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The Class of Jane Wyman

Although a movie buff, I’m not all that familiar with the work of Jane Wyman. I have only seen a handful of her films — and a good number of episodes of Falconcrest, the 1980s TV drama in which she starred and for which she won a Golden Globe Award.

I’ve long wanted to see Johnny Belinda, the 1948 film for which she won an Oscar. (Guess I’ll just Netflix it). I was most impressed with her performance in All That Heaven Allows, the 1955 Douglas Sirk flick where she plays an upper-class widow who falls for a much younger man. And in the 1945 film The Lost Weekend.

All that said, I was sad today when I learned that this talented actress had died today at 93. I will most remember the class she showed, the type of class once commonplace in Hollywood and Washington, when asked about her third husband, Ronald Wilson Reagan, the nation’s 40th president.

As AP Reporter Bob Thomas put it in his obituary, when her ex-husband “became governor of California and then president of the United States, Wyman kept a decorous silence” about him (Emphasis added). As she put it, “it’s bad taste to talk about ex-husbands and ex-wives.”

The Gipper returned the favor, writing very little about their marriage in his biography, An American Life. All he said was that it “produced two wonderful children, Maureen and Michael, but it didn’t work out, and in 1948 we were divorced.”

Perhaps the Gipper learned to be publicly silent about such private matters from the “decorous silence” his first wife maintained about their marriage. And perhaps while understanding that while a union between them could not “work out,” he continued to respect her talents as an actress and her quality as a human being.

For it seems that she was indeed a great actress and an even better person. Hollywood could learn from her example.

Democrats Find Themselves CaughtBetween Bin Laden and Petraeus

Wow.  It is a bad time to be a “Cut and Run” Democrat. 

First, Osama (pronounced “oh-sah-mah”, not “oss-ah-mah” Rep. Skelton!) comes out with his diatribe on Friday that sounded strangely like John Kerry, Dick Durbin, Harry Reid and Nancy Pelosi all tied up under one turban and dyed/fake beard.

And today, Commanding General David Petraeus handed the Dem-featists their hat in his Congressional testimony.  Even before Petraeus eloquently outlined his moving-forward strategy, the American people reminded lawmakers who they trust on Iraq.

Americans trust military commanders far more than the Bush administration or Congress to bring the war in Iraq to a successful end, and while most favor a withdrawal of American troops beginning next year, they suggested they were open to doing so at a measured pace, according to the latest New York Times/CBS News Poll.

Which is what General Petraeus delivered today in his plan… a measured plan to withdraw and bring success.  So now the Democrats are>… as I blurted out earlier today to PatriotPartner while watching the hearing…. completely f***ed. 

They have invested so much political capital in defeat, they are caught between a nut-in-a-cave and a hard place… and a public that wants (according to the NYT poll) a successful end in Iraq. 

Mario Loyola at National Review explains it quite well.

So the bombshell is in. Because the surge has been so successful in meeting its objectives, General Petraeus recommends a drawdown of 25 percent of the combat brigades in Iraq by next summer, and expects to continue drawing down after that. 

Since this is what the Democrats have been asking for, they must now shift their position, and insist that the drawdown be deeper and faster. This is the lesson of the Vietnam period. The Nixon administration often announced troop withdrawals in excess of what the Democrats had called for. Weeks later, the Democrats would conclude that the withdrawals were not nearly deep enough, or rapid enough, and press for more.

Notice the pickle that the Democrats are in, however — the difference between this and Vietnam. Petraeus recommends a massive drawdown because in his view we are winning and the surge troops won’t be needed for much longer. But the Democrats have no choice but to dispute the premise of this recommendation — absurdly arguing, by implication, the troops are needed, but the cause is hopeless so we should withdraw anyways.

The fact of the matter is that between the desires of their base and the increasingly clear progress in Iraq, the Democrats have an almost impossible communications problem.  It is going to interesting to see how they negotiate it. 

Mario now reports that the words were barely out of Petraeus mouth when the Democrats “Fact-Denying Caucus” began talking:  “Right On Cue…. on Fox [News Channel], Congressman [Robert] Wexler [D-FL] disputes the facts presented by General Petraeus.  He simply refuses to believe them.”

That’s because Wexler and his fellow Democrats cannot allow the American public to believe the truth either.  They are faced with a potential political implosion because they have put party above nation and winning elections above winning a global war against America.

-Bruce (GayPatriot)

UPDATE (by JohnAGJ): I hate to be a buttinski on someone else’s post, but this is related to Bruce’s comments here. We can see how shrill and detached from reality many on the Left have become, by their antics towards General Petraeus as this despicable “General Betray Us” ad from demonstrates. Yet this cute nickname that undoubtedly has lefties giggling like schoolkids didn’t just spring Athena-style from the Zeus-like minds of MoveOn (nod to Dan here). No, as Dan Riehl notes, “It appears they started testing out the slur in June – and it caught on”. Indeed it has. One finds this being used by many leftist nutjobs online from DailyKos and After Downing Street to Pam’s House Blend. No doubt our troops are just basking with all the support the Left is showering on them…

UP-UPDATE (from GPW): I was thinking of how to tackle a post on the ad that John referenced in the update above when I read Hugh’s comments which pretty much sum up my thoughts:

For is it a moment of searing clarity that reveals them to be as divisive and as repugnant as Joe McCarthy was at the time of his 1954 fiasco in the Army-McCarthy hearings. The Democrats who fail to denounce the slander of this honorable and courageous American are complicit in that slander.

Watch Petraeus/Crocker Report LIVE


….. and feel free to comment here at GayPatriot.  Please try to stay on topic:  Petraeus/Crocker Report to Congress.

-Bruce (GayPatriot)

TNR’s Beauchamp Fiction Blown Apart — Pajamas Media Exclusive

Congrats to Bob Owens (Confederate Yankee) for this outstanding report blowing the lid off of the never ending lies of The New Republic regarding their fiction-writer-in-Baghdad, Scott Thomas Beauchamp.

Bob Owens has this exclusive report up at Pajamas Media this morning.  It is a must read for those of you keeping track of the Iraq-as-Fiction meme put forth by TNR, Thomas and his wife — TNR “fact-checker” Elspeth Reeve.

Army Checkmates The New Republic – Bob Owens at Pajamas Media

While Scott Thomas Beauchamp has repeatedly turned down interview requests—including one as recently as last week— Pajamas Media’s Bob Owens, who runs the PJM network blog Confederate Yankee , was enterprising enough to arrange an email interview with Major Cross.  [GP Ed. Note – Major John Cross – Executive Officer, 1-18 Infantry (Vanguards), Second (Dagger) Brigade Combat Team, First Infantry Division – was the lead investigating officer of the Beauchamp allegations.]

In a wide-ranging interview, Maj. Cross provides surprising new evidence about Beauchamp and the editorial process at the New Republic.

Read the whole thing!

Owens’ conclusions from his exclusive interview with Major Cross:

– Private Scott Beauchamp did not reveal that he was “Scott Thomas,” author of “Shock Troops,” until he was asked to sign a second sworn statement. It was after he signed this statement that his identity was revealed in The New Republic.

– Major Cross has seen no evidence of any sort of fact checking by The New Republic’s editors prior to publication, a sentiment shared by Army Public Affairs Officers in both Iraq and Kuwait.  It is also worth noting that TNR editors have refused to publish PAO statements that contradict their claims.

Major Cross was unable to find anyone in Beauchamp’s squad, platoon, or company that would corroborate the stories he told in “Shock Troops.”

Beauchamp was the subject of a second investigation, which found him guilty of violating his unit’s operational security for which he could have been thrown out of the Army.

The U.S. Army and the soldiers in Beauchamp’s unit seem to have been very forgiving of his fraudulent stories and potentially dangerous operational security violations.

This is the third time in recent memory that a New Republic writer has been persuasively charged with fabrication. Stephen Glass, who was found to have made up 27 of the 41 articles he wrote for the magazine, is perhaps the most famous case. Glass’ exploits were chronicled in the movie “Shattered Glass.” The Glass incident severely damaged the credibility of the magazine, and should have led to far more stringent editorial standards…it obviously did not.

It is doubtful that editor Franklin Foer and The New Republic deserve yet another chance, and that readers will be as loyal to the magazine as the military has been to Beauchamp.

Clearly heads should roll at The New Republic…. and that ever-on-the-wrong-side Andrew Sullivan should apologize to the US military for defending “Scott Thomas” and TNR’s cover-up.

-Bruce (GayPatriot)