Free for All: 06/03/14

What’s on your mind?


25 Responses to “Free for All: 06/03/14”

  1. And the father wrote “follow your conscience”, and the son walked away from his sworn duty.

  2. Susan Rice proved again she is the Sunday Show Mistress of Mistrust. She’ll say anything but a truth not in her talking points.

  3. erich500 Says:

    Good gawd, the President’s decision to swamp those Taliban for Bergdahl was dumb. What was he thinking?

    Yes, everyone wants our people back. But not at any price.

    Reagan sold the Iranians weapons to free Americans who were being held in brutal conditions in Lebanon. Civilian Americans and not soldiers.

    And everybody knows that was a disastrous decision. It didn’t mean you were against getting our people home – as Chris Hayes and some other leftwingers are suggesting about those who oppose this deal.

    Dumb, dumb, dumb.

  4. erich500 Says:

    Swamp? Well it is one now.

    Swap, swap.

  5. Who the hell are Obama’s advisers? And, how farking stupid are they?

  6. erich500 Says:

    I do think, though, that the President – acting as Commander-in-Chief during a war or declared conflict – has plenary powers in dealing with POWs. He can trade them for captured US soldiers and Congress has no say in the decisions.

    Still, it was dumb.

  7. erich500 Says:

    Here’s a fascinating story (to me at least) from the late Norman Mailer’s book on Lee Harvey Oswald, “Oswald’s Tale.”

    Mailer went to Russia after he was informed by a source that the KGB files on Oswald would be available. He had always wanted to do a book on Oswald and this was the chance to do some work.

    One there he interviewed “Stepan” (a pseudonym) the KGB officer who was in charge of watching Oswald when Oswald was sent to Minsk. The KGB wasn’t sure who Oswald really was. A spy? A nut? A provocateur? So they watched him 24 hours.

    About two hours after the assassination and when Oswald’s name was announced, “Stepan” was called by the KGB in Moscow and told to immediately come to headquarters with Oswald’s file.

    He gets Oswald’s file, gets on board a waiting plane and goes to Lubyanka, the KGB headquarters. He enters it and walks and walks and walks through endless halls. Finally he enters a room with a large table in the middle of it. Nothing is on the table. On one side are five stern looking Soviet officials.

    They tell him to sit down.

    One immediately asks: “Did you ever try and recruit Oswald”?

    Stepan: “No, we never did.”

    Stepan said all five of the men sighed in relief and relaxed.

    Eventually, he was sent back to Minsk. On the flight back he thought of Oswald. Who was he? What did I miss? After about an hour of thinking he says to himself: “Eh, I don’t care. Let’s the Americans worry about it”

  8. I am going to deviate from my usual pracice of not talking politics…

    I lost all confidence in Obama’s advisers more than 4 years ago after they forced an Obamacare vote and then started up a street fight over same sex marriage. Whether I was for or against either was irrelevent. The country wasn’t. I don’t like 50-50 politics and government by plurality where you have the numbers to force your issue but not without pissing off too large a chunk of the country…unless you have the moral high ground (Abortion doesn’t really qualify…you can make valid moral arguments in both directions).

    I sent Chuck Todd this tweet back then:

    “Just announced on Amazon: ‘How to destroy a generational Congressional majority in just two short years’ by David Axelrod.”

    I was right. The House flipped…something EVERYONE thought was impossible just two years earlier. Obama won his battles in the first two years but it cost him the next six and ruined his presidency which now looks even more feckless than Jimmy Carter’s and both Bushes’.

    So I am not surprised that Obama made the kind of tone deaf head scratching move of that prisoner swap. It’s as bad as Bill Clinton pardoning Frank Rich. And I do think he broke the law. And I think when the Senate flips in November, the House will consider impeachment. Whether it will actually move to file charges, I’m not sure. But they will discuss it.

  9. erich500 Says:

    Spud, even if this was a violation of a law, I can’t see how it remotely warrants impeachment.

    This equals “High crimes and misdemeanors”?

    In order to impeach the president, in my view, there has to be clear and demonstrable acts of crimes.

    Whether the president acting as commander-in-chief during war has the plenary power to trade POWs is an open question, in my mind.

  10. erich500 Says:

    ABC news had video of the five Taliban prisoners that were released into the “custody” of the Qatari government.

    They were in SUVS and walking with no security controlling their activity.

    Gawd, unbelievable.

    We know – yes we do – that a year or two from now they will be directing attacks on US soldiers. We know this.

    I have to think the President was given bad advice. He’s too smart of a man, especially politically, to do something this short-sighted. What’s the advantage? There is none.

  11. He wants to have CLOSED GITMO so bad as part of his legacy, he is willingly reckless.

  12. erich500 Says:

    Well, there’s no chance of that now.

    And it’s now going to be a campaign issue in 2016.

    You’re welcome, Hillary.

  13. savefarris Says:

    What’s the advantage?

    Noone’s talking about the VA anymore, are they?

  14. Spud, even if this was a violation of a law, I can’t see how it remotely warrants impeachment.

    This equals “High crimes and misdemeanors”?

    That bar was irrevocably lowered when the GOP went after Clinton over a sex lie. That single move has done more to poison our political climate and divide the country in ways we still contend with than anything that has come since while defining the way Cable News covers politics and Washington. The country is worse off today because of it.

  15. I have to believe this weighed on Ford’s mind when he decided to pardon Nixon. Ford knew that whatever legitimate reasons existed for going after Nixon once he resigned, the country would be worse off for it.

  16. is perjury – lying under oath while being sued for sexual harassment a high crime or misdemeanor? Maybe not. Depends on what “is” is.

    Is repeatedly outright lying to the public a high crime or misdemeanor? No, that’s become pretty much the job description.

  17. erich500 Says:

    FWIW, I think the impeachment of Clinton went too far as well. A Senate censure would have sufficed.

    Impeaching and removing – two steps – of a president is obviously an enormously serious act. Just the trial itself, without a guilty verdict by the Senate, causes a major national crisis. Everything essentially stops.

    In order to take an act that serious, the President, to me, has to show that he openly and defiantly violated the law. Clear and explicitly.

    This controversy isn’t in that category.

    And from reports today the White House is apparently apologizing to the Senate for not giving 30 days notice. That, again, to me mitigates any “crime.”

    Mistakes were made?

  18. Only apologizing because a few Democrats (Not Harry Reid of course) are lightly squawking, but that was probably anticipated. The only was this defector-for-terrorist scheme was going to work was to seek forgiveness afterwards rather than permission before. That apology is insultingly insincere.

  19. You can’t impeach the first black President. We could do it, but it would be wrong.

  20. erich500 Says:

    Impeachment to me requires a high level of explicit abuse of power in the service of or by/for the president.

    Yes, high and explicit are subjective words but I just don’t think this violation is close to what those terms mean.

    He was trying, however poorly handled, to get a US soldier freed from a terror group. Misusing his power in doing so simply doesn’t warrant, it seems to me, removal from office.

    The ends doesn’t justify any means; but just as we can’t separate means from ends we cannot separate ends from the means.

  21. Dennis Kucinich never met a President he didn’t want to impeach.

  22. savefarris Says:

    … and Nixon was only trying to increase the telecommunicative abilities of the DNC…

    It’s not the violation in and of itself that’s got everyone atizzy. It’s that this action is of a familiar pattern where the law says ‘X’, the White House does ‘Y’ and then blames Republicans for noticing.

    Not punishing, or at least threatening to punish, these actions will only serves to give tacit approval.

  23. Well, if it were up to me, I’d send Obama to the Bolton Dread-fort, but we have only a couple more years of the guy. Durning that time a still very protective media and Democrat Party will shield him from any and all recourse. He probably could get away with anything short of murdering the First Lady and her waiter friend. Maybe that even.

  24. erich500 Says:

    Farris, he’s getting hammered by the public.

    That’s some punishment albeit not all of it is for the right reasons, i.e., abuse/misuse of powers.

    Legally, what more can be done? It highlights again the problem with what the Courts have called “political questions” or disputes and as such are loathe to address.

    He’s now got zero chance of closing Gitmo. He cannot touch it now.

    Public opinion turning against him, his presidency is nearly finished, Gitmo cannot be touched. That’s at least some measure of punishment.

  25. erich500 Says:

    Nixon wasn’t impeached – or, more accurately, had to resign – because of the break in and bugging.

    It was him using his powers – or trying to – to cover up criminal activity. E.g., approving that hush money be given to the burglars for their silence, ordering the CIA to tell the FBI to stop investigating the crime, et cetera.

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