The big story of the moment is that President Obama has suddenly decided to talk with lesser political beings. The famously aloof President who began his second term as if the 2012 election campaign wasn’t over is inviting Members of Congress, and even some of its evil Republicans, to lunch and dinner. The question is whether this is merely a tactical feint or if Mr. Obama really wants to accomplish something in the next two years and realizes he needs Republicans to do it.
The appearance of a new bipartisanship is perfectly consistent with such a partisan 2014 strategy. The more reasonable he appears today, the better positioned he might be to blame Republicans for failure next year. Independent voters love to see politicians working together, however haplessly, so Mr. Obama may figure he has nothing to lose by dropping his Democrats-only strategy for now. He can always sandbag the GOP again later. In particular, he’d love to carve out deals in the Senate that isolate House Republicans.
Our advice to the GOP opposition in the meantime is—adapting the Reagan arms-control maxim—don’t trust but verify. Mr. Obama has repeatedly demonstrated that he can’t be trusted in backroom negotiations where he can later claim to support something he really didn’t. Republicans need to test his seriousness in the sunlight where voters can better see who is the real obstructionist.
The Wall Street Journal ponders a new kinder gentler Obama.
Here is the latest Liberty Link Dump
I am really trying to be a better “blogger” and actually post something (thoughts, opinions, etc.) along with the links and introduction to the news stories I post here. However this is proving to be harder for me then what I thought (before I started this)
So please bear with me as I practice this art.
While several other states and President Barack Obama are trying to tighten gun controls, Michigan is going in a different direction, introducing legislation that would either expand gun rights or work toward making the state immune from any new federal regulations on weapons ownership.
The first of more than a dozen bills — a technical fix to the definition of a federal firearms dealer — got final approval in the state Senate on Tuesday and will go to Gov. Rick Snyder for his signature. But many more far-reaching bills expanding gun rights — such as a bill that would allow those licensed to carry concealed weapons to be able to do so in previously forbidden areas, such as schools — have been introduced or reintroduced in the Legislature this year.
Among the legislation introduced in Michigan, some would:
- Exempt the state from federal gun regulations for weapons made in Michigan. Another bill would exempt Michigan entirely from “unconstitutional” federal firearms legislation.
- Allow anyone to carry a gun in a school. Another bill would allow school employees to carry weapons into schools.
- Exempt firearms registration and license information from the Freedom of Information Act.
- Eliminate firearms licensing databases in certain circumstances and prohibit firearms dealers from taking pictures of people who are buying and getting licensed for guns.
- Shift the responsibility for issuing concealed weapons permits from counties to the Michigan State Police.
- Include libraries in the facilities that can choose to be a gun-free zone, where people could not carry concealed weapons into the building.
Read the rest at GOP USA
An internal government email sent Monday instructed an official with a subdivision of the U.S. Department of Agriculture to make sure that sequester-related cuts inflict as much pain as possible to make sure “you are not contradicting what we said the impact would be.”
Read the rest at breitbart.com and remember that the $85 billion sequester cuts represent just .5% of the national debt.
Documents obtained by the ACLU have revealed that the U.S. Marshals Service has experimented with using drones for domestic surveillance. The documents, available on the ACLU website, were released via a Freedom of Information Act request. The rights group says that although the Marshals Service admitted it had found 30 pages of information pertaining to its use of drones, it only actual handed over two, which were heavily redacted, containing only two short paragraphs of visible information. Under the heading “Unmanned Aerial Vehicle, Man-Portable (UAV) Program,” an agency document overview states.
Press TV has this article Documents reveal US Marshals using spy drones, which seems to be a new trend in American law enforcement.
More here DHS Domestic Drones Designed To Snoop on Guns, Communications
Also see Holder’s Worrisome Assurances About the President’s Power to Kill Suspected Terrorists
Senate Bill 213 is the bill number for the newly re-introduced version of last year’s vetoed SB 59. Along with a number of other positive changes, it would:
- Eliminate County Gun Boards and move their responsibility to the Michigan State Police. The task of accepting the application and printing the CPL would remain with your county clerk.
- Reduce the price to get a CPL from $105 to $90. For first time issuance, finger printing is still required and a police agency may charge you an additional fee (on top of the $90) of up to $15 in order to finger print you. Renewal CPL applications would not require a fingerprinting, thus saving you $15 compared to the status quo.
- Repeal Several of the Pistol Free Zones found in MCL 28.425o outright (No compromising open Carry, no additional training). Zones being repealed include: (b) public/private daycare or public/private child placement agency, (c) sports arena or stadium, (d) a bar or tavern, (f) an “entertainment facility” where the seating capacity is over 2,500 people, (h) a dorm or classroom of a community college, college, or university. No additional training would be required to carry there. Remaining pistol free zones (schools, churches, hospitals) would have an “opt-in” ability similar to what churches have right now — this would allow the people in charge of these facilities to allow conceal carry on their premises. Currently schools and hospitals cannot even grant permission to someone to carry concealed on their premises.
Source: Michigan Coalition for Responsible Gun Owners
A new Reason-Rupe poll finds that a majority of Americans think President Obama’s targeted killing program, which famously allowed the CIA to assassinate an American-born Muslim cleric living in Yemen as well has his American-born teenage son, to be unconstitutional.
When asked if they thought it was “constitutional or unconstitutional for the president of the United States to order the killing of American citizens who are suspected of being terrorists,” 57 percent of respondents said they thought it was unconstitutional, including 65 percent of Republicans, 64 percent of independents, and 44 percent of Democrats.
New Poll Finds 57 Percent of Americans Think Obama’s Assassination Program Is Unconstitutional
On the one hand I do not want to tie the hands of the people that we expect to protect us (and blame when they don’t or can’t) but on the other hand this puts way to much power into the hands of one person (the President). And I don’t think we as a people are served well by these type of action and could some day find this same type of justice used against us both as a people and as a country.