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Monday, February 12, 2018

OTP 12 February 2018: Jeff Samardzija explains why politics and baseball rarely mix

However, there were several curveballs that forced Giants’ players to think outside the box, including one from a fan who asked a trio that included catcher Buster Posey, reliever Cory Gearrin and starting pitcher Jeff Samardzija whether they think baseball players should have a role in voicing their political opinions like football and basketball players have in recent years.

The question temporarily stumped Gearrin and Posey, so as his teammates waited, Samardzija decided to jump in and share his perspective.

“I don’t think so, not necessarily because we’re here to entertain you guys. Every time we step on the field, it’s important,” Samardzija said, before pausing temporarily while a loud round of applause petered out.

(As always, views expressed in the article lede and comments are the views of the individual commenters and the submitter of the article and do not represent the views of Baseball Think Factory or its owner.)

Mellow Mouse, Benevolent Space Tyrant Posted: February 12, 2018 at 07:41 AM | 2005 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: off topic, politics, san francisco giants, spring training

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   401. Zonk was SHOCKED by #6! Posted: February 13, 2018 at 12:02 PM (#5624214)
pre-flip.... because nobody wants to be #00!

Now: What more do people want? The WH to admit it screwed up? Kelly to admit it? McGhan to do so? Trump to admit something (although it's not clear that he actually knew much of anything). Kelly to lose his job? McGhan to lose his job? Trump to be impeached?



List of wants:

1) Kelly to explain himself and by proxy, the WH unraveling and admitting to a bucketful of lies

2) A full accounting of what other held-up security clearances exist... hint, Jared, hint.

3) What the administration policy is regarding people flagged and denied security clearance - what steps do they take to resolve/investigate such flagged applications

4) Is it WH policy to simply say "Oh well, you just get a never-ending 'temporary clearance' because this is how we roll"

Once upon a time, items 2, 3, and 4 -- and probably item 1, too -- seem to fit the perfect definition of what Congressional Oversight Committees do... I imagine Congressional Intelligence committees likewise have a vested interest security clearances and why they are essentially ignored.

I vaguely recall Congressional committees used to do this sort of thing... something about some woman and endangering national security with e-mails or something.

I realize that such committees have a full plate --- what with volunteering themselves full-time to the Carter Page Legal Defense fund -- but perhaps a reassessment of priorities is in order?

Or - I guess we could just wait until the next election, where others may decide this separation of powers thing, this checks-and-balances thing, this oversight thing... these things mean more than fashioning #THEMEMOs in order to protect the civil liberties of former coffee fetchers.
   402. Misirlou doesn't live in the restaurant Posted: February 13, 2018 at 12:02 PM (#5624215)
I mean, sure, it's possible in an "aliens landing from outer space" sort of way that these women are lying, or were paid off, or something - though that wouldn't explain the contemporaneous police report - but as far as the White House is concerned, they're not deciding whether he should be convicted of anything; they're only deciding whether he should keep his job. And it's clear that he shouldn't.


Once Kelly was informed by the FBI that they would be unable to give Porter a security clearence, it was borderline criminal for Kelly to keep him in the job. I'm not saying I want Kelly prosecuted for anything, but fired for cause would not be inappropriate.

But what I really want, and am unlikely to get, is a real honest effort from the WH starting with Trump, to admit to them selves at least that they are running a real ######## operation and start acting like professionals. That will be impossible if the man in charge doesen't dramatically change his behavior.
   403. BrianBrianson Posted: February 13, 2018 at 12:03 PM (#5624218)
Because so far all I've heard the press ask during the briefings is whether the WH is for domestic abuse, which is the dumbest of questions.


Given their inability to admit they screwed up, it's a reasonable question (although "indifferent to" is probably closer to what I imagine the truth is than "for").

And, of course, to ask about all the other people who haven't been able to get security clearance.

EDIT: Or, Ditto.
   404. Misirlou doesn't live in the restaurant Posted: February 13, 2018 at 12:07 PM (#5624219)
From here they want to emote and virtue signal. That’s what they always want to do.


Right, because no one could possibly care about a man who cannot get a securty clearence being kept in a job dealing with highly classified material on a never ending series of temporary waivers.

God you are a twit.
   405. Morty Causa Posted: February 13, 2018 at 12:08 PM (#5624220)
I've lived in the Deep South all my life, and somewhere along the way I've come to realize that many white people had to know that a loved one or relative had some "taint". It went without saying unless it was too obvious to ignore. Most people and in most cases, like Scarlett, they just didn't think too much and too deeply about that. Don't go there. No telling what you'll find. Moreover, preparatory to marriage, most people weren't sending out sorties of private eyes to find out if their intended was pure, and they weren't committed to extensive cogitation wrt proving a negative. Cursory precautions were taken, scuttlebutt was noted, but after that, mostly the hide went with the hare. Of course, it's the extreme that will get the attention, will make the literary and cultural papers. Meh doesn't make a good story.
   406. Zonk was SHOCKED by #6! Posted: February 13, 2018 at 12:08 PM (#5624221)
Never underestimate Trumpkin capability to take something that is simultaneously unseemly, despicable, ridiculously handled, AND has legitimate national security implications --- and turn it into yet another whinefeset about the REAL problem is the mean media.
   407. PepTech, the Legendary Posted: February 13, 2018 at 12:11 PM (#5624224)
In the Maps Are Cool category, here's one; the company with the highest market cap in each of the 50 states. I wouldn't have been able to pick off more than eight or ten before seeing the map. Heck, I would have guessed wrong on my own state (Washington); I probably would have been right last week...
   408. Sleepy's not going to blame himself Posted: February 13, 2018 at 12:11 PM (#5624225)
It would have been that in the first 44 administrations, but we have a President who aggressively defends & accepts the very thin excuses of a child molester and a wife beater against significant evidence of their guilt. It's not such a crazy question anymore.
To me, this is a disreputable trait, but pretty much irrelevant from a national security standpoint. That is, Trump should have spoken out against domestic abuse, but his failure to do that should be corrected at the ballot box. The minority of the American people who voted for him knew what they were voting for and he's under no obligation to act like a compassionate, responsible adult now that he's been sleeping in until noon every day for an entire year while in the seat.

The "actually bothersome" fact was that the White House staff gave an interim security clearance to handle top secret information to a guy who was considered too high of a risk to even get a vanilla secret clearance. Trump might not know any better, but Kelly certainly did. if he was aware of this situation and made the decision, then he should explain it.

There are probably something like 10,000 retired Army, Marine or AF generals who could act as a responsible "adult in the room". There might even be a capable retired Admiral or two out there. Kelly is eminently replaceable. If he's not acting responsibly then he should be replaced.
   409. dlf Posted: February 13, 2018 at 12:12 PM (#5624226)
My hand has never gone through a plate glass window, but, well, maybe it could happen in some innocuous way, I guess.... similar to how Jack Tripper would end up falling over the sofa once every two weeks when if you lived to be 500 it might never happen but... maybe.


I punched a plate glass window, shattering it, cutting myself pretty badly, resulting in stitches, and frightening the heck out of the 18 year old woman who was witness to my display of anger. Of course I was only 7 at the time, the young lady was my baby-sitter, and I lacked a strong connection between cause and effect. But had I only know this was going to be the subject of discussion, I could have shown off the resulting scar to the ATL get-together last night.
   410. Ray (CTL) Posted: February 13, 2018 at 12:13 PM (#5624229)
Once upon a time, items 2, 3, and 4 -- and probably item 1, too -- seem to fit the perfect definition of what Congressional Oversight Committees do... I imagine Congressional Intelligence committees likewise have a vested interest security clearances and why they are essentially ignored.

I vaguely recall Congressional committees used to do this sort of thing... something about some woman and endangering national security with e-mails or something.


Maybe I'm missing it but what's the oversight issue? It may be a bad decision to keep him in the job but it's not impermissible or illegal, so I don't see what the oversight committee would be addressing.
   411. zenbitz Posted: February 13, 2018 at 12:13 PM (#5624230)
@391 *shrug* glad the guy was fired, hope he is charged. As for the white house, they embarrass themselves on a daily basis, I expect it to continue.

I don't really have a problem with political opponents taking advantage of stupid or miscreant behavior.
   412. Ray (CTL) Posted: February 13, 2018 at 12:15 PM (#5624232)
Once Kelly was informed by the FBI that they would be unable to give Porter a security clearence, it was borderline criminal for Kelly to keep him in the job. I'm not saying I want Kelly prosecuted for anything, but fired for cause would not be inappropriate.


Borderline criminal? What statute was potentially violated?

Or do you mean it in a figure of speech sort of way. (Which would be fine - I'm just trying to figure out what you're saying.)

   413. Ishmael Posted: February 13, 2018 at 12:16 PM (#5624233)
I've lived in the Deep South all my life, and somewhere along the way I've come to realize that many white people had to know that a loved one or relative had some "taint". It went without saying unless it was too obvious to ignore. Most people and in most cases, like Scarlett, they just didn't think too much and too deeply about that. Don't go there. No telling what you'll find. Moreover, preparatory to marriage, most people weren't sending out sorties of private eyes to find out if their intended was pure, and they weren't committed to extensive cogitation wrt proving a negative. Cursory precautions were taken, scuttlebutt was noted, but after that, mostly the hide went with the hare. Of course, it's the extreme that will get the attention, will make the literary and cultural papers. Meh doesn't make a good story.

There's a reference in Passing to the Rhinelander trial. It's a hell of a thing.
   414. Misirlou doesn't live in the restaurant Posted: February 13, 2018 at 12:16 PM (#5624234)
Maybe I'm missing it but what's the oversight issue? It may be a bad decision to keep him in the job but it's not impermissible or illegal, so I don't see what the oversight committee would be addressing.


Legality aside, do you feel it is an appropriate use of the temporary waiver to use it to keep a man in a job requiring a security clearence who is unable to get one? What's the point of having them if the President can just say "Don'y bother with backround checks. I'll grant you all temporay waivers for as long as we need you."
   415. Sleepy's not going to blame himself Posted: February 13, 2018 at 12:17 PM (#5624235)
I'll pick up a 12-pack of coke at CVS on my lunch break. Damn you guys type fast.

4) Is it WH policy to simply say "Oh well, you just get a never-ending 'temporary clearance' because this is how we roll"
This is actually something to think about. One of these days, someone is going to tell Trump that the President establishes the whole classification system by executive order, and he can change it to pretty much whatever he wants within bounds of the various laws designed to protect classified information. Obama took some strong steps to de-politicize classification of information but Trump has wide latitude to swing the pendulum the other way, if he ever actually bothers to tell someone to draft him a memo directing it.

   416. Srul Itza Posted: February 13, 2018 at 12:17 PM (#5624237)
A pretty simple forecast model that relies on economic performance and presidential popularity predicts Democrats will pick up 45 to 50 House seats this fall,


Dream on.

We are living in the Age of the Stupids.

Tout the Enlightenment all you want. The Un-Enlightenment is on the march.

   417. Misirlou doesn't live in the restaurant Posted: February 13, 2018 at 12:18 PM (#5624238)
Or do you mean it in a figure of speech sort of way. (Which would be fine - I'm just trying to figure out what you're saying.)


Yes. And I have explained my reasoning several times.
   418. PepTech, the Legendary Posted: February 13, 2018 at 12:18 PM (#5624239)
Now: What more do people want? The WH to admit it screwed up? Kelly to admit it? McGhan to do so? Trump to admit something (although it's not clear that he actually knew much of anything). Kelly to lose his job? McGhan to lose his job? Trump to be impeached?
Zonk's list is a good start.

What would you be calling for, had HRC's mythical staff secretary been accused of the same thing?
(although it's not clear that he actually knew much of anything)
Would you have let HRC slide with a mere parenthetical? Methinks not.
   419. Zonk was SHOCKED by #6! Posted: February 13, 2018 at 12:18 PM (#5624240)
Maybe I'm missing it but what's the oversight issue? It may be a bad decision to keep him in the job but it's not impermissible or illegal, so I don't see what the oversight committee would be addressing.


Oy

Just oy.

How about just pretend this whole thing came about because of a FISA surveillance application for Rob Porter and Rob Porter just used to fetch coffee. Now does it make sense?

   420. Joe Bivens is NOT a clueless numpty Posted: February 13, 2018 at 12:22 PM (#5624242)
Dream on.

We are living in the Age of the Stupids.

Tout the Enlightenment all you want. The Un-Enlightenment is on the march.


You're harshing my calm.
   421. ERROR---Jolly Old St. Nick Posted: February 13, 2018 at 12:23 PM (#5624243)
Andy also with a non-answer.

To a stupidly abstract and non-contextualized question.
   422. Ray (CTL) Posted: February 13, 2018 at 12:24 PM (#5624245)
From here they want to emote and virtue signal. That’s what they always want to do.

Right, because no one could possibly care about a man who cannot get a securty clearence being kept in a job dealing with highly classified material on a never ending series of temporary waivers.

God you are a twit.


SBB's comment wasn't about the Porter dustup.

That said, I see the argument that you don't want a domestic abuser in that job. But setting the domestic violence aside there's nothing relating to that that would make him unable to perform in the job per se. Or do you think he could be blackmailed? Is that the argument?
   423. BDC Posted: February 13, 2018 at 12:26 PM (#5624246)
I'm still not sure about that hypothetical (which is not Ray's but the Princeton instructor's, I believe).

Ray (and Bear) want it to be obvious is that words are superficial, and can never be worse than punching. But everybody knows from experience that people can say things to others in extremely disrespectful and demeaning ways. Most people can remember some experience where you think (and sometimes say) "That experience couldn't have been worse if you'd have hit me."

Ray says the white guy is punching the other because he's black. So how does the black guy know this? There has to be some verbal or symbolic context somewhere – otherwise the white guy may just be drunk, or got out of bed on the wrong side. I mean, if he calls him a ###### and then punches him, I guess that's worse than just name-calling, but that's not the question. But who yells "Sir! African-American gentleman! I dislike your ethnicity!" and then punches somebody?

If somebody calls you a ######, what can you do back? Call him whitey? Perhaps you can't do that because the threat of punching (or much worse) awaits, but you also can't because it isn't a reciprocal insult. You're a ######, and you can't retaliate, and that's the story of your life (and used to be of many people's lives).

If somebody punches you, can you punch back? Usually – unless the puncher and his society can already call you a ######, and thus the consequence of punching back is much worse.

I think those kinds of things are what the question is getting at, but if y'all want to make it (hmn) black and white, that's your prerogative.



   424. Ray (CTL) Posted: February 13, 2018 at 12:29 PM (#5624248)
Ray says the white guy is punching the other because he's black. So how does the black guy know this? There has to be some verbal or symbolic context somewhere – otherwise the white guy may just be drunk, or got out of bed on the wrong side. I mean, if he calls him a ###### and then punches him, I guess that's worse than just name-calling, but that's not the question. But who yells "Sir! African-American gentleman! I dislike your ethnicity!" and then punches somebody?


You seem to be arguing that there's no such thing as a hate crime, because there's no way to identify that it was a hate crime, or that there's nothing about a hate crime that makes it worse than any other crime. That would... go against what the left typically thinks about hate crimes.

But in this hypothetical I (or actually the professor) am telling you it's a hate crime -- both the punching of the guy and the calling him the n-word. The crime is occurring because the victim is black.

The whole _point_ of a hypothetical is that you can use it to strip away all else other than what you're focusing on for the hypothetical. People here seem unfamiliar with how they work.
   425. PepTech, the Legendary Posted: February 13, 2018 at 12:30 PM (#5624249)
But setting the domestic violence aside there's nothing relating to that that would make him unable to perform in the job per se.
Very fine people, capable people. Why quibble over one character flaw?
   426. Gonfalon Bubble Posted: February 13, 2018 at 12:32 PM (#5624250)
#418:
What would you be calling for, had HRC's mythical staff secretary been accused of the same thing?


Hypothetically, for the staff secretary to get punched in the hypothetical nose by a black guy.
   427. tshipman Posted: February 13, 2018 at 12:33 PM (#5624251)
That said, I see the argument that you don't want a domestic abuser in that job. But setting the domestic violence aside there's nothing relating to that that would make him unable to perform in the job per se. Or do you think he could be blackmailed? Is that the argument?


Yes. People with undisclosed crimes are not allowed to hold top secret clearance because they are vulnerable to blackmail/being leveraged by foreign intel agencies.

There's also an element of "unsavory" where it's just preferred that people handling top secret intel are squeaky clean independent of blackmail/leverage.
   428. TDF didn't lie, he just didn't remember Posted: February 13, 2018 at 12:37 PM (#5624254)
In the Maps Are Cool category, here's one; the company with the highest market cap in each of the 50 states. I wouldn't have been able to pick off more than eight or ten before seeing the map. Heck, I would have guessed wrong on my own state (Washington); I probably would have been right last week...
Don't feel bad. That map is from December 2016.
   429. Sleepy's not going to blame himself Posted: February 13, 2018 at 12:40 PM (#5624257)
But setting the domestic violence determination of ineligibility for access to classified information based on judgments by appropriately trained adjudicative personnel aside, there's nothing relating to that that would make him unable to perform in the job per se.
FIFY.
   430. David Nieporent (now, with children) Posted: February 13, 2018 at 12:45 PM (#5624258)

Legality aside, do you feel it is an appropriate use of the temporary waiver to use it to keep a man in a job requiring a security clearence who is unable to get one? What's the point of having them if the President can just say "Don'y bother with backround checks. I'll grant you all temporay waivers for as long as we need you."
Setting aside Porter and speaking generally, there are a couple of million people with security clearances. The point of having a clearance system is to control the flow of information in a mass bureaucracy, not to constrain the president. (Remember, the president controls the system in the first place.) There's nothing wrong with having the system but then having the president grant waivers on a case by case basis as he thinks appropriate.
   431. Zonk was SHOCKED by #6! Posted: February 13, 2018 at 12:45 PM (#5624260)
Yeesh.... you lawyers can all get me an "interim admission to the bar" for doing all this law look-up, right? I mean - I'm not saying that I should get an actual admission to the bar - just an interim admission (that... doesn't expire).

In any case, 50 U.S. Code § 3341 and 50 U.S. Code § 3343 (Section 3342 covers security clearance for transition team members). Neat extra -- that question about "oversight" and why it applies? Turns out these very same statutes on the procedures for security clearance also cover the appropriate role for specific congressional committees, their oversight responsibilities, and duties to report such stuff to them.

I presume from.... ummmmm.... past discussions, you Trumpkins all remain as familiar with 18 USC 1001, given how many times you referred back to it when matters of national security didn't involve a Trumpkin?
   432. Lance Reddick! Lance him! Posted: February 13, 2018 at 12:46 PM (#5624261)
If somebody calls you a ######, what can you do back? Call him whitey?

Dead honkey.
   433. BDC Posted: February 13, 2018 at 12:46 PM (#5624263)
The whole _point_ of a hypothetical is that you can use it to strip away all else other than what you're focusing on for the hypothetical. People here seem unfamiliar with how they work

Well, at this point all we're disagreeing about is how questions work in classrooms. Maybe in law school the idea is to pose a hypothetical question so that you laser in on the correct answer. In humanities classrooms, the idea is to expand the debate and think about its connections to bigger pictures.

Therefore my official (and correct) answer is that if a white racist expresses a racist intention and walks up and punches a black person racistly, that is indeed worse than him just being verbally racist. That also means it's a stupid hypothetical question. Whether it started stupid or got reduced to stupidity, I leave to the audience to decide :)
   434. Mellow Mouse, Benevolent Space Tyrant Posted: February 13, 2018 at 12:47 PM (#5624265)
But setting the domestic violence aside there's nothing relating to that that would make him unable to perform in the job per se.


What part of illegal are you not understanding?
   435. ERROR---Jolly Old St. Nick Posted: February 13, 2018 at 12:52 PM (#5624268)
In the Maps Are Cool category, here's one; the company with the highest market cap in each of the 50 states. I wouldn't have been able to pick off more than eight or ten before seeing the map.

10 was my limit: California, Oregon, Washington, Delaware, Georgia, Texas, Arkansas, Tennessee, Michigan, and Nevada. I should've known North Carolina, but my atavistic memory keeps associating North Carolina with tobacco companies.
   436. PepTech, the Legendary Posted: February 13, 2018 at 12:54 PM (#5624270)
People here seem unfamiliar with how they work
Typically when this statement is made, it's by the guy driving the wrong way on the freeway.
   437. Zonk was SHOCKED by #6! Posted: February 13, 2018 at 12:55 PM (#5624271)
Setting aside Porter and speaking generally, there are a couple of million people with security clearances. The point of having a clearance system is to control the flow of information in a mass bureaucracy, not to constrain the president. (Remember, the president controls the system in the first place.) There's nothing wrong with having the system but then having the president grant waivers on a case by case basis as he thinks appropriate.


Isn't there?

50 USC § 3343(c)

(c) Disqualification
(1) In generalAfter January 1, 2008, absent an express written waiver granted in accordance with paragraph (2), the head of a Federal agency may not grant or renew a security clearance described in paragraph (3) for a covered person who—
(A) has been convicted in any court of the United States of a crime, was sentenced to imprisonment for a term exceeding 1 year, and was incarcerated as a result of that sentence for not less than 1 year;
(B) has been discharged or dismissed from the Armed Forces under dishonorable conditions; or
(C) is mentally incompetent, as determined by an adjudicating authority, based on an evaluation by a duly qualified mental health professional employed by, or acceptable to and approved by, the United States Government and in accordance with the adjudicative guidelines required by subsection (d).
(2) Waiver authorityIn a meritorious case, an exception to the disqualification in this subsection may be authorized if there are mitigating factors. Any such waiver may be authorized only in accordance with—
(A) standards and procedures prescribed by, or under the authority of, an Executive order or other guidance issued by the President; or
(B) the adjudicative guidelines required by subsection (d)
.


So.... IOW - it would seem that you're implying Trump knows a lot more than he let on?

Unless there's an EO granting Kelly "Do whatever you want" privileges, this would seem to say that the President would need to grant this waiver, no?
   438. David Nieporent (now, with children) Posted: February 13, 2018 at 12:57 PM (#5624272)
Well, at this point all we're disagreeing about is how questions work in classrooms. Maybe in law school the idea is to pose a hypothetical question so that you laser in on the correct answer. In humanities classrooms, the idea is to expand the debate and think about its connections to bigger pictures.
The idea in law school or elsewhere is to get you to think -- but fighting the hypo is always the wrong answer.
   439. The usual palaver and twaddle (Met Fan Charlie) Posted: February 13, 2018 at 12:57 PM (#5624273)
315

You want reaction?

I'll give you reaction...


OK, this caused an actual spit-take...
   440. Gonfalon Bubble Posted: February 13, 2018 at 12:58 PM (#5624274)
Zonk, #437:
So.... IOW - it would seem that you're implying Trump knows a lot more than he let on?

Unless there's an EO granting Kelly "Do whatever you want" privileges, this would seem to say that the President would need to grant this waiver, no?



So this would be a "The President is new and inexperienced in politics and is still feeling his way" excuse, and not a "The President is new and inexperienced in politics which makes him extra awesome" situation?
   441. Sleepy's not going to blame himself Posted: February 13, 2018 at 12:59 PM (#5624275)
But setting the domestic violence aside there's nothing relating to that that would make him unable to perform in the job per se.

What part of illegal are you not understanding?
Also, the domestic abuse is just the "character flaw" that we heard about; it may not be the only issue. The determination that the man should not have a security clearance came after a full background investigation, so the decision not to give him access may have been based solely on that, or it may have been based partly on that and partly on other things. It may have been based on something we don't know about, like delinquent debt or sworn allegiance to the lizard people's organization or whatever.
There's nothing wrong with having the system but then having the president grant waivers on a case by case basis as he thinks appropriate.
An interim clearance is not a waiver to access classified information after you've been determined to be ineligible. The interim clearance is designed to give short-term access while the responsible agency investigates. Once the investigation is complete, the interim clearance is void and should have been immediately terminated. At a minimum, the responsible security officer (almost certainly some low level person we've never heard of) should be sanctioned.

Zonk, I don't think the law you cited is the right reference. He wasn't found to be mentally incompetent; it was determined that his personal and professional history indicates unacceptable risk that his loyalty to the United States might be compromised.
   442. Gonfalon Bubble Posted: February 13, 2018 at 12:59 PM (#5624276)
fighting the hypo is always the wrong answer.


But what if it weren't?
   443. The usual palaver and twaddle (Met Fan Charlie) Posted: February 13, 2018 at 01:00 PM (#5624277)

Once Kelly was informed by the FBI that they would be unable to give Porter a security clearence, it was borderline criminal for Kelly to keep him in the job.


This is a stretch, but you finished up strong, Miserlou...
   444. ERROR---Jolly Old St. Nick Posted: February 13, 2018 at 01:01 PM (#5624278)
Well, at this point all we're disagreeing about is how questions work in classrooms. Maybe in law school the idea is to pose a hypothetical question so that you laser in on the correct answer. In humanities classrooms, the idea is to expand the debate and think about its connections to bigger pictures

In the context of an undergraduate classroom, as long as the teacher frames the question in its proper context, it should indeed lead to further questions and an expanding of the debate. It's hard to tell just how well this particular teacher did that, though the reaction of the students was way over-the-top.

Is it worse for a black person to punch a white person in the face, or call him a "sorry-assed white faggot" in a public setting? Doesn't the concept of "fighting words" have any meaning at all?
   445. Lassus Posted: February 13, 2018 at 01:02 PM (#5624279)
My google-fu is failing. Does anyone have a good link to the current Vegas odds for tonight's Best in Show at the Westminster?
   446. David Nieporent (now, with children) Posted: February 13, 2018 at 01:04 PM (#5624281)

Isn't there?

50 USC § 3343(c)
Not sure what you think that has to do with this discussion, either procedurally or substantively. We're not talking about federal agencies here, which is what that statute governs; we're also not talking about someone who is automatically disqualified, which is who that section you quote pertains to.

Oh, and in addition, even if this statute applied to the Porter situation, no, it does not say that the president needs to be the one to grant waivers. It says that the president must set guidelines and procedures for granting waivers.
   447. BDC Posted: February 13, 2018 at 01:04 PM (#5624282)
Does anyone have a good link to the current Vegas odds for tonight's Best in Show at the Westminster?

Odds are the winner will be a dog.
   448. Zonk was SHOCKED by #6! Posted: February 13, 2018 at 01:06 PM (#5624283)
The issue here would seem to be that Kelly cannot grant waivers... only the President can. Yes, yes - the President can sign EOs or set forth guidance that would allow Kelly to apply a waiver in accordance with such guidance...

But then again, don't we need to know what that guidance is - specifically?

And doesn't Kelly then need to explain how Porter got his waiver under the instructions of this guidance?

And further, shouldn't it be asked by someone... you know, like a congressional committee charged with oversight on such matters (the rules on Security clearances seem to say that there are 3 of them)... what other such waivers have been granted and why?

Like ahem, Jared, ahem.
   449. Ray (CTL) Posted: February 13, 2018 at 01:07 PM (#5624285)
Is it worse for a black person to punch a white person in the face, or call him a "sorry-assed white faggot" in a public setting?


The former, of course.

Doesn't the concept of "fighting words" have any meaning at all?


Not to mature adults. Although even children learn sticks and stones can break my bones but... etc etc.

As to "fighting words," inciting violence is not protected speech under the 1A. But do you know what else is not protected? Punching someone in the face for no legally acceptable reason such as self defense or defense of others.
   450. Zonk was SHOCKED by #6! Posted: February 13, 2018 at 01:09 PM (#5624286)
Zonk, I don't think the law you cited is the right reference. He wasn't found to be mentally incompetent; it was determined that his personal and professional history indicates unacceptable risk that his loyalty to the United States might be compromised.


Not sure what you think that has to do with this discussion, either procedurally or substantively. We're not talking about federal agencies here, which is what that statute governs; we're also not talking about someone who is automatically disqualified, which is who that section you quote pertains to.

Oh, and in addition, even if this statute applied to the Porter situation, no, it does not say that the president needs to be the one to grant waivers. It says that the president must set guidelines and procedures for granting waivers.


So no interim bar admission? Drat.

OK - then what governs Presidential grants of waivers?

Surely, this must be documented somewhere.... it isn't just some thing Presidents can just do, right?
   451. Lassus Posted: February 13, 2018 at 01:14 PM (#5624288)
Does anyone have a good link to the current Vegas odds for tonight's Best in Show at the Westminster?
Odds are the winner will be a dog.


Clever. I'm serious, though, there have to be odds SOMEwhere. My GF's favored breed won the toy group, so I'm curious what the line is on him winning the big one.
   452. Stormy JE Posted: February 13, 2018 at 01:17 PM (#5624289)
What would you be calling for, had HRC's mythical staff secretary been accused of the same thing?
So here we have not just whataboutism, but fantasy whataboutism, yet the usual suspects don't bat an eyelash. LMFAO.
   453. PepTech, the Legendary Posted: February 13, 2018 at 01:17 PM (#5624290)
I'm blocked from such sites at work, but in the past the Wynn Sportsbook has laid odds on the WDS. Or maybe oddsshark.com.
   454. The usual palaver and twaddle (Met Fan Charlie) Posted: February 13, 2018 at 01:17 PM (#5624291)
423

If somebody calls you a ######, what can you do back?


Or, as Richard Pryor so eloquently told us, "DEAD Honky..."

Edit: enjoy your frosty beverage, Lance...
   455. Zonk was SHOCKED by #6! Posted: February 13, 2018 at 01:19 PM (#5624292)
This would seem to indicate that the sections I noted do very much apply... as they reference the "interim" clearance thresholds described in the sections.

Can independent agencies within the executive branch, such as the FBI, overrule the White House on questions of security clearance? “There’s no real oversight,” national security attorney Bradley Moss told me. Moss works on helping government officials navigate the security-clearance process. He said that ultimately if Congress is compliant, there’s nothing stopping Trump from allowing whoever he wants to work in the White House without final security-clearance approval. The way the process normally works is that an official is given interim security-clearance approval until an investigating agency, likely the FBI, can vet the official for permanent clearance. Interim clearance, though, offers the same exact access to classified information as permanent clearance. “Access is access,” Moss said. “The interim access [though] is only supposed to be there long enough for an agency to finish the vetting.” That vetting process, Moss said, can be as quick as a couple of weeks depending on the circumstances of the individual application.

We know that Kushner has been able to access classified information despite never being granted final clearance, potentially due to questions surrounding misleading information he put on his initial clearance-request forms. Both Porter and Kushner have apparently had this interim clearance for a year, though Moss said, “the interim clearance really isn’t supposed to last longer than somewhere between 90 and 180 days. The agency is supposed to have rendered a decision at that point one way or the other as to whether or not to grant a clearance.”

The enormous loophole in this process is that even if the adjudicating agency decides that someone should not receive security clearance for whatever reason—including that they might be susceptible to blackmail or have committed domestic assault—the president can override that agency’s decision and grant clearance anyway. Additionally, there’s no internal mechanism for making the public aware of possible White House decisions to override security-clearance decisions by the federal bureaucracy. The only way the public might learn about a security-clearance decision being ignored or overridden is through a leak to the press, a waiver signed by the official in question releasing his or her own security clearance status, or perhaps congressional oversight.


OK.... so - Wray just testified today that the FBI delivered its final report last November. I suppose I'm making a leap here - but it seems obvious per reporting that his security clearance was denied.

He must have gotten a waiver, right? Additional reports are now saying that in fact, Porter was likely to be elevated to Deputy Chief of Staff.

So.... how is he getting a waiver without the President knowing?
   456. Sleepy's not going to blame himself Posted: February 13, 2018 at 01:22 PM (#5624294)
OK - then what governs Presidential grants of waivers?

Surely, this must be documented somewhere.... it isn't just some thing Presidents can just do, right?
No evidence of any waiver has been presented AFAIK, but the president (Obama, in 2009, EO 13526, Section 4.1(a)) established the policy, so the President should be able to waive anything in it. That EO doesn't discuss who can approve waivers to the administrative clearance process but it does say that:
(a) A person may have access to classified information provided that:
(1) a favorable determination of eligibility for access has been made by an agency head or the agency head’s designee;
(2) the person has signed an approved nondisclosure agreement; and
(3) the person has a need-to-know the information.
So no waiver would even be required, IF authorized by the appropriate person.

So who authorized it, and what risk mitigation did he or she have in place?
   457. PepTech, the Legendary Posted: February 13, 2018 at 01:22 PM (#5624295)
So here we have hypothetical whataboutism, yet the usual suspects don't bat an eyelash. LMFAO.
JE, that's a pretty thin reed.

I'm not excusing Porter's behavior by saying "Obama had a wife-beater, what's your problem?" THAT would be a WhatAbout. I'm asking what a just reaction would be in a neutral/nonpartisan environment.
   458. ERROR---Jolly Old St. Nick Posted: February 13, 2018 at 01:22 PM (#5624296)
Is it worse for a black person to punch a white person in the face, or call him a "sorry-assed white faggot " in a public setting?

The former, of course.

Doesn't the concept of "fighting words" have any meaning at all?

Not to mature adults. Although even children learn sticks and stones can break my bones but... etc etc.


Introducing "mature adults" into this is a completely irrelevant distraction, though you'd probably find more certifiably mature adults react to fighting words than use those fighting words themselves.

As to "fighting words," inciting violence is not protected speech under the 1A. But do you know what else is not protected? Punching someone in the face for no legally acceptable reason such as self defense or defense of others.

Your point being? This has absolutely nothing to do with legal issues, and everything to do with words and actions in context.

   459. David Nieporent (now, with children) Posted: February 13, 2018 at 01:22 PM (#5624297)
OK - then what governs Presidential grants of waivers?

Surely, this must be documented somewhere.... it isn't just some thing Presidents can just do, right?
It is something presidents can just do. Remember that almost all of the classification system originates via Executive Order in the first place.
   460. Stormy JE Posted: February 13, 2018 at 01:24 PM (#5624300)
I'm not excusing Porter's behavior by saying "Obama had a wife-beater, what's your problem?" THAT would be a WhatAbout.
No, you appear to be concerned that Republicans aren't making a big enough deal here; imagine if something similar had happened in a HRC administration -- even though it hasn't happened.
   461. Lassus Posted: February 13, 2018 at 01:26 PM (#5624302)
What would you be calling for, had HRC's mythical staff secretary been accused of the same thing?
So here we have not just whataboutism, but fantasy whataboutism, yet the usual suspects don't bat an eyelash. LMFAO.


In my defense, I quite seriously thought this was someone quoting you.
   462. ERROR---Jolly Old St. Nick Posted: February 13, 2018 at 01:27 PM (#5624305)
I'm not excusing Porter's behavior by saying "Obama had a wife-beater, what's your problem?" THAT would be a WhatAbout.

Well, ya never know....

"C'MON BABY GIMME ONE MORE CHANCE"
   463. Lassus Posted: February 13, 2018 at 01:27 PM (#5624306)
Thanks, Peptech.

EDIT: no dice on phone. Tsk. Maybe when home.
   464. Zonk was SHOCKED by #6! Posted: February 13, 2018 at 01:31 PM (#5624309)
No, quite the opposite. You appear to be concerned that Republicans aren't making a big enough deal here; imagine if something similar had happened in a HRC administrationt -- which hasn't even happened.


Um, near as I can tell - they're not making any deal.... big enough or otherwise.

Both Wray (and DNI Coats) testified today - previously scheduled testimony, but obviously, questions were asked. Wray reports that the FBI provided an interim report last March, a full report in July, and then final report in November. Coats testified that the security clearance system is "broken" -- I might have said "doesn't matter" or "is meaningless and to be ignored".

So I'll reiterate what I said at the top of the page.

Maybe your congressional committees could spare some time from their Carter Page Legal Defense Team work to exercise some oversight? I have this vague recollection that someone previously explained to me how the Carter Page Legal Defense Team work was important because it was about.... Oversight.
   465. TDF didn't lie, he just didn't remember Posted: February 13, 2018 at 01:31 PM (#5624310)
I should've known North Carolina, but my atavistic memory keeps associating North Carolina with tobacco companies.
Like I said, that map is over a year old. You'll be relieved to hear that at least in Virginia, PhilipMorris has passed Atria.
   466. Mellow Mouse, Benevolent Space Tyrant Posted: February 13, 2018 at 01:32 PM (#5624311)
No, you appear to be concerned that Republicans aren't making a big enough deal here; imagine if something similar had happened in a HRC administration -- even though it hasn't happened.


Imagine there's no heaven
It's easy if you try
No hell below us
Above us only sky
Imagine all the people living for today

Imagine there's no countries
It isn't hard to do
Nothing to kill or die for
And no religion too
Imagine all the people living life in peace, you

You may say I'm a dreamer
But I'm not the only one
I hope some day you'll join us
And the world will be as one

Imagine no possessions
I wonder if you can
No need for greed or hunger
A brotherhood of man

Imagine all the people sharing all the world, you
You may say I'm a dreamer
But I'm not the only one
I hope some day you'll join us
And the world will be as one
   467. -- Posted: February 13, 2018 at 01:35 PM (#5624313)
Therefore my official (and correct) answer is that if a white racist expresses a racist intention and walks up and punches a black person racistly, that is indeed worse than him just being verbally racist. That also means it's a stupid hypothetical question.


I don't get the conclusion that the hypo was stupid. Actually it seems pretty good, because it led to you committing to an answer.

The purpose of course is a valid one -- to see where harboring badthought or committing badthink ranks in the hierarchy of moral turpitude. It also points out the continuing imperative to distinguish between words and acts. Yes, words can be violent -- but they're virtually never as violent as actual violence.
   468. -- Posted: February 13, 2018 at 01:37 PM (#5624314)
The concern with security and the like would have been better aimed at Hillary's grossly negligent commitment of a bunch of classified information to her rogue server while serving as Secretary of State.

Whereby some of it eventually wound up on the computer of a highly blackmailable pervert and child molester.
   469. Zonk was SHOCKED by #6! Posted: February 13, 2018 at 01:38 PM (#5624317)
Porter was up for promotion despite abuse allegations

I guess this explains why "off the record" interviews with various media outlets were being pursued so Porter could get "his side of the story" - his struggles with vases and women's eyes, the amazing power of his index finger to punch through glass from mere tapping, etc - out there.

Ah well, I guess we'll just have to wait for the next Celebrity Big Brother for former WH staffer Omarosa to explain how things work in the WH.
   470. Zonk was SHOCKED by #6! Posted: February 13, 2018 at 01:41 PM (#5624320)
The concern with security and the like would have been better aimed at Hillary's grossly negligent commitment of a bunch of classified information to her rogue server.

Whereby some of it eventually wound up on the computer of a highly blackmailable pervert and child molester.


So you're saying all of that could have been avoided if Obama had just thought to snap his magic waiver fingers?
   471. Stormy JE Posted: February 13, 2018 at 01:43 PM (#5624322)
I'm not excusing Porter's behavior by saying "Obama had a wife-beater, what's your problem?" THAT would be a WhatAbout. I'm asking what a just reaction would be in a neutral/nonpartisan environment.
Let's make it simpler, shall we?

If I *weren't* pissed at the Trump White House for this obvious ####-up and *then* typed the following...

Now it's not alleged wife beating but Obama *did* allow someone into the Oval Office who was denied a security clearance until, PRESTO!, one magically appeared!
Lawmakers and congressional insiders continue to raise questions about a senior Obama administration official and proponent of its Iran diplomacy following revelations he was denied interim security clearance before being given a senior role in the White House, according to conversations with multiple sources.

The Washington Free Beacon first disclosed last week that Ben Rhodes, a White House deputy national security adviser who handled the administration's efforts to mislead the public about the terms of the Iran nuclear agreement, is being probed by Congress following disclosures the FBI may have denied him top-level security clearances.

Lawmakers told the Free Beacon that the Obama administration has been obstructing formal efforts to obtain information about why Rhodes was initially denied FBI clearance and how he ultimately received top-secret clearances.
Not that the MSM or you fellas the usual suspects gave a flying ####...

Now *that* would be whataboutism.
   472. TDF didn't lie, he just didn't remember Posted: February 13, 2018 at 01:43 PM (#5624323)
Boy, the NCAA really has a mess on its hands. If they don't stop all of those football players from protesting during the national anthem, pretty soon no one will go to the games at all!
   473. McCoy Posted: February 13, 2018 at 01:45 PM (#5624326)
Baby boomers are dying out and millennials aren’t going to the games. It also doesn’t help that these colleges shake you down for money left and right just for the honor to go to a football game.
   474. PepTech, the Legendary Posted: February 13, 2018 at 01:46 PM (#5624327)
I'm not excusing Porter's behavior by saying "Obama had a wife-beater, what's your problem?" THAT would be a WhatAbout.

No, you appear to be concerned that Republicans aren't making a big enough deal here; imagine if something similar had happened in a HRC administration -- even though it hasn't happened.
Maybe *I* don't understand WhatAbouts.

I had understood them to be along the lines of "Nevermind Trump's ##### grabbing, because Bill Clinton!" or "Nevermind Obama's drone attacks, because Mission Accomplished!". With Trump these days, the complaint about WhatAboutism is due primarily to the daily "neverminds" about each NEW instance of TeamTrump's racism/buffoonery/misogyny/incompetence/narcissism by constantly calling back to one or two events from HRC's actual past, or something LBJ's COS did, or some Democratic County Supervisor rather than looking at, say, Pruitt's travel spending as an Independently Bad Thing. This has the effect of shoving Pruitt's travel spending under the rug while we bicker about history. See #468 for a classic example of an Actual WhatAbout.

Ray's question is legitimate - Porter's been outed. What further consequences (if any) should there be for Kelly and/or Trump? To answer this question, it would be instructive to take into account how folks on both sides would react in a - yes - hypothetical D situation. There's no element of excusing or enabling Porter here.
   475. Sleepy's not going to blame himself Posted: February 13, 2018 at 01:46 PM (#5624328)
It is something presidents can just do. Remember that almost all of the classification system originates via Executive Order in the first place.
So the interesting thing, I think, is that the EO implements executive branch policy directed by law (national security act of 1947, as amended, enacted by Public Law 111–259 (October 7, 2010)). So the President should be held accountable for faithfully implementing the law. Is the Republican-led congress doing that?

To answer Zonk's question, the law specifically states:
TITLE VIII—ACCESS TO CLASSIFIED INFORMATION

PROCEDURES
SEC. 801. [50 U.S.C 435]
(a) Not later than 180 days after the date of enactment of this title, the President shall, by Executive order or regulation, establish procedures to govern access to classified
information which shall be binding upon all departments, agencies, and offices of the executive branch of Government. Such procedures shall, at a minimum—
(1) provide that, except as may be permitted by the President, no employee in the executive branch of Government may be given access to classified information by any department, agency, or office of the executive branch of Government unless, based upon an appropriate background investigation, such access is determined to be clearly consistent with the national security interests of the United States;
(2) establish uniform minimum requirements governing the scope and frequency of background investigations and reinvestigations for all employees in the executive branch of Government who require access to classified information as part of their official responsibilities;
   476. Zonk was SHOCKED by #6! Posted: February 13, 2018 at 01:46 PM (#5624329)
You ####### really just cannot make this #### up anymore...

President Donald Trump's proposals to cut eligibility for food stamps would hit hard on thousands of military families who receive the benefit, the Pentagon said Tuesday.

"It's a very unfortunate situation," Army Lt. Gen. Anthony R. Ierardi, the Pentagon's Joint Staff Director for force structure, readiness and assessment, said of the difficulties of troops who have to resort to food stamps.

* * *

Amy Bushatz of Military.com last year cited a report by the nonpartisan Government Accountability Office which said that the Department of Defense lacked the data or coordination with other federal agencies to keep an accurate track on how many troops were receiving food stamps.

The report found that about 23,000 active duty service members received food stamps in 2013, according to U.S. Census data. In addition, information from the Department of Defense Education Activity showed that in September 2015, 24 percent of 23,000 children in U.S. DoDEA schools were eligible for free meals, while 21 percent were eligible for reduced-price meals.


We're adding more to the deficit than was added during ALL of the 2009-2010 Great Recession recovery programs.... We're adding --- how many billions? 10s of billions? 100s of billions? -- to a defense budget that already laps the next 10 defense spending nations combined.

But this.

####### this.

Just stop, Trumpkins... enough already. Just stop.
   477. Zonk was SHOCKED by #6! Posted: February 13, 2018 at 01:51 PM (#5624332)
To answer Zonk's question, the law specifically states:


Gracias... I mean, thanks... wait - what am I worried about, ICE has no jurisdiction here.

I guess we'll just put this all on the pile of Things that Don't Matter Anymore Because Trump. Awfully big pile.
   478. Stormy JE Posted: February 13, 2018 at 01:52 PM (#5624333)
Amy Bushatz of Military.com last year cited a report by the nonpartisan Government Accountability Office which said that the Department of Defense lacked the data or coordination with other federal agencies to keep an accurate track on how many troops were receiving food stamps.
Stop right there. Why not?
The report found that about 23,000 active duty service members received food stamps in 2013, according to U.S. Census data. In addition, information from the Department of Defense Education Activity showed that in September 2015, 24 percent of 23,000 children in U.S. DoDEA schools were eligible for free meals, while 21 percent were eligible for reduced-price meals.
It sounds like everyone would be better off if our service members were honored with paychecks that didn't require their families to have to apply for food stamps.
   479. Zonk was SHOCKED by #6! Posted: February 13, 2018 at 01:56 PM (#5624335)
It sounds like everyone would be better served if our service members were honored with paychecks that didn't require their families to have to apply for food stamps.


If only we had a 716 billion dollar proposed defense budget where such a thing could be done.

Alas.

Let them eat nukes!
   480. PepTech, the Legendary Posted: February 13, 2018 at 01:56 PM (#5624336)
JE, I would call the Rhodes situation approximately equally troubling and worthy of discussion.

Are you trying to argue that because Rhodes and Obama misbehaved, we should give Kelly a pass? Because classic "WhatAboutism" would lead in that direction. I would be fine with a stronger postmortem on Rhodes. I'm not willing to let that postmortem obfuscate a similar process on Porter/Kelly^.

So the question remains, and we can make it about Rhodes if you like - what oversight, or future constraint, or recommendations, or penalties, would you like to see put in place to rectify the Rhodes situation? Would you make the same recommendations for Porter/Kelly? If the answer to the last question is "yes", then all is fine and good.
---------------

^ This is quite similar, by the way, to the whole "Russian interference" thing. Blow it all open. If HRC/Steele/Podesta get caught up in it, fine. If Trump/Kushner/Sessions get caught up in it, fine. Trump is screaming "SHUT IT ALL DOWN SHUT IT ALL DOWN FAKE NEWS HOAX". That's the opposite of blow it open and let the chips fall where they may.
   481. ERROR---Jolly Old St. Nick Posted: February 13, 2018 at 02:02 PM (#5624339)
I should've known North Carolina, but my atavistic memory keeps associating North Carolina with tobacco companies.

Like I said, that map is over a year old. You'll be relieved to hear that at least in Virginia, PhilipMorris has passed Atria.


Well, I guess that purple lungs go well with purple politics.
   482. Sleepy's not going to blame himself Posted: February 13, 2018 at 02:06 PM (#5624342)
We're adding more to the deficit than was added during ALL of the 2009-2010 Great Recession recovery programs.... We're adding --- how many billions? 10s of billions? 100s of billions? -- to a defense budget that already laps the next 10 defense spending nations combined.

Just stop, Trumpkins... enough already. Just stop.
WaPo says an increase of 73.9 billion. And DHS funding is increased to 47.5 billion(!!!), almost double the Marine Corps budget. But yay, we're getting some new TSA technology!
   483. Mellow Mouse, Benevolent Space Tyrant Posted: February 13, 2018 at 02:09 PM (#5624344)
It has been rumored for a while, but Israel PM Netanyahu 'should be charged with corruption'

Israeli media say police will announce there is enough evidence to indict Mr Netanyahu for bribery and breach of trust in two separate cases.


I have not followed it closely enough to say how legit the charges are, but they sure don't read well.
   484. Misirlou doesn't live in the restaurant Posted: February 13, 2018 at 02:09 PM (#5624345)
We're adding more to the deficit than was added during ALL of the 2009-2010 Great Recession recovery programs.... We're adding --- how many billions? 10s of billions? 100s of billions? -- to a defense budget that already laps the next 10 defense spending nations combined.

But this.

####### this.

Just stop, Trumpkins... enough already. Just stop.


Military families on food stamps isn't a new thing. It was a big deal when I was in 30 years ago. The miltary pay system isn't set up for junior enlisted personnel (E1-E3 or so) to support a family. On the one hand, I get it. It's tragic. But on the other, 18, 19 year olds probably shouldn't be having families.
   485. Mellow Mouse, Benevolent Space Tyrant Posted: February 13, 2018 at 02:10 PM (#5624346)
And DHS funding is increased to 47.5 billion(!!!)


Security theater ain't cheap, but be glad they didn't include in the needless opportunity cost of delays and so on, that would add a bunch more.
   486. TDF didn't lie, he just didn't remember Posted: February 13, 2018 at 02:11 PM (#5624347)
Now it's not alleged wife beating but Obama *did* allow someone into the Oval Office who was denied a security clearance until, PRESTO!, one magically appeared!
Much like the map of companies, that article of Rhodes is over a year old. Did anything ever come of all the questions lawmakers had about his security clearance?
   487. Fancy Crazy Town Banana Pants Handle Posted: February 13, 2018 at 02:13 PM (#5624349)
Now: What more do people want? The WH to admit it screwed up? Kelly to admit it? McGhan to do so? Trump to admit something (although it's not clear that he actually knew much of anything).

I can only imagine, if a Clinton staff secretary had been denied a security clearance, with the FBI passing along evidence of domestic abuse, you would react such ignorance, just as magnanimously. There is no way you would be claiming, there was either a direct cover up, or a complete lack of oversight. Either of which reflects negatively on said Clinton.
   488. Misirlou doesn't live in the restaurant Posted: February 13, 2018 at 02:14 PM (#5624350)
An E1 with <4 months service gets $1514/month basic pay. That may not sound like much, but he also gets free housing, free meals, and his uniforms are paid for. So, $18,000 per year when housing, food, medical, and work clothes are provided for, is not bad for a single 18 YO. Throw in a wife and children who cannot eat in the chow hall nor live in the barracks, and yes, that family is in need of assistance. But I'm not sure that's the Army's fault.
   489. Swoboda is freedom Posted: February 13, 2018 at 02:15 PM (#5624351)
Military families on food stamps isn't a new thing. It was a big deal when I was in 30 years ago.

Same here. I was fine, lived on base and really didn't have a many expenses. The people who were really suffering were the soldiers who had families. I don't know how they lived on the salary if the wife wasn't working.
   490. Mellow Mouse, Benevolent Space Tyrant Posted: February 13, 2018 at 02:17 PM (#5624353)
Some local political news .... Tennessee, come on down!

Bob Corker might un-retire — which could mean chaos for Tennessee’s Senate race

Corker is reportedly “listening” to some Republican colleagues encouraging him to run for reelection, according to Politico, amid concern that the party’s leading candidate, Republican Rep. Marsha Blackburn, could lose the Tennessee Senate seat to a Democrat in the 2018 midterms.

Blackburn, who launched her bid for Corker’s seat last October with a clear conservative message against congressional Republican leadership, fell behind former Democratic Gov. Phil Bredesen in a hypothetical matchup poll. The internal poll, conducted by Glen Bolger of the Republican research firm Public Opinion Strategies and obtained by Politico, showed Bredesen up 47 to 45, despite having a sample that was overweighted with Republicans.


And now Minnesota!

Minnesota Democrats prevail in a critical special election, holding on to a Trump country seat

Hillary Clinton carried it in 2016, but like the rest of the Midwest, it tilted strongly in Trump’s direction relative to where it had been in 2012. Both of the districts that voted Monday followed that basic pattern. House District 23B voted by a narrow 3-point margin for Mitt Romney, but Trump won it in a 27-point landslide. Obama carried Senate District 54 by a fairly comfortable 7-point margin, but Trump eked out a 1-point victory.

Minnesota has two US Senate elections this November, plus two open House races in seats being vacated by Democratic incumbents in districts Trump won, plus an upscale suburban House district represented by Erik Paulsen (R-MN) that’s considered one of Democrats’ top pickup opportunities. The state’s political trends are of enormous national interest. Tonight’s results carry no guarantees for November, of course, but they seem to indicate that Democrats are succeeding in rolling back recent GOP gains in the state.


Pretty generic so far, but wait! I may have to withdraw my criticism of appointing the Lt. Gov to the Senate seat.

With Monday night’s results, Republicans now hold a narrow 34-33 majority in the Minnesota state Senate — but that majority is at risk. When Al Franken resigned from the Senate, Gov. Mark Dayton appointed Lt. Gov. Tina Smith, a Democrat, to fill the vacancy. That created a vacancy for the lieutenant governor job that, by statute, was automatically filled by state Senate President Michelle Fischbach, a Republican.

Fischbach views her elevation to the lieutenant governorship as essentially a dirty pool play by Minnesota Democrats to create a vacancy, so she has refused to relinquish her state Senate seat. Democrats are suing, arguing that the lieutenant governor can’t also be a state senator and that Minnesota law does not allow Fischbach to refuse her promotion.


That is seriously funny IMO.

I thought this was interesting ...
It’s particularly interesting that Democratic results thus far show a much larger overperformance relative to Clinton in 2016 than to Obama in 2012. People who’ve crunched the numbers in detail say that’s because some Trump voters really are crossing over to vote for Democrats.


And from Wisconsin and other points, well no surprises there ...
Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker has decided to leave a number of formerly GOP-held seats vacant rather than schedule special elections his party might lose, national Republicans are pushing the panic button on an upcoming special House election in Pennsylvania, and GOP leadership is letting scandal-plagued Rep. Blake Farenthold stick around in his seat rather than risk a special election.
   491. Sleepy's not going to blame himself Posted: February 13, 2018 at 02:17 PM (#5624354)
Amy Bushatz of Military.com last year cited a report by the nonpartisan Government Accountability Office which said that the Department of Defense lacked the data or coordination with other federal agencies to keep an accurate track on how many troops were receiving food stamps.Stop right there. Why not?
The OSD rebuttal to the GAO Report (p50) says it's because SNAP is administered at the state level and the USDA isn't sharing the information with the DoD.
   492. Greg K Posted: February 13, 2018 at 02:23 PM (#5624355)
The anthro hypothetical is somewhat similar to that Bill James story isn't it?

I always forget the people involved, but the story goes that a white player A refuses to have a drink with a black player. White player B sees this and punches out white player A.

James concludes by asking who the bigger jerk is, A or B?
   493. ERROR---Jolly Old St. Nick Posted: February 13, 2018 at 02:24 PM (#5624356)
The anthro hypothetical is somewhat similar to that Bill James story isn't it?

I always forget the people involved, but the story goes that a white player A refuses to have a drink with a black player. White player B sees this and punches out white player A.

James concludes by asking who the bigger jerk is, A or B?


So how does James answer his own question?

(EDIT: Let's insert some names here. Player A is Dixie Walker, and player B manager B is Leo Durocher.)
   494. Stormy JE Posted: February 13, 2018 at 02:24 PM (#5624357)
Are you trying to argue that because Rhodes and Obama misbehaved, we should give Kelly a pass?
Nope.
   495. PepTech, the Legendary Posted: February 13, 2018 at 02:32 PM (#5624362)
Are you trying to argue that because Rhodes and Obama misbehaved, we should give Kelly a pass?
Nope.
Glad to hear it.

So, rather than the HRC fantasy, what recommendations would you have made in the Rhodes aftermath, either as forward-going process improvements, or sanctions for any party (from Rhodes through Obama)? Presumably the same ones you'd champion with regards to Porter/Kelly/Trump. Would Zonk's list from #401 (pretend it's rhetoric-free) serve as a good starting point?
   496. Mellow Mouse, Benevolent Space Tyrant Posted: February 13, 2018 at 02:34 PM (#5624366)
James concludes by asking who the bigger jerk is, A or B?


I don't know that being a jerk is ordinal, instead I think it is a binary state, one is or is not in the set of things that are jerks. Both A and B are in that set, albeit for different reasons.
   497. Stormy JE Posted: February 13, 2018 at 02:38 PM (#5624370)
BTW, it's kinda funny that suddenly a bloke like TDF demands to know why Congress isn't investigating someone no longer in the government or running for higher office.
   498. ERROR---Jolly Old St. Nick Posted: February 13, 2018 at 02:39 PM (#5624371)
Here's the Post's version of the story about JE's hero:

Israeli police recommend indictment of Netanyahu on corruption charges

The police announcement will increase pressure on Netanyahu to resign, though he has given no indication that he plans to do so, adopting a combative tone as the investigations have circled closer to him.

He has repeatedly attacked the police, accusing them of being politically motivated and attempting to stage a coup.

Now where have we seen this before?

And careful readers will note that Derrick Jeter's Bibi Number is confirmed at no worse than a 2, and maybe even a 1!
   499. Srul Itza Posted: February 13, 2018 at 02:40 PM (#5624373)
Has anybody been following the multi-national free-for-all that Syria is turning into?

US and its allies being attacked by, and then decimating, Russian mercenaries.
Iranian drone being shot done, followed by Israeli airstrike at Iranian positions, and Israeli F-16i going down and then massive attach on Syrian Air Defense.
Turkey moving hard against the Kurds and now threatening a town where the US has forces.

While everybody is obsessing about dossiers, Porter, Kelly and the like, the Syrian Civil War/Russian-Iranian-Hezbollah incursion/Anti-ISIS campaign is beginning to morph into something different and far more consequential.

But, hey, with good-hearted, even-keeled, clear-headed leaders like Erdogan, Netanyahu, Khameni, Nasrallah, Assad and Trump running the show, I am sure nothing can go wrong.
   500. Stormy JE Posted: February 13, 2018 at 02:42 PM (#5624377)
.pilF
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