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July 25, 2013

Obama Honors Japan's Culture of Hard Work and Meritocratic Achievement By Naming Caroline Kennedy Ambassador

Wait, what?

I thought you said world-class nepot and charity-circuit layabout Caroline Kennedy but you couldn't have, because that would be insane. We pay off Democratic donors and bundlers and other anti-social climbers by appointing them ambassador to tiny, meaningless countries, like Trinidad and England, and not economic powerhouses like Japan.

Her lack of any kind of qualification, experience, or skill of any kind is such that even NPR is asking questions about it.

The liberal-left Christian Science monitor can't help but ask if she has any qualifications at all.

Even American propaganda outfit Voice of America asks the question.

But Yoichiro Sato with Japan's Ritsumeikin Asia-Pacific University, tells VOA that some in Tokyo have questions about her experience.

"I think there is an unspoken concern about her lack of Japan-specific or even Asia-specific expertise," he said.

Kennedy has not worked in government and does not have any Japan-related experience. Even still, Sato says this does not mean she is viewed as unqualified in Tokyo.

"But she's going to have to quickly catch up, with the amount of policy expertise, especially in security matters, in the region," said Sato.

Well, sure, but if there's any attribute I associate with Caroline Kennedy, it's "hard-working crammer."

Then again, per the Guardian, she's simply replacing another Democratic mega-bundler:

Kennedy doesn't have any obvious ties to Japan, a key ally in dealing with North Korea's nuclear ambitions. She would replace John Roos, a wealthy former Silicon Valley lawyer and top Obama campaign fundraiser.

You know who doesn't ask about her qualifications? The paper of record, the New York Times, which portrays the unaccomplished heiress as exactly the sort of "political heavyweight" that is usually given such an important diplomatic post.

President Obama on Wednesday nominated Caroline Kennedy to be ambassador to Japan, moving to give a scion of America’s most enduring political dynasty a diplomatic post that has often gone to political heavyweights.

In naming Ms. Kennedy, whose nomination has been rumored for months, Mr. Obama is keeping with a well-established tradition of rewarding important campaign supporters with plum embassies. He recently put forward big-dollar fund-raisers to be envoys in London, Berlin, Copenhagen and Madrid.

But Ms. Kennedy’s value to Mr. Obama has been less about money than mystique. [Oh? Cite? -- ace.] As the daughter of President John F. Kennedy, her imprimatur on his candidacy in 2008 — along with that of her uncle, Senator Edward M. Kennedy of Massachusetts — elevated Mr. Obama at a crucial moment against his better-known rival, Hillary Rodham Clinton.

And it gave Ms. Kennedy lasting ties to Mr. Obama, something analysts said would come in useful in Japan, where officials and journalists have been buzzing with speculation about what a Kennedy in Tokyo would mean for Japan’s standing in the United States.

Ms. Kennedy, 55, a lawyer and an author who has served as director of numerous nonprofit organizations, has never worked in government and has no special expertise in Japan. But some experts said her lack of knowledge is outweighed by her connections to the Oval Office. [These experts would be the political advisers to Obama, and people who work for John Kerry -- ace.] She shares that with other marquee figures who have served as ambassador to Tokyo, including former Vice President Walter F. Mondale; Howard Baker, a former senator and White House chief of staff; and Thomas S. Foley, a former House speaker.

“For those who say she doesn’t know a lot about Japan, I say ‘sure,’ but neither did Walter Mondale,” said Kurt M. Campbell, a former assistant secretary of state for East Asian affairs.

“What you really want in an ambassador is someone who can get the president of the United States on the phone,” Mr. Campbell said.

You know who agrees with that assessment? Chris Stevens.

The New York Times

More in the tank for Obama than two organizations directly paid for by Obama.

Content Warning for Cartoon (But Serious) Sexual Imagery:

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posted by Ace at 07:12 PM

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