Friday, July 25, 2014
I'm sorry to say that I'm going to be out of action for a few weeks. I'm afraid I'm about to undergo a surgery on my shoulder very soon, and will be away recovering for a while. The extent of my injury is not completely clear yet, so I can't really tell how long I'll be out. No matter what, I won't be blogging for at least three weeks.
In the meantime, check out the links at the side.
I'll hopefully be back to blogging soon.
|"You folks didn't think I was kidding when I said I was going use the government to punish my enemies, did you?"|
A good write-up from Investors Business Daily. Check out the whole thing at this link.
The tangled web of IRS deceit unravels a bit more with news recycled backup tapes of lost emails still exist and statements before a federal judge that Lois Lerner's hard drive was irreparably damaged were untrue.
Deliberately destroying evidence pertaining to the investigation of possible criminal activity is a crime. So is lying about it to Congress and the courts as part of a cover-up of that activity.
In response, the IRS said under oath that the hard drive from Lerner's computer was destroyed and recycled, echoing earlier testimony from Commissioner John Koskinen.
The reason given for Lerner's hard drive — possibly containing incriminating emails from and to the former head of the IRS Tax Exempt division — being destroyed and recycled, according to the IRS in the affidavit, was that a team of its technical experts had determined the drive was irreparably damaged and had to be recycled.
Except that was not true.
On Tuesday, House Ways and Means Committee investigators said that they had a chance to talk to the technical experts inside the IRS who actually examined Lerner's computer, and that the experts said the hard drive in question was merely "scratched" and most of the data on it was indeed recoverable.
As we and others have noted, the desire to use the IRS to punish political enemies was one of the articles of impeachment against President Nixon.
That President Obama's IRS may have actually been doing it, we believe, is sufficient motive to go along with the opportunity the IRS had to destroy the incriminating evidence that was possibly one of the reasons Lerner pleaded the Fifth Amendment in testimony before Congress.
Lawlessness, using the wheels of government agencies to intimidate and "punish" political adversaries, all the while blaming the opposition for making up phony scandals. Just another day in the Obama presidency. Well that and a lot of snarky comments and golfing...
Tuesday, July 22, 2014
President Kick-The-Can is at it again. The Obama strategy has pretty much been-- after claiming that everything was the fault of Bush, the GOP, racists, ATMs, etc.-- to just throw money at the problem and then put it off for as long as possible. Even if that means conceding to Iran the ability to make nuclear weapons, and paying off a country that arms the terrorist foes that one or our allies (Israel) is currently fighting.
Smartest. President. Evah.
From The Washington Free Beacon:
The United States will give Iran access to another $2.8 billion over the next several months and appears to have conceded to Iran’s demand that it be permitted to domestically enrich uranium, the key component in a nuclear weapon, according to senior Obama administration officials.
In exchange for agreeing over the weekend to extend nuclear talks until late November, Iran will be given another $2.8 billion in unfrozen assets, the White House told reporters over the weekend, after President Barack Obama decided to extend the talks past their July 20 deadline.
Maybe Obama can extend the deadlines past the 2014 elections... just like ObamaCare!
The United States already returned to Iran $4.2 billion in unfrozen oil assets during the past six months of the interim nuclear deal and has now agreed to provide another $2.8 billion in exchange for an extension in the negotiations.
White House officials also appeared to admit that U.S. negotiators have told Tehran that they will allow it to preserve some of its domestic enrichment capabilities, something that Congress has opposed.
“As part of the JPOA [Joint Plan of Action] extension, Iran will be allowed access in tranches over the next four months to $2.8 billion from its restricted overseas assets,” a senior administration official told reporters on a conference call over the weekend. “Those assets, which are largely unavailable to Iran, are more than $100 billion.”
$2.8 billion for agreeing to extend talks that will result in nothing? Perfect! And maybe the U.S. can also pay the Iranians to promise not to be especially mean on slow news days and make the Light-bringer look bad.
|Remember, it's a State Department whose competence cannot be questioned by anyone-- except for people who are racist...|
Monday, July 21, 2014
|"Look, folks within the Civil Service support me simply because they recognize a savior when they see one. I mean just look at this halo!"|
An excellent analysis by Richard Sameulson at the NRO. Click on the link here and read the whole piece.
Something has gone wrong in our civil service. Consider some recent developments. The IRS was forced to pay the National Organization for Marriage $50,000 for leaking the group’s donor list. Tea-party organizations and donors were much more likely than others to be audited by the IRS. This misbehavior was not the work of a few rogue employees in Cincinnati. In general, the IRS stalled tea-party applications for status as 501(c)(4) groups.
Meanwhile, April Sands, an employee of the FEC, recently pleaded guilty to violating the Hatch Act, which prohibits federal employees from campaigning at the office. Ms. Sands, who worked in the office charged with enforcing our election laws, recently said, “I just don’t understand how anyone but straight white men can vote Republican.” What business does such a person have in that office in the first place? Somehow the FEC managed to wipe her computer clean, weakening the case against her. Perhaps that answers our question. These cases reflect a larger pattern. Our civil service is putting a thumb on the scale of justice.
Today we have the worst of both worlds: a tenured and partisan civil service. Government employees have civil-service protection and are seldom fired, only for the most egregious of crimes. Yet they lean to one party. From 1989 to 2012, two-thirds of donations from IRS employees, for example, went to Democrats. Even so, our civil servants seem to think that they are politically neutral. Hence the employees at the VA think it is reasonable to spy on (presumptively partisan) congressional investigators, and hard drives mysteriously get destroyed in the IRS scandal. Laws are for the little people, as Glenn Reynolds likes to say.
The rise of the “fourth branch” of government — the administrative bureaucracy — complicates things further. Obamacare was roughly 2,000 pages long when Congress passed it. Bureaucrats have added thousands more. The Hobby Lobby case was about a rule written by bureaucrats, not by Congress. In fact, Congress probably would never have passed such a law. Worse, our tenured partisans sometimes delegate their jobs to activists. Who drafted the EPA’s new greenhouse regulations? The National Resources Defense Council.
Nowadays, in other words, laws are, in effect, written, interpreted, and enforced by the bureaucratic equivalent of made men who are quite well paid. So much for checks and balances. Moreover, our legal code is so complicated that, as Harvey Silverglate notes, most businesses or individuals are probably guilty of breaking some law somewhere. That puts each of us at the mercy of the government.
All of the actions that these partisan shills too are unacceptable, of course. However the most important thing for people to do is to recognize that this partisan problem does, in fact, exist. This knowledge allows all of us to more easily fathom why the U.S. is continually becoming more politically Left while a huge majority of Americans self-identify as being conservative or middle-of-the-road-- in that order. It's backed into the bureaucratic cake, and we ignore this at our own peril.
Massive Civil Service reforms must take place, if the U.S. ever hopes to correct itself and get back onto a economically sustainable course.
Friday, July 18, 2014
Long gone are the days when CNN was known as "the most trusted name in news." I haven't watched the station with any sense of trust since about the time of Hurricane Katrina.
During her on-air report, Magnay [CNN reporter Diana Magnay] pointed out the trail of rockets that could be seen leaving Israeli positions to take out Hamas. "I think you can probably see there are lots of Israelis gathered around who are cheering when they see these kinds of Israeli strikes," she noted. It was a scene that was "macabre," Magnay insisted.
On Twitter Magnay was shocked at those Israelis she saw that morning cheering the rockets' red glare: "Israelis on hill above Serdot cheer as bombs land on Gaza; threaten to 'destroy our car if I say a word wrong'. Scum."
Magnay deleted her tweet only minutes later.
Nice to see such mature and unbiased reporting within the mainstream media.
Malaysian Airlines Flight 17 Likely Shot Down by Russian Backed Ukranian Separatists Killing 295-- Obama Makes Jokes During Speech
|A plastic reenactment of Obama's speech.|
The king of tact and empathy has struck again...
Obama scarcely mentioned the loss of Malaysian Airlines Flight 17 during a speech in Delaware. I guess he didn't have a fundraiser to go to.
From The Daily Mail:
President Barack Obama provoked fury in the U.S. on Thursday by casually devoting less than a minute to the deaths of 295 people aboard a Malaysian airliner, as he began an often jokey 16-minute speech about the need to expand America’s transportation infrastructure.
There are no confirmed American dead and the White House issued a statement on Thursday evening which said they were still seeking any 'information to determine whether there were any American citizens on board'.An earlier Reuters report claimed that it was feared that as many as 23 U.S. citizens had perished.Obama declared in Wilmington, Delaware that 'it looks like it may be a terrible tragedy,' but not before enthusiastically declaring that 'it is wonderful to be back in Delaware.'
'Before I begin, obviously the world is watching reports of a downed passenger jet near the Russia-Ukraine border. And it looks like it may be a terrible tragedy. Right now we’re working to determine whether there were American citizens on board. That is our first priority.'
'And I've directed my national security team to stay in close contact with the Ukrainian governemnt. The United States will offer any assistance we can to help determine what happened and why. And as a country, our thoughts and prayers are with all the families and passengers, wherever they call home.
Obama then jarringly quickly returned to his prepared remarks.
'I want to thank Jeremie for that introduction' he said. 'Give Jeremie a big round of applause.'
'It is great to be in the state that gave us Joe Biden. We’ve got actually some better-looking Bidens with us here today. We've got Beau and his wife, Hallie, are here. Give them a big round of applause. We love them.'
Obama also acknowledged the presence of Treasury Secretary Jack Lew with a joke.
'Jack Lew’s signature is actually on your money,' he said, 'although it's kind of illegible. We teased him when he first became treasury secretary that he was going to have to fix his signature a little bit because it looked just like a caterpillar running along the bottom.'
From there he launched into a 16-minute speech about transportation projects he wants Republicans to fund, complaining bitterly about their objections to his end-runs around the federal legislature.
National Review reporter Charles Cooke tweeted: 'Shorter Obama: 'Something awful has happened with a plane. It’s awful. Awful. Republicans are bastards for not funding new airports".'
I wish I could be surprised by Obama's behavior. I wish I could think to myself "Wow, this guy's a lot less astute and savvy than I thought." Alas, no. Shall we remember that Obama jetted off to a fundraiser after learning of the deaths in the attack of the American embassy in Benghazi, that he publicly blamed an innocent filmmaker for the attack-- even to the bereaved families of the those lost. There is nothing beneath this man.
I'm sure he'll find a way to blame Bush, a YouTube video, or the GOP for this, and then resume his full-time job of punishing his (American) enemies, and claiming that Americans are ungovernable and racist.
Thursday, July 17, 2014
|"These are all phony scandals! This country is ungovernable! You're all racist if you don't overlook my plethora of scandals! Now, start recycling those VA hard drives!"|
Why is that when a scandal breaks during the Obama Presidency, the people doing the investigations get spied on? It's almost as though Obama behaving like a Leftist Chicago politician.
From The Washington Examiner:
Congressional staffers investigating data falsification and whistleblower retaliation at the Department of Veterans Affairs regional office in Philadelphia were given a workspace there that was wired with activated audio microphones and video cameras, the chairman of the House Committee on Veterans' Affairs said Monday.
Committee investigators also glimpsed a notebook used by the agency's regional director that bore written instructions to ignore their requests for information, Rep. Jeff Miller, R-Fla., said during a late-night hearing.
Miller, chairman of the veterans committee, said he is “shocked” by the directives from VA officials to ignore congressional investigators.
“You will not ignore this committee anymore,” Miller said to Allison Hickey, VA's under secretary for benefits, who testified at the hearing.
Miller sent two committee staff members to the Philadelphia facility July 2 to determine whether claims-processing data was being falsified to hide long delays and errors that could cost veterans the benefits they deserve because of illnesses or injuries linked to military service.
Before the meeting began, one of Miller’s staffers, Lauren Rogan, went to the bathroom, where she saw a notebook by the sink that included the phrase “ignore Rory,” a reference to her colleague Rory Riley.
Circled at the top of the page were the names of two whistleblowers who were cooperating with the committee to expose improper processing of veterans claims in a way that improved agency statistics but did not resolve the cases.
The notebook belonged to Lucy Filipov, acting director at the regional office. It apparently reflected an earlier conversation with Diana Rubens, who at the time was deputy under secretary for benefits.
After the meeting, case files and computers were placed in a room where Filipov insisted Rogan and Riley should work. As the two checked the room, they found the sound and video equipment were active, and they insisted on being moved.
The exchange over surveillance and stonewalling was a bizarre twist in the committee's investigation into long backlogs veterans face when seeking disability compensation for service-connected medical conditions.
Whistleblowers told the committee of “gross mismanagement” and deceptive practices used at regional offices to hide the months-long delays veterans face when they file a disability claim.
Kristen Ruell, a quality review specialist in Philadelphia, said she faced retaliation after she tried to expose data manipulation, improper payments and other “gross misinterpretations of the law.”
Ruell was one of the two whistleblowers whose names were circled on the top of Filipov’s notebook.
Just another day in the Obama Administration.
How many scandals in this administration again? And how many times has the White House responded by denial, stonewalling, and domestic espionage?
Tuesday, July 15, 2014
From the BBC News:
A Ukrainian military transport aircraft has been shot down in the east, amid fighting with pro-Russian separatist rebels, Ukrainian officials say.
They say the An-26 plane was hit at an altitude of 6,500m (21,325ft).
The plane was targeted with "a more powerful missile" than a shoulder-carried missile, "probably fired" from Russia. The crew survived, reports say.
Russia has made no comment. Separately, Nato reported a Russian troop build-up near the Ukraine border.
A Nato official confirmed to the BBC that the alliance had observed a significant increase of Russian troops, bringing their number to up to 12,000.
There's been a fair amount of fighting in the eastern parts of Ukraine-- not that we're hearing a much about from the media. Well, I'm sure that Obama's and the State Department's rhetoric about Putin not behaving as a 21st Century gentleman is very comforting. Poland should rest easy from that. Uh, right...
Monday, July 14, 2014
|Under the penalty of government harassment, you shall not mock the Light-bringer.|
Because using government power to intimidate and squelch opposition is a hallmark of the Left.
From The Washington Times:
The U.S. Department of Justice has sent a member of its Community Relations Service team to investigate a Nebraska parade float that criticized President Obama.
A Fourth of July parade float featured at the annual Independence Day parade in Norfolk sparked criticism when it depicted a zombie-like figure resembling Mr. Obama standing outside an outhouse, which was labeled the “Obama Presidential Library.”
The Nebraska Democratic Party called the float one of the “worst shows of racism and disrespect for the office of the presidency that Nebraska has ever seen"
The Omaha World-Herald reported Friday that the Department of Justice sent a CRS member who handles discrimination disputes to a Thursday meeting about the issue.
So let's all remember that public criticism of Obama is racist, treasonous, and will be investigated by the Department of Justice. Oh, and maybe the IRS...
Wednesday, July 9, 2014
Not good news for anyone.
From The Jerusalem Post:
Air raid sirens rang out in Greater Tel Aviv, and in Jerusalem, Kfar Saba and the Binyamina area on Tuesday evening, marking an increase in the Gazan rockets’ range, on the first day of Operation Protective Edge.
An Iron Dome battery intercepted the incoming rocket over Tel Aviv. Hamas announced it had fired four M-75 rockets at the capital. Two loud thuds were heard in downtown Jerusalem shortly after the rocket warning siren went off at 9:56 p.m. Thousands of residents entered bomb shelters, while others remained outside and in cafés.
Police spokesman Micky Rosenfeld said none of the rockets fired from Gaza hit in side the capital, although two rockets struck just outside the city. At least one rocket hit in the adjacent Mateh Yehuda region. A rocket hit near a home, but there was no damage.
Palestinian rockets continued to pound southern Israel throughout the day, with some 120 projectiles striking by the evening.
Iron Dome intercepted 23 rockets, shooting down rockets over Ashdod, Ashkelon and Gaza border communities.
The army began calling up the 40,000 reserve soldiers the cabinet approved for Operation Protective Edge, launched the previous night to stop the rocket fire from Gaza. IDF Chief of Staff Lt.-Gen. Benny Gantz asked for the 40,000 soldiers in order to replace conscripted forces in the West Bank, thereby enabling their deployment to the Gaza border.
And of course Obama urges restraint-- which pretty much means Israel should just absorb casualties because Obama thinks they deserve it-- in a laughable op-ed in Haartez. Obama uses the deaths of several Israeli teens and the ensuing crisis as a platform for his two-state solution rhetoric. Apparently Obama is oblivious to the fact that Hamas is incorporated into the Palestinian government.
Smartest president evah...
Monday, July 7, 2014
|"Those who doubt global warming are disapproved of by their ruler."|
Which, of course, just goes to prove global warming, or something...
Responding to widespread criticism that its temperature station readings were corrupted by poor siting issues and suspect adjustments, NOAA established a network of 114 pristinely sited temperature stations spread out fairly uniformly throughout the United States. Because the network, known as the U.S. Climate Reference Network (USCRN), is so uniformly and pristinely situated, the temperature data require no adjustments to provide an accurate nationwide temperature record. USCRN began compiling temperature data in January 2005. Now, nearly a decade later, NOAA has finally made the USCRN temperature readings available.
According to the USCRN temperature readings, U.S. temperatures are not rising at all – at least not since the network became operational 10 years ago. Instead, the United States has cooled by approximately 0.4 degrees Celsius, which is more than half of the claimed global warming of the twentieth century.
First, global warming is not so dramatic and uniform as alarmists claim. For example, prominent alarmist James Hansen claimed in 2010, “Global warming on decadal time scales is continuing without letup … effectively illustrat[ing] the monotonic and substantial warming that is occurring on decadal time scales.” The word “monotonic” means, according to Merriam-Webster Online, “having the property either of never increasing or of never decreasing as the values of the independent variable or the subscripts of the terms increase.” Well, either temperatures are decreasing by 0.4 degrees Celsius every decade or they are not monotonic.
Second, for those who may point out U.S. temperatures do not equate to global temperatures, the USCRN data are entirely consistent with – and indeed lend additional evidentiary support for – the global warming stagnation of the past 17-plus years. While objective temperature data show there has been no global warming since sometime last century, the USCRN data confirm this ongoing stagnation in the United States, also.
Expect global warming alarmists, now and for the foreseeable future, to howl in desperation claiming the USCRN temperature data are irrelevant.
Of course, to global warming alarmists, all real-world data are irrelevant.
Obviously the NOAA is racist and in bed with big corporations. Otherwise this means that billions of dollars and untold man hours have been wasted on something that was never a problem in the first place, and we can't have that now.
Thursday, July 3, 2014
|Pic from Breitbart article linked below|
Looks like someone was straying off the Dem's definition of what it means to be Black again...
JACKSONVILLE, Fla., July 2 (UPI) --Florida Republican congressional candidate Gloreatha "Glo" Scurry-Smith tweeted a picture of one of her campaign signs Sunday that had been subject to racist vandalism.
The vandal spray-painted Smith's face white. Smith, who discovered the sign in Jacksonville, said she expected signs to be tampered with, but didn't expect anything to that degree.
"Throughout this entire incident, I go back to Martin Luther King's comment that 'we look forward to a time when people will not be judged by the color of their skin, but by the content of their character,'" Smith told the National Review.
But King's view is the antithesis of the modern Left's belief on race. Weird, huh?
Let's all remember that if you don't support high unemployment rates among Blacks, high crime rates in Black neighborhoods, high abortion rates, and don't always vote Democrat, then you're not really Black.
Plus if you don't possess the basic belief that Blacks just generally cannot perform as well as Whites in academia or in the job market, then you're a racist.
Funny how that works...
Wednesday, July 2, 2014
|"I think a whole lotta folks want some audits, if you ask me..."|
A real shocker, I know.
From The Washington Times:
Poll after poll has charted President Obama’s dipping approval rating in recent months, but Wednesday brought perhaps the cruelest cut to date: A new Quinnipiac University survey found that voters rate Mr. Obama as the country’s worst president since World War II.
With Mr. Obama deploying troops to Iraq, failing to find compromise with Congress and seeing major defeats in the Supreme Court, voters continue to sour on him. The new poll also revealed that more voters now say GOP nominee Mitt Romney would have been a better choice in 2012
Quinnipiac found 45 percent of voters say the country would have been better off if Mr. Romney had been elected, while just 38 percent say Mr. Obama remains a better choice. Even Democrats aren’t so sure — just 74 percent of them told the pollsters Mr. Obama was clearly the better pick in the last election.
Voters also rated the man who swept into office in 2009 with a promise of “hope and change” as worse than even his predecessor, Republican President George W. Bush, who left office with terrible approval ratings.
“Over the span of 69 years of American history and 12 presidencies, President Barack Obama finds himself with President George W. Bush at the bottom of the popularity barrel,” said Tim Malloy, assistant director of the Quinnipiac University Poll.
A Zogby Analytics Poll released Wednesday also found Mr. Obama slipping — in that survey, to 44 percent approval, while his disapproval jumped 4 percentage points from last month to reach 54 percent.
Nearly half of voters told the Zogby poll that Mr. Obama is “unable to lead the country.”
White House press secretary Josh Earnest said Mr. Obama still has the ability to lead America, whatever the polls say.
Heh. Good one, Josh.
Gee, do you think it's because of the IRS scandal? Or is it because of bugging reporters? Or the high unemployment rates? Or the lies about Benghazi? Or arresting an innocent filmmaker as a scapegoat? Or is it the stagnant economy under his watch? Or is it ObamaCare? Or is it his criminal bungling of Libya, Egypt, Iraq, Ukraine, or the continual betrayal of our ally Israel during the Mid-East peace process? Or could it be from operation Fast & Furious? Or attacks against political opponent through the EPA, IRS, etc.? Or is it Obama's has repeatedly proven himself to be untrustworthy?
Naw. It's racism. Straight up.
|"I give unto you underlings sky-high gas prices. You're welcome."|
Under the watch of Obama, of course...
From the CNS News article by Julia Seymour:
This Independence Day weekend, drivers won't see any relief from high gas prices. Although prices retreated by a fraction of a cent at the beginning of the week, AAA predicts holiday travelers will pay the most at the pump since 2008.
In its monthly gas price report released June 30, AAA said, "With Independence Day only a few days away, today's national average price of gas is $3.68 per gallon. This average is considerably more expensive than recent years for the holiday. The national average on July 4 in previous years was: $3.48 (2013); $3.34 (2012); $3.57 (2011); $2.74 (2010); $2.62 (2009); and $4.10 (2008)." The motorist organization expected prices to remain high throughout the month of July, ranging from $3.60-$3.70 per gallon.
The still high gas prices would extend the record number of days the national average for gasoline has remained above $3-a-gallon. Unless prices drop nearly 70 cents a gallon, July 4th will be the 1,290th day above that mark. USA Today reported in September 2013 that, for the first time ever, gas prices had been higher than $3 a gallon for 1,000 consecutive days - beginning Dec. 23, 2010, through Sept. 17, 2013. That streak of three-and-a-half years has not been broken.
Hey, super-high gas prcies and the ensuing high prices of consumer goods is the new normal! We to pay extra for "fairness," or the enviroment, or something...
Well, I don't know why anyone would expect more from Leftist, community organizer. Still, do you remember the days when people proudly proclaimed that Obama was ging to make them all rich?
I barely do.
Wednesday, June 18, 2014
Not a surprise considering (a) China's recent belligerence, (b) India's rocky history with China-- the two countries briefly went to war in 1962, and (c) India's recently elected BJP (Bharatiya Janata Party government.
From India Today (h/t Leslie Eastman at Legal Insurrection):
The new BJP government is keen to send out a strong signal to Beijing regarding border disputes by nearly doubling the deployment of Indo-Tibetan Border Police (ITBP) personnel on the India-China frontier. Top government sources said the ITBP will very soon have more boots on the ground to effectively guard the border that has witnessed several Chinese incursions in the past few years. The previous UPA government was often criticised for being "soft" on the issue of Chinese incursions.
The Home Ministry has approved the construction of 54 new border outposts along the disputed frontier with China. A proposal in this regard was made by the ITBP before the polls but the previous government did not go ahead on it.
With the new outposts, the number of troops on the ground too will increase. Currently, there are close to 40 outposts and nearly 15,000 troops guard the sensitive zones. Sources said the number could now go up to 30,000. "There were critical gaps regarding security on the China border that need to be filled up," said a senior Home Ministry official.
"The increase in deployment should not be construed as an aggressive approach on our part. We are only securing out territory," a top government official said.
I would characterize India's security build-up as more of a domestic political position, rather than any response or in preparation for a direct Chinese threat. China's bellicose stances against the Philippines, Vietnam, South Korea and Japan are another matter entirely...
Thursday, June 12, 2014
It's the lying liars lie some more: gun control edition.
If their position is so right, why do gun control advocates continually lie about reality?
From The NRO piece by Charles C. W. Cooke:
This map, which purports to show that there are have been 74 “shootings at schools” since the abomination at Newtown, is currently doing the rounds.
Writing it up, the Washington Post reported that,
Tuesday’s school shooting in Oregon is at least the 74th instance of shots being fired on school grounds or in school buildings since the late-2012 elementary school shooting in Newtown, Conn., according to a list maintained by the group Everytown for Gun Safety, which advocates for policies it believes limit gun violence.
There have been at least 37 shootings on school grounds this year, which is just barely half over. All told, there has been nearly one shooting per week in the year and a half since Newtown. Everytown identifies a school shooting as any instance in which a firearm was discharged within a school building or on school grounds, sourced to multiple news reports per incident. Therefore, the data isn’t limited to mass shootings like Newtown—it includes assaults, homicides, suicides and even accidental shootings. Of the shootings, 35 took place at a college or university, while 39 took place in K-12 schools.
The Post is admirably clear that the map includes both colleges and schools, that it counts “any instance in which a firearm was discharged within a school building or on school grounds,” and that the data isn’t “limited to mass shootings like Newtown.” This point has also been made forcefully by Charles C. Johnson, who yesterday looked into each of the 74 incidents and noted that not only did some of them not take place on campuses but that “fewer than 7 of the 74 school shootings listed by #Everytown are mass shootings,” that one or more probably didn’t happen at all, that at least one was actually a case of self-defense, and that 32 could be classified as “school shootings” only if we are to twist the meaning of the term beyond all recognition.
And that, of course, is precisely what the map’s creator is doing. The point here is not to tell the truth, but to get out the “74 school shootings since Newtown” figure and to turn it into conventional wisdom before anybody can check if it’s actually correct. This is why, on its website, Everytown for Gun Safety introduces the map with the simple claim that,
Since the December 2012 shooting in Newtown, CT, there have been at least 74 school shootings in America. How many more before our leaders pass common-sense laws to prevent gun violence and save lives?
Everytown is not the only advocate of gun control that is engaged in a concerted effort to convince the public that gun violence is on the rise. At his White House event yesterday, President Obama insinuated that the United States was uncommonly awash with shootings. “We’re the only developed country on Earth where this happens,” he said.
And it happens now once a week. And it’s a one-day story. There’s no place else like this.
Later, the president added:
So the country has to do some soul-searching about this. This is becoming the norm.
This isn’t true. But it doesn’t matter. As Pew reported last year, the American public remains largely unaware that the last two decades have seen a quite remarkable drop in gun violence. Obama presumably knows this. ”Despite national attention to the issue of firearm violence,” Pew wrote, “most Americans are unaware that gun crime is lower today than it was two decades ago. According to a new Pew Research Center survey, today 56% of Americans believe gun crime is higher than 20 years ago and only 12% think it is lower.”
National rates of gun homicide and other violent gun crimes are strikingly lower now than during their peak in the mid-1990s, paralleling a general decline in violent crime, according to a Pew Research Center analysis of government data. Beneath the long-term trend, though, are big differences by decade: Violence plunged through the 1990s, but has declined less dramatically since 2000.
Compared with 1993, the peak of U.S. gun homicides, the firearm homicide rate was 49% lower in 2010, and there were fewer deaths, even though the nation’s population grew. The victimization rate for other violent crimes with a firearm—assaults, robberies and sex crimes—was 75% lower in 2011 than in 1993. Violent non-fatal crime victimization overall (with or without a firearm) also is down markedly (72%) over two decades.
Don’t want to take Pew’s word for it? The Obama administration’s own Department of Justice agrees:
According to DOJ’s Bureau of Justice Statistics, U.S. gun-related homicides dropped 39 percent over the course of 18 years, from 18,253 during 1993, to 11,101 in 2011. During the same period, non-fatal firearm crimes decreased even more, a whopping 69 percent. The majority of those declines in both categories occurred during the first 10 years of that time frame. Firearm homicides declined from 1993 to 1999, rose through 2006, and then declined again through 2011. Non-fatal firearm violence declined from 1993 through 2004, then fluctuated in the mid-to-late 2000s.
As Forbes’s Larry Bell notes, this is the “gun-control hypesters’ worst nightmare.” ”More people are buying firearms, while firearm-related homicides and suicides are steadily diminishing.” I would only add that these drops have happened while the gun laws have generally been liberalized, not tightened. Do we really want to start screwing with the trend so that we can all feel good about ourselves?
What? Firearm homicides are down by 49% and violent crimes are down by 75%!! Well then we must ban guns. It's the only way to get those number back up to where they should be!
How else are we going to create a morass of worse-than-useless federal laws that restrict our freedoms, our ability to defend ourselves, and make us dependent on government agencies for protection? Get with the program people.
|Above is the current image of Obama being used to dishearten Islamic terrorists.|
But, you know, Obama totally has this under control.
From The Daily Mail:
Iraq was under siege yesterday after Al Qaeda-inspired jihadists seized control of Saddam Hussein’s home town of Tikrit and closed in on the country’s biggest oil refinery.
Coming less than 24 hours after the country’s second city Mosul was overrun by the militants, there were fears that the loss of Tikrit could open the way for an assault on Baghdad just 80 miles to the south.
British security firms working in the capital are said to have been put on high alert amid fears that insurgents will target the ‘Green Zone’ where most of the foreign embassies are based.
As well as Mosul and Tikrit, several other northern towns were reported to have fallen to the spectacular offensive by the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL).
While the West has so far refused to assist with military support, the US has said it will come to the aid of the 500,000 people who have fled fierce fighting in Iraq.
Denouncing ISIS as ‘one of the most dangerous terrorist groups in the world, Stuart Jones, the nominee to be the next US envoy to Baghdad, told US politicians the United States ‘will continue to monitor the situation closely, and will work with our international partners to try to meet the needs of those who have been displaced’.
Forgive me if I don't take the words of the architect of this collapse to seriously. Perhaps Obama will send the displaced across America's southern border. Dreamers all...
Tuesday, June 10, 2014
|Don't worry. Plastic Obamas in intimidating poses, hollow reassurances, and State Department selfies will keep America and her allies safe.|
But I thought Obama said that al Qaeda was on the run and all that? Oh well, I'm sure the Obama Administration is trying to find out what obscure YouTube video caused this to happen...
From The Wall Street Journal (via Drudge):
Al Qaeda-inspired militants seized control of Iraq's second-largest city on Tuesday in a brazen military operation that underscored the weakness of the Baghdad government across vast swaths of the country.
Hours after government forces fled Mosul in disarray following four days of fighting, Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki declared a nationwide "state of maximum preparedness" but didn't indicate whether government forces were mobilizing to retake the Iraqi city, 220 miles north of the capital Baghdad.
The capture of Mosul by rebels linked to the Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham, or ISIS, is the latest evidence of the weakness and disorganization that have beset Iraq's security forces since the U.S. forces withdrew from the country in December 2011.
It also underlines the group's determination to establish an Islamic emirate encompassing the Iraqi-Syrian frontier, weaken the already fragile Iraqi state and expand the theater of the three-year-old civil war in neighboring Syria.
The U.S.-trained and equipped Iraqi security forces, which have floundered since the U.S. pullout, haven't succeeded in thwarting ISIS's emergence as a formidable paramilitary force. Its fighters regularly launch daytime attacks against government forces and have held the city of Fallujah, 36 miles east of the capital, since early January.
Mosul, the capital of Nineveh province, has been a longtime staging ground for al Qaeda-linked forces. Residents of the province have complained recently about stepped-up ISIS activities, including cash-for-protection demands to local businessmen and political officials—a major source of funding for the group's operations.
Obama: making the world safer for radical Islamists (and other thuggish political entities) since 2009.
Friday, May 30, 2014
|"I love you, Dear Leader. Let me kiss your jacket sleeves."|
Jay Carney has resigned. I guess he needed more time to sit in the lotus position and contemplate the Soviet propaganda posters at his house.
From USA Today:
President Obama announced Friday that White House press secretary Jay Carney will be stepping down from his job and be replaced by deputy Josh Earnest.
"It's been an amazing experience," Carney said after Obama's announcement.
Carney said he will stay on until mid-June.
In praising his press secretary, Obama described Carney as one of his best friends and said he would continue to rely on him as an outside adviser.
Obama described Earnest, his incoming spokesman, as "honest and full of integrity" and "a straight shooter."
Yeah... Obama's honesty and integrity were both in full bloom as he blamed the Benghazi attacks on an obscure YouTube film-- and jailed the film maker, blamed operation Fast & Furious on Bush, blamed the VA scandal on Bush, etc.
Well, at least we got a cool photo out of it.