All the tech companies are denying that they ever heard of “PRISM“, and that the government does not have “direct access” to their servers. Amazingly, they all use almost precisely identical language to frame their non-denial denials. It’s another pathetic chapter in a long running series. So they didn’t apparently know the name “PRISM”, and they apparently forwarded the information the government requested to separate servers. Next!
Archive for the 'fabrications' Category
The New Yorker:
the mere existence of the edits — whatever the motivation for them — seriously undermines the White House’s credibility on this issue. This past November (after Election Day), White House Press Secretary Jay Carney told reporters that “The White House and the State Department have made clear that the single adjustment that was made to those talking points by either of those two institutions were changing the word ‘consulate’ to ‘diplomatic facility’ because ‘consulate’ was inaccurate.”
Remarkably, Carney is sticking with that line even now. In his regular press briefing on Friday afternoon (a briefing that was delayed several times, presumably in part so the White House could get its spin in order, but also so that it could hold a secretive pre-briefing briefing with select members of the White House press corps), he said:
The only edit made by the White House or the State Department to those talking points generated by the C.I.A. was a change from referring to the facility that was attacked in Benghazi from “consulate,” because it was not a consulate, to “diplomatic post”… it was a matter of non-substantive factual correction. But there was a process leading up to that that involved inputs from a lot of agencies, as is always the case in a situation like this and is always appropriate.
This is an incredible thing for Carney to be saying. He’s playing semantic games, telling a roomful of journalists that the definition of editing we’ve all been using is wrong
There are a number of takeaways from this. First, the MSM apparently really believed their guy when he spoke rubbish and grandiosity lo these many years. They believed their guy even though most every word that came out of his mouth was to be measured in terms of its political usefulness, not by its truth. That accounts for the tone of surprise and incredulity in the New Yorker piece.
Second, the White House is equally unprepared and surprised. As we know from the days of Richard Nixon and Ron Ziegler, the press secretary’s orders come straight from the top. So when Carney looks like a buffoon telling lies that are long past their sell-by date, it’s because there’s confusion, disorganization and maybe even a little panic at the top. And why wouldn’t there be? Here was this Chicago Way politician with a nice voice getting treated as a god. Heaven on earth.
The MSM is now coming to grips with the fact that, despite it was Republicans saying so, there actually was a cover-up and they ignored it because they wrote it off as partisan politics. Oops! Whether the media get to the central issue is another matter. Contrary to the received wisdom in these matters, the cover-up is not always worse than the crime. In Ron Ziegler’s “third-rate burglary” that was true. In Benghazi, the opposite is the case. The crime in Benghazi was not taking whatever diplomatic and specifically military actions that might have saved four lives. Whether or not the efforts would have been successful is not the issue; orders to “stand down” are the issue. We know where the order came from. Whether the media are willing to go there is another thing entirely.
The media have started to wake up. How far will it go in this much-more-serious-than-Watergate scandal? PL:
Obama and Hillary Clinton are on trial — not yet before a court, but in the minds of thoughtful people everywhere. It appears (given the limited evidence we have so far) that they were grossly negligent before Benghazi, criminally incompetent that night of the attack, and then that they aided and abetted a conspiracy to lie about the murders—all for the obvious political reasons and because Obama and Clinton (and nearly all their leftist friends) believe that Americans are stone-stupid. But the real trial deals with other suspects.
It is the Democratic Party that’s on trial today; and to a lesser extent, America’s mainstream media. For Democrats (and especially Democratic senators) it is put-up-or-shut-up time: are they Democrats or Americans first? Obviously their first instinct was to defend the Democratic administration. Republicans would have done the same. But starting with the Hayes story on the Rice propaganda points (and the neo-Soviet process that turned them from truth to lies), and then the Issa hearing Wednesday (and a recent ABC news piece focusing again on the phonied-up talking points), no honest observer can fail to suspect this administration of doing unspeakable things. It is Congress’s duty to find out the truth.
How would Republicans act if a GOP administration were under this sort of cloud? We know exactly how. It was the radically partisan Edward Kennedy who proposed that a senate select committee investigate Watergate—but in February 1973, the Senate voted unanimously to create that committee. Republican Senator Howard Baker was vice chairman, and asked the key question: ”What did the president know and when did he know it?” Which Democratic senator will ask that question today, now that the issue isn’t breaking-and-entering but lying about four murders, including the murder of an American ambassador? Which cabinet member will be Eliot Richardson and resign rather than continuing to be part of a coverup?
Bonus fun: the administration is doing other things to copy Nixon’s paranoid and perhaps criminal behavior. And finally, one of the worst aspects of this sordid affair is that it undid the US’s relationship with the moderate President Magariaf of Libya. We threw it all away, and for what?
Actually it’s more like drawing to an inside straight flush. The odds of that are in the ballpark of 1 in 52. You have to get not only the right card, but the right suit. In the instant case, the administration has to bet that not only have a majority of influenceable voters have become morons but that the press will continue to be complicit in the most egregious campaign of PR rubbish in our memory. Case in point: the janitors at the Capitol. The chief says they’re getting a pay cut, only they’re not, so his minions scramble to turn an omelet back into unbroken eggs. To little avail, as it turns out. Even the Washington Post has to describe the pathetic nature of the falsehoods.
But of course, to some extent the administration doesn’t care what people like that think. The whole objective is to have one sob story after another for the TMZ crowd. Which makes us wonder even more about the janitor story. Was it supposed to end with visuals in the Capitol of janitors taking mops against a sea of troubles, and by opposing, end them? The Broomstick Revolution against the GOP, live and in color on afternoon TV? Maybe. It must be awful to believe that a 2% cut in anything is Armageddon, and more awful to pretend for the cameras that a 2% cut is Armageddon. Low intelligence or low character, take your pick. We’re wondering if some of the Washington Post crowd and their peers are finally figuring out just how low is the character of the men they’re covering.
From a few days ago:
I’ll lay out additional proposals that are fully paid for and fully consistent with the budget framework both parties agreed to just 18 months ago. Let me repeat: Nothing I’m proposing tonight should increase our deficit by a single dime. It is not a bigger government we need, but a smarter government
Someday there will be real reporters again. In all likelihood it will take some catastrophe to make that happen. It could be (a) the inflation that is coming, or (b) the loss of reserve currency status, or (c) something even worse. HT: MS
Apes and pigs again. Where have we seen this before? And Mac Owens and Captain Katie Petronio weign in on the latest offense to common sense from the faculty lounge. The Tatler explains that the faculty lounge looked a lot more like Google than GM when it came to running an election company. Take a look. Very impressive. Imagine if they applied that same discipline and savvy to supporting the expansion of the private economy. Fat chance.
Finally, Egan-Jones, which downgraded US debt three times, has been “barred from grading government debt and asset-backed securities for 18 months” by the SEC. We’re all trapped momentarily inside a video game whose narrative is shaped by government and the media. It won’t last forever, and this hectoring of S&P and Egan-Jones is going to look very bad in retrospect.
Two months ago Illinois’ Democratic Sen. Dick Durbin made the utterly misleading assertion that “Social Security does not add one penny to our debt — not a penny.” In fact, Social Security, which is a pay-as-you-go program financed primarily by payroll taxes, began taking in less money than it was spending for the first time in 2010. Its cash flow deficit has been growing ever since, and it accelerated since the enactment of the payroll tax holiday two years ago.
Only by counting the yearly interest on the $2.7 trillion worth of U.S. Treasury IOU’s that already sit in the program’s trust fund (paid for, ironically enough, with more IOU’s) — a fund that has been raided over the years to pay for other government spending, can one possibly claim that Social Security “is not in crisis.”
The following day, the president’s aides echoed Durbin’s fiction about Social Security. “We should address the drivers of the deficit,” White House spokesman Jay Carney said during his daily press briefing, “and Social Security currently is not a driver of the deficit.”
This is pretty funny considering that even the NYT has noticed recently that Social Security is in worse shape than you thought. It should be shocking that politicians defend a practice that would send them to the hoosegow if they were directors of a private company, but it’s not, is it? Say, why don’t they just give some of those magic coins to the Social Security “trust fund.” Then everything will be swell.
How interesting. One Bobbie Bigsby noticed that her paycheck was short $31. That’s one way to get the attention of the 47%.
CIA officials on the ground in Libya dispatched security forces to the U.S. diplomatic mission in Benghazi within 25 minutes and made other key decisions about how to respond to the waves of attacks on U.S. installations on September 11, a senior American intelligence official said on Thursday. Officials in Washington monitored events through message traffic and a hovering U.S. military drone but did not interfere with or reject requests for help…”At every level in the chain of command, from the senior officers in Libya to the most senior officials in Washington, everyone was fully engaged in trying to provide whatever help they could,” the official said. “There was no second-guessing those decisions being made on the ground, by people at every U.S. organization that could play a role in assisting those in danger. There were no orders to anybody to stand down in providing support,” the official added.
This latest ridiculous statement from the administration smells like another Clapper caper to us. You know, the fellow who said that the Muslim Brotherhood was secular and so forth. A denial by a fool, meant to help the boss limp across the finish line on Tuesday. Then what? Worry about that then. HT: RS
BTW, this is the same Reuters that said this on September 13: “this much is clear: a crowd gathered at dusk, about 7 p.m. (1700 GMT), chanting slogans against the film and angry at Washington’s failure to act against its promoters. At some point, shooting began, with some in the crowd thinking they were under fire from the consulate. Around 10 p.m., rioters surged into the compound.” Perhaps the report above came from the same fine source.
McCain on Benghazi:
this is either a massive cover-up or gross incompetence on the part of the president of the United States. There were ample warnings ahead of time. There was two attacks on our consulate in Benghazi, one in April and one in June. The British ambassador, there was an attempt to assassinate him in Benghazi. The British consulate was closed. The Red Cross left. From our Lt. Col. Woods, there was request after request for security. Why didn’t the president of the United States know about what was happening in the deteriorating situation in Benghazi as al Qaeda-affiliated groups moved in? Then, of course, a seven hour firefight. A seven hour fight, and we’ve got forces all over that region. On September 11th, why didn’t we have forces on alert? Why couldn’t we get people there? A couple of these brave Americans were murdered in the last hour or so.
And then, the massive cover-up – does the President really think that we don’t know that he came out for days and days afterwards saying that this was a spontaneous demonstration triggered by a hateful video? By the way, Hugh, one thing about continuous flow of information? He gave us everything after they got bin Laden, right, including betraying people’s very lives in their eagerness to give us all the details. There was surveillance cameras throughout the consulate in Benghazi. So the FBI finally got in there. Do you know where those recordings are kept now?…
Top secret. Is that a flow of info? Why, Mr. President, did you send out Susan Rice, your ambassador, to say that this was a spontaneous demonstration triggered by the hateful video? Why did you, Mr. President, on Letterman, why did you, to the United Nations, say that same thing when everybody knew that was wrong? That was absolutely false. So the president of the United States either out of stupidity or willing desire to deceive the American people continued this absolute falsehood about a spontaneous demonstration…
he keeps saying they’re going to have an investigation? You don’t need an investigation to know that the president of the United States told people absolute falsehoods when he continued to say this was a spontaneous demonstration triggered by a hateful video. There was nothing, nothing that showed that. If I sound angry to you, I knew Chris Stevens. I knew him well. I was in Benghazi with him during the fighting. I was in Tripoli with him at the time of elections. The last message he sent out, Hugh, was a request for, and his concern about the lack of security at the consulate in Benghazi…
I promise you as the person who would be the chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee, I will not rest. And I will not rest, because the American people cannot be deceived like this.
Roger Simon is appealing to knowledgable people to contact PJ media before election day. With regard to cover-up or incompetence, John McCain (as fired up as we’ve ever heard him) is wrong. It’s not either-or, it’s both-and. The Jarrett-Axelrod-Obama administration both dithered and covered up. Disgraceful behavior, made even worse by treating the American people as gullible children, and made even worse than that by the complicity of the corrupt media establishment.
From the other day:
Panetta said he and top military commanders had judged it too dangerous to send troops to the eastern Libyan city without a clearer picture of events on the ground. The “basic principle is that you don’t deploy forces into harm’s way without knowing what’s going on; without having some real-time information about what’s taking place,” he said
The US had the World’s Fair of “real-time information” (live video from a drone or two of a seven hour attack, constant contact with the consulate and annex, etc.), so Panetta’s statement is transparent rubbish meant to deflect blame, no doubt from the president. But imagine for a moment if Panetta were serious. It’s an open invitation to bad actors to carry out sneak attacks on US facilities around the world.
If this were a novel, you might think it over-the-top to create characters with this level of incompetence. HT: JG
2008, regarding planetary matters:
I am absolutely certain that, generations from now, we will be able to look back and tell our children that…this was the moment when the rise of the oceans began to slow and our planet began to heal
2012, regarding Benghazi:
I gave three very clear directives. Number one, make sure that we are securing our personnel and doing whatever we need to.
What’s the difference between 2008 and 2012? In one sense, nothing. Rubbish then, rubbish now. Of course 2008 was a better year for Messrs. Stevens, Smith, Doherty and Woods.
“The entire reason that this has become the political topic it is, is because of Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan.” Thus, Stephanie Cutter, President Obama’s deputy campaign manager, speaking on CNN about an armed attack on the 9/11 anniversary that left a U.S. consulate a smoking ruin and killed four diplomatic staff, including the first American ambassador to be murdered in a third of a century.
To discuss this event is apparently to “politicize” it and to distract from the real issues the American people are concerned about. For example, Obama spokesperson Jen Psaki, speaking on board Air Force One on Thursday: “There’s only one candidate in this race who is going to continue to fight for Big Bird and Elmo, and he is riding on this plane.”
She’s right! The United States is the first nation in history whose democracy has evolved to the point where its leader is provided with a wide-body transatlantic jet in order to campaign on the vital issue of public funding for sock puppets. Sure, Caligula put his horse in the Senate, but it was a real horse. At Ohio State University, the rapper will.i.am introduced the President by playing the Sesame Street theme tune, which, oddly enough, seems more apt presidential walk-on music for the Obama era than “Hail To The Chief.”
Obviously, Miss Cutter is right: A healthy mature democracy should spend its quadrennial election on critical issues like the Republican Party’s war on puppets rather than attempting to “politicize” the debate by dragging in stuff like foreign policy, national security, the economy and other obscure peripheral subjects. But, alas, it was her boss who chose to “politicize” a security fiasco and national humiliation in Benghazi.
At 8.30 p.m., when Ambassador Stevens strolled outside the gate and bid his Turkish guest good night, the streets were calm and quiet. At 9.40 p.m., an armed assault on the compound began, well-planned and executed by men not only armed with mortars but capable of firing them to lethal purpose – a rare combination among the excitable mobs of the Middle East. There was no demonstration against an Islamophobic movie that just got a little out of hand. Indeed, there was no movie protest at all. Instead, a U.S. consulate was destroyed and four of its personnel were murdered in one of the most sophisticated military attacks ever launched at a diplomatic facility.
This was confirmed by testimony to Congress a few days ago, although you could have read as much in my column of four weeks ago. Nevertheless, for most of those four weeks, the President of the United States, the Secretary of State, the U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations and others have persistently attributed the Benghazi debacle to an obscure YouTube video – even though they knew that the two events had nothing to do with each other by no later than the crack of dawn Eastern time on Sept. 12, by which point the consulate’s survivors had landed safely in Tripoli.
So Washington had both real-time video of the attack and eyewitness reports no later than dawn on September 12. Yet Jay Carney said on September 15 that it was all about a YouTube video and there was no evidence that it was pre-planned. And the UN ambassador was on all the talk shows on September 17 saying the same thing.
Published 50 years ago, Seven Days in May is a political thriller about a president who makes unsound decisions about foreign policy and becomes the target of a coup d’etat plotted by military and intelligence officers. In the end the president wins because he has more dirt on his opponents than they have on him.
Fifty years later, the latest firewall in the dumbest cover-up in history is that the state department and others in the intelligence community knew all sorts of things about Benghazi, but none of it (except wrong information for a week after the attack) made its way to the White House. Toby Harnden:
Biden blamed the US intelligence community for the debacle and stated that no one had requested additional security. When asked by Raddatz why the White House had blamed the death of Ambassador Chris Stevens on protests about a movie, he responded: ‘Because that was exactly what we were told by the intelligence community.’ There is ample evidence that this was not the case. From tomorrow, expect a number of senior intelligence figures to come out and say that. The US intelligence community is not about to take the fall for what happened in Benghazi just so Obama can be re-elected. Even more startling was Biden’s insistence: ‘Well, we weren’t told they wanted more security there. We did not know they wanted more security again.’ That is directly contradicted by testimony from two State Department officials this week. Eric Nordstrom, expressed frustration at how his appeals for more resources were rebuffed. Lt Col Andrew Wood, former head of a 16-member U.S. military team that helped protect the embassy in Tripoli, testified: ‘We were fighting a losing battle. We couldn’t even keep what we had. There were requests for extra security; those requests were not honoured.’
There’s video of the Benghazi attack and no doubt much more information as yet undisclosed. What is the likelihood that the Clinton state department, the intelligence community and others being thrown under the bus are going to sit back and take it? This reminds us of Seven Days in May with an alternative ending.
Or apparently at least a prince. Interesting if true.
he demagogues against Washington’s supposedly selective waivers of the Stafford Act — legislation that requires communities hit by disasters to match 10 percent of federal aid. They waived it for 9/11, he tells the crowd, and they waived it when Hurricane Andrew hit Florida: Those communities were allowed to keep their one dollar for every ten federal dollars. But when he comes to Hurricane Katrina, which devastated the largely African-American population of New Orleans, Obama implies that Congress refused the waiver: “What’s happenin’ down in New O’leans? Where’s yo’ dollar? Where’s yo’ Stafford Act money?…Tells me that somehow the people down in New O’leans they don’t care about as much.” In fact, ten days before Obama gave that speech, Congress had waived the Stafford Act requirement for Katrina. He was well aware of that fact, too. After all, he was one of only 14 senators to vote against the waiver.
Tells you pretty much all you need to know about the guy.
Pethokoukis on the 873,000 jobs added last month:
in June 1983, the economy added about 900,000 jobs, according to that same household survey. During the second quarter of 1983, the quarter that month falls in, the economy grew at an astronomical 9.3% annual rate…Right now, in the third quarter of 2012, economists think the economy is growing at an an anemic 1.5% or so. So the economy was growing six times as fast in 1983 when it was adding that many jobs.
Pay no attention. All is well.
We are pleased to report most excellent news about the glorious success of the dear leader’s five year plan, comrades. Employment has increased by 873,000 in one month. Pay no attention to reactionary political forces that try to exploit a false narrative for personal gain. Pay no attention to counter-revolutionary scribblers who say that unemployment is 14.7%. As for Mr. Welch, he uses a corporate jet, which makes him an enemy of the people. We are also pleased to report an excellent harvest in the Ukraine, comrades, as a result of the glorious success of our dear leader’s scientific application of collective farming.
The man in the garbageman ad: “Picking up fifteen tons, sixteen tons by hand, you know, that takes a toll on the body.” That is of course true. However, in 1989 California passed a recycling law that accelerated a change into fully automated sanitation trucks that pick up the garbage from specially designed containers with mechanical jaws; the job of the men in the truck is principally to operate the loader. The mechanical arm sweeps up the container so it deposits the trash in a space at the top of the truck. The men rarely get out of the truck, let alone pick up anything.
Moreover, there are several fleets of trucks, each dedicated to differently colored containers, each containing a specific form of trash. Black containers for regular trash, blue for recyclable material, green for leaves and branches and so forth. Yes, it’s mostly a waste of money, but the point is that long gone are the days when men picked up plastic bags of stuff and swung them into the compacter unit in the back of a truck.
San Diego, the location of the garbageman ad, completed its transition to fully automated trucks in 1999. So the ad has been false for a decade or two. Alas, when you’re going for a voting demographic several layers below the ba-ba-booey cohort, the facts don’t matter at all if the feeling of the thing is right.
Unlike his neighbors, Mitt Romney hasn’t hugged his garbageman! Of course all this is rubbish, as it were. If you look at the garbage truck in question, it picks up large plastic bins with mechanical jaws. The garbageman doesn’t pick up the garbage anymore, and, despite the supposed “live-action” moving of a bin by a fellow, these guys normally don’t get out of their trucks. This is a total fraud, and the claims about how tough the work is on his body are tales from yesteryear. The truck does the work, and has been doing so for a decade or more. Hey, fella, get outa that truck, we want to give you a hug. Ewwwwww.
“Picking up fifteen tons, sixteen tons by hand, you know, that takes a toll on the body. When I’m fifty-five, sixty years old, I know my body’s going to be break down.” Rubbish. Here are ordering instructions for the plastic containers that the truck, not the garbageman, picks up.
But this is what it’s come to these days. The minimum qualification for president is what is said about you in a phony video. How about adequate honesty and competence to avoid the five scandals of the current administration? Oops. Did we say five scandals? We forgot the sixth, the economy, a scandal so big that SNL can’t figure out how to make it funny.
Super fun irony bonus: Romney was of course briefly an “invisible” garbageman himself, back when they did pick up the bags by hand.