What do you think about this?
My foray into Congressional Politics last year was in part motivated by the lip service concerning the Brent Spence Bridge I saw coming from the eventual winner of the fall contest. He seemed to be putting public safety and local economy at risk by standing firm for deep spending cuts despite the need for a new Interstate bridge over the Ohio River.
Well maybe this news will help move the ball a bit and get Mitch, Rand and the entire Kentucky Congressional delegation to adopt my call that they "Build The Dang Bridge."
MOUNT VERNON, Wash. — An Interstate 5 bridge over a river collapsed north of Seattle Thursday evening, dumping two vehicles into the water and sparking a rescue effort by boats and divers as three injured people were pulled from the chilly waterway.
Survivor Dan Sligh and his wife were driving their pickup truck when he said the bridge disappeared before them in a "big puff of dust."
"I hit the brakes and we went off the bridge," Sligh told reporters from Skagit Valley Hospital, adding he "saw the water approaching ... you hold on as tight as you can."
Traffic along the heavily-travelled route could be impacted for some time.
"The I-5 corridor is totally disrupted," said Gov. Jay Inslee, who went to the scene Thursday night. [POLITICO]
If you see any of these boys riding and waving in a parade this weekend, instead of just smiling and waving back how about shouting to them
BUILD THE DANGED BRIDGE!
Hillary Clinton, Rand Paul and Marco Rubio were tested by the Quinnipiac University poll in Iowa and though today Mrs. Clinton would seem to be ahead, her closest rival for president of the United States is Rand Paul, more so than Marco Rubio.
In fact, right now Rand is within 4 points of Hillary, not bad considering that nobody outside of the Bowling Green Kentucky Lions Club had ever heard of him three years ago.
Oh, and by the way, Rand beats Biden head to head whereas Biden and Rubio are in a virtual tie. [POLITICO]
Have you been awakened to the Common Core issue yet? If not, here's a primer. The Common Core State Standards Initiative is a U.S. education initiative that seeks to bring diverse state curricula into alignment with each other by following the principles of standards-based education reform. What does that mean?
It means teaching to the test. Or in other words, in order to qualify for federal funds your school will have to meet certain test standards, which of course means that your school will have to teach the kids to know the answers to the tests. Which of course means that by designing the tests the government controls what your kids are being taught.
Now that you know the kind of indoctrination that comes with the horrible Common Core Initiative, let's look at how it is actually being played out in the real world. Get ready to gasp in horror and then get very angry.
Lying to Congress is a very bad idea. When the Attorney General of the United States does it much is at stake. And it now looks like Eric Holder has been caught red-handed doing just that. And how do we know that he has been caught lying? The report comes directly from Michael Isikoff at NBC.
Attorney General Eric Holder signed off on a controversial search warrant that identified Fox News reporter James Rosen as a “possible co-conspirator” in violations of the Espionage Act and authorized seizure of his private emails, a law enforcement official told NBC News on Thursday.
That is certainly not what Holder said to Congress under oath. This is:
“First of all you’ve got a long way to go to try to prosecute the press for publication of material. This has not fared well in American history… In regard to potential prosecution of the press for the disclosure of material. This is not something I’ve ever been involved in, heard of, or would think would be wise policy.“
source: Gateway Pundit
Franklin Circuit Judge Phillip Shepherd has granted TEA party organizer David Adams the legal standing he needs to challenge Steve Beshear's creation of health care exchanges as part of the new Obamacare law. Beshear's lawyers tried to get Adams suit challenging this authority dismissed but Judge Shepherd disagreed.
Adams has been a singular voice challenging Beshear on this issue and though this is just an opening salvo so was the shot at Concord bridge.
In comments to the story which appeared in the Courier Journal Adams says that this was the big hurdle. "The Governor is just being childish now. The only way he can be in compliance with KRS 12.028 is to stop wasting time and money on this ObamaCare "exchange." The standing issue resolved by this ruling was the closest thing to a real controversy in this case because the law is abundantly clear", Adams said.
Following the court victory Adams circulated this meme:
Stay tuned. Now we have a real fight to watch.
Charlie Blackmore was driving home around 4 a.m. when he spotted a woman being assaulted along the side of the road. A man had pushed her to the ground and was kicking her repeatedly in the head and stomach. Blackmore stopped his car and ordered the man to stop the attack. The assailant then turned his attention to Blackmore and began approaching him. Thanks to Wisconsin’s new concealed-carry law, Blackmore was able to draw his pistol and hold the suspect at gunpoint until police arrived. The woman was treated for what appeared to be a broken nose and large laceration on her face.
Reprinted with the encouragement of the NRA
An email from a Wikileaks document dump has surfaced in which a private security contractor seems to confirm that former security adviser and now CIA director John Brennan was behind the "witch hunt" of journalists which has blown into a full scale scandal this week turning Obama's press friends against him.
An obscure November 2012 Wikileaks email dump points to former White House counterterrorism adviser and now-CIA chief John Brennan as the person behind the “witch hunt” of journalists who reported unflattering Obama administration leaks.[Breitbart]
We've been on to Brennan for a long time. His role at CIA could very well be Obama's bunker door.
Look, I'm not trying to advance a conspiracy theory but there are a lot of fishy things which keep on popping up around the Boston Bombing case. For example, an FBI agent shot and killed a friend of one of the bombers in Florida this week. Why? And why were they even down there talking to him?
Then there is the bizarre story of how two of the FBI agents who were members of the elite team involve in the arrest of the Boston Bomber fell to their deaths from a helicopter during a "training" exercise.
This mirrors the strange coincidence of the helicopter crash which killed members of the elite SEAL team involved in the killing of Osama Bin Laden.
What comes to mind is unfortunately the adage that "dead men can't testify."
What did they know?
Lois Lerner shocked the nation when she appeared before Congress yesterday. She opened her remarks with a denial of any wrongdoing and then promptly refused to answer any questions on advice of counsel, relying upon her right under the Fifth Amendment to not be compelled to become a witness against herself.
But it's not that simple. First of all, though the Fifth Amendment applies only to criminal cases, it has been extended by the Supreme Court to include testimony in other proceedings such as testimony before a Congressional Committee.
However, the right is one which may be waived and when Lois Lerner appeared before Congress in other matters and then yesterday gave an opening statement in which she denied wrongdoing and violations of the law, she may have waived her right to be be free from questioning on those matters.
But forget all of that legal wrangling. A good hard hitting lawyer knows how to force her to testify. He goes out and grants immunity to every potential witness who can come in and thrown her under the guillotine and builds such a tough case against her that she has no choice but to spill the beans.
Or, the feds could grant HER immunity and force her to talk, but then, without the corroboration of other witnesses before hand, she could just lie and get by with it.
This isn't over and her decision to "take the fifth" opened up a huge can of worms.
The bottom line is however, if they want to, Congress can force Lerner to testify.
The Weekly Standard quotes famed attorney James Bopp Jr. who tells the tale of Lois Lerner and her abuse of power at the Federal Elections Commission, before being moved to the IRS, where she harassed the Christian Coalition costing them hundreds of thousands of dollars in a failed lawsuit against them.
According to Jim Bopp Lerner's FEC lawsuit was so over-reaching that it even included questioning Oliver North over what prayers might have been said for him by Pat Robertson based upon a thank you note Ollie had written to the pastor.
The Weekly Standard article makes it pretty clear that Lerner's ability to use government power to crush people was well developed at the FEC and was cause for concern when she moved to the IRS.
Perhaps no other IRS official is more intimately associated with the tax agency's growing scandal than Lois Lerner, director of the IRS’s Exempt Organizations Division. Since admitting the IRS harassed hundreds of conservative and Tea Party groups for over two years, Lerner has been criticized for a number of untruths—including the revelation that she apparently lied about planting a question at an American Bar Association conference where she first publicly acknowledged IRS misconduct.
One of the most shocking things about the current IRS scandal is the revelation that the agency asked one religious pro-life group to detail the content of their prayers and asked clearly inappropriate questions about private religious activity. But under Lerner's watch, inappropriate religious inquiries were a hallmark of the FEC's interrogation of the Christian Coalition.
The Christian Coalition was ultimately absolved of any FEC wrongdoing in 1999, and Lerner was promoted to acting General Counsel at the FEC in 2001 before eventually moving on to the IRS. Bopp, who's all too familiar with the aggressive and inappropriate tenor she set leading the FEC's Enforcement Division, says he became concerned about what would happen as soon as Lerner joined the IRS. "When she left the FEC, I thought, 'Wow, this means the not for profit division is gearing up politically,'" he said. "It didn't bode well, because of the way [the FEC] approached cases."
In fairness it was George W. Bush who appointed Lerner to the position at the IRS, but the unbridled efforts to thwart the growing influence of TEA party and other conservative groups occurred under Obama's watch.
There's plenty for her to hide and her botched attempt at taking the fifth before Congress isn't going to protect her.
I am hesitant to expect this sentiment to last but for the moment it seems that the wheels have come off of the Obama-Train. This is from the New York Times:
With the decision to label a Fox News television reporter a possible “co-conspirator” in a criminal investigation of a news leak, the Obama administration has moved beyond protecting government secrets to threatening fundamental freedoms of the press to gather news.
Michael Clemente, the executive vice president of Fox News, said on Monday that it was “downright chilling” that Mr. Rosen “was named a criminal co-conspirator for simply doing his job as a reporter.” Bruce Brown, the executive director of the Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press, added on Tuesday that treating “routine news-gathering efforts as evidence of criminality is extremely troubling and corrodes time-honored understandings between the public and the government about the role of the free press.”
The Rosen case follows other signs that the administration has gone overboard in its zeal to find and muzzle insiders.
When his greatest fans and protectors in the MSM lodge criticisms like this, the next shoe to drop could very well be enough to squash him.
Okay Mitch, solid conservatives have gotten the message that you have come around on some of the important issues of concern to them and though they may not have great enthusiasm for your campaign would probably be there for you unless you gave them a reason to distrust your goals.
So this report regarding immigration is likely to give them a serious bit of indigestion and I would highly recommend that you explain yourself very quickly.
Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell said Tuesday he wants the Gang of Eight’s immigration bill to proceed to the floor, despite requests from some conservatives to reject all procedural votes related to the bill.
Far reaching Amnesty for millions of illegal immigrants granting them full welfare and Obamacare benefits without border security provisions will now head to a full vote in the US Senate after passing through the Senate Judiciary Committee.
Call every Senator you know, or can reach, and tell them how you feel about this. And tell them in no uncertain terms.
The FBI shot and killed a man yesterday near Orlando Florida who they say was an "acquaintance" of the deceased Boston Bombing suspect. According to a friend of the man who was killed the allegation of a shootout is "impossible that's the last thing he would do even if he had a gun", he told reporters.
There must be more to this story but at this time for the FBI to shoot and kill a witness which appears to be so disconnected from the bombings raises many suspicions.FOX 35 News Orlando
Every day something new breaks on the IRS and Benghazi scandals. Late yesterday it was announced that Lois Lerner, the director of the IRS division, will invoke the Fifth Amendment before the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee. First of all she has this right. But more importantly, she is worried about criminal prosecution.
At this point the matter is an investigation into abuses by a government agency. Criminal prosecution would be very unusual. So for the director to see something in her anticipated testimony that could incriminate her in a criminal prosecution could indicate that there is something more to this than politics.
In addition, The Blaze reported last night that a Washington Times editor had just revealed in a series of Twitter posts that a CIA source had told him that the White House was sitting on a something that has Obama's top aides terrified.
Also last night Bret Baier at FoxNews broke via several other reporters that when Obama's people tapped into James Rosen's phones they also tapped into his parent's phones.
Clearly this kind of government over-reach is about to explode all over this administration. It has journalists of all political persuasions furious, and that's not good for the guy they've been protecting for the past five years.
The Lexington Herald Leader is reporting that the head of the Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife is up for a contract approval that would give him $134,000 per year in pay plus another $53,000 in benefits with a cap of $218,000 subject to being raised.
Wildlife Commissioner Jon Gassett has been a good friend of sportsmen in Kentucky and his compensation has been approved by the Fish and Wildlife Commission chair and the Commonwealth's Tourism Secretary. It still needs approval from the Government Contract Review Committee. [Ky.com]
The Hill is reporting that Heather French Henry is considering a run against Mitch McConnell, if she can get someone to clean her house that is.
Some Democrats believe a younger female candidate could be the best contender against McConnell because it would create a strong contrast with the five-term incumbent. Actress Ashley Judd decided against a run after initially making preparations to jump in the race, citing family concerns.
Democrats are still hoping Kentucky Secretary of State Alison Lundergan Grimes will run, believing her to be the strongest remaining contender, but she hasn't yet made up her mind on the race.
French Henry, who won the pageant crown in 2000 and now owns a gown boutique, for which she designs dresses, is a candidate in that same vein.
Looking forward, she said that she had no timeline on a decision. Asked what could convince her to run, French Henry balked.
"Other than someone to clean my house for me?" she joked. "I don't know — God would have to make it very evident to me, like a frying pan to the head, and say, 'Heather, you need to run.'"
Uh, Heather, the frying pan to the head could come very quickly. I predict that it would arrive as soon as you said you were running and it would have $9 million of force behind it.
Bob Woodward even thinks Benghazi is an explosive scandal. Now word is that the big bang is set to come very soon. New Whistleblowers are about to come forth and what they say could sink both Obama and Hillary. This from Roger Simon at PJ Media:
Stevens’ mission in Benghazi, they will say, was to buy back Stinger missiles from al-Qaeda groups issued to them by the State Department, not by the CIA. Such a mission would usually be a CIA effort, but the intelligence agency had opposed the idea because of the high risk involved in arming “insurgents” with powerful weapons that endanger civilian aircraft.
Hillary Clinton still wanted to proceed because, in part, as one of the diplomats said, she wanted “to overthrow Gaddafi on the cheap.”
This left Stevens in the position of having to clean up the scandalous enterprise when it became clear that the “insurgents” actually were al-Qaeda – indeed, in the view of one of the diplomats, the same group that attacked the consulate and ended up killing Stevens.
We already reported that the Benghazi attack was connected with a gun running operation. Now it appears that the whole mess might have been cooked up by Hillary. Stay tuned.
When I was a boy in school we stood and recited the Pledge of Allegiance everyday. We prayed the Lord's Prayer. Our fathers were still being celebrated as the heroes who saved Europe from Hitler's flame. Our reading materials included a little newspaper called "The Weekly Reader."
America was locked in a very cold war with the Soviet Union. We read about the horrid conditions "behind the iron curtain" where people were gathering in small groups to listen to "Radio Free Europe" a Congressional sanctioned broadcast providing news an information to countries where the free flow of information was banned.
We were told that children in those countries were being encouraged to turn in their parents if they knew of such small groups listening to these broadcasts. We were told that people in those nations lived in fear of their government. The world in which I grew up included images of families being rounded up and never heard from again. The entire notion of free speech had been erased from their world. My mind was imprinted very early to fight against anything that resembled the slightest restriction on freedom.
I'd like to encourage you to read an article written by Tim Carney for the Washington Examiner. Hear these words:
Benghazi. The IRS targeting the Tea Party. Feds snooping on the Associated Press. These dizzying controversies around the Obama administration all carry the same lesson:
Watch what you say.
On Benghazi, set aside for a moment the dust-ups over State Department officials changing talking points, White House officials misleading the media, and congressional Republicans misrepresenting administration emails. Go back to what the administration was saying just after the deadly Sept. 11, 2012, attacks on the U.S. diplomatic facility.
Many administration officials -- although they may have known better -- blamed the attack, and thus the death of four Americans, on a bad YouTube video called "The Innocence of the Muslims."
Protests outside the U.S. Embassy in Egypt did use the video as a pretext, and White House spokesman Jay Carney responded by calling the video "reprehensible and disgusting." Obama publicly attacked the filmmaker as "sort of a shadowy character who made an extremely offensive video. ..."
Later that month, federal officials arrested this "shadowy character" for probation violations related to making the video.
From the administration falsely blaming the video for Benghazi, to the White House's repeated denunciations, to the federal arrest, the message is clear: Watch what you say.
On the IRS debacle, the speech being policed isn't even offensive -- unless you find it abhorrent to criticize big government or President Obama.
The queries the IRS rained on Tea Party groups in 2010 were aimed at discerning just how political these groups were. What books will your book clubs be discussing? Tell us about your donors -- will any of them run for office?
While targeting Tea Party groups was clearly inappropriate, some of the IRS' questions were actually in keeping with federal law, which restricts 501(c)(4) groups' freedom to oppose candidates for office. This is problematic in itself because it puts the IRS in the business of telling Americans, "Watch what you say about politicians."
Finally, the administration secretly tracked the phone calls of the Associated Press to root out who leaked the report of a drone strike. Then the CIA told AP to hold off on the story so that Obama could announce it first.
This has a chilling affect on journalists. But it's also the latest salvo in the Obama administration's war on whistleblowers. Liberal writer Jane Mayer wrote in 2011 that Obama has used "the Espionage Act to press criminal charges in five alleged instances of national-security leaks -- more such prosecutions than have occurred in all previous administrations combined."
The three scandals of the past two weeks differ in their severity and in the White House's level of culpability. But they all have the same message: "My fellow Americans, watch what you say."
I'll let the elected officials battle it out over how to control health care costs for a Government apparently committed to being the nanny for everyone. I'll let the electoral process decide whether the best way to cure deficit spending is to cut taxes or raise them. I trust the outcome of elections to the extent that bad results can be fixed in two or four years. But when it comes to chilling my rights, and your rights to speak freely, think freely, share freely, assemble freely and to plot and plan legitimate ways to bring about the kind of changes we and those who agree with us would like to see in America, I will never entrust that battle to anybody else.
I am a lawyer. I have taken an oath to defend the Constitution. I take that vow very, very seriously. And I have never shied away from a fight in defense of free speech.
Tim Carney is right. Obama has shown more clearly in the past few weeks than in the past four year combined that his vision for America resembles much of what I was taught to hate about the Soviet Union.
It now appears very clear that he is determined to lower something which resembles an iron curtain over America, engender fear among people, put an end to small groups of freedom loving people who gather in the name of Liberty and to squelch free speech in all quarters.
For those of you who still remember the lessons of your youth, this time in our history should send a chill up your spine. The kind of chill that makes you stand up and fight.
A California TEA party group has filed suit contending that the IRS violated its Constitutional rights in its handling of their application for tax-exempt status. The suit asks for Class Action certification which means that the case could take the lead on behalf of all other affected groups across the nation. [POLITICO]
A 12 year old took the top prize in a science fair for her study of the ice at fast food restaurants. And her findings are enough to make you sick.
So she went to five fast food restaurants and collected samples.
She ordered cups of ice and put them in sterile beakers. She also went into bathrooms, flushed the toilet once, and collected a sample.
The findings were pretty disturbing.
How did that happen?
The reason that the bacteria was more prevalent in the ice could be that while toilets are cleaned regularly, ice machines are not. [Business Insider]
First the DC Circuit Court of Appeals found that President Obama's recess appointments were unconstitutional. Now the Third Circuit in Philadelphia has also found these appointments illegal as well.
President Obama has made 32 recess appointments which could all be invalid under the interpretations which hold that the President's power only exists between sessions of the Senate not any time they are merely away.
In fairness, George W. Bush made 141 recess appointments during his two terms and some of those could be in jeopardy as well. [Washington Post]
You might think that a state cannot outlaw the purchase of a firearm because the Second Amendment prevents such a prohibition, but cagey lawmakers in California have figured a way around that little "problem".
Californians who surmount the paperwork and scrutiny required to purchase a handgun can still buy any of the handguns on the current Roster of Handguns Certified for Sale. But that’s about it. As of today, all new models which manufacturers want to introduce for sale in California will need to follow the new guidelines. They’ve got to be capable of microstamping.
There’s not a single handgun manufactured in the United States that microstamps a cartridge. Not one. Why should there be? The technology is both expensive and useless (the firing pin can be replaced or sanded down in seconds) and consumers may well balk at the idea.
The Supreme Court has overruled similar scams pulled by gun grabbers in the past and they’ll probably shoot this one down as well. You can’t get around the 2nd Amendment by charging $1000 each for bullets or by only making non-existent guns legal. But, who knows? Maybe this time the liberal gun grabbers will get away with it. In any case, it will take time for the court system to rule so until then, if you want to buy a new semi-automatic handgun, I guess you’ll have to move to Texas. If gun owners in California aren’t sure how to get there, they can just follow the flood of business owners fleeing the state. [John Hawkins]
It seems like yesterday that Alice B. Toklas brownies were an underground recipe for the subculture of pot smokers whose lives grew out of the protest era of the 60's and 70's. Now it seems that plans are in the works for controlling what is expected to be an immensely profitable marijuana marketplace in America.
Bill Keller, writing for the New York Times, says that Washington and Colorado are already struggling with the issue.
One practical challenge facing the legalization pioneers is how to keep the marijuana market from being swallowed by a few big profiteers — the pot equivalent of Big Tobacco, or even the actual tobacco industry — a powerful oligopoly with every incentive to turn us into a nation of stoners. There is nothing inherently evil about the profit motive, but there is evidence that pot dealers, like purveyors of alcohol, get the bulk of their profit from those who use the product to excess. “When you get a for-profit producer or distributor industry going, their incentives are to increase sales,” said Jonathan Caulkins of Carnegie Mellon, another member of the Washington consulting team. “And the vast majority of sales go to people who are daily or near-daily consumers.”
If indeed the consumption of marijuana is destined to become legal a whole host of problems need to be planned away. If it is treated like alcohol marijuana use will result in public intoxication, drugged driving, underage and open use laws being enacted.
Licensing growers, producers, manufacturers and dispensers will require some form of labeling like the old tax stamps on liquor bottles and cigarette packs.
But its interesting to watch the discussion turn from whether to legalize pot to a discussion of how to design a world in which pot is legal.
I don't think we're in Kansas anymore Toto.
The news this morning is seriously devoid of anything "new". The IRS scandal, Benghazi emails, Obama giving a speech, all things that could have been headlines any day last week. The only news that is a bit surprising is the big winter storm that dumped snow on Alaska this weekend. But then, global warming is old news too.
Here is a photo my friend in Anchorage sent me of his front yard as he woke up Saturday morning. I was preparing to mow the yard here in Kentucky when the pic arrived.
When TEA party groups sought tax free status with the IRS and found themselves entangled in a White House driven program of retribution they came face to face with the punitive nature of the current tax code. They also invited a snake into the house, the kind that bites.
The need for "tax exempt" status only exists in a world where taxes are paid by some and not others. And the "exemption" from those taxes only exists in a world where lobbyists can persuade congress to grant "exemptions".
That's why real tax reform will take bold men to get behind it. Those who have spent their lives lobbying for clients and pocketing millions along the way have found the sandbox of taxes a great place to play. Carving out exemptions, negotiating credits, adding sub-paragraphs to sub-paragraphs in the Internal Revenue Code and creating a system that requires lawyers, and accountants and tax-preparation companies to do the calculations has created a labyrinth of cottage industries so intertwined with the current tax structure that any serious attempt at modernization will be met with fierce resistance from those who profit off of taxes as they currently exist.
Don't think for one minute that thousands of people with a vested interest in keeping the status quo, with perhaps some pork barrel tweaks, aren't already putting together well crafted messages to deliver to the public and to elected officials why anything that really makes sense is a bad idea.
But this scandal over the IRS targeting TEA party groups might just have enraged the wrong monster. Every evil the TEA party railed against was found in bed together in this infuriating mess.
There is the mean old IRS, the dictatorial president, a huge federal bureaucracy too big, David Axelrod said, for even the president to control and of course the lobbyists and DC insiders who are lining up to prevent their cash cow, the income tax, from being slaughtered.
As the old saying goes, you can milk a cow for a long time, but you can only eat it once. Meaningful tax reform, like moving to the Fair Tax, will kill the cash cow for a lot of people suckling off of her for decades. But the move will not only eliminate the punitive nature of the cows now obvious kick, it will give plenty of red meat to a growing TEA party appetite for liberty. And that's a good thing.
The Dalai Lama says that his religion is simple, it is "kindness".
He preaches compassion and kindness from a Tibetan Buddhist school of thought known as the 'Gelug', founded by religious leader and philosopher Je Tsongkhapa in the 15th century. His school of thought emerged as the dominant one in Tibet after a period of violence between competing sects of Tibetan Buddhists.
His philosophy teaches the path to enlightenment as taught by Buddah who was a sage of the ancient Shakya republic which was an ancient kingdom on the sub-Indian continent during the first century BC.
The man known as the Dalai Lama is actually the 14th Dalai Lama. His name at the time of his birth in 1935 was Lhamo Dondrub, his religious name is Tenzin Gyatsois. He is believed to be one of the most famous men in the world.
Buddhism is the fourth largest religion in the world after Christianity, Islam and Hinduism.
A Tibetan monk named Kardo was reportedly beaten to death by Chinese police after they found him in possession of recordings of speeches by exiled spiritual leader the Dalai Lama.
Kardo was formerly associated with the Champa Ling monastery in Chamdo prefecture of the Tibet Autonomous Region (TAR). He was arrested at his home and in the subsequent search two cassettes of the Dalai Lama’s speeches were discovered.
According to one report, Kardo was a student monk at Jampaling Monastery for a long time but left because of the monastery’s worship of a controversial deity called Dorje Shugden. The Dalai Lama discourages worship of the deity.
Kardo was taken into custody on April 21 at his home in Dzogang (in Chinese, Zuogong) county by county police, a Tibetan living in India told RFA’s Tibetan Service on Monday.
“Two cassettes of the Dalai Lama’s speeches were discovered in his room,” the source said, speaking on condition of anonymity and citing contacts in the region.
He was severely beaten in custody and died on April 28.
Police received a "domestic violence" call they say. They went to the suspected residence and knocked on the door. Both of the residents, husband and wife, told police through the door that there was no domestic violence. Police ordered them to open the door (no warrant). The people recorded the event.
Police then kicked down the door, entered the home and tasered the couple to the ground.
Can police enter a house without a warrant? In some limited circumstances they can, but they are at great risk of injury and legal action if they do. This video doesn't appear to qualify for any of the exceptions. But that wouldn't prohibit a judge from granting them one.
Can police order people out of their houses without a warrant? No.
But more disturbing is the use of the taser.
What, you don't think this could happen to you? Wake up and smell the smokestacks.
I had the pleasure of participating in the republican primary for Congress from my district last year. Of course as I told everyone, I was more George Plimpton in the Paper Lion than a conditioned player on the field. But I did have one take-away that I feel it is time to share. Even those I respected most were mealy-mouthed about changes to the tax laws.
I heard nearly every candidate say, when asked, that they were in favor of a "fairer-flatter" tax. I guess that's an homage to both the proponents of the "fair tax" and proponents of the "flat tax" and a way to show voters that you empathize with their dislike of the income tax.
But none really committed to any effort to make a dramatic and historic change for America. I did though. I favored the "Fair Tax". Yes I had some questions about the "prebate" but continue to be certain that some of the difficult details of that portion of the proposal could be worked out.
Proponents of the Flat Tax would keep the IRS, and apparently don't think the Fair Tax would pass.
But there is probably no better time for a discussion and for a strong push for the Fair Tax than right now.
Why not the Flat Tax? The Patriot Post has done a comparison of the Fair Tax, the current Income Tax and the Flat Tax. I suggest that you CLICK HERE to do your own comparison.
Why do I prefer the Fair Tax over the Flat Tax? Here are a few examples.
I was not surprised that a candidate would bob and weave during a campaign and was thrilled to have the chance to share the stage with the others to engage in the ongoing debate about the future of our nation, but now we are at a time when talk should end and action take its place.
Now is the time for the Fair Tax.
Barack Obama has tried to distance himself from three major scandals this past week by blaming everyone except himself. David Axelrod even appeared on the Sunday shows and offered an excuse which caused Rush Limbaugh to chuckle and agree. Axelrod said the government was just too big for the President to control.
But as the layers of denial and deflection have been batted away what appears at the core of these serious problems is at best an incompetent and at worst the architect of perhaps the greatest threat to liberty to ever occupy the office.
Now the Wall Street Journal has had enough. In an article yesterday the mask was pulled off of Obama and full blame for the actions of the IRS laid right at his feet.
Was the White House involved in the IRS's targeting of conservatives? No investigation needed to answer that one. Of course it was.
President Obama and Co. are in full deniability mode, noting that the IRS is an "independent" agency and that they knew nothing about its abuse. The media and Congress are sleuthing for some hint that Mr. Obama picked up the phone and sicced the tax dogs on his enemies.
But that's not how things work in post-Watergate Washington. Mr. Obama didn't need to pick up the phone. All he needed to do was exactly what he did do, in full view, for three years: Publicly suggest that conservative political groups were engaged in nefarious deeds; publicly call out by name political opponents whom he'd like to see harassed; and publicly have his party pressure the IRS to take action.
Breitbart has a meme which hits the same message.
And as I said as soon as this IRS scandal broke, this is the one that will fire up everybody, liberals and conservatives alike, because it is proof that the President is capable of abusing power and that is someting only the most dedicated communists and dictators love.
You can yell "TYRANNY" over anything else you want, but this IRS scandal is the spark in the presence of the powder keg that all Americans despise.
Seriously, if there was ever a time for updating the taxing system in the United States it is now.
Which elected official will be the bold one, to capture the nation's attention, to rally a nation behind him/her and call for the elimination of the IRS and the shift to the Fair Tax for our future?
One comes to mind. Mitch, now is your moment to make history.
Kelby Smith, 34, pulled into his brother’s driveway and was carrying his 2-month-old son in a car seat when a man with a pistol approached them and demanded money. Smith knelt in front of his son to shield him as the robber held the gun to Smith’s head. As Smith handed over a small amount of cash, he pulled his own gun from its holster. Upon seeing the firearm, the robber fled, but turned and pointed his gun back at Smith, who fired his gun. The man was later identified as he entered a hospital seeking treatment for a gunshot wound. (The Plain Dealer, Columbus, OH, 1/15/13)
Reprinted with the encouragement of the NRA
Here's an interesting coincidence. The once vibrant TEA party is said to have waned in power between 2010 and 2012, precisely the time during which the IRS was rolling logs in its path while approving applications for tax free status from progressive groups. One cartoonist was able to capture the irony in this.
Now the Washington Post is wondering if the recent scandals in the Obama administration might just have given the TEA party movement a new level of credibility and with it, power.
The Internal Revenue Service’s decision to single out conservative groups for extra scrutiny has brought a fresh dose of attention to the tea party, a once thriving movement that has waned in the years since the 2010 GOP wave election.
Will the fact that the agency targeted groups with “tea party” and “patriot” in their names reignite the energy of limited-government activists and groups who have warned of the perils of overreach? Republicans both in and outside the movement think it could give them a boost on several fronts.
As the old saying goes "Just because I'm paranoid doesn't mean somebody isn't out to get me."
From Real Clear Politics:
MARK LEVIN: "Yes, we're going to cover the ins and outs of this -- we're going to come into the weeds, but folks, it's time to kill the IRS. That's the bottom line. This agency has been corrupt since its founding. And the bigger the government gets, the more corrupt it gets, the more ubiquitous it gets. And I don't just mean political partisanship and cronyism, I mean its abuses. We must fight the expansion of the IRS under Obamacare. We must fight to kill the IRS or critically wound it -- politically -- with either a flat tax or a fair tax. Now is the time to advance a liberty agenda. Now is the time to advance a Constitutional agenda." (Mark Levin Show, May 15, 2013)
POLITICO is reporting that Republicans in the House bipartisan immigration group are threatening to leave negotiations if they don’t come to an agreement Thursday. But by all accounts there are a number of serious problems with the bills under consideration.
A large group of law enforcement officers from around the nation have written a letter to Congress urging Congress to not enact the current legislation, arguing that "this legislation fails to meet the needs of the law enforcement community and would, in fact, be a significant barrier to the creation of a safe and lawful system of immigration".
Out of work Americans in the technology sector are worried that the proposed legislation will further their woes by carving out an eventual path to citizenship for residents here illegally and give priority to skilled immigrants over those entering through family ties.
Norman Matloff, professor of computer science at the University of California, Davis, goes even further. He contends employers sometimes just prefer foreigners over Americans.
“It really boils down to cheap, compliant labor,” Matloff said. “You, as the employer, have no leverage over American workers. But you do have huge leverage over foreign workers if they’re being sponsored for a green card.” [Seattle Times]
And for many republicans who will be called upon to support the current immigration proposals the whole mess could mean "risky business" in a political sense too.
"While the shift to a less hard-edged position on immigration might make good political sense for the GOP nationally, with the nation's Hispanic population growing steadily, it makes little sense locally for many of the Republican lawmakers who will be asked for vote for it. Their political fortunes depend on conservative white voters who have strong feelings about people slipping across the border to live in this country." [Capital Gazette]
The current plans for Immigration Reform, even with some republicans cheering it on, seems to be about as difficult a path as making your way through an inhospitable desert on foot.
Congressman Devin Nunes told Hugh Hewitt that the FBI ran its tapping operation by tapping phones in the Congressional Cloak Room, a place closed to everyone except for Senators and Representatives. If this is true, this is an egregious violation of law and the separation of powers.
HH: The idea that this might be a Geithner-Axelrod plan, and by that, the sort of intimation, Henry II style, will no one rid me of this turbulent priest, will no one rid me of these turbulent Tea Parties, that might have just been a hint, a shift of an eyebrow, a change in the tone of voice. That’s going to take a long time to get to. I don’t trust the Department of Justice on this. Do you, Congressman Nunes?
DN: No, I absolutely do not, especially after this wiretapping incident, essentially, of the House of Representative. I don’t think people are focusing on the right thing when they talk about going after the AP reporters. The big problem that I see is that they actually tapped right where I’m sitting right now, the Cloak Room.
HH: Wait a minute, this is news to me.
DN: The Cloak Room in the House of Representatives.
HH: I have no idea what you’re talking about.
DN: So when they went after the AP reporters, right? Went after all of their phone records, they went after the phone records, including right up here in the House Gallery, right up from where I’m sitting right now. So you have a real separation of powers issue that did this really rise to the level that you would have to get phone records that would, that would most likely include members of Congress, because as you know…
DN: …members of Congress talk to the press all the time.
HH: I did not know that, and that is a stunner.
DN: Now that is a separation of powers issue here, Hugh.
DN: And it’s a freedom of press issue. And now you’ve got the IRS going after people. So these things are starting to cascade one upon the other, and you have the White House pretending like they’re in the clouds like it’s not their issue somehow. [Hugh Hewitt]
If this is true, can you say "Impeachment"?
Okay, the time has come to do away with the IRS. And though I doubt Thomas Massie is going to take any advice from me I suggest that he seize the moment, gather a few more around him and boldly step forward to propose the Fair Tax to replace the current income tax system. Why? Look at what the IRS is now doing.
The Internal Revenue Service is facing a class action lawsuit alleging that more than 60 million personal medical records were improperly seized by agents from the embattled agency.
According to a story by Courthousenews.com, an unnamed healthcare provider in California is suing the IRS and 15 unnamed agents, alleging that they improperly seized some 60 million medical records of 10 million Americans, including medical records of all California state judges on March 11, 2011.
The medical records included information on psychological counseling, gynecological counseling, sexual and drug treatment, and other sensitive medical treatment data, the suit alleges. A copy of the legal complaint can be purchased here for $35.
“This is an action involving the corruption and abuse of power by several Internal Revenue Service agents,” the complaint reads.
“No search warrant authorized the seizure of these records; no subpoena authorized the seizure of these records; none of the 10,000,000 Americans were under any kind of known criminal or civil investigation and their medical records had no relevance whatsoever to the IRS search. IT personnel at the scene, a HIPAA facility warning on the building and the IT portion of the searched premises, and the company executives each warned the IRS agents of these privileged records,” it continued.
“These medical records contained intimate and private information of more than 10,000,000 Americans, information that by its nature includes information about treatment for any kind of medical concern, including psychological counseling, gynecological counseling, sexual or drug treatment, and a wide range of medical matters covering the most intimate and private of concerns,” the complaint states.
“Despite knowing that these medical records were not within the scope of the warrant, defendants threatened to ‘rip’ the servers containing the medical data out of the building if IT personnel would not voluntarily hand them over,” the complaint reads. [FORBES]
These are the same people who will be in charge of enforcing Obamacare. And despite his feigned outrage, Obama is the CEO of the USA and as such the IRS is under his command.
SHUT DOWN THE IRS NOW!
This is top story on Drudge.
The Internal Revenue Service asked tea party groups to see donor rolls.
It asked for printouts of Facebook posts.
And it asked what books people were reading.
A POLITICO review of documents from 11 tea party and conservative groups that the IRS scrutinized in 2012 shows the agency wanted to know everything — in some cases, it even seemed curious what members were thinking. The review included interviews with groups or their representatives from Hawaii, New Mexico, Ohio, Texas and elsewhere. [POLITICO]
And you thought the Patriot Act was too much.
Michelle Keller of Northern Kentucky was sworn in yesterday as the third woman on the Kentucky Supreme Court, a milestone receiving great attention. But not all women jurists are of the same opinion when it comes to one of the most controversial issues on the "woman" front, abortion.
In early 2011 the Court of Appeals was faced with deciding whether a teenager from another state could travel to Kentucky and obtain an abortion without her parent's knowledge. While the decison is reported to be sealed, the 2-1 ruling in favor of such a practice has been made public.
Voting in favor of the procedure was newly appointed Supreme Court Justice Michelle Keller. But highly critical of the ruling was then Judge Keller's colleague on the Court of Appeals, Judge Joy Moore.
Chief Judge Jeff Taylor of Owensboro and Judge Michelle Keller of Covington were in the majority and they admitted to the judge shopping that concerns McClusky.
But they said Kentucky’s law makes it so “every minor” gets the bypass and that the law does not place any limits on it to Kentucky residents only.
Judge Joy Moore of Burlington said Kentucky judges have no “business making any decisions regarding a minor from another state seeking an abortion without parental consent.”
She cited as her basis for rejecting the claims that Kentucky’s abortion laws say “it is in the interest of the people of the commonwealth that every precaution be taken to insure the protection of every viable unborn child being aborted.” [Life News]
Judges and Justices are expected to make their rulings based upon their interpretation of the law and not personal bias. But it is very clear that even when attempting to rise to that level of fairness differences of opinion do arise.
At this time no one has announced plans to challenge Keller when the seat to which she has just been appointed will appear on the ballot next year. The filing deadline isn't until January.
In another story today an ABC reporter has said publicly that he has it on very credible sources that people very close to the president in the West Wing of the White House not only knew about the IRS targeting perceived enemies, but authorized it. [ORYR]
When the IRS set out to target certain groups for extra intimidation scrutiny it turns out they did it under the encouragement of several US Senators. And now it appears they targeted every single group with TEA party in its name. This is such perhaps the most egregious abuse of power in memory. It is communistic.
A group of seven Senate Democrats urged the Internal Revenue Service on Monday to impose a strict cap on the amount of political spending by tax-exempt, nonprofit groups.
The senators said the lack of clarity in the IRS rules has allowed political groups to improperly claim 501(c)4 status and may even be allowing donors to these groups to wrongly claim tax deductions for their contributions. The senators promised legislation if the IRS failed to act to fix these problems.
“We urge the IRS to take these steps immediately to prevent abuse of the tax code by political groups focused on federal election activities. But if the IRS is unable to issue administrative guidance in this area then we plan to introduce legislation to accomplish these important changes,” the senators wrote.[Chuck Schumer website March 2012]
If Obama was worried about the mid-terms before, he has to be planning his escape from the country by now.