Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Tuesday November 24 -- Got news or an update?

If you have news or an update, leave it in comments.


Anonymous said...

Walpin Firing Details Emerge PATTERICO

It appears the Obama Administration has been less than candid about the firing of AmeriCorps Inspector General Gerald Walpin. Byron York at the Washington Examiner has the details:

“Other than board chairman Alan Solomont, the Democratic mega-donor and Obama supporter who originally told the White House of his dissatisfaction with Walpin, “no member of the CNCS board had any substantive input about whether the removal of Gerald Walpin was appropriate,” according to the report.

Only one other board member, vice-chairman Stephen Goldsmith, was even called by the White House, and that was on June 10, a few hours before Walpin was fired.

According to the report, Goldsmith told investigators that “the White House had already decided to remove Walpin and wanted to confirm [Goldsmith's] support for the action.”

The new documents show the White House scrambling, in the days after the controversy erupted, to put together a public explanation for the firing. On June 11, less than 24 hours after Walpin received the call from Eisen, the board held a conference call.

The next day, Ranit Schmelzer, who is part of the corporation’s press office, sent an email to board members giving them talking points to use if contacted by reporters seeking information about the matter.

“Indicate that you support the president’s decision to remove IG Walpin,” was Schmelzer’s first instruction to the board.

Then: “If asked why he was removed, indicate that the president lost confidence in Mr. Walpin.”

And then: “If the reporter continues to press, say that you can’t get into details on a personnel matter, but you understand there were some performance-based issues.”

Finally, Schmelzer advised the board to avoid “getting into any specifics about IG Walpin’s performance-based issues. The WH has stayed away from this and has counseled us to do the same.”

Ed Morrissey at Hot Air sums it up:

“The new information shows that Obama fired Walpin for political purposes, not for cause.

The White House also broke the law, at least initially, by not giving Congress the proper notification before terminating Walpin (they adhered to the regulation after being called on this violation by postponing Walpin’s termination date).

The firing appears to have been motivated to protect an Obama ally (Sacramento Mayor Kevin Johnson) from having allegations of using federal funds to pay off employees and avoid sexual harassment charges exposed.

The White House essentially smeared Walpin with completely unsubstantiated allegations of senility to undermine his credibility, once Walpin went public. One might think that the national media would take an interest in this, but as York also notes, their interest has never been very intense at all.

Inspectors general exist to check abuses of power and corruption, regardless of the party in power. An attack on them, especially one so nakedly political and potentially corrupt as Walpin’s firing, is an attack on accountability and citizen government.

This case should be headlining major media outlets — and if the current president was a Republican, it no doubt would be.”

Too bad the media isn’t willing to teach the Obama Administration a valuable lesson about the downside of political patronage and coverups.

Anonymous said...

Obama Quietly Backs Patriot Act Provisions (Inter Press Service)
Flaming liberals up in arms...CRICKETS

NEW YORK, 23 Nov (IPS) - With the health care debate preoccupying the mainstream media, it has gone virtually unreported that the Barack Obama administration is quietly supporting renewal of provisions of the George W. Bush-era USA Patriot Act that civil libertarians say infringe on basic freedoms.

And it is reportedly doing so over the objections of some prominent Democrats.

When a panicky Congress passed the act 45 days after the terrorist attacks of Sep. 11, 2001, three contentious parts of the law were scheduled to expire at the end of next month, and opponents of these sections have been pushing Congress to substitute new provisions with substantially strengthened civil liberties protections.

But with the apparent approval of the Obama White House and a number of Republicans – and over the objections of liberal Senate Democrats including Russ Feingold of Wisconsin and Dick Durbin of Illinois – the Senate Judiciary Committee has voted to extend the three provisions with only minor changes.

Those provisions would leave unaltered the power of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) to seize records and to eavesdrop on phone calls and e-mail in the course of counterterrorism investigations.

Anonymous said...

Liberals and Mammography -- Rationing? What Rationing?
The Wall Street Journal

The flap over breast cancer screening has provided a fascinating insight into the political future of ObamaCare.

Specifically, the political left supports such medical rationing even as it disavows that any such thing is happening.

No sooner had the Health and Human Services Department's U.S. Preventative Services Task Force recommended against mammography for women under 50 than Secretary Kathleen Sebelius rushed to say don't worry.

The decision had "caused a great deal of confusion and worry among women," she said, promising that no policies would change.

New Jersey's Frank Pallone vowed to hold hearings, and Senator Dick Durbin leveled the gravest charge Democrats can make: The task force was "appointed by President Bush."

The political duck-and-cover was also on display in that vanguard of ObamaCare known as the New York Times, which ran at least four much-ado-about-nothing items even as it endorsed the reduced screening.

On the same day as an editorial and op-ed, a front-page "news analysis" lectured that what the public really needs is "a transformational shift in thinking" about the "evidence-based" medical future that the mammogram decision portends. Yes, and no doubt the Times will tell us what "evidence" to follow.

Anonymous said...

Fighting for a peaceful, pain-free death (fearful of "Liverpool Care Pathway" euthanasia)(The Telegraph UK)

The Liverpool Care Pathway, a NHS programme for terminally ill patients close to death, has been at the centre of a storm of controversy. Now patients are demanding answers.

Jean Cutler knows precisely how she would like to die. Alert and free of pain in the familiarity of her light-filled, home, she would glance one last time at her lovingly-tended garden, with its whispering trees and the stream winding into the bluebells, and kiss her husband Richard goodbye.

But she knows, too, that this happy dream of death can never be.

She is in the late stages of mesothelioma – a vicious, cancer of the lining of the lungs caused by exposure to asbestos. At the very end, the best she can hope for is drug-induced oblivion. The alternative is horrifying pain.


Jean is fearful of being put on the Liverpool Care Pathway (LCP), a controversial NHS palliative care programme for terminally-ill patients close to death.

The LCP, originally designed by the cancer charity Marie Curie in the late Nineties to ease the suffering of terminally ill patients at a hospice in Liverpool, was approved by the National Institue for Clinicial Excellence (NICE) in 2004.

It has since been rolled out to nearly 1,000 hospitals, care homes and hospices in the UK.

It is composed of a series of palliative measures, for doctors to consider once a patient is recognised to be "in the final hours or days of life".

Included is the withdrawal of assisted hydration and nutrition, the removal of intravenous drips, the withdrawal of non-palliative prescribed medications and the use of morphine and sedatives.


In a further disturbing twist, a national audit of the LCP revealed the same month that more than a quarter of families were not informed ...

Anonymous said...

Hindu sacrifice of 250,000 animals begins (The Guardian UK)Paging PETA

The world's biggest animal sacrifice got under way in Nepal today with the killing of the first of more than 250,000 animals as part of a Hindu festival in the village of Biriyapur, near the Indian border. * * *

In the main event, 250 appointed locals with traditional kukri knives began their task of decapitating more than 10,000 buffalo in a dusty enclosure guarded by high walls and armed police.

Frightened calves galloped around in vain as the men, wearing red bandanas and armbands, pursued them and chopped off their heads. Banned from entering the animal pen, hundreds of visitors scrambled up the three-metre walls to catch a glimpse of the carnage.

Anonymous said...

Drudgereport Headline Only RASMUSSEN: Obama Poll Drops to New Low: -15

Anonymous said...

Media Ignore Climate Science Scandal (aim)

Media bias is one thing. But we have just witnessed one of the greatest scandals of modern science, and it barely made the front page of the New York Times.

Late last week we got the word: hackers broke into the University of East Anglia's Climatic Research Unit server.

The stolen emails and documents were later made public--and while the University claims that some of the emails may not be authentic, the scientists whose emails were hacked admit that they were the authors.

These emails and documents are indeed shocking. The blog Red State reports the highlights:

1. Prominent environmental scientists organize a boycott of scientific journals if those journals publish scholarly material from global warming dissidents.

2. The scientists then orchestrate attacks on the dissidents because of their lack of scholarly material published in scientific journals.

3. The scientists block from the UN's report on global warming evidence that is harmful to the anthropogenic global warming consensus.

4. The scientists, when faced with a freedom of information act request for their correspondence and data, delete the correspondence and data lest it be used against them.

5. The scientists fabricate data when their data fails to prove the earth is warming. In fact, in more than one case, scientists engaged in lengthy emails on how to insert additional made up data that would in turn cause their claims to stand out as legitimate.

Again: we're dealing with fabricated and deleted data, and an orchestrated effort to undermine global warming dissidents.

Anonymous said...

CBS Catches Up with Conservatives and Realizes Obama Has 'Credibility' Problem (Newsbusters)

Long after conservatives and the American people figured it out, CBS on Monday night came to the realization President Barack Obama has a “credibility” problem fueled by the “disconnect” between Obama's promise to reduce the deficit as he pushes for massive new spending.

Back in August, the CBS Evening News denigrated the town hall questioners as “unruly protests,” but on Monday reporter Chip Reid warned:

The American people are increasingly questioning the President's credibility. He says the stimulus has saved or created 640,000 jobs, but only seven percent of Americans believe it has created any.

And he's repeatedly promised health care reform will not increase the deficit, but a mere 19percent believe him.

Anonymous said...

Playboy to outsource most magazine ops: report (Reuters)

(Reuters) – Playboy Enterprises Inc will outsource most of the business operations of its namesake magazine in an effort to curb losses, the Wall Street Journal said on Tuesday.

Playboy will turn over all magazine operations, except its editorial operations, to Florida-based American Media Inc, according to the paper. The deal reached last week is expected to be funded in part from Playboy's advertising sales, the paper said.

Playboy has about 30 full-time employees working in the operations that will be outsourced, and most will be let go, the Journal said.

Scott Flanders, chief executive officer of Playboy Enterprises told the paper that the five-year partnership would help return the magazine to profitability by the end of 2011.

Playboy Enterprises has been in talks with at least one possible bidder for the Chicago-based company.

Anonymous said...

FYI. Former KC Star columnist and critic of his old paper Hearne Christopher picked up for dui. blames cop, not his own lack of sobriety.

Anonymous said...

Breaking News from Sac Bee Guild site: The company may allow employees to park their bicycles inside the building. LOL!
Is this guild for real? The company negotiators can't take these guys serious.

Anonymous said...

Walpin is a total incompetant with his own political agenda. Firing him is the only thing Obama has gotten right in the past year.

Anonymous said...

Anon 9:25 Smile!

Anonymous said...

here's tomorrow's top story in the Sillymento Bee:
Three lacrosse players at a Connecticut college have been charged with conspiring to sexually assault a female student.

Anonymous said...

Hot Air: The 9/11 trial Clueless Moment of the Day:


Leonard Pitts sticks his foot in it...

"It’s not often that one runs across a column quite so clueless as this one by Leonard Pitts and published by McClatchy. Maybe Pitts should take a little time to learn about history and current law before opining on this topic again."