Paul Revere by Cyrus Dallin, North End, Boston

~~~

~~~

Friday, May 17, 2013

CBS IS REPORTING THAT GOP ALTERED WHITE HOUSE EMAILS

CONFIRMED: 


GOP Sources Altered Benghazi E-Mails To Suggest A Cover-Up, Reporter Confirms


One day after The White House released 100 pages of Benghazi emails, a report has surfaced alleging that Republicans released a set with altered text. 

 CBS News reported Thursday that leaked versions sent out by the GOP last Friday had visible differences than Wednesday's official batch. Two correspondences that were singled out in the report came from National Security Adviser Ben Rhodes and State Department Spokeswoman Victoria Nuland. 

 The GOP version of Rhodes' comment, according to CBS News: "We must make sure that the talking points reflect all agency equities, including those of the State Department, and we don't want to undermine the FBI investigation." 

 The White House email: "We need to resolve this in a way that respects all of the relevant equities, particularly the investigation." 

 The GOP version of Nuland's comment, according to CBS News: The penultimate point is a paragraph talking about all the previous warnings provided by the Agency (CIA) about al-Qaeda's presence and activities of al-Qaeda." 

 The White House email: "The penultimate point could be abused by members to beat the State Department for not paying attention to Agency warnings." 

The news parallels a Tuesday CNN report which initially introduced the contradiction between what was revealed in a White House Benghazi email version, versus what was reported in media outlets. 

On Monday, Mother Jones noted that the Republicans' interim report included the correct version of the emails, signaling that more malice and less incompetence may have been at play with the alleged alterations. 

 In that April interim report on Benghazi (which Buck noted), the House Republicans cited these emails (in footnotes 56 and 57) to note an important point: 

"State Department emails reveal senior officials had 'serious concerns' about the talking points, because Members of Congress might attack the State Department for 'not paying attention to Agency warnings' about the growing threat in Benghazi." 

Despite the White House's Wednesday move to release emails, Republicans continued to call for more information on Thursday. 

 "While these hundred are good and they shed light on what happened, we have nearly 25,000 that they haven't released," Rep. Jason Chaffetz (R-Utah) told Fox News on Thursday.

Also this from Polk Award winning journalist, Josh Marshall of Talking Points Memo:




More on ABC's erroneous report on emails:


"...on Tuesday of this week, CNN’s Jake Tapper published the entirety of the White House email, which showed ABC’s take on the story to be completely false."


From the Department of Moronic GOP pundits comes this piece of gobshite from "Our Lady of the Magic Dolphins," Peggy Noonan.  She really ought to keep away from the gin:

"
We are in the midst of the worst Washington scandal since Watergate."


Andrew Sullivan asks:


"Can she actually believe this? Has this president broken the law, lied under oath, or authorized war crimes? 

Has he traded arms for hostages with Iran? 

Has he knowingly sent his cabinet out to tell lies about his sex life? 

Has he sat by idly as an American city was destroyed by a hurricane? 

Has he started a war with no planning for an occupation? 

Has he started a war based on a lie, and destroyed the US’ credibility and moral standing while he was at it, leaving nothing but a smoldering and now rekindled civil sectarian war? 

 So far as I can tell, this president has done nothing illegal, unethical or even wrong." 


So in the face of all this hanky-panky and dishonesty by the GOP in trying to alter the substance of the WH emails--a terrible scandal in itself--what did the House do yesterday?  It voted for the 38th time to repeal the ACA.  A total and complete waste of taxpayers' money and nothing more than another sop to throw at their base.  Another scandal.  But IOKIYAR.

It's become apparent to the American people that the GOP has overreached on these issues and are more interested in hanging a scandal around this president's neck than in getting to the truth.

No wonder people are turned off by politics and government.

This is for those poop-flinging conservatives who were so eager to call Mr. Obama "Nixonian."  Congratulations on revealing your inner chimpanzee:



The Washington Post editorial board chimes in with probably the best description of the modern GOP - "small-minded, hyperpartisan and foolish": "This is one of those Washington dust-ups where the actual facts don’t seem to matter much to the scandal mongers. [...] By focusing on the phony issue of the talking points, Republicans are missing the opportunity to press for needed reforms at State and a more active U.S. policy in the Middle East. They should also be spurring a sluggish FBI investigation to determine who really organized and led the attacks in Benghazi; it has yet to be established whether they were ordered by local jihadists, terrorists linked to al-Qaeda or someone else, and whether they were planned because of the Sept. 11 anniversary or inspired by the events in Cairo. Instead, with their bigger-than-Watergate rhetoric, the GOP’s scandal-pushers are making themselves look small-minded, hyperpartisan and foolish." 

The Los Angeles Times editorial board:
  "On Monday, an exasperated Obama, referring to the emails, said: "There's no 'there' there." The same is true of the allegation of a broader Benghazi coverup. And now that we know, let's move on." 


Scot Lehigh at The Boston Globe:
Watergate? Nixonian? Impeachment?
Please. Someone get the smelling salts. [...]
[C]harges of a Benghazi coverup don’t pass the evidence test. Comparisons to Nixon are idiotic. And it’s the height of partisan absurdity to suggest that anything we’ve seen in these so-called scandals could justify impeachment.

39 comments:

Always On Watch said...

The vast majority of politicians of ANY political party = snakes. To believe otherwise is too idealistic, IMO.

Anonymous said...

So the only ones left to be reasonable on this, is the Democrats? But due to partisanship, Democrats wouldn't investigate Obama, if he killed someone.

Shaw Kenawe said...

Anonymous, that's ridiculous.

You appear to be bitterly disappointed that these unfortunate incidences aren't going to destroy Mr. Obama's presidency.

Hard cheese, old chap.

skudrunner said...

This Is No Ordinary Scandal
Political abuse of the IRS threatens the basic integrity of our government.
http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424127887323582904578487460479247792.html

Now we have the honor of having the IRS be the collection agency for obamacare, aren't we lucky.

Always On Watch said...

This morning on NBC.

Mark S. said...

So, Congressional Republicans deliberately doctored emails from CIA and State Dept. to make it appear as if the Obama administration was attempting to cover up events in Benghazi.

C'mon my Republican friends, where is your outrage? If Dems did something approaching this, you would be apeshit with outrage!!!

Giulio C. said...


It's the GOP stategy.

Plan A, let's make Obama a one-term president. FAILED. Plan B, let's find a way to impeach him.

Shaw Kenawe said...

AOW, that may be true, and if it is, it was wrong.

There isn't any evidence that there was any involvement by the White House or President Obama.

If the IRS was doing this--headed by a Bush appointee--those involved should be punished.

Jerry Critter said...

The GOP failed miserably at making Obama a one term president. Now they are doing their best to make him a two term president. They are so bad at accomplishing anything, odds are only 50-50 that they will be successful.

Ducky's here said...

Wonder if the White House goes on counter attack over this Benghazi fiasco.

The IRS "scandal" is also turning out to be a good deal less.
The committee is going nuts over every question asked of a conservative organization to justify non-profit status. I've yet to see what damage was done or read the name of an organization denied the request.

Whitewater Summer is on hold but it's early. Jim Inhofe (R - Warming denier) recently said he's going to have to use the "I" word. I thought he meant idiot.

Ducky's here said...

No need to keep on about Our Lady of the Perpetual Martini, Shaw.

Charlie Pierce has a beauty

Wonkette gets her pretty good, too

Hard to see how they're going to keep the normals interested in this minor issue.

Rational Nation USA said...

And the beat goes on.

"There is but one straight course, and that is to seek truth and pursue it steadily."

--George Washington, letter to Edmund Randolph, 1795

Dervish Sanders said...

The fake Benghazi scandal is almost dead/dying and Always On Watch knows it... which is why he resorts to the "they all do it" false equivalency. That is the fall back position the Repubs retreat to when the know they've lost.

Hopefully the REAL scandal (GOP altering emails) will go somewhere and the Republicans will pay a price. I'm with Ducky in believing the Dems should counter attack.

The IRS thing won't go anywhere either.

Lee Arnold said...

Here's the "SCANDAL". What Republican operative leaked the "altered" emails that ABC News trumpeted as their exclusive?
ABC News, release the LIARS name. He/She no longer should have their confidentiality protected. That is only required for a "source" of FACTS, not LIES.
RELEASE THE REPUBLICAN OPERATIVE/LIAR'S NAME NOW !!!!

Anonymous said...

Now that it is confirmed that the GOP lied about the emails and tried to make the Benghazi tragedy into something it is not, who the hell in their right minds would ever believe anything the crazies on the right say.

They've been in a fever since Obama was elected to either defeat him in his second election and when that failed they go onto impeachment.

Liars and hypocrites.

Not seeking the truth, but deceiving so that they can destroy a good man and his presidency.

They will regret this.

Rational Nation USA said...

Seems to me there ain't much for the REpublican party to regret. I mean they've lost credibility and therefore relevancy already right? At least that seems to be the narrative.

Some truth to it. Still don't trust the other side. Their all politicians and as such they are all power hungry.

Always On Watch said...

Shaw,
Yes, Shulman was a Bush appointee. Was Shulman a Republican? I have no idea. Perhaps you do.

Anonymous said on May 17, 2013 at 11:32 PM: They've been in a fever since Obama was elected to either defeat him in his second election and when that failed they go onto impeachment.

If the above is true, that precedent was set by the impeachment and resignation of Richard Nixon.

Don't get me wrong! I am IN NO WAY defending RMN! But the quest for political power is eternal and is not limited to one political party.

It is the job of Congress to investigate any malfeasance on the part of the highest federal executive officers in our nation.

If it is reasonably proven that some "higher up" gave the order for local IRS offices to target groups based solely on political affiliation -- political affiliation that opposes the re-election of an incumbent POTUS in favor of a qualified opponent to that POTUS -- then it is the duty of Congress to find out who DID give the order.

As I understand the situation, multiple locations of IRS were involved; if so, then it is more difficult to believe that only rogue IRS personnel were acting beyond the scope of their jobs.

Always On Watch said...

From this source:

Long before the Internal Revenue Service revealed it had improperly targeted conservative 501(c)(4) groups, a group of Democratic senators led by New York Sen. Chuck Schumer urged the IRS to do just that.

The IRS’s admission last Friday that it had singled out tea party and other groups for extra audits and delays has raised concerns that President Barack Obama’s administration quietly attempted to stymy opponents through intimidation. But many prominent Democrats — including Montana Sen. Max Baucus, Americans United for the Separation of Church and State and the New York Times editorial board — had been publicly calling for tighter restrictions on 501(c)(4) groups affiliated with the tea party and conservatives.

Last year, Schumer, along with Democratic Sens. Michael Bennet, Sheldon Whitehouse, Jeff Merkley, Tom Udall, Jeanne Shaheen and Al Franken, penned a letter calling on the agency to cap the amount of the political spending by groups masquerading as “social welfare organizations.”...


The term "social welfare organizations" can cut several ways. Do you catch my drift?

Always On Watch said...

Something else about the IRS:

...A HIPAA-covered data management company is suing the IRS after agents seized the personal and confidential medical records of more than 10 million patients in 2011. The IRS had a search warrant to obtain financial information of a former employee of the data management company, but according to the legal complaint, "It did not authorize any seizure of any healthcare or medical record of any persons, least of all third parties completely unrelated to the matter. This is an action involving the corruption and abuse of power... No search warrant authorized the seizure of these records; no subpoena authorized the seizure of these records; none of the 10,000,000 Americans were under any kind of known criminal or civil investigation and their medical records had no relevance whatsoever to the IRS search."...

Jerry Critter said...

Our political parties are trustworthy. The problem is that they are trustworthy to the wrong entities -- business and the wealthy rather than the American people.

Anonymous said...

Typical, RN would deny the known facts and scream "criminal" over unknown non facts.

Dervish Sanders said...

Anonymous: Now that it is confirmed that the GOP lied about the emails... They will regret this.

I REALLY hope you are right Anonymous. Perhaps the Dems need to hold a few hearings or convene a select committee to investigate this serious Republican scandal.

AOW said: it is the job of Congress to investigate any malfeasance...

Of course it is. But what happens when they find none? Should they just keep holding hearing after hearing in an attempt to gain political advantage?

AOW said: The term "social welfare organizations" can cut several ways. Do you catch my drift?

As it should. Groups politicking for Dems shouldn't be tax exempt either.

Jerry: Our political parties are trustworthy... to the wrong entities -- business and the wealthy rather than the American people.

Most of them, yes. Not all of them though. Bernie Sanders isn't (for one).

RN: Still don't trust the other side. They're all politicians and as such they are all power hungry.

Either side? I suppose you do trust the Libertarian side? Fortunately the voters largely disagree.

Jerry Critter said...

DS,
I don't think Elizabeth Warren is either.

Rational Nation USA said...

Why yes genius WD. Given the three choices I'll take Libertarian and liberty over the the other two hands down.

If there was still such a thing as Classical Liberalism that is where you would find me.

Dervish Sanders said...

Jerry: I don't think Elizabeth Warren is either.

Absolutely. Maybe this is why these are the politicians those on the Right hate most of all?

RN: Why yes... Given the three choices I'll take Libertarian and liberty...

Libertarians are in favor of the wealthy having the most liberty. You only get as much liberty as you can afford to buy. This is why you would never find me (nor most people) there.

Always On Watch said...

Dervish,
Should they just keep holding hearing after hearing in an attempt to gain political advantage?

No.

But the ugly truth may be this: All that politicians care about is getting votes.

I have two "rules" of history:

1. It's always about the money -- money and power being equal.

2. Never trust any politician.

Groups politicking for Dems shouldn't be tax exempt either.

We agree there!

I have never favored tax deductions for groups seeking political votes.

Of course, I do have a dog in the race about tax-exempt organizations is that I've never deducted any of my own income on that basis. For decades now, I don't give money to groups but rather to individuals. Burned too many times! I have donated small sums to churches and universities but never enough to qualify for a deduction to my income; when I have given to such groups, I have always designated the destination: for the choir (robes, music), for the department of foreign language, etc.

As you might detect from comments I've made here and elsewhere, I'm not particularly politically partisan. I've become a cynic about a lot of things, I guess.

Shaw Kenawe said...

AOW wrote: "But the ugly truth may be this: All that politicians care about is getting votes.

I have two "rules" of history:

1. It's always about the money -- money and power being equal.

2. Never trust any politician."


This is a tragic indictment on our government, isn't it. That we cannot trust those who hold such power over us. Power to legislate what affects our very lives.

Let me ask a question here: Do you believe Mr. Obama, personally, sought the presidency for money and power? Or for egotistical reasons?


AOW: "Groups politicking for Dems shouldn't be tax exempt either.

We agree there!

I have never favored tax deductions for groups seeking political votes."

Nor I. So how do we get the politicians who passed the law that allows this to reverse it. Too much money involved in politics gives us too much power concentrated in fewer groups.

This is why we're all angry.

Rational Nation USA said...

In as much as all humans posses an ego to a lesser or larger degree, and the ego plays a part in every individual decsion in relation to the size of ones ego I suspect the President's decision to run was heavily influenced by ego. I have NEVER known a person who aspired to influence and power that did NOT have a rather large ego.

This is not a bad thing. In so long as the vision the person has for his country is honorable and honest. Even given my policy and philosophical differences with Obama I believe his ego is driven by his sincere vision of what he believes is right for OUR country.

Always On Watch said...

Shaw,
Do you believe Mr. Obama, personally, sought the presidency for money and power? Or for egotistical reasons?

In part, yes.

My answer isn't an indictment of the man, however. It is my view that the vast majority of politicians do the same.

Obama does have his own worldview, of course. And, like most who believe in their own worldviews, he is pursuing it. This is the nature of human beings, and when they get the power to further their own worldviews, they do so.

So how do we get the politicians who passed the law that allows this to reverse it.

I don't know! Legislation is needed, but passing any such legislation is not in the personal interests of legislators, who are looking for a pool of money to make sure that they and their cohorts get elected and re-elected. Severe term limits, perhaps?

Too much money involved in politics gives us too much power concentrated in fewer groups.

Altering that structure, which is the reality as far as I can tell, would need to be done very carefully. Although I am not an objectivist (Ayn Rand), I certainly think that going Galt could hurt the entire economy and thereby make the plight of the lower class and the middle class even worse. It's the Gordian Knot of capitalism, IMO!

Always On Watch said...

(with apologies to Shaw)

Dervish,
Because you are copying and pasting comments about me from another site you frequented yesterday (or maybe you copied and pasted from here to that other site), here are my two responses to you from that site (where you deleted your own comments after I responded to you)...

I'll thank you not to attribute thoughts and views to me -- thoughts and views that I do not hold.

I DID say that politicians are snakes -- regardless of political party.

Oh, and my avatar is gender accurate. I am a woman.

PS: I am not registered as a Republican or a Democrat. From day one, I have been registered as an Independent.

-------------

Hey, Dervish!

To my knowledge, Shaw has not invited me to leave, nor has she so implied. Until such time, I will comment there.

I do visit sites that are owned by those with whom I don't agree. I seek out reasoned discussion in many locations because it is my nature to learn about others' views -- and not to hurl barbs, either.

Jerry Critter said...

Something lost in all this IRS stuff is that the 501(c)(4) filing was not really about tax-free status. Tax-free status can be accomplished as a 501(c)(3), but as a 501(c)(4) they did not have to reveal their donors.

This is all about hiding where the money comes from. They do not want the American people to know who is funding them. It is about the right to hid donors as opposed to the peoples' right to know.

Always On Watch said...

Jerry,
Something lost in all this IRS stuff is that the 501(c)(4) filing was not really about tax-free status. Tax-free status can be accomplished as a 501(c)(3), but as a 501(c)(4) they did not have to reveal their donors.

Of course, the other side of it is that people fear that they could lose their jobs if it comes to light whom they support in an election or what causes they support. A double-edged sword that can apply all along the political spectrum.

Jerry Critter said...

AOL,
Now you get to the crux of the problem. 501(c)(4)s are suppose to be for social welfare programs exclusively, nor primarily. Political contributions should not even be a consideration. There's the real scandal!

Always On Watch said...

Jerry,
It occurs to me that the real scandal might have been going on for a long time -- all across the political spectrum. Everybody looks for loopholes

For how long has misuse of 501(c)(4)s been going on? When did it start? Do you know?

Jerry Critter said...

I heard on the radio that the IRS made the interpretation that exclusively social welfare programs means primarily social welfare programs about 40 years ago.

Always On Watch said...

Jerry,
40 years ago -- that would be during the Nixon administration, right?

I'd really like to pin down the exact date and what led to this change. If you find any links, let me know if you don't mind. I receive comment notification for this thread.

Jerry Critter said...

It appears that the IRS regulation was changed in 1959. Prior to 1959 the statute and the regulation both said "exclusive". More details are given <a href="http://crew.3cdn.net/9e6dd1e2b163dbb240_i1m6b5q6u.pdf”>here</a>.

Always On Watch said...

1959??? YE, GODS!

What was afoot politically that effected that change? JFK's campaign? Richard Nixon's? It seems to me that it must be one or the other -- or both, for all I know.

I haven't yet read the pdf file, perhaps obviously. I'm getting ready to head out for work -- a very long workday, too. But I WILL read that pdf. Thanks!

Always On Watch said...

Shaw,
Calling your attention to THIS, which received "three Pinocchios."