Despite an increasingly noisy chorus of resistance to many of its provisions, the Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act (CISPA) passed the House, 248-168, on April 26. Passage in the House was assured with more than 70 percent of those supported by the Tea Party voting for it. It moved to an uncertain future in the Senate.
The opposition noted that the bill’s many flaws included precious little “protection” for rights guaranteed in the Bill of Rights, especially those guaranteed by the Fourth Amendment.
Upon receipt of verification from Hawaii that President Obama was born there, Arizona Secretary of State Ken Bennett said that it satisfies his state’s requirement for placing the President’s name on the ballot for the November election.
The conservative think tank Cato Institute has announced its latest effort to hold local police accountable by establishing its National Police Misconduct Reporting Project. Its purpose is to “determine the extent of police misconduct in the United States ... and report on issues about police misconduct in order to enhance public awareness.”
However, the institute may be totally unaware that the project's apparently sensational presentation of police misconduct may be playing into the hands of those whose interest is in attacking the credibility of local police officers. By loosening those bonds of credibility, the argument for national control of local police authorities gains credibility. In Nazi Germany, that police force was called the Gestapo.
This Memorial Day, before we further decorate the earth with more graves of more young Americans, let us pause to consider who really "supports the troops." Is it the architects of our policy of perpetual war? Is it those who are eager to send young Americans to die in other people's quarrels or even for other nations' imperial ambitions, all under the endlessly "entangling alliances" of the United Nations and NATO? Or is it those who do not want to put American soldiers in harm's way except when necessary to defend our own country and liberties?
Several key witnesses in the shooting death of Trayvon Martin by Neighborhood Watch captain George Zimmerman have changed their original stories since first being interviewed by law enforcement, according to news reports about recently released evidence in the case. Some analysts cited in the media speculated that three of those revised accounts might hurt the shooter’s claims of self-defense as the second-degree murder prosecution goes through the Florida court system.
Experts in the field, however, have noted that later recollections — which could be impacted by external factors such as publicity, for example — are thought to be less reliable than earlier memories. And the addition of post-event information into the memory reconstruction process, normally unbeknownst to the person, is one reason why psychologists believe that eyewitness testimony can often be unreliable.
GOP leadership in the House of Representatives announced that legislation to thoroughly audit the secretive Federal Reserve, a wildly popular measure pushed by Rep. Ron Paul (R-Texas) for decades, will come up for a floor vote in July. Honest-money advocates and pro-transparency activists celebrated the news as a historic opportunity to rein in the central bank, which has come under heavy fire — especially in recent years — for debasing the U.S. dollar, manipulating markets, and showering big banks with trillions in bailouts.
The legislation, H.R. 459, already has over 225 co-sponsors in the House including an impressive roster of senior Democrats and Republicans, some of whom chair important committees. In the Senate, however, a similar bill has only about 20 co-sponsors so far, forcing Audit-the-Fed activists to wage a massive campaign aimed at exposing Senators who refuse to support transparency at the shadowy central bank.
The Obama administration has come under fire after the Health and Human Services Department (HHS) hired a public relations firm to help restore the muddied reputation of the President’s controversial Affordable Care Act. The $20-million, taxpayer-funded contract was awarded to a PR firm called Porter Novelli, which helped launch the Agriculture Department’s renowned healthy food pyramid.
Facebook founder Mark Zuckerburg will find himself in court once again over yet another shareholder lawsuit. This time, shareholders have filed a lawsuit against Facebook and several banks, including Morgan Stanley, asserting that the defendants have “concealed a weakened growth forecast prior to the high-profile IPO,” reports Fox News. And the litigation has prompted the United States Congress to take a closer look at Facebook.
Senate lawmakers are continuing investigations over the infamous prostitution scandal that implicated 12 Secret Service agents during a presidential assignment in Cartagena, Colombia. So far, eight Secret Service employees have lost their jobs, while the agency plans to permanently revoke the security clearance for one other employee.
The U.S. government’s so-called “War on Drugs” in Central America is under heavy fire again after a barrage of negative publicity surrounding a controversial and deadly operation in Honduras earlier this month: an attack that terrorized villagers and reportedly killed two pregnant women and two children traveling on a riverboat. Fierce criticism also erupted when it emerged later that state-sponsored gunmen speaking English — presumably Americans, according to witnesses — pointed a gun at a teenager’s head and threatened to shoot if he refused to talk.
Ronald Reagan did not support the Law of the Sea Treaty over concerns that our nation would be surrendering sovereignty to the United Nations and Senator Jim Inhofe of Oklahoma thinks the former President was right. Said Inhofe: "I think it’s a tax, since it costs money. I’ve read the work of the U.S. Interagency Extended Continental Shelf Task Force and the briefs and sources there talking about how to quantify the amount of money we would be losing. This is the first time in history that an international organization — the U.N. in this case — would possess taxing authority over this country.”