Patterico's Pontifications


R.I.P. James Gandolfini

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 5:34 pm

Dead at 51, apparently of a massive heart attack.

The news comes as a shock. I was a Sopranos fan.

Condolences to his friends and family.

James Rosen: State Department Officials May Have Committed Perjury

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 7:40 am

Perjury, schmerjury. Lying under oath is quickly becoming an Obama administration tradition:

Two top officials at the State Department’s Diplomatic Security Service (DS) — the federal law enforcement agency that protects American diplomats and investigates allegations of criminal misconduct by State Department employees — gave sworn testimony earlier this year that appears to be evasive at best, and untrue at worst, according to evidence obtained by Fox News.

The officials are Scott Bultrowicz, who until Feb. 1 served as director of DS, and Tracy H. Mahaffey, who remains the executive director of DS. In videotaped depositions conducted this past February, Bultrowicz claimed not to know about any claims by a federal agency that DS officials have failed to follow proper procedures; and Mahaffey claimed not to know about any pending investigations into DS.

Yet Fox News has obtained meeting notes, draft reports and other evidence that suggest both officials were aware, at the time they were deposed, of a pending investigation into DS and its operations by the State Department’s Office of Inspector General (OIG). What’s more, both officials had been apprised of the OIG’s preliminary finding that DS did indeed fail to follow proper procedures in at least eight cases, and possibly more, because of “undue influence” and “pressure” brought to bear by senior State Department officials to halt internal investigations.

If these folks lied under oath, they are just following the example set by top U.S. government officials like Eric Holder and James Clapper.

Clapper’s defense: it depends on what the meaning of the word is collect is. By saying we don’t “collect” data on Americans, I didn’t mean “collect,” you see, I meant “look at.” (Maybe it depends on the definition of the word “wittingly”!)

Holder’s defense: it depends on what the meaning of the word is “potential” is. By saying I never “heard of” a “potential prosecution,” you see, I didn’t mean “potential,” I meant we hadn’t actually prosecuted anyone. (“The attorney general’s statement that no journalists have been prosecuted under the Espionage Act during his tenure is accurate.”)

If the State Department folks lied under oath, they can certainly construct defenses less ridiculous than this.

They can just say they were answering the questions in the “least untruthful” manner possible.

Rand Paul: We Must Keep Out Illegals Before We Legalize Them All

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 7:23 am

Rand Paul:

I’m one of the Republicans who favors immigration reform, but I think that any legalization of those who are here illegally should be dependent upon border security, and unfortunately we’re hearing from the Gang of Eight they want the opposite. They want legalization not dependent on border security, but I think most conservatives in the country want to see the border secured, and then they’re willing to go ahead and give documentation to workers that are here illegally. But we can’t do it if we’re not going to secure the border first.

Let’s examine this statement to see if it makes sense. I think what Paul is saying is, we must secure the border because illegal immigration to this country is intolerable. Then, we must legalize all the illegal immigrants.

Yes, that is perfectly coherent. Illegal immigrants are so undesirable that we need to keep them out and also legalize all the ones who are here. That makes total sense to me. You?

P.S. I’m a “secure the borders first” guy because it appears that position makes amnesty unpalatable to Democrats and thus less likely to pass — not because “secure the borders first” makes any kind of logical sense whatsoever.

P.P.S. And the idea that Republicans need to pass amnesty for our own political well being is a crock, as evidenced by the fact that this idea is pushed, hard, by leftists all over the country. Hey, leftists? The day I actually believe that you care about the GOP’s ability to attract voters, is the day NEVER.

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