Top Conservative Blogs
“Activists say authorities are unfairly targeting 18-year-old US high-school student because she is gay.”
The American Civil Liberties Union of Florida said [Kaitlyn] Hunt was being criminalised for behaviour that “occurs every day in tens of thousands of high schools across the country, yet those other students are not facing felony convictions … and potential lifelong branding as sex offenders.”An 18-year-old with a 14-year-old is going on every day? Is this charge of anti-gay prejudice cloaking what is really a movement to lower the age of consent (or to widen the age gap covered by “Romeo and Juliet” laws)?
After the IRS revealed it had wrongly targeted hundreds of conservative and Tea Party groups, the agency claimed that the misconduct was limited to “low-level employees” in its Cincinnati office. Yesterday, the attorney for Lois Lerner, the head of the IRS’s tax-exempt organizations division, told the House Oversight Committee she would invoke her Fifth Amendment rights, making that explanation much less credible.
City workers swooped in Monday night and yanked out part of a bike-share rack blocking the front of a West Village co-op — just hours after The Post called the Department of Transportation over complaints that an ambulance crew had trouble getting to a 92-year-old resident in distress.So… your tax money is used to install these things and then yank them out again. You might say: Just site them properly in the first place. But every time an old lady is “in distress” the right place for bike-share racks becomes the wrong place, The Post calls the Department of Transportation, and — once again — city workers must swoop in and yank out.
During Tuesday’s hearing of the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, Congresswoman Jackie Speier (D., Calif.) declared that failing to encourage people to sign up for government-mandated health insurance is downright “un-American.” Speier was referring to Congress’s refusal to fund the Obama administration’s Obamacare “outreach” efforts with taxpayer dollars (although the administration will still be running lots of taxpayer-financed pro-Obamacare propaganda ads later this summer with money that it has managed to cobble together from various sources).
Our awareness of the latent toxicity in what we consume... hmm… yeah… suddenly I am aware of… why am I slogging through the verbal mush of another Washington Post column? What am I doing to myself?!
Like that, you mean, Monica?
Speaking at a Jewish American Heritage Month reception last night in Washington, D.C., Vice President Joe Biden requested the “teleprompter in the room to be taken down,” according to the pool report.
Writing from memory yesterday morning, I recalled the role George Will had played as National Review’s Washington columnist during Watergate. I was faithfully reading the magazine in 1973 and 1974, and I think I was remembering Will’s NR columns accurately, but I was also recalling an inside account written, I thought, by William Buckley or NR senior editor Jeffrey Hart. I couldn’t find what I was thinking of in Buckley’s books or Professor Hart’s The Making of the American Conservative Mind: National Review and Its Times — but I did find this interesting passage in Hart’s history:
National Review responded to the developing scandal with condemnation for the violation of constitutional norms mixed with a great deal of disgust; it came close to lacking even residual loyalty to Nixon. NR viewed the “President’s men,” the aides closest to him, as technicians of no discernible principle, all products of their relationship with Nixon and otherwise ciphers with no personal identity. It regarded Nixon himself as the shifty politician the magazine had always known….
What strikes anyone going back over that period, and what certainly struck National Review at the time, is the conspicuous presence of an absence–or the deafening noise of a silence. Why did those closest to the president in the administrative structure–namely Haldeman, Ehrlichman, and Mitchell–not once, ever, say to themselves or to each other, “President Nixon would never approve of this”?
We don’t know what Obama’s senior staff members have said to or among themselves, but that passage resonates.
Who is Ibragim Todashev? Chechen friend of Boston bomber, planning to fly back to Chechnya, killed by FBI agent
Via WESH this morning, check out the story of a fatal shooting involving an FBI agent and a man who knew Boston marathon jihad bomber Tamerlan Tsarnaev.
An FBI agent was involved in a deadly shooting overnight that could have ties to the Boston Marathon bombings.
Officials said the special agent was conducting official duties when they encountered a suspect. The suspect, who was not immediately identified by officials, died.
A friend of the suspect said his friend, 27-year-old Ibragim Todashev, was being investigated as part of the Boston bombings and knew bombing suspect Tamerlan Tsarnaev because both were MMA fighters.
The man claims he and Todashev were interviewed by the FBI for nearly three hours on Tuesday.
Here’s video of Todashev on YouTube:
Here’s his official MMA profile.
This news report says Todashev was from Chechnya and had been planning to fly back:
Khusen Taramov says the day that federal agents identified the Tsarnaev brothers as the Boston bombing suspects, FBI agents came to the apartment complex and started questioning a few people of Chechnyan descent. “One day they started questioning us, next day after the bombing, not the bombing , after they found out the bombers were Chechnyans, and they started following us, watching us, they pretty much told the guy from his apartment and they start following us, watching us like everyday,” said Taramov.
Taramov says Todashev met Tamerlan Tsarnaev in Boston and the two had hung out a few times.
Taramov says Todashev met with FBI agents last night and it was supposed to be their last meeting because he was planning to fly back to Chechnya last night. He says the plane ticket was purchased before the Boston bombings but federal agents strongly advised him not to go home.
“He cancelled the tickets because, the FBI had been like, I don’t know, they’ve been pushing him, you know what I’m saying. They’ve been pushing him they say don’t leave; don’t leave so he decided to stay. But we had a feeling, worst case scenario something like that was going to happen. You know what I mean,” said Taramov.
The FBI has not identified the man killed but says the agent was working on a case inside the apartment complex when the shooting happened. “We are currently responding to a shooting incident involving an FBI special agent. The incident occurred in Orlando Florida. The agent encountered the suspect while conducting official duties. The suspect is deceased. We do not have any further details at this time. We expect to have more information later this morning,” said FBI spokesperson Special Agent Dave Couvertier.
Keep an eye on this one.
Anthony Weiner announced overnight that he’ll be running for mayor of New York City. He made the announcement by releasing this YouTube video:
Weiner, who resigned from Congress after getting caught sending lewd pictures of himself to women he had never met, uses part of the video to admit his mistakes.
“Look, I made some big mistakes, and I know I let a lot of people down,” Weiner says looking straight into the camera. “But I’ve also learned some tough lessons.”
The Obama crony in charge of your medical records
by Michelle Malkin
Who is Judy Faulkner? Chances are, you don’t know her — but her politically connected, taxpayer-subsidized electronic medical records company may very well know you. Top Obama donor and billionaire Faulkner is founder and CEO of Epic Systems, which will soon store almost half of all Americans’ health information.
If the crony odor and the potential for abuse that this “epic” arrangement poses don’t chill your bones, you ain’t paying attention.
As I first noted last year before the IRS witch hunts and DOJ journalist snooping scandals broke out, Obama’s federal electronic medical records (EMR) mandate is government malpractice at work. The stimulus law provided a whopping $19 billion in “incentives” (read: subsidies) to force hospitals and medical professionals into converting from paper to electronic record-keeping systems. Penalties kick in next year for any provider who fails to comply with the one-size-fits-all edict.
Obamacare bureaucrats claimed the government’s EMR mandate would save money and modernize health care. As of December 2012, $4 billion had already gone out to 82,535 professionals and 1,474 hospitals; a total of $6 billion will be doled out by 2016. What have taxpayers and health care consumers received in return from this boondoggle? After hyping the alleged benefits for nearly a decade, the RAND Corporation finally admitted in January that its cost-savings predictions of $81 billion a year — used repeatedly to support the Obama EMR mandate — were, um, grossly overstated.
Among many factors, the researchers blamed “lack of interoperability” of records systems for the failure to bring down costs. And that is a funny thing, because it brings us right back to Faulkner and her well-connected company. You see, Epic Systems — the dominant EMR giant in America — is notorious for its lack of interoperability. Faulkner’s closed-end system represents antiquated, hard drive-dependent software firms that refuse to share data with doctors and hospitals using alternative platforms. Health IT analyst John Moore of Chilmark Research, echoing many industry observers, wrote in April that Epic “will ultimately hinder health care organizations’ ability to rapidly innovate.”
Question: If these subsidized data-sharing systems aren’t built to share data to improve health outcomes, why exactly are we subsidizing them? And what exactly are companies like Faulkner’s doing with this enhanced power to consolidate and control Americans’ private health information? It’s a recipe for exactly the kind of abuse that’s at the heart of the IRS and DOJ scandals.
As I reported previously, a little-noticed HHS Inspector General’s report issued last fall exposed how no one is actually verifying whether the transition from paper to electronic is improving patient outcomes and health services. No one is actually guarding against GIGO (garbage in, garbage out). No one is checking whether recipients of the EMR incentives are receiving money redundantly (e.g., raking in payments when they’ve already converted to electronic records). And no one is actually protecting private data from fraud, theft or exploitation.
But while health IT experts and concerned citizens balk, money talks. Epic employees donated nearly $1 million to political parties and candidates between 1995 and 2012 — 82 percent of it to Democrats. The company’s top 10 PAC recipients are all Democratic or left-wing outfits, from the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (nearly $230,000) to the DNC Services Corporation (nearly $175,000) and the America’s Families First Action Fund Democratic super-PAC ($150,000). The New York Times reported in February that Epic and other large firms spent hundreds of thousands of dollars lobbying for the Obama EMR “giveaway.”
Brandon Glenn of Medical Economics observes “it’s not a coincidence” that Epic’s sales “have been skyrocketing in recent years, up to $1.2 billion in 2011, double what they were four years prior.”
It’s also no coincidence, as a famous Democratic presidential candidate once railed, that the deepest-pocketed donors “are often granted the greatest access, and access is power in Washington.” That same candidate, Barack Obama, named billionaire Democratic donor Faulkner as the only industry representative on the federal panel overseeing the $19 billion EMR “incentives” program from which her company benefits grandly.
The foxes are guarding the Obamacare henhouse. The IRS vultures are circling overhead. The shadow of tyranny and the stench of corruption are unmistakable. If you see something, say something. BOLO is our watchword.