Saturday, June 15, 2013
If Obama gets his way, the treaty will be become law and your rights will go the way of the buggy whip. Will they force us to give up our guns? Is this the reason for the massive Department of Homeland Security purchases of guns, ammo and armored vehicles?
Yes, we know that is all speculation but after several years of hearing excuses for the government purchases, no one has ever come up with a plausible answer to the question--why? Until we have that answer, our paranoia meter is peaking at 1000!
June 7, 2013 by Chip Wood
A majority in the U.S. Senate has told President Barack Obama not to do it. There’s no doubt that an overwhelming majority of Americans would oppose it — if the media ever told them about it.
Nonetheless, this past Monday, Secretary of State John Kerry said that Obama will sign a controversial gun-control treaty promulgated by the United Nations. “We look forward to signing it as soon as the process of conforming the official languages is completely satisfied,” Kerry said in a prepared statement.
Although the treaty is being touted as a way to prevent “illicit trade in conventional weapons,” it actually does far more than that. Among other outrages, it demands that every nation create a registry of gun owners, manufacturers and traders within its borders. And also that each country establish mechanisms that could prevent private individuals from purchasing ammunition for any weapons they do own.
In other words, this U.N. treaty would mean the end of our 2nd Amendment rights. And Kerry says Obama will sign it. What kind of madness is this?
Resolutions condemning the treaty were promptly introduced in both branches of Congress. The measures submitted to the Senate by Jerry Moran (R-Kan.) and to the House of Representatives by Mike Kelly (R-Pa.) declare that the U.N. Small Arms Treaty “poses significant risks to the national security, foreign policy, and economic interests of the United States, as well as to the constitutional rights of United States citizens and United States sovereignty.”
Then in March, Sen. Jim Inhofe (R-Okla.) submitted an amendment to the budget bill that urged the Obama Administration “to uphold Second Amendment rights and prevent the United States from entering into the United Nations Small Arms Treaty.” Inhofe’s amendment was approved by a vote of 53 to 46.
So a majority of Senators have publicly declared their opposition to this dangerous treaty. Doesn’t sound like there’s much chance the treaty will get a positive vote by two-thirds of the Senate, which the Constitution says must be done for any treaty to take effect.
Despite rumors to the contrary, I don’t think even Obama — surely one of the most arrogant people to ever occupy the Oval Office — will try to do an end-run around this Constitutional requirement. But still, the President has come out in favor of it. And Kerry says the Administration is eager to sign it.
Which makes me wonder, have these guys lost their minds?
I’ll grant you, both men have made it clear throughout their careers the utter disdain they hold for the idea of any Constitutional restraints on their actions. But still, coming out in support of such a flagrantly unConstitutional measure now makes me wonder what is really going on here.
I’ve heard suggestions that the U.N. gun control treaty is being brought forward now to distract us from all the other scandals that are besetting the Obama Administration. But that’s as unlikely as the idea that the Administration decided to unleash the story of what the IRS did to Tea Party and other patriotic groups in an effort to distract people from two other scandals — the Administration’s response to the terrorist attacks in Benghazi and the Justice Department’s surreptitious seizure of some reporters’ emails.
Okay, so we now know that the IRS actually planted the question that led to the story first breaking about how they targeted conservative groups seeking tax-exempt status. And of course it was incredibly stupid to ask for donors’ names and addresses and even questioning what some of the applicants believed.
Passing on some of that private information, so it could be posted on-line by a left wing group, compounded the folly. Clearly, some heads will have to roll over all of this. By the time Congress finishes its various investigations, some IRS employees may even face criminal penalties. From what we know, they should.
But I haven’t seen enough evidence yet to convince me that the IRS scandal will reach into the Oval Office. Yes, Obama set the tone that led to the malfeasance below him. But I don’t think he issued the orders. Unlike Watergate, there’s no recorded conversation or other smoking gun here: or, so far as we know, any impeachable offense.
But that’s emphatically not the case with the Administration’s active support of the U.N. Small Arms Treaty. Obama and his allies, including Kerry, know exactly what they’re doing. And they seem determined to proceed, no matter what anyone says.
The United Nations Small Arms Treaty was going nowhere last year. Obama, who was running for reelection, said he opposed it. Negotiators couldn’t agree on terms.
But then on Nov. 7 — one day after Obama won his second term — the President reversed himself and instructed our delegation at the U.N. conference to agree to a “Final United Nations Conference on the Arms Trade Treaty” to be held in New York City in March.
When that conference voted to send the treaty to the U.N. General Assembly, the U.S. representatives fully supported the move. Subsequently, on April 2 the U.N. General Assembly voted overwhelmingly in favor of its passage. The vote was a lop-sided 154 to 3. The Untied States was one of the “ayes.”
The “no” votes came from three of most notorious human-rights violators in a body that’s filled with them — Iran, Syria, and North Korea. China and Russia joined 21 other nations in abstaining.
How many of those countries were founded on the principle that the citizens’ rights come from God, not government? How many have anything resembling our own Bill of Rights, where the people’s rights (and the limitations on their rulers) are spelled out so forcefully and specifically?
I’m pretty sure the answer is zero.
No, those 154 countries represent some of the most repressive regimes on earth. There aren’t too many friends of freedom sitting in that glass palace on the East River.
The United Nations is been a notorious hotbed of anti-American sentiment since the day it was founded. We don’t have many friends there and never have. Heck, its very creation was virtually a communist plot against this country, as G. Edward Griffin proves in The Fearful Master, his invaluable study of the origins of this one-world monstrosity.
Allowing the United Nations to void our 2nd Amendment rights, and determine gun-control policies for this country would be a huge step down the road to our own enslavement. As I said before, it’s utter madness.
Let’s make sure that Barack Obama, John Kerry and their left wing allies don’t get away with it.
Until next time, keep some powder dry.
Had the incompetent idiots at NSA done their job, Snowden would not have been able to smuggle out the data, but they did not. The most simple way of making sure that one cannot use a flash drive is to disable the port on the computer or to order computers without the flash drive port. Obviously, no one was thinking when they ordered the computers, installed them or supervised the department for which Snowden worked!
This is just another example of bureaucrats sloppily doing their job since they know that they cannot get fired. They can work for the government do less than stellar work and retire with a great pension. No striving for excellence, trying to do the best job possible, that would only get them in trouble.
So we get Snowden and who knows how many others that have stolen information right from under our noses using banned items. This is what happens when government gets so big that no one is watching the store. It is time to cut the size of government, punish those who allowed Snowden to steal data, and to eliminate the programs that harm our Constitutional rights.
Snowden Used Banned Flash Drive to Smuggle NSA Data
A website supporting Edward Snowden is displayed on a computer screen in Hong Kong on June 13.
Friday, 14 Jun 2013 04:42 PM
By Todd Beamon
The small data-storage device has been banned from use on secret military networks, including those of the National Security Agency, for at least five years, The Washington Times reports.
"He should not have been able to do either of those things" without raising red flags, a private-sector IT security specialist told the Times.
NSA officials "were lying down on their job if they didn't disable the USB port," the specialist said, referring to the small socket on the side of a computer where the thumb-sized drives are inserted.
The agency is still trying to determine the extent of Snowden's breach of top-secret information. It did not respond to a request for comment from The Washington Times.
Snowden, a former NSA contractor, smuggled electronic copies of an unknown number of classified documents out of the agency's operations center in Hawaii, where he worked, The Los Angeles Times reported on Friday.
A U.S. official told The Washington Times "that's one avenue" investigators are following.
Thumb drives have been banned from use on classified military systems since malicious software, thought to be of Russian origin, infected the secret computer networks of the U.S. Central Command five years ago, The Washington Times reports.
Lawmakers briefed on the matter by NSA Director Gen. Keith Alexander have not commented on the USB drive, but said Snowden also exceeded his authorized access to the agency's computer systems.
"It's clear that he attempted to go places that he was not authorized to go, which should raise questions for everyone," Michigan Rep. Michael Rogers, the GOP chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, told the Times.
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Friday, June 14, 2013
How do you spell incompetent? We spell it M-u-e-l-l-e-r. Can you imagine being the head of an agency tasked with investigating the IRS and not knowing who is doing that work? If he worked for a private company, he would be fired! Since he works for the government he won't.
This is just another example of a government which is too large and therefore, by definition, incompetent.
FBI Director Robert Mueller: I Dunno Which Of My Guys Is Investigating The IRS
Of all the cases the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) is looking into, there’s probably not a higher-profile one than that of the Internal Revenue Service and its discriminatory election-year targeting of conservative nonprofit groups.
But when FBI Director Robert Mueller testified before the House Judiciary Committee Wednesday, he seemed pretty uninformed about where the IRS investigation stood – even though it’s supposedly entering its second month.
Asked by Jim Jordan (R-Ohio) who the case’s lead investigator is, Mueller replied, “Off the top of my head, no.”
“It’s the most important issue in front of the country in the last six weeks, and you don’t know who’s heading up the case? Who the lead investigator is?” pressed Jordan.
“At this juncture, no, I do not know,” Mueller replied.
A legacy appointee of the George W. Bush Administration, Mueller was reappointed by President Barack Obama for a two-year extension beyond his present term, which was to have expired in Sept. 2011.
Bulldog Benghazi Reporter’s Computer Was Hacked At Height Of Libya Scandal – Was It The Government?
CBS News’ Sharyl Attkisson, one of the only mainstream media reporters who hasrelentlessly pursued the Administration of President Barack Obama for the truth behind its handling of the Benghazi, Libya, embassy attack, was spied on via her own computer before and during the period when the scandal (which is still a scandal) was at its height.
CBS News confirmed Friday that Attkisson’s computer was hacked, by “an unauthorized, external, unknown party on multiple occasions in late 2012.” The Benghazi attack, which claimed the life of U.S. Ambassador Christopher Stevens and three other Americans, occurred on Sept. 11.
Attkisson was already on the government’s radar for her dogged coverage of the Fast and Furious scandal, and has since found herself fighting an uphill battle to get the Obama Administration to respond to her questions, even as other reporters’ access to the White House remains unchanged. She told POLITICO last month that she already knew that someone was doing a sophisticated hack on her computers as early as February 2011, butCBS News didn’t confirm that assertion until revealing the results of a forensic investigation by an independent cybersecurity firm on Friday.
Neither Attkisson nor CBS News has yet put forward any speculation about what persons or agencies might be behind the spying. But the investigation found the third-party surveillance to be sophisticated:
Evidence suggests this party performed all access remotely using Attkisson’s accounts. While no malicious code was found, forensic analysis revealed an intruder had executed commands that appeared to involve search and exfiltration of data. This party also used sophisticated methods to remove all possible indications of unauthorized activity, and alter system times to cause further confusion. CBS News is taking steps to identify the responsible party and their method of access.
In its story, CBS News also mentioned last month’s scandal involving seizure of an ABC Newsreporter’s emails and phone records by the U.S. Department of Justice — and then said this:
To be clear, the federal government has not been accused in the intrusion of Attkisson’s computer; CBS News is continuing to work to identify the responsible party.
We are un-embarrassed fans of the straight talk of Sarah Palin. She has an ability to express our anger in a clear and succinct manner. She is a great communicator much like Reagan.
There will be some of you who might disagree with that characterization and point out the disaster of 2008. We would agree that she was not ready for prime time when McCain picked her from obscurity. However, as governor she had a very high approval rate, had cleaned up Alaskan Republican mess that she inherited and had her state fiscally sound. Not a bad record for a "housewife from Wasilla."
However, the tumult of a national campaign was something that she was not ready to handle. Neither was she prepared for the "gotcha" politics of the news media. And lastly, the McCain campaign did not prepare her properly when meeting with the media and her gaffes definitely hurt the effort.
With all the negatives that the news media could pile on her, the Obama campaign kept running against her and her "inexperience." They could not attack McCain for that lack of Washington experience, so they attacked her. Yet, Obama had only a couple years of time in the Capital. The Republicans never responded to the Obama attacks on experience. Why? Poor campaign management and a poor party choice for President.
Other media darlings of the minute soon fade from view very quickly. Sarah has remained in the forefront of Republican politics and we believe that she will be there as a force to be reckoned with for many years. Why? It is that straight forward, "tell it like it is" way of speaking that enamors many, including yours truly, with her.
We are glad she has a new contract with Fox and wish her the best.
Sarah Palin Returning to Fox News
Thursday, 13 Jun 2013 04:38 PM
By Greg Richter
The former Alaska governor and vice presidential candidate will make her first appearance on June 17 on the morning program "Fox & Friends," according to a press release issued by Fox News. She will appear as a contributor on various Fox News programs and on Fox Business Channel, offering her opinion on news and politics.
Palin previously served as a Fox News contributor, but left in January after being with the network for three years, a Newsmax story reported.
Fox News CEO Roger Ailes said he had several conversations with Palin over the past several weeks about having her return.
"I have great confidence in her and am pleased that she will once again add her commentary to our programming," Ailes said. "I hope she continues to speak her mind."
Details of the deal were not announced. Palin was reportedly making $1 million a year during her first stint. Howard Kurtz reported in The Daily Beast in January that she had been offered a fraction of that to stay because Ailes felt her star had faded.
Palin noted in an August Facebook post that Fox had canceled all her scheduled appearances, but with the new contract all seems to be forgiven.
"The power of Fox News is unparalleled," Palin said in the press release from Fox. "The role of Fox News in the important debates in our world is indispensable."
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Trump believes that Snowden is a bad guy and he might be right if the former NSA computer contractor does leak significant data to the Chinese. On the other hand if he doesn't then bringing the NSA spying scandal to forefront is not a bad thing. Most everyone does not know the damage that has been done, only time will tell.
It is curious that he is holed up in Hong Kong which since 1999 is a part of China, a country not known for being warm and fuzzy to traitors. It might be that they are draining him of all the information that he has and then will drop him into the hands of the Americans when they are finished with him.
Snowden might have jumped from the frying pan and into the fire. We will see.
Trump: China 'Having a Field Day' Because of Snowden
Thursday, 13 Jun 2013 10:24 PM
By Todd Beamon
“Over the last year, we have been talking about them hacking us — and now, all of a sudden, China is talking about us hacking them,” the billionaire businessman told Piers Morgan on CNN. “We do far more than they’ve ever done — and they’re having an absolute field day.
“But the bigger field day is what is Snowden giving them,” Trump added. “How much information is Snowden giving them? It sounds like he’s got just about all the information we have in this country.”
In hiding in Hong Kong, Snowden reportedly has shown The South China Morning Post "unverified documents" describing an extensive U.S. campaign to obtain information from computers in Hong Kong and mainland China.
He also has promised "explosive" new revelations about Washington's surveillance targets.
U.S. officials have confirmed that Snowden, a former subcontractor for the National Security Agency, may have more secret material. He initially revealed the agency’s secret monitoring of Internet and telephone data of millions of Americans.
“Of all the places he goes for protection is Hong Kong, which is a little interesting, because that’s not a place where actually he should get that kind of protection,” Trump told Morgan. “It looks like they’re going to protect him.
“I don’t know what information he’s given them, but it could be very serious,” Trump added. “He’s a bad guy. I have no doubt that he’s a bad guy.”
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Rep. Mike Rogers: White House 'Took too Long' on Syria Decision
Thursday, 13 Jun 2013 07:47 PM
By Todd Beamon
"They tried to outsource it to the United Nations," Rogers, the Michigan Republican who is chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, told Bret Baier on Fox News. "There's no substitute. You cannot outsource U.S. leadership. It just doesn’t work.
"Our Arab League partners wanted U.S. leadership on this — and, again, this is not about boots on the ground and military action," Rogers added. "There's a whole host of things that U.S. credibility brings to very hard decisions that are being made in a place like Syria. None of that really happened.
"We lost credibility with our Arab League partners. We lost credibility with the opposition, which is why the Secretary of State [John Kerry] is having a difficult time trying to get some agreement on a diplomatic solution.
"You have to show that leadership role in order to corral all the forces on the ground in Syria into a difficult agreement. We don’t have that yet."
The Obama administration said on Thursday that it had definitive evidence that Assad’s regime had used sarin and other chemical weapons against opposition forces.
"The Assad regime has used chemical weapons, including Sarin, on a small scale multiple times in the last year," Ben Rhodes, Obama's deputy national security adviser, said in a late-afternoon news conference with reporters. "We have a high degree of confidence in this information.
"This is a high-confidence assessment," Rhodes said, adding: "The use of chemical weapons crosses a red line. This is a clearly evolving situation is Syria."
Rhodes, who said that as many as 100 to 150 people had died from chemical weapons use, said that the U.S. was increasing military support to the main Syrian rebel group in light of the revelation.
"The president has made a decision about providing more support to the opposition, that will involve providing direct support to the [Supreme Military Council], that includes military support," he said. "This is going to be different in both scope and scale in terms of what we are providing to the SMC than what we have provided before."
The Supreme Military Council is the military wing of the main civilian opposition group.
In March, Rogers said there was a "high probability" that chemical weapons had been used by Assad's regime.
"Many have said that there's clear evidence that chemical weapons have been used, maybe as long as a year or a year and a half ago," he told Fox. "This thing is deteriorating to a regional conflict, which is dangerous to the national security of the United States.
"The problem is, the announcement comes today; we still don’t have a plan."
He added that White House officials have been asked to meet with the Intelligence Committee to detail its plans for Syria.
"The Arab League is looking for leadership — not necessarily boots on the ground — but leadership," Rogers said. "We can bring unique capability to the situation.
"This is important. They have chemical weapons. Clearly, we've now seen that they've used them. We know that every flavor of terrorist in the world is in Syria right now, fighting and gaining experience, and they want to get their hands on those chemical weapons.
"We need to make sure that those groups do not get armed with something that causes a world-wide crisis."
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Thursday, June 13, 2013
Armed for the Future: Gun Trusts Help Owners Legally Pass Down Firearms
Who gets the guns after you're gone?
Lawyers say a growing number of firearms owners are creating special gun trusts, which are designed to allow collectors to share and pass down firearms to loved ones without inadvertently breaking any laws. The trusts also make it easier for gun enthusiasts to procure certain restricted firearms, such as suppressors, because of a quirk in federal regulations.
Interest in these trusts is growing, lawyers say, after a series of recent mass shootings brought responsible gun ownership into the national conversation. That's because gun trusts, if drafted properly, may offer gun owners and their heirs some protection from future laws placing restrictions on gun ownership, they say.
"What's happening recently has really changed the landscape" of firearms planning, says David Goldman, a Jacksonville, Fla., lawyer, who helps clients set up gun trusts.
Even without the specter of stricter gun-control legislation, however, a complex patchwork of federal and state gun laws makes it easy for gun owners and their families to get into legal trouble when transferring or taking possession of firearms, especially restricted ones. A gun owner, for example, may not realize that an heir who is a legal medical marijuana user may be prohibited from owning a firearm under federal law. Creating a trust, a legal entity that holds the guns and is managed by a trustee (typically the gun owner) for beneficiaries, can help owners properly navigate this thicket of rules.
Having a trust is "a responsible way of owning a firearm," says Mr. Goldman. It "provides a set of rules for how you want your assets to be managed during your life, and in the event of your incapacity and beyond," he says.
Meanwhile, because of a legal loophole, collectors can buy certain restricted firearms, such as machine guns and short-barreled rifles, through trusts without having to get the approval of a local law-enforcement officer, like individual buyers do. Many gun trusts, in fact, are created for this purpose, says Dennis Brislawn, a Kirkland, Wash., lawyer who has drafted hundreds of gun trusts for clients.
A spokesman for the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, the federal agency enforcing gun laws, says that applications to transfer restricted firearms to trusts or corporations has grown rapidly in recent years, to 39,354 last year from 26,376 a year earlier. He says the agency is reviewing a proposal to make firearms purchased through trusts subject to the same requirements as guns bought by individuals.
Setting up a gun trust can range from several hundred dollars to about $2,500 in lawyers' fees. Online gun-trust forms can be purchased for less than $100, but users should make sure they are compliant with federal and state laws.
Ms. Silverman is a Wall Street Journal staff reporter in Austin, Texas. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.