Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Real Scandals

I still don't care about Benghazi, though that term is now loaded since Hilary's testimony is being taken out of context. I think the fact that the security of the embassy was not sufficient is a big problem that needs to be corrected. I think the issue about "talking points" is stupid. But there are two other "scandals" floating around that seem more significant to me.

First the IRS using extra scrutiny for tea party groups seeking 501©(4) recognition. Chris Hayes last night had the best coverage I've seen of this.

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I wonder what the tea partiers think of the ACLU supporting their outrage over this?

Second, the NY Times reports U.S. Secretly Obtains Two Months of A.P. Phone Records "The Justice Department secretly obtained two months of telephone records of reporters and editors for The Associated Press in what the news cooperative's top executive called a "massive and unprecedented intrusion" into how news organizations gather the news."

"The government would not say why it sought the records. Officials have previously said in public testimony that the U.S. attorney in Washington is conducting a criminal investigation into who may have provided information contained in a May 7, 2012, AP story about a foiled terror plot. The story disclosed details of a CIA operation in Yemen that stopped an al-Qaida plot in the spring of 2012 to detonate a bomb on an airplane bound for the United States."

"Prosecutors have sought phone records from reporters before, but the seizure of records from such a wide array of AP offices, including general AP switchboards numbers and an office-wide shared fax line, is unusual."

But for both of these the point is, there's something that needs to be investigated to find out what happened and why and if there was wrong-doing (which seems likely) some penalties must be enacted and policies changed. Republicans talking about Impeachment over the weekend (I forget if it was about Benghazi or the IRS) are going way overboard.

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