laden that he launched a war against an inept dictator instead and even managed to botch THAT up. Obama promised to kill Bin Laden and he kept that promise.

    Beware GOP! Obama’s back.haha

    • joblo

      The truth is that Obama could not have found Bin Laden without the policies & procedures that Bush put in place. Kudos to Obama for following through, but the idea that is was all Obama and no Bush is just plain ignorant. Ironically, it was actually policies that Obama heavily criticized (like rendition and enhanced interrogation) that developed the intel that led us to Osama’s hideout.

      • Attention Libs

        ^ This is very correct. Read it.

      • Amy

        ^ That has not been proven. Check your facts. I am not denying that Bush’s policies were not at least partially responsible for OBL’s capture and kill, but many suggest that Obama’s increase in drone strike is what has made this mission possible and a success. The truth is we will never know because we are not top ranking intelligence officials.

        I will note that I love how all republicans have been screaming from the roof tops that Obama has been in office long enough and that nothing he is doing now has anything to do with Bush. However, all of sudden when Obama’s leadership has led to something great- Bush deserves some credit. No hypocrisy there.

      • Beauty

        Yea that’s exactly why Bush stated Mission Accomplished EIGHT years ago, yet we are still at war. What Bush couldn’t do in 8 years Obama did in 2! Obama is in office and guess what OBL is in Pakistan exactly where Obama always said he was while Bush was in Iraq.

      • joblo

        @Beauty you’re just spouting rhetoric. The facts of the story undeniably show the trail of evidence coming from KSM and others who were captured under Bush. @Amy, it has been proven, if you have been paying attention to the news since last Sunday. Again, kudos to Obama for making the call and getting it done. But it’s just plain false to try and pretend he did it on his own. Even Nancy Pelosi – oil and water to Bush – has called Bush to congratulate him on Osama being taken out.

      • willyb

        Not only are you ignorant and naive, you just repeat what the repubs blabber without doing your own research. Think for a change. You will be surprised what you will find out and may very well please yourself.

      • Bush does NOT deserve any credit for getting Bin Laden…READ ON

        ANd here’s why:lol

        Direct quote from BUSH himself:
        “We hadn’t [sic] heard from him in a long time, and the idea of focus ing on a per son is um, really indi cates to me peo ple don’t under stand the scope of the mis sion. Ter ror is big ger than one per son, and ah, he’s just… he’s, he’s, he’s a per son that’s been marginalized.

        So I don’t know where he is, nor, you know. I just don’t spend much time on it. I’ll be hon est with ya.

        We hadn’t heard much from him. And ah, I wouldn’t nec es sary say he’s at the cen ter of any com mand struc ture. And again, I don’t know where he is. I ah, I, I, I repeat what I said, I truly am not con cerned about him.”

        So, yes, that’s why Obama gets the credit. He promised to renew the hunt for Bin Laden and that promise was kept. Bush had 7 years to catch the guy and, gee, did it happen? Nope.

        Sorry teabaggers…haha

      • jim

        Bush deserves credit? Credit for what?- totally leaving the Repubs, in dire need of a complete redo. Get rid of all of them and elect some that have common sense.

      • Lois

        Bush ended funding for the Bin Laden Task Force. Obama restored the Bin Laden Task Force and made finding him a priority. People involved in the Bin Laden investigation are saying that they got mostly lies from the detainees, and that it was the hard work of our intelligence services that got the information we needed. Of course, anyone paying attention to the actual news, instead of Republican talking heads, would already know that.

    • barb

      Bush policies did it.

      • Hilarious

        Even Rummy disagrees with you. LOL

      • Lois

        Condie Rice disagrees as well.

  • Proud of America again. Thanks Obama!

    Thanks to Obama I’m proud of my country again. He managed to restore my faith in the U.S.A. and Bush almost ruined it. Thanks Barack!

    • Loch Ness

      The Bush years were The New American Dark Ages. Thankfully, we’re coming out into the light again.

      • Go away

        I think you should spend more time hating on a president who has been out of offfice for years now. Obsessed much? Also Bush’s policies (Gitmo / rendition / waterboarding – all of which Obama campaigned against) led Obama to being able to get OBL. Blows your mind doesnt it? Please spare me the stereotpyical Bush Bashing. You are a couple years late to that party.

      • Hilarious

        You can always tell when the Hannity clowns are here. Fox lies to them and then they just spew it on message boards. Nice to see these already debunked talking points finally showing up. These right wingers will believe anything.

      • @Go away

        Bush’s policies actually hindered the hunt for OBL.
        .

        http://www.huffingtonpost.com/david-danzig/torture-did-not-lead-the-_b_857708.html

        “”Four leading former interrogators and intelligence officials argue today that, “The use of waterboarding and other so-called ‘enhanced’ interrogation techniques almost certainly prolonged the hunt for Bin Laden and complicated the jobs of professional U.S. interrogators who were trying to develop useful information.” Matthew Alexander, Colonel (ret.) Stuart A. Herrington, Joe Navarro and Ken Robinson are members of an ad hoc working group of former high-ranking interrogation and intelligence officials who have devised a set of principles to guide effective interrogation practices and have advocated for its adoption across U.S. agencies.”

        Their statement:
        “”We are concerned about the suggestion by some that the use of waterboarding and other enhanced interrogation techniques led U.S. forces to Osama bin Laden’s compound
        .

        The use of waterboarding and other so-called “enhanced” interrogation techniques almost certainly prolonged the hunt for Bin Laden and complicated the jobs of professional U.S. interrogators who were trying to develop useful information from unwilling sources like Khalid Sheik Muhammed
        .

        Reports say that Khalid Sheik Muhammed and Abu Faraq al-Libi did not divulge the nom de guerre of a courier during torture, but rather several months later, when they were questioned by interrogators who did not use abusive techniques
        .

        This is not surprising. Our experience is that torture is a poor way to develop useful, accurate information
        .

        We know from experience that it is very difficult to elicit information from a detainee who has been abused. The abuse often only strengthens their resolve and makes it that much harder for an interrogator to find a way to elicit useful information
        .

        We believe that the U.S. would have learned more from Khalid Sheik Muhammed and other high value detainees if, from the beginning, professional interrogators had a chance to question them using the sophisticated, yet humane, approaches approved by U.S. law
        .

        We are convinced that the record shows that abusive questioning techniques did not help, but only hindered, the United States’ efforts to find bin Laden.””

    • Kelly

      Your pride in your country should NOT be based on your government.

  • Ken Tucker

    Just FYI – I am a bit obsessed with Mr. Beck. I need to write at least 2-3 articles about him or mentioning him per week. I dont like him at all but I hang on his every word.

    Glenn Beck just sneezed guys!
    Wait now Glenn Beck is eating dinner!
    Glenn Beck is watching TV now. Wait now he is using EW as toilet paper!

    • LK

      So other than getting on Ken Tucker for mentioning Glen Beck and his statements, do you have any actual response in regards to his statements? I don’t follow Glen Beck so I’m glad Ken Tucker mentioned what Mr. Beck has been saying to remind me why I avoid listening to him.

    • Imran

      I was going to say the same thing Cats! Charlie did everything but say, Tell the truth, you know that you aren’t prisndeetial material, don’t you? And Palin sounds completly scripted. I simply do not believe that she has an understanding of the complexities of world affairs, nor any kind of diplomatic sophistication.

  • Ken Tucker

    Update:

    Glenn Beck is watching TV now. Sportscenter
    I will keep an eye out everyone. Dont you worry

    • Ken Tucker

      Glenn Beck fell asleep. I really hate his breathing. It is too loud and conservative. I have now turned on my night vision goggles.

  • rm

    those bin Laden tapes…geez, if we weren’t able to follow his courier, we coulda just followed the Ms. Clairol shipments…dude dug the dye. Tremendous interview, though; it unquestionably solidified that he has Presidential mettle and resolve, without any hint of bravado or posturing.

  • scytherius

    With Bush we got 9/11

    With Obama we got the removal of the operational head of Al Qaeda.

    Hmmm. Do the math.

    • Morpheus

      Idiot. To even presume that Bush caused 9/11 is moronic. Guess you forgot that the intelligence that got UBL came during the last administration, not this one. I credit Obama for getting rid of this goon, but get your facts straight.

      • normalheart

        Same words, with different meaning. Obama gave tribute to the soldiers (Seals)…their first big praise in decades. Seems it might have been appropriate when Obama spoke to the troops on Thursday…but there should have been a sign…for real this time, “Mission Accomplished!”

      • @Morpheus

        Stop spreading your lies. Bush got rid of the OBL task force because he didn’t care about finding him. Obama made a new OBL task force. They went through tons of leads and evidence to track him down. By saying that Bush’s administration got the info insults the hard work of all the people who worked to find OBL. It also begs the question, if your theory about the Bush administration having the info were true, why didn’t Bush go and get him?

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