CNN panel is having none of President Obama’s excuses for not visiting the border.

Obama has had time to drink beer and play pool and meet with horse head people but no time to see the border crisis in person. 

Smart Power: Germany expels CIA station chief for spying on German military secrets

I really don’t know what it is about this administration, but the Obama White House has successfully ticked off more US allies than any other administration I can remember.  

Germany isn’t too happy with us right now after they found out that we’ve been stealing military secrets from them.  This comes after Edward Snowden’s revelations that we’ve been spying on virtually the entire country’s communications including Chancellor Angela Merkel’s personal cell phone. 

from WaPo:

Germany has asked the CIA station chief in the country to leave the country, an unusual action among allies that is a very public expression of anger over reported cases of U.S. spying in the country.

“The representative of the U.S. intelligence services at the Embassy of the United States of America has been requested to leave Germany,” government spokesman Steffen Seibert said in a statement Thursday.

A day earlier, federal prosecutors in Germany said police had searched the office and apartment of an individual with ties to the country’s military who is suspected of working for U.S. intelligence. Those raids followed the arrest of an employee of Germany’s foreign intelligence services who was accused of selling secrets to the CIA.

Seibert said the request to have the CIA official leave was made “against the backdrop of the ongoing investigations of the Federal Prosecutor General as well as the questions pending for months about the activities of the US intelligence services in Germany, for which the Lower House of Parliament has also established a parliamentary inquiry committee.”

German officials have also been angered by the revelations of former intelligence contractor Edward Snowden of widespread U.S. surveillance in Germany, including of Chancellor Angela Merkel’s cellphone, an operation that has since been halted.

read the rest

I know that the CIA keeps tabs on both our enemies and our friends, but has the Obama administration just taken things to a new level, or are they just incapable of keeping any of that secret?  Either way, this flap will only further strain already tense relationships and sow more seeds of distrust around the world.

Uh Oh: ISIS steals 88 pounds of uranium from Mosul University

They’ve already got their hands on sarin gas.  Now ISIS has got their hands on Uranium as well.

from Reuters:

Insurgents in Iraq have seized nuclear materials used for scientific research at a university in the country’s north, Iraq told the United Nations in a letter appealing for help to “stave off the threat of their use by terrorists in Iraq or abroad.”

Nearly 40 kilograms (88 pounds) of uranium compounds were kept at Mosul University, Iraq’s U.N. Ambassador Mohamed Ali Alhakim told U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon in the July 8 letter obtained by Reuters on Wednesday.

"Terrorist groups have seized control of nuclear material at the sites that came out of the control of the state," Alhakim wrote, adding that such materials "can be used in manufacturing weapons of mass destruction."

"These nuclear materials, despite the limited amounts mentioned, can enable terrorist groups, with the availability of the required expertise, to use it separate or in combination with other materials in its terrorist acts," said Alhakim.

He warned that they could also be smuggled out of Iraq.

read the rest

US officials are downplaying this, saying it would “difficult” to develop a weapon with the materials.  Somehow I don’t feel very comforted. 

Federal Government dished out over $100 BILLION in improper payments every year for the past 5 years

This officially makes President Obama the worst executive to ever serve the office.

from ABC News:

Tax credits for families that don’t qualify. Medicare payments for treatments that might not be necessary. Unemployment benefits for people who are secretly working. Federal agencies reported making $100 billion in payments last year to people who may not have been entitled to receive them.

Congressional investigators say the figure could be even higher.

"The amounts here are absolutely staggering," said Rep. John Mica, R-Fla. "It’s over $100 billion each of the last five years. That’s a staggering half a trillion dollars in improper payments."

Mica chairs the House Oversight government operations subcommittee, which held a hearing on improper payments Wednesday.

Each year, federal agencies are required to estimate the amount of improper payments they issue. They include overpayments, underpayments, payments to the wrong recipient and payments that were made without proper documentation.

Some improper payments are the result of fraud, while others are unintentional, caused by clerical errors or mistakes in awarding benefits without proper verification.

In 2013, federal agencies made $97 billion in overpayments, according to agency estimates. Underpayments totaled $9 billion. That adds up to $106 billion in improper payments, or 3.5 percent of all the payments made by the federal government.

read the rest

The worst year on record was 2010 in which the Obama administration presided over $121 Billion in improper payments.  And I can just hear the Democrats out there: “See, Obama has improved the situation!”  That’s like only losing $900 the next time after you’ve lost $1,000 at the casino. 

This. This is why Obama is president. Yes, some of you will rush to their defense by saying things like “it’s hard when you’re put on the spot like that” or “they just edited it to find all the stupid people”. But remember: (1) American Citizens should know the year and from whom the United States declared independence as well as they know their own name. Would these people have had trouble remembering their name when “put on the spot”? And (2) There should be no citizen that doesn’t know this. There should be no “stupid people” to splice together to make this video. Everyone should have answered it correctly.

Newly discovered Lerner email: "we need to be cautious about what we say in emails"

A recently discovered Lois Lerner email suggests that she may have something to hide (although we figured that out when she repeatedly pleaded the 5th in Congressional hearings).

Darrell Issa has tweeted out an email exchange involving Lois Lerner in April 2013, in which she attempts to scope out what email records get retained, and cautions that because Congress may seek emails, “we need to be cautious about what we say in emails”.

This evidences a consciousness of guilt, even if somewhat after the fact of the harassment of conservative groups.

She’s also not the brightest bulb in the theater — if you are worried about saying incriminating things in emails because Congress may discover the emails, don’t talk about it in emails.

Delusional Obama: ‘By almost every measure’ we’re better off now than we were before me

image

I’m starting to think that we’re either in Bizarro World or Obama’s entire presidency has been nothing but an elaborate prank for the amusement of us all. (H/T: WZ)

By almost every measure? Seriously, what is he talking about?

I literally can’t think of one issue that is better now.

Obviously this is in no way an exhaustive list. This was just off the top of my head. The fact that Obama has been a disaster on virtually every level should be common knowledge even to those on the left who adore him.

VIDEO: Democrat Rep got an angry call from White House after speaking out about border crisis

The Obama administration does not like dissension from within Democrat ranks, and they have a message for Congressman Henry Cuellar: get back in line.

Here’s video of Rep. Cuellar on Fox this morning:

Rep. Cuellar isn’t the only one speaking out about Obama’s refusal to visit the border amid the current humanitarian crisis.  However, he is the first I’ve seen who is making it clear he won’t be bullied into shutting up.

VIDEO: Veteran illegally disarmed and arrested in Washington state where open carry is legal

Openly carrying a firearm is legal in the state of Washington, but a group of police officers in Vancouver disregarded the law and illegally disarmed, detained, and arrested gun rights activist Mack Worley.  This video will make your blood boil.

here’s the video:

I’m sure there will be some of you in the comments section who will argue that Mack went out looking for a confrontation, and that’s why he has his camera on.  That’s really irrelevant.  Mack set out to prove that the law isn’t being followed, and his video proves exactly that. 

Mack was charged with trespassing while carrying a firearm, even though he was on a public sidewalk at the time of his arrest and was trying to leave the area.  

Mack is currently soliciting donations for a legal defense fund

Obama has time for beer and pool in Denver but no time to visit the border

Obama has so many more important things to do rather than attend to the border crisis.  You know…like meet horse head people and play pool. 

from Washington Times:

As part of a broader effort to connect with average Americans, President Obama on Tuesday night drank beer and played pool at a brewpub in downtown Denver.

Mr. Obama was joined at the Wynkoop Brewing Co. by Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper, a Democrat and one of the brewery’s co-founders.

After ordering beers, the governor challenged Mr. Obama to a game of pool — and lost badly.

Despite a slow start, the president, playing solids, won handily and told reporters to note that Mr. Hickenlooper still had five balls left on the table.

“Did you record that?” Mr. Obama asked the press.

“I take a little longer to warm up,” Mr. Hickenlooper explained.

Mr. Obama heads to Texas Wednesday for fundraising events. He plans to meet with Lone Star State Gov. Rick Perry in Dallas to discuss the immigration crisis gripping America.

The president has insisted he will not visit the border for a first-hand look at the flood of illegal immigrants flooding across the southern border.

read the rest

That’s right, Obama. Just drink your problems away.  America can wait.

Surprise! John Boehner not interested in impeaching Obama.

I have mixed feelings about this.  My gut reaction is to say that this fits the mould the spineless, ineffective John Boehner we all know and loath.  

However, to be honest, I can understand where Boehner is coming from on this one.  With the Senate being run by the tyrant Harry Reid, an impeachment from the House wouldn’t go anywhere.  

from WaPo:

House Speaker John A. Boehner (R-Ohio) disagrees with Republicans calling for the impeachment of President Obama.

Former GOP vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin on Tuesday joined a growing chorus of Republicans calling for the impeachment of Obama, writing in an op-ed that the influx of young illegal immigrants over the southern border “is the last straw that makes the battered wife say, ‘no mas.’ “

"I disagree," Boehner said when asked by reporters Wednesday morning. When a reporter pointed out that some House Republicans also are calling for impeachment, Boehner said again: "I disagree."

Boehner’s comments came after Palin said Tuesday night on Fox News that the speaker’s planned lawsuit against Obama over his use of executive power is a weak maneuver. “You don’t bring a lawsuit to a gunfight,” she said. “There’s no place for lawyers on the front lines.”

read the rest

This is one of those cases where I completely understand both sides.  While Obama certainly deserves impeachment, impeachment from the House wouldn’t actually do anything without the Senate also following through.  With the Senate under Democrat control, there’s no chance impeachment will be anything more than a political mud slinging. 

John Boehner’s lawsuit, on the other hand, could actually force Obama to stop ignoring the law.  It’s a weak play, to be sure, but it’s the only one on the table right now that makes any sense. 

The real immediate goal is November.  Rending control of the Senate away from Harry Reid would put Republicans on equal footing with Obama and truly be able to hold him accountable. At that juncture, impeachment might be a much more viable option.

Percentage of Americans on welfare at highest point ever

Every time we hear that the number of those on disability is at a record high, we hear people use the excuse that we have an aging population (even that’s only part of the problem). I wonder how those people will justify this: There are more people on welfare as a percentage of the population than ever before.

From CNS News:

According to the 2014 version of a report that the Department of Health and Human Services is required by law to issue annually, the percentage of Americans on welfare in 2011 was the highest yet calculated. The data for 2011 is the most recent in the report.

HHS has calculated the percentage of all persons in the United States who live in families that receive “welfare” going back to fiscal 1993. It has not calculated a percentage for years prior to that.

As defined in the report (“Welfare Indicators and Risk Factors”), a welfare recipient is any person living in a family where someone received benefits from any of just three programs—Temporary Assistance to Needy Families (formerly Aid to Families With Dependent Children), Supplemental Security Income, and the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (or food stamps).

By this measure, according to the report, 23.1 percent of Americans were recipients of welfare in 2011. Since 1993, the earliest year covered by the report, that is the highest percentage of Americans reported to be receiving welfare.

A startling 38 percent of all children 5 and under in the United States were welfare recipients in 2011, according to the report.

Read the Rest

Nearly a quarter of the country receives welfare. This is unsustainable (not to mention immoral).

Many progressives, no doubt, will view this as a success, but those who are truly compassionate have no choice but to view this as an utter failure. Success is when workers no longer need (or want) welfare, but rather, take initiative become self-sufficient. As a nation, we need to have policies that encourage this, not discourage it.

AWESOME: Ted Cruz sends Obama maps of Texas with directions from his fundraisers to the border

Ted Crus really wants to make sure President Obama knows how to make it to the border during his oh-so-busy trip to Texas for Democrat fundraisers.

A little bit of harmless political gamesmanship can be a very entertaining thing to watch.  Ted Cruz is a master at it. 

Whistleblower testifies to Congress that he was punished after alerting White House to VA wrongdoing

Four VA whistleblowers testified before Congress that they faced retaliation after exposing wrongdoing at the agency.  This is a big story both because it shows how systemic the corruption is at the Department of Veterans Affairs and, in one case, directly implicates the White House.

from FNC (emphasis mine):

The whistleblowers who testified said that retaliation for reporting misconduct was widespread at the VA.

Scott Davis, a program specialist at the VA’s Health Eligibility Center in Atlanta, said he was placed on involuntary leave after reporting that officials were “wasting millions of dollars” on a direct mail marketing campaign to promote ObamaCare. Davis also reported the possible purging and deleting of at least 10,000 veterans’ health records at the Atlanta center, and said more records and documents could be deleted or manipulated to mask a major backlog and mismanagement.

Davis also charged that after he filed a complaint directly to White House Deputy Chief of Staff Rob Nabors, it was leaked to his manager and he was subsequently subjected to “harassment.”

Another witness, Dr. Christian Head, works in the Legal and Quality Assurance department of the Greater Los Angeles VA Health Care System. Head said at one point, he was charged with investigating allegations of time card fraud. After reporting his findings, he said he was humiliated in front of hundreds of employees and labeled a “rat.”

“Retaliation culture is a cancer to the VA,” he said.

Meanwhile, a doctor at the Phoenix veterans hospital said she was harassed and humiliated after complaining about problems at the hospital, where dozens of veterans died while on waiting lists for appointments.

Dr. Katherine Mitchell said the hospital’s emergency room was severely understaffed and could not keep up with “the dangerous flood of patients” there. Mitchell, a former co-director of the Phoenix VA hospital’s ER, said in testimony prepared for the House committee that strokes, heart attacks, internal head bleeding and other serious medical problems were missed by staffers “overwhelmed by the glut of patients.” Her complaints about staffing problems were ignored, Mitchell said, and she was transferred, suspended and reprimanded.

read the rest

Davis alerted the White House directly (presumably because he trusted them), but that turned out to be a big mistake.  The White House wasn’t interested in hearing about wrongdoing.  They wanted VA workers to work on Obamacare materials rather than do their jobs.

Here’s video of Davis’s testimony:

Davis’s testimony is damning.  The only way that his superiors at the VA could have known to punish him is that the White House ratted him out. 

These four whistleblowers are just the tip of the iceberg.  

from Denver Post:

A federal investigative agency is examining 67 claims of retaliation by Veterans Affairs Department supervisors against employees who filed whistleblower complaints, including 25 complaints filed since June 1, amid a growing health care scandal involving long patient waits and falsified records at VA hospitals.

The independent Office of Special Counsel said that 30 of the complaints about retaliation have passed the initial review stage and were being investigated further for corrective action and possible discipline against VA supervisors and other executives. The complaints were filed in 28 states at 45 separate facilities, Special Counsel Carolyn Lerner told the House Veterans Affairs Committee.

read the rest

The VA scandal isn’t just about chronic inefficiency.  It’s about criminal corruption, and it is clear from this testimony that the corruption goes all the way up to the White House.

Oops: Forgotten smallpox discovered in old storage room near D.C.

Heh. If I had a dime for every time I left my vile of smallpox in a storage room…

National Institutes of Health workers preparing to move a lab in Bethesda, Md., found an unwelcome surprise in a storage room this month: six vials of smallpox.

There is no evidence that any of the vials was breached, and no lab workers or members of the public were exposed to the infectious and potentially deadly virus, the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said in its announcement Tuesday.

The vials labeled variola — a name for the smallpox virus — were found July 1 “in an unused portion of a storage room” and seem to date to the 1950s, the CDC said. They were freeze-dried, intact and sealed, forgotten and packed away in a cardboard box, officials said.

The vials were “immediately secured” in a containment lab, then transported via government aircraft Monday to the CDC’s containment facility in Atlanta, it said.

The samples are being tested to see whether any of them are viable – that is, can grow – and will then be destroyed, the CDC said.