If this was done by the Boosh DOJ what do you thing would be going on?

The New Yorker has a piece detailing the travesty, signed off by Holder himself, involving our most transparent and ethical government ever spy on a Fox News reporter, whom they accused of espionage, of all things because he, unlike the sycophants in the LSM that can’t line up quick enough to lick Obama’s balls clean for him, no matter where they have been, was investigating these fuckers, and they want none of that. So they then went in front of judges and made the incredulous case that the warrants needed to be kept secret so they could keep spying on the guy they accused of spying.

The Obama Administration fought to keep a search warrant for James Rosen’s private e-mail account secret, arguing to a federal judge that the government might need to monitor the account for a lengthy period of time.

The new details are revealed in a court filing detailing a back and forth between the Justice Department and the federal judges who oversaw the request to search a Gmail account belonging to Rosen, a reporter for Fox News. A 2009 article Rosen had written about North Korea sparked an investigation; Ronald C. Machen, Jr., the U.S. Attorney who is prosecuting Stephen Jin-Woo Kim, a former State Department adviser who allegedly leaked classified information to Rosen, insisted that the reporter should not be notified of the search and seizure of his e-mails, even after a lengthy delay.

E-mails, Machen wrote, “are commonly used by subjects or targets of the criminal investigation at issue, and the e-mail evidence derived from those compelled disclosures frequently forms the core of the Government’s evidence supporting criminal charges.”

He argued that disclosure of the search warrant would preclude the government from monitoring the account, should such a step become necessary in the investigation. Machen added that “some investigations are continued for many years because, while the evidence is not yet sufficient to bring charges, it is sufficient to have identified criminal subjects and/or criminal activity serious enough to justify continuation of the investigation.”

Machen insisted the investigation would be compromised if Rosen was informed of the warrant, and also asked the court to order Google not to notify Rosen that the company had handed over Rosen’s e-mails to the government. Rosen, according to recent reports, did not learn that the government seized his e-mail records until it was reported in the Washington Post last week.

So Rosen’s crime was to point out how fucked up these idiots were, and for that they decided they would need to spy on him. I ask the question again: if a story like this had come out about the Boosh Admin’s DOJ spying on the media – and I remind you this Rosen case, so far, is not the only such story we know of, and I can’t wait to find out the details of what the Obamanauts did to Sharyl Attkisson, a Fast & Furious and Benghazi-gate reporter from CBS that didn’t tell the story the WH wanted – as part of a pattern that now clearly shows the agenda was to rig an election, do you think the LSM would be so blasé about it?

It was not conspiracy theories. These fuckers are and have done worst than practically every conspiracy theory I heard about them accused them of. But no way they will do to black Jesus what they would do to someone with an R next to their name if the people with the R next to their name abused power in this way. After all, as most of the leftard commenters point out: the end justifies the means, and the real enemy is anyone that doesn’t like the left’s vision and nanny state. I shouldn’t be gloating, but I have to again point out that I was right when I pointed out to the Boosh haters that any candidate from the left would do far worse and they would make excuses for that candidate simply because they were hypocritical leftist hacks.

Comments are closed.

  1. Seattle Outcast

    Any judge that was worth a shit and not being blackmailed/extorted/bribed would have told them to take their request and shove it up their ass.

    I guess his promised appointment to a higher court won’t be happening any time soon…..

    Thumb up 5

  2. grady

    while the evidence is not yet sufficient to bring charges, it is sufficient to have identified criminal subjects and/or criminal activity serious enough to justify continuation of the investigation.

    Meaning we know we have nothing on Rosen. But we certainly have other stuff that is really important to this cover up, I mean investigation.

    The left supported Wikileaks. The left supported the Times detailing how the Bush administration was monitoring the money transfers for terrorist activities. Why doesn’t the Obama administration support a journalist’s ability to do research against their activities? Isn’t this the most transparent administration ever?

    You would think that the entirety of the MSM would be appalled about this, but I’m hearing crickets.

    Thumb up 6

  3. Mississippi Yankee

    Let’s start a pool as to when Black Jesus (love that btw) throws Super Lawyer Holder under the bus.

    IMHO I don’t see how he not help but cut some minions loose.

    Can y’all feel the radiance from my smug, self satisfied grin from way down here? Cause I’m goddam beaming!

    Thumb up 5

  4. stogy

    Hidden due to low comment rating. Click here to see.

    Thumb up 2

  5. richtaylor365

    OT, but I had an interesting experience with an environmentalist today, I thought I share with the group (You could file this under my other ubiquitous posts of “aren’t you glad you don’t live in California”).

    About once a month I officiate tennis tournaments at all levels in the Bay Area, it is something I enjoy doing. This weekend I am working a gig at the Berkeley tennis center, Berkeley mind you. One of my many duties is preparing the courts for the next match, and this would involve discarding the names (printed on paper and displayed on the individual court score board). At first I was asking the players if they wanted the paper with their names boldly printed on them as a souvenir , nobody did. About midday today a match ended so I walk on the court, gather the two paper name sheets and throw them in the trash (folding them first, naturally), one of the players looks at me in total disgust and says ,”What are you doing, that is paper, here in California we don’t throw paper away”. I reply ,”since your match is over I need to remove your names so the next players can display their names”. He tells me (rather heatedly) that I need to recycle that paper. I told him (probably shouldn’t have) that I NEVER recycle paper, that I own stock in both Weyerhaeuser and Georgia Pacific (I lied) and that as a capitalist and as a greedy shareholder, it’s all about self interest.

    For the remaining matches the rest of the day I made a little show out of crumpling up the old names sheets and ceremoniously throwing them in the trash. Those people all need a good smack.

    Thumb up 8

  6. AlexInCT *

    The Plame affair was easily worse than this.

    Do you mean the fantasy version the left likes to pretend happened, or what really happened? If it is the first case, where leftists pretend that this idiot woman that rode a desk at Langley and was actually outed by herself and her husband, numerous times, before Armitage actually did the official leaking, was some super secret agent that puts James Bond to shame, I can give you a “maybe”. But the real story, including the fact that we had an out of control independent investigator that had found out weeks into his multi year investigation that Plame was neither an undercover agent nor doing anything secret, and that the supposed leak came from Armitage, a liberal, is a big snoozer, and much ado about nothing.

    But you are welcome to keep pretending Plame was a super special and secret agent, that she was outed by the Boosh WH not Armitage which wasn’t part of that group at all, and that the Boosh WH magically covered it all up, such that after years and millions of dollars only some guy accused of perjury because he couldn’t get some dates straight, had to do time, and then all because he didn’t have a (D) next to his name so he could avoid punishment, if that allows you to keep pretending black Jesus and his crew still have room to do worse and get away with it. Fuck, the nonsense about Alberto Gonzales firing AGs was a bigger story – even if it was a non story just like this made up Plame one – was a bigger deal than the Plame bullshit. Just look at how Obama’s WH outed the DevGroup member’s identiy just so he could dance on bin Laden’s grave before the election! That’s a bigger security leak than that joke with Plame ever was, and there are plenty of other such much more serious and real breaches of national security by black Jesus’ team so they could score points that nobody even batted an eye about.

    So spare me the faux indignation and if you can take some advice wioe the Obama come off your face.

    Thumb up 8

  7. Hal_10000

    Hidden due to low comment rating. Click here to see.

    Thumb up 2

  8. Section8

    I find this interesting embedded in the comments on a post about dishonest behavior.

    Perhaps Rich is trying to get on the Obama payroll.

    Oh, Jesus, Stogy, have you poked the conservative denial on the Plame affair again? That was when I left the conservative echosphere. When they started putting out the fantasy version of reality so nicely summarized in Alex’s comment.

    Fair enough, why not also join in on Thrill’s question?

    Oh, come on! How?

    I’d like to know how harassment of civilian reporters, harassment of civilian political groups, and likely auditing of civilian individuals by the IRS for their views, comments, or reporting isn’t nearly as bad as outing a CIA agent married to another government official. For kicks, let’s assume Bush was directly responsible for the outing and that he gave the info directly to Novak. It’s bad but at the end of the day isolated to government employees. Also interesting is how the “adult party” with all the “brilliant minds” has now reduced itself to comparisons with the lowest bar imaginable, and to top it off struggles to propel itself over said bar, and half the time can’t even do that. In the meantime minimizing the severity of harassment of civilians that don’t fall in line, not that the left generally give a shit about that anyhow.

    So if either of you could answer how Plame is worse that this please do. Several of us are interested.

    Thumb up 8

  9. AlexInCT *

    So if either of you could answer how Plame is worse that this please do. Several of us are interested.

    Be content with the cheesy snark, because that’s all you will get from them. The gravity of the Plame affair only exists in the minds of the left and of Boosh haters that are so easily blinded to the truth like Hal.

    As I pointed out: Plame was a nobody in the intelligence community, a fucking desk jockey, and she and her own husband had compromised her employment with the CIA on numerous occasions, long before Armitage – a donkey operative and liberal – did the leaking that started the whole which hunt the left hoped to pin ob evil Boosh. But all these fucking idiots can keep pretending that something else happened. Even sadder that they bring it up to pretend there is some kind of parallel between the massive and corrupt abuses of power – real and not imagined ones, I add – that their black Jesus’ government has been perpetrating for 5 years now, and the guy they hates so much because he prevented Al Gore from stealing the 2000 election.

    The left has nothing left to defend this with. Hence the smoke and mirrors, the attempts to change the conversation to anything but the criminal behavior, and of course the tried and true return back to it was Boosh’s fault or Boosh did it (too), crap they have been ridding to excuse their incompetence and as we now see criminal behavior. Calling this shit weak would be an overstatement of the obvious.

    Thumb up 10

  10. Section8

    Be content with the cheesy snark, because that’s all you will get from them.

    I really hope not, as I really am interested how Plame could possibly be worse than this. Anyhow I’ll check back in tomorrow.

    Thumb up 8

  11. stogy

    Oh, come off it. The WH deliberately went after Wilson because his public statements on uranium in Niger didn’t gel with official WH doctrine at the time. And in the process, they (unwittingly or wittingly) outed his wife as a covert operative. The only reason people didn’t get charged was because it couldn’t be proved that Libby, Armitage, Rove et al actually knew of her covert status at the time, and because she hadn’t been posted overseas in the previous five years (and therefore they argued that it was likely that the Intelligence Identity Protection Act didn’t apply).

    Waxman at the congressional inquiry said:

    During her employment at the CIA, Ms. Wilson was undercover. Her employment status with the CIA was classified information, prohibited from disclosure under Executive Order 12958. At the time of the publication of Robert Novak’s column on July 14, 2003, Ms. Wilson’s CIA employment status was covert. This was classified information. Ms. Wilson served in senior management positions at the CIA in which she oversaw the work for other CIA employees and she attained the level of GS-14 — Step Six under the federal pay scale. Ms. Wilson worked on some of the most sensitive and highly secretive matters handled by the CIA. Ms. Wilson served at various times overseas for the CIA.

    What the WH did was disgraceful and indefensible. I personally doubt Bush knew anything about it though at the time. But it’s about what could have happened to covert agents overseas, contacts and sensitive information that is the problem. That it turned out with so little damage is more a matter of dumb luck than anything else.

    I’m not saying that what this current WH has done is, if all true, not disgraceful as well. But your perceptions of how bad it is are driven as much by partisanship as anything else. WH admins have harassed left-wing and environmental groups for decades. One of the articles of impeachment against Nixon was that he had misused the IRS…. that’s the same IRS… against left wing tax exempt organizations… And all this without barely more than a nod and a wink from the right.

    Yes, it’s bad. And yeah, if there is a smoking gun to Obama, impeachment… But some perspective, please. This is not the worst scandal ever in the history of the Republic.

    Hot! Thumb up 2

  12. Mississippi Yankee

    This is not the worst scandal ever in the history of the Republic.

    Perhaps this is not the worst but when “We the People” add on
    (1) Fast and Furious,
    (2) Charges dropped against Black Panthers by DoJ (that had already been filed),
    (3) Pigford payouts expanded to women, hispanics and Native Americans in 2010,
    (4) Voter fraud in Ohio ( local DNC are still taking a beating of this scandal)
    (5) Benghazi (which is far from over), Trust me,
    (6) The DoJ spying on CBS, AP and FOX News personnel…
    (7) Hey it’s only Monday…give it time

    There’s blood in the water and your messiah still has 3.5 years of a very unhappy proletariat, not to mention the ‘hurty feeeelings’ of betrayal within the LSM.

    These scandals are not only cumilative but each seems pregnant with it’s own new scandal. And I Know I will not stop until there is an asterisk beside Barack Milhous Mugambe’s name in the history books.
    I believe it’s my constitutional duty to never relent in this regard. It has a lot to do with an oath I took in the fall of 1966. As it turns out IT has no expiration date.
    Happy Memorial Day.

    Thumb up 10

  13. salinger

    Hidden due to low comment rating. Click here to see.

    Thumb up 1

  14. Thrill

    The only reason people didn’t get charged was because it couldn’t be proved that Libby, Armitage, Rove et al actually knew of her covert status at the time, and because she hadn’t been posted overseas in the previous five years (and therefore they argued that it was likely that the Intelligence Identity Protection Act didn’t apply).

    That’s a pretty long and fancy way of saying: “It wasn’t a crime.”

    Plame’s rights weren’t violated and no law was broken. Admittedly, trying to discredit her husband by saying the only reason he was assigned to investigate in Niger was because of her connections was an amateurish and petty dick move. However, it didn’t even qualify as a scandal in terms of the Rosen affair. Here we have abuse of the law, violations of Rosen’s civil rights, and the Attorney General possibly perjuring himself before Congress.

    This comparison is completely invalid. Plame was about the stupid games Beltway bureaucrats play. The Rosen matter is the kind of thing paranoid, banana republic tyrants do for survival.

    Thumb up 7

  15. Thrill

    I also find interesting the fact that Fox sat on the info of his being an investigative target for almost three years.

    That’s an easy one. They weren’t told.

    Lawrence A. Jacobs, who was News Corporation’s chief legal officer until he left in June 2011, said he never saw a notification about the phone records.

    “I would have remembered getting a fax from the Justice Department,” Mr. Jacobs said in an interview Sunday. “These are not the kinds of things that happen every day.”

    He added, “The first thing I would’ve done would be to call Roger Ailes.”

    News Corporation said it had conducted a thorough search of its legal records, including, Mr. Jacobs said, a scan of his e-mails and other relevant materials, and has found nothing related to the investigation. “The inference that I sat on this and didn’t share it with Roger couldn’t be further from the truth,” Mr. Jacobs said.

    Thumb up 7

  16. Section8

    Oh, come off it. The WH deliberately went after Wilson because his public statements on uranium in Niger didn’t gel with official WH doctrine at the time. And in the process, they (unwittingly or wittingly) outed his wife as a covert operative. The only reason people didn’t get charged was because it couldn’t be proved that Libby, Armitage, Rove et al actually knew of her covert status at the time, and because she hadn’t been posted overseas in the previous five years (and therefore they argued that it was likely that the Intelligence Identity Protection Act didn’t apply).

    Hmm. I could only imagine the response from you, the rest of the left here, and Hal if Alex posted this regarding Obama if this situation happened under him. Oh yeah, his administration is corrupt, can’t prove it, but hey there was a conspiracy. Let me quote some quote a partisan hack from Congress to prove it. There would be post after post on here about what a crazy asshole Alex is.

    Anyhow, Novak found out she worked for the CIA through a slip up, and got her name from Wilson’s biography. I’m not sure where that’s even in dispute. More info about her came later in other articles. Where’s the grand conspiracy here?

    Regardless, you still haven’t answered the question about how this is worse than the current harassment of civilians that goes on in this administration.

    Thumb up 9

  17. Mook

    WH admins have harassed left-wing and environmental groups for decades.

    Evidence? Were the private tax returns of the members of those leftwing groups turned over to conservative groups like the IRS turned over the private tax returns of conservative groups under the Obama admin to leftwing groups to smear them? No? You’re pulling “facts” from your ass..

    One of the articles of impeachment against Nixon was that he had misused the IRS…. that’s the same IRS… against left wing tax exempt organizations… And all this without barely more than a nod and a wink from the right.

    Really? Name two tax exempt leftwing organizations audited for their political leanings on the orders of Nixon or his cronies. The IRS even back then was largely filled with Democrats.

    The articles of impeachment against Nixon alleged that Nixon TRIED to illegally use the IRS to target political enemies. Unlike Obama, he was relatively unsuccessful by comparison. From the articles of impeachment:

    He (Nixon) has, acting personally and through his subordinated and agents, endeavored to obtain from the Internal Revenue Service, in violation of the constitutional rights of citizens

    Emphasis mine, as evidence that Nixon successfully obtained this information from the IRS and persecuted political enemies with it is pretty thin. They were able to obtain info on some individuals and groups, but who was audited and persecuted as a result? A relative tiny handful compared to the recent abuses under the Obama administration. Anyone who believes that Obama was out of the loop on what was going on is delusional.

    And the extreme level of intimidation and corruption from the IRS today is unprecedented – In addition to the politically motivated audits and withholding of information from Congress (didn’t Obama tell us that the IRS was an “independent” organization?), the IRS interrogating religious groups about what is said during their PRAYERS for chrissakes.. and the IRS demanding under threat of perjury to know family members of those in conservative organizations and other personal information they had no business in hell asking. This is FAR beyond anything Nixon did. Caught red-handed, Democrats are feigning outrage while simultaneously claiming that these abuses are merely unfortunate examples of “business as usual” and that such IRS criminal behavior is a “time honored tradition” in order to minimize and excuse it. Despicable.. but not surprising.

    Thumb up 6

  18. AlexInCT *

    Really? Name two tax exempt leftwing organizations audited for their political leanings on the orders of Nixon or his cronies.

    WELL ACORN! Pressure from evil conservatives convinced rethuglicans in congress that ACORN was wrong in teaching people how to cheat, steal, and commit crimes, in attempts to help democrats and their causes, which then resulted in their funding being pulled. And all because some asshole made a few videos he then edited to boot!

    And Planned Parenthood! They want to defund that great organization too.

    /moonbat off

    I am enjoying the schadefruede. I told people that they would see real criminal activity, abuses of our freedoms and the law, and the economy would be destroyed when the left took over after Boosh, and so far I am batting 1.000. The travesties of the Obama presidency will make Boosh’s mediocre presidency look like something awesome. Those of us not blinded by the need to pretend that criminal activity on a level never seen before, perpetuated by Obama and the left, which are now are so corrupt they make third world countries look decent, can see this fact. No wonder Team Blue and Obama are running our government and economy like a banana republic either. That’s what these fucks are about. And watching the assholes on the left make excuses for Obama and Team Blue? Priceless! I hope they, and especially the LSM, burn all their credibility trying to save the fucking rats on the sinking ship.

    Nixon was given a raw deal over far less than this asshole has gotten away with. You fools that want to keep pretending that the plethora of scandals are no big deal and that this administration isn’t beyond despicable, keep at it. For every one we know about I bet there are 50 more we don’t. This is a pattern, and if you still feel you need to sell your soul to defend this criminal and despicable behavior, well don’t be surprised that you will be labeled for what you are.

    Thumb up 5

  19. stogy

    There’s quite a nice in the Chicago Tribune about the false equivalence between Nixon and Obama:

    But equating the two is like concluding that babies are like poisonous snakes because some of them have rattles. Maybe information will someday emerge to confirm the conservative suspicion that Obama thuggishly subverted the IRS to win re-election, but so far, it falls in the realm of make-believe.

    Here is what the 44th president had to say about how the agency should operate: “Americans have a right to be angry about it, and I’m angry about it. It should not matter what political stripe you’re from. The fact of the matter is the IRS has to operate with absolute integrity.” Obama said this as he announced the dismissal of the acting commissioner for failing to prevent political abuse.

    Here is what the 37th president had to say about how the agency should operate: “Are we looking over the financial contributors to the Democratic National Committee? Are we running their income tax returns? … We have all this power and we aren’t using it. Now, what the Christ is the matter?”

    You still think Nixon was an innocent victim?

    Thumb up 2

  20. Thrill

    It’s hardly fair to compare Obama’s public statement on IRS targeting of one’s political opponent’s at the moment the scandal became known versus what Nixon said in closed-door (but stupidly recorded) meetings with his staffers, stogy.

    Plenty of elected Democrats in 2010 were demanding the very same thing that the IRS did. If you choose to believe that Obama really had no clue that any of this was going on until he saw it on the news, you are being gullible. I’d love to hear some recordings of Obama’s meetings with IRS officials, his counsel, and others but we all know how likely that is to happen.

    Thumb up 4

  21. stogy

    That’s a pretty long and fancy way of saying: “It wasn’t a crime.”

    Yeah, they got away with it. If it had happened under a Dem administration, you would have been screaming blue murder about how the WH had undermined national security and put field operatives’ lives at risk.

    Thumb up 2

  22. Mook

    Americans have a right to be angry about it, and I’m angry about it. It should not matter what political stripe you’re from. The fact of the matter is the IRS has to operate with absolute integrity.” Obama said this as he announced the dismissal of the acting commissioner for failing to prevent political abuse.

    If you’re delusional enough to believe that Obama “didn’t know” about the IRS criminal abuses, then it’s my mistake for engaging you in discussion at all. As Thrill pointed out, a PR filtered public statement which is almost certainly a lie from Obama is hardly comparable to a taped admission behind closed doors.

    I’ll ask you again since you (Stogy) made the claim:

    One of the articles of impeachment against Nixon was that he had misused the IRS…. that’s the same IRS… against left wing tax exempt organizations… And all this without barely more than a nod and a wink from the right.

    Name even two leftwing tax exempt organizations that were targeted for audit by Nixon or his cronies for their anti-Nixon or leftist political leanings. If you can’t do so, then admit that you simply made it up.

    Thumb up 3

  23. Mook

    Yeah, they got away with it. If it had happened under a Dem administration, you would have been screaming blue murder about how the WH had undermined national security

    That is utter bullshit and provably false. Obama divulged the name of the Seal Team 6 commander to Hollywood producers for the sole purpose of making a craven politically advantageous movie as a sleazy PR stunt before the election and Republicans didn’t make a witch hunt out of it. It’s directly comparable to the Plame situation where a hyperpartisan Dem-led witch hunt was orchestrated by Dems on completely unsubstantiated basis.. As has been factually established, Richard Armitage “leaked” Plame’s name.. quotation marks because she was a desk jockey, not a real hero like the Seal Team leader who Obama leaked

    Thumb up 4

  24. Thrill

    If it had happened under a Dem administration, you would have been screaming blue murder about how the WH had undermined national security and put field operatives’ lives at risk.

    No, I wouldn’t. I’m surprised you think that little of my independence and fair-mindedness. There are enough recent examples of me challenging conservative commenters on here to think that I would similarly dismiss a non-scandal like the Plame affair even if a Democratic Administration were behind it.

    I simply do not see a crime or a scandal in that particular situation.

    It was ridiculous and immature, but hardly the kind of thing Administrations should be brought down over. The IRS scandal is that kind of thing and I’m amazed that you would equate the two.

    Thumb up 2

  25. hist_ed

    Gotta say this (and I bow to no one in my disdain for our president): I don’t know if Obama ordered the IRS to do this. I can certainly see it as possible, even likely. But until there is proof, all reasonable people will qualify their statements. I can also see this happening without his orders and can also see his staff deliberately not telling him when they found out.

    What I really enjoy about all these scandals (and I bet you the 5th or 6th shoe will drop soon now that some in the press have woken up) is that Obama’s best and only defense is to claim incompetence. John Stewart’s video of O saying over and over again that he learned about all this shit from the news is a priceless indictment: President fucking clueless.

    Thumb up 5

  26. Mook

    I can also see this happening without his orders and can also see his staff deliberately not telling him when they found out.

    Sorry to quibble, but once the IRS investigation concluded that IRS abuses were widespread and reported to top Treasury officials in the Obama admin (per NY Times) in June 2012, what are the odds that no one brought that to Obama’s attention? Or didn’t “bring it to his attention” because they knew damn well Obama approved it? Seriously hist-ed, you can “see” that happening? Just because it’s within the realm of possibility, a distant and unlikely possibility, doesn’t make it plausible. It’s fully within Obama’s mandate to “punish your enemies”

    Thumb up 5

  27. Section8

    Yeah, they got away with it. If it had happened under a Dem administration, you would have been screaming blue murder about how the WH had undermined national security and put field operatives’ lives at risk.

    Wow ok. Again though what were the reasons “they got away with it?” based on your previous post.

    Lack of evidence
    Lack of intent, as even you state the outing was wittingly or unwittingly

    Whether the Bush administration was unhappy with Wilson is irrelevant. Administrations are unhappy with individuals all the time, including this one, and no one says a peep about it from either side because there is nothing wrong with that. What does matter is if they use the power of the government to harass, detain, fine, audit, etc. If you have real evidence there was a conspiracy rather than they just got away with it please post it here.

    But again, beyond all that. None of this involved the wholesale harassment against civilians due to political views. As Thrill has pointed out, that’s the general tactics of tin pot dictators, and tyrants that run banana republics, and to me trumps just about every other wrong the government could do.

    Oh and Nixon was a douche, and was investigated, and was thrown out of office. Whether what is going on here now is worse or almost as bad is irrelevant to me. Being alarmed of this behavior shouldn’t rest on being the worst violation ever, it should rest on if it’s just plain wrong and has no business in our Republic. If you truly thought what Obama was doing was wrong you’d just state that and not have to follow up with others did it too. You can’t do that though.

    Thumb up 4

  28. stogy
    WH admins have harassed left-wing and environmental groups for decades.

    Evidence?

    Aren’t you forgetting McCarthy? Hoover’s deliberate targeting of leftist groups, MLK? Regarding Nixon, there were rather more than two:

    Nixon’s minions had the IRS set up a special internal arm “the Activist Organization Committee” in July of 1969 to audit an “enemies list” provided by Nixon. My uncle Senator Ted Kennedy was at the top of that list along with a small army of well-known journalists. The IRS later renamed its political audit squad “Special Services” or “SS” to keep its mission secret. The SS targeted over 1,000 liberal groups for audits and 4,000 individuals. The SS staff managed their files in a soundproof cell in the IRS basement.

    On October 6, 1971, Nixon ordered Haldeman to have the IRS audit Los Angeles Timespublisher Otis Chandler who had transformed the Times from a right wing rag into a universally respected paper by recruiting top journalists from across the nation.

    Nixon directed Haldeman to order Schultz to audit Kimmelman. “Everybody thinks George is an honest, decent man,” Nixon observed contemptuously. “George has got a fantasy… what’s he trying to do say? That you can’t play politics with the IRS? Just tell George he should do it.” Three days later Nixon had Kimmelman’s tax returns as well Larry O’Brien’s who had by then agreed to manage McGovern’s faltering campaign and whose office would be the target of the Watergate break-in.

    In case you think our author might be exaggerating, here’s the Wall Street Journal (worth reading because it also goes over Roosevelt’s and Kennedy’s abuse of the IRS):

    After Richard Nixon took office, his administration quickly created a Special Services Staff to mastermind what a memo called “all IRS activities involving ideological, militant, subversive, radical, and similar type organizations.” More than 10,000 individuals and groups were targeted because of their political activism or slant between 1969 and 1973, including Nobel Laureate Linus Pauling (a left-wing critic of the Vietnam War) and the far-right John Birch Society.

    The IRS was also given Nixon’s enemies list to, in the words of White House counsel John Dean, “use the available federal machinery to screw our political enemies.”

    But there’s more recent stuff than that: The Inspector General of the Attorney General’s department found that groups that opposed government policies had been spied on for years:

    The FBI improperly targeted Greenpeace, People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) and two antiwar groups in domestic terrorism investigations between 2001 and 2006, the Inspector General of the Department of Justice said in a report released today.

    The IG found there was “little or no basis” for the terror investigations, and that they were “unreasonable and inconsistent with FBI policy.”

    At least two of the investigations resulted in innocent people being placed on the domestic terror watch list for years, and one resulted in FBI Director Robert Mueller providing Congress with “inaccurate and misleading information,” according to the report.

    But here’s the thing. I don’t think, as some people have indicated above, that Obama is the Messiah. Alex also mentions how much he is

    enjoying the schadefruede

    I think, and I’ve certainly said this before, that Obama is simply a continuation of Bush. Not even Bush lite. Drones, foreign wars, Guantanamo, climate inaction, extrajudicial killings of terrorist suspects and innocent civilians, expanding fossil fuels use, military spending, persecuting WIkileaks (see below), Obamacare simply hands over more cash to those rorting the health system …whether you agree or disagree with these policies, there’s nothing liberal about the guy at all. Everything is the same as Bush but the rhetoric. (I would say he’s a DINO, but the Dems don’t really stand for anything much at all either these days, so it really wouldn’t mean anything to use the label).

    And yes, even targeting journalists and whistleblowers. Towards the end of the Bush administration, there was speculation that Gonzales would go after journalists for revealing the NSA’s eavesdropping program using exactly the same laws that Obama is using now. The Obama admin is simply taking it quite a bit further (there is an excellent summary of it in Greenwald’s column a week ago):

    That’s what always made the establishment media’s silence (or even support) in the face of the criminal investigation of WikiLeaks so remarkable: it was so obvious from the start that the theories used there could easily be exploited to criminalize the acts of mainstream journalists. That’s why James Goodale, the New York Times’ general counsel during the paper’s historic press freedom fights with the Nixon administration, has been warning that “the biggest challenge to the press today is the threatened prosecution of WikiLeaks, and it’s absolutely frightening.”

    And here’s the killer argument. The FBI targeting of left-wing and anti-war groups has continued throughout the Obama administration. The FBI have conducted raids and harassment of a number of anti-war groups, most notably this one, commencing in 2010. Again, I don’t care if you agree with their views or not, they do have the right to legally express them.

    This is why the current administration disgusts me. But they’re still not worse than Nixon (at least until we can prove that they are). It’s just a continuation of business as usual at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue.

    Thumb up 1

  29. stogy

    Wow ok. Again though what were the reasons “they got away with it?” based on your previous post.

    Lack of evidence
    Lack of intent, as even you state the outing was wittingly or unwittingly

    Yeah, it doesn’t matter, but it does. If they did this, they weren’t doing their jobs properly. And ignorance of the law should not be a defence for outing a covert operative and placing people in danger simply to discredit evidence that didn’t back their world view. Nor would it be if this had occurred under a Dem administration. But now, of course, we have BENGHAZI – and a dem administration. “Facts be damned, we’re going after them!”

    This is why you lot are so pathetic. You can’t see above partisan politics – when it was Clinton (“He lied: impeach impeach! The dress!”) or Bush (“nothing to see here, move along, all just BDS, Plame was nothing, we FOUND the WMDs”). There’s nothing about fixing the systems that make it possible for successive administrations, regardless of political leanings, to flout the laws and use the “available federal machinery to screw our political enemies.”

    You can pretend this is something new all you like, but the way US politics is going, I can see every administration from here on in, both Dem and GOP, is going to spend most of their terms of office fighting off impeachment calls from the other side.

    If you truly thought what Obama was doing was wrong you’d just state that and not have to follow up with others did it too. You can’t do that though.

    Yeah, actually I already did.

    Thumb up 2

  30. hist_ed

    Sorry to quibble, but once the IRS investigation concluded that IRS abuses were widespread and reported to top Treasury officials in the Obama admin (per NY Times) in June 2012, what are the odds that no one brought that to Obama’s attention? Or didn’t “bring it to his attention” because they knew damn well Obama approved it? Seriously hist-ed, you can “see” that happening?

    I wasn’t too clear, I guess, let me rephrase: I think it is possible that if top WH staff were made aware of an IRS program to target conservative during an election campaign that they would choose to not tell Obama so that he could then deny knowledge of it (and, if the shit hit the fan, there would be no paper trail ’cause he was never told). I don’t think this is way out there crazy-insulating the boss against the nitty gritty crap isn’t far fetched. I’m not betting on it, but I don;t think it is far fetched.

    Thumb up 1

  31. hist_ed

    Regarding Nixon, there were rather more than two:

    Love this from your source (which you didn’t link):

    My uncle Senator Ted Kennedy was at the top of that list

    Yep, quoting a Kennedy-that sure is an unbiased source, ain’t it?

    Also, way up there you said about Nixon’s crap: “And all this without barely more than a nod and a wink from the right.” Nixon resigned because Republicans went to him and told him he was toast. They indicated that many Republicans in the House and Senate would vote to impeach and remove him from office. If the GOP had stood with him in a united front, he almost certainly would have battled it out.

    I also love this: “Towards the end of the Bush administration, there was speculation that Gonzales would go after journalists for revealing the NSA’s eavesdropping program using exactly the same laws that Obama is using now. ”

    Speculation? Wow. You know, that settles it. Speculation is so definitive. Heck, towards the end of the Reagan administration there was speculation that Reagan would nuke Cuba just for the hell of it. I know because I heard the person speculate (it was towards the end of a long night of acid and pot-there was a lot of speculation that evening, let me tell you). Now, I also know enough not to bring that up as a serious indictment of Reagan because condemning someone because some other idiot speculated about their intentions is fucking idiotic.

    Thumb up 7

  32. stogy

    I just want to mention your point again. I think I didn’t answer it properly:

    If you truly thought what Obama was doing was wrong you’d just state that and not have to follow up with others did it too. You can’t do that though.

    You’re right. The real point is not whether this is better or worse (although in this case, there’s a lot we still don’t know – and as far as I know, no charges have yet been laid). My point is not to make Obama look better by showing other Republican Presidents were worse. Ten days ago I was putting together completely bipartisan lists of presidents who had abused their powers on another thread.

    But all that is being drowned out as you fall all over each other, frothing at the mouth in your outrage. Is it really necessary to whitewash Nixon’s record simply to elevate the current scandal. Nixon was an evil son of bitch, who we know used the systems of government including the IRS against his political enemies. The break in was only the last in a long line of abuses of power. We don’t yet know the full extent of this current scandal (and it may be worse), but already many here have already passed judgement.

    So in response to the second part of you point, I would also say that looking at it in historical context is absolutely essential – otherwise you never get to see it as a long process of abuse by both major parties that needs to be addressed. Otherwise it just goes on.

    Thumb up 2

  33. stogy

    Yep, quoting a Kennedy-that sure is an unbiased source, ain’t it?

    Yeah, that’s why I included the WSJ link right underneath. Just so you wouldn’t need to feel your sensitivities were being upset. Apparently, they still were. Sorry I forgot the link.

    Speculation? Wow. You know, that settles it. Speculation is so definitive.

    You’re right. Speculation was a poor choice of words. It wasn’t speculation at all. Gonzalez launched a DOJ investigation into whether or not journalists could be charged under the espionage act. Officials from right across the White House (including Cheney) backed this up. And whether or not the charges proceeded, the intention was to intimidate the media:

    For that reason, this flamboyant use of the forces of criminal prosecution to threaten whistle-blowers and intimidate journalists are nothing more than the naked tactics of street thugs and authoritarian juntas. There is much speculation over whether other eavesdropping programs exist, including domestic eavesdropping programs, as well as whether other lawless programs have been authorized based on the Administration’s theories that it has the right to wield war powers against American citizens on American soil.

    And like Section 8 said,

    that’s the general tactics of tin pot dictators, and tyrants that run banana republics, and to me trumps just about every other wrong the government could do.

    So you questioned the author of my source (but nothing he said), and the use of one of my terms. Anything that deals with the more substantive issues?

    Thumb up 1

  34. Section8

    . Is it really necessary to whitewash Nixon’s record simply to elevate the current scandal.

    I’m going to assume this was directed at me since you’re responding to my quote.

    And in fact here is the full quote

    Oh and Nixon was a douche, and was investigated, and was thrown out of office. Whether what is going on here now is worse or almost as bad is irrelevant to me. Being alarmed of this behavior shouldn’t rest on being the worst violation ever, it should rest on if it’s just plain wrong and has no business in our Republic. If you truly thought what Obama was doing was wrong you’d just state that and not have to follow up with others did it too. You can’t do that though.

    I can only summize at this point you don’t know what the use of douche is in this context. Basically I was insulting the guy, not whitewashing his record.

    This is why you lot are so pathetic. You can’t see above partisan politics – when it was Clinton (“He lied: impeach impeach! The dress!”) or Bush (“nothing to see here, move along, all just BDS, Plame was nothing, we FOUND the WMDs”).

    Nope, not true. I had an issue with Bush’s wiretapping. I noticed you posted a link saying the the Bush administration MIGHT go after the media for leaks. MIGHT according to speculation, and is doing with the AGs fucking signature attached are two different things. I was and am still not a fan of Bush, so I’m not sure what you want to argue there. It would seem to be you who is interested in partisan bickering.

    Thumb up 4

  35. AlexInCT *

    Is it really necessary to whitewash Nixon’s record simply to elevate the current scandal.

    You are fucking kidding me right? Nixon wishes he could have sicked the IRS at his opponents in order to steal an election like these fucks did. What Nixon did doesn’t come close to what the IRS did for Team Blue. And yes, I doubt this was done without knowledge or direction from the top. This pattern has been repeated from the “Fast & Furious” scandal, to Benghazi, to every other god damned instance of malfeasance and criminal behavior that these bastards wanted to pretend was no biggie.

    The same fuckers that keep pretending that Nixon was evil are the ones now telling us Obama didn’t know or that the IRS didn’t do anything bad. Again, if the information of how the IRS abused their power to drastically impact an election had come out under Boosh’s tenure, I am certain that the very same fuckwads now pretending this travesty isn’t a big deal, that if it is a big deal it is still not so bad, and/or that if it is the real serious problem it is, that Obama didn’t know or was not the one in charge, would all be demanding we impeach him. Boosh would never be allowed to resign, and they would have been demanding criminal charges be filed too.

    If Nixon had to go for much less abuse of power and a single scandal, then Obama is getting away with murder. And in the case of what happened in Benghazi, he is.

    Thumb up 5

  36. stogy

    I’m going to assume this was directed at me since you’re responding to my quote.

    Hi Section 8. My comments on Nixon were more towards Alex, Mook and Hist_ed, who seem to have very little idea of the scale of the shit that the douche (see, S8, I do know what it means) Nixon actually pulled. And it was the fact that he was caught with a smoking gun leaving his Republican supporters in the Senate with very little option but to switch their votes toward impeachment. It was far more than being caught for a simple burglary. And went on for many many years as a deliberate and documented abuse of power.

    So my apologies if I made you sound like a signed on the dotted line member of the GOP.

    Alex:

    The same fuckers that keep pretending that Nixon was evil are the ones now telling us Obama didn’t know or that the IRS didn’t do anything bad.

    It is a bit early to say. There hasn’t been much of an investigation yet aside from the partisan Benghazi ones. Will you be willing to extend the same level of magnanimity toward Obama as you were to members of the Bush administration over Plame, if nothing is found, and no charges laid (apart from say, a minor perjury charge perhaps)?

    If Nixon had to go for much less abuse of power and a single scandal, then Obama is getting away with murder. And in the case of what happened in Benghazi, he is.

    Er… so let me get this… Obama conspired to murder the Libyan ambassador in Benghazi, for some completely unclear motive, but there was one, and has managed to successfully cover up the crime. Almost, that is, because our man Alex at Right Thinking is onto him. Has all the evidence. Including the smoking gun. Just waiting for the right moment to bring down the presidency.

    Either that or our man at Right Thinking Alex is delusional.

    Again: the point – the last dozen or so administrations (including the current one), regardless of political leanings, have played fast and furious with the both the spirit and the letter of the American constitution. Focusing only on the most recent scandal (as befits partisan politics) is stupid because it only means the same thing is likely to happen again as soon as the other party gets into power. Rinse and repeat, or rinse and impeach. Next douche please.

    It makes all of us useful idiots in a power game that really only benefits those with their fingers in the big pie. If you were a little more upset with Obama’s targeting of anti-war groups through the FBI, then you would be more credible.

    Thumb up 3

  37. Section8

    Hi Section 8. My comments on Nixon were more towards Alex, Mook and Hist_ed, who seem to have very little idea of the scale of the shit that the douche (see, S8, I do know what it means) Nixon actually pulled.

    Fair enough. I really don’t see why anyone would defend him but whatever. To my fellow conservatives here, don’t excuse Nixon to magnify what is going on now. Nixon was a douche period. I just don’t like the arguments either way in comparison to Nixon, or anyone else for that matter. To me what is going on now should just be judged based on what is going on now and not go on tangents. True, there is no concrete evidence as of yet if Obama knew anything, however, the fact there are so many scandals coming out now is alarming though either way, and we’re only in the early stages of fact finding.

    Focusing only on the most recent scandal (as befits partisan politics) is stupid because it only means the same thing is likely to happen again as soon as the other party gets into power. Rinse and repeat, or rinse and impeach. Next douche please.

    I agree to a point, but most of the focus should be on the current scandals as that’s what is affecting us now, but you are correct, they seem to be growing with each administration. My guess it’s purely due to the growing authority of government in general. I’ve been saying that repeatedly since I’ve been on this blog which I think is nearing or is past 10 years now. I think you’ve been here about that long too now that I think of it.

    Power corrupts, absolute power corrupts absolutely. Nothing has changed since that phrase was first put on the market. The way this system was originally built wasn’t based on giving large amounts of power to angels who would be benevolent. It was quite the opposite. It was viewed government was a necessary evil run by man who is clearly corruptible, and power should be limited and divided as much as possible. I really don’t think the humans have evolved genetically to the point where this still isn’t a sound argument. We need to decentralize much of the government and put it back in local hands where it belongs.

    Thumb up 4

  38. Mook

    Fair enough. I really don’t see why anyone would defend him but whatever. To my fellow conservatives here, don’t excuse Nixon to magnify what is going on now.

    And who in the fuck here is doing that Sec8? Not me, not Alex, not Hist_Ed.. NO ONE is excusing Nixon. Show me the quote where I or Alex or any other conservative here was in ANY WAY “excusing” Nixon? You’re a dupe for swallowing Stogy’s dishonest as hell characterization of our arguments. He can’t argue on facts, so he mischaracterizes others who call him on his bullshit as somehow defending Nixon. And now you’re defending stogy’s dishonest characterizations by lecturing your “fellow conservatives” not to do what they never did in the first place. Jesus man, pull your head out.

    The point is, that the IRS abuses under Nixon were child’s play in comparison to the IRS abuses going on EN MASSE under Obama, yet Nixon was forced from office. Point out this fact does not “excuse” jack shit for what Nixon did. Nixon was a scumbag and no one has said different. I asked stogy to back up his BS claim by asking him to name even 2 leftwing tax exempt organizations audited under Nixon’s orders and he couldn’t do it. Why? Because the IRS, unlike the scumbags running things now, wouldn’t let him. Former IRS chief recalls defying Nixon

    The comparison between Nixon and Obama is not required in order to demonstrate that criminal abuses from the IRS took place.. But the comparison is important to make because the IRS abuses REALLY ARE worse under the Obama admin than under Nixon. Much worse, and much more intrusive. More disturbing, it’s the first time entire classes of individuals and organizations have been targeted for abuse. Searching keywords “patriot”, “Tea Party”, “liberty” (or gun organization?) for selective targeting. Nixon had an enemies list. He abused his power to TRY (often unsuccessfully) to go after his enemies. Unlike Obama who had no similar axe to grind, Nixon had in fact been targeted by Democrats for IRS abuse in the early 1960’s and Nixon had a hard-on to get even. But make no mistake, there was an element of payback to what Nixon did. Not excusing it, but putting it in perspective.

    Obama hasn’t been directly implicated yet, but it’s strains credulity to believe that he didn’t know about or authorize what the IRS was doing. After all, he is the same scumbag who used executive privilege to block investigations into Operation F&F. He’s made clear his disdain for the bitter clingers and he’s the first President in my lifetime to direct his followers to “punish our enemies”. Let’s not pretend that Obama is an honest or decent man. He’s not. That doesn’t “prove” that he was directly responsible with IRS abuses, but I believe it’s almost certain that he approved of it, if not authorized it, even indirectly. The alternative is to believe that Obama really did, as he tells us, first learn of the IRS abuses in the newspaper..

    Thumb up 4

  39. CM

    The alternative is to believe that Obama really did, as he tells us, first learn of the IRS abuses in the newspaper.

    Or, he might have not known about it, but lied about when he found out.

    Thumb up 2

  40. Section8

    And who in the fuck here is doing that Sec8? Not me, not Alex, not Hist_Ed.. NO ONE is excusing Nixon. Show me the quote where I or Alex or any other conservative here was in ANY WAY “excusing” Nixon?

    Well there is this from Alex. You are correct though, you and Hist Ed don’t have much I see at all.

    Nixon was given a raw deal over far less than this asshole has gotten away with. You fools that want to keep pretending that the plethora of scandals are no big deal and that this administration isn’t beyond despicable, keep at it. For every one we know about I bet there are 50 more we don’t. This is a pattern, and if you still feel you need to sell your soul to defend this criminal and despicable behavior, well don’t be surprised that you will be labeled for what you are.

    That’s where my request came in about not excusing Nixon. He wasn’t give a raw deal, compared to anything, and he got what he deserved, and the focus should be that Obama is given what he deserves and in the meantime the left would love for us to go on tangents. It distracts us to arguing over a dead guy compared to getting fucked in the ass now by the left’s version of superman. Don’t get me wrong I’m guilty as hell getting roped in with Plame, but when Hal chimed in on Stogy’s side with that I was kind of surprised. Well sort of. The surprises get less as we go.

    Listen, I’m not here to back down on this. Stogy, and the rest of the usual suspects will cry conspiracy or it’s bad but… under any circumstance. Shit, Obama could be drowning puppies out in the Memorial Reflecting Pool, and to criticize it would be “conspiracy!”, or It’s bad but George Bush probably kicked a cat once so so what? At the end of the day we need to avoid tangents, in my opinion anyhow. That’s what they want, then the argument shifts to a dead guy instead of the one fucking us now.

    Thumb up 6

  41. stogy

    Shit, Obama could be drowning puppies out in the Memorial Reflecting Pool, and to criticize it would be “conspiracy!”, or It’s bad but George Bush probably kicked a cat once so so what?

    Fair enough S8. I think your points are very reasonable. There is a lot of clatter on right wing blogs about this being “worse than Nixon”. It’s not. At least yet. It might be, but unless someone can produce a smoking gun, then we may never know. Everything else is speculation.

    I’d actually like to see a much broader investigation. How is it that the organs of state can be misused for political gain? Is it possible that the DOJ attempts to put Assange/Wikileaks and other journalists on trial has much broader implications for media freedom? How can it be that the same misuse of the IRS for political ends has been allowed to occur decades later? What happened to the laws on FBI investigations after the FBI harassed PETA and Greenpeace under the Bush administration? Why is the FBI still able to conduct vendetta operations against both right-wing and left-wing groups (and under a supposedly liberal presidency)? How much of this a result of civil liberties curtailment under the Patriot Act?

    The problem I have with Congressional investigations, as I’ve said, is that they tend to be party-political. And the findings tend to go along party lines rather than actually exposing the truth. The Republicans will thump the table and talk about the threat to the existence of the Republic; the Dems will piss and moan and talk about how biased the whole process was; and the blogosphere will erupt in its usual outrage; and Fox news will do… what it does every other day of the year. Of course, in the case of the whole Clinton thing, it all backfired and cost the GOP the mid-terms, and Newt his job.

    Mook, the reason I listed you was because you said this:

    Name two tax exempt leftwing organizations audited for their political leanings on the orders of Nixon or his cronies. The IRS even back then was largely filled with Democrats.

    As there were thousands of groups and there was a whole special department set up within the IRS for these “investigations”, it suggested to me that you weren’t aware of the scale of Nixon’s corruption. That’s all I said. No offence intended.

    Thumb up 1

  42. stogy

    Mook, here’s a little more on how the Special Services worked within the IRS. This is from the book, The Lawless State: The crimes of the U.S. Inteligence Agencies by Morton Halperin, Jerry Berman, Robert Borosage, Christine Marwick (1976):

    On July 2, 1969, officials of the Compliance Division of the IRS first met to discuss the creation of a group inside the IRS to examine “ideological organizations” and to collect intelligence on dissident groups through a “strike force” approach. Later that month, the Special Service Staff was established “to coordinate activities in all Compliance Divisions involving ideological, militant, subversive, radical and similar type organizations; to collect basic intelligence data, and to insure that the requirements of the Internal Revenue Code concerning such organizations have been complied with.”

    The Special Service Staff was a mechanism to take advantage of the decentralized- character of the IRS. Its purpose was to gather information on political groups and individuals throughout the government, and to stimulate audits by local and district IRS offices based upon this information. It remains unclear how instrumental White House and congressional pressure had been in establishing the SSS. Although influenced by outside pressures, which led IRS officials to believe they had made a “commitment” to the White House to follow up on the administration’s initial interest, officials within the IRS assumed responsibility for forming the special unit. As with the FBI and military intelligence programs, interest from the higher levels of the White House triggered a bureaucratic reaction that may have exceeded the expectations of the president and his aides.

    Once in operation, the SSS became a political tool responsive to the FBI, the Internal Security Division of the Justice Department, and other government agencies monitoring political dissent. Paul Wright, who headed the SSS, felt, like J. Edgar Hoover, “that he was participating in an effort to save the country from dissidents and extremists,” and identified the smaller operations of SSS with the larger campaign conducted by the FBI.

    In one instance where he pressed the Detroit District Office to reopen an audit case on a group of political activists, he gave as primary reason that “they are notorious campus and antidraft activists having records under anti-riot laws. They are the principal officers in the Radical Education Project, an offshoot of the Students for a Democratic Society, and have been identified as members of certain Communist front organizations…. while revenue potential might not be large in some cases, there are instances where enforcement against flagrant law violaters would have some salutary effect in this overall battle against persons bent on destruction of this government.” These were hardly tax-related criteria. As the July 24, 1969, memorandum creating the SSS had asserted, “from a strictly revenue standpoint, we may have little reason for establishing this committee or for expending the time- and effort which may be necessary.” Nevertheless, political considerations dictate that “We must do it.”

    Indeed, those in the executive agencies who had initially pressured the IRS to initiate action against dissident organizations, saw the Special Service Staff as an important complement to other methods of harassing political dissidents. The ability to stimulate an audit of an organization or individual created a legitimate “administrative” COINTELPRO operation-one which was particularly effective against those tax-exempt organizations involved in political activity that had proved difficult to reach.

    For the most part, the SSS did not even make the decision about which groups or individuals were to be watched. Unlike every other special compliance group within the IRS, in which target selection is based solely on tax criteria, the SSS initiated investigations in response to information reports from outside agencies. The FBI was the single largest source of targets for the Special Service Staff. In its four years of operation, the SSS received 11,818 separate reports from the FBI, over 6,000 of them classified, including FBI COINTELPRO reports, and an FBI list of over 2,300 organizations categorized as “Old Left,” “New Left,” and “Right Wing.”

    If the subject of an FBI report had not already been under examination, the SSS would sometimes begin a file on that person or group. Information from the FBI comprised 43 percent of the data gathered by the SSS, and in its first year of operation more than four of every five SSS referrals to the field for audit noted the FBI as an important source of information. The Inter-Divisional Information Unit (IDIU) of the Department of Justice also provided leads for SSS investigations, including lists of 10,000 and 16,000 persons and organizations that might potentially engage in civil disturbances, and the Internal Security Committees of the Congress also provided the SSS with a list of target groups and individuals. Beyond these sources, the SSS had access to the army’s Counter-lntelligence Compendium which listed “dissident individuals and organizations, and made contact with the air force’s Counter-lntelligence unit as well.

    Thumb up 1

  43. stogy

    Sorry, I don’t want to threadbomb, but I really have to put this up as well. The abuse of the IRS continued under the Clinton presidency, and both sides were doing it. This is from the WSJ article I linked to above:

    One potential bombshell of the Clinton era that went relatively unrecognized was an Associated Press report in 1999 that “officials in the Democratic White House and members of both parties in Congress have prompted hundreds of audits of political opponents in the 1990s,” including “personal demands for audits from members of Congress.” Audit requests from congressmen were marked “expedite” or “hot politically” and IRS officials were obliged to respond within 15 days. Permitting congressmen to secretly and effortlessly sic G-men on whomever they pleased epitomized official Washington’s contempt for average Americans and fair play. But because the abuse was bipartisan, there was little enthusiasm on Capitol Hill for an investigation.

    The whole article is worth reading.

    Thumb up 1

  44. Mississippi Yankee

    Well dogey as you’ve pointed out every president since Wilson has misused the IRS. So it would be a simple solution to repeal the 16th amendment (Hal’s head explodes). After all many states do just fine without ‘state income tax’. Texas being the most successful in this regard. Why can’t we do a similar “thang” on a national level. Hell we went over 100 years without the IRS. And managed to fight several wars and expand from Sea to Shining Sea.

    Or has this all just been bloviating on your part?

    Thumb up 4

  45. stogy

    Or has this all just been bloviating on your part?

    I see it as more a problem with the separation of powers. Even without the IRS, there’d still be the FBI and the DOJ to abuse their roles. You want to do away with them as well?

    Thumb up 1

  46. Mississippi Yankee

    Even without the IRS, there’d still be the FBI and the DOJ to abuse their roles. You want to do away with them as well?

    I’m a conservative constitutionalist, which is a bit more fundamental than a constitutional conservative. What do you think?

    Thumb up 1

  47. stogy

    I’m a conservative constitutionalist, which is a bit more fundamental than a constitutional conservative. What do you think?

    Interesting. I didn’t even know there was a distinction. You got anything I can read on that apart from some half-baked blogs, which don’t really explain principles? Oh and a few snarks on Democratic Underground.

    I’m genuinely interested.

    Thumb up 1

  48. Mook

    Well there is this from Alex. You are correct though, you and Hist Ed don’t have much I see at all.

    Ok, I don’t like it when liberals like stogy mischaracterize the arguments against them.. but I tend to get really disagreeable when I see others buy into those mischaracterizations.

    You obviously feel differently, but I disagree that Alex crossed any line with that statement of his which you blockquoted. The abuses under the Obama administration at the State Dept., DOJ and IRS are FAR worse than what occurred under Nixon. And Alex is dead-on right to presume that the corruption and criminal behavior we’ve seen so far is likely only the tip of the iceberg. The only difference between Obama and Nixon is that we had tapes on Nixon, but Scooter Milhous Obama has been adequately devious to keep the dirty dealings a safe arms length distance away, enabling him enough wriggle room to make outrageous claims that he “first learned” of the IRS scandals in the newspaper. He has yet to acknowledge or explain why he clearly lied for weeks about a filmmaker being the cause of the Benghazi attacks when he was informed that it was a terrorist attack from the get-go. It’s better to acknowledge the obvious truth that our President is a liar and a vicious scumbag.. when you can do that, you absorb the fact that his past and present actions preclude him from any benefit of any doubt. He is not an honest man, he’s not a good man. I wish more people would stop pretending otherwise.

    Thumb up 4

  49. Mook

    Mook, here’s a little more on how the Special Services worked within the IRS.

    I’ve already provided citation upthread from the head of the IRS at that time who says that he defied Nixon’s requests, and his account is largely substantiated by Stanley Kutler’s authoritative books on the subject, “Abuse of Power” and “History of Watergate”. Also, you had Nixon cabinet members like George Schultz intervene to block politicization of the IRS. Sure, you can find vague claims of ‘enemies lists’, but name those who were audited and persecuted as a result of IRS abuses. It’s a relative teeny tiny handful.

    Nixon “attempted” to manipulate the IRS, but unlike Obama, his attempts were largely a failure.. which is why you’ve been unable to name even two liberal organizations which were audited under Nixon. Under Obama we have THOUSANDS who were targeted and harassed for political reasons.. we have an IRS which withheld information from Congress to influence an election.. and the level of intrusion is unprecedented – name for me ONE other time in which the IRS targeted across an entire political class, not just individuals, and demanded to know what they said in their PRAYERS… while demanding under threat of perjury to know the names of their relatives.

    Give me ONE EXAMPLE where that level of abuse and widespread criminal behavior on the IRS has taken place before in US history?

    Thumb up 5

  50. stogy

    Thanks Mook,

    I’ve come across the Walters story before. It’s been widely reported. But only represents a small part of the overall picture. It was only in that particular instance that he (and quite rightly too) refused to let the IRS to be used for such political ends. But the Special Section was operating the whole time, target mostly left wing groups, but also a fair few right wing groups on the grounds that someone in the FBI had decided that they were worth intimidating. There was, in most cases, no prior evidence of tax evasion or fraud, but investigated they were anyway. But the whole operation was really run out of the White House.

    Nixon “attempted” to manipulate the IRS, but unlike Obama, his attempts were largely a failure..

    OK. You want two? The head of the ACLU, Jay Miller, was audited in both 72 and 73, and then filed a lawsuit against the administration for harassment. The IRS also improperly provided a list of donors to FBI regarding the Southern Christian Leadership Conference (that’s Martin Luther King’s group). I could go right through the enemies master list for each of the groups to see if they were audited, but it’s late and I have an early start tomorrow. But keeping tens of thousands of files on groups and individuals simply because of their political beliefs cannot be morally (and surely not legally justifiable).

    The big difference I can see in the Walters case is that came direct from the administration, and almost entirely focused on Nixon’s democratic political enemies, rather than being routed through the FBI.

    But I think I have demonstrated that this has gone on right throughout pretty much every administration since WW2. I see nothing that makes the particular episode with Obama special (large-scale – check, targeted political opponents – check, use the IRS and the FBI – check). The biggest difference I can see is that right wing groups were targeted more heavily for once – fancy that causing such a big fuss! And there isn’t yet a smoking gun or thousands of tapes describing every detail of the operation from the oval office. So calling for heads to roll outside of the IRS is definitely premature.

    Honestly, if this had been Bush (who in this vein, as far as I know, limited himself to nefarious and legally dubious intimidation of PETA and Greenpeace etc. through the FBI), would you have been quite so upset? And if it was so widspread under the Clinton administration (including audits of everyone who claimed he had slept with them), did it suddenly die out with Bush (I have seen one report that the ACLU was audited under Bush, but not sure what it means just yet)?

    And last point: I’m not particularly pro-Obama. As I noted above, I think he is really a conservative. And a poor one at that. I’m pretty disgusted with the whole administration and have been for quite some time.

    Thumb up 1

  51. stogy

    …. oh, and of course, I forgot to mention that the Plame and WIlson were also audited in 2004 (despite there being nothing that should have triggered such an audit, at least according to their accountant).

    That’s one for the more conspiratorially minded among you…

    Thumb up 1

  52. CM

    It’s better to acknowledge the obvious truth that our President is a liar and a vicious scumbag.. when you can do that, you absorb the fact that his past and present actions preclude him from any benefit of any doubt.

    But when you do that you’re pretty much admitting ODS and an inability to distinguish between conspiracy theory and evidence/fact/reality. If you assume as a given that he’s a liar and viciuous scumbag, you’ll put everything through that filter first.

    Thumb up 1

  53. Mook

    But when you do that you’re pretty much admitting ODS and an inability to distinguish between conspiracy theory and evidence/fact/reality

    Is it derangement or the objective truth which is supported by the facts? What “conspiracy theory” have I subscribed to? Please name it. It’s been well established that Obama is a liar and vicious scumbag even if you chose to selectively ignore all facts to the contrary.

    Obama lied his ass off for weeks claiming a filmmaker was the cause of the Benghazi attacks even as we now have learned that he was informed immediately after the attack that it was an organized terrorist attack. He used executive privilege to block investigations into why his administration sent thousands of guns to Mexican drug lords resulting in a pile of dead bodies (scumbaggery, callousness, criminal negligence). He urged political supporters to “punish your enemies” and he is on video accusing Republicans of “wanting dirty air and dirty water” (viciousness, scumbaggery, lies). Obama’s DOJ dropped charges against black panthers caught on video trying to intimidate white voters and Obama didn’t do a thing to stop it (complicit in corruption, extreme dishonesty). He lied that former terrorist Bill Ayers was just “someone in the neighborhood” when Ayers now openly admits that they were much closer (pattern of lying). Obama claims that after attending Rev. Jeremiah Wright’s church for 20 years, he never heard a racist or anti-semitic sermon (laughably dishonest).

    No derangement, just pointing out a few examples of what Obama actually said and what he did. Someone who is that dishonest and who lies routinely should never be given the benefit of doubt as to whether he/she is telling the truth. Nothing “deranged” about that. The only derangement are those who pretend that after everything Obama has done, that those who distrust him are kooks.. or dishonestly equate that after all he’s done Obama is “just as bad” as most of the other Presidents.

    Thumb up 4

  54. richtaylor365

    Nice scorecard, Mook, that was quite a list, allow me to add a few more:

    “Transparency and the rule of law will be the touchstone of this administration”

    How about this one , , “no family making less than $250,000 a year will see any form of tax increase.
    Not your income tax, not your payroll tax, not your capital gains taxes, not any of your taxes.”

    His ban on lobbyists working in his administration

    All congressional debate on Obamacare will be on CSPAN

    a 72 hour hold placed on all legislation so folks can read what’s in the bill

    “If you have insurance that you like, you will be able to keep it”

    Obamacare is not a tax

    “I’m pledging to cut the deficit in half by my first term in office”

    Obama did tell the truth about one thing, he promised to fundamentally change America………….boy howdy!!!

    Thumb up 6

  55. Mississippi Yankee

    Interesting. I didn’t even know there was a distinction. You got anything I can read on that apart from some half-baked blogs, which don’t really explain principles? Oh and a few snarks on Democratic Underground.

    I’m genuinely interested.

    Stogy, just as a start, read a bit about the Tea Party and any of their statements, manifestos. mission statements or declared written principles. Then proceed to tell us HOW they’re all wrong headed.

    Then you can, like our resident star gazer did, emphatically claim that ‘they have no ” manifestos, mission statements or declared written principles” Then quickly run away like a little bitch, never to discuss “those people” again.

    Thumb up 4

  56. CM

    The ‘list’ looks similar in quality to those made by the extreme-left about Bush.

    The only derangement are those who pretend that after everything Obama has done, that those who distrust him are kooks.

    No way would I ever suggest that anyone who distrusts Obama is a kook. To distrust him is healthy (and some of that list certainly provides sound reasont to do so). But to pretend speculation is fact (e.g. that he ordered the IRS to target conservative groups) is something quite different. Geniune skepticism still requires objectivity. You could even say it demands it. But starting an assessment of everything and anything on the premise (i.e. an ‘obvious truth’) that Obama is “a liar and a vicious scumbag” isn’t objective. It’s certainly not skepticism.

    Unless and until the IRS scandal can be traced back to Obama directly it surely is an IRS scandal rather than a Presidential scandal.

    Thumb up 1

  57. Section8

    The ‘list’ looks similar in quality to those made by the extreme-left about Bush.

    It’s a conspiracy. It’s all a conspiracy. Keep in mind Obama wasn’t sold a just an ordinary Democrat, he was the best thing this country has had since, well since we became a country. He took a shit and got a peace prize for it. To dare criticize him made one a racist and violent extremist according to his supporters on the left. In the end, we’re down to he’s just another Bush by a growing number of you guys. Too funny, the BEST from the left is basically on par with a substandard GOP presidency. Personally I don’t want Obama to be tossed out regardless of what they find. This is just way too fun. In the meantime, we’ll get the usual from you guys trying to divert any serious conversation to nitpick over people’s opinions of the guy and try to sidetrack reality by claiming anyone who is outraged is a “conspiracy theorist”. It’s good comedy so please my friends on the left, keep it going. Keep in mind anyone who claims something is a conspiracy all the time isn’t credible, nor is anyone who cries it’s just a conspiracy theory at every turn.

    Thumb up 5

  58. CM

    Keep in mind Obama wasn’t sold a just an ordinary Democrat, he was the best thing this country has had since, well since we became a country.

    Yep, it was all completely overblown.

    He took a shit and got a peace prize for it.

    Yep, that was somewhat ridiculous.

    To dare criticize him made one a racist and violent extremist according to his supporters on the left.

    Those people are deranged. They should be given no attention.

    In the meantime, we’ll get the usual from you guys trying to divert any serious conversation to nitpick

    I strongly disagree that suggesting there is no evidence of Obama involvement in the IRS scandal can be described as “nit-picking”. I also disagree that suggesting it is an attempt to divert any serious conversation.

    by claiming anyone who is outraged is a “conspiracy theorist”.

    No, that’s not correct.

    Keep in mind anyone who claims something is a conspiracy all the time isn’t credible, nor is anyone who cries it’s just a conspiracy theory at every turn.

    I couldn’t agree more. But that’s not what’s happening here.
    Assessing everything through a primary filter that Obama is “a liar and a vicious scumbag” is going to mean ending up with a skewed sense of reality. Just like the anti-Bush wackos had a skewed sense of reality as they could always trace everything back to him. There’s a big difference between always giving someone “the benefit of the doubt” and assuming they’re behind everything as a given. There appears to be geniune outrage that Obama targeted conservatives via the IRS and yet there is (AFAIK) no evidence that that is what happened.

    Thumb up 1

  59. Mook

    To distrust him is healthy (and some of that list certainly provides sound reasont to do so). But to pretend speculation is fact (e.g. that he ordered the IRS to target conservative groups) is something quite different

    Except that my “list” made no mention whatsoever of the IRS. You simply threw that in there as a distraction. You see CM, here is where you cross the line into being a full-on asshole. You don’t deal with specific arguments, you bring in strawmen that were not mentioned.

    I have stated, apart from the post which you reference, that I think it naïve and extremely unlikely that Obama did not know about and approve of what the IRS did (especially after the IRS internal investigation reported to top Obama Treasury dept. heads of this in 2012. What are the odds no one brought this to Obama’s attention after it escalated to that level?), but that’s a far, far cry from your dishonest claim that anyone here said “he ordered the IRS to target conservative groups”. No one on this blog has written that to my knowledge. You just made that up, because you had no argument against the list that I presented.. which provided overwhelming justification for characterizing Obama as both a liar, and vicious scumbag. No derangement, just clear eyed examination of what he has said and what he has done. If you disagree, please don’t put words in my mouth that I didn’t say.

    Thumb up 5