Sunday, July 26, 2015

Last Call For Aptly-Named McCarthy

The National Review has collapsed in credibility to the point where editor Andrew McCarthy is calling for the impeachment of President Obama over the Iran deal because he "surrendered to the enemy" or something by going to the UN Security Council to approve the deal.

So, in his signature “if you like your health-care plan, you can keep your health-care plan” style, the president has come up with a fraudulent scheme: use the IAEA (the International Atomic Energy Agency) as a smokescreen. His administration now cynically claims that these critical agreement components — the rationale for lifting American sanctions on and making American commitments to the “Death to America” regime — actually have nothing to do with America . . . they are strictly between Tehran and the IAEA. Translation: Blame the IAEA, not Obama, for the abandonment of Obama’s core commitments.

This would be laughable if it were not so offensive — and so perilous. Put aside that the Constitution does not permit the U.S. government to delegate American national security to anyone. The IAEA is not an independent actor. It is an international bureaucracy forged by the United States in the 1950s. Not only is the U.S. is a staple of its governing board; the American people underwrite over 25 percent of its budget. Furthermore, the IAEA reports to the United Nations (to which the American taxpayers’ contribution also far exceeds that of other countries) and, specifically, to the U.N. Security Council (of which the United States remains the dominant permanent member).

Now consider this: Under cover of this IAEA ruse, Obama ran to the Security Council and rammed through a resolution commencing implementation of his Iran deal before Congress or the American people could consider it. He thus undermined American sovereignty and the Constitution by scheming to impose an international-law fait accompli. And he thus undermined American national security by transferring his inspection commitments to an international agency that he knows is not close to being capable of executing them — an agency that will be further hampered by notice restrictions that, as Charles Krauthammer concludes, render the inspections “farcical” in any event. 

The Constitution forbids providing aid and comfort to America’s enemies. And the Framers’ notion that a president would be punishable for deceiving Congress regarding the conduct of foreign affairs meant that lawmakers would be obliged to use their constitutional powers to protect the United States — not merely shriek on cable television as if they were powerless spectators. 


Well, you spittle-flecked moron, you need help.  Seriously.  There's a reason everyone's having a good laugh at this today, and that's because your temper-tantrum is so completely embarrassing and outright stupid that it's become the comedy hit of the week.

The same people who thought nothing about lying us into a war that cost hundreds of thousands of lives and trillions of dollars are convinced that doing the opposite is impeachable.

Utterly ridiculous.

Chamber Of Horrors

Don't look now, but the war between Tea Party GOP and Country Club GOP is about to get absolutely nasty.

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce is gearing up to challenge some House Republicans in primary elections, frustrated after much of its agenda has been stymied by a small pocket of conservative GOP lawmakers. 
The influential and well-heeled business group is already eyeing several races, but the plans are still in their infancy and the targets have not yet been decided upon, according to more than a half dozen Republican sources on K Street and Capitol Hill.

The group’s apparent new willingness to engage in hand-to-hand political combat to take out sitting Republicans would represent a major shift for the business community, which has largely shied away from targeting sitting lawmakers. 
House GOP leadership sources say they’re unaware of and don’t support any attempt to target sitting GOP lawmakers. But the Chamber’s internal dialogue comes as House Republican leaders have struggled to maintain discipline in their ranks. Recent attempts to crack down on dissenting lawmakers have backfired. 
The early discussions by top-level Chamber operatives like Rob Engstrom and Scott Reed reflect a broad consensus among companies with business before Congress that the political dynamic needs to change on Capitol Hill.
The theory is simple: The Chamber spent some $70 million in 2014, mostly to help Senate Republicans build their majority. But many of their legislative priorities — immigration reform, the renewal of the Export-Import Bank and a long-term highway bill — have been held up by a clutch of conservative lawmakers in the House.

The Tea Party was fine until the whole "shutting the government down" and "breaking the economy" thing started cutting into the bottom lines of America's biggest corporations.  Going after hippies in the Democratic party was one thing.  Going after corporate subsidies, transportation infrastructure used to move goods, and immigration as a source of labor, well, now that the GOP is firmly in control of Congress, suddenly it's gotten a whole lot more cost effective to replace the nutjobs.

I don't know who to root for here, but whoever wins this battle, we all lose in the end.

Sunday Long Read: What Happens In Vegas...

America's right-wing domestic terrorism problem, the anti-government, anti-authoritarian "sovereign citizen" types who believe they are a law unto themselves and nobody else, was personified in the Las Vegas shooting by David Brutsch and Devon Newman two years ago.  Ashley Powers at The California Sunday Magazine looks at that fateful and deadly summer of 2013.

Devon Newman parked her black Honda Civic outside the warehouse. Her friend David Brutsche glowered in the passenger seat — they’d spent the 12-minute crawl across Las Vegas bickering about the mission. How committed are you, David barked, in that prison-guard way of his. Is this a joke to you? A game of let’s pretend? A few weeks ago, when the mission was still a dark fantasy, their pal Scott Reibach had warned them: “What we’re doing, you know, is dangerous. We could be hurt, we could be shot by these knuckleheads, we could be thrown in prison for the rest of our lives.” David didn’t flinch. “I’m willing to give my life for this,” he said.

It was mid-August and over 100 degrees. The air chapped lips, parched throats. The sun was starting to dip behind the mountains that ring the Las Vegas Valley; the Strip was shaking off its afternoon slumber. From outside the warehouse, David and Devon could glimpse the tops of the Wynn, the Encore, the Palazzo, and the Trump, its 64 stories sheathed in 24-karat-gold glass. That was not their Las Vegas. Neither was the Vegas of foreclosed McMansions — that was farther out, near the mountains, in the gated communities in Henderson and Summerlin.

Devon and David’s Las Vegas hadn’t lost its sheen in the recent recession; it had none to begin with. It was a Vegas of dollar stores, check-cashing services, EZPawn shops, gas-station slot machines, and storefronts stripped of fancy names — they offered DOG GROOMING and NAIL TIPS, nothing more. Everywhere there were apartment complexes painted in earth tones, their nameplates missing letters, their yellow welcome flags frayed. It was a Vegas of frustrations and resentments, of second and third chances squandered — the Strip’s opulence in sight, but always out of reach.

The warehouse was similarly glamourless, building B in a warren of squat structures. Scott worked there at a fledgling video-​​production business, near Code Red Emergency Plumbing and H&J Trophies. His boss didn’t mind if David and Devon stopped by. They mostly huddled in a backroom, on three couches arranged in a U, mapping out the mission until the sky was black and the Strip ablaze.

The mission: Kidnap a cop at a traffic stop. Jail him (or her, but likely him) at a house in the burbs. Hold their own trial. And then:

“Put a bullet in his head,” David said. He grinned

The plan of course went horrifically wrong as police got wind of it and the pair were arrested after dozens of meetings with an undercover officer.  But it's a chilling reminder that in the age of Obama, this domestic terrorism movement has grown exponentially, and so has the danger they pose.

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