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Posts Tagged ‘FBI’
April 5th, 2016 at 2:14 pm
Ramirez Cartoon: Hillary’s Dinner With James Comey
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Below is one of the latest cartoons from two-time Pulitzer Prize-winner Michael Ramirez.

View more of Michael Ramirez’s cartoons on CFIF’s website here.


April 26th, 2013 at 8:04 pm
Feds “Mollycoddle” Jihadists But Profile Christians, Pro-Lifers and Veterans

As a follow-on to Quin’s column this week, it’s interesting to learn which people agencies of the federal government think deserve to be profiled, monitored, etc.

On the one hand, as the Washington Examiner (echoing Quin) points out, FBI training manuals were systematically purged in 2011 of all references to Islam that were judged offensive by a specially created five-member panel.” “Nearly 900 pages were removed from the manuals as a result of that review.”

Without a training manual to fall back on for cover, it’s no wonder that FBI agents took a hands-off approach when investigating Tamerlan Tsarnev, one of the two Boston Marathon bombers who posted a pro-jihad video on his Facebook page. Without specific, bureau-approved criteria for monitoring Tsarnev even though he expressed radical views, frontline investigators let a future terrorist roam free.

But not to worry; the Obama administration knows whom to target.

David Limbaugh over at NewsBusters has a sobering round-up of many of the instances of government profiling of Christians, pro-lifers, and Second Amendment supporters.

Examples include military bases blocking access to the Southern Baptist Convention’s website for “hostile content,” a West Point study linking pro-life advocates to terrorism and a Department of Homeland Security briefing alleging that returning military veterans with Tea Party views could pose a security threat.

Branches of the federal government as diverse as the U.S. Army, DHS and the Houston National Cemetery, among others, are part of a seemingly coordinated effort to monitor and marginalize people that not so long ago would have been considered as the patriotic backbone of America. In today’s upside-down world, however, not so much.

Clearly, when it wants to, the Obama administration knows how to keep tabs on individuals and groups it deems dangerous to public safety. Unfortunately, they aren’t the people who are acting like terrorists.

September 20th, 2011 at 5:42 pm
FBI’s Latest Figures Refute Myth That Poverty Is the Root Cause of Crime
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Two federal government reports released within the past week again refute the toxic, persistent myth that poverty is the root cause of crime.

Last week, the Census Bureau announced that the nation’s poverty level jumped from 14.3% in 2009 to 15.1% for 2010, the highest rate since we emerged from the Jimmy Carter hangover in 1983.  The overall number of poor Americans rose to 46.2 million, the highest total since poverty estimates began 52 years ago.  Those numbers justify Newt Gingrich’s observation that Barack Obama is the “Food Stamp President.”

Now this week, the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) announced that crime rates continued to plummet last year.  Violent crime rates declined for the fourth consecutive year, while property crimes declined for the eighth consecutive year, even as the nation’s economic malaise deepened.  Moreover, the lower crime rates occurred amid local budget reductions that have affected police departments.

These statistics confirm the timeless reality that criminality is not some sort of involuntary act to which helpless souls are driven by economic adversity.  Rather, criminality is a voluntary choice on the part of the culpable criminal.  The latest data won’t stop the political left from repeating their discredited dogma, but the facts as usual refute them.

September 9th, 2011 at 3:42 pm
More ATF Guns Found at Murder Site of Border Patrol Agent

The web of possible criminality in the ATF “gun-walking” case i still stretching with a Fox News story confirming the existence a second and third ATF gun at the murder scene of Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry.

Congressional investigators have been looking for evidence of the third weapon for months.  Now, it looks like it disappeared at the behest of the FBI for fear that an informant working for it and ATF would be exposed.

This revelation follows on the news that ATF and the FBI coordinated efforts on other dubious programs that allowed guns to reach known criminals.

There seems to be no end to the incompetent corruption at Eric Holder’s Justice Department.  Can the same indefinite tenure be true of the Attorney General?

September 8th, 2011 at 11:26 pm
FBI Raids Obama Green Jobs Company

There’s been quite a bit of media buzz surrounding the recently announced bankruptcy of Solyndra, the California solar panel company that couldn’t turn a profit even after a $535 million loan from the federal government.

But what started out as Exhibit A in the case against subsidizing green jobs into existence has morphed into the latest scandal engulfing the Obama Administration.  At issue is a suspicious connection between a Solyndra investor’s work as a bundler for the Obama campaign and the sweetheart loan given to the company.

On Wednesday, the FBI raided Solyndra’s Fremont, California headquarters, and Republicans are promising increased scrutiny.  It would be bad enough if there is a pay-to-play scandal, but it’s even worse financially since the failure of Solyndra is both corrupt and incompetent.

September 6th, 2011 at 5:19 pm
ATF Gunrunner Scandal Sprouts More Legs…in Indiana

David Codrea, the blogger who originally broke the “Gunrunner” scandal at ATF, reports that another guns-to-criminals scheme is sprouting up in Indiana.

There, a gun seller defended himself recently against an FBI demand for information about guns sold to American crime gangs with all-too-familiar response: I was just following ATF’s guidelines.

That’s right, according to Codrea’s extensive documentation there is now another instance of ATF deliberately violating gun control laws to let weapons fall into criminal hands in the hopes of catching bigger criminal fish.  And how’s this for oversight: when the FBI was told the Indiana gun dealer was working with ATF, the FBI promised to remove the seller from any further investigation.

Add the American Midwest to the list of ATF scandals including Phoenix, AZ, (Project Gunrunner, Operation Fast & Furious) and Tampa, FL (Operation Castaway).

Last week the Acting ATF director was reassigned and the Arizona U.S. Attorney abruptly resigned.  With a third front opening up, how much longer can U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder – the man charged with oversight of ATF – keep his job?

H/T: Michelle Malkin

May 20th, 2011 at 12:06 pm
No Extra FBI Time for Mueller

The more I think about it, the more it rankles me that President Obama wants to extend FBI Director Robert Mueller’s term by two years, and that the opposition to this proposal has been so muted. On principle, the extension is an awful idea (even apart from the bitterness of longtime agents, as reported in today’s WashPost), and principle should not take a back seat to admiration for the person of Mueller.

Here’s the deal: By almost all accounts, Mueller has done a superb job as FBI Director. Because of that record, Congress seems to be assessing Obama’s extension request in terms of whether Mueller should be kept on.  But that’s the wrong standard. The question should be not about Mueller, but about whether Mueller should be kept on. Or, better, whether an FBI Director — any FBI director — should be kept on beyond the statutory ten-year limit. So far, only Sen. Charles Grassley, Iowa Republican, has spoken up from the Hill to raise this point. Ever so hesitantly, Grassley said the re-appointment might set a “risky precedent.”

Might? Try “would.” There are excellent reasons why, by law, the FBI chief is limited to a single, ten-year term. Those reasons are laid out in this statement by the ACLU (yeah, I know, an oft-suspect organization). Take out the tendentious second paragraph (except the first sentence of it, which is fine) of the official statement, and I agree with every word of what remains. This is the key point:

It was for good reason that Congress chose to limit the tenure of future FBI directors. By setting a 10-year term, Congress sought to protect both the FBI director from undue political influence and our democratic institutions from allowing an unelected official to hold the power to examine the lives of Americans, including political leaders, for longer than is appropriate.

The rampant abuses under J. Edgar Hoover showed the dangers of letting one, unelected man gain such a major foothold in a position with great power, and with so much public acclaim, that elected officials are loathe to dismiss him. Yes, of course there is oversight authority to which the FBI Director answers in theory, but congressional oversight can be notoriously weak and executive oversight can be obviated by the very fact that the director serves the executive and can therefore use his own accumulated power to the executive’s political (or other) benefit.

It made perfect sense to create a term of up to ten years for the director, so he would be semi-immune to the politics that comes with Cabinet-level appointments by every incoming president.  It made even more sense to limit that term, by law, so that the separation from democratic accountability would not be impregnable.

The CNN story linked above ends with the statement that Mueller is “on the cusp of being officially irreplaceable.” That statement should give every Madisonian cringe. One of the understandings that underlie a republic is that no man is irreplaceable. It is not merely a cliché to say that we are a nation of laws and not of men. Any time any man, even a Mueller or a Petraeus or a MacArthur,  becomes seen as irreplaceable, the dam against over-accumulation of executive power is broken. (I myself don’t worry much about accumulation of legislative power, because by its very nature it is dispersed and because frequency of elections allows the public to weigh in.)

Conservatives who do not object to Obama’s request for a new law giving him this “one-time” term extension for Mueller are failing to remember their basic principles.

Finally, on a practical level, allowing a potentially re-elected Obama to appoint the new FBI director right after his re-election could shift a huge power to a president newly unmoored from electoral pressures Do we really want to give Obama such carte blanche? Forcing Obama to appoint a new director this year, as scheduled, would ensure that he appoint somebody moderate and competent because he and Congress both would know that the public that will vote on their own campaigns just over a year later would punish anybody who had okayed the appointment of a political hack.

Mueller has been a wonderful director. Surely, though, he’s not the only person, among 300 million Americans, who can do the job.

October 16th, 2010 at 1:44 pm
Author of ‘Where Good Ideas Come From’ Explains How Networks & Hunches Lead to Big Discoveries

For anyone wondering how large organizations can put pieces of time-sensitive information into a coherent, real-time picture, author Steven Johnson provides an answer.  In his book, Where Good Ideas Come From: The Natural History of Innovation, Johnson explains ‘the adjacent possible;’ i.e. alternative paths.  In the short video below, Johnson discusses the missed opportunity pre-9/11 to match up the FBI’s ‘Phoenix Memo‘ with the arrest of a would-be terrorist who said during flight school that he didn’t need to know how to land.

If our nation’s intelligence community is ever going to function efficiently, it’s going to need a way to match information in a fast, coherent way.  Maybe Johnson’s book could help.