Senator & Representative … Crazy As An Outhouse Mouse

Hillary Clinton 1

Hillary Clinton 1 (Photo credit: Angela Radulescu)

We have a Speaker of the House crazy for giving Obama most of what he wants and if he isn’t removed from his position he’ll have his way in giving Obama all of what he desires.

We have a RINO senator from Arizona, who actually ran for President in 2008, now acting as suitor for the worse Secretary of State we have ever had the bad fortune to experience.

The United States is increasingly going to hell in a hand-basket thanks to politicians that have little courage to perform their jobs in an honest and efficient way. You can read about one such politician from a Washington Post article starting below:

John McCain to host Hillary Clinton in Sedona, Ariz.

Since leaving the State Department last year, Hillary Rodham Clinton has racked up scores of accolades and appeared on many a big stage. Still, it might come as a surprise that a past Republican presidential nominee — specifically, the one who is among the loudest critics of Clinton’s handling of the Benghazi terrorist attacks — would invite her to his desert retreat for a lofty conversation about leadership values.

This is precisely what Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) has done.

Clinton, a prospective 2016 Democratic presidential candidate, will appear on stage Saturday with McCain at the Sedona Forum, an annual ideas festival hosted by the McCain Institute for International Leadership at Arizona State University. Clinton is among the national and international business leaders, philanthropists and public figures appearing at the gathering, held in Sedona, the tony red-rocks oasis in Arizona’s Verde Valley.

In a statement released Thursday, McCain called Clinton “my friend” and praised her public service career.

“From her years of service as first lady, in the U.S. Senate and the State Department, one would be hard-pressed to find a leader with Secretary Clinton’s informed perspective on the many challenges facing America across the globe,” McCain said.

The above is pure bull butter and McCain should be ashamed of himself, even though he is a bad republican, he is not ignorant enough not to know that Hillary was of questionable value during her tenure at attempting to be Secretary of State.

Anyway, you can read the last of the Washington Post article by clicking here.

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Does the NSA Tap That? What We Still Don’t Know About the Agency’s Internet Surveillance

As the reader can see, ProPublica is the original publisher of this article. It is posted here with permission from them.

The idea that the NSA is sweeping up vast data streams via cables and other infrastructure — often described as the “backbone of the Internet” — is not new. In late 2005, the New York Times first described the tapping, which began after the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks. More details emerged in early 2006 when an AT&T whistleblower came forward.

But like other aspects of NSA surveillance, virtually everything about this kind of NSA surveillance is highly secret and we’re left with far from a full picture.

Is the NSA really sucking up everything?

It’s not clear.

The most detailed, though now dated, information on the topic comes from Mark Klein. He’s the former AT&T technician who went public in 2006 describing the installation in 2002-03 of a secret room in an AT&T building in San Francisco. The equipment, detailed in technical documents, allowed the NSA to conduct what Klein described as “vacuum-cleaner surveillance of all the data crossing the internet — whether that be peoples’ e-mail, web surfing or any other data.”

Klein said he was told there was similar equipment installed at AT&T facilities in San Diego, Seattle, and San Jose.

There is also evidence that the vacuuming has continued in some form right up to the present.

A draft NSA inspector’s general report from 2009, recently published by the Washington Post, refers to access via two companies “to large volumes of foreign-to-foreign communications transiting the United States through fiberoptic cables, gateway switches, and data networks.”

Recent stories by the Associated Press and the Washington Post also described the NSA’s cable-tapping, but neither included details on the scope of this surveillance.

Upstream slide (<a href='http://www.washingtonpost.com/business/economy/the-nsa-slide-you-havent-seen/2013/07/10/32801426-e8e6-11e2-aa9f-c03a72e2d342_story.html' _cke_saved_href='http://www.washingtonpost.com/business/economy/the-nsa-slide-you-havent-seen/2013/07/10/32801426-e8e6-11e2-aa9f-c03a72e2d342_story.html' _cke_saved_href='http://www.washingtonpost.com/business/economy/the-nsa-slide-you-havent-seen/2013/07/10/32801426-e8e6-11e2-aa9f-c03a72e2d342_story.html' _cke_saved_href='http://www.washingtonpost.com/business/economy/the-nsa-slide-you-havent-seen/2013/07/10/32801426-e8e6-11e2-aa9f-c03a72e2d342_story.html' _cke_saved_href='http://www.washingtonpost.com/business/economy/the-nsa-slide-you-havent-seen/2013/07/10/32801426-e8e6-11e2-aa9f-c03a72e2d342_story.html' _cke_saved_href='http://www.washingtonpost.com/business/economy/the-nsa-slide-you-havent-seen/2013/07/10/32801426-e8e6-11e2-aa9f-c03a72e2d342_story.html' _cke_saved_href='http://www.washingtonpost.com/business/economy/the-nsa-slide-you-havent-seen/2013/07/10/32801426-e8e6-11e2-aa9f-c03a72e2d342_story.html' _cke_saved_href='http://www.washingtonpost.com/business/economy/the-nsa-slide-you-havent-seen/2013/07/10/32801426-e8e6-11e2-aa9f-c03a72e2d342_story.html' _cke_saved_href='http://www.washingtonpost.com/business/economy/the-nsa-slide-you-havent-seen/2013/07/10/32801426-e8e6-11e2-aa9f-c03a72e2d342_story.html' _cke_saved_href='http://www.washingtonpost.com/business/economy/the-nsa-slide-you-havent-seen/2013/07/10/32801426-e8e6-11e2-aa9f-c03a72e2d342_story.html' _cke_saved_href='http://www.washingtonpost.com/business/economy/the-nsa-slide-you-havent-seen/2013/07/10/32801426-e8e6-11e2-aa9f-c03a72e2d342_story.html' _cke_saved_href='http://www.washingtonpost.com/business/economy/the-nsa-slide-you-havent-seen/2013/07/10/32801426-e8e6-11e2-aa9f-c03a72e2d342_story.html' _cke_saved_href='http://www.washingtonpost.com/business/economy/the-nsa-slide-you-havent-seen/2013/07/10/32801426-e8e6-11e2-aa9f-c03a72e2d342_story.html' _cke_saved_href='http://www.washingtonpost.com/business/economy/the-nsa-slide-you-havent-seen/2013/07/10/32801426-e8e6-11e2-aa9f-c03a72e2d342_story.html' _cke_saved_href='http://www.washingtonpost.com/business/economy/the-nsa-slide-you-havent-seen/2013/07/10/32801426-e8e6-11e2-aa9f-c03a72e2d342_story.html' _cke_saved_href='http://www.washingtonpost.com/business/economy/the-nsa-slide-you-havent-seen/2013/07/10/32801426-e8e6-11e2-aa9f-c03a72e2d342_story.html' _cke_saved_href='http://www.washingtonpost.com/business/economy/the-nsa-slide-you-havent-seen/2013/07/10/32801426-e8e6-11e2-aa9f-c03a72e2d342_story.html' _cke_saved_href='http://www.washingtonpost.com/business/economy/the-nsa-slide-you-havent-seen/2013/07/10/32801426-e8e6-11e2-aa9f-c03a72e2d342_story.html' _cke_saved_href='http://www.washingtonpost.com/business/economy/the-nsa-slide-you-havent-seen/2013/07/10/32801426-e8e6-11e2-aa9f-c03a72e2d342_story.html' _cke_saved_href='http://www.washingtonpost.com/business/economy/the-nsa-slide-you-havent-seen/2013/07/10/32801426-e8e6-11e2-aa9f-c03a72e2d342_story.html' _cke_saved_href='http://www.washingtonpost.com/business/economy/the-nsa-slide-you-havent-seen/2013/07/10/32801426-e8e6-11e2-aa9f-c03a72e2d342_story.html'>Washington Post)</a>

Upstream slide (Washington Post)

A recently published NSA slide, dated April 2013, refers to so-called “Upstream” “collection” of “communications on fiber cables and infrastructure as data flows past.”

These cables carry vast quantities of information, including 99 percent of international phone and Internet data, according to research firm TeleGeography.

This upstream surveillance is in contrast to another method of NSA snooping, Prism, in which the NSA isn’t tapping anything. Instead, the agency gets users’ data with the cooperation of tech companies like Facebook and Google.

Other documents leaked by Edward Snowden to the Guardian provide much more detail about the upstream surveillance by the British Government Communications Headquarters (GCHQ), the NSA’s U.K. counterpart.

GCHQ taps cables where they land in the United Kingdom carrying Internet and, phone data. According to the Guardian, unnamed companies serve as “intercept partners” in the effort.

The NSA is listening in on those taps too. By May 2012, 250 NSA analysts along with 300 GCHQ analysts were sifting through the data from the British taps.

Is purely domestic communication being swept up in the NSA’s upstream surveillance?

It’s not at all clear.

Going back to the revelations of former AT&T technician Mark Klein — which, again, date back a decade — a detailed expert analysis concluded that the secret NSA equipment installed at an AT&T building was capable of collecting information “not only for communications to overseas locations, but for purely domestic communications as well.”

On the other hand, the 2009 NSA inspector general report refers specifically to collecting “foreign-to-foreign communications” that are “transiting the United States through fiber-optic cables, gateway switches, and data networks”

But even if the NSA is tapping only international fiber optic cables, it could still pick up communications between Americans in the U.S.

That’s because data flowing over the Internet does not always take the most efficient geographic route to its destination.

Instead, says Tim Stronge of the telecom consulting firm TeleGeography, data takes “the least congested route that is available to their providers.”

“If you’re sending an email from New York to Washington, it could go over international links,” Stronge says, “but it’s pretty unlikely.”

That’s because the United States has a robust domestic network. (That’s not true for some other areas of the world, which can have their in-country Internet traffic routed through another country’s more robust network.)

But there are other scenarios under which Americans’ purely domestic communication might pass over the international cables. Google, for example, maintains a network of data centers around the world.

Google spokeswoman Nadja Blagojevic told ProPublica that, “Rather than storing each user’s data on a single machine or set of machines, we distribute all data — including our own — across many computers in different locations.”

We asked Blagojevic whether Google stores copies of Americans’ data abroad, for example users’ Gmail accounts.  She declined to answer.

Are companies still cooperating with the NSA’s Internet tapping?

We don’t know.

The Washington Post had a story earlier this month about agreements the government has struck with telecoms, but lots of details are still unclear, including what the government is getting, and how many companies are cooperating.

The Post pointed to a 2003 “Network Security Agreement” between the U.S. government and the fiber optic network operator Global Crossing, which at the time was being sold to a foreign firm.

That agreement, which the Post says became a model for similar deals with other companies, did not authorize surveillance. Rather, the newspaper reported, citing unnamed sources, it ensured “that when U.S. government agencies seek access to the massive amounts of data flowing through their networks, the companies have systems in place to provide it securely.”

Global Crossing was later sold to Colorado-based Level 3 Communications, which owns many international fiber optic cables, and the 2003 agreement was replaced in 2011.

Level 3 released a statement in response to the Post story saying that neither agreement requires Level 3 “to cooperate in unauthorized surveillance on U.S. or foreign soil.”

The agreement does, however, explicitly require the company to cooperate with “lawful” surveillance.

More evidence, though somewhat dated, of corporate cooperation with NSA upstream surveillance comes from the 2009 inspector general report.

“Two of the most productive [signals intelligence] collection partnerships that NSA has with the private sector are with COMPANY A and COMPANY B,” the report says. “These two relationships enable NSA to access large volumes of foreign-to-foreign communications transiting the United States through fiber-optic cables, gateway switches, and data networks.”

There’s circumstantial evidence that those companies may be AT&T and Verizon.

It’s also worth noting that the NSA might not need corporate cooperation in all cases. In 2005, the AP reported on the outfitting of the submarine Jimmy Carter to place taps on undersea fiber-optic cables in case “stations that receive and transmit the communications along the lines are on foreign soil or otherwise inaccessible.”

What legal authority is the NSA using for upstream surveillance?

It’s unclear, though it may be a 2008 law that expanded the government’s surveillance powers.

The only evidence that speaks directly to this issue is the leaked slide on upstream surveillance, and in particular the document’s heading: “FAA702 Operations.” That’s a reference to Section 702 of the 2008 FISA Amendments Act. That legislation amended the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, the 1970s law that governs government surveillance in the United States.

Under Section 702, the attorney general and director of national intelligence issue one-year blanket authorizations to for surveillance of non-citizens who are “reasonably believed” to be outside the U.S. These authorizations don’t have to name individuals, but rather allow for targeting of broad categories of people.

The government has so-called minimization procedures that are supposed to limit the surveillance of American citizens or people in the U.S. Those procedures are subject to review by the FISA court.

Despite the procedures, there is evidence that in practice American communications are swept up by surveillance under this section.

In the case of Prism, for example, which is authorized under the same part of the law, the Washington Post reported that the NSA uses a standard of “51 percent confidence” in a target’s foreignness.

And according to minimization procedures dating from 2009 published by the Guardian, there are also exceptions when it comes to holding on to American communications. For example, encrypted communications — which, given the routine use of digital encryption, might include vast amounts of material — can be kept indefinitely.

The government also has the authority to order communications companies to assist in the surveillance, and to do so in secret.

How much Internet traffic is the NSA storing?

We don’t know, but experts speculate it’s a lot.

“I think that there’s evidence that they’re starting to move toward a model where they just store everything,” says Dan Auerbach, a staff technologist at the Electronic Frontier Foundation. “The Utah data center is a big indicator of this because the sheer storage capacity has just rocketed up.”

We know more details about how the GCHQ operates in Britain, again thanks to the Guardian’s reporting. A breakthrough in 2011 allowed GCHQ to store metadata from its cable taps for 30 days and content for three days. The paper reported on how the spy agency — with some input from the NSA — then filters what it’s getting:

The processing centres apply a series of sophisticated computer programmes in order to filter the material through what is known as MVR – massive volume reduction. The first filter immediately rejects high-volume, low-value traffic, such as peer-to-peer downloads, which reduces the volume by about 30%. Others pull out packets of information relating to “selectors” – search terms including subjects, phone numbers and email addresses of interest. Some 40,000 of these were chosen by GCHQ and 31,000 by the NSA.

How does the NSA do filtering of the data it gets off cables in the United States?

“I think that’s the trillion dollar question that I’m sure the NSA is working really hard at all the time,” Auerbach, the EFF expert. “I think it’s an incredibly difficult problem.”

Often The Names Do Not Tell All

Take the article posted below from OpenSecrets.  While the names of the two organizations seeking 501C(4) status sound very conservative, information discovered about both reveal they are about as progressive as they come, and in their case, we could say they come and go repeatedly.

We post this article under a creative commons license and you may click here to read the terms of the license.

OpenSecrets Blog

Shape-Shifting by Liberal Dark Money Groups Seems Meant to Confuse

IRS employees who sent overly detailed questionaires to some groups applying for tax-exempt status in recent years used words like “tea party” and “patriot” to try to filter out those that planned to be heavily involved in politics (a big no-no).bigstock-tangled-wire-isolated-on-white-21683192.jpgAs it turns out, not only was that improper; it’s not even very effective. For instance, two liberal groups that have faded in and out of the political scene mysteriously and repeatedly over several years bear names that few would associate, at first glance, with progressive causes: Citizens for Strength and Security, and Patriot Majority.

As we’ve laid out in our Shadow Money Trail stories over more than a year, tax-exempt 501(c)(4)s are hard to track: They don’t have to disclose their donors, they don’t have to file tax forms until nearly a year after the close of their fiscal years, and those tax forms require very little detailed information.It’s far worse when the paper trail is full of dead ends — by design.

Here’s what we’ve learned about the evolving identity of the first group, Citizens for Strength and Security:

  • 2009: A liberal 501(c)(4) group, Americans for Stable Quality Health Care (ASQHC), is established, raising and spending nearly $47 million that year. Included in that is a grant to another 501(c)(4), the Foundation for Patients Rights, which had no other source of income.
  • 2010: Foundation for Patients Rights is terminated. It gives what’s left of its funds to an arm of ASQHC that is not a 501(c)(4), but a 527 group. And it’s not called ASQHC, but Citizens for Strength and Security Action Fund. It’s housed at a different address from the first organization, but is run by the same consultants.
  • 2011: Citizens for Strength and Security, the 501(c)(4), shuts down, having spent more than $50 million on “media buys” in 2009 and 2010.
  • Also 2011: The consultants who ran the 527 create a new 501(c)(4): Citizens for Strength and Security Fund (no “Action”). CSSF then starts a super PAC simply called Citizens for Strength and Security.

Through it all, the various groups seemed to have many of the same addresses and board members in common.

Here’s another way to look at it:

css_flowchart_new.png

To elaborate: In its first year, Citizens for Strength and Security (then ASQHC) raised $47 million with a staff of only two people. The pair — who appear to have been employees of the consulting firm Hilltop Public Solutions — worked an average of two hours a week. They drew no salary from the group, but two firms that share an address with Hilltop — SA Productions and Data  and S&B Public Solutions LLC — were paid more than $3.4 million for “issue advocacy” and “coalition management” in 2009 and 2010.

In 2009, the vast majority of ASQHC’s spending went toward media production and airtime — with at least $40 million being paid to the shadowy consulting firm Waterfront Strategies, a unit of the big media firm GMMB, which did work for President Obama’s campaign, among others. Waterfront was one of twelve contractors, other than SA Productions, to receive at least $100,000 from ASQHC. Since tax-exempt groups are required to list only their top five contractors, we don’t know who else is on the list.
One of the only non-advocacy expenditures made by ASQHC came in the form of a $1.24 million grant to another “social welfare” organization called Foundation for Patients Rights — not to be confused with Center to Protect Patient Rights. That grant made up the entirety of FPR?s 2009 revenues, and most of that money ($1.1 million) subsequently went right out the door as spending on ?media.? (FPR never filed any reports with the FEC, but it’s possible the organization ran “issue ads” that it didn’t have to report to the election agency.)
The Foundation for Patients Rights terminated the following year, after only 15 months in existence — entirely funded by ASQHC’s grants. But before shutting down, it spent more than $800,000 on ?ads and production.” It also gave $180,000 to ASQHC’s union- and industry-backed 527, not its 501(c)(4) — the latter being where all the money had come from to begin with. The “Health Care” component of the groups’ name was gone by this time, though. The 527 receiving the money was called Citizens for Strength and Security. Grantor and grantee shared the same address — a UPS store in Washington, D.C.
Thus, money that had begun in a social welfare group’s account wound its way through another 501(c)(4) and ended up with an arm of the originating group that had fewer restrictions on its political spending. And in fact, the CSS 527 raised and spent close to $10 million, most of it in 2010. One of its top contributors was the Democratic Governors Association, which gave it $3.3 million that year.
That same year, 2010, Americans for Stable Quality Care changed its name to Citizens for Strength and Security Action Fund and filed its first spending reports with the FEC — using the M St. address of another group, Patriot Majority USA (about which we’ll have more later). It reported $1.4 million in spending to the FEC, but the group told the IRS it spent $9.3 million on ?media buys and production expenses? — most of it going once again to Waterfront Strategies. (As before, some of it may have been used for issue ads not reported to election authorities, but the IRS doesn’t require detailed spending reports.)
Like other (c)(4)s, CSS Action Fund can keep its donors’ identities secret. But one surprising benefactor has come to light: the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers Association.  Its $2.5 million grant — first reported by the Center for Public Integrity — made up about 19 percent of CSS Action Funds’s total revenues in 2010.
In 2011, CSS Action Fund shut its doors. But the same year, a 501(c)(4) called Citizens for Strength and Security Fund (minus the “Action”) set up shop at the old Foundation for Patients Rights address — which a recent Frontline documentary revealed to be a UPS store. And its board members are the same as those of the old CSS 527, Lora Haggard and Jeremy Van Ess. The latter is connected with Hilltop. The new (c)(4) went on to fund its own super PAC, called simply Citizens for Strength and Security.
The new (c)(4) group had a new address and a new employer identification number (the IRS assigns a unique EIN to every distinct organization that has employees) but it was still linked to figures close to the old organization. Its mission, too, was the same, except for the deletion of “health care” from the description — the Affordable Care Act having already been signed into law.
Neither of the two 501(c)(4) groups in the Citizens for Strength and Security family appear to have sought exempt status from the IRS — or if they did, they don’t appear to have received it, something that would have been highly unusual. Still, more than $60 million flowed through these organizations, much of it going into the political arena.
Patriot Majority
Citizens for Strength and Security is not alone in the process of surreptitious rebirth. Another liberal group, Patriot Majority USA — some of whose activities OpenSecrets Blog first reported last year — has been engaged in a similar evolution, employing some of the same tactics that seem designed to mask the doings of the complicated constellation of organizations known as Patriot Majority.

patmaj.logo.png

The network includes multiple 527s, a super PAC, and a 501(c)(4). Its 501(c)(4) arm has been killed off twice, each time rising anew.
The first iteration of the group, Patriot Majority for a Stronger America, began as the 501(c)(4) ?Midwest Alliance for Better Government? in 2006. It shut its doors in 2009. Meanwhile, though, another (c)(4), American Alliance for Economic Development, had been formed in 2008 with the same employees — none of whom drew a salary — at the same address. (It was also the same address that Citizens for Strength and Security Action Fund, the group discussed above, would use in later FEC filings.)In 2010, American Alliance changed its name to Patriot Majority USA. Then, as OpenSecrets Blog reported last year, Patriot Majority USA gave large sums of money to two politically active, liberal 501(c)(4)sAmerica Votes and VoteVets. Both of these groups then gave large grants to Patriot Majority’s own political 527 account. In essence, money appears to have gone from Patriot Majority USA’s nondisclosing social welfare account through two other social welfare groups, ultimately making its way into Patriot Majority’s 527 account.
pmu_flowchart_new.png

In 2011, Patriot Majority USA began using a P.O. box as its mailing address, then filed a termination report. The same year, another 501(c)(4) called Patriot Majority USA — housed at that very same P.O. box, boasting the same board, and even listing the terminated Patriot Majority USA as an affiliate — filed its initial tax return. It would be Patriot Majority USA version 3.0 that would end up being the first to report to the FEC making direct, political expenditures — rather than passing the money first through a super PAC or 527.
The latest iteration of Patriot Majority USA was very active in the 2012 campaign season, telling the FEC it spent $7 million on ads. Yet despite the fact that it is not supposed to be primarily a political organization, it doesn’t appear to have done much since the elections. Its YouTube page has not been updated in the six months since early November, and its homepage — which, structurally, has been virtually unchanged through the last two versions of the organization — has been stripped down to bare-bones auto-updating content such as a sidebar of “this day in history” facts.
IRS Oversight 
 
No one affiliated with Patriot Majority or Citizens for Strength and Security responded to our repeated requests to explain why they engage in this complicated process of reincarnation and money shuffling. We tried all of the phone numbers listed on the Citizens for Strength & Security documents, and we contacted Hilltop Public Solutions. Nobody would comment. Craig Varoga, who has overseen the Patriot Majority groups, also did not respond to calls or emails. (Varoga is not anxious to be found; year after year, he lists “no@email” in the email address field on IRS forms for his organization.)
Nonprofit experts contacted by OpenSecrets Blog could not think of a practical motivation for their actions. “It?s hard to tell what is going on here,” said Marcus Owens, former head of the Internal Revenue Service’s Exempt Organizations division, “but starting and terminating organizations makes it more difficult for the IRS to identify who did what when.”
Ellen Aprill, professor of tax law at Loyola University in Los Angeles, speculated that the groups might have feared they’d violated a tax rule and decided it was better to dissolve “either to be good going forward or, if we were to take a cynical, Machiavellian view, to continue to ignore rules by operating briefly and then dissolving to do the same thing again.”
irs logo.jpgWhat we do know is that the IRS is not an agency built for political oversight or transparency, and these groups could very well be using the agency’s weaknesses as an added layer of cover for their activities.
The IRS’s primary legal responsibility is to protect information, rather than disclose it, and that is reflected in almost every aspect of the nonprofit infrastructure.  Groups are not required to get the agency’s blessing to claim 501(c)(4) status, and if they don’t they aren’t included in the IRS summary data listing all the tax-exempt organizations it oversees. Annual tax filings are submitted long after they are relevant; even after they’re filed, the IRS doesn’t provide them  — nor any of the relevant data — online or in machine-readable format.

On the rare occasion that an organization’s exempt status is revoked or denied, little to nothing about it is public. As we described in part five of our recent Shadow Money Magic report, the IRS doesn’t tell the FEC or the public that the group might be required to disclose its donors. Rather, most groups could simply pay their federal income taxes and fade away, except in cases of prominent organizations like Crossroads GPS — which applied for exempt status nearly three years ago and has yet to receive it. (This week a Crossroads spokesman told the Los Angeles Times that his group may have been a victim of the IRS’ heightened scrutiny of conservative groups.) Denial letters are made public only after they are scrubbed of all identifying information. Furthermore, formal denials are often unnecessary because, according to Lois Lerner, IRS Director of Exempt Organizations, “many organizations withdraw their application for exemption when they learn that a denial is forthcoming.”

For its part, Citizens for Strength and Security doesn’t appear to ever have sought exempt status for either of its 501(c)(4) incarnations. Patriot Majority USA, on the other hand, applied for, and received, exempt status at least twice, according to its most recent letter granting exempt status, obtained by OpenSecrets Blog. In that letter and the accompanying documents, Patriot Majority USA acknowledged that it had “substantially similar activities and goals” as the old Patriot Majority USA, which it refers to in the filing by its previous name, Alliance for Economic Development.In the document, it also explains that it had no intentions of hiring employees, opting instead to depend on “a large base of volunteers who will be responsible for contributing to, developing, and disseminating the organization’s message.”  At the time it filed its first annual filing, the organization boasted about $2.9 million in revenues, but no volunteers.
In the course of their evaluation of Patriot Majority USA’s request for exempt status, IRS staffers don’t appear ever to have inquired about Patriot Majority USA’s previous two iterations, and the third incarnation was granted exempt status once again, after a wait of only three months. That was in 2011, a time when many other organizations waited far longer to receive approval as IRS staffers screened (often inappropriately) applicants for hidden political agendas. Ironically, this group’s application sailed through though its name contained the word “patriot,” one of the terms the IRS supposedly looked for, according to the Treasury Department’s Inspector General for Tax Administration.
However, in a final twist, it now appears that the IRS might have revoked the tax exempt status of the last two versions of Patriot Majority USA. The IRS data that includes listings of all exempt organizations no longer contains records for the group. Washington, D.C.’s Corporations Division still lists Patriot Majority as “active,” and there are few other explanations for its absence from the list. “It could mean that their status was revoked after an audit and for cause,” tax attorney Owens says.
But that’s between Patriot Majority USA and the IRS. The public won’t be told anything, and the FEC won’t be notified. The donors behind the millions spent by Patriot Majority in the 2012 election will remain safely on the dark side of Section 6103 of the US Code.
Reporting intern Janie Boschma contributed to this post.

A Promise Keeper: HARDLY

A promise made by Obama is a worthless pronouncement made by an insincere politician.  We don’t need to go through a laundry list of Obama’s fake promises, but they are many.  One of the most telling of his broken promises relates to his pledge to kick the lobbyists from the White House.  We now know, thanks to investigations of White House visitor logs, many lobbyists, and Obama “party hardy” in the White House.

President Barack Obama and Vice President Joe ...

President Barack Obama and Vice President Joe Biden with the U.S. World Cup Soccer team and former President Bill Clinton on the North Portico of the White House. Screenshot from official White House video. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

You can access the visitor logs and examine them in detail by following the links in a story by Breitbart:

Liar, Liar … Pants On Fire

Once you access the above story you will find links to related stories, to the visitor logs, along with external investigative comments about the nature of the visits.  What may surprise you is the number of daily visitors and the repeat visitors, with at least one visiting as many as fifty times.

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NARAL President Resigns: See Below To Find Out Why

I received this from my friend Pastor Max Sanchez.  I am thrilled we may be gaining even more than we may have imagined.  If you are so inclined, there is a method to donate and send the information on via social media.  Go to the bottom of the article to see how.  Chuck

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Dear Friends,
In an exclusive interview with the Washington Post’s Sarah Kliff released tonight, NARAL President Nancy Keenan announced that she would be stepping down from her post at the end of the year.Kliff writes in her story:
In recent years, Keenan has worried about an ‘intensity gap’ on abortion rights among millennials, which the group considers to be the generation of Americans born between 1980 and 1991. While most young, antiabortion voters see abortion as a crucial political issue, NARAL’s own internal research does not find similar passion among abortion-rights supporters.
In other words, Nancy Keenan’s conclusion is something we have known for years: the post-Roe generations are pro-life – and more passionately so than their parents’ generations and their pro-abortion, post-Roe counterparts.We know from Gallup that 61% of the country believes abortion should be illegal in all circumstances or legal only in a few circumstances. We know from Gallup that 45% of the country self-identifies as pro-life. We know from Gallup that 51% of Americans believe abortion is morally wrong. And we know that when those questions are asked of the post­-Roe generation, the numbers tend to skew higher.More important, I know that none of this would even be possible without you and the work you do with National Right to Life and our nationwide network of state affiliates and local chapters. Every day you are educating your communities, touching hearts and changing minds. Every day, you are helping us make a difference for the most defenseless members of our society.Look back to 2003 when the New York Times Magazine quoted David J. Garrow, a hard-core pro-abortion “legal historian” at Emory University, as stating, “There’s been so much media attention over the last seven to eight years on partial-birth abortion, we shouldn’t be surprised that some of it has had an effect on 12-to-14-year-olds, and it is a public relations coup for the National Right to Life Committee.”The other side has noticed. And they’re “worried.”Keep up the great work. Together we will win…for their lives.
carol-tobias-sigpicFor Life,
Carol Tobias, President
http://cts.vresp.com/c/?NationalRighttoLife/bc4e68eb26/e28379b56a/51ec4b50be
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National Right to Life
512 10th St. NW, Washington, DC 20004
202.626.8800 – www.nrlc.org
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President Obama’s Budget A Done Deal: Some Say, “NOT BY FAR!”

President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle...Image via Wikipedia–Is This A wave Good Bye?

Please watch and send on the videos found below:

Sessions Addresses Obama’s Budget on MSNBC

Sessions Addresses Obama’s Budget On Fox

Sessions Addresses Obama’s Budget On Bloomberg

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Sandia Tea Party General Meeting (11/13/11)

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Dudley DooLittles?

President Barack Obama meets with Speaker Nanc...

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By Chuck Ring (GadaboutBlogalot ©2009 – 2010)

Quote Freely From The Article – Leave The Pseudonym Alone

Dana Milbank over at The Washington Post has some fun with the Democrats in general and in particular with House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-Maryland.)  Truth is, Milbank is/was not the only reporter to cite small accomplishments at Hoyer and other Democratic Congress members as seen with the following:

They still have their largest majority in decades, but the Democrats have succumbed to paralysis in the closing days of the legislative session. Congress has yet to pass a budget or a single one of the annual spending bills. Plans to spur the economy with tax cuts await action. Senate Democrats, faced with a GOP filibuster, have now punted on immigration reform and repeal of the “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy on gays in the military. Meanwhile, House Democrats have so little on their schedule that their first vote of the week is coming at 6 p.m. on Wednesday, when Americans are most of the way through their workweeks.

Naming federal buildings in Florida and post offices elsewhere seems to occupy a lot of the House’s time while they wait, hope or expect something else to come along.  At least, it seems so:

“Your schedule,” Linda Scott of PBS remarked to Hoyer at Tuesday morning’s meeting, “looks pretty light.” She asked whether Democrats are “telling you they need to be back home, rather than naming post offices?”

“We always name post offices,” Hoyer replied with irritation. “It’s a worthwhile endeavor to do that, and people really do appreciate it, particularly when it’s their name and their community.”

The Democrats are unable to rally themselves around tax cuts for millions of Americans, and their leader is defending . . . postal namings. In fairness, they’re not just talking about post offices: They’re also talking about flags. “On the floor we’ll have the All-American Flag Act,” announced Hoyer.

Milbank slips into light to medium praise for the Democrats, citing a few accomplishments, but then he is quick to point out they can’t seem to drag their sacks of laws along with them while they are fearful of talking a lot about what they did “accomplish.”  Probably, due to the likelihood the majority of Americans were not overly supportive of much that was laid on the them.

The Democrats, have a lot to ponder as they travel (scatter?) across the nation to piece their excuses and shortcomings together, hoping for another bite of apple pie, support of those at home and at least some approval of  “Mom.”  Interesting stuff, this is.

Access the rest of Milbank’s piece, but before you do steel yourself for some more silly, senseless and humorous stuff from Hoyer ( intentional or not.)  Click here for the rest.

Will Says; But Will The Warmers Take Note — Or Just Make Noise

Timon of Phlius, ancient Greek Skeptic philoso...

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By Chuck Ring (GadaboutBlogalot ©2009 – 2010)

Quote Freely From The Article – Leave The Pseudonym Alone

George Will, serving as an op-ed writer on the Washington Post’s web presence has written a piece wherein he quotes a noted professor of politics at Bard College and Yale.  Of course, he also offers ample servings of his opinion.  I like Will and most of his commentary, but perhaps I’m to  apt to follow someone who does not follow all the  “warmers”  dogma.  If I still have “warmer” friends they might cringe when they see this post.  Maybe they’ll just saunter on … or not.  To get back to Will and his article, let’s look at this:

The collapsing crusade for legislation to combat climate change raises a question: Has ever a political movement made so little of so many advantages? Its implosion has continued since “the Cluster of Copenhagen, when world leaders assembled for the single most unproductive and chaotic global gathering ever held.” So says Walter Russell Mead, who has an explanation: Bambi became Godzilla.

I believe the climate change issue has been slapped on the head until some of its followers are dizzy, or perhaps dopey.  Not because, there is not climate change, but because “warmers”  have attempted to lay the cause for climate change and global warming in the main on humans.  To top their anthropological blame, I and others believe they failed miserably when they attempted  to explain away the East Anglia information obtained from hacked emails. Of course, there have been investigations which purport to absolve some of the actors in the controversy.  One blog reporting on the matter of some investigations will be found here. On to Will’s piece and his report on the mentioned professor’s assertions:

… Mead, a professor of politics at Bard College and Yale, notes that “the greenest president in American history had the largest congressional majority of any president since Lyndon Johnson,” but the environmentalists’ legislation foundered because they got “on the wrong side of doubt.”

And, further:

Environmentalists, Mead argues, have forgotten their origins, which were in skeptical “reaction against Big Science, Big Government and Experts.” Environmentalists once were intellectual cousins of economic libertarians who heed the arguments of Friedrich Hayek and other students of spontaneous order — in society or nature. Such libertarians caution against trying to impose big, simple plans on complex systems. They warn that governmental interventions in such systems inevitably have large unintended, because [sic] unforeseeable, consequences.

What Mr. Mead seems to say is the modern-day environmentalists (evios) have not only missed the boat, but were not even on the dock of public opinion and they allied themselves with big government factions.  I can remember when government programs were held at arm’s length, and insulted by the Mr. Cleans and Ms. Greens of the evios factions, some going so far as to break into nuclear facilities.  Now it seems the evios have the attention of every government in the world and the only groups protesting big government, aside from conservatives, are the anarchists.  No alliance existing or wanted between the two, I’d have to say.

Continue reading “Will Says; But Will The Warmers Take Note — Or Just Make Noise”

From The Mouths Of ? — Does Anyone Check These Things?

Theodore Parker

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By Chuck Ring (GadaboutBlogalot ©2009 – 2010)

Quote Freely From The Article – Leave The Pseudonym Alone

From the Washington Post comes information about another monumental FAIL of this administration.  Jamie Stiehm on Saturday, September 4, 2010 posted an article that reveals more than those of POTUS’ staff  or POTUS himself (?) desire to be made public.  The revelation shows that someone does not know their history or they have a reading comprehension problem.  Follow on:

A mistake has been made in the Oval Office makeover that goes beyond the beige.

President Obama’s new presidential rug seemed beyond reproach, with quotations from Abraham Lincoln, Theodore Roosevelt, Franklin Roosevelt, John F. Kennedy and the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. woven along its curved edge.

According to the story by Stiehm, some reporters were smug in their self-assurance (as the administration surely was) the attribution of each quote was spot-on.  Well NOT.  Major mistakes are woven into the warp and weft of the rug.  No doubt the mistakes will be expensive to remedy and if the administration members responsible for getting the quotes correct,  got them wrong, we sap citizens will pay more for what may amount to vanity on the part of some ignorant soul who should have known better.

Let us see more of what the article reveals:

“The arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends toward justice.” According media reports, this quote keeping Obama company on his wheat-colored carpet is from King.

But, it is not from Reverend King … not even close.  The quote came from someone who had a long connection with people going back to long ago Boston and a grandfather who  led the Minutemen at the Battle of Lexington.  Stiehm provides the following to explain:

For the record, Theodore Parker is your man, President Obama. Unless you’re fascinated by antebellum American reformers, you may not know of the lyrically gifted Parker, an abolitionist, Unitarian minister and Transcendentalist thinker who foresaw the end of slavery, though he did not live to see emancipation. He died at age 49 in 1860, on the eve of the Civil War.

Reverend King had a passing and worthwhile acquaintance with the words of Parker and used the quote on more than one occasion:

… Often he’d ask in a refrain, “How long? Not long.” He would finish in a flourish: “Not long, because the arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends toward justice.”

It happens that another black, described as eloquent in  his speeches, and given credit for being an accomplished orator, also used the words of Parker quoted above.  Neither he, nor his biographer, David Remnick in his book, “The Bridge,” managed to assign the correct attribution.  We speak of  President Obama and Jamie Stiehm further says:

… Early in the narrative, Remnick, the editor of the New Yorker, presents this as “Barack Obama’s favorite quotation.” It appears that neither Remnick nor Obama has traced the language to its true source.

Parker said in 1853: “I do not pretend to understand the moral universe; the arc is a long one. . . . But from what I see I am sure it bends toward justice.”

So, we lay one puzzle’s solution to rest, thanks to Ms. Stiehm, but we still have to wonder how this oddity managed to sneak past the guard at the quote gate.

You can read more and gain some sincere appreciation of Ms. Stiehm’s work on this matter.  She is far more gracious regarding this silly error than I  have been, but then she makes the bucks, while I might look for flattened pennies on a railroad track.  Flap of the cap to her in any event.

Click here for the complete story.  Oh yes, here’s a blog that indicates that because King took Parker’s quote and rearranged it a small amount, it is in fact, King’s quote.  That Cuckoo won’t lay in any victim’s nest.