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“After keeping his great powers of persuasion and elucidation under wraps all summer, the president at long last comes forward to explain his health care plan to an utterly confused and increasingly skeptical and wary public,” columnist Maureen Dowd complained about President Obama’s address to Congress tonight. She argued that Obama is “so wrapped up in his desire to be a different, more conciliatory, beer-summit kind of leader,” that he ignores how sometimes “you have to keep your foot on your opponent’s neck.” Dowd added: “Civil discourse is fine, but when the other side is fighting dirty, you should get angry. Don’t let the bully kick sand in your face.”
Some of the reports of the resignation of White House “green jobs” adviser Van Jones (in photo) have omitted a key point. As the Washington Post reported: “Fox News Channel host Glenn Beck began the drive against Jones. Beck’s campaign grew more vitriolic after a group Jones founded in 2005, ColorofChange.org, led an advertising boycott against his show to protest Beck’s assertion that Obama is a racist.” The group’s current executive director, James Rucker, has said that Jones now has nothing to do with the group and didn’t know about the anti-Beck campaign before it began. In any case, Jones, whatever his qualifications, had become a distraction for President Obama.
New York Times columnist Tom Friedman took away a useful lesson from how Van Jones’ present job was undone by his past. On NBC’s “Meet the Press,” Friedman said: “When everyone has a cell phone, everyone’s a photographer. When everyone has access to YouTube, everyone’s a filmmaker. And when everyone’s a blogger, everyone’s a newspaper. When everyone’s a photographer, a newspaper and a filmmaker, everyone else is a public figure. Tell your kids. . . ‘be careful.’ Every move they make is now a digital footprint.”
The Sedgwick County Regional Forensic Science Center, the Wichita Police Department and the Sedgwick County Commission need to work together to make sure that police and the forensic center have the resources they need. At issue is a memo from the center last month outlining restrictions on DNA testing. Because of limited resources, the center wants to focus on violent crimes and not do testing on weapons or ammunition in cases alleging that felons possess guns. But police Deputy Chief Tom Stolz told The Eagle that DNA testing on weapons can help put gang members behind bars and prevent violence. Some prioritization on testing makes sense, given tight budgets, but the center and the commission need to make sure they aren’t taking away an important tool for keeping Wichita safe.
© 2009 Wichita Eagle & Beacon Publishing Co. All rights reserved.