Good Freaking Grief
Good Freaking Grief
The number of people not in the labor force exceeded 94 million for the first time, hitting another record high in August, according to new jobs data released Friday by the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
The BLS reports that 94,031,000 people (ages 16 and over) last month were neither employed nor had made specific efforts to find work in the prior four weeks.
The number of individuals out of the civilian work force represented a jump of 261,000 over July’s record of 93,626,000 people.
August’s labor force participation rate remained at the same level as the prior two months at 62.2 percent, the lowest level seen since October 1977 when the participation rate was 62.4 percent.
The civilian labor force also experienced a slight decline of 41,000 people, compare to July’s 157,106,000 people in the civilian labor force to 157,065,000.
In total 149,036,000 people were employed in August, 8,029,000 were unemployed, and 5,932,000 people who wanted a job.
Overall the Labor Department reported that the economy added 173,000 jobs in August. The unemployment rate was 5.1 percent, lower than July’s 5.3 percent.
In 2013, more than 200,000 people on net fled states with Democrat governors for ones run by Republicans, according to an analysis of newly released IRS data by Americans for Tax Reform.
“People move away from high tax states to low tax states. Every tax refugee is sending a powerful message to politicians,” said ATR President Grover Norquist. “They are voting with their feet. Leaders in Texas and Florida are listening. New York and California are not.”
That year, Democrat-run states lost a net 226,763 taxpayers, bringing with them nearly $15.7 billion in adjusted gross income (AGI). That same year, states with Republican governors gained nearly 220,000 new taxpayers, who brought more than $14.1 billion in AGI with them.
Only one-third of states with Democrat governors gained taxpayers, compared to three-fifths of states with Republican governors.
Top 5 loser states for Democrat governors in 2013:
· Illinois (68,943 people with $3.8 billion in AGI)
· California (47,458 people with 3.8 billion in AGI)
· Connecticut (14,453 people with $1.8 billion in AGI)
· Massachusetts (11,915 people with $1 billion in AGI)
Top 5 winner states for Republican governors in 2013:
· Texas (152,912 people with $6 billion in AGI)
· South Carolina (29,176 people with 1.6 billion in AGI)
· North Carolina (26,207 people with $1.5 billion in AGI)
· Arizona (16,549 people with $1.5 billion in AGI)
The single largest net migration from one state to another took place between New York and Florida (17,355 people).
Every time the State Department pulls out a new fistful of Hillary Clinton e-mails like Richard Dreyfuss yanking a license plate out of a shark’s belly in Jaws, someone declares that there’s “no smoking gun!”
I’ve written before about how shouting “There’s no smoking gun!” is a non-denial denial. Ask a cop. When a murder suspect immediately exclaims, “You have no indisputable evidence I murdered my boss!” instead of, “I didn’t do it!” it’s a good sign that the suspect thinks he covered his tracks, not that he’s innocent.
Fellas, if your wife asks if you’re having an affair, respond by saying, “You have no proof!” See if she takes that for a denial.
But here’s the thing. There is a smoking gun. In fact, there’s a whole smoking arsenal. The problem is that the standards for what counts as a smoking gun keep changing.
Nearly everything Clinton has said in her defense regarding her secret server has been a lie. Among the minor lies: her claim that she set up the server so she could use a single device. (She had two.) Her claim that the State Department was saving her e-mails to staff. (It wasn’t until 2010.) Her claim that she erased tens of thousands of e-mails because they included, among other things, her e-mail correspondence with her husband. (Bill Clinton doesn’t use e-mail.)
Hillary Clinton said she never solicited e-mail from her lugubrious political hatchet man, Sidney Blumenthal. The latest e-mails show that she was in near-constant contact with him, encouraging him to keep his various reports coming. Blumenthal was barred from getting a job at the White House, so Clinton set him up at her charity-cum-super PAC, the Clinton Foundation.
The more important lie: She said she never received or sent classified information. “I did not e-mail any classified material to anyone on my e-mail. There is no classified material.”
Note: This was not an off-the-cuff statement. She said this while reading from notes, after consulting with her campaign team and her lawyers, in a ballyhooed press conference in March at the United Nations.
And it was a lie. When the inspectors general of the State Department and the Intelligence Community confirmed in July that she had sent classified material, Clinton “clarified” her carefully prepared lie by saying that what she meant was none of the e-mails she sent or received were marked classified at the time.
This left out the fact that the whole point of the secret server was that it was hidden from the officials whose job is to designate documents as classified (and to keep it all hidden from Freedom of Information Act requests and congressional oversight). It’s like setting up an illegal still and then claiming none of the moonshine you sold was marked “illegal.”
But the deceit goes deeper. Most people can be forgiven for not understanding the difference between classified documents and classified information. A classified document is marked “Top Secret” or some such. But people who work in government understand that lots of information is classified simply by virtue of the kind of information it is.
My National Review colleague Andrew McCarthy, a former federal prosecutor, has been setting his head on fire trying to get the mainstream media to take note of this fact. He points out that according to an executive order issued by President Obama, all “foreign government information is presumed to cause damage to the national security” and is therefore presumed classified. Clinton routinely ignored this rule. That’s not just my opinion. A study by Reuters found that “Clinton and her senior staff routinely” ignored these rules.
“Here’s my personal e-mail,” Clinton told Middle East envoy George Mitchell, who then proceeded to convey numerous private conversations he had with foreign leaders.
The Washington Times reports that Clinton’s unsecured e-mails contained spy-satellite information about North Korea’s movement of its nuclear assets. This sort of information is universally recognized as top secret and is normally subjected to draconian safeguards. There is no way Clinton didn’t know this.
All of these – and many other – facts would have counted as “smoking guns” if they had been divulged immediately after Clinton’s U.N. press conference. But Clinton, with the help of her praetorian defenders in the media, keeps moving the goalposts.
Still, all of this ignores the biggest smoking gun of them all: her illicit server. It’s sitting in plain view, its smoke visible to anyone with eyes to see.
Hillary Clinton paid to hide the identity of the people running her private email server, Breitbart News has learned.
Her attempt to hide details about her server has allowed another faceless company access to her classified email information, while doing little to nothing to secure that information from hackers.
Clinton’s private email domain clintonemail.com was initially purchased by Clinton aide Eric Hoteham, who listed the Clintons’ Chappaqua, New York home as the contact address for his purchase. But the domain is actually registered to an Internet company designed to hide the true identity of the people running it.
Clintonemail.com is currently registered to a company called Perfect Privacy, LLC.
The company has a listed address of 12808 Gran Bay Parkway West in Jacksonville, Florida. But don’t try to get someone from “Perfect Privacy” on the phone. The company merely serves to mask its clients’ personal information by providing its own meaningless contact information on official databases.
“Did you know that every time you register a domain name, the law requires that your personal information is added to the public “WHOIS” database, where it becomes instantly available to anyone, anywhere, anytime?,” according to the Perfect Privacy website. “Perfect Privacy eliminates these risks by ensuring that your personal information stays private. By signing up for Perfect Privacy when you register your domain, our information is published in the WHOIS database, instead of yours.”
“We won’t reveal your identity unless required by law or if you breach our Perfect Privacy Service Agreement,” the company explains.
Perfect Privacy, LLC is owned by Network Solutions, which in turn is owned by Web.com. Network Solutions advertises Perfect Privacy as a way to “Keep Your Contact Information Hidden With Private Registration.”
The Jacksonville address listed for Perfect Privacy, LLC is actually just the headquarters for Web.com. It is an unassuming gray building just off Interstate 95.
Breitbart News called a number listed for Network Solutions and, after some on-hold elevator music, an operator confirmed that clintonemail.com is one of the domains that it manages. The company has access to information in the account. But the company does not provide any kind of security for the domain, and instead encourages its clients to buy a standard Norton AntiVirus package like the kind available at retail stores.
“No, we don’t do that,” a Network Solutions operator told Breitbart News when asked if it provides security for its clients. But, the operator, noted, “Our server automatically checks for known SPAM.”
Network Solutions, the operator explained, can identify major hacks and can access and change information related to the email account in the event of a hack. The company declined to provide more information without speaking to the domain’s administrator.
As Breitbart News revealed, Hillary’s email account clintonemail.com was operating with the same IP addresses as presidentclinton.com, an email account managed by the private Clinton Foundation and used by top Clinton Foundation staffers. The IP addresses were based in New York City, meaning that they were sharing the same email network at the same physical location, likely at one of the Clintons’ Midtown Manhtattan offices. Additionally, Chelsea Clinton’s work email account chelseaoffice.com was sharing the same email server.
wjcoffice.com, an email account used by Bill Clinton staffers, including his former communications director Jay Carson, also shared the same IP address as clintonemail.com.
Breitbart News has also discovered that clintonemail.com and presidentclinton.com were using the same IP port: port 443.
That Hillary Clinton shared a server with the Clinton Foundation and the offices of her husband and daughter raises further concerns about the illegality of her private email use, since other Clinton-World employees not affiliated with the State Department certainly had physical access to her server and the classified information on it.
Hillary’s private server also used the McAfee-owned MXLogic spam-filtering software, which is susceptible to a security breach and which made the information on her server accessible to McAfee employees during the numerous intervals in which her emails were passed through the MXLogic system.
The server was prone to crashes.
Hillary Clinton’s private email server went down in February 2010, and the State Department IT team didn’t even know that she was using a private email address, indicating that Clinton Foundation staff was working on her server as opposed to the agency’s IT professionals.
After the State Department Help Desk sent Clinton’s private email address a routine warning notifying her that her messages were being flagged with fatal errors, Hillary’s top aide Huma Abedin sent the Secretary an email explaining to her what was going on.
“Ur email must be back up!!,” Abedin wrote. “What happened is judith sent you an email. It bounced back. She called the email help desk at state (I guess assuming u had state email) and told them that. They had no idea it was YOU, just some random address so they emailed. Sorry about that. But regardless, means ur email must be back! R u getting other messages?”
Hillary’s server went down again during Superstorm Sandy in 2012.
The State Department IT worker who managed Hillary Clinton’s private email server while she was secretary of state will plead the Fifth Amendment if called to testify about his work on the Democratic presidential candidate’s mysterious email setup, his attorney informed the House Select Committee on Benghazi this week.
The committee subpoenaed Bryan Pagliano on Aug. 11, according to The Washington Post. In addition to testifying on Sept. 10, committee chairman Trey Gowdy asked Pagliano to produce documents related to the servers he managed on behalf of Clinton.
Pagliano worked on Clinton’s 2008 presidential campaign before moving over to the State Department in May 2009, several months after Clinton took office. He left the agency at the same time as Clinton, in February 2013.
But in a letter to the Benghazi Committee on Monday, Mark MacDougall, Pagliano’s attorney, said that his client would assert his constitutional right against self-incrimination if called to testify. Pagliano is one of numerous Clinton aides that Gowdy’s panel intends to interview. Two of Clinton’s top aides will testify this week. Clinton herself is scheduled to publicly testify next month.
Pagliano’s decision to plead the fifth comes amid growing concerns over whether Clinton handled classified information on her private server. The FBI took control of the hardware last month after the Intelligence Community inspector general determined that two of the emails maintained on it contained “top secret” information.
“While we understand that Mr. Pagliano’s response to this subpoena may be controversial in the current political environment, we hope that the members of the Select Committee will respect our client’s right to invoke the protections of the Constitution,” wrote MacDougall, an attorney for high-profile Washington, D.C. law firm, Akin Gump.
According to The Post, MacDougall stated that two Senate committees had also contacted his client within the last week.
“Mr. Pagliano’s legal counsel told the committee yesterday that he would plead the Fifth to any and all questions if he were compelled to testify,” a spokesperson for Senate Judiciary Committee chairman Chuck Grassley told The Post in a statement.
The Senate Homeland Security and Homeland Affairs Committee also recently reached out to Pagliano, according to MacDougall’s letter.
When Pagliano was hired at State, he was given the titles of strategic adviser and special projects manager to the chief technology officer and the deputy chief information officer. While he oversaw Clinton’s email server, it was reportedly housed in the basement of her Chappaqua, N.Y. home. After Clinton left office, she hired a company in Denver to manage the device. The company, Platte River Networks, transferred the server from Clinton’s home to a New Jersey data center in 2013.
Numerous questions remain about the server, including whether it was cleared of all of Clinton’s emails, and, if so, who ordered it, and when.
Immigrant-headed households in the U.S. use welfare at a much higher rate than their native-born counterparts and that trend holds true for both new and long-time immigrant residents, according to a new study.
According to a report released Wednesday from the Center for Immigration Studies, 51 percent of immigrant-headed households (both legal and illegal) reported using at least one welfare program during the year in 2012. Thirty-percent of native-headed households meanwhile used at least one welfare program.
The CIS report analyzed welfare data from the Census Bureau’s Survey of Income and Program Participation (SIPP). Included in the center’s definition of welfare is Medicaid, cash, food, and housing programs.
“If immigration is supposed to benefit the country, then immigrant welfare use should be much lower than native use,” Steven Camarota the CIS’s Director of Research and the report’s author said. “However two decades after welfare reform tried to curtail immigrant welfare use, immigrant households are using most programs at higher rates than natives.”
Camarota noted that the skill and education level of many current immigrants is contributing to their welfare use.
“The low-skill level of many immigrants means that although most work, many also access welfare programs. If we continue to allow large numbers of less-educated immigrants to settle in the country, then immigrant welfare use will remain high,” he added.
While welfare use among both new and old immigrants is high – with 48 percent of immigrants in the U.S. for more than 20 years reporting welfare use – the rates vary based on region of origin.
In 2012, 73 percent of immigrant-headed households from Central America and Mexico reported using one of more welfare program. Households from the Caribbean used welfare at a rate of 51 percent, African immigrants were at 48 percent, South America at 41 percent, East Asia 32 percent, Europe 26 percent, South Asia 17 percent.
The report further highlights that while immigrant-headed households use welfare at a higher rate than natives they also pay taxes at a lower rate.
“On average, immigrant-headed households had tax liability in income and payroll taxes in 2012 that was about 11 percent less than native households, or about 89 cents for every dollar native households pay, based on Census Bureau data. Immigrant households have lower average incomes (from all sources) than native households and are a good deal larger, giving them more tax deductions. As a result, their average income tax liability is less than native households,” the report reads
Other findings in the CIS report include:
• No single program explains immigrants’ higher overall welfare use. For example, not counting subsidized school lunch, welfare use is still 46 percent for immigrants and 28 percent for natives. Not counting Medicaid, welfare use is 44 percent for immigrants and 26 percent for natives.
• Immigrant households have much higher use of food programs (40 percent vs. 22 percent for natives) and Medicaid (42 percent vs. 23 percent). Immigrant use of cash programs is somewhat higher than natives (12 percent vs. 10 percent) and immigrant use of housing programs is similar to natives.
• Many immigrants struggle to support their children, and a large share of welfare is received on behalf of U.S.-born children. However, even immigrant households without children have significantly higher welfare use than native households without children – 30 percent vs. 20 percent.
• The welfare system is designed to help low-income workers, especially those with children, and this describes many immigrant households. In 2012, 51 percent of immigrant households with one or more workers accessed one or more welfare programs, as did 28 percent of working native households.
• The large share of immigrants with low levels of education and resulting low incomes partly explains their high use rates. In 2012, 76 percent of households headed by an immigrant who had not graduated high school used one or more welfare programs, as did 63 percent of households headed by an immigrant with only a high school education.
• The high rates of immigrant welfare use are not entirely explained by their lower education levels. Households headed by college-educated immigrants have significantly higher welfare use than households headed by college-educated natives – 26 percent vs. 13 percent.
• In the four top immigrant-receiving states, use of welfare by immigrant households is significantly higher than that of native households: California (55 percent vs. 30 percent), New York (59 percent vs. 33 percent), Texas (57 percent vs. 34 percent), and Florida (42 percent vs. 28 percent).
One of the most serious potential breaches of national security identified so far by the intelligence community inside Hillary Rodham Clinton’s private emails involves the relaying of classified information concerning the movement of North Korean nuclear assets, which was obtained from spy satellites.
Multiple intelligence sources who spoke to The Washington Times, solely on the condition of anonymity, said concerns about the movement of the North Korean information through Mrs. Clinton’s unsecured server are twofold.
First, spy satellite information is frequently classified at the top-secret level and handled within a special compartment called Talent-Keyhole. This means it is one of the most sensitive forms of intelligence gathered by the U.S.
Second, the North Koreans have assembled a massive cyberhacking army under an elite military spy program known as Bureau 121, which is increasingly aggressive in targeting systems for hacking, especially vulnerable private systems. The North Koreans, for instance, have been blamed by the U.S. for the hack of Sony movie studios.
Allowing sensitive U.S. intelligence about North Korea to seep into a more insecure private email server has upset the intelligence community because it threatens to expose its methods and assets for gathering intelligence on the secretive communist nation.
“While everyone talks about the U.S. being aware of the high threat of hacking and foreign spying, there was a certain nonchalance at Mrs. Clinton’s State Department in protecting sensitive data that alarms the intel community,” one source familiar with the email review told The Times. “We’re supposed to be making it harder, not easier, for our enemies to intercept us.”
State Department spokesman Mark C. Toner told The Times on Tuesday evening he couldn’t discuss the email because of ongoing probes by the FBI and the inspector general community. “There are reviews and investigations under way on these matters generally so it would not be appropriate to comment at this time,” he said.
The email in question was initially flagged by the inspector general of the intelligence community in July as potentially containing information derived from highly classified satellite and mapping system of the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency. That email was later confirmed to contain classified information by Freedom of Information Act officials within the intelligence community.
The revelation, still under review by the FBI and intelligence analysts, has created the most heartburn to date about a lax email system inside the State Department that allowed official business and – in at least 188 emails reviewed so far – classified secrets to flow to Mrs. Clinton via an unsecured private email server hosted at her home in Chappaqua, New York.
The email does not appear to have been copied directly from the classified email system and crossed what is known as the “air gap” to nonclassified computers, the sources said.
Rather, the intelligence community believes a State Department employee received the information through classified channels and then summarized it when that employee got to a nonclassified State Department computer. The email chain went through Mrs. Clinton’s most senior aides and eventually to Mrs. Clinton’s personal email, the sources said.
The compromised information did not include maps or images, but rather information that could have been derived only from spy satellite intelligence.
It was not marked as classified, but whoever viewed the original source reports would have readily seen the markings and it should have been recognized clearly by a trained employee who received the information subsequently as sensitive, nonpublic information. Intelligence community professionals are trained to carry forward these markings and, if needed, request that the information be sanitized before being transmitted via non-secure means.
The discovery could affect the FBI investigation of Mrs. Clinton’s email, putting the originator of the email chain into legal jeopardy and allowing agents to pressure the employee to cooperate as they try to determine how classified information flowed so freely into Mrs. Clinton’s account and what senior officials knew about the lax system that allowed such transmissions.
As the investigation has advanced, the intelligence community has debunked many of Mrs. Clinton’s and the State Department’s original claims about the private email system.
For instance, the department initially claimed that it had no idea Mrs. Clinton was conducting government business on an insecure private email account.
But the intelligence community uncovered evidence early on that her private email account was used to coordinate sensitive overseas calls through the department’s operations center, which arranges communication on weekends and after hours on weekdays.
The coordination of secure communications on an insecure break with protocol would give foreign intelligence agencies an opportunity to learn about a call early, then target and intercept the call, U.S. officials told The Times.
The concern is in full display in emails that Mrs. Clinton originated and that the department has already released under the Freedom of Information Act.
“As soon as I’m off call now. Tell ops to set it up now,” Mrs. Clinton wrote from her personal email account on Oct. 3, 2009, to top State Department aide Huma Abedin on Oct. 3, 2009, seeking the department’s operations center to set up a high-level Saturday morning call with two assistant secretaries of state and a foreign ambassador.
The email thread even indicated where Mrs. Clinton wanted to receive the call, at her home, giving a potential intercept target.
Similarly, the very next day, Mrs. Clinton and Ms. Abedin coordinated another call over insecure email with her ambassador to Afghanistan, former Army Gen. Karl Eikenberry. The two clearly understood the potential sensitive nature of the Sunday morning call even as they discussed its coordination on an unprotected email system.
“OK. Does Eikenberry need to be secure?” Mrs. Clinton asked, referring to the need for a secure phone line to receive the call. State officials said Mrs. Clinton had a secure phone line installed at her home to facilitate such calls, which is common for Cabinet-level officials.
Mr. Toner, the State Department spokesman, told the daily press briefing on Tuesday he did not know who approved Mrs. Clinton having a private email server to conduct official business but that it was obvious from the emails now released that many people knew inside State, including some in high places.
“People understood that she had a private server,” he told reporters. “…You’ve seen from the emails. You have an understanding of people who were communicating with her, at what level they were communicating at.”
Tony Blair knew about Hillary Clinton’s private e-mail account before the American people did – and his off-the-grid e-mail exchanges with Clinton are another sledgehammer to the already crumbling edifice of excuses offered in defense of her homebrew server.
Among the thousands of Clinton e-mails released by the State Department last night were direct exchanges with foreign dignitaries such as former prime minister (and then special envoy for the Middle East Quartet) Blair and internal exchanges between State Department officials about those conversations. The conversations cover a wide range of world hot spots, including the Middle East, Afghanistan and Iran, Sudan, and Haiti. Many of them – nearly 200 in total to date – have now been classified by the State Department as “foreign government information” and redacted or withheld from release. The very nature of the communications in those e-mails established that they contained classified information from their inception. Mrs. Clinton’s defense that she did not know of the existence of such information on her server at the time is laughable.
In September 2010, Barack Obama undertook an ambitious effort to settle the ancient dispute between Israel and the Palestinian people. Direct talks took place in Washington, D.C., in early September, and follow-up discussions were planned for later in the month. But talks broke down when a moratorium on West Bank settlement construction expired and Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu sought to tie renewal of the moratorium to Palestinian recognition of Israel.
With some urgency, Hillary Clinton asked Tony Blair to cancel a speech scheduled in Aspen, Colo., to “go to Israel as part of our full court press on keeping the Middle East negotiations going.” Blair obliged, and Clinton e-mailed the organizers of the Aspen conference to explain the cancelation. She then e-mailed Blair that his schedule was now clear: “Tony – Message Delivered… I’m copying Jake Sullivan because I’ve asked him to arrange a call w you once you land so you can be fully briefed before seeing BN [Netanyahu]. We are on a fast moving train changing every hour but determined to reach our destination.”
Later that day, Blair responded: “Hi Hillary. Just spent 3 hours with BB [Netanyahu]. Ready to speak when convenient but should do it on a secure line.” There is no indication whether that secure conversation took place, but the message certainly indicates that Blair at least understood the sensitivity of the subject matter.
Blair e-mailed Clinton again the next day, copying Sullivan, Clinton’s aide, apparently on a private e-mail account of his own. The entirety of that e-mail has been redacted from public disclosure as part of the FOIA release. Why? Because it has now been acknowledged as classified information and formally marked “Confidential” by State Department reviewers. The markings that accompany the redactions (which took place just this week as part of the release) explain that the redacted portion is classified under parts 1.4(B) and 1.4(D) of President Obama’s Executive Order 13526. Thus, it falls within the categories of information classified as “foreign government information” – 1.4(B) – and information relating to “foreign relations or foreign activities of the United States, including confidential sources” – 1.4(D).
Those markings are relevant because they blow up the Clinton campaign’s insistence that Mrs. Clinton and her colleagues did not know that the information at issue was classified at the time. Clinton is, of course, correct that the e-mails were not formally marked classified at the time they were exchanged, but that is only the result of a failure by Mrs. Clinton and her staff to mark them and handle them through the proper channels used for such foreign communications. The information contained in the e-mails was plainly classified at the time they were sent and received – by order of the president.
Executive Order 13526, issued by President Obama at the beginning of his term, addresses the classification and handling of national-security information. It provides that “foreign government information” – which includes “information provided to the United States Government by a foreign government or governments, an international organization of governments, or any element thereof, with the expectation that the information, the source of the information, or both, are to be held in confidence” – must be treated as classified. The president made a determination in the Executive Order that disclosure of these confidential foreign communications “is presumed to cause damage to the national security.”
Since a reasonable expectation of harm to the national security is the threshold for whether to classify information, the president’s determination necessarily establishes the classification of any foreign communications provided to the U.S. with the expectation of confidence. The Executive Order leaves no doubt on this point, when it directs that an agency “shall safeguard foreign government information under standards that provide a degree of protection at least equivalent to that required by the government or international organization of governments that furnished the information.”
The State Department now acknowledges that the Blair communications – just like scores of other Clinton e-mails involving sensitive diplomatic communications in Africa, Afghanistan, and elsewhere – are classified “Confidential” as foreign-government communications. Their determination simply confirms that the information was classified all along and that Clinton and her inner circle should have treated the e-mails containing it with the care required by our national-security laws and regulations. Instead, they were regularly passed between insecure private e-mail addresses, handed off wholesale to the private Internet company that maintained her server, and shared with who knows how many lawyers and staff as part of her own private review process.
Putting aside the legal technicalities, Clinton’s plea of ignorance defies common sense. The very nature of our diplomatic relations requires that we closely guard information learned from foreign dignitaries. And the State Department’s secure e-mail system contains reams of such classified communications. We protect that information in order to protect our international relationships and sources. The secretary of state regularly deals in those communications, as evidenced by the growing number of e-mails now classified. Yet here we see the sitting secretary of state communicating with a foreign envoy about sensitive diplomatic communications regarding the world’s most nettlesome national-security issues. She did so on the least secure platform imaginable – a private server concealed from government oversight – and took no steps to limit the information’s subsequent distribution. Faced with such irrefutable proof of her own recklessness, the former secretary of state now claims ignorance. Her plea rings hollow.
In one of the newly-released emails from Hillary Clinton’s private email server, the former Secretary of State emailed an Obama administration special envoy and told him to send sensitive information to her “personal email.”
Republican strategist Rory Cooper made the discovery:
Clinton told Middle East envoy to send classified details from Italy’s Foreign Minister to “my personal email.”
8:06 AM – 1 Sep 2015
On July 25, 2010, Clinton sent an email to Special Envoy for Middle East Peace George Mitchell. The subject line read “Here’s my personal email,” and only had a short message: “[Please] use this for reply – HRC.”
Mitchell emailed her back two hours later. “I talked with [Italian Foreign Minister Franco Frattini] again and went over the point again. He said he understands and agrees,” he began. The rest of the email is blanked out, indicating that the State Department team releasing Clinton’s emails recognized that the information it contained was classified.
The reasons listed for the email’s classification indicates that the blanked out paragraph contained sensitive information about foreign governments or the United States’ relationship with foreign government.
Did the latest release of Hillary Clinton server e-mails uncover a “smoking gun” proving a criminal violation of the law? Chuck Todd earlier said no, but The Federalist’s Sean Davis says yes indeedy. The smokiest of these “guns” is this e-mail, written by Hillary to Sidney Blumenthal in November 2009, redacted as classified almost in its entirety:
There are other classified e-mails in this tranche that originated with Hillary and went to other State Department officials. This e-mail is more notable because of its transmission outside of State’s personnel. Sid Blumenthal did not work in the Obama administration – Rahm Emanuel expressly forbid him to be hired anywhere in the federal government, especially State – and thus was out of the need-to-know loop, especially on top-level diplomatic talks. Where was Blumenthal working when this message (and others) went out? At the Clinton Foundation.
Yet here Hillary is, sending him updates on negotiations with Germany’s Angela Merkel and Tony Blair, which are obviously too sensitive to send out over an unauthorized and unsecure mode of transmission. On top of that, she’s sharing it with someone not cleared for this information even when properly transmitted.
The bulk of Hillary Clinton’s message to Blumenthal was redacted, under codes 1.4(D) and 1.4(B) because classification authorities determined it contained classified information “which reasonably could be expected to cause damage to the national security[.]” As was the case with other e-mails where Clinton originated classified information, authorities determined that the information was classified at birth and did not allow declassification until November of 2024 – 15 years after the e-mail was written and sent by Hillary, rather than 15 years after the information was marked.
The 2009 executive order signed by Obama states that U.S. officials who negligently disclose classified information to unauthorized individuals are subject to any and all federal sanctions provided for by law.
The two codes mark this as dealing with “foreign government information” and “foreign relations or foreign activities of the United States, including confidential sources.” The declassification date is set for November 2024, fifteen years after Hillary created the document. That clearly shows that the data was classified “at birth,” and as Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton had to know that top-level diplomatic discussions would have been too sensitive to share in this manner and with this particular person.
David Freddoso also reminds us that not only was this an unsecured transmission method, we know it got hacked at least once:
And of course, we already know Blumenthal’s email was compromised by a hacker.
1:01 PM – 1 Sep 2015
All of this fills in the requisites for 18 USC 793, with or without classification. Hillary appears to have originated obviously sensitive material and transmitted it through an unauthorized system to deliver it to someone who was not authorized to access it. That person eventually had his system hacked, which almost certainly exposed that information.
Yesterday, Fox News reported that “the mystery deepens” on how classified material got onto Hillary’s server:
The Clinton campaign adamantly denies any emails traversing Clinton’s homebrew server were marked classified at the time. The intelligence community inspector general says “potentially hundreds” of classified emails may be in the mix, but acknowledges at least some were not properly marked.
So if the Clinton denial is to be believed, individuals in her inner circle would have simply typed or scanned classified information into a non-classified system without regard for its contents. In this case, emails would have started in, and stayed in, the unclassified system – albeit improperly, based on the findings of the intelligence inspector general.
But if it turns out emails literally jumped from the classified to the non-classified system — something the State Department claims cannot happen – it would seem to point to Clinton’s staff going to great lengths to create a work-around to do so.
It’s not actually that mysterious. Hillary and her aides created e-mails with classified information in them, in a few cases Top Secret/Compartmented, and sent them out on an unauthorized and unsecured communications channel – in this case to someone who wasn’t cleared to see it at all. The only mystery will be whether Hillary gets treated like anyone else who had violated the law on a systemic basis in a similar manner.
An undercover video filmed by James O’Keefe and Project Veritas purportedly shows Molly Barker – the national marketing director for Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign – “knowingly and intentionally” violating campaign finance law.
Per Project Veritas:
During Clinton’s kickoff campaign event at Roosevelt Island, a Canadian citizen with no affiliation to Project Veritas Action attempted to make a donation to the Clinton campaign by purchasing a Hillary shirt. Barker knew that this was illegal, a fact which was confirmed by Clinton’s national Compliance Manager Erin Tibe, yet proceeded to process the contribution… Barker facilitated a straw man transaction where the Canadian citizen gave cash to an American citizen who subsequently purchased the shirt for the Canadian under Barker’s direction. Thus, Barker who was fully aware of the law didn’t merely look the other way like Tibe did, rather, she actually facilitated election illegalities.
A Clinton official told Time Magazine Monday that “the campaign is confident it upheld the law.”
A federal judge on Friday ordered the Internal Revenue Service to reveal White House requests for taxpayers’ private information, advancing a probe into whether administration officials targeted political opponents by revealing such information.
Judge Amy Berman Jackson of the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia rejected the IRS’s argument that a law designed to protect the confidentiality of such information protected the public disclosure of such communications with the White House.
The law, 26 U.S. Code § 6103, was passed after the Watergate scandal to protect citizens from retribution by federal officials. Jackson scoffed at the administration’s claims that the statute could be used to shield investigations into whether private tax information had been used in such a manner.
“The Court is unwilling to stretch the statute so far, and it cannot conclude that section 6103 may be used to shield the very misconduct it was enacted to prohibit,” Jackson wrote in her order.
The decision was a victory for Cause of Action, the legal watchdog group that sued the IRS in 2013 seeking records of its communications with the White House and potential disclosure of confidential taxpayer information.
The group called the decision “a significant victory for transparency advocates” in a Friday statement
“As we have said all along, this administration cannot misinterpret the law in order to potentially hide evidence of wrongdoing,” said Dan Epstein, the group’s executive director. “No administration is above the law, and we are pleased that the court has sided with us on this important point.”
The lawsuit came after Treasury’s inspector general for tax administration, the IRS’s official watchdog agency, revealed that it was investigating whether Austan Goolsbee, the White House’s former chief economist, illegally accessed or revealed confidential tax information related to Koch Industries.
The corporation’s owners, Charles and David Koch, are prominent funders of conservative and libertarian groups that often oppose the White House’s policy priorities.
Goolsbee “used Koch Industries as an example when discussing an issue noted in the [President’s Economic Recovery Board] report that half of business income goes to companies that do not pay corporate income tax because they are pass-through entities and that many of them are quite large,” the White House said in 2010.
His apparent knowledge of Koch’s tax history, detailed during a conference call with reporters, “implies direct knowledge of Koch’s legal and tax status, which would appear to be a violation” of federal law, said Sen. Chuck Grassley (R., Iowa), the chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, at the time.
Every Tennessee Volunteer should hang their head in shame
Now the University of Tennessee has gone full moonbat:
The University of Tennessee has told its staff and students to stop calling each other ‘he’, ‘she’, ‘him’ and ‘her’ – and to start referring to one another with terms like ‘xe’, ‘zir’ and ‘xyr’ instead.
The Knoxville branch of the public university, which has 27,400 students, sent a memo round to its members filled with unusual new parts of speech to avoid referring to anybody’s gender.
According to a gay rights official at the university, the new language regime will make the university ‘welcoming and inclusive’ and stop people feeling ‘marginalized’.
Oh for fucks sake! BTW here is the WOMAN, I think that is a woman, that wrote these guidelines. So please blame HER, because SHE did it. SHE is to blame, it is all HER doing! SHE is the buffoon responsible
This is what type of hypersensitive, self-absorbed world she would make for us all. This is what she thinks makes a better world
Donna Braquet, who runs the university’s [Pervert] Pride Center, wrote the guidelines, which are accompanied with a long table demonstrating how to replace the regular parts of speech.
She also advises staff members not to call roll in class, and to instead greet every student by asking them to announce their name and pronoun of preference.
Pronoun of preference? Honestly who thinks up this garbage?
The latest batch of Hillary Clinton emails set to be released by the State Department Monday evening include 150 which contain now-classified information, a spokesman for the agency has confirmed.
Through two mass releases so far – one in June and another last month – the State Department retroactively classified 63 emails Clinton sent or received during her tenure as secretary of state.
That’s in addition to several others which the Intelligence Community inspector general discovered contained information that was classified as “top secret” at the time they were sent.
During a daily press briefing Monday afternoon, State Department spokesman Mark Toner confirmed that approximately 150 of the 7,000 emails that will be released contain information that has been “upgraded” to classified. He said that while State Department staffers are still processing the emails before publishing them online Monday night, none of the emails are believed to contain information that was classified at the point of origination.
Toner said that the new release puts the State Department ahead of a schedule mandated by a federal judge in May.
“We’re producing more documents than we have in the previous three releases,” said Toner. U.S. district court judge Rudolph Contreras ordered the agency to release Clinton’s emails on a graduated schedule at the end of each month.
Clinton has downplayed the existence of classified information in her 30,000-plus emails. When the scandal over her use of a private email account and private server first broke in March, she maintained that none of her emails contained classified information. She has since altered that claim by saying that none of the emails that traversed her server contained information that was marked classified when originated.
Bernie Sanders continues to cut into Hillary Clinton’s once-commanding lead among Iowa Democrats, closing to just 7 points of the party front-runner in the first-in-the-nation caucus state, a new poll has found.
A survey released late Saturday afternoon by the Des Moines Register and Bloomberg Politics finds that Sanders, the fiery progressive senator from Vermont, trails Clinton 37% to 30%. The former secretary of state has lost one-third of her supporters since May.
Sanders’ support owes more to voters’ enthusiasm for his candidacy than opposition to Clinton, the poll found. A whopping 96% of his backers say they support him and his ideas, with just 2% saying their vote is motivated by a desire to stop a Clinton candidacy. As for the controversy surrounding Clinton’s use of email while leading the State Department, 61% of likely Democratic caucusgoers say the issue is not important to them.
Sanders has a deeper reservoir of support, the poll found. Thirty-nine percent of likely caucusgoers say their feelings about Sanders are very favorable, with just 8% having a negative view of him. That’s a sharp contrast to Clinton: 27% view her very favorably, but 19% view her negatively.
Saturday’s poll marks a remarkable eight-month climb for the self-proclaimed Democratic socialist from Vermont, who is garnering support in part from his anti-establishment rhetoric. Back in January, half of likely Democratic caucusgoers were unfamiliar with Sanders, and he was pulling in just 5% of support.
“What this new poll shows is that the more Iowans get to know Bernie, the better they like him and what he stands for. We’ve seen the same thing in New Hampshire and across the country,” Sanders campaign spokesman Michael Briggs said in a statement.
Meanwhile, Vice President Joe Biden, who has not declared whether he’ll seek the Oval Office next year, captured 14% of the vote, easily distancing himself from former Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley (3%), former Virginia Sen. Jim Webb (2%) and former Rhode Island Gov. Lincoln Chafee (1%).
Speculation has heated up in recent weeks about whether Biden, 72, will join the race. He faces several obstacles in a potential run, including the need to raise enough campaign cash to compete with the Clinton machine and carving out enough support among key Democratic voting blocs. And he’s still grieving over the loss of his son, Beau Biden, who died of brain cancer three months ago; in a conference call with Democrats this week, Biden said he was still determining whether he had the “emotional fuel” to run.
But the vice president’s hesitation didn’t prevent his supporters from responding enthusiastically to Saturday’s poll.
“These results are the latest sign that voters respect and trust the Vice President and are looking for a candidate who speaks authentically and openly about the issues important to them,” according to a statement from “Draft Biden.” “They make clear the Vice President would have the support needed to mount a strong, competitive campaign.”
Can you imagine a group of white people marching down the street chanting, “Michael Brown what a clown! He got what he deserved,” after he was shot by officer Darren Wilson?
I can only imagine how the #BlackLivesMatter activists would have reacted.
How many riots would it have started? It would have been considered a ‘racist chant’ and it would have gotten coverage from the Obama Administration, for sure.
But moments after Texas Deputy Darren H. Goforth, a 10-year veteran, father of two, husband, and a public servant, was murdered execution style by an African-American at a gas station while he was refueling his vehicle, we heard chants of “Pigs In A Blanket, Fry ‘Em Like Bacon” from the racist #BlackLivesMatter activists.
Yes, you heard right. I said racist.
Check it out:
* When white people say “white power”… it’s racist.
* When Mexicans say “brown pride”… it’s racist.
* But when ‘Black Power’ and ‘Black Lives Matter’ is chanted… that isn’t racist? If that’s your way of thinking, you’re an ignorant person and you are part of the problem.
In what world is it OK for such a disturbing chant to be yelled out in the streets after an innocent man was murdered?
The Obama administration has had multiple chances to bring whites, blacks and Hispanics together to possibly end racism by uniting everyone in a tragic time. But instead, they’ve picked a side and now our country is divided by race.
We need to wake up America. We need to stop the ignorant people who keep dividing us. We need to become one and do as Jesus instructed us: ‘Love your neighbor as you love yourself.’
How about instead of White, Black, Hispanic lives matter, we use #ALLLIVESMATTER?
It’s a mystery to us where President Obama or his interior secretary, Sally Jewell, gets the authority to rename in Alaska a mountain whose name was ratified by Congress a century ago as McKinley. We can understand the Democratic Party’s interest, in that McKinley, a Republican, was a particularly fine President. He was, moreover, one of four presidents felled by an assassin. We can understand, too, the sentiments of Alaska, whose legislature has wanted to change the name. Where, though, does the president come off doing this by fiat?
The question begs for an answer in light of the fact that legislation has been before Congress to change the name, but the Congress has decided not to do so. If the Supreme Court has been clear about anything it has been that the failure of Congress to act doesn’t amount to license for the other branches to act. Congress, the law supposes, had its own good reasons for not acting. One of them no doubt is that McKinley was from Ohio, which, given that Mount McKinley National Park is the locale of said mountain, has its own standing.
Our own interest in the matter lies with McKinley. We have no particular objection to, per se, Denali. That’s the name for the summit used by Alaskan Natives and, in recent years, also the federal name for the park. It’s the name the state’s senior senator, Lisa Murkowski, sought to attach to the mountain via legislation she earlier this year introduced, to no effect. Legislators from Ohio understood better, and moved to block the measure. William McKinley may never have been to the mountain, but he was an important and assassinated president.
Maybe some day a Republican president will restore to John Fitzgerald Kennedy International Airport the name of Idlewild, which is the name us native New Yorkers use for the airport (Idlewild is still a permitted reference for the airport in the “Reporters Handbook and Manual of Style of the New York Sun”). We could see the logic of it in an age of hyper-sensitivity to local sentiments. But we would object were a president to simply rename the airport after Congress had been asked and decided not to act.
In any event, let us raise a salute to Wm. McKinley. From his front porch in 1896, he ran one of the most remarkable campaigns in American history, defeating the Democrat, William Jennings Bryan, who ran for the free coinage of silver – a campaign of inflation – by attacking the Jews. It was one of the few anti-Semitic campaigns in American history. McKinley defeated it handily and gained passage in 1900 of the Gold Standard Act, which set the stage for the great boom of the 20th century. It’s a monument as majestic as the peak of Denali.
The British Empire was founded by accident, run by brilliant amateurs and wrecked by professionals. The United States was founded by design, run by the people and wrecked by professionals.
The terrible decline in the conduct of the professional classes (think lawyers or climate “scientists,” for instance) certainly leaves room for the gifted amateur. But it does not leave room for the ungifted amateur. Yet in the two most important seats of power on the planet – the White House and 10 Downing Street – sit two ungifted, inept amateurs.
World War III could be the result.
In the days of Ronald Reagan and Margaret Thatcher, both of them tough and decisive, few thought it a good idea to attack U.S. or British interests or territories. When Mr. Leopoldo Galtieri tried it on, he got an unpleasant surprise: Britain, despite having slashed its defense forces to the bone, was still able to mount a courageous campaign half across the world, utterly defeating his tyrannous regime, recovering the Falkland Islands and restoring something like democracy to Argentina.
The hand-wringers and professional-outrage merchants of the far left, of course, whined that the “militarism” of Reagan and Thatcher was a threat to world peace. It wasn’t. In fact, it led to the toppling of Soviet Communism, which was then the single greatest menace to the stability and prosperity of the planet.
The totalitarian regimes of the world, still in a majority, alas, knew full well that while Reagan and Thatcher were in charge there would be no nonsense. Si vis pacem, said the Romans, para bellum: If you want peace, be ready for war.
Not anymore. These two colossi are merry in heaven. And just look at the dismal track record of their current successors in keeping the peace.
For Obama, there was the Romneyesque flip-flopping over Guantanamo, Benghazi and the failure to do anything about the slaughter of Christians in Syria, and the capitulation to China over so-called “global warming” last December, and the recent capitulation to Iran over nuclear weapons development, and the relentless reduction of American’s military strength, and the failure to act against illegal immigrants (for they vote left).
For Cameron, there was Libya, the scrapping of Britain’s last aircraft-carrier a decade before replacements would be available, the “sharing” of aircraft carriers with France, the relentless reduction of Britain’s military strength, and the failure to act against illegal immigrants (for they come from Europe, and the European Union is sacred to Cameron, for it is the only entity other than himself that he worships with unreserved devotion).
In Britain, at any rate, the armed forces have had enough of Cameron’s notorious shilly-shallying. A fascinating biography of Cameron by Sir Anthony Seldon, official biographer du jour on this side of the Atlantic, records that Gen. Sir David Richards, while head of Britain’s armed forces, blames Cameron for the rise of the fanatical Islamic State, saying he “lacked the balls” to crush them with armed force in 2012 when they first became a threat in Syria.
Sir David bluntly told Sir Anthony: “If they had the balls, they would have gone through with it… If they’d done what I’d argued, they wouldn’t be where they are with ISIS.”
Sir David also attacks Cameron over his botched attack on Libya and his failure to take effective action to prevent Russia re-annexing the Ukraine. His overall verdict on Cameron’s approach to foreign and defense policy: “a lack of strategy and statesmanship.” Sir David says: “The problem is the inability to think things through. Too often it seems to be more about the Notting Hill liberal agenda rather than statecraft.”
The book also reveals that the “special relationship” between Cameron and Obama is not all it is cracked up to be. Obama is not often prompt in answering Cameron’s telephone calls. The Foreign Office calls Mr. Obama “Dr Spock” after the humorless character in Star Trek.
The overriding impression left by Sir Anthony’s book is that the West is not in safe hands at present. Obama and Cameron are both criticized for amateurishness and inability to reach rational decisions, as well as a lack of grasp of foreign affairs and of defense.
In my experience, it is rare for the chiefs of staff in Britain to call upon the prime minister to initiate a military campaign. It is nearly always the other way around, as it was when Galtieri invaded the Falklands. Our senior officers are not of the “nuke ‘em till they fry” cast of mind. Sir David Richards’ advice to Cameron that he should move militarily against ISIS from the outset should, therefore, have been very carefully heeded.
Cameron, however, cut and ran. Not the least of his reasons, no doubt, was that this allegedly “Conservative” government has so cut back the armed forces that they are already scandalously overstretched.
Underlying the under-funding of the military on both sides of the Atlantic is the scandalous indifference to the rapidly-mounting national debt. This perceptive book really marks the moment when it became clear to all who have eyes to see and ears to hear that the hegemony of the West, which was a blessing to humanity, is now at an end. Obama and Cameron have handed away their nations’ economic and military strength because kicking the can down the road always seems easier in the short term than picking it up.
Which brings me to the present election campaign. None of the candidates, on either side, is giving enough attention either to the national debt or to the extinction of America’s military might. The two ungifted amateurs, Obama and Cameron, have conspired to leave a dangerous economic and military vacuum, which many ambitious nations will scramble to fill. When Britain and America were strong because Thatcher and Reagan were strong, the world was by and large a less dangerous place than it is now.
World War III will not begin through the alleged aggression of a Reagan or a Thatcher. It will begin, just as World War II did, because for too long fashionable, easy appeasement was a substitute for a considered and determined foreign-policy stance.
I do not feel safe under the “leadership” of Obama and Cameron. The politics of the pre-emptive cringe have always led to disaster in the past, and may do so again in the future unless we can find leaders less fearful of actually leading.