Patterico's Pontifications

11/27/2013

Snowden Document Reveals The Government Is Tracking Individuals’ Online Activities for the Explicit Purpose of Embarrassing Them

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 7:30 am

The latest Edward Snowden document shows the government tracking online activities of people in order to discredit them with charges of hypocrisy for viewing porn and such. But it’s OK, nothing to worry about . . . they’re all Muslims:

The National Security Agency has been gathering records of online sexual activity and evidence of visits to pornographic websites as part of a proposed plan to harm the reputations of those whom the agency believes are radicalizing others through incendiary speeches, according to a top-secret NSA document. The document, provided by NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden, identifies six targets, all Muslims, as “exemplars” of how “personal vulnerabilities” can be learned through electronic surveillance, and then exploited to undermine a target’s credibility, reputation and authority.

The NSA document, dated Oct. 3, 2012, repeatedly refers to the power of charges of hypocrisy to undermine such a messenger.”

It doesn’t take a genius to see how a brass knuckles politician might drool over access to information that would embarrass and destroy their critics and political opponents. And it does not take a fanatical student of political smear jobs to imagine information like this being used in a political campaign. See if you buy this argument in response:

Stewart Baker, a one-time general counsel for the NSA and a top Homeland Security official in the Bush administration, said that the idea of using potentially embarrassing information to undermine targets is a sound one. “If people are engaged in trying to recruit folks to kill Americans and we can discredit them, we ought to,” said Baker. “On the whole, it’s fairer and maybe more humane” than bombing a target, he said, describing the tactic as “dropping the truth on them.”

Any system can be abused, Baker allowed, but he said fears of the policy drifting to domestic political opponents don’t justify rejecting it. “On that ground you could question almost any tactic we use in a war, and at some point you have to say we’re counting on our officials to know the difference,” he said.

Sorry, Stu: no sale. Everything about this story screams, in 20-foot red letters: “POLITICIANS CAN AND WILL ABUSE INFORMATION LIKE THIS!!!!” This is pretty much a vindication of everyone who trumpeted the importance of the information being released by Snowden. This document, in my view, reveals important information that shows a fundamental restructuring of the relationship between the government and an individual. It doesn’t make Snowden a hero, necessarily . . . but I find this story eye-opening about the government’s real purposes in tracking Internet activity. We increasingly live our entire lives online these days. Maybe you don’t look at pornography at all, but don’t worry. Once the government is able to track and store all your internet activity, it can find some other way to intimidate you.

The depressing part is, I doubt any level of outrage is going to change the fact that government will do this. If they can do it, they will.

What, you got a problem with that? OK, I’m happy to hear you out, sir. Before we discuss your concerns, though, could I just ask you a few quick little questions about your browsing history?

Yeah. That’s what I thought. Have a nice day . . . sir.

142 Responses to “Snowden Document Reveals The Government Is Tracking Individuals’ Online Activities for the Explicit Purpose of Embarrassing Them”

  1. Ding.

    Patterico (9c670f)

  2. stay classy america

    happyfeet (8ce051)

  3. a new twist on things: “i’ll show them yours if you show them mine…”

    redc1c4 (abd49e)

  4. I have utter contempt for politicians, but I’m not scared of them. I’m scared of the NSA. The NSA is competent.

    Leviticus (6a67b8)

  5. People should view their internet history as abandoned property

    JD (06dacf)

  6. Yup. That’s why I visit porn sites. Opposition research. Nothing more.

    Seriously? They need to find actual, real browsing histories in order to smear an enemy? They have some ethical rule against manufacturing them, or is it beyond their programmers’ capabilities?

    When the NSA government tells you something, doublecheck it. Then doublecheck it, again. Then don’t believe it.

    I’m starting to wonder whether Snowden is a triple agent, put out there for disinformation.

    nk (dbc370)

  7. president food stamp’s entire stupid career is based on leaking personal data about his opponents

    the white house is a powerful whore magnet so the caliber of people you get in there are certainly not the sort to take the high road

    happyfeet (8ce051)

  8. This can only be done for a cause in which everybody involved is unified, and where also there are no worries about legality.

    Stopping people from preaching radical Islam and killing is such a cause.

    Electing Democrats or Republicans isn’t.

    You could create such a group of course, but that’s not he membership of the NSA.

    Sammy Finkelman (6ee5be)

  9. Even supposing, let’s say, that everybody in tghe know was unified about something maybe – that would keep the NSA in business – they wouldn’t be similarly unified about using such tacxtics for such a purpose.

    Only when dealing with terrorists or people trying to recruit supports of terrorists could they be so unified.

    Sammy Finkelman (6ee5be)

  10. 7. Comment by happyfeet (8ce051) — 11/27/2013 @ 7:59 am

    president food stamp’s

    Don;t call him President Food Stamp, call him President Medicaid.

    That’s more true.

    Food stamp usage went up bwcause of the recession. There was also a promotional campaign but that dated back to the Bush Administration. And food stamps don’t amount to all that much money.

    It’s Medicaid he’s really promoting, and thinks it is a good solution.

    Sammy Finkelman (6ee5be)

  11. You only need one person who has the information to leak it, Sammy. For crying out loud! S-N-O-W-D-E-N is in the the title of this post!

    Not that I still don’t think the NSA is comedy material.

    nk (dbc370)

  12. but the food stamps have the multiplier effects that ensure america will be a food stamp superpower for decades to come!

    in you face stupid chinesers

    happyfeet (8ce051)

  13. entire stupid career is based on leaking personal data about his opponents

    Amd wheer did that come from?

    Not from the NSA.

    Not from the government.

    From court clerks.

    Politically appointed in some way, or law form connected, not civil service.

    Nothing at all like the NSA.

    They are not all Democrats there, or tied to lawyers.

    It should be said also that we don’t know exactly who found the information and leaked it. There were other people than those tied directly to Obama who were inerested in making him a Senator.

    the white house is a powerful whore magnet so the caliber of people you get in there are certainly not the sort to take the high road

    The NSA is staffed by permanent employees, not tied to one Administration.

    Sammy Finkelman (6ee5be)

  14. President free condoms?

    nk (dbc370)

  15. 11. Comment by nk (dbc370) — 11/27/2013 @ 8:11 am

    You only need one person who has the information to leak it, Sammy. For crying out loud! S-N-O-W-D-E-N is in the the title of this post!

    Not that I still don’t think the NSA is comedy material.

    It can’t become general practice to turn over material to politicians, or anybody, or someboody will leak that.

    More important here, the NSA, according to all accounts, has strong internal controls, and about the only unauthorized collection of information, has been about love interests. It happens, and gets discovered, every so often. Then they get fired.

    Snowden himself does not seem to have acquired any personal information about anyone.

    What he has had were general documents, including one listing violations, when data was collected on someone that should not have been. (and to blackmail or embarass someone etc, you first have to collect and save the data.)

    A large number of them were technical, when someone, often from China, whose phone was being monitored (and not listened to, because the NSA collecs data and never analyzes it) came over to the United States, putting survellance of that phone into a different legal category, for the time that he stayed in the United States.

    Others were love interests.

    I didn’t read anything about criminals paying anyone to spy, or political people asking for or getting anything. So I assume Snowden’s document had nothing of that sort.

    There probably really are internal checks and balances that stop it.

    Sammy Finkelman (6ee5be)

  16. The lesson to be learned is only visit pron sites from a work computer.

    daleyrocks (bf33e9)

  17. News item: Visits to such sites go down during important news events and holiday celebrations. They go back up later.

    Sammy Finkelman (6ee5be)

  18. My cookies be clean, Eugene.

    Colonel Haiku (96d40b)

  19. 6. I agree with nk, if they want you, they’ve got you.

    I dreamt I woke up on the Amur this AM, bald as a cue ball.

    Hope the appetite persists thru tomorrow’s repast.

    gary gulrud (dd7d4e)

  20. I have utter contempt for politicians, but I’m not scared of them. I’m scared of the NSA. The NSA is competent.

    Absolutely. Politicians come and go, but the permanent federal bureaucracy is always there to get its way in the most thuggish manner possible.

    Leviticus, if conservatives and liberals can get together and demand reform of the federal bureaucracy, we might just extricate ourselves from this mess after all.

    JVW (709bc7)

  21. I can’t see how this will be very effective. If I were to make public the fact that Patterico surfs Stooge porn sites (porn in which the participants dress up as one or more of the Three Stooges), he will undoubtedly deny it (even though it is 100% true). Now I release some logs that show the truth, he claims they have been fabricated. How does anyone evaluate whether or not the logs are authentic and undoctored? In the end, it all comes down to my word against Patterico’s, which is where we would be if the logs didn’t exist at all and I was making the unsupported allegation.

    Anon Y. Mous (8ec442)

  22. Oh, and for the uninitiated: The “Curlys” are the most sought after.

    Anon Y. Mous (8ec442)

  23. David Petraeus and John Allen aren’t muslims. Ever wonder how they found out so much of their private sex lives and started an investigation.

    Enemy (19c5f8)

  24. But Anon Y. Mous, how could you possibly be certain that it’s an embarrassing porn site unless you spend several hours a day, every day, monitoring it to make sure that it indeed has no redeeming artistic, educational, political, or social value? And whom do I pay off to get that job?

    nk (dbc370)

  25. i think mostly what we’re learning is that the NSA consists of a bunch of hyper-repressed gaywads who’ve built up pornshame in their own minds to where they’ve convinced themselves that it’s a far more consequential force on this planet than it actually is in the real world where everyone else lives

    happyfeet (c60db2)

  26. CinCs and DCIs better be under a microscope all the time, Enemy.

    nk (dbc370)

  27. 10- Sammy, put a sock in it.

    askeptic (b8ab92)

  28. The NSA is staffed by permanent employees, not tied to one Administration.

    I’m sure there have been many changes in the almost 50-years that I’ve been away form the NSA fold, but at the basic ELINT collection level,
    the staffing was done by members of the USA/USN/USAF, not civil service.

    askeptic (b8ab92)

  29. Since Obama thinks everyone who opposes him and his policies as his enemies, consider this fair warning of how far he will go to discredit the opposition. IRS audits are tame compared to this.

    DRJ (a83b8b)

  30. We could always ask Jack Ryan his opinion on this, DRJ. You are absolutely correct. It’s uber-Chicago style politics.

    Simon Jester (c8876d)

  31. Political opposition research knows no boundaries. None.

    htom (412a17)

  32. Iraq is liberated, bin Laden is dead and the al Queda base in Afghanistan is destroyed so why are we still doing this? It’s time to shut it down. There will always be terrorists in the world it’s past time for US to hold the nations who harbor them responsible rather than live in an Orwellian police state.

    crazy (d60cb0)

  33. Sammy, one question:

    If Edward Snowden was able to release all this material, despite the countless barriers in place protecting compartmentalized information, why do you think that the President’s Chief of Staff would be unable to obtain any damn thing he asked for?

    Kevin M (bf8ad7)

  34. Government bureaucracy run amok. Instead of focusing on the type of people that foment 99% of the terror around the world, i.e., fundamentalist Islam, our own countrymen choose to put John Q. Public through the wringer and under a microscope.

    Colonel Haiku (96d40b)

  35. 13. “The NSA is staffed by permanent employees, not tied to one Administration.”
    15.”There probably really are internal checks and balances that stop it.”
    They used to say the same thing about the IRS.

    Walter Cronanty (d16f1a)

  36. Yet, they hate us for our freedoms.

    Butler T. Reynolds (4c23e8)

  37. Yet, they hate us for our freedoms.

    Well, that explains the Progs, but what about the Jihadi’s?

    askeptic (b8ab92)

  38. I run disc cleanup daily. Sometimes more often just for grins. I usually have about 42k files to be cleaned up. A couple of k more or less.
    Went away for a week, ‘puter turned off. Got home, had 606k files on my C drive.
    I don’t know how computers work, but this seems like a concern.

    Richard Aubrey (c411da)

  39. 33 Comment by Kevin M (bf8ad7) — 11/27/2013 @ 11:57 am

    Sammy, one question:

    If Edward Snowden was able to release all this material, despite the countless barriers in place protecting compartmentalized information, why do you think that the President’s Chief of Staff would be unable to obtain any damn thing he asked for?

    Nobody else but Snowden – actually that’s a question * – knew that Snowden had obtained anything he wasn’t supposed to.

    Snowden had a technical job that let him look behind the scenes. In a way, compartmentalization didn’t apply to him. He was in charge of maintaining the electronic compartmentilization!!

    The president’s chief of staff, on the other hand, is not in a position to hiddenly violate the rules, at least, not by virtue of being the Chief of Staff.

    There can be a spy ring, and he can be member, but the president’s Chief of Staff can’t just go out and ask for something. That’s an open , not a hidden, violation of the rules.

    * There’s a question as to how Snowden got hired. His hiring by Booz Allen Hamilton – the company James Clapper ran – and everything is suspicious.

    It could look like someone wanted to limit intelligence capability, maybe to protect someone. That’s the only real motive, for Snowden lied and exaggerated.

    Sammy Finkelman (6ee5be)

  40. 35. Comment by Walter Cronanty (d16f1a) — 11/27/2013 @ 12:25 pm

    13. “The NSA is staffed by permanent employees, not tied to one Administration.”
    15.”There probably really are internal checks and balances that stop it.”

    They used to say the same thing about the IRS.

    And indeed, political operatives did not get to see anybody’s tax returns, or start an audit. (with afew possible exceptions)

    What did happen is processing for approval of tax exempt status was centralized in one office and then with one or two employees in Washington. They had to do that first. Change procedures. And the employees were all unionized.

    And there were whistleblowers/

    And they mostly just stalled applications.

    They also did suceed in releasing some confidential information, but they had to go through a whole roundabout method of doing this.
    It did not go to political opeatives directly. It went to some media outlet. The confidential information was a donor list.

    Sammy Finkelman (6ee5be)

  41. http://www.propublica.org/article/irs-office-that-targeted-tea-party-also-disclosed-confidential-docs

    The same IRS office that deliberately targeted [3] conservative groups applying for tax-exempt status in the run-up to the 2012 election released nine pending confidential applications of conservative groups to ProPublica late last year [4].

    The IRS did not respond to requests Monday following up about that release, and whether it had determined how the applications were sent to ProPublica.

    In response to a request for the applications for 67 different nonprofits last November, the Cincinnati office of the IRS sent ProPublica applications or documentation for 31 groups. Nine of those applications had not yet been approved—meaning they were not supposed to be made public. (We made six [4] of those [5] public, after redacting their financial information, deeming that they were newsworthy.)

    Sammy Finkelman (6ee5be)

  42. This is whose donor’s names were leaked:

    http://freebeacon.com/irs-sued-by-the-national-organization-for-marriage-for-leaking-tax-information/

    They went to the Human Rights Campaign, a no-holds-barred pro gay marriage group.

    Testifying before a congressional committee in May, acting IRS Commissioner Miller testified that he believed that TIGTA “found that those disclosures were inadvertent and there’s been discipline in one of those cases for somebody not following procedures.”

    NOM’s donor list, including home addresses and phone numbers, were also posted on The Huffington Post, which has refused to take them down. NOM claims in court filings that it lost contributions in excess of $50,000 as a result of the leak.

    The Pro-Publica incidente is a different and more minor matter, as if approved the contents of the application woujld have been made public anyway.

    Sammy Finkelman (6ee5be)

  43. Contrarian. Semanticist. Finkelman

    Birdbath (716828)

  44. Yeah, I’m on Team Snowden Is a Hero.

    Not Snowden is perfect, but compared to the evil of rushing at breakneck speed into a surveillance police state helped along by the fact that almost all police forces are now training up their troops with military-style boot camps and equipping them as warriors organized in to tactical teams and riot units, yeah.

    It is at the point where if an American (or a Brit or a Canadian and doubtless others in the west) wants to live as a free person and even contribute to public dialog without being intimidated by the government, there only option is … nonexistence.

    Since western countries are no longer zones of freedom compared to other states. In many ways, they are worse, the quintupling of the US prison population in 35 years being an example.

    Former Conservative (6e026c)

  45. 40.”And indeed, political operatives did not get to see anybody’s tax returns, or start an audit. (with afew possible exceptions)…And they mostly just stalled applications.”

    Really, Mr. Finkelman? “[A] few possible” audits – and “just stalled applications” and the IRS had to go through “a whole roundabout method” of releasing “some confidential information” to a friendly media outlet which published the confidential information? That’s all you got to assauge fears that the NSA’s wealth of information won’t be used against political enemies?
    The IRS has a long history of being used against political enemies, just as any agency with that amount of accumulated data on individuals would have [see, also, FBI and JEH]. I see absolutely nothing that gives me any assurance that an administration wouldn’t use the NSA just as past and current administrations have used the IRS:

    President Franklin Roosevelt used the IRS to harass newspaper publishers who were opposed to the New Deal, including William Randolph Hearst and Moses Annenberg, publisher of the Philadelphia Inquirer. Roosevelt also dropped the IRS hammer on political rivals such as the populist firebrand Huey Long and radio agitator Father Coughlin, and prominent Republicans such as former Treasury Secretary Andrew Mellon. Perhaps Roosevelt’s most pernicious tax skulduggery occurred in 1944. He spiked an IRS audit of illegal campaign contributions made by a government contractor to Congressman Lyndon Johnson, whose career might have been derailed if Texans had learned of the scandal.
    President John F. Kennedy raised the political exploitation of the IRS to an art form….
    After Richard Nixon took office, his administration quickly created a Special Services Staff to mastermind what a memo called “all IRS activities involving ideological, militant, subversive, radical, and similar type organizations….

    Despite Article 2, paragraph 1 of Nixon’s Articles of Impeachment, the practice continued:

    In the following decades, the IRS regularly sparked outrage by abusing innocent taxpayers, but there was not much controversy about the agency’s politicizing until Bill Clinton took office.
    In 1995, the White House and the Democratic National Committee produced a 331-page report entitled “Communication Stream of Conspiracy Commerce” that attacked magazines, think tanks and other entities and individuals who had criticized President Clinton. In the subsequent years, many organizations mentioned in the White House report were hit by IRS audits. More than 20 conservative organizations—including the Heritage Foundation and the American Spectator magazine—and almost a dozen individual high-profile Clinton accusers, such as Paula Jones and Gennifer Flowers, were audited.

    http://online.wsj.com/news/articles/SB10001424127887324715704578482823301630836

    Your apparent naivete concerning NSA data being used against political enemies of an administration in power is closer to willful ignorance.

    Walter Cronanty (d16f1a)

  46. *their

    Former Conservative (6e026c)

  47. Yet, they hate us for our freedoms.

    Comment by Butler T. Reynolds

    Threadwinner. And I’m embarrassed by how much I supported, even loved, George W. Bush.

    Former Conservative (6e026c)

  48. Oh, and if anyone thinks that by posting on sites like this one expressing discontent at their governments (or even doing the opposite which, if you look at what drug interdiction officers do, is also taken as a convenient sign of suspicion) they don’t get put on lists for extra scrutiny and monitoring, I think they’re insane.

    Former Conservative (6e026c)

  49. They call it Taquiyya, how the likes of KSM justified partying in Manila nightclubs while planning jihad.

    narciso (3fec35)

  50. Better yet, let you control there actions and votes.

    Say like a Supreme Court Justice being told to make sure the ACA mandate is a tax. Or his personal pecadillos (if there are any) will become national news.

    Anyone who’s read Obama’s history KNOWS that THIS is his MO. He will use whatever information he can gather to distort/harm his opponents and has no compunction about doing so.

    THIS is what an oligarchy looks like. And the GOP just sits there and thinks we’re still in the ’60’s playing fair and such.

    jakee308 (e940d5)

  51. Comment by Walter Cronanty (d16f1a) — 11/27/2013 @ 1:40 pm

    The IRS has a long history of being used against political enemies,

    I think the last time it happened was in the Kennedy Administration. A president used to be able to start an audit. They put more and more protections in. Nixon talked about starting audits to John Dean on September 15, 1972, but never did it.

    A caveat:

    In the subsequent years, many organizations mentioned in the White House report were hit by IRS audits. More than 20 conservative organizations—including the Heritage Foundation and the American Spectator magazine—and almost a dozen individual high-profile Clinton accusers, such as Paula Jones and Gennifer Flowers, were audited.”

    This is right, but I believe they had to do it in an extremely underhanded manner. There were procedures, or they set up procedures, to make audits when there were complaints – and then they made those complaints! It doesn’t happen any other way now.

    Sammy Finkelman (6ee5be)

  52. And if they stole files – and I mean stole – there’s no sending it undrer any color of law – yes I think they peaked into files – and they wanted to use the data in any way, they had to leak it to the press, and get it published, so there would be deniability.

    They’d be in a lot of trouble if they indicated they knew somebody’s somebody’s confidential information, with no explanation as to how they knew.

    And it isn’t just data they had jurisdiction over that this happened with. Stealing doesn’t require any legal authority – just contacts.

    I beleive President Clinton had access to Monica Lewisnsky’s grand jury tstimoney before it became public. In his own rand jury testimony he was just about to cite Monica Lewisnsky as support for the claim that oral sex wasn’t sex when he stopped himself. Because he was not supposed to know that she had said that.

    I think the leaker of the testimony was probably Samuel Dash, whom Ken Starr had been persuaded to install as some kind of an ethics reviewer. (Samuel Dash had been chief counsel of the Senate Watergate Committee, and in reality, wa snot to be trusted)

    Sammy Finkelman (6ee5be)

  53. In fact, I believe that making secrets public so that they could be used probably was what was behind the Snowden leak. Al Qaeda, or some others wanted to change their behavior, but they needed an excuse for knowing that they should do so, so Snowden was recruited to leak and make a whole bunch of things public. By some enemy of ther United States.

    Sammy Finkelman (6ee5be)

  54. So anyway files could be seen, but extremely illegally, and not acting through the organization as a whole, but finding some people to pull files.

    The IRS has a long history of being used against political enemies,

    But the NSA does not.

    And in the case of teh NSa, someone would not only have to steal information, they’s have to create it. Using one person here and one person there – no chain of command.

    just as any agency with that amount of accumulated data on individuals would have [see, also, FBI and JEH].

    I believe the idea that JEH blackmailed is basically a false rumor. Not one single example has come to light.

    He collected inaccurate data about a lot of people.

    Maybe somebody else was using it.

    I see absolutely nothing that gives me any assurance that an administration wouldn’t use the NSA just as past and current administrations have used the IRS:

    Easier to use DOJ and get a search warrant. The NSA actually refuses to help the DEA and others.

    “President Franklin Roosevelt used the IRS..

    That was in the early days. As I said, the Kennedy Administration was the last to openly (that is, under color of law) use the IRS this way.

    Any audits done by the Clinton or the Obama Administrations were done by manipulating procedures that triggered audits. Other Administrations didn’t do this, although maybe people outsid ethe government with proper contacts found a way to use the IRS. This happened with state government employees who had some ability to trigger an audit.

    Sammy Finkelman (6ee5be)

  55. We’re back to the Shamrock and Minaret era, of the NSA, where as the Cole Porter song puts it ‘ Anything Goes’

    narciso (3fec35)

  56. Sammy, you should start a blog. One possible name would be “Houses of Cards”. Do you ever read back the things you’ve constructed?

    Kevin M (bf8ad7)

  57. I think the last time it happened was in the Kennedy Administration.

    Bzzzzzztttttttt. Wrong answer. It happened under Barcky Obama.

    JD (5c1832)

  58. Easier to use DOJ and get a search warrant. The NSA actually refuses to help the DEA and others.

    Sammy, you seem to not be paying attention.

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/the-switch/wp/2013/08/05/the-nsa-is-giving-your-phone-records-to-the-dea-and-the-dea-is-covering-it-up/

    Really, Sammy, why do you have this habit of saying things are false that are in fact, true.

    SPQR (768505)

  59. In fact, I believe that making secrets public so that they could be used probably was what was behind the Snowden leak. Al Qaeda, or some others wanted to change their behavior, but they needed an excuse for knowing that they should do so, so Snowden was recruited to leak and make a whole bunch of things public. By some enemy of ther United States. — Sammy

    You’re funny.

    But I don’t care if Snowden was in league with Castro’s second cousin in Argentina, Americans had a right to know they were being spied on, as did Brits by GCHQ, Canadians by CSE, etc. (although they collaborated to spy on each others’ citizens to flout what little oversight there was).

    The nations with the longest traditions of free speech are having the screws turned on them by their government with a massive chilling effect. People are right to turn to private solutions to protect themselves from this as much as possible, and to distrust their governments’ security services, finally seriously questioning them for once in their lives.

    Former Conservative (6e026c)

  60. And of course, can one forget Effendi Awlaki, who Greenwald maintains did nothing wrong?

    narciso (3fec35)

  61. 51, 52, 53, 54. Lord, where to start.
    51. My comment: “The IRS has a long history of being used against political enemies.

    Your reply: I think the last time it happened was in the Kennedy Administration. A president used to be able to start an audit. They put more and more protections in. Nixon talked about starting audits to John Dean on September 15, 1972, but never did it.”

    I think the last time it happened was when the IRS was used by the Obama Administration against political enemies – that’s fairly recent.

    To summarize part of your comment – “underhanded” methods had to be used by Clinton to use the IRS against his enemies – it was against “procedures.”

    Oh, well, that changes my outlook entirely. If it’s not cricket, I’m sure no one will use NSA info to screw his political enemies.

    52. “They’d be in a lot of trouble if they indicated they knew somebody’s somebody’s confidential information, with no explanation as to how they knew.”

    Attempting to use the IRS against political enemies is an impeachable offense – see, Nixon, Richard M. That’s “a lot of trouble.” Yet, it still happens.

    53. No comment on your conspiracy theory.

    54. “So anyway files could be seen, but extremely illegally, and not acting through the organization as a whole, but finding some people to pull files.

    Uh oh, it would be illegal to wrongfully use NSA info. Well, once again you’ve just stopped me in my tracks.
    But, tell me, what Amendment did Lois Lerner mention when she refused to testify before Congress?
    And, did you know that the aforementioned MS. Lerner gave confidential tax info to the FEC on political enemies? Not exactly cricket, that. I’m sure she just missed that part during her orientation when she joined the IRS.

    The NSA doesn’t have a long history of being used against an Administration’s enemies [summary].

    Really? “A secret operation code-named “MINARET” was set up by the NSA to monitor the phone communications of Senators Frank Church and Howard Baker, as well as major civil rights leaders including Dr. Martin Luther King, and prominent U.S. journalists and athletes who criticized the Vietnam War.” Wiki.

    The NSA actually refuses to help the DEA and others.

    That’s not what the WaPo says: “The Drug Enforcement Administration has been the recipient of multiple tips from the NSA. DEA officials in a highly secret office called the Special Operations Division are assigned to handle these incoming tips, according to Reuters. Tips from the NSA are added to a DEA database that includes “intelligence intercepts, wiretaps, informants and a massive database of telephone records.” This is problematic because it appears to break down the barrier between foreign counterterrorism investigations and ordinary domestic criminal investigations.
    Because the SOD’s work is classified, DEA cases that began as NSA leads can’t be seen to have originated from a NSA source.
    So what does the DEA do? It makes up the story of how the agency really came to the case in a process known as “parallel construction.”‘
    http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/the-switch/wp/2013/08/05/the-nsa-is-giving-your-phone-records-to-the-dea-and-the-dea-is-covering-it-up/

    Any audits done by the Clinton or the Obama Administrations were done by manipulating procedures that triggered audits.

    Well, that’s certainly salve for Frank VanderSloot’s wounds: “You remember him, right, the Idaho businessman singled out by the Obama campaign last year for giving one million dollars in support of Mitt Romney, later becoming the focus of three different audits, two from the IRS, one from the Labor Department.”
    http://www.foxnews.com/on-air/your-world-cavuto/2013/05/15/romney-donor-claims-he-was-unfairly-targeted-irs

    Sorry, Mr. Finkelman. I’m definitely not buying what you’re selling.

    Walter Cronanty (d16f1a)

  62. i am very thankful for all of the sacrifices Mr. Snowden has made I’m a drink a pumpkin martini for him tomorrow and I’ll offer a silent toast to his patriotism

    happyfeet (c60db2)

  63. I like peanut butter toast better than silent toast. Besides, mine kind of crunches when I bite it

    Walter Cronanty (d16f1a)

  64. raisin bread toast, is my favorite, with butter,

    narciso (3fec35)

  65. i love peabnut bubber toast too but i like to drizzle on some honey from the honey bear, a fact of which the nsa is surely aware

    happyfeet (c60db2)

  66. 64. Raisins ugh. Mother Nature’s boogers.
    65. The NSA knows that your toast crunches, too.

    Walter Cronanty (d16f1a)

  67. Well that’s for toast, for sandwiches, a crunchy french or cuban roll,

    narciso (3fec35)

  68. 67. Alright, I’ll bite. What’s the difference between a crunchy french [I know what that is] and a “cuban roll.”

    Walter Cronanty (d16f1a)

  69. the latter is softer then the other,

    narciso (3fec35)

  70. ELLIOT SPITZER

    P Tan (9d94b5)

  71. yup he’s toast too

    happyfeet (c60db2)

  72. Are they all Muslims? I thought one was Joe the Plumber.

    Steve57 (338553)

  73. 61. Comment by Walter Cronanty (d16f1a) — 11/27/2013 @ 4:15 pm

    Oh, well, that changes my outlook entirely. If it’s not cricket, I’m sure no one will use NSA info to screw his political enemies.

    This does not happen without a lot of background.

    It was not just anyone at the IRS who did something illegal. Lois Lerner actually had a long history of partisanship, from the days she was at teh FEC and damaged Al Salvi’s campaign versus Dick Durbin for the U.S. senate in 1996 and tried to get him to promise never to run for elective office again. (Salvi also got tricked into accusing Jim Brady of once having sold machine guns. He mentioned it once in a radio interview and was lambasted for it)

    There are not too many people at the NSA, or in the military, or such places, who will do something that is definitely illegal, especially when there is no foreign policy/national security type reason for it. We can take that as a given.

    Sammy Finkelman (6ee5be)

  74. “The NSA doesn’t have a long history of being used against an Administration’s enemies [summary].”

    Really? “A secret operation code-named “MINARET” was set up by the NSA to monitor the phone communications of Senators Frank Church and Howard Baker, as well as major civil rights leaders including Dr. Martin Luther King, and prominent U.S. journalists and athletes who criticized the Vietnam War.” Wiki.

    Not the same thing at all. This was in the 1960s, and was not definitely illegal.

    http://www.theguardian.com/world/2013/sep/26/nsa-surveillance-anti-vietnam-muhammad-ali-mlk

    The lack of judicial oversight of the snooping programme led even the NSA’s own history to conclude that Minaret was “disreputable if not outright illegal”.

    So even now, the illegality isn’t clear, maybe becvause this was before the Supreme Court had ruled on such issues and Congress had legislated.

    And furthermore this concerned a matter of foreign and military policy (albeit it was spying against Senators) and had nothing to do with politics and was not used in any such way.

    The orders came stright from the Lyndon Johnson White House and without subtrefuge.

    Sammy Finkelman (6ee5be)

  75. speaking of rampant fascism in the US government

    guess what?

    the fascist whores at the National Park Service aren’t even a wee lil bit interested in exploring ways they might handle a future shutdown with maybe a modicum of class and dignity

    The National Park Service is not interested in coming up with plans to let states pay to keep parks open should another government shutdown occur, a service official testified late last week to a House subcommittee.

    http://www.azcentral.com/news/politics/articles/20131122national-park-service-shutdown-planning.html

    but guess what the fascist piggysluts at the National Park Service have taken an interest in?

    anti-fracking propaganda! Today they got busted.

    http://www.nationaljournal.com/energy/park-service-director-pulls-back-criticism-of-hydraulic-fracturing-20131127

    The National Park Service is withdrawing public comments submitted in response to a draft proposal of regulations for hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, proposed by the Bureau of Land Management following conservative attacks that the comments, which criticized the drilling technique as a possible health and environmental hazard, were unfounded, according to The Hill.

    the takeaway is that if you see a (federal) park ranger over the holidays you should tell them to stop being such a fascist ignant whore and maybe think about getting a real job

    happyfeet (8ce051)

  76. When all is said and done, I think I’m going to happy I kept the D-guard bowie knife.

    Steve57 (338553)

  77. I already know I’m glad I kept the bayonet and the Ka-Bar.

    Nice things about knives is you don’t have to reload them.

    Steve57 (338553)

  78. They dip their toes in by saying they are only searching for information about radical islamists.

    Then once it’s a ‘standard practice’ from multiple administrations they will use it for any potential bad guy. And I’m reminded of the DHS’s potential bad guy list which included vets and Tea Partiers. It’s not like the IRS didn’t already go whole hog with that.

    Eventually there will be an ‘accidental’ or ‘anonymous’ disclosure of the results of this surveillance.

    This is why the GOP should hold itself to the utmost moral standard. So when the people realize the stakes of immoral leadership, they will have somewhere to turn. But the GOP used unconstitutional means to strip the ballots of the wrong candidates in the last primary, one of dozens of Nixonian Chicago style mistakes.

    Dustin (e7a496)

  79. From the fine article:

    Stewart Baker, a one-time general counsel for the NSA and a top Homeland Security official in the Bush administration, said that the idea of using potentially embarrassing information to undermine targets is a sound one.

    The main point in Stewart Baker’s comment that isn’t quoted:

    “Why wouldn’t we consider doing to Islamic extremists what Glenn Greenwald does routinely to Republicans?”

    Understanding the Enemy (Stewart Baker, at the Volokh Conspiracy)

    Ibidem (4c0145)

  80. ==But the GOP used unconstitutional means to strip the ballots of the wrong candidates in the last primary, one of dozens of Nixonian Chicago style mistakes.==

    I’m afraid I’m in the dark as to what you are referring to here. Are there specific links about this?

    elissa (4738eb)

  81. “I’m afraid I’m in the dark as to what you are referring to here. Are there specific links about this?”

    elissa – I think he’s whining again about some campaigns not being organized enough to get enough signatures from qualified canvassers to access the last Virginia ballot. The rules were announced ahead of time and were the same for everybody, but some campaigns only bothered to make a fuss after they did make the standards.

    daleyrocks (bf33e9)

  82. “Nixonian Chicago-style mistakes”… huh?

    Nixon-Kennedy election era association may have made some sense.

    Colonel Haiku (7eae7f)

  83. 51, 52, 53, 54. Lord, where to start.

    here?

    Sometimes commenters get on me about why I’m not defending this or that Republican’s dumb statement. Well, because I have an ego. I do not wish to think of myself as some reflexive Talking Points Robot who is ready, willing, and eager to engage in any spin, no matter how preposterous, to protect the all-important team.

    Well, other people are like that too. And the Liberal Chattering Classes are facing a question now: “Will my reputation and sense of pride survive Obama’s incompetence?”

    And: “How absurd am I willing to make myself in order to cover up for this arrogant buffoon’s incompetence?”

    read the rest of the slam here: http://ace.mu.nu/archives/345291.php

    redc1c4 (abd49e)

  84. i wanted to quote moar, but our host has quaint notions about such things… 😎

    redc1c4 (abd49e)

  85. There are not too many people at the NSA, or in the military, or such places, who will do something that is definitely illegal,

    Sammy, you’re overlooking the way that ideology can become quite pernicious and corrupted and easily infect any group or organization. For example, it wasn’t that long ago when I’d never have believed the US military would incubate the political-correct lunacy surrounding Nidal Hasan or the GLBT agenda (ie, hectoring army chaplains to stay quiet if they disapprove of same-sex marriages). So if it can happen to the military, it sure as hell can happen to the NSA.

    BTW, the phenomenon of one links to the other, in that if official US security forces are acting like foolish members of the ACLU — and treating a Nidal Hasan or the Boston bombers with kid gloves — then what good is it if they perfect their skills in spying on subversive elements? They’d be analogous to legally-blind security guards assigned the responsibility of watching closed-circuit anti-theft monitors.

    Mark (58ea35)

  86. I recommend Coppola’s 1974 film The Conversation for folks who think this is all new stuff. Johnson was really big on this, apparently wiretapping Goldwater’s campaign in 1964. Nixon was a piker compared to LBJ.

    Kevin M (bf8ad7)

  87. The thing is if they just wanted to discredit radical islamists, they could just lie. Why monitor them? Like anyone is going to check your footnotes.

    If I wanted to discredit one of these cats, I wouldn’t release the list of porn sites they visited. I’d have the guy starring in the flick. And not something his buddies would get a kick out of.

    I’m a big fan of Psy Ops. Not so much of surveillance. I think you can do one without the other.

    Steve57 (338553)

  88. Sammy, you’re overlooking the way that ideology…

    Sam the Sham overlooks any & everything, including his own prior mendoucheous blatherings, that interfere with whatever BS he’s trying to foist off on folks at that particular moment in time. dishonesty is the one constant in his poastings.

    redc1c4 (abd49e)

  89. the Ewok engages in category error, most of the times the Dems or their enablers are either ignorant or effectively lying, earnest statements by our side shouldn’t be regarded in the way,

    narciso (3fec35)

  90. The Conversation was about private surveilance,

    narciso (3fec35)

  91. Was there an apology on this site, to Christine, for all the blood curdling horrors that turned out to be wrong, like the phantom IRS audit, she was the canary in the coal mine, in this respect, as it was with Joe the Plumber.

    narciso (3fec35)

  92. Comment by Mark (58ea35) — 11/27/2013 @ 9:39 pm

    For example, it wasn’t that long ago when I’d never have believed the US military would incubate the political-correct lunacy surrounding Nidal Hasan

    That really shouldn’t be so surprising.

    Ultimately, civilians control the military, since they appoinmt the top ranks, and if some premise is really widespread, it can act as a litmus test, and vasrious kinds of “liberal” beliefs can get into policy.

    However, this is ideology – beliefs about things -not partisanship or help for some particular politician. The military is not infected woth that.

    As for Hasan, they did revise their approach as a result, which is now to treat this like possible loyalty to Communism was during the Cold War. So this is very unlikely to be repeated or even come close..

    or the GLBT agenda (ie, hectoring army chaplains to stay quiet if they disapprove of same-sex marriages).

    That’s unfortunate, and really comes close to establishing a religion, or at least selecting one religious position as the only legitimate one.

    But that problem is a little caused by the mere fact of having any chaplains at all.

    Sammy Finkelman (da29ec)

  93. So if it can happen to the military, it sure as hell can happen to the NSA.

    The military is not involved in politics, or in helping or hurting any candidate for office.

    What they are speculating about: “POLITICIANS CAN AND WILL ABUSE INFORMATION LIKE THIS!!!!” didn’t happen in the case of the military – it’s actually kind of more dngerous in the military and some people think the Second Amendment was intended as a protection against that – and it didn’t happen in the case of teh NSa and is extrenely unlikely to happen.

    The counterexamples are either from an organization not like the NSA or the military (the IRS, and even there, in recent decades, it was a small carefully selected group of people) or from a time when the law and procedures were not as they are now and even then, there was a color of legitimacy to it -it had to do with a foreign policy/military issue (the Vietnam War)

    The political audits were probably caused by a backdoor. Some situation was set up so that if complaints of acertain type were made to acertain office an audit would result. Of course, only people like Brett Kimberlin or Neal Rauhauser knew about it. The audit of Christine O’Donnell came from another backdoor – a state official in Delaware.

    If we are worried about phony investigations, numerous federal agencies can be used.

    Sammy Finkelman (da29ec)

  94. Comment by daleyrocks (bf33e9) — 11/27/2013 @ 8:24 pm

    some campaigns only bothered to make a fuss after they did make the standards.

    The usual way to qualify was to pay someone to make all the arrangements – it is likely that some campaigns were double crossed by campaign consultants secretly loyal to the main Republican party organization in Virginia.

    And Ron Paul was on the ballot just to make it look better, and because Libertarians specialize in getting on the ballot.

    Sammy Finkelman (da29ec)

  95. 75. Comment by happyfeet (8ce051) — 11/27/2013 @ 7:24 pm

    anti-fracking propaganda! Today they got busted.

    Anti-fracking propaganda can sound plausible, in places like New York and California…

    Until it is reflected that fracking is going on in many other states, including Pennsylvania, and in a number of foreign countries, without incident.

    http://www.nationaljournal.com/energy/park-service-director-pulls-back-criticism-of-hydraulic-fracturing-20131127

    The National Park Service is withdrawing public comments submitted in response to a draft proposal of regulations for hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, proposed by the Bureau of Land Management following conservative attacks that the comments, which criticized the drilling technique as a possible health and environmental hazard, were unfounded, according to The Hill.

    the takeaway is that if you see a (federal) park ranger over the holidays you should tell them to stop being such a fascist ignant whore and maybe think about getting a real job

    Sammy Finkelman (da29ec)

  96. Happy Thanksgiving, Sammy

    Icy (95f731)

  97. Sammy, you’re doing your back-bending, contortionist-watusi type of rationalizations again. First, by believing that ideology can’t easily become infected with partisanship. (BTW, yea, a right-leaning military will inculcate pro-Republican-Party sentiments, but that won’t probably lead to the insanity of an attitude of “Give Hasan some slack, fellas.”) And then, in effect, saying, hell, the military wouldn’t be establishing a new form of religion if it didn’t have damn, pesky representatives of the Christian faith running around in the first place.

    Mark (58ea35)

  98. Sorry I didn’t edit the quote from happyfeet.

    But the point is, what made the conservative attacks so compelling on the draft proposal by the Bureau of Land Management was that fracking was not a new and untested and experimental drilling technique – although the states of New York and California treat it that way..

    Sammy Finkelman (da29ec)

  99. Happy thanksgiving, all,

    Speaking of guanajos, that’s our term for turkeys;

    http://talkingpointsmemo.com/edblog/a-realists-take-on-obamacare

    narciso (3fec35)

  100. Comment by Mark (58ea35) — 11/28/2013 @ 7:20 am

    First, by believing that ideology can’t easily become infected with partisanship.

    They are really two sepaate infections, and it is
    much harder to infect an organization with partisanship (which is kind of global, pertaininmg to everything the organization does) than with ideology as applied to one or a small subset of issues.

    Even when it is infected with particular positions on issues, each issue may infect the organization to a greater or lesser degree.

    (BTW, yea, a right-leaning military will inculcate pro-Republican-Party sentiments, but that won’t probably lead to the insanity of an attitude of “Give Hasan some slack, fellas.”)

    Because that’s not a leaning Republican sentiment.

    It wasn’t actually give Hasan some slack – but find some kind of innocent motive here for what he is doing.

    And then, in effect, saying, hell, the military wouldn’t be establishing a new form of religion if it didn’t have damn, pesky representatives of the Christian faith running around in the first place.

    The Air Force really has been infected with evangelical Christianity and it is a bit of a problem. No politicians did that, that came from within. From above is the position on gay marriage, although it is really more toleration, as people are ot supposed to have to personally agree.

    There is also now the whole controversy about how to handle rape and what constitutes it, or something close enough to it to all for action.

    Part of the problem has bene caused by putting too many people in close proximity, and maybe not recognizing that it is to be epected that some people will act wrongly.

    Sammy Finkelman (da29ec)

  101. “Even when it is infected with particular positions on issues, each issue may infect the organization to a greater or lesser degree.”

    Sammy – Nice double talk.

    daleyrocks (bf33e9)

  102. Happy-Day-Before-Black-Friday-Where-You-Get-To-Eat A-Lot-And-Start-The-Consumerism-Season-Off-Right, everybody.

    And Happy Hannukah, the celebration of the first high-efficiency light which required only one-eighth the energy of the prior version, to everybody who is Jewish or eco-friendly.

    nk (dbc370)

  103. “The Air Force really has been infected with evangelical Christianity and it is a bit of a problem.”

    Sammy – Really? You mean some people have complained about religious iconography, prayer and the like? What is the infection you are talking about?

    daleyrocks (bf33e9)

  104. Comment by happyfeet (8ce051) — 11/27/2013 @ 7:24 pm

    guess what?

    the fascist whores at the National Park Service aren’t even a wee lil bit interested in exploring ways they might handle a future shutdown with maybe a modicum of class and dignity

    Oh, they are interested. In creating as much inconvenience as possible.

    So far Obama has not reversed himself on that, and the prospect of another government shut down around January 15 is very real.

    The timing is bad for him.

    Healthcare.gov will have a complete chance to fail before January 15. The insurance policies are supposed to start before that.

    They extended the deadline to enroll and have the insurance take effect by Jan 1 from December 15 to December 23. The insurance companies are complaining that doesn’t give them enough time to process the applications.

    I guess they should be grateful they at least have a week.

    Sammy Finkelman (da29ec)

  105. Another recent change was to move the new enrollment period for 2015 ahead one month, so it would start November 15 instead of October 15.

    The accusation is so that people wouldn’t see the higher prices before the election, but actually I think this is a kind of desperate attempt to avert or limit higher prices in the first place.

    Insurers will make their first calculations for 2015 in the early spring – these are public filings – and they want to give them another month.

    Maybe more people will enroll, maybe the usage will drop off after a month after people get their childrens’ teeth fixed.

    Sammy Finkelman (da29ec)

  106. They are going for a ‘more selective audience’ as illustrated above;

    http://legalinsurrection.com/2013/11/in-totalitarian-societies-holidays-serve-the-interest-of-the-state/

    narciso (3fec35)

  107. The Air Force really has been infected with evangelical Christianity and it is a bit of a problem.

    Moreover, Sammy, I understand that commentator Pat Buchanan loves blood and violence.

    Mark (58ea35)

  108. Seriously, Sammy, where the hell do you get this stuff?

    Colonel Haiku (7eae7f)

  109. The Daily News, and Carlos Slim’s scratch sheet.

    narciso (3fec35)

  110. Wilkerson, borderline 9/11 denialist and Powell majordomo, is at the forefront of this effort to replace it with Festivus, I think?

    narciso (3fec35)

  111. Such subversive messages like Jonh 3:16 have to be stopped, who knows what could happen?

    narciso (3fec35)

  112. As for Hasan, they did revise their approach as a result, which is now to treat this like possible loyalty to Communism was during the Cold War. So this is very unlikely to be repeated or even come close..
    Comment by Sammy Finkelman (da29ec) — 11/28/2013 @ 7:04 am

    Not true. The superiors who facilitated Hasan have not been punished and the culture that condemns “Islamophobia” has not changed. It will happen again.

    Stashiu3 (e7ebd8)

  113. Not true. The superiors who facilitated Hasan have not been punished and the culture that condemns “Islamophobia” has not changed. It will happen again.

    The finknado comment bombs each thread with inaccurate declarative statements.

    Huitzilincuatec (f7d5ba)

  114. “Such subversive messages like Jonh 3:16 have to be stopped, who knows what could happen?”

    narciso – Christofascist godbags just won’t leave anybody alone.

    daleyrocks (bf33e9)

  115. sometimes you just have to bop them on the goozle with a rolled up newspaper

    if that doesn’t work try using your outside voice very firmly and say NO! BAD!

    they respond to tone more than volume so you don’t have to yell just make sure you sound different than regular

    happyfeet (8ce051)

  116. Rest assured they are on it,

    http://proteinwisdom.com/?p=52048

    by that I mean going along with it.

    narciso (3fec35)

  117. Huitzilincuatec , who the F are you? Stashiu3 has credibility with us. You do not.

    SPQR (768505)

  118. I think he was agreeing with Stashiu3, and finknado refers to Sammy.

    DRJ (a83b8b)

  119. If so, my apologies.

    SPQR (768505)

  120. No worries I think SPQR,

    I made the same mistake on first reading until I realized what finknado referred to.

    Stashiu3 (e7ebd8)

  121. Stashiu3, good to see you on Thanksgiving.

    SPQR (768505)

  122. Seriously, Sammy, where the hell do you get this stuff?

    only his proctologist, Dr. Finknado, knows for sure.

    Sam the Sham is a real piece of w*rk…

    redc1c4 (abd49e)

  123. Getting back to tracking individuals’ online activity, does anyone besides me think that makes the lack of prep for Benghazi even more unforgivable?

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xCt2PNmmddI

    KT McFarland: We Were ‘Completely Unprepared’ For Libya Attack

    Apparently CIA warned DoS about the risk of attack on the Benghazi facility on 9/11. And Hillary! ignored it. Not just Hillary! but Obama.

    My mind keeps going back to the Cairo protest. I’ve mentioned that the organizers were issuing press releases. They were of course active on social media. Common sense would tell you that you don’t put together a mob of that size by being hush hush about your plans. No doubt the organizers had put up flyers all over the city to tell people about it.

    Yet somehow the intel types missed this? The brain trust in DC can track Muhammad al Zawahiri’s on line porn habits, but not keep track of his plans to pose a threat to an embassy?

    We are told that there were no assets available to go to the aid of the people under siege in Benghazi. As more information comes out, that becomes more and more inexcusable. We know that the intel types knew beyond a shadow of a doubt that there was a threat to a US diplomatic facility in the region. We know the masters of the universe in the Obama administration is capable of conceiving that violence can erupt during a protest. That was after all their first impulse; to lie and say that was what happened in Benghazi. So even if all the US intel community had on its radar was the protest in Cairo, there should have been some response planned. And given the disposition of forces in Europe, it would have been easy to “pivot” from Cairo to Benghazi.

    This administration talks about pivoting a lot. Obama is going to “pivot” to jobs. To the economy. To Asia. They talk a lot about it, but they never do it.

    But of course we know that the administration had intel specifically about threats to the facility in Benghazi on 9/11/2012. This administration was (is) absolutely stupid for a variety of reasons. But one of those reasons is they actually thought they could keep a lid on this. More people know the truth about what happened in Benghazi then have signed up for Obamacare, I guarantee it.

    Steve57 (338553)

  124. Seriously, the same people who have porn addictions that the NSA is so interested in also planned the assaults on the Cairo embassy and the Benghazi facility.

    Yet while we’re learning the NSA has developed the capability to learn how often the jihadis are downloading “Debbie does Djibouti” or how much each one spends per annum on sex toys, we’re supposed to believe we had no actionable intelligence on what they had planned on the anniversary of 9/11?

    Steve57 (338553)

  125. that report from the Pentagon’s Irregular Warfare group, prepared for the Library of Congress, pointed out most of the major players, Bin Qumu among them,
    also consider they use porn among other venues, for steganography to hide the information they don’t want hidden,

    Logan’s conclusion that it was AQ, was one of the reasons she was forced to recant,

    narciso (3fec35)

  126. Interesting, what gets you fired, and what doesn’t:

    http://shoebat.com/2013/11/28/cbs-news-one-logans-mistakes-blaming-al-qaeda/

    narciso (3fec35)

  127. As for McCain’s friends, they are not so friendly;

    http://www.longwarjournal.org/archives/2013/11/islamic_front_endors.php

    narciso (3fec35)

  128. It’s nice to be home and I wish for you all to have a wonderful, well… every day. :)

    Stashiu3 (e7ebd8)

  129. 117.Huitzilincuatec , who the F are you? Stashiu3 has credibility with us. You do not.

    Yeah, I wasn’t very clear who I was replying to. The Finkster is starting to get to me with his tiresome comments.

    In the movie Evan Almighty, Morgan Freeman asks Evan’s wife, if you pray for patience, does God give you patience, or does He give you the opportunity to be patient. I’ve prayed for patience, God gave me the opportunity, and I failed miserably. I’ll continue to pray to be a better person and hope I’m more successful in the future.

    Happy Thanksgiving all!

    Huitzilincuatec (f7d5ba)

  130. My sincere apology.

    SPQR (768505)

  131. Huitzilincuate,

    I’ve said before that it’s my flaw and I need to be more patient … but he gets to me, too.

    DRJ (a83b8b)

  132. My sincere apology.

    No apology necessary. I was the one who made the remark about Sammy. It was uncalled for, and I should have had another eggnog instead of commenting.

    Huitzilincuatec (f7d5ba)

  133. If Milhouse is reading: there used to be a script that would eliminate a particular commenter’s picture from this site — but since we moved servers it apparently does not work any more. Any chance you could write a new script or tweak the old one?

    Patterico (d87e46)

  134. Huitzilincuatec #133 – just put such comments in the original nahuatl – you’ll feel better, and folk won’t understand it … (grin) …

    And, as a Brit, please permit me to wish all of you and yours an excellent Thanksgiving (with an optional heaping helping of Hanukkah) …

    Alastor (2e7f9f)

  135. Patterico-
    Greasemonkey & “Patterico Ignore List” still works with my Firefox. FYI.

    Roy in Nipomo (160066)

  136. Does something like this explain how so many generals have been fired with no resistance or press conferences after (by the generals), or John Roberts change of heart on Obamacare? Or John Boehners fecklessness?

    The government should always have a fear of the good people of the US to keep them in check, not total control.

    Smarty (40327b)

  137. OT, I know, doesn’t it seem like the shutdown was good for the economy;

    http://www.mcclatchydc.com/2013/11/08/207969/what-shutdown-october-hiring-eclipses.html

    narciso (3fec35)

  138. doesn’t it seem like the shutdown was good for the economy;

    Most certainly!

    And that bit of news several days ago about the unemployment rate being fudged to help Obama in 2012?! Pfft! Nothing to see there. No worries. Keep the faith, people.

    Yea, and considering how ongoing political trends — given that a wise, noble figure like Obama is managing our state of affairs — should be making the public quite confident and upbeat, the following truly is a very big mystery. It makes absolutely no sense.

    One of the mysteries in Friday’s report, however, was the sharp drop in the labor force participation rate. Already at a 35-year low, the rate fell by an unusually large four-tenths of a percentage point in just one month, to 62.8 percent. That’s more than 700,000 people exiting the labor force.

    Sam the Sham is a real piece of w*rk…

    I give Sammy F. credit for at least trying to overcome his liberal impulses. Yea, sometimes they get the better of them, but he nonetheless does make an effort to wrestle with them on occasion. Also, keep in mind that in places similar to where he lives (ie, New York City) he’d be considered an outlier, a contrarian, even an out-and-out conservative.

    Mark (58ea35)

  139. Ok, so now we are supposed to be sad, because they don’t want to go back;

    http://blogs.wsj.com/law/2013/11/29/efforts-to-close-gitmo-hit-snag-dewey-leaders-hit-with-trustee-complaint/

    narciso (3fec35)


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