Friday, 07 June 2013

IS BEING ATTORNEY GENERAL AN OUT-OF-BODY EXPERIENCE?

Ken Berwitz

I very often quote the folks over at powerlineblog.com.  My reason, as you might guess, is that they are so often correct about so many things.

Well, today is no exception.  John Hinderaker has written a superb piece in which he notes - more in disgust than bemusement - that the Obama administration is comprised of people who do not take any responsibility for their actions.  And, other than Barack Obama himself, no one more typifies this more completely than the disgraceful, dishonest, toady and Obama sock-puppet, Attorney General eric holder.

The following excerpt provides Mr. Hinderaker's brilliant evaluation of holder:

Eric Holder is the perfect attorney general for the Obama administration. As his Department of Justice sinks deeper and deeper into scandal, he retains a remarkable objectivity. Nothing that happens in the department that he ostensibly runs is, apparently, his doing. His NBC interview with Pete Williams is a classic. Asked about the controversies over DOJs subpoena of the Associated Press and the search warrant it executed for James Rosen's emails, Holder replied:

I'm a little concerned that things have gotten a little out of whack ... I think we can do a better job than we have. We can reform those regulations, reform those guidelines to better reflect that balance.

So things have "gotten a little out of whack" on Holder's watch. Is that because of instructions he gave his subordinates? Because he approved applications for search warrants that he shouldn't have? Holder's passive voice takes no responsibility. And how about those "regulations" and "guidelines" that need to be reformed? Those are regulations and guidelines of the Department of Justice. Which Holder allegedly runs. He could "reform" them with a stroke of the pen. Having been AG for going on five years now, he has failed to do so. Nor did the thought of reforming those regulations and guidelines ever, apparently, occur to him until the AP and Rosen scandals came to light. And, by the way, we have no reason to think that these two instances are the only ones. In all likelihood, there are many other subpoenas and search warrants about which we know nothing, but which will provoke outrage when they eventually come to light.

Hinderaker goes on, and even provides an equally brilliant cartoon depiction of this woeful adminstration by the great Michael Ramirez.

We have elected, and now re-elected, an administration filled with people whose explanation of their failures is either that it is the fault of the previous administration or that it somehow just sort of happened, as if their being in charge of the government is an out-of-body experience in which they just look from a distance and provide evaluations...while taking full credit for anything that turns out well, of course.  

The Obama administration, with a scary degree of media complicity, is taking us down a path I'm not entirely sure we can be walked back from.  I have never worred as much about the future of this country as I worry about it today.


THE QUOTE OF THE DAY

Ken Berwitz

Today's quote is from President Barack Obama.  He was talking about the fact that his administration has used the Patriot Act, enacted a month and a half after the 9/11 attack for the purpose of surveilling people under suspicion of terrorist activities, to spy on just about everyone - no suspicion of anything necessary.  Please also consider it an IQ test:

"Nobody is listening to your telephone calls.  That's not what this program is about. As was indicated, what the intelligence community is doing is looking at the numbers and durations of calls. They're not looking at names and they're not looking at content, but sifting through this so-called meta data, they may identify potential leads with respect to people that might engage in terrorism."

"I think on balance we have established a process and a procedure that the American people should feel comfortable about"

Ok, there's the quote.  Now comes the IQ test.  Do you believe this hot, steamy load of BS?

Before answering:  did you believe Barack Obama when he said al-qaeda was almost non-existent?  Did you believe him when he said that the Benghazi massacre was because of a video tape almost no one ever saw?   Did you believe him when he said that ObamaCare would lower the cost of health care?  Did you believe him when he said that the "stimulus package" would blow down the deficit?

Ok, please give me your answer:  do you believe this hot steamy load of BS? 

If the answer is yes, please signify by saying "I am completely, unconditionally, owned and operated by Barack Obama, and will unquestioningly believe anything he says".

Why did I give him Quote Of The Day honors?  Are you kidding?  There isn't even any second place.


JAMES CLAPPER: FROM MUSLIM BROTHERHOOD DUPE TO LIAR

Ken Berwitz

"The term Muslim Brotherhood is an umbrella term for a variety of movements. In the case of Egypt, a very heterogeneous group, largely secular, which has eschewed violence and has decried al-Qaeda as a perversion of Islam,":  James Clapper, Director of National Security, February 10, 2011.

James Clapper should have been fired on the spot for that assessment of an organization our own state department classifies, with complete justification, as a terrorist organization.

But, no, in the age of Obama being a Muslim brotherhood dupe is not grounds for dismissal at all.  Clapper stayed.

Now, fast-forward to March 12th of this year.  Here, via Carlos Munoz's article at thehill.com, is what the same James Clapper had to say about domestic surveillance:

"Does the NSA collect any type of data at all on millions or hundreds of millions of Americans?" committee member Sen. Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) asked Clapper during the March 12 hearing. 

In response, Clapper replied quickly: "No, sir." 

"There are cases where they could inadvertently perhaps collect [intelligence on Americans], but not wittingly," the U.S. intelligence chief told Wyden and the rest of the committee. 

That said, "particularly in the case of NSA and CIA, there are structures against tracking American citizens in the United States for foreign intelligence purposes," Clapper added. 

Both agencies are focused on foreign intelligence collection, "and that's what those agencies are set up to do," he added.

Conducting surveillance on Americans inside U.S. borders is something "they do not engage in," the intelligence chief added. 

In February, 2011 he was a dupe.  In March, 2013 he was a liar.  And today?  He continues to to be our Director of National Security anyway.

Is there any bottom to this administration?  Because I can't say I've found one yet.


WHILE WE'RE ON THE SUBJECT OF LIES....

Ken Berwitz

.....anyone who tells you the jobs numbers which just came out today are goood, is either grossly ignorant, or flakking for this amazingly inept administration.

Here are excerpts from Wayne Root's excellent piece for weeklystandard.com, which lays out the reality of our jobs situation as plain as day:

Today we heard that 175,000 jobs were created. The stock market soared upon hearing the news. Happy Days are here again. But are they?

Just beneath the headlines is nothing but tragic news. First, last month's jobs figures were adjusted downward. April's jobs increase was revised downward from 165,000 to 149,000. Isn't it a funny coincidence that the revisions are almost always downward?

Even worse is the kind of jobs being created. Here's a fact for you: The industries with the strongest employment growth in the last month were temporary help agencies.

No wonder Obama supports amnesty for illegal immigrants. Almost every job he is creating is tailor-made for someone who has no skills, education, or legal papers.

Of the 175,000 jobs supposedly created in May (wait for the downward revision next month), 122,000 were in low wage industries. Just take one key industry with good jobs and high wages - manufacturing. Jobs in that industry were NEGATIVE 8000 in May.

More proof of the horrible quality of the jobs created: the average hourly earnings of American workers was flat again....even while the cost of goods they need (gas for their auto, home heating oil, groceries) continue to skyrocket. Even while higher taxes decrease take-home pay. The media continues to lie and call this a "recovery" even though the average middle class American keeps falling further and further behind.

By all means use my link and read every word of Mr. Root's article, because it has much, much more than what I have excerpted.  And, by all means, use Mr. Root's link and read the actual data, so you will see how accurate he is with your own eyes.

Then wonder along with me what this country was thinking when we reinstalled Obama & Co. for another four years.

Zeke .... .... 175,000 jobs were created in May .... but 420,000 entered the labor market. .... Looking at the record low percent of home ownership, shuttered stores all over, percent of households on food stamps, terribly low GDP growth coming out of a recession .... .... almost any indicator is gloomy. ...... ... (06/07/13)


WHY MORE GUN CONTROL LAWS WON'T HELP CHICAGO

Ken Berwitz

Please read this story in today's Chicago Tribune, written by Rosemary Sobol (and too small to excerpt from - sorry Rosemary).  Then tell me how new, stricter gun control laws would change any part of it:

A 14-year-old boy was arrested after he dropped a silver and black handgun while crossing North Michigan Avenue.

As two police officers watched near Chicago Avenue, the boy bent down and picked up the gun from the median and tucked it into his waistband late Thursday afternoon, authorities said.

The officers arrested him and he was cited in a juvenile petition with unlawful use of a weapon, police said. The boy spent the night at the Juvenile Detention Center, police said.
 
His mother, reached by telephone at her Austin home, said authorities were "wrong" for having cited him and indicated they were not interested in listening to her son's side of the story.

"My son's side of the story doesn't count," she said. "They're going to make it whatever they want."

After being asked if her son had a gun, she said: "I'm not at liberty to say, you'll have to discuss that with his lawyer," and hung up.

A 14 year old, walking down the street with an illegally obtained gun (it must be illegal, unless they reduced the age to 14 this morning)?  Asking again:  how would new gun control laws - or, for that matter, any of the current ones - have any relevance in this situation?  Anyone?

And while we're asking questions, here's another:  what kind of a "mother", from her home in a different state by the way (where does this child live?) would worry less about her 14 year old packing a gun and more about "his side of the story" after he is arrested for walking down the city's main shopping street with a gun in his possession?  What side of the story would that be? 

Let me finish by reiterating a point I made just last week:

Yes, there should be strict gun control laws, so that we minimize guns legally being put into the wrong hands.

But, no, this has absolutely nothing to do with what you just read about:  a 14 year old in possession of an illegal gun, thus in complete disregard of those laws.  These are TWO SEPARATE ISSUES.

The sooner we realize this - and realize that the politicians getting applause for proposing more and more gun control laws are not doing squat about gun violence in places like Chicago - the closer we are to realistically dealing with this scourge.


THE NEW JOBS DATA

Ken Berwitz

The new jobs data?  Here from Investors Business Daily, is the story.

Although somewhat better than expected, the 175,000 net jobs created in May continues the historically tepid jobs growth trend that has come to characterize the now four-year old economic recovery. The result has been continued high unemployment, a vast pool of long-term jobless, and unprecedented number of people who've dropped out of the labor force.

Highlighting the weakness of the May report is the fact that the number of unemployed climbed by nearly the same amount as jobs created - 101,000 - nudging the unemployment rate up to 7.6%.

As a result, there are still 2.4 million fewer people working than there were in January 2008, the previous jobs peak. And since the recovery started in June 2009, the number of jobs has increased a mere 3.9%, well below the post-World War II average of 9.7%.

In fact, had this jobs recovery merely kept pace with average of the previous 10, there would be 7.6 million more people working today, and the unemployment rate would be less than half its current level.

Now watch how much of mainstream media, and the low-information crowd, read these data, see what they want to see, and misunderstand what is happening in front of their eyes.

Sad, but almost 100% certain.


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