[VIDEO] Jonah Goldberg Drops the F-Bomb: ‘Whiff of Fascism’ to Obama Questioning Companies’ ‘Economic Patriotism’Posted: August 6, 2014
I had this on in the background when Charles Krauthammer and Jonah Goldberg were discussing this, and Jonah’s invocation of the F-word made me stop what I was doing and pay attention. Jonah’s scholarship on the history of fascism–history of political ideologies in general–makes his comments more interesting and relevant. It’s not a word he’d use casually. It’s an unsettling, and I think, accurate observation.
“Congressional investigators are fuming over revelations that the Internal Revenue Service has lost a trove of emails to and from a central figure in the agency’s tea party controversy.”
That’s the opening sentence of the Associated Press’ story on the IRS’ claim that it lost an unknown number of emails over two years relating to the agency’s alleged targeting of political groups hostile to the president.
But note how the AP casts the story: The investigators — Republican lawmakers — are outraged.
Is it really so hard to imagine that if this were a Republican administration, the story wouldn’t be the frustration of partisan critics of the president? It would be all about that administration’s behavior. With the exception of National Journal’s Ron Fournier, who called for a special prosecutor to bypass the White House’s “stonewalling,” and former CBS correspondent Sharyl Attkisson, it’s hard to find a non-conservative journalist who thinks this is a big deal.
Let’s back up for a moment. Read the rest of this entry »
First, we found out agency was targeting Tea Party. Now IRS emails are missing. Cover-up?
For USAToday, Glenn Harlan Reynolds writes: I guess it’s time to award President Obama a second asterisk. When charges came out that the IRS targeted Tea Party groups for harassment, the Wall Street Journal‘s James Taranto started calling Obama “President Asterisk.”
[Don’t miss this: The Daily Caller Knows EXACTLY Where The IRS Emails Went]
His point was that this illicit assistance tainted the election, the way an athlete’s use of illegal performance-enhancers results in an asterisk on any records he sets.
“…since government agencies seldom ‘lose’ evidence that makes them look good, reasonable people might suspect that there’s a cover-up going on…”
Now it may be time for another asterisk. As Congress investigates the IRS chicanery, the IRS has responded to a request for emails to and from Lois Lerner, who spearheaded the Tea Party harassment, by saying, basically, that the dog ate its homework.
[Glenn Reynolds‘ book The New School: How the Information Age Will Save American Education from Itself is available at Amazon]
Or, rather, the IRS claims, somewhat dubiously, that “a hard drive crash” on Lerner’s computer led to the loss of emails to outside entities “such as the White House, Treasury, Department of Justice, FEC, or Democrat offices.” You know, the very people she’s accused of coordinating her harassment with.
“…After all, nobody thought that the famous ’18½ minute gap’ on Richard Nixon’s White House tapes contained anything positive about White House involvement in Watergate.”
With those emails missing, it’ll be harder to prove whether Lerner’s Tea Party harassment might have been at the behest of other wrongdoers, perhaps going as high as the Oval Office itself. But since government agencies seldom “lose” evidence that makes them look good, reasonable people might suspect that there’s a cover-up going on. After all, nobody thought that the famous “18½ minute gap” on Richard Nixon’s White House tapes contained anything positive about White House involvement in Watergate.
Noah Rothman writes: “Whatever the stated reason for the new delay, it is illegal.”
This is the stark verdict of Case Western University School of Law professor Jonathan Adler. Writing in The Washington Post, he notes that President Barack Obama’s administration “is not the first to take liberties with the laws,” but it is doing so with “increasing brazenness” which he finds “disturbing.” Adler is not alone, but he is one of the few to speak out plainly against this administration’s actions.
“Their collective non-reaction has the cumulative effect of acclimating the nation to the rule of man over the rule of law.”
The administration’s 27th delay in the implementation of the Affordable Care Act, the most overtly political delay yet, designed primarily to insulate the president’s political allies from the voters’ wrath, has sparked some criticism. Most of it, however, has been timid or is emanating from opponents of this president who are easily dismissed.
But these delays are unbecoming of a republican government and worthy of sterner rebuke. They have precedent-setting implications that honest political observers should fear. And this condition is likely to become even more dangerous because it seems that no one has either the means or the desire to do anything about it.
From...where else but the Daily Caller? Look at renegade journalist Glenn Greenwald getting all territorial about his NSA leaker Edward Snowden today. It’s as if he’s saying to The Washington Post, ‘BACK OFF BITCH, HE’S MINE.’
I can’t really blame him. Back in the summer of 2001 when Chandra Levy went missing amid an affair with slimeball, blow-dried Rep. Gary Condit (D-Calif.) that involved oil massages in his Adams Morgan love palace, it was my story at The Hill. As in MY STORY. Any reporter or intern who even breathed in the direction of Levy and Condit got glances filled with cold daggers in their skulls and a firm declaration that it was my beat and not to be touched. Looking back on that, that was a little ridiculous and I don’t even know how I got away with that attitude. But live and learn, and share. There’s plenty of room for multiple stories on a topic.
But not Snowden. Mess with the facts on Snowden and you might as well rip out Greenwald’s liver at this point.
Because this no-show is so atypical–and contrary to my uniformly negative view of Obama’s presidency–I’m tempted to give him the benefit of the doubt, and imagine there’s a good reason he’s not giving a speech in Gettysburg today.
Why? Because this is an example of what he’s good at. Giving speeches. Obama may be a failure at governing and managing, but his strength as an orator is legendary, it’s a potential safe zone to return to. Linking himself with history and destiny is his natural habit of rhetorical stagecraft.
I’d think he’d welcome an opportunity to change the subject. If anyone one needs a chance to change the conversation, it’s Obama. He could remind people of how special he is, why his presidency is important. What’s behind the decision not to appear in Gettysburg today?
WH adviser: Obama too busy for 150th anniversary of Gettysburg because of ObamaCare, or something
This gem comes from Dan Pfeiffer, Senior Advisor to the President for Strategy and Communications, who most recently compared Republicans to suicide bombers for trying to derail ObamaCare through the budget process. Suddenly, though, the ObamaCare debacle seems to be a lot more critical than Pfeiffer admitted in September. Today, National Journal’s George Condon openly wondered what was so important on Barack Obama’s schedule that precluded him from attending the 150th anniversary of the Gettysburg Address:
Why the president’s defenders are wrong when they argue Obama is impotent.
by Ron Fournier
Two New York Times reporters recently posited for President Obama this grim scenario: Low growth, high unemployment, and growing income inequality become “the new normal” in the nation he leads. “Do you worry,” the journalists asked him, “that that could end up being your legacy simply because of the obstruction … and the gridlock that doesn’t seem to end?”
Obama’s reply was telling. “I think if I’m arguing for entirely different policies and Congress ends up pursuing policies that I think don’t make sense and we get a bad result,” he said, “it’s hard to argue that’d be my legacy.”
Actually, it’s hard to argue that it wouldn’t be his legacy. History judges U.S. presidents based upon what they did and did not accomplish. The obstinacy of their rivals and the severity of their circumstances is little mitigation. Great presidents overcome great hurdles.
In Obama’s case, the modern GOP is an obstructionist, rudderless party often held hostage by extremists. So … get over it. His response to The New York Times is another illustration that Obama and his liberal allies have a limited—and limiting—definition of presidential leadership.
I call it the White Flag Syndrome.