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(CNN)   Has "Hope and Change" fallen to the to the level of truth as "trickle down economics"?   (cnn.com) divider line 164
    More: Interesting, obama, domestic spying, clandestine operations, Jameel Jaffer, Obama Presidency  
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1257 clicks; posted to Politics » on 08 Jun 2013 at 9:43 AM (1 year ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2013-06-09 03:03:54 AM  
 
2013-06-09 03:07:58 AM  
 
2013-06-09 03:26:06 AM  
Stacking the Justice department with millionaire Wall Street defense attorneys.

Obama delivered heated rhetoric, but his actions signaled different priorities. Had Obama wanted to strike real fear in the hearts of bankers, he might have appointed former special prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald or some other fire-breather as his attorney general. Instead, he chose Eric Holder, a former Clinton Justice official who, after a career in government, joined the Washington office of Covington & Burling, a top-tier law firm with an elite white-collar defense unit. The move to Covington, and back to Justice, is an example of Washington's revolving-door ritual, which, for Holder, has been lucrative--he pulled in $2.1 million as a Covington partner in 2008, and $2.5 million (including deferred compensation) when he left the firm in 2009.

Putting a Covington partner--he spent nearly a decade at the firm--in charge of Justice may have sent a signal to the financial community, whose marquee names are Covington clients. Goldman Sachs, JPMorgan Chase, Citigroup, Bank of America, Wells Fargo, and Deutsche Bank are among the institutions that pay for Covington's legal advice, some of it relating to matters before the Department of Justice. But Holder's was not the only face at Justice familiar to Covington clients. Lanny Breuer, who had co-chaired the white-collar defense unit at Covington with Holder, was chosen to head the criminal division at Obama's Justice. Two other Covington lawyers followed Holder into top positions, and Holder's principal deputy, James Cole, was recruited from Bryan Cave LLP, another white-shoe firm with A-list finance clients.


Conveniently for the "too big to jail" banks, their lawyer lackeys inside the Justice department refused to prosecute them, even when faced with undeniable proof of wrongdoing.

For at least half a decade, the storied British colonial banking power helped to wash hundreds of millions of dollars for drug mobs, including Mexico's Sinaloa drug cartel, suspected in tens of thousands of murders just in the past 10 years - people so totally evil, jokes former New York Attorney General Eliot Spitzer, that "they make the guys on Wall Street look good." The bank also moved money for organizations linked to Al Qaeda and Hezbollah, and for Russian gangsters; helped countries like Iran, the Sudan and North Korea evade sanctions; and, in between helping murderers and terrorists and rogue states, aided countless common tax cheats in hiding their cash.

"They violated every goddamn law in the book," says Jack Blum, an attorney and former Senate investigator who headed a major bribery investigation against Lockheed in the 1970s that led to the passage of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act. "They took every imaginable form of illegal and illicit business."

That nobody from the bank went to jail or paid a dollar in individual fines is nothing new in this era of financial crisis. What is different about this settlement is that the Justice Department, for the first time, admitted why it decided to go soft on this particular kind of criminal. It was worried that anything more than a wrist slap for HSBC might undermine the world economy. "Had the U.S. authorities decided to press criminal charges," said Assistant Attorney General Lanny Breuer at a press conference to announce the settlement, "HSBC would almost certainly have lost its banking license in the U.S., the future of the institution would have been under threat and the entire banking system would have been destabilized."


dl.dropboxusercontent.com
 
2013-06-09 03:45:52 AM  
 
2013-06-09 03:58:44 AM  
Continually fighting to establish indefinite detention without charges or a trial inside the United States:

He first proposed this only weeks after taking office.

President Obama's proposal for a new legal system in which terrorism suspects could be held in "prolonged detention" inside the United States without trial would be a departure from the way this country sees itself, as a place where people in the grip of the government either face criminal charges or walk free.

Rachel Maddow called Obama's proposal to establish indefinte detention without a trial on US soil, "a radical new claim of Presidential power that is not afforded by the Constitution, and has never been attempted in American History, even by George W. Bush and Dick Cheney."

He's still fighting for the power to toss American citizens into a military prison forever, without bothering to file charges or holding one of those pesky trials, even after a Federal judge immediately found the practice to be completely Unconstitutional.

Lawyers for the Obama administration are arguing that the United States will be irreparably harmed if it has to abide by a judge's ruling that it can no longer hold terrorism suspects indefinitely without trial in military custody.

This after claiming that we should elect him because he was a Constitutional Scholar who would bring back due process and the rule of law.
 
2013-06-09 04:07:49 AM  
Making sure nobody inside the Bush administration could be held accountable for illegal warrantless wiretapping.

When Congress immunized telecoms last August for their illegal participation in Bush's warrantless eavesdropping program, Senate Democratic apologists for telecom immunity repeatedly justified that action by pointing out that Bush officials who broke the law were not immunized - only the telecoms. Here, for instance, is how Sen. Jay Rockefeller justified telecom immunity in a Washington Post Op-Ed:

Second, lawsuits against the government can go forward. There is little doubt that the government was operating in, at best, a legal gray area. If administration officials abused their power or improperly violated the privacy of innocent people, they must be held accountable. That is exactly why we rejected the White House's year-long push for blanket immunity covering government officials.

Taking them at their word, EFF - which was the lead counsel in the lawsuits against the telecoms - thereafter filed suit, in October, 2008, against the Bush administration and various Bush officials for illegally spying on the communications of Americans. They were seeking to make good on the promise made by Congressional Democrats: namely, that even though lawsuits against telecoms for illegal spying will not be allowed any longer, government officials who broke the law can still be held accountable.

But late Friday afternoon, the Obama DOJ filed the government's Weeners to EFF's lawsuit (.pdf), the first of its kind to seek damages against government officials under FISA, the Wiretap Act and other statutes, arising out of Bush's NSA program. But the Obama DOJ demanded dismissal of the entire lawsuit based on (1) its Bush-mimicking claim that the "state secrets" privilege bars any lawsuits against the Bush administration for illegal spying, and (2) a brand new "sovereign immunity" claim of breathtaking scope - never before advanced even by the Bush administration - that the Patriot Act bars any lawsuits of any kind for illegal government surveillance unless there is "willful disclosure" of the illegally intercepted communications.

In other words, beyond even the outrageously broad "state secrets" privilege invented by the Bush administration and now embraced fully by the Obama administration, the Obama DOJ has now invented a brand new claim of government immunity, one which literally asserts that the U.S. Government is free to intercept all of your communications (calls, emails and the like) and - even if what they're doing is blatantly illegal and they know it's illegal - you are barred from suing them unless they "willfully disclose" to the public what they have learned.
 
2013-06-09 04:14:30 AM  
 
2013-06-09 04:25:38 AM  
Claiming that he allows Congress the oversight role into what he orders the CIA and NSA to do that US law demands.

On the murder of Americans without due process:

Senator Ron Wyden, an Oregon Democrat, has sent an extraordinary letter to top White House counterterrorism adviser John Brennan, President Obama's choice to lead the CIA. The letter poses questions about executive power, like "How much evidence does the President need to determine that a particular American can be lawfully killed?" and "Does the President have to provide individual Americans with the opportunity to surrender before killing them?" We're used to such questions from organizations like the ACLU, journalists like Charlie Savage, and various concerned citizens. And though rules that confer death should always be transparent, the fact that they're being kept even from Wyden is especially indefensible.

The body he sits on, the U.S. Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, is charged with providing "vigilant legislative oversight over the intelligence activities of the United States," to ensure "that they conform with the Constitution and U.S. law." There is no one in America more justified in demanding to know the official legal rationale behind actions like targeted killings. Obama isn't just keeping this information from the American people. He isn't just hiding his legal reasoning from the U.S. Congress. He is stonewalling one of 15 senators that federal law establishes as the most important check on secret abuses by the CIA.


On blanket spying on every American without seeking a due process warrant each time someone is spied upon as the Forth Amendment requires.

Sen. Jeff Merkley (D-Ore.) on Friday disputed a claim President Obama made at a press conference only moments earlier, when the president said that every member of Congress had been briefed on the National Security Agency's (NSA) domestic phone surveillance program.

Merkley said only select members of the House and Senate Intelligence Committees had been briefed on the program, and that he was only aware of it because he obtained "special permission" to review the pertinent documents after hearing about it second-hand.

"I knew about the program because I specifically sought it out," Merkley said on MSNBC. "It's not something that's briefed outside the Intelligence Committee. I had to get special permission to find out about the program. It raised concerns for me. ... When I saw what was being done, I felt it was so out of sync with the plain language of the law and that it merited full public examination, and that's why I called for the declassification."
 
2013-06-09 04:49:09 AM  
Completely shredding one of the central promises of change in his entire campaign.

President Obama has picked a former telecommunications lobbyist and campaign fund-raiser to serve as chairman of the Federal Communications Commission, raising serious questions about his 2007 pledge that corporate lobbyists would not finance his campaign or run his administration.

Let's put AT&T's guy in charge of regulating AT&T. That's exactly the sort of change we were promised, amirite?
 
2013-06-09 05:00:31 AM  
 
2013-06-09 05:13:58 AM  
 
2013-06-09 05:25:09 AM  
 
2013-06-09 08:41:20 AM  

Infernalist: Disband the Congress?


Quoted because it's poetic.
 
2013-06-09 09:29:29 AM  

Vinz_Clortho: thamike: Vinz_Clortho: thamike: No.  I'm still hoping right wing dickbags will change.  It sucks and seems useless, but that's what hope's all about, really.

Vinz_Clortho: 51. Killed Space Program.

See?  i hope this dickbag changes.

Typical lib...don't like a comment.  Resort to '5th-grade name calling'.

Typical dickbag...makes a stupid comment, refuses to own it.

Are you 10?


Look, if you realize how ridiculous your initial statement was, just say so, and we don't have to prolong this.
 
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