Thursday, December 31, 2009

There Is Justice After All

Judge dismisses all charges in Blackwater shooting

By Del Quentin Wilber
Washington Post Staff Writer
Thursday, December 31, 2009; 4:15 PM

A federal judge on Thursday threw out charges against five Blackwater Worldwide security guards accused of killing 14 people in a 2007 shooting in downtown Baghdad.
In a 90-page opinion, U.S. District Judge Ricardo M. Urbina ruled that the government violated the guards' rights by using their immunized statements to help the investigation. The ruling comes after a lengthy set of hearings that examined whether federal prosecutors and agents improperly used such statements that the guards gave to State Department investigators following the shooting on Sept. 16, 2007.

"The explanations offered by prosecutors and investigators in an attempt to justify their actions and persuade the court that they did not use the defendants' compelled testimony were all too often contradictory, unbelievable and lacking in credibility," Urbina wrote.

Dean Boyd, a spokesman for the Justice Department, said, "We're obviously disappointed by the decision. We're still in the process of reviewing the opinion and considering our options."

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Prayers Up For MahaRushie

Having gone through it and having the bat crap scared out of me, I can empathize. I'm glad he wasn't as stubborn as I was.

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10 Most Wanted

Judicial Watch has issued its Top Ten Most Wanted Criminals List for 2009.

If you see any of these individuals, please notify law enforcement immediately. Individuals are not considered armed but are incredibly stupid. Do not attempt to apprehend or engage in reasonable debate.

WARNING: #3 - If you are a cute guy, he may try to kiss you.

1. Senator Christopher Dodd (D-CT): This marks two years in a row for Senator Dodd, who made the 2008 "Ten Most Corrupt" list for his corrupt relationship with Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac and for accepting preferential treatment and loan terms from Countrywide Financial, a scandal which still dogs him. In 2009, the scandals kept coming for the Connecticut Democrat. In 2009, Judicial Watch filed a Senate ethics complaint against Dodd for undervaluing a property he owns in Ireland on his Senate Financial Disclosure forms. Judicial Watch's complaint forced Dodd to amend the forms. However, press reports suggest the property to this day remains undervalued. Judicial Watch also alleges in the complaint that Dodd obtained a sweetheart deal for the property in exchange for his assistance in obtaining a presidential pardon (during the Clinton administration) and other favors for a long-time friend and business associate. The false financial disclosure forms were part of the cover-up. Dodd remains the head the Senate Banking Committee.

2. Senator John Ensign (R-NV): A number of scandals popped up in 2009 involving public officials who conducted illicit affairs, and then attempted to cover them up with hush payments and favors, an obvious abuse of power. The year's worst offender might just be Nevada Republican Senator John Ensign. Ensign admitted in June to an extramarital affair with the wife of one of his staff members, who then allegedly obtained special favors from the Nevada Republican in exchange for his silence. According to The New York Times: "The Justice Department and the Senate Ethics Committee are expected to conduct preliminary inquiries into whether Senator John Ensign violated federal law or ethics rules as part of an effort to conceal an affair with the wife of an aide…" The former staffer, Douglas Hampton, began to lobby Mr. Ensign's office immediately upon leaving his congressional job, despite the fact that he was subject to a one-year lobbying ban. Ensign seems to have ignored the law and allowed Hampton lobbying access to his office as a payment for his silence about the affair. (These are potentially criminal offenses.) It looks as if Ensign misused his public office (and taxpayer resources) to cover up his sexual shenanigans.

3. Rep. Barney Frank (D-MA): Judicial Watch is investigating a $12 million TARP cash injection provided to the Boston-based OneUnited Bank at the urging of Massachusetts Rep. Barney Frank. As reported in the January 22, 2009, edition of the Wall Street Journal, the Treasury Department indicated it would only provide funds to healthy banks to jump-start lending. Not only was OneUnited Bank in massive financial turmoil, but it was also "under attack from its regulators for allegations of poor lending practices and executive-pay abuses, including owning a Porsche for its executives' use." Rep. Frank admitted he spoke to a "federal regulator," and Treasury granted the funds. (The bank continues to flounder despite Frank's intervention for federal dollars.) Moreover, Judicial Watch uncovered documents in 2009 that showed that members of Congress for years were aware that Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac were playing fast and loose with accounting issues, risk assessment issues and executive compensation issues, even as liberals led by Rep. Frank continued to block attempts to rein in the two Government Sponsored Enterprises (GSEs). For example, during a hearing on September 10, 2003, before the House Committee on Financial Services considering a Bush administration proposal to further regulate Fannie and Freddie, Rep. Frank stated: "I want to begin by saying that I am glad to consider the legislation, but I do not think we are facing any kind of a crisis. That is, in my view, the two Government Sponsored Enterprises we are talking about here, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, are not in a crisis. We have recently had an accounting problem with Freddie Mac that has led to people being dismissed, as appears to be appropriate. I do not think at this point there is a problem with a threat to the Treasury." Frank received $42,350 in campaign contributions from Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac between 1989 and 2008. Frank also engaged in a relationship with a Fannie Mae Executive while serving on the House Banking Committee, which has jurisdiction over Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.

4. Secretary of Treasury Timothy Geithner: In 2009, Obama Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner admitted that he failed to pay $34,000 in Social Security and Medicare taxes from 2001-2004 on his lucrative salary at the International Monetary Fund (IMF), an organization with 185 member countries that oversees the global financial system. (Did we mention Geithner now runs the IRS?) It wasn't until President Obama tapped Geithner to head the Treasury Department that he paid back most of the money, although the IRS kindly waived the hefty penalties. In March 2009, Geithner also came under fire for his handling of the AIG bonus scandal, where the company used $165 million of its bailout funds to pay out executive bonuses, resulting in a massive public backlash. Of course as head of the New York Federal Reserve, Geithner helped craft the AIG deal in September 2008. However, when the AIG scandal broke, Geithner claimed he knew nothing of the bonuses until March 10, 2009. The timing is important. According to CNN: "Although Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner told congressional leaders on Tuesday that he learned of AIG's impending $160 million bonus payments to members of its troubled financial-products unit on March 10, sources tell TIME that the New York Federal Reserve informed Treasury staff that the payments were imminent on Feb. 28. That is ten days before Treasury staffers say they first learned 'full details' of the bonus plan, and three days before the [Obama] Administration launched a new $30 billion infusion of cash for AIG." Throw in another embarrassing disclosure in 2009 that Geithner employed "household help" ineligible to work in the United States, and it becomes clear why the Treasury Secretary has earned a spot on the "Ten Most Corrupt Politicians in Washington" list.

5. Attorney General Eric Holder: Tim Geithner can be sure he won't be hounded about his tax-dodging by his colleague Eric Holder, US Attorney General. Judicial Watch strongly opposed Holder because of his terrible ethics record, which includes: obstructing an FBI investigation of the theft of nuclear secrets from Los Alamos Nuclear Laboratory; rejecting multiple requests for an independent counsel to investigate alleged fundraising abuses by then-Vice President Al Gore in the Clinton White House; undermining the criminal investigation of President Clinton by Kenneth Starr in the midst of the Lewinsky investigation; and planning the violent raid to seize then-six-year-old Elian Gonzalez at gunpoint in order to return him to Castro's Cuba. Moreover, there is his soft record on terrorism. Holder bypassed Justice Department procedures to push through Bill Clinton's scandalous presidential pardons and commutations, including for 16 members of FALN, a violent Puerto Rican terrorist group that orchestrated approximately 120 bombings in the United States, killing at least six people and permanently maiming dozens of others, including law enforcement officers. His record in the current administration is no better. As he did during the Clinton administration, Holder continues to ignore serious incidents of corruption that could impact his political bosses at the White House. For example, Holder has refused to investigate charges that the Obama political machine traded VIP access to the White House in exchange for campaign contributions – a scheme eerily similar to one hatched by Holder's former boss, Bill Clinton in the 1990s. The Holder Justice Department also came under fire for dropping a voter intimidation case against the New Black Panther Party. On Election Day 2008, Black Panthers dressed in paramilitary garb threatened voters as they approached polling stations. Holder has also failed to initiate a comprehensive Justice investigation of the notorious organization ACORN (Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now), which is closely tied to President Obama. There were allegedly more than 400,000 fraudulent ACORN voter registrations in the 2008 campaign. And then there were the journalist videos catching ACORN Housing workers advising undercover reporters on how to evade tax, immigration, and child prostitution laws. Holder's controversial decisions on new rights for terrorists and his attacks on previous efforts to combat terrorism remind many of the fact that his former law firm has provided and continues to provide pro bono representation to terrorists at Guantanamo Bay. Holder's politicization of the Justice Department makes one long for the days of Alberto Gonzales.

6. Rep. Jesse Jackson, Jr. (D-IL)/ Senator Roland Burris (D-IL): One of the most serious scandals of 2009 involved a scheme by former Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich to sell President Obama's then-vacant Senate seat to the highest bidder. Two men caught smack dab in the middle of the scandal: Senator Roland Burris, who ultimately got the job, and Rep. Jesse Jackson, Jr. According to the Chicago Sun-Times, emissaries for Jesse Jackson Jr., named "Senate Candidate A" in the Blagojevich indictment, reportedly offered $1.5 million to Blagojevich during a fundraiser if he named Jackson Jr. to Obama's seat. Three days later federal authorities arrested Blagojevich. Burris, for his part, apparently lied about his contacts with Blagojevich, who was arrested in December 2008 for trying to sell Obama's Senate seat. According to Reuters: "Roland Burris came under fresh scrutiny…after disclosing he tried to raise money for the disgraced former Illinois governor who named him to the U.S. Senate seat once held by President Barack Obama…In the latest of those admissions, Burris said he looked into mounting a fundraiser for Rod Blagojevich -- later charged with trying to sell Obama's Senate seat -- at the same time he was expressing interest to the then-governor's aides about his desire to be appointed." Burris changed his story five times regarding his contacts with Blagojevich prior to the Illinois governor appointing him to the U.S. Senate. Three of those changing explanations came under oath.

7. President Barack Obama: During his presidential campaign, President Obama promised to run an ethical and transparent administration. However, in his first year in office, the President has delivered corruption and secrecy, bringing Chicago-style political corruption to the White House. Consider just a few Obama administration "lowlights" from year one: Even before President Obama was sworn into office, he was interviewed by the FBI for a criminal investigation of former Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich's scheme to sell the President's former Senate seat to the highest bidder. (Obama's Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel and slumlord Valerie Jarrett, both from Chicago, are also tangled up in the Blagojevich scandal.) Moreover, the Obama administration made the startling claim that the Privacy Act does not apply to the White House. The Obama White House believes it can violate the privacy rights of American citizens without any legal consequences or accountability. President Obama boldly proclaimed that "transparency and the rule of law will be the touchstones of this presidency," but his administration is addicted to secrecy, stonewalling far too many of Judicial Watch's Freedom of Information Act requests and is refusing to make public White House visitor logs as federal law requires. The Obama administration turned the National Endowment of the Arts (as well as the agency that runs the AmeriCorps program) into propaganda machines, using tax dollars to persuade "artists" to promote the Obama agenda. According to documents uncovered by Judicial Watch, the idea emerged as a direct result of the Obama campaign and enjoyed White House approval and participation. President Obama has installed a record number of "czars" in positions of power. Too many of these individuals are leftist radicals who answer to no one but the president. And too many of the czars are not subject to Senate confirmation (which raises serious constitutional questions). Under the President's bailout schemes, the federal government continues to appropriate or control -- through fiat and threats -- large sectors of the private economy, prompting conservative columnist George Will to write: "The administration's central activity -- the political allocation of wealth and opportunity -- is not merely susceptible to corruption, it is corruption." Government-run healthcare and car companies, White House coercion, uninvestigated ACORN corruption, debasing his office to help Chicago cronies, attacks on conservative media and the private sector, unprecedented and dangerous new rights for terrorists, perks for campaign donors – this is Obama's "ethics" record -- and we haven't even gotten through the first year of his presidency.

8. Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-CA): At the heart of the corruption problem in Washington is a sense of entitlement. Politicians believe laws and rules (even the U.S. Constitution) apply to the rest of us but not to them. Case in point: House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and her excessive and boorish demands for military travel. Judicial Watch obtained documents from the Pentagon in 2008 that suggest Pelosi has been treating the Air Force like her own personal airline. These documents, obtained through the Freedom of Information Act, include internal Pentagon email correspondence detailing attempts by Pentagon staff to accommodate Pelosi's numerous requests for military escorts and military aircraft as well as the speaker's 11th hour cancellations and changes. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi also came under fire in April 2009, when she claimed she was never briefed about the CIA's use of the waterboarding technique during terrorism investigations. The CIA produced a report documenting a briefing with Pelosi on September 4, 2002, that suggests otherwise. Judicial Watch also obtained documents, including a CIA Inspector General report, which further confirmed that Congress was fully briefed on the enhanced interrogation techniques. Aside from her own personal transgressions, Nancy Pelosi has ignored serious incidents of corruption within her own party, including many of the individuals on this list. (See Rangel, Murtha, Jesse Jackson, Jr., etc.)

9. Rep. John Murtha (D-PA) and the rest of the PMA Seven: Rep. John Murtha made headlines in 2009 for all the wrong reasons. The Pennsylvania congressman is under federal investigation for his corrupt relationship with the now-defunct defense lobbyist PMA Group. PMA, founded by a former Murtha associate, has been the congressman's largest campaign contributor. Since 2002, Murtha has raised $1.7 million from PMA and its clients. And what did PMA and its clients receive from Murtha in return for their generosity? Earmarks -- tens of millions of dollars in earmarks. In fact, even with all of the attention surrounding his alleged influence peddling, Murtha kept at it. Following an FBI raid of PMA's offices earlier in 2009, Murtha continued to seek congressional earmarks for PMA clients, while also hitting them up for campaign contributions. According to The Hill, in April, "Murtha reported receiving contributions from three former PMA clients for whom he requested earmarks in the pending appropriations bills." When it comes to the PMA scandal, Murtha is not alone. As many as six other Members of Congress are currently under scrutiny according to The Washington Post. They include: Peter J. Visclosky (D-IN.), James P. Moran Jr. (D-VA), Norm Dicks (D-WA.), Marcy Kaptur (D-OH), C.W. Bill Young (R-FL.) and Todd Tiahrt (R-KS.). Of course rather than investigate this serious scandal, according to Roll Call House Democrats circled the wagons, "cobbling together a defense to offer political cover to their rank and file." The Washington Post also reported in 2009 that Murtha's nephew received $4 million in Defense Department no-bid contracts: "Newly obtained documents…show Robert Murtha mentioning his influential family connection as leverage in his business dealings and holding unusual power with the military."

10. Rep. Charles Rangel (D-NY): Rangel, the man in charge of writing tax policy for the entire country, has yet to adequately explain how he could possibly "forget" to pay taxes on $75,000 in rental income he earned from his off-shore rental property. He also faces allegations that he improperly used his influence to maintain ownership of highly coveted rent-controlled apartments in Harlem, and misused his congressional office to fundraise for his private Rangel Center by preserving a tax loophole for an oil drilling company in exchange for funding. On top of all that, Rangel recently amended his financial disclosure reports, which doubled his reported wealth. (He somehow "forgot" about $1 million in assets.) And what did he do when the House Ethics Committee started looking into all of this? He apparently resorted to making "campaign contributions" to dig his way out of trouble. According to WCBS TV, a New York CBS affiliate: "The reigning member of Congress' top tax committee is apparently 'wrangling' other politicos to get him out of his own financial and tax troubles...Since ethics probes began last year the 79-year-old congressman has given campaign donations to 119 members of Congress, including three of the five Democrats on the House Ethics Committee who are charged with investigating him." Charlie Rangel should not be allowed to remain in Congress, let alone serve as Chairman of the powerful House Ways and Means Committee, and he knows it. That's why he felt the need to disburse campaign contributions to Ethics Committee members and other congressional colleagues.

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DCExaminer Morrning Email Blast

Mark Hemingway - White House takes four days to respond to terror attack, but responds to Cheney criticism in matter of hours?
What I can't wrap my head around is that it took the President four days to acknowledge what he termed a "catastrophic" national security failure, but Cheney criticizes the administration's handling of the war on terror and they have a rapid response on the White House blog in a matter of hours? Priorities!

Chris Stirewalt - Prof. Obama shies away from tackling history
Rahm Emanuel was not the first to suggest that a crisis should not go to waste, but he and the other members of the Obama team applied the concept with more eagerness — and nakedness — than any new administration in American history.

Michael Barone - Should national Republicans contest Ted Kennedy's seat?
Democratic nominee Attorney General Martha Coakley has none of Ted Kennedy's magic and seems to be conducting a perfunctory campaign. Republican nominee state Senator Scott Brown is running TV ads. The current Democratic governor, Deval Patrick, has a dismal job rating. Barack Obama is not particularly popular in the state: he lost the Democratic primary (despite the endorsement of Ted Kennedy) to Hillary Clinton by a 56%-41% margin and carried only one of the 10 congressional districts (the one that includes Cambridge, natch).

If you look at the town by town returns, Clinton ran very well in ethnic and working class areas. In the general election Obama actually ran behind the percentage of Bay Stater John Kerry. And Obama's denunciation of Sergeant James Crowley undoubtedly did not play well in many of the areas where Obama did poorly in the primary; Massachusetts is still more town than gown.

Byron York - Michelle Obama not most admired woman -- even among Democrats
Gallup has released its annual poll on the most admired man and woman in the United States. In the most admired woman category, Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton is the winner, named by 16 percent of respondents. Former Republican vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin is a close second, with 15 percent. Talk show host Oprah Winfrey is third, with eight percent, and First Lady Michelle Obama is fourth, named by seven percent.

More Stories
Why the underwear bomber might hurt Democrats' health care plans

Thirteen state attorney generals threaten lawsuit over Nebraska's health care deal

Is there a 'double standard' for Obama in terrorism case?

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Queen Nancy - Rock Star or Politician?

I tried to get to this story all day Wednesday, but all my attempts resulted in a page that said "Server to Busy". Must be nice to be a rock star politician.

Pelosi enjoys privacy at Hualalai after Palin is hounded off Maui
by Andrew Walden

While President Barack Obama enjoys a high profile vacation on Oahu, "progressive" House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) is being allowed to stay out of the limelight while luxuriating at the Four Seasons Hualalai resort on the Big Island.

Guarded by US Capitol Police bolstered by officers on loan from the Hawaii County PD, Pelosi is enjoying what Hollywood Reporter calls: "...a picture-perfect stretch of beach on the Big Island's chic Kona Coast....a private Jack Nicklaus-designed golf course and Pahu'ia, an award-winning oceanfront restaurant, $40 million worth of enhancements...20 new suites and ... its lauded Hualalai Spa."

According to the Hualalai Spa website, Pelosi may, "Enjoy complimentary pre-treatment rituals, relaxing by a quiet stream in the open-air Waiea, or Water of Life, garden. Or savour the lap pool, whirlpools, saunas, steam rooms and cold plunges, all set amidst lush greenery. (Pelosi's) choice of skin-care and massage treatments may be enjoyed outdoors in our exotic new hales, secluded for privacy.... With the guidance of (her) spa therapist, (Pelosi may) choose from more than 20 local natural ingredients – from Hawaiian sea salt to crushed macadamia nuts – which are custom-blended to create unique personalized treatments."

It is not clear how Pelosi arrived on the Big Isle. Her controversial military transport is not immediately visible amidst the forest of private jets which now crowd Kona's Keahole Airport South Tarmac. Hawaii County is hard hit by shrinking tax receipts caused by the Obama recession, but Hawaii County Police department spokesperson Chris Loos states that the department was able to aid Pelosi's security detail without
canceling other scheduled enforcement activities. Loos did not provide an estimate of the expense incurred by the County PD.

Pelosi's visit has not been noted in local or national media. This contrasts strikingly to the treatment meted out to another high profile Hawaii vacationer--Sarah Palin.

While attempting to relax at a resort on Maui December 16 and 17, Palin, husband Todd and their children found themselves hounded by paparazzi hungry for photo bounties offered by the pro-Obama Hollywood gossip website Finally they were forced to leave.

Palin told Politico: "Todd and I have since cut our vacation short because the incognito attempts didn't work and fellow vacationers were bothered for the two days we spent in the sun." Palin was obligated to issue an apology for wearing a visor with the McCain campaign logo covered. Said Palin: "So much for going incognito."

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Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Questions Concerning EO 12452 and The Consitution

From RealNewsBlog
More after the jump

Could Obama Use INTERPOL to Evade Constitutional Law?

Much has been written recently since ThreatsWatch first broke the story of President Obama’s stealth Executive Order (EO) rendering an international police force immune from the restrictions of the Constitution and American law.

Reports are focusing on the ramifications of the EO to U.S. sovereignty and the potential surrender of Americans to war crime tribunals in the International Criminal Court (ICC).

But is the President using the 2(c) provision to sidestep Constitutional law and place the U.S. under the jurisdiction of the ICC without ratification of the UN Treaty by 2/3 of the Senate?

Or is he granting unrecognized authority to INTERPOL, the International Criminal Police Organization, providing them unrestrained power over the American people? And could he use these privileges to step above and beyond the Constitution, or as a means for political cronies to profit?

Although the UN Treaty committing signatory nations to ICC jurisdiction has been both signed by President Clinton and ‘unsigned‘ by President Bush, it has never been ratified by the Senate. If INTERPOL has unrestrained authority to arrest and try American citizens in the ICC, the Constitutional requirement for Senate ratification is bypassed in a manner unintended by our founding fathers.

With his signature Obama reversed President Reagan’s EO restricting INTERPOL to the Constitution and American law when acting on U.S. soil. INTERPOL now has the full diplomatic immunities afforded foreign embassies, International Organizations, their officers and employees under the International Organizations Immunities Act (IOIA).

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Does Janet Understand The Nature of the Enemy?

Napolitano: No War Here

William Kristol

It's worth reading (don't worry, it's short) Janet Napolitano's op-ed in USA Today.

As if to confirm Dick Cheney's claim that the Obama administration doesn't understand we're at war, Napolitano never uses the word...war. Nor does she mention Islam, Yemen or Nigeria -- nor any of the details of the incident, nor the particulars of the government failures over the last few months.

Lots of op-eds ghost-written for cabinet secretaries are stupid. But this one may outdo them all in its vagueness and avoidance of substance, in its managing to be at once bureaucratic and cloying, and in speaking to the American people as if they are children. She attempts to reassure, and fails.

By the way, since this was a plot hatched overseas by people whom our intelligence agencies are listening in on and trying to bump off -- is Napolitano really the appropriate lead official? It's revealing who the White House put out Sunday -- Napolitano and press secretary Robert Gibbs. For the Obama White House, it's all spin and TSA procedures. Do we still have a CIA director? I'd heard Panetta wasn't getting along with the White House...but is he even in the loop?

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Hey Hey Ho Ho Napalitano Has To Go

and if CIA screwed the pooch, Panetta needs to be replaced as well.

Obama: U.S. Knew of Nigerian Terror Threat But Did Not Act
Wednesday, 30 Dec 2009 10:52 AM
By: Jim Meyers

President Obama has acknowledged that the United States had early signals that a terrorist attack was being plotted in Yemen and failed to take adequate steps to prevent it.According to a page one story in the New York Times, two federal officials told the paper that U.S. intelligence was aware that a Nigerian Muslim was preparing an attack, yet officials did nothing to give warning of such an attack.

The paper reported Wednesday: "Two officials said the government had intelligence from Yemen before Friday that leaders of a branch of Al Qaeda were talking about 'a Nigerian' being prepared for a terrorist attack." Although the attacker was not named, officials said his identity would have been evident had it been compared with information about Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab, the 23-year-old Nigerian charged with trying to blow up an American passenger jet on Christmas Day.

But despite those signals, the administration never raised a terror alert, and would-be bomber Abdulmutallab was allowed to board a plane bound for the United States.

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Heritage Morning Bell - Does Zero Realize We Are At War?

Does Obama Realize We Are at War Yet?
Refusing to interrupt his Hawaiian golf vacation for almost three full days after the Flight 253 attack, President Barack Obama finally emerged on December 28th to assure the American people that Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab was “an isolated extremist” and that he had already “been charged with attempting to destroy an aircraft.” Continuing to treat the incident like a common law enforcement problem Obama referred to Abdulmutallab as the “suspect” five times and promised he would “not rest until we find all who were involved and hold them accountable.”

Perhaps Obama should have stayed on the links for another 24 hours, because by yesterday it had become exceedingly clear that Abdulmutallab was in no conceivable way “isolated” and was instead very much part of al Qaeda’s larger war on the United States. Here’s what we know so far:

  • According to CBS News, as early as August of 2009 the Central Intelligence Agency was picking up information on a person of interest dubbed “The Nigerian,” suspected of meeting with “terrorist elements” in Yemen.
  • According to the Wall Street Journal, the father of Mr. Abdulmutallab warned the CIA of his son’s likely radicalization at the U.S. embassy in Abuja, Nigeria. That led to a broader gathering of agencies the next day, including the Department of Homeland Security, the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the State Department, in which the information was shared.
  • According to CNN, information on Abdulmutallab, including his passport number and possible connection to extremists, had been sent to CIA headquarters in Langley, Virginia, but it sat there for five weeks and was not disseminated.
  • Also according to the Wall Street Journal, the National Security Agency who had been monitoring former Guantanamo detainees in Yemen had communications intercepts suggesting a Nigerian was being prepped for a terror strike by al Qaeda operatives in that country.
  • And the Washington Post reports that not only did the British government reject an Abdulmutallab visa application this May, but that British Home Secretary Alan Johnson said that U.S. officials should have been told about the rejection and that he believes they were.

Faced with this preponderance of evidence that Abdulmutallab did not act alone President Obama finally admitted yesterday that “a systemic failure has occurred. And I consider that totally unacceptable.” It may have taken Obama four full days to reach this conclusion, after both White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs and Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano spent all of Sunday trying to convince the American people that “the system worked”, but his belated acknowledgment of the seriousness of the situation is welcome.Also belatedly welcome is the acknowledgment that al Qaeda is a major force in Yemen that must be dealt with carefully.

The Washington Post describes al Qaeda in Yemen as a ”major new threat to the United States,” but there is nothing new about it. In fact, al-Qaeda’s first terrorist attack against Americans came in Yemen, the ancestral homeland of Osama bin Laden’s father, who had migrated to neighboring Saudi Arabia before the birth of the al-Qaeda leader.

In December 1992, bin Laden’s followers bombed a hotel in Yemen that was used by U.S. military personnel involved in supporting the humanitarian food relief flights to Somalia. And in October 2000, seventeen American sailors on board the USS Cole, were killed in an al-Qaeda bombing in the harbor of Aden, Yemen’s main port.

The Obama administration must stop thinking of al Qaeda and Abdulmutallab as mere criminals. Obama’s blindness to Abdulmutallab’s al Qaeda connections and his insistence on calling him a “suspect” in the “alleged” bombing is the same mindset dictating Obama’s decision to send Khalid Sheikh Mohammed and four other terrorists to New York for a civilian trial in federal court. Hopefully this incident will prod Obama into revisiting that historically bad decision.

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Great Analysis From Another Conservative Lady

The first time I saw this young Lady on Fox I was smitten. Smart and gorgeous.
(It's a Marine thing. Deal with it.)


Conservatives Can't Be Silenced
Wednesday, 30 Dec 2009 08:40 AM
By: Andrea Tantaros

The left is legendary for its protests and ability to challenge, organize, and sow discord. For generations we’ve seen marches, burning bras, and human barricades galore. But when Americans question a democratically — and arguably leftist-controlled — government, freedom of assembly must be more than simply discredited, the left responds. It must be stopped. This year alone, we’ve seen progressives shift from downplaying the discontented mood of the nation to flat-out panic.

It started with the tea parties. As thousands gathered across the country, the far left sniffed at their concerns, and the mainstream media failed to acknowledge their growing popularity. Many discounted their effectiveness and alleged, absurdly, that Fox News was funding them.

So what did these “champions of free speech” do? They tried to silence it, of course. The Obama administration was so threatened that the truth would take hold that the Department of Homeland Security issued a memo to first responders to be on the lookout for “radical right-wing extremism.”

No memo like this was issued when members were showing up at town halls in 2003 and 2004 to voice their rage over the war in Iraq.

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Important Advice From Tiger Woods


1. It's important to have a woman who helps at home, who cooks from time to time, cleans up and has a job.

2. It's important to have a woman who can make you laugh.

3. It's important to have a woman who you can trust and who doesn't lie to you.

4. It's important to have a woman who is good in bed and who likes to be with you.

5. It's very, very important that these four women do not know each other

Tiger Woods

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DCExaminer Morrning Email Blast


Former VP Dick Cheney's Statement on Zero

Dick Cheney: Barack Obama 'trying to pretend'

"As I’ve watched the events of the last few days it is clear once again that President Obama is trying to pretend we are not at war. He seems to think if he has a low key response to an attempt to blow up an airliner and kill hundreds of people, we won’t be at war. He seems to think if he gives terrorists the rights of Americans, lets them lawyer up and reads them their Miranda rights, we won’t be at war. He seems to think if we bring the mastermind of 9/11 to New York, give him a lawyer and trial in civilian court, we won’t be at war.

“He seems to think if he closes Guantanamo and releases the hard-core al Qaeda trained terrorists still there, we won’t be at war. He seems to think if he gets rid of the words, ‘war on terror,’ we won’t be at war. But we are at war and when President Obama pretends we aren’t, it makes us less safe. Why doesn’t he want to admit we’re at war? It doesn’t fit with the view of the world he brought with him to the Oval Office. It doesn’t fit with what seems to be the goal of his presidency – social transformation—the restructuring of American society. President Obama’s first object and his highest responsibility must be to defend us against an enemy that knows we are at war."

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Morning Must Reads from DCExaminer


Why has Obama put Interpol beyond U.S. law?

Examiner Editorial
"Obama has granted Interpol the ability to operate within the territorial limits of the United States without being subject to the same constitutional restraints that apply to all domestic law enforcement agencies such as the FBI."

Government health care is a childrens' fable.

Mark Hemingway, Examiner Columnist
"That's the problem with Democrats' health care legislation in a nutshell. It promises coverage for millions of Americans, but a government IOU is a far cry from seeing a doctor when you need one."

We must face the reality that evil exists.

Noemie Emery, Examiner Columnist
"Gulag survivor Natan Sharansky once wrote that for the oppressed, the problem is finding the strength to fight evil, while for those in free countries, the problem is finding the 'moral clarity' (as he calls it) to see it exists."

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Monday, December 28, 2009

What Exactly "Worked"?

Family Security Matters

What exactly “worked?”
An expert source close to FSM breaks down the AP article that describes Napolitano’s claim of success:


1. "Homeland security head: The security system worked"

Nothing we did prevented that plane from being blown up. This was a case of a bad guy fumbling the ball on the one yard line through the end zone for a touchback. If the security system worked, then the system STINKS. Either Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab's detonator was bad or else it was a case of "you need to be smarter than the equipment you're using" and he screwed up. But if not for their screw-up, we'd have had a U.S. airliner blown up and crashing over a populated area on Christmas with hundreds killed.


2. "The father of the man accused of attempting to blow up the jetliner told U.S. officials in Nigeria he was concerned about his son's extreme religious views. However, Napolitano says there was no specific information to place Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab on a no-fly list."

This is a byproduct of refusing to recognize the religious component integral to the enemies we face. The fact that the father informed us that his son was a Jihadi wasn't enough for our PC system to keep him out of the U.S. This is the modern-day equivalent to allowing members of the SS into America because their membership in the SS was not sufficient specific information to exclude them.


3. Napolitano says that within 60 to 90 minutes of the incident all 120 flights that were in the air at time were contacted to make sure the attempted bombing did not extend beyond the flight to Detroit.

How were those other air crews supposed to know? Did they announce over the intercom, "Any terrorists on board with an explosive device strapped to your crotch, please raise your hand"?

Ace of Spades wonders

… what the hell it's going to look like when the system doesn't work, by the Obama Administration's lights. If this is what they deem a "success," Good Lord in Heaven, I tremble for what will come that provokes them to concede "mistakes were made."

If Napolitano is going to make such idiotic claims as “the system worked” when it clearly failed, then no American should take to the skies until she has resigned. And the sooner the better.

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Heritage Morning Bell - Flight 253 An Intelligence Failure

The System Failed

Pentaerythritol tetranitrate (PETN), the explosive Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab tried to detonate aboard Northwest Airlines flight 253, is among the most powerful of explosives in the world and was widely used to blow up airplanes in the 1970s and 1980s. The only reason the passengers of Flight 253 are still alive today is because Mr. Abdulmutallab’s syringe detonator failed for still unknown reasons.

Yet despite the facts that PETN is easily detected and Mr. Abdulmutallab’s father warned the U.S. embassy in Nigeria about his son this November, Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano had the audacity to go on television yesterday and say “the system worked” and that the suspect was properly screened.

The “system worked?” The 278 passengers on flight 253 could be dead today but for a faulty syringe and the Obama administration considers that a success? That is pure idiocy. Idiocy that is a direct threat to the security of this country and that goes to the heart of the Obama administration’s approach to the war on terror.

What on earth could Secretary Napolitano possibly mean when she said the “system worked?”

The answer can be found at the University of Michigan Medical Center in Ann Arbor where on Saturday U.S. District Judge Paul Borman read Mr. Abdulmutallab the charges the Obama administration has filed against him for trying to blow up Flight 253.

And the Obama administration probably will win a slam dunk conviction of Mr. Abdulmutallab. But his conviction will not make us any safer than the convictions of the 1993 World Trade Center bombers did during the Clinton administration. Prosecuting terrorists when we can is necessary to protect our country, but is in no way sufficient.

The Obama administration continues to demonstrate that they believe counterterrorism is a law enforcement problem to be managed, not a war to be won. Hence Attorney General Eric Holder’s insistence on sending Khalid Sheikh Mohammed and four other terrorists to New York for a civilian trial in federal court. The five defendants are already plotting how best to air their grievances and exploit their treatment while in detention. Worse, criminalizing the war on terror will force our government to give up the chance to interrogate terrorists like any enemy combatants and lose invaluable intelligence.

The Flight 253 incident was an intelligence failure. Instead of focusing on convictions, the Obama administration should be focusing on gathering the intelligence necessary to best protect the American people. This aborted attack provides a visceral reminder that terrorists remain committed to killing Americans. But it also illustrates the need to:

Work with international partners on countering terrorism;

Defend the domestic intelligence and law enforcement tools that disrupt plots inside
the U.S.; and

Pursue foreign terrorist sanctuaries that serve as staging grounds for international operations.

Clearly, terrorists have not wavered in their resolve to strike America. The United States must be equally resolute in its response.

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DCExaminer Morrning Email Blast


Power Corrupts, Absolute Power....etc etc

Washington Democrats gorge on absolute power
The old saw, "power tends to corrupt and absolute power corrupts absolutely," applies perfectly to the process we're witnessing in Washington.

Republicans still represent the views of roughly half of the American people -- on health care, it's more like 60 percent -- and yet the minority party has had no moderating effect on the health care reform packages moving swiftly to passage.

It's a bill written by Democrats and passed by Democrats, with all of the give-and-take taking place between Democrats. The horse-trading is between the middle and the left, instead of between the right and the left.

So instead of a bill that falls close to the middle, Congress will produce one that is well left of center.

In the House, freshmen Democrats elected from conservative districts balked at voting for the most liberal bill to move in more than 40 years. They were bought off with promises of plum committee assignments or bullied into line by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi with threats of burial in committee catacombs.

Sen. Mary Landrieu, a Democrat from conservative Louisiana, held out, citing the enormous costs. Ironically, she delivered her vote after getting a promise of $300 million for her pork-laden state.

Sen. Ben Nelson, D-Neb., took up the torch lit by Michigan's Bart Stupak in the House and insisted that the Senate bill ban abortions from public funding. He didn't get his abortion amendment. But he did win a promise from Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid to exempt Nebraska from the cost of the mandated Medicaid expansion.

Forty-nine other states will have to eat those costs, along with Nebraska's share. In Michigan, it could total $500 million the state doesn't have.

Send some love to Michigan Attorney General Mike Cox, who has joined a handful of his colleagues from other states to challenge the constitutionality of the curious deal.

Reid says this is how legislating works. It is when there's no check on power. Some of the stuff we've seen over the past couple of months would qualify as criminal coercion, vote buying and bribery if it were the private sector writing the checks.

But as Obama pointed out, elections have consequences. So at least for the next year, this Democratic Congress will be able to do whatever it pleases.

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GOP Will Repeal Healthcare Takeover

From The Weekly Standard Blog:
TPM reports:
With Democratic senators united on the health care bill today, their campaign arm has settled on an attack plan for 2010: Republicans would "repeal" it if they win control.

The Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee, aggressively challenging incumbent GOP senators and vying for open seats, will paint the Republicans as only interested in obstructing.

So, the Democrats' attack plan is to tell voters that the GOP will repeal the budget-busting, tax-hiking, Medicare-cutting, abortion-funding, big insurance and big pharma giveaway that only has the support of 35% of voters. Brilliant!!!!

Conservatives have been saying that if Obamacare passes Republicans should run on the platform of repealing this monstrosity. The Democrats really think it's a smart attack plan to send the same message?

Does this count as an in-kind contribution to Republican candidates?
Posted by John McCormack at

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Sunday, December 27, 2009

BBC Snubs Troop Support Effort

H/T Susan Katz Keating

Background brief: Earlier this year, a group of musicians and singers gathered at London's famed Abbey Road Studios to record a gorgeous anthem, "We Will Remember Them." The song honors troops killed in action. The stellar musical group includes The Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, the Pipes & Drums from the Scottish Regiments, Michael Bolton, Robin Gibb, and singers your kids would recognize. It was the biggest-ever one-day session at Abbey Road. As you will see, the result is GORGEOUS. The recording supports an excellent cause. All proceeds from the downloads / CD sales in the UK will go to Help for Heroes and The Royal British Legion. The soldiers themselves - and their families - love the song. In Britain, it even has been played at the funerals of troops killed in action in Afghanistan.
More at the link above.

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New Jersey TEA Party Recalls Menendez

Virginia's recall process, while requiring citizen petitions, allows a recall trial rather than an election.
National Conference of State Legislators


A “Committee to Recall U.S. Senator Robert Menendez,” sponsored by the Sussex County Tea Party has announced plans to launch an effort to recall Senator Robert Menendez from his position in office. Helping to lead the charge is New Jersey Tea Parties United, the state's grass-roots coalition of county and regional Tea Party groups representing several thousand members in support of fiscal responsibility, individual liberty and limited government.

The Committee filed a formal Notice of Intention to Recall with the Secretary of State's office on September 25, 2009. While the office of the Secretary of State acknowledged receipt of the Committee's Notice of Intention to Recall in a letter dated October 5, 2009, it has since provided no further communication. NJ state law requires that administrators respond either with an approval or with a notice of non-compliance stating the reasons within three business days of receiving the Notice, which was October 4, 2009.

Since no response had been received, on November 25, 2009, the Committee filed a civil complaint in the Essex County Superior Court of New Jersey against Nina Mitchell Wells, Secretary of State and Robert F. Giles, Director of the Division of Elections, demanding that the defendants be ordered to immediately and forthwith comply with state law by issuing a response to the Committee’s Notice of Intention. To date, the Secretary of State has ignored the Notice and the Complaint in violation of state law and the Committee is awaiting a decision from the court.

One NJ Tea Party member put it this way, “When NJ voters came out to the polls in November of 2008, they voted for the transparency and accountability that was promised. Rather than believe his own constituents who have desperately been trying to convey their wishes to him on health care reform without a government run option, he chooses to dismiss us, making public statements on the senate floor that our concerns are all nothing more than the greedy insurance companies lobbying to protect themselves.”

It is statements like this that have convinced the Committee, NJ Tea Parties United, and other tea party members that Senator Menendez is one of many elitists in government that are more concerned with promoting their own careers than doing what is right for the American people.

Those spearheading this effort hope that this will be the first recall of many throughout the nation and that the Constitutional government of the United States can be restored to the American people, to whom it belongs.

Reference websites:

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Thursday, December 24, 2009

From Our Family To Yours


DCExaminer Morrning Email Blast

Tapscott's Copy Desk
Fresh and insightful opinion from Tapscott's Copy Desk, by the Washington Examiner's Editorial Page Editor Mark Tapscott.


2009 has been Obama's year of falling swiftly

Mark Tapscott, Examiner Columnist
"To grasp the depth of the gathering disappointment with Obama, consider this fact: He is less popular today, not quite a year into his first term, than the battered and bruised George W. Bush was at the end of his eight years in office."

A football player with a higher calling

Gregory Kane, Examiner Columnist
"In December of 2007, Sports Illustrated published a story about those remarkable folks with the last name of Rolle and their forebears in the Bahamas islands called the Exumas."

A rude awakening for the naive Left on Big Government.

David Freddoso, Examiner Columnist
"The free market is a harsh mistress, but a fair one. Big Government, on the other hand, is always for sale to the powerful."

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Wednesday, December 23, 2009

CJ On Exec. Order 12425 INTERPOL

Read the rest after the jump.

US Liberties Further Eroded

When recognizing INTERPOL as an international agency, Reagan understood that certain restrictions should be placed to protect our citizens from violations of our constitutional rights. Therefore, he ensured that those sections of the Act not apply to INTERPOL. After all, if INTERPOL were not excluded from those sections, they could have snatched up Americans “guilty” of international crimes and our law enforcement and justice systems would be unable to file FOIA or other requests for proof of their “crimes.” Their records would not be open to scrutiny by our government or American citizens.

Unfortunately, this is no longer the case. Last week, President Obama amended
Executive Order 12425

By the authority vested in me as President by the Constitution and the laws of the United States of America, including section 1 of the International Organizations Immunities Act (22 U.S.C. 288), and in order to extend the appropriate privileges, exemptions, and immunities to the International Criminal Police Organization (INTERPOL), it is hereby ordered that Executive Order 12425 of June 16, 1983, as amended, is further amended by deleting from the first sentence the words “except those provided by Section 2(c), Section 3, Section 4, Section 5, and Section 6 of that Act” and the semicolon that immediately precedes them.

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Armstrong Williams on Sarah Palin

WILLIAMS: Palin's paradox
Armstong Williams
21 December 2009

More after the jump.

Before Sarah Palin became John McCain's running mate last year, we spent a morning in her Alaska office while she was still governor. We sat down for a one-hour TV interview, and I was most impressed with her insights, traditional values, grasp of issues, and just what a sincere and genuinely warm person she was.

The morning in her office made it clear why so many Americans across the board respond to and connect deeply with her brand of politics. However, the former governor has become an icon to many and a disaster waiting to happen for others.
Are Americans beyond questioning President Obama's birth? Do Americans believe for a second that Medicare administrators want institutional euthanasia for seniors?

Will the media give her a platform to espouse Reaganesque doctrines or enough rope to hoist her up on her own petard? Will Mrs. Palin appear more radical the more opportunities she has to share her "Alaskan values"?

America loves second acts. Exhibit A: the book tour phenomenon. Every washed-up, has-been former star can jump-start his or her career by writing a book and singing a redemptive tune in book stops across the country. In many respects, the book tour is a microcosm of the democratic political process. The form relies on the ability of the writer to hold the audience's interest by simply recounting his or her own story. The most successful ones are able to resonate with the blue-collar public by suggesting a better alternative to their own lives.

Politicians thrive at this kind of performance art. Not surprisingly, the ghost-written autobiography has become de rigueur for both successful and washed-up political candidates. It provides politicians a chance to press the flesh and talk about why they are so likable. Politicians can do this for days on end.

The American voter is happily complicit. Voters judge their elected leaders much like a fifth-grade popularity contest. The stories of politicians are to Americans what the mythologies of the gods were to the ancient Greeks. Tell a personal, compelling narrative that resonates with the masses, and you've defined yourself. Your vision becomes far more impactful and wields with it a virtual legacy lasting far longer than any speech behind a podium.

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NC Rep. Sue Myrick in FSM

Some in the Political Class Lie, Deceive, Manipulate And Rob
Sue Myrick, Congresswoman, North Carolina (R)

This protest happened in September, 2009 but apparently it wasn't enough.

The fraud, deception, deceit and bribery occurring in Washington regarding Senator Ben Nelson's vote for the ‘any' health care bill is standard operating procedure. The way a President, Majority Leader in the Senate and the Speaker of the House of Representatives do business would land any ‘average' American citizen in prison!

I wasn't a Member of Congress long when I learned this lesson. I was not supporting a major piece of legislation - and had been very vocal about it. I received a phone call from the Transportation Committee Chairman's office, who offered me $15 million to help finish Interstate 485 around Charlotte. I had championed that road when I was Mayor and they knew it was important to me. I said my vote was not for sale.

When politicians make such deals, in my opinion, they are compromising the integrity of their constituents who put their trust in them. So, what happened with Senator Ben Nelson from Nebraska, to change his mind about the health care bill, is not new.

First it has been reported that Senator Nelson was threatened by the President that if he did not vote for the ‘any' health care bill, that Offutt Air Force Base in Nebraska would be closed. (Change we can believe in?) Then the Senator was offered free Medicaid for Nebraska. (That means that you and the rest of us Americans will be paying for it.)

Playing ‘let's make a deal' with YOUR money is how those politicians flex their power egos and control your life. THINK: 537 people (House, Senate, President, Vice President) control the lives of 308 million Americans - plus those not yet born who will also have to keep on paying the bill.You are now being lied to, deceived, manipulated and robbed of your hard earned money - money you and your family need. Next - higher taxes. You had better become active now! It's Christmas - they don't think you're paying attention.This health care bill is a momentous fraud. Those truly needing health care could be covered for a miniscule amount - compared to what this bill will cost you.

Instead the pirates in Washington continue to divide the fruits of your labor. Only you can stop it. Remember the lone student in China who stood in Tiananmen Square in Beijing in front of a tank? In effect, he was saying ‘give me liberty or give me death'.

Obviously here in America it will take tens of millions hitting the streets in protest to stand a chance of stopping this continuing march toward totalitarianism.

Sue Myrick is a Republican Congresswoman from North Carolina

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SEAL Trio Update From

3rd SEAL in Detainee Case Wants Trial
December 23, 2009

NORFOLK, Va. -- A third Navy SEAL charged with not stopping the alleged abuse of an Iraqi detainee pleaded not guilty Tuesday to two misdemeanors and asked to be tried by a military jury.

Petty Officer 2nd Class Jonathan Keefe, of Yorktown, faces charges of lying to investigators and dereliction of duty for failing to safeguard Ahmed Hashim Abed -- a man the military describes as "a suspected Iraqi terrorist' captured by U.S. forces in September. Abed is thought to have been involved with the killing of four U.S. civilian contractors in 2004.

Keefe, 25, told Cmdr. Tierney Carlos, a military judge, that he wants a jury made up of at least one-third enlisted sailors, as is his right under rules for military courts-martial.

Keefe's lawyer, Gregory McCormack, requested a delay because the government has been slow to produce evidence against Keefe. Carlos scheduled the court-martial to begin April 6. Although the case is being handled locally, the decision to press charges was made by Army Maj. Gen. C.T. Cleveland, head of Special Operations Command Central.

Like Petty Officer 2nd Class Matthew McCabe and Petty Officer 1st Class Julio
Huertas, arraigned on related charges earlier this month, Keefe could have accepted administrative punishment for his actions but instead chose to fight the charges. If convicted, the SEALs could face a year in the brig, demotion in rank and a bad-conduct discharge.

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Morning Must Reads from DCExaminer

Washington Post -- Obama lists financial rescue as 'most important thing' of his first year

New York Times -- Plan to Move Guantánamo Detainees Faces a New Delay
Greg Craig has been booted and the Governor of Illinois is all fired up about the economic development potential of housing al Qaeda members in his state, so the whole “close Guantanamo” thing is back on track, right.

Not so much.

Wall Street Journal -- Businesses Brace for Health Bill's Costs
Companies are trying to extract some concessions in the final mash up of President Obama’s health plan and an army of lawyers and accountants are studying the plans so far to make the right plays once the legislation passes: which benefits they can cut, which benefits they must add, whether to start firing workers.

New York Times -- Thousands May Incorrectly Be Using Stimulus Tax Breaks
The problem with targeted tax incentives is that just as the government hopes to elicit very specific responses, fraudsters are given very specific targets.Writer Lynnley Browning tells us that the first-tie homebuyers tax continues to be a font of fraud and error, with half-a-billion dollars being siphoned off by those who haven’t met the criteria.Browning explains how a big part of the problem are the blizzard of phony tax identification numbers, a hot commodity in the illegal immigrant community.

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Pharmcos Makes Out Like A Bandit

DC Protest Warrior: Pharmcos Makes Out Like A Bandit

Timothy P. Carney - Christmas comes early for the big drug companies
President Obama on Monday credited the Senate for "standing up to the special interests -- who've prevented reform for decades, and who are furiously lobbying against it now." But the health care "reform" bill, passed late Sunday night, provides the drug companies with billions in taxpayer-funded subsidies, government-sanctioned monopolies, and mandates forcing people to buy drug insurance. At the same time, the bill doesn't touch the industry's existing special favors that Obama had pledged to eliminate in the name of consumers.


Christmas Wishes From Home/The Lee Brothers on Patriot Radio

Over on the left sidebar, I have a link to WRVA's live stream. Wednesday afternoon at 1600, Scott and Richard Lee, the only two-headed talk radio show in Richmond, are doing their annual Christmas Wishes From Home program.

Please join us and if you have family deployed, (or even if you don't,) call in and let them know we're thinking about them.

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Ray Stevens "We the People"


Healthcare Poll--Update

As of 0633 this morning these are the results:

Yes 5% 628 votes
No 95% 17415 votes
Undecided 0% 88 votes
Other 0% 15 votes
18146 total votes

The Washington Times is running a poll on the healthcare legislation.

Lets make sure they know how we feel about socialist engineering.

H/T FreeRepublic

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Reid Is Stupid, Cunning, Deceitful, or Incompetent

You be the judge. We told you about the provision which prohibits the repeal of certain sections of the healthcare bill.

The impudent tyranny of Harry Reid
Examiner Editorial
December 23, 2009

The final Orwellian touch in this subversion of democratic procedure is found in the ruling of the Reid-controlled Senate parliamentarian that the anti-repeal provision is not a change in Senate rules, but rather of Senate "procedures." Why is that significant? Because for 200 years, changes in the Senate's standing rules have required approval by two-thirds of those voting, or 67 votes rather than the 60 Reid's amendment received. Reid has flouted two centuries of standing Senate rules to pass a measure in the dead of night that no senator has read, and part of which can never be changed. If this is not tyranny, then what is?

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It Will Come Down To States' Rights and We Will Stand With the Commomwealth

Obamacare sparking 10th Amendment rebellion, action in seven states
By: Mark Tapscott
Editorial Page Editor
12/22/09 6:01 PM EST

Looks like the steadily growing list of constitutional, ethical and political outrages that constitute the Harry Reid version of Obamacare is sparking a rebellion in the states, as AP reports South Carolina's attorney general plans to investigate the vote-buying that surrounded the proposal in the Senate majority leader's office.

According to AP, South Carolina's Henry McMaster is being joined by the attorneys general of Michigan and Washington state in a suit to determine the constitutionality of the Obamacare proposal.

Their initiative was prompted by a request from South Carolina's two senators, Lindsay Graham and Jim DeMint, both Republicans.

Attorneys-general in at least four other states are also considering joining McMasters, according to AP.

Graham has been all over cable news today visibly angry about the vote-buying by Reid that secured the votes of Senators Mary Landrieu of Louisiana, Ben Nelson of Nebraska, and Bernie Sanders of Vermont, as well as possibly other senators as yet unknown.

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Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Heritage Morning Bell - Healthcare

The Six Key Issues the House Must Cave On Before Obamacare Becomes Law

President Barack Obama attempted to downplay differences between the House and Senate bills telling American Urban Radio Networks yesterday: “The Senate and the House bills are 95 percent identical. There’s five percent differences, and one of those differences is the public option. This is an area that has just become symbolic of a lot of ideological fights. As a practical matter, this is not the most important aspect to this bill.” We’ll let President Obama fight with his base abut how important a strong public option is to health reform, but a government run plan is just one of six key differences between the House and Senate bills:

Soak the Rich or Tax Everybody:
The Senate bill relies heavily on a new excise tax on high cost health plans: a 40 percent tax on plan exceeding $8,500 for an individual and $23,000 for a family. The AFL-CIO and SEIU both call this a tax on working families. The Senate bill also includes a new premium tax on all insurers and the CBO confirms that the cost of this tax will be passed on to all Americans with private insurance. The House bill depends on a heavy new income tax targeted at top-earning taxpayers and small businesses. The 5.4 percent tax on individuals with incomes above $500,000, and on families with incomes above $1 million, is structured in a way that over time more and more Americans will be hit by this tax and small business owners would be particularly affected.

Employer Mandate Penalties:
The Senate bill imposes a $750 penalty per worker on employers of 50 or more who are not covered by the federally approved package of health benefits. The Senate mandate has other strange consequences. If an employer offers coverage, but an employee is eligible by virtue of income to qualify for taxpayer subsidies and entry into the state-based health insurance exchange, the employer is also penalized. In other words, employers are penalized for hiring people at the poverty level, even if they offer health insurance. The House bill imposes a direct requirement on employers to offer federally-qualified health care coverage to their employees or pay a payroll tax on a sliding scale up to 8 percent. Both the US Chamber of Commerce and the National Federation of Independent Businesses have come out against the bills.

Individual Mandate Penalties:
The Senate bill requires individuals to purchase a government approved plan or pay a $750 penalty, beginning in 2014. The tax penalty, indexed for inflation, would increase over time. The House bill requires individuals to pay a penalty of 2.5 percent of their income, depending on the size of their income, for not obtaining federally-approved health care coverage.

Weak or Strong Public Plan:
The Senate bill establishes a new set of “multi-state” private health plans sponsored by the U.S. Office of Personnel Management (OPM) — the agency that administers the federal civil service — that would compete against private health plans in the state based exchanges that are mandated by the provision of the Senate bill. In contrast, the House bill includes an explicit public plan.

Medicaid Expansion:
The left may complain that there is no government-run option in either bill, but both the House and Senate bill accomplish over half their additional health insurance coverage through Medicaid expansion. The Senate bill would require states to expand their Medicaid programs to cover all Americans up to 133 percent Federal Poverty Level. The House bill would require states to expand their Medicaid programs to 150 percent FPL, the same level suggested in earlier versions of the Senate HELP Committee bill. Both Democrat and Republican Governors are against this state budget-busting welfare expansion.

Taxpayer Funded Abortion:
The President promised that there would be no federal funding for abortion. In the House bill, by virtue of the Stupak-Pitts amendment, there is a genuine firewall between federal funding and abortion coverage. In the Senate bill, by virtue of the agreement between Senate Majority leader Harry Reid and Senator Ben Nelson (D-NE), there is no such firewall. For the “pro-life” forces on both sides of the aisle, the Nelson language appears to fall short of the House language.

These are all major policy differences that go to the core of the Obama health care plan. For each option, choosing one version over the other will have huge consequences for the American people. But since Sens. Joe Lieberman (I-CT) and Ben Nelson (D-NE) have threatened to veto the bill if any significant changes are made by the House in conference, it is most likely the Senate will prevail on every issue. Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) might even just save herself and the leftist majority in the House the embarrassment and pass the Senate bill as is.

After all, the Obama administration wants a bill, any bill, and doesn’t really care what is actually in it.

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Corruption in High Office

Legal Dictionary

Main Entry: bribe
Function: noun
: a benefit (as money) given, promised, or offered in order to influence the judgment or conduct of a person in a position of trust (as an official or witness) —compare KICKBACK

Main Entry: bribe
Function: transitive verb
Inflected Forms: bribed; brib·ing
: to influence (a person) by giving a bribe
Merriam-Webster's Dictionary of Law, © 1996 Merriam-Webster, Inc.

Senator Mary Landrieu BRIBED with $300,000,000 in taxpayer money

Senator Ben Nelson BRIBED by a an amendment forcing 49 OTHER states to pay increased Medicaid costs to cover HIS state.
(If bills singling out one citizen for a law, how is this legal? In addition to the bribery?)

Senator Harry Reid BRIBES fellow Senators to the tune of $1.2 BILLION OF YOUR MONEY!

I am willing to bring charges and/or a lawsuit against Reid and the Democrats for corruption. Unfortunately, I have no idea on how to do so properly.

AG Cuccinelli's first act should be to bring suit to prove that this bill is unconstitutional.

Update: Michelle Malkin has the list of those being bribed

DemCare Bribe List #1

DemCare Bribe List #2

Rope. Tree. Democratic Senators. Assembly required.

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Monday, December 21, 2009

Senate Sell-out..Redstate

Less than 12 months to find replacements for the corrupt politicians subverting our Constitution. We need a super-majority, lets get one.

Eric from Redstate posted this about an hour and a half ago.

We Are No Longer a Nation of Laws.
Senate Sets Up Requirement for Super-Majority to Ever Repeal Obamacare
The Senate Democrats declare a super-majority of senators will be needed to overrule any regulation imposed by the Death Panels

If ever the people of the United States rise up and fight over passage of Obamacare, Harry Reid must be remembered as the man who sacrificed the dignity of his office for a few pieces of silver.

The rules of fair play that have kept the basic integrity of the Republic alive have died with Harry Reid. Reid has slipped in a provision into the health care legislation prohibiting future Congresses from changing any regulations imposed on Americans by the Independent Medical Advisory Boards, which are commonly called the “Death Panels.”

On December 21, 2009, however, Harry Reid sold out the Republic in toto.

Upon examination of Senator Harry Reid’s amendment to the health care legislation, Senators discovered section 3403. That section changes the rules of the United States Senate.

To change the rules of the United States Senate, there must be sixty-seven votes.

Section 3403 of Senator Harry Reid’s amendment requires that “it shall not be in order in the Senate or the House of Representatives to consider any bill, resolution, amendment, or conference report that would repeal or otherwise change this subsection.” The good news is that this only applies to one section of the Obamacare legislation. The bad news is that it applies to regulations imposed on doctors and patients by the Independent Medical Advisory Boards a/k/a the Death Panels.

Section 3403 of Senator Reid’s legislation also states, “Notwithstanding rule XV of the Standing Rules of the Senate, a committee amendment described in subparagraph (A) may include matter not within the jurisdiction of the Committee on Finance if that matter is relevant to a proposal contained in the bill submitted under subsection (c)(3).” In short, it sets up a rule to ignore another Senate rule.

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Maybe Its Time For Total Recall

This coming November we get the opportunity to replace the deadweight occupying the Capital Building in Washington DC. We can't replace all of them, because only about half of the Senate is up for re-election this cycle. We can replace at least one lying POS dhimmi Senator from Virginia, but suppose we could actually get a two for one deal?

Suppose enough concerned Virginia citizens got togther and signed a petition to put a ballot initiative/referendum to recall the most sleazy politician, (with the exception of Terry MaCauliffe) ever to stride upon the sacred soil of the Commwealth, Hizzoner Markie Mark Warner? Suppose just the idea of a ballot initiative was enough to make this dhimmi re-think his position on the welfare of Virginias' citizens?

How cool would that be? Do we have the votes? I think we do. I also think we have the moral authority to demand that our elected representatives actually represent the majority opinion, rather than toe a party line.

Think about it, Virginians. We have to do something.

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