Benghazi & the FBI wiretaps – the connection

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This morning, the Washington Post reported that the FBI wiretap investigation of the Associated Press was initiated because of leaks of classified information from the government. In the words of the Post:

“The aggressive investigation into the possible disclosure of classified information to the AP is part of a pattern in which the Obama administration has pursued current and former government officials suspected of releasing secret material. Six officials have been prosecuted, more than under all previous administrations combined.”

The Post also reported:

“The two leak inquiries were started after Republicans in Congress accused the Obama administration of orchestrating news stories intended to demonstrate the president’s toughness on terrorism and improve his chance for reelection. The Republicans sought a special prosecutor, but Holder instead named two veteran prosecutors to handle the inquiries.”

If you recall, in June of last year, in the heat of the election, Senators Dianne Feinstein, John McCain, and others accused the White House of leaking information on the highly classified Stuxnet cybervirus program to the New York Times. Of course the Democrats called it politics but it was serious enough to force meetings with Director of National Intelligence James Clapper and FBI Director Robert Mueller. Clapper then suggested wider polygraph testing of intelligence officials.

In fact, the suspected source for this leak was at the very top at the White House.

In May of 2012, world headlines reported the arrest of a second underpants bomber in Yemen. It was later reported that the United States government blew the cover of an allied agent in place who tipped off the British intelligence services. Even Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta condemned the leak. A full investigation was supposed to have been launched, but then it sank mysteriously into obscurity. Again, the White House was the prime suspect.

For an Administration that has been more aggressive in policing the intelligence community than any of its predecessors, there is a gaping hole in its narrative.

And so now the important facts are coming out about the Benghazi attack. It was a coverup and it was political.

And the FBI has been caught in delicto flagrante wiretapping one of the Administrations favorite news organizations for vague, unspecified reasons. Again quoting from the Washington Post article.

“This investigation is broader and less focused on an individual source or reporter than any of the others we’ve seen,” said Steven Aftergood, a government secrecy expert at the Federation of American Scientists. “They have swept up an entire collection of press communications. It’s an astonishing assault on core values of our society.”

Translated into English, it was a fishing expedition.

So as the Administration has been using intimidation and threats to our intelligence apparatus at every step it has itself been engaging in a Byzantine level of political corruption to forward its narrative.

CIA Director David Petraeus was humiliated on a national stage 2 days after the election. This wasn’t an accident. It was an act of political destruction. The Benghazi coverup wasn’t an accident. The FBI investigation was a political fig leaf meant to both show Congress that something was being done on the larger scandals while being used as a tool to quash the Administration’s enemies.

Machiavelli and Boss Tweed and the Borgias have got nothing on this bunch of treasonous crooks.

 

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The Smoking Gun in Benghazi

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Ambassador StevensWe are still being fed a narrative by the media on Benghazi. The problem runs much deeper than they are willing to admit.

First we were told it was a protest against a video. Then, after weeks of lies, we were told the Administration was looking into it. Then there were Congressional hearings where State Department officials were pilloried. Then Hillary Clinton faced Congress and said:

hillary-clinton-testifies-on-benghazi-2

” The fact is; we had four dead Americans! Was it because of a protest? Or was it because of guys out for a walk one night who decided they’d go kill some Americans? What difference at this point does it make?”

Then Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta said:

Panetta covers ass

“The United States military is not and should not be a global 911 service capable of arriving on the scene within minutes to every possible contingency around the world,”

General Martin Dempsey, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff denied that there was time to send a response team or for that matter any support until hours after the attack was over. The attack went on for at least 5 hours.

Panetta then went on to say:

“You can’t willy-nilly send F-16s there and blow the hell out of place. … You have to have good intelligence.”

And yet in later testimony it was acknowledged that there were drones broadcasting real time data back to Washington and to other sites almost all through the entire attack. The defenders of the Consulate were lasing targets in the expectation of strike aircraft support. We had good intelligence and we had specific targets.

The resignations at the State Department after the hearings were another smoke screen. State has been underfunding security around the world partially because their embassy construction budget is insanely high.

Our new embassies look like and are fortresses, which projects a terrible image across the world. But that is the policy of the our government these days.

The crisis on 9-11-12 was a multi-jurisdictional crisis. DoD, CIA, NSA, and all the other alphabet agencies were involved and the manager was supposed to be the DNI, James Clapper, who has very little actual authority.

Every agency involved fell flat on its face either through incompetence or the orders of the political masters running the show. Obama checked out at 5:00pm, and Hillary and Panetta and even Petraeus shortly thereafer. No one with authority was on-line to hear the screams or watch the tracers and RPG’s that finally ended this debacle. There was clear dereliction of duty.

Someone at the very top pulled the plug and let these people die and in all likelihood it was Obama and his minions. The 5:00PM checkout is a smoking gun.

It’s like one of those bad movie devices when they turn off the computers and the phones and the lights and the last person out of the room closes the door and the screen goes black.

And the next morning the lies and the coverup began. And even now the media are doing their best to cover up the truth.

Obama’s Middle Finger to America

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Obama FingerSince when has an Administration given the finger to virtually the entire American People?  And since when has there been an almost complete silence on the issue by the media?

The President badly misjudged  the effects of Sequestration on the American political landscape. The first few weeks had been a non-event despite the rending of garments and gnashing of teeth by everyone from the President himself to the Cabinet to the Joint Chiefs of Staff.

So now the President has ratcheted the game up, Chicago-style.

The Sequester represents a 2% cost reduction from the increased budget for this year and the next 10 years. This year’s portion is approximately $85 Billion (2%) from a budget of $3.8 trillion, 40% of which is being borrowed. In most families and companies, this would mean a few less nights out for pizza or movies. To the Federal government under President Obama, it means war.

Consider the following:

White House tours cancelled. White House parties continue.

Aircraft carrier deployment cancelled. Military exercise with Morocco cancelled. Air shows cancelled. Worthless programs continue.

Government threatens the most vulnerable; education, HIV patients, Meals on Wheels; HeadStart

. Government threatens closure of  national parks.

Government orchestrates air traffic control slowdown.

In other words, the leadership in government wants you to feel the pain while they continue to spend beyond all reason.

When he was selling Obamacare to the American people, the President said that he had identified $65 Billion in waste and fraud in the Medicare program that would offset higher costs for wider coverage. Not a thing has been done about that fraud since. Even some reform would have mitigated the cuts.

The Federal government has added hundreds of thousands of additional jobs, year after year until it has become a bureaucracy more bloated that any in the world. Federal unions have some of the most generous pension plans and benefits in the country as well. Taking care of your special interests is vital to crony capitalists. Think of the hundreds of billions of dollars wasted on green energy projects.In a time of lean, one must consider anything that is peripheral to the common good, but not this government. Not now.

And when one tries to discuss greater efficiency or common sense solutions, the reply is crickets. They don’t want the problems solved.

Our government has never set out to oppress its own people until now. Now, we are all pawns in the President’s battle to assert his will. Never before has a President been so arrogant as to do so. He is directly confronting us with his power and daring us to respond.

And to date no one has directly responded.

This is clearly the president’s crisis. He was the one who recommended and campaigned for sequestration in the first place and now he is reaping what he has sown. And in his vindictiveness he is giving the finger to all of us.

 

The President’s New Policy – A Fable of the Modern Age

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Gather round, children, and I will tell you the story of the President’s New Policy.

Once upon a time, there was a vain president in far off Washington whose only worry in life was to make grand pronouncements and dress in elegant clothes and have parties. He began by making grab bag policy speeches and then holding weekly soiree’s, and then twice per week, and then three times per week. And at each event he loved to show off his new clothes and played with the presidential Teleprompter telling ever more outrageous stories.

His consort, Princess Shopping Cart, would also dress up in the most expensive and outrageous outfits, which disturbed the common folk to no end while the sycophants and hangers-on all cried with joy at her inventiveness. The plebes, however, began to call her Princess Gaga.

The President and his Princess had the most wonderful times eating cake and spending the plebe’s money with their rich liberal friends, who all professed their solidarity with the plebes as they ate cake.

One day, two clever economists from far off Italy named Dolci and Gabbano heard of the vain president and decided to take advantage of him.

They went to the President’s gate dressed in the finest clothes and said to the guards “We are two very fine economists who also happen to moonlight as tailors, and can not only fix your economy, but also weave a policy of whole cloth so light and fine that it looks invisible. We’ll even throw in an extra pair of pants for free.”

The head guard heard the strange story, but did not know what to make of the two outrageously dressed strangers. He summoned the Chamberlain of the Economic Policy Council. The Chamberlain notified the Chief of Staff, who ran to the President and disclosed the incredible news.

The President’s curiosity got the better of him, and he immediately summoned the two economists to his throne room.

“We have done many years of research, and can not only fix your economy, but we have also invented an extraordinary method to weave a policy so light and fine that it looks invisible. As a matter of fact, the policy is so fine and incredible that it is invisible to anyone who is too stupid and incompetent to appreciate its quality.” And we will throw in the pants for free.”

The President gave the two scoundrels a large sack of TARP funds, and said “Just tell me what you need and I shall give it to you”.

They asked for a loom, silk, an Apple MacBook Pro and 100 kilograms of the finest gold thread, and began to pretend to work. They promptly converted the TARP funds into RMB Yuan and transferred them to an untraceable bank account in Austria, which everyone knows is much more secure than Switzerland these days. The gold thread was melted down into bar and hidden in a safe place in case of hyperinflation.

The President thought he had spent his money quite well. He would fix his economy, get a new policy, and find out which of his plebes were ignorant and incompetent, along with an extra pair of pants.

He promptly held another soirée, where the clothing was the most outrageous yet and the cake was made of the finest ingredients. He invited Princess Oprah and Lord Harry and Nancy of Marin and Princess Shopping Cart outdid herself in a dress made of environmentally sustainable materials including dixie cups and duct tape and lawn clippings and tinfoil.

Once the door closed behind them, the two economists chortled with glee. “Whadda Maroon” said Dolci. “whattan embezzle!” said Gabanno. For days they pretended to work deep into the night at the loom, but in fact were listening to iTunes on their Bluetooth headsets.

Several days later when he had heard nothing from the economists, the President said “I would really like to know how they are coming along with my policy and my extra pair of pants.” But he was a bit uneasy when he recalled that anyone who was unfit for his position would not be able to see the policy or the material. Of course he himself had nothing to fear, but still he decided to send someone else in order to follow White House protocol.

“I’ll send my honest old Treasury Secretary to the economists” thought the President. He’s the best one to see how the policy is coming along and knows good clothing. He is very sensible and no one is more worthy of his position than he. So the honest old Treasury Secretary went into the hall where the two economists sat busily working their empty looms and typing on the computer. They had printed out 1,000 pages of incomprehensible gobbledegook, but the loom seemed empty.

“Goodness, thought the Treasury Secretary, I cannot understand a single phase of this policy and I cannot see a thing.” But he did not say so.

The two swindlers invited him to step closer, asking him if wasn’t the most beautifully elegant policy and if the colors of the pants were not the most magnificent he had seen. They pointed to the empty loom and the thousand pages of gobbledygook and the poor old Treasury Secretary opened his eyes wider and wider. He still could see nothing for nothing was tthere. “Gracious, he thought. Is it possible that I am stupid? I have never thought so. Am I unfit for my position? No one must know this.  No, it would never do for me to say that I am unable to understand the policy or see the extra pair of pants. ”

“You aren’t saying anything!” said one of the economists.

“Oh! The policy is magnificent! It will solve all of our problems and will only penalize those with incomes over $250,000 dollars, depending upon how we define it. Peering through his glasses, the Treasury Secretary said ” The patterns and colors of the extra pair of pants are magnificent! Yes, I will tell the president that it is beyond our greatest expectations!”

“That makes us very happy!” said the two economists, and they called the policy and the colors and the pattern by name. The old Treasury Secretary listened very closely so that he would know exactly which words to say when he reported back to the President, and that is exactly what he did.

The swindlers now asked for more money and silk and gold and shares in Exchange Traded Funds, all of which were immediately granted and all of which were immediately laundered. They then continued to weave on empty looms as before and download Latvian folk poetry translated through babelfish and parsed through Lexis/Nexis.

The President then sent other officials as well to observe the economists progress. They too were startled when they saw nothing and they too reported back to the president how wonderful the policy was and how beautiful the extra pair of pants were, advising him to carry the policy and wear the pants in a grand procession. The entire city was alive with praise of the policy and of the pants. “Magnifique!!,  Prima!!!,  Nysseligt!!, Incredible!!” they said in all languages. The President awarded the economists with medals of Nobel, bestowing on each of them the title of Senior Policy Advisor and Master Weaver.

The swindlers stayed up the entire night before the procession was to take place, burning more than 16 compact fluorescent lamps. Everyone could see they were in a great rush to finish the policy and the extra pair of pants. They pretended to take the material from the looms and ordered 3 extra printers and a collating machine in order to print the new policy. They cut the air with large scissors, and bound the policy with the most exquisite bindings of fine Corinthian leather. They sewed the air with needles without any thread. Finally, they said “Behold!

The President’s policy is completed! And while we ran 3,000% over budget, behold the extra pair of pants, along with a frock coat and vest, are finished!”

The President came to them with his most trusted advisors, Congressmen, Senators, and Princess Shopping Cart. The two economists handed the President the exquisitely bound new policy, which he promptly passed to a page as he strode forward to see the new clothes. The two swindlers raised their arms as if they were holding something and said ” Just look at this extra set of pants! Here is the jacket! This is the vest!!” and so forth. “They are light as spider webs! You might think you didn’t have a thing on, but that is the good thing about them!”

“Yes!” said the advisers and Congressmen and Senators and Princess Shopping Cart, but they couldn’t see a thing because nothing was there.

“Would your Presidentness, if it pleases, kindly remove your clothes so that we may dress you?” asked the swindlers. “We will then fit you perfectly with the new ones, in front of this mirror.”

The president took off all of his clothes, and the economists pretended to dress him, piece by piece with the new ones that were to be fitted. They took hold of his waist and pretended to tie something around it. They pretended to tie his tie in an exquisitely formed knot just so. Then the president turned and faced the mirror.

“Goodness! Don’t the clothes fit you well! What a wonderful fit!” everyone said. “What a pattern! What colors! Such luxurious clothes!”

“The canopy to be carried above Your Presidentness awaits outside” said the Director of Protocol.

“Yes! I am ready!” said the President. “Don’t they fit well?” Princess Shopping Cart could only smoulder at all of the attention he was getting.

The chamberlains who were to carry the train held their hands just above the floor as if they were picking up the train. As they walked, they pretended to carry the train high. For they could not let anyone notice they could see nothing.

The President walked beneath the beautiful canopy in the procession, the new policy symbolically carried by two carefully chosen members of special interest groups, and all of the people on the street and in their windows said ” Goodness!! The new policy will save us all (except those with incomes over $250,000), and the President’s new clothes are incomparable. What a beautiful jacket! What an exquisite pair of spare pants!” Scribes Krugman and Sullivan and Friedman and Robinson all praised the policy as they were told to do by Journo List. No one wanted to admit that they had not read the policy nor that they could see the President’s new clothes, for then it would be said they were unfit for their position or that they were stupid. None of the President’s clothes or policies had ever received such praise.

“But he doesn’t have anything on,” said a small child in a wondering voice.

“Good Lord! Let us hear the voice of an innocent child!” said the father, and whispered to a reporter what the child had said.

” A small child has said the President doesn’t have anything on!” said the reporter. “And having seen a copy of the policy it seems to be nothing but Latvian folk poetry!” he continued.

Finally, everyone was saying “He doesn’t have anything on! The policy is gobbledygook!”

The President shuddered, for he knew that they were right, but he thought “The procession must go on!” He carried himself even more proudly as the pages of the policy began to come loose from their bindings and dance in the breeze, and the chamberlains carried the train that wasn’t there.

The two Italian economists, Dolci and Gabbano, crept softly into the night onto a G5 bound for the Cayman Islands, where they could not be extradited, and were warmly greeted by Angelo Mozillo, Lloyd Blankfein, Jack Lew, Jon Corzine and George Soros.

The End

All due respect to Hans Christian Andersen.

Obama’s Way versus the American Way

On the way home this afternoon from running errands, my wife told me about a friend of hers who attended a benefit last night. A local 16 year old has a rare form of Muscular Dystrophy which is almost always fatal. The benefit was for that kid.

A bunch of people got together; they freely associated as we Americans do; and put together a fund-raiser to help pay for an extremely expensive experimental therapy. The amount of money raised is not the issue nor is the cause, necessarily.

What is at issue is the ability of Americans to band together to make things happen and how the state is superseding this ability at every chance. Whether it is a corporation to make money; or to build a hospital or raise money for good causes, which is one of our great virtues, Americans come together like nowhere else in the world to make things happen. This is one of the reasons we are called the Land of Opportunity.

Alexis de Toqueville wrote in 1835:

“Americans of all ages, all conditions, all minds constantly unite. Not only do they have commercial and industrial associations in which all take part, but they also have a thousand other kinds: religious, moral, grave, futile, very general and very particular, immense and very small; Americans use associations to give fêtes, to found seminaries, to build inns, to raise churches, to distribute books, to send missionaries to the antipodes; in this manner they create hospitals, prisons, schools. Finally, if it is a question of bringing to light a truth or developing a sentiment with the support of a great example, they associate. Everywhere that, at the head of a new undertaking, you see the government in France and a great lord in England, count on it that you will perceive an association in the United States.”

It was one of the fundamental differences between the statist monarchies of France and England and the new republic all the back to our Revolution. And Barack Obama and his allies are doing their best to subvert one of our most glorious achievements.

In his Inaugural Address last week, the President, emphasized time and again not the role of the individual, but that of the state in dictating public life. This idea is foreign to our very nature. The freedoms and responsibilities delegated to government, the people, and its secular institutions in the Constitution are being redefined by the Administration and its supporters.

And that is the tragedy of the young person my wife spoke of. The American Way is to band together as individuals and do things. The Obama Way is for the state to dictate the outcome and the means to that outcome. In the past this was the way of monarchs, sultans, dictators, and communists. Statism is an outcome concentrating power in the hands of the few.

Under the American Way, this kid may have a chance to get the treatment he or she needs. People will work hard and long hours for nothing except the knowledge they did the right thing.

Under an Obama, statist system, the bureaucracy will decide who gets treatment and how it is administered. The shocks of Obamacare are already being felt as insurance rates rise and treatment options are circumscribed. Ask anyone in the military covered under Tricare. He’s already tried to sell them out.

The voices of the Left are ready to abandon the obese, the smokers, and other “fringe”” dwellers who do not conduct themselves in the politically correct manner. Do you really think that government would authorize millions of dollars in care per patient for a miniscule minority?

Under an Obama, statist system bureaucrats decide how big your soft drink is and which cooking oil you use and the school lunches your kids eat. Under an Obama, statist, system, bureaucrats decide how you use your land, how much money you can make, and on a myriad of other vanishing freedoms.

Under and Obama, statist system, government reverts to the failed models of the past. The romance with socialism and Marxism or simply enhanced state involvement has been proven wrong in virtually every case in which it has been tried. Western Europe is under crushing debt while the East has only recently seen an economic renaissance after the failure of the Marxist socialist experiment. Russia itself is a mess of a dictatorship. China is authoritarian and still cannot provide for most of its population. And these are the models that Obama’s teachers and advisers ascribe to. Government knows best.

The president was absolutely clear in his speech. He outlined his vision of our future. he has a sycophantic media establishment and an intellectually lazy and corrupt political class. He has an agenda. An agenda that is at odds with the American Way.

The short and sweet ballad of Al Gore

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There was an Emir from Oman
Who had a nefarious plan
He’d buy up a station
in a very large nation
and make Gore a very rich man.

That Al sold the turd to a Sheikh
Was considered completely unique
After carbon tax credits and fraudulent edits
Even Begly thought Gore was a freak.

So Al flew on to the Great Green Northwest
Where in his hotel he undressed
But the masseuse wasn’t buying and ended up crying that Al was just there to molest.

So the gist of the story is clear
Mr. Gore is just not sincere.
When he tells us one thing and he does something else we know that his actions are queer.

We now know where the buck doesn’t stop

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We found out yesterday that “systemic failures” were responsible for the death of United States Ambassador Christopher Stevens on September 11 of this year. Somehow “systemic failures” pulled the trigger. Somehow “systemic failures” were responsible for complete inaction to save the lives of the ambassador and three security team members in a battle that lasted for over 5 hours.

It seems that “systemic failures” were responsible for Ambassador Rice lying about the incident 5 days after it occurred and Hillary Clinton going on Pakistani television to apologize for an obscure video and for the president prevaricating all the way into October on the true causes the terrorist attack. For this is all the report really tells us.

Hillary Clinton is said to have fainted and suffered a concussion while she has avoided being in Washington for the past 3 months, all to avoid testifying before Congress on the Benghazi incident.

The one thing we do now know is where the buck doesn’t stop. The buck that used to stop on Harry Truman’s desk seems to dart hither and thither in today’s Washington.

Despite direct ties to the office of the Attorney General, Fast & Furious was swept under the rug by both the Administration and the media. Despite direct communication between the Attorney General’s office and senior White House staff, executive privilege was invoked and no follow-up was done. Two federal agents dead; over 200 Mexican citizens dead, and a coverup of the murder last month of a Mexican beauty queen by a weapon implicated in Fast & Furious and no one in the Administration bears responsibility.

Vague reports of “senior staffers” miscommunicating and plausible deniability are all we see today from the “most transparent and open administration ever”. Top secret information leaks like a sieve from the White House itself with condemnation by both parties and no one bears responsibility.

Cabinet level officials such as Kathleen Sebelius line the pockets of friends and cronies and no one bears responsibility.

This is not bureaucratic ineptitude but rather a conscious effort to hide the facts and truth. It is still anyone’s guess why the Administration lied about Benghazi. But time and again, it seems that the Administration is doing its best to best the Nixon Administration in coverups.

Even in the negotiations on the fiscal cliff, the President has done his best to obscure the facts and refuses to consider spending cuts, promising that sometime in the future they might be considered. All the while he blames his opposition for intransigence.

The President cannot be pinned with any of the policy disasters of his administration. He slips like mercury through the fingers of responsibility.

Nixon, Ford, Carter, Reagan, Bush I, Clinton, and Bush II were all held accountable for their actions. But today, with a sycophantic press and docile Congress, Barack Obama has shirked responsibility time and again. It is very clear that the buck never, ever stops on his desk.