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Judicial Watch obtains Vaugn Index of Fast and Furious documents

They have a press release with information about the index, and here's the index itself. Obama is claiming executive privilege over approximately 15,000 documents.

2014-10-23 16:53:35.0 by TriggerFinger. Comments [Tweet]

DC police claim cell phone surveillance gear unused for 6 years

Newly released documents definitively show that local law enforcement in Washington, DC, possessed a cellular surveillance system—commonly known as a "stingray"—since 2003. However, these stingrays literally sat unused in a police vault for six years until officers were trained on the devices in early 2009.

I don't believe those devices sat unused and gathering dust for 6 years before someone found the time to train officers to use them. I believe that those devices were in active and entirely undocumented use from the moment they were acquired, and the use was simply not tracked in any documentation.

2014-10-23 11:08:42.0 by TriggerFinger. Comments [Tweet]

The embarrassing elephant in the room of online harassment

Twenty-seven percent of all of those who responded to the survey said they had been called offensive names. As many as 22 percent said someone had tried to "purposefully" embarrass them. Others said they felt threatened, were stalked, or sexually harassed.

If you took a survey and asked people who had been called offensive names, purposefully embarrassed, or "felt" threatened in real life, getting only 27% to say yes to that question would be a tremendous victory. That this is considered bad news somehow is only because of the desperate spin of the social justice warriors, who mostly come from an environment almost completely devoid of real threats.

2014-10-23 10:08:42.0 by TriggerFinger. Comments [Tweet]

Virginia police have secret stash of phone records

The database, which affects unknown numbers of people, contains phone records that at least five police agencies in southeast Virginia have been collecting since 2012 and sharing with one another with little oversight. Some of the data appears to have been obtained by police from telecoms using only a subpoena, rather than a court order or probable-cause warrant. Other information in the database comes from mobile phones seized from suspects during an arrest.

As far as I can tell, it's illegal on multiple counts. It includes call records, and data gathered from seized phones -- including those from people merely stopped, not charged or convicted of crimes -- but most importantly it is a shared database that includes basically all the information law enforcement can extract from a seized phone.

In short, it's the state version of the NSA.

2014-10-23 09:08:42.0 by TriggerFinger. Comments [Tweet]

Bill Quick gets it right on Ebola

So, here’s the bottom line: The CDC is right about one thing: As long as Ebola is burning out of control in Africa, the likelihood that active cases of it will be exported from there to here remains high. We seem to have beaten back the first of such exports. Those who worship at the altar of western superiority, who advise us that we know all about Ebola and how to stop it, and that we should therefore not worry, are, because of this, more or less ensuring a continuation of the mindset that the public health system doesn’t really need to step up its game, because, after all, Western White People.

And that is a recipe for utter disaster.

Read the whole thing.

It's not that we are panicking about Ebola itself. It's that our government's response has been so completely naive, combined with the obvious fact that Ebola can become a civilization-destroying epidemic if it is not swiftly contained.

I wouldn't be worried if I trusted the Center for Disease Control to do its job and manage the swift and strict containment necessary. But the evidence has demonstrated that the CDC cannot be trusted to do so effectively.

2014-10-22 17:08:42.0 by TriggerFinger. Comments [Tweet]

O'Keefe has new undercover videos on vote fraud

Today, he is releasing some new undercover footage that raises disturbing questions about ballot integrity in Colorado, the site of fiercely contested races for the U.S. Senate, the U.S. House, and the governorship. When he raised the issue of filling out some of the unused ballots that are mailed to every household in the state this month, he was told by Meredith Hicks, the director of Work for Progress, a liberal group funded by Democratic Super PACS.: “That is not even like lying or something, if someone throws out a ballot, like if you want to fill it out you should do it.” She then brazenly offered O’Keefe, disguised as a middle-aged college instructor, a job with her group.

If they don't cheat, they can't win. So they cheat very, very vigorously.

2014-10-22 16:08:42.0 by TriggerFinger. Comments [Tweet]

Government lives are more valuable than your lives

If you want to carry a gun in DC, there is now a legal procedure in place for you to do so:

Under the emergency legislation, applicants will need to have "good reason to fear injury to his or her person or property" or "any other proper reason for carrying a pistol."

In practice, under these sorts of laws, that means you have to be a politician, a public figure, a police officer, or make large contributions to a politician's campaign fund. But don't bother applying; this is emergency legislation passed only under court order, and before the 90 days are up the city will no doubt have lost your application and you will need to reapply under the new rules, whatever those are.

But never fear, your politicians and dignitaries are safe:

Firearms still cannot be carried into D.C. schools, hospitals, government buildings, public transportation vehicles, establishments that serve alcohol, stadiums or arenas, or within 1,000 feet of a dignitary under police protection.

Perhaps the city can fence off a small "concealed carry zone" where they guarantee you can legally carry your concealed firearm to protect yourself without being at risk of sudden visits from dignitaries in motorcades.

2014-10-22 15:08:42.0 by TriggerFinger. Comments [Tweet]

Shootings in Canada may be terror attacks

Multiple attacks, multiple attackers, one of whom had been monitored by their anti-terrorism task force for months, and on the day that Canada was set to bestow honorary citizenship on a critic of Islam from Pakistan.

Sure, it could be a coincidence. But that's not the way I would bet.

Note that adding the attacker's name to a list and "monitoring" him did not stop him from committing his attack. Now, imagine adding the name of every gun owner to a (much longer) list and "monitoring" them. Will that stop them from using their guns to attack people if they are so inclined?

Of course not.

2014-10-22 14:08:42.0 by TriggerFinger. Comments [Tweet]

More on Gamergate, CCW, and Anita Sarkeesian's canceled speech

Larry Correia fisks an editorial in the Deseret News.

With someone of his knowledge and expertise on this issue against a random journalist, it's like shooting fish in a barrel.

2014-10-22 13:08:42.0 by TriggerFinger. Comments [Tweet]

Incoming Liberian national with fever hospitalized

They are treating him as if he is a confirmed Ebola case, which is smart, since he is coming from Liberia and landed with a fever. He's not a confirmed case yet, though. The main thing this points out is how stupid it was for us to wait this long to put even basic controls in place.

How many potential cases slipped through before we caught this one? And let's hope they were only potential cases.

2014-10-22 12:08:42.0 by TriggerFinger. Comments [Tweet]

Florida court rules warrant required for cell phone location tracking

The application did not seek authority—or provide facts establishing probable cause—to track the location of Tracey’s cell phone in either historical or real time; and the order did not ask for access to real time cell site location information. For some unexplained reason, the cell phone information given to officers did include real time cell site location information on Tracey’s cell phone, which the officers then used to track him.

This is a welcome ruling; we need the courts to put some teeth into the warrant requirement for cellphone tracking.

2014-10-22 11:08:42.0 by TriggerFinger. Comments [Tweet]

Something rotten in Wisconsin

Observers like Ingold do their work alongside special voting deputies, or SVDs, paid employees who assist voters, such as those at nursing homes, cast their absentee ballots. While they take an oath to remain nonpartisan, the vast majority of SVDs in Milwaukee County are Democrats, perhaps not surprising in a deep blue urban county.

Occasionally you see news stories about these SVDs "assisting" people with mental disabilities or dementia to vote in the approved Democrat way. Being an election observer means you are supposed to spot and stop that sort of thing. But in this case, it got Ingold banned from observing elections and referred to a prosecutor.

2014-10-22 10:08:42.0 by TriggerFinger. Comments [Tweet]

Obama seething about poor performance of his own administration

He's pulled this move so many times before that people shorthand it as the "Limbaugh Theorem." The idea is that Obama's political tactic for his many, many failures is to run against his own government, as if he were an outsider, and external critic, rather than the man who is in charge of each and every bureaucracy. And now he's doing that with the CDC's response to ebola, Tom McGuire notes.

Someone needs to remind him that he is in charge of the government he is criticizing.

2014-10-22 09:08:42.0 by TriggerFinger. Comments [Tweet]

Supreme Court to take new gun case

The U.S. Supreme Court agreed on Monday to decide whether a Florida man convicted on drug charges and forced to give up his firearms under federal law could sell the guns or transfer ownership to his wife or a friend.

I suspect that this is only a matter coming before the courts because the individual, a Border Patrol agent, surrendered his firearms to law enforcement directly rather than giving them to a friend (outside of his home) when first charged. It's not a great case for this particular aspect of law, but it could be a lot worse. My gut feeling on this is that we'll get a decision allowing prohibited persons to sell or transfer their firearm collections upon or shortly after conviction, since firearms can be assets with significant financial value and requiring them to be sold before conviction would impose a significant penalty on those found innocent. Transferring the firearms out of immediate physical possession should be sufficient to address safety concerns.

2014-10-21 16:08:42.0 by TriggerFinger. Comments [Tweet]

Judicial Watch source claims NAACP encouraging voter confusion

According to a letter from a lawyer for the State of North Carolina to the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP), a speaker at a recent NAACP conference in North Carolina urged audience members to mislead the NAACP’s own members into believing they do not need to register to vote in advance, or that they do not need to vote at their assigned polling place. Why? The letter alleges: To create confusion and animosity during the upcoming mid-term elections in North Carolina, and to use the evidence of that confusion in the ongoing litigation between Eric Holder’s Justice Department and North Carolina and to show that North Carolina’s election integrity laws are discriminatory.

Read the whole thing.

2014-10-21 15:08:42.0 by TriggerFinger. Comments [Tweet]

Ballot box stuffing caught on tape

An Arizona county party official said he saw a man stuffing “hundreds” of ballots into the ballot box and later told a local news outlet the entire incident was caught on surveillance video.

“A person wearing a Citizens for a Better Arizona T-shirt dropped a large box of hundreds of early ballots on the table and started stuffing the ballot box as I watched in amazement,” said A.J. LaFaro, chairman of the Maricopa County Republican Party.

This is not a small scale operation. Hundreds of ballots were involved in just this one person and trip. Who knows what else is going on? I suspect this sort of thing is why Democrats historically have a significant advantage in early voting results.

Video of the incident below the fold.

(Read More...)

2014-10-21 14:08:42.0 by TriggerFinger. Comments [Tweet]

Why do Democrats oppose voter ID laws?

An ex-DOJ Civil Rights lawyer explains:

1. Opposition to Voter ID Is a Base-Mobilization Tool.
2. Voter ID Opponents Have the Soft Bigotry of Low Expectations.
3. They Need Money.

None of those reasons are wrong. But there is a fourth reason: they can't win unless they cheat.

2014-10-21 13:08:42.0 by TriggerFinger. Comments [Tweet]

Lawsuit falls apart as ex-DOJ counsel allege fraud and deception

But now two former DOJ lawyers in the office that prosecuted the action corroborate Sierra Pacific’s claim that the DOJ’s case was based on fraud and deception. Using information provided by these lawyers, Sierra Pacific told the federal court that “the United States presented false evidence to the Defendants and the Court [and] advanced arguments to the Court premised on that false evidence or for which material evidence had been withheld.”

Going after the deepest pockets available is a common tactic in a civil lawsuit. We expect our government to be more interested in justice than pocketing a cash settlement based on fraud, however.

2014-10-21 12:08:42.0 by TriggerFinger. Comments [Tweet]

National Science Foundation funds big brother research project Truthy

If you take to Twitter to express your views on a hot-button issue, does the government have an interest in deciding whether you are spreading “misinformation’’? If you tweet your support for a candidate in the November elections, should taxpayer money be used to monitor your speech and evaluate your “partisanship’’?

Read the whole thing.

2014-10-21 11:08:42.0 by TriggerFinger. Comments [Tweet]

Supreme Court may hear disparate impact case

The Supreme Court has granted the state of Texas a petition for certiorari disputing the use of disparate impact to determine discrimination in housing after a civil-rights group sued its housing department. Such pressure can force lenders to water down underwriting standards and take on more risk, since "down-payment requirements, debt-to-income requirements, loan-to-value requirements, and other neutral, risk-based underwriting requirements can all affect various racial and ethnic groups differently," ABA added.

Doesn't anyone remember that these insane credit policies have already caused a housing crisis and economic disaster that we have yet to fully recover from? Hopefully the Supreme Court does. The roots of this go back well before the Obama administration, though.

2014-10-21 10:08:42.0 by TriggerFinger. Comments [Tweet]

Two more Tea Party groups approved, but it took 4 years

Today, two more conservative groups received approval of their tax-exempt applications. Laurens County Tea Party of Laurens, South Carolina and Allen Area Patriots from Frisco, TX, both seeking 501(c)(4) status, were just approved.

Laurens County Tea Party and Allen Area Patriots both applied for tax-exemption in July of 2010. It took the IRS more than four years to review their applications and approve these groups.

Of our 41 clients, 28 have now been approved, and seven groups are still awaiting approval. One of these seven groups, Albuquerque Tea Party is less than two months away from “celebrating” five years since they originally applied for tax-exemption. To date, they have still not been approved.

This is being sold as a victory, but these two groups have been prevented from taking an active role in the 2010, 2012, and 2014 election cycles, as have many of the other groups. The remaining 7, should they be approved eventually, have a similar but even greater disadvantage.

For groups that were formed in response to the irresponsible spending of presidents Bush and Obama, denying them the ability to operate as tax exempt educational non-profits until both the presidents they opposed are out of office is a victory for censorship.

2014-10-21 09:08:42.0 by TriggerFinger. Comments [Tweet]

21 day incubation period ends for many people on quarantine

So they are going to stop quarantining the people on Duncan's high-risk list who don't already show symptoms:

The 21-day monitoring period ended Sunday and Monday for nearly all the roughly 50 people. It concludes as federal health officials are tightening the guidelines for the protective gear worn by health care workers treating Ebola patients.

But Ebola can incubate for longer than that:

In the research, Haas found that according to statistics from the recent outbreak in West Africa— where the disease has run rampant in Sierra Leone, Liberia and Guinea since March— as well as in 1995 in Congo, there’s up to a 12 percent chance that someone could be infected after the 21-day incubation period. The range of deviation from the incubation period was between .1 and 12 percent during those outbreaks. In other words, from 0.1 to 12 percent of the time, an individual case will have a greater incubation time than 21 days.

They may be past the point of greatest risk, but they are not free of risk.

2014-10-20 18:08:42.0 by TriggerFinger. Comments [Tweet]

Another end run around the Constitution

No one knows if the Obama administration will manage in the next five weeks to strike what many in the White House consider the most important foreign policy deal of his presidency: an accord with Iran that would forestall its ability to make a nuclear weapon. But the White House has made one significant decision: If agreement is reached, President Obama will do everything in his power to avoid letting Congress vote on it.

The Senate must ratify treaties before they carry any legal force. If Obama bypasses that procedure and "suspends" sanctions on Iran in order to avoid asking Congress to vote to lift those sanctions (when Congress would likely refuse to lift them), he will be acting without legal authority.

It's a pity Congress doesn't have the gumption to actually stop him.

2014-10-20 17:08:42.0 by TriggerFinger. Comments [Tweet]

Why gun owners don't like mental health checks

So…to recap: In New York state, a person can be deprived of one of the most basic of the Constitutionally-guaranteed rights, and his property confiscated by the state, on the word of a witch-doctor and a bureaucrat, with no judicial intervention required. And apparently the bureaucrat is in reality out of the picture. Good to know.

Mandatory reporting by first responders combined with ineffective review by a civil servant results in basically no due process of law.

If you are going to deny a fundamental right, you need to have a trial and an adversarial process that respects the rights of the accused.

2014-10-20 16:08:42.0 by TriggerFinger. Comments [Tweet]

Supreme Court allows Texas voter ID law in upcoming elections

The U.S. Supreme Court this morning decided that Texas can continue enforcing its controversial voter identification law for the upcoming Nov. 4 midterm elections. This in spite of challenges by the U.S. Dept. of Justice. There was no explanation of the ruling provided from the court’s majority. Dissenting were Justices Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Sonia Sotomayor and Elena Kagan.

Ginsburg seems to think that requiring an ID to vote is a poll tax and risks denying the right to vote to hundreds of thousands of people in just one state.

That's frankly absurd. And each time I see an absurd argument like that deployed to try to block voter ID, it makes me wonder why the left is so desperate to save vote fraud.

And then I remember that they can't win elections without it.

2014-10-20 15:08:42.0 by TriggerFinger. Comments [Tweet]

Obama announces plan to allow 100K Haitian immigrants into US

There are many questions left unanswered. Which countries are next on President Obama’s list? Will there by medical screenings before entry? Will work permits be granted automatically? How will this affect American workers? The President’s continued push to circumvent Congressional authority and ignore the rule of law sets a bad precedent for the future.

He's doing this before the elections, and the only way that makes sense to me is that he's doing it as a proof-of-good-faith for executive action on actual amnesty for those here illegally after the election. This is Obama's way of showing the illegal immigrant lobby that he's serious, and he probably hopes to convince them to vote (also illegally) for him in the midterms.

The wheels are also in motion to grant work permits and up to 9 million identification cards.

The evidence is clear. Obama has decided that The People do not measure up to his ideals, and so he is preparing a fundamental transformation into a new People of which he can approve.

2014-10-20 14:08:42.0 by TriggerFinger. Comments [Tweet]

Pastors told to perform same-sex weddings on pain of jail and fines

I'm not necessarily opposed to same-sex marriage if everyone involved is a consenting adult:

City officials told Donald Knapp that he and his wife Evelyn, both ordained ministers who run Hitching Post Wedding Chapel, are required to perform such ceremonies or face months in jail and/or thousands of dollars in fines. The city claims its “non-discrimination” ordinance requires the Knapps to perform same-sex wedding ceremonies now that the courts have overridden Idaho’s voter-approved constitutional amendment that affirmed marriage as the union of a man and a woman.

But that includes the people officiating over the wedding, the people baking the wedding cake, and the people who own the venue.

Note here that a judge has somehow overturned an amendment to the state constitution in order to institute gay marriage. The legislature has spoken. The people have spoken. And the courts think they can ignore both and issue a ruling that will compel people to act against their religious beliefs and affirm something to which they are religiously opposed.

I oppose that.

2014-10-20 13:08:42.0 by TriggerFinger. Comments [Tweet]

Libertarians and Quarantine

SaysUncle asks how that works. The comments answer the question pretty well, but I wanted to add my take and an even more interesting question.

First, I see people with dangerous diseases as active threats to the people around them. If you have Ebola, and you are out in public, you are a threat to those around you and they are allowed to respond with force, preferably a mandatory and monitored quarantine, but escalating if necessary. That doesn't mean you can be held incommunicado or denied other rights.

The more interesting question for me is what do you do about the asymptomatic carrier case? Supposedly a very small percentage of people who catch Ebola never show symptoms, but are contagious and can spread the disease. (No, I have no idea how that works medically). Are these people basically doomed to life in quarantine?

2014-10-20 12:08:42.0 by TriggerFinger. Comments [Tweet]

Testimoney on DC's proposed concealed carry law

It's one of the litigants in Heller and Palmer, and he does an excellent job explaining why "may someday eventually possibly consider issuing a license to someone we really like" doesn't respect anyone's second amendment rights. Instead, it turns those rights into a privilege held by those with political connections.

2014-10-20 11:08:42.0 by TriggerFinger. Comments [Tweet]

International agreements seeking to invade privacy to enforce copyright

Draft rules under negotiation would impose on Internet service providers a legal obligation to fight against online copyright infringement. This obligation is embodied in several provisions, which would require, for example, ISPs to communicate to their users any supposed infringement committed through their accounts, take down from the Internet information that supposedly infringes on copyright, and collect information that allows identification of users that supposedly have infringed the law.

If we actually had two political parties instead of one ruling class, one of the parties would be opposing this stuff.

2014-10-20 10:08:42.0 by TriggerFinger. Comments [Tweet]

Worst-Case scenarios

Or, 6 reasons why the authorities don't really have everything under control.

2014-10-20 09:08:42.0 by TriggerFinger. Comments [Tweet]

Anti-Obamacare video producer audited by IRS

If I remember correctly, the IRS inspector general's targeting report found that people associated with conservative/tea party groups had a chance of being audited roughly 10 times that of the general population.

2014-10-19 16:08:42.0 by TriggerFinger. Comments [Tweet]

What's the problem with money in politics?

2014-10-19 16:07:40.0 by TriggerFinger. Comments [Tweet]

Hazmat crews respond to Houston death

A woman died Thursday night after recently traveling to Nigeria. Crews responded to the scene in hazmat suits. Again, it may be a false alarm -- Nigeria has not reported an Ebola case for more than 21 days -- but we know Ebola can incubate for significantly longer than that in some unusual cases, and if this person died of Ebola, we can tack on her own incubation period to that as well some amount of time showing symptoms before dying.

2014-10-18 18:04:56.0 by TriggerFinger. Comments [Tweet]

Oregon Senator Merkley linked to IRS targeting

If you live in Oregon, you can vote him out in a few weeks.

2014-10-18 15:08:42.0 by TriggerFinger. Comments [Tweet]

Kim's Story

2014-10-18 09:08:42.0 by TriggerFinger. Comments [Tweet]

Another potential Ebola patient in Dallas

They screened positive (ie, had symptoms and risk factors, which could be travel to West Africa or contact with existing Ebola patients) but have not yet gotten test results.

Might be a false alarm. Might not be.

2014-10-17 15:27:42.0 by TriggerFinger. Comments [Tweet]

Obama plans to let foreign Ebola patients into US for treatment

Judicial Watch has an excellent track record for accurately exposing information the Obama administration wants kept quiet, but this is their biggest scoop yet:

Judicial Watch has learned that the Obama administration is actively formulating plans to admit Ebola-infected non-U.S. citizens into the United States for treatment. Specifically, the goal of the administration is to bring Ebola patients into the United States for treatment within the first days of diagnosis.

It is unclear who would bear the high costs of transporting and treating non-citizen Ebola patients. The plans include special waivers of laws and regulations that ban the admission of non-citizens with a communicable disease as dangerous as Ebola.

One source tells us that the Obama administration is keeping this plan secret from Congress. The source is concerned that the proposal is illegal; endangers the public health and welfare; and should require the approval of Congress.

Quoting the whole thing, because BOMBSHELL NEWS. Congress must act to block this immediately.

2014-10-17 15:02:44.0 by TriggerFinger. Comments [Tweet]

Possible three-way race shaping up in South Dakota

If Pressler, a former Republican Senator currently running as an independent, can win a three way race he will change the political calculus for 2016 nationwide.

2014-10-17 14:08:42.0 by TriggerFinger. Comments [Tweet]

Prosecutors claim stand-your-ground does not apply to domestic violence

In their hatred for SYG, South Carolina Prosecutors have no qualms in sending Women’s Rights 40 years in the past. To demand that a woman should sustain injury or death trying to retreat from an abusive partner because your butt is full of legal boils against a law that protects the innocent and tie your hands when you are trying to be an idiot is beyond contempt.

Why should anyone defending themselves be required to retreat from their home?

2014-10-17 13:08:42.0 by TriggerFinger. Comments [Tweet]

Fast and Furious gun linked to criminal attack that injured two victims

Judicial Watch today announced that, based on information uncovered through a Judicial Watch public records lawsuit against the City of Phoenix, the U.S. Congress has confirmed that an AK 47 rifle used in a July 29, 2013, gang-style assault on an apartment building that left two people wounded was part of the Obama Department of Justice (DOJ) Operation Fast and Furious gunrunning program.

Read the whole thing, and mark October 22nd on your calendar, because that's when the list of documents withheld from the public under Holder's claim of executive privilege will be released.

Sharyl Attkisson has leaked documents.

UPDATE: Breitbart is reporting that Holder's top deputy has resigned due to the leaked Fast and Furious documents.

2014-10-17 12:08:42.0 by TriggerFinger. Comments [Tweet]

Most transparent administration ever is also most prosecutorial of leaks

Up until Obama's "most transparent administration", and throughout the entire history of the USA, national security leakers had received a total of 24 months of jail time. There are many more cases pending.

More jail time for leaks than all previous administrations combined. Also, more deficit spending than all previous administrations combined. This has certainly been a historic presidency... And there are two years left.

2014-10-17 11:08:42.0 by TriggerFinger. Comments [Tweet]

It's time for the CDC director to resign

A man on a flight from Nigeria to New York died after vomiting in his seat. They say he died of a heart attack, but that's certainly one way Ebola can kill you. The CDC examined the body on the scene and said that the person did not have Ebola... but the test takes hours to run, not counting transport time to a lab.

Flights from Ebola-stricken countries have not been banned, and the CDC director will not say if the directive to keep the flights coming came from the White House. Idiots with clipboards but no protective gear fly with known Ebola patients.

The second Texas nurse with Ebola is now known to have been ill earlier than first suspected, adding at least 138 people to the list of potential carriers. The airline continued to fly the potentially contaminated plane, bringing the total number of potentially exposed passengers to 800. And there appears to be an unidentified mystery patient being treated at the same hospital the nurse was just transported to.

Some health care workers exposed to Ebola treating Duncan are still working. The President has already sent 3000 soldiers to Africa, where they will be exposed to Ebola patients, and is now calling up the reserves for the same mission. The person who handled Patient Zero's blood samples for testing is showing Ebola symptoms while on a cruise ship! Her husband is also on the cruise, and also showing symptoms. There are almost five thousand people on that ship, probably many of them Americans who will return from their vacations to widely dispersed locations.

This is insane.

The Obama administration has not followed the CDC recommendations on Ebola from 2008.

CNN has published a editorial calling for the CDC director to resign, as are some Republican House members.

2014-10-17 10:08:42.0 by TriggerFinger. Comments [Tweet]

Reminder: CDC is spending money on gun control again

Michelle Malkin:

Video games and TV violence. At Obama’s behest, in the wake of high-profile school shootings, the CDC scored $10 million last year to study violent video games and media images, as well as to assess “existing strategies for preventing gun violence and identifying the most pressing research questions, with the greatest potential public health impact.” Whatever that means. Why is this the CDC’s business?

She links to (but the link is broken) the White House plan to resurrect gun control as an important issue, which includes this specific language:

Conduct research on the causes and prevention of gun violence, including links between video games, media images, and violence: The President is issuing a Presidential Memorandum directing the Centers for Disease Control and scientific agencies to conduct research into the causes and prevention of gun violence. It is based on legal analysis that concludes such research is not prohibited by any appropriations language. The CDC will start immediately by assessing existing strategies for preventing gun violence and identifying the most pressing research questions, with the greatest potential public health impact. And the Administration is calling on Congress to provide $10 million for the CDC to conduct further research, including investigating the relationship between video games, media images, and violence.

This is in violation of the Congressional ban on the CDC spending money on gun control advocacy, and now it looks really, really stupid, because the Center for Disease Control is unable to do it's job of controlling infectious and deadly diseases.

They had one job.

2014-10-17 09:08:42.0 by TriggerFinger. Comments [Tweet]

But Bush lied about WMD!

Chemical weapons produced at the Al Muthanna facility, which Isis today seized, are believed to have included mustard gas, Sarin, Tabun, and VX.

Because, of course, Iraq DID have WMD. Even the New York Times admits it now. The question was whether he had nukes (probably not), a nuclear program (active or not), or the capacity to reactivate his known chemical weapons program on short notice (probably).

I've recently shared my office at work with an intern whose living memories barely reach back to the beginning of the Second Iraq War (never mind the First Iraq War). The only thing most people know about the Second Iraq War is that "Bush lied, people died." They don't know why we went in (other than "something about 9/11") or what conditions were like there before we did. If they even know there was a war in Iraq before this one, they know it as a paragraph in a history book that the teacher skipped.

Here is some information about what our soldiers found in Iraq:

From 2004 to 2011, American and American-trained Iraqi troops repeatedly encountered, and on at least six occasions were wounded by, chemical weapons remaining from years earlier in Saddam Hussein’s rule... In all, American troops secretly reported finding roughly 5,000 chemical warheads, shells or aviation bombs, according to interviews with dozens of participants, Iraqi and American officials, and heavily redacted intelligence documents obtained under the Freedom of Information Act.

So, yes, Iraq had weapons of mass destruction. Chemical weapons, which were -- for whatever reason -- not disclosed to the public once found. It would be amusing, were it not so serious, to watch the New York Times attacking President Bush for not disclosing the fact that he found weapons of mass destruction in Iraq after they spent years attacking Bush for lying about weapons of mass destruction in Iraq.

I was going to lay out why we went to war in Iraq in this post, but Ace of Spaces beat me to it.

It's scary that there are voting-age people today who don't remember these things.

2014-10-16 15:08:42.0 by TriggerFinger. Comments [Tweet]

Cato disappoints me on birth control mandates

Cato is posting an argument about religion and government that fails to handle the opposing arguments with even a modicum of respect or honesty. This both offends and disappoints me, so I feel I must respond. This post is responding to a variety of claims related to birth control mandates and religious exemptions thereto.

(Read More...)

2014-10-16 14:08:42.0 by TriggerFinger. Comments [Tweet]

The proper role of the US military

This isn't quite right:

President Obola’s basic thesis is that the US military should be a charitable organization, sacrificing itself to save lives in foreign countries. Most Americans, on the other hand, think that the proper role of the military is to sacrifice itself to save American lives.

I think the proper role of the US military is to make the other guy sacrifice himself trying and failing to take American lives.

2014-10-16 10:08:42.0 by TriggerFinger. Comments [Tweet]

Moms Demand still lying about guns

This is astoundingly, willfully, egregiously dishonest. Every single thing that Dmitry Smirnov did was already flatly illegal. He didn’t utilize any “loopholes”; he didn’t benefit from any ambiguities or exceptions in the law; he wasn’t freed up by a lack of “common sense” prohibitions. He just broke the existing rules.

Laws don't stop people from breaking them. Nothing can do that. Laws allow us to punish people after the fact.

2014-10-16 09:08:42.0 by TriggerFinger. Comments [Tweet]

A second Texas healthcare worker with Ebola

Earlier today, the Texas Department of State Health Services announced that a second healthcare worker had tested positive for Ebola virus infection. The individual had also worked at Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital and cared for the first person diagnosed within the US, Thomas Eric Duncan. The fact that two caregivers were infected gives credence to suggestions that the hospital lacked either sufficient procedures to prevent contamination, or sufficient training in them.

This is the problem inherent in the 76-to-1 ratio I talked about yesterday. Each person coming into contact with the Ebola patient is at risk of infection, whether by insufficient protocol measures or error following the protocol (and for practical purposes, both). Putting 76 people at risk to maybe save one is not sustainable risk. That part of the protocol needs to be fixed, pronto.

Oh, and she flew to Cleveland and back the day before showing symptoms.

2014-10-15 15:08:42.0 by TriggerFinger. Comments [Tweet]

Obama cancels political travel to deal with Ebola

AP is reporting it, so I won't bother quoting.

I don't think one more healthcare worker testing positive is enough to get Obama off his political game. I think there are more suspected cases that aren't being announced.

2014-10-15 14:15:29.0 by TriggerFinger. Comments [Tweet]
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