Friday Open Thread

Here's an open thread, all topics welcome.

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    Yes, it's cold. But one must suffer for (5.00 / 1) (#1)
    by oculus on Fri Jan 25, 2013 at 01:29:41 PM EST
    the sake of art:

    Carnegie Hall

    Enjoy! (none / 0) (#3)
    by kdog on Fri Jan 25, 2013 at 02:04:35 PM EST
    I wanna be like Oculus when I grow up...y'all should see her culture calendar the next two weeks...jammed packed!

    The cold spell is supposed to break next week Oc, so hang in there, though our balmy winter weather is probably still pretty damn cold for you.

    Don't forget your earplugs on the 5th, John Mayall awaits! A good primer I think to get more rock in your culture roll.


    Enjoy...sorry I could not join you (none / 0) (#5)
    by ruffian on Fri Jan 25, 2013 at 02:21:38 PM EST
    Still in employment purgatory....

    We're sorry... (none / 0) (#6)
    by kdog on Fri Jan 25, 2013 at 02:44:38 PM EST
    would love to have you here Ruff, we're going to see John Mayall play the blues 2/5, right up your alley.

    Good luck weathering the continued corporate bullsh*t storm.

    Maybe you'll be settled by April-May, taking a hard look at doing the New Orleans Jazz Fest this year.  Gonna be tight as it's a pricey excursion, will require a new level of the self-imposed hermitude savings plan, but I hope to get the prettiest girl I've ever seen up from GDL to meet me Down South in New Orleans.  

    Bily Joel, Fleetwood Mac, Black Keys, Widespread Panic, BB King, Willie Nelson, Jimmy Cliff, Gipsy Kings, and many more announced.  Hot dog!


    I picked up some kind of special ear plugs (none / 0) (#9)
    by sarcastic unnamed one on Fri Jan 25, 2013 at 02:59:00 PM EST
    from the guitar shop for me and Mrs. SUO, and we have used them a couple times at concerts.

    They really do seem to work as advertised. They diminish the volume without affecting the sound. Much, anyway.

    Downside, for me, was they don't fit my ears very well and kinda hurt, although they were very comfortable for Mrs. SUO.

    Anyway, maybe oc could pick up a pair and try them out.


    Speak up man... (none / 0) (#13)
    by kdog on Fri Jan 25, 2013 at 03:18:00 PM EST
    my ears have been ringing since the Garland Jeffreys show last week;)

    I was just messing with Oc...usually she needs an amplification device at the Yo Yo Ma show, so I'm thinking John Mayall might be just the right volume, and if necessary I can borrow her amplifier.


    I suppose my noise canceling headphones (none / 0) (#17)
    by oculus on Fri Jan 25, 2013 at 03:42:31 PM EST
    would embarrass you.  Could not be louder than Los Locos--opener for Eric Clapton.

    Not as much... (none / 0) (#21)
    by kdog on Fri Jan 25, 2013 at 03:53:48 PM EST
    as I embarrass myself;)

    I forgot you saw Clapton, who once was a member of John Mayall's Bluebreakers...you're going full circle.  I seriously doubt he will crank it to that level, but we can hope!


    I Use... (none / 0) (#15)
    by ScottW714 on Fri Jan 25, 2013 at 03:31:27 PM EST
    ... Doc's Pro Plugs, the vented ones.

    Linky no worky... (none / 0) (#20)
    by sarcastic unnamed one on Fri Jan 25, 2013 at 03:46:09 PM EST
    ...are they comfortable? I think my ear canals might be smaller than most...

    LINK (none / 0) (#109)
    by ScottW714 on Mon Jan 28, 2013 at 10:38:06 AM EST

    I actually use them for diving, as the bubbles really give me a headache.  The vent allows me to equalize my ears.

    They don't work like normal foam plugs, and even when I dive, I can have normal conversations at the surface without the stuffy voice sound you get from foam plugs.

    They are super comfortable and stay in, even under water.  


    Excellent, thanks. (none / 0) (#111)
    by sarcastic unnamed one on Mon Jan 28, 2013 at 04:47:40 PM EST
    The Jazz Fest is on (none / 0) (#24)
    by oculus on Fri Jan 25, 2013 at 04:18:10 PM EST
    My bucket list. Enjoy.

    Who are you planning on seeing? (none / 0) (#38)
    by shoephone on Fri Jan 25, 2013 at 06:44:33 PM EST
    "Nevermind" (none / 0) (#39)
    by shoephone on Fri Jan 25, 2013 at 06:50:13 PM EST
    Looks like it ended two weeks ago. Darn. Would love for you to have gone to hear Donny McCaslin and report back.

    Next year.


    New Orleans. (none / 0) (#48)
    by oculus on Fri Jan 25, 2013 at 09:10:46 PM EST
    Ahhh..NOJF (none / 0) (#70)
    by shoephone on Sat Jan 26, 2013 at 03:25:14 PM EST
    Well, very little of it is jazz anymore. But from what I see on the schedule, Diane Reeves and Wayne Shorter would certainly be worth a listen.

    WOW... (none / 0) (#25)
    by fishcamp on Fri Jan 25, 2013 at 04:23:53 PM EST
    you get all the big time music while we just have Jimmie Buffett impersonators in every bar.  Of course it is 70 degrees now during sunset.  Kinda chilly for us.

    In the case of Jazzfest... (none / 0) (#27)
    by kdog on Fri Jan 25, 2013 at 05:06:08 PM EST
    you're closer than me fishcamp...your vessel up to the Key West to N'awlins voyage?

    The only thing I would think better than going to Jazzfest is going to Jazzfest by boat.


    problem is... (none / 0) (#29)
    by fishcamp on Fri Jan 25, 2013 at 05:14:44 PM EST
    I only have a bonefish skiff.

    but good old Wally (none / 0) (#30)
    by fishcamp on Fri Jan 25, 2013 at 05:20:40 PM EST
    right down the canal has a new 70' American Yacht sport fisherman.  Wonder if Wally likes jazz.

    Aw, thanks for that! (none / 0) (#35)
    by ruffian on Fri Jan 25, 2013 at 06:17:57 PM EST
    I will weather it...but they sure are wearing me out.

    I've never seen Mayall - sounds great.

    Never been to the Jazzfest either...I'll have to think about that. Let me know if you decide to do it and I will see if my adjusted budget will allow ;-)


    One animal calls it contraband... (5.00 / 1) (#14)
    by kdog on Fri Jan 25, 2013 at 03:20:36 PM EST
    another just calls it food.

    Unless it's a ruse, and Lt. Nolte has been raiding the stash.

    Good to Know (none / 0) (#18)
    by ScottW714 on Fri Jan 25, 2013 at 03:44:08 PM EST
    ...stuff as important as evidence is being contaminated and eaten by mice.  What happens when they pull out the semen stain to free Joe Blow for a crime he didn't commit and it turns out mice ate it.

    The (5.00 / 1) (#41)
    by lentinel on Fri Jan 25, 2013 at 07:21:27 PM EST
    NYTimes today printed a story about Sarah Palin and Fox News parting ways.

    Halfway down the page, the reporter offers:

    Fox almost surely offered a lesser annual amount to Ms. Palin in the recent negotiations, since four years have passed since her unsuccessful bid for vice president. Fox had no comment about the negotiations.

    Pure speculation by the NYTimes in the middle of what is supposed to be a news report.

    fun blog post for SCOTUS geeks (5.00 / 2) (#42)
    by desmoinesdem on Fri Jan 25, 2013 at 07:23:46 PM EST
    Edge cases (5.00 / 2) (#57)
    by jmacWA on Sat Jan 26, 2013 at 10:43:43 AM EST
    Will get you every time :)

    Thoroughly enjoyable read



    SITE VIOLATOR! (none / 0) (#4)
    by Zorba on Fri Jan 25, 2013 at 02:05:58 PM EST

    It's Pro Bowl Week in Honolulu, and ... (none / 0) (#7)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Fri Jan 25, 2013 at 02:49:30 PM EST
    ... the weather forecast for Sunday's game at Aloha Stadium is -- MONSOONS!

    You'd never have guessed that by looking outside my office window right now, because it's an absolutely gorgeous day today. That will all change by tomorrow night, when it'll be batten down the hatches time.

    Maybe it Will be Worth Watching... (none / 0) (#10)
    by ScottW714 on Fri Jan 25, 2013 at 03:01:37 PM EST
    ...but I doubt it.

    Are those hard tickets to score and can anyone go to the field when they are doing those contests the days before the game ?


    Pro Bowl... (none / 0) (#11)
    by kdog on Fri Jan 25, 2013 at 03:04:48 PM EST
    is unwatchable...nobody wants to hit and I can't say I blame them.

    A flag football game on the beach with the NFL's best players would be more entertaining, along with the skills competitions.  


    That's the Only reason to Tune In (none / 0) (#16)
    by ScottW714 on Fri Jan 25, 2013 at 03:37:09 PM EST
    The competitions, but now that kinda sucks because the two best team's players aren't competing.

    You're a lot more succeptible to injury ... (none / 0) (#22)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Fri Jan 25, 2013 at 04:15:39 PM EST
    ... playing flag football on the beach, than you would be in a full-contact contest in a stadium.

    For starters, there are no beaches in Hawaii that are perfectly horizontal, and have you ever tried running on a 10-degree grade? Further, you could sprain / break an ankle or tear some tendons if you're running at full speed and step onto an unseen sandcrab hole. Those little excavators are quite common on Oahu beaches such as Kailua, and they can actually burrow some fairly extensive tunnels just under the surface. It's not uncommon to be walking along the beach and occasionally feel your foot give way a few inches into one.


    Trivia (none / 0) (#110)
    by ScottW714 on Mon Jan 28, 2013 at 10:45:29 AM EST
    Robert Edwards
    Edwards was chosen by the New England Patriots in the first round of the 1998 NFL Draft. He rushed for 1,115 yards for the Patriots in the 1998 National Football League season, before blowing out his knee at an NFL rookie flag football game in Hawaii. Edwards barely escaped the injury without having his leg amputated below the knee, and he was told he might not walk again.

    I'm pretty sure they give the tix away (none / 0) (#12)
    by sarcastic unnamed one on Fri Jan 25, 2013 at 03:06:50 PM EST
    if you buy $20 of groceries at Ralphs.

    All pre-game events are open ... (none / 0) (#19)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Fri Jan 25, 2013 at 03:45:06 PM EST
    ... to the general public. The game itself will be a sellout, both in terms of tickets sold and the onfield performance by the players.

    The Pro Bowl has been held in Honolulu every year (except two years ago) since 1980. 20 years ago, it was actually a much better game to watch. Nowadays, the players and their respective teams are so worried about potential injuries that the game itself often devolves into a nearly unwatchable farce.


    The GD GOP (none / 0) (#8)
    by ScottW714 on Fri Jan 25, 2013 at 02:58:03 PM EST
    New Plan:
    Some Republicans are looking to change the Electoral College system in battleground states that Democrats have won in the last two cycles. As the Washington Post reports, Republicans in Michigan, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Virginia -- all controlled at the state level (in some form or fashion) by the GOP -- have proposed awarding their Electoral College votes by congressional district instead of the winner-take-all approach used by every state except for two (Maine and Nebraska). "No state is moving quicker than Virginia, where state senators are likely to vote on the plan as soon as next week," the Post says.

    I guess all that catering to minorities and coming across softer rhetoric turned out to be just too damn much work.  Time to change the EC to shadow the House.

    Did you think they went to all the trouble of ... (5.00 / 1) (#32)
    by unitron on Fri Jan 25, 2013 at 05:30:20 PM EST
    ...all that gerrymandering without intending to gain the maximum benefit, regardless of the wishes of the suckers, I mean voters?

    Barack and Hillary giving a joint (none / 0) (#23)
    by Militarytracy on Fri Jan 25, 2013 at 04:17:41 PM EST
    Interview together on Friday.  Hmmmmmm, it's awfully hard to not feel like they are setting Hillary up for a run.

    I wish they would share a joint (5.00 / 2) (#26)
    by Dadler on Fri Jan 25, 2013 at 04:37:08 PM EST
    We'd all be better off.

    And by that I mean...

    BTW, Tracy, I linked to this video yesterday, replying to Donald, who had replied to PPJ about a lack of logic or living in a FoxTalkingPoint fantasy world or some such. I find it a very accurate dramatization of what dealing with the reactionary rightwingnut mindset is like. It'll make you laugh. (LINK)


    From our "Yahoo's Yer Daddy?" file: (none / 0) (#34)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Fri Jan 25, 2013 at 06:13:24 PM EST
    Speaking of people in dire need of toking a joint, Sen. Ron Johnson (R-WI) has now decided to triple down on stupid, attacking the Washington Post after resident pundit Chris Cillizza gave Johnson the "Worst Week in Washington" award:

    "The Washington Post - the poster child of Washington status quo - said I had the 'Worst Week in Washington,' [...] In Washington, demanding the truth is apparently a sin. Every week that Washington leadership continues to sweep its dirt under the carpet, ignore America's economic plight and turn a blind eye to its own out of control spending is a bad week for me, the people of Wisconsin and every American."

    This phuquing idiot's singlehandedly transformed himself into a one-man clown car this week. That's probably why Fox News has hustled resident dingbat Sarah Palin off its studio sets, in order to make room for some fresh new crackpottery.

    However, were I the honorable gentleman from Wisconsin, I'd best keep watch on my far-right flank -- because here comes the Mississippi State House GOP caucus, apparently determined to refight the Civil War by introducing HB 490, which would "clarify the compact entered into between (sic) the State of Mississippi and the United States when Mississippi was admitted to Stahood in 1817[.]"

    You think anyone over there in Jackson is listening to former Gov. Haley Barbour?


    I'm hoping Johnson keeps at it (none / 0) (#36)
    by shoephone on Fri Jan 25, 2013 at 06:42:51 PM EST
    It's fun watching the GOP stoopids keep digging those holes they're in. Now if Wisconsin voters in his district would only wise up, but according to Towanda, that district has become one of the strongholds of GOP Stoopidvile.

    As for Mississippi, which has long had the lowest level of educated residents, I expect nothing less than full blown Revenge of the Rebs nuttery.


    I must (5.00 / 1) (#40)
    by lentinel on Fri Jan 25, 2013 at 07:09:57 PM EST
    admit that I would have liked to have an answer to Johnson's question: Why didn't someone call one of the surviving employees or witnesses to find out who did the attacking? Are they saying that they did ask and were told by those surviving the attack that they had been attacked by an angry mob driven nuts by an anti-Mohammad video?

    I would respectfully suggest that ... (5.00 / 1) (#43)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Fri Jan 25, 2013 at 07:32:54 PM EST
    ... you read the Dec. 12, 2012 (unclassified) report from the State Dept.'s own duly convened Accountability Review Board, which was chaired by Amb. Thomas Pickering, and lays out in no small amount of detail (a) what happened in Benghazi, (b) the mistakes and errors in judgment, (c) who was responsible for those mistakes and errors, and (d) recommendations for what should be done, both immediately and over the long term, to prevent a repeat performance elsewhere in the world sometime in the future.

    From what I gathered from the HRC/Johnson (5.00 / 1) (#45)
    by sarcastic unnamed one on Fri Jan 25, 2013 at 08:23:04 PM EST
    kurfuffle that BTD linked to, her answer, basically, was that had she called them that would have been improper, ie., not following the proper protocols.

    So, (5.00 / 1) (#49)
    by lentinel on Fri Jan 25, 2013 at 09:11:41 PM EST
    in other words, no she did not call them.

    And, the inference is that calling them by someone responsible in our government would have been against protocol? Doesn't that sound a wee bit idiotic?

    At any rate, for many days we were allowed to believe that our people were killed by a Muslim mob inflamed by a video.


    No, it doesn't sound idiotic -- except ... (5.00 / 5) (#51)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Sat Jan 26, 2013 at 01:58:12 AM EST
    lentinel: "So, in other words, no [Mrs. Clinton] did not call them. And, the inference is that calling them by someone responsible in our government would have been against protocol? Doesn't that sound a wee bit idiotic?"

    ... perhaps to the uninformed. What difference would it have possibly made had Mrs. Clinton "called them"? Well, just for starters, at that point it was an active FBI investigation, and it would have been completely improper for her talk to prospective witnesses prior to the investigators doing so.

    Let's suppose, just for the sake of argument, that Mrs. Clinton had an alterior motive in wanting to compromise the investigation, in order to perhaps cover up negligence or incompetence at senior levels of the State Dept.'s Bureau of Diplomatic Security in Washington. Suppose she had asked a prospective witness / survivor who was on the ground to not divulge certain information to investigators about security readiness at the Benghazi compound?

    That's why State Dept. protocols required Mrs. Clinton to stand aside and let the investigators do their work free of any interference, whether helpful or otherwise. The FBI needed to look at her role in this situation, too, and they certainly wouldn't have been able to get a clear and unfettered view of that role, were she to be talking to eyewitnesses in Benghazi prior to their investigators.

    Further, the CIA was similarly trying to analyze and determine what happened, and it was at that agency's insistence that administration officials initially downplayed the possibility of the assault having been a terrorist attack. From the CIA's Sept. 15, 2012 talking points to U.N. Ambassador Susan Rice:

    "The currently available information suggests that the demonstrations in Benghazi were spontaneously inspired by the protests at the U.S. Embassy in Cairo and evolved into a direct assault against the U.S. Consulate and subsequently its annex. There are indications that extremists participated in the violent demonstrations. This assessment may change as additional information is collected and analyzed and as currently available information continues to be evaluated." (Emphasis is mine.)

    In those initial hours and days when the fog was clearly, they didn't know exactly what had transpired in Benghazi. Therefore, they acted as a bureaucracy is wont to do when it's on unsure footing -- with an overabundance of caution.

    It was the CIA, and not the White House or State Dept., that was responsible for having left the public with the initial but ultimately mistaken impression that the attacks in Benghazi were the spontaneous work of demonstrators.

    Hell, CIA and FBI investigators weren't even able to retrieve most or all of the Benghazi compound's surveillance videos until nearly three weeks after the attack! Those videos provided the key to understanding what happened, when it happened and who was doing the attacking.

    I'm willing to grant CIA officials the benefit of the doubt that it was not their intent to mislead or cover up, and that it was an honest mistake in assessment, but all the same, they were ultimately proved wrong, and Ambassador Rice probably paid the political price for that error after she dutifully repeated their talking points on the Sept. 16 Sunday gasbag shows.

    Now, all that said, why are you determined to be the left's counterpart to jimakaPPJ's mindless wingbattery on this subject, similarly passing judgment upon the actions of others on the basis of little or no real information and fact on your part?

    Because quite honestly, you seem to me to be far less interested in truly trying to understand what happened in Benghazi last September, than you are in wanting to grasp some reason or excuse -- however flimsy it may be -- to cast aspersions upon the motives and actions of the Obama administration.

    And to be perfectly blunt, that's just as pathetic as Jim's clueless right-wing prattle on the subject. I don't have much tolerance when such unwarranted and unsubstatiated accusations come from the far right, and I'm not going to give you a pass, either, when you offer left-wing variations of the same.

    If I and others here can take the time to review source materials in a personal effort to understand for ourselves what happened in Benghazi, then so can you.



    I'm (5.00 / 1) (#52)
    by lentinel on Sat Jan 26, 2013 at 05:48:19 AM EST
    not interested in who didn't call the people involved at the scene.
    It matters not to me if it was the FBI, the CIA or the State Department who didn't call to get the straight story.

    Or, if, what is more likely, someone did call and get some straight information, it was not deemed appropriate by whomever to let us, the public, in on it. If this is the case, I would ask why.

    You are steamed up over nothing.

    I also don't care about what you can tolerate.
    I don't need you to give me a pass.
    I also don't like your lofty condemnations. I wonder who you think you are.

    Since you present yourself to be so familiar with source materials, instead of huffing and puffing or linking you might present a simple answer to a question that I posed: Did anyone call? This is a discussion, not a treatise.

    I never accused Mrs. Clinton of anything. I simply said that she didn't answer the question and I thought it was a question worth answering.


    If I can add my two cents to this, (5.00 / 6) (#53)
    by Anne on Sat Jan 26, 2013 at 08:05:35 AM EST
    what Donald is suggesting - perhaps not with the tone you want him to use - is that if you were to read the materials he has linked to repeatedly, you might appreciate why Clinton didn't answer the "simple question" you - and Senator Johnson - want answered.

    That being said, I don't think one necessarily has to read the report to understand that this was a complex and highly-charged event; you're looking at it as if it were a snapshot, from the vantage point of hindsight - in real time, no one knew if this attack was an end in itself, or the beginning of something bigger, and the immediate concern was the safety of American personnel on the scene.  Add in the protocols, all the different components of government, and it was never, ever going to be a simple-answers-to-simple-questions kind of thing.  Never.  And attempting to reduce it to that is, sadly, putting you in a position where you look about as interested in understanding the entire situation as Sen. Johnson is.

    I'm sure you don't appreciate being lumped in with either Johnson or jim, but you do have something in common: ignoring the information that has been provided and insisting that others have to answer your questions to your satisfaction.  As someone who tries to provide  information and links to materials when posting an opinion or observation, I can tell you that it is enormously frustrating and aggravating to do so, only to have people ignore it, and continue to rely on others to cite it and refer to it.

    And that's why you're getting the reaction you are.


    Some people ought to be (5.00 / 2) (#54)
    by Politalkix on Sat Jan 26, 2013 at 08:51:20 AM EST
    disabused of the notion that the attackers were wearing T-shirts identifying them as "Al-Qaeda" or "Islamic terrorists who are not protesting the video" and that a quick phone call to the Consulate would have settled once and for all the question about the identity of the attackers.
    For heaven's sake, there were riots on the same day in neighbouring countries about the video; it was hardly far-fetched for one to initially imagine that the attack in the Libyan consulate was for the same reason (and particularly so if the CIA also said the same thing).

    Maybe, but (5.00 / 1) (#60)
    by jbindc on Sat Jan 26, 2013 at 11:10:03 AM EST
    For heaven's sake, there were riots on the same day in neighbouring countries about the video, it was hardly far-fetched for one to initially imagine that the attack in the Libyan consulate was for the same reason (and particularly so if the CIA also said the same thing).

    The ridiculous story and video was perpetuated, with Obama saying it a few days later on The View and Clinton repeating the story all that week, finally culminating in Susan Rice saying that on the Sunday news shows - 5 days later.

    Forget the "talking points" -  the talking points should have been "We don't really know at this point and are still working to find out what really happened." Period.  Making up crap about a video and riots just makes them all look like the Clampetts.


    See note above to lentinel. (none / 0) (#62)
    by christinep on Sat Jan 26, 2013 at 12:15:36 PM EST
    Yes (none / 0) (#63)
    by jbindc on Sat Jan 26, 2013 at 12:41:12 PM EST
    Sometimes we see things in way too positive a light when we want to believe.

    Or too negative.... (none / 0) (#64)
    by christinep on Sat Jan 26, 2013 at 01:41:49 PM EST
    I prefer (none / 0) (#66)
    by jbindc on Sat Jan 26, 2013 at 01:54:12 PM EST
    reality to fairy dust, YMMV.

    I have to agree with you, but in hindsight. (none / 0) (#74)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Sat Jan 26, 2013 at 03:42:25 PM EST
    jbindc: "The ridiculous story and video was perpetuated, with Obama saying it a few days later on The View and Clinton repeating the story all that week, finally culminating in Susan Rice saying that on the Sunday news shows - 5 days later."

    Yes, absolutely, it was indeed a ridiculous story, and it's one that's since been proven to be very wrong and has made the administration look foolish.

    But that's also been common knowledge for at least six weeks now, and possibly more. And I'd offer that repeatedly asking why the CIA offered up such a fanciful scenario -- as others are still doing -- really isn't going to get us any closer to the truth about what actually happened in Benghazi, and what can be done to try and keep such things from occurring again.

    Rather, it's a "Gotcha!" question, and we're being self-indulgent by doing what Anne pointed out earlier -- that is, we're demanding that others answer our question to our own satisfaction, even if our question is at best tangential to the actual problem at hand.



    We have no evidence that the video (5.00 / 1) (#77)
    by Militarytracy on Sat Jan 26, 2013 at 04:36:16 PM EST
    Did not unite the factions in Benghazi for the attack and we had neighborhood witnesses who were told by some of the attackers that the video was the reason for the attack.

    As we have traveled farther down the road we now know that this wasn't a peaceful protest that grew into something else, but we have no evidence that this wasn't an attack organized in protest of the video.  The extremists in the area are also typically very fractured, except where this attack was concerned.  Why?


    Aren't (none / 0) (#80)
    by lentinel on Sat Jan 26, 2013 at 04:54:58 PM EST
    you interested in why the CIA made up such a story?
    That is a story in and of itself.
    It is a problem at hand:
    The fabrication of tall tales to present to us, the citizens.

    Jesus! What did they fabricate? (none / 0) (#92)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Sun Jan 27, 2013 at 05:16:49 PM EST
    lentinel: "Aren't you interested in why the CIA made up such a story?  That is a story in and of itself. It is a problem at hand: The fabrication of tall tales to present to us, the citizens."

    Just because the CIA's initial analysis was proved flawed doesn't mean they fabricated anything! All it means is that they prepared an overly cautious statement in real time as evidence was still being gathered, and that the subsequent evidence invalidated their initial speculation.

    Further, the CIA cautioned as much themselves in their Sept. 15 talking points, that their initial analysis could change as they learned more. More to the point, you're the one who's now making the accusation that they were being deliberately untruthful -- where's YOUR evidence to support such a contention?

    The immediate and obvious answer is that, like Sen. Johnson, you have none to offer -- except perhaps your misplaced sense of personal certitude. The CIA's being wrong in this instance is not proof of some sort of conspiracy on their part to deceive people. It simply means that they were wrong. Period.

    Therefore, the only "story in and of itself" is the one that you've been composing in your own head. Don't be so obtuse.


    OK (none / 0) (#101)
    by lentinel on Sun Jan 27, 2013 at 08:55:43 PM EST
    The point I get from your discourse is that the misinformation we were fed for days was due to incompetence (what you call, "being wrong") on the part of the CIA, not a deliberate attempt to misled us.

    I'm not making an accusation that the CIA or the FBI or the State Department deliberately implemented a conspiracy to deceive us.

    But I do not cast it away as an impossibility either.
    I've seen it too often.

    Briefly, the intelligence services, or representatives of the government were either given flawed information, or they were creative and made up stuff based on probable assumptions.

    I just find myself drawn to a discussion of this phenomenon rather that to the one of a politician of one party cynically using events to undermine an opposition party.


    How did I know??? (1.00 / 2) (#56)
    by jimakaPPJ on Sat Jan 26, 2013 at 10:04:07 AM EST
    Hmmmm, happened on 9/11....

    Used RFG's and mortars....

    Of course it couldn't be al Qaeda or another organized terrorist group...

    Nope. No way. Nada. Couldn'be...

    (That's sarcasm dripping off this comment.)


    Psssttttt, Jim .... (5.00 / 1) (#71)
    by Yman on Sat Jan 26, 2013 at 03:25:46 PM EST
    You do realize that:

    1. everyone and their sister has an RPG in post-Qadaffi Libya, and

    2.  the "heavy weapons" that some seems to think are proof this was an organized attack were actually part of the second attack, which occurred hours after Ambassador Stevens was already dead.


    So, (none / 0) (#59)
    by lentinel on Sat Jan 26, 2013 at 11:03:03 AM EST
    the answer is that the surviving personnel were in fact contacted, but could offer no definitive opinion about who the attackers were or how many.

    I know what was being imagined initially. I"m not saying that that which was being imagined was at all unlikely.

    But I still don't know how that imagined reality could go on being presented as fact, not only unchallenged, but with elaborations being added on a daily basis.

    My guess, is that it amounted to the usual collusion between the media we have now, and the government trying to figure out an acceptable scenario to present to us.


    Drawing conclusions (5.00 / 1) (#61)
    by christinep on Sat Jan 26, 2013 at 12:14:39 PM EST
    Sometimes we all draw conclusions about a situation to fit our preconceived notions about the people involved in a situation.  

    Sometimes there are no conspiracies.  No collusions. Just what we are predisposed to believe???


    Of course, (5.00 / 1) (#65)
    by lentinel on Sat Jan 26, 2013 at 01:53:40 PM EST
    I agree with you.

    I will admit that Clinton's (in my opinion) non-response to the question seemed all too reminiscent of every administration I have even seen - which is to say, they are number one out to protect their own, and number two - a very distant second - is their tepid desire to let the peasants in on what is actually going on - once they figure out a scenario that is the least damaging to their own well-being.


    Thank you, Anne. (5.00 / 1) (#69)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Sat Jan 26, 2013 at 03:23:57 PM EST
    You summed up what I was thinking. I must apologize to everyone here for my abrupt and at times heated tone.

    Yes, I do get frustrated when I post relevant information in response to a comment about a given subject, and it's freely ignored by those same people who continue to indulge their own respective notions (or in some cases, fantasies), regardless of the evidence presented that might disabuse most others of such hasty and / or possibly mistaken opinions.

    But that's really no excuse for me to become rude to them. I probably sound like the guy who's angrily yelling at someone at a party or other gathering, whereas I'm clearly not thinking of others here such as yourself, who are also present. I have to remember that the world doesn't revolve around my own opinions, either.

    Again, my apologies if I made anyone uncomfortable. Aloha.


    Maybe (none / 0) (#58)
    by lentinel on Sat Jan 26, 2013 at 10:52:17 AM EST
    I'm wrong, but I think you usually state your opinion or conclusion and provide a link to substantiate or elaborate.

    What I felt from the clip that started this conversation was that Johnson was asking a simple question of Secty Clinton that I felt was certainly in bounds.

    She didn't answer what you wrote, or even what Don wrote. She talked about protecting personnel - including someone recovering at Walter Reed.

    I don't doubt that their first thought was the, "safety of American personnel on the scene". But wouldn't that necessitate contacting them? Speaking to them? Asking them who the attackers were?

    I admit I did not want to go reading declassified documents to get to the bottom of this.

    I was asking those in the know, who have done the research, what they thought had happened or not happened. And, I repeat, I don't understand why Secty Clinton did not answer the question - but instead said that it didn't matter by whom they were attacked or for what reason - a band of hooligans, or an angry mob. I'm paraphrasing. Maybe you would say I"m misrepresenting her. I can only say what I felt when I watched the exchange. She didn't refer, as you did, to protocols - at least in that clip. If she had, it would have answered the question for me.

    Of course, a response referring to protocols without further elaboration would lead to other questions about the rationales and efficacy of those protocols....


    Why couldn't Johnson make (5.00 / 3) (#78)
    by Militarytracy on Sat Jan 26, 2013 at 04:42:41 PM EST
    The classified Benghazi briefing that contained facts that you and I will not know for a very long time?  Why does he get an easy pass turning the hearing into a side show while he doesn't attend classified briefings that would clarify Benghazi for him?  He doesn't want to understand.  He wants to use his time and energy to make Clinton look bad, and you are giving him a free pass to fail at his real job which is to govern responsibly.

    I'm (none / 0) (#79)
    by lentinel on Sat Jan 26, 2013 at 04:50:38 PM EST
    not giving him a pass.
    I don't care about him.

    I just thought he asked a good question.
    Perhaps it is one that he should have known the answer to if he had attended briefings.
    But it is a question to which I, a citizen, would have liked to have an answer. I was not invited to any briefings.


    I am with Hillary (5.00 / 1) (#85)
    by MKS on Sun Jan 27, 2013 at 12:28:39 AM EST
    It does not make a difference what the response was for the first week after the attack.  We shoould be past that by now.  

    Obama suffered more bad press during the campaign from Susan Rice's explanation than could have possibly be gained from trying to put out an story that put things in too favorable a light.  If that is what Obama was trying to do, it did not work.   The issue was fully explored during the campaign--everyone agrees it was a "terrorist" attack, as if using that word is the be-all and end-all regarding Benghazi.

    Republicans are just ticked that Romney fumbled during the debates on this issue, and that they did not gain more from attacking Obama on Benghazi.

    The campaign is over, and they lost.


    To (none / 0) (#86)
    by lentinel on Sun Jan 27, 2013 at 05:25:52 AM EST
    the extent that this Johnson-Clinton back-and-forth was an exercise in political grandstanding, I see your point.

    Nevertheless, I regret that the question had, for me, some merit.

    I don't dispute your, or Anne's, or Don's interpretation of Johnson's motivation, but for me it is irrelevant.

    And when Clinton said,

    "We had four dead Americans!" she said. "Whether it was attack preplanned by terrorists or it because of a guy out for a walk one night who decided they'd go kill Americans ... What difference does it make?!"
    I thought that it makes one hell of a difference.

    And as to Johnson's question as to "why the people who were evacuated safely weren't interviewed immediately" - he received no answer.

    Johnson also said that he believed U.N. Ambassador Susan Rice "intentionally misled" people in the initial aftermath of the attack by blaming it on a spontaneous protest, a charge that Clinton brushed off and said "nothing could be further from the truth."
    But the administration did appear to throw Ms. Rice under the old bus, didn't they? So, how far from the truth was it?

    We have two issues here.
    The motivation of Mr. Johnson - a tea-bagger asking questions that are embarrassing to the administration and Secty Clinton for political purposes.
    And the politically motivated evasions by Secty Clinton on the other hand.

    To quote Moe Howard in the film, "Brideless Groom', (1947), "This ain't gettin" us noplace".


    Why do you believe there was some (5.00 / 1) (#88)
    by Militarytracy on Sun Jan 27, 2013 at 08:14:49 AM EST
    deranged kind of coverup?  Initially the right wanted to call the attack an Al Qaeda attack too and I knew they would, they attempted to lunge at it but that has been parsed down by fact too.  Johnson doesn't care if you are informed, he only cares to create sound bites for busy overwhelmed Americans that attempt to make it look like Al Qaeda got Obama and that's it.

    The truth is that in any kind of situation like this the truth that is unexploitable by your political enemy is not immediately known.  Did anyone kick Bush in the groin repeatedly a few days after 9/11 for still not knowing exactly how it all went down?


    You (none / 0) (#100)
    by lentinel on Sun Jan 27, 2013 at 08:42:03 PM EST
    end with a reference to Bush.

    Bush used the 9/11 event, of which he should have had prior knowledge, for purely a purely personal and political agenda. The fact that that agenda would reap fortunes for his close buddies probably was made rather clear to him as well.
    He should have been confronted in the manner you suggest.
    But he is instead honored for "his service", and given immunity  from prosecution as we, "move on".

    I don't know that I would call this latest event a coverup.
    I would call it another example of the people of the United States being misled by its government.

    I don't know what Johnson really wants us to know either. I am perfectly at peace with the notion that he is just a Republican hack blowhard out to destroy Democrats.

    But until I understand this event differently that I do now, it appears to me that the administration presented him with some ammunition.


    I've been trying to put my finger on what (5.00 / 2) (#81)
    by Anne on Sat Jan 26, 2013 at 05:18:07 PM EST
    all this "why won't she just answer the simple question?" reminds me of, and it finally came to me: it's a version of "have you stopped beating your wife?"

    And can we please dispense with the notion that Senator Johnson just wants an answer to his simple question?  Because that's not what he's after.  He's looking for ways to pillory Clinton, and by extension, Obama.  I might be able to give him some benefit of the doubt if he had availed himself of the classified reports and attended the briefings for members of the committee, but he didn't, so he's about an agenda that has nothing to do with the facts.

    Clips are just that: little snapshots that don't always represent the big picture that the totality of information would provide; if I hand you one piece of a 500-piece jigsaw puzzle, what are the chances you will know what the finished puzzle represents?

    For what it's worth, I distinctly remember Clinton saying early on after the attack that she couldn't go directly to the personnel who were there because of investigative protocols, and there may be a clip out there to back me up, but I'm not taking the time to look.  All I can say is that it boggles the mind to think that someone who is the human vacuum of information would have dropped the due diligence ball if it had been within the scope of her authority to do what you think she should have done.

    It just strikes me as somewhat disingenuous and unfair to admit you don't want to do your own research and have chosen to rely instead on those in the know who have, and then harangue them because they aren't answering your questions to your satisfaction; if it were me, I think I'd stop digging myself into a hole, and start relying on myself to get the answers others are "failing" to give me.


    Interested... (none / 0) (#87)
    by lentinel on Sun Jan 27, 2013 at 05:38:43 AM EST
    Do you agree with this statement?

    We had four dead Americans!" she said. "Whether it was attack preplanned by terrorists or it because of a guy out for a walk one night who decided they'd go kill Americans ... What difference does it make?!"

    To me, it makes a difference. How do you feel about it?

    And secondly, Johnson said that he believed U.N. Ambassador Susan Rice "intentionally misled" people in the initial aftermath of the attack by blaming it on a spontaneous protest, a charge that Clinton brushed off and said "nothing could be further from the truth."

    Do you think that charge is far from the truth?

    I am interested in your opinion.


    It seems to me (5.00 / 1) (#89)
    by christinep on Sun Jan 27, 2013 at 12:35:54 PM EST
    lentinel, that the more you dig in this area, the deeper hole to nowhere you show.  Pardon me, but your comments evidence a "beans in your ears" approach...as well as underscore old political science studies (to which Donald refers) that the furthest right and furthest left sometimes display similar attitudes, conclusions, beliefs.  (See the Michigan Survey Research Center studies on aspects of the authoritarian personality & T. Adorno et al, e.g.)

    I think that we all get your distaste for the President.  Let me suggest, tho, that you seem smart enough to get that your underlying opinion may be twisting facts to fit your framework.  


    I think (none / 0) (#104)
    by lentinel on Sun Jan 27, 2013 at 09:36:53 PM EST
    that you're saying that I am distorting facts for the purpose of casting discredit on the president.

    I have not mentioned the president - except to the extent that it seemed to me that he and his coterie left Susan Rice out to dry.
    Perhaps that is a misperception.

    My issue, at least the one I have thought I was trying to make, is that we have just experienced one more occasion upon which we have been led to believe something by our government and our media that was untrue.


    I think (none / 0) (#107)
    by christinep on Sun Jan 27, 2013 at 10:37:18 PM EST
    that your cynicism (or anger or whatever it is) has gotten the best of you.  Towit: "The government always lies, and this is no different" approach...with that, you will think what you will think...and noone can convince you otherwise.

    lentinel, it does not seem somehow impossible (5.00 / 2) (#90)
    by caseyOR on Sun Jan 27, 2013 at 02:34:28 PM EST
    that Susan Rice Did Not intentionally mislead anyone. Her talking points came from the intelligence services. She did not make them up herself. So, I can believe Hillary Clinton when she declared "nothing could be further from the truth."

    As to H. Clinton's remark about "what difference does it make," if I thought for one second that Sen.Johnson actually gave a damn about what truly happened in Benghazi, if I thought he cared at all about the lives that were lost, maybe I would see Hillary's outburst in a different light. But Johnson only cares about political demagoguing. He has no interest in finding out what really happened. I thought Hilary was remarkably restrained in her dealings with those clowns.

    And, finally, I don't understand your belaboring the same points over and over. And I don't understand your seeming faith in Sen.Johnson and his comments. I think that if you did some research into this you would find that Johnson and Rand Paul and McCain are nothing but blowhards.


    I think it's possible that Susan Rice (5.00 / 3) (#91)
    by Anne on Sun Jan 27, 2013 at 05:06:39 PM EST
    was used by the intelligence services to disseminate the information they thought it best to be out there at that particular time; for what purpose, or as part of what other, larger plan, I couldn't tell you.

    What I can tell you is that the level of trust I have in the intelligence services is pretty low, and as such, it makes sense to me that if the decisions made by them regarding what the American people would be told were going to come back to haunt anyone, it wouldn't be them, it would be those who were the faces of the messages delivered - Susan Rice, Hillary Clinton and the president.

    Senators Johnson and Paul would like nothing better than to "kill the messenger" because it suits their larger agenda - which is not finding answers to the Benghazi questions, but bringing down any and every Democrat they can, by whatever means are at their disposal.  Having cameras and microphones to help them put on that show - and it was a show - was pretty much a Tea Party Republican's wet dream.


    I can (none / 0) (#98)
    by lentinel on Sun Jan 27, 2013 at 08:18:46 PM EST
    easily agree with just about everything you wrote.

    It's possible that Susan Rice was used as a mouthpiece to disseminate information to us that was not necessarily true, but the best spin the intelligence services could come up with.

    I don't know their plan either - except in the short term which was to not tell us what they knew.

    I don't like to see people used that way, and then hung out to dry.

    Either that, or she was deliberately lying to us - telling us things she knew to be untrue.

    If any intelligence agencies are behind the deception, they have deliberately used different faces, Clinton, Rice and to a lesser extent the president to promote their mysterious agenda.

    I know that the Republicans are out to destroy Democrats by any means at their disposal. But to me, that is a different issue than the one that is more scary to me - the ongoing of the manipulation of information presented to the American people, or the withholding of truthful information in order to sustain some agenda.

    As an aside, to the extent that this is political theatre, I hope the Democrats take some lessons and start to browbeat the Republican blowhards or semi-idiots like Boehner. Be relentless and challenge them on every single cloud of murky dust that they spew in our direction. And wipe it away with logic and truth and beautiful honesty and compassion.


    Exactly (none / 0) (#93)
    by Zorba on Sun Jan 27, 2013 at 07:15:20 PM EST
    And I frequently agree with lentinel, but in this case I think that he or she is, as you said "belaboring the same points over and over."
    Johnson, Rand Paul, and McCain are, indeed, blowhards, and should not be taken seriously.

    I (none / 0) (#95)
    by lentinel on Sun Jan 27, 2013 at 07:58:20 PM EST
    don't take issue with your characterizations of those fellows.

    But the point I am belaboring is not that one - at least not deliberately.

    The one I am consciously belaboring is that I don't understand how Secty. Clinton could say, "Whether it was attack preplanned by terrorists or it because of a guy out for a walk one night who decided they'd go kill Americans ... What difference does it make?

    I just don't see it. I don't understand it.
    That has nothing to do with my opinion of Johnson.

    I also think, I believe I have read, that it is generally accepted that what Susan Rice expressed to the nation was inaccurate information. Either she was deliberately misrepresenting facts, or for some reason she was fed misinformation by some agency or agencies of government. If she was deliberately fed misinformation, we ought to find out why. If misinformation was fed to her through the incompetence of one or more of our intelligence agencies, we should know about it.

    I felt that those issues much more strongly than any thought about Johnson or his motives.


    Lentinel, I think that (5.00 / 2) (#106)
    by Zorba on Sun Jan 27, 2013 at 09:57:20 PM EST
    Rice expressed what was known or what she was told at the time, and thus I do not think she deliberately lied.  She was the UN Ambassador, not the Secretary of State or Defense.
    And I do think that she was later thrown under the bus, mainly because she was felt to be expendable by the administration.
    Having said that, I also do not see any deep, dark conspiracies.  
    I don't entirely trust the government to tell us the truth, but in this case, I can well believe that conditions on the ground were so confusing and chaotic that we may well never learn exactly what went on, when, and by whom.
    But your continual reiteration of your talking points, over and over and over, without any acknowledgement that there may have, indeed, been some total confusion for weeks after the Benghazi attack (and even now), does nothing to extend the discourse.
    We get that you are unhappy with the "official" explanations.  He!!, I'm not totally ecstatic about them, either.  But having read a whole lot about the incident, I can also accept that it is what it is.  And everything that Johnson, Paul, McCain, et al, were pounding Clinton about at the hearings, were totally self-serving demagoguery, as caseyOR suggested earlier.

    I (none / 0) (#94)
    by lentinel on Sun Jan 27, 2013 at 07:44:50 PM EST
    have nothing to say about Johnson. I am not saying that he is sincerely seeking the truth. But, for me, there is a different issue here - and that is that Susan Rice misled us. If it was unintentional, it was because she was given fraudulent talking points - as you said. From whom? I read that it is the CIA.

    Isn't it more important that the CIA or some other intelligence agency was involved in spreading misinformation to the people of the US? Isn't this of more import to us than the political grandstanding of a rightwing hack?

    I will assume that Johnson doesn't really give a damn about what truly happened in Benghazi, but I still can't understand how Secty Clinton could say that thing about, "what difference does it make?"

    My belaboring of this discussion is just based on my perception, perhaps an incorrect one, that deception by our government is ongoing. It is either deliberate, or it is the result of incompetence. Of the two stories here, Johnson's grandstanding or lack of sincerity or obnoxiousness, and the specter of a government controlled by militaristic and economic interests that mandate misleading the public, I feel that the latter is more dangerous.


    Of course our government deceives us. That has (5.00 / 3) (#96)
    by caseyOR on Sun Jan 27, 2013 at 08:09:25 PM EST
    been the case since the nation was founded. Officials don't lie about everything, but they are hardly paragons of openness. This is nothing new, nothing unique to what may or may not have happened in Benghazi.

    I guess that is part of why I don't understand this rant you are on about whether S. Rice lied or why H. Clinton didn't bare her soul to the Senate and House committees. Maybe Rice lied. I happen to think the intelligence services authored the talking points, and she went with the info she was given. Keep in mind, Rice qualified her remarks by saying they were based on the info known at the time. She did not, to my knowledge, claim that what she was saying was the gospel truth.

    History is constantly being revised when formerly secret or classified documents become available. We find out that things we were told by the government, things we have always believed were not true. Do you think FDR was a paragon of truthfulness about what was happening in WW II? He danced around the truth all the time, especially when he was trying to send aid to Great Britain and the isolationists were fighting any kind of U.S. involvement. And, of course, news from the front was doctored and censored.

    This year will be the 50th anniversary of Jack Kennedy's assassination. Nobody that I know thinks that we will ever in our lifetime get the truth about what happened that day in Dallas and what happened in the hours and days after Kennedy was shot.

    And let's talk about the war in Iraq. Do you think the government has disclosed all the information about the lead-up to the war, the invasion, the occupation, the abuses by the Provisional Authority, any of it? Because I certainly do not.

    If the government is keeping back information about Benghazi, and they probably are, it is nothing different from what has been done for the last 230 some years.

    And the questions about Benghazi that have the Republican blowhards, and you, all worked up are not even close to the questions that I consider important about that event and the turmoil in Libya. IMO, they are nothing more than distractions.

    I have never gotten the impression that you are a simpleton, lentinel. So, I don't understand this dog-with-a-bone thing you have with these relatively, IMO, unimportant questions about Benghazi. I just do not get it.


    I agree (5.00 / 1) (#97)
    by Zorba on Sun Jan 27, 2013 at 08:18:29 PM EST
    with you, caseyOR.  I really do not get this "thing" that lentinel has about Benghazi.
    And normally, I think that you and I are mostly on the same page as lentinel on most other things.

    I (none / 0) (#103)
    by lentinel on Sun Jan 27, 2013 at 09:22:48 PM EST
    don't mean to be harping on questions about Benghazi.

    I do mean to be harping on what I perceive to be the ongoing practice of the government to either mislead or hold back information from the people - a practice you say has been going on for 230 years.

    It is a practice I would like to see, at long last, abandoned by a democracy that is said to be of, for and by the people.


    (Sigh!) Again, there is a big difference ... (5.00 / 1) (#99)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Sun Jan 27, 2013 at 08:33:06 PM EST
    lentinel: "But, for me, there is a different issue here - and that is that Susan Rice misled us. If it was unintentional, it was because she was given fraudulent talking points - as you said. From whom? I read that it is the CIA."

    ... between being wrong and being "fraudulent," as you put it. Fraud implies a deliberate perpetration of a known falsehood, which is a very serious allegation and charge. Yet you've offered us no evidence whatsoever of said fraud, save for your own reckless use of vocabulary to that effect.

    I really wish you would recognize that, and cease your repeated framing of this issue in such hyperbolic terms, as though there's some all-pervasive conspiracy taking place here which only you can apparently see.

    You're no Cassandra, and what you've offered in this thread is as much partisan hackery as anthing spewed this week by Messrs. Johnson and McCain.


    I don't (none / 0) (#102)
    by lentinel on Sun Jan 27, 2013 at 09:15:32 PM EST
    see how what i have questioned here amounts to partisan hackery because imo, neither participant in the exchange between Johnson and Clinton is one in whom I can have great confidence.

    Speaking of vocabulary with respect the information we had been given for many days: I'll change the word, "fraudulent" to your word, "flawed".

    If they deliberately spread stuff they knew to be untrue, or semi-true, that would be, as you say, fraudulent.

    If they gave us sketchy stuff that they thought was true or might be true, then the information was flawed. I think we ought to know which it was because it tells us something important about the condition of our government.

    I do freely admit that I believe that for generations, Americans have lived with the consequences of having a government that is elitist rather than democratic. It doesn't like to tell us what's going on - unless it puts them in a good light. They will lie about events even to the extent that they will fabricate motives for wars - wars such as those is Vietnam or Iraq - if it suits their political or economic interests.

    While some of the evil of the Bush era is behind us, too much of its ethos still remains, imo. So I remain a skeptic.


    Just before Hillary's (5.00 / 2) (#83)
    by MKS on Sun Jan 27, 2013 at 12:12:48 AM EST
    forceful response to Johnson, he had in his prior comment interrupted Hillary's testimony that she did not immediately telephone the survivors in Germany to see if it was a "terrorist" attack or "in response to the video," (as if the two were mutually exclusive), because it would have interfered with an onoging investigation.

    Johnson's interruption called Hillary's explanation an "excuse."  It was that snide comment that really ticked off Hillary imo.


    ... making an "idiotic" statement to the Senate Foriegn Relations Committee. Yes, somebody called the survivors of the attack -- the FBI, and not her. So, yes, she did answer the question. Whether it was the answer you and Sen. Johnson wanted to hear is completely irrelevant. Why should she have to answer to people who are clearly not interested in either her response or the truth?

    Personally, I don't care what you think of me. But if you don't like being called out, then make an effort to become informed about such a sensitive and controversial subject as this before you comment, and don't offer insinuating statements about others which are steeped in ignorance, as Jim does. The world's axis is not pegged upon you two and your own opinions.



    Kerry destroyed Johnson (5.00 / 1) (#84)
    by MKS on Sun Jan 27, 2013 at 12:18:38 AM EST
    That was one of the most effective questions and answers in a customarily longwinded hearing.

    Kerry:  Did you attend the hearing with the videos that explained everything, or did you skip it and are just a dumbass repeating talking points?

    Johnson:  I am an idiot and did not attend the classified intelligence briefing because I rely on Sean Hannity, Drudge and Rush for my talking points, and just pretend to be a real Senator.

    Ha! Ha! Ha!


    No, (none / 0) (#105)
    by lentinel on Sun Jan 27, 2013 at 09:45:33 PM EST
    You are misrepresenting what I said.

    I didn't say the Mrs. Clinton had made an idiotic statement.

    What I said was that, if she indeed said that the delay in getting information was a result of some kind of protocol, that conception of "protocol" is what I characterized as idiotic.

    I also suggested that if such a "protocol" exists, it's rationale and effectiveness should be examined carefully.

    It's just an opinion.


    Donald I was going to drop the subject (1.00 / 3) (#55)
    by jimakaPPJ on Sat Jan 26, 2013 at 10:00:23 AM EST
    but since your ego can't stand to lose...

    The issue is why Obama didn't send help.

    He didn't and he has blood on his hands.

    The second issue is why he had Rice go out and lie.

    We all know the answers.

    And blathering about protocols and such won't wash the blood away.


    To quote Abraham Lincoln, Jim, ... (5.00 / 4) (#68)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Sat Jan 26, 2013 at 03:01:19 PM EST
    ... "Better to remain silent and have others think you a fool, than to speak and remove all doubt."

    I'm through talking to you about this subject. You're living in your own private Idaho, and are no more interested in the truth about Benghazi than your left-wing counterpart above. All you two want to do is bash the president and his adminstration as a means to demonstrate your own self-proclaimed moral superiority.

    So, talk to each other and knock yourselves out. Maybe you could start by comparing notes about what a royally intolerant A-hole I've been to the both of you. After all, it's a well-known fact that in the arc of political orientation, the far left and far right have much more in common with each other than with most other people occupying the wide center swath of the spectrum.


    No, Jim. The question is ... (5.00 / 1) (#72)
    by Yman on Sat Jan 26, 2013 at 03:29:41 PM EST
    The issue is why Obama didn't send help.

    He didn't and he has blood on his hands.

    ... why you keep repeating this lie when you've been shown to be wrong about it so many times already.

    I have a good theory about that ...


    Some people believe... (5.00 / 1) (#73)
    by shoephone on Sat Jan 26, 2013 at 03:32:00 PM EST
    that if they just keep repeating a lie it will mAgIcAlLy turn into the truth.

    It may be a lie (none / 0) (#112)
    by jondee on Tue Jan 29, 2013 at 03:36:41 PM EST
    but it's a noble lie..

    In the service of the TRUTH.


    it appears to me (5.00 / 1) (#82)
    by fishcamp on Sat Jan 26, 2013 at 06:43:35 PM EST
    to be a grassy knoll situation in that we may never know what really happened.

    Unsubstantiated (none / 0) (#108)
    by IrishGerard on Mon Jan 28, 2013 at 12:23:27 AM EST
    It was the CIA, and not the White House or State Dept., that was responsible for having left the public with the initial but ultimately mistaken impression that the attacks in Benghazi were the spontaneous work of demonstrators.

    you've made this assertion multiple times but I don't believe it to be accurate. Even your own link contradicts your statement:

    On Sept. 15, Michael Morell, then CIA deputy director and now acting director, spoke with the CIA station chief in Tripoli, who expressed concern that the agency's reporting was off the mark. The station chief said there was no protest ongoing at the time of the attack, and he didn't think the attack was spontaneous.

    The David Ignatius article you cite is not only outdated but also contradicted by subsequent congressional testimony - TTBOMK, the CIA has only admitted to deleting the reference to 'al-qaeda' from the TalkingPoints. Ignatius also contradicts himself in a subsequent timeline article:

     1:15am... The first idea is to go to a Benghazi hospital to recover Stevens, who they rightly suspect is already dead. But the hospital is surrounded by the al-Qaeda-linked Ansar al-Sharia militia that mounted the consulate attack.

    It's inconceivable, considering that it was the CIAs own paramilitary folks on the ground who fought off these militants, that they would have ever described the assaults on the consulate or annex as being perpetrated by 'demonstrators'.

    we have thus far been given numerous accounts of who edited the talking points but till this day we don't know who actually crafted the politically favorable version that Rice used.


    Two thoughts: (none / 0) (#44)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Fri Jan 25, 2013 at 08:01:26 PM EST
    (1) Ron Johnson is a U.S. senator, and he has to run statewide. I bet there are a lot of voters in Milwaukee and Madison who are none too pleased with his disgraceful performance this week.

    (2) How'd it work out the last time certain white Mississippi $cHittkickers went full-tilt Rebel boogie on the federal government?


    Kerplunk. (none / 0) (#46)
    by shoephone on Fri Jan 25, 2013 at 08:26:28 PM EST
    I'd love to use the excuse that I'm sleepy, down with the flu, or stressed out about something, but...I simply conflated silly things in my brain before posting.

    Maybe in my subconscious mind I decided that Senator Stoopid couldn't possibly have a constituency bigger than a few precincts.


    ... after only two years on the job, your subconscious is probably right about Sen. Johnson's constituency! ;-D

    Giving an interview where? With whom? (none / 0) (#28)
    by caseyOR on Fri Jan 25, 2013 at 05:14:30 PM EST
    Will this be televised?

    60 minutes Sunday night (none / 0) (#31)
    by nycstray on Fri Jan 25, 2013 at 05:26:00 PM EST
    taping today . . .

    Interesting and thought provoking column... (none / 0) (#33)
    by unitron on Fri Jan 25, 2013 at 05:33:38 PM EST
    ...from Friedman no less.

    Depending on your situation, you may have to figure out a paywall workaround, and monkey with the URL.

    Wish I had the stomach for Friedman (5.00 / 1) (#37)
    by shoephone on Fri Jan 25, 2013 at 06:43:54 PM EST
    Maybe I'll read the piece in 6 months...

    OK, I waited a couple of days (none / 0) (#76)
    by shoephone on Sat Jan 26, 2013 at 04:29:12 PM EST
    As usual, Friedman is still presenting himself as the most reasonable guy in the room when it comes to the Middle East. It's not that his ideas are bad, per se, it's that they won't work, because they are not based in reality.

    1. Having John Kerry, new SOS, go straight to the Iranian people with policy proposals? Yeah, sure. I guess that would generate a successful civil revolution in some fantasy world, but not in this one.

    2. Making a deal for reciprocal two-state solution/respect w/ Abbas will lead to... what? Abbas has long expressed his support for a two-state solution, based on Israel's right to exist. Did Friedman forget that Hamas -- which, like it or not, was democratically elected -- still has more passionate followers than the PA, no matter what the western media would like us to believe? Has Friedman not noticed that this thing called the Arab Spring has unleashed all sorts of rebel groups in and around Israel, most of whom identify with Hamas, and not the PA?

    Friedman has been living in the bubble for so long he doesn't know how to recognize the real world. Thank dog he doesn't actually have any power beyond his Grey Lady soapbox. I don't think anyone in or out of government really cares what he has to say anymore.

    Interesting post re: gay rights and Afr. Americans (none / 0) (#75)
    by shoephone on Sat Jan 26, 2013 at 04:12:38 PM EST
    particularly African American religious leaders. Courtesy of Pam's House Blend, via FDL.