April 30, 2010

Napolitano’s Contempt For Our Intelligence…

…can be seen below.

Here, we have some bad news that is part of the National Drug Threat Assessment for 2010.

Three Border Patrol agents are assaulted on the average day at or near the U.S. border. Someone is kidnapped every 35 hours in Phoenix, Ariz., often by agents of alien smuggling organizations. And one-in-five American teenagers last year used some type of illegal drug, many of which were imported across the unsecured U.S.-Mexico border.

These facts are reported in the recently released National Drug Threat Assessment for 2010, published by the National Drug Intelligence Center, a division of the U.S. Justice Department….

Here, we have Janet Napolitano in action.

Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano, while testifying before a Senate panel, said the United States’s southwest border is “as secure now as it has ever been.”

“I say this again as someone who has walked that border,” she said. “I’ve ridden that border. I’ve flown it. I’ve driven it. I know that border I think as well as anyone, and I will tell you it is as secure now as it has ever been.”

Napolitano made that remark in response to Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.), who was questioning her during Tuesday’s Senate Judiciary Committee hearing on the oversight of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS).

…as secure now as it has ever been.

Notice that unlike when she announced that the “system” works in the aftermath of the Christmas attempt to blow up a plane by the underwear bomber, this time she says the border is “as secure as it has ever been.”

In other words, it ain’t too secure, is it, Mzzzz Homeland Security Secretary?

by @ 2:36 pm. Filed under Border Security, Homeland Security, Weasels

April 28, 2010

Liberal Trial Lawyers (Spit!)…

…make even the French (Spit!) look respectable. The cottage industry those parasites sleazed upon us a few years ago, that of victimizing the innocent in order to make a few bucks even less honestly than con men practicing the Bible scam does nothing more than make it impossible for many companies and individuals to protect their homes, families, merchandise and possessions.

What these scumbags (and this particular brand of lawyer should take the term “scumbag” as a compliment as he/she stuffs his/her maggot-ridden pockets with the lucre stolen from honest citizens) don’t give a damn about is decency, morality or any other quality that requires a soul.

They sue the innocent on behalf of other human feces who, like them, are nothing more than opportunists who are too lazy to try and earn a living like anybody else.

Here, we have a prime example of a couple of people losing their jobs because their employers’ attorneys advised them, rightly, that the flotsam known as a liberal trial lawyer is always waiting in the wings to transform a victim into a victimizer and make a victimizer into a victim.

Here’s the story.

Two retail employees say they were fired last week after they chased down a suspected shoplifter.

Wait: The tale gets even loopier. The men – Paul Shoemaker and Mike McGee – apparently were on their break and chasing an alleged store shoplifter not in their store, but in an adjacent Apple Store.

The pair were heading out of the Sprint store where they used to work in Denver’s Cherry Creek Mall when they came upon a frantic security guard in the hall. “[He] came right basically in front of us, and was like, ‘Help me, Help me.’ Out of breath. You could totally hear he was distraught,” Shoemaker told Denver’s 7News.

The pair pitched in to help capture the alleged shoplifter.

“It’s the way I was raised as a kid,” McGee said. “You see something that’s going on wrong you step in and try to help whatever way you can.”

In other words, the young man simply wanted to do the right thing, like any decent person. So…

The trouble started after the suspect was carted off. Sprint’s corporate policy states that employees should not chase shoplifters, though the men argue they were on break and it wasn’t even Sprint’s merchandise they were seeking to retrieve. Sprint declined to comment, citing privacy concerns.

The firing isn’t without precedent. In October Walmart fired an Ocala branch’s loss prevention officer for chasing a man allegedly trying to steal golf balls. And in August 2009, two college-age Best Buy employees were fired from a Broomfield, Colorado Best Buy after tackling an alleged shoplifter. A Best Buy spokeswoman said all employees “are aware, and trained, on the standard operating procedures for dealing with shoplifting or theft – which includes ceasing pursuit of a suspected shoplifter once they exit the store.” This, she said, was for the safety of employees.

So should you fire an employee for pursuing a thief? Only you can decide the “should,” but legally you are able to do so.

Employment lawyer Frank Steinberg blogged about the Walmart case that the chain “was clearly within its rights to set a policy on how shoplifting incidents were to be handled and to decide that the guard’s violation of that policy warranted termination.”

In fact, having a policy about how employees should handle shoplifting or any crime they witness on the job is seen as a smart move legally, because it can protect you from liability in the event someone is hurt. Judgments in these cases are rare, but can reach into the hundreds of thousands or even millions of dollars.

In Texas, for example, a shoplifter – his lawyer says he admits to the crime – is suing Walmart for $100,000 over the dislocated shoulder he claims employees inflicted on him.
Separately, the Houston Chronicle reported the company paid nearly $750,000 as part of a settlement to the family of a 30-year-old alleged shoplifter who died of a heart attack as employees tried to stop him. (The items he was accused of stealing: a package of diapers, a pair of sunglasses, a BB gun, and a package of BBs.)

Whether the good Samaritans in Denver deserved to be terminated is another question; how you train your staff to handle loss prevention is one of those tricky matters you probably never considered when you first started your business.

These two people were on break, which means they were on their own time, yet companies have become so paranoid about lawsuits that this didn’t matter to Sprint.

However, while the excuse used was that their concern was the safety of the two employees, face it: The larger worry was a lawsuit by the criminal. That’s right, criminal, the perpetrator of the crime of shoplifting.

I have seen this before. Security chases a thief out the door and the dirtbag runs into traffic attempting to escape, gets hit by a car, and it’s no longer his fault that he was running in the commission of a crime, because some derriere creeping, toilet cake liberal trial lawyer turns things around and makes it the pursuers’, and therefore their employers’ fault, that the anal cavity ran out into traffic.

Look at the other examples in the linked article.

In Texas, for example, a shoplifter – his lawyer says he admits to the crime – is suing Walmart for $100,000 over the dislocated shoulder he claims employees inflicted on him.

Separately, the Houston Chronicle reported the company paid nearly $750,000 as part of a settlement to the family of a 30-year-old alleged shoplifter who died of a heart attack as employees tried to stop him. (The items he was accused of stealing: a package of diapers, a pair of sunglasses, a BB gun, and a package of BBs.)

Whose fault was either the dislocated shoulder or the heart attack?

The employess were simply, as the late Louis L’Amour used to say, “riding for the brand”, trying to recover their employers’ merchandise, so the business wouldn’t have to take a loss on something it had paid for.

Shrinkage control, or loss prevention, is an integral part of running any business where there is any sort of inventory involved, whether it’s equipment for performing services or it’s merchandise.

In the course of my own consulting work, I’ve had to counsel clients along the same lines their attorneys have had to — advising them to incorporate the same policies of non-pursuit (except in the case of clients wherein security officers have such concerns as national security or certain kinds of public safety issues that will protect them in instances of litigation) while silently cursing those walking, talking used prophylactics who dare think of themselves as anything other than the thin film of scum that floats atop the cesspool of humanity. Unfortunately, coaching clients in the avoidance of fraudulent, frivolous or overstated lawsuits is often part of my job.

In my opinion, sustaining crime related injuries, whether superficial, disabling or fatal, should be written off as “If you mess around with the bandwagon, you have to expect to get hit with the horn. Live with it.”

Some divorce lawyers (that’s a brand of lawyer who milks his lucre out of another kind of misery) are as septic tank qualified as the ones described above. I’ve never had any truck with any of those critters, but one day last year, as I was strolling by a divorce lawyers’ office in Santa Monica, an older lawyer walked out with a younger one, and he was telling the rookie, “You’re gonna call the broad, and you’re gonna kiss her ass. Promise her anything you have to, the pension…” and then they were too far away to hear any more.

These turds should be taken out and either boiled or drowned very slowly on national television…

by @ 8:18 pm. Filed under Assholes, Criminals, Good People Punished, Parasites, Weasels

“And You Can(’t) Take That…

…to the bank!”

The kerfuffle comprised of flying blame over the financial crisis goes on.

Depending upon whom you ask, and that depending upon their individual political agendas, the conclusion one could easily draw is that the private sector’s to blame and the public sector’s to blame.

Face it, though, the entire economic mess was triggered, if that’s the operative word, by unconstitutional government interference in the marketplace.

As congressional Democrats press on with their attempts to get financial legislation reform passed, a key component has been lacking from the debate: how to handle the government-sponsored enterprises Fannie Mae (NYSE:FNM) and Freddie Mac (NYSE:FRE).

Although some Republican lawmakers have cried foul over the fact nothing has been included in a bill sponsored by Senate Banking Committee Chairman Sen. Chris Dodd, (D-Conn.), President Barack Obama’s administration has vowed to pursue reforming the GSEs … eventually.

However, despite a long history of alleged corruption, close ties to the current administration and a recent $10-billion extension of “emergency aid” to Freddie and Fannie in the deadest possible part of the news cycle, these two entities have gone relatively unnoticed by the news media, with a lion’s share of the spotlight given to Wall Street bogeymen like Goldman Sachs (NYSE:GS).

Reporting on the roles of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac has been almost nonexistent, particularly in the broadcast media. Since March 28, ABC, CBS and NBC put together only broached the topic of GSEs one time. But Goldman Sachs and the circumstances surrounding an SEC investigation were mentioned 37 times.

Even in the cable media, home of the 24-hour news cycle, when GSE-reform is discussed, it’s dismissed as some sort of Republican talking point or distraction.

As usual, the big government, regulation addicted side of the aisle kick started the problem.

Background: Freddie and Fannie ‘Proximate Cause’ of Crisis

Though the attention has been lacking, there is a strong to be made that these government-sponsored enterprises are at least somewhat, if not largely, culpable for the economic crisis.

According to the “Financial Services Committee Republican Plan for Reforming Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac,” posted on March 26, it’s not just the collapse in housing these GSEs are responsible for, but the entire economic crisis.

“The evidence is clear that the Government Sponsored Enterprises (GSEs) – specifically, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac – were the proximate cause of the economic crisis,” the Republican plan explained. “Ultimately supported by the taxpayers to the tune of hundreds of billions of dollars, Fannie and Freddie permitted their executives, investors, and creditors to make outsize profits when times were good, but stuck taxpayers with the tab when the housing bubble burst. Fannie and Freddie’s access to cheap capital and the taxpayers’ pocketbook helped run up housing prices to unsustainable levels, while crowding out lenders and investors who could not afford to compete against these government-sponsored juggernauts.”

Howsomever, there appeared to have been some hanky panky going on, of, as they say, an unsavory nature.

For example, there’s the chain of shenannigans brought to us courtesy of Goldman Sachs, wherein they’re accused of capitalizing in less than forthright fashion upon markets broken by the onslaught of federal buttinskyism.

A Senate showdown has put Goldman Sachs’ defense of its conduct in the run-up to the financial crisis on display before indignant lawmakers and a national audience. Democrats hope it also builds momentum for legislation, now before the Senate, to tighten regulation of the nation’s financial system.

Goldman Sachs CEO Lloyd Blankfein testily told skeptical senators at a hearing Tuesday that clients who bought subprime mortgage securities from the Wall Street powerhouse in 2006 and 2007 came looking for risk “and that’s what they got.”

The Senate investigative panel alleges the firm bet against its clients — and the housing market — by taking short positions on mortgage securities, and failed to tell them that the securities it was selling were very high risk.

Naughty, dudes and dudettes at Goldman Sachs, if these allegations are indeed true.

One rather impissening revelation, if it is indeed a revelation, are the series of not-all-that-good accusations and the resulting investigation into my own former bank (no, I didn’t own it, per se, just had lots of money in it before it was absorbed by Chase as it began sinking to Davy Jones’ Locker).

Of course, the below ABC News account is a bit on the bursting-with-enthusiasm side of things.

In an incident that critics view as emblematic of rampant greed at Washington Mutual, a remix of that song — with the lyrics changed to “I like big bucks and I cannot lie…” — was performed at one of the company’s lavish annual retreats years before it became the largest bank to fail in U.S. history.

Every year the bank would hold huge parties in exotic locales to celebrate its mortgage originators who created the most loans — the same high-risk loans that would ultimately prove to be the company’s undoing.

At the 2006 retreat in Kauai, a group of employees performed a “tribute” to the event’s honorees. To the tune of the 1992 hit “Baby Got Back,” the employees came out on stage and started rapping, “I like big bucks and I cannot lie / You mortgage brothers can’t deny / That when the dough roles in like you’re printin’ your own cash / And you gotta make a splash / You just spends/ Like it never ends / Cuz you gotta have that big new Benz…”

At a retreat in Maui the year before, NBA Hall-of-Famer Magic Johnsonwas the emcee. “President’s Club,” Johnson told the gathering. “It’s kind of like the NBA All-Star game. Everyone there is an All-Star.”

But on Sept. 25, 2008, collapsing under the weight of these now-toxic loans, Washington Mutual — with over $300 billion in assets, $188 billion in deposits, and 43,000 employees – was seized by federal regulators and sold to JP Morgan Chase for $1.9 billion in the largest bank collapse in the country’s history.

For the past year the Senate Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations, led by chairman Carl Levin and ranking member Tom Coburn, has been examining Washington Mutual’s collapse as part of a probe into the financial crisis.

What they have found is widespread fraud. The investigators have said that Washington Mutual engaged in fraudulent lending practices for years leading up to its demise.

I must admit that as we entered the mortgage quagmire, WaMu bank officers were being encouraged to push those loans any way they could, and one branch manager I know told me that there were generous bonuses being paid to help things along.

All the while, the bank was selling its toxic loans into the market: not only were some marred by fraudulent information, but others were ones that the bank believed would likely go bad. Still, the company did not alert the securities’ buyers about the looming problems. In fact, the bank even boosted compensation for its loan officers who sold higher-risk loans: the faster the speed and the greater the volume, the bigger the payday a loan officer would earn for the sales.

The entire article on Washington Mutual is here.

Any way you look at both sides in this, it is profoundly disconcerting.

by @ 4:22 pm. Filed under Assholes, The Economy

I Suppose You Could Call This One…

…a theocrapost, in that there are connotations to that effect in both links herein.

First, A Victory For People Who Have Souls.

The Supreme Court has said a federal court went too far in ordering the removal of a congressionally endorsed war memorial cross from its longtime home in California.

In ruling the cross could stay, the justices said federal judges in California did not take sufficient notice of the government’s decision to transfer the land in a remote area of California to private ownership. The move was designed to eliminate any constitutional concern about a religious symbol on public land. The ruling was 5-4, with the court’s conservatives in the majority.

Brad Dacus of the Pacific Justice Institute is delighted with the decision, saying it addresses a crucial issue “on whether or not the government is going to allow individuals and others [to use religious symbols] to recognize those who’ve died in the service of our country….”

Dacus points out that the use of religious symbols has been a part of the nation’s history and a practice that has been long accepted in the past — and he is pleased that the high court has not deviated from precedent.

With the permission of Congress, the federal land the cross sits on was turned over to private parties. That fact, says Dacus, was a critical factor in the court’s decision.

“The fact that that [land transfer] did occur is such that this court was correct in that you can’t have a federal endorsement if the land is not federal property any longer — and that’s what this case hinged on,” says the attorney.

Because lower courts held the cross to be unconstitutional, it had been encased in a wooden box — pending a final ruling — so people could not see it.

The heroes of the day were Kennedy, Roberts, Alito, Scalia and Thomas, while the losers in the atheists’ box were Stevens, Ginsburg and Sotomayer, who were unable to muster enough firepower to support their G-d hating leftist political agenda.

Second, it’s good to see that somebody gets it!

The Institute on Religion & Democracy is concerned that Christian groups are not fully realizing the threat posed by an expansion of sharia (Islamic law) in the West, and so it is calling upon churches to stand against global attempts to enshrine it.

Faith McDonnell, director of the religious liberty program at the IRD, highlights what she describes as a “trend” found in several countries “to capitulate to Islamist factions within the Muslim population” by enshrining sharia into the legal code, effectively creating a different set of rules for Muslims.

Imagine that!

“Islam’s goal is to Islamize the entire country — to take the territory and to claim it for Islam,” she explains. “So any of these things that we see happening where Islamists are complaining about offense, like with Franklin Graham coming to the Day of Prayer — it’s just a little bit more territory that they’re taking.”

Put a bucket underneath a leaky sink and leave it there, untouched. It will fill up, little by little, and begin to overflow overflow.

Put a slowly growing Islamic population in your Judeo-Christian country, leave it to its own devices, and watxch it overrun your own rights and religious freedom.

April 27, 2010

Sowell On Slavery…

…as portrayed by revisionist history.

I was only going to do one post today, then I read this column by Thomas Sowell in Jewish World Review a little while ago and thought it needed another post in which to share it.

Mr. Sowell is right on point when he talks about the fact that our educational institutions have filtered slavery, as a historical subject, down to a simple affair of whites enslaving blacks, which, as inaccurate as this revisionism tends to be, is one of the cornerstones of the unjustified, even lie-based guilt trip laid on all white Americans by the political left and by certain race-card waving rabble-rousers looking for a hand-out or an edge in the game of politics.

Many years ago, I was surprised to receive a letter from an old friend, saying that she had been told that I refused to see campus visitors from Africa.

At the time, I was so bogged down with work that I had agreed to see only one visitor to the Stanford campus — and it so happens that he was from Africa. He just happened to come along when I had a little breathing room from the work I was doing in my office.

I pointed out to my friend that whoever said what she heard might just as well have said that I refused to go sky-diving with blacks — which was true, because I refused to go sky-diving with anybody, whether black, white, Asian or whatever.

The kind of thinking that produced a passing misconception about me has, unfortunately, produced much bigger, much longer lasting, much more systematic and more poisonous distortions about the United States of America.

Slavery is a classic example. The history of slavery across the centuries and in many countries around the world is a painful history to read — not only in terms of how slaves have been treated, but because of what that says about the whole human species — because slaves and enslavers alike have been of every race, religion and nationality.

If the history of slavery ought to teach us anything, it is that human beings cannot be trusted with unbridled power over other human beings — no matter what color or creed any of them are. The history of ancient despotism and modern totalitarianism practically shouts that same message from the blood-stained pages of history shouts that same message from the blood-stained pages of history.

But that is not the message that is being taught in our schools and colleges, or dramatized on television and in the movies. The message that is pounded home again and again is that white people enslaved black people.

It is true, just as it is true that I don’t go sky-diving with blacks. But it is also false in its implications for the same reason. Just as Europeans enslaved Africans, North Africans enslaved Europeans — more Europeans than there were Africans enslaved in the United States and in the 13 colonies from which it was formed.

The treatment of white galley slaves was even worse than the treatment of black slaves picking cotton. But there are no movies or television dramas about it comparable to “Roots,” and our schools and colleges don’t pound it into the heads of students.

The inhumanity of human beings toward other human beings is not a new story, much less a local story. There is no need to hide it, because there are lessons we can learn from it. But there is also no need to distort it, so that sins of the whole human species around the world are presented as special defects of “our society” or the sins of a particular race.

“Our society”.

If American society and Western civilization are different from other societies and civilization, it is that they eventually turned against slavery, and stamped it out, at a time when non-Western societies around the world were still maintaining slavery and resisting Western pressures to end slavery, including in some cases armed resistance.

Only the fact that the West had more firepower than others put an end to slavery in many non-Western societies during the age of Western imperialism. Yet today there are Americans who have gone to Africa to apologize for slavery — on a continent where slavery has still not been completely ended, to this very moment.

It is not just the history of slavery that gets distorted beyond recognition by the selective filtering of facts. Those who go back to mine history, in order to find everything they can to undermine American society or Western civilization, have very little interest in the Bataan death march, the atrocities of the Ottoman Empire or similar atrocities in other times and places.

Those who mine history for sins are not searching for truth but for opportunities to denigrate their own society, or for grievances that can be cashed in today, at the expense of people who were not even born when the sins of the past were committed.

An ancient adage says: “Sufficient for the day is the evil thereof.” But apparently that is not sufficient for many among our educators, the intelligentsia or the media. They are busy poisoning the present by the way they present the past.

Spot On!

by @ 4:30 pm. Filed under Great Commentary, The Fact Of The Matter...

Disciples Of Hanoi Jane? Or Simply…

…general purpose useful idiots, have visited the anti-American despot in Venezuela to fawn over him, praise him and kiss his touchas. Sean Penn, Kevin Spacey, Danny Glover, Naomi Campbell and, famously, the wretched Cindy Sheehan.

Of course, I’m talking about Hugo Chavez, the guy we’ve largely ignored for some time now, who’s been forging all sorts of alliances with communists and Islamofascist terrorist organizations while letting it be known he is an enemy of the United States.

Latin America experts are warning about the growing threat from Hugo Chavez of Venezuela, citing new evidence of Chavez’s expanding ties with Iran and Hezbollah and other terrorist groups.

The Venezuelan president also has demonstrated his willingness to buy elections throughout the hemisphere to empower enemies of the United States, several experts said in presentations Thursday during a conference that the Center for Security Policy sponsored on Capitol Hill.

“Today, Venezuela airports are being freely used by drug cartels to export drugs to Europe and the United States,” said Luis Fleischman, senior adviser for the center’s Menges Hemispheric Security Project. “Chavez has helped the FARC fight against Colombia, [while] Hezbollah cells have increased their fund-raising and other activities in the area.”

What’s more, Fleischman said, “Young Venezuelans are being trained in Hezbollah camps in Lebanon . . . and Venezuela has reportedly produced uranium for Iran.”

Because of the close ties between Chavez and Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, “there is a real possibility” that Chavez could get a nuclear weapon from Iran after Iran acquires that capability itself, he said.

But we have nothing to worry about, thanks to President Obama’s outstanding diplomatic applications.

Obama’s “friendly interaction” with Chavez at last year’s Summit of the Americas has only emboldened the Venezuelan strongman in thinking that the United States will do nothing to oppose his regime or his anti-American activities, a panelist said.

Anyhow, read on.

by @ 4:10 pm. Filed under Homeland Security

April 26, 2010

Terrorist Biological/Chemical Warfare Threats…

…vs. Nukes shouldn’t be a matter of competing priorities, both being concerns involving weapons of mass destruction, though I’d have to agree with those who believe that the former are more likely to be employed, or attemptedly so, by terrorists than the latter.

The Obama administration’s push to address the specter of nuclear terrorism has some proliferation experts fretting that the White House isn’t as focused on the more likely scenario of being attacked with chemical or biological weapons.

Last week’s nuclear-security summit in Washington took steps to thwart attempts by al Qaeda and other terrorist groups to acquire the fuel for a nuclear bomb, which White House counterterrorism adviser John Brennan called “one of the greatest threats to our national security.”

But some proliferation experts worry that chemical and biological weapons are much more likely to be used in a terrorist attack, and that the administration and Congress hasn’t adequately addressed this threat.

Okay, so…

One example: The Obama administration has yet to name an ambassador to the Chemical Weapons Convention in The Hague, a group that monitors military-grade chemical weapons and dual-use chemicals that could be used as weapons by terrorists.

A National Security Council strategy paper released in November concluded that a bioattack could kill hundreds of thousands of people and the cost of each incident could exceed $1 trillion. Chemical weapons, though less deadly, are easier to acquire and use.

Nuclear terrorism would be catastrophic, but the odds of a terrorist group acquiring fissile material, assembling it, and delivering a bomb are low, given the extreme difficulty of these tasks, experts said.

“People concentrate on what’s most terrifying, not on what could really happen,” said Eric M. Javits, ambassador under President George W. Bush to the Organisation for the Prevention of Chemical Weapons in The Hague.

The bipartisan Commission on the Prevention of WMD Proliferation and Terrorism concluded in late 2008 that terrorist use of a biological weapon was “more likely” than the use of a nuclear weapon. The commission’s final report card, issued in January, noted the administration’s “keen understanding” of the nuclear threat but said there had been “no equal sense of urgency displayed towards the threat of a large-scale biological weapons attack.” The commission gave the U.S. an “F” grade for preparations against a biological attack.

The chairmen of that commission—former Sens. Bob Graham, a Democrat, and Jim Talent, a Republican—stressed before the House Committee on Homeland Security this week that the U.S. was still unprepared to deal with a large-scale attack using biological weapons, whose lethality could “rival or exceed that of an improvised nuclear device.”

I concur. There’s not a whole lot I can add to this one, as the author has laid it out completely in the article linked above, but I will say that I sincerely hope the Powers That Be, which unfortunately include such august personages as B. Hussein Obama and Janet Napolitano, will do something right, just this once, and refrain from basing whatever decisions they engender on our behalf based upon the last couple of paragraphs in the article.

But some WMD experts remain convinced that al Qaeda’s goal remains an attack that will trump the scope of Sept. 11, including the use of nuclear weapons. “I don’t get any sense al Qaeda is going downscale,” said Graham Allison, Director of Harvard University’s Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs and a member of the WMD commission.

“What’s Osama bin Laden’s icon? It’s a mushroom cloud enveloping a city,” Mr. Allison said.

Sure, Mr. Allison, you go with the icon while those of us with a little more sense pray that O and company disregard a dumb logo and, though it’s not exactly a strong point of theirs, pursue a more logical course.

by @ 5:53 pm. Filed under Homeland Security

April 24, 2010

One “Not Guilty”, Two To Go

So far, one third of a travesty of justice has been rectified.

A U.S. military jury cleared a Navy SEAL Thursday of failing to prevent the beating of an Iraqi prisoner suspected of masterminding a 2004 attack that killed four American security contractors.

The contractors’ burned bodies were dragged through the streets and two were hanged from a bridge over the Euphrates river in the former insurgent hotbed of Fallujah, in what became a major turning point in the Iraq war.

The trial of three SEALs, the Navy’s elite special forces unit, has outraged many Americans who see it as coddling terrorists.

Petty Officer 1st Class Julio Huertas, 28, of Blue Island, Ill., was found not guilty by a six-man jury of charges of dereliction of duty and attempting to influence the testimony of another service member.

As far as I’m concerned, the so-called “victim” (Ahmed Hashim Abed, scumbag) is damn lucky that I wasn’t there, and yeah, these politically correct assholes who in any way believe the SEALs in question should even be in the position of having to defend themselves in this case are coddling friggin’ tangos.

Huertas is the first of three SEALS to face a court-martial for charges related to the abuse incident. All three SEALs could have received only a disciplinary reprimand, but insisted on a military trial to clear their names and save their careers.

The trial stems from an attack on four Blackwater security contractors who were driving through the city of Fallujah west of Baghdad in early 2004. The images of the bodies hanging from the bridge drove home to many the rising power of the insurgency and helped spark a bloody U.S. invasion of the city to root out the insurgents later that year.

The Iraqi prisoner who was allegedly abused, Ahmed Hashim Abed, testified Wednesday on the opening day of the trial at the U.S. military’s Camp Victory on Baghdad’s western outskirts that he was beaten by U.S. troops while hooded and tied to a chair.

…beaten by U.S. troops while hooded and tied to a chair. is, to my way of thinking and whether it happened or not, quite a bit milder than burned bodies were dragged through the streets and two were hanged from a bridge, but a certain species of service personnel known as REMFs, along with a whole lot of civilians back home with spines of asparagus or a general bone to pick with the brave folks who keep ‘em safe and preserve their freedom, can’t seem to tell the difference.

Navy Petty Officer 3rd Class Kevin DeMartino, who was assigned to process and transport the prisoner and is not a SEAL, testified he saw one SEAL punch the prisoner in the stomach and watched blood spurt from his mouth. Huertas and the third SEAL were in the narrow holding-room at the time of the incident, he added.

PO3 DeMartino probably enjoys “don’t ask, don’t tell” status, giving him the privilege of getting to hang around real men, even though he has to keep the fantasies he entertains about them to himself.

But defense attorneys tried to cast doubt on the beating claims, showing photographs of Abed after the alleged beating in which he had a visible cut inside his lip but no obvious signs of bruising or injuries anywhere else.

In her closing arguments, Huertas’ civilian attorney Monica Lombardi pointed to inconsistencies between DeMartino’s testimony and nearly every other Navy witness. She also reminded the jury of the terrorism charges against Abed, who is in Iraqi custody and has not yet been tried, saying he could not be trusted and may have inflicted wounds on himself as a way of recasting blame on American troops.

Lombardi is no doubt correct.

But prosecutor Lt. Cmdr. Jason Grover said DeMartino said the SEALs were itching to abuse Abed as payback for the killings of the Blackwater guards — two of whom were former SEALs.

DeMartino will most likely resign his commission in due course and become one of those civilian lawyers who make their lucre through fraudulent and frivolous lawsuits, following in the footsteps of one John Edwards, priss.

Let’s see what happens with our other two brothers. If either of them is convicted, justice will not have been served to the extent it needs to be. In fact, the whole thing will be, as I said above, a travesty of justice.

The only justice here would have been served if Ahmed Abed was dead (hey, that rhymes!).

by @ 2:36 pm. Filed under Uncategorized

It’s Not Like Arizona’s Taking The Law…

…into its own hands, as the phrase goes, it’s more like, unlike the U.S. Government, they’re enforcing the law.

For some time now, it’s appeared that certain politicians and, sadly, Americans, interpret the word illegal to mean “a sick bird”. We already know that we’re presently governed by a president and a congressional majority who believe that the Constitution, printed on a long, narrow, perforated roll of tissue paper, can be found rolled up on a spool in a bracket on the wall beside the commode, but the additional knowledge that they get hives, a rash or some other ailment as a result of defying their allergy to the law is a bit much.

Thankfully and in hopes that it sets a precedent of some kind, the governor of Arizona, in accordance with the the will of the majority of her constituents, has signed a statewide illegal immigration bill into law.

Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer on Friday signed a law making it a state crime to be an illegal immigrant, just hours after President Obama criticized the measure and said the federal government would review it to see if it violates civil rights laws.

In signing the bill, the Republican governor said she has also issued an executive order to set standards to ensure racial profiling does not take place under the new law, which goes into effect in 90 days. She said the state had to step in and protect its residents because the federal government has failed.

“Though many people disagree, I firmly believe it represents what’s best for Arizona,” the governor said as she signed the law.

The law makes it a state crime to be in Arizona without proof of legal status, and would authorize police to demand documents from those they suspected could be illegal immigrants. It would also make it a crime to transport or hide illegal immigrants.

The Arizona law has the support of the state’s two Republican senators, who said criminals among the illegal immigrant population are responsible for a marked increase in violence and crime.

Of course, there are always those who have no respect for the sovereignty of our country, in fact no respect for anything that stands in the way of their agendas, even when they’re bad for the United States and the citizens herein.

But one of the state’s congressman, Rep. Raul Grijalva, a Democrat, has urged businesses to boycott Arizona in retaliation for the proposed law. He said the measure would encourage racial profiling and predicted that without some sort of penalty falling on Arizona, other states would try to follow its lead.

Yes, there will be dissent from Mexican residents with U.S. citizenship who haven’t a clue as to what words like “patriotism”, as regards their citizenship status, engender and lawless liberals who see a massive amnesty they hope someday to bring about, gain the votes of a million criminal aliens once they’ve been amnestied and then naturalized.

Even “our” president will be attacking the bill, using as a basis, among other already tired arguments, that it will encourage racial profiling.

Arizona’s governor vows the state’s tough new law targeting illegal immigration will be implemented with no tolerance for racial profiling, but at least two advocacy groups were preparing legal challenges and Mexico has warned that the law could affect cross-border relations.

Cross border relations, hmmmmm…….There’s another argument that’s become tired.

It’s none of Mexico’s business what laws we enact in order to protect our citizens from cirme and safeguard, to the best of our ability, our economy, as long as we’re not going south across the border and physically disrupting their state of being.

The fact that the corrupt, unctuous bottom feeders who govern Mexico are not favorably disposed toward taking responsibility for anything other than lining their own pockets is not a prerequisite factor for any of our own internal legislation, and therefore we are not responsible for taking in, at massive cost to our own citizens in terms of livelihood, well being, safety and the disposition of our taxes, the bulk of their neglected, unemployed population, let alone the legions of violent criminals spawned by corruption and neglect on the part of that same government.

Republican Gov. Jan Brewer on Friday signed into law a bill that supporters said would take handcuffs off police in dealing with illegal immigration in Arizona, the nation’s busiest gateway for human and drug smuggling from Mexico and home to an estimated 460,000 illegal immigrants. The law requires police to question people about their immigration status — including asking for identification — if they suspect someone is in the country illegally. It’s sparked fears among legal immigrants and U.S. citizens that they’ll be hassled by police just because they look Hispanic.

With hundreds of protesters outside the state Capitol shouting that the bill would lead to civil rights abuses, Brewer said critics were “overreacting” and that she wouldn’t tolerate racial profiling.

“We in Arizona have been more than patient waiting for Washington to act,” Brewer said after signing the law. “But decades of inaction and misguided policy have created a dangerous and unacceptable situation.”

My emphasis, there.

And that says it all, I should think.

Federal Law dictates in no uncertain terms that these illegals are just that, illegal. It is the federal government’s job to enforce federal law. They are failing at that task, more out of unwillingness for political reasons than anything else, and if they aren’t going to do the job, states have to do it themselves in what amounts to pure self defense.

Earlier Friday, President Barack Obama called the Arizona bill “misguided” and instructed the Justice Department to examine it to see if it’s legal. He also said the federal government must enact immigration reform at the national level — or leave the door open to “irresponsibility by others.”

Seems to me, the door’s been open to Irresponsibility by the federal government, and what Arizona’s doing is simply working to patch that particular hole in the fabric in the society of their state. It’s truly amazing what that lying, anti-Constitution, phony American has the moxi to say, expecting intelligent people to acknowledge his statements a seven a trifle respecting of their sensibilities.

The new law makes it a crime under state law to be in the country illegally. Immigrants unable to produce documents showing they are allowed to be in the U.S. could be arrested, jailed for up to six months and fined $2,500.
It also allows lawsuits against government agencies that hinder enforcement of immigration laws and toughens restrictions on hiring illegal immigrants for day labor and knowingly transporting them.

My thoughts: “Way to go, Jan Brewer!”

by @ 1:39 pm. Filed under Criminal Aliens, Homeland Security, Immigration, Uncategorized

April 22, 2010

I’m Sorry, But This One’s Just…

…too funny, despite being rather f—ed up, but funny (there’s no accounting for my sense of humor, what can I say?) nonetheless, to ignore. I just have to post on it…

Senior staffers at the Securities and Exchange Commission spent hours surfing pornographic websites on government-issued computers while they were being paid to police the financial system, an agency watchdog says.

The SEC’s inspector general conducted 33 probes of employees looking at explicit images in the past five years, according to a memo obtained by The Associated Press.
The memo says 31 of those probes occurred in the 2 1/2 years since the financial system teetered and nearly crashed.

Taxes, as they used to say, working for the people.

A senior attorney at the SEC’s Washington headquarters spent up to eight hours a day looking at and downloading pornography. When he ran out of hard drive space, he burned the files to CDs or DVDs, which he kept in boxes around his office. He agreed to resign, an earlier watchdog report said.

• An accountant was blocked more than 16,000 times in a month from visiting websites classified as “Sex” or “Pornography.” Yet he still managed to amass a collection of “very graphic” material on his hard drive by using Google images to bypass the SEC’s internal filter, according to an earlier report from the inspector general. The accountant refused to testify in his defense, and received a 14-day suspension.

• Seventeen of the employees were “at a senior level,” earning salaries of up to $222,418.

• The number of cases jumped from two in 2007 to 16 in 2008. The cracks in the financial system emerged in mid-2007 and spread into full-blown panic by the fall of 2008.

The entire article is here.

An SEC spokesman declined to comment Thursday night.

by @ 9:41 pm. Filed under WTF!!!!?