Monday, October 1, 2012

ABC, CBS & NBC Blackout Major New Findings in Fast & Furious Scandal

NewsBusters ^ | Oct. 1, 2012 | By Geoffrey Dickens

Over the weekend the Univision network broke major news in the Fast and Furious gunwalking scandal. They found 57 previously unreported guns used in crimes by Mexican cartels, but ABC, CBS and NBC have yet to report the Spanish-language network’s findings. There were zero mentions on Sunday night’s ABC's World News and CBS's Evening News (NBC's Nightly News was pre-empted by Ryder Cup coverage) or on any of Monday’s morning shows. The blackout on ABC’s broadcasts is particularly confounding since they have an excerpt from Univision's report on ABC's official Web site.
The refusal by ABC, CBS or NBC to report the findings is remarkable since the Univision report not only contains politically explosive information to a sitting administration at the height of the election season but also compelling human tragedy. Univision’s Gerardo Reyes and Santiago Wills reported “Indirectly, the United States government played a role in the massacre” of 14 Mexican teens in a one-story house by “supplying some of the firearms uses by the cartel murders.”
The lack of coverage by the Big Three (ABC, NBC, CBS) networks continues their trend of mostly ignoring major events in the scandal that has led to calls for Attorney General Eric Holder’s resignation. . .
(Excerpt) Read more at newsbusters.org ...

Obama Didn’t Save the Auto Industry: He Took Away 2,200 Dealerships and 120,000 Jobs

Laycatholics ^ | October 1, 2012

As a Catholic who works in the trade association profession in the auto industry it was unsettling to hear President Obama claim that he saved the auto industry. President Obama closed over 2,200 auto dealerships, which caused the losses of decades old family-owned businesses and over 120,000 jobs they provided. The closures were allowed to happen under the false notion that auto dealerships were an expense on their auto maker. The President ignored the fact that auto dealers are not an expense to automakers. Auto makers own none of what you see at auto dealerships. Auto dealers own all their property; the cars and trucks, parts, buildings, land, signs, everything. The dealerships pay their employee’s salaries and millions of dollars in taxes to state and local governments. The manufacturer has nothing to do with any of these things.
Facts:
  • President Obama purposefully and unjustly took away 2,200 self-sufficient, family owned businesses under the false premise that they were an expense on their auto manufacturer. He deliberately put these people in debt with no way to recover. Auto dealers still cannot sell their closed properties.
  • President Obama’s decision to close dealerships cost 120,000 persons their jobs and livelihood.
  • The President’s action defrauded auto dealers of their property rights and their employees of their wages.
The President’s actions against auto dealers violated the Catholic social teaching principles of social justice and the common good by removing owners rights to their property and defrauding workers of their wages. His actions (he calls it “shared sacrifice”) were an example of collectivism, centralized planning and socialism. All of these ideas are rejected by America and all are rejected by Catholic teaching in regard to the commandment, “thou shall not steal.”
Many people have forgotten what damage President Obama did to the auto industry and the auto dealer and their employees. Please remind them.

Traveling like a president...

politico44 ^ | 10/1/12 | DONOVAN SLACK

What takes 200 hotel rooms, four jets, five helicopters and 35 motorcade vehicles?
A typical presidential trip, according to The Travel Channel, which goes behind the scenes in its special "Travel Like a President," set to air Tuesday.

Andy Singer, the network's general manager, says the show is "designed to give viewers an all-access, unprecedented look at the enormous level of detail and thought that comes with the territory when you are the leader of the free world.”

It looks at famed presidential accommodations, such as the Waldorf in New York, and follows President Obama during a vacation to Hawaii.

(Excerpt) Read more at politico.com ...

How do you debate Obama? Make him own the economy!

Human Events ^ | October 1, 2012 | David Harsanyi

It’s simple. During the upcoming debates, no matter what question is thrown at him, Mitt Romney has to dump the economy onto the lap of its rightful owner. The president, Romney might suggest, shouldn’t be judged on the economy he campaigned so hard to inherit, but the recovery he has botched. As it stands, Obama is the owner of the most pathetic economic revival in American history. A recovery so weak, it’s difficult to believe that voters even think of it as one.
So, when the president starts unfurling his economic vision of growth through wind-powered fairness factories, Romney has to bring it back to reality. Mr. President, you passed $831 billion special interest “stimulus” plan that you promised the American people would spark growth, yet it has had a negligible impact on economic growth.
It was your administration that claimed growth would climb to 4 percent during your first term if we passed the stimulus. This year, growth is under 2 percent. And it was your economic forecasters who told us that the stimulus would help avert an unemployment disaster. But the unemployment numbers we’re now facing are actually worse than the ones your administration predicted we would have had without the “stimulus.”
Nowadays, the president and his advocates are compelled to cobble together ludicrous claims of success.
(Excerpt) Read more at humanevents.com ...

Judge Emmet Sullivan Rules 14th Amendment Did Not Repeal Natural Born Citizen Requirement!

ORYR ^ | Monday, October 1, 2012

U.S. District Judge Emmet Sullivan Rules Natural Born Citizen Requirement Not Repealed By The 14th Amendment Or The 5th Amendment

Abdul Karim Hassan vs FEC - Court Opinion - District Court for the District of Columbia - 10/1/2012

MEMORANDUM OPINION

"Plaintiff Abdul Karim Hassan brings this action against the Federal Election Commission (“FEC”), seeking a declaratory judgment that (1) the Presidential Election Campaign Fund Act, 26 U.S.C. §§ 9001-9013, which provides public funding to Presidential nominees of major or minor political parties, is unconstitutional and invalid, and (2) the natural born citizen clause of the Constitution1 is irreconcilable with, and has been “trumped, abrogated and implicitly repealed” by, the Equal Protection guarantee of the Fifth Amendment and the Citizenship Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment."

--JUMP--

"Hassan’s challenge to the Fund Act rests on his contention that the natural born citizen requirement has been implicitly repealed by the Fifth and Fourteenth Amendments. The Court need not repeat the thorough and persuasive opinions issued by its colleagues in at least five other jurisdictions, all of whom determined that the natural born citizen requirement has not been implicitly repealed by the Fifth and Fourteenth Amendments."

"Moreover, the Supreme Court has consistently held that the distinction between natural born citizens and naturalized citizens in the context of Presidential eligibility remains valid."

"Because the natural born citizen requirement has not been explicitly or implicitly repealed, Hassan’s challenge to that provision, and the Fund Act’s incorporation thereof, must fail."

CONTINUED HERE: http://www.scribd.com/doc/108620619/Abdul-Karim-Hassan-vs-FEC-Court-Opinion-District-Court-for-the-District-of-Columbia-10-1-2012

MORE HERE: http://www.fec.gov/press/press2012/20121001_Hassan_v._FEC.shtml

BACKGROUND ON HASSAN'S CASE HERE: http://obamareleaseyourrecords.blogspot.com/2011/09/fec-unanimously-ruled-foreign-born.html

New look at health care? [Supreme Court re-review of Obamacare?]

SCOTUSblog ^ | Mon, October 1st, 2012 9:41 am | Lyle Denniston

The Supreme Court opened its new Term on Monday by asking the federal government to offer its views on whether the way should be cleared for new constitutional challenges to the federal health care law — including a new protest against the individual mandate that the Court had upheld last June. The request for the government’s views came in response to a rehearing request by a religious-oriented institution, Liberty University in Lynchburg, Va. The university’s earlier petition was simply denied in June, so it asked the Court to reconsider and wipe out a lower court ruling in order to revive the university’s religious challenges to both the individual mandate and the separate insurance coverage mandate for employers. There is also another challenge to the employer mandate, which did not figure in the Court’s decision last Term.
The order came amid a long list of orders on cases that arrived at the Court over the summer. There were no new grants. Among other actions, the Court invited the government to offer its reaction to several new cases.
The U.S. Solicitor General was invited to advise the Court on whether it should hear Arzoumanian, et al., v. Munchener…(docket 12-9) on the insurance claims of victims of the Armenian genocide; three related cases on class-action lawsuits involving securities fraud (dockets 12-79, 12-86 and 12-88), and on Young v. Fitzpatrick (docket 11-1485), a case testing legal immunity for police officers working for an Indian tribe.
The Court summarily affirmed lower court rulings rejecting claims of “packing” of minority voters into new districts to diminish their political strength — a question of racial gerrymandering (Backus v. South Carolina, 11-1404) — as well as claims of partisan gerrymandering in redistricting (Radogno v. Illinois Board of Elections, 11-1127). The Court provided no explanation for its action.
(NOTE TO READERS: This post will be updated and expanded following this morning’s oral arguments. Posts also will appear later today on those arguments.)

Obama Caught In His Own Rope A Dope

Flopping Aces ^ | 10-1-12 | Skookum



They Comfort Each Other Over The Deaths They Caused

The White House, aided by its state-directed media feels no responsibility to tell the American people the truth; in fact, everything we hear from the Obama Administration is filtered through a propaganda process, until it is judged beneficial to President Obama.
The official White House account of the Benghazi terror attack suggests it happened because, there was no “actionable” intelligence to suggest the consulate office was in danger.
Apparently, the Red Cross seems to have a better intelligence team than the United States.
According to the Washington Post:

Security in eastern Libya deteriorated sharply in recent months. A string of attacks, some linked to fundamentalist groups, made clear that Westerners were no longer safe. The International Committee of the Red Cross suspended operations and evacuated staff in the east after an attack June 12 on its compound in the port city of Misrata. In Benghazi, convoys transporting the U.N. country chief and the British ambassador were attacked in April and June, respectively. The British government shut down its consulate soon afterward. The U.S. outpost had a close call of its own June 6, when a small roadside bomb detonated outside the walls, causing no injuries or significant damage. But the Americans stayed put.


Hillary and Obama Try To Organize Their Lies AsThe Bodies Of Americans Slain By Terror Arrive Home
The Red Cross realized the severity of the situation and pulled out. The British realized the danger and pulled out. Our State Department decided we could stay without increasing security.
The Red Cross and Britain aren’t headed up by BHO, after his Cairo speech, these people of the Middle East love him; at least, Obama's confidence seems to be predicated on this assumption, despite a bomb being detonated earlier this year outside the same consulate office. They made no effort to meet the strict safety standards for government buildings overseas, nor they post a Marine guard as is customary in high-threat situations.

A U.S. military team assigned to establish security at the new embassy in Tripoli, in a previously undisclosed detail, was never instructed to fortify the temporary hub in the east. Instead, a small local guard force was hired by a British private security firm as part of a contract worth less than half of what it costs to deploy a single U.S. service member in a war zone for a year.
How did the Obama administration respond to the threat that drove other westerners out: he continued to use cheap British contractors, who employed local personnel. The year-long contract was for $387, 413. It is interesting to know how much value the Obama administration places on its ambassadors and embassy personnel. Valerie Jarrett had a Secret Service detail with her in Martha's Vineyard. Ambassador Stevens had unarmed locals in Benghazi.
The New York Times offers up this tidbit of carefully timed and released inside information from the White House:
(excerpt) Read more at floppingaces.net...

Shame on the Main Stream Press

by sr4402

Imagine a Republican president was in the White House and the White House Military Network was hacked by the Chinese. Oh the Hew and the Cry of the Mainstream Media would be deafening. But because it's a Democrat - nary a peep.


Imagine a Republican president when the countries credit rating was downgraded again during his term. The media would call for his immediate resignation. But because it's a Democrat, it's buried on the back pages if it is mentioned at all.


Imagine a Republican president being caught covering up for Al Queda's murder of the Libyan Ambassador. And that steps for the Ambassador's protection were not taken. The cries of failed presidency would never end. But because it's a Democrat, the Mainstream media covers for him.

Shame on the Mainstream Media. They should be asking the question, "if this were a Republican, would we be reporting this differently?" but they are not and their credibility is going down with their ratings and advertising dollars (right down the drain).

3posted on Monday, October 01, 2012 1:38:29 PMby Diogenesis(Vi veri veniversum vivus vici)

Debate Prep

As California Declines, Texas Rises!

Daily Beast ^ | 09/30/2012 | Tom Gray

After World War II, California was where Americans went in search of a better life—the state with more jobs, more space, more sunlight, and more opportunity. But since 1990, Californians have gone elsewhere for opportunity, with the state losing a net of more than 3.7 million people to other states.
n the national recovery or slow slog since the economy bottomed out roughly three years ago, even California has regained some ground. As of this August, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, it has added more than a half million jobs since its payroll totals hit bottom around the end of 2009.
It seems natural these days to assume that the Golden State is the sick man of the U.S.—so if even California is coming back, however weakly, perhaps the recovery is real.

As recently as the 1980s, California still had the aura of an unstoppable growth machine, and such a view would have been unthinkable. Now, Texas is the object of economic envy and California is the object lesson, the toxic state.
It's a partisan narrative to be sure, with Republican-run Texas as a low-tax, right-to-work mecca for business. But propaganda aside, though, there is statistical reality to the idea that Texas is rising and California is falling back. In 2000, California’s jobless rate was 4.9%, while the Texas rate was 4.4%. Ten years later, that half-percentage-point gap had widened to more than four points: 12.4% to 8.2%. Texas is also adding more jobs than California, which has 50% more people.
These figures help explain the findings of a new study I conducted along with demographer Robert Scardamalia for the Manhattan Institute’s Center for State and Local Leadership, The Great California Exodus: A Closer Look. During the first decade of the 2000s, according to IRS data on the movement of income-tax filers, California saw a net loss of 635,000 people and aggregate income of $14.7 billion to just three states—Texas, Arizona and Nevada. Texas was the leading destination, with about 225,000 Californians relocating there.
At the beginning of the decade, when California and Texas were fairly close in job production, movement between the states was close to even. About 35,000 Texans moved to California between the 2000 and 2001 tax years, and slightly fewer than 42,000 Californians moved to Texas. Five years later, Texas had gained a lopsided advantage, gaining about 72,400 Californians while losing about 31,200 Texans to the Golden State. At the decade’s end, the recession had dampened migration in all directions—people are less prone to move when fewer jobs are available to attract them. But Texas remained the far more popular draw, attracting 48,900 Californians while losing just 33,900.

CLICK ABOVE LINK FOR THE REST...


Free Phones and the Loss of Freedoms

Illinois Review ^ | September 30, 2012 A.D. | John F. Di Leo

Statistics are odd things. They can grab one’s attention; they can utterly fascinate, or they can make one’s eyes glaze over.

Election seasons are a great time for such examples – candidates, parties, and commentators all use statistics to make their points, but all too often, the important issues are lost in the shuffle of challenges or defenses to the statistics.

The modern welfare state presents such a problem. Consider the “rise of the Obamaphone” in recent years, as a three-decade-old policy of providing the most indigent with a subsidized landline has been translated by the current administration as a commitment to provide 12.5 million voters with the latest cellphones. Honestly, shouldn’t the recipients be offended that their party hopes their votes can be bought with a free phone?
First, the statistics: there were about 7.1 million federally-subsidized cellphones in 2008, and that number nearly doubled to 12.5 million during the Obama presidency. Politicians are sure that these statistics will affect the November elections, especially with the news that about a million of them are in Ohio, the battleground of all battlegrounds.
The Democrats hope that people who receive their phones from the government will vote for the Party of Government. The Republicans, the Party of the People, fear that the Democrats might be right, that this statistic may indeed represent 12.5 million certain Democrat votes. Even more infuriating and unfair, Republicans are disgusted that their own tax dollars have been used, again and again, to finance the opposition party.
There are similar statistics worth considering. Over 46 million people currently receive taxpayer-funded food stamps. In a nation of 300 million, that’s a sixth of the population! Officially published unemployment rates are consistently over 8%, but are really north of 15% when one counts the part-timers, the underemployed, and the forcibly retired. Many cities and states are far higher, with urban areas, ethnic groups and age groups suffering an unemployment rate over a horrifying 33%.
Unemployment insurance and all these other forms of government coverage are bankrupting local, state, and federal governments and businesses from coast to coast.
THE NATIONAL COST OF SPENDING:
Yes, it’s certainly true that these statistics are terrifying. The government should not be spending so much on these programs. As the old saying goes, government cannot put any coin in your right pocket that it has not already taken out of your left.
The more we spend on any program, the more we must take from the public. Nothing is free from the government; Washington and our state capitals must either raise the money today in taxes, or borrow today to raise more taxes later, or monetize it by printing more money and devaluing the currency for everyone. All these methods make every product and service cost more, usually much more, than it appears.
For example, if our free phone is only ten dollars per month – the government pays the cellphone provider $120 per year for each allegedly indigent person to have one of these phones – then it actually costs much more than that, for two reasons:
One is that the government doesn’t have $120 in surplus to pay today, so it will really cost three, four, or five times that, when we finally finish paying off our national debt in two or three generations (if ever) and actually finish paying off that bill, with interest.
The other is that the phone actually costs the provider more than the provider’s agreement with the government, so part of the cost – the part in addition to the $10 per phone federal subsidy – is actually paid by other private cellphone subscribers. If a product ought to be $15/month, and they can only get $10 from the government (through the fee on our bills, or other sources), then they must split the other five dollars in cost across their non-government customers.
All Americans therefore pay several times, in several ways, for our neighbors’ “free” phones. Our taxes go up today, our children’s taxes will go up tomorrow, and our own phone bills go up as well, both today and tomorrow, for as long as these double-subsidized programs remain in place. It isn’t even “robbing Peter to pay Paul,” because Paul too, who gets the benefit today, sees his own other taxes or employment prospects suffer as a result. So it’s “robbing both long-term to pay one short-term.”
What do we get for it? A segment of the society gets something from the government. At a crippling cost of half to three quarters of government spending, an ever-growing segment of our society receives entitlements of all sorts, from phones to food, from housing to college. And not only is there no end in sight, there’s no end to the rate of growth, in sight, either.
As the entitlements grow, the taxes climb, the spending climbs, and government crowds out the private sector. We can say that quite literally; the nation is blanketed with towns in which businesses closed down and government offices moved in. We’ve all seen neighborhoods in which whole city blocks have flipped from business district to government district, as the loss of one after another of yesterday’s employers has “necessitated” new welfare offices, unemployment offices, police precinct houses, and public-private partnership “charities”… all of which would be unneeded if the region was growth-oriented enough to keep the people employed.
People need to eat, people need to be educated; people need to be housed and clothed… and today, some people even think they “need” a phone. When the government offers to provide all these things, people forget the one need that takes care of them all without reliance on government: people need a job.
But the growth of government, and specifically, the growth of entitlement spending, has crowded out those very jobs. As entitlement statistics have climbed, so too have the unemployment statistics, and many forget which direction the causal relationship really goes.
Before voters who receive such things decide to base their votes on which candidate promises them the most, they should consider what this largesse actually does to them, personally. Because, in the end, all these statistics aren’t just a danger to our election season and a crippling cost to our economy; they’re also a danger to the recipients.
THE PERSONAL COST OF SPENDING:
When an unemployed person receives a little momentary help – an excused postponement of utility bills, for example – this makes sense, and watching the continued growth of the debt, even while payments are suspended, can be a wonderful inspiration to keep the jobseeker focused on the goal of finding or creating a new (and hopefully better) job.
When the unemployed person – or even an employed but not wealthy person – receives direct assistance, however, it warps the system. Not only does it add to the burden of government, raising his own and everyone else’s taxes, but in addition, it warps the individual’s own situation.
These programs come with rules, as they should. But if you get some benefits for keeping your salary under $20K, it may cost much more than the difference to be worth it to get a salary over $20K. And if you get benefits for keeping your salary under $50K, then it costs even more to be worthwhile to work for that next raise too. There are benefits in this country for people making $100,000 per year! Not the same ones, necessarily, but the government writes a LOT of checks, each with different qualification thresholds, each one quickly becoming a financial “necessity,” each one becoming harder and harder to give up… each one an additional obstacle, discouraging the recipient from advancing.
Our country is now at the point that the vast majority of us factor government benefits into our life decisions. We choose what city to live in, based on whether the taxpayer-funded public schools are good or bad. We sometimes even choose our very state, based on the quality of its subsidized colleges. There might be a better job with better opportunities in another state, but we choose this one for the taxpayer-funded college system. After spending ten or twenty years paying taxes to fund Champaign-Urbana, or Madison, or William and Mary, one would feel such a loss in moving to another state with poorer state colleges (in one’s own opinion, anyway – others may disagree).
Retirees might enjoy working, and want to return full time – and their employers may want them back! – but the fear of diminished Social Security benefits puts a ceiling on their willingness to work. The company suffers as a result, missing out on the knowledge of the most experienced workers they know.
But worst of all is the effect of entitlement benefits on the poor and the working poor themselves. The more our government hands out to the unworking, the more expensive an entry level role has to be, just to be worthwhile. Imagine trading $20,000 in tax-free benefits for $20,000 in taxed benefits. Or thirty for thirty. Or even forty for forty. The system heavily discourages the transitions from unemployment to work, or from a lesser job to a better one. It discourages advancement.
Hard-working people don’t lose their work ethic overnight, but after years, or after generations, there’s eventually no more work ethic to lose. People need to work for necessities, and strive for luxuries. When you’re working a forty hour week just to get by, you’re motivated to do better so that the forty hours can pay for luxuries as well. And then once you get a taste of some luxuries, you’re motivated to work harder still, to have a chance at more and more luxuries – the better home, the better computer, the better television, the better restaurants, the better entertainment.
This is the path to the American Dream, the honorable, responsible desire to focus your efforts on a career that will earn you the kind of life you desire.
Entitlements warp this focus. Some people work hard for housing; now we give it away free. Some people work hard for a cellphone; now we give that away free too. Some work hard – focusing their entire careers on being able to send their children to the best college. What happens to our work ethic if that too becomes taxpayer-funded, and therefore, “free”?
Someone still has to pay these bills. Someone has to pay for the phones, the housing, the food, the schools. Our nation needs growth – not stagnation, not the status quo, certainly not the current downward spiral – we need real growth to be able to pay these bills and enable the path to prosperity that we all desire.
If all you have is a room provided by your neighbors, groceries provided by your neighbors, a war zone of a public school provided by your neighbors, and a cellphone provided by your neighbors, then all you really have, all you really own, is your dependence.
The modern American Democrat emphasizes these programs, and many more, because they are counting on ever more Americans voting for the Democratic Party who robs them of opportunity… for the same Democratic Party that warps their priorities and locks their futures in a downward spiral.
The Democratic candidate for public office is counting on people voting against their own best interests; the candidate counts on their voting block voting to remain dependent, to remain limited. You’ve heard of the glass ceiling, so difficult to break through? Try being capped by the concrete ceiling of the welfare state, for now and forever. The modern American Democrat counts on his constituents embracing their dependence.
It is the job of the Republicans, the job of the conservatives, to remind them which party is really looking out for their best interests, long term: because the right knows that when all you have is dependence, then you have nothing at all.
Copyright 2012 John F. Di Leo
John F. Di Leo is a Chicago-based Customs broker and international trade compliance lecturer. A former chairman of the Milwaukee County Republican Party, he has been a recovering politician for over fifteen years now.
Permission is hereby granted to forward freely, provided it is uncut and the IR URL and byline are included. Follow me on Facebook or LinkedIn, or on Twitter at @johnfdileo.
http://illinoisreview.typepad.com/illinoisreview/2012/09/free-phones-and-the-loss-of-freedoms.html

Our Fearless Misleader

Weekly Standard ^ | October 8, 2012 edition | Stephen F. Hayes

After more than two weeks of obfuscation and misdirection from the Obama administration, the American public is coming to understand what the U.S. intelligence community learned in the 48 hours immediately following the September 11 attack on the American consulate in Benghazi, Libya. Among the important new details:

* Top Pentagon officials declared the assault a terrorist attack on “Day One.” Doing so enabled them to expedite any response to the attack (Yahoo! News).
* U.S. intelligence and counterterrorism officials understood right away that the attacks were planned for the eleventh anniversary of 9/11 (THE WEEKLY STANDARD).
* Within 24 hours of the attack, “U.S. intelligence agencies had strong indications al Qaeda-affiliated operatives were behind the attack and had even pinpointed the location of one of those attackers” (Daily Beast).
* In telephone intercepts of phone calls involving members of Ansar al Sharia, an al Qaeda-linked group in Libya, members “bragged about their successful attack against the American consulate and the U.S. ambassador” (Daily Beast).
* U.S. counterterrorism officials had repeatedly warned about the growth of al Qaeda affiliate groups in Libya and noted in particular their relationship to al Qaeda’s central leadership in Pakistan (THE WEEKLY STANDARD).
The nature of intelligence collection after an operation like the one in Benghazi means that the narrative of the attack—in both classified and open sources—will change. As intelligence professionals gain access to more data, the picture they can paint becomes fuller and more detailed. And the early narrative of an attack can evolve.
For the most part, that’s not what happened with the Obama administration’s claims about Benghazi. While top administration officials often pointed out that more complete information would be available after an investigation, this did not prevent them from offering a detailed account of what had happened in Libya. And, as we’ve noted in these pages, that account was wrong in virtually every one of its particulars.
The attack was, in fact, planned. It did involve al Qaeda-linked terrorists. It was not a copycat of the protests in Cairo, Egypt. Indeed, there was no protest outside the consulate in Benghazi at all. The U.S. compound was not well secured. The two ex-Navy SEALs killed in the attack were not there to protect the ambassador, and they were not, obviously, joined by several colleagues also providing security. The date of the attack was not coincidental. And the anti-Islam YouTube video at the center of the administration’s public relations effort had nothing to do with the assault that took the lives of four Americans.
This, more than anything, is the problem with the administration’s response. It wasn’t that they failed to provide enough information to the public, but that they provided incorrect information and did so long after it was clear to many in the intelligence community that the political narrative was false.
There are two possible explanations. Either the information widely available to intelligence professionals was not shared with those speaking on behalf of the president. Or those Obama administration officials had the accurate information and chose not to provide it.
If intelligence professionals had immediately concluded that the attack in Libya had nothing to do with the YouTube video, why did top administration figures point to it as the trigger?
If the Pentagon knew on “Day One” that the attacks were planned, why was U.S. ambassador to the U.N. Susan Rice still denying this four days later?
If counterterrorism officials had determined that the killings were the result of a terrorist attack, why did State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland refuse to acknowledge that during her briefing on September 17?
If intelligence officials knew on September 11 that the attack took place that day for a reason, why did White House press secretary Jay Carney still pretend otherwise eight days later?
Some of the misleading information provided to the public could not possibly have been a result of incomplete or evolving intelligence. The information about security for the ambassador and the compound, for instance, would have been readily available to administration officials from the beginning. And yet when Susan Rice appeared on five political talk shows on September 16, she erroneously claimed that the two ex-Navy SEALs killed in the attack were, along with several colleagues, providing security. They were not. Why did she say this?
These questions, and many others, deserve answers. And soon.

Univision report connects Operation Fast and Furious scandal to murders of Mexican teenagers!

Daily Caller ^ | October 1, 2012 | Matthew Boyle

The Spanish language television news network Univision unleashed a bombshell investigative report on Operation Fast and Furious Sunday evening, finding that in January 2010 drug cartel hit men slaughtered students with weapons the United States government allowed to flow to them across the Mexican border.

“On January 30, 2010, a commando of at least 20 hit men parked themselves outside a birthday party of high school and college students in Villas de Salvarcar, Ciudad Juarez,” according to a version of the Univision report in English, on the ABC News website.

“Near midnight, the assassins, later identified as hired guns for the Mexican cartel La Linea, broke into a one-story house and opened fire on a gathering of nearly 60 teenagers. Outside, lookouts gunned down a screaming neighbor and several students who had managed to escape. Fourteen young men and women were killed, and 12 more were wounded before the hit men finally fled.”
Citing a Mexican Army document it obtained and published, Univision reported that “[t]hree of the high caliber weapons fired that night in Villas de Salvarcar were linked to a gun tracing operation run by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF).”
That operation was Fast and Furious.
The “massacre,” as Univision described it, was not the only bombshell the network unveiled in its Sunday evening report.
“Univision News identified a total of 57 more previously unreported firearms that were bought by straw purchasers monitored by ATF during Operation Fast and Furious, and then recovered in Mexico in sites related to murders, kidnappings, and at least one other massacre,” the Univision report reads.
The network also uncovered another Fast and Furious weapons “massacre.” On September 2, 2009, 18 young men were killed at “El Aliviane, a rehabilitation center in Ciudad Juarez,” according to the report.
Univision found many of these victims through “access to the list of serial numbers for weapons used in Fast and Furious” and the “list of guns seized in Mexico,” according to English subtitles on the Spanish-language video.
“After cross-referencing them both lists, it became clear that a least a hundred of them were used in crimes of all kinds,” the subtitles read. “We found 57 weapons that were not mentioned in [the U.S.] Congress’ investigation.”
Though Univision tracked many more victims down, it said that “the death toll that this free flow of weapons authorized by ATF had in Mexico has not been tallied.”
Univision held nothing back in its broadcast, airing images and video of bloodied, dead bodies. The network showed the faces of the dead and walked viewers through how cartel operatives hunted their victims down with the weapons President Barack Obama’s administration allowed straw buyers to traffick to them.
One photo, for instance, showed pools of blood in the streets of a Mexican town after a “massacre” committed by murderers armed with Fast and Furious weapons. Video footage showed where some of the victims were killed and how the cartels chased their helpless victims to their deaths.
The Univision broadcast implicitly suggested that Americans have no regard for the victims of violence American policy helps fuel — that is, until one of those victims ends up being an American.
It wasn’t until U.S. Border Patrol agent Brian Terry’s murder prompted whistle-blowers to come forward to Congress to publicly voice concerns about ]he program that the Obama administration stopped allowing firearms to flow into Mexico.
One victim’s father, Mexican poet Javier Sicilia, told Univision he thinks “Americans are not often moved by the pain of those outside [their country].”
“But they are moved by the pain of their own,” Sicilia added.
“Well, turn around and watch the massacres.”
Univision says the Obama administration’s actions “inadvertently” helped fuel violence and a war between the cartels.
“In Mexico, the timing of the operation coincided with an upsurge of violence in the war among the country’s strongest cartels,” according to Univision.
“In 2009, the northern Mexican states served as a battlefield for the Sinaloa and Juarez drug trafficking organizations, and as expansion territory for the increasingly powerful Zetas. According to documents obtained by Univision News, from October of that year to the end of 2010, nearly 175 weapons from Operation Fast and Furious inadvertently armed the various warring factions across northern Mexico.”
An English-subtitled translation of one expert’s comments indicated that the weapons the Obama administration allowed to flow to the cartels through Fast and Furious were “capable of not only penetrating an armored vehicle but also a whole house from wall to wall.”
According to the Univision report, it wasn’t weak gun laws that made Fast and Furious possible, as some liberal commentators have suggested.
“If up to this point drug dealers could easily obtain and smuggle guns, the United States government made it easier,” English subtitles on one part of the report read.
“When Fast and Furious began in 2009, the ATF and Arizona prosecutors told [gun] store owners to sell weapons without restrictions to suspicious buyers.”
Univision also said that it was Phoenix ATF office leader Bill Newell who ultimately concluded that “the only way to track the guns was to wait for weapons to be recovered in crime scenes in Mexico.”
That charge, if true, would mean the Obama administration decided to allow cartel operatives to kill and injure people with the weapons it gave them, and to recover the guns only after criminals ditched them at brutal — often deadly — crime scenes.
Univision also found additional details about other gunwalking operations the Obama administration undertook.
“In Florida, the weapons from Operation Castaway ended up in the hands of criminals in Colombia, Honduras and Venezuela, the lead informant in the case told Univision News in a prison interview,” the network reported. The informant Unvision interviewed was “Vietnam veteran-turned-arms-trafficker” Hugh Crumpler.
“When the ATF stopped me, they told me the guns were going to cartels,” Crumpler said. “The ATF knew before I knew and had been following me for a considerable length of time. They could not have followed me for two months like they said they did, and not know the guns were going somewhere, and not want for that to be happening.”

France’s Socialist 75 percent tax rate is economic suicide!

The Telegraph (UK) ^ | September 28, 2012 | Nile Gardiner

Back in May I wrote a piece describing Francois Hollande’s election victory as emblematic of the EU’s decline, noting that “his government promises to be a symbol of everything that is wrong with Europe today.” True to his election campaign promise, the new French president, together with his prime minister Jean-Marc Ayrault, has outlined his plans for a 75 percent marginal income tax rate tax on anyone earning more than €1 million Euros a year.

This is economic suicide for the second biggest economy in Europe, a supreme act of financial har-kiri for a country whose public debt has now risen to 91 percent of GDP, a growth of 30 percent in five years. This is part of €20 billion Euros worth of new taxes, mainly on businesses and high earners, unveiled by a backward-looking Socialist government seemingly intent on economic self-destruction. As Jean-Paul Agon, chief of L’Oreal told The Financial Times earlier this week, it will now become “almost impossible” for France to attract leading business talent.

(Excerpt) Read more at blogs.telegraph.co.uk ...

Women Drivers

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Lying the King

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HOPE

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Pants on Fire

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My Two Dads

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Back Pocket

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Party Time!

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Obama Lied

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Logic

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Who to blame?

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One Sided

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The Greatest Danger

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saving time

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Take it off?

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He swiped my speech!

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Obama USDA met 30 times with Mexican gov’t to promote food-stamp use among Mexican immigrants!

Daily Caller ^ | October 1, 2012 | Caroline May

Department of Agriculture personnel in the Obama administration have met with Mexican Government officials dozens of times since the president took office to promote nutrition assistance programs — notably food stamps — among Mexican Americans, Mexican nationals and migrant communities in America.

Writing in response to Alabama Republican Sen. Jeff Sessions’ July request for information about the USDA’s little known partnership with the Mexican government to educate citizen and noncitizen immigrants from Mexico about the availability of food stamps and other nutrition assistance programs, Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack defended the partnership as a way to curb hunger in America — and the continuation of a program formed under the Bush administration in 2004.
“The Mexico-U.S. Partnership for Nutrition Assistance Initiative is just one of a wide range of USDA partnership activities intended to promote awareness of nutrition assistance among those who need benefits and meet all program requirements under current law.” Vilsack wrote to Sessions in a letter obtained by The Daily Caller. (RELATED: USDA uses Spanish soap operas to push food stamps among non-citizens, citizens)
Since the partnership began, Vilsack wrote, USDA personnel have met at least 151 times with officials from the Mexican government “to discuss nutrition assistance programs as well as to provide program updates.” Those instances included 91 meetings with embassy and consulate staff in 25 U.S. cities; 29 health fairs in 19 U.S. cities; and 31 roundtable discussions, conferences and forums in 20 U.S. cities.
Roughly 30 of these meetings and activities occurred under the Obama administration, Vilsack’s letter revealed.
The agriculture secretary added that the list might not be exhaustive as some of the meetings may not have been recorded.
Sessions has been the lead lawmaker pushing back against the partnership. According to the Alabama senator, the program appears to be in “plain conflict with the sound principles of federal immigration law.”
“The premise of American immigration is that those entering our country should have to work and to contribute to the financial health of the United States,” Sessions told TheDC Sunday evening. “Not only does the administration violate this principle through the partnership, but it does harm by gradually displacing the role of family and community with continual government aid. Welfare reform is guided by the moral principle that good policy helps more people live better lives.”
In his letter, Vilsack asserted that USDA does not pressure people to enroll in the program or is attempting to boost its rolls. President Obama, too, has said that “people do not come here looking for handouts.”
“We do not pressure any eligible person to accept benefits, nor is our goal to simply increase the number of program participants, but we are determined to help people in need make informed decisions about whether or not to seek assistance for which they may be eligible,” Vilsack claimed.
The mission USDA articulates on its website is to “increase participation in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program” — food stamps. The agency has been engaged in aggressive advertising campaigns and issuing guidance to state and local offices about how to enroll more beneficiaries.
“I share the goal stated in your letter,” Vilsack concluded in his letter to the ranking member of the Senate Budget Committee, “which is to help people move toward gainful employment and financial independence. At the same time, the Nation’s nutrition assistance programs have never been needed more to help struggling families until they get back on their feet. I hope that this information clarifies our efforts and my views on these vital program.” (RELATED: USDA suggests food stamp parties, games to increase participation)
But statistics in Vilsack’s letter indicate that the number of legal non-citizens participating in SNAP increased approximately 190 percent from 2001 to 2010, from 425,000 to 1.23 million legal non-citizen participants. That number rose 77 percent since the program’s inception in 2004, when it served 693,000 non-citizen participants.
USDA did not offer data for 2011 and 2012, but a Republican Budget Committee staffer told TheDC that based on the growth rate, the number of legal non-citizens participating in the food stamp program today is about 1.63 million. That’s more than double the number of legal non-citizens who participated in 2008.
“Our nation is nearing a debt crisis and yet the Obama Administration has conducted thirty activities and meetings with the Mexican government to place even more foreign nationals on American welfare,” Sessions said. ”The number of non-citizens receiving food stamp support has doubled since the president took office. Such a policy defies rational thinking during a time of weak growth, high debt, and increasing welfare dependency. President Obama will have defend this alarming partnership to the American people.”
Vilsack stressed that illegal immigrants are barred from participating in SNAP, and that states are required to determine whether applicants are legal citizens. He added that the USDA’s Food Nutrition Services supports the Systematic Alien Verification for Entitlements (SAVE) eligibility check program.
Food stamp participation reached an all time high this summer with 46.7 million people enrolled in the program overall. Spending on SNAP has doubled in the last four years and represents USDA’s single biggest annual expenditure, according to a Bloomberg report.
“Nearly 1 in 6 people living in the US are now on food stamps,” Sessions noted. “How can the administration justify trying to increase that number through outreach on the foreign soil of fifty consulates?”
He added that the continuation of the partnership demonstrates how far the country has moved from the guiding principles of the 1996 welfare reform and said there is a need for a renewed effort to return to that vision.
Participation in nutrition assistance programs like food stamps by non-citizens does not hinder their ability to qualify for citizenship or immigration status adjustments, according to current Department of Homeland Security immigration policy.

WE ARE THE 91%: Only 9% of Americans Cooperate with Pollsters

PJ Tattler ^ | Sept 30, 2012 | Zombie
Posted on Monday, October 01, 2012 5:13:28 AM by expat1000



One of the most amazing — and significant — statistics of this election season has gone almost completely unnoticed:

Only 9% of sampled households gave an answer to pollsters in 2012:
It has become increasingly difficult to contact potential respondents and to persuade them to participate. The percentage of households in a sample that are successfully interviewed – the response rate – has fallen dramatically. At Pew Research, the response rate of a typical telephone survey was 36% in 1997 and is just 9% today.

The general decline in response rates is evident across nearly all types of surveys, in the United States and abroad. At the same time, greater effort and expense are required to achieve even the diminished response rates of today. These challenges have led many to question whether surveys are still providing accurate and unbiased information.

You read that correctly: In any attempted poll or survey, only 9% of attempted contacts come back with an actual response.
That means 91% of sampled households are NOT having their opinions recorded by pollsters.
Breaking down the numbers a bit, we can see that this is due to two reasons: 38% of the households contacted were unreachable in the first place, leaving only a 62% “contact rate.” But among that 62%, only 14% “cooperated” with the pollsters; the remaining 86% of contactees presumably slammed down the phone or simply refused to answer. Since 86% of 62% of the population are non-cooperators, that leaves us with the astonishing conclusion that…

53% of Americans actively refuse to answer poll questions.

The real breakdown chart should look like this:
38% could not be reached
53% were contacted but actively refused to answer
9% cooperated and answered the polling questions
Or, put another way:

Out of every 7 people contacted by pollsters, only 1 will answer the polling question, while the remaining 6 refuse to answer.

Six to one, people; six to one. Think about that for a second.
What are those 53% thinking — and why would they purposely refuse to cooperate with pollsters?
Furthermore, where are those unreachable 38%? At work? On drugs? Curled up in a fetal position under the couch?
Pew goes on to claim that, despite the appallingly low cooperation rate in 2012, they think their estimates of public opinion are fairly accurate in any case.
That may have been true in past years, but we won’t know this year until after the election how accurate the polls were.
But now also consider these newly released stats showing that distrust of the media has hit an all-time high, and most importantly that Republicans and independents are twice as likely to distrust the media as Democrats:

There’s only one possible conclusion to reach: That the non-cooperating 86% of contactees are twice as likely to be Republicans and independents as they are to be Democrats.

This imputes a HUGE skew into all poll results, a skew that is rarely acknowledged.
Who are the 91%???
Are you one of them?
Did you miss a call from a pollster because you were at work?
Did you refuse to answer a question from a pollster, once contacted?
If so, why did you refuse?
Even if you don’t answer poll calls, do they record your non-response as support for Obama anyway?
We have the stats. Now let’s flesh them out with some anecdotes.

UPDATE:
Here’s a summary of some of the anecdotes and reasons for non-response from the comments section below; the number preceding each line is the number of commenters who cited that rationale:
13 – I have caller ID and never answer any call from any number that is either unknown or blocked.
12 – I do answer, but I often lie and give false answers, just to screw with them.
11 – I do not respond because I suspect that callers identifying themselves as “pollsters” are more likely telemarketers, fraudsters or deceptive political operatives engaged in “push-polling.”
9 – I do not cooperate because I consider the polling industry an arm of the biased media, trying to influence the electorate.
8 – I refuse to divulge any personal opinions or data to an anonymous stranger, who could be ill-intentioned for all I know.
6 – “Why should I waste my time talking to these people who will skew the results anyway?”
6 – I only answer calls from people I already know; if I accidentally answer a robo-call or a call from a stranger, I just hang up.
4 – I do not respond because of potential privacy violation, that pollsters can correlate my answers with my identity; “I fear that they will use my political beliefs against my family.”
3 – I’m among the 38% “unreachable” because I do not have a landline.
3 – I would answer calls from any pollster which I recognize from caller ID as being unbiased, but otherwise I don’t.
3 – It’s just a waste of time; I have better things to do with my life.
3 – I suspect that if I answer once, my number will be added to lists of positive respondents, precipitating more calls.
2 – After I burst out laughing when questioned if I supported Obama, the pollster hung up on me.
2 – I never used to answer pollsters, but recently I have started answering, to counter the inaccuracies in earlier polls.
2 – I’d only cooperate with pollsters if they compensated me for helping them.
1 – I hang up if I “don’t like the questions.”
1 – I don’t answer because I think that polls are a corrupting influence on public policy, that political decisions are based on poll results, not on what is actually best for the country.
1 – A pollster questioned me once. I ate his liver with some fava beans and a nice Chianti.
4 – I refuse to cooperate with pollsters for all of the reasons above.





The Particulars of Polls

Townhall.com ^ | October 1, 2012 | Michael Barone

As a recovering pollster (I worked for Democratic pollster Peter Hart from 1974 to 1981), let me weigh in on the controversy over whether the polls are accurate. Many conservatives are claiming that multiple polls have overly Democratic samples, and some charge that media pollsters are trying to discourage Republican voters.

First, some points about the limits of polls. Random sample polling is an imprecise instrument. There's an error margin of 3 or 4 percent, and polling theory tells us that one out of 20 polls is wrong, with results outside the margin of error. Sometimes it's easy to spot such an outlier; sometimes not.

In addition, it's getting much harder for pollsters to get people to respond to interviews. The Pew Research Center reports that it's getting only 9 percent of the people it contacts to respond to its questions. That's compared to 36 percent in 1997.
Interestingly, response rates are much higher in new democracies. Americans, particularly in target states, may be getting poll fatigue. When a phone rings in New Hampshire, it might well be a pollster calling.
Are those 9 percent representative of the larger population? As that percentage declines, it seems increasingly possible that the sample is unrepresentative of the much larger voting public. One thing a poll can't tell us is the opinion of people who refuse to be polled.
Then there is the problem of cellphone-only households. In the 1930s and 1940s, pollsters conducted interviews in person because half of households had either no phone or (your grandparents can explain this) a party-line phone.
By the 1970s, phone ownership was well nigh universal, and pollsters mostly phased out in-person interviewing. Phone interviews are much cheaper and quicker.
But today the percentage of households without landline phones is increasing. Under federal law, cellphone numbers have to be hand-dialed rather than dialed by computer, as landline numbers are now even when live interviewers ask the questions.
Cellphone-only individuals tend to be younger and more Democratic than landline owners. Most pollsters are conducting a set number of interviews with cellphone-only households. But they can only guess at what percentage of the electorate they'll constitute. Oversample them, and you'll get overly Democratic results.
That, many conservatives are arguing, is what pollsters have been getting in polls this month. They point out that Mitt Romney is running ahead among Independents in many polls but trails overall.
This can only happen if Democrats have a big lead in party identification, as they did in 2008. In the exit poll then, 39 percent of voters identified themselves as Democrats and 32 percent as Republicans.
In contrast, exit polls showed an even break on party identification in 2004 and 2010. But many September polls and some earlier polls showed Democrats with an even bigger party identification lead than four years before.
That seems implausible. Party identification does change over time, as exit polls indicate. But it usually shifts gradually rather than suddenly, as current polls suggest.
There is evidence that since the Charlotte convention Democrats have become more motivated to vote and have narrowed the advantage in enthusiasm Republicans have had since 2010. In that case, more Democrats may be passing through screening questions and getting polled.
I don't believe that any of the media pollsters have been tilting their results in order to demoralize Republicans, though I do look with suspicion on the work of some partisan pollsters.
But I do have my doubts about whether samples with more Democratic party identification than in 2008 are accurate representations of the actual electorate. Many states with party registration have shown big drops in registered Democrats since then.
Pollster Scott Rasmussen, who weights his robocall results by party identification, adjusted monthly, has shown a much closer race than most pollsters who leave party identification numbers unweighted. So has the Susquehanna poll in Pennsylvania.
It may be that we're seeing the phenomenon we've seen for years in exit polls, which have consistently skewed Democratic (and toward Barack Obama in the 2008 primaries). Part of that is interviewer error: Exit poll pioneer Warren Mitofsky found that the biggest discrepancies between exit polls and actual results were in precincts where the interviewers were female graduate students.
But he also found that Democrats were simply more willing to fill out the exit poll. That raises the question: Are we seeing the same thing in this month's polls?

Is Barack Obama a Compulsive Liar?

American Thinker ^ | October 1, 2012 | Steve McCann

In an earlier column I asked the question is Barack Obama a compulsive liar or a sociopath? (h)

A Sociopath:

A sociopath is typically defined as someone who lies incessantly to get their way and does so with little concern for others. A sociopath is often goal-oriented (i.e., lying is focused--it is done to get one's way). Sociopaths have little regard or respect for the rights and feelings of others. Sociopaths are often charming and charismatic, but they use their talented social skills in manipulative and self-centered ways.

A compulsive liar:

A compulsive liar is defined as someone who lies out of habit. Lying is their normal and reflexive way of responding to questions. Compulsive liars bend the truth about everything, large and small. For a compulsive liar, telling the truth is very awkward and uncomfortable while lying feels right.

 Compulsive lying is usually developed in early childhood, due to being placed in an environment where lying was necessary.
While Barack Obama exhibits traits from both categories, it is becoming increasingly clear that he is primarily a compulsive liar. How else to explain the lies and obfuscations that so easily come forth regardless of whom he may be talking to or the subject matter. His sociopathic skills come to the fore in his ability to manipulate others to join him in his these prevarications, or to exploit the celebrity culture that has overwhelmed a deliberately ill-educated American society.
(Excerpt) Read more at americanthinker.com ...