Showing posts with label George Washington. Show all posts
Showing posts with label George Washington. Show all posts

Monday, November 7, 2016

Did Hillary Clinton have Classified Information on her Server?

Earlier today, against my better judgement, I got into a social media argument.

I know, like I said it was against my better judgement and I should have just walked away, but I couldn't. Unfortunately it ended with comments like: "I guess i'm that stupid" and "count me stupid too."

Why does it seem that people enjoy making a flippant comment, but when you point out how they are wrong they immediately take things personally? I'm sorry that you are not plugged in to the issues and that you rely on a corrupt media for your talking points.

For the record, yes, Hillary Clinton did have classified information, Top Secret & Above, in her unsecured emails. Information that was so sensitive that even members of Congress were kept from seeing / hearing about it. In fact, Congress was given redacted documents and had to issue a subpoena. Don't believe me, listen to those in charge.

FBI Director James Comey



FBI Assistant Director Jason Herring




Inspector General of the Office of the Director of National Intelligence (ODNI) Charles McCullough


NSA / NGIA / ODNI Hearing



The problem is that we have become so entrenched in our political party system that we have abdicated our responsibilities as citizens. We have put party over ethics, morality and convictions. It's the reason we are in the place we are today and we have no one to blame but ourselves..... oh, and those pesky little talking points as well !! 

Tuesday, September 27, 2016

When gov't agencies no longer respect the Constitution...

Many of you are aware that, in addition to being a retired NYPD sergeant, I am also a political junkie and this plays a big role in some of the books that I have written. 

This morning, I watched something that I found to be profoundly disturbing to me, as it should be to the overwhelming majority of Americans.

Congressional Oversight Committee Chairman, Congressman Jason Chaffetz, was questioning FBI Assistant Director Jason Herring, regarding the production and distribution of materials, relative to Congress’ investigation of Hillary Clinton’s emails. During the course of his appearance, Agent Herring stated: “Director Comey tried to be as transparent as he could with this committee.”



Stop for a moment and let that sink in: “tried to be as transparent as he could..”

Folks, that should send a chill through you. If it doesn’t, then the problem is greater than you could imagine.

How have we arrived to the point where an arm of the government, specifically a federally law enforcement agency, decides to become its own arbiter of what it will and will not provide to congress?

I cannot begin to warn you of the seriousness of this and the dire implications for our country going forward.

As many of you know, in the past I have railed against the ‘party’ system as I believe that this political arrangement is more of a detriment to us, driving a wedge of dissension between Americans. I believe that we have a solemn responsibility to elect principled leaders, as it is the only way our system works. But with each passing day I have come to realize that the majority of Americans do not have a clue as to exactly how this system of government works.

First, please understand that we do not live in a democracy. I keep hearing people say that and I cringe. There is a significant reason that the United States is not a democracy, best summed up by founding father and future president, James Madison:  

Hence it is that democracies have ever been spectacles of turbulence and contention; have ever been found incompatible with personal security or the rights of property; and in general have been as short in their lives as they have been violent in their deaths …” – Federalist Papers, #10.

The truth is that democracy is actually the antithesis of our government. In a democracy the majority can decide to simply vote away things they don’t agree with, including your rights. Ever hear the argument about common sense? Well, in a democracy, the majority can take away any right by virtue of common sense….. you know, for the common good. Sadly, many do not consider the implications of this. You might be part of the in-crowd today, enjoying your moment in the sun, but remember that tomorrow the political winds can shift and you may very well find yourself looking down the barrel of the gun you helped create. We only have to look back 70 or so years at the rise and fall of Nazi Germany.

So the founding fathers took the extraordinary path of creating the world’s first constitutional republic. It established a constitution as the guiding principles, recognizing certain unalienable rights to the citizens of this nation, and created a framework of co-equal government that would insure these rights were not infringed upon.

The new government was founded upon three co-equal branches: Executive, a bicameral Legislative (House of Representatives and Senate) and Judicial. Without getting into the minutia, because you should already know this, each has its own separate powers and was thought to be the best system for insuring that one branch didn’t accumulate too much power and attempt to exceed its granted authority.

Got that? This system was designed to prevent one branch from gaining too much power.

Checks and balances is what it is called and a good example of this is that the legislative (Congress) has the power to create laws. The executive (President) can veto any legislation, an act which can be overridden by Congress, with sufficient votes. The President nominates judges to the nation's highest judicial authority (Supreme Court), but nominees must be approved by Congress. The judicial then has the power to invalidate, as ‘unconstitutional,’ any law passed. The Congress also has the power of the purse, the ability to tax and spend public money for the national government. So if the President does attempt an end-run to establish something the Congress does not approve of, he won’t have the funding to do so.

This works well, at least in theory.

When George Washington was first elected president in 1789 there were no political parties. This would soon change with the Federalist Party in 1791 and, in the following year, the formation of the Anti-Federalist Party or Democratic-Republicans. By his 2nd term, party lines and loyalty in the Nation’s capital were drawn to the point of bitterness and destruction. Personal and professional attacks became common and they represented a serious threat to the new republic. Washington was greatly concerned that the parties had sought to, and would again; seek more power for themselves, using it to exact political revenge on their opponents. Something he called the ‘alternate domination.’ When reading Washington’s Farewell Address, it does not take much to see just how remarkably prophetic his words were:

The disorders and miseries which result gradually incline the minds of men to seek security and repose in the absolute power of an individual; and sooner or later the chief of some prevailing faction, more able or more fortunate than his competitors, turns this disposition to the purposes of his own elevation, on the ruins of public liberty.”

Does any of this sound familiar?

Just as Washington predicted, two hundred plus years ago, we are seeing the elevation of man, and party, over the principled and faithful execution of law.

Party in-fighting, within the hallowed halls of Congress, has diminished that body to nothing more than a cheerleader for the current occupant of 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue. A fact eloquently outlined in the accompanying statement by Rep. Trey Gowdy. And the judicial is not very far behind, becoming more of an activist judiciary instead of one that uses the Constitution as their guide.

But in the case of Congress, rather than perform the role they were elected to do, by you, they are actually doing the will of the party. This has to resonate with the electorate. If not, then we are truly doomed.

Whatever your political affiliation is, the current investigation into, Democratic Party nominee, Hillary Clinton’s email servers has to be taken seriously. I spent most of my career conducting criminal investigations. Unlike politicians and pundits who try and couch their words, I can tell you unequivocally that crimes were committed. Whether a decision was made to not prosecute for those crimes is not the issue. Congress has, and should act upon, the authority to investigate this matter, but as we see in the video above, forces are at play to impede it. An agent of the executive branch, in this case the FBI, should not be allowed to decide what they will or will not share with the legislative branch tasked with oversight. That is chilling.

It is something that is even occurring within lower federal courts where agencies are refusing to turn over documents to the court.

How did we get to this place? What happened to the rule of law and not man? Will the foundation that is being laid now slowly trickle down to the rest of society? What will happen when society chooses to fail to comply with a court order? Will the judge wring his hands and bemoan his impotence to do anything? I don’t think so.

I truly believe that something has to change in this country.

The government of the United States represents the citizens or as Abraham Lincoln so eloquently put it: "Government of the people, by the people, for the people…” We are their bosses and yet somehow we have abdicated all control to the powers that be.

To be fair, they are not completely at fault. We, the people, have become co-equal cheerleaders. Lamenting when someone from the other side does something wrong, yet turning a blind eye when it is our person. We simply cannot have different rules for us and them.  

If this continues down the path it is going, we will not survive.

Congress has to stop ‘protecting’ people, because they belong to the same party, and start doing what their bosses, the people, elected them to do. For our part, we have to be honest with ourselves and understand that just because someone might have the same party affiliation as us, doesn’t mean they are the best person for the job.

Unlike the vast majority of folks reading this, I handled classified information at one time. Folks, this isn’t an insignificant issue and it certainly isn’t a political one. Understand that people have lost careers and have even gone to prison for far less than what Hillary Clinton did, yet we are being told: ‘nothing here, move along.’ If it were you or I, our lives would be ruined and our freedoms taken away. Don’t you have a problem with that? Why is it, that by virtue of her place, in some type of American political lineage, she is getting a free pass on something you or I would spend a long time in prison for? Doesn’t this bother you at a fundamental level?

Elections are about the accumulation of power, not for you or me, but for the party. It is the reason that Barack Obama and Mitt Romney, the two major party candidates for president in 2012, spent close to $1.12 billion, a number which, by all estimates, will probably be exceeded in this election cycle. All that money for a job that pays a paltry annual salary of $500,000.00, give or take. Let that sink in for a moment. At best, the next president, if they are in for two-terms (eight years), will have earned about 4-5 million dollars. Hillary and Bill Clinton brought in five times that total amount during one year of speaking engagements.

You still think this isn’t about power?

It is time that you and I stand up and demand that our representatives in Washington, D.C. start to do the job they were elected to do, instead of abdicating it in favor of those with power. If we don’t, then we have no one else to blame when the government comes crashing down on top of us.

If you’d like to stay up to date on the newest releases, then please like my Facebook page and feel free to follow me on Twitter.

Monday, August 17, 2015

The end of Political Party Dominance in America


"The alternate domination of one faction over another, sharpened by the spirit of revenge natural to party dissention, which in different ages & countries has perpetrated the most horrid enormities, is itself a frightful despotism. But this leads at length to a more formal and permanent despotism. The disorders & miseries, which result, gradually incline the minds of men to seek security & repose in the absolute power of an Individual: and sooner or later the chief of some prevailing faction more able or more fortunate than his competitors, turns this disposition to the purposes of his own elevation, on the ruins of Public Liberty." — George Washington, September 19, 1796

I wrote the below article on our political parties two years. In fact it was my second attempt to shine the spotlight on the system that has seemingly devolved us from informed voter to mindless party hacks.

It was my attempt to educate people that we have, in fact, been lied to, by both political parties, for much too long. Now, as the ‘anti-establishment’ candidates, for the 2016 presidential race, seem to be taking hold, I thought I would once again dust it off and see if I could get people to take their party blinders off. This country is in dire straits and it is time that we take a long hard look at the world that we have created, in our blind obedience to the party masters, and begin to take control of this runaway train.

  
No More Political Parties – Change we CAN believe in! (June 12th, 2013)

I piss people off.

My 17, going on 70, year old daughter will attest to that little fact.

I don’t try to, but there comes a point when you need to speak up and state, unequivocally, where you stand on issues.

I think Washington, D.C. needs a dose of this.

The other day I got pulled into a sports conversation and I admitted that I have adopted the George Carlin position on sports:

I decided it's not necessary to suffer and feel crappy just because my teams suck. What I do now is cut 'em loose for a while. I simply let them go about losing, as I go about living my life. Then, when they've improved, and are doing well once again, I get back on board and enjoy their success. Yeah, I know, I can hear it. Diehard, asshole loyal sports fans screaming, "Front-runner!" Goddamn right! Don't be fuckin' juvenile. Teams are supposed to provide pleasure and entertainment, not depression and disappointment.

…. Why on earth would you place your happiness and peace of mind in the hands of several dozen strangers? Listen, folks, if they win, fine; if they lose, fuck 'em! Let 'em practice more.”

Does that sound harsh?

I hope so, because it is the truth.  I've talked about it before. Political Parties Explained.

Every day I turn on the TV and I become depressed. Why you ask? Because politicians have turned into Athletes.

Rather than practice more, they have adopted the status quo and now just point fingers at the other guy.

Remember when EVERYONE hated the Yankees?

Why?

Because they fielded the best team possible. Period. End of story.

Well, we, as Americans, have been duped into rooting for two opposing teams, but the fact that they both suck doesn’t seem to mean much to them. They just point their finger at the other team and expect you to believe them.

But they are lying to your face and worse, YOU actually believe them.

I’m not going to get into who lies more, Republican or Democrat. I’m just going to give you one sample because I think it fits into the discussion we are having in America right now over the whole NSA issue.

In May 2006, then Senator Joseph Biden said

"I don't have to listen to your phone calls to know what you're doing. If I know every single phone call that you've made, I'm able to determine every single person you talk to; I can get a pattern about your life that is very, very intrusive. The real question here is what do they do with this information they collect that does not have anything to do with Al-Qaida? We're going to trust the president and vice president of the United States that we're doing the right thing? Don't count me in on that."

So, how exactly is that working out for you? Bet you'd love to have those words back, huh, Joe?

You see, my point is this, both sides lie to you. Without remorse or fear because they know you will continue to vote by party lines. But what would happen if we did away with the parties? What would D.C. look like if we removed the political party finger pointing?

Wouldn’t it be a novel idea if we forced people to run a campaign based, not on which party band wagon they have hoped on, but the issues.

Honestly, how many of you ever bothered to find out where the ‘other guy’ stood on issues, before going into the polling booth? Most likely you voted the following:

PARTY LINE.

I’m not condemning you. We have been ingrained to think this way.

But have you ever wondered if that’s exactly why we are in the position we are today?

It cannot be right when one party does it and then wrong when the other party does it.

That’s disingenuous and if the people in ‘your’ party are telling you, “well it’s complicated,” they are lying to you.

The complicated issue is that you got caught doing the same thing you railed against.

In other words, “the other team really didn't ‘stack the deck’, we just suck right now.”

I don’t know about you, but I am not going to vote by party any longer, I am going to vote by person.


Here is a campaign slogan I can get behind: PERSON, NOT PARTY.