The Case Of The Missing President

Update: Glory, glory, mighty, mighty. This has to be one of the most memorable quotes of the day:

It is transparent. That’s why we set up the FISA court…. The whole point of my concern, before I was president — because some people say, “Well, you know, Obama was this raving liberal before. Now he’s, you know, Dick Cheney.”

If the Darth Vader costume fits, wear it.

If you voted for Chicago Barack Obama and got a wittle biddy bit upset over some or all of the Obama scandals, you can now go back to lighting incense to your god. “Transparent” he says. What a laugh! Of course to us Barack Obama is indeed transparent – we see right through him – and his lies.


Drag a dollar bill through a sewer and you’ll find Barack Obama. Add two zeroes… or one, and you’ll find Michelle Obama. We say this because all of a sudden, after years of flim-flams some Obama supporters are scratching their heads and wondering who Barack Obama really is. Where did their love go? Hells bells, we answered those questions years ago in The Case Of The Missing State Senator.

Its taken them this long to ask these questions? To start wondering and wandering? The mindless young and the color-over-character black Americans who supported Barack Obama in two national elections are increasingly tired of being barebacked by Barack:

“The drop in Obama’s support is fueled by a dramatic 17-point decline over the past month among people under 30, who, along with black Americans, had been the most loyal part of the Obama coalition,” says Keating Holland, polling director for CNN. “It is clear that revelations about NSA surveillance programs have damaged Obama’s standing with the public, although older controversies like the IRS matter may have begun to take their toll as well.”

The survey, released Monday, also shows that 50 percent of Americans say they don’t believe Obama is “honest and trustworthy,” for the first time in his presidency, according to CNN.

These dolts are finally understanding our catechism:

Obama simply cannot be trusted. Obama cannot be trusted on any issue. Obama cannot be trusted by his friends. Obama cannot be trusted by his enemies. Obama cannot be trusted.

Do You Trust This Man?:

“Like Bush before him, President Obama faces a credibility crisis.

There is a common element to the so-called Obama scandals—the IRS targeting of conservatives, the fatal attack in Benghazi, and widespread spying on U.S. journalists and ordinary Americans. It is a lack of credibility.

In each case, the Obama administration has helped make controversies worse by changing its stories, distorting facts, and lying.

The abuse of trust may be taking a toll on President Obama’s reputation.

A CNN/ORC poll of 1,104 adult Americans June 11-13 shows the president’s job approval rating at 45 percent, down 8 percentage points in a month. [snip]

This month, only 49 percent of Americans say Obama is honest and trustworthy. That is a 9-point drop since May 17-18.”

The Jammie Wearing Fools are baffled that The Hill is baffled.

Who is he? Obama keeps allies, enemies guessing in second term

Five months into his second term, allies and enemies are as confounded as ever about who President Obama really is.”

Alert: Missing State Senator

So who is Barack Obama? We answered that question in The Case of the Missing State Senator and in The Obama Health Plan Obama Supporters Do Not Want To Discuss.

Because the mindless young and others who voted for Barack Obama, (sometimes twice and sometimes in the same election we might as well add), do not like to read or in any way tax their minds we’ll shorten those two articles rather miraculously into one sentence: “Barack Obama will in flowery terms tell you what you want to hear but after you vote for him he stabs you in the back.”

Yup, it’s that simple. He is a missing president because he was a missing state senator when it came to helping the poor, blacks, the young, the old:

“When it came time to defend the defenseless or protect and enrich the powerful. Obama made a decision. He protected his powerful friends and provided them with even more government money. Same old Chicago politics. The poor shivered in cold tenements. Obama bought a new house. Now he wants a bigger White House to entertain his Chicago friends.”

Resignation or Impeachment

Put a dollar bill in Obama’s g-string and he’ll follow you anywhere. In January of 2008 the New York Times gave minimal attention, but more than it does now, to the real Barack Obama:

“When residents in Illinois voiced outrage two years ago upon learning that the Exelon Corporation had not disclosed radioactive leaks at one of its nuclear plants, the state’s freshman senator, Barack Obama, took up their cause.

Mr. Obama scolded Exelon and federal regulators for inaction and introduced a bill to require all plant owners to notify state and local authorities immediately of even small leaks.”

That’s how the article began. This is what the article concluded:

“A close look at the path his legislation took tells a very different story. While he initially fought to advance his bill, even holding up a presidential nomination to try to force a hearing on it, Mr. Obama eventually rewrote it to reflect changes sought by Senate Republicans, Exelon and nuclear regulators. The new bill removed language mandating prompt reporting and simply offered guidance to regulators, whom it charged with addressing the issue of unreported leaks.

Those revisions propelled the bill through a crucial committee. But, contrary to Mr. Obama’s comments in Iowa, it ultimately died amid parliamentary wrangling in the full Senate.

“Senator Obama’s staff was sending us copies of the bill to review, and we could see it weakening with each successive draft,” said Joe Cosgrove, a park district director in Will County, Ill., where low-level radioactive runoff had turned up in groundwater. [snip]

Since 2003, executives and employees of Exelon, which is based in Illinois, have contributed at least $227,000 to Mr. Obama’s campaigns for the United States Senate and for president. [snip]

In addition, Mr. Obama’s chief political strategist, David Axelrod, has worked as a consultant to Exelon.”

And you young fools, black fools, liberal fools, fools’ fools thought you had a chance? Stupid is as stupid does.

It’s not just freezing tenants in Chicago, nor Exelon, that should clue the clueless. There is also ObamaCare. You know that ObamaCare is a gangster government enforced extraction of of your money to give to the insurance companies right? You do know by now that ObamaCare is welfare for insurance companies right?

Did you ever read about The Obama Health Plan Obama Supporters Do Not Want To Discuss. If you want to know why ObamaCare sucks, your money from your pocket to give to health insurance companies that will give you little in return read about the father of ObamaCare.

The father of ObamaCare is the corrupt Obama of Chicago. It’s the same old story with Obama – excoriate insurance companies in public then make deals favorable to them in private. That’s not the only reason ObamaCare sucks (the life out of you and the money out of your wallet) but if you’re wondering why ObamaCare sucks so bad, start there.

After that, you might begin to hunt for the missing president who appears to disappear every time the cops come around. Like us you might begin to ask yourself Where’s Obama?

When the going gets tough, when answers are required, Obama is the disappearing president. That’s not new to us. On our very first day of publication in April 2007 we noted Obama’s missing votes and missing presence when it was time to get things done. In September 2007 we named this phenomenon The Presence Of Absence.

A Bigger Splash

The “missing president” is now touted by some as a smart strategy to govern. According to this debauched view of proper governance the best way for Obama to get things done is to disappear. Immigration reform, say these advocates of irresponsibility and invisibility, will pass if Obama disappears behind drapes and Michelle’s ample, um, profile.

But for those of us that believe the best way to govern is to propose good policies, explain them honestly to the public with care not to be too too clever, then exert as much effort and influence acquire the legislative votes necessary, this “presence of absence” strategy is fools’ gold.

Barack might try to pass immigration reform by hiding behind tapestries and under rugs but we think that as of now immigration reform is dead. We’ll be proven correct eventually if there is any truth to this report: Boehner won’t bring immigration bill to the floor unless majority of House Republicans support it.

Advocates of amnesty or what is now called “immigration reform” might do well to remember that Obama made a lot of promises to them before and during his first term – none of which materialized. Young people who expected glorious CHANGE got their pockets picked with only some change left to jingle jangle in their pockets.

Liberals? Hell you got rendition, abuse of civil liberties, FISA, lobbyists, a vegetable garden tended to by someone other than Michelle, DOJ targeting and intimidation of real journalists, and the NSA national security state. Happy?

Blacks? See the disappearing black middle class? See your unemployed young? See affirmative action disappearing (probably next week)? Take a look around if you are an African-American that put the bro ahead of the… well you know what they called Hillary – and realize you are in a Monty Python film. One day all this will be yours.

If you think Barack Obama is standing by you, look again. He just disappeared. You can find him if you look for the person he really is, not the one you imagined.

Chicago Clown

Want to find the missing president? Drag a dollar bill through a sewer and you hook yourself an Obama.


140 thoughts on “The Case Of The Missing President


    “This suspicious activity has been going on for quite some time – both on my CBS computer and my personal computer,” Attkisson said. “CBS then hired its own independent cyber security firm, which has been conducting a thorough forensic exam … they were able to rule out malware, phishing programs, that sort of thing.”

    Attkisson described some of the bizarre things that were happening with her computer.

    “There were just signs of unusual happenings for many months, odd behavior like the computers just turning themselves on at night and then turning themselves back off again. I was basically able to verify and obtain information from my sources on the suspicious activity and I reported it to CBS News in January because of course it included CBS equipment and systems.”

    Attkisson could not speak about whether the hacking was related to her questions about Benghazi because of “legal counsel,” but she did say her work at that time was primarily on the occurrence.

    “Whoever was in my work computer, the only thing I was working on were work-related things with CBS were big stories I guess during the time period in questions were I guess Benghazi and ‘Fast and Furious.’ The intruders did have access to personal information including passwords to my financial accounts and so on, but didn’t tamper with those, so they weren’t interested in stealing my identity or doing things to my finances. So people can decide on their own what they might have been trying to do in there.” [snip]

    Attkisson also confirmed that the investigation is still ongoing, and that she still has questions about the way the Benghazi incident was handled.


    Obamacare will share personal health info with federal, state agencies
    BY: PAUL BEDARD JUNE 17, 2013 | 8:05 AM

    Washington Secrets

    A new rule requires state, federal and local agencies as well as health insurers to swap the…

    A new 253-page Obamacare rule issued late Friday requires state, federal and local agencies as well as health insurers to swap the protected personal health information of anybody seeking to join the new health care program that will be enforced by the Internal Revenue Service.

    Protected health information, or PHI, is highly protected under federal law, but the latest ruling from the Department of Health and Human Services allows agencies to trade the information to verify that Obamacare applicants are getting the minimum amount of health insurance coverage they need from the health “exchanges.”

    The ruling, explained on pages 72-73 of the book-thick guidance, does not mention any requirement that applicants first OK the release of their PHI. HHS already allows some exchange of PHI without an individual’s pre-approval, especially when for a “government program providing public benefits.” Officials said the swapping of information is simply meant to help figure the best insurance coverge of Obamacare users.

    The new ruling surprised some congressional critics. “This sounds as if HHS will have access to protected health info to me,” said one top Hill aide worried about how well the administration will protect that information. SURPRISE!

    Conservative groups including Americans for Tax Reform have raised questions about the release of PHI in the aftermath of the IRS scandal.

    PHI includes an individual’s medical history, test and laboratory results, insurance information and other data.

    The new rule said that appropriate privacy laws will be followed.(yeah, sure!)

    “The exchange would submit specific identifying information to HHS and HHS would verify applicant information with information from the federal and state agencies or programs that provide eligibility and enrollment information regarding minimum essential coverage. Such agencies or programs may include but are not limited to Veterans Health Administration, TRICARE, and Medicare,” said the new rule, which HHS is seeking public comment on.

    “HHS will work with the appropriate federal and state agencies to complete the appropriate computer matching agreements, data use agreements, and information exchange agreements which will comply with all appropriate federal privacy and security laws and regulations. The information obtained from federal and state agencies will be used and re-disclosed by HHS as part of the eligibility determination and information verification process,” added the rule.

    Explaining the PHI release ruling, HHS said Obamacare “is a government program providing public benefits, is expressly authorized to disclose PHI … that relates to eligibility for or enrollment in the health plan to HHS for verification of applicant eligibility for minimum essential coverage as part of the eligibility determination process for advance payments of the premium tax credit or cost-sharing reductions.”

    Paul Bedard, The Washington Examiner’s “Washington Secrets” columnist, can be contacted at


    all of this to ensure our personal health care…where is that bridge O is selling?

  3. when are our so called ‘leaders’ going to start asking if ‘obtaining health care’ in the USA now means that many low level administrators will now be privvy to your personal health information as they join in on the circle that gets to pass all your once private information between local, state and federal bureacracies…

    this is INSANE…and again, it has nothing to do with actual health care…it is all about more control, more spying on our private information…and more government control over making decisions on how and why we will received certain government subsidies and coverage for our health care…and now it is all tied in with our taxes, penalties and the IRS…it is all bureacratic, not determined by actual health professionals…

    this is why i ask…if more doctors are dropping insurance companies…they should all revolt and drop them and jolt the system…but if they are dropping them and treating patients on cash basis for primary care…how does that effect the O mandate control?

    and what happens to people in rural areas, etc…that have hardly any access to primary care…and when doctors refuse certain govt programs…then what?

    are people supposed to be forced to pay for care they cannot even get…and have no access to?


  4. Snowden answers specific questions from public online thru the Guardian:

    Why did you wait to release the documents if you said you wanted to tell the world about the NSA programs since before Obama became president?


    Obama’s campaign promises and election gave me faith that he would lead us toward fixing the problems he outlined in his quest for votes. Many Americans felt similarly. Unfortunately, shortly after assuming power, he closed the door on investigating systemic violations of law, deepened and expanded several abusive programs, and refused to spend the political capital to end the kind of human rights violations like we see in Guantanamo, where men still sit without charge.

    1) Define in as much detail as you can what “direct access” means.

    2) Can analysts listen to content of domestic calls without a warrant?


    1) More detail on how direct NSA’s accesses are is coming, but in general, the reality is this: if an NSA, FBI, CIA, DIA, etc analyst has access to query raw SIGINT databases, they can enter and get results for anything they want. Phone number, email, user id, cell phone handset id (IMEI), and so on – it’s all the same. The restrictions against this are policy based, not technically based, and can change at any time. Additionally, audits are cursory, incomplete, and easily fooled by fake justifications. For at least GCHQ, the number of audited queries is only 5% of those performed.

    How does that make you feel about your personal, private healthcare info now being thrown into that mix?? (what i want to ask)


    What are your thoughts on Google’s and Facebook’s denials? Do you think that they’re honestly in the dark about PRISM, or do you think they’re compelled to lie?

    Perhaps this is a better question to a lawyer like Greenwald, but: If you’re presented with a secret order that you’re forbidding to reveal the existence of, what will they actually do if you simply refuse to comply (without revealing the order)?


    Their denials went through several revisions as it become more and more clear they were misleading and included identical, specific language across companies. As a result of these disclosures and the clout of these companies, we’re finally beginning to see more transparency and better details about these programs for the first time since their inception.

    They are legally compelled to comply and maintain their silence in regard to specifics of the program, but that does not comply them from ethical obligation. If for example Facebook, Google, Microsoft, and Apple refused to provide this cooperation with the Intelligence Community, what do you think the government would do? Shut them down?

    I, sitting at my desk, certainly had the authorities to wiretap anyone, from you, or your accountant, to a federal judge, to even the President if I had a personal email.

    Do you stand by that, and if so, could you elaborate?


    Yes, I stand by it. US Persons do enjoy limited policy protections (and again, it’s important to understand that policy protection is no protection – policy is a one-way ratchet that only loosens) and one very weak technical protection – a near-the-front-end filter at our ingestion points. The filter is constantly out of date, is set at what is euphemistically referred to as the “widest allowable aperture,” and can be stripped out at any time. Even with the filter, US comms get ingested, and even more so as soon as they leave the border. Your protected communications shouldn’t stop being protected communications just because of the IP they’re tagged with.

    More fundamentally, the “US Persons” protection in general is a distraction from the power and danger of this system. Suspicionless surveillance does not become okay simply because it’s only victimizing 95% of the world instead of 100%. Our founders did not write that “We hold these Truths to be self-evident, that all US Persons are created equal.”

    Is encrypting my email any good at defeating the NSA survelielance? Id my data protected by standard encryption?


    Encryption works. Properly implemented strong crypto systems are one of the few things that you can rely on. Unfortunately, endpoint security is so terrifically weak that NSA can frequently find ways around it.

    My question: given the enormity of what you are facing now in terms of repercussions, can you describe the exact moment when you knew you absolutely were going to do this, no matter the fallout, and what it now feels like to be living in a post-revelation world? Or was it a series of moments that culminated in action? I think it might help other people contemplating becoming whistleblowers if they knew what the ah-ha moment was like. Again, thanks for your courage and heroism.


    I imagine everyone’s experience is different, but for me, there was no single moment. It was seeing a continuing litany of lies from senior officials to Congress – and therefore the American people – and the realization that that Congress, specifically the Gang of Eight, wholly supported the lies that compelled me to act. Seeing someone in the position of James Clapper – the Director of National Intelligence – baldly lying to the public without repercussion is the evidence of a subverted democracy. The consent of the governed is not consent if it is not informed.

    Anything else you’d like to add?


    Thanks to everyone for their support, and remember that just because you are not the target of a surveillance program does not make it okay. The US Person / foreigner distinction is not a reasonable substitute for individualized suspicion, and is only applied to improve support for the program. This is the precise reason that NSA provides Congress with a special immunity to its surveillance.

    yes, funny how the government also wants ‘immunity’ from the harsh control of the Ocare they all passed without even reading…but let the rest of us…the middle class…suffer with it…

  5. We are getting more information on the issue we criticized Snodwen about. The American electorate should have been given this information before the November 2012 election. And…He believed Obama!!!! He wasn’t the brightest bulb was he?

    NSA leaker Edward Snowden on Monday criticized President Barack Obama for empty promises in a wide-ranging online interview, saying that the president’s alleged failings influenced his decision to release the secret information on government surveillance.

    Obama’s campaign promises and election gave me faith that he would lead us toward fixing the problems he outlined in his quest for votes. Many Americans felt similarly. Unfortunately, shortly after assuming power, he closed the door on investigating systemic violations of law, deepened and expanded several abusive programs, and refused to spend the political capital to end the kind of human rights violations like we see in Guantanamo, where men still sit without charge,” Snowden said in a response to a question from a commenter on The Guardian’s website.

    Snowden was responding to this question: “Why did you wait to release the documents if you said you wanted to tell the world about the NSA programs since before Obama became president?

    Speaking further about his mindset in deciding to release the information, Snowden said Congress and the administration also spurred him to act.

    “There was no single moment. It was seeing a continuing litany of lies from senior officials to Congress – and therefore the American people – and the realization that that Congress, specifically the Gang of Eight, wholly supported the lies that compelled me to act. Seeing someone in the position of James Clapper – the Director of National Intelligence – baldly lying to the public without repercussion is the evidence of a subverted democracy,” Snowden wrote.

    Snowden appeared to be referring to the so-called intelligence gang of eight, the four leaders (ranking members and chairs) of the House and Senate Intelligence Committees and the four leaders of the House and Senate.

    But Snowden, answering questions from an unknown location, said there was still a chance for the president to redeem himself.

    ”This disclosure provides Obama an opportunity to appeal for a return to sanity, constitutional policy, and the rule of law rather than men. He still has plenty of time to go down in history as the President who looked into the abyss and stepped back, rather than leaping forward into it. I would advise he personally call for a special committee to review these interception programs, repudiate the dangerous “State Secrets” privilege, and … begin a tradition for all Presidents … by appointing a special investigator to review the policies of their years in office for any wrongdoing,” Snowden said. [snip]

    Bathtub falls and police officers kill more Americans than terrorism, yet we’ve been asked to sacrifice our most sacred rights for fear of falling victim to it,” Snowden said to one commenter.

    This information should have been released to the electorate during the election of 2012. That rubbish about falls and accidents killing more than terrorists is straight out of the DailyKooks playbook. Last we heard flimsy chairs were not in a conspiracy to terrorize Americans in order to bend them to the will of theocrats and assorted totalitarians. And that he still thinks there’s hope for Obama… the boy is not very bright.

    We are still happy to finally get the information he withheld until now and that must still be addressed by the electorate during an election.

  6. Mooch To Stay At $3,300-A-Night Dublin Hotel Suite…

    First Lady Michelle Obama is staying Monday evening in the $3,300-per-night Princess Grace suite of Dublin’s Five-Star Shelbourne Hotel, according to Irish press reports, adding some credence to accusations she is in the city for a quick vacation at taxpayer expense.

    Michelle jetted to Dublin Monday afternoon Irish time after a brief stop in Belfast with President Obama, who is in the city for the two-day G-8 Summit.

    The White House is billing Michelle’s trip to Dublin as having diplomatic significance, but her itinerary suggests otherwise. She and her daughters will visit the Trinity College library to explore President Obama’s Irish family roots, attend a performance by the world-famous Riverdance troupe, and visit the Wicklow Mountains national forest.

  7. Admin: you are feted. Today’s leading Op-Ed of WSJ is asking the same questions.

    Have we reached the points where even the elites feel threatened by this bozo?

    They worry about foreign policy more than I do at this point, because that is the one bet they cannot cover with all their money.

    Perhaps we can add Barack to the long list of MIAs in the global war on terror.


    The Absent Commander in Chief
    Obama isn’t defending the war powers he has used so robustly.

    With Mr. Obama’s face on the surveillance milk carton, the case for data-mining and digital eavesdropping has fallen to NSA chief Keith Alexander and the bipartisan leaders of the House and Senate intelligence committees. Meanwhile, Director of National Intelligence James Clapper continued his pattern of doing more harm than good with his line about answering congressional questions in “the most truthful or least most untruthful manner,” which helps to explain why people are skeptical of U.S. spooks.

    Even an effort by Mr. Obama to lead from behind would be better than this abdication. The President’s mistake seems to be a combination of moral afflatus—how could anyone possibly imagine that he would abuse government power?—and treating the current furor as a law school seminar. The political danger is a lot greater than that. A real and growing risk is that Congress will move in a way that limits the war powers of the Commander in Chief and endangers national security.

    To take one example, support seems to be growing for Senate legislation from Democrats Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley of Oregon and Republican Mike Lee of Utah that would require the declassification of certain legal opinions from the oversight court under the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, or FISA. This infringes on executive power because the President has traditionally defined what is secret, especially in times of war.

    White House attorneys recently compounded the damage in a separate lawsuit to unseal those decisions, claiming in front of the FISA court that the FISA court itself had mandated their secrecy. The court ruled instead, and rightly so, that it is “fundamentally the Executive Branch’s responsibility to safeguard sensitive national security information.”

    This rebuke harmed the Administration’s credibility with the judges who approve surveillance applications, and it suggested that the Administration lacks the courage of its own security convictions. When in trouble, this crowd always blames someone else.

    If Mr. Obama wants to maintain public support for the U.S. antiterror architecture he inherited and has robustly used, he is going to have to publicly defend it in the context of American interests and values. Without such a defense, the political vacuum will be filled by speculation and demagoguery as it has been for nearly two weeks.

    As a Senator, Mr. Obama might have joined the demagogues. Yet as President he has largely erred on the side of keeping the country safe, which confirms the truism that the world looks different from the Oval Office than from an Iowa fairground. He has bombed terrorists to death by the hundreds even as his rhetoric continues to suggest that he has saved the nation from George W. Bush’s antiterror tyranny. This contradiction between his talk and action is now undermining support for Mr. Obama’s powers.

    All of this follows an unfortunate national-security pattern: Mr. Obama ramped up the Afghan campaign while undercutting the counter-insurgency strategy from the start, and he barely spoke of it again except to trumpet withdrawal. He threw in with the Europe-led Libya coalition at the last second, only to abdicate once Gadhafi fell and to the point that a U.S. Ambassador was murdered without consequence.

    Last month he all but declared the war on terror wrapped up. And then last Thursday he left the explanation for his abrupt change of heart to (lightly) arm the Syrian rebels to his deputy national security adviser.

    Mr. Obama has been lucky that his predecessors, including Lincoln, FDR, Truman, Reagan and George W. Bush, protected the wartime powers of the Presidency. This has provided him with the tools to protect Americans from the deadly combination of Islamist fanaticism and modern technology. He now has an obligation to explain and defend those tools, lest he leave America more vulnerable and the Presidency weaker than he found them.

  8. Someone get a big fishing pole, tape a $100 bill to the hook and tease it onto the next spaceship to Mars.

    Adiós BO and his MO.

    Great post admin!

  9. “We are still happy to finally get the information he withheld until now and that must still be addressed by the electorate during an election.”
    If I were faced with the utter certainty of the total destruction of my life vs Magical thinking about Obama in 2012, I would be still be having Magical thinking about the President in 2016. Whatever psychological quirk that drove Snowden to “spill the beans” is extremely rare.

  10. The 2016 GOP platform: equality and the rule of law

    They would be better off running Kimmy (Kardosian) than trying to peddle this kind of crap to an electorate who does not give a shit and does not believe them. Equality and the rule of law are abstract concepts which mean nothing to the target audience. Yes, it was different thirty years ago, but that was thirty years ago and much has changed. Identity politics and celebrity status–that is where the electorate heads are at. In 2008 I did a job description for the presidency and compared it to Obama’s meager qualifications. I gave it to several people to read at their caucuses which they did. They got shouted down. No, 2016 will not be different, because our electorate is uneducable. So they had better see if Kimmy is available, because that is what will sell.

  11. Obama returns from the fundraising wars and puts Harry Reid, Dick Durbin and Martin O’Malley in their place for not celebrating his return:

  12. Tell President Obama We Can’t Afford His Vacations!
    3,631 Letters and Emails Sent So Far

    Dear Friend,

    President Obama and his family are planning to travel to Senegal, Tanzania, and South Africa this month and to spend up to $100 million of tax money on their trip. Essentially, a paid vacation and heritage tour, the trip will involve extensive federal expenditure at a time when federal employees are on furlough working four day weeks due to sequester.

    The Washington Post reports that:

    “Hundreds of U.S. Secret Service agents will be dispatched to secure facilities in Senegal, South Africa and Tanzania. A Navy aircraft carrier or amphibious ship, with a fully staffed medical trauma center, will be stationed offshore in case of an emergency.

    “Military cargo planes will airlift in 56 support vehicles, including 14 limousines and three trucks loaded with sheets of bullet¬proof glass to cover the windows of the hotels where the first family will stay. Fighter jets will fly in shifts, giving 24-hour coverage over the president’s airspace, so they can intervene quickly if an errant plane gets too close.

    Tell President Obama to stay home! We can’t afford his vacations.

    We will forward your signature to President Obama. Please be sure to include your name, hard mailing address, and your email so we can do so.

    We’ll add your email address to our Alerts list to keep you posted on progress and let you know if we need to take further action.

    Thank you,

    Dick Morris

  13. New coalition rising?:

    Pew: Strongest support for Snowden comes from young adults — and tea partiers

    All of the numbers are extraordinary there, but the most eye-popping is the fact that the only other partisan segment that agrees with TPers that Snowden’s FISA/PRISM leak was in the public interest are … liberals. In a separate question, Pew asked people if they would feel “violated” if they knew that the government had collected their data; then they divided the results up by various demographics — sex, race, age, education, partisanship, you name it. Among 17 different demographic slices, the one with the highest percentage saying that hey would indeed feel violated was tea partiers at fully 78 percent. The second-rate, from independents, was a distant second at just 69 percent. Proof positive that Rand Paul’s right and I’m wrong about a deep, permanent libertarian shift within the GOP? Or merely an artifact of sharp partisanship fueled by tea partiers’ total distrust of The One?

  14. The Immoral Consequences of Amnesty
    by Ace Of Spades 17 Jun 2013, 12:12 PM PDT 46 post a comment
    Share This:
    An aide to Rubio shrugged off the possibility of millions of American workers being displaced by amnestied foreign ones. “There are American workers who, for lack of a better term, can’t cut it,” he said.

    So the Rubio plan for these Americans is just to put them on the dole, then? If they can’t cut it working, they’ll need money from somewhere, and as American citizens, they still have the right to vote themselves wages for not working, right?

    So many Libertarian “solutions” to problems rely on this First Assumption: “First, assume that we do not have a social welfare state, so that our policies will not increase the costs of maintaining that welfare state.”

    But we do have that welfare state, and it’s not going anywhere, particularly when millions of Americans, formerly able to hold good-paying jobs, are now economically threatened by imported foreign workers and now can look only to the dole for their daily bread.

    The corporate class seems to only look at the direct costs of labor, without ever considering the indirect costs: That is, the cost of your product is not determined only by your materials and labor costs, but those costs plus the avalanche of taxation required to support more and more millions of Americans reduced to permanent existence on the taxpayer-funded dole.

    And, critically I think, there is a moral dimension to this, whose costs are so great so as to defy measure.

    As a moral, political, and psychological matter, it is far better to have a country in which most of its voting citizens have the self-worth and natural connection to the economy that a job provides, as opposed to having more and more citizens taking the government dole, knowing they are essentially worthless to the nation, so many useless mouths to feed.

    That breeds cynicism, lack of responsibility, and lawlessness, and we see it in every community in which taking the dole because almost as common as (or actually more common than) working for wages.

    There are very few manufacturing-type jobs left — doing jobs, making jobs — where the natural advantage of the American worker has not been undermined by outsourcing to other countries.

    This whole Amnesty bid is an attempt to do an end-run around that. We can’t export these jobs to other countries? Fine, then: We’ll import the workers to this one.

    All I can do is ask: When the Citizens-of-the-World type well-heeled Republican donor class, the businessmen and so forth, succeed in reducing even more millions of Americans to permanent unemployment, do they not understand that they will pay those unemployed Americans far, far more on the back end than they could ever possibly save by utilizing foreign workers?

    Work is not just an economic boon; it is a moral boon. It connects, in a man’s mind, a virtue (industriousness) directly to a reward (a paycheck). It creates a connection between past (the work and training you did) to future (the paycheck you will receive), and thus promotes delayed gratification, planning for the future, and a whole host of socially-important virtues.

    It breeds a feeling of self-respect and self-worth. It makes the worker invested in society — he is stakeholder in it. He has skin in the game.

    Worklessness does the exact opposite. It teaches that there is no connection between virtue and reward, and thus encourages a pirate or brigand mentality. Worklessness severs the connection between past effort and future reward because there is none. A magic government check just arrives twice a month — you did nothing to earn it, except to exist.

    A nation can survive a limited number of citizens who have been deprived of the moral instruction of useful work, but not many of them, and certainly not a majority of them.

    Make no mistake: Depriving millions of Americans of gainful employment does have a cost, and a large one, and that cost will be reflected in our economy — as well as in our morality, politics, and general level of social wellness.

    To be anti-Amnesty is not to be anti-immigrant: it is simply to be pro-American and pro-morality.

  15. admin
    June 17, 2013 at 10:03 pm

    New coalition rising?:
    God, I hope so Admin.

  16. I knew that the young folks would be on Snowden’s side. The young that have cell phones, use sites like Facebook, and have some experience on the internet don’t want Barry in their underwear drawer, snooping in their computers, tracking their downloads and listening in on their conversations.

    Obama couldn’t be caught with his pants down in a worse situation, when it comes to the first and second time voting youth that wanted to ‘lift up the black guy’.

  17. Interesting. Public trust in the news media is one half (1/2) of what it was in 1993. Today, less than 1 in 4 people trust NBC, CNN, ABC and CBS. What has changed? They have abandoned the pretense of objective journalism. They no longer deal in truth, but administration propaganda. And everyone knows this. Just like the Administration they serve, they have been caught lying 10 times too often. Lying does not promote trust.

    A new poll on newspapers and television news shows that Americans’ confidence in the news industry continues to erode in this era of mass communications. (snip)

    The Gallup polling firm finds that trust in newspapers has fallen to 23 percent. This is down from 25 percent in 2012 and 28 percent in 2011.

    The previous low was recorded in 2007 when trust in newspapers reached 22 percent.

    Trust in newspapers has steadily declined since its 1979 high of 51 percent, Gallup reports.

    Television news fares no better in the estimation of those polled by Gallup. Trust in TV news tied that of newspapers, with 23 percent saying they trust TV news sources. This is down from a 1993 high of 46 percent–when Gallup first began asking about it.

    The polling giant cautions, however, that the TV question does not distinguish between cable and network news, with both sources lumped in together in the question.

    Naturally, liberals trust newspapers more than conservatives.

    Conservatives’ confidence in newspapers, at 15%, is down from 21% in 2012 and 2011. Moderates’ confidence has been trending downward for the past two years, and is now at 25%. Liberals remain the most confident in newspapers–although not by much–with 31% putting a great deal or quite a lot of confidence in them this year.

    Confidence in newspapers by party mirrors the ideological findings. Democrats are most confident, at 33%, while independents are less so, at 19%, and Republicans, at 16%, are least confident.

    For conservatives, the findings were similar for TV news, with only 18 percent saying they trust it. Liberals and moderates, however, have seen an upswing in trust for TV news. Moderates trust their televisions at a rate of 24 percent while liberals trust it at 26 percent.

    Women trust all news sources more than men, and educated people trust the news less than the uneducated, but regardless of class, education, or party affiliation, trust in the news is below 31 percent in every case, showing that the media is not well-liked by most Americans.

  18. Today, people realize that what the media chooses not to report, can be more important than what they do report. Media censorship has been necessary to promote the fiction of Obama and to avoid accountability. Their goal is to keep the public ignorant. For example, Benghazi. And they wonder why they are distrusted?

  19. AT THIS POINT, immigration reform is dead?
    Q-1: will the senate pass a legalization now border security later bill by a 60 vote margin? (Note: the democrats will not support the Cronyn amendment)

    Q-2: will the house under Boehner reject that bill (based on the Hassert rule)? Will they offer their own bill based on border security now legalization later?

    Q-3: when the two contrary bills go to reconciliation, will Boehner hold the line–border security first? Or will he cave in to a muddled illusory middle ground of border security now and legalization now, which is a joke because border security will take years, as Schumer has said. (Note: this is where I worry about Boehner–at the reconciliation stage. If he does that, he will kill his party. And the donor money he gets for betraying party principles will not prevent their constituents from getting even.)

  20. I will not deal with the mutually prominent alternative, i.e. a piecemeal approach to the issue. That is the right approach for the country, but the democrats have rejected that concept consistently. They have no more interest in an incremental approach to immigration reform than they had in health care reform. What they want is a massive bill which nobody understands which create confusion, misunderstanding and chaos, but they can hold their head up and take credit for it, because they know the sheeple will never read the fine print.

  21. It seems to me that a lot of people on the left are just pushing for a race war. The racial comments are getting more frequent and more vicious.

    Salon Lib Joan Walsh: Palin “Could Become The Face Of The White Nativist Backlash,” “White Far-Right’s Hero”…
    Sarah Palin is back! Not only did she get another Fox News contract, she was the star of Ralph Reed’s Faith and Freedom Conference this past weekend for her slashing attacks not only on President Obama and Democrats but on Republican sellouts (and 2016 hopefuls) like Jeb Bush. Watching Palin gleefully take on Bush, who made a dumb comment about needing immigration reform because immigrants are “more fertile” than native-born Americans, I realized that Palin’s star really is rising again, at a time of heightened racial insecurity on the white far-right. They need a hero, and here she is again. […]

  22. Massive San Antonio NSA Data Center Raises Eyebrows

    Even as reports break about the size and scope of the National Security Agency’s vast data storage center in Utah, new details are emerging about a second massive NSA center in San Antonio, Texas. According to the Houston Chronicle, “Satellite and aerial imagery show that massive air conditioning units and backup generators have been added to the facility, which is now ringed by barbed-wire fencing. City permits and property tax records show that the complex has been dramatically expanded.” According to sources, the plant will supposedly translate intercepted communications from the NSA; the communications are then forwarded to Maryland for processing.

  23. Something perverse happened after the Supreme Court’s decision today invalidating citizenship-verification requirements in Arizona for registrants who use the federal voter registration form. The Left knows they lost most of the battle, but are still claiming victory. That’s what they do. Election-integrity proponents and the states are saying they lost, but don’t realize they really won.

    The Left wins even when they lose, and conservatives are often bewildered and outfoxed in the election-process game.

    Earlier today, I called the decision a nothingburger. After re-reading the case and reflecting a bit more, it’s clear that the decision was a disaster for the Left and their victory cackles are hollow — and they know it.

    Worse, conservatives dooms-dayers who have never litigated a single National Voter Registration Act case have taken to the airwaves, describing the case as a disaster which invites illegal-alien voting.

    In the last year, I’ve litigated five NVRA cases and worked on the preemption issues for years, and there is more to cheer in today’s opinion than there is to bemoan. Those complaining about the opinion don’t understand what the Left’s goal was in this case: total federal preemption. On that score, Justice Scalia foiled them; indeed, the decision today was a huge war won, even if the small Arizona battle was lost.

  24. Page2 🙂

    How does it work? The decision today uncorks state power. The Left wanted state power stripped and they lost.

    First, Arizona can simply push the state forms in all state offices and online, and keep those federal forms in the back room gathering dust. When you submit a state form, you have to prove citizenship. Thanks to Justice Scalia, that option is perfectly acceptable. Loss for the Left. Victory for election integrity.

    You might say, “That’s a small victory.” Nonsense. This was the whole ballgame to the groups pushing the Arizona lawsuit. They lost, period.

  25. McCaskill endorses effort to draft Hillary Clinton

    Sen. Claire McCaskill (D-Mo.) has signed her name to an effort to draft Hillary Clinton into the 2016 presidential race, becoming the first sitting member of Congress to do so.

    The Ready for Hillary super PAC announced McCaskill as its latest big-name supporter on Tuesday morning. McCaskill in 2008 supported President Obama over Clinton in the primary, but said earlier this year that she hopes Clinton will run again.

  26. Out of hundreds of thousands of people who know what is going on, only one had the courage to “spill the beans???

    The environment of fear and threats created by the Obama Admin. and our evolving Police State must be incredible. Cong. Nadler who said that he was told at secret briefing that analysts could listen to phone calls without a warrant, now says he believes whatever the Obama Administrations says.
    I would not read too much into the Nadler episode. He has always been mercurial, and willing to tow the party line when they turned up the heat. Frankly, I was surprised that he was willing to disclose what he had learned in a secret briefing. That was a clear violation of his oath. Nor do I accept the idea that everything is now 1984. If it were true, then their clumsy attempts to shut down EOX would have succeeded, and while you could argue that they keep them around to create the illusion of a free press, the fact that FOX a much larger viewing audience than the state run media, and runs an anti-Administration narrative tends to refute that premise. What I do think is that people need to realize the bad direction we are heading in at warp seed and why the right of privacy which is the victim is important. The reason it is important is because without it, government can know everything people are really thinking, and can then it can shape its message in such a way as to eliminate any sense of free will. If they can do that then they can turn thinking people into little more than robots. But the way, this has been the goal of every dictator throughout history. The Obama administration qua campaign have simply used the latest technology to further that evil end, thanks to Google and Eric Schmidt. People should leave Google en masse, if they do not want their information turned over to Obama for America, the DNC and the government. I posted the name of one search engine here a couple days ago which keeps this information private from prying eyes.

  27. Surveillance is a one-sided exploitation of cultural violence, like a street mugging backed by ideological rationalizations. To be able to invade the life of another human being at will; to catalog his hopes, dreams and weaknesses; to put yourself in a position to judge him from a discreet distance or undermine his future entirely: This is what surveillance is truly about. Mass surveillance is not about safety; it’s about power.

  28. foxyladi14
    June 18, 2013 at 10:02 am
    Christian Adams is brilliant. You could fit 10 Brian Williams brains into his. It is not just that Brian Williams’ brain is so small, which we all know it is–a news reading dullard as they say, but that Adam’s brain is so big. He is the only one smart enough to keep up with Scalia, who is the Justice Holmes of the court.

  29. Listen up.Important notice. 🙄

    The Miranda Warning/Miranda Rights say “you have the Right to remain silent”, the 5th Amendment says you don’t have to answer any questions. ….but apparently the Supreme Court, which is quickly becoming a Mickey Mouse/puppet court in my opinion, says the 5th Amendment doesn’t apply unless you say “I invoke my 5th Amendment” …..YOU HAVE THE RIGHT TO REMAIN SILENT…but apparently, if you do so it can NOW BE HELD AGAINST YOU IN COURT. .

  30. Sen. Claire McCaskill (D-Mo.) has signed her name to an effort to draft Hillary Clinton into the 2016
    McCaskill is a revolting pig. Just remember her statement about not wanting her child around Bill, the implication being too clear to forget. The pig simply sees the direction the freight train is heading and hopes her past disloyalty and disparagement of the Clintons will be forgotten if she jumps on board early enough. Same thing with fat ass Brazil. I cannot play on the same team as they do, I can tell you that right now, so I hope Hillary keeps them in a cage.

  31. foxyladi14
    June 18, 2013 at 10:53 am

    Mass surveillance is not about safety; it’s about power.

  32. When did Obama become a lame duck? It is six months into his second term, he is not trusted by the American People and the talk is shifting to the draft Hillary thing where past traitors/Obama devotees like those I mentioned are trying to slither onboard. I think we are there. But the sheeple are not. They have no ability to read the tea leaves, and more is the pity for that. Likewise, big media is still in love, and always will be. So the cognisenti know he is a lame duck, but the public at large does not. That is not a good state of affairs.

  33. There should be a pathway to citizenship. It is called go to the end of the line of legal immigrants. Anything short of that will provide a magnate to more and more and more illegal immigration, and more and more and more calls for people like Schumer who say we must do what is right–meaning whatever gives him a permanent lock on power, and the country be damned. Rand Paul’s bill is the only moral outcome to this problem that I have seen.

    Sen. Rand Paul Immigration Proposal Will Eliminate Pathway to Citizenship
    by Elizabeth Sheld 18 Jun 2013, 4:35 AM PDT 98 post a comment
    Share This:
    Rand Paul (R-KY) will offer several amendments to the hotly contested immigration bill. “Paul’s most ambitious proposal would eliminate the pathway to citizenship for 11 million illegal immigrants and lift the caps on guest workers.”

    One of Paul’s proposals will provide immigrant workers to employers “who can demonstrate need” but the rest of the workers would have to apply for legal permanent residency through existing channels. Another amendment would give Congress the authority, not the Department of Homeland Security, to determine if the border is secure.

    Strategists see this as a smart move for the 2016 Presidential race, allowing a possible 2016 candidate Paul to say that he tried to take action against the unpopular immigration proposals now being debated.

    “Rand Paul can turn around and say in 2016, ‘Hey guys, I tried to fix it,’ ” said GOP strategist Ford O’Connell, who handled rural outreach for the McCain-Palin ticket in 2008.

    Robert Haus, an Iowa-based Republican strategist who worked for Texas Gov. Rick Perry’s (R) 2012 presidential campaign, said Paul’s amendment would give him a political edge.

    The move puts him at odds with Marco Rubio (R-FL) who has a high profile position pushing controversial immigration reform. Rubio is thought to have his eye on a possible 2016 Presidential run. Looking at the 2016 Presidential line-up “Steve Deace, a nationally syndicated conservative talk-radio host based in Iowa, said Rubio’s role in the Gang of Eight has significantly hurt his chances of winning the Iowa caucuses in 2016.”

    Rubio’s office had no comment on the Paul amendments.

  34. McCaskill in 2008 supported President Obama over Clinton in the primary, but said earlier this year that she hopes Clinton will run again.

    Claire can take her bullshit support and stuff it. She turned her back on Hillary before and now she wants to pretend to play nice.

    Take a hike Claire.

  35. No Dick, Unlike You, Snowden Ain’t a Traitor

    By Larry Johnson

    If Dick Cheney is looking for traitors, I suggest he take a look in the mirror. The audacity of his chutzpah is unsurpassed. One does not need a well-honed sense of irony to appreciate the weirdness of Cheney–the man who went on a rampage against an authentic, genuine undercover CIA officer in charge of covert operations against Iraq while we were at war with Iraq–pontificating about the treachery of Edward Snowden.

    The more I examine the substance of the so-called “leaks” by Snowden, the only real damage he did was to blow the whistle on the obvious. He did not reveal a capability unknown to our enemies. Seriously. Do you think our adversaries believed that we were incapable of intercepting their phone calls and computer messages? Nope. The only ones in the dark were (and are) the American people. We really did not want to believe that our Government was invading our privacy.

    Snowden’s sin was to challenge the Washingoton establishment.

    His revelations really did not expose any technological capability that your average tekkie does not already know is within the realm of possibility. For example, your cell phone, even if turned off, can be used as a listening device. Twenty years ago, spies had to send covert teams into a target’s house if they wanted to hear what was going on. Not today. Same vulnerability exists with WiFi computers.

    What could Snowden have revealed that would have been really damaging? He could have identified where all of our drone bases are located. He could have revealed all of the technical specs about drones. You know–speed flight, altitude and communications links. That kind of information would do harm.

    He could have exposed the identity of an undercover CIA officer, but he didn’t. Nope. That’s the shit that Dick Cheney did. Cheney, who became rich because of his Washington insider status and his willingness to play the revolving door between the public and private sector, is a poster boy for all that is wrong with Washington. Edward Snowden? Perhaps he is a true patriot.

    One thing I know for certain. Telling Americans that their Government is violating the Fourth Amendment is not being a traitor. Snowden is innocent on that count.

  36. Anyone listening to this?

    NSA director testifies at House hearing

    From the sounds of the folks at the NSA, they are saints and have wonderful checks and balances built in already, so maybe a few tweaks would help out that is being recommended by the House.

  37. Shadowfax, the congress should ask them if they are lying. Tell them the NSA comes to congress to lie.

  38. foxyladi14
    June 18, 2013 at 11:04 am

    When a President acted like one. 🙂


    Thank You! Sometimes I think he was the last real president this country had!

  39. Why is Obamamania disappearing among the young? One reason: Only 40 percent approve his performance on the economy, slightly less than the 42 percent among all respondents. Many conservatives have been wondering when the economic woes of young Americans — the high rate of joblessness, crushing student loan debt for worthless degrees or no degree — would sour them on Obama. If the CNN/ORC poll is right, the time is now.

  40. Well, Michelle Bachman just summed up that Snowman is a traitor that just hurt America’s security and the NSA is next to perfect in not snooping on Americans.

    My guess is that kind of talk is going to push Snowman to expose more of the data he had on that thumb drive.

  41. foxyladi14
    June 18, 2013 at 12:31 pm

    She needs to keep the trend going until her hair covers her entire face, a new ‘hair style, burka ganglan’.

  42. Leonora, here’s the HotAir take on McCaskill (so we are not the only ones who see right through this disgusting creep and her fear filled ploy):

    Why endorse someone who’s probably still 12-18 months from formerly announcing her candidacy? Because: McCaskill, famously, was one of the first prominent Democrats to back The One over HIllary six years ago. She helped make him a credible challenger at a moment when Team Clinton was trying to frame him as not yet ready for primetime. She also said this of Bill Clinton on “Meet the Press”: “I think he’s been a great leader but I don’t want my daughter near him.” In other words, McCaskill’s very, very much on the outs with a notoriously ruthless political operation that stands a real chance of capturing the White House three years from now. If she doesn’t do something dramatic to fix that, she’ll end up as one of the least influential Democrats in Congress. [snip]

    The fact that she’s willing to shank Joe Biden and other would-be Democratic contenders this early in the game tells you either (a) that she feels, probably rightly, that she has far more to fear from the Clintons than from any of their competitors or (b) that Beltway Democrats think Hillary’s basically a lock to run and win the nomination. [snip]

    Right, although I wonder if even sustained pro-Hillary cheerleading would be enough to earn McCaskill a spot in the cabinet after the betrayal of 2007. More likely, I think, is that she’s hoping President Hillary will come to Missouri and stump for her in 2018 in order to turn out Democrats. Unless the GOP pulls the pin on another Akin-esque grenade in the primaries, they’ll have a great chance to win that seat. A big Democratic showing will be McCaskill’s only chance and the Clintons (and her old friend Barack) are the way to make that happen.

    Exit question: Which other Democratic Hillary enemies should we expect to do some early ass-kissing in order to make nice?

    In Borgia Italy you accept with magnanimity a public display of fealty. But once you have power you slit the throat of the traitor at the dinner table. Then, right in front of all the guests – serve the entrails to the huffing dogs kept hungry for days to build the appetite for this special dinner event.

    Gull them, then cull them.

  43. Last night Brit Hume said pretty much what our article states:

    BRIT HUME: President Obama’s handling of the deteriorating situation in Syria follows a pattern traceable through much of his political career. When the issues are difficult and the options unappetizing, he tends simply to go away.

    Recall his history of voting present in the Illinois legislature. But when you’re president you can’t simply vote present.

    Eventually, you have to decide. So he often decides but says as little about it as possible. His decision to send small arms to the Syrian insurgents was announced by a junior White House aide. We’ve heard nothing since.

    When the NSA phone number database blew up into headlines, Mr. Obama answered a question about it in passing, but then went silent.

    It has fallen to members of both parties in Congress and to the likes of Dick Cheney to mount a public defense of the program. But none of them has the platform or the megaphone commanded by the president. He, though, apparently feels that to use it on such issues as Syria and the NSA would only call attention to policies his allies on the left are already upset about. Which raises the question of whether Mr. Obama’s decision to both do and say as little as possible on the fateful night in Benghazi, Libya last September sprang from the same political impulse.

    But foreign policy and defense are the one area in which the federal government and the executive branch have sole responsibility. Silence may be a way to duck but it is not a way to lead.

  44. moononpluto
    June 18, 2013 at 2:06 pm

    Well this is awkward…..

    BILL AYERS: President should be tried for ‘war crimes’
    Not as much as you might think.

    If you want to know what the law is, ask a thief.

    Could this be a way to support Obama? Nahh.

  45. Intercollegiate Review – Multiculturalism is Mediocrity Police Detain Campus Reform Reporters Seeking University’s NSA Facility Info
    Supreme Court leaves door open to Arizona requiring additional proof of citizenship – Wait, what?
    Posted by William A. Jacobson Tuesday, June 18, 2013 at 1:00pm

    7-2 decision practically invites Arizona to try again using proper administrative procedures


    Most of what you have heard in the media about the Supreme Court’s decision yesterday in Arizona v. Inter Tribal Council of Arizona is incomplete to the point of misleading.

    It is true that the Court held that Arizona’s Proposition 200 (passed in 2004) requiring documentary proof of citizenship was invalid as contrary to the National Voter Registration Act (NVRA) requirement that states “accept and use” the federal Election Assistance Commission (EAC) voter registration form which merely requires that a registrant affirm citizenship.

    But, this ruling essentially was procedural.

    The Court held if Arizona wanted to require additional documentary proof of citizenship it needed to follow the administrative procedures under the NVRA to obtain approval to alter the instructions to the federal form. In fact, in 2005 Arizona had requested such approval, the EAC split 2-2, but Arizona failed to appeal. The Court held that nothing prevented Arizona from requesting approval again, and appealing if denied. The Court practically invited Arizona to try again.

    Here’s the key passage (pp. 16-17, emphasis mine):

    “Since, pursuant to the Government’s concession, a State may request that the EAC alter the Federal Form to include information the State deems necessary to determine eligibility, see §1973gg–7(a)(2); Tr. of Oral Arg. 55 (UnitedStates), and may challenge the EAC’s rejection of that request in a suit under the Administrative Procedure Act, see 5 U. S. C. §701–706, no constitutional doubt is raised by giving the “accept and use” provision of the NVRA its fairest reading. That alternative means of enforcing its constitutional power to determine voting qualifications remains open to Arizona here. In 2005, the EAC divided 2-to-2 on the request by Arizona to include the evidence-of citizenship requirement among the state-specific instructions on the Federal Form, App. 225, which meant that no action could be taken, see 42 U. S. C. §15328 (“Any action this chapter may be carried out only with the approval of at least three of its members”). Arizona did not challenge that agency action (or rather inaction) by seeking APA review in federal court, see Tr. of Oral Arg. 11–12 (Arizona), but we are aware of nothing that prevents Arizona from renewing its request. [fn 10 omitted] Should the EAC’s inaction persist, Arizona would have the opportunity to establish in a reviewing court that a mere oath will not suffice to effectuate its citizenship requirement and that the EAC is therefore under a nondiscretionary duty to include Arizona’s concrete evidence requirement on the Federal Form. See 5 U. S. C. §706(1). Arizona might also assert (as it has argued here) that it would be arbitrary for the EAC to refuse to include Arizona’s instruction when it has accepted a similar instruction requested by Louisiana.”[fn11]

    Footnote 11 noted that and additional documentary evidence requirement recently was approved by the EAC in Louisiana:

    11. The EAC recently approved a state-specific instruction for Louisiana requiring applicants who lack a Louisiana driver’s license, ID card, or Social Security number to attach additional documentation to the completed Federal Form. See National Mail Voter Registration Form, p. 9; Tr. of Oral Arg. 57 (United States).

    If there were any doubt, the Court reiterated this holding in its conclusion (pp. 17-18)(emphasis added):

    “We hold that 42 U. S. C. §1973gg–4 precludes Arizona from requiring a Federal Form applicant to submit information beyond that required by the form itself. Arizona may, however, request anew that the EAC include such a requirement among the Federal Form’s state-specific instructions, and may seek judicial review of the EAC’s decision under the Administrative Procedure Act.”

    So there you go.

    The Court held that Arizona has a right to seek additional proof of citizenship in state-specific instructions to the federal form if Arizona could show that such information was necessary to effectuate Arizona’s citizenship requirement, but it must follow the administrative procedures under the NVRA to obtain approval, and the appeal procedures under the federal Administrative Procedure Act if denied.

    For more on how the media has not appreciated what a huge defeat several aspects of the Court decision were for the left, see Christian Adams’ post, Left Loses Big in Citizenship-Verification Supreme Court Case (h/t Instapundit):

    The decision today is a great example of how conservatives can be distracted by squirrels running past. It is understandable and forgivable because they aren’t daily immersed in the long-term election-process agenda of the left-wing groups. Nor do they daily involve themselves with the details of election process. But having been in the “preemption wars” for nearly a decade, I can assure you this case is a big win, even if it doesn’t appear so at first glance.

  46. On Monday, conservative talk radio host Rush Limbaugh exposed the Republican politicians, donors, and consultants in the permanent political class that want the immigration bill to pass so they can benefit at the expense of American workers.

    He said “big money” has trumped politics and principles in the push for “amnesty.”

    “I think a number of elected Republicans are taking a look at their donors, and are listening to their consultants, and they are seeing that people that are donating big amounts of money to them want amnesty,” Limbaugh said on his show on Monday.

    He named Republican consultants like Frank Luntz, Mike Murphy, and Steve Schmidt as those establishment Republicans who do not know any better. He said these consultants tell politicians that money will dry up if they do not support amnesty. Limbaugh then named prominent Republican donors, who often work with these consultants, that also want the immigration bill passed so they can get an influx of cheap labor.

    “All of the Republican major donors want this bill,” he said. “I’ll give you some names. The Koch brothers, Sheldon Adelson. I mean, they want the bill, because they want the influx of new labor. They want it. They’re not concerned with how anybody’s gonna vote down the line. As long as these guys can stay aligned with whoever is running government, they’re in fat city.”

    He said Republicans who support amnesty want the public to think “immigration reform” is about “ideas” and “politics,” but it is really about the crony capitalism that has made Washington, D.C. a boomtown. Limbaugh said, “there is a growing phenomenon in this country of crony capitalism taking place,” and moneyed interests and corporations actually support government.

    He said big corporations never criticize government and don’t really care which political party is in the White House.

    “What they care about is being in bed with whoever is there … If you can profit and profit big by being involved in the government, then you don’t need to worried about government as an obstacle; they’re your partner,” he said.

    Limbaugh’s remarks ring truer in light of comments made by two aides to Sen. Marco Rubio in which they disparaged American workers to a New Yorker magazine writer by alleging there are Americans “across every sector” that just “can’t cut it.”

    Limbaugh said he continued to believe “conservatism sells every time it’s properly explained” and that it is “attractive to everybody who hears it.” He emphasized supporting immigration reform was not the way to win over new voters and then noted the “big money” forces behind the immigration bill have never really cared about the long-term health of the conservative movement or the Republican party.

  47. When Rush says stuff like that he tells the truth and he sticks a shiv between the shoulderblades of every RINO by showing the American People that the RINO is not on their side, and will bury them every chance he or she gets. That point needs to be burned into the brain of every America who votes. Never support a RINO.

  48. Obama’s nibbling interventionism – famously dubbed “leading from behind” – has produced plenty of unhappy results so far. But if you knew what he knew, Obama promises, you would be on board.

    That seems to be the new motif of this presidency, whether it’s domestic spying, taking it easy on the IRS and Department of Justice scandals or implementing his creaking and groaning health law. Americans can’t understand the details here, but Obama and his team of experts understand things in a way we can’t.

    Obama can’t tell you why he’s doing what he’s doing because it is too complicated. But if you could understand, you’d be all for it.

    For a government and a president suffering a crisis of confidence, “trust me” takes a mocking tone.

    And Now a Word from Charles

    “Look, the search for Iranian moderates is perpetual. And the answer is always the same — it’s a mirage. We go back to the hostage crisis in ’79. We were looking for the moderates. Then Iran-Contra started because the national security advisor of Ronald Reagan of all people had had the idea that he knew of some moderates in Iran and he went over on a secret trip. In the end he was swindled and humiliated. But this happens over and over again. This is a wish. It’s not a reality.”

    — Charles Krauthammer on “Special Report with Bret Baier”

    Read more:

  49. Leanora
    June 18, 2013 at 10:18 am

    McCaskill endorses effort to draft Hillary Clinton


    I know Ready for Hillary is soliciting support from wherever it can and I applaud them and support them. That said, I threw up a little in my mouth as I read the form letter I got showing this Benedict Arnold’s support…

    Dear subscriber,

    In 2008, I was an early supporter of then-Senator Obama’s campaign. I worked my heart out to elect him President. Now, as I look at 2016 and think about who is best to lead this country forward, I’m proud to announce that I am Ready for Hillary. And – as I said back in February – if Hillary decides to run, I will work my heart out to see that she is elected.(JUDAS!!!!!)

    For people like us (who does she mean ‘…like us?..’)who want to see Hillary Clinton be our next president, though, our work doesn’t start in 2016. It starts now.

    We need to show Hillary that she has an army of supporters who, like me,(JUDAS!!!!) are ready to get to work to see her elected as our next president. And I’m counting on your help to send that message.

    There is no better indicator of the grassroots support for Hillary’s potential candidacy than the number of people who are willing to step up and own a piece of this effort. And I hope you will consider joining them today.

    Help Ready for Hillary reach 5,000 grassroots donors before the FEC filing deadline on June 30. Just $5 will help us prove that individuals across America are Ready for Hillary to run in 2016.

    In 2008 and 2012, President Obama’s campaign went to work, organized early and organized voters old and new. I personally saw the impact of neighbors talking to neighbors and the power of online organizing like social media.

    Ready for Hillary is doing this critical work already, laying the groundwork for Hillary so that when she’s ready, we are ready. But something that impresses me even more about this organization is that they aren’t just reaching out to Americans who supported Hillary in the early days of 2008. They’re building a movement that includes passionate Hillary supporters like me (JUDAS!!!!)who backed President Obama in the 2008 primary.

    Hillary has earned the respect and admiration of Americans and of people in every nation across the globe. She stepped up and joined President Obama’s team and made us all proud as Secretary of State.

    But while Hillary was representing our country abroad, she had to give up her political infrastructure. That is why Ready for Hillary is so critical. They are building a nationwide network of supporters and doing what President Obama did: harnessing the energy of everyday Americans and asking them to own a piece of history.

    Help Ready for Hillary reach 5,000 grassroots supporters by the FEC filing deadline on June 30. A gift of just $5 will add your name to the army of supporters who are ready to work for Hillary.

    I look forward to working with you (I will never work with her for any reason. JUDAS!!!!)and Ready for Hillary in the months ahead. And I’m proud to declare: “I’m Ready!”

    All the best,

    Senator Claire McCaskill


    Hillary 2016

  50. moononpluto

    Well this is awkward…..

    BILL AYERS: President should be tried for ‘war crimes’

    Hmmm, even his once loyal supporter only likes him because ‘Obama is charming, likes to read and asks questions”….but…”fails as a President on issues and policies.”

    This all boils down to Ayers thinks Barry is cute but his job as President stinks.

    Betcha he voted for him in 2012 anyway.


  51. The Rock

    That self-endoursement letter from Judas is disgusting.

    “…Hillary supporters like me..” would include backstabbers like:

    Rove’s lover Brazilenut
    Hispanic Judas
    Boxer the idiot
    The DNC
    Boxing Harry
    Babyface cheating husband of a dying wife
    The list of creeps goes on…

  52. Anthony
    June 18, 2013 at 12:57 pm
    Looks like some black voters are catching on….

    African American State Senator Elbert Guillory becomes Republican.

    Here’s the link w/video:

    PLEASE let this be the beginning of a larger movement!! His argument was so well constructed! I fear that the MSM will begin very shortly to try and discredit and destroy him. Furthermore, I hope beyond hope that the GOP does EVERYTHING to support this senator from LA.

    Hillary 2016

  53. Shadowfax
    June 18, 2013 at 3:58 pm


    I was worried that the Spam monster would censor me if I wrote how I REALLY felt about the thing from the great state of Missouri. Do they really think that we will forget?


    Hillary 2016

  54. Senate rejects border fence

    Senators on Tuesday rejected building the 700 miles of double-tier border fencing Congress authorized just seven years ago, with a majority of the Senate saying they didn’t want to delay granting illegal immigrants legal status while the fence was being built.

    The 54-39 vote to reject the fence shows the core of the immigration deal is holding. The vote broke mostly along party lines, though five Republicans, including Sen. Marco Rubio and the rest of the bill’s authors, voted against the fence, and two Democrats voted for it.

  55. The 54-39 vote to reject the fence shows the core of the immigration deal is holding. The vote broke mostly along party lines, though five Republicans, including Sen. Marco Rubio and the rest of the bill’s authors, voted against the fence, and two Democrats voted for it.
    It is so thrilling to sit here and watch the systematic destruction of this country by the uniparty.

    But since there will be no border fence, there can be no path to citizenship, because to have citizenship plus no lock on the door will bring in a billion illegals knowing that they will become citzens as well, and even while they are not citizens they can still vote as if they are.

  56. The 54-39 vote to reject the fence shows the core of the immigration deal is holding.
    Does it show that? Or does it suggest that 39 senators, and some of the seven who did not vote, will not support the Gang of 8 proposal, which provides for amnesty and a path to citizenship, with lip service only to border security?

  57. would include backstabbers like:

    Rove’s lover Brazilenut
    Hispanic Judas
    Boxer the idiot
    The DNC
    Boxing Harry
    Babyface cheating husband of a dying wife
    A bridge too far for me.

  58. Republicans had offered the fence as a way to build the confidence of voters skeptical that the government will enforce its laws, but opponents said building more fencing is costly, would take too long, and shouldn’t be dictated by Washington.

    “I think we should leave that to the best judgment of the Border Patrol,” said Sen. John McCain, one of the eight senators who wrote the immigration bill.

    Sen. John Thune, South Dakota Republican, proposed the border fence amendment, which would have prevented the administration from granting any illegal immigrants legal status under the bill until at least 350 miles of double-tier fencing has been erected, and would withhold full citizenship rights until 700 total miles have been built.

    Minutes after the border fence, senators also voted to weaken current law that requires the government to have biometric checks such as fingerprints or eye-scans for every visitor to the U.S. — a recommendation of the 9/11 commission that looked into the terrorist attacks on Washington and New York.

    Read more:
    Follow us: @washtimes on Twitter

  59. I think what this has done is removed the mask of Rubio and other RINOs proving that they are not serious about border security, citizenship, or who votes in our elections. The goal here could not be clearer: to disenfranchise the American People. Rubio has become a leper within the party.

  60. No border fence = rigged elections, amnesty, draining our tax money for other country’s poor and letting American’s that are homeless (like our vets and mentally ill) rot in our streets.

    America is turning into Calcutta thanks to the lazy, worthless man occupying the Oval Office.

    Who ever runs and wins in 2016 had better be a Superwoman in office or our country will be in the $hitter for a long time.

  61. Rubio has become a leper within the party.

    Rubio is the token Hispanic to the Republican party just like Barry is the token half-black guy to the Dimocrats.

    Both have much in common:

    ‘Look a certain way’- clean, and mostly young
    Have cute children
    Love to tell their hard luck story about their family

    All hat and no cattle

    Both parties have sold their souls to the Devil

  62. I almost started to praise Google until I got further into the article…


    Google challenges U.S. gag order, citing First Amendment

    Google asked the secretive Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court on Tuesday to ease long-standing gag orders over data requests it makes, arguing that the company has a constitutional right to speak about information it’s forced to give the government.

    The legal filing, which cites the First Amendment’s guarantee of free speech, is the latest move by the California-based tech giant to protect its reputation in the aftermath of news reports about sweeping National Security Agency surveillance of Internet traffic.

    Google, one of nine companies named in NSA documents as providing information to the top-secret PRISM program, has demanded that U.S. officials give it more leeway to describe the company’s relationship with the government. Google and the other companies involved have sought to reassure users that their privacy is being protected from unwarranted intrusions.

    In the petition, Google is seeking permission to publish the total numbers of requests the court makes of the company and the numbers of user accounts they affect. The company long has made regular reports with regard to other data demands from the U.S. government and from other governments worldwide.

    “Greater transparency is needed, so today we have petitioned the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court to allow us to publish aggregate numbers of national security requests, including FISA disclosures, separately,” the company said in a statement.

    That information would not necessarily shed much light on PRISM, whose existence was first reported by The Washington Post and Britain’s Guardian newspaper. But initiating a high-profile legal showdown may help Google’s efforts to portray itself as aggressively resisting government surveillance.

    All of the technology companies involved in PRISM, including Facebook, Apple, Microsoft, Google and Yahoo, have struggled to respond to the revelations about NSA surveillance. Most have issued carefully word denials, saying that they do not permit wholesale data collection while acknowledging that they comply with legal government information requests. (Washington Post Co. chief executive Donald E. Graham is on Facebook’s board.)

    FISA court data requests typically are known only to small numbers of a company’s employees. Discussing the requests openly, either within or beyond the walls of an involved company, can violate federal law.

  63. Both parties have sold their souls to the Devil
    The LEADERSHIP of both parties have sold their souls to the Devil.

    At least there is some dissent in the base of the Republican Party.

    Ah, but in the Democrat Party base, it is the silence of lambs.

    And lambs get led off to the slaughter.

    Too soon dead, too late smart.

  64. How dare he! This is none of his GD business!

    In Northern Ireland, Obama Pushes A Stale Leftist Canard About Religion

    Freedom: In Northern Ireland, President Obama repeated an old canard about religious schools being at the root of division there and elsewhere. In reality, hatred comes from state power and poisonous political ideologies.

    Sticking his nose in Northern Ireland’s internal affairs at the Group of Eight summit in Belfast, the president pretty much told the Irish to dismantle their Catholic and Protestant schools, on the grounds they’re hotbeds of hatred.

    “If towns remain divided ­ if Catholics have their schools and buildings and Protestants have theirs, if we can’t see ourselves in one another, and fear or resentment are allowed to harden ­ that too encourages division and discourages cooperation,” Obama told an Irish audience of 2,000, many of whom were children in religious school uniforms.

    It was an odd statement coming from an American president whose nation’s founding was premised on the idea that diverse religions could flourish together as long as there is freedom. America has been a beacon of this idea’s success for more than 200 years.

  65. Obama Getting Ass Whooping in Syria

    By Larry Johnson on June 18, 2013 at 2:56 PM in Current Affairs

    Give it to Vladimir Putin. He schooled the boy from Hawaii this week in a very public way. Whooped his ass he did.

    My friend and mentor on all things Middle East, Pat Lang, said it best:

    Barack Obama is about to have his “butt kicked” by the Russians over Syria. This will be the latest in a long series of defeats for him in his second term, not to mention the unceremonious way the US was disinvited from a continuing presence in Iraq and the massive and thinly disguised failure of his COIN strategic decision in Afghanistan. These were in his first term.

    Putin made it clear yesterday to our British lapdog, David Cameron, that he considers Assad’s government to be the legitimate government of Syria and that there will be no resolution emerging from the UN Security Council that threatens that status. He also made it clear that the rebels (whoever they are) are responsible for many of the civilian casualies that have occurred in Syria.

    Russia, Iran, Hizbullah and Syria are in the process of finishing off the “rebels.”

    Some people are saying that an unpopular minorities based government cannot hold Syria. Really? His father did so for decades.

    Putin said at Enniskillen today that Russia “will not allow” no-fly zones in Syria. that’s a real red line folks.

    Humiliation over Syria will be one more phase in BHO’s progress toward irrelevance. pl

    I encourage you to make Pat’s blog a daily stop. His short, pithy pieces are full of gems and nuggets of wisdom.

    As I have written before, the Russians at least understand what their interest is–they don’t want more religious fanatics in charge of countries in the Middle East. AMEN, Vlady, AMEN!

    The Middle East will become increasingly irrelevant to the United States, save for Israel. We do not need their damn oil. Thanks to fracking and private sector initiatives, we can tell the Saudis to fuck off. And we should. Those decrepit, misogynists locked in the 14th Century deserve to disappear from the face of the earth. They are a walking, talking definition of anachronism.

    Turkey’s double dealing game of trying to take out Assad is blowing up in its face. Unhappy secularists in the streets of Istanbul are mounting a tough challenge to the Islamic government seeking to promote its own version of Sharia. Good. Turkey has too much positive in its favor to become a hostage to the mentality of 13th Century mysticism and superstition.

  66. Lets be clear on what this immigration bill is REALLY about: it is about allowing Mexico, which is teetering on the verge of a failed state, run increasingly by drug lords from behind the scenes to export their rural working poor–fully one fifth of its population to the United States, to save their elites. That is the inside game of Calderone and our own elites who are pushing this toxic gang of 8 legislation.

    Spenglar at the Asian Times:

    Syria and Egypt are dying. They were dying before the Syrian civil war broke out and before the Muslim Brotherhood took power in Cairo. Syria has an insoluble civil war and Egypt has an insoluble crisis because they are dying. They are dying because they chose not to do what China did: move the better part of a billion people from rural backwardness to a modern urban economy within a generation. Mexico would have died as well, without the option to send its rural poor – fully one-fifth of its population – to the United States.

  67. I spoke with a friend of mine today who is an Iranian ex pat and professional. He laughed at the way big media finds new hope in the election of the new president, and comfort in the fact that so many Iranians showed up to vote.

    The new president is part of the same power structure, and that means nothing of substance will change. A mullah is a mullah is a mullah. In Persian literature, mullahs are singled out for criticism. They are compared to a fox which in their culture means a weasel. Young people see hope in the new election but it is illusory. They have been told that after the fall of the Shah, the people voted 90% for an Islamic Republic. What gets lost in the shuffle however, is that at that time there were only three options on the ballot: 1) Islamic Republic, 2) Monarchy, 3) Communist state.

    He asked one of the young people why he showed up to vote, when it was essentially a choice between tweedle dee and tweedle dumb (not unlike here). He told the young man that alot of the expats are mad about this because it creates an impression of assent to the Mullah regime. The young man told him this was not a case of assent. It was purely economics. In Iran, everyone must keep a personal book, containing their birth certificate, marriage certificate, childern and other vital statistics. This book also includes a page which is stamped whenever they vote, and how they voted. If you want a job in government, they will ask to see your little book and unless you voted and voted the right way you will not get a job.

    This same process of corrupting the vote, disenfranchising the people, pursuant to a ritual which is intended to confer the illusion of a democratic mandate is exactly what you see in this country with the Obama campaign, only he is much more invasive.

  68. Thanks TheRock and Anthony for bringing this video to our attention.

    I agree. He seems like a Libertarian/Repub to me, kinda has a touch of Ron Paul in him.

    There were parts of Ron Paul I always liked.

  69. Issa to Cummings: ‘Thanks for Giving IRS Officials a Roadmap to Navigate Future Investigative Interviews’

    by Debra Heine 18 Jun 2013, 1:49 PM PDT 52 post a comment
    Share This:

    House Oversight and Government Reform Committee Chairman Darrell Issa (R-Calif.) fired off the following statement regarding Ranking Member Elijah Cummings’ decision to post the full investigative interview transcripts of IRS employee John Shafer on the Internet.

    “I am deeply disappointed that Ranking Member Cummings has decided to broadly disseminate and post online a 205 page transcript that will serve as a roadmap for IRS officials to navigate investigative interviews with Congress. After unsuccessfully trying to convince the American people that IRS officials in Washington did not play a role in inappropriate scrutiny of Tea Party groups and declaring on national television that the case of IRS targeting was ‘solved’ and Congress should ‘move on,’ this looks like flailing. Americans who think Congress should investigate IRS misconduct should be outraged by Mr. Cummings’ efforts to obstruct needed oversight.

    “In the course of this fact based inquiry, Ranking Member Cummings has wrongly argued that questions about IRS conduct are somehow not legitimate. His own previous release of excerpts from this very same transcript undermines his claims that the Committee is somehow trying to keep some specific revelation from public view.”

  70. wbboei
    June 18, 2013 at 8:34 pm
    I spoke with a friend of mine today

    That’s interesting, I wondered about their new pres being a mullah…and what the majority voting for him meant.

  71. this is stunning…,0,7611310.story

    Journalist Michael Hastings dies in L.A. car crash

    By Richard Winton, Andrew Blankstein and Kate Mather

    June 18, 2013, 4:57 p.m.
    Journalist Michael Hastings, best known for a Rolling Stone feature that led to the resignation of Gen. Stanley McChrystal, died early Tuesday in a car crash in Los Angeles, his employer said.

    Neither the Los Angeles Police Department nor coroner’s officials could immediately confirm whether Hastings was the victim of a single-car crash that occurred about 4:25 a.m. in the 600 block of North Highland Avenue. Police officials said it was the only vehicle fatality reported Tuesday morning in the city of Los Angeles.

    The vehicle crossed a median, struck a tree and burst into flames in the Hancock Park area, LAPD Officer Christopher No said. The driver was pronounced dead at the scene.

    Coroner’s officials said they could not immediately identify the victim, saying the body was burned beyond recognition. Without identification or next of kin, neither the LAPD nor the coroner’s department could officially identify the body found in the vehicle.

    But in a statement released Tuesday afternoon, BuzzFeed Editor-in-Chief Ben Smith confirmed that Hastings died earlier in an L.A. car crash, saying his team was “shocked and devastated by the news.”

    “Michael was a great, fearless journalist with an incredible instinct for the story and a gift for finding ways to make his readers care about anything he covered, from wars to politicians,” Smith said. “He wrote stories that would otherwise have gone unwritten, and without him there are great stories that will go untold.”

    Hastings, who covered the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, is perhaps best known for his Rolling Stone profile of McChrystal. Hastings also worked for GQ and Newsweek and wrote a book about his fiance, who was killed in Iraq in 2007.

    A witness described the accident to KTLA News: “I was just coming northbound on Highland and I seen a car, like, going really fast and all of a sudden I seen it jackknife,” Luis Cortez said. “I just seen parts fly everywhere, and I slammed on my brakes and stopped and tried to call 911.”


    all by himself, single car accident, 4:24 am on Highland Ave in LA and burned beyond recognition…33 years old…with his history of investigations…

    wow…makes one wonder…

  72. Admin, I love the Tricky Dick look-alike photo of Obama. It suits.

    Comments about Claire McCaskill’s support of Hillary are spot on. The woman must have no pride after her actions of 2008. She wanted to sit at the cool kids’ table back then, when she supported Barack. My guess is that she also is a little deficient in the ego department, and possibly just felt too threatened by a female of Hillary’s stature and influence. Her pathetic groveling now is unbecoming, to say the least. My guess is that the Dims who threw Hill under the bus in 2008 should just wait about ordering those party duds. They just might not be on the guest list.

    Regarding O’s advice to the Irish about parochial schools. AYFKM. This from the person who has deliberately created greater racial division in this country than we have experienced in decades. He takes it upon himself to advise the Irish about how to promote unity and end intolerance?! I think Obama and Claire must be smoking from the same dime bag.

  73. this is Michael Hastings last piece written on June 7th…

    Why Democrats Love To Spy On Americans

    Besides Senators Ron Wyden and Mark Udall, most Democrats abandoned their civil liberty positions during the age of Obama. With a new leak investigation looming, the Democrat leadership are now being forced to confront all the secrets they’ve tried to hide.

    Michael Hastings BuzzFeed Staff posted Jun 7, 2013 12:10pm EDT .

    For most bigwig Democrats in Washington, D.C., the last 48 hours has delivered news of the worst kind — a flood of new information that has washed away any lingering doubts about where President Obama and his party stand on civil liberties, full stop.

    Glenn Greenwald’s exposure of the NSA’s massive domestic spy program has revealed the entire caste of current Democratic leaders as a gang of civil liberty opportunists, whose true passion, it seems, was in trolling George W. Bush for eight years on matters of national security.

    “Everyone should just calm down,” Senator Harry Reid said yesterday, inhaling slowly.

    That’s right: don’t panic.

    The very topic of Democratic two-facedness on civil liberties is one of the most important issues that Greenwald has covered. Many of those Dems — including the sitting President Barack Obama, Senator Carl Levin, and Sec. State John Kerry — have now become the stewards and enhancers of programs that appear to dwarf any of the spying scandals that broke during the Bush years, the very same scandals they used as wedge issues to win elections in the Congressional elections 2006 and the presidential primary of 2007-2008.

    Recall what Senator Levin told CNN in 2005, demanding to “urgently hold an inquiry” into what was supposedly President Bush’s domestic wiretap program.


  74. The Russians Think We’re Wrecking the World on Purpose
    By David P. Goldman, aka Spengler

    “In Russia, most analysts, politicians and ordinary citizens believe in the unlimited might of America, and thus reject the notion that the US has made, and continues to make, mistakes in the [Middle East]. Instead, they assume it’s all a part of a complex plan to restructure the world and to spread global domination,” writes Fyodor Lukyanov on the Al Monitor website today. Lukyanov, who chairs Russia’s Council on Foreign and Defense Policy, laments what he derides as a “conspiracy theory.” Nonetheless, he reports, President Vladimir Putin and the Russian elite think that the United States is spreading chaos as part of a diabolical plot for world domination:

    From Russian leadership’s point of view, the Iraq War now looks like the beginning of the accelerated destruction of regional and global stability, undermining the last principles of sustainable world order. Everything that’s happened since — including flirting with Islamists during the Arab Spring, U.S. policies in Libya and its current policies in Syria — serve as evidence of strategic insanity that has taken over the last remaining superpower.
    Russia’s persistence on the Syrian issue is the product of this perception. The issue is not sympathy for Syria’s dictator, nor commercial interests, nor naval bases in Tartus. Moscow is certain that if continued crushing of secular authoritarian regimes is allowed because America and the West support “democracy,” it will lead to such destabilization that will overwhelm all, including Russia. It’s therefore necessary for Russia to resist, especially as the West and the United States themselves experience increasing doubts.

    It’s instructive to view ourselves through a Russian mirror. The term “paranoid Russian” is a pleonasm. “The fact is that all Russian politicians are clever. The stupid ones are all dead. By contrast, America in its complacency promotes dullards. A deadly miscommunication arises from this asymmetry. The Russians cannot believe that the Americans are as stupid as they look, and conclude that Washington wants to destroy them,” I wrote in 2008 under the title “Americans play monopoly, Russians chess.” Russians have dominated chess most of the past century, for good reason: it is the ultimate exercise in paranoia. All the pieces on the board are guided by a single combative mind, and every move is significant. In the real world, human beings flail and blunder. For Russian officials who climbed the greasy pole in the intelligence services, mistakes are unthinkable, for those who made mistakes are long since buried.

    From a paranoid perspective, it certainly might look as if Washington planned to unleash chaos. The wave of instability spreading through the Middle East from Syria is the direct result of American actions. I wrote yesterday in Asia Times Online:

    Syria’s Sunni majority started an insurgency against the minority Alawite government of Basher al-Assad in response to the ill-named Arab Spring uprisings in North Africa. America’s abrupt dismissal of its long-ally Hosni Mubarak and the ascendancy of Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood emboldened Syria’s long-suffering Sunni majority to stake its claim to power. Like Mubarak, the Assads suppressed the Muslim Brothers, but far more viciously, leveling the Sunni town of Hama in 1982 with casualties estimated at between 20,000 and 40,000.

    Western policy thus provoked Syria’s civil war. The prospect of a Sunni fundamentalist regime in Egypt under American patronage, the emergence of the ”Sunni Awakening” in Iraq during the Petraeus ”surge”, and the victory of Western-backed Sunni jihadists over Libya’s Gaddafi, gave Syria’s Sunnis little choice. America’s fecklessness with respect to Iran’s nuclear ambitions, moreover, gave Saudi Arabia and Turkey strategic reasons to fund and arm various branches of Syria’s Muslim Brotherhood.

    In this tightly scripted tragedy, America’s blundering provided the impetus for each step, except, of course, for the blundering of the European Union. The Europeans forced Assad to undertake agricultural reforms among the conditions for a new trade treaty, forcing tens of thousands of small farmers off their land in the Sunni Northeast of the country, into tent cities around Damascus.

    Iran responded to the Sunni insurgency in the obvious way, by sending Revolutionary Guard regulars as well as its Lebanese-based Hezbollah auxiliaries into Syria to fight for its ally, the Assad regime. Iran’s involvement prevents the loosely organized insurgent coalition from toppling a minority regime.

    The depleted ranks of the regular Syrian army will be replenished with Iranian soldiers or surrogates. The Alawite regime will continue to commit atrocities in order to convince its own base as well as the Syria’s Christian, Kurdish and Druze minorities that they must fight to the death because Sunni vengeance would be horrible. Saudi Arabia will continue to filter jihadists and weapons into Syria and Turkey will continue to provide logistical support.

    Could the Americans really have been such idiots?, the Russians ask. Of course we could. George Bush and his advisers actually believed that we were going to bring democracy to Iraq and the rest of the Middle East. The Russians understood matters differently. Fyodor Lukyanov writes:

    In the summer 2006, when then-President George W. Bush came to St. Petersburg for a summit of the “Big Eight,” an interesting dialogue took place between him and Russian President Vladimir Putin at a news conference. Bush drew attention to the challenges posed by democratic freedoms, especially freedom of the press, in Russia — and then noted that things had gotten much better in Iraq. Putin immediately responded, “Well, we really would not want the kind of democracy they have in Iraq.” The room filled with applause, and not everyone heard Bush’s response: “Just wait, it’s coming.” What Bush had in mind was increased stability in Iraq, but it sounded more ominous: you’ll see, democracy will be brought to you as well…

    If the Russians sound mad, consider this: there is another substantial body of opinion that sees an evil conspiracy behind American blundering in the Middle East, and it votes for Ron Paul and Rand Paul. I am not suggesting that Sen. Rand Paul is a paranoid, I hasten to clarify: I have never met the man and don’t presume to judge his state of mind. But his popularity stems in no small measure from conspiracy theorists who think that the U.S. government really is planning to criss-cross the continental United States with killer drones and pick off American citizens on their home soil. A lot of the same people think that America invaded Iraq on behalf of the oil companies (who would make a lot more money if Iraq were zapped by space aliens) or by the Israelis (who never liked the project from the outset). A fair sampling of such paranoia gets posted on the comments section of this site.

    Thus we have the strangest pair of bedfellows in modern politics, the Russians and the rubes. Try to explain to them that George W. Bush was a decent and well-intentioned man without a clue as to the consequences of his actions, and they will dismiss it as disinformatsiya. Tell them that the New York Times and the Weekly Standard both believed in the Arab Spring as the herald of a new era of Islamic democracy, and they will see it as proof of a conspiracy embracing both the Democratic and Republican establishments. How, the paranoids ask, could two administrations in succession make so many blunders in succession? It stretches credibility. I wish it were a conspiracy. The truth is that we really are that dumb.

  75. The above explains why Putin is contemptuous of Obama and puts him in short pants and lecture him every chance he gets. And Obama sits there and takes it like a dog.

  76. Journalist Michael Hastings dies in L.A. car crash
    I saw the title and was not sorry.

    But when I read the text and the accolades by Ben Smith I changed my mind.

    Now, I am terribly sorry that Ben Smith was not in the car with him.

  77. Hastings, as you may recall, set General Crystal up, and published his private thoughts which got him fired. Hastings did this to protect Obama.


    Support Of Republicans

    GOP Rep Says He’s Not A Racist

    Banks Caught In How Many Mortgage Settlement Violations?

    GOP Congressman: I Oppose Abortion Because Male Fetuses Masturbate

    Congress Defends NSA Spying, But Questions Emerge

    House Committee Advances Immigration Bill Over Dem Objections

    Tea Party Favorite Accused Of Knife-Wielding Threats

    Report Finds Obstacles Ahead For Obamacare Rollout

    Obama relying on untested oversight board on NSA

    STEPHEN BRAUN | June 19, 2013 03:20 AM EST |
    Compare other versions »


    WASHINGTON — The obscure oversight board that President Barack Obama wants to scrutinize the National Security Agency’s secret surveillance system is little known for good reason. The U.S. Privacy and Civil Liberties Oversight Board has operated fitfully during its eight years of low-profile existence, stymied by congressional infighting and, at times, censorship by government lawyers.

    The privacy board planned to meet privately Wednesday, its first meeting since revelations that the NSA has been secretly collecting the phone records of millions of Americans.

    Obama’s sudden leaning on the board as a civil libertarian counterweight to the government’s elaborate secret surveillance program places trust in an organization that is untested and whose authority at times still defers to Congress and government censors.

  79. wbboei and Shadowfax…Hastings had just written an article June 7, his last, very critical of O and the Dim hypocrites on their stand on spying of the American people…he was very critical of O’s drone program…and the Iraq and Afghan war…

    He was also critical of Hillary at State…

    doesn’t seem to me that he was protecting O in general…he seems more like Jeremy Scahill and critical of the wars and the lies…and rebellious like Greenwald…

    I could be wrong but he seemed to challenge the establishment not kiss their butt

    he also seemed to be getting ready to do more investigating on the spy story…i posted the link above to the last article he wrote on it…that does not sound protective of O and dims…

    his accident seems very strange to me…unless he was high or drunk…and burned beyond recognition…so know cause could be determined…strange…

  80. Michelle Obama’s Black Reparation Junket

    Michelle Obama has been capitalizing on her status as a descendant of slaves. Her latest junket to Ireland shows she is definitely enjoying the 21st-century benefits of the transatlantic slave trade her radical friends in Chicago refer to as “genocide” by white Americans.

    According to the First Couple’s pals, Reverend Jeremiah Wright, Louis Farrakhan, Rahm Emanuel, and Dr. Conrad W. Worrill of Northeastern University, white Americans should monetarily compensate black Americans for past slavery. The four, along with others, have been pushing reparations legislation since 1987.

    Worrill, a lesser-known Obama friend, has been involved with the National Black United Front, a Chicago-based, ’60s-style radical group. He’s also with the National Coalition of Reparations for Blacks in America (N’COBRA).

    Read more:
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  81. Living in Fear: Welcome to Fascist America

    Back in the ’80s when, on a couple of occasions, I visited the Soviet Union, I always wondered what was it really like to live in that godforsaken place. But it didn’t much matter. For all the creepy spying that was going on, I realized I’d be out of there in a week or two.

    Now I know what it was like. It’s come home.

    I live in fear.

    I don’t want to admit it, but it’s true. Every phone call I make, every email I send, every text I message, every article I write including this one, I imagine being bugged or recorded.

    1984 is here and it’s not pretty.

  82. Washington Is Insane

    Paul Craig Roberts was once a DC insider. He doesn’t like what he’s seeing coming out of the District of Corruption:


    Pace, Mr. Roberts, but the myth that the American people are sovereign was upended in 1865. Generals Grant and Sherman forced the people to realize that the commander of the armed forces is sovereign, and that’s the way it’s been ever since.

    That’s why the welfare-warfare state is what it is. A politically connected elite heavily invested in perpetual war tosses benefits to the underclass, which in turn keeps the elite in power. Sweet deal.

  83. Despite all obstacles. Despite the demonization. Despite the lying rhetoric from the left. Despite the hate-filled vitriol that they hurl at us. We must remember one thing: Never give up. Our Founding Fathers never gave up, even though their fight cost many their lives and for others their fortunes. We owe it to their legacy, to the history of America, and to future generations to stand for freedom, for the Constitution despite the guilt trip laden twisted realities from the likes of Harry Reid.

    See Harry Reid’s complete propaganda, Obama talking point filled press conference in the video below.

  84. “Here’s how they do business. A piece of legislation is going to cost trillions of dollars, but Members of Congress don’t want the public to see that. Instead, they have the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) look at the bill for just the first 10 years—and they move any costly items off into the future on purpose.
    The bill will burden taxpayers with trillions of dollars in welfare and entitlement costs for the newly legalized immigrants under amnesty. Heritage’s Robert Rector explains:
    S.744 provides only a temporary delay in eligibility to welfare and entitlements. Over time, S.744 makes all 18.5 million eligible for nearly every government program, including: Obamacare, 80 different welfare programs, Social Security and Medicare. When this occurs, spending will explode, but nearly all the real costs do not appear in the CBO score.”

  85. So Obama had to resort to a 4000 guest list for his Berlin speech, lol….scared no one would turn up?

  86. We have a democrat party that seeks to expand the state to the point that it chokes off liberty and prosperity for all but the chosen few vs. a republican party who wants to roll back the state and leave millions of people with nowhere to go. Beyond that, our institutions have been corrupted by money and influence to the point that they stand in direct opposition to the public will and the public good, as shown time and again by polls and empirical data. And our culture is a dung heap.

  87. So Obama had to resort to a 4000 guest list for his Berlin speech, lol….scared no one would turn up?
    From the Great White Way to an off Broadway production far from Schubert Alley, where they cannot fill the seats, all in four short years. He is damned lucky they did not show up with tomatoes. The guy has nothing original or unique or meaningful or true to say about anything. It is just noise, like a loud off key player piano, programmed by his speech writers. Why would anyone in their right mind listen to this jackal. All you will ever get from him is a continuum of lies.

  88. Could get interesting. C-span will be covering it live at 12:00.

    Capitol Hill Police Block Tea Party Activists from Immigration Rally

    Capitol Hill police are trying to block activists attending Wednesday’s “Audit the IRS” rally from also attending a nearly day-long press conference on immigration, hosted by Reps. Steve King and Louie Gohmert. The IRS rally is on the west side of the Capitol, while the immigration event is on the east side. Organizers for the IRS event were told by Hill police that “your people” can only assemble on the west side. Organizers were told to remove the activists from the immigration event.

  89. What they need to do is treble the volume of his teleprompter so that everyone can hear him. Maybe he can shatter a glass like Ella used to do. Better that he shatter a glass, than shatter what is left of this country.

  90. Solid guy, Alito. I remember him when he was a federal prosecutor in New Jersey. As a Supreme Court justice, he called the game on Obamacare (infra).
    Jenkins: The Young Won’t Buy ObamaCare
    It makes scant financial sense for them to subsidize others’ care.


    Media outlets lately have emphasized the challenge of enticing healthy young adults to sign up for ObamaCare, “exactly the type of person insurance plans, states and the federal government are counting on to make health reform work,” as the L.A. Times put it. These pieces are useful as far as they go, but miss a key point that Supreme Court Justice Samuel Alito managed to convey in many fewer words during last year’s Supreme Court argument on ObamaCare.

    Mr. Alito pointed out that young, healthy adults today spend an average of $854 a year on health care. ObamaCare would require them to buy insurance policies expected to cost roughly $5,800. The law, then, isn’t just asking them to pay for “the services that they are going to consume,” he continued. “The mandate is forcing these people to provide a huge subsidy to the insurance companies . . . to subsidize services that will be received by somebody else.”

    Since he puts it that way, why would they sign up for ObamaCare, especially since the alleged penalties will be negligible and likely unenforced?

    Journalism celebrates the “five Ws” but a secret of our profession is that many of us disdain the fifth W—”why”—as if accurate analysis is somehow woolly and inferior to accurate transcription of simple facts like “who,” “what,” “when” and “where.”

    Enlarge Image

    Here’s another example. For 30 years, journalists have been “investigating” hospital pricing, which is neither competitive nor closely related to cost, invariably throwing up their hands and saying government must fix matters. Yet any reasoned analysis shows that government policy is why we have such a byzantine payment system in the first place, in which an ever-inflating health-care bill is allocated among “payer” groups via opaque political bargaining.

    Why isn’t the same mess seen in other realms of the economy? In the automobile market, dealers publish prices on their websites and in ads that are always lower than the sticker prices. Why?

    Independent websites like, and Kelley Blue Book publish detailed pricing information for consumers and do so for free. Why?

    The answer is obvious. Consumers want such information and businesses see opportunity in providing it, even for free, in order to attract eyeballs for advertising.

    Such information doesn’t exist in health care because consumers don’t demand it, because somebody else is almost always paying for our health care. Those of us who aren’t subsidized directly by Medicaid, Medicare and the Veterans Administration are subsidized through the tax code to channel all our aches and pains through a third-party payment mill, disguised as employer-provided “insurance.”

    Not being able to analyze “why” also leads to all kinds of anomalous conclusions.

    The uninsured are painted as the payer group getting the worst deal from the health-care system since they don’t enjoy insurer discounts. But judging by the 6% of hospital costs written off as uncollectable, the uninsured are actually getting the best deal (in a sense). A 2011 government study found that even relatively affluent families pay just 37% of their hospital bills in full.

    Medicare is portrayed as getting the best deal from the system because Medicare pays less per service. But remember how the system works. Who’s to say Medicare doesn’t pay less per procedure because it’s being billed for many more procedures, because that’s how providers are allowed to maximize their revenues from the payer known as Medicare?

    In fact, plenty of evidence suggests this is exactly how Medicare operates. And Congress understands as much, hence the 25% cut in physician reimbursements it keeps threatening to impose is informed partly by expectations that physicians could maintain their incomes by charging for more services.

    The media’s refusal to accumulate any wisdom on the “whys” of our health-care system is also behind the willingness of so many to credit a recent moderation in health-care spending to ObamaCare, though that moderation began before ObamaCare was enacted.

    The spending moderation is actually not dissimilar to that seen during the heyday of managed care in the 1990s and again during the 2000s as employers rolled out sharply higher deductibles, co-pays and health savings accounts. The moderation is not dissimilar to that seen in every economic downturn when companies chuck insured workers off their payrolls and fellow workers curb their health spending out of fear of losing their jobs.

    Employers are stuck constantly trying to combat the inflationary forces that government policy fosters. That’s our best explanation of why health-care inflation waxes and wanes, though never to the point of falling in real terms. And it’s probably true now too.

    If this big picture is news to you, blame the disrespect in which the fifth W is held by the media profession.

  91. S

    In my book, Hastings got what he deserved for setting up and helping to disgrace a great General.

    I don’t give a crap if he hates war, hates drones…who doesn’t?

  92. Leanora

    I live in fear.

    I don’t want to admit it, but it’s true. Every phone call I make, every email I send, every text I message, every article I write including this one, I imagine being bugged or recorded.

    It’s one thing to learn the truth of our government snooping and join others to fight against the corruption. It’s another to be fearful of every action you take.

    I have seen some of the articles you have posted on this blog and often shake my head that you pull up endless articles of some of the worst things going on, inside and outside of politics.

    Take a breather girl, don’t live in false hope, but do try and see the good in humanity somewhere. That’s why many of us still post current articles of Hillary, she gives many of us an emotional lift.

    I’m sorry that you, GonzoTX and a few others still see Hillary as the demon child of Benghazi, but if Hillary no longer lifts your spirits, find someone that does. It’s better for your health.

  93. With photos…


    And instead of opening up the speech to the whole city, Obama spoke in front only about 5,000-6,000 spectators, all of them invited guests. [Sort of like extras in a movie set]

    His speech today (you can click here for a detailed comparison vs. the 2008 speech) called for a reduction in global nuclear weapons (through more negotiations with Russia) and defended the idea of Western intervention in Syria. Hammering on the theme of “peace with justice,” he also discussed closing Guantanamo Bay and taking action on climate change, calling it the “global flood of our time.” (Much more on that here.) But it was notably different in tone than 2008’s more sweeping view of the world, which was a speech more fitting for a candidate. (It’s now Angela Merkel who is in the middle of an election year, as she stood next too and introduced Obama.)

    The whole thing also looked a lot different to the cameras, too. (And not just because Obama was sweating through is shirt in the scorching sun.) Today’s speech was at the Brandenburg Gate — where he wanted to speak in 2008, before German politics and symbolism forced a switch to the column other end of Berlin’s Tiergarten. He also spoke on the Eastern side of the Gate, the first U.S. President to ever do so. But the crowds weren’t quite as loving or as large as last time. Check out the photos below for some comparisons.

  94. foxyladi14
    June 19, 2013 at 12:45 pm


    I might listen later, but I can’t handle Beck these days.

    I had to give an email address to see the entire screen of the stream, so what did I put in as an email address? b.obama at gmail 😉

  95. Trickle up his leg is still deeply in love ~ Disgusting.

    MSNBC host and Obama sycophant Chris Matthews blamed the sun for spoiling the president’s speech in Berlin today.

    “I think a lot of the problem he had today was the late afternoon sun in Berlin ruined his use of the teleprompter and so his usual dramatic windup was ruined,” Matthews said immediately after the speech. “I think he was really struggling with the text there.”

  96. wbboei
    June 19, 2013 at 11:47 am

    Solid guy, Alito. I remember him when he was a federal prosecutor in New Jersey. As a Supreme Court justice, he called the game on Obamacare (infra).

    Mr. Alito pointed out that young, healthy adults today spend an average of $854 a year on health care. ObamaCare would require them to buy insurance policies expected to cost roughly $5,800. The law, then, isn’t just asking them to pay for “the services that they are going to consume,” he continued. “The mandate is forcing these people to provide a huge subsidy to the insurance companies . . . to subsidize services that will be received by somebody else.”

    Since he puts it that way, why would they sign up for ObamaCare, especially since the alleged penalties will be negligible and likely unenforced?


    …that is the practical reality of Ocare in a nutshell…and it goes for many people in the middle class also…many people these days are not even wed to traditional medicine or part of the entrapement of doctors, tests, more tests, etc…

    a lot of people keep their expenses minimal and they are not anticipating suddenly being forced to pay $5000-6000 a year…or a large part of their yearly income that they have budgeted elsewhere…

    and what is so galling is, no again, the so called ‘leaders’ – O and the Dims…think they know better than everyone else and want to force this upon other people’s lives…no consideration for the burden they want to force on people while stripping them of their own personal choices…


    Shadowfax, I understand your point regarding Hastings…but can’t that really be blamed on O…it was O that called McChrystal back to Washington and forced his hand…seems like it was O once again exercising his admin’s complete control and censoring of people’s ability to speak…just like his shutdown of whistleblowers and the spread of his spying dragnet…think about it…Petraeous was also brought down…

    Hastings’ unvarnished 2010 profile of McChrystal in the pages of Rolling Stone, “The Runaway General,” captured the then-supreme commander of the U.S.-led war effort in Afghanistan openly mocking his civilian commanders in the White House. The maelstrom sparked by its publication concluded with President Obama recalling McChrystal to Washington and the general resigning his post. “The conduct represented in the recently published article does not meet the standard that should be met by – set by a commanding general,” Obama said, announcing McChrystal’s departure. “It undermines the civilian control of the military that is at the core of our democratic system.”

    Read more:


    Vast discretion vested in NSA analysts

    The vast amount of discretion vested in NSA analysts is also demonstrated by the training and briefings given to them by the agency. In one such briefing from an official with the NSA’s general counsel’s office – a top secret transcript of which was obtained by the Guardian, dated 2008 and then updated for 2013 – NSA analysts are told how much the new Fisa law diluted the prior standards and how much discretion they now have in deciding whose communications to intercept:

    “The court gets to look at procedures for saying that there is a reasonable belief for saying that a target is outside of the United States. Once again – a major change from the targeting under Fisa. Under Fisa you had to have probable cause to believe that the target was a foreign power or agent of a foreign power. Here all you need is a reasonable belief that the target is outside of the United States …

    “Now, all kinds of information can be used to this end. There’s a list in the targeting procedures: phone directories, finished foreign intelligence, NSA technical analysis of selectors, lead information. Now, you don’t have to check a box in every one of those categories. But you have to look at everything you’ve got and make a judgment. Looking at everything, do you have a reasonable belief that your target is outside the United States? So, cast your search wide. But don’t feel as though you have to have something in every category. In the end, what matters is, ‘Does all that add up to a reasonable belief that your target is outside the United States?'”

    So vast is this discretion that NSA analysts even have the authority to surveil communications between their targets and their lawyers, and that information can be not just stored but also disseminated. NSA procedures do not ban such interception, but rather set forth procedures to be followed in the event that the NSA analyst believes they should be “disseminated”.

    The decisions about who has their emails and telephone calls intercepted by the NSA is made by the NSA itself, not by the Fisa court, except where the NSA itself concludes the person is a US citizen and/or the communication is exclusively domestic. But even in such cases, the NSA often ends up intercepting those communications of Americans without individualized warrants, and all of this is left to the discretion of the NSA analysts with no real judicial oversight.

  98. Our Masters, the Bureaucrats
    A republic, if we can keep it.
    Jun 24, 2013, Vol. 18, No. 39 • By JAY COST

    With so many scandals swirling around the Obama administration, it is hard to identify which is the most politically damaging for the president. But there’s no doubt which one should trouble constitutionalists the most. The Internal Revenue Service’s targeting of conservative groups raises core questions about the nature of our government that the public has ignored for generations. It’s high time to revisit the issue of how the people can maintain control over those who are supposed to do their business.

    Political scientists and economists have identified the “principal-agent problem” that rational actors face when trying to outsource management of their affairs. How can a “principal” induce her “agent” to work for her interests rather than his own? The Constitution is an attempt to manage the principal-agent problem in a republic, though the Founders didn’t understand it in those terms. The founding document institutes a system of checks and balances to ensure that elected officials work on behalf of the people, rather than themselves.

    Yet the Constitution barely touches upon the bureaucracy, the modern version of which the Founders couldn’t have imagined. It merely empowers Congress to create executive departments and charges the president to make sure the laws are faithfully executed. This gives little direction, as the Framers—like most republican thinkers of their day—were more interested in the relationship of the three main branches of government to each other and to the people. It would be up to later generations of Americans to fill in the gaps, and they struggled for a century to find a reasonable organizational scheme for the civil service.

    The original bureaucracy has often been called a “government by gentlemen,” which more or less persisted through the Jeffersonian era. Bureaucrats were thought to be public-spirited, independently established farmers or merchants who could put aside their own interests for a while to serve the public good. Thomas Jefferson, Albert Gallatin, and Alexander Hamilton all fit this mold—none of them ever made a dishonest dollar from public service.

    By the 1820s, fraud was creeping into the executive departments, which in turn contributed to the Jacksonian revolution and a sea change in how the bureaucracy was staffed. Andrew Jackson believed that government by gentlemen had degenerated into rampant corruption, tilting public policy away from the interests of all the people (or at least his main constituency in the West) towards the elites. He instituted “rotation in office” as a tool to clean out the bureaucracy and make it more reflective of the general public, and thus (he hoped) more responsive to the public good.

    But rotation in office soon became the corrupt “spoils system,” facilitating the graft and mismanagement that characterized the federal government during the Gilded Age of the late 19th century. Reformers of this period began calling for an educated, professional bureaucratic class free of political interference. After the assassination of President James A. Garfield in 1881 by a man rejected for a diplomatic post, the public outcry led Congress to respond with the Pendleton Civil Service Reform Act, the first major stab at improvement.

    More reforms would follow over the years, giving rise to the (supposedly) apolitical bureaucracy that we have today. Indeed, the professionalization and autonomy of the bureaucracy was a prerequisite for the modern liberal state, which claims moral legitimacy through the disinterested application of “scientific” principles of management. It wouldn’t have been possible if the percentage of political appointees had not been scaled drastically downwards between the Civil War and the Great Depression.

    That is how America ultimately addressed the principal-agent problem of the bureaucracy: We would hire only qualified people, free them almost entirely from politics, and insist they employ this new “science” of administration.

    But is this solution still satisfactory? Today there is one member of Congress for approximately every 5,150 civilian members of the executive branch. How can the people’s representatives possibly keep track of all those bureaucrats? And if they cannot keep track, what is to stop the worst fears of Andrew Jackson from being realized? His “rotation in office” did not turn out to be a salutary alternative, but that does not negate his critique of the status quo. A bureaucracy that is too insulated from the people runs the risk of antirepublican corruption, regardless of whether it is staffed by “gentlemen” or those with master’s degrees in public administration.

    The targeting of conservative organizations by the Internal Revenue Service suggests that this risk is not insignificant. Career bureaucrats there—presumed to be above politics—unduly went after Tea Party groups, effectively denying them their constitutional right to equal protection, for years. All the while, Congress did nothing. The agency’s inspector general failed to blow the whistle in a timely fashion. The media overlooked the many transgressions. And now, the bureaucrat in charge of the division, Lois Lerner, has lawyered up, taken the Fifth Amendment, and thus will slow the investigative process to a crawl.

    This does not appear to be an isolated incident, either. Last month, National Review reported that a longtime colleague of Lerner has known for decades that she harbored suspicions of conservative groups. The Weekly Standard has reported that while at the Federal Election Commission, she harassed the Christian Coalition in a similar manner. Far from being reprimanded for this, she was promoted—during a Republican administration, no less! Recent reports, moreover, suggest that the Environmental Protection Agency has been making conservative groups pay Freedom of Information Act fees while waiving them for liberal organizations.
    Related Stories

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    Kristol Podcast: IRS, NSA, and the Week in Review
    This Won’t Turn Out Well

    More by Jay Cost

    Republicans in the Good Old Days
    Taxes for Revenue Only?
    All Politics Isn’t Local
    Define and Conquer
    Created Equal

    The Declaration of Independence vested all sovereign power in the people alone, while the Constitution established a government to manage that power in a republican fashion. While the people still swear fealty to the founding ideals, they have not put much thought recently into the problems the Founders tackled. As society has become more complex, the government has, too; Americans have not reexamined the structure of government, in an age in which it accounts for more than 20 percent of the national economy, to ensure it still reflects the republican spirit. In fact, there has not been a serious public discussion about the organization of the bureaucracy since the 1880s, even as it has doubled in size many times over. And so today, it is a vast enterprise of millions of workers, with precious little oversight from the people’s elected representatives.

    It’s no wonder that some agency somewhere in the bureaucracy could have worked so perniciously for so long against the people’s interests. Perhaps the only surprise is that we ever noticed the malfeasance at the IRS at all. Were it not for the over-the-top questioning from the IRS—asking one group to pledge not to protest abortion clinics, another to reveal what books their members were reading, another to say what they’re praying about—all this might still be hidden in the shadows, unbeknownst to an overburdened Congress and an incurious media. And it remains to be seen what will be done about it, whether the bureaucracy, now under attack, has the resources and wherewithal to block oversight and prevent reform.

    The IRS scandal should serve as a wake-up call. We can no longer take for granted the matters of republican governance over which the Framers obsessed. They rightly understood that a republic is a terribly difficult form of government to preserve. We wrongly presume that it is our birthright. As a result, we risk losing our inheritance.

  99. S

    Shadowfax, I understand your point regarding Hastings…but can’t that really be blamed on O

    True that Oh is ultimately to blame for McChrystal’s finally leaving the military. But the article by Hastings is what shamed the military and it was that embarisment that caused Barry to get rid of the General.

    McChrystal speaking out against poor leadership from their Presidental commander, putting lives in the military at risk…makes him a great general in my eyes and I don’t think higly of the way Hastings set up the military.

  100. Another early poll from FL –

    TALLAHASSEE — Florida voters like U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio and former Gov. Jeb Bush. But if either of the Republicans decides to run for president in 2016, Floridians could back Democrat Hillary Clinton instead.


    In the Quinnipiac poll, Clinton led Rubio by a margin of 53 percent to 41 percent among Florida voters and led Bush by a margin of 50 percent to 43 percent.

    Hillary 2016

  101. Shadowfax
    June 19, 2013 at 1:01 pm

    Trickle up his leg is still deeply in love ~ Disgusting.

    MSNBC host and Obama sycophant Chris Matthews blamed the sun for spoiling the president’s speech in Berlin today.

    “I think a lot of the problem he had today was the late afternoon sun in Berlin ruined his use of the teleprompter and so his usual dramatic windup was ruined,” Matthews said immediately after the speech. “I think he was really struggling with the text there.”

    LOL. There is just no hope for Tingles. “his usual dramatic windup was ruined.” If Chris has any friends who have some sense, they need to do an intervention, and help Chris realize that nobody is interested in O’s speeches any more. No one cares. If he gave that speech without one mistake – hell, if he gave it while wearing a neon green halo on his head, draped head to toe the U S Flag, it would mean nothing, and no one, save Chris and a few hangers on, would give one damn. Whether the sunshine prevented him from reading the teleprompter correctly, or cloudy weather allowed easy reference to his his rolling brain machine, the words would be just that – just words.

  102. Wow! . . . .

    Irish parliamentarians spar over ‘war criminal’ Obama’s summit visit

    President Obama’s visit to the Group of Eight summit has created a political row in Ireland after an outspoken liberal lawmaker on Wednesday denounced the U.S. president as a “war criminal” for his drone use and his decision to arm the Syrian rebels.

    Parliamentarian Clare Daly said her country’s government had showcased the country “as a nation of pimps, prostituting ourselves in return for a pat on the head,” The Irish Times reports.

  103. Quite a drop in Bambi’s Berlin audience: from 200,000 in 2008 to 4,500 in 2012. Kind of like the difference between their support for their last dictator in 1938 and 1946. Gosh, that is a 95% attrition in his audience. Whereas here roughly half the country adores him as he destroys this country, and screams racist at anyone who begs to differ.

  104. wbboei
    June 19, 2013 at 3:59 pm

    Quite a drop in Bambi’s Berlin audience: from 200,000 in 2008 to 4,500 in 2012.
    Worse than that Wbb because these were ‘invited guests’. Translation: these people were probably bussed in, free plane tickets and most of them were probably part of the Obama entourage that came over the pond with them. Some of the German nationals may have just been in the area and wandered over to have a look-see at the US Presidential goof off.

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