Conservative Political Views



Shocking Benghazi Report Blames State Dept.: U.S. Gov’t ‘Failed Tragically’ to Protect Americans

A shocking new Senate report on the Benghazi, Libya, attack that claimed the lives of four Americans on Sept. 11, including U.S. Ambassador Christopher Stevens, contends that the State Department is at fault for failing to tackle security threats in the days and months leading up to the deadly assault. Additionally, the document concludes by noting that the horrific event is evidence that the U.S. battle with “Islamist extremists and terrorists is not over.”

The report, “Flashing Red: A Special Report On The Terrorist Attack At Benghazi,” which came from the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee, charges that, considering unpredictable chaos in the region, the State Department did not adequately protect the compound or respond to challenges facing it leading up to the attack. While no specific threats were waged against U.S. staffers in Libya prior to Sept. 11, the report essentially charges that the U.S. government, taking information and developments into account, should have taken grander steps to protect workers.

Senate Report Blames State Department on Benghazi, Failed to Protect Americans

U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton (R) presents a Common Ground Award to Anne Stevens (L), sister of the U.S. Ambassador to Libya Christopher Stevens, during a ceremony at the Carnegie Institution for Science November 8, 2012 in Washington, DC. Anne Stevens accepted the award on behalf of her late brother, who was killed in the assault on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Libya September 11, 2012. Credit: Getty Images

“In the months leading up to the attack on the Temporary Mission Facility in Benghazi, there was a large amount of evidence gathered by the U.S. Intelligence Community (IC) and from open sources that Benghazi was increasingly dangerous and unstable, and that a significant attack against American personnel there was becoming much more likely,” the study’s first finding contends.

The report went on to claim that information about threats was shared within the Intelligence Community (IC) and with key personnel at the Department of State. However, despite knowledge that the situation was worsening, it “did not lead to a commensurate increase in security at Benghazi nor to a decision to close the American mission there.” These actions, the Senate committee claims, would have been justified by the intelligence findings.

Another of the statements in the document reads, “The absence of specific intelligence about an imminent attack should not have prevented the Department of State from taking more effective steps to protect its personnel and facilities in Benghazi.”

With the Libyan government unable to provide adequate security, the need for greater U.S.-led provisions was obvious, but according to the study — not undertaken. In addition to laying out its findings, the report also provides recommendations to prevent future events like the Benghazi terror attack from unfolding.

“We hope this report will help contribute to the ongoing discussion that our nation must have about how best to protect the brave men and women who serve our country abroad and how to win this war that will continue for years to come,” the document concludes, noting that the U.S. government “failed tragically” to protect Americans serving abroad in Libya.

Read the document in its entirety here. This report follows an independent investigation earlier this month that found systematic management and leadership failures in the wake of the Benghazi attack.




NRA fingerprints in landmark health-care law

Handout/Reuters – Wayne LaPierre, CEO and Executive Vice President of the National Rifle Association, appears on “Meet the Press” in Washington D.C. in this December 23, 2012 photo.

By Peter Wallsten and , Published: December 30

The words were tucked deep into the sprawling text of President Obama’s signature health-care overhaul. Under the headline “Protection of Second Amendment Gun Rights” was a brief provision restricting the ability of doctors to gather data about their patients’ gun use — a largely overlooked but significant challenge to a movement in American medicine to treat firearms as a matter of public health.

The language, pushed by the National Rifle Association in the final weeks of the 2010 debate over health care and discovered only in recent days by some lawmakers and medical groups, is drawing criticism in the wake of this month’s schoolhouse massacre of 20 children and six educators in Newtown, Conn. Some public health advocates, worried that the measure will hinder research and medical care, are calling on the White House to amend the language as it prepares to launch a gun-control initiative in January.

A look back at 10 quips that defined the election year that was.

NRA officials say they requested the provision out of concern that insurance companies could use such data to raise premiums on gun owners. The measure’s supporters in the Senate say they did not intend to interfere with the work of doctors or researchers.

But physician groups and researchers see the provision as part of a decades-long strategy by the gun lobby to choke off federal support for studies of firearms violence.

The research restrictions began in the 1990s, when the NRA urged Congress to cut funding for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s division that studied gun violence. In 1996, Congress sharply limited the agency’s ability to fund that type of research.

More limits came last year in a spending bill setting restrictions on the National Institutes of Health after complaints from gun rights advocates about an NIH-backed study drawing links between alcoholism and gun violence. The provision, added by Rep. Denny Rehberg (R-Mont.), prohibits the NIH from spending money to “advocate or promote gun control” — language that researchers say does not explicitly forbid studies but sends a signal to federal research agencies to steer clear of the topic.

The NRA push has extended into state capitals as well, with Florida lawmakers last year crafting a plan to impose jail time on doctors for inquiring about their patients’ gun ownership. Gov. Rick Scott (R) signed a scaled-back version of the proposal requiring health-care workers to “refrain” from asking patients about their ownership or possession of firearms unless the providers believe “in good faith” that such information would be relevant. A federal judge this year declared the law unconstitutional and blocked its enforcement, but the ruling was appealed by the state and is under review.

Undercutting gun laws

Physician groups and public health advocates say the cumulative effect of these restrictions undercuts the ability of the White House and lawmakers to make the case for new laws, such as an assault-weapons ban, in the face of opponents who argue that there’s no evidence such measures are effective. Advocates for regulating guns lament that reliable statistics are limited in part because physicians and health researchers who could track these patterns are being inhibited.



National_Rifle_Association (Photo credit: ChrisWaldeck)

Unless a gun is used to commit suicide, or if a gun owner’s weapon has injured him/her, it is none of the doctor’s business if one owns a gun!!  The NRA is a free society’s last line of resistance and defense against tyranny.


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Politico: Breitbart Leads the Opposition

by Joel B. Pollak 31 Dec 2012, 5:52 AM PDT

The left-leaning, DC-based Politico news outlet has named–or blamed–Breitbart News as the leader of the opposition to Speaker of the House John Boehner: “The main anti-Boehner grumbling is coming from conservative media outlets like Breitbart and Hot Air, and outside groups such as American Majority Action.”

In fact, Breitbart News has not opposed Boehner’s speakership as such, but has reported on possible challenges stemming from his apparent weakness in “fiscal cliff” negotiations with President Barack Obama, his purge of conservative members from key leadership positions, and his failure to unite the Republican caucus behind “Plan B” proposals to raise takes on the highest earners–proposals the President and his party had already rejected.

Breitbart News has also proudly and comprehensively covered opposition to tax hikes from the conservative grass roots, as well as pointing out the failure of such policies in “blue” states such as Illinois and California.

We are not alone. In addition to the other outlets and groups mentioned by Politico, conservative talk radio–much detested by Beltway journalists–has played a significant role, with host Mark Levin urging listeners to call their representatives to voice objections to “Plan B,” and featuring interviews with members opposed to the deal.

While adopting a critical posture towards Boehner’s initiatives, Breitbart News has also allowed for the possibility that “many of his failures are not his fault,” given President Obama’s intransigence and detachment from talks. It is partly for that reason–and not because he enjoys unanimous support–that Boehner received a standing ovation yesterday from members of the GOP caucus when he announced that the Senate had to forge a deal.

However, Andrew Breitbart would no doubt be proud that his website continues to lead the conservative opposition to Obama–and that it remains as feared as ever by the “Democrat-media complex” in Washington.



Assault Rifles Selling Out

NEW YORK (CNNMoney) The feverish demand for military-style rifles and high-capacity ammunition magazines is outstripping supply, ahead of legislative efforts to ban them in the wake of mass shootings. “Our phones are ringing every 10 seconds and people are saying, ‘Do you have any assault rifles?'” said Dennis Pratte, owner of My Gun Factory in Falls Church, Va., a store that also sells products online. “They’ve sold out of just about every gun shop nationwide and just about every distributor is out of stock.” Online retailers are running out of semiautomatic rifles — known variously as assault weapons, tactical rifles or modern sporting rifles — and magazines that can hold more than 10 rounds. Brick-and-mortar gun shops are also working furiously to meet demand. Semiautomatic rifles, which fire one round for every pull of the trigger, and high-capacity magazines are flying off the shelves. “The retail market is completely sold out of anything with high-capacity magazines,” said Pratte. “We get people 20-deep waiting to buy.” Pratte said that he sells AR-15s as soon as they arrive at his store, before he even has the time to display them on the wall. Handguns are also hot commodities, especially from popular makers such as Smith & Wesson (SWHC), he said. He said that prices are soaring, and not just for guns. High-capacity magazines, particularly the popular 30-round magazines, are going for $100 apiece on, a bidding site like Ebay (EBAY, Fortune 500). He said they used to sell for $15. “Ammunition is hard to come by, as well,” Pratte said, noting that ammunition for military-style semiautomatic rifles has tripled in price to about one dollar per bullet.

Gun flashback #3

by Tom Tomorrow for Daily Kos

As a small reminder of how long we’ve been having the exact same conversation about guns, I’m posting a few of the cartoons I’ve written on the topic over the years.  This one is from 1999.




December 31, 2012 - Posted by | Home, Videos | , , , , , , ,

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