“Soft despotism is a term coined by Alexis de Tocqueville describing the state into which a country overrun by "a network of small complicated rules" might degrade. Soft despotism is different from despotism (also called 'hard despotism') in the sense that it is not obvious to the people."

Monday, May 13, 2013

Gen. David H. Petraeus, the former director forced to resign after a sex scandal, is a dangerous man to the Obama administration. Mad and intent on getting even, he’s already talking, telling one reporter the talking points were “useless” and that he preferred not to use them at all. The floodgates will open this week, and by the end of business Friday, the scandal will be full blown.

CURL: Watch out for Petraeus in Benghazi scandal

Sunday, May 12, 2013
Call it “Oval Office Couch Syndrome.”
By their second term “inside the bubble,” presidents have completely lost touch with reality: Aides and confidants conspire to keep the chief executive insulated from the real world — the bad news, the worse press coverage. They think it’s their job, and lounging on the Oval Office couches, they nod along with the president’s every musing.
But this presidency has taken OOCS to new heights. Mr. Obama has only a few trusted aides, and occasional leaks from the West Wing show a paranoid president suspicious of nearly everyone around him. Supremely confident, convinced by the fawning minions at his feet that he is untouchable, the president dismisses all controversy as partisan attacks by an overzealous opposition. A pliant press corps of stenographers follows in lockstep.
Not surprisingly, every president in the past 60 years has had a major scandal in Term 2: Dwight Eisenhower had the U-2 “incident”; Richard Nixon had Watergate; Ronald Reagan had Iran-Contra; Bill Clinton had Monica (literally); George W. Bush had Katrina (and let’s not forget those WMDs that never turned up); and now, this president has Benghazi.
Make no mistake: Benghazi is a major scandal. Benghazi is a scandal before, during and after the terrorist attack that left four Americas dead, including an ambassador.
For months before, there were warnings about weak security at the U.S. Consulate in Libya; no one paid attention. During the attack, when Americans were begging for help, the White House ignored their pleas, sent no help.
And after? That’s when the Obama scandal falls into the predictable second-term pattern his predecessors all learned the very hard way. Faced with a crisis, the Obama White House panicked. “We can’t have a terrorist strike two months before Election Day, so … let’s not have a terrorist strike two months before Election Day.” Cue the Cover-Up.
So little is known about what happened in Benghazi: Where was the commander in chief that night? No pictures from the Situation Room this time. Why didn’t the Pentagon authorize a quick-response team to swoop in? Members of the military say they were ready — burning — to go. The call came in: Stand down. Let them die. There were dozens of witnesses to the attack that night: Where are they? What do they know? What really happened that night?
And who forced the heavy-handed redactions of those infamous “talking points,” the ones that sent Mr. Obama’s ambassador to the United Nations onto the Sunday talk shows to declare that the attack was just the culmination of a spontaneous protest over an anti-Islam video posted on YouTube?
Carnival barker Jay Carney looked almost ashen Friday as he took the podium to face a suddenly invigorated press corps. Of course, the public briefing came after a private session with “reporters who matter,” a sure sign the White House is in full hunker-down mode — and, more precisely, terrified.
“Again,” one newly curious reporter asked, “what role did the White House play, not just in making but in directing changes that took place to these?”
“Well,” the carney said, “thank you for that question. The way to look at this, I think, is to start from that week and understand that in the wake of the attacks in Benghazi, an effort was underway to find out what happened, who was responsible. In response to a request from the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence to the CIA, the CIA began a process of developing points that could be used in public by members of Congress, by members of that committee. And that process, as is always the case — again, led by the CIA — involved input from a variety of …”
Enough. You get the point: Full Spin Cycle.
Speaking for the White House, the flack said the CIA was fully to blame for the talking points. Fully. “That is what was generated by the intelligence community, by the CIA,” he said.
For the record, this is what the CIA “generated”:
“Since April, there have been at least five other attacks against foreign interests in Benghazi by unidentified assailants.” That line was stricken: Everything was fine there — fine fine fine.
And: “We do know that Islamic extremists with ties to Al Qaeda participated in the attack.” That line, too, was deleted by … someone. Instead, this was inserted: “There are indications that extremists participated in the violent demonstrations.”
Despite protestations by the White House, this scandal is just beginning. And the White House has picked a very bad scapegoat: the Central Intelligence Agency. The CIA follows RFK’s edict: “Don’t get mad, get even.” And when the CIA gets even, it isn’t pretty.
With the White House putting all blame on the agency, expect push back this week — nuclear push back. Gen. David H. Petraeus, the former director forced to resign after a sex scandal, is a dangerous man to the Obama administration. Mad and intent on getting even, he’s already talking, telling one reporter the talking points were “useless” and that he preferred not to use them at all. The floodgates will open this week, and by the end of business Friday, the scandal will be full blown.
A warning to those West Wing sycophants suffering from acute OOCS: Don’t walk down any dark alleys.
• Joseph Curl covered the White House and politics for a decade for The Washington Times and is now editor of the Drudge Report. He can be reached at and @josephcurl.



  1. ABC’s Jonathan Karl, who broke news on the multiple revisions to the Obama administration’s Benghazi talking points, added a new piece to the puzzle on Sunday, revealing that then-CIA director David Petraeus thought the final product was “essentially useless.”

    Those particular words are Karl’s, but he quotes from an e-mail in which Petraeus, who only put eyes on the talking points the afternoon before Susan Rice’s infamous Sunday Show tour, says of the talking points ”I would just as soon not use them, but it’s their [the White House's] call.”

    The talking points had been denuded of any reference to terrorism, al-Qaeda, or Ansar al-Sharia, the local jihadist group who took credit for the murder of four Americans and the destruction of the U.S. facility in Benghazi.

    1. Karl followed, and added to, Stephen F. Hayes' account @ The Weekly Standard.


    ABC News’ John R. Parkinson and Sunlen Miller report:

    The attack that killed four Americans in the Libyan consulate began as a spontaneous protest against the film “The Innocence of Muslims,” but Islamic militants who may have links to Al Qaeda used the opportunity to launch an attack, CIA Director David Petreaus told the House Intelligence Committee today according to one lawmaker who attended a closed-door briefing.

    Rep. Dutch Ruppersberger, the top Democrat on the House Intel committee, said Petraeus laid out “a chronological order exactly what we felt happened, how it happened, and where we’re going in the future.”

    “In the Benghazi area, in the beginning we feel that it was spontaneous – the protest- because it went on for two or three hours, which is very relevant because if it was something that was planned, then they could have come and attacked right away,” Ruppersberger, D-Md., said following the hour-long briefing by Petraeus. “At this point it looks as if there was a spontaneous situation that occurred and that as a result of that, the extreme groups that were probably connected to al Qaeda took advantage of that situation and then the attack started.”

    Petraeus did not speak to reporters on his way in or out of the briefing. When he left the meeting, the former four-star general was trailed by about a dozen intelligence officials and a couple of Capitol police officers.

    Members of the Senate Armed Services Committee were also briefed today by Defense Secretary Leon Panetta and Vice Chair of the Joint Chiefs Admiral James Winnefeld. But senators emerging from that private briefing reported that they believed the attack in Libya was premeditated.

    “It was a terrorist attack organized and carried out by terrorists,” Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., the top Republican on the committee said, adding that about 15 “al Qaeda or radical Islamists” were armed with rocket propelled grenades and other lethal weapons.

    “This was a calculated act of terror on the part of a small group of jihadists, not a mob that somehow attacked and sacked our embassy,” McCain said. “People don’t go to demonstrate and carry RPGs and automatic weapons.”

    “I don’t think any of us are clear yet about who carried out these attacks in Libya, but from all that I’ve heard the murderous attacks on Libya that resulted in the death of four Americans were not accidental,” Sen. Joe Lieberman, I-Conn., added. “They were not just some kind of coincidental protests to this film, this anti-Muslim film. They were a well-planned and professional terrorist attack against the U.S. consulate in Benghazi.”

    This morning, President Obama notified congressional leaders that he had deployed troops “equipped for combat” to Libya and Yemen to defend U.S. citizens and property, pursuant to the War Powers Resolution.

    “It’s just common sense that in view of the situation that we’re looking at right now, we will see enhanced security anywhere across the world where we see the protests,” Rep. Michele Bachmann, R-Minn., said after attending the briefing with Petraeus. “We’ve seen how quickly this one began, and how quickly it turned violent and I think that’s something that we have to be aware of and deal with.”

    Rep. Pete King, another Republican on the House Intel committee and the chairman of the Homeland Security panel, said that regardless of whether al Qaeda coordinated the attack on the consulate in Libya, “we are very concerned that this could spread” to other countries across the region.

    “We’re talking about a very hostile area of the world in many cases, a very turbulent part of the world where there are many enemy forces, very disparate forces, many type of jihadists,” King, R-N.Y., said. “Like Libya there’s many militias that are still there, heavily armed, they do have an al Qaeda presence. You put all that together, it’s very combustible, and it can be many countries besides Libya and Egypt.”

    1. When did General P change his story, from the attack being an outgrowth of the spontaneous protest, to being planned well in advance

      Why did General P lie to Congress, if he did?

      As Mr King said ...

      ... there are many enemy forces, very disparate forces, many type of jihadists

      Not all of whom are the International Terrorists, with whom we are at war.

    2. Interesting point of view.

      What is a lie?

      What is truth?

      General P has not been indicted, convicted nor tried for any crimes.

      The way you ask: Why did General P lie to Congress, if he did?

      Could be applied to you. Why did you kill civilians in Central America, if you did?

      Ya see rodent your entire life is all about "have you stopped beating your wife" type statements.

      Nothing is truth, nothing is real, everything is an argument you seek to "win" but there is no victory for you. Just meaningless ramblings on a blog.

      Maybe you should go have a nice ride on a horse, build a campfire, make some coffee and watch the sunset.

  3. We shall see.

    Right now, I give this story 2 1/2 OOrah’s.

  4. Can the House subpoena the President?

    Hmmm......I think so. I think it's been done in the past.

    Maybe the House should subpoena the President, ask him a few good questions.

    Would he appear? No.

    What then?

    Petraeus feels betrayed and blackmailed. He might well cause a lot of trouble.

    I certainly hope so.

    I am really enjoying all this.


    >NEMESIS was the goddess of indignation against, and retribution for, evil deeds and undeserved good fortune. She was a personification of the resentment aroused in men by those who commited crimes with apparent impunity, or who had inordinate good fortune.
    Nemesis directed human affairs in such a way as to maintain equilibrium. Her name means she who distributes or deals out. Happiness and unhappiness were measured out by her, care being taken that happiness was not too frequent or too excessive. If this happened, Nemesis could bring about losses and suffering. As one who checked extravagant favours by Tykhe (Fortune), Nemesis was regarded as an avenging or punishing divinity.<

    The gods seem alive and well there on Olympus these days, keeping watch, arguing among themselves. A few may even support Shillary and Barky......but the majority, and Zeus.....child of Cronus and Rhea, and the youngest of the siblings......are having other ideas......

  5. Canie defends Barky, hits on Shillary and State, who point to CIA, and Petraeus is laughing.

  6. A partial listing of the Obama dead -

    May 13, 2013
    The Bloody Hands of Barack Obama
    By Stella Paul

    >Obama stands center stage in this tragic opera of America's downfall, cheapening, endangering, and destroying the lives of the best among us. The pile of corpses grows ever higher, and the lies more noxious.

    Let's pay tribute to some of his many victims, and vow to honor their memory by holding him to account.<

  7. Don't ask for whom the bell tolls
    It tolls for Shillaree

  8. >Aside from an October 2011 report on the men’s death, Washington has forgotten about these men who not only died in America’s service, but were sacrificed on Obama’s political altar. Their families and friends haven’t forgotten though, and convened a press conference in Washington on Thursday, during which they revealed a truly shocking fact.

    The gathered families played a video showing the official funeral that the military held in Kabul for the victims of the attack on the helicopter. Although there were generic references in English to “God”, the military barred any mention of Jesus Christ. The military did, however, invite a Muslim cleric to speak at the funeral. The Muslim cleric recited a long prayer, in Arabic. Later, the families had that prayer translated and were outraged to learn that the cleric damned the fallen troops as infidels – at their own funeral! The translation you see in the video and below is a certified translation<

    Military brass invited a Muslim cleric to pray at Navy SEALs’ service — and he proceeded to damn them (in Arabic)

    >Amen. I shelter in Allah from the devil who has been cast with stones.
    In the name of Allah the merciful forgiver.
    The companions of the “fire”
    (The sinners and infidels who are fodder for hell fire)
    ARE NOT EQUAL WITH the companions of heaven.
    The companions of heaven (Muslims) are the winners.
    Had we sent this Koran to a mountain, you would have seen the mountain prostrated in fear of Allah.
    (Mocking the God of Moses)
    Such examples are what we present to the people, so that they would think.
    (repent and convert to Islam)
    Blessings are to your God (Allah) the God of glory and what they describe.
    And peace be upon the messengers (prophets) and thanks be to Allah the lord of both universes (mankind and Jinn).<

  9. While it does look as if the Israeli attack on Syria has had a political component, within Syria.

    It must have been quite a blow political to the Free Syria Army ...

    'Israel, Hezbollah, Iran are working with Assad'

    Free Syrian Army commander says alleged IAF strikes were to aid Assad regime and stop rebels, not Hezbollah

    A Syrian opposition commander has accused Israel of working with Iran and Hezbollah to support Syrian President Bashar Assad in his two year effort to topple opposing forces, Turkish news network Today's Zaman reported on Sunday.

    Abdulkader Saleh, a commander in the al-Tawhid Brigade of the Free Syrian Army told Today's Zaman that "Assad has protected Israel's border for 40 years,” and that is why "Iran and Hezbollah are cooperating with Israel to be able to support Assad" in Syria's raging civil war.

    Despite previous media reports that last week's airstrikes in Syria were an Israeli initiative to aid rebel forces and stop Hezbollah from helping Assad attain destructive weapons, Saleh apparently told Zaman that these reports were false.

    “The opposition was going to take over arms, so Israel attacked. There is evidence pointing to this," he reportedly said.

    Lovin' every minute of it.


    1. Brought to you by the folks at the ...

      ... so it must be true.

    2. Remember that Abdulkader Saleh, a commander in the al-Tawhid Brigade of the Free Syrian Army is the US man in Syria.

      The Free Syrian Army is the US proxy.

      It is the FSA which receives the non-lethal aid, from US, in Syria.

  10. The Atlantic is paying attention

    After catching up on coverage of the Benghazi attack over the weekend, there's something that has me very confused: why are so many journalists ignoring the fact that the Americans there were mostly CIA? Here's how The New York Times began a Benghazi story published online Sunday: "A House committee chairman vowed Sunday to seek additional testimony on the Obama administration's handling of last year's deadly attack on the American diplomatic post in Libya."

    Mark Steyn's latest National Review piece on Benghazi doesn't mention the CIA. Neither does this Weekly Standard piece, in which Victoria Toensing complains that a recent report about Benghazi "was purposefully incomplete and willfully misleading." And Stephen F. Hayes, whose work on Benghazi is widely cited among conservatives, refers to "the assault on the U.S. diplomatic post" and CIA warnings about a "potential attack on U.S. diplomatic facilities in the region."

    Am I wrong in thinking that this is madness?

    The compound in Benghazi was not just a "diplomatic post" or a "diplomatic facility."

    According to a Wall Street Journal article published way back in November 2012, "The U.S. effort in Benghazi was at its heart a CIA operation, according to officials briefed on the intelligence. Of the more than 30 American officials evacuated from Benghazi following the deadly assault, only seven worked for the State Department. Nearly all the rest worked for the CIA, under diplomatic cover, which was a principal purpose of the consulate, these officials said.”


  11. {…}
    Doesn't that fact need to be acknowledged if the goal is to figure out what happened? I'm not invested in any outcome. If the Obama Administration is proved to have acted badly, I won't be surprised: as someone who thinks that President Obama violated the U.S. Constitution and the War Powers Resolution when he unilaterally volunteered American forces for the rebellion against Colonel Gaddafi, it seems to me that he's guilty of scandalous behavior in Libya regardless, and I am always eager for more transparency in the American government's conduct abroad. At the same time, I have no faith in the Republican Party to make good use of its oversight authority, and presume they're more interested in winning the next election than forcing transparency in foreign affairs, which they generally oppose, or improving State Department policy.

    Moreover, I don't know what happened in Benghazi.

    But knowing that the U.S. facility was a CIA post would seem to help explain certain mysteries. Why wasn't the Obama Administration truthful about what happened? There may have been multiple reasons. Surely one of them was that they wanted to hide the fact that a supposed diplomatic facility was really rife with spies. Why was the compound attacked? It seems likely that the presence of more than 20 CIA agents had something to do with it. Why were bureaucrats at the State Department so insistent on deflecting blame? Perhaps they're just typically averse to seeing their misjudgments revealed. But it also seems plausible that they conceived of Benghazi as a CIA operation, given the fact that it was largely a CIA operation, and felt the CIA bore responsibility for protecting their own assets, a rebuttal State Department officials cannot make publicly so long as we persist with the fiction that Benghazi was just a normal diplomatic facility with foreign service folks, a visiting ambassador, and no overwhelming spy presence.



  12. {…}
    Did an American ambassador die in Benghazi in part because the Obama Administration, like all its executive branch predecessors, decided to use diplomatic cover to protect covert CIA assets? What, exactly, were those CIA agents doing in Benghazi? These are the sorts of questions neither establishment Republicans nor establishment Democrats have an interest in answering. Says John McCain of Benghazi, "I would call it a cover-up to the extent that it was willful removal of information." The purpose of the CIA presence in Benghazi is certainly being excluded from official statements and covered up, but the Republicans clamoring for transparency and excoriating the Obama Administration for lying are okay with certain lies and opaqueness.

    The disclosure they're seeking is decidedly partial.

    I don't know why the press is playing along. If the American facility in Benghazi was a CIA operation disguised as a diplomatic post, let's call it a CIA facility, probe whether that fact helps explain why it was attacked, and investigate the CIA's failure to protect its personnel along with the State Department's failure to protect its employees. At present, journalists like Hayes are writing as if we should credulously accept whatever former CIA director David Petraeus says as if it's the true account of what happened. I've got no objection to getting to the bottom of Benghazi. But so long as we all pretend that it's a story about a diplomatic mission that was attacked, we'll be missing part of the truth. And so long as Republicans continue to champion the White House's prerogative to expand executive power to fight terrorism and invoke the state secrets privilege to obscure the true nature of its actions abroad, calls for "transparency" on Benghazi will be peculiar. I'm for transparency, but I want the whole story of Benghazi, including the CIA's role in it.

    How Can We Understand Benghazi Without Probing the CIA's Role?
    The attack that killed Ambassador Chris Stevens targeted a CIA operation, not a ‘diplomatic post.'

    MAY 13 2013, 8:30 AM ET

    1. The attack that killed Ambassador Chris Stevens targeted a CIA operation, not a ‘diplomatic post.'

      The whole affair centers around the CIA.

      As I've always said.

    2. This has been known since 12SEP12, why hs so little been said of it?

      Of the more than 30 American officials evacuated from Benghazi following the deadly assault, only seven worked for the State Department

      That it was a compound flying a false flag, one reason why it was not on the State Dept list of Consulates, on 11SEP12.

      Why continually misidentifying the compound as a consulate, well, that just plays into the cover up, strengthening the misconceptions so important to keep the strawman standing.

    3. Now if the point of this "Benghazigte" is to "Get" Hillary, embarrass the President, play domestic politics, that's all well and good.

      If the objective is to get to the core of the truth, well, no one in DC will deliver that.
      You have to connect the dots, yourself.

      Why was Mr Stevens meeting with the Turks, in Benghazi?
      Who leaked that the Ambassador was at the compound?
      Why was the Ambassador targeted, and the other employees not killed in the onslaught?

      Was the entire attack a cover for an assassination?

      That is the core of the 'transparency' cover up, not the White House trying to spin and massage the story after the fact.

    4. If the CIA gunslingers at the annex building were in a fight for their lives ...

      ... why were they just 'intimidating' the attackers with red dot lasers, and not taking the shot?

      Or were they really utilizing laser target designators for the air support that was not coming, as FOX News first reported?

    5. .

      The whole affair centers around the CIA.

      As I've always said.

      No, rat what you have said from the beginning was that this entire fiasco was the CIA's 'fault'. You even blamed the CIA operatives Woods and Doherty of being insubordinate for leaving the Annex and going to save the Americans at the other facility. You offer up a questionable claim that the CIA was responsible for the attack on the Annex by lasering the mortar sights even though the Annex had been under continuous attack by the terrorists all night long and Woods and Doherty weren't killed until dawn.

      You have basically been attacking the CIA for what can only be described as 'doing their job'.

      Here's what I wrote last night when I read your obvious attempt to shift all responsibility to the CIA.

      QuirkMon May 13, 02:38:00 AM EDT

      Issa has stated that the hearings will continue. If true, they should call in witnesses from the CIA also. I heard that there are currently CIA contract workers who want to testify as whistleblowers. I'm all for it. Bring them on. If DOD screwed up, bring them into the hearings under oath also. The more light that is shown on the entire clusterfuck the better.

      That being said, don't try to minimize the guilt of one group by pointing out the complicity of others. State, since it has security responsibility for all State Department facilities including Tripoli and Benghazi, is obviously involved in the overall coverup.

      Throwing around inane statements like "And the CIA had more people and more weapons" doesn't help. We knew from day one that the CIA had more people in Benghazi than State did. The reason for their mission there was also speculated about. And of course they had more guns. It doesn't take our military expert to tell us that. We are talking of a bunch of diplomats at State versus a paramilitary force in the CIA. An interesting point in itself since during the latest hearing the acting HOM, Hicks indicated security concerns were so bad in Libya they were requesting that all State Department personnel located there be given arms training. A prescient suggestion in light of later events when they and their CIA compatriots were basically left to their own devices.


    6. .

      If the objective is to get to the core of the truth, well, no one in DC will deliver that.
      You have to connect the dots, yourself.


      Dammit, if you refuse the "It just doesn't matter" line, rat suggests you ignore the e-mail trails, DOS rules regarding security, testimony of the people on the ground, timelines, in other words, tangible reports, testimony, and facts and instead do the only reasonable thing, SPECULATE.

      You have to connect the dots, yourself.

      Our resident miltary expert assures us that the reason the annex was attacked was because the CIA were laser targeting the mortar sites and gave away their position, this despite the facts that the annex was under sporatic attack for over five hours before the mortar attack which occurred at dawn. Some waould assume their position was already 'given away'.

      How does he know the CIA was laser targeting the mortars, despite the facts noted above and denials from the CIA? Because it was reported on FOX news obviously a much more reliable source than the CIA. The same FOX news that forced the Boston police to have to come out and report that the false media reports on the capture of of the Marathon bomber were just that, false. The same FOX news with commentators that offer us insights like this, "I'll tell you why [religion is] not a scam, in my opinion," O'Reilly told Silverman. "Tide goes in, tide goes out. Never a miscommunication. You can't explain that. You can't explain why the tide goes in." The same FOX news that multiple research studies have shown caters to an audience with IQ's lower than the general public.

      And why would the CIA be targeting the mortars. Rat's explanation: For the planes they were told were coming but didn't. And who told them planes were coming? It’s a mystery. And why would they be told that if the planes weren't coming? Another mystery. And since the CIA was in direct communication with their people in Tripoli and also the U.S., why would they begin painting targets until the planes were overhead. One can only speculate.


    7. .

      More speculation

      Why was Mr Stevens meeting with the Turks, in Benghazi?

      An interesting question, one that has been speculated upon, but hardly one that impacts on the state of security at facility.

      Who leaked that the Ambassador was at the compound?

      Gee, a toughy, at least, if it was 'leaked' that the Ambassador was at the compound. Of course, the American presence in Libya was limited and in most case the Ambassador would be either in Tripoli or Benghazi. Stevens had been in-country since May so he was easily recognizable to anyone interested. His travels between Tripoli and Benghazi could have been easily tracked. As ambassador his job was to present a public face for the U.S. But assuming his presence was 'leaked', who could have done it. From his reputation it really seemed like Stevens was making enemies right and left. Riiiight. But then we can only speculate.

      Why was the Ambassador targeted, and the other employees not killed in the onslaught?

      Well, actually one of the others was killed in the compound. And the fact that even more weren't killed was due to the fact that the CIA, including the rescue team from the annex, the same guys rat once accused of dereliction of duty for leaving the annex, was able to fight off the terrorists and get the people in the compound back to the annex.

      Was the entire attack a cover for an assassination?


      Gee, rat, you forgot to mention which side was plotting the assassination. Was it from our side? Naw, only the president has the authority authorize assassinations of American citizens. He told us so. An enemy of Stevens? No doubt within the CIA. One can only speculate. Oh wait, you probably mean a plot amongst the terrorists. Well, that would make sense. However, since that's the kind of thing those pesky terrorists do, it's hard to see how that impacts on the clusterfuck that was Benghazi. Likewise, it could be a long time before we find out. It has been 8 months since the attack and despite Obama's promise to track down those responsible, we have seen nothing yet. In addition, one has to question how much effort is being given to the search when initially we denied terrorist involvement despite their claims to have done it.

      But why stop the 'speculating' there. Why not bring up something that will really spark the MSM's interest. For instance, what was Stevens doing in Benghazi with three other guys? Why were they alone in that building? Why were there no women there? What were they doing in that building all afternoon? You have to wonder.


  13. And why, in the end, it really does not matter ...

    America the Clueless
    ... So explain this: according to a recent poll, roughly 40 percent of Americans don’t even know that it’s a law on the books.

    Now if I learned that 40 percent weren’t aware of when Obamacare was to be fully implemented or whether any of it had yet gone into practice or precisely how it’s likely to affect them, I wouldn’t be surprised or distressed. Obamacare is nothing if not unwieldy and opaque: “Ulysses” meets “Mulholland Drive.” The people confused about it include no small number of the physicians I know and probably a few of the law’s authors to boot.

    But 40 percent of Americans are clueless about its sheer existence. Some think it’s been repealed by Congress. Some think it’s been overturned by the Supreme Court. A few probably think it’s been vaporized and replaced with a galactic edict beamed down from one of Saturn’s moons. With Americans you never know.

    According to a survey I stumbled across just weeks ago, 21 percent believe that a U.F.O. landed in Roswell, N.M., nearly seven decades ago and that the federal government hushed it up, while 14 percent believe in Bigfoot.

    1. .

      The Prince of the Sheeple is back spouting Hillary's words and the Obama line. It just doesn't matter.

      "YOU are the government, if you distrust us, you distrust yourself." Go back to sleep little sheep. Baa. Baa. Baa.


    2. It is the battle of the shepherds. Which are you Quirk? Sheeple or cynical shepherd? You wrap yourself in the flag pronouncing that your really really care about the 4 dead Americans all the while urging the POLS to 'get to the bottom of it'. Do you really think there was intent to harm those folk by the US government or was it simply bureaucratic bumbling followed by usual political spin? Are you a poor sheeple, like bob, following the OZ repubs in their political blood lust or a cynical shepherd herding the poor sheeple?

    3. My political blood lust is up, Ash. Now these hot days, my mad blood flows. With desire, with revenge, even with cruelty! I want to see Shillary finally get hers. I want to see Barky come down. I want to see Summer Fiasco - The Reality, Final Episode.


    4. .

      Do you really think there was intent to harm those folk by the US government or was it simply bureaucratic bumbling followed by usual political spin?

      Another straw man courtesy of the great white north. The first part is stupid the second part dismissive. Do I think the U.S. Government 'intended' to harm the people on the ground in Benghazi? No. However, your statement offers up a false delemma, minimizing the import of the second part of the statement by comparing it to the absurdity of the first part.

      I do agree with the second part of the statement. Benghazi was a clusterfuck. It started well before the 9/11 attack, continued on through it, and into the aftermath. The entire episode shows that political considerations were prioritized over the security concerns of U.S. government employees. Unlike you, I consider that significant while you yawn and say, "Ho-hum, business as usually."

      By your use of the terms "wrap yourself in the flag" and "really really care" you show yourself to be not only a sheeple but and 'elitist' sheeple and a cynical little prick. You can't conceive that anyone would actually be concerned about four dead Americans or that they would like to get to the bottom of why they died. In your elitist mentality, you assume that since you don't give a shit about these things why in the world could anyone else possibly care about them.

      You imply I approve of the GOP bloodlust. You're damn right I do. If it requires political partisanship to get light thrown on the muchkins in OZ, so be it. I took the same stance during the Bush years. I will take the same stance, supporting the Dems, the next time the GOP screws up as they invariably will. If I'm more incensed over this issue than most, it's because four Americans died who might not have in other circumstances. Whoops, sorry for having brought that up. Old news. It really doesn't matter.

      Go back to sleep, Ash.


  14. Iowa Governor Terry Branstad went out on a limb last year, bucking his party and his candidate to lobby with Democrats for extending a key federal tax credit for wind power. The credit was extended after a pitched battle in Congress, and Branstad’s gamble has just paid off in spades with the announcement of a $1.9 billion investment in new Iowa wind farms by MidAmerican Energy Company, which comes under the corporate family of wind power fan and legendary investor Warren Buffet. So, who’s the big loser here?


    Iowa Rate/Tax Payers come out Big Winner

    1. The company expects rates to go down by $10 million annually when all the new turbines are completed in 2017, with an initial $3.3 million savings due to kick in even earlier, so Iowa ratepayers certainly aren’t going to lose any sleep over its latest investment in Iowa wind power.

    2. MidAmerican anticipates that the new wind projects will generate 460 construction jobs, 48 permanent jobs, and more than $360 million in new property tax revenue over the next 30 years.

      To get a look at what that could mean in terms of local economic development, take a look at the Atchison County, Missouri wind farm we profiled a couple of years ago. The project, from Ibderola Renewables, provides 44 different landowners with new revenue from leasing their property, with payments totaling about $365,000 annually. The ripple effect in new tax revenue for the project’s home county is up to $1 million annually.

      Atchison County credits its wind tax base with promoting local fiscal stability, as a County official noted back in 2010:

      “Every county in the state of Missouri almost has experienced a decline in their sales tax revenue and Atchison County has not. We attribute that directly to the construction of the wind farms.”

      Transferring that to Iowa, residents win with a few dozen new green jobs, but the ripple effect is much broader, due to the potential for a wide distribution of revenue from land leasing, and a more sound fiscal footing for local governments to tend to roads, bridges, schools and other civic infrastructure.

      Branstad’s Wind Gamble Pays Off

      Governor Branstad comes out smelling like roses from all this, too. When he . . . . .


  15. You poor dumbunnies :)

    You spend all your time hating on Obama, and Hillary, and the Americans that do notice shake their heads in amused pity.

    Meanwhile, the party that you support is on the wrong side of Every single issue of any importance to the American People, and to make matters worse, the demographics have turned on you with a vengeance.


    Silly, Silly-Billies.

    1. .

      Four dead Americans and to some it's merely a political witch hunt, business as usual, "it just doesn't matter", or we laugh at you guys in between our brewskis and our naps.


  16. Fuck four dead spooks, and liars. I never liked any of the assholes, anyway. We've probably lost over 100 Marines in Afghanistan since their little Libyan debacle; where are the tears for my dead Marines?

    Oh right, we don't want to mention Afghanistan (where Obama accomplished Bush's mission, and is winding the mess down.)

    1. .

      Should we count up all the words expounded here over the last ten years on Afghanistan, the ROEs, the corruption, the dead, the still dying, the cries to get our guys out, the questions of why are they still there and then compare that count with the posts on Benghazi.

      How many times do you have to come here and tell us you don't give a shit about anyone but 'your' family and 'your' marines?

      Go to hell.


  17. .

    The Obama has a lot of support here. Many agree with him.

    Obama has told us that to question the government is to question ourselves. From that we can assume whatever happened in Benghazi is our fault. [The Rat]

    A frustrated President Obama on Monday dismissed new questions surrounding the White House role in producing a set of public talking points after the Sept. 11, 2012, attacks in Benghazi, Libya, calling the debate around them a politically motivated “side show.” [Rufis II]

    “We don’t have time to keep playing these political games in Washington,” Obama said, arguing that the more important work is ensuring that U.S. diplomats are adequately protected. “We dishonor them when we turn things like this into a political circus.” [Ash]

    Well, I'm glad that's cleared up. I guess we can all go back to sleep now.


    1. Bullshit, Q.

      Find the statement where I said that Benghazi was our fault.

      You can't.
      Find a quote, you did for everyone else, or admit you're a bullshitter.

    2. You don't have to go back to sleep. Spend some time trying to figure out how to wean ourselves off of that Middleeastern Oil (before mother nature does it for us.)

      Or, try to figure out how to correct the trajectory of Median Household Incomes.

      Or, how to get some more of those manufacturing jobs back to the United States.

      There are plenty of serious issues that could occupy your time.

    3. A bullshitter who cynically uses four dead americans to grind his political axe.

    4. I did not push it when you said the Drone War was illegal, but boobie read it, too.

      It is back there ... somewhere
      But I let that pass.
      Did not even come to boob's defense.

      Not this.
      I NEVER blamed Benghazi on US.

      Not once.

      Find it if can, or shut the fuck up.

    5. That should have been

      Find it if YOU can, or shut the fuck up.

    6. .

      My comment above followed by [The rat] referred to the post Deuce put up a few streams back regarding Obama's Ohio State commencement speech,

      It should come as no surprise that President Obama told Ohio State students at graduation ceremonies last week that they should not question authority and they should reject the calls of those who do. He argued that "our brave, creative, unique experiment in self-rule" has been so successful that trusting the government is the same as trusting ourselves; hence, challenging the government is the same as challenging ourselves. And he blasted those who incessantly warn of government tyranny.

      That post provided editorial comment on the president's speech. Whether the comments were a true reflection of what Obama was saying or not, irrelevant, my subsequent comments were on the spirit of those thoughts. On the following stream you gave us a reflection of your thoughts on our responsibilities with regard to asking questions about Benghazi.

      desert ratFri May 10, 04:05:00 PM EDT
      You want to know "why", but there is no need for you to know why.

      You know what happened, there is no cover up of the event.
      You want to know why ...

      You do not like the lack of responsiveness official provide to your questions, but there is no need for you to know motive, only what happened, and you do.

      You know security was decreased.
      We know the FEST was inadequate to the task of entering a ongoing fire fight in Benghazi.
      We know there is a policy of no US military on the ground in Libya. If we didn't before, we do now.

      No need for official confirmation.

      The Government had a "Cover Story" that they ran with as long as they could. It was a dumb story, to be sure. That they did it, everyone knows.

      You have no need to know the operational command structure of US combat forces.
      You have no need to know who gave what order, to whom.

      You may like to know, but you have no need to know.

      (continued on next below)


    7. .

      To which I responded,

      QuirkFri May 10, 05:07:00 PM EDT

      Rat, you are the poster boy for the sheeple.

      You want to know "why", but there is no need for you to know why.

      What a craven response.

      Four people died and others injured because of inadequate security in Tripoli and Benghazi and you say we don't need to know why, that congress should abdicate its oversight responsibilities and like Hillary ask, "What does it matter?", that rather than try to find out 'why' and try to take the lessons learned forward to prevent it happening again, we should drop it, that we should believe the government when it says "Trust us".

      All the rest of the post follows in line.

      ...but there is no need for you to know motive...

      You don't need to know why security was decreased...

      You don't need to know why FEST couldn't do the job it was designed for...

      All projection. What you are really saying is YOU don't need to know the answer to these things, that you don't give a shit about them, therefore, in your arrogance, you assume that if you don't care about them why anyone else should. Not only a sheeple but an elitist sheeple, the Ash of Arizona.

      From the previous thread,

      “It should come as no surprise that President Obama told Ohio State students at graduation ceremonies last week that they should not question authority and they should reject the calls of those who do. He argued that "our brave, creative, unique experiment in self-rule" has been so successful that trusting the government is the same as trusting ourselves; hence, challenging the government is the same as challenging ourselves.”

      And the rat nods his head and baaas, "Gosh, that really makes sense. I guess I AM the government. Why do I need to know anything? Heck, if I question torture, rendition, signature strikes, abuses of the constitution, lying, double-taps, crony capitalism, foreign wars of choice, or a Benghazi cover-up, I am only questioning myself. It's all so logical."

      And the sheep baas, "Ya gots to go along to get along, amigo."


      At the time you neither questioned nor challenged my post. Are you doing so now?

      Are you denying that the Benghazi was a clusterfuck and was the ‘fault’ of government actions and/or inactions? Hard to do since even a truncated ARB has already identified a significant amount of blame, fault if you like.

      If you agree with that, which I assume you do, then it gets back to the point I was pressing which was your contention that we don’t have the right or the need to question the government on why four Americans were killed just because the government tells us “Trust us.” We are the government. We elected these guys. We have met the enemy and he are us.



    8. .

      There are plenty of serious issues that could occupy your time.


      First, the assumption that someone can't walk and chew gum at the same time.

      Second, that Benghazi is not a serious issue.


    9. .

      As for Ash, I addressed your position on the previous post. Must I repeat it?


    10. .

      Your lesson for the day, Ash, don't try to bullshit a bullshitter.


  18. As to the dead CIA gunslingers, Q ...

    When it was reported they had been ordered to "Stand Down" and did not, well sure, they'd have been insubordinate.

    But then it was reported they hd not been ordered to stand down, but had been given the go ahead to move to contact, at the compound and evacuate US personnel.

    So, no, with that version they are heros.

    All depends upon which version we decide to "like".

    The version where the CIA gunslingers were laser targeting for incoming air support, or the version where they were merely "intimidating" the attackers with their small arms red dot laser targeting system?

  19. A car bomb exploded near a hospital in the Libyan city of Benghazi on Monday, killing and maiming a number of bystanders, with conflicting reports putting the death toll between one and 15.

    The country’s deputy minister of the interior, Aballah Massoud, told AFP that at least 15 people had died in the explosion, with 30 wounded.

    Meanwhile, a doctor at the hospital told Reuters that at least three people had been killed, with 17 wounded. A second doctor said only one of the bodies had arrived intact, making it difficult to immediately establish the number killed.

    Benghazi, which was a key centre of the revolution that toppled long-time dictator Muammar Gaddafi, has continued to be a site of unrest, including a string of attacks and bombings in recent days.

    Tensions have risen in Libya since ex-rebels besieged two ministries at the end of last month in a dispute over a law that would ban officials who served under Gaddafi from holding office.

    Nearly two years after Gaddafi’s fall, the new rulers of Libya have struggled to maintain order in a country awash with weapons and armed groups.

    (FRANCE 24 with wires)

  20. Like Abraham Lincoln, Bashar al-Assad, in his third year of fighting the rebellion against the lawful central government, is making some gains. The body count is far less than Lincoln’s

    Syrian troops have taken control of a town near the main road linking the capital, Damascus, with Jordan, an advance in the regime's campaign to drive rebels from the south, an activist group has said.

    Rebels seeking to topple President Bashar al-Assad are trying to carve a pathway from the Jordanian border through the southern province of Deraa in what is seen as their best chance of capturing Damascus.

    A few weeks ago they scored significant gains but suffered setbacks after the regime launched a counteroffensive.

    In recent days, regime troops and rebel fighters have battled over Khirbet Ghazaleh. Regime forces retook the town near the Damascus-Jordan road on Sunday and rebels withdrew from the area, said Rami Abdul-Rahman, the head of the Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights.

    Troops reopened the road, restoring the supply line between Damascus and Deraa city, the contested provincial capital, he said. Regime forces were carrying out raids and searching homes in Khirbet Ghazaleh on Monday.

    Damascus, still overwhelmingly under regime control, is the ultimate prize in a largely deadlocked civil war. Rebels control large parts of the countryside in northern Syria, but those areas are further away from the capital than the Jordanian border.

    Arab officials and western military experts have said Middle Eastern powers opposed to Assad have stepped up weapons supplies to Syrian rebels, with Jordan opening up as a new route.

    The uprising against Assad erupted in March 2011 and escalated into a civil war. Over the weekend, the Observatory issued an estimated death toll of more than 80,000, with almost half of them civilians. In February, the UN said at least 70,000 Syrians had been killed.

    Western leaders face growing pressure to find a way to end the conflict – because of the rising death toll and fears that neighbouring Israel or Turkey could inadvertently get pulled deeper into it.

    Turkey has blamed the Assad regime for twin car bombs on Saturday that killed 46 people and wounded scores in a border town that serves as a hub for Syrian refugees and rebels.

    Turkey said it would not be dragged into the quagmire but tensions between the former allies run high.

    This month Israel launched back-to-back air strikes in Syria against what it said were shipments of advanced Iranian missiles. Israeli officials signalled there would be more attacks unless its neighbour refrained from trying to deliver such "game-changing" missiles to its ally Hezbollah, an anti-Israel militia in Lebanon.

    For now, the west is placing its hopes on a diplomatic plan that previously ran aground but now appears to have stronger Russian backing.

    Last week the US and Russia agreed to revive the idea of negotiations between Syria's political opposition and members of the regime on a transitional government, accompanied by an open-ended ceasefire.

  21. Lincoln dodged the bullet of having foreign intervention in the US Civil War. Will Assad be as fortunate?

    As the US today is leery of direct involvement in Syria (fortunately) , the British were reluctant to help the South because both Bismarck and Napoleon III were growing in power and would take advantage of any British overreach.

    Lincoln wasn’t sure about British entry. When an over-exuberant US Navy seized a British mail ship, Britain increased her military capacity in Canada and off the US coast. The USS San Jacinto intercepted the British RMS Trent and removed two Confederate diplomats, James Mason and John Slidell. The envoys were bound for Great Britain and France to press the Confederacy’s case for diplomatic recognition in Europe. Lincoln was concerned the Brits would enter the war and take New York. Lincoln disavowed the action of the US Naval commander and returned the ship to the Brits.

    The Confederacy knew that their chances of winning the war without British support was slim. Without the hoped for Foreign intervention from England and France, the South ultimately lost. The cost to the US was 6-7 hundred thousand US killed. The US population at the time was about 30 million and present day Syria, about 22 million. So far 70,000 have been killed in Syria. The civil war has been extended by foreign intervention.

  22. The cost to the US was 6-7 hundred thousand US killed.

    300,000+ United States killed.

    300,000+ insurrectionists killed.

    All they had to do was wait a few days, Major Anderson said, and he would have had to haul down the colors over Fort Sumter due to being starved out. But NO.

    1. The Civil War was bound to happen. If it wasn't Fort Sumter it would have been something else.

      Lincoln knew this too. He said he had no control over the war, it was coming, regardless. And he felt he had little control over it even as it was happening.

  23. >Oh right, we don't want to mention Afghanistan (where Obama accomplished Bush's mission, and is winding the mess down.)<

    This is proof positive - 100 Proof - that Rufus has finally succeeded in drinking himself into total insensibility.

    He used to be more realistic about the prospects in Afghanistan, saying all we are doing is walking around being shot at, and that in that big a country we haven't a chance with our small number of troops. How, by the way, Obama has ordered must not shoot, until they are shot at first.

    Meanwhile, Obama exited Iraq too early, and it is going to hell, too.

    1. The US left Iraq when the Iraqi would not give US "Above the Law" status.

    2. Iraq is the Iraqi's problem, not a problem for US.

  24. It was murder, after all.

    PHILADELPHIA - A doctor who was responsible for cutting the spines of babies after botched abortions was convicted Monday of three counts of first-degree murder in a case that became a sharp rallying cry for anti-abortion activists.

  25. So Bob joined J Street, K Street, Arab Street, Sesame Street, Queer Street, what the fuck?