Patterico's Pontifications


More From Hillaryland

Filed under: General — Dana @ 5:00 pm

[guest post by Dana]

In spite of Hillary’s unprecedented efforts, this scandal just won’t go away.

When Clinton finally addressed the email scandal earlier this week, she said she believed her “work” emails (on private email account and private server) were preserved because they included other officials with the “” email addresses.

Today the State Dept. undercut Clinton’s claim:

[S]tate Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki told reporters Friday that archiving of the work email boxes of senior State Department officials besides the secretary did not begin until “February of this year.”

(Reminder: the public and President Obama found out about Hillary’s exclusive use of personal email for government business on March 3, 2015.)


Psaki said that since 2013, after Clinton had left, the secretary’s emails have been automatically archived. She said this same system has only been in place for dozens of other senior officials since last month.

When asked directly whether emailing another official would have automatically created a permanent record, back when Clinton was secretary, Psaki indicated that this is a bad assumption.

“It depends on whether the employee archived their documents, doesn’t it?” she said.

This latest blow to Clinton comes on the heels of the revelation that her team used a purposely limited method of determining which emails would be saved:

“For more than a year after she left office in 2013, she did not transfer work-related email from her private account to the State Department. She commissioned a review of the 62,320 messages in her account only after the department–spurred by the congressional investigation–asked her to do so. And this review did not involve opening and reading each email; instead, Clinton’s lawyers created a list of names and keywords related to her work and searched for those. Slightly more than half the total cache–31,830 emails–did not contain any of the search terms, according to Clinton’s staff, so they were deemed to be ‘private, personal records.’”

Clearly, intentionally using such an insufficient query to search and select emails – and one in which no staffer carefully reviewed the individual email to ensure no errors were made as to “personal” and “work” – suggests that a limited, narrow response was the planned outcome.

As it were, though, Clinton may very well have reason to be concerned:

Storing classified information in a personal, nongovernmental email account on a private computer server, like the one at Mrs. Clinton’s home, would be a violation of secrecy laws.

Of course, if she were truly interested in full disclosure, she would have kept it as simple and clean as possible and turned over all the emails from the get-go instead of going through the painfully obvious machinations to avoid sunlight. (On a side note, as far as Trey Gowdy is concerned, the Select Committee on Benghazi is not the least bit interested in her personal emails – only those which “he’s legitimately entitled to with respect to Libya and Benghazi.”)

Where it stands:

1) Clinton said all her work emails were cc’ed to others at State, but it’s now not clear that all of these were archived or kept by those officials.

2) Clinton said about 30,000 of emails she deemed to be “personal” were destroyed, and that she won’t give anyone access to her serve. However, Time Magazine has reported that emails were designated as “personal” only if they weren’t flagged by a keyword search, a process some have said is not very thorough.

3) The State Department has said it would release portions of the 55,000 pages of emails that Clinton did send in hard copy form to the department. However, State has said many of these documents will include redactions, and that some may not be released at all.

4) Despite her claims of compliance, House Select Committee on Benghazi Chairman Trey Gowdy (R-S.C.) has said there are gaps in the emails they have from Clinton. Gowdy has subpoenaed Clinton for her emails, and has said Clinton should testify twice before his committee.

Finally, one more potentially damaging issue is that of whether Clinton signed the requisite OF-109 form declaring that she turned over all relevant classified records and materials upon her departure from the State Dept. For its part, the State Dept. is declining to provide a direct answer:

QUESTION: Right, but did Secretary Clinton – a former DOJ attorney has asked if – under department policy, asked if Secretary Clinton, like all officials here in this building when they depart or separate from office, has to sign something called a form OF-109. It’s a separation statement declaring that when you leave office, you’re turning in – turn over not just classified materials, but any documents for official purposes. Did she sign —

JEN PSAKI, STATE DEPARTMENT: Sure. I think this was asked – it was more than two years ago. I don’t have an update on that specific question at this point.

Either way, it appears to be a no-win for Clinton:

If she signed it and was not honest, she is in a heap of trouble. If she did not have to sign it, it is further evidence that the rules don’t apply to her and that she is deliberately evasive enough to avoid perjuring herself.

Why, it’s almost as if Clinton, whose historical imperiousness and past behaviors evidence she sees herself as above the law, is exercising a full-blown strategy to exhaust and confuse the public and lawmakers with layers upon layers of lies, obfuscations and distractions. IOW, it’s business as usual.


WaPo: Scientific Study Proves Conservatives Have Tendency Towards Self-Aggrandizement

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 7:47 am

The “science” is settled!

Previous work on the “happiness gap” between liberals and conservatives took a relatively simple route: Just asking. Study subjects were asked to self-report their own happiness levels. In several academic studies (and one by Pew) conservatives repeatedly came out as generally cheerier than their left-wing countrymen.

The new results, published Thursday in the journal Science, took a different approach. Led by Sean Wojcik, a doctoral student in psychology and social behavior at the University of California at Irvine, the experiment analyzed photos and language analysis from the LinkedIn and Twitter profiles of those identified as either liberal or conservative.

“Common sense would dictate that if you want to know how happy someone is, you can ask them,” said Peter Ditto, UCI professor of psychology & social behavior and co-author of the paper. “But what do you do if someone says they’re happy, but doesn’t act that way?”

Indeed, Ditto and Wojcik found more genuine smiles (as measured by standard facial analysis) and more positive language in the Web trail of liberals, even though other members of that group self-reported as less happy in the very same study.

The reason, they say, is that political conservatives have a tendency to self-aggrandize. When they compared happiness self-reports with tests that measured a tendency to enhance one’s better qualities, they found that the happiness gap could be explained by a self-enhancement gap. In other words, liberals were being more honest about their personal pitfalls.

I would bet a paycheck that Ditto and Wojcik are leftists, for many reasons. One of the top reasons is, only a leftist would look at a data point like “conservatives say they are happier” and reach a conclusion that this must be because “political conservatives have a tendency to self-aggrandize.” That conclusion is certainly catnip for Big Media, which is chock-full of like-minded sneering leftists, but it’s not “science.”

Norm MacDonald has a joke that illustrates the problem here:

A new study found that men with beards are more attractive. More great work from the University of Bob Seger!

As the saying goes, when all you have is a hammer sneering dismissiveness towards conservatism, every problem looks like a nail an opportunity to sneer dismissively at conservatives.

P.S. Your Faithful Blogger is a happy man who is feeling some Conservative Anger™ as he contemplates the likelihood that taxpayer funds were expended for this “research.”

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