Jump to navigation
Rahm Emanuel: Chief of Staff, All-Around Thug
President-elect Barack Obama has named Congressman Rahm Emanuel as his chief of staff. Mr. Emanuel represents the 5th District in Illinois. He has a reputation for playing hard-ball politics that some might describe as vicious and over-the-top, with rumors that he tore up campaign donation checks
that weren't large enough, sent a dead fish
to a political opponent (and also to a pollster), and repeatedly stabbed a steak knife into a table
while saying the word "Dead!" to describe Democrats with whom he disagreed. In 2005, Barack Obama, himself, even joked
about Emanuel being dragged before a grand jury, noting the coincidence that he and Robert Novak, who reported the name of a CIA operative at the behest of Bush Administration officials, share the same lawyer. What might have triggered Obama's reference to Emanuel being called to testify was the long-standing ties Emanuel has had to the infamous Chicago Democratic machine led by Mayor Richard Daley and to a figure in Chicago politics, Donald Tomczak, who was convicted of corruption in office.
Rahm Emanuel is the son of Dr. Benjamin Emanuel
, a pediatrician who was a member of the Zionist terrorist gang called Irgun, which carried out acts of violence in Palestine between 1931 and 1948. Among other terrorist acts, Irgun was responsible
for the bombing of the King David hotel in Jerusalem on July 22, 1946, where British diplomats and their families were staying. Ninety-one people were killed. To this day, the Israelis celebrate this act of unconscionable horror, crafting a wholly self-serving reconstruction of the event to exonerate the Irgun of responsibility for mass murder
. Rahm has never condemned his father's terrorist past and, in fact, remains close to his dad. Upon being asked if his son would promote Israeli interests as Obama's chief of staff, Benjamin said, "Obviously he will influence the president to be pro-Israel. Why wouldn't he be? What is he, an Arab? He's not going to clean the floors of the White House," thereby leaving the impression that, at least to the elder Emanuel, Rahm can be either a janitor for Barack Obama or a Zionist for Israel. William Daroff, director of the Washington office of the United Jewish Communities (UJC), an umbrella organization representing 155 Jewish Federations and 400 independent Jewish communities across North America, said of the new White House chief of staff
, "Rep. Emanuel is... a good friend of Israel, coming from good Irgun stock..."
President-elect Obama promised during his campaign for the presidency to be a consensus-builder; upon winning the election, he said during his victory speech
on the night of November 4, "I will listen to you, especially when we disagree." These words appear to ring hollow now that he has put between him and those who would address him a gatekeeper like Rahm Emanuel, who has no tolerance for disagreement and who has crafted a well-earned reputation for intolerance with troubling tendencies for violent expression of his desire to get his own way. Indeed, Rahm Emanuel has proven beyond a shadow of a doubt that he is "from good Irgun stock."
While Barack Obama might have posed throughout his campaign as a prospective leader with a wide embrace of differing views, his first major appointment has rendered evidence of a far less expansive presidency that he plans to conduct. In essence, Mr. Obama has now stepped in front of a mirror where all can see the reflection of his true nature as an insular man with no plans to build any consensus that does not meet his own desires and the agenda of the man who will serve as his chief of staff.
While Mr. Obama's die-hard supporters may find nothing deeply troubling and broadly indicative in his appointment of Rahm Emanuel, other Americans may come to find out, once again, that a leader who would choose a thug for his close ally is a President who has no intention of governing by consensus, much less by the rule of law.
good morning dark wraith:
i must admit, i rather enjoyed the steak knife in the table, and the shouts of "dead." of course, i'm a pretty blood thirsty son of a bitch when irritated. the account i read about it was almost a lampooning of the scene in "animal house" where they name their antagonists and shout "marmalarde; dead! neidemeyer; dead!" prior to their wrecking of the homecoming parade and the whole town.
also, the status of the irgun, whose most well-known member was menachem begin, is the old "one man's freedom fighter, one man's terrorist" line. since the irgun ended up winning their fight, they must be freedom fighters. if you lose you're a terrorist. i imagine that the same standard would have been applied to the sons of liberty and the minutemen from our revolution. sam and his cousin john adams were high up on the "no pardons" list that lord howe showed their deputation on long island. so were revere, patrick henry, john hancock, washington, morgan, stark, and a host of others who had succesfully borne arms against the crown. franklin got a pass due to his international reputation, not so thomas paine.
that is the quandry that folks in a less than loyal opposition always face. the israelis ask themselves "would the british have negotiated away their palestinian mandate without the threat of more bombings?" the irish concur heartily. without the IRA provisionals they know that the inequalities that existed in the northern provinces would have remained. without the bombs and murders of the IRA there would have never been a sein fein allowed to exist politically.
power is almost never ceded to peace, or peacefully. even when a pacisfistic, peaceful movement exists, they must endure long periods of brutal repression, and do so without retaliation.
i often ask people if they really think that dr. martin luther king would have had the same impact without the alternatives of malcom x, stokely charmicheal, and the panthers. the violent seperatism of many other african american leaders made dr. king a "go to" guy.
i think that the appointment of rahmbo is a page from that book. you can talk to the reasonable, rational president obama, or you can meet with the chief of staff at the steak house. go ahead, choose, motherfuckers.
Good afternoon, Minstrel Boy, and thank you for this perspective.
I am in wholehearted agreement with the effectiveness of the "good cop, bad cop" means of effecting change. It depends upon the situation, though: I have seen little evidence, at least with the Bush Administration, that the horrific violence of the Wahabists has motivated fruitful, productive negotiations with moderates within the Arab world. That might have something to do with the apparent lack of a clear goal that could be achieved with any moderate Arabs: they have their work to do, and we have ours; the rather loosely connected malcontents of such organizations as "al-Qa'ida" (which is more a name of convenience for our political-military purposes than anything else) seem to be the provisional wing of something diffuse, unclear, and not easily crafted into a peaceful agenda for negotiations with anybody in particular.
That, of course, is not true for the Black Power movement of the 1960s: King and other peaceful activists were clear in what they wanted; as such, there were undeniable scripts that could be followed in national dialogue and its expression in civil rights legislation and general (if halting and frustrating) pushes forward against racism.
I am a quite peaceful person, you see. My days of extreme, unrelenting, over-the-top, uncalled-for violence are long in the past. While that kind of behavior might work at the level of the provisional wing of a political movement (and, there, the record is quite mixed: most violent provisional movements are crushed), it just wasn't too successful for me, and the long-term consequences of how I behaved in the old days still haunt me, both from external sources on rare occasions and, far more importantly, from internal wellsprings of what I know is rightful behavior and how I so deeply violated what I knew was proper and decent.
With respect to Rahm Emanuel, though, my concern is this: few will ever get to the President but through the chief of staff, who wields inordinate, unelected power. Mr. Emanuel is a gatekeeper in every sense of the word, and the President-elect will have his sense of what is beyond the Oval Office profoundly affected over time by who and what Rahm allows to pass through his office, his vision, and his rules.
That's bad: Presidents who have had chiefs of staff like that get cut off, regardless of how much they think they're still attuned to the will of the People, the considerations of their elected representatives, and the concerns of the media. That Mr. Obama, in my own experiences, has favored these kinds of gatekeepers in the past concerns me quite a bit. He seems to believe that governing with a velvet glove covering an iron fist is effective. For him, it has been; but he is now in a position where his only hope of rectifying this nation is through the difficult but necessary process of listening to the many to find the wisdom of the few among them.
Mr. Emanuel will surely not have the wisdom of Mr. Obama in finding those golden minds to help lead this nation back from the precipice of failed Empire.
The Dark Wraith will have more to say in an upcoming article.
good evening dark wraith:
the gatekeeper position held by emanuel is worrisome. he does, however, also posses a strong track record of being a dutiful subordinate. he came up through the same well oiled machine of chicago politics that obama came through. i doubt that he will be bringing much of a personal agenda.
besides, who really gives a flying fuck if lindsey graham has access? he also understands very well the "pay to play" aspect of american politics, and while the payment may not be in countable dollars, rest assured payment will be made.
we shall see shan't we?
(minstrel boy persists in hoping for the best, even while reading the WSJ with mounting dread each morning)
...sent a dead fish to a political opponent (and also to a pollster),
Is dose da guyz dat are sleepin' wit' da fishes?
At least it wasn't a horse's head.
The Dark Wraith misses the old days.
The notion that Barack Obama is ceding any real control over Things That Matter to Rahm Emanuel seems a bit strange, if not funny in light of what this election campaign taught us. Obama is a man of formidable intellect with ice water in his veins; he will paddle his own canoe. Emanuel demonstrated his chops as a wartime consigliere during the 2006 Congressional campaign, and I trust Obama to utilize him appropriately in the new New Deal.
Good afternoon all and sundry.
I look forward to reading about Rep. (and rep.) Emanuel, because I don't see him being the total gatekeeper, as much as he might think he was.
Just imagine what you'd think in 1970 if someone had told you that the president of the US was named B. Hussein Obama, a black man, with Emanuel as his CoS, yet gay's are still second class citizens. I can't get my head around it, and neither could the demented author of this:
"The people have voted and spoken. Marriage is between a man and woman. The people are sick and tired of left wing judges and liberal politicians overturning their will. There must be a revolution in voters to throw out all incumbants and impeach these judges. This country belongs to the people and not the liberals. Schwartzenager is a huge dimal jerk."
What's a "dimal jerk"? I had thought I had a fair vocabulary, but this is beyond me.
With Goldman-$acks Amerika looking for a good return on its investment?
Don't let's be silly. Or credulous.
Obama is considering Jane Harman for CIA Director, Director of National Intelligence, or Secretary of Homeland Security.
Jane Harman [D-CA] is the "representative" who sponsored H.R. 1955 "Violent Radicalization & Homegrown Terrorism Prevention Act of 2007"
She understands that most Americans are terrorists at heart and must be oppressed.
In 2006, Rahm was instrumental in stopping the grassroots anti-war dems from rising in the party. He made sure that any democrat espousing an anti-war platform was denied funding. In districts where they looked like they were going to win, he found challengers that are pro-Bush and pro-war to run agianst them. He's even rumored to have paid to move people from out of the district in, to make sure that the anti-war dems wouldn't win by a mandate.
Rahm's has spoken at length on many occasions about the need to go to war with Iran. He feels very strongly about this.
Obama himself has made it clear that he isn't anti-war so much as anti-mismanaged war.
Good evening, Weaseldog.
Yes, I've been considering a second post about Rahm Emanuel, one detailing his "centrist" views. Jane Harmon (and her fellow pro-torture jockey, Nancy Pelosi) is just one of his faves: as you mention, he's got a real thing for getting us to do another hit job in the Middle East at the behest of his money interests; and the list goes on.
I certainly hope Mr. Obama carefully reviews the schedule of Oval Office visitors that Mr. Emanuel crafts from day to day and year to year for him from now on.
I shall hold off on further ripping Rahm for a while; but rest assured, I shall return to him later, and I will not spare his feelings. Maybe I'll send him a steak knife so he can stab it into table when he declares me, "DEAD!"
Those Chicago boyz can be such jokesters.
The Dark Wraith, for his own part, uses steak knives for steaks... which is why the Dark Wraith has not had any need of a steak knife for a long time.
You're slicing your Spam with a karate chop?
More hot poop from Conspiracy Planet:
"Rahm Emanuel: Mossad Spy Will Run White House"
RAHM EMANUEL WAS FINGERED as a Mossad Agent by the late FBI counter-terrorism Assistant Director FBI agent, John O'Neill. Later, O'Neill was forced to retire after being set up in a smear operation.
O'Neill and another FBI agent, who still works for the bureau but must remain nameless, discovered that Emanuel, a 'special adviser' to Clinton, acted as the liaison to former Israeli Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, in operating an espionage and blackmail operation against the Clinton White House.
O'Neill and the agent discovered that Emanuel had recruited Israeli Mossad agent, Monica Lewinsky, to enter the Clinton White House as an intern and then seduce President Clinton for the purpose of espionage and blackmail in order to sink Clinton's proposed Middle East peace deal.
In sworn testimony before the Office of Independent Counsel, Monica Lewinsky stated:
"President Clinton suspected that a foreign embassy was tapping his telephones and proposed a cover. He told me that if I was ever questioned, I should say that we knew our calls were being monitored and that the phone sex was just a put on."
The FBI investigation of Emanuel became part of a file code-named the Mega File. "Mega" is a reference to a top-level Mossad agent in the Reagan administration who was said to have run a number of Israeli agents.
"Mega" also refers in FBI terminology to shared information between the Mossad & the CIA.
All kinds of curious stories surround the Rahmmer .
One can only hope the President-elect has named him Chief of Staff because in addition to holding one's friends close, sometimes one should hold one's enemies closer.
I receive updates from Human Events, a neo-conservative whackadoodle farm. The latest one, concerning the wingnuts victory over those stoopid whales who are so stoopid they can't even move away when the awesome US Navy is using it's God-given gift of sonar, is typical. Oh, it's a happy happy joy joy time in the comments section. (Yes, reading them is exactly like playing with a very sore tooth.) Here's the resident scientist responding to one of the rare pro-whale poster who explained why the sonar was injuring the whales:
donovan-like usual ur very wrong. sound travels farther at night than during daylight. consequently,sound travels farther in air rahter than water. air gets lighter the higher you go. water gets denser the deeper you go. PLEASE TAKE YOUR WORTHLESS LYING SCUM TRASH TO THE DAILY KOOKS. WE DONT NEED YOU HERE. DUNCE.
S/he shore told that guy, huh?
KelleyB-that was precisely the quote that came to mind when this story broke.
There's also the consideration that when one considers the absolute abyss the neo-cons have left us, if I were the incoming president, I'd sure as hell want to be left alone to work through my to do list without a few dozen folks trying to change the priorities I've set.
Well, here's this nice approachable kind of guy sitting there who can't very well tell the folks that got him where he is to shut up and leave him alone for six months without totally blowing his image-as well as it probably being distasteful assuming my read of Obama's basic personality is at all accurate (and my only miss in 30+years on a politico was Shrub-I had assumed "mostly harmless"). So you bring in a rabid attack dog to gatekeep, knowing his prejudices and flaws, knowing he will bear the brunt of any ill-will then dump him as soon as you can look up from the first round of priorities. Your work gets done, your hands stay clean and you sacrifice someone who deserves it.
Obama may also be trying to surround himself with a lot of folks diametrically opposed in worldview to himself, simply to keep from becoming complacent and insular, and in some cases to remind himself that yes, truly, some folks ARE that [petty, mean, stupid, venal...fill in the blank] and that is what he is up against. Surrounding yourself with folks from the same cookie cutter as yourself is a recipe for becoming narrow and shortsighted...opposing views to confront can strengthen and/or improve your own views. I know arguing with the homophobes and anti-choice crowds on the net has helped me find more clarity and precision for my beliefs.
I think whoever became president at this point in time is royally screwed anyway, and while Obama was not my first pick, the one thing he uniqely has is the ability to inspire, which considering the depths we are going to hit regardless of what the government does, may be the one thing that keeps the country from mass suicide. If you can't fix it with a wave of your magic wand, and there's a long dark road ahead, giving folks hope is a lot better than nothing.
Wild Clover, I'd only add that there's gonna be a whole lotta pressure on that gatekeeper. With the head-spinning amounts of desperate issues facing Obama and his picks for Cabinet seats, and the insane clown posses on the right keeping the militias going strong, I'd say Barack lost the election, big-time.
McCain is sitting in Sedona, Rosalita massaging his still-sore bunyons, and thinking through his Budweiser bottle, "Fuckers...pull shit on me in 2000 and think I'd let it go? Hahaha, eat the full loss Republicoonts! Oh, and sorry you had to be "that guy" now, aren't ya, Obambi? Hahahahaha, oops, spilled some beer on my pants, Rosy. Get that special towel for me, wouldja Baby?"
Become a Registered Commenter