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Obama's Inane Debate Comment


President Barack Obama made the most inane debate comment of the early 21st century in the October 22nd debate.

"But I think Governor Romney maybe hasn't spent enough time looking at how our military works. You — you mentioned the Navy, for example, and that we have fewer ships than we did in 1916. Well, Governor, we also have fewer horses and bayonets — (laughter) — because the nature of our military's[sic] changed. We have these things called aircraft carriers where planes land on them. We have these ships that go underwater, nuclear submarines."

We may not need as many horses and bayonets as we did in 1916, but we need more ships than the peace time navy of 1916 did. In 1916 the United States didn't think it needed a big navy because it wasn't involved in World War 1 and still expected the British Navy to control the seas. The United States Navy has inherited the commerce protecting and peace keeping role the British Navy played a century ago. However, the U.S. cannot perform that role with only 114 ships of 287 total ships deployed over 139 million square miles of ocean.

The United States should have an aircraft carrier based group with rescue helicopters and Marines off the coast of Libya and other hot spots where embassies are close enough to the sea for sea based rescues. The capital of Iran was too far from the sea for a sea based rescue during the Carter administration. Diplomatic facilities in Libya and some other trouble spots can be reached from ships.

It may come as a surprise to Obama, but the main reason we ended up in WWI was because the United States didn't have enough ships to protect its merchant ships from German submarines called U-boats. Nuclear power for submarines may have come long after WWI but "ships that go underwater" were a major German weapon in that war. The first submarine was built in the 17th Century and the first submarine attack was an unsuccessful attempt to attach a bomb to a British ship during the American Revolution.

It is unlikely that Japan would have attacked the Pacific Fleet at Pearl Harbor in 1941 if the United States had had more than one fleet in the Pacific. Japan thought that knocking out the only American fleet in the Pacific would allow it to take control of the Pacific before the United States could build a replacement fleet.

This year begins the 200th anniversary of the first major war fought by the United States, the War of 1812. The United States wouldn't have felt a need to enter that war if it had had a big enough navy to discourage the British navy from kidnapping sailors from American merchant ships and even naval ships.

Peace provides the best environment for the international trade the U.S. economy has always depended upon. The United States first foreign "war" was an attack on pirates on the North African coast. The U.S. needs a big enough navy to permanently station ships in shipping lanes plagued by pirates.

The Navy provides the best option for protecting the peace. Moving ships to a trouble spot doesn't require construction of large bases first. Personnel can be stationed near a trouble spot without the complications involved with stationing troops among the local population. We may not need as many horses and bayonets as were needed in 1916, but ships are even more necessary.

Four years ago Democrats criticized Gov. Sarah Palin for her statement "I can see Russia from my house". Compare that to Obama's statements: "We have these things called aircraft carriers where planes land on them. We have these ships that go underwater, nuclear submarines." Obama apparently thinks he's speaking to children, or maybe he just has a simple mind.

Obama's statements that al Qaeda is weak ignores the implications of the attack on the Libyan consulate. Al Qaeda may be weaker in Afghanistan, but it is growing elsewhere. It is not going away any time soon. Obama is underestimating the strength of al Qaeda much like the Johnson administration underestimated the strength of the Viet Cong before the 1968 Tet offensive.


ChesterFester 2 years, 3 months ago


Sarah Palin never ever said that. Tina Fey said that in a comedy skit.

Come with the facts.

somedude20 2 years, 3 months ago

I would "suggest removal" of this post because it is the dumbest post so far, but I bet you have written more down the line so I shall wait to form judgement......we get it, you wanna go white...thanks for playing!

2madre 2 years, 3 months ago

Chester - Wrong dude. She did say it in an interview with ABC news in 2008. Thus the SNL skit to make fun of it.

ChesterFester 2 years, 3 months ago

2madre, dude, you're wrong. She said nothing about seeing Russia from her house. Her statement that you can see part of Russia from part of Alaska was 100% correct. Educate yourself.

2 years, 3 months ago

Obama is right on in this case. Simply counting the number of ships in a navy does not give you a meaningful measurement of anything.

And the main reason we ended up in WWI was not that we didn't have enough ships, but because the Progressives of that era wanted a giant national project that would forge us into one nation via shared sacrifice and experience. WWI was not a war of necessity, but a war of choice in which the blood of 100k+ Americans provided the cement to help build politicians' dreams.

2madre 2 years, 3 months ago

Sounds like she said it to me. Just not the exact words. Whatever man. The concept of the comment is there and I think it's just as dumb and Obama's.

fiddleback 2 years, 3 months ago

Indeed, I can't wait to spot your avatar come Nov. 7. Let me know if you'd like to wager.

tolawdjk 2 years, 3 months ago

Big Bird Bayonettes Binders

And it took till the last sentance, but he still managed to work Vietnam in there. Kudos!

Mike Ford 2 years, 3 months ago

old guys who sound crazy with fox facts are always right in their own minds and the trolls that support them.....

Armstrong 2 years, 3 months ago

Ummm Tusch, you may want to go easy on the people talkiing crazy bit...... just sayin

beatrice 2 years, 3 months ago

Another blog from the self-proclaimed birther.

By the way, Obama wasn't talking to Romney like he was a child, he was appropriately condescending to him -- you know, talking down to him.

Mike Ford 2 years, 3 months ago

gotta love the gop....romney was the clown who brought world war one up in the first place.....back then there were isolationists like Henry Cabot Lodge in the GOP who acted like country club mitt. Back then there were Springfield 03 30-06's and Eddystone Pattern 17's where the bayonet was long and necessary before the implementation of semi automatic rifles with large clips. I know this because I've helped collect these weapons. There may be a bayonet on an M16/M4 but it's not as necessary due to the short length of the rifle itself. Most modern soldiers have a holstered knife on them. Horses were at Fort Riley until world war two as part of the mounted cavalry until harleys and sidecar mounted browning machine guns showed up. There were also bayonet mounted Winchester 97 and Model 12 trench guns back then. One would think that the archie bunkers like this clown in the picture pounding their nra chests would know something about guns. Too bad a gun collecting non nra member Democrat who got his first shotgun to hunt with in Louisiana at age 8 had to show up the archie bunkers. Whoda thunk?

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