Posts Tagged ‘Obama’

Yes, folks, there’s blood in the water, the sharks are circling, and there’s talk of IMPEACHMENT! Don’t ya know. High crimes and misdemeanors. All manner of gross malfeasance and treasonous machinations. A threat to our very Republic he is. So. Let’s take a look at: The Case Against Trump.

1) Trump Said Mean Things About Obama

According to PoliticsUSA, Pres. Trump may have committed an impeachable offense by claiming that Obama wire-tapped him. Apparently this violates some legal precept not actually named in the article, but clearly, making a “false” claim about a previous President is the next best thing to selling secrets to Wikileaks. Except…

As it turns out, Pres Obama didn’t have to order the surveillance of Donald Trump and his election team, because he knew it was already ongoing. So, as President, all the honorable Mr. Obama had to do was request the intercepts of illegal NSA spying on American citizens, and get anything that had “Trump” meta-tagged on it. So, yes, while technically correct that then Pres. Obama did not “order the wire-tapping” of the Trump transition team, it’s a simple, demonstrable fact that he acquired surveillance information on them. So, yes, please, let’s talk about the impeachability of impugning the reputation of a former President, while completely ignoring the fact that the NSA, operating under the Obama administration, conducted illegal surveillance on US citizens, and then “unmasked” said citizens names in violation of both precedent and federal law. NONE of which, but the way, was related to Russia.

Impeachment Score: Weeeeak.

2) Chinese Trademark Keffuffle

And again, our friends from across the pond, with their keen and insightful grasp of US Constitutional law, insist that, after a 10-year legal battle, the Chinese finally granting a contentious trademark decision to Trump, Inc. within days of Trump becoming President is impeachable. Like, totally, dude. As a side note, this same article suggests that being mean to the media is an impeachable offense because it violates the 1st Amendment. Or something. You know what, I’m not even going to talk about this ridiculous smear of yellow journalism anymore. Ptooie.

A slightly more credible source (no, seriously, read this article, it’s incredibly informative and well-balanced) highlights the fact that the this potential conflict of interest could potentially violate the Emoluments Clause which, “prohibits the federal government from granting titles of nobility, and restricts members of the government from receiving gifts, emoluments, offices or titles from foreign states without the consent of the United States Congress.(Wikipedia)”  HOWEVER!

This arguably deals with the practice of naming an US government official as an officer, noble, or other binding title to a foreign nation, thus engendering a conflicting loyalty or claim to a foreign power. The question then becomes, is the granting of a trademark equivalent to the awarding of a Duchy? Or perhaps more germane, was the granting of this trademark intended as a “gift” to the President? Was it intended as a bribe to curry favor? In order to make this an impeachable offense, one would, I suggest, have to provide compelling evidence of both the former and the latter. Neither of which has, to date, been presented.

The other question I would propose, in my role as a woefully uneducated layman, is what would Pres. Trump’s detractors have him do in this situation? Trump Enterprises is an ongoing concern. Management of this enterprise has been transferred to his son. Is it the expectation that if a business man becomes President for four years, he must divest himself of all business-related holdings acquired over a lifetime? Should Pres. Trump have rejected the Chinese government’s approval of the trademark after a ten year legal fight? How do you “not accept” a trademark decision like this in your favor? The simple reality is that while there may be a suggestion of impropriety here, it may also be completely circumstantial. If there was a compelling case to be made, would it not have already BEEN made? More importantly, can it be proven that Donald J. Trump used the influence of his Office to influence the Chinese in order to secure these trademarks? If so, such evidence has yet to surface. The fact that Trump turned right around and played nice with Taiwan thereby stretching and bending China’s long-standing “One China” policy suggests otherwise.

Impeachment Score: Really Weak.

3) President Trump’s “Travel Ban” Was Unconstitutional. Or something.

So, to state the painfully obvious, let’s at least get the terms and conditions straight here. It was not a Muslim ban. It was not a travel ban. It was 120-day moratorium on travel (Click it. No, really. Have you actually read the thing? Didn’t think so.) from seven specific countries that bleed jihadists like a hemophiliac Imam. So, to review: Ban = permanent, i.e. – a revocation. Moratorium = temporary, i.e. – a suspension. Any questions? No? Good.

Just a taste:

“In order to protect Americans, the United States must ensure that those admitted to this country do not bear hostile attitudes toward it and its founding principles.  The United States cannot, and should not, admit those who do not support the Constitution, or those who would place violent ideologies over American law.  In addition, the United States should not admit those who engage in acts of bigotry or hatred (including ‘honor’ killings, other forms of violence against women, or the persecution of those who practice religions different from their own) or those who would oppress Americans of any race, gender, or sexual orientation.”(emphasis mine)

But wait. TRUMP MYSOGONIST RACIST HOMOPHOBE GURGLE CHOKE FROTH!! Right?!  Ooooops.

The chest beaters on this one imply that it was either, a) a violation of the First Amendment, to whit, the free exercise of religion (yes, it hurts my brain, too), or b) Pres. Trump “exceeded his Constitutional Authority (yes, it’s those UK Constitutional scholars again).  Well, for starters, the travel moratorium did not identify a specific religion. Because the restriction dealt with predominantly Muslim countries, it was heralded as a “Muslim Ban!11!!11!” Except that, there are upwards of 50 Muslim-majority countries, and this travel restriction deals with only…seven.

Immigration and travel restrictions are nothing new. And while it can certain be argued that Pres. Trump blocking existing green card holders was both ill-considered and incredibly poorly implemented, is it really outside the power of the President? Is it really a violation of the President’s Constitutional authority? No. While potentially distasteful, it is not illegal.

Newsflash folks: As a sovereign nation, we get to decide who can come in.

Impeachment Score: I can’t even.

4) Comey Over.

And, of course, mean ol’ D.J. fired FBI Director Comey right before he was ready to drop the hammer on the Trump administration with a full-blown investigation into collusion with Russian meddling in the election. So, let ring forth the calls for a Special Prosecutor to…uh…uh…find out some stuff!

The move to fire the sitting FBI Director during a contentious period where investigations into the Trump-Russia connection were actually underway, but had revealed no actual evidence of collusion, is seen as a “Constitutional crisis.” Except, (insert money quote):

But neither thinks that the Comey firing counts, since there’s absolutely no dispute over Trump’s legal authority to remove Comey from his position. “This is not (yet) a constitutional crisis, since there’s no doubt about his authority to fire Comey,” Levinson told Politico.

Oops. Would appear not to be impeachable. Damnit.

But wait! That paragon of objective journalism (trigger warning) Think Progress, lets us know that it can be both legal AND impeachable! Somehow.

“Constitutional law experts say that while President Donald Trump’s decision to fire Federal Bureau of Investigation Director James Comey was legal, it appears to be an abuse of power that could constitute an impeachable offense.”

The problem I have with this approach is two-fold. One, Pres. Trump did not disband the FBI. He did not place a gag-order or any other restrictions on agents within the FBI from conducting or continuing any investigation into any potential “Russian Connection©.” Moreover, less than a year ago the same Democrats who are now calling for Trump’s head over Comey’s firing, were calling for Comey’s head over his release of Hillary Clinton emails just prior to election day. So, Director Comey effectively outed himself as both partisan and politicized. Despite his arguable competence, he had lost the confidence of those both within and without his organization as to his objectivity. And that, ladies and gentlemen, is a Very Bad Thing when it comes to the top law enforcement official in the land.

And, oh by the way, President William Jefferson Clinton fired FBI Director William Sessions in 1993 for what he felt to be “ethical lapses” in his conduct. So this is not “unprecedented.” Strangely, there were no cries for impeachment then.

All that said, the FBI Director is a political appointee, and serves, “at the pleasure of the President.” So, despite the long-standing precedent that the Director serves his 10-year terms, the President, legally, doesn’t need a reason at all to fire him.

Impeachment Score: Close, but no cigar.

In Conclusion:

Every bit of research  I made into this post was rife with hypotheticals and technicalities. A lot of “mights” and “coulds” and “feasiblies.” I searched news sites, blogs, academic analyses, wikis and archives. The simple fact is this: as much as you may want it to be true, as much as you NEED it to be true, President Donald J. Trump, however morally corrupt or bankrupt you find him, however distasteful you find his policies and politics, however much you long to see him strung up from the yardarm or boiled in oil, simply hasn’t done anything (yet) that’s truly impeachable. He’s walking a fine line, and we can only wonder what tomorrow will bring, but from what I can so, so far it’s a lot of reaching and innuendo without any prosecutable evidence.

Buy hey, keep trying. Never know, you might get lucky yet.

So, imagine if you will, the CEO of a top Fortune 500 company.  A long-standing leader in the industry, with satellite branches in other countries and significant influence across the globe. Thousands of employees, hundreds of divisions, involved in everything from pharmaceuticals to oil refineries to high-tech research and development.

Now, imagine that this company is plagued by scandals.  An overseas plant is caught using child labor.  Another facility is shown to have falsified safety reports.  Low-grade medicines being pawned off as premium quality with high prices.  The more the problems that come to light, the more people start digging, and things just keep getting worse.

Now, imagine that time and again the CEO’s response to each new revelation of wrong-doing, oversight, or unethical business practice is, “You can’t blame me, I only found out about this when I read about it in the Wall Street Journal!”  And even as his corporation begins to crumble around him, he continues to go on golf outings with his rich buddies, takes his extended family on numerous overseas vacations on the company dime, and continues to try and divert attention from his problems by pointing fingers at everyone else but himself.

Now imagine millions of customers and consumers of this corporation’s products — who might otherwise hate big business — turning a blind eye to evey misstep and instance of malfeasance on the part of the CEO…because he’s black.  And then attacking his critics as racist for daring to impugn the character of this fine, upstanding member of the community!

In the real world, just how long do you suppose that this CEO would remain the CEO?  How many more instances of incompetence, disconnectedness, and destructive business practices would the clientelle endure before the stockholders got fed up and had him fired?

Hypothetically speaking, of course.

Obama Signs Global Internet Treaty Worse Than SOPA

The Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement was signed by Obama on October 1 2011, yet is currently the subject of a White House petition demanding Senators be forced to ratify the treaty. The White House has circumvented the necessity to have the treaty confirmed by lawmakers by presenting it an as “executive agreement,” although legal scholars have highlighted the dubious nature of this characterization.

Under the provisions of ACTA, copyright holders will be granted sweeping direct powers to demand ISPs remove material from the Internet on a whim. Whereas ISPs normally are only forced to remove content after a court order, all legal oversight will be abolished, a precedent that will apply globally, rendering the treaty worse in its potential scope for abuse than SOPA or PIPA.

Once again, Pres. Obama demonstrates his hostility to Congress, the concept of Separation of Powers, and the personal liberties we in this country have, until now, assumed were inviolate.

So say, for example, that you take your car to a mechanic.  The car’s not running all that great, and you’d like to get it a tune-up.  Your mechanic takes on the job, and promises you that your trusty automobile will soon be running better than ever before.

You pick the car up later that day, and drive off, expecting great things.  Funny though, something isn’t quite right.  Now it’s got a clank and a shimmy it didn’t have before.  So you take it back the next day to have it looked at again.

Noooo problem, insists the mechanic.  We just need a little more time with it.  Soon it’ll be like new.  You’re somewhat skeptical, but the mechanic seems confident, competent, so you entrust your family wagon to him one more time.

Later you pick up your vehicle, accompanied by the smiles and assurances of the maintenance staff that all is well.  You drive off with a renewed sense of confidence and optimism.

Funny though, now not ONLY does it have a clank, and a shimmy, but the radio doesn’t work and it stalls at stop lights.  You’re a bit miffed, and limp it back to the dealership to demand that the mechanic set things aright.

The mechanic clucks and sighs, and shakes his head, and informs you that you just have to be patient with him.  These things are complicated, they take time.  It might even appear to get worse before it gets better, but really, he’s the mechanic and you’re just the driver, so you need to trust that he’s doing what’s best for you.

Properly humbled, you entrust your sole mode of transportation to this august, if slightly condescending professional and hope for the best.  Later, you pick your car back up, and the mechanic’s beaming smile assures you that all will be right, no really, this time he means it. 

But, as you go to pull out of the parking lot, the muffler falls off, the tires blow out, and the engine catches fire.  You bail out of the burning wreck of what was once a perfectly serviceable automobile, and storm up to demand an accounting from the so-called “mechanic” who trashed your car.

It’s not my fault, he insists.  As a matter a fact, it was the old mechanic you had that caused all the problems.  There was too much wrong with it to fix in the time you gave me.  You should blame him, not me.  As a matter of fact, wouldn’t it be better if you just rode the bus?

Now, at some point in this scenario, wouldn’t you figure out that this so-called mechanic had no real idea what he was doing, had no idea how to actually fix your car, and was really just pretending to repair things in order to soak you for the cash you kept paying him to “fix” these problems, many of which HE HIMSELF CAUSED?!

That said, WHY, oh WHY do we keep looking to Pres. Obama and his administration to somehow “fix” the economy?  Every time he’s tried, he’s given us back something worse that what we started with.  Why do we overlook behavior in a President that we wouldn’t stand for in a mechanic?

We really, really, REALLY need to find a new pit crew.

White House: When Congress Won’t Cooperate, Obama Will Take ‘Small, Medium and Large’ Executive Actions

Carney said the president wants to work with Congress, but if the House and Senate don’t, Obama will.

“He’s going to take the actions that he can take using his executive authority to help the cause here, to help Americans deal with this challenging economy. And they can be small, medium or large actions and they don’t have to be just executive authority actions,” Carney continued. “They can be things we can do working with the private sector. So he’ll pursue all tracks.”

Carney added the president still would like to work with Congress (emphasis mine).

 “But it is not accurate to suggest that he doesn’t want to engage with Congress and that he won’t engage with Congress,” Carney said. “He wants to continue to work with Congress. He and his advisors believe there will be opportunities to cooperate with Congress this year. We believe, as a purely political matter, that some members of Congress that have pursued an obstructionist path may begin to see it in their political interest to actually demonstrate to their constituents that they can get some things done.”

To me, the two bolded passages reflect a strange perception on the part of our current President that working “with” the Senate and the House of Representatives is somehow optional.  That it’s sort of the preferred method, but by no means the only method of getting legislation passed and implementing national, federal policy in this country.

In other words, Congress has relevance only as long as the Emperor deigns to give it such.  If it gets in his way, gets inconvenient, slows down his agenda, well then it’s time to shoulder the thing aside and get down to the real business of running this country the way HE thinks it oughta.

Folks, anywhere else, that’s called either a monarchy, or a dictatorship.  And for all their talk about George Bush and his “imperial” presidency, I see President Obama showing a much more overt, fundamental, and arrogant disregard for the rule of law and the concept of separation of powers than any previous member of the White House.

Congress is explicity empowered and mandated BY THE CONSTITUTION as the body which make the laws in our country.  NOT THE PRESIDENT.  If the President is only willing to work with the Congress when they are doing what he wants, then they are no longer “of the people, by the people, for the people,” but rather, merely the steno pool for the CEO.

Scary, scary stuff.

via Protein Wisdom.

In the run up to the second Iraq war, there came to light a document which came to be know as the “Downing Street Memo.”  The crux of this document is that it reflected the author’s concerns that the culture in the White House at the time was such that there was only one right answer, and that answer was war with Iraq. 

Intelligence estimates and analysis were feared to be colored by this culture, tuned and filtered or “cherry picked” to give the most damning possible indictments of Iraqi weapons programs, even if the evidence did not fully support such a view.  To quote, “the intelligence and facts were being fixed around the policy“.

 Dissenting opinions were hushed up or buried, and the view seemed to be that since Pres. Bush had already decided in his mind to use military force, that the discussion was over, and efforts should cease to be about finding the truth, but rather, become oriented towards supporting the pre-established conclusion.

This document is often spoken of as a “smoking gun,” potential grounds for impeachment, and/or a clear revelation of the “rush to war,” demonstrating a resolve to take one certain course of action, regardless of what alternatives some naysayers might have suggested.   Sadly, a great deal of this seems to have been true.

The mindset, the policies, the actions reflected in the Downing Street Memo have been used by Pres. Bush’s many ardent critics and enemies as justification for their outrage, often bordering on hatred.  How COULD he just ignore evidence which didn’t support his view!?  How can we trust an administration that shows itself deaf and blind to any information save for that it wants to hear!?

Fast forward to 2009.

Many quite rational and sane voices on the “Right”, and now increasingly from all walks of scientific and political life, have become open sceptics about the “incontrovertible” nature of the “evidence” supporting global warming.   The science is weak, the evidence lacking, and the prophecies of doom and gloom wholly unsupportable.  Yet, despite the growing volume and number of protests, there still seems to be a prevailing culture of there being only “one right answer” in many circles.  There is a culture of implicit acceptance of all things global warming…as long as they paint a dark and terrible picture requiring immediate and expensive action.  More and more is seems that the available intelligence is being “cherry-picked” to support the pre-established conclusion, and that which doesn’t is ignored. To quote, “the intelligence and facts [are] being fixed around the policy“.

Now, via Michelle Malkin, I wonder if we are finally being provided with Global Warming’s version of the “Downing Street Memo?”

EPA plays hide and seek; suppressed report revealed

From Ms. Malkin’s article:

The free market-based Competitive Enterprise Institute in Washington (where I served as a journalism fellow in 1995) obtained a set of internal e-mails exposing Team Obama’s willful and reckless disregard for data that undermine the illusion of “consensus.”

Sound familiar?

Later on, quoting senior supervisor Al McGartland of the Environmental Protection Agency with regards to a subordinate’s report that didn’t support the desired findings:

“The time for such discussion of fundamental issues has passed for this round. The administrator and the administration has decided to move forward on endangerment, and your comments do not help the legal or policy case for this decision… I can only see one impact of your comments given where we are in the process, and that would be a very negative impact on our office.”

Read the rest.  It’s really quite disturbing.  For all the frothing fist-waving and chest-beating of the vocal left about the Evil that was BushCheneyRumsfeldSatanHitler, for all the demands for impeachment and talk of war crimes, for all the hearfelt insistence that Bush “lied us into war,” what, I wonder, will be the response by the Left to this EPA whitewashing of evidence countering their own carefully nurtured global warming hysteria?

How many millions and billions will we spend “fighting an unjust war” against global warming?  Is Barack Obama lying is into this war?  Is there only one right answer in the Obama administration with respect to global warming? 

The screaming Progs have long lamented the “irresponsible deficit” inflicted on the American people by Bush’s war for oil.

Yet, how many trillions of dollars are we being forced to swallow in Obama’s war AGAINST oil?

How many people will die of starvation because we are using 1/3 of our corn crop to produce ethanol rather than export as food for hungry nations?  What will happen to our economy when the cost of houses doubles as they must be built to new, and very expensive…”green” standards?  When our electricy costs triple because we have outlawed efficient coal-fired energy plants and refuse to embrace nuclear energy?  All in the name of “complying” with an ill-considered and unsupportable global warming policy?

Many would suggest that Iraq didn’t pose a threat to the US, and so our war was illegal and immoral.  I’d like to suggest that the “war on global warming” is even more unjustified, illegal, and immoral, and poses a great threat to our country than Iraq ever did, or that global warming itself ever will.

In betwixt and between all the impassioned outcrys both from within and without Iran regarding their most recent “election,” I find that all the intensity and furor suddenly begs the question:

Why all of a sudden do we see such a fervor from the voting public in Iran?

More importantly, why are we HEARING about it, from within what has traditionally been a country with a very tight hold on not only its media, but its people?

My personal opinion is that this is the result of the very kind of “domino theory” that Iran and the other countries of the Middle East feared would result from a successful Iraq.

There was more at stake than meets the eye for Iran, Syria, Jordan, and yes, even our “ally” Saudi Arabia.  There was a reason that a large (disproportionately so) number of the “insurgents’ we were capturing or killing in Iraq were from these countries.   They saw very clearly the threat posed in the Middle East by a stable, US-friendly democracy.  And it wasn’t because of the oil.

As Pres. Bush and his advisors correctly surmised, in the context of the “Long War” perhaps the best way to defeat the violence of militant Islamic extremists — despite the hardships we might face in the relative short term — was to establish a country where freedom, not fear, ruled the day.  To show that the “Great Experiment” could even work within the context of Islam. (more…)