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Archive for August, 2009

When you let loose the dogs of media, eventually they will turn on and devour their masters. Well not really, but it’s nice to see Democrats getting a dose of their own medicine from the state-run media.

Congresswoman Sheila Jackson Lee (D-TX) – famous for appearing unannounced at funerals and delivering political speeches – has incensed the public for talking on her phone while being questioned in a townhall meeting. Jackson Lee made an appearance on CNN to (supposedly) show us how we got it all wrong, but instead got grilled by the host, Rick Sanchez.

The Congresswoman also said that the footage may have been “doctored.” Disgusting.

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Referring to the massive socialized healthcare bill, Congressman John Conyers (D-MI) told members of the National Press Club: “I love these members that get up and say, ‘read the bill.’ What good is it to read the bill when it’s a thousand pages, and you don’t have two days and two lawyers to find out what it means after you’ve read the bill?”

Are you the chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, or an innocent bystander, Conyers?

Who is it that determines that the House has only two days to read a bill anyways?

Isn’t the job of the Congressman to read the bill he or she is voting on? God doesn’t write these bills, people do. If the bill is too complex, if you only have two days to read the bill, vote against it. This is as absurd as a firefighter saying “I love these citizens that get in my face and say, ‘save my baby.'”

When someone says something like that, they don’t deserve to be a Congressman, or a firefighter, any more.

John Conyers’ contact info:
Washington Office: 202-225-5126
Detroit Office: 313-961-5670
Trenton / Downriver Office: 734-675-4084
john.conyers@mail.house.gov

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AP: Obama a Jock?

In case you didn’t know, this is what passes as journalism at the AP (emphasis mine):

[Obama has] spent his adult life in big cities — New York, Chicago and, now, Washington. Basketball, golf, and bodysurfing are how this jock rolls. Indoor daily gym workouts are the norm.

How this “jock” rolls? I don’t know how he rolls, but I remember how he bowls: a very un-jock-worthy 37. And afterwards he had the audacity to make fun of special olympians.

Isn’t this the same jock that threw out the first pitch to the All-Star Game? The Fox Network cameras were positioned so that they would not show the actual pitch. MLB did show the entire pitch in an All-Star wrap-up, but it was hard to tell whether or not the ball hit the ground (some say it did) since you can’t pause it. Albert Pujols was positioned on top of the plate, rather than behind it, and the ball still nearly hit the ground.

Not quite what I would call a jock, but I am not an active duty member of the White House Press Corps, either.

From my AP Style Manual (the only thing written by the AP worth the ink):

mn_obama_bowlsjock Used when describing athleticism of Democratic presidents.
See Barack Obama.

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The Federal government’s “Cash-for-clunkers” program provides assistance to consumers wishing to trade in their older vehicle for a newer, more fuel-efficient vehicle. But the program’s website contained language in a security warning that stated by agreeing to the terms, the user’s computer and all of its files would become government property.

Last Friday, Fox News commentator Glenn Beck brought attention to the disclaimer on the Cars.gov dealer support page, which originally stated: “When logged on to the CARS system, your computer is considered a Federal computer system and is the property of the U.S. Government. Any or all uses of this system and all files on this system may be intercepted, monitored, recorded, copied, audited, inspected, and disclosed to authorized CARS, Dot, and law enforcement personnel, as well as authorized officials of other agencies, both domestic and foreign.”

On Monday, The Department of Transportation announced that it had removed the warning and that the department was “working to revise the language.” The warning was posted on the dealer support page of the website, which does not directly affect the consumer.

“They can continue to track you basically forever,” Fox News anchor and former Assistant District Attorney Kimberly Guilfoyle told Beck during an interview. “Once they’ve tapped into your system, and the government of course has like malware systems and tracking cookies – they can tap in any time they want.”

Guilfoyle added that it is “absolutely legal.”

However, Kristin Oehmke, a former lawyer and current legal analyst and advocate for the Bazelon Center of Mental Health Law says that the disclaimer is in fact unconstitutional as it violates the Fourth Amendment rights of those who didn’t agree to the terms, which guards against unreasonable searches and seizures.

“These dealers by signing up for the website in order to get their money are in fact waiving their rights by agreeing to the terms of the contract,” Oehmke stated in an interview. “But anyone sharing that computer – i.e. the spouse, children, or anyone else – did not agree to such terms and therefore are – or should be – protected under Constitutional rights.”

Oehmke added that “You can not give up your Constitutional rights except in a court of law. But in this case the Federal government seems to have taken away that right.”

The disclaimer has been removed, but whether or not the government’s practice has ended, or if information already obtained is to be destroyed, remains to be seen.

Although the Obama administration is withholding sales data to account for the first $1 billion of taxpayer dollars spent on the program, the Senate voted Thursday night to add an additional $2 billion in funding. After figuring in expenses such as an $18 million website and the creation of numerous government agencies to run the program, it is estimated that the actual cost for each cash for clunkers rebate will be around $6,000.

Originally published at the International Analyst Network

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