Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Scandalpalooza Proves One Thing That Our Government Is Out Of Control

To be honest there are way too many scandals to write about in just one post that are tied directly or indirectly to the Obama administration.
There are two that IMHO really stick out that seem to prove the axiom that we have a way, way big government that may be totally out of control.
There is the IRS scandal and the NSA scandal that if it all plays out will show a frightening reach that no one could have imagined as little as five years ago when Team Obama arrived in Washington, D. C.
Start with the IRS Scandal.
The gist of it is that a multitude of new, Tea Party and allied groups applied to the Internal Revenue Service to be tax-exempt organizations starting in 2010.
Keep the year in mind.
The Tea Party, not an actual political party but an idea, started with this totally epic rant from CNBC's Rick Santelli.
From this many Americans believed that Mr. Santelli spoke for them. Count me as one of those Americans. Later that year, millions of Americans held rallies on the dreaded April 15. THAT is the date that lives in perpetual infamy for it is the day that American income taxpayers file their paperwork to pay their taxes. From that, again many Americans thought that it would be good to organize and thus as part of that organization, most are non-profit educational organizations.
Ahh, but 2010, that was a mid-term national election. At that point, the Democrats had control in Washington of the White House and both houses of congress. And both houses beyond comfortable margins.
So, the IRS got a lot of applications from conservative groups. Groups that had possibly as part of their name Tea Party. Constitution. Patriot. I think that you get the idea.
OK, it does get murky as to who actually was behind clear intimidation of new groups seeking what is in shorthand a 501(c)(4) tax exemption.
The Cincinnati field office of the IRS is the one that handles the 501(c)(4) requests. In March of 2010, they began to very closely scrutinize the many new conservative groups seeking the tax-exempt status. Here is the "guidelines" that they used:

  • referenced words such as "Tea Party," "Patriots," or "9/12 Project" in the case file;
  • outlined issues in the application that included government spending, government debt, or taxes;
  • involved advocating or lobbying to "make America a better place to live";
  • had statements in the case file that criticized how the country is being run;
  • advocated education about the Constitution and the Bill of Rights;
  • were focused on challenging the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act — known by many as Obamacare;
  • questioned the integrity of federal elections.

  • The above is courtesy of the Wikipedia link from earlier in this post.
    The evidence is very overwhelming that the IRS took way more to scrutinize conservative groups than liberal groups.
    And there are a lot of names behind this that makes clear that there is a lot of splainin to do. Lois Lerner, Douglas Shulman, Steven Miller. All are deeply involved in this clear targeting of groups that opposed the Obama administration.
    But, according to the ranking Democrat on the House Oversight  Committee, Rep. Elijah Cummings (D-Md.) claims that he interviewed an unnamed "conservative Republican" that was also involved in the targeting.
    Since the "conservative Republican" is not named, I will believe that he or she does not exist.
    And anyone can say they are a conservative Republican, a liberal Democrat, who cares? What does that mean there was not a targeting of these groups?
    Of course.
    Understand that right now, there is a liberal Democrat government in Washington, D. C. And whether this came from the White House, directly or indirectly, it says that there is a tacit approval of raw political power over just showing the same scrutiny to any group that would apply for a 501(c)(4) tax exemption.
    It is a sign of a huge, out of control government.
    The second scandal, the NSA scandal may affect more Americans than the IRS one. It is because it, as we are to understand it, the National Security Agency was conducting surveillance on millions if not billions of phone calls between Americans.
    I will be perfectly honest on two fronts.
    One, this is complex. Because from all that has been released it appears that the government has not, supposedly, actually listened to calls. They merely can know when we placed a call, to who, and how long that call was. This article from the left-wing newspaper, The Guardian, that broke the story explains how it is supposedly done.
    Oh, did I mention that all of this is supposed to be classified and one needs security clearance to access such things.
    Which brings us to Edward Snowden, the traitor or whistle blower who spilled the beans on this.
    Is Mr. Snowden a traitor, a whistle blower or both?
    I think that Mr. Snowden is, at this point, both a traitor and a whistle blower.
    This is a clearly sensitive program in the War Against Islamofacsist Terror. It is one of the tools that even the Obama administration realizes is needed in trying to track down potential terrorists and possible plots that they may be trying to commit against the United States. Yet it appears that this has gone way out of control.
    And, something many defenders of this program have not caught on to.
    The current administration has been doing all it can to downplay the Islamofascist threat. Yet on any chance that they can get, they go out of their way to emphasize domestic terror. Particularly so-called right wing terrorism. Take the IRS scandal and then understand that this program in targeting pretty much anyone with a phone and once again, the American people have a right to be leery of their government.
    But lets get back to the PRISM case.
    How do we know that phone calls are not being listened to? Not once has there been anything that has been said that in fact and indeed, everyday Americans are not being listened to?
    Also, a case can be made that a non-success of this program is that the Boston bombers succeeded in their act of terror.
    These two cases still have to play out.
    But one thing is clear.
    The federal government is way too big and way too out of control.
    When the people do not trust the government in this manner, then there is a righteous fear of the government. That is why it is beyond important for these scandals to be thoroughly investigated. That those who have committed wrongdoing are brought to justice. That we revisit our tax code and yes, even the Patriot Act, so hated by the left and libertarians alike.
    Scandalpalooza is just solidifying what conservatives have been saying since Franklin Delano Roosevelt was elected president in 1932.
    That the government is getting bigger and removed from the people.
    How we will balance that out is the new challenge.

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