If You Haven’t Become Somewhat Skeptical About News Photos, You’re Not Paying Attention

The Washington Examiner posted an article today about some recent film aired by ABC News that was described as ‘slaughter in Syria.’ There was only one problem. It seems that the film footage was actually from a nighttime machine gun demonstration at the Knob Creek Gun Range in West Point, Kentucky. We’ve seen this sort of propaganda before, but it usually comes from middle eastern news sources (as in this instance).

The article in The Washington Examiner reports:

After seeing a comment from Wojciech Pawelczyk, I began making some calls. As of this writing, it appears ABC indeed aired footage recorded in the Kentucky and claimed it was from Syria. The network has since pulled the video.

“We’ve taken down video that aired on World News Tonight Sunday and Good Morning America this morning that appeared to be from the Syrian border immediately after questions were raised about its accuracy,” a network representative told the Washington Examiner. “ABC News regrets the error.”

A representative for the gun range also told the Washington Examiner that they are still investigating ABC’s reporting, adding further that the images aired by the network “look to be” from their Kentucky property.

“As of right now,” the representative added, “it seems to be our footage.”

Note that the sequence and shape of explosions is identical in the following ABC and Kentucky videos, as are some of the features of the terrain amid the explosions. But we might actually be dealing with two different videos of the same Kentucky live-fire event from slightly different angles. In the independent film of the live-fire event in Kentucky, you can clearly see taller objects in the foreground that seem to appear as silhouettes in the ABC footage:

The article concludes:

Earlier, on Sunday, ABC News anchor Tom Llamas also aired the allegedly shocking footage, claiming it showed a fierce Turkish attack on Kurd civilians.

“The situation rapidly spiraling out of control in northern Syria. One week since President Trump ordered U.S. forces out of that region, effectively abandoning America’s allies in the fight against [the Islamic State],” he said.

Llamas then described the video as it aired on-screen.

“This video right here appearing to show Turkey’s military bombing Kurd civilians in a Syrian border town. The Kurds, who fought alongside the U.S. against ISIS. Now, horrific reports of atrocities committed by Turkish-backed fighters on those very allies,” he added.

The intro to the show he anchored,ABC World News Tonight, also claimed of the footage: “A border town, bombarded by Turkey’s military!”

The footage would indeed be stunning were if actually from northern Syria. It would be horrific were it actually to show a Turkish assault on Kurd civilians. But it does not show that. The footage, which appears to be from 2017, shows American gun enthusiasts putting on a terrific pyrotechnic show for an audience in Kentucky. In fact, the Machine Gun Shoot and Military Gun Show, which involves the very popular night shoot, is a bi-annual event at the Kentucky gun range. People love the show. They love it so much, in fact, that they record it and post footage of it to social media. …

It is astonishing that ABC appears to have aired Kentucky gun range footage during prime-time news segments on the clashes in Syria and that no one at the network — not a producer, not a fact-checker, and certainly not an on-air personality — caught the errors before they aired.

When the mainstream media has a narrative, they will use whatever resources they can to promote that narrative. Don’t believe anything you currently see in the mainstream media. They are not interested in reporting accurate news–they are interested in remaking America into something that would negatively impact the lives of everyday Americans.

 

I Guess The Truth Is Not Important If You Are A Democrat Candidate

Newsbusters posted an article today about the reporting on some recent embellished stories told by Joe Biden.

The article reports:

Apparently, the truth and the accuracy of details meant little to the so-called “powerhouse roundtable” on ABC’s This Week. During the latter half of the Sunday show, the panel defended former Vice President Joe Biden after The Washington Post exposed that a war story Biden had been telling for years was actually a tall tale.

But it wasn’t entirely false. As The Post explained and ABC rationalized on Thursday, Biden created the story by conflating several real events into a, sort of, Frankenstein’s monster designed to tug on the heartstrings of listeners. According to The Post, “Biden got the time period, the location, the heroic act, the type of medal, the military branch and the rank of the recipient wrong, as well as his own role in the ceremony.”

But the facts be damned on ABC News.

First up was ABC political director Rick Klein, who said the story “shows the best of Joe Biden and the worst of Joe Biden. It’s him connecting and telling a really compelling story. It’s also him sanding away the edges and conflating things and maybe confusing details.”

The thing that is amazing about the above statement is that if your grandfather was ‘sanding away the edges and conflating things and maybe confusing details,’ you would probably have him checked for dementia. I really wonder if Joe Biden is going to be the Democrat nominee for President. I wonder if by some miracle he is the candidate, is he up for the task?

The article continues:

Washington Post national correspondent Mary Jordan was flippant about her own paper’s reporting on Biden’s latest gaffe. She suggested the voters she was talking too were telling her: “Come on, let’s focus on the big stuff, it’s the economy and the character of the leader and the character of the country that we want going forward”.

“And that’s what they’re saying. It’s big time. It’s big stuff that we care about. It’s not about the stories,” she concluded.

As Klein’s argument showed, it’s a double standard with it came to Democratic candidates and President Trump. If it was Trump telling Biden’s tale, then the media would be running story after story about him intentionally “gaslighting” America. Perhaps that’s why the news story wasn’t “resonating”.

I guess we are going to find out if American voters are willing to elect a candidate who the friendly media admits doesn’t even tell the truth when he is running.

When You Never Look In The Mirror

ABC News posted an article today about a shocking statement made by President Trump during an interview with ABC News Chief Anchor George Stephanopoulos.

This is the controversial quote:

Asked by ABC News Chief Anchor George Stephanopoulos in the Oval Office on Wednesday whether his campaign would accept such information from foreigners — such as China or Russia — or hand it over the FBI, Trump said, “I think maybe you do both.”

“I think you might want to listen, there isn’t anything wrong with listening,” Trump continued. “If somebody called from a country, Norway, [and said] ‘we have information on your opponent’ — oh, I think I’d want to hear it.”

The mainstream media is shocked–simply shocked. Somehow they have overlooked the fact that the Clinton campaign actually paid for the Steele dossier.

The article continues:

President Trump lamented the attention on his son, Donald Trump Jr., for his role in the now-infamous Trump Tower meeting in June 2016. Stephanopoulos asked whether Trump Jr. should have taken the Russians’ offer for “dirt” on then-candidate Hillary Clinton to the FBI.

“Somebody comes up and says, ‘hey, I have information on your opponent,’ do you call the FBI?” Trump responded.

“I’ll tell you what, I’ve seen a lot of things over my life. I don’t think in my whole life I’ve ever called the FBI. In my whole life. You don’t call the FBI. You throw somebody out of your office, you do whatever you do,” Trump continued. “Oh, give me a break – life doesn’t work that way.”

“The FBI director said that is what should happen,” Stephanopoulos replied, referring to comments FBI Director Christopher Wray made during congressional testimony last month, when he told lawmakers “the FBI would want to know about” any foreign election meddling.

Should Hillary Clinton have called the FBI after she paid Steele for the dossier? Oh yeah, I forgot, she did call the FBI in order to make sure the information in the dossier was leaked to the press. There was never an investigation into the fact that the Clinton campaign paid for the dossier or that it was information from a foreign source. Had President Trump called the FBI with a foreign source claiming to have damaging information on Hillary Clinton, I wonder what their response would have been.

I am hoping American voters will begin to think about the implications of this question and how it reflects the bias of the press.

It’s All A Matter Of Perspective

Yesterday Newsbusters posted an article about a recent ABC News panel that was absolutely hilarious (not intentionally of course).

The article reports:

With nearly the entire Democratic 2020 field sprinting to be the closest to socialism without using the label, folks in the liberal media were busy trying to spin their radical policy positions as something palatable. A great example of this occurred during ABC’s This Week on Sunday, when two panelists tried to suggest that it was Republicans who were the radical ones with Democrats supposedly as the centrists.

During the “powerhouse roundtable” discussion late in the show, Republican strategist Alice Stewart noted that the candidates could “run away from the socialism label” all they wanted “but you can’t deny the fact that the Democratic Party is moving very, very far to the left.”

“We’re talking about a lot of policies that are extremely left. The Cortezs of Washington and the younger generation of Democrats are really causing a divide in the Democratic Party,” she added before triggered faux-Republican Matthew Dowd couldn’t hold back anymore.

Talking over Stewart, Dowd emphatically insisted it was the Republicans who were the ones who were out of touch with Americans: “The Democratic Party — if you look at all the issues and where the public stands, the Democratic Party is actually closer to the center than the Republican Party is. The Democratic Party is much closer to the center.”

Meanwhile ideas such as socialism, free education, free healthcare, and generally free money are gaining acceptance in the Democrat Party.

Wow. So let’s look at some of the other issues.

President Trump supports strong borders (and a wall). In January a Rasmussen poll showed that 48 percent of Americans felt that the government was doing too little to stop illegal immigration. On March 13th, Rasmussen reported that 56% of Likely U.S. Voters say Democrats should allow Fox News, the most-watched cable news network, to host at least one of their intraparty debates. Just 28% disagree, while 15% are undecided. On January 18th, Real Clear Politics reported that more Americans may identify as pro-choice than pro-life, but more than six in 10 of those who say they are pro-choice (61 percent) join the three-quarters of all Americans in wanting abortion restricted to – again, at most – the first trimester. So do about six in 10 Democrats (59 percent), eight in 10 independents (78 percent) and nine in 10 Republicans (92 percent).

In January 2018, the Pew Research Center reported the following:

The latest national survey by Pew Research Center, conducted Jan. 10-15 among 1,503 adults, finds that 42% say Donald Trump is “striking the right balance” in the situation in the Middle East, while 30% say he favors Israel too much (just 3% say Trump sides too much with the Palestinians; 25% do not offer an opinion).

At a similar point in Barack Obama’s presidency, 47% of Americans said he had struck a proper balance in dealing with the Middle East; 21% said he sided too much with the Palestinians, while 7% said he favored Israel too much.

I’m not sure it’s the Republicans who are out of touch with the American people. They are probably out of touch with the people in New York, California, and Washington, D.C., but I am not sure how out of touch they are with most Americans.

This Is Actually According To Sharia Law

ABC News is reporting today that Fox News host Jeanine Pirro was taken off the air for remarks made about Democratic Representative Ilhan Omar.

These are the remarks:

“Think about it: Omar wears a hijab, which according to the Quran, 33:59, tells women to cover so they won’t get molested,” Pirro said on her show last week. “Is her adherence to this Islamic doctrine indicative of her adherence to Sharia law, which in itself is antithetical to the United States Constitution?”

Sharia Law is antithetical to the United States Constitution. Sharia Law does not support Freedom of Speech, equality for women, equal rights for all religions, and believes in the killing of homosexuals. Those ideas are not in tune with the U. S. Constitution. The fact that Jeanine Pirro was taken off the air for telling the truth is much more in line with Sharia Law than American Law. Under Sharia Law, slander is anything that offends the hearer–it doesn’t matter if it is true or not–if the hearer is offended, it is slander.

We need to put the speech police out of business or we will totally lose our freedom. The question Jeanine Pirro asked was a perfectly logical question. I am sure pressure was put on Fox News by CAIR and other Muslim groups (threatening lawsuits, etc.) to take her off the air to make an example of her. It is sad that Fox News did not have the backbone to stand and fight for free speech in America.

The Look Of Desperation

Yesterday The Gateway Pundit reported that Robert Mueller is investigating ‘billionaires with ties to Russia’ who attended Donald Trump’s inauguration festivities. Good grief. We have large donations from Russia to the Clinton Foundation followed by a transfer of a large portion of America’s uranium resources, and Robert Mueller is investigating businessmen who attended the inauguration parties? This totally smacks of desperation!

The article quotes ABC News:

The presence of people with Kremlin ties in Washington for Trump’s inaugural celebration was first reported by The Washington Post. But the guest lists obtained by ABC News offer a new glimpse at the level of access granted to several well-connected oligarchs.

Several donated enough to the Presidential Inaugural Committee to qualify for tickets to a “Candlelight Dinner” in Washington’s Union Station on the eve of the inauguration, a perk for $1 million contributors, the list of attendees show. Guests were treated to a preview performance by singer Jackie Evancho, a one-time runner-up on “America’s Got Talent,” who would go on to sing at the inauguration the following day.

…The Trump inauguration brought in more than $107 million, double the amount of President Obama, to finance a week of festivities that was filled with far fewer events than past inaugurations – only three Presidential balls. In May, ABC News reported that the Special Counsel had questioned several witnesses about millions of dollars in donations from donors with connections to Russia, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and Qatar.

Donating to the inauguration is not unusual. Has anyone looked at donations to the Clinton Foundation during the time that Hillary Clinton was Secretary of State? This investigation is clutching at straws hoping that the American people are unaware of what is normal practice in Washington. It would make more sense to evaluate the funding of inaugurations than to try to accuse President Trump of something based on donations from Americans (which are perfectly legal, regardless of who those Americans do business with).

A Lie Goes Halfway Around The World Before The Truth Gets His Boots On

This is a story about how the media got it wrong. I don’t believe that they intentionally got it wrong, I think they were just in a hurry to be first with a story. That can be risky.

On February 16th, Politico posted an article about the history of the claim that Nikolas Cruz was associated with white supremacist groups. Since the charge of racism or white supremacy is very popular now, I suppose it’s not a surprise that this charge was levied against this deeply troubled young man. It’s easier to blame racism than it is to blame the Promise Program (article here) which prevented the gun shop owner from knowing Nikolas Cruz should never have been allowed to buy a gun. I don’t know if Nikolas Cruz would have been able to get a gun illegally or not, but at least if his information had been included in a background check, it would have slowed him down a little. At any rate, the media decided he was a white supremacist.

The article explains how that happened:

On Thursday afternoon, the Anti-Defamation League reported that a white supremacist group claimed ties with Nikolas Cruz, who confessed to the shooting spree that killed at least 17 people, including many high-school students, at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida.

“A spokesperson for the white supremacist group Republic of Florida (ROF) told the Anti-Defamation League on Thursday, February 15, that Nikolas Cruz [….] was associated with his group,” the ADL reported. The ADL quoted a man named Jordan Jereb, who runs the small group, which is based in Tallahassee.

“Jereb added that ROF had not ordered or wanted Cruz to do anything like the school shooting,” the ADL wrote in a blog post that was quickly picked up by ABC News and The Associated Press, and later percolated through dozens of other media outlets. Even The Daily Stormer, a neo-Nazi website, picked up the claim.

…But a few hours later, after law enforcement agencies said they had no evidence linking Cruz to ROF, Jereb said his identification of Cruz was a “misunderstanding” and that he, too, had been the subject of a “prank.” On online forums and Twitter, trolls and white nationalists gloated at the disinformation they had sowed.

“All of our evidence seems to point to the ADL getting this wrong,” said Joan Donovan, a researcher who tracks online misinformation campaigns for Data & Society, a think tank in New York City.

The ADL subsequently revised its report, as did many news outlets.

The saga continues:

In posts to Gab, a social-networking site used by many in the alt-right, early Friday morning, one user said the Discord group “spent around 18 hours orchestrating, contacting ABC, being interviewed by reporters, etc.”

Members swapped links to articles that identified Cruz as a member of ROF, celebrating each story and keeping a tally of media interview attempts.

“ABC messaged me. Asked to use my name in this article,” wrote one user.

“This is spreading like wildfire,” wrote another user, “Renegade,” after someone in the chat shared a link to the ADL blog post.

“All it takes is a single article,” the first user wrote back. “And everyone else picks up the story.”

ABC News reported that its reporters spoke with three “former schoolmates” of Cruz, but did not indicate whether these communications were over social media. A spokesperson for ABC News declined to comment on how its reporters vetted the identities of these purported acquaintances.

For its part, an AP spokesperson said, “AP spoke with the leader of Republic of Florida, who said Cruz was a member of his group and had participated in exercises in Tallahassee. In the course of continued reporting, police and other groups were not able to confirm Cruz’s association with the white nationalist militia, and that is what is reflected on the wire.”

Others in the Discord chat said they were contacted by a reporter from The New York Times.

At some point, the trolls started a “confessional” 4chan thread dedicated to convincing readers that Cruz had been a member of ROF. The ADL confirmed this 4chan post was the one that led to their blog post.

The people behind the disinformation campaign were very proud of themselves. The article reports:

By Thursday evening, 4chan users were celebrating their efforts, posting screenshots of their communications with reporters and faux posts pretending to be ROF members.

“[T]hey are so hungry for a story that they’ll just believe anything as long as its corroborated by a few people and seems legit,” wrote the creator of one 4chan thread.

Donovan, the disinformation researcher, said reporters need to be more vigilant against these kinds of campaigns, which are going to get only more common and more sophisticated.

“We have to start thinking of these white nationalist groups as what some of them describe themselves — ‘media militias,’” said Donovan. “They think of media as adversarial territory.”

The internet can be a dangerous place for truth.

A Lie Is Halfway Around The World While The Truth Is Still Putting Its Boots On

Fake news hit a new low this week. ABC News had to apologize for a totally misleading report. The Independent Journal Review posted the details yesterday.

The article shows the initial ABC tweet (which has since been deleted):

Well, that wasn’t quite what happened.

This is the correction later issued:

The article concludes:

In short, Flynn was ordered to make contact with the Russians after Trump won the election when he was president-elect. According to ABC News now, Flynn was told to see if the United States could work with Russia in order to fight ISIS, among other issues.

The correction changes certain ideas that many were originally hyping up.

It is a shame that Americans cannot depend on their mainstream media sources for honest reporting.

The Proof Of A Prediction Is Whether Or Not It Comes True

On Sunday, Gateway Pundit posted an article about global warming predictions made by ABC News in 2009. The predictions stated that because of global warming, by 2015 New York City would be under water.

Further predictions included:

…Gas over $9 a gallon? A carton of milk costs almost $13? Welcome to June 12, 2015.

Climate change is read–the climate of earth has been changing since long before man arrived on the planet. Greenland used to grow things, there was global warming in the Middle Ages, and according to some scientists, we are entering a mini ice age. The frightening global warming predictions are being made by people who can’t even tell you whether or not to bring your umbrella to work! None of the computer models that predict global warming have proven to be accurate. We need to do what we can to keep the earth clean; however, we don’t have to cripple the earth’s economy to do it.

 

Why I Am Not Overly Concerned About Global Warming

Newsbusters posted a story today reminding us of some predictions made on “Good Morning America” in 2008. Looked at in hindsight, the predictions are almost funny. At the time, I am sure there were people who took them seriously and were totally stressed out by the information.

This is the partial transcript of the news segment from 2008:

CHRIS CUOMO: Now, we will have a dramatic preview for you of an unprecedented ABC News event called “Earth 2100.” We’re asking you to help create a story that is yet to unfold: What our world will look like in 100 years if we don’t save our troubled planet. Your reports will actually help form the backbone of a two-hour special airing this fall. ABC’s Bob Woodruff will be the host. He joins us now. Pleasure, Bob.

 BOB WOODRUFF: You too, Chris. You know, this show is a countdown through the next century and shows what scientists say might very well happen if we do not change our current path. As part of the show, today, we are launching an interactive web game which puts participants in the future and asks them to report back about what it is like to live in this future world. The first stop is the year 2015.

CUOMO: I think we’re familiar with some of these issues, but, boy, 2015? That’s seven years from now. Could it really be that bad? 

…CUOMO: I think we’re familiar with some of these issues, but, boy, 2015? That’s seven years from now. Could it really be that bad? 

WOODRUFF: It’s very soon, you know. But all you have to do is look at the world today right today. You know, you’ve got gas prices going up. You got food prices going up. You’ve got extreme weather. The scientists have studied this for decades. They say if you connect the dots, you can actually see that we’re approaching maybe even a perfect storm. Or you have got shrinking resources, population growth. Climate change. So, the idea now is to look at it, wake up about it and then try to do something to fix it. 

The news segment also included predictions that New York City would be underwater by 2015 and there would be wildfires everywhere. You get the idea.

The bottom line here is simple–we really don’t have the ability to predict the weather seven years in advance or the ability to understand if man actually has the ability to impact the weather. My favorite website (which I have mentioned before) for accurate, scientific information on climate is wattsupwiththat.com. In the early days of this blog, that site was the source of my information about surface stations–the monitors that measure temperature for the climate scientists. I will admit that I lost a bit of respect for some climate scientists when I saw where some of these monitors were placed–on a small private airport apron where people warmed up their private planes, next to the air conditioning exhaust from an apartment building, in the middle of an asphalt parking lot, etc. There really is a lot more going on with so-called climate science than meets the eye.

 

 

 

 

 

Some Thoughts On That New Car Smell

Yesterday Byron York posted an article at the Washington Examiner about President Obama’s recent comments that a 2016 Democrat Presidential candidate would need that new car smell.

The article states:

President Obama set off ripples in the political world Sunday morning when he said voters in the 2016 presidential race will want “that new car smell.” Speaking with ABC’s George Stephanopoulos, Obama said in picking a new leader, Americans will “want to drive something off the lot that doesn’t have as much mileage as me.”

President Obama also praised Hillary Clinton’s performance as Secretary of State as he made those comments.

I would like to point out something about that ‘new car smell.’ Just for the record, it is toxic! In February 2012, CBS News reported:

(CBS) Who doesn’t love that factory fresh “new car smell”? It’s so well-liked that air fresheners and sprays have been produced in attempts to reclaim the odor.

…But according to a new study from the nonprofit Ecology Center and HealthyStuff.org, what you might actually be sniffing are toxic fumes from chemicals used to create the car interior.

Meanwhile, back to President Obama’s statement. Despite praising Hillary Clinton’s performance as Secretary of State (which isn’t a surprise, since theoretically the President controls the actions of the Secretary of State), it seems to be common knowledge in Washington that there is no great love between the Clintons and the Obamas. I believe that President Obama (either behind the scenes or obviously) will support Elizabeth Warren as the Democrat candidate for President in 2016. Senator Warren would be able to challenge Hillary Clinton from the left, despite the fact that politically they are not really very far apart. Note that the leaders of the Senate have already put Senator Warren in a leadership position.

Anyway, I am hoping that the new car smell that is toxic in automobiles will also be toxic in Democrat presidential politics.

The Border Is Not Our Only Weakness UPDATED

ABC News reported yesterday that three Afghan military officers who were in the United States for a joint military mission have disappeared on Cape Cod, Massachusetts.

The article reports:

They arrived in the country on Sept. 11, and were reported missing by base security personnel late Saturday. They were last seen at the Cape Cod Mall in Hyannis, Mass.

A Centcom official told ABC News there is no indication that the Afghan men reported missing pose any threat to the public. Officials said all the Afghan military personnel were fully vetted before they arrived

Base and local police and state authorities are working together to locate the three Afghans. There are still approximately a dozen Afghan soldiers still participating in the exercise, which ends Sep. 24th.

…Just last weekend, two Afghan policemen in the Washington, D.C., for a DEA training program at Quantico, Va., also went missing while on a sightseeing trip to Georgetown.

The two men, who were part of a group of 31 Afghan police officers in the U.S. for the multi-week program, were found safe somewhere outside of D.C., but officials would not say exactly where, ABC affiliate WJLA-TV reported.

According to WJLA-TV, the DEA said the two men left the group because they did not want to go back to Afghanistan.

The term ‘green on blue violence’ is used to describe attacks on our soldiers in Afghanistan by people our military is training to defend the country. The fact that this phenomena has a name is an indication that these attacks are not isolated events. So why are we inviting Afghans to America when there are trust issues with Afghani forces? This makes no sense.

UPDATE:

WCVB is reporting that that the three Afghani officers have been found.

The article reports:

The three missing Afghani soldiers who went missing during a training exercise at a Cape Cod military base this weekend have been found, a high-level law enforcement source tells Team 5.

…The source tells Team 5’s Karen Anderson the men were taken into custody at the Rainbow Bridge Canadian/US border crossing near Niagara Falls on Monday.

They were identified as Major Jan Mohammad Arash, Captain Mohammad Nasir Askarzada and Captain Noorullah Aminyar.

“They were here for a multi-national military exercise which had been scheduled for a long time. They have been here for a couple of weeks. There’s a lot of speculation that within the military they maybe be trying to defect,” Deval Patrick said.

 

Playing Politics Instead Of Solving Problems

The Blaze posted a story about a statement made in the House of Representatives on Friday night by Representative Tom Marino that evidently hit a sore spot with former Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi.

The article reports Representative Marino’s statement:

“You know something that I find quite interesting about the other side?” Marino said. “Under the leadership of the former Speaker [Pelosi], and under the leadership of their former leader [Rep. Steny Hoyer], when in 2009 and 2010, they had the House, the Senate and the White House, and they knew this problem existed. They didn’t have the strength to go after it back then. But now are trying to make a political issue out of it now.”

At that point Ms. Pelosi charged across the floor and challenged him. The video of the incident is included in the article at The Blaze.

The article includes the following:

The spokeswoman also claimed that, “Pelosi accepted the Congressman’s apology” — but a spokesman for Marino said there was no apology.

“[Rep. Marino] did not apologize to Leader Pelosi and does not intend to do so as he has nothing to apologize for,” the spokesman told ABC News. “She was entirely out of line in approaching him while he was recognized and delivering remarks on the Floor.”

Marino later tweeted about the bizarre incident.

Please follow the link above to the article and read the tweets–they are hilarious.

However, there is a lesson here. Neither political party right now is looking out for the interests of America–the current members of Congress are only interested in getting re-elected and maintaining and increasing their power. There are a few exceptions, but they are very few. And unfortunately, the blame for this lies at the feet of the American voter. It is time for all of us to take a good look at our Senators and Representative and see how they have voted and if they have truly represented us. If we want Washington to respond to us, we have to send people there who represent us. It is up to us. As Pogo used to say (if you are old enough to know who Pogo is), “We have met the enemy and he is us.”

All Cultures Are Not The Same

USA Today posted a story today about the young girls in Nigeria who were kidnapped by Boko Haram. Boko Haram is translated as “western education is a sin.” The group is a militant Islamic group that operates in Nigeria.

The article reports:

In the video, Shekau described the girls as slaves and said, “By Allah, I will sell them in the marketplace.”

Unconfirmed reports last week said the girls were being sold as brides for $12 each.

The goal of Boko Haram is to”destroy the secular Nigerian state” and replace it with an Islamic state, said John Campbell, former U.S. ambassador to Nigeria.

The mass abduction isn’t the first time Boko Haram has targeted students. In February, the group shot or burned to death nearly 60 boys in northeast Nigeria.

There is no prohibition of slavery in Islam. The girls were taken by men posing as Nigerian military who said they wanted to take the girls to safety.

Yesterday ABC News reported:

The students were studying for final exams at their local school when the abduction happened. One girl told the New Yorker that militants dressed in Nigerian military uniforms came into their dorms and told the girls they were being taken to a safe space. They were placed in trucks and on motorcycles and driven away as the militants shouted “Allahu akbar,” which means God is great. Some managed to escape by jumping off the caravans and running away.

…The Northern States Christian and Elders Forum, a group of elders in the state where the girls were taken, released a list of 180 names that were confirmed to be among the missing and said that a majority of them are Christian.

Under Sharia Law, girls are not supposed to be educated, and Christians can be sold as slaves. The concept of equal rights for women is not part of Islamic law.

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The Unjust Justice Department Strikes Again

Integrity should not be a partisan issue, but unfortunately in the Eric Holder Justice Department it is. Yesterday’s Washington Times reported that the Justice Department has blocked a full investigation concerning corruption charges against Senate Democrat Harry Reid and Senate Republican Mike Lee.

The article reports:

The probe, conducted by one Republican and one Democratic state prosecutor in Utah, has received accusations from an indicted businessman and political donor, interviewed other witnesses and gathered preliminary evidence such as financial records, Congressional Record statements and photographs that corroborate some aspects of the accusations, officials have told The Washington Times and ABC News.

But the Justice Department’s public integrity section — which normally handles corruption cases involving elected figures — rejected FBI agents’ bid to use a federal grand jury and subpoenas to determine whether the accusations are true and whether any federal crimes were committed by state and federal officials.

Please follow the link to the article to see the details of the charges and the lack of cooperation from the Justice Department.

It does neither political party good to have corrupt people remain in office and not be held accountable for their misdeeds. It would behoove the Justice Department to move forward with both of these investigations and either convict or clear the air.

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Some Sad News From The Entertainment World

ABC News is reporting today that Linda Ronstadt has Parkinson’s Disease and as a result has lost her ability to sing. Linda Ronstadt had a truly beautiful singing voice. She could do rock and roll, country, traditional songs and operetta. She provided part of the soundtrack of my early twenties, and later I thoroughly enjoyed her performance in Pirates of Penzance. I wish her the best and hope a cure for the disease is found soon. Her beautiful voice will be missed.

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The Attorney General Will Investigate the Department Of Justice And Report To The President On July 12th

ABC News is reporting that President Obama has ordered the Department of Justice to review the national security leak investigations. So Attorney General Eric Holder will be conducting a 45-day review on the Department of Justice’s guidelines for handling these investigations.

The article states:

And then the news: “I have raised these issues with the attorney general, who shares my concern. So he has agreed to review existing Department of Justice guidelines governing investigations that involve reporters, and will convene a group of media organizations to hear their concerns as part of that review. And I have directed the attorney general to report back to me by July 12th.”

So Eric Holder is going to investigate Eric Holder. This should be interesting. We all know how that will turn out.

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Using Scare Tactics To Discourage Whistleblowers

I will admit that I have only followed current events for the last twenty years or so, but I can’t remember ever hearing anything like the story I am about to report.

Yesterday Breitbart.com reported that two ABC News reporters who entered the Peck Federal Building in Cincinnati were escorted through the building by an armed uniformed police officer with the Federal Protective Service. The Peck Building is a public building, it is also the home of the Internal Revenue Service office in Cincinnati.

The article at Breitbart reports:

At the [Cincinnati] IRS office on the fourth floor, a woman who answered the buzzer referred reporters to officials in Washington, though they were not returning very many calls. That staffer also said she was not allowed to speak to anyone – a line that was repeated by agency personnel during the week.

IRS headquarters in Washington denied that a no-talk rule was official policy because, after all, agency staffers still have a constitutional right to talk to whomever they want. …

Not so, said IRS folks in Ohio.

One of them, who asked not be named, told ABC News that security guards did remind employees of the official policy not to talk with the press – a warning cemented by the punch line “or risk losing our jobs.”

All we need is one honest, brave employee to come forward and explain exactly what happened. Unfortunately, that would be the Obama Administration’s worst nightmare and they will do everything they can to keep that from happening.

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I Wondered About This When I First Heard It

Yesterday Hot Air posted a story about the Democrat‘s claim that the e-mails regarding Benghazi had been doctored by the Republicans. That claim was made by Dan Pfeiffer on his Sunday round of talk show appearances. So what is the story behind the claim?

The article reports:

Nothing was “doctored.” Following the House report, Steve Hayes of The Weekly Standard revealed a significant amount of new detail, followed by Jon Karl at ABC News. Both Hayes and Karl refer to summaries of the emails, meaning they presumably relied a great deal on the notes of those at the March 19 White House briefing. Karl inaccurately quotes from one email, which may have been based on faulty note-taking or some other error. While this is significant, the email in question exists and has the same core content as the email quoted by Karl — there was no wholesale fabrication.

The article explains why some of the initial reports were not totally accurate:

The incorrect versions – and they were inaccurate quotes – were not generated by GOP operatives. They were extracted by ABC’s Jon Karl from notes taken by attendees at the original meeting when the White House refused to initially allow anyone to have copies which could have been used for full referencing. ABC went with the notes, being the closest thing anyone had to an official record, and the GOP worked off those notes.

As the scandal continues, pay attention to who says what and question everything you read or hear. That is the only way we will ever get to the truth.

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Rearranging The Deck Chairs On The Titanic

The Obama Administration has promised to get to the bottom of the Internal Revenue Service‘s (IRS) scandal involving the targeting of conservative groups. They have promised that the person responsible will be held accountable. Because of the time frame, they can’t blame it on George Bush, but that doesn’t mean that the concept of accountability isn’t flexible.

ABC News reported today that the person who was in charge of the tax-exempt organizations at the time the Tea Party was targeted is now head of the IRS’ Affordable Care Act office. Oddly enough, she was not the one asked to resign.

The article reports:

Her successor, Joseph Grant, is taking the fall for misdeeds at the scandal-plagued unit between 2010 and 2012. During at least part of that time, Grant served as deputy commissioner of the tax-exempt unit.

Grant announced today that he would retire June 3, despite being appointed as commissioner of the tax-exempt office May 8, a week ago.

As the House voted to fully repeal the Affordable Care Act Thursday evening, House Speaker John Boehner expressed “serious concerns” that the IRS is empowered as the law’s chief enforcer.

The IRS scandal has some rather subtle consequences. It vindicates those conservative organizations that were complaining about being targeting in 2010. It shows that Congress and the Inspector General were slow to respond to those complaints. But there is another aspect of this story that is interesting. The House of Representatives voted today to repeal ObamaCare. That is nothing new–they have been doing that pretty much on a regular basis. It won’t be repealed under this Congress–it would never pass the Senate, and even it it did, the Senate would not be able to override a Presidential veto. But there is a twist to this story. The IRS scandal is one that every American can relate to. As the scandal unfolds, the Republicans (assuming they have given up being the stupid party) will remind people that the IRS will be administering ObamaCare. After this scandal, that will be a scary prospect to many people. ObamaCare is not popular to begin with, it was passed with only Democrat votes–no Republicans voted for it, and the mid-term elections are a year and a half away. There will be more votes on the repeal of ObamaCare, and it will be interesting to see if any Democrats running for re-election change their votes.

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I’d Love To See The Guest List

Yesterday Breitbart.com reported that the White House announced that it would hold a meeting to brief reporters on Benghazi. The meeting was initially referred to by Politico as ‘off-the-record,’ but the White House changed that to ‘deep background.’ I agree that the word deep is probably a good description, but background is not the word I would place after it.

Fourteen news organizations were invited to the closed-door meeting.

Politico reported yesterday:

The meeting was conducted on “deep background,” according to White House spokesman Josh Earnest, but sources told POLITICO that the existence of the meeting was “off the record.” The meeting began around 12:45 p.m. and postponed the daily, on-the-record White House press briefing until mid-afternoon.

The session was announced to reporters in the wake of an ABC News report showing that White House and State Dept. officials were involved in revising the now-discredited CIA talking points about the attack on Benghazi.

I would love to see which fourteen news organizations were invited to the meeting! Can you imagine what would have happened if Nixon had tried this with Watergate?

Breitbart.com tells us what to look for as a result of this meeting:

White House spokesman Josh Earnest said, “Deep background means that the info presented by the briefers can be used in reporting but the briefers can’t be quoted.” So expect a fair number of “White House sources” to appear in reportage for the next few days.

Four people died at Benghazi because they did not have adequate security, and when they asked for help they did not get it. Later the Obama Administration lied about what happened. Also, remember that the man who made the video that was not responsible for the attack is the only person in jail as a result of the attack. He is still in jail. It’s time to stop playing games and explain what happened.

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When Is A War Injury Not A War Injury ?

On Friday, ABC News reported that as a result of an ABC news investigative report regarding the shootings at Fort Hood, Republicans in Congress are asking for more information on how the aftermath of the attack was handled. At issue is the Obama Administration’s decision to charge Major Nidal Hasan with ‘workplace violence’ instead of terrorism. That decision has a great deal of impact on those who were victims of the attack.

The decision that the shooting was ‘workplace violence’ prevents those shot by Major Hasan from being awarded purple hearts. It also gives the surviving victims lower priority when it comes to receiving medical care and a loss of benefits available to soldiers whose injuries are considered combat related. Because the shootings were considered workplace violence, they are not considered combat related.

The article reports:

Thirteen people were killed, including a pregnant soldier, and 32 others shot in the Nov. 5, 2009 rampage by the accused gunman, Maj. Nidal Hasan, at the Army base in Killeen, Texas. Hasan, who was in communication with al Qaeda leader Anwar al-Awlaki prior to the attack, now awaits a military trial on charges of premeditated murder and attempted murder. Al-Awlaki has since been killed in a U.S. drone attack in Yemen, in what was termed a major victory in the U.S. efforts against al Qaeda.

It is bad enough that Major Hasan pretty much broadcast ahead of time that he had gone over the edge–some of his lectures, his business cards, etc. He was not reported because no one was willing to take the chance of being called a racist or anti-Muslim. Because no one came forward, thirteen soldiers died as Hasan shouted, “Allahu Akbar.” It seems to me that it should be rather obvious to even the most naive member of the Obama Administration that most people who commit workplace violence don’t shout, “Allahu Akbar,” and that shout might have something to do with a motive for the killings.

Meanwhile, American soldiers and their families pay a price because the Obama Administration does not want to admit that Major Hasan is an example of a domestic terrorists in our military.

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Let’s Put The Budget Together Right After The Company Christmas Party

Putting the budget together for a business right after the company Christmas party is ridiculous, right? Well, evidently the United Nations has done that consistently in the past.

ABC News posted a story today quoting Ambassador Joseph M. Torsella, who represents the U.S. on the U.N.’s budget committee.

The story reports:

Ambassador Joseph M. Torsella, who represents the U.S. on the U.N.’s budget committee, said Monday that the tense process of negotiating the world body’s annual budget is made more complicated by the number of diplomats who turn up drunk.

The U.N. budget is finalized in December, when holiday parties apparently lead to some revelry spilling over into budget negotiations.

The U.S. is making “the modest proposal that the negotiating rooms should in future be an inebriation-free zone,” Torsella said during a private meeting of the budget committee. The U.S. mission released a transcript of his remarks.

It’s mostly American money, so why should they worry?Enhanced by Zemanta

If The Truth Is Not Repeated Often Enough The Lie Will Take Over

Yesterday the Washington Examiner posted an article with a quote from Dan Rather on the supposed National Guard documents concerning George W. Bush.

Dan Rather is quoted as saying:

Number 1 – the facts of case are not in dispute.

Number 2 – no one had ever established that the documents were forged (those who attack them argued that we didn’t do enough to demonstrate that they were not forged) The whole documents argument was a camouflage – what was described in the documents was factual. As for the trap argument — could have been, might have been but nobody has ever proven that. What I know, all I know, is we reported a true story. Whatever you think of the documents, facts are facts.

Yes, Mr. Rather, facts are facts. First of all, the charges against President Bush have never been proven. Second of all, the fact that the documents were forged has been proven.

The article includes comments by Font expert Thomas Phinney, who has built a career on typography:

I am on the left wing of the political spectrum, and I am also a typography expert who was quoted twice in the Washington Post about the memos, and approached by ABC News to get my opinion on the topic. TL;DR: they were blatant forgeries.

…The assertion that all the attacks on the Bush National Guard story were “partisan political” attacks is nonsense. I voted against Bush in both elections, and I donated money to his opponents. But that doesn’t change my assertion that the memos were clear forgeries. None of the hundreds of typographers who have come to one of my presentations has even tried to collect the $1000 reward I have repeatedly offered to anybody who can produce a device, available in 1972, that could have produced those memos. (The Selectric Composer and the IBM Executive typewriter are not plausible candidates, btw.)

It’s an old story, but I guess it needs to be retold occasionally. Winston Churchill is quoted as saying, “A lie gets halfway around the world before the truth has a chance to get its pants on.” In this case at least we have the information to refute the lie.Enhanced by Zemanta

Something To Make This Weekend A Little Better

This is not a new story, but it is something that I just came across. It gives me hope for the future.

On October 5, 2012, the Columbus Dispatch (Ohio) reported on the crowning of the Homecoming Queen at Bishop Hartley High School, a Roman Catholic school on the East Side of town. Megan Ryan was elected Homecoming Queen by her classmates. Megan has Down syndrome.

The article reports:

Her fellow seniors chose their outgoing, ever-smiling classmate from among 10 nominees (with Jacob Smith selected king ).

“I’m so thrilled for her,” said senior Sam Burgess, a member of the court. “She just has a great personality. She’s like a sister to me.”

Aside from the fact that this is a heartwarming story, there is another aspect to this that encourages me. In November 2009 ABC News reported:

“An estimated 92 percent of all women who receive a prenatal diagnosis of Down syndrome choose to terminate their pregnancies, according to research reviewed by Dr. Brian Skotko, a pediatric geneticist at Children’s Hospital Boston.

The students at Bishop Hartley High School saw Megan as a person having value. Although I understand that raising a child with Down syndrome is extremely challenging, that does not negate the fact that the child is a human being and has value because he or she is a human being. It gives me hope that these students were able to see Megan as a person who was worthy of the honor of Homecoming Queen.

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