On MSNBC Live Monday, substitute host Brian Shactman, after reading administration propaganda about ObamaCare, asked a Democratic Congresswoman – who is also a member of the White House strike team pushing said propaganda – “What are we doing to get that message out there a little more?”
BRIAN SHACTMAN, SUBSTITUTE HOST: As the White House continues its renewed public relations campaign to promote ObamaCare, the number of Americans signing up is on the rise. According to the Kaiser Family Foundation, more than 243,000 have signed up for private coverage through the exchanges, and more than 567,000 have been determined eligible for Medicaid since the October 1st rollout. Joining me now, Congressman Rosa DeLauro (D) of Connecticut, one of the House Democrats on the White House strike team promoting the healthcare law this month. Congressman DeLauro, thanks for joining us.
CONGRESSWOMAN ROSA DELAURO (D-CONNECTICUT): Thank you. Delighted to be here.
SHACTMAN: Thank you. Now, according to the White House, today's push is all about the success of Medicaid expansion. 26 states and D.C. have taken advantage, while 24 states, all run by either Republicans or Republican legislatures, have declined the expansion. I also want to point out these stats the White House just released. If all 50 states were on board, 5.4 million uninsured Americans would gain coverage. Eight in ten of those would be paying less than $100 a month. All of which would actually save states about $10 billion over the next decade. So my question, Congresswoman, is what are we doing to get that message out there a little more?
BY: Washington Free Beacon Staff
Once staunch supporters of the President, former Obama voters are now expressing their disappointment in him, MSNBC’s Chuck Todd reported.
A focus group conducted by Peter Hart, a Democratic Pollster, found that President Obama is losing credibility with his faithful allies.
Eight of the eleven participants in the Ohio group- independents or independent leaners- voted for President Obama in 2012, but not one of them described themselves as “proud” or “satisfied” with him. Instead, they said that they were ‘disappointed’ with him, and used words like “inexperienced,” “powerless,” “cautious,” “timid,” and “overwhelmed” to describe him.
(STEVE WATSON) A campus police offer in San Antonio has been placed on paid leave following the shooting of an unarmed student who directed a sarcastic remark toward the officer.
The incident took place Friday morning during a traffic stop close to the University of the Incarnate Word. KSAT News reports that 23-year-old honor student Robert Cameron Redus was shot to death by Cpl. Christopher Carter at around around 2 a.m.
After pulling Redus over for speeding, according to the police report, witnesses said that the officer emptied his gun into the student, without warning and despite the fact he was unarmed.
“I didn’t hear him say anything like, ‘Get down on your hands and knees,’ you know? I didn’t hear him say anything. He just started shooting,” one witness said. “He emptied the gun on him… Boom, boom, boom.Six shots — five or six.”
Another witness, Mohammad Haidarasl, says that Redus’ last words were “Oh, you’re gonna shoot me?” said to Carter in a sarcastic off-handed tone. Haidarasl added that he heard the officer saying “Stop resisting, stop resisting.”
Haidarasl lived below Redus and described him as “the nicest guy.” Other residents described Redus as “kind, intelligent, compassionate and well-loved within the community.”
“He was not an aggressive person at all, so the story doesn’t make sense,” one resident said.
Carter has claimed that shortly after he stopped Redus, “a struggle ensued” between himself and the student.
An official statement from the university noted that Carter has “an extensive law-enforcement background,” and has worked on the campus for “several years”. However, the San Antonio Express-News notes that Carter has only been in the job two-and-a-half years, after working for eight different law enforcement agencies in the same number of years.
The latest case also brings to mind the incident in California earlier this year, in which a police officer was caught on tape shooting and killing an unarmed homeless man, Hans Kevin Arellano, because he called her a “bitch.”
Cops are now routinely shooting and killing people when they perceive any kind of threat, even kids with toy guns and small dogs.
But then again, this is America, a police state where law enforcement officers called in to defuse minor domestic disputes end up shooting people, including kids, dead. And even if you get lucky and the cops miss when they shoot at you, you’ll most likely end up facing an assault lawsuit. Read more via Infowars...
(Joe Wolverton, II, J.D., New American)
“Everything secret degenerates, even the administration of justice; nothing is safe that does not show how it can bear discussion and publicity.” — Lord Acton
Barack Obama campaigned for president promising to usher in an era of transparency in government. That promise stands next to you “if you like your doctor you can keep your doctor” in the Barack Obama Presidential Hall of Shame.
One of the most egregious examples of President Obama’s duplicity is the way he and his administration have responded to the roster of revelations that have come from the leaks of documents defining the surveillance activities of the National Security Agency (NSA).
Not only has the president been called out on his support of secrecy at home, but leaders around the globe have turned on him, as well, after learning that American snoops have been monitoring their phone calls for years.
Then there is the bugging of the United Nations, the World Bank, the International Monetary Fund, and other organizations by none other than the NSA. This is germane to the secrecy analysis because the NSA is part of the Executive Branch and the head of that branch is Barack Obama.
Anita Kumar, writing for McClatchy Newspapers, points out the criticism the president has faced after his 180 on openness.
As criticism swelled at home and abroad, Obama said the nation should examine how the government can strike a balance between national security and privacy concerns. He said at an August news conference that Americans will resolve any disagreements about the NSA programs through “vigorous public debate.”
But what started out as a national examination largely turned into a private review with few public meetings, little document disclosure and next to no public debate, say some lawmakers, technology organizations and civil liberties groups. And now, as those behind-the-scenes reviews begin to wind down, Obama is not providing details of the results.
“As part of the overall review of our intelligence-gathering practices, decisions are being made by the president and implemented by the president, but beyond that, I have to ask you to wait until the reviews, the various reviews have been completed and we have more to say,” White House spokesman Jay Carney said.
A key tenet of the Obama administration’s code of silence seems to require the thickest walls be built around the sectors of government that can take advantage of the cover to do the most damage to liberty. As reported by Tech Dirt:
The administration, which likes to pretend it’s the most transparent in history, is actually one of the most secretive. Its attempts at transparency have almost exclusively been focused on where it can get the most political bang, not for what areas people expect the government to be transparent about — such as how it interprets the laws that allow the government to spy on everyone….
What’s incredible is that it appears that no one high up in the administration seems to recognize how this is a strategy that will almost certainly make things worse, not better. It may be how the administration is used to functioning, but it makes it much more difficult to believe anything that is said about a supposed “vigorous public debate” being held on the surveillance activities. It also means that as more leaks come out revealing more questionable practices, the constant backtracking and excuses will just destroy whatever credibility the administration has left on this issue. If, instead, it were to actually be transparent and simply reveal things like how it interprets the law, and allows for a real public discussion on these matters, that would actually result in some frank discussions that the administration seems terrified of actually having.
Beyond the violations of the Fourth Amendment evident in the NSA’s dragnet surveillance turning citizens into suspects, there are several other significant examples of President Obama’s fierce determination to keep Americans in the dark when it comes to policies and programs that pose the most potent threats to their freedom.
One of the most egregious examples is the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP). Every round of negotiations are conducted in secret and even the content of the draft agreement itself would be completely unknown were it not for a WikiLeaks project that resulted in the publication of a chapter on intellectual property.
William F. Jasper, writing for The New American, explains how and why President Obama is keeping details of the TPP trade pact under wraps.
If there is one word that is used more often than “reform” by governments, politicians, and international organizations — and abused even more frequently and egregiously — it is “transparency.” As with the United Nations and the World Trade Organization (WTO), the White House and the U.S. Trade Representative’s (USTR) office regularly proclaim their commitment to transparency while doing everything possible to hide their actions from their constituents. The USTR’s “Fact Sheet: Transparency and the Trans-Pacific Partnership” is intended to give the impression that the Obama administration is forthrightly providing the American people with all the up-to-date information they need to accurately evaluate the agreements that are being made in their name, and that would, if accepted by Congress, devastatingly impact their lives, their liberty, and their future.
And, perhaps the most deadly deception perpetrated by the secrecy-loving president is the number of innocent civilians who have been killed by missiles fired from U.S. drones. Until recently, in fact, the Obama administration denied the drone war was even being waged. Now, even though he admits to targeting “militants” using the remote control weapons, the president refuses to comment on how many civilians have been blown up in the process.
Then, of course, there is ObamaCare. After the roll-out derailed, press reports revealed that the president likely knew there were problems with his hallmark legislation and also knew that Americans would not be able to keep their doctor. A CBS News report about the weekly GOP address that Senator Ron Johnson (R-Wis.) gave on November 16 on the president’s broken promise noted:
“Millions of Americans are coming to realize that those are your tire tracks on their canceled policies,” Johnson said to the president, accusing Mr. Obama and his Democratic allies in Congress of perpetrating “political fraud” to aid their political goals.
“Consumer fraud this massive in the private sector could — and should — bear serious legal ramifications,” Johnson said. “For President Obama, however, it helped secure enough votes to pass Obamacare and win re-election.”
As he continues burrowing deeper and deeper into the sands of secrecy, President Obama seems not to realize that that soil shifts and there will always be those committed to digging around until the truth is told.
Mark Jaycox, a policy analyst for the Electronic Frontier Foundation, said he doesn’t expect the administration to change much even amid the intense criticism. This administration, he said, has always held fast against similar criticism. For example, it resisted for years bipartisan pressure to release more information about its top-secret targeted killing program.
“It’s a pattern of the Obama administration,” he said.
Tech Dirt recognizes the problem for the president:
Extreme secrecy may seem like the easier short-term strategy, but it’s just digging an ever deeper hole that the administration is going to have to try to climb out of in the long-term. Hiding reality from a public that’s going to find out eventually is just making the problem worse.
(by Joseph Curl, The Washington Times)
Fact: The IRS targeted conservative and tea party groups requesting tax-exempt status in the run-up to the 2012 presidential election. That’s a fact.
Congress held hearings — embarrassing hearings. Three top Internal Revenue Service officials resigned. No heads rolled, but for the Obama administration, and the lawless Attorney General Eric H. Holder Jr., that amounted to a major scandal. Even White House spokesman Jay “Circus” Carney called the IRS‘ actions “inappropriate.” Fact.
“When we do things right, they don’t get a lot of attention,” the president said, no doubt sending a thrill up the MSNBC host’s leg. “If we do something that is perceived at least initially as a screw-up, it will be on the nightly news for a week.”
Like, say, deploying the nation’s tax watchdog to target political opponents? Just a “screw-up.”
You bet. Manufactured in the media.
“If, on the other hand,” Mr. Obama said, ” you’ve got an office in Cincinnati in the IRS office that, I think for bureaucratic reasons, is trying to streamline what is a difficult law to interpret about whether nonprofit is actually a political organization, deserves a tax exempt agency [sic], and they’ve got a list. Suddenly everyone is outraged.
“And I’ll point out there are some so-called progressives and, you know, perceived to be liberal commentators who during that week just were outraged at the possibility that these folks, you know, had been at the direction of the Democratic Party, in some way discriminated against tea party folks. You know, that is what gets news. That’s what gets attention.”
Uh, yeah. That’s what “gets news.” In fact, that’s also what gets presidents impeached (see Nixon, Richard re: Watergate).
Like Benghazi, when Obama officials like Susan E. Rice, Hillary Rodham Clinton — even the president himself — tried to make up a narrative that the attack on a U.S. diplomatic compound was spontaneous and only about some obscure YouTube video, the story that America’s top officials tried to ply on the IRS scandal was that a few rogue workers had committed some transgressions. No scandal here, they said.
Of course, that was the red flag. No one knew? (Of course, that is the mantra of the Obama administration — no one ever knows anything. They had three years to build the Obamacare website, and when it didn’t work, well … No one knew! Sheesh, get off our backs!)
Although the president is busy trying to change the subject, this time to income inequality, the IRS story just won’t disappear. Last week, Rep. Darrell E. Issa, chairman of the Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, had simply had enough. He called out the IRS‘ chief counsel, William Wilkins, for saying “I don’t recall” a staggering 80 times during his congressional testimony last month.
“Your memory consistently failed when you were asked about information you shared with the Treasury Department,” the lawmaker wrote. “Your failure to recollect important aspects of the Committee’s investigation suggests either a deliberate attempt to obfuscate your involvement in this matter or gross incompetence on your part.”
Funny, the Obama administration, in Year 5, is totally fine with “gross incompetence.” Many warned that these guys weren’t ready for prime time. They said they were.
(by Guy Taylor, The Washington Times) A growing clutch of lawmakers from both sides of the aisle is publicly countering the Obama administration’s portrayal of al Qaeda as an organization on the run, saying that an evolving network of the terrorist group’s affiliates now may pose as grave a threat to the U.S. as its predecessor did a decade ago.
While some have outright accused President Obama of pushing a “false narrative” to protect his reputation as the man who got Osama bin Laden, others focus on fears that a new breed of decentralized al Qaeda-style groups may control more safe haven territories in the Middle East and North Africa than the original did in Afghanistan prior to 9/11.
Growing evidence, meanwhile, that Syria’s civil war has emerged as what some officials now describe as a “magnet” for al Qaeda-linked fighters from as far away as Russia, Western Europe and the United States, seems only to be fueling an increasingly heated debate in Washington about just how successful the Obama administration has been at fighting terrorism.
Rep. Michael T. McCaul, Texas Republican and chairman of the House Homeland Security Committee, became the latest to sound alarms about the state of al Qaeda on Sunday, when he told CNN that the terrorist network’s overall ideology is “spreading like a spider web, like a wildfire through Northern Africa and the Middle East” and that the threat to the U.S. “has become greater, not lesser” in recent years.
Mr. McCaul went on to accuse Mr. Obama of having attempted to paint a rosier picture than the reality of America’s successes against al Qaeda — particularly during speeches the president made while campaigning for re-election last year. Continue reading via The Washington Times...
(RED STATE) It’s funny how putting words to paper helps clarify one’s thought processes. As you can tell by the headline, when I started to write this, it was born of some disgust at the endless outpouring of praise for Nelson Mandela. Actually, it’s more at the rewriting of history, the complete ignoring of his radical, terrorist roots.
Mandela, in the period of less than a week, will be buried, eulogized, beatified, and canonized. Jesus gets more opprobrium than Mandela in the world media.
We all are aware of Obama’s attitude towards the British, the “special bond” that has united our two nations through centuries. Obama began his presidency by shipping back the bust of Winston Churchill that had long graced the White House. He then chose not to attend Lady Thatcher’s funeral. Indeed, his administration gives more import to a visit from an NHL champion, or the winner of the NCAA women’s basketball tourney. Heck, he probably spends more time worrying about his NCAA bracket than US-British relations.
So when I read that of course, the Obamas would attend Mandela’s funeral, I felt the urge to pen a semi-snarky diary reminding everyone that he skipped Lady Thatcher’s funeral, hence the headline.
But I’m actually now pleased by the fact that he didn’t attend. It was a beautiful event, and we were able to focus on the Iron Lady, and her legacy. And I rather suspect that Maggie herself was probably glad that Obama wasn’t there: she couldn’t suffer fools, and despised “poseurs.”
So, Obamas, enjoy it for a few more years. Read more via Red State...
It wasn’t that many years ago – 2008, in fact – that Nelson Mandela’s name was still on the US terrorist watch list (officially, anyway) for having been a leader of the African National Congress, which advocated armed resistance to South Africa’s white minority regime.
That’s when US officials embarrassedly removed his name from the list, by which time Mr. Mandela already was seen as a hero for having peacefully led South Africa out of apartheid, becoming the country’s first freely elected president, winning a US Presidential Medal of Freedom and a Nobel Peace Prize.
Today, flags around the US are being flown at half-staff in honor of Mandela, a rare honor for a foreign leader that puts him in company with Winston Churchill and Pope John Paul II.
This week, President Obama – together with former presidents George W. Bush, Bill Clinton, and Jimmy Carter – will travel to Johannesburg along with some 50 other heads of state to attend the memorial service for Mandela.
The “ceremony of remembrance” Tuesday will be held in the Soweto soccer stadium, which holds 94,000 people.
A large, open venue like that would present a massive security challenge under any circumstances. But with just a few days' notice since Mandela’s passing three days ago, it’s meant unusual scrambling for the Secret Service and other agencies.
Dozens of agents, armored presidential vehicles, travel and logistics officials are on their way. Some from US diplomatic and military sites in Africa and Europe are already there. Read more via CNS News...
Via The Hill:
Rev. Jesse Jackson said Sunday apartheid still exists in the United States as he reflected on Nelson Mandela’s effect on American politics.
“Apartheid remains. Apartheid gaps in poverty, healthcare and education. We’re in the middle of the end of the apartheid struggle now, but it’s just changed phases,” he said on NBC News’s “Meet the Press.”
“For almost 30 years, we had a lead jump on the right to vote and used that right to vote to empower allies in South Africa,” Jackson said.
Jackson is expected to attend the Dec. 15 funeral for the former South African president, who died late Thursday in Johannesburg at 95.
President Obama and first lady Michelle Obama are going to attend the national memorial service for Mandela on Tuesday in South Africa. Former President George W. Bush and his wife Laura have reportedly accepted an invitation to accompany the Obamas on Air Force One.
Via Daily Caller:
MSNBC host Melissa Harris-Perry suggested the term “Obamacare” and the N-word are interchangeable, claiming both were “conceived by a group of wealthy white men who needed to . . . render [a black man] inferior and unequal and diminish his accomplishments.”
Harris-Perry opened her show Sunday morning with a sober monologue on President Obama’s push to rebrand his failing healthcare law:
HARRIS-PERRY: “I want to talk today about a controversial word. It’s a word that has been with us for years. And like it or not, it’s indelibly printed in the pages of American history. A word that was originally intended as a derogatory term, meant to shame and divide and demean. The word was conceived of by a group of wealthy white men who needed a way to put themselves above and apart from a black man, to render him inferior and unequal and diminish his accomplishments.
“President Obama has been labelled with this word by his opponents, and at first he rose above it, hoping that if he could just make a cause for what he’d achieved, his opponents would fail in making their label stick. But no matter how many successes that he had as president, he realized there were still many people for whom he’d never be anything more than that one disparaging word — a belief he knew was held not just by his political opponents, but also by a significant portion of the American electorate.
“And so he decided if you can’t beat them, you’ve got to join them. So he embraced the word and made it his own, sending his opposition a message they weren’t expecting: ‘If that’s what you want me to be, I’ll be that.’”
“Y’all know the word that I’m talking about. Obamacare! That’s right! I said it and I’m not ashamed, and neither is President Obama!”
Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Seymour Hersh has dropped yet another bombshell allegation: President Obama wasn’t honest with the American people when he blamed Syrian President Bashar al-Assad for a sarin-gas attack in that killed hundreds of civilians.
In early September, Secretary of State John Kerry said the United States had proof that the nerve-gas attack was made on Assad’s orders. “We know the Assad regime was responsible,” President Obama told the nation in an address days after this revelation, which he said pushed him over the “red line” in considering military intervention.
But in a long story published Sunday for the London Review of Books, Hersh — best known for his exposés on the cover-ups of the My Lai Massacre and of Abu Ghraib – said the administration “cherry-picked intelligence,” citing conversations with intelligence and military officials.
President Barack Obama will never able to learn from the late Nelson Mandela about how to properly govern a nation, says Walter E. Williams, a syndicated columnist and economist at George Mason University.
“He’s beyond learning. He has another agenda and, firstly, I don’t think Obama is his own man,” Williams told “The Steve Malzberg Show” at Newsmax TV.
SHARPTON: I think there’s a lot of differences between how Mandela became the first black president of South Africa and the United States President Obama. But I think that of the differences that addresses directly your point is that at what point we don’t know, de Klerk and his allies decided it was in their interest to make Mandela’s presidency successful for the good of South Africa. They didn’t like it. They ran against him. But for the good of the nation, to have this great reconciliation, we need to make this work. I don’t think that has happened with President Obama. There are those that have said that no matter what, he can do whatever it is miraculous; we are determined to have his demise. And we don’t care if the country suffers, shut down government, whatever. I think that’s the big difference in the opposition they faced, is there a commitment to the country over your partisan position?
H/T Weasel Zippers
Via Daily Caller:
U.S. Education Secretary Arne Duncan has promised to improve education quality vastly by pushing for the implementation of the Common Core State Standards Initiative.
This year, 45 states and the District of Columbia have implemented the Common Core standards and curricula based on those standards.
Duncan doesn’t much care for the people who criticize Common Core, either. He has insisted that it’s all a bunch of “white suburban moms who — all of a sudden — their child isn’t as brilliant as they thought they were and their school isn’t quite as good as they thought they were, and that’s pretty scary.”
What, exactly, is the content of this Common Core that’s going to make American kids so much smarter? So far it appears to be a slew of worksheets and tests involving various, incomprehensible arrays of squares and circles.
There are also traditional word problems. Twitchy has found a word problem that may be the most egregiously awful math problem the Common Core has produced yet. Take a look:
Via Biz Pac Review:
For one South Carolina sheriff, defying President Obama’s order to lower the American flag to half-staff in honor of former South African President Nelson Mandela is simple: Mandela “was not an American.”
Pickens County Sheriff Rick Clark took to Facebook Friday to explain to seemingly supportive residents why he will not lower the flag at the Sheriff’s Office for Mandela, despite Obama’s Dec. 5 Presidential Proclamation:
I usually don’t post political items, but today is different. I received this notification today, “As a mark of respect for the memory of Nelson Mandela, the President orders that the flag of the United States be flown at half-staff effective immediately until sunset, December 9, 2013″
Nelson Mandela did great things for his country and was a brave man but he was not an AMERICAN!!! The flag should be lowered at our Embassy in S. Africa, but not here. Our flag is at half staff today for a Deputy in the low country who died going to help his fellow Deputy. He deserves the honor. I have ordered that the flag here at my office back up after tomorrow’s mourning of Pearl Harbor Day!