American Elephants

Is There No End To Obama’s Drive to Control Everything With “Executive Orders?” by The Elephant's Child

President Barack Obama seems to be indignant that we had a wave election, putting the Republicans in charge of Congress and has determined to just go ahead and do what he wants to anyway.  And he has apparently instructed Democrats in Congress to do the same. Democrats are convinced that their vision of moral and social progress is the pathway to a “better world.” “Their belief in a redeemed future accounts for their political passion and for their furious personal assaults on those who stand in their way.” Slipping into full tyrant mode is not a problem. Republicans are the enemies of the just and the good, and defeating them at every opportunity is a step forward.

So Monday, President Barack Obama introduced his plan for a progressive takeover of state and local policing.

We have a great opportunity… to really transform how we think about community law enforcement relations,” he said Monday.

“We need to seize that opportunity… this is something that I’m going to stay very focused on in the months to come,” Obama said, as he touted a new interim report from his Task Force on 21st Century Policing.

Obama also instructed his media allies to help federalize policing, and to sideline the critics of centralized policing rules. “I expect our friends in the media to really focus on what’s in this report and pay attention to it,” he instructed.

This is, of course, derived from Ferguson, and the police shooting of “the unarmed young black man” that was endlessly played up by Mr. Obama, his deputies, Al Sharpton, and the Justice Department. Timing, however, is everything.

The Justice Department today announced that it will not charge former Ferguson MO police office Darren Wilson with any civil rights violations in the “racially charged” shooting death of Michael Brown. Encouraged by the administration, the St. Louis County grand jury’s decision not to charge Wilson in the shooting set off massive protests, rioting and looting in the area and around the country. I have never quite grasped just why looting is a viable response to angry feelings.

In order to clean up the record, outgoing Attorney General Eric Holder admitted that the “Hands Up, Don’t Shoot” slogan used by Democrat activists endlessly since August 2014 was a complete falsehood. He acknowledged the fake story as he released the results of the Justice Department’s investigation of the Ferguson shooting.

Instead, Holder suggested the media and Americans recognize the fakery. “It remains not only valid – but essential – to question how such a strong alternative version of events was able to take hold so swiftly, and be accepted so readily,” he said.

The town had a “highly toxic environment, defined by mistrust and resentment, stoked by years of bad feelings, and spurred by illegal and misguided [police] practices – [so] it is not difficult to imagine how a single tragic incident set off the city of Ferguson like a powder keg,” he said.

Those claims of police abuse are being used by Holder to promote President Barack Obama’s new effort to federalize police practices in states and localities.

The report also admitted that Police Officer Darren Wilson’s description of the incident was completely accurate and confirmed by witnesses.

An incident hyped up by the lapdog media and the administration was an attempt to bring out a big black vote in the 2014 election, but the issue was not only the issue, but part of Obama’s plan to federalize the police force.

Attorney General Holder is Ordered to Investigate—Eric Holder by The Elephant's Child


The House Judiciary Committee is investigating whether Attorney General Eric Holder lied under earth during his May 15 testimony on the Justice Department’s (DOJ) surveillance of reporters.

During a back and forth with Rep. Hank Johnson (D-GA) about whether the DOJ could prosecute reporters under the Espionage Act of 1917 — “In regard to potential prosecution of the press for the disclosure of material—this is not something I’ve every been involved in, heard of,or would think would be wise policy” Holder said in his testimony.

NBC News reported the following week that Holder personally approved a search warrant that named Fox News chief Washington correspondent James Rosen a co-conspirator in a national security leaks case.

John Conyers Jr. (D-MI) the ranking member of the Judiciary Committee said that Holder was “forthright” with the panel and there was “no need to turn a policy disagreement into allegations of misconduct.”

Rep James Sensenbrenner Jr. (R-WI) said Holder should resign. He said the attorney general had misled the panel during the “Fast and Furious” gun-walking operation, and again in claiming no knowledge of the AP probe.

President Obama has said he is “troubled” and argued that”journalists should not be at legal risk for doing their jobs.” He ordered Holder to review his department’s guidelines for DOJs surveillance of reporters. In other words, he asked Holder to investigate Holder.

In the meantime, “Fast and Furious” is heating up again. This is the operation that allowed large quantities of guns to be “walked” across the border, and which Mexican Drug cartels used to kill hundreds of Mexican citizens and one American Border Agent.

The DOJ Inspector General released a report blasting a government leak intended to smear a key ATF whistleblower. The leaked memorandum was aimed at discrediting Special Agent John Dodson and contradicting his damaging testimony before Congress, about the federal program that put thousands of high-powered weapons in the hands of Mexican criminals. Disgraced former U.S. Attorney Dennis Burke, one of the officials in the administration’s lawless gun-trafficking scheme., was furious when whistleblowers had gone to Congress and the media, but he was particularly angry because Dodson had written a memo outlining the plot to allow guns to “walk” across the border— and into the hands of the drug cartel.

Burke, who left the department in 2011, refused to be  interviewed for the investigation, and claimed that he had no intention of retaliating, but was concerned that congressional investigators were acting as “willing stooges” for defenders of the right to keep and bear arms. Incredibly the violence of Fast and Furious — U.S. law enforcement officers killed and hundreds of Mexican citizens massacred — was used to push for more gun control in the United States, according to official documents.

Evidence continues to come out that Fast and Furious was much bigger than the press or the administration have admitted. Mexican drug lords have claimed that the U.S. government was shipping weapons to their cartels and allowing them to bring drugs across the border in exchange for information. The CIA’s involvement is largely concealed, and all the other major scandals means that justice for the victims of Fast and Furious may never be served.

Eric Holder is Promoting Another Mortgage Crisis. by The Elephant's Child

According to the Obama administration, the nation’s largest mortgage lender —Wells Fargo Bank — and dozens of other  banks are racist bigots. Another Justice Department witch-hunt.  Attorney General Eric Holder has added Sun Trust Bank and Bank of America to the long list of bank bigots. Some 60 other lenders are under investigation for allegedly denying blacks and Latinos home loans solely due to the color of their skin, or for allegedly “steering” them into higher-cost subprime mortgage loans when they could have qualified for prime loans. If you see everything through the prism of racism, don’t be surprised if you find it everywhere.

I just advised everyone to read Gretchen Morgenson’s Reckless Endangerment.  The financial meltdown was not a pretty picture, and the interplay of Washington, Wall Street and corrupt mortgage lenders dumped a major crisis on us all. The corrupt mortgage lenders were the big mortgage giants Fannie Mae and  Freddie Mac. The financial crisis was caused by the federal government — politicians trying to be compassionate when they should have been responsible and thoughtful.

The idea in Washington was both good and compassionate. If more people owned their own homes, they would become more responsible members of the community, work for better communities and better schools. All good things would come to be if only more people were homeowners. White picket fence, apple trees, and mom and apple pie.

A lot of people in this country who are poor, are poor because they have made bad choices. There are good and kind people who may be poor too, just a little down on their luck. But there’s a big chunk of bad choices there. Dropping out of school. Getting pregnant in high school, having babies without a father to support them. Drugs, crime, prison. Gambling. Those choices reflect on creditworthiness. If you don’t have a steady job, it is hard to pay the mortgage bill. One payment missed means a future double payment.

Some have chosen to believe that the reason that poor people are turned down for mortgage loans— the only reason— is racism. Because some minorities are poor, they should be offered loans at a less discriminatory rate than those who can afford it. We are still undergoing the fallout from the mortgage crisis, and now Holder wants to do it all over again.

Holder has smeared the entire banking industry as racist — an absurd lie — in order to help lawyers and housing-rights activists to justify a bigger shakedown of the industry. The left likes to believe in FDR’s Second Bill of Rights ( without understanding the difference between a natural right and wishful thinking), which included the right to a good paying job, freedom from unfair competition and monopolies, a decent home, the right to medical care, a good education, and the right of a farmer to prosper. The left believes in this because they believe in making promises to the electorate. They don’t care if they don’t turn out. It’s the promise that matters.

Holder is attempting to turn the public against banks, erode confidence in the financial sector, erode time-tested credit standards, and to go back and do the financial crisis all over again.  He has ordered banks to “modify’ their lending practices to approve more minorities, regardless of their creditworthiness, and forced them to open branches in depressed urban areas, regardless of profitability. Wells Fargo must devote at least $50 million to down-payment assistance for homebuyers in predominately minority areas of Chicago, Baltimore, Detroit, Miami, Oakland, Cleveland, Philadelphia and Washington DC.

Well, who wants to fight the federal government? It may be more expensive than settling. Holder has not yet had to prove his charges in court.  Out of the 20 settlements so far, there has been no material evidence of lending discrimination in any of them.  In the case against Wells Fargo, Investors says:

1. Justice’s 37-page complaint covers the period 2004 to 2009, yet Wells ceased making wholesale subprime loans in July 2007.

2. Over the same period, Wells scored “outstanding” grades on its Community Reinvestment Act exams conducted by federal regulators, who monitor bank lending in minority areas and work closely with Justice prosecutors. Wells set aside more than $110 billion in mostly low-interest loans for minorities as part of so-called CRA loan commitments.

3. In the 29-page consent order, Wells denies discriminating against minority borrowers and insists that an internal review of its loan files proves its subprime borrowers had “significantly weaker credit characteristics” than its prime borrowers. Black, white or brown, they would not have qualified for prime loans.

4. In approving loan products, originators followed published underwriting guidelines and weekly “rate sheets” pegging prime and nonprime interest rates to credit scores—the higher the score, the better the rate, and vice versa. They also followed an automated checklist, “Enhanced Care Filter,” to prevent “steering” a prime candidate into subprime.

5. Wells also asserts that the government failed to conduct “an appropriate analysis” of its loan data. As in other cases, prosecutors drew their conclusions from statistical analyses showing “disparities” in loan pricing by race.

But the computer models — which were developed by a former top Center for Responsible Lending official — do not control for all credit risk variables. The former official, Eric Halperin, has long had it out for banks; yet he now serves as Justice’s lead prosecutor for “fair lending.”

6. The complaint fails to identify a single “victim” of lending discrimination; and, in fact, asks Wells to “assist in identifying allegedly aggrieved persons.” Nor does it cite any internal bank communications, such as emails, showing willful intent to discriminate against blacks or Latinos. (there’s more)

The state of the law is such that someone accused must weigh the ultimate cost of a court battle against the cost of whatever settlement is demanded. Why did Wells Fargo agree to settle, when the charges are preposterous? They said “Solely for the purpose of avoiding contested litigation with the Department of Justice.” And, Investors adds, avoiding brand damage from boycotts and negative media orchestrated by Holder. And the Community Organizer could call in his troops —ACORN and the Unions.

Eric Holder believes that his critics are motivated by racism, and an attack on him is meant as an attack on the president. He said in a speech at Columbia University the he “can’t imagine a time in which the need for more diversity would ever cease. Affirmative action has been an issue since segregation practices. The question is not when does it end, but when does it begin…When do people of color truly get the benefits to which they are entitled?”

Way back in February of 2009, Holder said the United States is “a nation of cowards.” “Though race-related issues continue to occupy a significant portion of our political discussion, and though there remain many unresolved racial issues in this nation, we, average Americans, simply do not talk enough with each other about things racial.”

At some point, all we can do for minorities is the compliment of treating them as no different than anybody else. Of not requiring special favors and special benefits, but having to earn the favors and benefits by their own efforts. We are, and remain human beings, subject to all the flaws of humanity, and there are lots of favors and benefits that depend on who you know and who you have done favors for. Oddly enough, that remains one of the most noticeable characteristics of the Obama administration. It has several names: crony capitalism, pay-offs, and “the Chicago style.”

How Do You Get Into the NAACP Convention to Hear Eric Holder Speak About The Racism of Requiring Voter ID?. by The Elephant's Child

You must present a government-issued photo ID such as a driver’s license.

When Mr. Holder spoke at the LBJ Library in Texas on the racism inherent in requiring voter ID, you had to show a government-issued photo ID such as a driver’s license, to get in.

When Michelle Obama does a book signing, you can’t get her to autograph her book unless you can present a government-issued photo ID such as a driver’s license.

To get into any District Courthouse in the country you must present a government-issued photo ID such as a driver’s license.

To set foot in Mr. Holder’s Justice Department in Washington D.C. you must present a government-issued photo ID such as a driver’s license.

The American people should be outraged that there are so many people in this country excluded from normal activity in society due to their lack of free government-issued photo ID. They cannot have a bank account. They cannot write checks. They cannot travel.

Liberals require photo ID for anything they think is important. However they are unconcerned with voter fraud. They encourage it, and resist recounts, resist removing ineligible voters from the rolls, including dead people, and encourage voter registration as late as the day of the election. They favor vote-by-mail ballots. and prefer that felons, illegal immigrants, and dead people vote. They are quite consistent.

(h/t: Powerline)

Requiring Picture ID to Vote? That’s Racist! by The Elephant's Child

Attorney General Eric Holder and his minions are incensed that some states would require voters to show a picture I.D. It is, they are quite sure that it is a return of the Jim Crow days when Southern Democrats tried to keep blacks from voting.

Fox reports today that President Barack Obama’s presidential campaign checked the identification of supporters attending Obama’s “framing” event at Cuyahoga Community College. Supporters picked up tickets beginning on Monday, but today, at the door, every ID was checked to match it with the name on the ticket. They did that for every person who came in.

Picture I.D, is also required at every Department of Justice building across the country. The Washington DC office requires picture ID. The grocery store does too, to pay by check.

Playing the Race Card, Encouraging Voter Fraud. by The Elephant's Child


Eric Holder, Attorney General of the United States, last Wednesday, speaking to the Council of Black Churches said: “”In my travels across this country, I’ve heard a consistent drumbeat of concern from citizens, who—often for the first time in their lives—now have reason to believe that we are failing to live up to one of our nation’s most noble ideals,” Voter ID laws and white discrimination, he added, mean that “some of the achievements that defined the civil rights movement now hang in the balance.”

The two most powerful men in America are black, the President and his Attorney General.  The last two Secretaries of State were black. Current CEOs of Fortune 500 companies like Darden Restaurants, Merck & CO, McDonalds, American Express,  TIAA-CREF, and Xerox are black, and other executives are black. Blacks are Governors, Mayors and members of Congress elected by both whites and blacks, in states that were once part of the Confederacy. They are Generals and members of Special Forces, Doctors, famous musicians and movie stars, writers and TV personalities and members of the dreaded 1%—the really rich. So the Attorney General is out suggesting that Jim Crow may be coming back?

The Supreme Court has held that Voter ID laws are not an undue burden under the Voting Rights Act and the Constitution.  You have to show picture ID to get into Attorney General Holder’s Justice Department.  You have to show ID to cash a check, fly on a commercial airplane, even people who never drive can get a picture ID from their state.

The Department of Justice has ordered the State of Florida to end its efforts to remove ineligible voters from the state’s voter rolls. States regularly remove from their voting rolls the deceased, non citizens, felons according to the laws of that state. According to the Miami Herald the department’s lead civil rights Attorney sent the state a detailed letter demanding that the state shut down it pursuit  and those “most likely to face being purged from the rolls” are “independent voters and Democrats.”  But no one is removed from the rolls until they are found to be ineligible.

There are declines in Hispanic voter registration -5% across the country, and black registration in down 7% across the country according to the Census Bureau. This may be due to the economy and people moving, mortgage foreclosures, may lead to relocating. No one has suffered more during this recession than minorities. Justice is filing voting-rights lawsuits to block voter ID laws. Voter eligibility is up to the states. Or some minorities may have lost their enthusiasm for this administration. The Attorney General is using his power to rouse racial antagonism, and that is just sad.

Obama Administration Seals Records of Murdered Border Patrol Agent. by The Elephant's Child

Amid Congressional calls for the resignation of Attorney General Eric Holder in connection with the Fast and Furious scandal that allowed firearms to be smuggled into Mexico, the Obama administration abruptly sealed court records containing alarming details about how Mexican drug smugglers murdered a U.S. Border Patrol agent with a gun connected to the failed federal experiment.

Information will now be kept from the public as well as the media.  The rifle used to kill federal agent Brian Terry last December is part of the scandalous Operation Fast and Furious. It was conducted by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms (BATF), an agency of the Justice Department, that forced gun dealers to sell thousands of weapons to known gun runners so they could eventually be traced to Mexican drug cartels.

Questions abound about this strange operation, and the associated Project Gunrunner.  The “most transparent” administration in history again is attempting to skirt the law.  If they can’t get what they want from Congress, they’ll just do it by executive order, or sealing the records, or some other way. This administration seems to have no respect for the Constitutional separation of powers.

Detainees Will Be Tried by Military Commission at Guantanamo. by The Elephant's Child

One of the strangest phenomena of recent years has been the Left’s attitude towards the prison at Guantanamo, and the terrorists imprisoned there.

There are difficult dilemmas involved in handling captured killers who refuse to obey the rules of war, let alone the rules of civilized society.  Find a way to let them go, try them and sentence them to prison terms or death, or detain them indefinitely.  Those are the choices. Over 25% of the detainees who have been released have returned to the battlefield, and those are only the ones we can identify.

In declared wars, as in World War II, when the war was over the POWs were released. And when will the war on terror end? Nazis Hermann Goering and Adolf Eichmann were sentenced to hang for their crimes. KSM and Ramzi bin al Shibh get three halal meals a day and hope that they will be released someday. As the Wall Street Journal said:

The Obama policy against military tribunals also devalues a legal wartime paradigm developed over centuries. This paradigm distinguishes between lawful combatants who wear a national uniform and obey the rules of war and unlawful combatants who do not. Without military justice, terrorists will know that, unless they are killed on the battlefield, the worst that can befall them is detention. We will have degraded the punishment for engaging in barbaric behavior against all civilized norms.

The President’s political mess over detainees is his own creation. To win the Democratic nomination, Mr. Obama sided with the anti-anti-terror left against Bush policies, only to discover the world is more dangerous and complicated than he imagined.

The president has pretended for two years that terrorism is a crime.  That collided with his responsibility to protect the nation. Attorney General Eric Holder’s attempt to try Khalid Sheikh Mohammed and other 9/11 criminal defendants on U.S. soil was halted by a Democrat controlled Congress and New York senators who refused to fund any move of suspects to American soil. These captured killers have no right to the constitutional protections that apply to citizens.

Attorney General Eric Holder exposed the strange thinking —or lack thereof—of the Left on Monday as related by the New York Times in an editorial:

The attorney general was all scowls yesterday when, according to a poignant New York Times editorial, “Mr. Holder’s dream . . . crumbled.” The somnolent fantasy in question was the “federal court trial for the self-professed mastermind of Sept. 11 attacks, Khalid Shaikh Mohammed,” which Holder “described . . . as ‘the defining event of my time as attorney general,’ ” although it did not happen and will not happen.How fitting it would have been to put the plot’s architect on trial a few blocks from the site of the World Trade Center, to force him to submit to the justice of a dozen chosen New Yorkers, to demonstrate to the world that we will not allow fear of terrorism to alter our rule of law.

So KSM is presumed guilty,  he is forced to “submit to the justice” of a dozen chosen New Yorkers.  The purpose is to “demonstrate to the world” so the proceeding is to be a show trial.  The Times assumes that the world would be impressed by “our rule of law.” The piece was titled “Cowardice Blocks the 9/11 Trial.  Apparently the idea is that Americans are cowards to fear KSM when there are home-grown mass murderers.  Strange thinking.

Guantanamo was the best solution available for a difficult problem. Military commissions are the proper form of trial, and they should be conducted at Gitmo, the model prison facility.  Bush was right.

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