A Memorial Day Story [CBD]
I read this in a post on Friday night and realized how appropriate it would be for this weekend. I asked the commenter for permission to repost it.
Thanks "An Observation" for the wonderful story.
In 1983 I was sitting in the Airport in Atlanta Ga. waiting for my transfer plane to arrive. There were a lot of military people in uniform striding through the airport and I would read their ribbons as they passed.
A Red Headed Army Major in his dress greens came up to the seats where I was and I looked at his chest. I saw immediately that he had both Combat Infantry and Airborne Ranger badges and more than the usual one row of medals that all Vietnam vets had.
I saw an Army commendation medal with V for Valor device, a Purple Heart with two oak leaf clusters - which meant that he had been wounded three times, and a Legion of Merit medal. I was very surprised to see that; mostly it is Generals who are awarded a legion of merit.
Then I saw that he had a seventh medal on a row all by itself, it was crepe blue with five little stars on it. My eyes got very big - I had never seen one before.
I walked over to where he was sitting and I said "Excuse me Major." to him. He stood up and I shook his hand and said "Thank you, Sir". He looked very confused and said with a puzzled look on his face "Thank me - what did I do?" I answered him "Sir I understand your confusion - its just that I know what that is" nodding toward that seventh ribbon "Thank you sir".
He started crying - no one had ever thanked him before. Here was a Congressional Medal of Honor recipient who couldn't imagine why anyone would be thanking him for anything.
Close it up
Saturday Morning Open Thread
Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends. ~ John 15:13
I hope everyone has a great Memorial Day weekend, and I thank God for the blessings He has bestowed upon the United States of America.
And I'll be damned if a bunch of two-bit socialist bastards who weaseled their way into positions of power will cause one drop of the blood spilled from Lexington & Concord to the Kunar Valley to have been done so in vain.
This Memorial Day, let's re-dedicate ourselves to preserving that for which our soldiers fought so valiantly.
Overnight Open Thread (24 May 2013)
USS Porter Collision
In the aviation world, we have a lot of training in something called aircrew coordination training (ACT) or cockpit resource management (CRM). Careful analysis of aircraft mishaps had determined that poor aircrew coordination and loss of situational awareness had contributed to or caused over 60% of mishaps. ACT was implemented in order to improve aircrew communication and situational awareness and lower human error in aircraft mishap rates. It is painfully obvious after listening to the audio of the USS Porter's bridge leading up to the collision that ACT/CRM training might be of value there.
I imagine this book, How To Avoid Huge Ships is a pretty popular read now. The book reviews are teh funneh.
How To Open A Beer
Might come in handy this weekend.
Good God. Full scale Lego X-Wing fighter. Only 5,335,200 pieces! I'm disappointed though. The S-foils can't lock into attack position.
Low Level Growlers
Inteliscope: Because your tactical rifle totally needed an iPhone strapped to it. Just don't have your phone on vibrate when taking the shot.
Tonight's ONT brought to you by Ginger Awareness:
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Close it up
It's Memorial Day Weekend
Check the calendar. I'm completely serious.
Jake Tapper had some good stuff on Twitter.
Digital Archaeology - the search for the first web page[Purp]
...Thankfully one of the people he showed it to while in the US for the Hypertext 91 conference kept a copy. This was largely because, said Mr Noyes, he had one of the same types of machine, a Next computer, that Sir Tim used for the demo...
How much do you want to bet its pron or some cat pictures?
The saying the internet never forgets is not really accurate. Shit goes completely missing constantly...particularly on vendor support sites after mergers. The archive.org effort isn't snap shotting everything either.
Holder Personally Vetted Rosen Search Warrant; Lied About It Under Oath
They fought to keep Rosen from finding out about the warrant because they wanted to keep searching his emails for a long period of time. Years, as it turned out.
[The prosecutor, Machen] argued that disclosure of the search warrant would preclude the government from monitoring the account, should such a step become necessary in the investigation. Machen added that “some investigations are continued for many years because, while the evidence is not yet sufficient to bring charges, it is sufficient to have identified criminal subjects and/or criminal activity serious enough to justify continuation of the investigation.”
Machen insisted the investigation would be compromised if Rosen was informed of the warrant, and also asked the court to order Google not to notify Rosen that the company had handed over Rosen’s e-mails to the government. Rosen, according to recent reports, did not learn that the government seized his e-mail records until it was reported in the Washington Post last week.
According to recently unsealed documents in the case, the Obama Justice Department sought an extensive amount of information from Rosen’s e-mail account. In addition to Rosen’s correspondence with Kim, the government wanted to know about Rosen’s contacts with other government officials, including “records or information relating to the Author’s communication with any other source or potential source of the information disclosed in the Article.”
Do you see what's going on there? Not only do they want to see which of Obama's people are disloyal in the actual case, they also want to keep secretly reading a private citizen's email for years in order to find other sources of leaks in other matters.
In other words: It's nakedly a Traitor Fishing Expedition.
Question: What happens if we find out that one of Rosen's sources -- say his other government sources, who are not in possession of any confidential information, but who can offer some negative information about Obama personnel -- failed to be promoted due to his name surfacing in this years-long Loyalty Crusade?
At 5:00, Holder says -- under oath-- he stayed out of any decisions to spy on the press. And not just in the AP matter.
In regard to potential prosecution of the press for the disclosure of material. This is not something I’ve ever been involved in, heard of, or would think would be wise policy.
Finally: Britain Cracks Down On Those Exploiting the System to Encourage Hate
Oh, you thought I meant the jihadi preachers on the dole?
No, I meant people making angry comments about the Woolrich butchers.
A 22-year-old man has been charged on suspicion of making malicious comments on Facebook following the murder of British soldier Lee Rigby.
Benjamin Flatters, from Lincoln, was arrested last night after complaints were made to Lincolnshire Police about comments made on Facebook, which were allegedly of a racist or anti-religious nature.
He was charged with an offence of malicious communications this afternoon in relation to the comments, a Lincolnshire Police spokesman said.
A second man was visited by officers and warned about his activity on social media, the spokesman added.
Glad they're finally getting to the Root Causes of the problem.
Secret Documents Reveal Winnie the Pooh Author A. A. Milne Was an Officer of MI7b During the Great War
That headline there?
That's a big fat lie.
Well, it's the truth, but it's misleading. I learned this from the media. MI7b was a propaganda-writing outfit, not a frontline espionage group.
This was actually revealed last month but it didn't attract much notice.
Secret documents saved from a skip have shed new light on Winnie the Pooh author AA Milne's clandestine role as a propagandist in the First World War.
All evidence of MI7b, the secret military intelligence unit where AA Milne was based, was feared lost - because government officials ordered the destruction of its entire archive.
But 150 classified documents were taken home by Captain James Lloyd and remained a secret for nearly 100 years, including a never-before seen satirical poem by Milne.
It imagines what famous great writers like Tennyson and Shakespeare would have written had they been propaganda writers in MI7b.
Milne became a pacifist after the war and the verse shows his struggle with the work he undertook.
It should be noted that although he became a pacifist, he modified his pacifism a bit to support, sorta, the war against the Nazis.
Incidentally, he had a great big feud with legendary Wooster & Jeeves writer P.G. Wodehouse. Part of this was due to Wodehouse's behavior during WWII -- he had not gotten out of France when the Nazis invaded and he and his wife were captured as... Prisoners of War? Civilians?
Anyway, the Nazis offered him a deal: Do 4 or 5 radio programs for us, and we'll let you and your wife depart back for England. Wodehouse took the deal. His programs were not pro-Nazi -- they actually poked fun at them -- but still, doing cute comedic radio programs for the Nazis just to save one's own skin did not go down well with Milne, who, despite his pacifism, was still pretty anti-Nazi.
Fantastic Essay: Rote Expressions of Alleged "Outrage" Are Not Enough To Combat Terrorism
Great link from Hot Air.
This is so full of head-nodding quotations that it's a a lie to excerpt any one part. However:
Too many still seek refuge in ignorance and denial that was so memorably displayed by U.S. officials after the Fort Hood shooting in 2009. A man who was a member of the American armed forces, Maj. Nidal Hasan, gunned down his colleagues while shouting "Allahu akbar." On that occasion the American government, like the French government before it and the British government this week, decided to focus on everything about the attack other than what really mattered: the motive. Fort Hood was put down to a case of workplace violence.
Most of the extremists who have repeatedly expressed their hatred of British soldiers are themselves supported by the British state. A prominent hate-preacher—Anjem Choudary, a leader of the disbanded al Muhajiroun—was even caught on video earlier this year extolling Britain's "jihad-seekers' allowance." As he explained to his followers, "The normal situation, really, is to take money from the kafir"—a slur for non-Muslims. "Allahu akbar. We take the money."
After the video showed up online, a BBC reporter asked Mr. Choudary to clarify how much he's taking—the press has long reported a sum of £25,000 ($37,770) per year. "It's irrelevant," Mr. Choudary replied.
This would not be the first time a country has paid both sides in a conflict. But if the reported figure is anywhere near accurate, it would surely be the first time in human history that a society has paid its opponents better than it pays its own. A British soldier can expect to start in the army on a salary of around £16,000 ($24,172).
The events in south London must cause a re-evaluation by British society of the insanity we have been permitting. The question is not how sad we feel. The only question should be what we do about it.
Video of the London Terrorists Being Shot
I can't view this video.
Downer ending, of course: They live.
Hey, You Know Who Really Liked Obama's Speech Yesterday...? MSNBC, That's Who
"He used his position as a classroom."
Obama gave an alleged foreign policy speech which was, in sum, patterned after Casey Kasem's sign-off "Keep your feet on the ground and keep reachin' for the stars."
MSNBC was absolutely thrilled by it.
They also loved Medea Benjamin's interruption of the speech to attack it from the Code Pink left. But even more than loving Medea Benjamin's interruption, they loved Obama's polite exchange with her.
It was just a supremely awesome day at MSNBC.
Get in Their Faces: Leftists Began Coordinated, Intentional Campaign to Impose a "Chilling Effect" on Conservative Donors (Their Own Words!) in 2008
The White House insists President Obama is "outraged" by the "inappropriate" targeting and harassment of conservative groups. If true, it's a remarkable turnaround for a man who helped pioneer those tactics.
On Aug. 21, 2008, the conservative American Issues Project ran an ad highlighting ties between candidate Obama and Bill Ayers, formerly of the Weather Underground. The Obama campaign and supporters were furious, and they pressured TV stations to pull the ad—a common-enough tactic in such ad spats.
What came next was not common. Bob Bauer, general counsel for the campaign (and later general counsel for the White House), on the same day wrote to the criminal division of the Justice Department, demanding an investigation into AIP, "its officers and directors," and its "anonymous donors." Mr. Bauer claimed that the nonprofit, as a 501(c)(4), was committing a "knowing and willful violation" of election law, and wanted "action to enforce against criminal violations."
AIP gave Justice a full explanation as to why it was not in violation. It said that it operated exactly as liberal groups like Naral Pro-Choice did. It noted that it had disclosed its donor, Texas businessman Harold Simmons. Mr. Bauer's response was a second letter to Justice calling for the prosecution of Mr. Simmons. He sent a third letter on Sept. 8, again smearing the "sham" AIP's "illegal electoral purpose."
Also on Sept. 8, Mr. Bauer complained to the Federal Election Commission about AIP and Mr. Simmons. He demanded that AIP turn over certain tax documents to his campaign (his right under IRS law), then sent a letter to AIP further hounding it for confidential information (to which he had no legal right).
The Bauer onslaught was a big part of a new liberal strategy to thwart the rise of conservative groups. In early August 2008, the New York Times trumpeted the creation of a left-wing group (a 501(c)4) called Accountable America. Founded by Obama supporter and liberal activist Tom Mattzie, the group—as the story explained—would start by sending "warning" letters to 10,000 GOP donors, "hoping to create a chilling effect that will dry up contributions." The letters would alert "right-wing groups to a variety of potential dangers, including legal trouble, public exposure and watchdog groups digging through their lives." As Mr. Mattzie told Mother Jones: "We're going to put them at risk."
None of this proves that Mr. Obama was involved in the IRS targeting of conservative nonprofits. But it does help explain how we got an environment in which the IRS thought this was acceptable.
By the way: Obama is fond of saying "the first victims of Muslim terrorism are other Muslims." In the same way, the first victims of Obama's "chilling" strategy were supporters of Hillary Clinton and then John Edwards-- they, too, were "put at risk."
Whoah: JFK Was a Nazi-Admirer As Late as 1937
We all knew his father had Nazi leanings and was quite a raving anti-semite, but to the extent this has been admitted it has always been insisted this was only Joe Kennedy's thing, not JFK's.
Here now the news.
President Kennedy's travelogues and letters chronicling his wanderings through Germany before WWII, when Adolf Hitler was in power, have been unearthed and show him generally in favour of the movement that was to plunge the world into the greatest war in history.
Fascism?' wrote the youthful president-to-be in one. 'The right thing for Germany.'
In another; 'What are the evils of fascism compared to communism?'
And on August 21, 1937 - two years before the war that would claim 50 million lives broke out - he wrote: 'The Germans really are too good - therefore people have ganged up on them to protect themselves.'
And in a line which seems directly plugged into the racial superiority line plugged by the Third Reich he wrote after travelling through the Rhineland: 'The Nordic races certainly seem to be superior to the Romans.'
After visiting two of Hitler's holiday homes, he wrote:
; 'Who has visited these two places can easily imagine how Hitler will emerge from the hatred currently surrounding him to emerge in a few years as one of the most important personalities that ever lived.'
Obama: Hey, You Know Who Should Be Promoted? Victoria Nuland, Shepardress of the False Talking Points
The White House announced Thursday that President Barack Obama intends to nominate Victoria Nuland as assistant secretary for European and Eurasian affairs, a position that requires Senate confirmation.
It's very odd how those who lie are promoted and those who tell the truth are demoted.
You'd almost think that, despite his protestations, Obama did not actually want the truth to come out at all.
Friday Morning News Dump
- Woolwich Terror Suspect Revealed To Be Muslim Convert
- "Youths" Continue Rioting In Sweden
- IRS Targeted Adoptive Parents
- Death Penalty: NJ Restaurants And Bars Caught Selling Colored Rubbing Alcohol As Scotch
- Are You Ready For Huntsman 2016?
- Woman Who Left Americans To Die In Benghazi Accepts Humanitarian Award
- The Medea Benjamin Thing Felt Awfully Staged
- Poland Set For Biggest-Ever Increase In Defense Spending
- JFK, Nazi Admirer?
- Zimmerman Lawyers Want Jurors To See Photos On Trayvon's Cell Phone
- I-5 Bridge Collapses In Washington River
- How Would A 3-D Printed Shotgun Slug Hold Up?
- Steven Crowder's Newest Video
- Mom Spends One Month In Jail For Mooning School Bus
- Eric Holder Will Be Investigating Eric Holder
- Now The Gibson Guitar Raid Makes Sense
- Obama Commerce Secretary Nominee Omitted More That 80 Million Dollars In Financial Disclosures
- Woman's Terrible Plan To Win Back Her Ex-Boyfriend
- Good: Some Unions Are Now Angry Over Health Insurance Overhaul
- Our 2016 Presidential Nominee Is Having His BFF Come Into Town For A Visit
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Top Headline Comments 5-24-13
Happy Friday and Happy Memorial Day Weekend.
Just a cover video from me today and also, note, I'll be out of town until Wednesday.
Be good ya'll.
Close it up
Initial FBI explanation of Todashev shooting in FL no longer operative [Purp]
...Initially, FBI officials said Todashev, 27, became violent and lunged at an agent with a knife while he was being questioned...
...The agent, acting on an "imminent threat," then shot Todashev, they said...
...However, later in the day, some of those officials had backed off that preliminary account, and it's no longer clear what happened in the moments before the fatal shooting, The Associated Press reported...
Easy to lose, hard to regain.
Overnight Open Thread (5-23-2013)
CEO magazine put out its annual business friendliness ranking of the states and here are the bottom 10 states:
And unshockingly they're
all nearly all blue states with blue state legislatures (can you name the exceptions?). And all of them either lost congressional seats or stayed the same during the 2010 reapportionment. So people are voting with their feet.
By contrast the top 10 are almost all red states and most gained seats in Congress. And are in general just nicer places to live.
While scanning last night's ONT I just happened to catch this comment. In context it all makes sense but you won't see anything like this elsewhere in the conservative blogosphere.
499 Posted by: yankeefifth at May 22, 2013 10:37 PM (Z9EHQ)
She's a retard Red Sox fan....but she's OUR retard Red Sox fan.
Don't fuck with peaches, or you'll have to deal with Dildo!
Posted by: CharlieBrown'sDildo at May 22, 2013 10:40 PM (O6Tmi)
After beheading the British soldier the two Jihadi killers fearlessly strode around, demanding people record their statements and only allowing women near the body. The crowd complied.
The women came forward. Children in nearby schools were locked down by their teachers.
This incident illustrates, if nothing else, the endpoint of the social engineering of the West. It has been remarkably effective.
From a certain point of view, the British crowd behaved perfectly and this is the way "they" all want us to behave. The populace sheltered in place, didn't do anything rash, talked to the perpetrators as people. They waited for the police to come and the hospital helicopter to take the corpse away. Some will doubtless get counseling to overcome their shattering experience.
And then they will congratulate themselves on how tough British society is; resilience and all that. The more caring will leave some flowers by a railing and hold a few candle vigils for healing and peace, until these wither and blow away and the news cycle washes up a new object of attention.The attackers knew they were actors in a drama - as keenly watched in their communities as on the BBC. And in that other audience they were asking: "How will the locals behave?" We know now. And that other audience may derive an entirely different lesson from this tableau: "See? Only their women act like men. They follow orders. They are nothing anymore - these Westerners. They are a civilization whose core has been destroyed."
News junkies - which probably includes you and me - are aware of what Mickey Kaus called "undernews" - stories that never quite break out of the blogs. John Edwards' scandal was well-known to most in the political press, but a lot of mainstream media institutions averted their eyes for a long time from the evidence. (Working in the news-gathering profession does not necessarily expose one to undernews, as shown by the woman who didn't understand why President Obama was joking about eating a dog in his 2012 White House Correspondent's Dinner speech.)
Well I've visited Canada often enough to have picked up a bit of the native tongue - mostly common nouns and curses. As best I can tell this is an account of one man's struggle against nature along with the occasional involvement of beer and hockey. Could just be a lucky guess though.
For years, I was a keener, but after my short-lived stint as reeve of Dildo, Nfld., in which I stumped for the still-unpopular Gouge and Screw Tax - dinged in the polls and my approval rating going downhill as fast as a runaway toboggan or a bus shagger - I put the kerfuffle behind me and tried to forget the fact that I'd been soundly turfed, even though Joey Smallwood's buddy had cherry-picked me himself. I got off the chesterfield, threw on my old housecoat and thongs, hucked a forty pounder, half-sack of swish and mickey of goof in a Loblaws bag over my shoulder before leaving my bachelor apartment to head due west past fire halls and hydros and parkades and corner stores in the direction of Dead Rear, Oilberta looking for some kind of joe job - cleaning eavestroughs; stitching hockey sweaters; packing Smarties; anything! - although damned if I knew whether I would find work once I got there.
Since diapers are so bourgeois, square and un-ironic the in thing amongst hipster parents apparently is to simply do without them AKA elimination communication:
Instead of putting diapers on your baby, you wait for them to somehow let you know that they have to shit at which point you run to the toilet and hold them over the bowl so the little fledgling craps in the commode. This week is Go Diaper Free! Week where I live in New York City, a holiday of grossness spearheaded by the assholes that follow this nonsense. So I got to see a hipster dad, handlebar mustache and all, get the "signal" from his baby at a restaurant, try to rush the defecating little bastard to the toilet, and not make it in time. This kid dropped a huge deuce right in the middle of the dining room. The poor bussers had to help this dickhead dad clean it up. He then sat back down and I heard him proudly explain this EC crap to his party. When I went home I looked it up and I saw this article on DNAinfo.com explaining this diaper free bullshit. Like I needed another reason to want to punch a hipster.
In March 2013, the U.S. government invented a new way of calculating GDP. The Financial Times reported that starting from July 2013, U.S. GDP would become 3% bigger due to a change in statistics. [GDP] now includes R&D spending, art, music, film royalties, books, theatre. This change in GDP statistics has not been implemented elsewhere in the world. So the U.S. is the first to accomplish this rewriting of the GDP number.
Research and development (R&D) spending, which shouldn't even be accounted for as investment, adds a significant amount to the U.S. GDP number. It accounts for around 2% of U.S. GDP. Art, music, film royalties, books and theatre add another 0.5% to U.S. GDP. Another adjustment has been made to pension accounting. Previously, pension spending was included in GDP. After this adjustment however, we also look at the "promise" to pay out pensions. So we are talking about imaginary numbers that are now included in GDP. A last example is found in real estate. Commissions, legal bills and expenditures on real estate transactions are included in GDP as "investment." Obviously these expenditures aren't associated with real production.One of the consequences is that comparing the GDP number between other countries and the U.S. is not transparent anymore. It is like comparing apples and oranges. GDP should measure real production (like building a factory) and what the U.S. government added here is not real production. It is a measure of spending in the economy and there are items in the GDP number that don't add real value to the economy (like writing books).
Good news citizens - Miniplenty has raised the chocorat from 30 grams to 25 grams!
What are the odds they got their deposit back?
In Russia excavators move you.
Why? Who knows - these are your highly trained government experts at work here.
The Singapore and French ones actually look pretty tasty - the American ones not so much. How the fuck is it even possible to screw up pizzas and fried chicken?
The Broke Generation are now too poor to shop in Chelsea or even get a proper shagging:
We spent weekends at his country house near Oxford. I never cooked because he employed a chef.
When we had arguments about money, it was because he had spent thousands of pounds on a 17th-century chair on which I was not allowed to sit lest I damage the upholstery, or complained about my smoking because it 'wasn't good' for his Zoffany paintings. The other day I bumped into a mutual friend and I asked after my ex.
'He's not doing so well. He had to sell his house and his art collection,' he explained.
'Did he go bankrupt?' I enquired in horror.
'No, he still earns about £200,000. It's just you have to be an oligarch to live the way he used to.'
These days, many members of the Broke Generation are finding that the money they earn can't even buy them love.
'I can't afford to have sex at the moment,' says my former school friend Rosamund, a slender, 40-year-old lawyer who broke up with her banker boyfriend after he demanded she pay half the rent on his Mayfair flat.She's now ended up in a rented flat in a not-so-nice part of town - and men are an unrequired extra while she battles to pay the bills.
Yahoo group. That is all.
And my Twitter spew.
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Close it up
Evening Open Thread
Here's a piece on a name that just might be getting more mention in the Scandal Summer to come -- Obama's consiglierte, Valerie Jarrett.
Of Course: Despite Claims She Had Nothing to Do With Scandal, And That It Was All "Front Line" (Low-Level) Workers, Lois Lerner's Signature is on Letters to Many Groups Targeted by IRS
I think people have a natural impulse to believe there's some truth in what someone says -- I think we (or I, at least) have a tic somewhere that says "Well, no one lies completely brazenly; there's always some tiny safe harbor of truth their statement takes refuge in."
But that's wrong. Sometimes, people just Straight Up Lie About Everything.
A series of letters suggests that senior IRS official Lois Lerner was directly involved in the agency’s targeting of conservative groups as recently as April 2012, more than nine months after she first learned of the activity.
A superb civil servant. She's certainly earned her taxpayer-paid vacation.
Slight Knock-Down of Eric Holder Story
Some are a little meh on this story, because, they say, the law requires Eric Holder (and no one else) to sign these sorts of warrants.
So, they're saying: Didn't we already sort of know/guess this? The knock-down isn't that the story is false, but that it is, or should have been, obvious, and hence isn't shocking news.
Ehhhh... I guess I admit I didn't consider that.
Still... certainly it's news to me he signed the warrants, given that he'd been so fulsome in noting his complete recusal from decision-making in the AP case.
I guess I was assuming that the signature here, too, may have been delegated.
But it wasn't.
So I insist this is a big story. It adds to what we know. Perhaps many (smarter than I) suspected this was the case, but knowing beats suspecting.
ERIC HOLDER SIGNED OFF ON JAMES ROSEN SEARCH WARRANT, OFFICIAL SAYS
Via NBCNews, Michael Issikoff reporting:
Attorney General Eric Holder signed off on a controversial search warrant that identified Fox News reporter James Rosen as a “possible co-conspirator” in violations of the Espionage Act and authorized seizure of his private emails, a law enforcement official told NBC News on Thursday.
Oh it gets slightly better: Today Barack Obama announced that Eric Holder had agreed to "review" the procedures employed in subpoenaing journalists' phone logs and emails.
In other words: It sounds an awful lot like Obama has appointed Holder to investigate himself.
[Update - JohnE.] That part of Obama's speech:
Journalists should not be at legal risk for doing their jobs. Our focus must be on those who break the law. That is why I have called on Congress to pass a media shield law to guard against government over-reach. I have raised these issues with the Attorney General, who shares my concern. So he has agreed to review existing Department of Justice guidelines governing investigations that involve reporters, and will convene a group of media organizations to hear their concerns as part of that review. And I have directed the Attorney General to report back to me by July 12th.
I'm sure that'll clear everything up.
[Update 2 - JohnE.] Video below from 7 days ago.
Interesting Speculation: Did Joseph Stack's Attack on an IRS Building -- and the Left's False Narrative That This Communist was a "Tea Partier" -- Spur the Political Persecution of the Tea Party by the IRS?
Joseph Stack -- who wrote a paean to the Communist way in his suicide note, which the Washington Post chose to delete in order to make him appear to be a Tea Partier* -- crashed his plane in the IRS building on February 18, 2010.
It is suspected that an unknown incident or directive started the IRS' inspection of Tea Party groups on February 25, 2010. The actual persecution began in March.
Today Obama made special mention of Joseph Stack's suicide/murder, noting it as a terrorist incident.
* Most media continue refusing to acknowledge this.
Here is the end of Stack's suicide note -- often deleted by the media.
saw it written once that the definition of insanity is repeating the same process over and over and expecting the outcome to suddenly be different. I am finally ready to stop this insanity. Well, Mr. Big Brother IRS man, let’s try something different; take my pound of flesh and sleep well.
The communist creed: From each according to his ability, to each according to his need.
The capitalist creed: From each according to his gullibility, to each according to his greed.
–Joe Stack (1956-2010), 02/18/2010
Another Date: WisRich writes:
ntriguing? Bah. How about this date:
***January 27th, 2010.***
The date Obama berated the Supreme Court for striking down McCain-Fiengold and unleashing, gah, free speech from people like the Tea Party folks.
This was the Clarion Call to Action for the progressives at every level of government.
Could be both. January 27 provided the actual motive, while February 18 provided the pretext.
Our Long National Nightmare Is Over: Mid-Level Employee Put on Administrative Leave, So The Scandal Is Now Over
Lois Lerner on administrative leave, which I think means she continues to be paid for not working as "punishment."
It is Now Time To Put This Partisan Witchhunt Behind Us (TM) so that the President Can Get Back to the Job He Was Elected to Do (TM).
Because Middle Class (TM).
Court Which Issued Secret Subpoena for James Rosen's Emails Kept the Filings Secret for a Year and a Half Despite Being Ordered by Another Federal Court to Disclose the Documents
At The Conversation, reported by the Washington Post.
The judge who failed to follow the law has two things to say:
1. He's "sorry."
2. He is conducting a top-down inquiry to discover which of his nameless low-level employees is responsible:
Lamberth blamed a series of administrative errors and said a review of the “performance of the personnel involved is underway.”
Well. That's just wonderful.
Isn't it awfully funny how facts that could have embarrassed Barack Obama kept being inadvertently delayed until after the November 2012 elections?
It's always an accident, and it's always low-level employees.
Royce Lamberth does not appear to be strongly liberal; he is a Reagan appointee. Though note that a "conservative-leaning judge" tends to be, in reality, a liberalish country-club Republican.
Nevertheless, this is so foul-smelling that no, it's not too early to Raise Suspicions. Every goddamn time this Administration oversteps its Constitutional bounds "low-level employees," always acting on their own initiative and without oversight from any higher ups, take pains to conceal the scandal from the public.
And we're always told that the direct beneficiaries of such concealment had nothing at all to do with it.
Trashy Former Pop Star Drinks Her Own Urine on MTV in Ratings Stunt
If you had questions about whether Ke$ha was a classy lady-- questions that really ought not to persist, given that she really spells her name that way, "Ke$ha" -- consider them now resolved.
Some are using this provocation as a justification for renewing the calls for a-la-carte cable subscriptions. "Some" are, in this case, correct.
Anyone who now has cable pays for MTV. Cable companies negotiate a flat payment to a station for carrying it. MTV also collects revenues from advertising, but a major source of its revenue is the automatic "tax" MTV imposes on your cable bill every month. You have no way to avoid paying for MTV-- except for cancelling the service altogether.
Monopolies are generally not permitted to "bundle" services together. And local cable companies are usually monopolies, or, at best, have but one competitor-- and as all of them have instituted this bundling practice and will not stop the practice no matter how much the public clamors for it, the monopolies (or duopolies) at least appear to be in collusion on this point.
MTV will be defended on First Amendment grounds. Here's the thing: I can buy into that defense. I don't want to censor MTV.
But MTV's right to broadcast its expression -- which apparently now includes a strong urine-drinking component -- does not trump any citizen's right to not view that expression, or his right to not pay for/subsidize that expression.
Ke$ha wrote back to the h8rs and claimed "Change the channel if you don't like it."
Sorry, Ke$ha. Almost everyone complaining has changed the channel (if they ever watched MTV at all). But that doesn't change the fact that they are being forced by a monopoly or duopoly to pay for MTV every single month.
It's time for consumer choice in cable subscriptions. No American should be forced by a monopoly to purchase a product he does not want (and in fact may object to for profound philosophical reasons).
MTV can be permitted to continue its descent into Porn for Children (TM) only if citizens are likewise permitted to not subsidize it.
VP Joe Biden: Damn I'm Glad the Jews Control the Media and Push Social Liberalism on the Country
A "Dan Foster Type" explores wisdom of our affably racist Vice President, and notes that The Onion beat him to the sentiment.
Here is some of what Biden had to say on Jewish control of the media:
“I believe what affects the movements in America, what affects our attitudes in America are as much the culture and the arts as anything else,” he said at a Democratic National Committee reception for Jewish American Heritage Month. He cited social media and the sitcom “Will and Grace,” giving Jews a large part of the credit for both.
“I bet you 85 percent of those changes, whether it’s in Hollywood or social media are a consequence of Jewish leaders in the industry,” he said. “The influence is immense, the influence is immense. And, I might add, it is all to the good.
Biden thoughtlessly stamps upon a strange rule in our politically-correct world, and thereby exposes its stupidity for all to see: You're not allowed to say anything about group stereotypes -- stereotyping a group is always Racism You Guys -- unless you're saying that stereotype is a good thing.
So, an angry old codger can spit and say "Jews control the media" and that's bad and racist, but a stupid old codger like Joe Biden can say "Jews control the media, splendid!" and that's philosemetic.
Note the actual observation in both cases is precisely the same -- but one man is adjudged to be a crazy, bitter conspiracist for noting it, because he assigned that observation a negative value, and the other is taken to be a swell-hearted old fool, because he assigned it a positive one.
This is a ridiculous rule, of course. In both cases, the observation is precisely the same -- sort of true, sort of false. The observation cannot become more true because you say it's wonderful, and it cannot become more false because you're critical. The truth of the observation is, of course, perfectly independent of the positive or negative assessment of the situation a speaker may assign to it.
Equally absurd is closely associated rule: The same behavior which is praiseworthy in a minority group is usually depicted in seethingly hostile terms if white people do it. To cite the most obvious example: The practice of Christianity itself. Atheist white liberals will do blackflips to praise the joy and spirituality of the black practice of Christianity, but any white person who subscribes to such a vicious gutter-religion must be contemned or, at least, condescended to.
Speaking of absurd rules of PC: Breitbart's John Nolte notes that a Politico reporter stated that Guantanamo was Obama's "tar baby," and no one in the media noticed or objected.
Nolte's piece is written in an arch way, though I don't expect that the liberal media will comprehend that (should they deign to read it, which they won't). He takes the Politico reporter to task for her "racism."
Of course, he doesn't mean a word of it; he is attempting to illustrate for the media the ludicrousness of their own attacks on conservatives for similar language.
A liberal can say "tar baby" and no one blinks because of course we know no liberals are racist.
If a conservative says it, though, it's proof he's offering "dog whistles" to his fellow racist.
How do we know this? What is the difference between the liberals' use of the expression and a conservative's?
Well, obviously: We know that conservatives are racist, ergo their use of "tar baby" must be racist.
And how do we know they're racist in the first place? Because, of course: They say things like "tar baby." Duh.
This is of course circular reasoning, which is obvious to anyone who gives the situation a moment's inspection, but of course leftists do not give the situation a moment's inspection, because their entire ideology is premised on double standards and creating different Classes of persons, some Officially Privileged (and therefore who can say "tar baby" without fear of being declared a racist) and some Officially Disparaged (for whom many, many words and ideas are off-limits, up to and including the mere criticism of the President).
Of all the many things I despise about the President, the Left, and the Leftist Media, I think this must be the most despicable and unamerican-- this never-ending attempt to create and strengthen a sharp division of Classes of citizenship, Favored and Disfavored, with starkly different rules applying to each.
And what is all the more galling is the claim that simply noting this unamerican Marxist scheme is itself evidence of racism, nearly a crime against the state. To object to one's Official Status as a Disfavored Person is to confirm the Elite's judgment of placing one in the category of Disfavored Person!
After all, if we were more enlightened -- more deserving of the status of Favored Person -- we'd understand the benevolence of the scheme. By critiquing the regime, we only prove that we belong in the category of Disfavored Persons.
NRCC Jumps on "Arrested Development" Buzz with "IRS'ted Development"
Also, The Onion actually wrote a funny piece. Moderate content warning, as you can gather from the excerpt.
Obama Fed Grapes While Urging Press Conference To Enjoy Orgy
WASHINGTON—Standing before members of the White House Press Corps Wednesday afternoon as aides lowered a bunch of grapes into his mouth, President Obama encouraged everyone gathered in the West Wing briefing room to abandon their inhibitions and revel in a wild, drunken orgy.
Sources confirmed Obama, who had initially called the press conference to discuss the progress on an infrastructure development bill, suddenly requested everyone in the room strip off their clothing and strongly urged NBC’s Chuck Todd and CNN’s Jessica Yellin to kick the festivities off by engaging in oral sex in front of the podium.
“This afternoon I will discuss how the new water resource development bill could affect S. 601, but first, I think we should all give in to the basest of our primal urges and drink thirstily from the cup of lust,” said Obama, as the juice of the grapes he was eating ran down his chin and White House staffers placed a wreath of leaves onto his head. “This is a day of excess! So now, release yourselves from your attire and surrender your body and mind to the pleasures of the vita carnalis, and to the sheer majesty of the human flesh.”
Throughout the course of the lascivious ceremony, sources also reported seeing a fully nude White House press secretary Jay Carney prancing between the writhing, sweat-soaked nude bodies sprawled across the room while playing a pan flute and vigorously tugging his erect penis.
“Are we not but beasts, each and every one of us?” Obama roared, as a line of young White House interns frantically playing drums filed into the room followed by servants carrying large trays loaded with slow-roasted boars, cooked turkeys, salted fish, and one large goat on a spit. “Death may visit us all by nightfall, thus do not concern yourself with the petty, ephemeral nature of existence and instead embrace pure pleasure!”
Shock: Obama's Nominee for Secretary of Commerce is a Chicago Billionairess Mega-Donor Crony Who By the Way Understated Her Income by $80 Million
From the Chicago Tribune:
Pritzker, 54, a member of Chicago's wealthiest family, is a business executive whose family founded Hyatt Hotels. She is a Democratic mega-donor and was nominated by longtime friend President Barack Obama, whom she helped get elected.
She's being questioned today by the Senate. They'll be asking about a failed bank of hers, Superior Bank.
Among the issues she likely will be asked about is the 2001 failure of Superior Bank, based in Hinsdale, where Pritzker was chair from 1991 to 1994. Pritzker also handled the matter after her uncle Jay died in 1999. The bank was co-owned by the Pritzker family and aggressively pursued subprime mortgages and car loans.
After having filed a lowball figure for her income, she's recently amended her financial disclosure statements to note "Oh yeah, I received an additional $80 million too, forgot to mention it, such a trifling figure, so sorry about that, shan't happen again."
Her net worth is estimated at $1.85 billion.
Why Didn't Obama Investigate Leaks about the Killing of OBL, or His Kill List?
Kristen Powers reminds everyone that leaks that make Obama look good aren't investigated, even if they reveal information about our most clandestine military units.
There's actually sort of an answer to this, although it's really no answer. Obama probably leaked this stuff himself, or his top minions leaked it with his permission. As President, he does have a lot of power to decide what a "leak" is -- he has some power to declassify things himself.
But that's not really an answer. For one thing, the Administration is surely not following the formal requirements of declassification in its pro-Obama leaks-- that is to say, it's almost certainly not filing an executive order saying such-and-such a fact about SEAL Team 6 is now declassified.
More importantly, Obama is plainly not classifying secrets according to whether they harm national security, but only as to whether they harm his political fortunes. Such a scheme of classification cannot be supported and would not be supported in court were there any way to bring the question before a judge.
GM recalls 20,000 - wheels could fall off [Purp]
...The Detroit automaker told the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration it is recalling 18,871 2013 SRX SUVs in the United States and nearly 1,000 in Canada over concerns that a wheel could eventually fall off...On a deeper more metaphysical, allegorical, alternative mystical land of the unicorns and Sasquatch plane, one might think GM a surrogate for the USA. Are our wheels coming off? Is the 5,000 year arc of recorded human history about to issue a recall on this grand experiment?
What does it matter? Why are we here? The good news is, unlike Venezuela, at least we got bung wrap on the shelves, and some fresh thread smell.
Google Doodle Contest Winner Sabrina Brady's Best Day Ever
Also, no link dump today. Ben's pay has been appropriately docked.
Top Headline Comments 5-23-13
The dude killed by the FBI in Florida implicated himself and Tamerlan Tsarnaev in that unsolved triple homicide in Boston. Suspicion: CONFIRMED.
Obama's going to try to change the subject today to the poll-tested topics of drones. Speaking of, did you hear that drone strikes accidentally killed three Americans, aside from the intentionally-targeted Anwar al-Awlaki?
Healthcare industry officials say they're feeling pressured to donate to a nonprofit with close ties to the White House. Just another day in Obama's America.
Maj. Nidal Hasan fired his attorneys and will represent himself in his upcoming court martial, which starts June 5.
The UK is taking what the Ministry of Defence terms a "common sense precaution" and ordering troops not to wear their uniforms if they're traveling alone to and from work or off bases. Eesh.
Switching gears, though not countries . . . this is a nice story about Helen Mirren.
Overnight Open Thread (5-22-2013)
You're Mitt Romney and it's October 31, 2012 and a witch comes to you and says, "I can help you win 72 percent of the Hispanic vote or give you an extra 4 points of the white vote." Which one do you pick?
Looking at the raw politics of the immigration debate, it's amazing to me that more GOP pros haven't asked themselves some version of this and then bothered to run the numbers to find out which is best for them.
The answer is here (select to see):
But what if Romney had been able to reach a mind-blowing 70 percent of the Hispanic vote? Surely that would have meant victory, right? No, it wouldn't. Romney still would have lost, although by the narrowest of electoral margins, 270 to 268. (Under that scenario, Romney would have won the popular vote but lost in the Electoral College; he could have racked up huge numbers of Hispanic votes in California, New York and Texas, for example, and not changed the results in those states.)
According to the Times' calculator, Romney would have had to win 73 percent of the Hispanic vote to prevail in 2012. Which suggests that Romney, and Republicans, had bigger problems than Hispanic voters.
Doesn't seem all that likely to vote for republicans and more importantly doesn't appear to change who it votes for according to major immigration debates or reform.
Here is the Republican share of the Hispanic vote in those elections:
1980: 38 percent
1984: 37 percent
1988: 30 percent
1992: 29 percent
1996: 23 percent
2000: 36 percent
2004: 43 percent (probably more like 38 percent)
2008: 32 percent
2012: 28 percent
Meanwhile the Immigration bill just gets better and better: Detained Illegal Immigrants Now Get Free Attorneys
The is the video version of David Foster Wallace's commencement speech to the 2005 class of Kenyon College explaining what adult life is really like. I'm not quite sure I agree with his ending conclusion but it is interesting and quite different from your usual boring graduation speeches.
On what it's like to live life with a penis constantly undermining you. It's far worse when you're a rich and famous man.
Do you think your micro penis is the itsy-bitsyest in all of Brooklyn? Then Kings County Bar wants you to sign up for their first annual Smallest Penis in Brooklyn pageant! It's the ultimate wet t-shirt contest for infinitesimal penises.
"The Contest" will be held on Saturday, July 20th starting at 5 p.m. at the bar, located at 286 Siegel Street near the Morgan Avenue L train. The event is open to anyone 21 and over; photo and video submissions will not be accepted, no matter how much you want to send them. Oddly, you don't have to worry about being completely nude, even if you are totally proud of your lilliputian penis: "While nudity is not required, contestants should expect to wear wet underwear (which will be provided)."
Yahoo group. That is all.
Tonight's post brought to you by The Cycle:
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Close it up
CAC's Spaced Out Challenge: A Triple Planet Treat, Bees & a Peek at ISON
The last few editions have featured objects you can't really enjoy naked-eye, but that changes with a special grouping of three planets this Sunday. All you need to see the trio are your eyes and a clear western/ west-northwestern horizon.
With the moon full or damn close to it this week/weekend, most deep sky objects save for double stars and clusters aren't worth the hunt, particularly in urban areas. With a pair of binoculars though, you can enhance your view of the planetary meet-up, eyeing the faint moons of Jupiter for a few minutes before the trio dips below the horizon. This week is the last good one this year for spotting the largest planet in the solar system in evening skies, and your best for eyeing Mercury, the smallest. Venus will hang around a bit longer, and Saturn continues to quietly drift along in Virgo.
Co-blogger rdbrewer sent over a link teasing a first look at Comet Ison, still on track to be visible naked eye in November, courtesy the Slooh Space camera here.
A few 'rons have mentioned the late Jack Horkheimer in the spaced threads. I found a video featuring another rare trio of worlds from 1991 (hint-hint: this stuff doesn't happen that often), and, well, I can see why some of you have mentioned him. He's very, very enthusiastic:
As an added bonus, keep your eyes on the sky after the trio, and if you live in an urban area, keep your binoculars handy for one of the oldest-known and beautiful clusters in the sky, Praesepe, more commonly called the Beehive:
Finding it without a dark sky can be alitle tricky, but thankfully there are some rather bright stars than can show you the way. Those living in rural areas should be able to pick out the faint constellation Cancer, but I kept the map set for those of us in the suburbs:
As always, for your astronomical needs be sure to hit up the Ace storefront right up their in yonder corner, check out the FULP object list for suburban/urban amateurs, clear skies to you, and keep looking up!
Next week: finding the dark secret of the swan
Close it up
Evening Open Thread
Happy Wednesday night.
I was just noticing this a couple of hours ago: While we're talking about scandals, Rubio and McCain are using this opportunity to get their Amnesty Bill passed in the Senate.
Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker Takes Perfectly Innocent Trip to Iowa That Don't Mean Nothin' At All
At the AP, via @conartcritic.
Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker is gearing up for re-election next year, his third race in four years. But the Republican’s courting of out-of-state donors and conservatives, his plans to visit Iowa this week and his refusal to say whether he would serve out another full term if elected suggest he might be seeking a much bigger prize — the presidency.
Not that he will openly acknowledge as much.
“I love being governor,” Walker said recently, just two years after bursting onto the national political scene when he challenged public unions and a year after surviving a recall election. “I’ve had to work hard for it. I’m focused on being governor, and I’m going to continue to be governor as long as the people of the state want me to be governor.”
Walker has a big advantage over any other contender, except, perhaps, Paul Ryan.
When you think about the conservative movement as a whole... haven't we already all sort of run one election with Walker? At least one, I mean. The recall. We were all very passionate about that.
We already have bonded with Walker in a national (effectively) electoral contest, and a big one.
Some guys, when I hear they want to be President, I'm all like, "That guy?" Dismissive about it. It's a weird thing to think of person as President.
But Walker has already sort of crossed that bridge, at least for me. The left elevated him by attacking him. The left gave the right a lot of buy-in into Walker. I'm not sure anything is more advantageous to a candidate than that.
Tamerlan Tsarnaev and His Buddy Murdered Three Men in 2011, Sources Say
JUST IN: Boston bomber Tamerlan Tsarnaev and man killed by FBI in Orlando responsible for 2011 triple homicide, sources say— NBC News (@NBCNews) May 22, 2013
You probably remember hearing that the Brothers Tsarnaever were suspected in a 2011 triple homicide (taking place around the 10th anniversary of the 9/11 attacks).
More information is coming out now. Courtesy of ABCNews, we now know the three men were either beheaded or nearly beheaded (anyone see a trend?). Apparently at least one of them was involved in selling pot; marijuana was tossed over his bloodied body. Drugs and cash were left at the scene of the crime.
Tsarnaev had also been close to one of the murder victims, 25-year-old Brendan Mess, investigators told ABC. The two had been training together in a local gym –each helping the other with a missing element from their fighting arsenal. Tsarnaev, a golden-gloves heavy weight boxer, lacked martial arts training. And Mess, an experienced jiu jitsu competitor, lacked boxing experience.
The two sparred together at an Allston, MA gym called Wai Kru...
Tsarnaev and Mess lived just a few blocks apart in Cambridge, in the same predominantly Russian neighborhood. Authorities believe there were times Mess crashed at Tsarnaev's apartment.
It was unclear if Tsarnaev knew the other men slain, Raphael Teken, 37, and Erik Weissman, 31.
Given that Jafar smoked pot, it is speculated that this was possibly some sort of Honor Killing by Tamerlan, living out some kind of murderous avenger fantasy, most likely due to his increasing interest in a religion that promotes murderous avenger fantasies.
Or it could simply be yet another beheading of members of a group that Muslims don't like, which is everyone who is not Muslim.
Corrected: I wrote the three victims were Jewish. I think I got that off of Twitter-- but now I don't see any real confirmation of that.
Meanwhile.... Things are just lovely in Stockholm.
Update: At Hot Air, NBC reports that Todashev confessed. And it was just a drug deal gone bad.
Or so he said.
Dead Boston bombing suspect Tamerlan Tsarnaev and another man — who was killed by the FBI on Wednesday — murdered three people in Massachusetts after a drug deal went wrong in 2011, law enforcement sources tell NBC News.
Sources say that what began as a drug ripoff ended in a triple homicide when Tsarnaev and friend Ibragim Todashev realized their victims would later be able to identify them.
Darrel Issa: Lerner Waived Her 5th Amendment Rights By Offering Her Claims Before Invoking Her Right to Silence
What I expect is that she will be forced to invoke the 5th for each of a series of pointed questions, such as her previous refusal to investigate an illegal Al Gore donor, and her previous hardline stance against Christian organizations. As well, of course, about her complicity in the IRS scandal.
She will look very bad doing so.
I didn't know the law on this and Allah recaps it at the link: While you may not selectively invoke the 5th in a criminal trial, you probably can at a Congressional hearing, so she won't be held in contempt.
She will, however, be made to look awful, which sounds about right.