Perry Under the Gun

So this happened:

A grand jury indicted Texas Gov. Rick Perry on Friday on two felony counts: abuse of official capacity and coercion of a public official. The charges are linked to his push for Travis County District Attorney Rosemary Lehmberg, a Democrat, to resign after she was arrested for drunk driving last year.

The case focused on Perry’s threat to veto funding to Lehmberg’s office unless she resigned. Perry eventually made good on that threat, vetoing $7.5 million that would have gone to the Public Integrity Unit in Lehmberg’s office, the Dallas Morning News’ Christy Hoppe explains. He justified the veto by pointing to Lehmberg’s April 2013 arrest for drunk driving, for which she pled guilty and received a 45-day sentence. As a result of the veto, several employees in Lehmberg’s office were either reassigned or lost their jobs, the Austin American Statesman reports.

The DWI incident was not one where Lehmberg had an extra wine cooler and was busted on a technicality. Rosemary Lehmberg was completely hammered when she got behind the wheel of a car and drove the wrong way down an Austin street. She had an open bottle of vodka on her and blew a staggering 0.23. Video shows her as stumbling, belligerent and fighting with the cops. More disturbingly, she keeps telling them to call the Travis County Sheriff as though expecting him to spring her. That’s called abuse of power. Perry was right to demand her resignation.

It does seem a bit capricious for Perry to withhold funds because from an office because of the behavior of its lead. I can see why people might not like his decision to veto the funding for her office. The problem is … it’s not illegal.

the Texas Constitution expressly reserves the veto power to the governor. The governor is entitled to decide which laws he “approv[es]” and which he disapproves — without constraint from the legislature, or from county-level district attorneys. The legislature certainly can’t make it a crime for the governor to veto its appropriation bills; that would deny the governor the power that the Texas Constitution gives him.

Nor can the legislature make it a crime, I think, for the governor to veto its appropriation bills as an attempt to influence some government official’s behavior — behavior that is commonplace in the political process, and that is likewise within the governor’s exclusive power to decide which bills to give his “approval.” To be sure, the legislature can make it a crime for the governor to accept bribes in exchange for a veto; but there the crime is the acceptance of the bribe, not the veto itself.

Lest you think I’m being selective, here’s Patterico, Chait and Rubin. I have yet to see a legal blogger — even on the lefty blogs gleefully celebrating the indictment — who thinks this indictment isn’t a giant flaming piece of crap (and most likely retaliation from Travis County).

I’d just write this off as standard political crap except that we’ve seen this before. Earlier this year, prosecutors gleefully announced that Scott Walker was the center of a giant criminal scheme only to admit days later that he was not a target of their investigation (said investigation having been rejected twice by judges before a sympathetic one allowed it to proceed). And then there is the “Bridgegate” scandal with Chris Christie which has yet to produce anything implicating the governor.

What these three men have in common is that they are all leading candidates for the 2016 Presidential nomination. All three governors are (or were) popular and all three will have long terms at their backs in 2016. Perry was, in fact, a favored candidate in 2012 until he imploded during a debate.

Is it an accident that the Democrats are engaging in “lawfare” against these guys? Should we expect some charges to be brought against Rand Paul, Ted Cruz and Marco Rubio?

Stay tuned. I don’t think this is over yet.

Why Ten German Spies Died of Boredom Last Year

Awkward:

German secret agents intercepted one of Hillary Clinton’s phone calls while she was US secretary of state and also listened in to a call by John Kerry, her successor, it emerged this weekend, in an embarrassing reversal of the spying scandal that blew up when it was revealed last year that America bugged Angela Merkel’s mobile phone.

The Germans are claiming this happened by accident. That’s almost believable because no one in their right mind listen to John Kerry on purpose. But this is really not surprising or particularly enraging. Allies spy on each other. They have to because even the tightest of allies have different interests and needs from time to time and it is the duty of the intelligence agency of any country to pursue its own interests. I am sure that the Germans, not being known for their stupidity, have a lot of intelligence assets in this country. When the Merkel thing blew up, I said that the if the Germans weren’t spying on Obama, it was only because they couldn’t.

Still, it’s fun to see a little bit of egg on previously outrage teutonic faces.

The real world has a way of pissing on stupid people’s parades

I can’t tell if other people, but especially the idiots that think dumb things like “peace concertss” or “beer summits” solve anything get the irony of this event, but the real world has a way of intruding on delushional idiots and their pipe dreams.

I am no monster. This is a sad thing. But in a world where people think the solution to violence is to disarm the law abiding citizens and restrict their ability to deal with violent criminals, it is kind of a good thing for a dose of reality to intrude and make the morons aware that the the old saying “Wish in one hand and take a shit in te other, and see which one fills up faster” still holds true. My bet is that the shooter used an illegal weapon to ruin everyone’s peace concert. I would not be surprised to find out that we are dealing with gangbangers as well.

WTF?

WTF I ask again:

A hotel has been forced to send out a letter to its British guests threatening £1,400 fines for anyone caught ‘logging’ in swimming pools while on holiday.

The bizarre internet craze (that’s no one had heard of until now) has apparently become a favourite pastime for ‘boozed up Brits abroad’, according to one holiday spot in Egypt.

The owners claim participants are deliberately pooing in their crowded pools before ‘watching the carnage unfold around them’.

At least I hope the hotel people know their Brits from Kiwis, cause I can see one of our posters doing shit like this…

Ferguson Erupts

Four days ago, Michael Brown was shot dead by police in the suburb of Ferguson, Missouri. Accounts of what happened differ dramatically. The police officer claims that he told Brown and his friend to get off the street and onto the sidewalk. They confronted him, attacked him in his vehicle and tried to take his gun. Brown was shot in the ensuing fracas. Other witnesses, including Brown’s companion (who has yet to be interview by police), claim that the officer initiated the physical confrontation, then shot Brown as he fled. The most explosive allegation, corroborated by several witness, is that the fatal shots were delivered while Brown was standing still with his hands over his head, having already been wounded. Ferguson police do not have dash cams installed so it is unlikely we will get video (which has frequently contradicted officer reports).

Protests began to erupt almost immediately. On Sunday night, some thugs took advantage of the situation to engage in a bit of recreational looting and criminality. Since the beginning, however, Ferguson police have responded to both looting and non-violent protests in full military gear and there are allegations that they’ve blocked the press from entering the scene (including a ban on aircraft flying over the area) and fired tear gas at peaceful protesters in their own backyards. You can view images from the events here. Note that many of these confrontations between protesters and fully armored cops are taking place in broad daylight with no rioting going on.

The militarized response to the looting and protests is not surprising, as libertarians have been noting for years:

Why armored vehicles in a Midwestern inner suburb? Why would cops wear camouflage gear against a terrain patterned by convenience stores and beauty parlors? Why are the authorities in Ferguson, Mo. so given to quasi-martial crowd control methods (such as bans on walking on the street) and, per the reporting of Riverfront Times, the firing of tear gas at people in their own yards? (“‘This my property!’ he shouted, prompting police to fire a tear gas canister directly at his face.”) Why would someone identifying himself as an 82nd Airborne Army veteran, observing the Ferguson police scene, comment that “We rolled lighter than that in an actual warzone“?

In fact, little of this situation is surprising if you’ve been paying attention. Every week or so, we hear a story of law enforcement violence, from firing flash grenades into cribs in Georgia to using illegal choke holds in New York. Every week seems to bring yet another incident of this violence being excused or ignored by those in authority. Every protest brings out the full riot gear and MRAPs. And every week, we hear about new military hardware given to smaller and smaller towns to deal with … whatever.

Part of this is because we live in the era of social media. Everyone has a camera on them so incidents of police violence are almost immediately documented and disseminated all over the world. But part of it also the increasing militarization of law enforcement. Radley Balko gets into this in detail in his book Rise of the Warrior Cop. Interviews with police chiefs and officers indicate that the use of militarized gear gives cops a warrior mentality that can lead to violence. If we dress our cops up like soldiers, tell them our cities our war zones and the the public is the enemy, we can’t pretend to be surprised when bad things happen. Balko even notes that the use of military gear can provoke violence from protesters. One former chief talks about how he avoided violent protests by keeping his riot police around a corner — out of sight, but ready to be used if it became necessary.

I don’t know what happened in this case. The fact that Brown was killed a ways down to the street makes the officer’s story seem unlikely. Any local investigation would be pointless not only given the “thin blue line” tendency of such investigations to exonerate cops, but the heavy racial tensions that already exist in the area. The FBI has said they will investigate and I think that is entirely appropriate given what has happened.

I do think the people using this as an excuse for criminality and looting are despicable. Not only are they confounding an already difficult case, they are only further antagonizing the cops and their supporters. No matter what has happened — and this could be pretty bad — burning your own house down is never the answer.

I don’t see that this ends well for Ferguson, though. The situation remains tense and the mutual distrust between citizens and police is only going to get worse. Even if this particular situation eventually calms down, the long-term impact is going to be very bad.

Why tell little lies when you can get away with big ones?

While I will admit that anyone making the case that there is plenty of competition for all the lying done by this WH, the argument can be made that the ludicrous claim they are transparent in their dealings and want an independent press can be seen as taking the cake. With so many key Obama people, all under investigation, destroying subpoenaed evidence, or the history of Obamacare and the lies and vote buying that went along with what will likely be remembered as the most destructive and insane thing put into law in the US, the VA scandal and the attempt to CYA, which I should add portends the future of Obamacare, the long running IRS targeting political opponent scandal, the lies about Benghazi, the fact Obama, after claiming a victory in Iraq, now pretends it is not his fault it is lost, the Snowden revelations of government spying on citizens, the whole illegal invasion debacle, the shady anti-business green bullshit, and countless other such stories of abuses and cover-ups, one is hard pressed to not do a double take at this brazen lying.

Brave new world it is, though. Tell the lie enough times, and the idiots should buy it, seems to be the strategy of this criminal gang. The only thing transparent about this WH is that they are crooks and care very little for what you think about that. Of course the cock gobblers in the LSM will just ask for some more splooge on their face instead of asmitting Obama uses them for Bukkake fun.

Get Off The Couch, You Fat Fu@K

It’s a fine line and never static, between personal freedom and personal responsibility, and if one had to choose I usually lean more on the side for freedom. Thankfully, it is rarely an either-or, so both hats can be worn.

I have written posts in the past on PSA’s, clever hard knocking PSA’s that grab you by the short hairs, push you off that fence, and smack you right in the face with the reality that you are indeed the captain of your ship and can control not only the quality of your life, but it’s duration as well. Here is the latest on obesity;

Strong4life is an outfit out of Atlanta, they did a series of fat videos a few years back, short and sweet;

Here’s the deal, we all hate food Nazi’s (looking at you, Bloomberg, and Michelle), we all hate governments (all levels, city, state, federal) making us jump through hoops because they think they know better what is good for us, and we hate sin taxes or outright bans (remove my 64 ouncer from my cold dead hands), best to leave it up to the individual and his own sense of self worth. The problem is that when you don’t wear that seat belt and crash, it becomes prohibitively more expensive, sometimes the individual foots the bill but more often than not, we as tax payers suffer for your irresponsibility. Ditto with smoking (although less and less people take up this filthy habit) and ditto with you porkers that get diabetes at 30, get hyper tension, clogged arteries, or needing quadruple bypasses.

I admit, one of the biggest problems is that fast food, crappy high calorie/low nutrition food is cheaper, so for the family not that well off, their options are more limited. But a great deal of the blame should also go to folks just being lazy. A salad, or vegetables at meals is not that costly. Sure, it does take some time, but minutes, really.

I am somewhat sympathetic, being raised by a single parent with not much money, I was a little chunky when I was growing up. But at adolescence I grew over a foot, started playing sports (and liking girls) and have never had a weight problem since. As one ages, leading a well rounded life, one in balance, becomes harder, as is eating right.

We are a fat country, to our detriment. One can not reach his full potential, either in creativity or earnings, if one is hampered by health issues. In the old days, the fleet of foot, the agile would always survive to the detriment of the fat slow guy, who was always eaten by the lion. Maybe we need more lions.

More Whoppers

I know, low hanging fruit, too easy;

Was that one of those “tells” for fibbing, he mentions his beautiful wife then pulls on his ear, busted.

For being as brilliant as his supporters like to believe, why does he have such a hard time figuring out that what he says is recorder for posterity, even on the campaign trail? I mean, Bill Clinton was not stupid enough to say that if he got elected he would give up abusing women, you think Hillary would be caught dead swearing off krispy kreme’s?

Time and time again the candidate Obama told us he would do A, then as president he does B. That crap about running up the deficit is unpatriotic, the garbaaage about him respecting the Constitution and working with congress, him being a uniter not a divider, being president is much better then running for president.

Good thing he didn’t say he would give up golf, however badly he plays it.