Saturday, March 31, 2012
The special state committee, created in January to investigate the controversial ATF Fast and Furious case, will not meet its March 30, 2012 deadline to provide its findings about the controversial case to the governor.According to Rey Torres, the Director of Communications for the Arizona House of Representatives, the Ad Hoc Committee on Operation Fast and Furious has not yet held a meeting and currently has no meeting scheduled. . .The group was formed to investigate the factual background of the flawed Fast and Furious case , in which ATF agents admitted to allowing straw buyers to obtain weapons and distribute them to known criminals .Torres said it is unlikely that a meeting will be scheduled before the legislative session is finished sometime next month.According to Rep. David Burnell Smith, the committee chairman, the group will aim for June 2012 as a new target date for delivering a report to the governor.
Friday, March 30, 2012
While the proceedings of that meeting happened “off the record,” and while Vanderboegh admits “There is no evidence that the committee asked these questions because of Larry's and my urging. Obviously, it didn't hurt,” this correspondent can confirm from contemporaneous communications that had such questions not been brought to light in the hearing, neglecting to do so would have resulted in that failure being reported — not by the mainstream, but by the citizen journalists who dragged everyone into this story in the first place.
Plus, Dave Workman reports on Issa: ‘We want to play fair'…but
"A federal district court judge in North Carolina has just struck down that state’s emergency power to impose a ban on firearms and ammunition outside the home during a declared emergency, ruling that the provision violates the Second Amendment right to keep and bear arms."
When I last ventured to DC, I took a selfish day before the hearings and visited Gunston Hall, the home of Founder George Mason. Luckily, the Friends of Fairfield Archaeology were having a seminar that Saturday and I learned a heckuva lot about local historical archaeology, Gunston Hall, etc. and met a whole bunch of nice folks. Now, FOFA is having their Spring Symposium on Archaeology of the Civil War at the James Lee Center, Monroe Gymnasium, 2855 Annandale Road, Falls Church, Virginia on Saturday, March 31 between 8:30 AM and 3:30 PM. Admission is free, although seating is limited to 200.
I mention this because one of the topics will be Civil War Crimean Ovens, presented by Wally Owen, Assistant Director of the Fort Ward Museum and Historic Site (which was itself within spitting distance of my hotel).
I have always been interested in military technology and this method of heating large tents and living spaces without endangering the occupants with carbon monoxide poisoning seemed interesting to me. Offered for what it is worth.
Thursday, March 29, 2012
While William LaJeunesse reports on the Zapatas, "Family demands to know if weapons used to kill ICE agent could have been seized before they crossed into Mexico," one of the rumors I heard earlier this week has come true.
Readers may recall my earlier pieces on Kevin O'Reilly such as here. Well, now FOX's White House correspondent Ed Henry is reporting "Lawmakers push to interview ex-White House aide in 'Fast and Furious.'" Here is the latest letter.
Wednesday, March 28, 2012
Keep the Cover-Up Alive. (This poster brought to you by Eric Holder's Department of Justice.)
The family of the U.S. Border Patrol agent killed in connection with Operation Fast and Furious said it “is sickened” to learn that law enforcement agencies were not sharing information that could have possibly closed the investigation early and spared his death and other bloodshed.“The Terry Family, like most of America, is sickened to read the latest revelations relating to ATF’s error-plagued and misguided Fast and Furious Investigation,” the family of slain agent Brian Terry wrote in a statement. “It is beyond our comprehension that U.S. federal law enforcement agencies were not talking with one another.”
Of course they WERE talking to one another, only it was in phrases of cover-up, denial and obfuscation. Here's a rumor: the El Paso ATF was onto the Miramonte Brothers. They were told to back off by Gunwalker Bill Newell in Phoenix, whose people themselves were told to back off by higher ups in DOJ and the FBI. Rumor also has it that this is coming out next week. Well, you know what they say about rumors.
Am coming off the pain medication that has been sustaining/plaguing me for two weeks. Haven't had a bit since last night and although my head aches it is getting quite a bit clearer. Defecation is no longer a problem -- amazing how the universe constricts to the very simple elements. Mirroring my digestive track, there are rumblings from DC and from Phoenix. We shall see how it goes. I'm waiting for the reality to catch up with the rumors. Thanks again for all your prayers and support. We wouldn't have gotten this far without them.
Tuesday, March 27, 2012
Maybe a gig as a law school dean.
University of Baltimore announces finalists in search for law school dean. Five candidates will visit campus starting March 26 to meet students, faculty, staff
The University of Baltimore has selected five finalists in its search for a new law school dean.The candidates are: Nicholas Allard, a political lawyer at Washington firm Patton Boggs; Penelope Bryan, the dean of Whittier Law School in California; Alfredo Garcia, a professor and former dean at St. Thomas University Law School in Miami; Patricia Salkin, a professor and associate dean at Albany Law School in New York; and Ronald Weich, an assistant attorney general at the U.S. Department of Justice.
"Mich. militia members cleared of charges that accused them of plotting war against government."
The trial, which began Feb. 13, will resume Thursday with only a few gun charges remaining against militia leader David Stone and son Joshua Stone, both from Lenawee County, Mich. They have been in custody without bond for two years.“The court is aware that protected speech and mere words can be sufficient to show a conspiracy. In this case, however, they do not rise to that level,” the judge said.
Monday, March 26, 2012
Sunday, March 25, 2012
Going home today, with all tubes out save a feeding tube which will remain for at least another two weeks. Please keep me in your prayers which have sustained me and brought me through thus far. God bless all of you whose more than generous subscriptions have made it possible for Rosey to commute, etc. I'm working on a couple major posts and hope to have at least one by later today.
Again, God bless you all.
Saturday, March 24, 2012
"And Weich is still out there deflecting, redirecting and stonewalling, trying to shutter the windows, pull down the blinds and make the villains in this murderous government intrigue the ones with the light."
Critical Mass: The FBI's Poster Boys for Murderous Paid Confidential Informants Outed for Everybody -- even the deliberately near-sighted John Boehner -- to See.
By William La Jeunesse
The investigation of Operation Fast and Furious escalated this past week as Fox News learned a leak at the Justice Department is providing documents to the Congressional investigators.
The scope of investigation also includes the Federal Bureau of Investigation, which records show failed to tell ATF its own confidential informants were helping finance the illegal gun purchases.
Eduardo and Jesus A. Miramontes-Varela, Mexican nationals born in Juarez worked for the Sinaloa Cartel when they became informants for the FBI in 2009, according to sources.
Previously, the brothers, ages 36 and 37, worked as informants for police in Miami, the U.S. Marshall's Service, and the DEA.
According to DEA and Congressional reports, the two men were the primary cartel contacts used to finance the illegal gun trafficking ring. Jim Needles, the assistant Agent in Charge of the Phoenix ATF office estimated the brothers spent $250,000 on guns tracked by his agency while conducting Operation Fast and Furious. Needles called it “a disappointment” the FBI didn’t bother to tell his agency of the connection.
“You are getting at the very basis of this investigation,” Senator Charles Grassley said Friday.
“But I have to wait till we have all the information before we bring down the hammer.”
Grassley first revealed in September 2011 the FBI, knew, but failed to tell the ATF, it’s informants were part of the gun trafficking ring. Then in February, Grassley called them “the big fish” ATF had been looking for the entire time.
Both the FBI and DEA know the Miramontes brothers’ role and identity, but declined to tell the ATF during a “deconfliction” meeting Dec. 15, 2009. Nor did either agency speak up at any of the joint meetings all three agencies attended of the Southwest Border Initiative. The DEA and ATF’s Group 7 shared the same floor of the same building and the same ‘wire room’ to listen to wiretaps of suspects.
Eventually and under pressure, the FBI invited top ATF officials to a classified briefing in El Paso in the late summer of 2010 and described the Eduardo and Jesus Miramontes as "a national security assets". The two men were "off limits, untouchable and indictable" said a source familiar with the briefing.
Asked a detailed set of questions regarding the Miramontes brothers role and payment as confidential informants, the FBI released this statement Friday, “There is a pending investigation and we cannot provide additional information even when there is inaccurate information being reported.”
Also this week, two damaging documents became public. One, a ATF ROI (Report of Investigation) from May 2010 shows that Manuel Celis-Acosta, ringleader of the illegal gun buyers, was stopped at a border checkpoint in Arizona with 74 rounds of ammunition, but ATF agents released him.
On Thursday, Congressman Darrell Issa and Grassley released a list of ROI’s that show ATF agents had evidence Acosta was trafficking weapons and one of his buyers, Uriel Patino, was lying on federal forms, but neither was arrested.
Late Friday, Department of Justice Assistant Attorney General Ron Weich warned Issa, “We are deeply disturbed that the sensitive law enforcement information…has entered the public realm.”
He said it is impeding the DOJ’s prosecution of current criminal cases arising from Fast and Furious.
A Congressional spokesperson for Issa made no apologies, saying the documents being leaked to the committee “are precisely what the Justice Department is hiding and what congressional investigators are seeking – basic information about who knew what when about Fast and Furious.”
Is it becoming clearer? Black operations are compartmentalized. The only thing that is required is the ability to deflect interest from other agencies and supervisors within a given agency who might be meddlesome. "National security" goes a long way. What is also required are back-channel means of communication and control. Can you say from "old friends" like the State Department's Kevin O'Reilly serving on the National Security Council and "Gunwalker Bill" Newell in Phoenix? I knew you could. And remember the one thing in Phoenix which would be required would be someone in control who could issue the proper orders and put them in a nice legal-looking frame -- Janet Napolitano's lickspittle, anti-gun zealot Dennis K. Burke. Personnel is policy.
Kurt Hofmann reports that the "Brady Campaign takes Trayvon Martin exploitation to new low." David Codrea believes that "Rush to judgment on George Zimmerman reminiscent of mob behavior."
Despite the fact that "Police say No Grounds For Arrest In Trayvon Martin Death" and "Zimmerman was on the ground being punched when he shot Trayvon Martin," we have already had the stampede to judgment in the best example of the multi-culti herd herd of race hustlers, cynical politicians and media harpies. Already Jesse Jackson avers that "Blacks are under attack,' NYC has alr5eady staged a thug-culture celebratory "Million Hoodie March," and the re has been a "Wanted Dead or Alive Poster Issued for George Zimmerman by New Black Panther Party."
My son, as perceptive an observer of the US social situation as anyone else I know, told me the other day that he expected to deploy as scheduled to Afghanistan this summer unless the unit would be sent to Chicago. He said this a few weeks ago, well before the Martin case.
It takes no crystal ball to see where we're headed with this Martin case, though. There is too much advantage to the federal collectivists and racial tribalists not to exploit this opportunity in the middle of an election year.
American shopkeepers of Korean descent defend their own property, LA, 1991.
Friday, March 23, 2012
William LaJeunesse makes the connection -- the Miramontes brothers -- on the payroll of the FBI -- are finally outed.
It ran at 6:15 PM Eastern on FOX. When I have the links I'll let you know. William connects the dots between Celis-Acosta and the one-armed man and his brother -- the "stone cold killers" Miramontes -- laying it at the door of the Hoover Building. complete with a non-denial denial from the Fibbies. Katie Pavlich posted this letter (see page 15, footnote 48) which mentions the Miramontes. The Miramontes brothers are said to be linked to the rip crew that killed Brian Terry. The protection of the Miramontes is responsible for the FBI cover-up -- of the murder and of the whole Gunwalking scandal. Congrats to William LaJ. Ignore this, John Boner, at your political peril.
Thursday, March 22, 2012
The company said that despite attempts to increase production, the rate of incoming orders has exceeded its capacity to fill them on a timely basis. As a result, the company said it was forced to put acceptance of orders on hold. It said it expects to resume accepting orders on a normal basis by the end of May.
More fraying FBI cover-ups. "FBI explanation of missing Oklahoma City bombing tapes not credible, judge says."
"This is a matter of significant public interest," the judge said, adding it's time for it to be resolved.
A federal judge on Wednesday continued to question the FBI's explanation for not producing videotapes associated with the 1995 Oklahoma City bombing that a Salt Lake lawyer has sought for nearly six years."It's quite astounding that documents as important as these went missing and the FBI says, 'Well, they're gone,'" U.S. District Judge Clark Waddoups said during a motion hearing.At issue is whether the FBI adequately responded to Jesse Trentadue's Freedom of Information Act request for footage of Timothy McVeigh parking a truckload of explosives at the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building on April 19, 1995. Specifically, the Salt Lake attorney is after a building surveillance tape and dashcam video from the Oklahoma state trooper who stopped McVeigh 90 minutes after the explosion that killed 168 people.
Watch for more from William on this subject later this week.
My first guest was Emmy Award-winning investigative journalist, now with FOX News, William LaJeunesse, who has done the most extensive investigative journalism on the federal government’s arms trafficking operation known as Fast and Furious. William had breaking news on the investigation – the key nugget is that the ATF has been claiming since the operation became public that they never had probable cause to dismantle the operation. LaJeunesse came across a document that the ATF had sufficient probable cause, from a stop of the kingpin of the straw purchasers at the Lukeville port of entry a few months into the operation. We also discussed the soundness of the overarching mission of the Fast and Furious operation, the Congressional investigation, and what potential outcomes could mean for the Presidential campaigns.
Would ATK rather arm the government than the people? Don't count on anything you have previously accepted as "normal." We must be ready to improvise, adapt and overcome any logistical problems -- very foreseeable problems -- that may arise as we move forward into this portentous year.
1 arrested, 6 detained after authorities discover cache of ammo, possible explosives at Liberty Co. residence
Because all the men in the home are convicted felons, it is illegal for them to have that ammunition.
LA Times expands on FOX's original work: Drug lords targeted by Fast and Furious were FBI informants
Federal agents released alleged gun trafficker Manuel Fabian Celis-Acosta to help them find two Mexican drug lords. But the two were secret FBI informants, emails show.
We're getting closer.
Mengele. Another example of a political "scientist.
To be effective, a new set of institutions would have to be imbued with heavy-handed, transnational enforcement powers. There would have to be consideration of some way of embracing head-in-the-cloud answers to social problems that are usually dismissed by policymakers as academic naivete. In principle, species-wide alteration in basic human behaviors would be a sine qua non, but that kind of pronouncement also profoundly strains credibility in the chaos of the political sphere. Some of the things that would need to be contemplated: How do we overcome our hard-wired tendency to “discount” the future: valuing what we have today more than what we might receive tomorrow? Would any institution be capable of instilling a permanent crisis mentality lasting decades, if not centuries? How do we create new institutions with enforcement powers way beyond the current mandate of the U.N.? Could we ensure against a malevolent dictator who might abuse the power of such organizations?
Wednesday, March 21, 2012
Tuesday, March 20, 2012
Guns.Com reports Texas Retailers Report Ammo Shortages: Price Increases as Supply Dwindles. My buddies who attended the Birmingham AGCA gun show over the weekend reported it to be "jumping" and "crazy for ammo sales." Don't delay if you can.
Dave Workman ran this story yesterday: Grassley, Issa want more answers about F&F suspect. Today I watch Darrell Issa on FOX -- sitting up in a chair holding my aching gut -- try to jawbone Holder, for the umpteeneth time. Over the weekend, there rumors of clashes between Grassley's office, Issa's office and the GOP leadership of Mitch McConnell and John Boehner about where the Gunwalker Investigation is going, if anywhere. IF.
Oh, shut up and indict his ass for perjury already. Or surrender your legitimacy once and for all.
LA Times: Gun-tracking operation caught top suspect, then let him go. Federal agents stopped the main target of the ill-fated Operation Fast and Furious in May 2010. After they questioned him, he disappeared back into Mexico, and the program went on to spiral out of control.
Sunday, March 18, 2012
"The Vetting - Holder 1995: We Must 'Brainwash' People on Guns." From Breitbart, an early look into the mind of the Attorney General of the United States. Not too far from this to gunwalking for propaganda purposes, is it?
Wow. That was something else. Now sitting up in a chair beside my bed in ICU. Wow. One of dressings is leaking, but incision is solid. Lungs are clear. Comments are released. Some emails deleted. Typing with this beast balanced on my cheat with all these tubes is exhausting. Gotta go for now. God bless you all.
LATER: By the way. the growth was three lobed, 15 cm long, attached to esophagus, stomach and pancreas.
Tuesday, March 13, 2012
Sitting here in my hospital room, awaiting the 1000 HRS start time for the surgery. The Doc says I will be out of it for at least a couple of days due to the pain medication, and he REALLY suggests that I not post while under the influence of same. I had to laugh at that. How would anybody tell the difference? I toyed with the idea of writing my own valediction, or at least some sort of summation of my philosophy, but I truly don't believe that God is done with me yet. Besides, even in the event that God disagrees, what better valediction could I have than my kids, my life's work, my writing and my friends? None. And it is to you, my friends, that I would just like to say thanks. Thanks for the prayers. Thanks for the generous subscriptions that have enabled me to stay in the fight. Thanks for the support. Thanks, for everything. At this moment, I am just overcome with sentiment for all of the support and trust you have given me and words are so inadequate to the occasion. So all I can say is thanks, and I'll see you on the other side of this thing, no matter how it turns out. It is, in any case, all in God's hands.
LATER: While I'm out of it, look for updates on my situation at David Codrea's War on Guns blog and always be sure and go to his daily National Gun Examiner column.
Monday, March 12, 2012
Tea Party Nation Founder Slams GOP Leaders For ‘Sitting There’ Instead Of Taking On Fast & Furious Scandal.
Judson Phillips, the founder of Tea Party Nation, appeared on Fox News this morning and called out top Republican leaders in Congress for their inaction on the Fast & Furious gunrunning scandal. Phillips accused GOP leaders like John Boehner and Eric Cantor of just “sitting there” and “not picking a fight with the president” instead of making the case a priority.
"The freshly-laundered white flag of surrender."
Phillips did credit Congressman Darrell Issa for his commitment to keeping the scandal afloat despite Attorney General Eric Holder‘s “stonewall,” but he did express some displeasure with how the rest of the Republican party in Congress has not been similarly adamant. He called out Boehner, whom he said frequently “hauls up his freshly-laundered white flag of surrender,” and Cantor for not taking more action on this issue.“The Republican leadership were just kind of sitting there, and that’s really a pretty accurate story. What my friends in Washington tell me is that Boehner says what he learned from the 1995 government shutdown is ‘you never pick a fight with the president.’ Well, here’s my question: if you’re not going to pick a fight with the president, especially when you’ve got an issue like this Fast & Furious operation… if you’re not going to pick a fight with the president when it’s something that’s really really important, what are you doing there?”
Waiting for Boner. Tea Parties Take on the Three Stooges Over Failure to Aggressively Investigate the Gunwalker Scandal.
Waiting for Boner.
Vladimir: "So, when is it coming?"Estragon: "When is what coming?"Vladimir: "I dunno, the OIG report, Holder's impeachment, the next Issa hearing, all of the above. When is somebody going to get off their ass about Gunwalker?"Estragon: "So, you haven't heard?"Vladimir: "Heard what?"Estragon: "It's all in the hands of the Three Stooges."Vladimir: "The Three Stooges? You mean Larry, Moe and Curly?"Estragon: "No, dummy, Boner, Can't-or and Charlie McCarthy."Vladimire: "Charlie McCarthy? I thought he was a ventriloquist's dummy."Estragon: "He is, only this time he's also a congressman from California."Vladimir: "I don't get it. You're saying that the GOP leadership doesn't want to get to the bottom of the Gunwalker Conspiracy?"Estragon: "That's exactly what I'm saying. You don't read much Sipsey Street, do you?"Vladimir: "But why?"Estragon: "Blowjobs, probably."Vladimir: "Blowjobs?"Estragon: "Yeah either blowjobs they want or blowjobs they gave that somebody found out about."Vladimir: "You mean the fate of the country is hanging on a blowjob?"Estragon: "You got it."
Remember when I said that my sources told me that John Boehner and the GOP leadership had put the brakes on Issa's investigation of the Gunwalker Plot?
Well, as time goes by with absolutely no forward movement, the people who called me names and doubted my sources are looking less credible and my sources are looking more credible. Just this morning I spoke with two folks close to the investigation who once again confirmed that it looked like some sort fix was in.
And we're not the only ones: Tea Party groups pressure House GOP leaders to rev up Fast and Furious probe.
Local Tea Party activists are pressing House Republican leaders to pursue their investigation into the Operation Fast and Furious gun-tracking effort more aggressively.The top three House Republicans have been slow to lead the charge of the GOP’s criticism of the botched operation.As a result, local Tea Party groups in the home districts of House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio), Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-Va.), and Majority Whip Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) are turning up the heat on the lawmakers.The groups say their representatives maintain the most powerful positions in the lower chamber and should be more critical of President Obama and Attorney General Eric Holder.
This is a great idea. Keep up the pressure, guys.
LATER: Media Matters reacts.
Boehner, Cantor and McCarthy investigate the Gunwalker Scandal.
Sipsey Street Exclusive: Checking the books of the Praetorians. Forensic audits as one answer to Juvenal's Question. Why bureaucrats fear the GAGAS Monster.
The GAGAS Monster (any resemblance to the Black Beast of Aargh is purely coincidental.)
Quis custodiet ipsos custodes? is a Latin phrase traditionally attributed to the Roman poet Juvenal from his Satires (Satire VI, lines 347–8), which is literally translated as "Who will guard the guards themselves?" -- Wikipedia.
Let me start this essay by sharing something with you from almost 15 years ago:
For the better part of a generation, both political parties have thrown money and laurels at the FBI for one reason: to stop crime. Under Clinton, while agency after agency saw its budget dwindle, the FBI's jumped 25% to $2.9 billion. Congress paid for 3,600 new employees, new computers, new field offices. Law-and-order Republicans were there first, but Clinton and the Democrats joined in until there was simply no constituency that didn't see the FBI as the all-purpose answer to voters who routinely listed crime among their top concerns. For a nation whose greatest enemy is suddenly within, the FBI has become the Pentagon of the post-cold war world.This means, like the well-protected Pentagon of 20 years ago, virtually no congressional oversight. Any lawmaker who raised concerns risked being flayed as soft on crime. But without accountability, several things happen, all of them bad. money gets wasted. Officials get sloppy. Innocent people go to jail. And cases that should be won are lost. The specifics have become a martyrs' lament Waco. Ruby Ridge. Filegate. Richard Jewell.-- Nancy Gibbs, Time Magazine, 28 April 1997, pp. 28-30.
Fifteen years ago. Of course since 9/11, the agency has become even more secretive, bloated and out of control, all because both parties have willfully failed in their oversight responsibility. Billions are wasted, simply because no one is really watching, all in the name of "national security."
The FBI is not the only agency which does this, of course. The entire federal government could benefit from targeted forensic audits.
Forensic accounting or financial forensics is the specialty practice area of accountancy that describes engagements that result from actual or anticipated disputes or litigation. "Forensic" means "suitable for use in a court of law", and it is to that standard and potential outcome that forensic accountants generally have to work. -- Wikipedia.
The difference between a simple audit and a forensic audit is the same as the relationship between an autopsy and a forensic autopsy. One merely explains how the subject died. The other seeks to identify who killed him.
Forensic auditing as a tool to identify waste, fraud and abuse in government has been spreading in recent years in all branches from the military to the Commerce Department. The Government Accountability Office has a small Forensic Audit and Special Investigations Unit (FSI) but this is hardly the extent of the Congress' ability to use forensic audits as a method of achieving real oversight over the out-of-control Praetorians of federal law enforcement.
However, for the purposes of illustration of how such audits might be useful, let us consider the ATF's eTrace system, so recently the subject of interest in the Gunwalker Scandal. Let us say that the chairman of a committee in the House (and the request, if made to GAO's FSI, must come from a chairman) decided that eTrace was deserving of a forensic audit to determine, for starters:
1. How is eTrace data defined and collected?
2. How is this date reported?
3. What are the strengths and limits of this data?
4. How is the ATF using this data to shape control of policy?
Let us use Fast and Furious as a particular example. The request for forensic audit would also want to know how F&F weapons were identified, by whom and according to what reporting. Who was responsible for putting them into the eTrace system? Is ATF making appropriate distinctions between crime and non-crime firearms entered into eTrace? Who had access to the data? Who could formulate reports based on the data, and more importantly, who could edit it? What, truly, was the time to crime for F&F weapons and how does that compare to non-F&F weapons? All of this data, then, could be examined with an eye to determine if the system was manipulated, or is subject to future manipulation.
Note that these are all questions that have an empirical basis. The political import is clear, both for explaining why the ATF did things they way did (and do) and the Congress' motives in asking for it, but the audit itself is simply fact-driven. Whatever the political import, the audit cannot be deflected because it has basic good-government principles and techniques at its heart. Who can object to that? Especially since it is accepted and provided for by law.
This is why all federal government agencies and bureaus fear the GAGAS Monster. GAGAS is an acronym for "Generally Accepted Government Auditing Standards." The fact is that most federal law enforcement agencies get away with what they do because they are not subject to forensic audits based upon GAGAS. One way that agencies seek to control the process is by "auditing" themselves and presenting the results to credulous (or, more often, totally-ignorant) congressmen. To be effective, agencies cannot be trusted to do GAGAS forensic audits because they are a party of interest. Eric Holder's DOJ, for example, could not be trusted to audit F&F.
Of course even GAO's FSI has previously come under fire for being politically tainted by the administration is it supposed to oversee, but a good way to keep both the auditors and the audited honest is for citizens and/or the Congress to request, by FOIA or other means, the working papers of the audit. This allows interested parties to look over the shoulders of the auditors to ensure that they are doing their jobs.
Equally important is a critical consideration of the scope and methodology as well as the evidentiary basis of the audit. Was the audit truly designed to be as complete as possible? Or was it a whitewash designed from the beginning.
There are many questions yet to answered about ATF's eTrace system and its relationship to the part designed for ATF by higher-ups in the Justice Department and the White House. It is evident from the testimony of the whistleblower agents, as well as subsequent press investigation of the FBI's role in supporting and protecting their paid confidential informants who actually transported the weapons south of the border, that the ATF was only entrusted by their superiors with two portions of the overall plan: document the movement of weapons from gun stores to the straw buyers and, afterward, to document where those weapons showed up beside dead bodies in Mexico.
A forensic audit of ATF's eTrace system could provide many details of what exactly happened. It remains for the House GOP leadership to pursue the truth with this obvious tool of investigation. They could even deflect charges of political animus on the part of Darrell Issa by the White House and its familiars by having the House Appropriations Committee make the request, since they certainly have a legitimate political interest in how our taxpayer dollars are being spent.
Whether they do or not is entirely up to you, gentle readers. I have given you knowledge of the tool. It is up to you to beat the politicians over the head with it until they begin to use the GAGAS Monster against these frightened bureaucrats.
Sunday, March 11, 2012
Likely no more posts today, although I will have several tomorrow morning. Sorry.
Dan Freedman as a child, learning how to practice "investigative journalism."
Dan Freedman, Washington Bureau Chief for Hearst Newspapers has previously been excoriated by this column for first ignoring the Gunwalker scandal and then minimizing it. Now comes Herr Freedman once again: "Guns used in killing of ICE agent draw scrutiny."
Now, spoon-fed with 50 pages of CASE FILES by ATF & DOJ, Freedman concludes:
Court records and ATF case files reviewed by the Houston Chronicle indicate the investigation's plodding pace may have kept agents from short-circuiting the guns purchase, but there is no evidence of so-called "gun walking," or trailing weapons to see where they would end up instead of interdicting them.In the Phoenix Fast and Furious operation, ATF agents did just that. But they lost track of the weapons and 2,000 or more guns were transported to Mexican cartels as ATF watched.Two of those weapons were later recovered in Arizona at the murder scene of U.S. Border Patrol agent Brian Terry in December 2010.No undercover stingAFT insists that wasn't the case in Baytown."We didn't know about Gomez until after the gun used in the Zapata murder was purchased," said the ATF's Franceska Perot in Houston. "There was no undercover operation where we witnessed guns being purchased and let them go. That didn't happen."Fifty pages of ATF documents obtained by the Chronicle indicate that it took agents six months to arrest Barba and two months, from June to August 2010, to find and interview a key witness. That witness was the first to clearly point to Barba, saying he paid her $700 to buy nine weapons at a gun show in Pasadena.
Saturday, March 10, 2012
Remain Calm! All is well! Gun owners vote with their wallets, despite John Horwitz's best efforts at reality denial.
Josh Horwitz is channeling the cinematic ghosts of Animal House.
Anybody remember this Bruce Krafft column about the "government monopoly of violence" advocate Josh Horwitz and his pooh-poohing the idea that firearm sales were increasing?: "I Reject Your Reality and Substitute My Own"
Now Nick Leghorn tells us that Bud’s Gun Shop Sales Reveal the Truth About Guns Sales
Bud’s Gun Shop is my go-to resource when I need to figure out a fair price for a gun or if I’m looking to pick a new one up. Even with shipping and transfer fees they have a tendency to beat out the local competition. Turns out a few other people have the same opinion, and the result is that Bud’s currently has five times more orders for guns than they did the February following the 2008 election. You know — the month after Obama was sworn in, an event many blame for sky high firearms and ammo prices. They sent out a letter to those waiting on orders explaining some things, and one of our readers was nice enough to forward it on so we could share with all of you.
This notice is being sent to all customers who recently placed an order with www.budsgunshop.com and may not necessarily apply to your order.If you are not already aware of what is going on in the firearms industry, there is no doubt you soon will be via the media. Our sales in the month of February were over FIVE TIMES what they were back in February 2009 following the last presidential election…and you may recall those were some pretty crazy times ! We did plan for 2012 to be another challenging election year….but we admittedly did not plan for this level of volume, and definitely not this early in the year !Although your order may not have experienced a delay, we would like to apologize to anyone who has, or is currently, experiencing a delay in shipping. Our order volume unexpectedly skyrocketed in February, far beyond our capacity to process and ship. We immediately began the process of expanding our facilities, adding additional staff, and working extended hours…but those efforts are just now starting to pay off.The good news is that we are starting to get back on top of things. We are currently shipping out more orders each day that what we are taking in, so it is now just a matter of clearing the backlog that was created in February. Since Monday we have been able to ship out 300 more guns than what we sold during that same time….so the backlog should be cleared shortly at this rate. We are shipping oldest orders first (first in – first out) so clearing this backlog will cause some newer orders to ship closer to the “7″ in our advertised “3 to 7 business days” terms. Many repeat customers were so use to us shipping in 3 days they started to get concerned when their order had not shipped in 5 days…even though we were well within our “3 to 7 business days” terms. Also, “business days” refers to Monday-Friday only, as neither UPS or USPS pick up packages at our warehouse on weekends.We sincerely apologize if you experienced a delay and assure you we are continuing to do everything we possibly can to prevent future delays. We have also suspended all cancellation fees for any delayed orders. If you orderhas been delayed, and you prefer to cancel your order at this time….we will be glad to accommodate that request with absolutely no fees….we need more guns anyway !We appreciate the business and commit to do a better job next time if given the opportunity.Kind Regards,Team Buds
Let's all chip in and buy Josh Horwitz and all the other advocates of a "government monopoly on violence" a one-way ticket to Venezuela where they can live by the rules they espouse.
To which I left this note in comment:
The Founders must be rolling over in their graves to the tune of 3,000 RPM. What sort of gelded anti-Americans do you have living in your state to put up with such tyrannical crap?!? They raid him, ostensibly, for drugs. Do they find drugs? Oh, no, but they find weapons which are legal under federal law but he hasn't begged the permission of your nanny-state to possess and register them. What other evidence? Oh, well, he might be connected to an "outlaw motorcycle gang." Maybe. Possibly. For this his house is raided and his family terrorized? They didn't charge him with being a felon in possession of weapons so they don't have that excuse. The truth probably is that the uniformed jackbooted thugs acting under color of law screwed up about the "drugs" and these charges are the result of the "OH, sh-t what do we do now?" that they had when they realized their mistake.What a disgrace. What an outrage.
Friday, March 9, 2012
But Jonathan Turley, a law professor at George Washington University, wrote in Foreign Policy magazine on Wednesday that Holder's remarks not only would be seen by the framers of the Constitution as "the very definition of authoritarian power," but were met "not with outcry but muted applause.""Holder's new definition of 'due process' was perfectly Orwellian," Turley wrote. "What Holder is describing is a model of an imperial presidency that would have made Richard Nixon blush. ..."Where due process once resided, Holder offered only an assurance that the president would kill citizens with care. While that certainly relieved any concern that Obama would hunt citizens for sport, Holder offered no assurances on how this power would be used in the future beyond the now all-too-familiar 'trust us' approach to civil liberties of this administration," he wrote.
My Grandma Vanderboegh would have ridiculed this woman. Godzilla the wild turkey stalks Commerce Township woman. Once upon a time in my youth, there was a summer my Michigan farmer grandparents drained a boggy area to add to their berry fields in Baroda Township, Berrien County. It happened to be infested with water moccasins. Previously we had all been warned to stay away from the bog and the poisonous snakes. But if the land was going to be put into cultivation, the moccasins, needless to say, had to go along with the muck. The solution? My little bitty barely-five-foot grandma waded into the muck and, barefoot as I remember, because the mud sucked her shoes off, killed 9 of the serpents with her hoe. Single combat. Just her and the snakes. The moccasins lost. Grandpa ran over another two from the safety of his tractor seat after she flushed them out up onto the road. I'll never forget the scene. The idea of being fearfully stalked by a turkey would have been as alien to her as a socialist in the White House.
First, "exporting security" and now citizen disarmament as "protection for women."
I have search engines keeping track of various keywords to let me know when stories pop up that may be of interest. "ATF," understandably, is one of them. There are a number of meanings for the acronym ATF, of course, including the Asian Tennis Federation. But I must confess I never knew that ATF also stood for "Alaskan Thunder F-ck." You never get too old to learn something new.
Anecdote from my beloved Winston County. So was the pipe bomb placed in the toolbox before or after it was stolen? And how, exactly, do you "diffuse" a pipe bomb?
Aunt Jenny Brooks, the patron saint of Winston County. She cut the head off the Confederate Home Guard leader who murdered her husband and oldest son, put it in a tote sack, took it home, threw it in the lye boiling pot and cooked it down. She used the the skull (minus the jawbone) as a soap dish for the rest of her life.
The things you got to watch for when processing evidence in Winston County, Alabama: "Pipe bomb diffused (sic) at Winston County Courthouse."
Winston County Courthouse was abuzz with activity this afternoon after an active pipe bomb was discovered, Sheriff Rick Harris told FOX6.In an investigator's room, a theft victim was identifying his stolen tool box. When they opened up the tool box they discovered the bomb.Winston County authorities called in the ATF and the Jefferson County Bomb Squad to diffuse the bomb. There were successful in disarming it and no one was hurt.Sheriff Harris said the tool box was seized after authorities busted a theft ring during a raid earlier this week at the Natural Bridge Motel.
Well, there's a question: was the pipe bomb placed in the toolbox before, or after, it was stolen? Here's another question: Is English the native language of the WBRC6 Birmingham affiliate staffer who wrote that the bomb was "diffused" rather than defused? How does one "diffuse" a pipe bomb exactly? And "media elite" in Birmingham (including, presumably, the idiot who wrote this story) think Winston County folks are "backward." Sheesh.
"Auferre, trucidare, rapere, falsis nominibus imperium; atque, ubi solitudinem faciunt, pacem appellant." -- Tacitus.Translation: "To ravage, to slaughter, to usurp under false titles, they call empire; and where they make a desert, they call it peace."
"Let's export some more security, companero!"
Dan Restrepo, the Admiral Poindexter of the Gunwalker Scandal (assuming his deputy Kevin O'Reilly to be the Oliver North) says War is Peace.
The White House has been floating a new concept in its war on drugs — Colombia as an “exporter of security.” The phrase has popped up in government statements several times just over the past week. . .Next up was Dan Restrepo in a March 1 press briefing for VP Joe Biden’s visit to Mexico and Honduras this week:We've also continued to work, for example, with our partners from Colombia, who have become a very significant exporter of security to Central America -- work to ensure, for example, in the last few weeks, the head of the National Police of Colombia traveled to Guatemala as part of the new Guatemalan government's effort to revamp the national security strategy in that country to ensure that it is facing what we all recognize to be a growing challenge in the region.
Now we now what "Gunwalker Bill" Newell was doing, he was just a local shipping manager for the "export of security." I'm sure agents Terry, Zapata and the hundreds, if not thousands, of Mexican citizens -- victims all of the Gunwalker Conspiracy --would agree. They're all "secure" right now. Nothing will ever happen to them again.
Thursday, March 8, 2012
"'Knockout game' case shocked St. Louis, then fell apart." Felony assault which could easily have been a murder. It is truly better to be judged by 12 than carried by 6.
Right, well, we'll see what happens to the first government SOBs to try this out on an American crowd. Now there's a quandary. Shoot the technology? Shoot the operator? Both? Decisions, decisions.
"Number of U.S. anti-government groups rises for third year." To quote the Bard, "Who hath measured the ground?"
And remember my exchange with press scumbag Bill Morlin? Well, this is the propaganda piece he was working on when I told him to "piss off."
David Codrea's illustration of my stress test:
Well, I survived my stress test and ain't dead yet. They haven't told me that I've passed so I can be cut on next Tuesday, but I suspect I will be shortly. Again, God bless you all for your prayers and support. Actually, I have a feeling that God ain't done with me yet. My son called me from Germany yesterday and told me "Drink water, drive on!" So I guess it isn't time to lay down and die.
Wednesday, March 7, 2012
"The largest solar storm in five years is racing toward Earth, threatening to unleash a torrent of charged particles that could disrupt power grids, GPS and airplane flights."
The sun erupted Tuesday evening, and the effects should start smacking Earth between 1 a.m. and 5 a.m. EST Thursday (0600 GMT and 1000 GMT), according to forecasters at the U.S. government's Space Weather Prediction Center. They say the storm, which started with a massive solar flare, is growing as it speeds outward from the sun. . ."This is a good-size event, but not the extreme type," said Bill Murtagh, program coordinator for the space weather center.The solar storm is likely to last through Friday morning, but the region that erupted can still send more blasts our way, Kunches said. He said another set of active sunspots is ready to aim at Earth right after this.But for now, scientists are waiting to see what happens Thursday when the charged particles hit Earth at 4 million mph (6.4 million kph).NASA solar physicist Alex Young added, "It could give us a bit of a jolt." But he said this is far from a super solar storm.
Collectivist Congressman Adam Schiff, who is supremely uninterested in pursuing the truth of the Gunwalker Scandal, is upset about gun smuggling to Mexico.
"Rep. Adam Schiff seeks new penalties for gun traffickers." More gasoline and matches for the arsonists of the Obama administration.
Rick Holmes opined on "Guns and paranoia" and later "Guns and paranoia, continued." To which Mr. Higgins replies, "Holmes’ column on guns shows ignorance." With all the box-top diagnoses of "paranoia" on the part of "journalists" and "columnists" like Holmes out there, the only thing I can ask is "Who's really being paranoid?"
Well, that was interesting. Had a long chat with my new surgeon (who actually I had met before when I was going to the wound care clinic for my foot) and tells me I have a Gastrointestinal stromal tumor, or GIST for short.
Bottom line: 1 in 5 chance of not surviving the surgery and convalescence. Will involve at least a partial gastrectomy with possible involvement in the pancreas, spleen and the main artery that serves the spleen. Minimum hospital stay two weeks. Maximum, two months, if I make it. The Doc led Rosey and me in a prayer at the end of the visit, which I appreciated greatly.
There is also a designer drug for GIST, Gleevec, which the Doc says I must have but is more expensive than my divorce. That will be required post op and for a while after discharge. Lord knows how we're going to pay for that, but then it is all in His hands anyway.
Things like this remind you of what you haven't gotten around to, and how much you need to. For example, Rosey and I still don't have a will, so we'll have to see to that in the next couple of days. Stupid, I know, especially when I never expected to live past the mid-Nineties. We've never had much of anything, especially since I had to quit work with the congestive heart failure, but we still need to do it, and quickly. Same for a power of attorney.
While I was writing this I just got a call from the surgeon's office telling me my cardio guy wants to put me through some kind of stress test to see if I'm okay to go under the knife, which sounds to me like they're trying to kill me off before I get to the OR. Anyway, if everything works right, I'll be admitted to the hospital on Monday and cut on Tuesday. So now you know what I know.
I want to thank all of you who have had me on your prayer list and humbly and gratefully ask you to continue to keep me and my family in them. I'll continue to post as I can.
LATER: So, cardiac stress test arranged for tomorrow and so it will likely be Tuesday when I'm carved on. And in answer to the comment below, yes, the PO Box still works for that. May God bless you all.
Sipsey Street Exclusive: "I would like to draw your attention to Mr. Erb's expert witness list." One more torpedo before I take a surgery break.
I have this day sent the following email to Henry Kerner, Darrell Issa's major domo on the House Oversight committee, and Brian Downey, Senator Grassley's right hand guy in the F&F investigation.
-----Original Message-----From: georgemason1776To: henry.kerner
; brian_downeySent: Wed, Mar 7, 2012 6:30 amSubject: Regarding what line United States Attorneys can, and cannot, do.Gentlemen,I would like to draw your attention to a story of mine from yesterday on the strange events surrounding a civil suit subsequent to the ATF's failed case of U.S. vs. Friesen. Link: http://sipseystreetirregulars.blogspot.com/2012/03/sipset-street-exclusive-little-jimmy.htmlDoug Friesen, an Oklahoma attorney and machine gun collector, was targeted for prosecution by the ATF. The case blew up over several issues, the most important being the accuracy of the National Firearms Registration and Transfer Record (NFRTR). The defense presented expert evidence that the NFRTR was in fact not accurate, that the ATF knew it was not accurate (although it routinely sends people to prison based upon its supposed accuracy), and sought more discovery material from the U.S. Attorney and ATF. (Problems previously noted with the NFRTR can be found here: http://www.nfaoa.org/documents/NFRTRdocpack.pdf) For its part, the ATF was chided by the trial judge for failure to produce Brady material which the defense demonstrated existence. In the event, some discovery material turned over to the defense by ATF attorney James P. Vann was later found to contain viruses which infected defense counsel computers. The ATF and DOJ were evidently relieved to offer a deal to Mr. Friesen on a minor paperwork violation rather than proceed with such a fatally flawed case. (This wasn't for lack of trying since this was the second time ATF had sought to prosecute Mr. Friesen on the same charges.)Subsequent to the deal, Mr. Friesen, who had suffered great economic damage from this wrongful prosecution, sought to recover from Charles Erb, the manufacturer of the machine gun at issue in a civil suit. The ATF and DOJ have reacted very strangely to this civil suit and seem to have decided that they have an identity of interest with Mr. Erb, although exactly why is a bit murky.I would like to draw your attention to Mr. Erb's expert witness list. (Linked in my story and found here: http://www.scribd.com/doc/84019250/Pl-Expert-Designation) You will note that it is made up entirely of current and former ATF and DOJ employees, all participating on the taxpayer dime, presumably.You will further note that it includes the name of Ed Kumiega, Assistant United States Attorney in Oklahoma City. I mention this because Mr. Kumiega is one of that protected species that Attorney General Eric Holder has been holding forth at great length about what DOJ line attorneys can, and cannot, do when it comes to your investigation of Fast and Furious. I am not an attorney, but attorneys have told me that this designated expert witness list made up ENTIRELY of government employees IN A CIVIL SUIT IN WHICH NEITHER THEY NOR THE GOVERNMENT IS NAMED, not only is unprecedented in their experience, but that it must have been approved at the highest levels of the Justice Department.Another curiousity of the list is that it does not include the ATF's NFRTR Custodian, who could testify under oath as to the accuracy and completeness of the NFRTR with particular regard to the specific firearm(s) brought into evidence at Friesen's original trial. Were the ATF case legitimate, this would be an obvious addition, yet this is evidently a place they do not wish to go.I commend this strange behavior in the case of Doug Friesen (and the similar case of U.S. vs. Clark in Phoenix which involves some of the same federal actors as Fast and Furious as well as James P. Vann) for your consideration and further investigation. The scandals of the ATF and DOJ are not limited to Fast and Furious and you are both -- through the elected public servants you represent -- uniquely positioned to get to the bottom of this curious behavior on the part of Eric Holder's employees.Mike VanderboeghPO Box 926Pinson, AL 35126
A future Absolved editor?
Michigan Escapee announces: "Mike Vanderboegh going under the knife."
Guess he's got a big ole softball sized tumor inside of him, so they gotta remove it,and hopefully he'll live long enough to finish the book.Nah, who am I kidding, he'll get run over by a kid on a moped 12 years from now just as he's shipping off the manuscript. Way things always seem to happen. :roll:
Pretty funny, although his frustration -- which mirrors mine -- is perfectly understandable. Actually, I finally see the surgeon in his office first thing this morning and, since all necessary tests are already done, expect to be admitted to the hospital immediately thereafter with surgery tomorrow. Had one of the worst nights yet last night so I hope it works that fast. Will be taking my laptop with me, although I expect I'll lose at least a couple of work days post-surgery. Go to David Codrea's War on Guns site for updates in the meantime.
I'll do what I can, when I can, to avoid that killer moped. Obviously my death will be no excuse for not finishing Absolved, although there is an apparently growing crowd of folks who will cheer my death, finished or not. But, I may surprise y'all yet. ;-)
Tuesday, March 6, 2012
Another big surprise. Vietnamese Communists upset about sales of weapons and military equipment on the Internet.
"Indiscriminate sale of weapons and military equipment on the Internet are a threat to society and against the law in Vietnam." Why they're even selling "Glog" pistols!
Sipsey Street Exclusive: Little Jimmy Vann raises his ugly little head, again, in the most unlikely of places. Friesen Case -- the ATF self-inflicted wound that continues to be a running sore on their legitimacy. Who is Delbert Knopp?
Doug Friesen, the Oklahoma attorney that the ATF tried to send to federal prison for his opinions. His case still haunts them.
When we last left the case of the United States vs. Doug Friesen, it was "Groundhog Day" while ATF's James P. Vann searched frantically for his "lost" documents, and the ATF folded because, as I was cautioned by someone familiar with the case at the time, "You don't have the half of it in this case." In order to protect themselves from further discovery, the ATF cut a deal with Doug Friesen and he paid a tiny fine on a paperwork violation.
Little Jimmy Vann slipped out of town back to the rock he lives under at the ATF Chief Counsels Office, having once again done his best to waste taxpayer dollars in pursuit of an agenda. End of story, right? Not so fast. It seems there is much more to the Friesen case that remains worth hiding to the ATF.
Doug Friesen, still considerably damaged economically by the case and more than a little curious how and why the ATF came to target him, filed a civil suit against Charlie Erb, the guy who manufactured the weapon at issue. And who comes running back to town, but Little Jimmy Vann. He hastened there because Doug Friesen, not without reason, had sought to lift the discovery protective order which had been agreed to as part of the now closed case. There is, it seems, a whole lot the ATF still doesn't want known about the case and they are circling the wagons around Charlie Erb.
Nolo Contendere is doing a fantastic job of keeping up with the case (as well as U.S. vs. Clark) over at ARFcom and he first posted this from PACER:
Little Jimmy's motion in opposition to Friesen's request. And here is Friesen's response to Vann.
Let me draw your attention to a few points from the response:
7. On February 22, 2012 USAO Mark Yancey communicated to the undersigned via telephone that the USAO had forwarded Exhibit 1 to BATFE attorney James Vann and that the USAO no longer considered itself involved in the matter of the disclosure discovery materials in this matter.
Paraphrase: I don't want any part of this turd and you need to talk to the designated sewer maintenance worker, Little Jimmy Vann. ("The Secretary will disavow any knowledge of your actions.")
8. To date, Rowe has not received any communication from BATFE regarding its request for redacted versions of those documents surrendered to the USAO.
Paraphrase: Little Jimmy ain't going to hand over anything you don't force him to, your Honor.
9. On February 15, 2012 the undersigned received from attorney Joe Wells (“Wells”), attorney for Charles Erb, Jr. (“Erb”) in the civil case, certain materials upon which Delbert Knopp, an expert witness listed by Wells in the civil case, had relied upon to formulate the expert opinions he intends to offer in trial in that matter.
Delbert Knopp. Expert witness. Yes, well, let's talk about that. Nolo has also provided us with a list of Erb's designated expert witnesses. And as he comments, incredulously, "this is an expert designation in which the defense is calling ALL these ATF agents to testify on his behalf. The question is why and who is calling the shots here. WHY would all these ATF agents testify on behalf of Erb? And WHO is ordering them to do this? AND! They have designated as an EXPERT a US Attorney! holy shit! I guess that destroys Holder's opinion that "line attorneys" should not have to testify as witnesses re: Fast & Furious."
Delbert Knopp has a somewhat checkered past with ATF, having once sued then director John McGaw over a transfer after another employee filed an EEOC complaint against him. Ole Delbert happens to have been the SAC who targeted Doug Friesen for compliance inspection in the first place. Rumor has it that Knopp didn't like Friesen for a variety of reasons, including comments that Friesen made on his local radio law talk show as well as embarrassments that Friesen, a lawyer himself, had wreaked upon Knopp and Friends in court.
So, what is it that Little Jimmy is trying to protect here by this amazing circling of government-paid wagons around a plaintiff in a civil suit? Delbert's misuse of power to target someone he didn't like? The ATF's agenda as it applied to the Friesen case? Or is there something deeper? The only thing that seems certain, gentle readers, is that if Little Jimmy Vann is involved, there's government misconduct they're trying to hide.