So, does this database include just the stolen or wanted cars (what exactly makes a car "wanted" to the NYPD?), or will it include an entry for every time one of the scanners saw any license plate, stolen or not?
I think we need a constitutional amendment to restrict the government's ability to aggregate data. If you want to have your police force look for a particular license plate, that's fine. If you want to have a list of license plates to look for, with appropriate probable cause requirements, that's fine. If you want to have a computer with a camera watch for license plates on the list, I'm OK with that.
But if the computer keeps a historical database, and all the other computers in the country contribute those observations to a single national database, then you have created a surveillance state. The only place I can think of to draw the line is at the point of history and aggregation. (I'm open to better ideas). Until we find a way to draw and enforce that line, things are only going to get worse.
It is, in fact, an end run around the Congressional power of the purse, both the spending power and the taxation power. In the case that prompted this story, the man will get his money back. But that's the exception, not the rule.
A political "journalist" (aka a Democrat operative with a byline) has three reasons that the public hates political journalism (ie, him). Two of them are completely wrong. The second one is mildly interesting.
Has there been a big problem tagging the spouses of politicians for criticism lately? Not that I've noticed. But there's about to be when 2016 gets moving, so this is clearly battlespace preparation for Hillary 2016, given who she's married to and what he's gotten up to. It's so transparently this, rather than some sort of sincere moment of self-examination, that the original author should quit his job and ask Microsoft for a job selling Windows.
This is why the article was written. That's it; full stop; no other reasons need apply.
The key here is not only the ideological targeting aspect. Karl Rove makes an obvious target, and the other groups still being delayed are probably just cover to prevent the IRS from being accused of blocking only Rove, an even more transparently political move. However, the failure to decide is just as important. If the IRS were to approve or deny the applications, the respective organizations could move on or adjust their business model. So long as they are kept in limbo, they are effectively paralyzed. And from Obama's perspective, that's even better than a denial. After all, deny Rove's rather well-funded group and he's likely to bring the issue up in court. It's much easier to defend the idea that you haven't made up your mind yet.
It seems that the new Senate Majority Leader failed to replace Senate Parliamentarian MacDonough when he "took control" of the Senate after the 2014 elections. Now, MacDonough claims that Obamacare, which the Democrats had to pass using a technique called reconciliation with less than 60 votes, cannot be repealed through the same mechanism.
But McConnell doesn't want to do it:
In other words, McConnell doesn't want to repeal it. He just wants to run on repealing it. Forever.
And that means he's either betrayed the people who elected him, or is being blackmailed with NSA intercept data. Or both; it could easily be both.
Not that this is news. It's just nice to point out the details occasionally.
Because the Middle East does such a good job getting along with each other before they acquired doomsday weapons. And it's not like half the nations there are run by insanely rich sponsors of terrorism or anything.
Chicago police still running secret interrogation and detention facility
Let me just point out here that Chicago is Obama's home town and is currently run by Rahm Emanuel, one of Obama's chief henchmen. If there are issues of racism and community policing here, they can be laid squarely at the feet of the left. And while I can't speak to race, a secret detention center that doesn't allow those detained their normal civil rights is one hell of a "community policing" problem.
Dem Rep Watson Coleman wants to pass ammunition control
I think the fact that she is proposing legislation in her district is an acknowledgement that it will never pass and that she is doing it for local political support rather than actually hoping it will pass Congress, or even for national media attention. This is strictly a pander-to-the-local-voters move.
That said, she's now on the record supporting:
If she thinks this will actually stop mass shooters, she's nuts. Showing ID is easy and basically none of the people who have committed mass murder would have a problem doing that. (They might have a problem passing a background check, but her legislation would not require one, and there are ways of getting around the background checks for firearms that would work equally well for ammunition). Further, the only people she will catch with her 1,000-round notification requirement are serious shooters who go through that amount of ammunition regularly; someone planning a mass shooting can easily shock the nation and get on TV with under a hundred rounds. With careful aim they could do it with a 6-shot revolver and have a round left over for the suicide shot.
If it actually passes, the only thing this will accomplish is to provide the government with a list of people who shoot more than 1,000 rounds on a regular basis and don't mind the government knowing about it. The ones who do mind will be trivially able to stay off the list without breaking any laws.
Oh, and it will effectively shut down online ammunition says, which will create a whole new set of ways to annoy gun owners and make their hobby more expensive. Undoubtedly the data will also be fed into the government panopticon, too.
The judge reasons that the defendant was not a violent felon. He was convicted previously of carrying a concealed weapon (the felony charge), and has some violent criminal issues in his past that did not rise to felonies.
I think this is probably the right call in this case. Misdemeanors, even violent ones, do not result in a lifetime prohibition on firearms possession. This is appropriate, because denying someone their right to defend themselves is a big deal. It seems that the only felony conviction in this case is for carrying a concealed firearm, not doing anything violently illegal with it. As such, the felony conviction would amount to a catch-22; he can't possess a firearm because he was once caught carrying a concealed firearm.
The decision is as-applied, meaning that the law in general stays in place; only this specific individual's case is thrown out.
We should probably be wary of anti-gun judges trying to throw out some questionable cases to troll for negative PR.
I sincerely believe that Romney is an intelligent, hard-working, and moral individual. In business he has experienced some success. In politics, particularly in Massachusetts, he has also experienced some success. If elected president, I believe he would do his best and, had he won in 2008 or 2012, we would not be facing the same problems today; in fact we would probably be much better off as a nation than we are now.
However, he did not win in 2008; he did not win in 2012; and running him in 2016 would be asking for the same result again.
Furthermore, while Romney may compare favorably to whoever the Democrats nominate, in his history and his campaigns he has repeatedly failed to inspire his party. Worse, he represents exactly the kind of establishment politics that will keep us on a steady course off the cliff. While I believe Romney is head and shoulders above Obama in terms of competence and moral virtues, his policies would likely favor gun control, expansion of government, and preservation of government control over health care and the economy.
Romney is well suited to be the Republican governor of a deep blue state. If the Democrats nominated him to run for President, I would applaud their return to some version of political sanity. If he chooses to run for Senate, as he has been rumored to be considering, he could do well depending on who and where. But he is the wrong man to run for President as a Republican in this environment. We need an inspirational change of direction, not a competent manager to continue the current trends.
Geraldo claims he was fired for $200 donation versus Stephanopolous' $75000
This sort of thing is exactly why we have a written code of laws. People are expected to know the rules in order to behave according to those rules, and expect punishment with those rules when they are broken.
If the friends of the king are allowed to escape punishment, or face lesser punishment for the same (or worse) acts, then the system breaks down. Or, in our case, has already broken down.
ABC's internal rules may not have force of law, but the principle is the same.
I'm not particularly worried about the donation itself. I'm worried about the lack of disclosure while reporting on the Clinton Foundation. Not to mention attacking its critics and defending its donors.
The latest case to assault the deniers in the audience is the matter of George Stephanopolous. Those who were alive under the last Democrat president will remember him as a Clinton political operative who spent a lot of his time appearing on network news shows to defend his bosses against scandals and do his best to spin the news to minimize the political damage-- and, make no mistake, his best was pretty damn good considering the material he had to work with.
When ABC News hired him in 1996, after Bill Clinton lied his way to reelection, they promised to keep him out of political reporting. They broke that promise almost immediately.
Obama bought into the lie that there are "moderate" Islamic terrorists who are willing to fight other Islamic terrorists. He was wrong. If you are a terrorist, you are by definition not a moderate. And while you may not be friends with other Islamic terrorists, you have a lot more in common with them than you do with the United States. And so now, the arms and funding we provided to "moderate" terrorists is in the hands of the "extreme" terrorists.