DHS

PC Security Policies Welcoming In Jihadists

Last night’s GOP debate focused on foreign policy and national security. It’s a good thing, too, because the stratospheric levels of unbridled incompetence and militant political correctness that is the hallmark of the Obama administration should terrify each and every American. Even in the aftermath of the ISIS-inspired attack in San Bernardino, which left 14 dead and 21 wounded, the Obama administration is doubling down on its PC policies, and in the process putting the lives of each and every American at increased risk.

With multiple investigations underway into Islamist terrorists Syed Farook and Tashfeen Malik following the San Bernardino attack, reports are revealing that what can only be termed political correctness on the part of the Obama administration has directly contributed to an inability to prevent the deaths of U.S. citizens.

Despite strong protests from senior officials within the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) and U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), the Obama administration refused to end a secret policy which prohibited security officials from reviewing the social media posts of foreign citizens attempting to obtain visas for entry into the United States. This was due to the fear of DHS Director Jeh Johnson that the policy might create “bad public relations”.

Speaking to ABC News, former acting Under-secretary for Intelligence and Analysis at DHS, John Cohen, reported that “During that time period immigration officials were not allowed to use or review social media as part of the screening process…The primary concern was that it would be viewed negatively if it was disclosed publicly and there were concerns that it would be embarrassing.”

Obama Strategically Waits for the Middle East to Catch Up to Civilization

modern medieval

Despite already having the ability — as he has been more than willing to mention — to wage war without asking for Congressional approval, President Obama nonetheless is trying to get a new authorization for use of military force (AUMF) passed on The Hill, something that is proving controversial to both sides of the aisle.

From a three-year limit to a check on launching “enduring offensive ground combat operations,” lawmakers on both sides of the aisle are calling Obama’s proposal either too restrictive or too broad — but few are calling it just right.

Those on the right wonder if the three-year time frame — which will bleed over into the term of the next president — doesn’t tie the hands of the executive office (bearing in mind Obama has made great use of that same executive privilege he would limit after he leaves office). It also turns our engagement in the region into a very dispassionate drone war, assuming we still have an interest in the region at all. Those on the left actually — oddly — argue the exact opposite: that the new AUMF gives the president too much power to say how and who we fight.

How The Sequester Torpedoed Conservatives’ Credibility

John Boehner

It was a mere tweet, but it summed up the entirety of the modern conservative movement:

It has everything: the source is the preeminent conservative “think tank” in DC, soon to be headed by Tea Party conservative and former senator Jim DeMint; lamenting about spending cuts; the laments are all about a government department that by all rights should not exist; and for good measure, it has a photograph. It shows precisely how the sequester had torpedoed conservative credibility.

We have heard relentlessly these past five years, ever since Obama was elected, that we need to cut spending. (Indeed, another Heritage article is a dorky little bit that specifically notes a “thrifty” House which demands that they have a balanced budget and avoid deficits.) Yet now that there is something which will cut—no, sorry, I can’t type that with a straight face; it will not cut spending, but merely slightly decrease the rate of spending—Heritage is up in arms about it.

Meanwhile, Speaker of the House John Boehner (R-Military Contractors) wrote the following in an op-ed:

Rick Perry’s New Groove (Maybe)

Rick Perry, looking to get back on top of the GOP primary, has unveiled a new reform plan that will “uproot, tear down and rebuild Washington, D.C. and our federal institutions,” as he puts it:

Blasting the congressional “creatures of Washington” for being overpaid and detached from the struggles of the people outside the Beltway, Texas Gov. and GOP presidential hopeful Rick Perry vowed Tuesday to eliminate federal agencies, set term limits for federal judges and push for a part-time Congress where both members’ pay and office budgets are sliced in half.

The three-term governor, speaking on a campaign swing in Bettendorf, Iowa, said he would lead by example by cutting his salary as president until the federal budget is balanced, and said that lawmakers who use information to profit from stock trades should go to jail — in what appeared to be a clear reference to recent news reports alleging insider trading involving House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi.

“I do not believe Washington needs a new coat of paint, it needs a complete overhaul,” Mr. Perry said, according to prepared remarks. “We need to uproot, tear down and rebuild Washington, D.C. and our federal institutions.”

I’m reading his actual plan right here, and I have to say, there are some good ideas here, and one very bad one.

TSA: Drinking the bong water

TSA gets a tough rap.  Let’s face it folks, these people do a tough, tough job, and all they get from us is nothing but derision, despite their hard work  They keep us safe from terrorists and all we can do…

…OK, sorry, I just can’t keep typing that crap without laughing my butt off.

Seriously, TSA is about as idiotic an organization as could possibly exist.  Even if they were a good idea, the Department of Homeland Security can’t seem to get all that much right.  The TSA, and their idea of keeping the nation safe is a prime example:

A recent TSA blog post cites several cases in which the agency’s screeners stopped travelers from carrying guns or knives onto airplanes: “the passenger in Boston who had a steak knife in his carry-on bag; the El Paso passenger with a 6 ½-inch hunting knife in his carry-on bag; the LaGuardia Airport passenger who had eight rounds of 9 mm ammunition in his bag; the JFK Airport passenger who had a 6-inch butterfly knife in his bag; and the New Orleans passenger who had a loaded .380 caliber firearm—with a bullet in the chamber—in his carry-on bag.” I’m not sure those eight 9mm rounds posed much of a threat, unless the passenger planned to hurl them at people. And as a commenter notes on the TSA blog, there is no indication that any of these passengers intended to harm anyone. But at least guns and knives are weapons (or potential weapons) that theoretically could be used to hijack a plane.

Podcast: Elena Kagan, Greece, War on Drugs, REAL ID, Line-Item VetoGuests: Marty Connors, Brooklyn Roberts

This week, Jason and Brett speak with former Alabama GOP chair, Marty Connors, and Alabama Eagle forum Executive Director, Brooklyn Roberts.

The discussion covers:

MIAC Report: Ron Paul Supporters Labeled Domestic Terrorists?

Ron PaulThe general rule for me is if Alex Jones says it, don’t take it seriously. And that’s what I said on Thursday to several friends that e-mailed me a link to a story about how the Missouri Information Analysis Center (MIAC) basically correlates libertarians and more specifically supporters of Ron Paul, Bob Barr and Chuck Baldwin, with potentially being a domestic terrorist or member of a militia.

EPA’s Secretive Agency May have Interfered With Independent Investigations

The Environmental Protection Agency has recently assured the House Oversight and Government Reform committee that its dispute with the inspector general over the EPA’s Office of Homeland Security’s alleged interference with independent investigations would be resolved.

Last year, the committee investigated charges related to Homeland Security Department’s former Defense Secretary Leon Panetta and his alleged involvement in removing material concerning the disclosure of classified information pertaining to the raid that took Osama bin Laden’s life to the producer of the move “Zero Dark Thirty.” Recently, the secretive office run by the EPA and administrated by Gina McCarthy was also charged with keeping the inspector general from freely investigating employee misconduct inside the federal agency, including two cases of employees doing outside activities while on the clock.

The existence of a secretive office paid by taxpayers that may have been working to keep important information concerning external threats or employee misconduct from the inspector general’s office indicates the EPA’s unwillingness to cooperate with independent investigations, leading to the protection of potential inside criminals such as John C. Beale, whose case is now under investigation by Republicans in Congress.

According to Associated Press, Beale, a former deputy assistant administrator, pleaded guilty to stealing thousands of dollars while claiming he was an undercover officer for the CIA between 2000 and April of 2013.

Whenever cases of confidential files that have been leaked make the news, the administration and pundits alike are quick to point fingers and call for the whistleblower’s head.

Obama administration takes three Muzzle “awards” for free speech suppression

The Thomas Jefferson Center for the Protection of Free Expression released its annual “Jefferson Muzzles” recognizing federal, state, and local governments agencies for the most egregious instances of infringements of the First Amendment in the last year.

Taking the top dishonors in this year’s list of winners is Department of Justice and the White House Press Office. The National Security Agency and the Department of Homeland Security share an “award.”

Attorney General Eric Holder’s Department of Justice was given the top dishonor for its war on leakers and whistleblowers. This crackdown has put reporters and, by extension, the First Amendment in its crosshairs.

The Thomas Jefferson Center cites the subpoena of Associated Press journalists’ phone records as well as the targeting of Fox News correspondent James Rosen as examples of the Department of Justice’s overreach. Though the department has responded to the controversy by issuing new guidelines, there still could be problems down the road.

“[T]he protections [the guidelines] provide are not absolute and some significant exceptions exist that, if exploited, could result in a repeat of last year’s shameful actions,” the Thomas Jefferson Center explains. “Should such temptation ever arise, we hope this 2014 Jefferson Muzzle will inspire the Department of Justice to fully consider the importance of a free press to our nation.”

DHS cancels plans to build a national license plate database

A week after posting a solicitation for contractor submissions, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) canceled its plans to build a massive database that would allow law enforcement officials to upload images of license plates that could assist federal agents in criminal investigations:

Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson on Wednesday ordered the cancellation of a plan by the Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency to develop a national license-plate tracking system after privacy advocates raised concern about the initiative.

The order came just days after ICE solicited proposals from companies to compile a database of license-plate information from commercial and law enforcement tag readers. Officials said the database was intended to help apprehend fugitive illegal immigrants, but the plan raised concerns that the movements of ordinary citizens under no criminal suspicion could be scrutinized.

The data would have been drawn from readers that scan the tags of every vehicle crossing their paths, and would have been accessed only for “ongoing criminal investigations or to locate wanted individuals,” officials told The Washington Post this week.


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