The following is a slightly edited version of my refutation to a letter sent in response to this article by Joan Walsh on Salon.com December 31, 2009 by a neocon reader with the screen name Barry Soetoro. Barry's comments are in bold face.

Greetings, Barry! I always love running into a neocon! :-)

Obama and the far left are learning quickly that being in power is alot [sic] harder than pointing fingers and astroturfing insane political theory about what works and the world realities.

Yup, Bush never worried about doing something that actually worked.

Overseas contingincies, manmade disasters still mean we are at war.

And why, exactly, are we at war? Of course, you will say, "Because those dirty terrorists attacked us on 9/11! Why else?" Well, that wouldn't actually explain why we went to war with Iraq, who had nothing to do with 9/11. And it also wouldn't explain the war in Afghanistan for the same reason.

Also, Obama has not only continued the quagmire (oops, I mean, war) in Iraq and actually escalated the war in Afghanistan, not to mention starting a front in both Pakistan and Yemen, all in the name of appeasing the saber rattlers in Congress and their obsession with winning the "war on terror" the way the Republicans want to "win" it. So how much more warlike and "tough" do you expect the poor guy to get before you people give him a bit of appreciation? After all, he sure as hell ain't listening to the true Lefties on this issue!

Where's all those friends, support from allies and our enemies['] willingness to talk and settle things peacefully they promised?

Um, might that have something to do with the fact that your homeboy Bush alienated them over the eight years of his reign by denouncing the Geneva Conventions, considering himself above the edicts of the World Court, and spitting in the face of the U.N. in attacking Iraq and deriding every other nation that disagreed with him on his eagerness to go medieval on a small and nearly defenseless nation that was later proven to have nothing to do with the 9/11 attacks (which was most of them) as being wimps ("we don't need no damn permission slip from anyone to 'protect' our interests!")?

And before you think I am trying to defend Obama here as many of his mindless cheerleaders on the Left do, could his trouble with receiving all the help from friends in the international community that he said he would receive possibly have to do with the fact that America barely has any friends out there anymore? Because Obama continues to utilize most of the same glorious policies that his beloved predecessor did to "win" the "war on terror"? Could it be because he let down as many people in the international community as he did supporters at home when he continued the bulk of these policies and started even more wars in the Middle East than Bush did despite his bold campaign pledges?

I don't know which is a more silly tableau...the "brave" warriors on the Right who constantly attack Obama when he is trying so hard to appease them with most of his policies, or some of the usually saner folks on the Left who keep cheering him on despite the fact that he is mostly going against their core beliefs and principles with his policies.

And now they can't even handle a fraction of the critical opposition they dished out before they took office. The thugs and tyrants of the world are laughing at these far left nerdy, academic, whiney whimps [sic] and they still don't get it.

Yup, and the tough chicken hawks who comprise the glorious Far Right Republican base certainly had these enemies on the run. Look at how safer the world is thanks to them right now!

No wonder Fox's ratings are at all time highs and MSLSD's continue to tank.

Could that be because the neocons simply love watching petty character smears and blatant Republican progandizing masquarading as "news" now more than during the Bush years due to their depression over having a Democratic president fighting the wars and detaining accused terrorists without due process instead of a tough guy Republican?

Beck now gets close to 20 viewers to every 1 that watches "Furball" with Chris Mathiews or something like that.

Well, Beck deserves the better ratings because he is a more entertaining conservative than Mathiews.

It's a lost cause and even a sex scene between Joan and that impotent twit Mathiews couldn't help.

Yeah, too bad Joan couldn't have had sex with a "real man" like one of you right-wing warriors who aren't afraid to sit at home and cheer on the soldiers who are sent to war to make you feel powerful and virile by association...er, one of you brave right-wing warriors who fight the wars to show how powerful you are, I meant.

Perception being reality and Obama percieved as a weak ineffective leader to Americans and the world is the picture now in focus.

You're right, Barry. Only five wars! That is not enough to prove he is a man! Note to President Obama: go after Iran, or you may not get any Republican voters during the next election!

The failed man[...]

As opposed to the roaring success that Bush was? Not because he fought more wars than Obama, of course, but because he was a Republican who invaded at least one Third World nation? Or maybe because he seemed like the type of guy the average joe could sit down and have a beer with and not be made to feel like an intellectual dunce in comparison, which is a problem that someone like you might have if you sat and chatted with Obama instead of someone like Bush.

[...]made disaster terms implemented by Janet Incompetano make it too easy for Cheney.

You mean, loaded cop-out terms like "enemy combatant," "surge," and "enhanced interrogation"? Why the hell didn't a brave man like Bush and his equally brave cheerleader of these policies, Dick Cheney, simply have the stones to call it torture!??

The War on Terror isn't the man[-]made disaster of most concern to Americans it's the Obama Administration itself.

Yup, and Obama must take all the blame for the mess his predecessor got us into, and damn him for considering even a minor change in the tactics that did so well for the administration that came before him. Smart thinking, Barry. What would the government do without people like you around to give them such stellar advice?