Age of Accountability

ACORN CEO Bertha Lewis shocked the entire country by appearing on FOX News this past Sunday. Today, however, she’s made a liar by her own organization. I have no trouble believing Lewis ordered this herself:

ACORN has filed suit against James O’Keefe and Hannah Giles, the two independent reporters who ran the actual sting operation, and against Andrew Breitbart, owner of Breitbart.com and Biggovernment.com, which aired the controversial ACORN videos.

Recap: earlier this month, a shocking video was posted on Biggovernment.com in which O’Keefe and Giles, posing as pimp and prostitute, went to the ACORN offices in Baltimore, Maryland to see what would happen if they asked for help and advice for their “situation.” They told the ACORN workers–Tonja Thompson and Shera Williams–that they made most or all of their money through Giles’ work as a prostitute, and they needed to hide their illicit activities from the IRS. Moreover, they wanted to buy a house to use as a brothel and wanted to staff it with underage girls from South America.

Thompson and Williams didn’t bat an eye. Both pretended like it was business as usual and gave the pair a laundry list of tips on how to evade detection by lying to the IRS and other authorities, including how to avoid paying taxes on ill-gotten gain and how to represent themselves on tax returns (they were really supposed to call themselves “performance artists”).

It didn’t stop there. There are reportedly no less than seven videos total, possibly eight. Each sting is at a different ACORN office, in every corner of the country. In each incident the same advice was given by different people. The reporters themselves later said that they didn’t expect to get anything of use out of the first meeting, and they certainly didn’t expect it to be so widespread. The operation revealed a systematic misuse of taxpayer and grant dollars for ACORN workers to help people use illegal means to get ahead.

After the first video was aired, most of the MSM ignored it–except FOX News. Within seconds of their first report on the sting, ACORN sent FOX producers a nasty-gram to stop showing the videos or reporting on the controversy (you could have set your watch by their timed reaction). When video after video revealed the same issues at every major ACORN hub in America, though, Congress took notice. They voted to de-fund ACORN. And Lewis had to stand up and say something, so she said it to FOX, whom they’d already threatened with a lawsuit.

Just days after her pontification about the actions of those employees being “unconscionable” and “inexcusable,” however, Lewis must have had a change of heart.

What’s interesting about the lawsuit is that it’s only for ACORN’s damaged reputation and the two Maryland employees–not all the others. And the entire basis of the suit is the Maryland Wiretap Law, which is quoted in the complaint. But if you read the quotations, it refers to “interception” of communications; nowhere does it refer to recording one’s own conversations. There’s a difference. O’Keefe and Giles weren’t setting up cameras and microphones to tape conversations they weren’t involved in, they were taping themselves.

So in reality, they didn’t violate the MWL. And it’s incredibly disingenuous for ACORN’s fearless leader to feign acceptance of responsibility for the poor actions of their employees, then turn around and sue the people who brought the grievances to light.

She’s basically saying, “yes, we were wrong, but we’re gonna make you pay for calling us out on it.” It’s a bully tactic, pure and simple. If Lewis were really sorry for what had been done, if ACORN weren’t really a criminal racket, and if it truly were just an isolated problem (at seven or eight offices all across the country, no less), there would be no lawsuit. It’s not just the two employees suing–it’s ACORN suing on their behalf. They’re demanding $1 million for ACORN’s reputation and $500K each for the two employees. And legal fees to boot.

Ah, the age of accountability. We’re so much more honest now than we were a year ago, aren’t we?

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30 thoughts on “Age of Accountability

  1. “And the entire basis of the suit is the Maryland Wiretap Law, which is quoted in the complaint. But if you read the quotations, it refers to “interception” of communications; nowhere does it refer to recording one’s own conversations. There’s a difference.”

    No there isn’t. The only reason it’s being mentioned is that Linda Tripp got away with it via this same loophole, so righties figure they can do it again.

    “O’Keefe and Giles weren’t setting up cameras and microphones to tape conversations they weren’t involved in, they were taping themselves.”

    And they were taping ACORN employees without their knowledge or consent, hence their conversations were intercepted. Except, lawyers have twisted Maryland’s law so that intercept is now somehow synonymous with acquisition, which is complete garbage. Even a fifth grader knows the difference between the two words. What I find interesting is that while the employees of ACORN who were “caught” giving advice on how to legally be a prostitute (which is detestable in itself), these ACORN employees didn’t break one single law. No tax papers were drawn up, no documents perpetrating any such fraud exist. But, ironically, those making the accusations are the ones who actually broke the law.

    And now, ACORN’s funding has been stripped by the government, which, on a personal level, I agree with, but technically, it’s completely unconstitutional. So, those on the right (who all of a sudden care about whatever they think the constitution says) don’t have a problem with the fact that government funding has been stripped from a nonpartisan organization without a finding of guilt. It’s just another example in a long line of conservative’s convenient and selective ignoring of the constitution…

  2. “And they were taping ACORN employees without their knowledge or consent, hence their conversations were intercepted.”

    Intercepted by whom? The CIA? The FBI? FOX News? Tell us the name of the third party who swooped in an intercepted this conversation?

    Bertha Lewis is mad because she is out of a task and now she has to go out and get a real job.

    Maybe she can be a Community Organizer whatever the hell that is.

  3. “And they were taping ACORN employees without their knowledge or consent, hence their conversations were intercepted.”

    Okay…then what do you say to undercover officers who tape the perps they catch? Officers need a warrant to tape conversations and deals they’re not directly involved in. But officers themselves do not need the permission of the bad guys prior to taping them committing a crime. Nor does an informant need to tell the people he’s taping that officers are listening in, as long as said informant has given consent to wear a bug. It’s the same concept.

    INTERCEPTION is taking a recording of something you are not involved in and nobody involved has consented to allow. There is a difference, Robert, whether you want to believe it or not.

    “Even a fifth grader knows the difference between the two words.”

    And someone with a degree in criminal justice knows what’s really going on.

    “No tax papers were drawn up, no documents perpetrating any such fraud exist. But, ironically, those making the accusations are the ones who actually broke the law.”

    You still haven’t proven how they broke the law. You’re harping on a subject I’ve studied at length. I wrote a term paper on it and got an A+ from a liberal instructor. I’m sure you don’t like to believe it, but I am talking about what I really do know here. By the way, giving advice on how to break the law is called aiding and abetting, and that IS illegal.

    “And now, ACORN’s funding has been stripped by the government, which, on a personal level, I agree with, but technically, it’s completely unconstitutional.”

    Really? How so? Since when is taxpayer support for any organization guaranteed by the Constitution? Please, point out the Amendment that covers this, because I’m awfully tired of people saying it’s Unconstitutional.

    “…don’t have a problem with the fact that government funding has been stripped from a nonpartisan organization without a finding of guilt.”

    Nonpartisan? Okay…lemme pick myself up off the floor…damn, that was funny!

    ACORN very actively pushed Barack Obama in the last election. They’re NOT a non-taxed nonprofit organization. They have several front organizations, such as the aforementioned CSI, that are nonprofits, but ACORN itself is a for-profit venture and they have made very clear what politics they espouse. ACORN had ads up everywhere supporting Obama. If you call that nonpartisan, you’re living in a twisted fantasy realm.

  4. “Okay…then what do you say to undercover officers who tape the perps they catch? Officers need a warrant to tape conversations and deals they’re not directly involved in”

    Are you really trying to compare a law enforcement issue to two people who aren’t even accredited journalists? You already answered your own rhetorical question by admitting that the police need a warrant to do that sort of stuff.

    “INTERCEPTION is taking a recording of something you are not involved in and nobody involved has consented to allow. There is a difference, Robert, whether you want to believe it or not.”

    It’s a loophole, and you know it. And law stipulates that consent is required from ALL parties involved. If you lived in Maryland, and someone you knew captured what you thought to be a private conversation which was later used against you in some way, you’d be pissed and we both know it. Possibly pissed enough to take legal action.

    “You still haven’t proven how they broke the law.”

    They intercepted oral communication without the consent of the people they were videotaping. My guess is ACORN will win the lawsuit, but it will be overturned on appeal, because that court will conveniently notice that the specific words “record” or “tape” do not exist in the Maryland wiretap law. Like I said, loophole pure and simple.

    “Please, point out the Amendment that covers this, because I’m awfully tired of people saying it’s Unconstitutional.”

    People are saying that? I don’t think it’s in an amendment, but Congress is not allowed to pass a bill of attainder without a judicial trial. You can’t punish someone without a finding of guilt (unless you’re a conservative, then all bets are off). That much is clear. Like I said, the pissed off person in me is glad that ACORN isn’t getting any more federal dollars, but the person in me that believes in the rule of law says it’s not right.

    “If you call that nonpartisan, you’re living in a twisted fantasy realm.”

    I’m well aware of their support for Obama, and for many left leaning causes. But technically, ACORN is a nonpartisan organization. It does have a separate political arm, and that’s the part that’s obviously partisan, but I stand by my original comment because I’m right.

  5. “If you lived in Maryland, and someone you knew captured what you thought to be a private conversation which was later used against you in some way, you’d be pissed and we both know it. ”

    I don’t say things I would not want repeated. My mama and daddy taught me that. The few times I regret what I have said have stemmed from the fact I couldn’t tell the person I dissed to their miserable face.

    Those ACORN employees said things they regert and they own that. You never know who is listening or how they are listening. You never know how loyal the person you communicate with is. Watch what you say and you’ll be much happier.

  6. I was shocked by these reports. It would be bad with one outlet but several outlets providing the same outrageous illegal advises. I am not only shocked but flabbergasted that anyone can defend the employee’s actions. Politicians were correct in cutting off taxpayer’s funds to ACORN. However, some still voted to support ACORN. I am grateful to FOX who kept this story on the front burner pressuring ACORN and others to come clean.

  7. “Are you really trying to compare a law enforcement issue to two people who aren’t even accredited journalists? You already answered your own rhetorical question by admitting that the police need a warrant to do that sort of stuff.”

    No…what I said was that police need a warrant to tape conversations they’re not involved in. They do NOT need a warrant to tape conversations in which undercover officers are involved, or those in which informants wearing bugs have given consent to be recorded.

    “And law stipulates that consent is required from ALL parties involved.”

    No, Robert. That is not required. As previously stated, if an undercover officer is working a suspect in a case, they can record the conversations via audio and/or video without the consent of the suspect. If we made that a requirement in the law, suspects might never be caught. I can see it now: “I’m sorry, but law requires that I ask you if I can tape our conversations. By the way, it’s because I’m an undercover law enforcement officer and I want to put you in jail. You don’t mind, do you?”

    The very act of wiretapping means that you’re breaking into a phone line, computer or other means of communication in order to see what other people are saying without actually being involved in the conversation yourself, Robert. Look up the word “wiretap” in the dictionary.

    “If you lived in Maryland, and someone you knew captured what you thought to be a private conversation which was later used against you in some way, you’d be pissed and we both know it.”

    If I lived in ARIZONA (which I do) and one of my friends taped a conversation with me and posted it on YouTube, I’d be pissed at that friend, but there’d be little I could do about it unless I wanted to sue for punitive damages. There would be no law against my friend. And as John said, I wouldn’t say anything I wouldn’t want recorded, because I don’t say things I don’t mean.

    If a person records a conversation they’re having with me, it’s legal. If they’re bugging my home and setting up cameras and selling the footage on the web, it’s illegal. Big difference.

    “Congress is not allowed to pass a bill of attainder without a judicial trial.”

    Um…Robert? The very act of a bill of attainder IS a finding of guilt without a judicial trial. And Congress is expressly forbidden from doing anything of the sort. What passed was not a bill of attainder. They merely elected to stop giving money to ACORN. There was no finding of any guilt involved.

    The entire basis of the lawsuit is the wiretap law. That’s the only legal recompense they listed. I find it hysterical that ACORN fired the employees, then sued on their behalf because of “mental and physical distress.” If you felt so bad about it, then why did you fire them in the first place? Why not give them a second chance?

    This isn’t going to get far in court.

  8. “No, Robert. That is not required”

    Yes, it is. Maryland law prohibits the interception of communications without the consent of all persons to the communication. The only issue is the one that arises when parsing words while defining “interception”. According to Maryland, “intercept” means the aural or other acquisition of the contents of any wire, electronic, or oral communication through the use of any electronic, mechanical, or other device. So, as an end run around this law, these two kids’ lawyers will no doubt argue that since ACORN employees willfully talked to them, and knew they were talking to them, that they consented by proxy to being videotaped because the kids consented to it. It’s a friggin’ loophole; nothing more, nothing less…

    “As previously stated, if an undercover officer is working a suspect in a case, they can record the conversations via audio and/or video without the consent of the suspect.”

    Right, because the law stipulates that it is lawful if:

    “The person is an investigative or law enforcement officer or is acting under the direction of an investigative or law enforcement officer;”

    And again, you’re trying to compare police actions to two nobodies in totally unofficial capacities.

    “The very act of wiretapping means that you’re breaking into a phone line, computer or other means of communication in order to see what other people are saying without actually being involved in the conversation yourself, Robert. Look up the word “wiretap” in the dictionary.”

    No one said anything about wiretapping anyone. You might want to know what you’re talking about before positing condescending screeds. I just posted the language from the law, and it says any electronic device, not just hacking into telephone lines. If Linda Tripp didn’t already have immunity from the Independent Counsel’s office, she would have been charged with violating this law too.

    “If a person records a conversation they’re having with me, it’s legal.”

    Maybe here in Arizona, but not in Maryland, unless you consent to it.

    “The very act of a bill of attainder IS a finding of guilt without a judicial trial. And Congress is expressly forbidden from doing anything of the sort.”

    That was precisely my point. How can you argue that fact by pointing out the same thing?

    “They merely elected to stop giving money to ACORN. There was no finding of any guilt involved.”

    Exactly. That was a violation of the constitution. By stripping the funding, they declared ACORN guilty of some wrongdoing without first holding a trial to establish said guilt. I think you may be arguing for the sake of arguing. You’re telling me what I already know, but those facts work against your position, not in favor of it.

  9. Congress doesn’t have to give money to ACORN in the first place, and shouldn’t be giving taxpayer money to any private organization in the first place. The fact that Congress chose to give ACORN money does not mean that it is unconstitutional when Congress chooses to stop giving them money. You might as well say that any time the government gives a person a welfare check it’s unconstitutional to stop giving them welfare checks until they have been brought up on charges and convicted.

    Now please show me the section of the US Constitution that requires the government to give ACORN money until they are found guilty of something. Hell, show me the section that allows Congress to give them money in the first place.

  10. “Maybe here in Arizona, but not in Maryland, unless you consent to it.”

    Well, Robert, if it’s truly a violation of the law then the Maryland AG will prosecute. The fact that no official charges have been brought should speak volumes.

    “By stripping the funding, they declared ACORN guilty of some wrongdoing without first holding a trial to establish said guilt. ”

    Congress doesn’t need to establish guilt to stop giving grant funds to an organization. Case in point, there are certain grants that have certain stipulations for one particular organization that I do EMS work for. If those stipulations aren’t met, we lose that grant. Loss of the grant, funded by tax money, doesn’t mean we’re guilty of anything–it just means we didn’t meet the requirements to keep getting those funds.

    Thus, there was no bill of attainder involved.

  11. “Congress doesn’t have to give money to ACORN in the first place”

    You’re right, but this isn’t the first place, it’s now. And to strip funding without a finding of guilt from a jury trial is unconstitutional.

    “and shouldn’t be giving taxpayer money to any private organization in the first place”

    That’s curious. I wonder of you’re against health care reform. If you are, you should know that the government currently subsidizes private insurance companies who offer Medicare Advantage plans with tax payer dollars. Are you in favor of that stopping?

    “The fact that Congress chose to give ACORN money does not mean that it is unconstitutional when Congress chooses to stop giving them money.”

    Yes it does. It’s the law. You may not like it; hell, I don’t like it, but it is the law.

    ” You might as well say that any time the government gives a person a welfare check it’s unconstitutional to stop giving them welfare checks until they have been brought up on charges and convicted.”

    Welfare doesn’t work the same way that subsidization or federal funding does. Welfare already has a time limit on it, so cutting that off would have to be for reasons of fraud, guilt of which would need to be determined by a court of law.

    “Now please show me the section of the US Constitution that requires the government to give ACORN money until they are found guilty of something.”

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Article_One_of_the_United_States_Constitution#Section_9:_Limits_on_Congress

    Limits on Congress. They can’t do this:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bill_of_attainder

  12. “Congress doesn’t need to establish guilt to stop giving grant funds to an organization”

    It does if there’s no expiration attached.

  13. “You’re right, but this isn’t the first place, it’s now. And to strip funding without a finding of guilt from a jury trial is unconstitutional.”

    You’re wrong. It doesn’t matter if it’s the first place, the second place, or the 48th place. It is unconstitutional for the government to punish an organization without a jury decision. Taking away government funding which is not constitutionally granted to any organization like ACORN is not “punishment.” As a matter of fact, it would be more of a constitutional argument for taxpayers who have no say in whether or not this ridiculous organization is funded….but thanks for continuing to bat for the big gov while we mere citizens here choose to know the difference.

    “That’s curious. I wonder of you’re against health care reform. If you are, you should know that the government currently subsidizes private insurance companies who offer Medicare Advantage plans with tax payer dollars. Are you in favor of that stopping?”

    It’s not a question of whether or not someone is in favor of stopping medicare. The more stunning question is when you slap moonbats like yourself with facts, why do you deflect by asking us if we want poor people to die and want to take something away from old people? Facts like that both medicare and social security are broke. Facts like that whatever the government puts its hands into, it turns to shit!

    I laugh when liberals compare healthcare to the US Postal Service. Ask a private citizen who is more likely to deliver a package faster or more efficiently, Fed Ex or USPS.

    Post offices all over the country are closing and a lot of cities will not have Saturday mail now. Can you imagine the confusion now? You can acknowledge this when telling us that Blue Cross and Blue Shield will be okay under a government plan, yet you cannot tell us exactly why that is, or at least you won’t admit the obvious…

    The obvious of course being that there isn’t one industry or business you can name where the US Government has done a better job handling than the private sector has. You never could.

    So what you do is throw out stupid questions like the Democrats saying we want poor people to die quickly to deflect from the obvious – which is that the United States Government cannot run 1/6th of our economy, even if you realllllly want them to! They never could….and if the moonbats in the House and Senate refuse to listen to the majority, I guarantee you that 2010 for Republicans will be bigger than 1994.

    Then the Republicans can repeal before it has a chance to take effect in 2013. If Obama continues to veto the repeals, then America shall answer in 2012 when moonbats will have to make a run at it without ACORN registering Mary Poppins to vote.

    Republicans gained power by 54 seats in 1994. We then won two national elections and we managed to defy historial odds in Bush’s first midterm when we actually picked up seats. It took six years of Bush demonizing for liberals to take back Congress with a not-so-impressive 34 seats. Now Obama’s approval rating is tanking at a faster speed than any American president in history.

    Liberals had 2006 until now and they’re already setting themselves up for massive losses.

    Really, at this point, all the rest of us have to do is to sit back and watch the fastest fall of power ever in American history.

  14. Again, article one of the Constitution talks about punishment. You cannot equate removing funding that is not constitutionally required to punishment.

    Closing them down altogether through force could be considered punishment. But not merely taking away the federal funding.

    Nice try, but no dice.

  15. ” Section 9: The migration or importation of such persons as any of the states now existing shall think proper to admit, shall not be prohibited by the Congress prior to the year one thousand eight hundred and eight, but a tax or duty may be imposed on such importation, not exceeding ten dollars for each person.

    The privilege of the writ of habeas corpus shall not be suspended, unless when in cases of rebellion or invasion the public safety may require it.

    No bill of attainder or ex post facto Law shall be passed.

    No capitation, or other direct, tax shall be laid, unless in proportion to the census or enumeration herein before directed to be taken.

    No tax or duty shall be laid on articles exported from any state.

    No preference shall be given by any regulation of commerce or revenue to the ports of one state over those of another: nor shall vessels bound to, or from, one state, be obliged to enter, clear or pay duties in another.

    No money shall be drawn from the treasury, but in consequence of appropriations made by law; and a regular statement and account of receipts and expenditures of all public money shall be published from time to time.

    No title of nobility shall be granted by the United States: and no person holding any office of profit or trust under them, shall, without the consent of the Congress, accept of any present, emolument, office, or title, of any kind whatever, from any king, prince, or foreign state. ”

    That didn’t even pretend to answer my question.

    An no I am not against health care reform I am against this version of health care reform. It’s not the Federal Government’s business to be in the health care industry and other than some regulation they should stay out of it. If an individual state wants full coverage it is their right to do so, it is not the governments right.

    The 10th Amendment:

    “The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.”

    It helps when you read Article 1 Section 8:

    http://en.wikisource.org/wiki/Constitution_of_the_United_States_of_America#Section_8

    OK another example. Congress allocated money in the defense budget to General Dynamics for the F-111Aardvark. Later the military and Congress decide that they no longer need the F-111 so they stop giving money to General Dynamics who were not brought up on charges and there was no finding of guilt. Some how this is constitutional but the second the government starts giving money to ACORN they have to have a trial before they can stop giving them money? If the government chooses to purchase a service from a company they are required to pay the bill however once that service is rendered and when the government feal they no longer need that service they can stop buying it any time they want. Otherwise we would still be buying Spencer Repeating Rifles from the Spencer Company because we never took them to court. Or think about Government Grants (something else not found in the Constitution). We would have to bring up charges on any scientist we give grants to every time the Government doesn’t want to give the man a grant for his research any more.

  16. “Good to see that you’re still a self hating, angry bottom.”

    Personal attacks. Very mature. And quite convincing, too. I know my mind is changed!

  17. “It is unconstitutional for the government to punish an organization without a jury decision”

    Which is essentially what happened. How am I wrong?

    “Taking away government funding which is not constitutionally granted to any organization like ACORN is not “punishment.”

    What the hell do you call it? A giant coincidence that this comes at a time when they’re in the news for dispensing horrible and possibly illegal advice?

    “It’s not a question of whether or not someone is in favor of stopping medicare.”

    I know, and it’s not the question I asked either.

    “The more stunning question is when you slap moonbats like yourself with facts, why do you deflect by asking us if we want poor people to die and want to take something away from old people?”

    First of all I never asked anyone if they wanted anyone else to die, and second, what “facts” have you “slapped me with”? All I asked was whether or not letters was in favor of the republican implemented subsidies to private insurance companies, since he took the position of being against taxpayer funded money going to a private organization like ACORN. I was merely trying to figure out whether or not he was a sycophant, like some other people on this site. Why you chose to interject in order to answer a question that was never aimed at you with a response that doesn’t even begin to relate to the question is beyond me.

    “Facts like that whatever the government puts its hands into, it turns to shit!”

    You’re right, Steve. I can’t tell you how inconvenient it is to have to drive on roads when I’m going to Fountain Hills to submit plans. It’s really quite annoying that my mother can call her sister who lives in a rural part of Oklahoma on the phone anytime she wants to chat. And the fact that the water coming out of my faucets doesn’t burn my scalp or turn my skin the shade of green that normally occurs when a loaf of bread gets stuck behind the microwave for a month and a half – that’s pure hell, man. What the fuck is wrong with you people? You took the time to get off of your privileged ass to go vote for some old codger in the hopes that he would die and leave the most unqualified bimbo in the history of national politics to take his place should he accidentally ingest a can of Ensure that was a little too clumpy for his windpipe to pass, so you must realize the irony of yourself and other like minded drones who see government as an enemy while attempting to vote into power people who demonize the very institution that they seek to be a part of. This overtly and absurdly paranoid rhetoric doesn’t do anyone any good, and it merely serves to push yourself farther and farther from the mainstream.

    “I laugh when liberals compare healthcare to the US Postal Service. Ask a private citizen who is more likely to deliver a package faster or more efficiently, Fed Ex or USPS.”

    But it’s okay for you to compare the two, right? You know what’s really funny? I ordered a pair of shoes from Action Village’s website and a watch from eBay, both on the 29th. Action Village shipped UPS, and eBay, USPS. I got my watch yesterday. Still waiting for my shoes…

    “You can acknowledge this when telling us that Blue Cross and Blue Shield will be okay under a government plan, yet you cannot tell us exactly why that is”

    I can tell you exactly why it is. One has nothing to do with the other. Blue Cross Blue Shield would continue to do business as usual. It has nothing to do with the government. I can tell that you’ve either been paying zero attention to what is actually proposed, or getting your news from the guy who’s always got a jar of vapo rub on hand when it’s time to turn on the waterworks…

    “The obvious of course being that there isn’t one industry or business you can name where the US Government has done a better job handling than the private sector has. You never could.”

    Oh, really? And exactly how many people did the VA deny life saving procedures to? And who has a better reputation and success rate, the US military or Blackwater? Who do you call when you’ve been robbed, the police or a private security firm? Get your head out of your ass, Steve.

    “So what you do is throw out stupid questions like the Democrats saying we want poor people to die quickly to deflect from the obvious – which is that the United States Government cannot run 1/6th of our economy, even if you realllllly want them to!”

    I thought the republican plan for health care according to rep. Grayson was the obvious. There are several things wrong with your assertion, the most obvious being that even if reform were passed, we wouldn’t wake up tomorrow to find over 300 million Americans automatically insured by the government (but kudos on inadvertently copping to the fact that you loathe the idea of competition in the marketplace). The next is that your entire tirade is itself a distraction from the obvious – that things cannot continue this way. Everything is not okay. It’s not okay that 44,000 people died last year because they didn’t have health insurance. It’s not okay that premiums rise exponentially faster than wages. And it’s not okay for people like you to fight this tooth and nail, then turn around and grudgingly admit that reform is needed. You people had eight years to do something about this mounting problem, and instead chose to give taxpayer dollars to private industry. The only republican in a lifetime to even attempt to tackle the issue was Richard Nixon, and people like you said the same things about his plan that are being said now. Let’s be honest. If you had your way, nothing would change in the health care industry; we both know that, even if you won’t admit it.

    “They never could….and if the moonbats in the House and Senate refuse to listen to the majority, I guarantee you that 2010 for Republicans will be bigger than 1994.”

    This statement is bar none the most glaring proof that you are truly out of touch with reality. You and John Boner. Steve, an overwhelming majority of the country (over 70%) favor reform with a strong public option. You need to stop pretending that your little teabagging parties and your deranged morons at town halls represent a majority of the country. In case you managed to land an accounting job in spite of the fact that math isn’t your strong suit, 21% is not a majority. Boner claims he’s never talked to one person in favor of a public option, but apparently he wasn’t actually talking to anyone, because he’s managed to overlook the fact that 57% of Ohioans favor a public option. You know, for someone who belongs to a party that loves to project it’s missteps onto others by claiming that the other side is out of touch with common folk, you sure know how to stick your foot in your mouth rather well.

    “Republicans gained power by 54 seats in 1994. We then won two national elections and we managed to defy historial [sic] odds in Bush’s first midterm when we actually picked up seats”

    That’s cute how you think this is ’94. Wishful thinking, I suppose. But as we see the fringe getting more and more desperate, it becomes apparent that you guys know you’re losing the debate, and you don’t really know how to deal with it, so you resort to killing census workers and calling for a military coup against the president. I was coming to terms with the probability of the GOP picking up seats next year, but I’m not so sure you won’t lose even more. And wouldn’t that be something to blog about – the incumbent party picking up seats without the “benefit” of fear mongering its constituents with looming terrorist attacks…

    “Now Obama’s approval rating is tanking at a faster speed than any American president in history.”

    You know, I’ve always been a firm believer in people telling themselves whatever they needed to to get by, and this demonstrates it beautifully. Obama’s approval rating is right on pace with just about every other past president’s ratings (with the exception of W., who had a 47% approval rating after five months on the “job”), but yet cons keep foaming at the mouth to convince everyone that this isn’t normal. Oddly enough, those same people loved to toss out Bush’s near 90% approval rating in the days and weeks following 9/11, and never mentioned his 19% approval rating when people finally figured out the guy was a dimwitted fraud.

    “Really, at this point, all the rest of us have to do is to sit back and watch the fastest fall of power ever in American history.”

    Ah, that’s priceless. I love the enthusiasm though. Gotta hope for something, right? Except, sadly, people like you hope for the country to endure more failures…

  18. I don’t believe public money from the federal government should go to any private organization for any reason. I also don’t support any form of subsidies for any private organization, business or non-profit either.

    The federal government should get out of health care reform the tort laws and only regulate enough that it can insure free competition and safety while safeguarding against fraud and abuse. Yes I support health care reform but not any of the current plans.

    However if an individual state wants to have public health care that is there right to make the adjustments to their laws and state constitutions to make it legal. I have no problem with that since it is the states right to do so the federal government has no right because it is not a right specifically given to them in the Constitution.

    And you still haven’t even pretended to make a dent in any of my earlier arguments.

  19. “And you still haven’t even pretended to make a dent in any of my earlier arguments.”

    I didn’t realize that I needed to satisfy your time requirements. You must forgive me, I have a job that currently has me working seven days a week, but rest assured, at my first free moment, I’ll be working to debunk your outrageous and nonsensical claims. One crazy at a time. Don’t worry, you’re next…

  20. “It is unconstitutional for the government to punish an organization without a jury decision”

    Wrong! So wrong.

    Early in my career I worked for the Federal government in contracting. I administered contracts.

    Federal government contracts contain many standard clauses that are not negotiable. Two such clauses are:

    Termination for Cause
    Termination for Convenience

    If a government contract is terminated for cause then that happens because the company doing business with the government has screwed up in a huge way. These matters can end up before a judge. Often they don’t.

    Termination for convenience involves the government telling the company, “we no longer need what you provide.”

    Now if you are the ogranization having your contract terminated, it can feel like punishment. Certainly if you screw up like ACORN did, then yes it feels like being punished. But, it is not punishment if the contract has the standard Termination Clauses.

    If the people who run ACORN feel they have been unjustly treated then they can sue. But they will have to prove that Termination for Cause (an allowable act) is wrong because there was no cause to justify the termination. What ACORN can’t do is assert the government has no standing to terminate a contract for any reason. The government has that standing.

  21. “Which is essentially what happened. How am I wrong?”

    Putting them in jail, taking away their exempt status, making them pay taxes on all of their earnings like all those other businesses you want to pay taxes to pay for Obama’s socialist ideas – THAT would be punishment….NOT taking away funding that was not constitutionally granted to them. This is what we call a responsible and level-headed decision, not one of punishment. Get over it.

    “First of all I never asked anyone if they wanted anyone else to die, and second, what “facts” have you “slapped me with”?”

    Facts about how one reads the constitution for one…..and second, yes you did imply that taking things away from old people would be the equivalent of what John was arguing for, just like the lefty congressman who called this a Holocaust in America as – not just right-wingers – but all Americans stood by silently to witness. Americans are getting it on their own now, even if the media won’t portray things accurately.

    “Oh, really? And exactly how many people did the VA deny life saving procedures to? And who has a better reputation and success rate, the US military or Blackwater? Who do you call when you’ve been robbed, the police or a private security firm? Get your head out of your ass, Steve.”

    Just exactly how many times have hospitals denied life-saving procedures to anyone? I know people personally – as does anyone – who goes to the hospital and has life-saving surgeries and racks up hundreds of thousands in medical debt that will never be paid. Nobody in this country would be denied a life-saving operation or be turned down in an emergency room. I am talking day-to-day operations, running an industry without reporting a constant deficit…to which I bring your attention back to social security and medicare, after constant years of deficit (more going out than coming in), they are finally BROKE. The US Postal Service is failing, and yes private companies like Fed Ex and UPS who are required to charge more are doing just fine. I repeat, there is not ONE industry government can run more efficient than the private sector can. Government employees are inefficient, lazy, and by in large work much smaller work-weeks than those in the private sector. The massive difference is that one can operate at a loss and continue to get away with it, and the other cannot.

    “Steve, an overwhelming majority of the country (over 70%) favor reform with a strong public option.”

    And just where are you pulling that number from?

    Here’s one I put your attention to……..

    http://www.gallup.com/poll/123332/Many-U.S.-See-Health-Insurance-Personal-Responsibility.aspx

    “Nearly two-thirds of Americans (61%) and independents (64%), and nearly all Republicans (89%) say Americans themselves — rather than the government — should be responsible for ensuring that they and their families have health insurance. Different question wordings elicit more support for the government.”

    So, depending on how the question was asked – probably something along the lines of a poll taken on the Huffington Post that says:
    “Should little old ladies be allowed to die? Or should the government offer a public option to stop a record number of deaths among African Americans in 2010?”

    I remain confident, go ahead….write Nancy and Dennis now, Robert….tell them to force it through after it was voted down initially in a liberal Senate……and then write the Senators to make sure they don’t vote it down again. It will really be the best present you can give us. 🙂

    “You people had eight years to do something about this mounting problem, and instead chose to give taxpayer dollars to private industry.”

    Just like that, all to do with the wording….your assertion of “giving tax dollars to private industry” when in essence, we kept unemployment at around 5% through most of Bush’s tenure even after 9/11, after Enron, after Katrina, etc….we gave tax cuts to businesses so they could continue to keep the market flowing.

    An estimate, Robert, is coming up….and I guarantee it will be right before 2010 elections full of facts showing Americans how under each President’s policies how much actual tax revenue was received. I guarantee, more tax revenue was received by the government under Bush because people were working, earning, and paying their taxes….as opposed to now where the TRUE crisis of 10% of Americans not having any work at all.

    Under Obama’s policies, he is literally removing the chances of wealth being created, the decline of quality for social services, the decline of opportunity to earn money – and the decline in the most talented Americans taking the risks needed to create jobs by spotting gaps or needs in society for new and innovative products and services. There’s no way Wall Street will respond positively. While it’s the working man on Main Street who turns the cranks, we need to seed money from the top to do it. So that working men on Main Street can develop their own business. And what do administration officials say? They themselves expect it to get WORSE, not better anytime soon.

    This administration is creating a more-than-ever reliant system and a nation who are more vulnerable to government handouts. But Americans are sniffing out the recipe and are slowly coming back – a.k.a. the poll results above.

    The only reason liberals got a shot – in which they completely blew – was because a few Republicans like McCain, like Bush toward the end – STOPPED being conservative.

    So, look in the mirror – say to yourself over and over again “America wants liberalism, America want liberalism” if it makes you feel better. But as the new conservative movement rolls out starring that really “stupid” quitter known as Sarah Palin, I want you to stick around so that we can all witness your head exploding.

    “That’s cute how you think this is ’94. Wishful thinking, I suppose.”

    I wish it were for Americas sake. Guns was among the top issues then. Today, real people are in real trouble. The stakes are higher, but I did predict to you back in 2008 that Americans would have to suffer while watching their President and his wife live well. Watching them head over to Copenhagen to stomp for their hometown while troops are dying in Afghanistan and while Joe and Mary Smith are about to lose their homes because Joe hasn’t worked in months.

    As Americans witness their own demise, they are slowly receiving the clarity and the reaffirmation that nothing – and I mean NOTHING – but hard work and responsibility is going to be their key to success and wealth.

    It will never be done by the pontification of Barack Obama or Nancy Pelosi.

    ….and if you disagree with that statement, you’re a racist. 😉

  22. BTW, notice how Robert wants federal money going to ACORN, but is pissed because industries that provide jobs to others received tax cuts.

    ACORN versus jobs…..hmmm, a real hard one.

  23. “Action Village shipped UPS, and eBay, USPS. I got my watch yesterday. Still waiting for my shoes…”

    You ordered the eBay item from a person who already had it. Action Village likely had to order the item you wanted. Next!

  24. Sorry I didn’t realize that while you have time to start a totally different argument you didn’t have time to finish the first one. And maybe I’m just “crazy” because I didn’t realize Ignoratio elenchi was a legitimate tactic in debate.

  25. “Facts about how one reads the constitution for one…..and second, yes you did imply that taking things away from old people would be the equivalent of what John was arguing for”

    I never once mentioned taking anything away from old people. Perhaps it would be a little prudent if you knew what the hell you were talking about before attempting to engage in a debate.

    “Just exactly how many times have hospitals denied life-saving procedures to anyone?”

    Why are you talking about hospitals when I am talking about insurance companies? Everyone knows that hospitals, unless they’re privately owned, cannot turn anyone with serious medical problems away. Insurance companies on the other hand, can and regularly do make decisions to withhold medical treatments and engage in recision, the practice of dropping customers they deem to be too high of a risk to insure (in other words, they’ll take your money long enough to make you think they’ll be there when you need them, then drop you once they suspect you are in need of prolonged care).

    “I bring your attention back to social security and medicare, after constant years of deficit (more going out than coming in), they are finally BROKE.”

    Well then, I trust I don’t need to remind you that your hero Reagan had a big hand in that by creating the Social Security trust fund just so he could steal from it, forcing the baby boomers to be the only generation to not only have to fund their own retirement, but the then current generation as well. And there is a simple solution that would end Social Security’s problems in one day – one day! – and that is by lifting the cap on Social Security taxes. Currently, only the first $91,000 of income is taxed by Social Security. If that cap were lifted, you wouldn’t have a problem at all anymore.

    “The US Postal Service is failing, and yes private companies like Fed Ex and UPS who are required to charge more are doing just fine”

    The USPS isn’t failing, but that doesn’t stop the cons from trying to privatize that industry too…

    “I repeat, there is not ONE industry government can run more efficient than the private sector can”

    Well, you’re either blind or you’re dumb, because I named three off the top of my head that you couldn’t refute. You like to pretend that the people that work for the government are somehow less than human, and that being in the private sector gives you super strength. They’re people, Steve. Just like the people who work in government. Neither is particularly special.

    “And just where are you pulling that number from?”

    http://www.surveyusa.com/client/PollReport.aspx?g=5ba17aa2-f1b9-4445-a6b8-62b9d1ba8693

    “So, depending on how the question was asked – probably something along the lines of a poll taken on the Huffington Post that says:
    “Should little old ladies be allowed to die? Or should the government offer a public option to stop a record number of deaths among African Americans in 2010?”

    Or, if you’re not a douche that reduces everything to sound byte friendly tidbits:

    “In any health care proposal, how important do you feel it is to give people a choice of BOTH a public plan administered by the federal government and a private plan for their health insurance–extremely important, quite important, not that important, or not at all important?”

    Please note that 58% said extremely important, and that 19% said it was quite important, putting support for a public option at 77%.

    “I remain confident, go ahead….write Nancy and Dennis now, Robert….tell them to force it through after it was voted down initially in a liberal Senate”

    Your confidence is severely misguided, my friend. And what is it that you think was voted down in the Senate?

    “Just like that, all to do with the wording….your assertion of “giving tax dollars to private industry” when in essence, we kept unemployment at around 5% through most of Bush’s tenure even after 9/11, after Enron, after Katrina, etc….we gave tax cuts to businesses so they could continue to keep the market flowing.”

    I guess it is about wording, because I didn’t say anything about tax cuts. What I am talking about is subsidies to private insurance companies. In essence, we’re already paying for health care that we’re not all getting. Those 47 million uninsured Americans are, against their will, giving their money to insurance companies, and getting nothing in return. And you’re certainly late to the praising Bush party, because, as every American has witnessed, he tanked the economy on his way out of office, keeping with the decades old tradition of republican presidents leaving office with unemployment above 5%.

    “I guarantee, more tax revenue was received by the government under Bush because people were working, earning, and paying their taxes….as opposed to now where the TRUE crisis of 10% of Americans not having any work at all.”

    As opposed to now? Are you really trying to convince anyone that it only takes six, seven, or even nine months to put an economy into this position? That’s rich. And how do you explain just about every reputable economist’s assertion that the economic stimulus did indeed pull us from the brink, and that it gave the economy a much needed shot in the arm, increased production output, and has us on track for a projected 3% growth for next quarter? And your joke about more tax revenue being generated under Bush is laughable, seeing as how his tax cuts benefited the top 1% of income “earners”, who have gone largely unscathed in this recession, making any lost revenue a product of middle class unemployment, which Bush did nothing to help anyway.

    “Under Obama’s policies, he is literally removing the chances of wealth being created, the decline of quality for social services, the decline of opportunity to earn money”

    Oh, really? How’s he doing that exactly? Because the last time I checked, GOP policies catered only to true capitalism (making money with money, which, by the way, does NOT create wealth). Revitalizing our floundering production base, that creates wealth, because it takes something from something much less (like turning chunks of iron ore into car parts) and turns a profit. Placing bets on whether or not a certain company will fail is merely moving money around in circles, and does nothing to benefit an economy in the long run; we’ve just witnessed that first hand, all of us.

    “and the decline in the most talented Americans taking the risks needed to create jobs by spotting gaps or needs in society for new and innovative products and services.”

    I’m sorry, what exactly do you call the emerging energy industry? That will create millions of long term jobs. If the cons had their way, we’d only exhaust the means by which to extract every last drop of oil from the earth’s crust. You people love to clutch onto what is clearly unsustainable, and it’s pretty baffling sometimes.

    “There’s no way Wall Street will respond positively”

    Right, which totally explains its recent three year high…

    “And what do administration officials say? They themselves expect it to get WORSE, not better anytime soon.”

    I think the American people appreciate the honesty. They’re not little kids who can’t handle the truth. They wouldn’t consciously opt to hear platitudes like ‘the fundamentals of the economy are strong’, or denials from the President that we’re even in a recession. Anyone with half a brain realizes that this president was left one hell of a mess to clean up, and it’s not one that is easily fixed. So while people like you chide and even have the unmitigated gall to blame the man for what the last guy left behind, sane and rational people know better.

    “The only reason liberals got a shot – in which they completely blew – was because a few Republicans like McCain, like Bush toward the end – STOPPED being conservative.”

    Hey man, whatever helps you sleep at night…

    “I did predict to you back in 2008 that Americans would have to suffer while watching their President and his wife live well”

    No you didn’t. You predicted that McCain would win because this country is so conservative. Not only did your desperate wish not come true, you’ve now turned to attacking your former candidate, accusing him of not actually being a conservative. And it’s the same all the way around; you attack any republican who doesn’t march in lock step with your neoconservative views. You, along with people like Rush Limbaugh, are making the Republican Party smaller and smaller, and with my blessing. The less people that think like you, the better off the country is.

    “Watching them head over to Copenhagen to stomp for their hometown while troops are dying in Afghanistan and while Joe and Mary Smith are about to lose their homes because Joe hasn’t worked in months.”

    You know, it’s funny that you mentioned the Olympics and people dying, because as I remember it, Bush also pushed for Chicago’s bid for the games, and not one con had a problem with it. But when Obama makes an effort to bring the Olympics to America, pieces of scum like Michelle Malkin and those at the American Standard have the rancor to cheer for what is essentially America’s loss. It’s truly despicable. Also, you didn’t utter one word of contrition when your president was here in Arizona eating cake with our senior (in more than one way) senator while thousands were dying in New Orleans, so you must forgive my callousness toward your phony altruism.

    “BTW, notice how Robert wants federal money going to ACORN, but is pissed because industries that provide jobs to others received tax cuts.”

    BTW, notice how Steve can’t seem to grasp one of life’s most basic functions (reading), because not only did I explicitly say that I personally agreed with stopping ACORN’s funding, but again, I did not mention anything about tax cuts in my earlier argument. But for the record, there is no proven link between tax cuts for the wealthy and the creation of jobs. If there were, Bush’s dismal record of job creation wouldn’t be so dismal, now would it?

  26. “You ordered the eBay item from a person who already had it. Action Village likely had to order the item you wanted. Next!”

    Next, really? So it’s your position that when I order something from Action Village and it says in plain english “In Stock”, that it really means they needed to order the product first? That’s kind of dumbfounding…

  27. “Sorry I didn’t realize that while you have time to start a totally different argument you didn’t have time to finish the first one.”

    Well, if you can read things in sequential order, you’ll realize that Steve’s comment was posted before yours was. And what exactly was I supposed to be responding to? All you did was repeat what I already posted in regards to congressional limits in the constitution.

  28. I’m sorry I didn’t realize the original argument wasn’t about the de-funding of ACORN.

    I repeated it because I was trying to ask you what section of the Constitution all your arguments came from, because I didn’t see anything you were talking about in there. Then there was other things you ignored.

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