Patterico's Pontifications


Saturday Night Music

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 11:03 pm

This tune never fails to send a chill down my spine. “This Isn’t Goodbye” by Jamie Woolford, formerly of The Stereo and Let Go.

From his latest album, A Framed Life in Charming Light. Awesome stuff. Posies fans, take note.

Patterico Page on Facebook: Open to All

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 9:42 pm

I have my own Facebook page, which has a mixture of “friends” from the blog and from my personal life. However, if I don’t know you well from the blog, you might have asked to be a “friend” and not gotten approved. Tonight I have set up a new page that is blog-centric. If I understand the way this new page works, anyone on Facebook can click “like” and follow it. Which would be fun.

I’m going to try to remember to post my entries on the Facebook page as well as on the blog. I’m not 100% sure I have done this right, as I am no social media expert. So anyway, go to this page and click “like,” I think is what you are supposed to do with the Facebook.

And then get off my lawn!

UPDATE: I have successfully changed the name to ( is my personal page.) Easy to remember, and a good way to be notified when there is a new post up. Go “like” it now.

Man Who Allegedly Secretly Recorded Mitch McConnell Already Facing Unrelated Trespassing Charges

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 8:06 pm

Yesterday a Kentucky Democrat said that he had heard two activists brag about taping Mitch McConnell’s office without his consent:

Jacob Conway, who is on the committee of Kentucky’s Jefferson County Democratic Party, revealed to Megyn Kelly moments ago that members of the liberal activist group Progress Kentucky bragged to him that they had made a secret recordings of a meeting held by Senator Mitch McConnell (R) without his consent.

Earlier this week, tapes were released of McConnell and his aides discussing challengers in the upcoming election, particularly actress Ashley Judd. The FBI is now investigating the incident.

According to Conway, Progress Kentucky’s Sean Riley and Curtis Morrison were in the hallway of McConnell’s campaign headquarters after an event ended, when they overheard a conversation they considered offensive, and decided to record it.

Unless someone in the office consented to the recording, which seems unlikely, this apparently violates Kentucky law. The video for the story as reported by Megyn Kelly is at the link (but is not embeddable).

Tonight, Charles C. Johnson reveals that Curtis Morrison was arrested last year for trespassing, and is facing charges as we speak:

One of the two Progress Kentucky co-founders involved in the alleged illegal wiretapping of Senator Mitch McConnell was charged in November of last year for illegally trespassing.

Activist Curtis Morrison was charged with third degree criminal trespassing on November 25th in Jefferson County, Ky., and the bail was set at $50.00. His pretrial conference is set for May 13, 2013.

No es bueno para el senor Morrison.

IRS Claims It Can Read Your Emails

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 2:41 pm

I knew about this story when it came out, but I didn’t want to be just another political blog following the herd. So I cleverly waited in the wings, waiting to pounce with coverage of how Big Media ignored this story over the past couple of days.

Also . . . I was too busy to say anything when the story came out.

Let’s review the absolutely shocking basic story:

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has claimed that agents do not need warrants to read people’s emails, text messages and other private electronic communications, according to internal agency documents.

The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), which obtained the documents through a Freedom of Information Act request, released the information on Wednesday.

In a 2009 handbook, the IRS said the Fourth Amendment does not protect emails because Internet users “do not have a reasonable expectation of privacy in such communications.” A 2010 presentation by the IRS Office of General Counsel reiterated the policy.

If the IRS says it doesn’t need a warrant to read your emails, that means the IRS is reading your emails without a warrant. They don’t claim powers like this without exercising them.

Now, those of you paying attention during the Bush administration might remember a small flap having do with warrantless wiretaps. I think there may have been an entry or two about it in the more partisan left-wing blogs, and a couple of the clearly left-leaning newspapers had a few small items about it. That’s pretty much how you recall the coverage, right? I think it was a “thing” for 2-3 days. It’s hard to remember, though, isn’t it?

If you’re rubbing your eyes in disbelief, that’s because I’m joking of course, and my deadpan (read: “not funny”) style of humor had you momentarily confused. Bush’s violation of FISA was a national story for literally years. The New York Times stories about it garnered a Pulitzer Prize. There were calls for impeachment. It was one of the biggest issues of Bush’s presidency.

On Thursday, Jay Carney was asked about all this. He was able to claim ignorance:

Q Two other quick topics. ACLU has released some documents that they obtained through a Freedom of Information Act request with the IRS, where IRS agents claim they can go through people’s emails and text messages without a warrant. Is the White House concerned about the IRA making that claim in terms of people’s privacy?

MR. CARNEY: I would have to take the question. I’m not aware of the story or the documents that were obtained, and I would certainly refer you to the IRS as a starting point.

Of course, Carney was able to profess ignorance because the national news media has been completely asleep at the wheel, in their typical shameless fashion. I searched national news publications for stories containing the terms IRS and email and warrant for the past year. The Los Angeles Times search revealed nothing. The New York Times revealed nothing. The Washington Post had nothing about the most recent IRS story — although to its credit, it did have a few stories and other pieces about government’s ability to do this generally.

A Google News search of the terms “IRS email warrant” reveals stories at publications like Fox News, or the Blaze, or Human Events, or the Washington Times. You get the idea. To be fair, a couple of lefty blogs have covered it as well — but there has been virtually nothing in Big Media. The closest thing I see to mainstream media news coverage is the single question asked of Carney, which he successfully brushed off as minor and non-newsworthy, and an NBC News blog post.

Is this one of those stories not being noticed by people in the left-leaning media bubble? On Friday we learned that massive publicity about the Kermit Gosnell case caused many lefty pundits to learn about that case for the first time. Folks like Dave Weigel and Conor Friedersdorf said that the Gosnell case was indeed a legitimate and compelling news story . . . they just had never heard about it before. [UPDATE: Actually, Weigel said he had read about it, but did not read the grand jury report — and thus see the obvious political angles — until the Twitter-bomb of coverage.]

One wonders if the story about the IRS reading your emails is similar.

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