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Journalists Are Not Special, Even In Ferguson

It’s unusual for me to disagree with Hot Air’s Mary Katherine Hamm, who says that national reporters are valuable test subjects for Constitutional rights.  Allowing reporters to continue in the illusion that they are something special would demonstrate the widening gap between America and her ruling elites.

Hamm acknowledges the danger in creating a tiered set of rights:

Now, it’s not that the journalists in question are super-citizens who have more rights than the rest of us (though, certainly, the coverage of them will suggest it). They are canaries in a coalmine. If national journalists are arrested at a McDonald’s in Ferguson for what can only be described (and has yet to be described by police, mind you) as some sort of reach of an infraction, how are the regular citizens in this now militarized zone faring?

The trouble is that the reporters in question think of themselves as something different from the maddening crowd of local yokels. They tend to act as if their Journalist Privilege puts them above the police, able to act outside the law because they are not part of events, but merely covering them.

In particular, a journalist might think it’s fine to question police officers about their actions in real time. “Why are you using that semi-automatic assault weapon that way?” Demanding attention while police are quelling a riot crosses a line into interference. I don’t trust journalists to know where that line is.

Journalists may sometimes deserve to spend a few moments in the cooler. They can then write about that, with a more perfect double-edged remedy hard to imagine.

While some dress up journalists in the fine garments of the Public’s Right To Know, those garments obscure the fact that most of the time journalists don’t give a tinker’s cuss about the public’s right to know, and are just trying to sell newspapers, or commercial spots, or page views. They are in business, or their employer is, to make money. The freedom of the press is not a guarantee of commercial success.

None of us is capable of separating our human desire for reward from our search to make information public. Treating journalists as some kind of dispassionate observers whose rights must be defended so that we know everyone’s rights are defended presumes that journalists act in ways no less troublesome than everyone else, a premise I refute by noting that Al Sharpton has press credentials.

Hamm continues,

And, here’s the thing. We ask more of law enforcement in a free society and we should. We don’t accept that everyone in a community must be under the gun because some of them committed crimes. Or, that journalists should be arrested while trying to cover that community…

That phrase “trying to cover” may gloss a multitude of sins, from simply distracting the police to actively encouraging or otherwise affecting the events they are “trying to cover.” It is inarguable that the presence of national media lends an element of drama that would not otherwise be there.

Being a journalist does not confer special rights, nor special status. The law, and more generally the culture, should treat everyone as a journalist, which in light of social media and ubiquitous smart phones, we are.


This 17-year-old Australian Singer Is RIDICULOUS.

This 17-year-old Australian Singer Is RIDICULOUS.

Ridiculously good, that is.

Cody Kay was a bit of an Internet phenom before she audtioned on X-Factor Australia, singing Before He Cheats by Carrie Underwood.

Start at 3:00 if you want.

“Before He Cheats”

Right now he’s probably slow dancing with a bleached-blond tramp,
and she’s probably getting frisky…
right now, he’s probably buying her some fruity little drink
’cause she can’t shoot whiskey…
Right now, he’s probably up behind her with a pool stick,
showing her how to shoot a combo…

And he don’t know…

That I dug my key into the side
of his pretty little souped up 4 wheel drive,
carved my name into his leather seats…
I took a Louisville slugger to both headlights,
slashed a hole in all 4 tires…
Maybe next time he’ll think before he cheats.

Right now, she’s probably up singing some
white-trash version of Shania karaoke.
Right now, she’s probably saying, “I’m drunk”
and he’s a-thinking that he’s gonna get lucky,
Right now, he’s probably dabbing on
3 dollars worth of that bathroom Polo*…

Oh, and he don’t know…

That I dug my key into the side
of his pretty little souped up 4 wheel drive,
carved my name into his leather seats,
I took a Louisville slugger to both headlights,
slashed a hole in all 4 tires…
Maybe next time he’ll think before he cheats.

I might’ve saved a little trouble for the next girl,
’cause the next time that he cheats…
Oh, you know it won’t be on me!

No… not on me

‘Cause I dug my key into the side
of his pretty little souped up 4 wheel drive,
carved my name into his leather seats…
I took a Louisville slugger to both headlights,
slashed a hole in all 4 tires…
Maybe next time he’ll think before he cheats.

Oh, maybe next time he’ll think before he cheats…

Oh, before he cheats… oh, oh.

[* Polo is Ralph Lauren’s men cologne]

This 17-year-old Australian Singer Is RIDICULOUS.

What Led President Obama Finally To Attack ISIS … A Little.

Less than two weeks after requesting that Congress rescind the Authorization for Use of Military Force (AUMF) in Iraq, President Obama has ordered a campaign of air strikes against the Islamic State (IS, formerly called ISIS). A need to defend the American embassy at Erbil in Kurdish Iraq, and a humanitarian mission changed his mind.

The New York Times reported in early June that the Iraqis requested that the US intervene against ISIS.  On June 15, ISIS released images of its own atrocities. The request for air strikes went public June 18. By June 20,  shiploads of US Marines were headed to Iraq to defend our embassy and help stand up the Iraqi armed forces.

That had to wait for the lawyers to work out a temporary Status of Forces agreement. President Obama blamed the lack of a SOF agreement for his complete withdrawal of troops in 2011. Critics charged that he failed to negotiate with any vigor, having made known his dislike of a US presence in Iraq since 2003.

On July 25, the House passed a resolution sponsored by Democrat James McGovern (MA-02) that said, in substance:

The President shall not deploy or maintain United States Armed Forces in a sustained combat role in Iraq without specific statutory authorization for such use

In a letter earlier that day, letter to Congress, National Security Adviser Susan Rice wrote that rather than voting not to send ground troops, Congress should rescind the AUMF for Iraq:


So the administration had received multiple requests from Iraq for air strikes, and had not only refused them, but has asked Congress to take away its ability to carry them out. The administration claims they don’t need Congressional authority to go to war, however. And on August 7, after an outcry over the fate of the Yazidi people in Iraq, Mr. Obama said:

I’ve said before, the United States cannot and should not intervene every time there’s a crisis in the world.  So let me be clear about why we must act, and act now.  When we face a situation like we do on that mountain — with innocent people facing the prospect of violence on a horrific scale, when we have a mandate to help — in this case, a request from the Iraqi government — and when we have the unique capabilities to help avert a massacre, then I believe the United States of America cannot turn a blind eye.  We can act, carefully and responsibly, to prevent a potential act of genocide.  That’s what we’re doing on that mountain.


Failed grammar aside, the tendency to react to world events rather to shape them is a hallmark of the Obama administration.

So, about the use of military force in Iraq…

Yes, that pretty well sums it up.

Rick Perry Shows How A President Acts In 2 Tweets

In contrast to both Barack Obama and his rivals for the Republican nomination in 2016, Rick Perry knows that actions, including symbolic ones, show true leadership.

This is not an endorsement of Rick Perry for President.

    1. Perry Knows To Secure The Border First, Or Immigration Reform Has No Chance

      In contrast to Mr. Obama’s irresponsible and unconstitutional refusal to carry out repatriation of those attempting to immigrate illegally, thus forcing the immigration system to appear even more dysfunctional than it already was, Perry knows that once the border is secure, changes to the immigration system can take place on a more rational basis.


  • Perry Knows American Support for Israel Must Be Unequivocal

    Mr Obama’s grudging acknowledgment of Israel’s right to defend itself is always paired with criticism of the way the Jewish nation does it. Rather than pointing out that Israel’s opponents are uncivilized monsters who use civilians as human shields, Mr Obama criticizes Israel. That gives Hamas a victory. Perry refuses to do that.


Rick Perry Shows How A President Acts In 2 Tweets

7 Fake District Images Democrat Julia Brownley Used In Reelection Bid

Rep Julia Brownley (D-CA26) used a mailer in her reelection bid against surging Jeff Gorell (R) that appears to show community support, but does not picture anyone who actually lives in the district. Some of the images used don’t even come from the United States.

Brownley sent this mailer to voters in the district implying that she supports the various special interest groups pictured, but none of the photos in the mailer appear to be from the district. In fact, while many of them are stock photos, at least one is simply stolen from a British blog post.

Mailer sent by Congresswoman Brownley

The Daily Caller first pointed out that the Navy-like picture had a non-US insignia.

Democratic lawmaker Julia Brownley sent a political mailer to her constituents in late July featuring a woman wearing fake military attire and a German Luftwaffe insignia — apparently unaware that the costume was not an official uniform worn by U.S. personnel.

On Monday Jeff Gorell, Brownley’s Republican opponent in California’s 26 congressional district, sent out a press release highlighting the congresswoman’s taxpayer-funded faux pas.


It turns out that none of these images Democrat Julia Brownley used in her reelection bid can be verified to be in the 26th district of California.

1. Portrait of an Airwoman from Getty Images.

2. of Northern Ireland


3. Hispanic Teacher talking to students stock photo


4. Stock photo of family



5. Used by Easy Choice Health Plan HMO and other publications, probably a stock photo, certainly not a constituent image.


6. Farm Girl Stock Photo


7. Stolen from a British blog post



BONUS Fake District Image Democrat Julia Brownley Used In Reelection Bid

8. Cargo ship at unknown port  that doesn’t look like Port Hueneme, CA, and is probably a stock photo


Given that the other images in the mailer are from stock photos or used off the Internet, the port image probably is, as well. The Brownley FEC page shows the campaign paid Marshall Creative Services of Beverly Hills for graphic design services.

With $1.5 million warchest, would  it so hard to hire a graphic designer that would use photos from the district? How much more powerful would that mailer have been, Congresswoman Brownley?


Dishonest Democrat Michelle Nunn in #GASen

I understand that some may view “dishonest Democrat” as redundant, but it’s just a reminder that if a Democrat running for Congress says the sky is blue, grab an umbrella.

Michelle Nunn (of Bethesda, MD)(I mean Atlanta, GA) is the daughter of Sam Nunn (D-Bethesda,MD), longtime Democrat Party stalwart and Senator representing Georgia while living in Maryland. She’s a loyal, partisan Democrat. Did I mention she’s a Democrat?

Because Nunn (D-Bethesda,MD), running as a Democrat in Georgia, would rather not mention herself that she’s a Democrat.

Like all Democrats, her first vote as a Senator would be for Harry Reid as Majority Leader. If Reid won a majority, he would do whatever it took to keep Obamacare on the books and to keep punishing the American people, bankrupting us and our children for generations to come.

Nunn could show that she opposes Obamacare and the Democrat agenda by declaring that she, as a Democrat, would not vote for a Democrat as Senate Majority Leader. It would be a lie, but so is anything else a Democrat says.