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Archive for April, 2012|Monthly archive page

Obama Bypasses Congress, Allows Funding for Palestinian Authority

In foreign policy, Global News, Israel, Palestinians, Politics, Secretart of State Hillary Clinton, State Deptment, United States on April 27, 2012 at 6:28 am

WASHINGTON, April 25 (UPI) — President Obama, citing the United States’ national security interests, Wednesday waived restrictions on funding for the Palestinian Authority.

In a memorandum sent to Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, Obama cited his authority under section 7040(b) of the Department of State, Foreign Operations and Related Programs Appropriations Act of 2012 section 7040(a) of the Act, to provide appropriated funds to the Palestinian Authority.

The president directed Clinton to inform Congress of his action.

State Department officials last month expressed concern the department had been unable to provide full funding to the Palestinian Authority for institution-building projects as the United States seeks to rejuvenate Israeli-Palestinian peace talks.

House Foreign Affairs Committee Chairwoman Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, R-Fla., had questioned the Obama administration’s request for $147 million for the Palestinian Authority at a time when P.A. President Mahmoud Abbas has demanded preconditions for returning to the negotiations while also pushing a unilateral statehouse plan at the United Nations. She also expressed concern that $26.4 million had been requested for projects in Hamas-run Gaza.

“The administration also says we need to help ‘rebuild the Palestinian economy’ — this at a time when our economy is facing serious challenges and Americans are suffering,” Ros-Lehtinen said.

http://www.breitbart.com/Big-Peace/2012/04/26/Obama-frees-PA-funding

Long lines and inspiration accompany Hillary Clinton at SU

In Global News, HILLARY 2012, Hillary Clinton Unleashed, HILLARY FOR PRESIDENT, HILLARY in 2012, United States on April 24, 2012 at 4:15 pm

Even before the doors opened for students to find a seat to see Secretary of State Hillary Clinton speak at Syracuse University Monday morning, a line began to form. Over the next couple of hours, it kept growing as a sturdy column of students, faculty, and community members stretched through campus in the cold rain.

SU Senior Zach Schleien says he arrived at 8:30 am. “We were actually at the very end of the line, but we waited it out. It’s really long, let’s say two and a half football fields,” he said.

His friend corrected him. “It’s half a kilometer!”

At ten, about two hours before the Secretary arrived, security personnel began funneling the crowd of more than a thousand through a row of metal detectors.

Syracuse resident Mary Lou Balcom says she wrote Clinton’s name on the ballot in 2008.

“I don’t really agree right now, with a lot of things that are going on. I would just as soon see us out of Iraq and Iran,” Balcom said. “But I really think she’s very diplomatic. I think she’s doing her best to solve a lot of conflicts.”

Some people who waited didn’t even make it inside, when SU’s Hendricks Chapel reached its maximum seating capacity of 1,100 people. But there was one lucky person who escaped the colossal line, quite by accident.

“You know, I parked the car… I saw a back door, and I walked in!” said Clay resident Ed Stronsky. He guesses that his baseball hat that says “News Junkie” made security personnel think he was a reporter.

For an hour, Clinton discussed policy and the difficulty of foreign diplomacy with her former deputy secretary James Steinberg, now Dean of SU’s Maxwell School.

Grad student Laura Alexander said the event reinforced her decision to take the first part of the Foreign Service exam in June.

“I’m very interested in the development side of diplomacy,” she said. “Being able to affect the lives of others in a positive way… not even to affect them, to enable them to affect their own lives in a positive way.”

Alexander will be able to take her first step this summer as an intern for the State Department.

LINK

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Dreaming of Hillary in 2016 2012

NEXT, NEXT PRESIDENT – Hillary Clinton holds the record for being named Gallup’s most admired woman, 16 years to be exact. Her favorability ratings among the general population are in the mid-sixties and among Democrats she has an 86 percent favorability score. The question now is what is she going to do with this stockpile of good feeling?
She has not always been the most popular or favored political figure whether because she was perceived as too meddlesome, too tough, or not tough enough. But once she became Secretary of State her favorability has remained above 60 percent. And while four years ago her own party was deeply split on her fit as presidential candidate today Democrats from all wings of the party want her to be the nominee in 2016.

According to a poll just released by Public Policy Polling Hillary Clinton has got it in the bag. If the Democratic primary were to be held today she would receive 57 percent of the vote with Vice President Biden coming in at a very distant second with less than 20 percent.

As in 2008, Hillary Clinton has very solid support among women where nine out of ten lady Democrats have a favorable opinion of her. Among the gentleman, that figure drops slightly but only to 8 out of 10 having a favorable opinion of her. And while the glass ceiling isn’t completely cracked, it’s getting there — this poll found that only 10 percent believed that the Democratic nominee should be a man.

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has denied that she will seek elected office after stepping down from her current position. More specifically she has denied interest in running for the 2016 Democratic Presidential nomination. And while her husband confirms her intent not to run he very recently opened up the door to such a possibility when he said on Good Morning America that if she changes her mind and decides to run, he’d be happy.

Well, according to public opinion a whole heck of a lot of people would also be happy. But there is a Latina friend of mine in Austin, Texas who would be ecstatic. This friend has affirmed to me on multiple occasions that if Hillary Clinton were to run she would quit her job (a very prestigious one at that) and move to Washington DC to work for her campaign without pay!

While the Latino community came to embrace Barack Obama as the nominee and has since consistently supported him, Hillary Clinton was the Latino electorate’s first love in 2008. She won the Latino vote in every primary with the exception of Illinois, by one point, and Virginia.

Clinton wasn’t everyone’s first love in 2008. However, over the course of her tenure as Secretary of State she has been able to woo those who initially did not love, let alone like her. She has gained a respect separate from that of her experience as First Lady or elected official. Through her role on the national stage Hillary Clinton has earned new respect and deepened it among those who already had it.

Anything can happen in four years, but with that stockpile of favorability it would be a shame to not give that glass ceiling that final big crack it needs.

(Dr. Victoria M. DeFrancesco Soto received her Ph.D. from Duke University and was recently named one of the top 12 scholars in the country by Diverse magazine. Her research on political behavior has been widely published in scholarly journals and cited in the New York Times, Los Angeles Times, Chicago Tribune, Time, and POLITICO. This column was posted first at NBCLatino, LA Progressive.com and drvmds.com)

-cw

Hillary Clinton- hardest working woman in the State Dept while Obama Bypasses Congress, Gives $1.5B to Muslim Brotherhood

In Americans, Barack Obama, Congress, foreign policy, Gaza, Global News, Hillary Clinton Unleashed, HILLARY in 2012, Israel, Madame Secretary Hillary Clinton, Mexico, Muslims, Squanderer of Tax Payer Money, United States, White House on April 21, 2012 at 7:56 pm

During a trip through Colorado in December of last year, President Obama spoke of his intention to implement his economic policies with or without the approval of Congress. Said Obama, “And where Congress is not willing to act, we’re going to go ahead and do it ourselves.” It now appears that such a mindset applies not only to economic matters but to the distribution of Foreign Aid as well–in particular, Foreign Military Aid for the Muslim Brotherhood, who now hold the reigns of power in Egypt

Nevertheless, the news breaking now is that Secretary of State Hillary Clinton will soon announce that President Obama will “resume funding for Egypt’s military, despite Congressional restrictions and objections from human rights and democracy advocates.”

“Does this sound like the Hillary Clinton we know? Or has Obama’s executive power taken over every government job rolling over Congress and his Cabinet when it suits his agenda?”

We have more examples of Obama’s subversive behavior. (read on)

BREAKING: Obama White House Using George Soros Owned-Media Matters To Deflect From Fast and Furious!


Once again the Obama administration is openly expressing their links to the Far Left of America – this time using the George Soros funded Media Matters as an official government source to deflect from still-growing criticism surrounding the failed and deadly Fast and Furious gunrunning program.  In addition, new details are now emerging about a 3rd weapon found at the scene of Border Agent Brian Terry’s death – and the Obama administration’s intentional cover-up to hide that evidence.

Excerpt from a just released Washington Free Beacon report:

The Department of Justice is using the liberal “watchdog” group Media Matters for America to deflect questions about the Fast and Furious scandal, including those regarding a gun that might have been used in the murder of a U.S. Border Patrol agent.

In response to an inquiry from the Free Beacon, a Justice Department spokeswoman said in an email that she “was told to direct your questions to the FBI, and also to provide you with a link to this story: http://mediamatters.org/research/201204190011

The link was to a story at the George Soros-funded Media Matters for America supposedly refuting many of Pavlich’s claims. Media Matters is a partisan organization whose founder, David Brock, is also running a pro-Obama super PAC.

In Operation Fast and Furious, federal agents allowed more than 2,000 weapons to be smuggled across the U.S.-Mexican border and into the hand of violent drug cartels, with the intent of tracking them to learn more about the cartels.

Two weapons connected to Fast and Furious were discovered at the murder scene of U.S. Border Patrol agent Brian Terry, who was gunned down in the Southern Arizona desert in 2010 by five criminals armed with AK-47s.

However, Pavlich asserts there was a third gun. The book details three separate pieces of evidence that point to a third weapon being recovered and then covered up by the FBI and the Justice Department.

Border Patrol agents, who have since been issued gag orders, were overheard at Terry’s funeral discussing the third gun.

FULL STORY HERE

Thanks to Ulsterman and Breitbart for carrying the torch enlightening America…

White House fires back on Sarah Palin’s Secret Service criticism

In Global News, Sarah Palin, Scandal, Secret Service Disgrace, STRONG WOMEN, United States on April 20, 2012 at 3:53 pm

Sarah Palin’s charge that the Secret Service prostitute scandal highlights President Barack Obama’s “poor management skills” drew a sharp rebuke Friday from the White House, where chief spokesman Jay Carney dubbed it absurd and politically motivated.

“It is preposterous to politicize the Secret Service,” Carney told reporters at his daily briefing.

Palin and Republican Sen. Jeff Sessions have in recent days charged that the scandal, coupled with the outrage over the General Services Administration’s lavish spending on a convention in Las Vegas, reflects poorly on Obama. Those two controversies, as well as the tragic mass slaying of Afghan civilians, allegedly by an American soldier, have overshadowed much of the White House’s agenda in recent weeks.

“What they’re doing is trying to turn these incidents—one that’s still under investigation—to political advantage,” Carney charged when asked about critics who lump the three issues together. “On the face of it, it’s a ridiculous assertion that trivializes both the very serious nature of the endeavor that our military is engaged in in Afghanistan and the very serious nature both of the work that the Secret Service does, the apolitical nature of the institution, and the seriousness of the investigation under way,” the spokesman said.

Palin weighed in on the scandal on Fox News Channel late Thursday after The Washington Post reported that David Chaney, one of two agents removed as a result, reportedly posted a photograph of himself guarding the former Republican vice presidential candidate during the 2008 campaign and captioned it “I was really checking her out, if you know what i mean?

“Well, check this out, bodyguard. You’re fired,” Palin quipped.

“You know, the president, for one, he better be wary there of—when Secret Service is accompanying his family on vacation. They may be checking out the first lady instead of guarding her. And I say that not just tongue-in-cheek, but I say that seriously, that the president, the CEO of this operation called our federal government has got to start cracking down on these agencies! He is the head of the administrative branch and all these different departments in the administration that now people are seeing things that are so amiss within these departments.”

“The buck stops with the president. And he’s really got to start cracking down and seeing some heads roll. You know, he’s got to get rid of these people at the head of these agencies where so many things, obviously, are amiss,” she said. “Our president has poor management skills.”

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Fired Secret Service agent remains eligible for up to $2.1 million in taxpayer-funded pension payout

The disgraced Secret Service supervisors accused of engaging in a cocaine-fueled hooker party on the taxpayer dime will still cash in on lucrative taxpayer-funded pensions.

Three Secret Service agents tasked with protecting President Barack Obama have been terminated since it was revealed that they reportedly caroused with prostitutes and drugs in Colombia.

The Washington Post Thursday identified the two supervisors who have been forced out of the agency. Supervisor David Randall Chaney, 48, has been allowed to retire, while Greg Stokes, the assistant special agent in charge of the K-9 division, has been fired with cause. A third low-level officer has resigned his post.

Chaney will soon be cashing in on a pension worth between $47,000 and $61,000 per year, according to a Washington Free Beacon analysis.

Despite the scandal, it will be nearly impossible to prevent him from collecting on the lucrative sum, according to Michael Spekter, an attorney specializing in defending federal benefit packages.

“Even if you’re fired for misconduct, unless you are found guilty of treason, you can get your retirement benefits that you’ve earned through your years of public service,” he said. “They don’t dock your pensions.”

Spekter has represented hundreds of federal employees during his 30-year career and has never seen a worker lose his pension.

Lawyers for the two agents told the Washington Post each man has between 17 and 18 years of service with the agency.

The Secret Service refused to comment on additional personnel matters. However, several federal law enforcement sources say that agents must have at least GS-14 seniority to qualify as supervisors—standards that also apply to the Secret Service.

Federal law enforcement supervisors working out of the D.C. metro area earn between $105,211 and $136,771. The positions qualify for pensions worth 2.5 percent of average highest salary over a period of three consecutive years, multiplied by years of service.

GS-14 supervisors receive pensions worth between $47,000 and $61,000 annually.

Since Chaney is retiring, he can collect on his pension almost immediately and could collect until age 83—the most recent average lifespan estimates for federal law enforcement officers, according to the Office of Personnel Management.

Over his lifetime, he could receive between $1.65 and $2.15 million in retirement.

Stokes, the fired agent, also qualifies for his pension and will begin collecting at age 62, which would earn him up to $1.3 million over his expected lifetime.

The Washington Free Beacon estimate could be on the low end of the spectrum.

Once in retirement, the agents will continue to enjoy a Cadillac health insurance plan while paying minimal premiums. They will also enjoy annual cost of living adjustments, which increase pensions based upon the consumer price index. Retirees enjoyed a 3.6 percent pay bump in 2012.

Scandals involving government or political employees often raise questions about whether they are entitled to such generous taxpayer-funded benefits.

The debate last surfaced when former Penn State assistant football coach Jerry Sandusky was charged with more than 50 criminal counts of sexually abusing 10 boys over 15 years. Public outcry led the state pension board to review his benefits, though Sandusky will continue to collect state checks until his trial is complete.

Andrew G. Biggs, a former principal deputy commissioner of the Social Security Administration, said pension benefits are viewed as money in the bank, regardless of who is holding the money.

“At some point you have to consider whether the employee earns this money or the employer does,” said Biggs, a scholar at the conservative American Enterprise Institute. “If you get fired in the private sector, you get to keep the money that’s in your 401(k).”

Frank Keegan, a pension expert at State Budget Solutions, said the employer-employee debate is complicated in the public sector.

“It’s the taxpayer’s money, not the government’s,” he said. “If people violate the public trust, taxpayers shouldn’t have to pay the pension costs for the rest of [the employee’s] life.”

Some state and local governments have passed laws that strip public officials and employees of their pensions if they are convicted of felonies or otherwise violate the public trust.

The most notable case to date has been that of the imprisoned former Illinois governor Rod Blagojevich. State Attorney General Lisa Madigan, whom the Democratic governor considered appointing to Barack Obama’s Senate seat, stripped Blagojevich of his $65,000 pension following his corruption conviction in 2011.

Beginning in 2019, however, Blagojevich will begin cashing $13,000 checks from the federal government for his congressional pension. He will also be halfway through his 14-year prison term.

The Secret Service is reviewing the conduct of nearly a dozen agents, as well as forcing those allegedly involved to undergo polygraph tests.

Biggs said the government’s exhaustive investigation digs at the root of the problem: office culture. He said the extensive guest list at the wild party—up to 20 military and Secret Service personnel and an equal number of prostitutes—demonstrates an agency culture akin to the General Service Administration’s lavish Las Vegas trip.

“If you want recourse, you don’t go after their pensions; you make it easier to fire federal employees,” he said. “I don’t know what happened over there, but if we give everybody their due process, we are going to get people paying attention.”

Agency officials have told congressional committees in the House and Senate that more heads are likely to roll—and take their lucrative pensions with them.

http://freebeacon.com/pley-money-2/

HAPPY EASTER… 2012

In Global News, Hillary Clinton Unleashed, Madame Secretary Hillary Clinton, President Bill Clinton on April 7, 2012 at 6:39 pm

EASTER BLESSINGS TO THE CLINTON FAMILY AND TO ALL OUR READERS

Hillary’s new photo shoot for ‘Elle’ Magazine…

In Hillary Clinton Unleashed, HILLARY FOR PRESIDENT, Madame Secretary Hillary Clinton on April 6, 2012 at 7:10 pm


Hillary Clinton Talks Women, Work-Life Balance

Rachel Combe’s profile of Hillary Clinton in the May 2012 issue of Elle opens with an anecdote in which Clinton compliments Combe’s evening shoes. You could view that as another instance of a women’s magazine stereotypically lightening up a female political figure, but to Combe’s credit and Elle‘s, this is not a “light” piece. It is an homage — and an argument that we are meeting a new Hillary. Combe describes herself as a Clinton supporter and spends a good chunk of the piece chronicling the decline of “Hilary hating”: “These days Hillary Clinton seems to get standing ovations whenever she opens her mouth.”

And about the shoe comment: Combe also addresses the over-attention paid to Clinton’s appearance through the years. “Supporters will often wail for everyone to stop focusing on Clinton’s hair and clothes and listen to her ideas, but that’s sort of a backhanded compliment. (People, she’s too smart to care that she looks like crap.) The truth is, Clinton does care (she’s a bottle blond! Do you know how much work that is?)” Fair point.

For me the most interesting moment in the piece came when Clinton addressed how women with more than one child can’t possibly achieve the level of success she has — or that men do.

“Look at Nancy Pelosi! She had five children…. People — especially young women — need to rid their minds of this baggage that has been inherited. Because you can unfortunately caricature anybody: ‘Oh, she’s the woman who never wanted to get married and have children.’ Well, you don’t know what her life is like. Or, ‘She’s the woman who gave up her career and stayed home.’ Well, maybe that’s what she found most fulfilling. We have got to get beyond all of that pigeonholing.”

The beginning of the quote is slightly misleading — Pelosi didn’t enter politics until after she’d had those five children, though she was still raising some of them while in office — and Combe doesn’t mention what a 180 the comment on women giving up their careers is from the Hillary we knew 20 years ago, the one who said on Nightline in 1992 –“I suppose I could have stayed home and baked cookies” — and thereby repelled American homemakers.

But this is very much a portrait of the new Hillary, the one who takes time out of her day to talk to reporters about an aide’s new baby and alludes to her own pregnancy. According to Combe, “the row of male wire reporters nodded their heads, looking a shade terrified. (Oh my God, is Hillary Clinton about to tell us about her C-section?)” This is the Clinton Combe describes as “a middle-class girl, from the middle of the country, born in the middle of the last century. Clinton is, at her core, still a good girl.” Her reaction to Bill Clinton’s philandering, according to Combe, resonated with “regular Americans” because “betrayal in marriage is common, and finding the empathy for your partner and confidence in yourself to forgive and rebuild can be admirable.” This Clinton is less political. She’s just helping girls save the world.

The shift in persona Combe presents doesn’t exactly jibe with the way Clinton describes herself elsewhere in the piece, “There’s a certain consistency to who I am and what I do, and I think people have finally said, ‘Well, you know, I kinda get her now.’ I’ve actually had people say that to me.”

Thus, the profile didn’t convince me that New Hillary is the real thing. The narrative did seem to possess a crucial element that could help Clinton win in 2016 (if, contrary to everything she and everyone connected to her has said, she decides to run). The New Hillary could move people. Exhibit A: Combe herself, who wrote that she wanted Clinton to win in 2008 (and wants her to run again) to show her daughter what is possible. That’s the kind of sentiment that wins elections.

Huff-Po Link

Palin to Couric: ‘Game On’

In Global News, news, Sarah Palin on April 1, 2012 at 2:46 am

When news broke that Katie Couric will be filling in for Robin Roberts next week on ABC’s “Good Morning America,” the country yawned. Or, at least we did, until we learned that NBC plans to pit “The Rogue Warrior” against “The Perky One”: Sarah Palin will be guest-hosting “Today” this Tuesday.

NBC’s decision to seat the former Alaska Governor-turned-multimedia star in their anchor chair will likely prove to be a fruitful one. Since coming onto the national scene in 2008, Palin has become one of the most charismatic figures in conservative America and will likely bring “Today” an entirely different demographic of viewers.

“I see this as a good opportunity to bring an independent, common-sense conservative perspective to NBC. We’re ‘going rogue’ and infiltrating some turf for a day,” Palin told Breitbart News.

Palin and Couric will be squaring off, in a sense, for the first time since their controversial interview on the 2008 campaign trail.

When Breitbart News asked for a comment about the fact that she will be competing with Couric, Gov. Palin responded simply: “Game on.”

Indeed.

Courtesy of Breitbart.com