Here, you are urged and encouraged to run your mouths about something important.

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

DOJ Inspector General Report on Fast and Furious: Holder Incompetent but Innocent of wrongdoing

After reading the Executive Summary of the Inspector General's Report on Operation Fast and Furious, I'm struck by one thing. The biggest indictment of Attorney General Eric Holder may just be that he still has a job as Attorney General after these findings, not because the conclusions call for his removal but because Holder shouldn't be able to look himself in the mirror before going to work. Any real leader would literally step aside in utter disgrace or, at best, fall on the sword for his subordinates. If Holder does neither, he shouldn't have the trust of any subordinates.

Yes, Holder was found innocent of wrongdoing but the degree to which others close to him were found culpable makes him look like anything other than a leader.

As it was during the hearings and investigation, a huge stickling point for Holder is that now infamous February 4, 2011 letter in which the DOJ assured Senator Chuck Grassley that no gun-walking was taking place. DOJ didn't rescind that letter until December of 2011. It's clear, apparently even to IG Horowitz, that while the letter itself should not have been written, there is no way it should have taken ten months to rescind it.

From the Executive Summary via AZ Central:
The OIG concluded, as did the Department, that its February 4, 2011, response letter to Senator Grassley contained inaccuracies, particularly its assertion that ATF "makes every effort to interdict weapons that have been purchased illegally and prevent their transportation to Mexico."

However, the OIG also found that, by March or April 2011, senior Department officials knew or should have known that ATF had not made "every effort to interdict weapons that [had] been purchased illegally and prevent their transportation to Mexico," either in Operation Fast and Furious or other firearms trafficking investigations and therefore the February 4 letter contained inaccuracies.
Ok, so the IG says "senior Department officials" should have known the February 4th letter was bogus within one to two months of it being signed (not ten months afterward). Once you're talking about "senior Department officials", you're talking about Holder's inner circle. We're left to conclude that members of Holder's inner circle are culpable when it comes to not identifying the February 4th letter for what it was.

As such, shouldn't Holder by culpable as well? In fact, he should step aside before those identified by IG Horowitz do; it would be the most honorable thing to do.

Then again, the only thing Holder and honor have in common is that they both start with the letter "h".

As for the IG's analysis of how the February 4th letter got written...
The OIG found that a poorly executed information gathering and drafting process, as well as questionable judgments by Department officials, contributed to the Department's inclusion of inaccurate information in its February 4 response letter to Senator Grassley.

In preparing this letter, Department officials relied on information provided by senior component officials that was not accurate, primarily from U.S. Attorney Burke, ATF Acting Director Melson, and ATF Deputy Director Hoover. These officials failed to exercise appropriate oversight of the investigation, and to some extent were themselves receiving incorrect or incomplete information from their subordinates about it.
Once again, Holder's direct subordinates are guilty of "questionable judgments" and relying on information that was "not accurate". Horowitz then says theses "officials (Holder's immediate subordinates) failed to exercise appropriate oversight".

This next excerpt indicates a lack of leadership on the part of Holder, not by name, but based on what his immediate subordinates (plural) viewed as a correct course of action:
The OIG further concluded that the Department officials who had a role in drafting the February 4 letter should have done more to inform themselves about the allegations in Sen. Grassley's letter and should not have relied solely on the assurances of senior officials at ATF and the U.S. Attorney's Office that the allegations were false.
Again, Holder's direct subordinates are fingered by Horowitz as being incompetent. Yet, Holder was whistling in blissful and ignorant solitude somewhere while his underlings - whom he hired - were making all of these bone-headed decisions?!

Perhaps most damning was an admission by Horowitz that the DOJ should have corrected the assertions in its February 4, 2011 letter in its May 2, 2011 letter in response to Grassley:
The OIG further concluded that, by the date of its May 2 response letter, senior Department officials responsible for drafting the letter also knew or should have known that ATF had not made "every effort to interdict weapons purchased illegally and prevent their transportation to Mexico," either in Operation Fast and Furious or other firearms trafficking investigations, and that the Department's February 4 letter contained inaccuracies and could no longer be defended in its entirety.
Rep. Darrell Issa's team has been very quick in sending out emails in response to this report. Here is an excerpt from a mass email I received from Frederick R. Hill, Director of Communications for the Oversight Committee:
IG Report’s Findings on why Attorney General Holder was not aware of Crucial Information about Operation Fast and Furious and Other Gunwalking (p. 453):

“We concluded that the Attorney General’s Deputy Chief of Staff, the Acting Deputy Attorney General, and the leadership of the Criminal Division failed to alert the Attorney General to significant information about or flaws in those investigations.”
Shouldn't Attorney General Holder be held accountable for the incompetence of multiple direct reports?

If Holder remains on as Attorney General, it will actually (and paradoxically) be the biggest indictment of him, based on the incompetence of the people who he is directly responsible for.

Hillary won't explain her Mormon/Muslim double standard but Lawrence O'Donnell did

One could argue that Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has directed more anger at the anti-Muhammad film that the administration has pointed to for rioting and murder in the Middle East, than toward the rioters and murderers of the Middle East. In fact, Clinton called the film "disgusting and reprehensible" but seemed to give the rioters a parental-like scolding.

So the standard is set, right? Criticizing religion is reprehensible and disgusting in the eyes of Hillary Clinton.

Uh, not so much.

The Wall Street Journal reported on her appearance last year at a Broadway musical that essentially shredded a different religion - Mormonism:
'Hasa Diga Eebowai" is the hit number in Broadway's hit musical "The Book of Mormon," which won nine Tony awards last year. What does the phrase mean? I can't tell you, because it's unprintable in a family newspaper.

On the other hand, if you can afford to shell out several hundred bucks for a seat, then you can watch a Mormon missionary get his holy book stuffed—well, I can't tell you about that, either. Let's just say it has New York City audiences roaring with laughter.

The "Book of Mormon"—a performance of which Hillary Clinton attended last year, without registering a complaint—comes to mind as the administration falls over itself denouncing "Innocence of Muslims." This is a film that may or may not exist; whose makers are likely not who they say they are; whose actors claim to have known neither the plot nor purpose of the film; and which has never been seen by any member of the public except as a video clip on the Internet.
Ok, so why the double standard? Don't hold your breath waiting for Hillary to tell you. She has an entire historical slew of things she can't explain - and doesn't attempt to.

However, perhaps MSNBC host Lawrence O'Donnell can tell us. Actually, he did just that during a radio interview with Hugh Hewitt in 2007. Here is a transcript of the relevant exchange via NewsBusters (audio follows):
LAWRENCE O’DONNELL: I don’t think he [Mitt Romney] believes everything in the Book of Mormon. I think he’s lying about that. It’s an insane document produced by a madman who was a criminal and a rapist. [...]

HUGH HEWITT: Would you say the same things about Mohammed as you just said about Joseph Smith?

O’DONNELL: Oh, well, I’m afraid of what the…that’s where I’m really afraid. I would like to criticize Islam much more than I do publicly, but I’m afraid for my life if I do.

HEWITT: Well, that’s candid.

O’DONNELL: Mormons are the nicest people in the world. They’re not going to ever…

HEWITT: So you can be bigoted towards Mormons, because they’ll just send you a strudel.

O’DONNELL: They’ll never take a shot at me. Those other people, I’m not going to say a word about them.

HEWITT: They’ll send you a strudel. The Mormons will bake you a cake and be nice to you.

O’DONNELL: I agree.

HEWITT: Lawrence O’Donnell, I appreciate your candor.
CLICK HERE and fast forward to the 18:00 mark to hear the exchange.

By the way, O'Donnell's admission that he would like to criticize Islam but won't might be perceived by Muslims as 'hate thought'.

On a semi-related note, it would appear that we have another in a long line of opportunities for Mitt Romney to take the gloves off but... we also have a long line of squandered opportunities by Mitt to do so because, well, he's so concerned about those 5%-10% of independents who don't know what they want.

Obama on man behind anti-Muhammad film: 'Shadowy character'

First Amendment champions were taken aback when they saw the producer of that anti-Muhammad film - Nakoula Basseley Nakoula - being taken in for questioning by police. Most came to his defense. In recent days, however, questions have arisen about his conviction on charges related to bank fraud. It may be time to do a little digging on this guy.

He is likely not what he seems.

Besides, Barack Obama says he's 'shadowy'.

Via the AP:
President Barack Obama says the man behind an anti-Islam movie that ignited violence across the Middle East is a "shadowy character."

U.S. officials blame the film in part for the violence in Libya, where U.S. Ambassador Christopher Stevens and three other Americans were killed. The White House says the matter still is under investigation and that assessment could change.
If Nakoula is so 'shadowy', perhaps we should learn more about him.

h/t WZ

Accuracy in Media
American Spectator
American Thinker
Big Government
Big Journalism
Doug Ross
Flopping Aces
Fox Nation
Fox News
Free Republic
The Hill
Hope for America
Hot Air
Hot Air Pundit
Jawa Report
Jihad Watch
Michelle Malkin
Naked Emperor News
National Review
New Zeal Blog
News Real
Pajamas Media
Red State
Right Wing News
Say Anything
Stop Islamization of America
Verum Serum
Wall Street Journal
Washington Times
Watts Up With That
Web Today
Weekly Standard
World Net Daily

Blog Archive