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Obama Debt Roundup

I meant to do this awhile back, updating previous posts in the series.

When President Obama left office on January 20, 2017, the U.S. national debt was $19.9 trillion. ($14.4 trillion held by the public; $5.5 trillion “intragovernmental”, for example, Treasury bonds held by Social Security.)

When Obama took office on January 20, 2009, the U.S. national debt was $10.6 trillion. ($6.3 trillion held by the public; $4.3 intragovernmental)

Obama more-than-doubled the part of the U.S. national debt that everyone agrees is important (what’s “held by the public”). And he nearly doubled the total.

And for what? Eight years of the weakest economy “recovery” on record.

Deficit update

First, let’s do a National Debt update. You’ll see why, in a minute.

As of this day, the U.S. national debt is $19.3 trillion. ($13.9 trillion held by the public; $5.4 trillion “intragovernmental”, for example, Treasury bonds held by Social Security.)

When President Obama took over from President Bush, it was $10.6 trillion. ($6.3 trillion held by the public; $4.3 intragovernmental)

So, Obama has already more-than-doubled the part of the U.S. national debt that everyone agrees is important (what’s “held by the public”). And he’s on track to double the total, by the time he leaves office.

But there’s more. On this day 3 years ago, the total was $16.7 trillion. So, over the past 3 years, the U.S. operating deficit – the money that the U.S. Treasury actually had to borrow to pay for stuff – has been $2.6 trillion, or roughly $865 billion per year.

That’s funny because the three most recent U.S. budget deficits are supposed to be much smaller. 2014 – $483 billion, 2015 – $438 billion, 2016 – $616 billion; for a total of $1.5 trillion. (September-ending fiscal year means a 2-3 month shift from the dates I used above; but that does not alter the story drastically.)

What does it mean? It means they’re lying to us about the size of the U.S. budget deficit. And they’ve been lying for years, as I’ve blogged previously.

Oh, you could say “Come now, the accounting numbers are accurate, they’re just using some budget/accounting tricks to hide a big chunk of their spending-and-borrowing.” But I consider tricks to be lies. Don’t you?

According to left-wingers like MSNBC and Rachel Maddow, or even the Dear Leader Himself, His Dear Leadership has reduced the U.S. annual budget deficit by 2/3. No, pumpkins. It hasn’t. You lie.

Irwin Schiff, R.I.P.

This past week, we had news that Irwin Schiff passed away on October 16. Schiff was a U.S. veteran, author, heroic income-tax protestor and, sadly, a U.S. political prisoner.

photo of Irwin Schiff
Irwin Schiff, 1928-2015

Big Government advocates will sometimes claim that the U.S. tax system is voluntary. They say it because they want to deny the obvious: that government is force (by its nature, it operates by forcing people against their will) – and that, as advocates of Big Government, they do basically want a dictatorial, regimented society.

I’ve seen lefties making the “voluntary” claim in GP comments. But as a stronger example, here is Democrat leader Harry Reid saying, “Our system of government is a voluntary tax system…We have a voluntary system.” Because, says Reid, if you don’t pay taxes in the U.S., “You don’t go to jail.”

That “voluntary” claim is nonsense, in practice. Some people, such as Eric Garner in 2014, are hounded by the police for selling untaxed cigarettes and then fatally assaulted by the police. Others like Gilbert Hyatt may be hounded by State authorities for decades, although they paid all taxes in full. Others like perceived Tea Party groups may be blocked (silenced) by the IRS for their political beliefs, before they could even have a chance to file tax reports.

And those who refuse to pay income taxes due to their outspoken moral and constitutional principles, such as Irwin Schiff, are jailed – and then forced to die in jail from untreated cancer. So much for the U.S. system being “voluntary”. You can be a conscientious objector to the draft! But not to the federal income tax.

I could try to tell more of Irwin Schiff’s story, but Peter Schiff does it best in his article, Death of a Patriot. Read the whole thing.

And consider downloading and reading Irwin Schiff’s last book, The Federal Mafia: How the Government Illegally Imposes and Unlawfully Collects Income Taxes. It’s free.

It’s free because, during Schiff’s lifetime, the government enjoined him from selling it. That makes it a banned book; indeed, it’s supposed to be the only book banned in the U.S. in the last 50 years (other than libel cases).

The book also claims that the U.S. income tax system is voluntary. I must suggest that Mr. Schiff’s own experience shows that, as a practical matter, he was mistaken about that. But he covers the history of the income tax in the U.S. and the IRS’ own use of the word “voluntary”. As such, Schiff may well have been right about the underlying Constitutional principle, or what *should theoretically* be true under the U.S. Constitution (which today’s U.S. government flouts in many ways).

Anyway, the book’s unusual ban, and Schiff’s cruel death in federal prison, should tell you something about our government’s true priorities. Hint: It’s much more to do with protecting the government’s power and jobs, than protecting or serving you.

Corruption and Malfeasance Breed Distrust

Pollster Rasmussen is shocked… SHOCKED… to find that people are losing their respect for laws and the courts.

Rasmussen’s new survey found that now a third (33%) of likely U.S. voters support the rights of states to ignore federal court rulings, a 9-point increase from February. The number opposing states’ rights to override the federal courts fell by six points to 52 percent, while 15 percent remain undecided.
Rasmussen declares that what is “even more disturbing” about the findings is that those who support the states are Republicans and conservatives, those who “traditionally have been the most supportive of the Constitution and the separation of powers.”

What Rasmussen is missing is that Rule of Law in this country has been undermined by the ruling party for political purposes, and that’s why Conservatives have lost faith in the courts.
Illegal Aliens are essentially exempt from American law. The president lawlessly decided to wave his hand and nullify immigration laws passed by the legislature.

The Supreme Court gives itself the power to write marriage laws for all fifty states, on the basis that gay people’s feelings get hurt and there is a Constitutional right to “dignity.”

Meanwhile, Hillary Clinton… commits a string of felonies… mishandling classified data, influence peddling, tax evasion… and is untouched by the law.
Democrat Governor Jon Corzine bilks investors out of billions, and walks away scot-free.

But Christian bakeries and Gibson Guitars get legally curb-stomped for political incorrectness.

The reason people are losing faith in the ‘Rule of Law.’ and Separation of Powers is because it’s become very clear that the political leadership and their activist mob groups are using the law as a tool to punish political opponents. There is no more equality under the law; the law has become just a political weapon wielded by Democrats and their voting constituencies to punish the other side.

And people who aren’t angry about it are ignorant or like that the law is being used in this way.

In other polling news. 70% of Americans believe the media is intentionally biased. On a related note, CNN gave Hillary Clinton a tongue-bath this afternoon.

When public lying is your job

Posted by Jeff (ILoveCapitalism) at 11:19 am - December 9, 2014.
Filed under: Government Accountability & Ethics,National Security

HotAir had this clip a few days ago, making the point that President Obama is flailing on his Egypt policy. I’m more into the “human interest” side of it.

The State Dept. spokeswoman has only meaningless answers on Egypt. Her smile frozen, she delivers her lines to her skeptical audience in a patronizing tone. When it’s over, she confessionally mutters, “That Egypt line is ridiculous.”

I almost feel sorry for her. But, if being Bree on Desperate Housewives were my job, I’d quit.

Video via the Washington Free Beacon; also on Russia Today via Zero Hedge.

Mary Landrieu can’t go away fast enough

Posted by Jeff (ILoveCapitalism) at 4:14 pm - December 4, 2014.
Filed under: Democratic Scandals,Government Accountability & Ethics

James O’Keefe explains how her cronies engaged in (what judges have called) prosecutorial misconduct:

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They apparently mis-used an anti-terrorism statute and leaked privileged material seized from O’Keefe, in throwing the book at him (one crony literally threw a book at O’Keefe, on-camera) for his having dared to investigate Sen. Mary Landrieu (D – LA) the Princess. O’Keefe has filed ethics complaints.

What’s the deficit, really?

In October 2013, I noted that the U.S. national debt leapt over $300 billion – the day after they raised the debt ceiling. It went from $16.75 trillion to $17.08 trillion, just days after President Obama had publicly lied that “…raising the debt ceiling…is not raising our debt. This does not add a dime to our debt.”

Update: Today, the U.S. national debt is about $18.01 trillion (or as this post is being written, $18,005,549,328,561.45).

$18 trillion! Up from $10.63 trillion when Obama took office on January 21, 2009. The Obama administration is 70% of the way to doubling the U.S. national debt – and still has two years to run!

But here’s the fishy part. Officially, the U.S. budget deficit for FY2014 was only $483 billion. If that’s true, our debt should have gone up a lot less. It should be just over $17.5 trillion.

There are two basic ways to measure the deficit.

  1. The official number: What the government budget states as revenue minus spending.
  2. The reality check: What the government had to borrow, to actually pay its bills.

Let’s take a look at the second one. I don’t have the exact numbers for the U.S. national debt for FY2014’s beginning vs. ending. But it should be obvious that, with the debt increasing by about $1 trillion from late October 2013 to end of November 2014, the real FY2014 deficit (covering twelve months from start of October 2013 to end of September 2014) had to be something larger than $483 billion. Otherwise, the FY2015 deficit would have to be $500 billion in just the last two months alone; and it isn’t.

So if an Obama supporter tries to say “The Dear Leader has reduced the deficit to $483 billion!”, you say: Then why did the national debt rise by roughly a trillion, over that same period? BALONEY.

Meanwhile, the Obama administration has found yet another way of lying to us. I’m becoming convinced that all of the ‘headline’ statistics put out by this administration are manipulated to the point where they’re a fraud, at least partly.

The Left Comes for the Churches

In Houston Texas, where the mayor is a lesbian,  the local Democrat leadership is seeking to make the sermons of local church leaders subject to Government oversight, and, as usual, it’s because LGBT feelings got hurt.

Alliance Defending Freedom attorneys have filed a motion in a Texas court to stop an attempt by the city of Houston to subpoena sermons and other communications belonging to several area pastors in a lawsuit in which the pastors are not even involved.

City officials are upset over a voter lawsuit filed after the city council rejected valid petitions to repeal a law that allows members of the opposite sex into each other’s restrooms. ADF attorneys say the city is illegitimately demanding that the pastors, who are not party to the lawsuit, turn over their constitutionally protected sermons and other communications simply so the city can see if the pastors have ever opposed or criticized the city.

Earlier this year, the IRS – weaponized by Obama into an instrument of political control – was colluding with groups of atheists to subject the content of religious services to State scrutiny.

The Culture War is over; we now live in the era of the Cultural Occupation. The social left… with its agenda of abortion, pornography, and the destruction of traditional moral and social values… occupies the Government, Academia, and Media. Anyone not on board with that agenda is living under occupation (and the Republican Party has gone Vichy). The only refuge left is the church, and the left is coming for that, as well.

Separation of Church and state is not enough; it now has to be subjugation of the church to the state.

Tax Day homily

Although this story focuses on California’s abuses, it shows how government gets its revenue in general: arbitrarily and with the power and willingness to ruin people’s lives.

In 1970, a young Southern California electrical engineer and inventor named Gilbert Hyatt filed a patent application for an innovative microprocessor chip…

Twenty years later…the U.S. patent office awarded Hyatt the patent…a multimillion-dollar windfall. He moved to Las Vegas, where he said he was a full-time resident before he received the earnings.

California’s Franchise Tax Board (FTB)…decided to seek $7.4 million in back taxes, claiming that he was still a resident of California when the money came in. That sounds like a simple enough dispute that could quickly be resolved, but what followed has been an ordeal that has consumed a good bit of Hyatt’s adult life.

…[for] a sum that now tops $55 million as interest and penalties have accrued…The tax authorities have been pursuing him through its administrative process. Tired of the endless investigations, Hyatt filed suit in Nevada court in 1998. California officials said they weren’t subject to an out-of-state tort lawsuit. California lost that argument in the Nevada Supreme Court and the U.S. Supreme Court and the high court decision sent the case back to a Nevada district court, which awarded Hyatt nearly $400 million in damages after finding that the California authorities abused their power and invaded his privacy. That case is on appeal.

Hyatt believes that California officials are purposefully delaying. “Specifically, because of the 20 year delay Hyatt can no longer obtain a fair and full adjudication of whether he owes state taxes to California,” according to his lawsuit. “During this time, material witnesses have passed away, memories of witnesses have faded, and documents relevant and important to Hyatt are no longer available.” The board keeps assessing penalties…He suspects the tax board is waiting for him to die so that it can go after his estate.

Under California law, the Franchise Tax Board has the “presumption of correctness,” meaning that the onus always is on Hyatt to disprove what the tax officials say. And, he argues, they keep changing their stories and their allegations, thus resulting in more years of legal expenses and disputes…

To sum up – When dealing with the tax man in America today, you have:

  • No “innocent until proven guilty”.
  • No real “right to a speedy trial”.
  • Kafka-esque complexity and situations rigged for you to lose.

To anyone who wants to claim that our tax system is “voluntary”, or that government somehow isn’t a gun, or that taxation somehow isn’t a use of force on people (many conscientious tax-objectors are given long jail sentences): You’re just lying.

And suddenly, HFT

I never knew that Casey Kasem was the voice of Shaggy. But I digress.

CBS recently did a good piece on High Frequency Trading (HFT), a means by which well-connected computers churn the stock markets and skim the cream. 15 minutes, here it is:

But a few things are odd about HFT as a story, or at least noteworthy.

First: the curious absence of government involvement. HFT has been going on for years (Zero Hedge started blogging it in 2009). Where have the vaunted government regulators been, all this time? Answer: Nowhere (until right now, as we’ll discuss in a minute).

The CBS piece praises Brad Katsuyama, a trader who figured out years ago how HFT works and founded a new exchange, IEX, to try to defeat HFT. That’s a great example of private enterprise being ahead of the regulators.

In fact, private enterprise has run circles around the regulators; first by creating HFT, then by being years ahead of government in working to defeat HFT. Could it be that government regulation isn’t effective? (cough)

The mainstream media’s absence from the HFT story until now (2014) is also striking. And that brings us to the second oddity: the timing of the CBS story. As if by magic, within days of its airing, we have also had announcements that the FBI will finally probe HFT. And that Goldman-Sachs will back IEX, the new HFT-free exchange. (Update: And the pr0n-watching SEC finally, also, investigating.)

I’m old enough to recognize a co-ordinated campaign. Granting that HFT is a real story, I still must speculate that the reason why HFT is suddenly on our collective lips, under investigation, etc., is because somebody powerful finds it convenient, at this time. (Where in the previous five years, they didn’t find it convenient.)

Who is that somebody? I don’t know. I did just note that Goldman-Sachs is rolling with the punches, at least. Over at Zero Hedge, they speculate that HFT is now being set up as the scapegoat for a coming stock market bubble-crash. The Federal Reserve is (by its QE, ZIRP and many other policies) the biggest market-rigger of all. The Fed has engineered the stock market bubble of the last five years. And, when that bubble bursts eventually, the Fed will want us all to blame something or someone else.

UPDATE: On CNBC, Katsuyama and a (truly obnoxious) pro-HFT guy get down-n-dirty. Good times.

So let me get this right:

The administration—whose latest foray into unobstructed, unlegislated, we’ve-got-this, go-it-aloneism was the fabulously ‘effed up roll-out of—is going to make 2014 the year of the Executive Branch takes on the world without the messiness of involving the People’s Branch of the federal government?

This’ll be something to see…

-Nick (ColoradoPatriot, from The Ranch)

Greens Behaving Badly; Evil Corporations Doing Good

The UK Daily Mail has exposed how the Green Movement has enabled the wealthy to become wealthier by using green energy initiatives to extract money from the working class. (This does not come as a surprise to those of us who have long found it curious that all the answers to Global Warming involved giving billions of dollars to organizations run by Global Warming activists.)

And in the USA, the highest paid employee at the EPA has been revealed to be perpetrating  a massive fraud. (Two, if you count both impersonating a CIA officer and Global Warming.)

Meanwhile, Lockheed Martin — the evil defense contractor that Left Wing Nut/fat sack of crap Job Michael Moore blames for somehow causing school shootings — has developed a revolutionary desalination process that has the potential to bring clean drinking water to millions of poor people around the world and lessen global tensions over water supplies.

I know there is outrage on the left over the private distribution of water, but, come on. Delivering clean potable water requires massive investment in infrastructure. The private sector, with an appropriate level of oversight, is well-equipped and incentivized to provide this service. And one need look no further than socialist Venezuela to see that putting bureaucrats in charge of public utilities doesn’t work out so great.

In any case, my guess is that due to Green interference, this technology will never reach its full potential.

Purity, Principles, and Dealbreakers

You get kind of tired of hearing Establishment Republicans whine that those of us who support the Tea Party over the Establishment are putting purity before pragmatism. Not at all. We just don’t trust the Establishment GOP because, time and time again, they’ve shown that they define pragmatism as stabbing the base in the back and helping the Democrat Left advance its agenda.

Marco Rubio won his senate seat promising to oppose Amnesty, and by his admission, a “path to citizenship” for illegal immigrants was Amnesty. Once in office, Rubio quickly betrayed his voters and signed onto the Gang of 8 Immigration Bill, that contained not only a path to citizenship, but gives the President almost unlimited authority to waive any of the bill’s requirements. (As if Obama would never do anything like that.) Pat Toomey also betrayed conservative who supported him by signing onto gun control. It’s Republican Standard Operating Procedure: Get Elected as a Conservative, Betray the Base, then lie about it . Meanwhile, someone like Ted Cruz actually does what he promised to do … fight Obamacare tooth and nail … and gets Cruzified.

You can follow the old, “someone who agrees with me 70% of the time is my 70% friend, not my 30% enemy” chestnut… and broadly that is valid. Sometimes you have to accept half a loaf. But not every compromise is worth making. There have to be some deal-breakers attached to that:

  • Amnesty – The importation of millions of unskilled foreign workers at a time when millions of Americans can’t find work is a crime against the working class.
  • Gun Control – The Second Amendment is Sacrosanct. And we know even the most benign-sounding gun control law is just part of the “just the tip” incrementalism the left uses to lead to eventual gun confiscation. They have admitted it. Repeatedly. And openly.
  • Fiscal Responsibility – Wasting money is a thing up with which we should not put. And especially no sucker deals where Democrats promise cuts later for tax increases now and the cuts never, ever happen.

You could probably add abortion-on-demand to that list as well. But the key point is, there is something very important that the Establishment GOP political insiders and their highly paid consultants (not to mention the left) don’t get and that is this:

Conservative voters don’t care about party affiliation, and we don’t care about personalities; we don’t base our votes on whom we would prefer to have a beer with or who has the nicest crease in their pants. (We further think people who vote on those criteria are idiots.) We vote based on principles, and we expect those whom we vote for to uphold those principles once elected. And when they don’t uphold them, we get pretty pissed off about that.

Update: Remember John McCain’s Gang of 14, that classic case of bipartisan compromise, where 7 Democrats and 7 Republicans ganged up to save the filibuster, prevent the nuclear option, and s-can most of Bush 43’s judicial appointment? Today, the Democrats showed their gratitude.


ObamaLies – in action

First, the facts.

  • October 16: U.S. national debt is $16,747,370,534,090.62.
  • Then they raise the debt ceiling.
  • October 18, at 3pm: U.S. debt is at $17,075,590,107,963.57.

That’s a $300+ billion increase, in two days. It’ll continue (albeit, at a slower pace). It moves the U.S. mathematically closer to its coming default, and the added interest will cost taxpayers (especially if interest rates rise in the future).

Now, here’s what Obama said during the shutdown. October 3:

I want to spend a little time on this. It’s something called raising the debt ceiling. And it’s got a lousy name, so a lot of people end up thinking, I don’t know, I don’t think we should raise our debt ceiling, because it sounds like we’re raising our debt. But that’s not what this is about.

It doesn’t cost taxpayers a single dime. It doesn’t grow our deficits by a single dime…it’s not something that raises our debt.

Or, October 8:

…it’s called raising the debt ceiling, I think a lot of Americans think it’s raising our debt. It is not raising our debt. This does not add a dime to our debt.

‘Nuff said.

Liberal Logic on Display: Two Prime Examples

I’ve seen two examples this week of jaw-droppingly appalling liberal logic which, I figure, just have to be shared in the same way that unusual specimens belong in a museum.

The first one appeared in Salon on Tuesday, and it purports to be a treatise on the necessity of “positive” rights.  It says that the original Bill of Rights doesn’t go very far, and conservatives are foolish and “short-sighted” to insist that those rights are essential and shouldn’t be tampered with.  According to the author of the piece, Michael Lind, what we really need is to endorse FDR’s “Second Bill of Rights”–which includes things like the right to a job, to a good home, and to medical care and good health.  Lind writes: “FDR’s Second Bill of Rights, and similar proposals, are not intended to replace the original bill of rights, but only to supplement it. Progressives believe that we should have both the right to free speech and the right to minimal healthcare at public expense.”

Lind’s article uses both appeals to authority (FDR and Cass Sunstein) and some sleight of hand to avoid tackling the very real contention that we can’t demand “positive rights” at other’s expense without in some sense enslaving those who are tasked with providing or paying for those “rights.”

In a brief rebuttal at PJ Media, Stephen Kruiser cites his own, contrary authority:

The negative/positive rights debate is brilliantly explored by Richard A. Epstein in his book Mortal Peril. He begins with a general discussion but his focus is on American health care. He points out that the positive rights frenzy contains “certain remnants of a discredited socialism” and that “…the protection of these newly minted positive rights invests government at all levels with vast powers to tax, to regulate, and to hire and fire the very individuals whose rights it is duty-bound to protect.”

The story, of course, is one we’ve seen over and over. The government continues to bloat itself as the social welfare state grows and in the process more rights are trampled upon than created.

The title of Epstein’s treatise can apply just as easily to the second, even more stunning example of liberal logic, which I saw linked by several folks on Facebook today.  It’s an article in Slate entitled “If You Send Your Kid to Private School, You Are a Bad Person: A Manifesto.”  The idea behind the article by Allison Benedikt is that public schools are ruined because students whose parents care enough about educational quality to devote their own resources to education aren’t forced to remain in the public school system.

Nowhere does it occur to this genius that perhaps the real problems with the public schools have to do with the teachers’ unions or with the educational bureaucracy which has arisen at public expense.  No, according to this author, the solution to all the problems with the public school system is that if everyone has to go, they will get better because parents will demand it, even if some large number of kids who would or could have had better options has to be sacrificed for the sake of liberal mediocrity.  (You really do need to read the article to believe it is not some sort of ridiculous hoax.  Even the usually liberal crowd of commenters at Slate are put off by the article.)

A much saner, contrary view appeared several days ago (before the absurd Slate article was published) at the Sippican Cottage blog (hat tip Transterrestrial Musings).  The whole piece is worth reading, but this excerpt nicely encapsulates the tone of the piece:

You see, there are no public schools in America that I know of. They’re reeducation camps for people that weren’t educated in the first place, maybe, or little prisons, or pleasure domes for creepy teachers, or places where tubby women work out their neuroses about eating on helpless children at lunchtime — but there’s not much schooling going on in school. A public school is a really expensive, but shabby and ineffectual, private school that collects their tuition with the threat of eviction from your house.

To liberal “thinkers” like Allison Benedikt and Michael Lind, unfortunately, that sort of a situation apparently sounds like a “great society.”

Holder promising not to spy


United States Attorney General Eric Holder said during an off-the-record meeting Thursday that the Department of Justice will change the way it conducts investigations of reporters amid scandals centered on Associated Press and Fox News journalists.

Several news organizations refused Mr. Holder’s invitation to attend…the few attendees who accepted the invitation said that the DoJ agreed to let some details emerge…

…Mr. Holder hoped to convince journalists that changes are on the horizon for how his office conducts probes into journalists.

The Associated Press revealed earlier this month that the Justice Department subpoenaed two months’ worth of phone records for lines linked to roughly 100 journalists. Soon after, it was acknowledged that the personal emails of Fox News reporter James Rosen were also [taken]…

…Holder and Deputy Attorney General James Cole “said they are reaching out to editors and counsels for news organizations about how to strike what they called ‘the balance’ between protecting the flow of information and journalists’ ability to do our jobs and what they described as national security damage.”

Got it? Holder, a man currently under investigation for perjury in this matter, and who was found in contempt of the House for his willful obstruction of the Fast and Furious investigation, seeks ‘balance’. Hmm. Doesn’t the wolf do the same, when it’s cornered by the hounds? “Hey guys, let’s compromise, let’s reach a balance.”

The article continues:

…even if the DoJ acknowledged those changes, eyewitnesses say it’s not certain when or how adjustments will be implemented. While most attendees say that Holder and Cole seemed understanding of their grievances, few walked away with feeling fulfilled about promises that have yet to be cemented…

“…I think it’s sort of an opening gambit, an opening discussion,” New York Daily News Washington bureau chief Jim Warren told CNN.

Let’s be clear: Holder should resign, for various of his actions.

But these aren’t normal times; this is the Age of Obama, wherein the once-great United States devolves into a banana republic. So Holder might not resign. I’ll be surprised if he does.

The open question, for me, is: How quickly will the mainstream media forgive Obama and Holder, resuming their boot-licking role? How little will it take to bring them back into the fold? I bet Holder and Obama are pondering the same question.

FROM THE COMMENTS: jimmy nails it: Holder’s stance amounts to “I did nothing wrong, but I promise not to do it any more. But don’t quote me on that.”

Media angry with Holder?

From The Hill:

Fox News will not attend a meeting with Attorney General Eric Holder on the Justice Department’s policy of targeting the media in national security leaks investigations if the session is off the record, the network said Thursday…

Fox is just the latest media organization to say it will boycott the meeting if it is off the record. Holder asked for the meetings in an attempt to ensure [sic; assure?] the press corps that its investigations of national security leaks are conducted in a way that respects the First Amendment.

The New York Times, The Associated Press, The Huffington Post and CNN have issued separate statements saying they will not attend because the DOJ is requiring the content of the meetings stay confidential…

Is saying “We will only meet with you on-the-record” the media’s way of saying “We don’t trust you, scumbag?”

By the way – not to change the subject, but: the Obama administration’s violations of press freedoms and privacy rights (far in excess of anything Bush did) has me wondering, did Obama supporters in 2008 and 2012 know what they were voting for? Are they honestly disappointed with his administration now, like “that’s not what we voted for”?

You see, I knew. I didn’t know what specific violations were coming, but already in 2008, I knew that Obama & Co. were worshippers of the State (or of Big Government) who only pretended to care about the U.S. constitution.

It followed that, once in office, the Obama administration would violate people’s rights to freedom and privacy in various ways. Now we have the growing list of scandal revelations, to prove it.

If some Obama supporter claims they didn’t know, then either: (1 – seems less likely) I am smarter than them, or (2 – seems more likely) they aren’t being honest: they saw much of what I saw *and just didn’t care*. Which means they shouldn’t look at the Obama administration now and try to say, “That’s not what we voted for.”

Nixon and Obama: how similar?

Posted by Jeff (ILoveCapitalism) at 6:31 pm - May 28, 2013.
Filed under: Democratic Scandals,Government Accountability & Ethics

Are people exaggerating the similarities? Or is this video (hat tip, Bruce’s Twitter feed) onto something?

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Holder being investigated for perjury

From The Hill:

The House Judiciary Committee is investigating whether Attorney General Eric Holder lied under oath during his May 15 testimony on the Justice Department’s (DOJ) surveillance of reporters…

“In regard to potential prosecution of the press for the disclosure of material — this is not something I’ve ever been involved in, heard of, or would think would be wise policy,” Holder said during the hearing.

However, NBC News reported last week that Holder personally approved a search warrant that labeled Fox News chief Washington correspondent James Rosen a co-conspirator in a national security leaks case…

Rep. Jim Sensenbrenner (Wis.), the second-ranking Judiciary Committee Republican, told The Hill that Holder should resign. He accused Holder of misleading the panel during the investigation of the Fast and Furious gun-tracking operation, and again when he claimed to not know about the AP probe…

The House voted to find Holder in contempt over his refusal to turn over documents to lawmakers on Fast and Furious…

I feel two ways about this. Part of me says, the AG should not get away with lying to Congress (if he has, in fact, done so). Another part says: what’s the big deal? Holder has a technicality here (he can say that he didn’t lie, because approving a warrant on Rosen with intent to see if he should be prosecuted is not actually prosecuting him). Anyway, the whole thing is the kind of (low) standard that we expect from the Obama administration, by now.

Brit Hume makes what may be a better point, that Obama putting Holder in charge of investigating the DOJ’s spying on the media is a giant conflict of interest.

UPDATE: Showing what sane people are up against in today’s world, Yahoo!’s current lead headline is “Obama, Christie rekindle their bromance”. Really, media machine? You couldn’t find something better to report on?

Food for thought

Happy Memorial Day, er, weekend! And a big Thank You to GP commenter heliotrope for the following, which he posted as part of a longer comment, some ten days ago. I must warn that it’s not exactly cheery; but neither is the state of America these days.

In an environment of enabling corruption, these words are tested:

“Experience has shown, that even under the best forms of government those entrusted with power have, in time, and by slow operations, perverted it into tyranny.”
― Thomas Jefferson

“The more corrupt the state, the more numerous the laws.”
― Tacitus, The Annals of Imperial Rome

“A man who has never gone to school may steal a freight car; but if he has a university education, he may steal the whole railroad.”
― Theodore Roosevelt

“Among a people generally corrupt, liberty cannot long exist.”
― Edmund Burke

“Power does not corrupt men; fools, however, if they get into a position of power, corrupt power.”
― George Bernard Shaw

“The surest way to corrupt a youth is to instruct him to hold in higher esteem those who think alike than those who think differently.”
― Friedrich Nietzsche

“Look at the orators in our republics; as long as they are poor, both state and people can only praise their uprightness; but once they are fattened on the public funds, they conceive a hatred for justice, plan intrigues against the people and attack the democracy.”
― Aristophanes, Plutus

“Might and wrong combined, like iron magnetized, are endowed with irresistible attraction.”
― Nathaniel Hawthorne, The House of the Seven Gables

“Why should he watch the hideous corruption of his soul?”
― Oscar Wilde, The Picture of Dorian Gray

“I will not let anyone walk through my mind with their dirty feet.”
― Mahatma Gandhi

Obama, Hillary Clinton, Eric Holder have made “not knowing” an art form. They learn of bad things by an occasional glance at the TV where the news is reporting it. That is the modus operandi of corruption. Unlike Ghandi, their minds are open to walking through by all manner of dirty feet, so long as there is no record kept or chain of evidence linking to them.