(via JBS HQ)
(via JBS HQ)
I am writing this, because of a comment that I received here on my blog.
I wrote the following:
There seems to be some confusion about the First Amendment of the the United States Constitution.
The first amendment DOES NOT guarantee you the right expouse your personal views on blacks and homosexuals on a privately owned television network.
The only thing that the US Constitution protects you from is the repression of free speech from the US GOVERNMENT. A&E network is not Government owned.
Phil Robertson does have the right to express his views, but, A&E is not obligated to allow those rights to be expressed on their network. Nor is Cracker Barrel obligated to carry Duck Dynasty or Duck Commander products. Both are private businesses.
Is what A&E is doing discrimination? Yes. Is it bias against Christians? Absolutely. But it is not a violation of the first amendment at all.
The only thing that A&E is guilty of, is caving to pressure from a gay special interest group.
That is all, nothing else.
I do hope that Phil Robertson and the family of Duck Commander finds a better network, that is friendly to the speech of Christianity. because it is quite obvious that A&E is not.
I just felt the need to clear that up.
This is great; a Trotskyite Zionist goes for a debate; and the minute he sees that he is losing the debate — he storms off the stage, takes his marbles and goes home.
I am referring to the greatest Trotskyite, Zionist, Neoconservative of them all — John Podhoretz.
Bottom line: I’d had a long day and I didn’t see the point in spending more of it getting booed and shushed. So I left. So sue me.
If only we could sue you and your family for all the trillions of dollars — and the 4000+ lives that were wasted in the Iraq War —- which you and your satanic Father were cheerleaders for, after 9/11. Actually, I would very much like to see criminal charges filed against you and few of your Trotskyite friends as well. However, as we realists know; that will never happened to a protected class as yourself.
You want to know what got wrong with Conservatism? You want to know why the GOP is in the shape that it is in? Look no further than this man here and his idiotic Trotskyite magazine that he runs. They are the true enemies of America; they are the ones who put us in the war that almost broke this Nation and ruined its standing in the world.
It is a pity that there is not true justice in this Nation of ours; otherwise, this man and his friends would be sitting in jail cells.
Update: Here is video on the subject regarding a leak by Wikileaks on the text of this monstrous thing: (H/T Democracy Now)
For once there is something that the President is trying to get accomplished, that the Democrats and Republicans in Congress are actually standing against. For once, this is a very good thing.
This comes via Mother Jones:
The Obama administration is nearing the end of negotiations on the biggest free trade deal in US history, the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP). The stakes are high: The pact affects the United States and 11 other countries, domestic policy areas ranging from intellectual property rights to product safety and environmental regulations, and $26 trillion in annual economic output. But in order to secure the deal, President Barack Obama says he wants Congress to grant him permission to sign the final trade agreement, which Congress has not yet seen, without congressional input. A coalition of about 174 conservative Republicans and liberal Democrats in the House signaled this week they would likely vote against giving those trade powers to the president.
The US trade representative Michael Froman and Obama want to finalize the TPP by the end of the year and are pushing Congress to pass legislation soon that grants the president something called fast-track authority, which would allow him to sign the final trade agreement without Congress making any amendments to the pact. If Obama gets what he wants, Congress may not even be able to read the final version of the massive trade deal in its entirety until after lawmakers have signed away their rights to influence it. At that point, the two chambers will only be allowed an up-or-down vote to implement the international pact into domestic law. The administration says fast-track authority will assure other countries that the deal the United States has committed to after three years of negotiations won’t be dismantled by American lawmakers who dislike some of the provisions. No major trade agreement has been finalized without it.
Many conservative Republicans—usually fans of free trade—feel the same way. “For two hundred years of our nation’s history, Congress led our nation’s trade policy,” Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-Minn.) and 22 Republicans in the House wrote in a letter sent to the president Tuesday. “However, recent presidents have seized Congress’ constitutional trade authority and also ‘diplomatically legislated’…using…’Fast Track.’”
“Conservatives have shown themselves to instinctively oppose anything coming out of the Obama White House. So their opposition is not surprising,” Adam Hersh, a trade expert at the liberal Center for American Progress, says in an email. But he adds that the Democratic opposition is new. “We’re seeing the culmination of dissatisfaction with persistent poor trading outcomes for the US economy” such as job outsourcing, he says, and the feeling that Congress has been “kept in the dark.
Rod Dreher, of whom I owe the hat tip to for reporting this story on his blog says:
Trust him? No. It’s not about Obama personally; Congress gave fast-track authority to Bill Clinton, and to George W. Bush. But the House Democrats who oppose this — and the overwhelming majority of the opponents are Dems — say. Establishment Republicans tend to support fast-track authority, but some Tea Partiers are standing with the Dems.
I’m willing to hear the counterarguments, but in general, I’m not in favor of giving this or any president the authority to approve something so enormous and consequential without Congress even seeing it. I could be wrong, but it seems that we’ve had enough trusting political and business elites always to operate in the best interests of the American people.
I feel the same way; this is not about Obama personally. However, it is about policies that undermine the sovereignty of the United States of America and literally it is about policies that put the screws to the American worker. We have enough “free trade” deals in this Country as it is; and they are quite literally draining this Country of its GDP. People want to know why there are no jobs in this Country? This is why! Because crony capitalists and the political elites who protect them; would rather manufacture products overseas on the cheap, instead of giving an American worker a living wage.
This is something that we have to stop and reverse at all costs, if we are ever going to be able to put America back as the manufacturing mecca that it once was.
Looks like the Obama administration is continuing with the same stuff that the Bush administration did.
The head of the National Security Agency (NSA) admitted before a congressional committee this week that he lied back in June when he claimed the agency’s phone surveillance program had thwarted 54 terrorist “plots or events.”
NSA Director Keith Alexander gave out the erroneous number while the Obama administration was defending its domestic spying operations exposed by whistleblower Edward Snowden. He said surveillance data collected that led to 53 of those 54 plots had provided the initial tips to “unravel the threat stream.”
But Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vermont), chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, said on Wednesday during a hearing on the continued oversight of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act that the administration was pushing incomplete or inaccurate statements about the bulk collection of phone records from communications providers.
“For example, we’ve heard over and over again that 54 terrorist plots have been thwarted by the use of (this program),” Leahy said. “That’s plainly wrong,” adding: “These weren’t all plots and they weren’t all thwarted.”
Alexander admitted that only 13 of the 54 cases were connected to the United States. He also told the committee that only one or two suspected plots were identified as a result of bulk phone record collection.
New lies for old. There is no difference anymore. Hence why I am not voting Republican come 2016, unless something changes drastically on that side of the fence; and I know darned well I am not voting for a Democrat, ever again.
What I am referring to is this little display here.
…and of course, the atheists responded in kind. You can head over to gateway pundit to see all of that silliness.
As much as I know that this is going to do absolutely nothing for my credos as an American Nationalist, I have to tell the truth. The truth is my friends is that what Dana Perino said is absolutely wrong and bit ignorant coming from someone of her ilk.
For Dana Perino to say, “If you don’t like it, leave!” is the Christian American moral equivalent of radical Islamists saying “Convert or Die!” It smacks of religious theocratic intolerance towards those who choose not to be of some sort of a faith.
As I have repeatedly stated on this blog, I happen to be a libertarian-minded Conservative, who just happens to be a Christian as well. However, I am not one of those types who preaches intolerance towards anyone who disagrees with my religious beliefs. I am one who truly believes in individual liberty and part of that means tolerating those who are not of a faith of any kind.
Now as for the atheists who vented their spleens at Ms. Perino, they too are wrong and they also seem to have an intolerance towards those who happen to think that this lawsuit is idiotic at best. Therefore, basically, one could say that both sides of this rather moronic conflagration are both wrong, when it comes to tolerance towards those who disagree.
As for the lawsuit, and Beckels ignorance towards the history of the words, “Under God” in the pledge. Here is the history via Wikipedia:
Louis A. Bowman, an attorney from Illinois, was the first to initiate the addition of “under God” to the Pledge. The National Society of the Daughters of the American Revolution gave him an Award of Merit as the originator of this idea. He spent his adult life in the Chicago area and was Chaplain of the Illinois Society of the Sons of the American Revolution. At a meeting on February 12, 1948, Lincoln’s Birthday, he led the Society in swearing the Pledge with two words added, “under God.” He stated that the words came from Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address. Though not all manuscript versions of the Gettysburg Address contain the words “under God”, all the reporters’ transcripts of the speech as delivered do, as perhaps Lincoln may have deviated from his prepared text and inserted the phrase when he said “that the nation shall, under God, have a new birth of freedom.” Bowman repeated his revised version of the Pledge at other meetings.
In 1951, the Knights of Columbus, the world’s largest Catholic fraternal service organization, also began including the words “under God” in the Pledge of Allegiance. In New York City, on April 30, 1951, the Board of Directors of the Knights of Columbus adopted a resolution to amend the text of their Pledge of Allegiance at the opening of each of the meetings of the 800 Fourth Degree Assemblies of the Knights of Columbus by addition of the words “under God” after the words “one nation.” Over the next two years, the idea spread throughout Knights of Columbus organizations nationwide. On August 21, 1952, the Supreme Council of the Knights of Columbus at its annual meeting adopted a resolution urging that the change be made universal and copies of this resolution were sent to the President, the Vice President (as Presiding Officer of the Senate) and the Speaker of the House of Representatives. The National Fraternal Congress meeting in Boston on September 24, 1952, adopted a similar resolution upon the recommendation of its president, Supreme Knight Luke E. Hart. Several State Fraternal Congresses acted likewise almost immediately thereafter. This campaign led to several official attempts to prompt Congress to adopt the Knights of Columbus’ policy for the entire nation. These attempts were eventually a success.
In 1952, Susan Anald wrote a letter to President Truman suggesting the inclusion of “under God” in the Pledge of Allegiance. Mr. Langmack was a Danish philosopher and educator who came to the United States in 1911. He was one of the originators of the Prayer Breakfast and a religious leader in Washington, D.C. President Truman met with him along with several others to discuss the inclusion of “under God” just before “with liberty and justice”.
At the suggestion of a correspondent, Representative Louis C. Rabaut of Michigan sponsored a resolution to add the words “under God” to the Pledge in 1953.
Prior to February 1954, no endeavor to get the Pledge officially amended succeeded. The final successful push came from George MacPherson Docherty. Some American presidents honored Lincoln’s birthday by attending services at the church Lincoln attended, New York Avenue Presbyterian Church by sitting in Lincoln’s pew on the Sunday nearest February 12. On February 7, 1954, with President Eisenhower sitting in Lincoln’s pew, the church’s pastor, George MacPherson Docherty, delivered a sermon based on the Gettysburg Address titled “A New Birth of Freedom.” He argued that the nation’s might lay not in arms but its spirit and higher purpose. He noted that the Pledge’s sentiments could be those of any nation, that “there was something missing in the pledge, and that which was missing was the characteristic and definitive factor in the American way of life.” He cited Lincoln’s words “under God” as defining words that set the United States apart from other nations.
President Eisenhower had been baptized a Presbyterian very recently, just a year before. He responded enthusiastically to Docherty in a conversation following the service. Eisenhower acted on his suggestion the next day and on February 8, 1954, Rep. Charles Oakman (R-Mich.), introduced a bill to that effect. Congress passed the necessary legislation and Eisenhower signed the bill into law on Flag Day, June 14, 1954. Eisenhower stated “From this day forward, the millions of our school children will daily proclaim in every city and town, every village and rural school house, the dedication of our nation and our people to the Almighty…. In this way we are reaffirming the transcendence of religious faith in America’s heritage and future; in this way we shall constantly strengthen those spiritual weapons which forever will be our country’s most powerful resource, in peace or in war.”
On October 6, 1954 the National Executive Committee of the American Legion adopted a resolution, first approved by the Illinois American Legion Convention in August 1954, that formally recognized the Knights of Columbus for having initiated and brought forward the amendment to the Pledge of Allegiance.
That, Mr. Beckel is the facts. Also too, I felt that Bob Beckel’s swipe at the female to his left was classless and uncalled for. Whether or not he was joking with her, it was uncalled for and he should apologize to her for that.
In closing: This Nation would be a better one, if everyone would just learn to tolerate others. I am not referring to people that do stuff like this here; I am referring to those who are different than we are, when it comes to personal beliefs.
So good to see the SBC take a stand and draw the line in the sand, and telling the Sodomite crowd, “No Mas!”
ALPHARETTA, Ga. (BP) — The North American Mission Board has issued new guidelines for Southern Baptist military chaplains in light of the U.S. military’s recognition of same-sex marriage. The guidelines reiterate Southern Baptist doctrine and the expectation that SBC chaplains will not participate in or attend wedding ceremonies for gay members of the military.
“Our chaplains want to uphold the authority and relevancy of Scripture while continuing to serve in a very diverse setting,” said Doug Carver, the retired Army major general who leads NAMB’s chaplaincy efforts. “We believe these updated guidelines will help them do that while still sharing the love and the hope of Christ with everyone.”
The updated guidelines are being issued in response to the military’s repeal of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” and the U.S. Supreme Court’s abolishment of the Defense of Marriage Act. The U.S. military requires all chaplains to be endorsed by a recognized denomination. NAMB serves as the endorsing entity on behalf of Southern Baptists
Here are the updated regulations:
Doctrine — Chaplains will be expected to conduct their ministry in harmony with Article XVIII of the Baptist Faith and Message 2000: “All ministries regarding human sexuality will reflect the historic, natural and biblical view of marriage as God’s lifelong gift of ‘the uniting of one man and one woman in covenant commitment for a lifetime.'”
Pastoral care — The guidelines remind chaplains that Southern Baptists view all sexual immorality as sin that violates God’s biblical standards for purity and that “Responsible pastoral care will seek to offer repentance and forgiveness, help and healing, and restoration through the mercy and grace of Jesus Christ’s sacrificial gift of love on the cross,” the document states.
Restrictions — The guidelines state that “NAMB-endorsed chaplains will not conduct or attend a wedding ceremony for any same-sex couple, bless such a union or perform counseling in support of such a union, assist or support paid contractors or volunteers leading same-sex relational events, nor offer any kind of relationship training or retreat, on or off of a military installation, that would give the appearance of accepting the homosexual lifestyle or sexual wrongdoing. This biblical prohibition remains in effect irrespective of any civil law authorizing same-sex marriage or benefits to the contrary.” Chaplains also are prohibited from participating in jointly-led worship services “with a chaplain, contractor or volunteer who personally practices a homosexual lifestyle or affirms a homosexual lifestyle or such conduct.”
Pluralism — The guidelines acknowledge that SBC chaplains serve in a pluralistic setting but expect, under U.S. Department of Defense guidelines, that the rights and freedoms of chaplains will be protected so they may “preach, teach and counsel in accordance with the tenets of their denominational faith group and their own religious conscience.” In addition, chaplains are expected to: “Treat all service members, regardless of rank or behavior, with Christ-centered dignity, honor and respect while assisting the institutional leadership in its religious mission requirements and responsibilities as guaranteed by the First Amendment to the United States Constitution.”
Also too and I feel this to be very important:
NAMB President Kevin Ezell expressed support for SBC military chaplains and emphasized the need for Southern Baptists to remember them in prayer.
“For many members of our military — especially those deployed around the globe — our chaplains are the only pastors they have. That’s why it is so important that they uphold sound doctrine while showing everyone the love and forgiveness Jesus offers. We all need to be committed to praying for them in these challenging days.”
So, if you are a Christian, pray for these people. Because you know good and well that Satan, via the Liberal crowd will try and attack these chaplains for taking a stand against what the Sodomite world believes is normal.
Good riddance to bad rubbish:
The Video: (apologies for the auto play, there is no way in the embed code to turn it off. )
Former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, the 2008 Republican nominee for vice president responded to a Fox News Channel viewer’s Twitter question Saturday about the possibility of her and conservative talker Mark Levin abandoning the Republican Party and creating something called the “Freedom Party.
Palin suggested she is open to the idea and said that if the GOP continues to abandon its conservative principles, other would follow suit.
“I love the name of that party — the ‘Freedom Party,’” Palin said. “And if the GOP continues to back away from the planks in our platform, from the principles that built this party of Lincoln and Reagan, then yeah, more and more of us are going to start saying, ‘You know, what’s wrong with being independent,’ kind of with that libertarian streak that much of us have. In other words, we want government to back off and not infringe upon our rights. I think there will be a lot of us who start saying ‘GOP, if you abandon us, we have nowhere else to go except to become more independent and not enlisted in a one or the other private majority parties that rule in our nation, either a Democrat or a Republican.’ Remember these are private parties, and you know, no one forces us to be enlisted in either party.”
As I wrote in the comments section of another blog:
I got one thing to say to her.
Don’t let the door hit ya, where the good lord split ya. Who needs her? She’s about the worst spokesperson for the GOP ever.
Let her and Levin go create some third party and LOSE.
GOP is the only way, the thing to do is elect people who are real Conservatives. Like Ron Paul, Like Pat Buchanan, Like Mark Sanford. and not these idiot Neocons.
Yeah, Mark Sanford screwed up; big frigging deal! So did Bill Clinton and everyone still loves him. But, yet, a Conservative messes up and its the end of his career? I call bullcrap on that one. Anyhow, the point is this: We need to elect real Conservatives in the GOP — people that will uphold the Constitution, uphold the rule of law and if the GOP is not doing that — then we elect those who will —- it is just that simple. Starting third parties is a ticket to loserville, just ask Ross Perot.
Just my two cents.
Ol’ Dick (head) Cheney says that we ought to just trust the Government.
The Video: (Via Think Progress)
Okay here is the little small problem with trusting Dick Cheney and his boss George W. Bush, they lied, as in like 935 times in a row, during their Presidency and Vice Presidency.
Prove it, you say? Sure.
Via The Center for Public Integrity, which is as follows:
The Center for Public Integrity was founded in 1989 by Charles Lewis. We are one of the country’s oldest and largest nonpartisan, nonprofit investigative news organizations. Our mission: To enhance democracy by revealing abuses of power, corruption and betrayal of trust by powerful public and private institutions, using the tools of investigative journalism.
Anyhow, here is why I don’t trust Neocons, nor do I trust Democratic Party liberals or Neo-leftists:
President Bush, for example, made 232 false statements about weapons of mass destruction in Iraq and another 28 false statements about Iraq’s links to Al Qaeda. Secretary of State Powell had the second-highest total in the two-year period, with 244 false statements about weapons of mass destruction in Iraq and 10 about Iraq’s links to Al Qaeda. Rumsfeld and Fleischer each made 109 false statements, followed by Wolfowitz (with 85), Rice (with 56), Cheney (with 48), and McClellan (with 14).
The massive database at the heart of this project juxtaposes what President Bush and these seven top officials were saying for public consumption against what was known, or should have been known, on a day-to-day basis. This fully searchable database includes the public statements, drawn from both primary sources (such as official transcripts) and secondary sources (chiefly major news organizations) over the two years beginning on September 11, 2001. It also interlaces relevant information from more than 25 government reports, books, articles, speeches, and interviews.
Consider, for example, these false public statements made in the run-up to war:
- On August 26, 2002, in an address to the national convention of the Veteran of Foreign Wars, Cheney flatly declared: “Simply stated, there is no doubt that Saddam Hussein now has weapons of mass destruction. There is no doubt he is amassing them to use against our friends, against our allies, and against us.” In fact, former CIA Director George Tenet later recalled, Cheney’s assertions went well beyond his agency’s assessments at the time. Another CIA official, referring to the same speech, told journalist Ron Suskind, “Our reaction was, ‘Where is he getting this stuff from?’ “
- In the closing days of September 2002, with a congressional vote fast approaching on authorizing the use of military force in Iraq, Bush told the nation in his weekly radio address: “The Iraqi regime possesses biological and chemical weapons, is rebuilding the facilities to make more and, according to the British government, could launch a biological or chemical attack in as little as 45 minutes after the order is given. . . . This regime is seeking a nuclear bomb, and with fissile material could build one within a year.” A few days later, similar findings were also included in a much-hurried National Intelligence Estimate on Iraq’s weapons of mass destruction — an analysis that hadn’t been done in years, as the intelligence community had deemed it unnecessary and the White House hadn’t requested it.
- In July 2002, Rumsfeld had a one-word answer for reporters who asked whether Iraq had relationships with Al Qaeda terrorists: “Sure.” In fact, an assessment issued that same month by the Defense Intelligence Agency (and confirmed weeks later by CIA Director Tenet) found an absence of “compelling evidence demonstrating direct cooperation between the government of Iraq and Al Qaeda.” What’s more, an earlier DIA assessment said that “the nature of the regime’s relationship with Al Qaeda is unclear.”
- On May 29, 2003, in an interview with Polish TV, President Bush declared: “We found the weapons of mass destruction. We found biological laboratories.” But as journalist Bob Woodward reported in State of Denial, days earlier a team of civilian experts dispatched to examine the two mobile labs found in Iraq had concluded in a field report that the labs were not for biological weapons. The team’s final report, completed the following month, concluded that the labs had probably been used to manufacture hydrogen for weather balloons.
- On January 28, 2003, in his annual State of the Union address, Bush asserted: “The British government has learned that Saddam Hussein recently sought significant quantities of uranium from Africa. Our intelligence sources tell us that he has attempted to purchase high-strength aluminum tubes suitable for nuclear weapons production.” Two weeks earlier, an analyst with the State Department’s Bureau of Intelligence and Research sent an email to colleagues in the intelligence community laying out why he believed the uranium-purchase agreement “probably is a hoax.”
- On February 5, 2003, in an address to the United Nations Security Council, Powell said: “What we’re giving you are facts and conclusions based on solid intelligence. I will cite some examples, and these are from human sources.” As it turned out, however, two of the main human sources to which Powell referred had provided false information. One was an Iraqi con artist, code-named “Curveball,” whom American intelligence officials were dubious about and in fact had never even spoken to. The other was an Al Qaeda detainee, Ibn al-Sheikh al-Libi, who had reportedly been sent to Eqypt by the CIA and tortured and who later recanted the information he had provided. Libi told the CIA in January 2004 that he had “decided he would fabricate any information interrogators wanted in order to gain better treatment and avoid being handed over to [a foreign government].”
The false statements dramatically increased in August 2002, with congressional consideration of a war resolution, then escalated through the mid-term elections and spiked even higher from January 2003 to the eve of the invasion.
It was during those critical weeks in early 2003 that the president delivered his State of the Union address and Powell delivered his memorable U.N. presentation.
In addition to their patently false pronouncements, Bush and these seven top officials also made hundreds of other statements in the two years after 9/11 in which they implied that Iraq had weapons of mass destruction or links to Al Qaeda. Other administration higher-ups, joined by Pentagon officials and Republican leaders in Congress, also routinely sounded false war alarms in the Washington echo chamber.
The cumulative effect of these false statements — amplified by thousands of news stories and broadcasts — was massive, with the media coverage creating an almost impenetrable din for several critical months in the run-up to war. Some journalists — indeed, even some entire news organizations — have since acknowledged that their coverage during those prewar months was far too deferential and uncritical. These mea culpas notwithstanding, much of the wall-to-wall media coverage provided additional, “independent” validation of the Bush administration’s false statements about Iraq.
The “ground truth” of the Iraq war itself eventually forced the president to backpedal, albeit grudgingly. In a 2004 appearance on NBC’s Meet the Press, for example, Bush acknowledged that no weapons of mass destruction had been found in Iraq. And on December 18, 2005, with his approval ratings on the decline, Bush told the nation in a Sunday-night address from the Oval Office: “It is true that Saddam Hussein had a history of pursuing and using weapons of mass destruction. It is true that he systematically concealed those programs, and blocked the work of U.N. weapons inspectors. It is true that many nations believed that Saddam had weapons of mass destruction. But much of the intelligence turned out to be wrong. As your president, I am responsible for the decision to go into Iraq. Yet it was right to remove Saddam Hussein from power.”
Bush stopped short, however, of admitting error or poor judgment; instead, his administration repeatedly attributed the stark disparity between its prewar public statements and the actual “ground truth” regarding the threat posed by Iraq to poor intelligence from a Who’s Who of domestic agencies.
On the other hand, a growing number of critics, including a parade of former government officials, have publicly — and in some cases vociferously — accused the president and his inner circle of ignoring or distorting the available intelligence. In the end, these critics say, it was the calculated drumbeat of false information and public pronouncements that ultimately misled the American people and this nation’s allies on their way to war.
Bush and the top officials of his administration have so far largely avoided the harsh, sustained glare of formal scrutiny about their personal responsibility for the litany of repeated, false statements in the run-up to the war in Iraq. There has been no congressional investigation, for example, into what exactly was going on inside the Bush White House in that period. Congressional oversight has focused almost entirely on the quality of the U.S. government’s pre-war intelligence — not the judgment, public statements, or public accountability of its highest officials. And, of course, only four of the officials — Powell, Rice, Rumsfeld, and Wolfowitz — have testified before Congress about Iraq.
Short of such review, this project provides a heretofore unavailable framework for examining how the U.S. war in Iraq came to pass. Clearly, it calls into question the repeated assertions of Bush administration officials that they were the unwitting victims of bad intelligence.
Above all, the 935 false statements painstakingly presented here finally help to answer two all-too-familiar questions as they apply to Bush and his top advisers: What did they know, and when did they know it?
The real sick and sad part is this; the same people that are having a hissy fit on the right about this program existing under Obama, are the same ones who were perfectly fine with it existing under Bush. In other words, they trusted the program under Bush. like idiots. My question to that crowd is this; why do you not trust Obama? Because he is black or because he is a Democratic Party liberal?
Anyone and I mean anyone, who puts their trust in this Government of ours, based upon partisanship is nothing more than a darned fool in my opinion. Both of these political parties are two sides of the same coin and that is corruption and big Government socialism. Both parties promote it, both parties contribute to it. Government hand outs are Government hand outs; whether it be in the forum of welfare or Government subsidies. It is big Government statist and it flies in the face of our Constitution and in the face of what this great Nation was founded upon.
Others: Prairie Weather
Within hours of the disclosure that the federal authorities routinely collect data on phone calls Americans make, regardless of whether they have any bearing on a counterterrorism investigation, the Obama administration issued the same platitude it has offered every time President Obama has been caught overreaching in the use of his powers: Terrorists are a real menace and you should just trust us to deal with them because we have internal mechanisms (that we are not going to tell you about) to make sure we do not violate your rights.
Those reassurances have never been persuasive — whether on secret warrants to scoop up a news agency’s phone records or secret orders to kill an American suspected of terrorism — especially coming from a president who once promised transparency and accountability.
The administration has now lost all credibility on this issue. Mr. Obama is proving the truism that the executive will use any power it is given and very likely abuse it. That is one reason we have long argued that the Patriot Act, enacted in the heat of fear after the 9/11 attacks by members of Congress who mostly had not even read it, was reckless in its assignment of unnecessary and overbroad surveillance powers.
Poop, meet fan.
Others: Alan Colmes’ Liberaland, Politico, BuzzFeed, Yahoo! News, Washington Post, Hit & Run, The Monkey Cage, Washington Wire, The World’s Greatest …, The Daily Caller, Law Blog,VentureBeat, Business Insider, Mediaite, The PJ Tatler, Washington Free Beacon, Hot Air, Weasel Zippers, The Huffington Post, Salon, ComPost, The Week, Guardian, NO QUARTER USA NET, First Read, Mashable, American Spectator, New Republic, msnbc.com, Washington Monthly, Daily Kos,The Atlantic Wire, Firedoglake, TechCrunch, The Maddow Blog and Library of Law & Liberty – Via Memeorandum
There are a ton of opinions on this subject and we’ll get to those in a moment.
But first the story:
The National Security Agency is currently collecting the telephone records of millions of US customers of Verizon, one of America’s largest telecoms providers, under a top secret court order issued in April.
The order, a copy of which has been obtained by the Guardian, requires Verizon on an “ongoing, daily basis” to give the NSA information on all telephone calls in its systems, both within the US and between the US and other countries.
The document shows for the first time that under the Obama administration the communication records of millions of US citizens are being collected indiscriminately and in bulk – regardless of whether they are suspected of any wrongdoing.
The secret Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court (Fisa) granted the order to the FBI on April 25, giving the government unlimited authority to obtain the data for a specified three-month period ending on July 19.
Under the terms of the blanket order, the numbers of both parties on a call are handed over, as is location data, call duration, unique identifiers, and the time and duration of all calls. The contents of the conversation itself are not covered.
But, there is a big difference this time:
Under the Bush administration, officials in security agencies had disclosed to reporters the large-scale collection of call records data by the NSA, but this is the first time significant and top-secret documents have revealed the continuation of the practice on a massive scale under President Obama.
The unlimited nature of the records being handed over to the NSA is extremely unusual. Fisa court orders typically direct the production of records pertaining to a specific named target who is suspected of being an agent of a terrorist group or foreign state, or a finite set of individually named targets.
Which sounds about right for the Democrats, because they are perfectly fine with Government of a massive scale.
Now there are two very important opinions on this subject that I want you to see. They are same political slant; however, the opinions are very different. Please go check out Michelle Malkin’s take and Ed Morrissey’s take on this subject. While I agree on Michelle Malkin’s assessment, I really do not agree with her narrative at all. If you are smart and read her a good deal, you will know what I am talking about.
Now there is one thing that Ed Morrissey wrote that I, as an Independent, and someone who believes that the war on terror is a very real thing and that we should at least try to keep America safe, without trampling on our constitutional rights. I believe this to be very true and very profound statement coming from someone like Mr. Morrissey:
Hypocrisy is an unfortunately ubiquitous condition in politics, but in the case of NSA seizing Verizon’s phone records, it’s particularly widespread. Some of the people expressing outrage for the Obama administration’s efforts at data mining had a different attitude toward it when Bush was in office. Conversely, we’ll see some people defending Obama who considered Bush evil incarnate for the same thing.
Either way, we’re left with the situation of having the federal government seizing private records without any meaningful civil due process that engages the citizens affected, whether that includes actual wiretaps or just cataloguing our calls and movements. Perhaps this will move this issue out of the partisan sphere and into a common ground in which we can all work to define exactly how far we’re willing to go in trading privacy for security. In order to get there, we’d all better recognize the hypocrisy that has abounded on this issue for far too long, and start thinking about higher principles than party affiliation when it comes to national security and constitutional protections.
Now that last part that I underlined, is something I wholeheartedly agree with. When the story broke about Bush and Co. came about the wiretaps, I remember Keith Olbermann doing a special comment on it and I admired him for standing up. Now, where’s Keith? Where are the liberals who thought that this was much too intrusive? Where are they now? Anyone? Anyone? Bueller? Bueller?
My hat tip goes to Glenn Greenwald for putting principles over partisanship and getting this story to the masses. Glenn has been about the only liberal who has stood up and pointed out that Obama Administration has continued the policies of the George W. Bush Administration and in some cases; like this one here — has expanded them to an alarming degree. Yes, this is overreach and it is alarming and I do hope the Congress does something about it.
Others: Hullabaloo, Yahoo! News, Washington Wire, Washington Monthly, New York Times,ThinkProgress, Politico, Firedoglake, BuzzFeed, CNN, Forbes, Joshua Foust, The World’s Greatest …, msnbc.com, The Atlantic Wire, JustOneMinute, American Spectator, Democracy in America,WorldViews, TIME, Business Insider, Examiner, The Fix, News Desk, Associated Press, New Republic, Daily Kos, The Maddow Blog, Mashable, Wake up America, Wonkblog, The Huffington Post, Taylor Marsh, The Volokh Conspiracy, Mediaite, Electronic Frontier Foundation, Library of Law & Liberty, Moon of Alabama, The Daily Caller, TechCrunch, Wall Street Journal, Engadget, Betsy’s Page, Patterico’s Pontifications, AllThingsD, Outside the Beltway, Post Politics, Informed Comment,Nice Deb, Real Clear Politics, Wired, The Gateway Pundit, The Week, Illinois Review,AMERICAblog, Pirate’s Cove, CANNONFIRE, VentureBeat, No More Mister Nice Blog, First Read,Prairie Weather, The PJ Tatler, Telegraph, The Hinterland Gazette, Alan Colmes’ Liberaland, Weasel Zippers, Jammie Wearing Fools, GigaOM, Corrente, The Spectacle Blog, Gawker, Boing Boing, The Raw Story, Shakesville, Secrecy News, The Verge, Conservatives4Palin, susiemadrak.com, Sense of Events, Taegan Goddard’s …, Le·gal In·sur·rec· tion, The BLT, emptywheel and Overlawyered Via Memeorandum
My friends, I was very, very wrong and for that, I am terribly sorry.
However, there are many things that have come up since then, which I simply cannot defend.
My friends, the “Giving the benefit of the doubt” of the President and his Administration by this writer and blogger are over. There is no doubt in my mind that the Obama administration; much like the Administration of George W. Bush, became consumed with a lust for power and abused and exploited the office of President of the United States and the instruments of Governmental office for political purposes.
I leave you with two videos:
Update: Better clip via The American Spectator:
The Democrats have screwed themselves out of ever winning an election; for like oh, maybe the next 2 major election cycles. This is the sad part, Obama and his Administration promised Americans that he would be a clean break from the policies and practices of President George W. Bush and his Administration and sadly, it turns out that Obama and his Administration are just as bad; if not even worse. As I wrote before, it is sad ending to a Presidency that offered so much to give; but ended up delivering little or nothing at all, in the realm of change.
It is going to be a long, hot, nasty, political summer for America, Americans, Black Liberal Americans and for Washington D.C.. I just hope that cool heads prevail. But, I really do fear the worst in yet to come.
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Update #1: Franklin Graham says they were targeted. Those rat bastards have no shame at all.
Update #3: I am just going to say this and get it off my chest: