Fast and Furious: the targeted cartel heads were our informants

February 10, 2012

Great. Just great. As they say on Twitter, #EpicFail :

The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives has acknowledged that guns were allowed into the hands of Mexican criminals for more than a year in the hope of catching “big fish.”

The memorandum from staffers with the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform says the FBI and Drug Enforcement Administration were investigating a drug-trafficking organization and had identified cartel associates a year before the ATF even learned who they were. At some point before the ATF’s Fast and Furious investigation progressed — congressional investigators don’t know when — the cartel members became FBI informants.

“These were the ‘big fish,'” says the memo, written on behalf of Rep. Darrell Issa, R-Calif., and Sen. Charles Grassley, R-Iowa. “DEA and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) had jointly opened a separate investigation targeting these two cartel associates….Yet, ATF spent the next year engaging in the reckless tactics of Fast and Furious in attempting to identify them.”

According to Issa and Grassley, the cartel suspects, whose names were not released, were regarded by FBI as “national-security assets.” One pleaded guilty to a minor offense. The other was not charged. “Both became FBI informants and are now considered unindictable,” the memo says. “This means that the entire goal of Fast and Furious — to target these two individuals and bring them to justice — was a failure.”

Representatives with the Justice Department and its subagencies declined to comment.

In other words, not only did the right hand not know what the left hand was doing, but all the fingers on the same hand were blithering idiots. In sum, one sub-agency of the US Department of Justice was supplying untraceable guns to murderous cartels to catch drug lords working as informants for another sub-agency of the US Department of Justice.

And all it cost was the life of Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry, possibly that of ICE Agent Jaime Zapata, and over 300 Mexican nationals.

I can understand why DoJ representatives declined to make a statement. They probably wanted to consult with their defense attorneys, first.

Read the rest at Bob Owens’ personal blog.

RELATED: Earlier Gunwalker posts.

(Crossposted at Sister Toldjah)


Gunwalker: three more murders linked to Obama admin. scandal

September 15, 2011

CBS reporter Cheryl Attkisson has done the best work among MSM journalists on the growing scandal surrounding Operation Fast & Furious, having been on it since it broke early this year. Now she’s filed a report about three more murders tied to guns the US government knowingly let fall into the hands of Mexican drug cartels:

Weapons linked to ATF’s controversial “Fast and Furious” operation have been tied to at least eight violent crimes in Mexico including three murders, four kidnappings and an attempted homicide.

According to a letter from U.S. Assistant Attorney General Ronald Weich to Rep. Darrell Issa (R-CA) and Sen. Charles Grassley (R-Iowa), the disclosed incidents may be only a partial list of violent crimes linked to Fast and Furious weapons because “ATF has not conducted a comprehensive independent investigation.”

When added to the guns found at the murder scene of Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry in the U.S., the newly-revealed murders in Mexico bring the total number of deaths linked to Fast and Furious to four.

According to the Justice Department letter:

One AK-47 type assault rifle purchased by a Fast and Furious suspect was recovered Nov. 14, 2009 in Atoyac de Alvarez, Mexico after the Mexican military rescued a kidnap victim.

On July 1, 2010, two AK-47 type assault rifles purchased by Fast and Furious suspects were recovered in Sonora, Mexico after a shootout between cartels. Two murders were reported in the incident using the weapons.

On July 26, 2010, a giant .50 caliber Barrett rifle purchased by a Fast and Furious suspect was recovered in Durango, Mexico after apparently having been fired. No further details of the incident were given.

Click through for the rest.

So, which scandal do you think will bring about the first cabinet-level resignations and/or a special prosecutor? Gunwalker, in which people have died, or Solyndra, into which the White House sank one-half billion of our dollars into a company it knew was failing? I think it’s almost a dead heat.

So many scandals, so little time.

via Moe Lane

(Crossposted at Sister Toldjah)


Oh my. FBI raids bankrupt Obama-favorite Solyndra

September 8, 2011

That’s the California solar-power manufacturer that somehow managed to secure a $535 million, federally-guaranteed (1) loan through the Department of Energy at a sweetheart interest rate, even though their financial condition and business plan never warranted it. But, and I’m sure it’s a coincidence, the major shareholder is a top Obama donor and donations bundler.

And now they’re bankrupt, the investor gets reimbursed with taxpayer money, and the FBI is kicking-in the door:

Just days after the company filed for bankruptcy protection, federal agents swarmed around the Solyndra facilities in Fremont to execute a search warrant.

FBI agents were joined by officials from the Department of Energy’s Office of the Inspector General in the early morning operation.

Officials would say little about the search, which seemed to center on the Solyndra buildings on Page Avenue off Interstate 880.

“Everything is under seal,” said Julianne Sohn, a spokeswoman for the FBI.

Agents began executing their search about 7:30 a.m., Sohn said. More agents arrived in SUVs at 8:40 a.m.

The action by federal agents comes a week after the solar manufacturer abruptly closed, laying off about 1,000 workers, and two days after the company filed for bankruptcy protection.

Solyndra spokesman Dave Miller said the search came as a surprise, but he emphasized the company is “fully cooperating” with federal officials. He said he did not know the purpose of the search, but he speculated it could have something to do with the $535 million in loan guarantees the Department of Energy awarded to Solyndra.

Gee, ya think??

Read the report from ABC yesterday on the loan guarantees and unusually low interest rates for background, but here’s an excerpt that I’m sure you’ll find entertaining:

Solyndra’s most prolific financial backer is George Kaiser, an Oklahoma oil billionaire who was a bundler of campaign donations for Obama’s 2008 race. Kaiser’s Argonaut Ventures and its affiliates have been the single largest shareholder of Solyndra, according to SEC filings and other records. The company holds 39 percent of Solyndra’s parent company, bankruptcy records filed Tuesday show.

Under terms of the bankruptcy filing, investors including Argonaut — which led a $75 million round of financing for Solyndra earlier this year — will stand in line before the federal government and other creditors.

You know, I do believe I hear the House Energy Committee warming up in the wings.

Kaiser, not surprisingly, was a frequent White House visitor.

Without a doubt, this deal stinks to the heavens. Not only is it a perfect  illustration of why “green jobs” –or any uneconomic, government-subsidized industry– is a doomed-from-the-start waste of public money, but it also reeks of political favoritism, backroom deals, and downright corruption.

What was it Sarah Palin said the other day? Oh, yeah

They use [public money] to bail out their friends on Wall Street and their corporate cronies, and to reward campaign contributors, and to buy votes via earmarks. There is so much waste. And there is a name for this: It’s called corporate crony capitalism. This is not the capitalism of free men and free markets, of innovation and hard work and ethics, of sacrifice and of risk. No, this is the capitalism of connections and government bailouts and handouts, of waste and influence peddling and corporate welfare. This is the crony capitalism that destroyed Europe’s economies. It’s the collusion of big government and big business and big finance to the detriment of all the rest – to the little guys. It’s a slap in the face to our small business owners – the true entrepreneurs, the job creators accounting for 70% of the jobs in America, it’s you who own these small businesses, you’re the economic engine, but you don’t grease the wheels of government power.

And I’ll bet you my last dollar that Solyndra is a $535,000,000 example of just what she was denouncing.

Between this and Gunwalker, Obama is going to have an… “interesting” 2012.

via Zombie

RELATED: Also check out Power Line and Hot Air.

UPDATE: At Power Line, historian Steven Hayward raises an interesting possibility — What if the raid is an attempt by Holder to cover-up what happened at Solyndra and block any congressional inquiry by hiding behind the privilege of a claim of an “ongoing investigation?”

Footnote:
(1) As in, guaranteed with our money.

(Crossposted at Sister Toldjah)


Oregon scandal, another special election in the offing?

July 23, 2011

What is it with congressmen and their evident inability to keep their pants zipped? Now it’s Democrat David Wu of Oregon, who stands accused of making unwanted sexual advances to a teenaged girl:

According to the Beaver State-based outlet, the daughter of a longtime friend and campaign donor accused the Democratic congressman of pursuing an unwanted sexual encounter said to have occurred last year. The young woman reportedly raised the matter in a voicemail left at Wu’s Portland office this past spring. An unnamed source tells the Oregonian that she sounded “distraught” in her message.

This is not the first time that Wu has come under scrutiny over matters unrelated to his work in the political domain. Earlier this year, the congressman found himself combating calls to resign in the wake of demonstrating questionable behavior. In February, Wu cited a reaction to mental health drugs in resisting calls to step down.

Apparently Wu’s behavior has been so erratic that his staff staged an intervention:

Three days before the Nov. 2 election, U.S. Rep. David Wu’s most loyal and senior staffers were so alarmed by his erratic behavior that they demanded he enter a hospital for psychiatric treatment.

Their concern had been spiking for weeks in tandem with the Oregon Democrat’s increasingly unpredictable performance on the campaign trail and in private. He was loud and sometimes angry, some of them told The Oregonian. He said kooky things to staff and — more worrisome with a tough election fast approaching — around potential voters and donors.

Most of all, they were worried for Wu, a 55-year-old single father of two children.

Earlier and gentler efforts had failed, so the tight-knit group of high-level staff took other steps, including quiet inquiries about the availability of beds in hospitals in Portland and Washington, D.C., multiple sources familiar with the effort told The Oregonian.

Several staff members confronted Wu for the final time on Oct. 30. Wu’s psychiatrist was brought into that meeting as well, joining the group at the Portland campaign headquarters by speaker phone. The meeting was held after four consecutive days of troubling behavior that led the staff to agree that Wu needed a higher level of medical care, according to people intimately familiar with the events of that period.

“This is way beyond acceptable levels and the charade needs to end NOW,” wrote Lisa Grove, a senior and long-serving campaign pollster, in an e-mail to colleagues that day. “No enabling by any potential enablers, he needs help and you need to be protected. Nothing else matters right now. Nothing else.”

Wu, however, remained defiant, sources said. He left the meeting and said he was going to a movie.

Oregon Live details further bizarre behavior by Congressman Wu. It seems as if he has serious mental health problems and is in need of treatment; his staff surely thought so. Perhaps the best thing for all concerned would be for him to resign so he can get the help he needs, and so the people of his district can choose a better representative.

(Crossposted at Sister Toldjah)


#Gunwalker becomes a real threat to the Obama administration

July 21, 2011

When even a Democratic Party house-organ such as the Los Angeles Times begins to take notice, you know the wall of obstruction and denial is crumbling fast.

via Melissa Clouthier and others

RELATED: Earlier posts on Gunwalker.

 

(Crossposted at Sister Toldjah)


Genius: Gunwalker targets were paid FBI informants

July 18, 2011

Remember, this is a product of the Smartest Administration Ever(tm). Key summary quote from Bob Owens:

To simplify: the Department of Justice was paying ATF agents to ignore federal laws in order to provide weapons to criminal informants paid by the FBI, who then distributed those weapons to other cartel members who killed federal agents from Border Patrol and Immigration and Customs Enforcement plus an estimated 150 soldiers and police in Mexico.

The development draws FBI Director Robert Mueller further into the scandal, and suggests that acting ATF Director Ken Melson was being truthful when he claimed he was unaware of key elements of Operation Fast and Furious. Congressional investigators now need to interview the FBI director and determine if Mueller was also being provided with only partial details about the operation.

Read the whole piece. There is no way the Attorney General was unaware of what was happening. Not only does he need to be fired or impeached, but criminal charges for several people are probably in order. This whole operation reeks of incompetence and criminality.

Or, as Congressman Issa called it, “felony stupid.”

(Crossposted at Sister Toldjah)


Gunwalker: ATF head to tell all?

June 28, 2011

Well, this could get very interesting. Instead of resigning in disgrace and going away quietly so that everything could be swept under the carpet, Acting ATF Director Ken Melson has agreed to testify before the Senate Judiciary Committee in a deal between Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-VT) and Charles Grassley (R-IA):

The head of the embattled federal agency that combats gun trafficking has agreed to talk with Senate investigators, a potentially important breakthrough as Congress tries to determine whether higher-ups in the Obama administration knew about a controversial sting that let assault weapons flow across the border into Mexico’s drug wars.

The testimony — expected next month from Kenneth Melson, the acting director of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives — was brokered as part of a deal between Senate Judiciary Committee chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) and the committee’s top Republican, Iowa’s Charles Grassley. Grassley and his fellow Republicans were given full access to ATF documents, Melson, and other key witnesses; and in return, Grassley agreed to release three Obama administration nominees he had been blocking, according to correspondence obtained by Newsweek and The Daily Beast.

So, is Melson the new John Dean, or is this a prelude to being the fall-guy? At Pajamas Media, Bob Owens considers five possibilities:

  1. Melson falls on his sword.
  2. Melson implicates the head of the DoJ Criminal Division, who signed off on a Gunwalker wiretap.
  3. Melson implicates Attorney General Holder, himself.
  4. Melson also names Homeland Security chief Janet Napolitano.
  5. Melson does the “full Dean” and implicates Obama.

For various reasons, Bob considers numbers two and three the most likely, leading to the resignation or even impeachment of the officials involved. Be sure to read the piece to find out why. Going a step further, Howard Nemerov makes a plausible argument that Holder and other officials could be charged as accessories before and after the fact to federal crimes.

Regardless, Melson’s forthcoming testimony promises some summer fireworks.

RELATED: Background on Gunwalker.

UPDATE: Welcome Hot Air readers!.

(Crossposted at Sister Toldjah)


Predictable, really

June 22, 2011

The marketing divisions of the Democratic Party, aka The New York Times and The Washington Post, have launched a vigorous defense of the Obama administration in the wake of scandalous revelations about Operation Fast and Furious (“Gunwalker”) by launching a smear campaign against Rep. Darrell Issa (R-CA), chairman of the committee investigating this fiasco. Patrick Richardson at PJM’s Tatler blog has the story:

Issa of course has been holding hearings on the fiasco that was Operation Fast and Furious, where the ATF allowed thousands of guns across the border into the hands of the drug cartels, weapons which then began showing up at crime scenes, including the murder of Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry.

The NYT is continuing to tell the lie that most of the weapons which end up in Mexico came from the U.S. They also show their complete ignorance when they say the weapons sold were military rifles. They were not. Whatever the semiautomatic rifles sold may look like, they are not true assault rifles. They do not have a selective fire capability, meaning they cannot fire full auto, as military rifles will. The NYT is merely using these hearings in order to push for the re-enactment of the so-called assault weapons ban while doing the administration’s dirty work.

The WaPo is perhaps more thoughtful in their attack, attempting to look like real reporting. Using anonymous sources to take potshots at Issa, claiming he was briefed in on the operation last year.

Let’s keep in mind that not only have two US federal agents been killed by guns that were allowed to “walk” over the border with the full knowledge of the ATF, but at least 150 Mexican soldiers, federal agents, and civilians. And Mexico is an ally.

If they were real newspapers truly concerned with the pursuit of the truth, the Times and the Post would be demanding to who knew what when and who gave the okays. They’d be digging into the serious foreign policy implications for the United States (1), and they’d be giving wall-to-wall coverage of the grotesque human tragedy caused by gunwalker — on American orders — something Representative Issa has described as “felony stupid;” an understatement if there ever was one.

But that would only happen if there were an (R) after the president’s name.

Real newspapers are mostly gone, at least at the national level. (2) Now, instead, we have PR flacks disguised as newspapers trying desperately to distract us from a trail that seems to lead directly to the Departments of Justice and Homeland Security, if not to the Oval Office itself.

Heckuva job, guys!

Footnotes:

(1) Supplying weapons to groups that threaten to destabilize a foreign state. Y’know, those little things we used to call “acts of war.”

(2) One exception is the Washington Examiner, which has a great lineup of journalists and analysts. Among the legacy media, CBS deserves real credit for following “Operation Fast and Furious” almost since the story first broke.

RELATED: Background and links

(Crossposted at Sister Toldjah)


Weinergate: police involved? Updated!

June 10, 2011

Okay, this may just have taken a big turn for the worse for Congressman Weiner:

Police on Friday afternoon came to the home of a 17-year-old high school junior to ask her about direct online communications she has had with Rep. Anthony Weiner.

Two officers from the New Castle County Police Department arrived at the girl’s home around 4:30 p.m. and asked to speak with the girl’s mother about the daughter’s contact with Weiner. Another officer appeared at the home a short time later. A FoxNews.com reporter was at the home when the police arrived.

The girl, whose name is being withheld because she is a minor, told FoxNews.com, “I’m doing OK.”

But Rep. Weiner won’t be doing OK, if it turns out he was “sexting”  a minor.

via ExJon

UPDATE: Weiner has admitted knowing she was 17, denies anything inappropriate. Patterico makes that very hard to believe.

(Crossposted at Sister Toldjah)


Weinergate: Question of the day, double-standards edition

June 10, 2011

Writing at Pajamas Media, Rand Simberg first thinks back to how hard (1) Bill Clinton fought to stay in office after a far worse sex scandal in a far more important office, then looks at all the Democrats suddenly calling on Congressman Anthony Weiner to resign and asks a simple question:

Can someone explain to me what Anthony Weiner did that was so much worse than what Bill Clinton did that he is being asked by his fellow Democrats to resign?

As someone who had the graphic details of then-President Bubba’s sexual escapades seared –SEARED! (2)– into my mind at the time, I have to say this is not only a simple question, but a good one.

Look at prior congressional sex scandals:

  • In 1983, Congressman Gerry Studds (D) was reprimanded for having sex with a 17-year old male House Page. Studds not only didn’t resign for what was arguably a worse offense (3), he turned it into a triumph, actually being applauded in the House when he stood on the floor to receive his reprimand.
  • Idaho Senator Larry Craig (R) was caught soliciting sex in a public restroom. He first resigned, then stayed to finish out his term.
  • Senator David Vitter (R) visited brothels, probably committing a crime (4), yet he not only did not resign, he was reelected.
  • And, my favorite, Barney Frank (D), whose “personal aide” ran a gay escort service from Frank’s apartment. (Frank claims he never knew until… Yeah, right.) And Barney is still there.
  • In a non-sex scandal, New Orleans “Dollar Bill” Jefferson (D) was widely believed to be as corrupt as the day is long, but he only left when defeated for reelection.

I’m sure we can think of others that are worse than a congressman cheating on his wife with phone and internet-sex, yet weren’t asked to resign. And all these people lied as much as Weiner — though probably not so wretchedly.

(Note: While John Ensign did resign in the wake of his scandal, there is a strong possibility of criminal violations in this case.)

So, to repeat Simberg’s question, if Clinton, Studds, Craig, Vitter, and Jefferson all got to stay, why does Anthony Weiner, whose offenses were lesser, have to go?

To be frank, since no crime was committed that we know of, let his voters pass judgment on him. They’ll be passing judgment on themselves, too.

And, as a partisan who wants to see the Democrats crushed in 2012, I want Weiner to stay so that our side can turn him into one of the “faces of Congress” for the election. Ask yourselves why the Democrats are pressuring him to go, now — it’s because they’re scared we’ll do just that.

So, there’s your question for the day, folks: Dear Democrats — if Bill could stay, why not Tony?

via Ed Driscoll

Footnotes:

(1) Get your minds out of the gutter.

(2) Just like Kerry in Cambodia, only this really happened.

(3) Not the sex itself (the age of consent in DC is 16), but for violating the trust implied in parents sending their teens to work in the House.

(4) Or is that not a crime in Louisiana?

(Crossposted at Sister Toldjah)


Weinergate: this dog is burned and done

June 6, 2011

Oh, my. Would it be inappropriate to begin a resignation countdown? What’s the over-under? 48 hours?

A new woman has come forward with what she claims are photographs, chats, and emails with Rep. Anthony Weiner (D-NY). These appear to undermine severely Rep. Weiner’s explanations that he was the victim of  a “prank” or a “hack.”

The detailed new information suggests that the Brooklyn- and Queens-based representative and the young woman in question were involved in an online, consensual relationship involving the mutual exchange of intimate photographs.

BigGovernment.com and BigJournalism.com were approached regarding this information more than a week prior to the separate, independent event of Friday, May 27, 2011, when a link to the now-infamous “gray underwear” photograph appeared publicly on Rep. Weiner’s Twitter feed.

We will be updating BigGovernment.com and BigJournalism.com throughout the day with photographs, timelines, and other clarifying details. However, we will not be releasing all of the material because some of it is of an extreme, graphic nature.

Stay tuned


Weinergate quote of the day

June 1, 2011

I’ve been avoiding* the whole Weinergate imbroglio, but this line from William Jacobson’s Legal Insurrection made me laugh:

We don’t expect much of our politicians, but we do expect them to know if they’ve taken pictures of their own crotches and uploaded them to yfrog.

We live in strange days, indeed, when something like that can be written in all seriousness.

*Other than a few jokes on Twitter. I’m weak, I know.


Oh, those naughty little Michigan Democrats!

March 17, 2011

Caught creating fake Tea Party candidates to dilute the conservative vote in the last election:

Two former leaders of the Oakland County Democratic Party are facing a total of nine felonies for allegedly forging election paperwork to get fake Tea Party candidates on November’s ballot.

“It is not a partisan statement, and we need to make that very clear,” said Oakland County Prosecutor Jessica Cooper.

Former Oakland County Democratic Chair Mike McGuinness and former Democratic Operations Director Jason Bauer face up to 14 years in prison if convicted.

“Some of the people didn’t even know they were on the ballot till they began receiving delinquency notices of filings that were required as a candidate,” said Oakland County Sheriff Michael Bouchard.

The sheriff says 23 statewide races had questionable Tea Party candidates on the ballot and the investigation may go beyond Oakland County.

Bad liberals, bad! No biscuits for you!

Try 14 years in prison, instead.

Ed Morrissey notes that the grand jury is still investigating this, even those these two cheating weasels Democrats have been indicted. That hints at further indictments, maybe at a statewide level.

Oh, and you know what the cherry on top of this Scandal Sundae is? It was all for nought! Try as they might to rig the election*, Democrats lost control of the legislature and the governor’s office, turning the state bright Red.

Great job, guys. That should make your prison experience that much more meaningful.

OBSERVATION: In his book Stealing Elections, John Fund notes that Republican electoral corruption tends toward voter intimidation, while Democrats are more likely to engage in voter fraud (dead voters, double voting, &c.). Looks like they’re staying true to form.

(By the way, that is an essential book for anyone concerned about the health of our electoral system.)

*And I don’t for a minute think this was just a local matter.

via Hot Air

(Crossposted at Sister Toldjah)


National Public Radio, or National Money-laundering Radio?

March 10, 2011

When James O’Keefe released his sting video of NPR executives trashing conservatives, Republicans, and Jews while currying favor with what they though were potential donors from a Muslim Brotherhood front group, he promised a follow up. I had a feeling he wasn’t just blowing smoke; a slow drip of explosive revelations is the style he honed while working under Andrew Breitbart.

But I never thought it would be this good. Offering to hide the source of a donation from the IRS?

In case you don’t want to watch the whole thing, here’s the key portion, via The Daily Caller:

New video released Thursday afternoon indicates National Public Radio intended to accept a $5 million donation from fictitious Muslim Brotherhood front group Muslim Education Action Center (MEAC) Trust – and that the publicly funded radio network might have helped MEAC make the donation anonymously to protect it from a federal government audit.

When a man posing as Ibrahim Kasaam asked, “It sounded like you were saying NPR would be able to shield us from a government audit, is that correct?” NPR’s senior director of institutional giving, Betsy Liley, responded, “I think that is the case, especially if you are anonymous. I can inquire about that.” According to conservative James O’Keefe, whose Project Veritas organization conducted the NPR sting organization, the man posing as Kasaam made two follow-up phone calls to Liley after their lunch.

Liley said a $5 million donation would amount to about “10 years of support.”

Kasaam follows up by asking: “The fact that NPR is not only a tax-exempt organization, but also receives direct contributions from the government — does that invite some sort of government oversight or government examination of contributions, et cetera?”

Liley answered: “They have audited our programs at times and, I think, as part of that, they can look at our audited financials. If you are concerned in any way about that, that’s one reason you might want to be an anonymous donor. And, we would certainly, if that was your interest, want to shield you from that.

Emphasis added.

Liley goes on to say the same anonymous-donor protection was afforded to universities and other donors, but, come on! There’s a difference between taking money from, say, Notre Dame and covering up a gift from a self-admitted front for the Ikhwan. You know, the organization whose motto is:

“Allah is our goal, the Prophet is our leader, the Quran is our constitution, the Jihad is our way, and the Death for Allah is our most exalted wish.”

But, don’t worry; NPR will make sure no one in the government knows the money came from the same group that founded Hamas, an organization designated as a terrorist organization by the Department of State.

Forget cutting their funding — NPR will be lucky if the FBI doesn’t show up with search warrants.

(Crossposted at Sister Toldjah)


Praise for The Washington Post

December 4, 2010

Unlike the New York Times, the Post has some measure of integrity left, even if they sometimes forget where they put it. In this case, they remembered it for a special review of Sean Penn and Naomi Watts’ movie “Fair Game,” about Plamegate, the scandal involving former diplomat (and lying publicity hound) Joe Wilson and his wife, Valerie Plame. Here’s a sample:

We certainly hope that is not the case. In fact, “Fair Game,” based on books by Mr. Wilson and his wife, is full of distortions – not to mention outright inventions. To start with the most sensational: The movie portrays Ms. Plame as having cultivated a group of Iraqi scientists and arranged for them to leave the country, and it suggests that once her cover was blown, the operation was aborted and the scientists were abandoned. This is simply false. In reality, as The Post’s Walter Pincus and Richard Leiby reported, Ms. Plame did not work directly on the program, and it was not shut down because of her identification.

The movie portrays Mr. Wilson as a whistle-blower who debunked a Bush administration claim that Iraq had tried to purchase uranium from the African country of Niger. In fact, an investigation by the Senate intelligence committee found that Mr. Wilson’s reporting did not affect the intelligence community’s view on the matter, and an official British investigation found that President George W. Bush’s statement in a State of the Union address that Britain believed that Iraq had sought uranium in Niger was well-founded.

Another Lefty myth shot down in flames. Good for you, WaPo!

Via Moe Lane

(Crossposted at Sister Toldjah)


Oligarchy has its privileges

September 10, 2010

Such as turning a tiny town’s treasury into your personal bank account:

Top managers for the city of Vernon, Calif., enjoyed pay and perks that outpaced some of the nation’s top leaders.

It is one of a growing number of California municipalities confronting questionable practices by municipal employees.

Vernon has only 90 residents, but top city managers were earning an astounding $1.6 million per year with some fancy perks, including first-class air travel around the world and $800-a-night hotel rooms.

“For these city officials to be receiving salaries larger than the governor, larger than the president of the United States is absolutely unjustifiable,” said Bob Stern of the Center for Governmental Studies.

The city’s small homeowners association is outraged that their city leaders were living the high life, particularly in a town that recently laid off workers and cut health insurance because of budget problems.

At one angry council meeting, residents shouted, “Shame on you!”

Read the rest for other small California towns whose “leaders” live the high life while unemployment skyrockets and the state faces financial insolvency.

Maybe those pitchforks-and-torches mobs in the old movies had the right idea.

(via Gabriel Malor)


Don’t you have to have some ethics, in the first place?

August 3, 2010

Congresswoman Maxine Waters (D-Corruptocrat) has demanded an ethics trial in the House.

I should think a coroner’s inquest would be more appropriate.


The animated sex poodle

June 25, 2010

Most news stations would just read a report of the sex-assault allegations against Al Gore, or maybe have a newsman report “from the scene.”

But in Taiwan, they go one step further: an animated recreation. Really:

Weird. Loved the fire in the eyes, though. Nice touch.

(via Breitbart through Allahpundit)


It won’t die… IT WON’T DIE!!!

May 28, 2010

The Obama White House must be going nuts trying to get past the story of whether it offered a bribe to Congressman Joe Sestak a bribe to cede the Pennsylvania Democratic primary to Senator Arlen Specter. It just won’t go away. After months of saying nothing untoward occurred and that no offer was made, while Sestak insisted one had been made, the administration finally got its lies straight admitted that, yes, there was some discussion of a job – an unpaid advisory position. The kicker? The intermediary was former President Bill Clinton:

President Obama’s chief of staff used former President Bill Clinton as an intermediary to see if Representative Joe Sestak would drop out of Pennsylvania’s Democratic Senate primary if given a prominent, but unpaid, advisory position, the White House said on Friday.

Rahm Emanuel, the chief of staff, asked Mr. Clinton last summer to explore “options of service” on a presidential or senior government advisory board with Mr. Sestak, the White House said in a statement. Mr. Sestak said no and went on to win last week’s primary against Senator Arlen Specter.

The White House disputed Republican claims that the conversations might be illegal or improper. “There was no such impropriety,” Robert F. Bauer, the White House counsel, said in a memo released to reporters. “The Democratic Party leadership had a legitimate interest in averting a divisive primary fight and a similarly legitimate concern about the congressman vacating his seat in the House.”

Mr. Bauer went on to say that such horse-trading has been commonplace through history. “There have been numerous, reported instances in the past when prior administrations – both Democratic and Republican, and motivated by the same goals – discussed alternative paths to service for qualified individuals also considering campaigns for public office,” he wrote. “Such discussions are fully consistent with the relevant law and ethical requirements.”

You know what? I agree with Bauer. This kind of thing has gone on as long as the Republic itself and, as I understand the law, talking over options and considering an unremunerated position doesn’t cross the legal red line.

If that’s what happened, and that’s a big “if.”

Consider: the day before this news comes out, Obama and Clinton had lunch together. On that same day, Sestak’s brother, who’s also his campaign manager, talked with White House officials about the bubbling controversy. It could be all on the up and up, in fact it probably (barely) is. But, toss in the pot an administration steeped in the Chicago Way of politics, an ex-President with a flexible sense of ethics, and a candidate who’s sorry he ever opened his mouth and really wants help winning his race, stir all that together, and you get…  Something that smells.

After all, if the truth was so anodyne, why’d it take so long to come with this stupid lie explanation? Experienced politicos aren’t buying it:

“I don’t believe that.  That may be what they’re concocting as a cover story.  But the idea that…Sestak is an Admiral in the Navy.  This is a smart, competent professional.  The idea that he misunderstood a free, unpaid job for the offer of Secretary of the Navy.  I mean, don’t you find that sort of boggles your mind?”

Not that Newt Gingrich would be biased or anything ( Rolling on the floor ), but I think he has a point.

And, just as Team Obama hopes this will all go away, Bill tosses red meat in front of reporters and bloggers by refusing to comment about the official explanation.

It may be that the Obama and Sestak camps are now telling the truth. It could be that White House Counsel Bauer is right that there’s smoke, but no fire. Yet something still smells here.

And I bet we’ll find out what before election day.

POSTSCRIPT: Congressman Darrell Issa (R-CA) has been bulldogging this issue admirably since it first came up, but now he’s crossing the line into Dumb Land by bringing up the “I-word:” impeachment. Darrell, dude. Sit down and relax. Breathe deeply. Calm down. Remember the last time the Republicans went for impeachment? It took years to recover from that self-inflicted embarrassment, even though Bill really was guilty on at least one charge. To go for it again would be to take a shotgun to the party’s one remaining foot. The public is worried about jobs, the economy, crazed jihadis, and oil slicks, and won’t have any patience with us trying to force Obama from office before 2012. We’re trying to prove we’re responsible enough to be trusted with government and not a bunch of frothing putschists, remember? If it gets bad, he’ll just throw Rahm under the bus and that will be the end of it.

Besides, you do recall who’s next in line, don’t you??

RELATED: A Colorado candidate for a Senate seat says he got a job offer, too.

LINKS: At Ace’s, SorenKay votes for the coordinated lies theory. Sister Toldjah asks for a show of hands from anyone who believes this story.


And if you believe that one…

May 25, 2010

It’s the maybe-scandal that just won’t die. With Congressman and Democrat Senate nominee Joe Sestak still insisting that someone in the Obama administration offered him a bribe job to quit the primary race, now even the White House marketing department New York Times is getting sick of the stonewalling:

For three months, the White House has refused to say whether it offered a job to Representative Joe Sestak to get him to drop his challenge to Senator Arlen Specter in a Pennsylvania Democratic primary, as Mr. Sestak has asserted.

But the White House wants everyone who suspects that something untoward, or even illegal, might have happened to rest easy: though it still will not reveal what happened, the White House is reassuring skeptics that it has examined its own actions and decided it did nothing wrong. Whatever it was that it did.

The administration goes on to clear itself of any wrongdoing:

“Lawyers in the White House and others have looked into conversations that were had with Congressman Sestak,” Robert Gibbs, the White House press secretary, said Sunday on “Face the Nation” on CBS. “And nothing inappropriate happened.”

“Improper or not, did you offer him a job in the administration?” asked the host, Bob Schieffer.

“I’m not going to get further into what the conversations were,” Mr. Gibbs replied. “People that have looked into them assure me that they weren’t inappropriate in any way.”

Via Jennifer Rubin, who observes:

It is a measure of how frustrated the press has become with the perpetual stonewalling and outright contempt this president has shown the media that the Times and other outlets are now aligned with a conservative Republican (nominee Pat Toomey -PF) in demanding that one of the most liberal Democrats on the ballot come clean.

The Los Angeles Times’ Andrew Malcolm, whose “Top of the Ticket” column is must reading, has too much fun in his headline regarding Team Obama’s self-absolution:

Obama White House probe of Obama White House finds no Obama White House impropriety on Sestak

It’s getting to be a habit with these guys.

Meanwhile, upping the ante in the “No, he’s the liar” department, the White House trotted out chief political adviser David Axelrod to say that there’s no evidence to support Sestak’s allegations:

Senior adviser to the president David Axelrod said Monday evening that there is “no evidence” that White House officials tried to keep a Democratic congressman from entering the Pennsylvania Senate race by offering him a high-ranking government job.

“When the allegations were made, they were looked into. And there was no evidence of such a thing,” Axelrod said on CNN’s “John King USA.”

So now we have Sestak insisting he’s telling the truth but refusing to name names, while the Democratic White House says the Democratic nominee for the US Senate is a liar. They can’t both be telling the truth….

Finally, in the “If it had been George W. Bush’s White House” category, we have Archy Cary at Big Journalism wondering why the media has been so slow to demand a special prosecutor?

Um, it’s just a guess, but… Maybe it’s because the Democrats won the election and the media is a bunch of hypocrites?

Nah.   Oh go on


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