Barack Obama’s approval ratings have been rising in the wake of the realization that Hillary Clinton or Donald Trump are his likely successors. I can’t blame the public too much for this, as irrational as it is. Place Steve Buscemi next to the Elephant Man, and after a while he’ll seem like George Clooney.
Still, the fact that so many Americans accept/ enable this incompetent, divisive, corrupt and untrustworthy government under Obama is a major reason such unfit candidates as Clinton and Trump have gotten this far. Never before has such incompetent leadership been so extolled, especially by the news media. The standards for what Americans would accept as Presidential leadership have been lowered catastrophically under Obama, and this is one of many horrible results.
Now the State Department—you know, that major Cabinet Department Hillary Clinton ran, the one that looked the other way while its Secretary violated its policies regarding classified material, then tried to cover it up? That one— has admitted that a question from Fox News reporter James Rosen about the government’s secret discussions with Iran was deliberately edited out of a video to re-write history and deceive the public. The section related to secret meetings with Iran prior to the nuclear deal—you know, the one that Obama’s foreign policy advisor Ben Rhodes boasted about how it was foisted on the American people by duping the media. That one. When Fox News first flagged the missing exchange, Obama’s government dismissed it as a “glitch.”
You know. Like The IRS said that it couldn’t find Lois Lerner’s e-mails.
But this week, finding that it couldn’t stonewall any more, the State Department told reporters that “a staffer” had erased part of the footage from the December 2013 briefing before it was posted on the Internet. This censor reportedly did so, the State Department admitted, after receiving a phone call from an “unknown” department employee ordering him or her to do so. “There was a deliberate request—this wasn’t a technical glitch,” State now says.
Though they first said it was. When it wasn’t. To put everyone off the track. Because this is the most transparent administration ever, and has never had any scandals. None.
Do I seem annoyed? I am.
Mr. Rosen: “Is it the policy of the State Department, where the preservation or the secrecy of secret negotiations is concerned, to lie in order to achieve that goal?”
Ms. Psaki: “James, I think there are times where diplomacy needs privacy in order to progress. This is a good example of that.”
Translation: “Yes. We lied. Yes, it is policy to lie under certain circumstances. “
After Rhodes, President Obama’s deputy national security advisor, proudly boasted in a recent interview how the administration had manipulated the press about the government’s dealings with Iran, Rosen went back to look at the video of the exchange he had with Psaki. He discovered that it was missing, all eight minutes of it.
Now State says that “deliberately removing a portion of the video was not and is not in keeping with the State Department’s commitment to transparency and public accountability.” You know, like refusing to use the State Department’s proscribed e-mail system isn’t policy.
State keeps using this word “policy.” I don’t think it means what they think it does. Policies that aren’t followed at the whim of Secretaries and lower level employees aren’t policies. They are subterfuge.
On Twitter, Psaki swears that she was not involved in the editing of the briefing video, and she did not know about it until it became news. “I had no knowledge of nor would I have approved of any form of editing or cutting my briefing transcript on any subject,” she tweeted. Well, that settles it, right? After all, Hillary said she had approval from the State Department to ignore all of its e-mails policies. And never handled any classified information. OK, never handled any classified information that was marked classified. Well, maybe a few. Why would we doubt these people?
Jen Psaki is now Director of Communications for the most transparent White House ever—Barack Obama said it was.
Of course she is.
The missing portion of the video has now been restored, but the State Department says it has hit a “dead end” in its investigation into who ordered the deletion. “We believe we’ve carried out the necessary investigation. We have hit a dead end in terms of finding out more information,” said State Department spokesman Mark Toner.
Do you trust that statement? Let me rephrase a bit: Are you an blithering idiot?
Here are the top two possibilities of what Toner’s statement really means:
“We investigated, and holy cow, you wouldn’t believe who ordered that cut! But the President, as usual, won’t fire someone who should be, so we’re just not going to let anyone know.”
“We went into various offices and shouted, “Hey, anyone know who did this?” and nobody answered. So that’s that.”
Mirabile dictu, as my old Latin teacher Miss Rounds used to say—she hated me; I think she was Mexican…and that’s great!—-an actual journalist is as annoyed by this as I am. CNN’s Jake Tapper, perhaps the closest thing to fair journalist in captivity—so if a toddler slips into his cage, please don’t shoot him!—told a radio interviewer,
“That looks like a completely cut-and-dried case of censorship. They took something they didn’t like and pretended it didn’t happen. People in the media whose personal leanings might be sympathetic to President Obama and to President Obama’s State Department should not let their personal bias get in the way of the fact that this is a true outrage.”
He then said that reporters must “complain consistently” about such shenanigans in the Obama Administration, or they won’t have any ground to stand on if “hypothetically, President Trump and Secretary of State Omarosa do the same thing.”
That’s a good line, but your call for fair and competent criticism of the Obama Administration is a little late, don’t you think, Jake? Maybe if you had been saying this for all 8 years, aided by Jon Stewart and other alleged “truth-tellers,” it might have made a difference. Better late than never? Sure. That still doesn’t excuse the late part.
Tapper wasn’t finished, though. On his own show on CNN, he stated that Psaki clearly “lied” to reporter Rosen and to the American public, noting that there were three major lies to deal with now: the lie about the secret talks with Iran, the censoring of the section of the video, and the initial “glitch” excuse. Tapper concluded,
“Just as the public has a right to know the truth, we have a right to know who lied to us. And why.”
Go get em, Jake!
By the way, your CNN show has been moved to 2 AM.
A personal aside: I have some good friends, real ones, on Facebook, who simply refuse to accept criticism of Barack Obama. Both are active Democrats; one is a retired Washington journalist of some note. They like to dismiss my analysis of Obama as biased ranting, that I write that he is the worst President ever and has never done anything worthwhile. This is a form of ad hominem attack by hyperbole.
Frankly, I don’t know how they can look at themselves in the mirror. This State Department episode isn’t unique; it is typical of a badly managed government rotting from the head down. It seems like the progressives (and African Americans, of course) just decided at the outset that they would regard Obama’s presidency as a monumental success, and they have done so, in complete defiance of reality. )Admittedly, this skill has proven invaluable as the same people deny that Hillary Clinton has ever done anything to suggest she isn’t trustworthy. )
And I’m the villain for challenging their fantasy.