The Examiner – By: Timothy P. Carney
President Obama has abolished the position in his White House dedicated to transparency and shunted those duties into the portfolio of a partisan ex-lobbyist who is openly antagonistic to the notion of disclosure by government and politicians.
Obama transferred “ethics czar” Norm Eisen to the Czech Republic to serve as U.S. ambassador. Some of Eisen’s duties will be handed to Domestic Policy Council member Steven Croley, but most of them, it appears, will shift over to the already-full docket of White House Counsel Bob Bauer.
Bauer is renowned as a “lawyer’s lawyer” and a legal expert. His resume, however, reads more “partisan advocate” than “good-government crusader.” Bauer came to the White House from the law firm Perkins Coie, where he represented John Kerry in 2004 and Obama during his campaign.
Bauer has served as the top lawyer for the Democratic National Committee, which is the most prolific fundraising entity in the country. Then-Rep. Rahm Emanuel, D-Ill., the caricature of a cutthroat Chicago political fixer, hired Bauer to represent the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee. In the White House, Bauer is tight with Emanuel, having defended Emanuel’s offer of a job to Rep. Joe Sestak, D-Pa., whom Emanuel wanted out of the Senate race…
This perfectly captures the Obama White House’s attitude toward disclosure. Sure, the administration publish the names of all White House visitors, but, as the New York Times reported a few weeks back, White House folks just meet their lobbyists at Caribou Coffee across the street. Sure, they restrict the work of ex-lobbyists in the administration, but lobbyists who de-list aren’t questioned.
And we’ve seen just a few of the e-mails former Google lobbyist, now Obama tech policy guru, Andrew McLaughlin traded with current Google lobbyists using his Gmail account, but who knows what else the White House whiz kids are doing to avoid the Presidential Records Act — Facebook messages? Twitter direct messages?
Did I mention Bauer was a lobbyist? At Perkins Coie, Bauer lobbied on behalf of America Votes Inc., a Democratic 527 funded by the likes of the AFL-CIO and ACORN….
Related (Hot Air): Media outlets that sued over transparency suddenly quiet over off-the-record luncheon
Group Told “Demonstrations” Not Allowed
NBC Washington – By P.J. ORVETTI
In 1939, the Daughters of the American Revolution refused to let Marian Anderson perform before an integrated audience at Constitution Hall. The Board of Education of the then-segregated District also refused to let her perform in the auditorium of a white public high school. So Anderson turned to a symbol of freedom: the Lincoln Memorial.
That April, Anderson held an open-air concert on the steps of the monument to the end of slavery and the ideals of the Republic. Stepping up before a racially mixed audience of more than 75,000, Anderson began with “My Country, ‘Tis of Thee.”
Two months ago, at the same memorial, a group of students were confronted by a security guard for singing the national anthem.
The students, members of the conservative Young America’s Foundation, were told by U.S. Park Police that they were “were in violation of federal law and their impromptu performance constituted a demonstration in an area that must remain ‘completely content neutral,'” reports FoxNews.com.
“The area they were standing in and singing is an area that is restricted for this type of activity,” said Sgt. David Schlosser. “The United States Park Police is absolutely content-neutral when it comes to any sort of demonstrations in these areas.”
One of the students, Shawn Balcomb, said the singing was spontaneous, not planned, and was certainly not intended to be political. “We got maybe two lines in and a police officer came over and he was yelling,” he told Fox News. “I was dumbfounded.”
Evan Gassman, a spokesman for the group, said, “I was taken aback. You wouldn’t expect a display of national patriotism to be censored.” At that point, he said, it had become political — and the group kept singing as an act of civil disobedience.
“If their idea of civil disobedience is singing the national anthem, then so be it,” Gassman said. “Let them disobey.”
BIG PEACE – By Candace de Russy
What else, that is, in addition to Ground-Zero-Mega-Mosque Imam Rauf’s likely fund-raising gig in five, oil rich countries?
Just as it has greatly, very greatly, disturbed 68% of you registered voters to learn of plans to build a $100 million dollar mosque financed perhaps by the very ones who underwrote the 9/11 slaughter, it will likely disturb you to learn that the State Department has been hard at work – on your dime – rebuilding of mosques in foreign countries.
The Washington Times reports:
In April, U.S. Ambassador to Tanzania Alfonso E. Lenhardt helped cut the ribbon at the 12th-century Kizimkazi Mosque, which was refurbished with assistance from the United States under a program to preserve culturally significant buildings. The U.S. government also helped save the Amr Ebn El Aas Mosque in Cairo, which dates back to 642.
The mosque’s namesake was the Muslim conqueror of Christian Egypt, who built the structure on the site where he had pitched his tent before doing battle with the country’s Byzantine rulers. For those who think the Ground Zero Mosque is an example of “Muslim triumphalism” glorifying conquest, the Amr Ebn El Aas Mosque is an example of such a monument – and one paid for with U.S. taxpayer funds.
By what lights is U.S. citizens’ money being used to preserve and advance Islam? What of First Amendment considerations about the use of public moneys for religious worship? Our government claims murkiness on these issues but nonetheless forges ahead in constructing mosque abroad…
Related (Michelle Malkin): That Los Angeles Times Sure Has a Good Sense of Humor
PR Newswire: CAIR Welcomes President’s Support for Muslim Rights
Debra Burlingame: 9/11 Families Stunned by President’s Support of Mosque at Ground Zero
Date: Thu, 12 Aug 2010 16:00:15 -0400
Subject: Luckybogey, it’s time to commit to vote
|Luckybogey –Eighteen years ago, shortly after graduating from law school, I helped lead a voter registration campaign in Chicago that generated record turnout on Election Day.
That experience taught me one of the most important lessons I ever learned as a community organizer: When people promise that they’ll do something — like voting — they are far more likely to do it.
That’s why one key part of our Vote 2010 plan this year is to get folks like you from across the country to commit to vote, to make sure we get as many people as we can to cast their ballots this fall.
But getting the commitments we need starts with your own promise to make it to the polls and cast your ballot.
Over the next 82 days, volunteers across the country will spend countless hours calling voters and knocking on their doors, asking them the same question.
And you can bet that I am counting on you to join them in talking to voters in your community.
This election offers a stark choice. We Democrats are hard at work trying to move America forward, repairing a decade of damage and growing an economy based on the Main Street values of hard work and responsibility.
We’ve fought for and won historic reforms to our health care system, a victory 100 years in the making, and to Wall Street, the most sweeping overhaul of the financial system since the Great Depression.
But after years of policies that landed us in the worst recession since the 1930’s, the Republicans who got us there have not come up with anything different from the policies of George W. Bush.
We simply cannot afford to go backwards or let them repeal our reforms. And making sure we can continue moving forward starts with your own promise to cast your ballot in these elections.
Please commit to vote this fall:
President Barack Obama
Paid for and authorized by the Democratic National Committee, www.democrats.org.
This communication is not authorized by any candidate or candidate’s committee.Democratic National Committee, 430 S. Capitol St. SE, Washington, DC 20003
Contributions or gifts to the Democratic National Committee are not deductible as charitable contributions for federal income tax purposes.
Related Previous Posts:
Dick Morris: A CONTRACT WITH AMERICA FOR 2010
Debbie Schlussel: Happy Ramadan From Hezbollah High’s Football Team: Your Tax $s @ Work
White House Blog: Remarks by the President at Iftar Dinner
…”But let me be clear. As a citizen, and as President, I believe that Muslims have the same right to practice their religion as everyone else in this country. (Applause.) And that includes the right to build a place of worship and a community center on private property in Lower Manhattan…”
White House Blog: President Obama Celebrates Ramadan at White House Iftar Dinner
New York Times: Obama Strongly Backs Islam Center Near 9/11 Site
PJ (Ed Driscoll): And Thus, the Walkback Begins
American Thinker: Regarding Ground Zero, Bloomberg Misses the Point
Updated Related Links – end