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What do you mean 25 years of corruption?


Just as I was starting to write my blog post, I read Alan Caruba’s Warning Signs covering the exact subject matter, but put forth in his superb and articulate style. So rather than reinvent he wheel, I am reposting Alan’s column …

Circumstantial Evidence  By Alan Caruba


Imagine that you are the former Governor of Virginia, Robert F. McDonnell and his wife, Maureen, both sitting in jail after having been found guilty last year of public corruption for accepting golf outings, lavish vacations and $120,000 in “sweetheart” loans. Compared to the Clintons they are just two failed bit players.

Writing in the May issue of Commentary, Jonathan S. Tobin, a senior editor, noted the lack of a “smoking gun” in the case of just the latest Clinton scandals. “But what Democrats and all Americans should be asking about this argument is why some people get prosecuted for corruption on such circumstantial evidence while others are considered likely to be elected president.”

“Just because a prosecutor isn’t likely to haul the Clintons into court over all these astonishing coincidences (or at least not so long as the Democrats control the Department of Justice), that doesn’t mean their behavior doesn’t smell to high heaven,” said Tobin. “The court in which the Clintons deserve to be condemned is that of public opinion.”

The Clintons have conspired and sometimes acted in direct contradiction of the law to rely on the concept of circumstantial evidence. Hillary’s use of her own private email server and her later destruction of that server is a classic example of this behavior. The high-paid speeches which Bill gave put him into a gray area of collusion, benefitting from the influence Hillary had as Secretary of State. Ultimately, the donations to their foundation by foreign governments rank far above a mere misdemeanor. It was too often just blatant bribery.

I fear that far too many Americans do not realize that our nation and its system of justice are on the cusp of encountering serious damage. Merely condemning the Clintons for what we know at this point is simply not enough.

What is needed is a widespread denunciation of their actions over recent years.

What is really needed is a decision by the Democratic Party to withhold the right to run in its primaries for the office of president, based on her actions deleting emails and accepting donation to the foundation.

The U.S. media needs to be more vocal that Hillary withdraw her candidacy.

Why would a media mute its criticism and a political party ignore the obvious revelations, even if deemed circumstantial evidence, of the corruption demonstrated by the Clintons? The Clintons have been given a free pass from the day they entered politics.

As Peggy Noonan, a Wall Street Journal columnist, has said, “We are defining political deviancy down.” That degrades the process by which we select and elect the men and women who are given the role and responsibility of lawmakers.

As Noonan notes of Hillary, “The story is that this is what she does, and always has. The rules apply to others, not her.” As recently as 2012, the State Department forced the resignation of a U.S. ambassador for “in part setting up an unsanctioned private email system.”

“In 1992 the Clintons were new and golden. Now, so many years later, their reputation for rule breaking and corruption is so deep, so assumed that it really has become old news. And old news isn’t news.”

Except when it is. When old news is an unbroken succession of wrong-doing it is incumbent on everyone involved with the present “campaign” by Hillary Clinton to be the next President to not avoid the stink that arises from both the earlier and most recent revelations.

“A generation or two ago,” said Noonan, “a person so encrusted in a reputation for scandal would not be considered a possible presidential contender. She would be ineligible. Now she is inevitable.”

Those earlier generations have been replaced by those more intent on celebrity than substance. They have the attention span of fungus. They lack any vision for America, having never really learned about or absorbed the lessons that the Greatest Generation and others passed onto us.

Are there enough of them to plunge America into the Clinton cesspool by electing her President? One can only pray that the answer is no.

Source: Warning Signs: Circumstantial Evidence (c) 2015 by Alan Caruba

A pattern and practice of wrongdoing …

There appears that there is a smoking gun that many choose not to recognize or acknowledge … that Hillary Clinton willfully violated various governmental document retention policies and that her alleged deletion of her e-mails, and the other e-mail accounts used by her top lieutenants in the Department of State,  constitutes a prima facie case of destroying government documents which are the property of the United States; and which may represents a clear pattern and practice of obstructing justice knowing that there were pending court actions on FOIA requests initiated by Judicial Watch and others.

And, then there is the allegation of tampering with State Department documents with the full knowledge there was a pending Accountability Review Board’s investigation and review.

The truth may eventually come out ….

Unlike the alleged successful cover-up of the Clinton’s misuse of the DOJ, FBI, and IRS as cited in the Barrett report, some of which is still classified due to the actions of democrat Senators John Kerry, Dick Durbin and Byron Dorgan who sneakily attached a rider to an unrelated appropriations bill, this investigation may actually succeed. Trey Gowdy is an able investigator, a top-notch attorney, and a former federal prosecutor with the U.S. Attorney for the District of South Carolina. A man that knows how to conduct an investigation and elicit sworn testimony.

On April 23, 2015, Trey Gowdy, the Chairman of the House Select Committee on Benghazi sent a letter to Hillary Clinton’s legal counsel David Kendall containing 136 comprehensive “sample questions” that might be asked of Hillary Clinton in a House of Representatives proceeding. They are categorized by:

  • Establishment of Private Email Server (1-14)
  • Operation and Security of Private Email Server (15-37)
  • General Use of Private Email Server (38-60)
  • Use of Private Email Server for Offical Business (61-91)
  • Return of Official Records (92-118)
  • Data Retention (119-136)

Trey Gowdy’s letter and the 136 sample questions is available by clicking here.

Bottom line …

What more is there to say about a corrupt, lying, Marxist who is the progressive socialist democrat’s choice for President of the United States? Look to the democrats to run a socialist, Senator Bernie Sanders (I-VT) or Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-MA), to make Hillary Clinton look moderate.

Sanders is a self-professed socialist, and Warren is a liar who gamed the affirmative action program by claiming she was an American Indian. With the amount of corruption in the progressive socialist democrat party, it appears that the party has become the home of the neo-Communists who do not wish America well.

It is time to avoid choosing candidates like we select celebrities on television competitions. It is time to avoid selecting candidates on the basis of historic import, color over competence, and sex over substance. It is time to VOTE FOR AMERICA by selecting a politician without a lengthy history of corruption, lying, and alleged criminal actions. A conservative candidate who knows the priorities of the American people and leaves social experiments to the states.

If we do not take action in 2016, we are so screwed.

-- steve

“Nullius in verba”-- take nobody's word for it!
"Acta non verba" -- actions not words

“Beware of false knowledge; it is more dangerous than ignorance.”-- George Bernard Shaw

“Progressive, liberal, Socialist, Marxist, Democratic Socialist -- they are all COMMUNISTS.”

“The key to fighting the craziness of the progressives is to hold them responsible for their actions, not their intentions.” – OCS

"The object in life is not to be on the side of the majority, but to escape finding oneself in the ranks of the insane." -- Marcus Aurelius

“A people that elect corrupt politicians, imposters, thieves, and traitors are not victims... but accomplices” -- George Orwell

“Fere libenter homines id quod volunt credunt." (The people gladly believe what they wish to.) ~Julius Caesar

“Describing the problem is quite different from knowing the solution. Except in politics." ~ OCS


The proximate cause of California’s water problems is not climate change, but the corruption of politicians. Politicians who ignore science to advance their socialist agenda; continuing to invite hundreds of thousands of illegal immigrants to illegally and inappropriately burden our state resources; to falsify the budget with accounting tricks and maneuvering; and worst of all, pandering to the public employee unions and special interests to nearly bankrupt our state. Public policies that see a disproportionate number of illegals (24 percent of the entire estimated illegal immigrant population in the United States) and welfare recipients (33 percent of the estimated welfare recipients in the United States) when we have approximately 12 percent of the nation’s population. A disparate impact created and maintained by the progressive socialist democrats.

The progressives say that this drought is unprecedented – but then again we have never had an estimated 40,000,000 residents during a drought period, 10,000,000 arriving since the last major drought. 

And, one of the most corrupt actions is the democrats refusal to accept that nature is cyclical, variable, and that our best defense against drought is a water retention and distribution system that works with nature’s wet cycle and builds resiliency against nature’s dry cycle. It is not like California hasn’t had dry spells in the recent past (1929-34, 1976-77 and 1987-92) and all of man’s feeble efforts will not stop nature from regressing to its mean – even if it means that we are leaving the interglacial period and heading back into another ice age. Nature will do what it will do, and man’s feeble climate signal is almost impossible impossible to measure against the background of climate’s natural variability.


What has our idiotic governor, Jerry Brown, has done now? … [my comments in blue italics]   



WHEREAS climate change poses an ever-growing threat to the well-being, public health, natural resources, economy, and the environment of California, including loss of snowpack, drought, sea level rise, more frequent and intense wildfires, heat waves, more severe smog, and harm to natural and working lands, and these effects are already being felt in the state; and

[The real threat to California and all Californians is Governor Brown and his cadre of corrupt and self-serving progressive socialist democrats whose corruption and perversion of science is the proximate cause of the state’s ills. The very same people who fight against dams and demand that 500 million gallons of fresh potable water be flushed to the see to protect a small fish known as the Delta Smelt; who has survived droughts when the Delta was little more than a mud flat. Thus crippling a large portion of California’s premier agriculture business.

As for intense wildfires, these are attributable to state conservation policies that demand unionized firefighters knock-down wildfires when they are nature’s mechanism for clearing the undergrowth and providing for the renewal of life rather than choking the environment. Yes, they get worse as public policy prevents burning. Yes, they get more costly because zoning and building codes allow more and more people to build in hazardous areas; not to mention the ever-rising costs of union labor without a corresponding increase in productivity.]

WHEREAS the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change concluded in its Fifth Assessment Report, issued in 2014, that "warming of the climate system is unequivocal, and since the 1950s, many of the observed changes are unprecedented over decades to millennia" and that "continued emission of greenhouse gases will cause further warming and long-lasting changes in all components of the climate system, increasing the likelihood of severe, pervasive and irreversible impacts for people and ecosystems;" and

[The IPCC is a corrupt United Nations group comprised of politicians and bureaucrats who are attempting to stage manage the global climate issue for the purposes of implementing a UN agenda that sees the United Nations being given legal powers that supersedes the sovereignty of its member nations and provides a method of global taxation that securely fund’s UN activities without having to rely on contributions from member nations. What the IPCC and the climate activists cannot explain is why, in the face of rising atmospheric carbon dioxide levels, the mean global climate has remained unchanged for 18+ years. There is no heat signature in the middle layers of the atmosphere and the models have been falsified as being incomplete and using suspiciously faulty and statistically-manipulated data which differs drastically from the data from the remote sensing (satellite) program.]

WHEREAS projections of climate change show that, even under the best-case scenario for global emission reductions, additional climate change impacts are inevitable, and these impacts pose tremendous risks to the state's people, agriculture, economy, infrastructure and the environment; and

[Yes, we have heard that repeatedly, and from the same political activist sources. While climate change is inevitable, we should be looking at promoting our state’s resiliency and adopting more appropriate zoning and building codes.]

WHEREAS climate change will disproportionately affect the state's most vulnerable citizens; and

[Consider that the state’s environmental policies are driving up energy costs, food costs, and destroying our economy has a disproportionate effect on the state’s most vulnerable citizens. As is allowing illegal aliens to destroy the state’s financial, educational, employment, medical, and social infrastructure. Thus importing poverty, illiteracy, low job skills, disease, and crime to create even more vulnerable citizens. Not that common sense is part of the climate change agenda or state planning process.]

WHEREAS building on decades of successful actions to reduce pollution and increase energy efficiency the California Global Warming Solutions Act of 2006 placed California at the forefront of global and national efforts to reduce the threat of climate change; and

[California is enacting symbolism that creates a distinction without a difference. Without the cooperation of other states that will voluntarily cripple their economies and disadvantage their citizens, you will find more and more productive individuals and companies moving out of California to other tax- and cost-friendly havens. Or see California’s top fat cat liberals talk about paying their fair share of taxes while playing offshore games to hide their taxes from California’s tax authorities.]

WHEREAS the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change has identified limiting global warming to 2 degrees Celsius or less by 2050 as necessary to avoid potentially catastrophic climate change impacts, and remaining below this threshold requires accelerated reductions of greenhouse gas emissions; and

[Again, with the corrupt IPCC, and its crazy interpretation of science based solely on computer models that are controlled by climate activists whose livelihood, reputations, and fortunes are dependent on political funding. Recent studies have shown that the climate is not as sensitive to greenhouse gas emissions as previously thought, and that the beneficial effects of a higher level of atmospheric carbon dioxide is rarely mentioned.]

WHEREAS California has established greenhouse gas emission reduction targets to reduce greenhouse gas emissions to 1990 levels by 2020 and further reduce such emissions to 80 percent below 1990 levels by 2050; and

[Nothing will satisfy the progressive socialist democrats – even a roll-back to pre-industrial levels. The Earth has been hotter, colder, with more atmospheric carbon dioxide and less atmospheric carbon dioxide; and that was before the industrial revolution. The most significant greenhouse gas is water vapor and yet you only hear about carbon dioxide. Why? Because by controlling carbon and carbon dioxide, you can control the production, storage, and use of energy – which in turn controls our economy. Control over our economy is the real agenda item and the progressives could give a fig at how we arrive at those ends, the means, fair or foul, being immaterial to justifying the ends.]

WHEREAS setting an interim target of emission reductions for 2030 is necessary to guide regulatory policy and investments in California in the midterm, and put California on the most cost-effective path for long term emission reductions; and

[Guiding regulatory policy is a code phrase for controlling our economy. Specifying the use of unsustainable, uneconomical, and unreliable green energy to drive up costs, lower energy use, and cripple our economy. Jerry Brown’s vision wants to limit our mobility by limiting our vehicle use to shorter ranges. To have us live like Europeans or New Yorkers in dense population centers that can be “serviced” more efficiently. Yeah, like a bull services a cow. Even today, the corrupt politicians are demanding new taxes to compensate for the loss of revenue as vehicles became more energy efficient and residents curtailed their driving. Thus, any savings that would accrue to residents is shifted to the corrupt politicians in higher taxes.]

WHEREAS all agencies with jurisdiction over sources of greenhouse gas emissions will need to continue to develop and implement emissions reduction programs to reach the state's 2050 target and attain a level of emissions necessary to avoid dangerous climate change; and

[Agencies headed by political appointees who do very little for their six figure salaries. Agencies who have been caught faking scientific results. Agencies that refuse to disclose their scientific findings. Agencies whose bureaucrats know that more regulations means more bureaucrats and more money for this privileged political class.]

WHEREAS taking climate change into account in planning and decision making will help the state make more informed decisions and avoid high costs in the future.

[The state does not act on an “informed” basis, they act on political whims and the demands of the unions and special interests that contribute to the campaigns of corrupt politicians and provide voter turn-out in elections. It is all about power and money – with politics being little more than a control mechanism.]

NOW, THEREFORE, I, EDMUND G. BROWN JR., Governor of the State of California, in accordance with the authority vested in me by the Constitution and statutes of the State of California, in particular Government Code sections 8567 and 8571 of the California Government Code, do hereby issue this Executive Order, effective immediately


1.A new interim statewide greenhouse gas emission reduction target to reduce greenhouse gas emissions to 40 percent below 1990 levels by 2030 is established in order to ensure California meets its target of reducing greenhouse gas emissions to 80 percent below 1990 levels by 2050.

2.All state agencies with jurisdiction over sources of greenhouse gas emissions shall implement measures, pursuant to statutory authority, to achieve reductions of greenhouse gas emissions to meet the 2030 and 2050 greenhouse gas emissions reductions targets.

3.The California Air Resources Board shall update the Climate Change Scoping Plan to express the 2030 target in terms of million metric tons of carbon dioxide equivalent.

4.The California Natural Resources Agency shall update every three years the state's climate adaptation strategy, Safeguarding California, and ensure that its provisions are fully implemented. The Safeguarding California plan will:

     -   Identify vulnerabilities to climate change by sector and regions, including, at a minimum, the following sectors: water, energy, transportation, public health, agriculture, emergency services, forestry, biodiversity and habitat, and ocean and coastal resources;

     -   Outline primary risks to residents, property, communities and natural systems from these vulnerabilities, and identify priority actions needed to reduce these risks; and

     -   Identify a lead agency or group of agencies to lead adaptation efforts in each sector. 

5.Each sector lead will be responsible to:

     -   Prepare an implementation plan by September 2015 to outline the actions that will be taken as identified in Safeguarding California, and

     -   Report back to the California Natural Resources Agency by June 2016 on actions taken.

6.State agencies shall take climate change into account in their planning and investment decisions, and employ full life-cycle cost accounting to evaluate and compare infrastructure investments and alternatives.

7.State agencies' planning and investment shall be guided by the following principles

     -   Priority should be given to actions that both build climate preparedness and reduce greenhouse gas emissions;

     -   Where possible, flexible and adaptive approaches should be taken to prepare for uncertain climate impacts;

     -   Actions should protect the state's most vulnerable populations; and

     -   Natural infrastructure solutions should be prioritized.

8.The state's Five-Year Infrastructure Plan will take current and future climate change impacts into account in all infrastructure projects

9.The Governor's Office of Planning and Research will establish a technical, advisory group to help state agencies incorporate climate change impacts into planning and investment decisions.

10.The state will continue its rigorous climate change research program focused on understanding the impacts of climate change and how best to prepare and adapt to such impacts.

This Executive Order is not intended to create, and does not, create any rights or benefits, whether substantive or procedural, enforceable at law or in equity, against the State of California, its agencies, departments, entities, officers, employees, or any other person.

I FURTHER DIRECT that as soon as hereafter possible, this Order be filed in the Office of the Secretary of State and that widespread publicity and notice be given to this Order.

IN WITNESS WHEREOF I have hereunto set my hand and caused the Great Seal of the State of California to be affixed this 29th day of April 2015.
Governor of California

Source: Office of Governor Edmund G. Brown Jr.

Bottom line …

Jerry Brown, also known as Governor Moonbeam, has led a silver-spoon existence and has never worked in a private sector job. A man of wealth and privilege provided by his father, former Governor Edmund G. “Pat” Brown. It is apparent Jerry Brown is a socialist with daddy issues – whereas his father helped create our water infrastructure, superb roads, and excellent educational institutions; this pathetic meathead has done everything in his power to destroy the legacy of his father and screw-over all Californians. I am not even sure that Jerry Brown has not ceded the operation of the State to his “wife” who appears to be managing the State’s affairs from her position of power.

We are so screwed.

-- steve

“Nullius in verba”-- take nobody's word for it!
"Acta non verba" -- actions not words

“Beware of false knowledge; it is more dangerous than ignorance.”-- George Bernard Shaw

“Progressive, liberal, Socialist, Marxist, Democratic Socialist -- they are all COMMUNISTS.”

“The key to fighting the craziness of the progressives is to hold them responsible for their actions, not their intentions.” – OCS

"The object in life is not to be on the side of the majority, but to escape finding oneself in the ranks of the insane." -- Marcus Aurelius

“A people that elect corrupt politicians, imposters, thieves, and traitors are not victims... but accomplices” -- George Orwell

“Fere libenter homines id quod volunt credunt." (The people gladly believe what they wish to.) ~Julius Caesar

“Describing the problem is quite different from knowing the solution. Except in politics." ~ OCS


Once again, President Obama is bloviating in a distraction from the real problem: political corruption!


[Excepted] Remarks by President Obama and Prime Minister Abe of Japan in Joint Press Conference


Chris Jansing. [MSNBC]

Q    Thank you, Mr. President.  As you know, the National Guard is now on the streets of Baltimore -- the latest aftermath in a series of what have been high-profile confrontations between black men and police officers.  And there seems to be growing frustration among African American leaders that not enough is being done quickly enough.  Marc Morial of the Urban League said, “The U.S. is in a state of emergency of tremendous proportions.”  The president of the NAACP Legal Defense Fund says, “We are in the throes of a national crisis.” 

Are we in the throes of a national crisis?  What are you prepared to do about it, both in terms of Baltimore and the larger picture?  And what do you say to critics who say that since the death of Trayvon Martin, you have not been aggressive enough in your response? 

Thank you.


With respect to Baltimore, let me make a couple of points.  First, obviously our thoughts continue to be with the family of Freddie Gray.  Understandably, they want answers.  And DOJ has opened an investigation.  It is working with local law enforcement to find out exactly what happened, and I think there should be full transparency and accountability.

[The elected official in Baltimore did not heed the lessons of Ferguson, Missouri and elsewhere. The Police Department and the prosecutors were not proactive in providing information about the incident, the officers, or the official response. Thus, the matter festered and was defined by self-serving activist-agitators who saw an opportunity to exploit the situation. Thugs, having learned the lessons from the past, were prepared to use a civil rights protest as another opportunity to loot liquor stores, electronic shops, and other high-value targets. Some say that the thugs were urged to violence by the agitators who wanted to see a massive protest spin out of control.

President Obama has the nerve to speak of investigations, full transparency, an accountability while four brave American, Ambassador Stevens, were killed in Benghazi and the American people were fed lies. Even President Obama himself lied to the American people.]

Second, my thoughts are with the police officers who were injured in last night’s disturbances.  It underscores that that’s a tough job and we have to keep that in mind, and my hope is that they can heal and get back to work as soon as possible.

[Perhaps President Obama has learned from the near universal condemnation he received when he appears to side with thugs in the Trayvon Martin and Michael Brown incidents while ignoring or diminishing law enforcement officers who put their lives on the line to keep citizens safe.]

Point number three, there’s no excuse for the kind of violence that we saw yesterday.  It is counterproductive.  When individuals get crowbars and start prying open doors to loot, they’re not protesting, they’re not making a statement -- they’re stealing.  When they burn down a building, they’re committing arson.  And they’re destroying and undermining businesses and opportunities in their own communities that rob jobs and opportunity from people in that area.

[This is pretty much a lie coming from a “community organizer” and union sympathizer where thuggish behavior is routinely used to scare, I dare say terrorize, municipalities and corporations to give in to the demands of the union. If you really think violence is counterproductive, watch for the massive amounts of taxpayer money that will be flowing into Baltimore.]

So it is entirely appropriate that the mayor of Baltimore, who I spoke to yesterday, and the governor, who I spoke to yesterday, work to stop that kind of senseless violence and destruction.  That is not a protest.  That is not a statement.  It’s people -- a handful of people taking advantage of a situation for their own purposes, and they need to be treated as criminals.

[Excuse me! President Obama thinks it is “appropriate” for a Mayor and a Governor to do their jobs to uphold the public peace. It is more than appropriate, it is their sworn duty.]

Point number four, the violence that happened yesterday distracted from the fact that you had seen multiple days of peaceful protests that were focused on entirely legitimate concerns of these communities in Baltimore, led by clergy and community leaders.  And they were constructive and they were thoughtful, and frankly, didn’t get that much attention.  And one burning building will be looped on television over and over and over again, and the thousands of demonstrators who did it the right way I think have been lost in the discussion. 

[The politicians were out in “campaign mode” and the clergy was busy reinforcing their relevance in the progressive socialist democrat scheme of things. Where were the politicians and the members of the faith community when domestic terrorists, the minority gangs, were killing men, women, and children as well as creating yet another generation of drug addicts? Where were these same people when minority troublemakers were intimidating school children not to do their best or strive for excellence in the classroom? Yet, these people seem to appear everywhere, especially when the politicians hand out grants and “walking around money” during campaigns.”]

The overwhelming majority of the community in Baltimore I think have handled this appropriately, expressing real concern and outrage over the possibility that our laws were not applied evenly in the case of Mr. Gray, and that accountability needs to exist.  And I think we have to give them credit.  My understanding is, is you’ve got some of the same organizers now going back into these communities to try to clean up in the aftermath of a handful of criminals and thugs who tore up the place.  What they were doing, what those community leaders and clergy and others were doing, that is a statement.  That’s the kind of organizing that needs to take place if we’re going to tackle this problem.  And they deserve credit for it, and we should be lifting them up.

[The truth is that Mr. Gray was known to the police, was in area known for drug dealing, made eye contact with the police, and ran. That does not excuse the fact that Gray was denied prompt medical help and allegedly suffered his injuries while in police custody. Nobody should be mistreated by the police. And, if the police are found guilty of being complicit in Gray’s death, they should be tried for 2nd degree murder or manslaughter. If government officials were complicit in an attempted cover-up, they too should be tried for obstruction of justice and jailed.]

Point number five -- and I’ve got six, because this is important.  Since Ferguson, and the task force that we put together, we have seen too many instances of what appears to be police officers interacting with individuals -- primarily African American, often poor -- in ways that have raised troubling questions.  And it comes up, it seems like, once a week now, or once every couple of weeks.  And so I think it’s pretty understandable why the leaders of civil rights organizations but, more importantly, moms and dads across the country, might start saying this is a crisis.  What I’d say is this has been a slow-rolling crisis.  This has been going on for a long time.  This is not new, and we shouldn’t pretend that it’s new.

[There is little or no doubt in my mind that President Obama is a racist and sees everything through the prism of race. A President who serves all Americans should have noted that whites and other minorities are similarly challenged by the police. But, blacks may be challenged on a disproportionate scale because they disproportionately commit more crime. Mistreatment of any person by the police is troubling and those who engage in these behaviors needed to be rooted out and punished.]

The good news is, is that perhaps there’s some newfound awareness because of social media and video cameras and so forth that there are problems and challenges when it comes to how policing and our laws are applied in certain communities, and we have to pay attention to it and respond. 

What’s also good news is the task force that was made up of law enforcement and community activists that we brought together here in the White House have come up with very constructive concrete proposals that, if adopted by local communities and by states and by counties, by law enforcement generally, would make a difference.  It wouldn’t solve every problem, but would make a concrete difference in rebuilding trust and making sure that the overwhelming majority of effective, honest and fair law enforcement officers, that they're able to do their job better because it will weed out or retrain or put a stop to those handful who may be not doing what they're supposed to be doing.

[Task forces, especially as convened by the White House, are seen-and-be-seen events that produce few, in any results, other than a report and media attention. The real work is to be done by elected officials and law enforcement supervisors. If they do not do their job or play politics, nothing much will change.]

Now, the challenge for us as the federal government is, is that we don't run these police forces.  I can't federalize every police force in the country and force them to retrain.  But what I can do is to start working with them collaboratively so that they can begin this process of change themselves. 

[Attorney General Eric Holder did attempt to federalize police departments via the Department of Justice intervention, investigation, and supervision. This was not done on a collaborative basis, but a coercive basis that denied critical federal funding to all who did not go along with federal programs, guidelines, and “suggestions.”]

And coming out of the task force that we put together, we're now working with local communities.  The Department of Justice has just announced a grant program for those jurisdictions that want to purchase body cameras.  We are going to be issuing grants for those jurisdictions that are prepared to start trying to implement some of the new training and data collection and other things that can make a difference.  And we're going to keep on working with those local jurisdictions so that they can begin to make the changes that are necessary

[It’s all about federal money, coercion, and control. In policing, in education, in environmental matters, and so many other areas where the federal government hoovers up taxpayer’s funds and then redistributes them to benefit their own political agenda.] 

I think it’s going to be important for organizations like the Fraternal Order of Police and other police unions and organization to acknowledge that this is not good for police.  We have to own up to the fact that occasionally there are going to be problems here, just as there are in every other occupation.  There are some bad politicians who are corrupt.  There are folks in the business community or on Wall Street who don't do the right thing.  Well, there’s some police who aren’t doing the right thing. And rather than close ranks, what we’ve seen is a number of thoughtful police chiefs and commissioners and others recognize they got to get their arms around this thing and work together with the community to solve the problem.  And we're committed to facilitating that process.

[Can you even believe that the man who heads the most secretive administration, is engaged in numerous cover-ups, has the temerity to call out others when his own house is under siege?] 

So the heads of our COPS agency that helps with community policing, they're already out in Baltimore.  Our Assistant Attorney General for the Civil Rights Division is already out in Baltimore.  But we're going to be working systematically with every city and jurisdiction around the country to try to help them implement some solutions that we know work. 

[There is little need for the Assistant Attorney General for the Civil Rights Division to be present. What is needed is the local United States Attorney who will investigate and prosecute political corruption that is siphoning off housing funds, educational funds, and other taxpayer funds rather than repairing or rebuilding the community and its infrastructure. This is a manufactured civil rights issue that is bogus. How can you overlook hundreds of black citizens being killed in Chicago and other areas and then send your prosecutor to Baltimore where a single black man may have met his death at the hands of the police?]

And I’ll make my final point -- I’m sorry, Mr. Prime Minister, but this is a pretty important issue for us. 

We can't just leave this to the police.  I think there are police departments that have to do some soul searching.  I think there are some communities that have to do some soul searching.  But I think we, as a country, have to do some soul searching.  This is not new.  It’s been going on for decades

[The President is right. The politicians have exploited the poor, the minorities, and the middle class. Blacks and other minorities have been given a pass on their behavior. You can’t tell me that Blacks living in the inner cities are any more disadvantaged than recent Black immigrants arriving with only a few dollars and having to learn the English language. How do these people exist – and thrive without the massive government assistance deployed into minority communities? The answer is mindset, motivation, and entrepreneurialism. Not sitting around collecting a government check. Not impregnating single young women and dooming them to a life of poverty. Not being held responsible for the gangs and others preying on their own people.]

And without making any excuses for criminal activities that take place in these communities, what we also know is that if you have impoverished communities that have been stripped away of opportunity, where children are born into abject poverty; they’ve got parents -- often because of substance-abuse problems or incarceration or lack of education themselves -- can't do right by their kids; if it’s more likely that those kids end up in jail or dead, than they go to college.  In communities where there are no fathers who can provide guidance to young men; communities where there’s no investment, and manufacturing has been stripped away; and drugs have flooded the community, and the drug industry ends up being the primary employer for a whole lot of folks -- in those environments, if we think that we're just going to send the police to do the dirty work of containing the problems that arise there without as a nation and as a society saying what can we do to change those communities, to help lift up those communities and give those kids opportunity, then we're not going to solve this problem.  And we’ll go through the same cycles of periodic conflicts between the police and communities and the occasional riots in the streets, and everybody will feign concern until it goes away, and then we go about our business as usual.

[Why does government always believe that they can provide solutions when the solution can only be provided by individual responsibility. For teaching ethics, motivation, achievement instead of preaching victimhood, oppression, and historical grievances that only empower agitators, community activists, and politicians.]

If we are serious about solving this problem, then we're going to not only have to help the police, we're going to have to think about what can we do -- the rest of us -- to make sure that we're providing early education to these kids; to make sure that we're reforming our criminal justice system so it’s not just a pipeline from schools to prisons; so that we're not rendering men in these communities unemployable because of a felony record for a nonviolent drug offense; that we're making investments so that they can get the training they need to find jobs.  That's hard.  That requires more than just the occasional news report or task force.  And there’s a bunch of my agenda that would make a difference right now in that.

[Somebody is lying. Most of the people in jail are not low level non-violent users, but hard-core drug dealers who have plea bargained down even more serious offenses in order to give some prosecutor a “win.” Obama’s agenda is little more than spending to shore up union-controlled municipalities with union-dominated projects. And, even worse, like his green initiatives, there is a lack of control and accountability for funds that seem to disappear into the political cesspool and re-emerge in some politician’s swimming pool.]

Now, I’m under no illusion that out of this Congress we're going to get massive investments in urban communities, and so we’ll try to find areas where we can make a difference around school reform and around job training, and around some investments in infrastructure in these communities trying to attract new businesses in.

[Is President Obama blaming the Republican-dominated Congress when he should be blaming the progressive socialist democrats, many who are black, who are running the inner cities?

Can you say union-dominated activities? The unions are the ones that have decimated education with their nonsense. The public employee unions are so out of control that they should be prosecuted under RICO for political corruption. These are the unions who have engaged in criminal activities under the guise of contractual law – and have milked municipalities, counties, and states almost to the point of bankruptcy. Unions is the private sector have driven entire industries into near extinction and pushed companies to move operations offshore to remain competitive and in business.]

But if we really want to solve the problem, if our society really wanted to solve the problem, we could.  It’s just it would require everybody saying this is important, this is significant -- and that we don't just pay attention to these communities when a CVS burns, and we don't just pay attention when a young man gets shot or has his spine snapped.  We're paying attention all the time because we consider those kids our kids, and we think they're important.  And they shouldn’t be living in poverty and violence. 

[They are living in poverty and violence because that’s where the politicians want them to be. The Administration is bloated with bureaucrats managing poverty programs and anti-violence programs – and nothing changes. For without poverty and violence these unionized-workers would have to fend for themselves in the private sector. If our country really wanted to solve the problem, we would prosecute politicians who are corrupt and malfeasant. Barack Obama would be out of office, impeached for high crimes and misdemeanors.]

That's how I feel.  I think there are a lot of good-meaning people around the country that feel that way.  But that kind of political mobilization I think we haven’t seen in quite some time.  And what I’ve tried to do is to promote those ideas that would make a difference.  But I think we all understand that the politics of that are tough because it’s easy to ignore those problems or to treat them just as a law and order issue, as opposed to a broader social issue.

That was a really long answer, but I felt pretty strongly about it.

Remarks by President Obama and Prime Minister Abe of Japan in Joint Press Conference | The White House

What you are not hearing …

Do you know that the Baltimore Police Commission is a Black man named Anthony Batts; a man who served as the Chief of Police of two California cities, Long Beach, California and Oakland, California – both cities with egregious records of police misconduct and political corruption. Batts former wife was the ethically challenged  progressive socialist democrat Congresswoman Laura Richardson. And, yet Batts acts more like a politician than a top law enforcement official.

Bottom line …

“We the People” are responsible for what happened in Baltimore and elsewhere because we refuse to confront the issue of political corruption and allow the progressive socialist democrats to continue to create a culture of victimhood; creating hyphenated-Americans who are promised a redress of their grievances in exchange for political power. But has anything changed in the past fifty years?

  • War on poverty was a slogan and the politicians and the special interests got rich.
  • Affordable housing was a slogan and the politicians and the special interests got rich.
  • Leave no child behind was a slogan and the politicians and the special interests got rich.
  • War on drugs was a slogan and the politicians and the special interests got rich.
  • Invest in infrastructure was a slogan and the politicians and the special interests got rich.
  • Climate change and green  environmentalism were slogans and the politicians and the special interests got rich.

Do you see a pattern? Political corruption.

And now they are blaming …

  • Poverty.
  • Lack of housing.
  • Lack of jobs,
  • Lack of education.

Do you see a pattern? Political corruption.

Unless we start controlling the progressive socialist democrats, their unions, their activists and agitators, we will continue to see more of the same. It is time to quit looking a politicians as celebrities. It is time to condemn those who vote for color over competence, sex over substance. The fact that the progressive socialist democrats are allowing a corrupt liar like Hillary Clinton to champion their party is to believe that they are now the neo-Communists pushing for revolution and social reform along the lines they “dictate.”

The real bottom line is this is a majorly black city, with a majorly black progressive socialist democrat leadership and a majorly black police department, those arrested are mostly blacks -- so there can be no racial component to this riot. Not to mention that the thug that died did have a very long rap sheet -- although that does not justify his alleged death by the police.

We are so screwed.

-- steve

“Nullius in verba”-- take nobody's word for it!
"Acta non verba" -- actions not words

“Beware of false knowledge; it is more dangerous than ignorance.”-- George Bernard Shaw

“Progressive, liberal, Socialist, Marxist, Democratic Socialist -- they are all COMMUNISTS.”

“The key to fighting the craziness of the progressives is to hold them responsible for their actions, not their intentions.” – OCS

"The object in life is not to be on the side of the majority, but to escape finding oneself in the ranks of the insane." -- Marcus Aurelius

“A people that elect corrupt politicians, imposters, thieves, and traitors are not victims... but accomplices” -- George Orwell

“Fere libenter homines id quod volunt credunt." (The people gladly believe what they wish to.) ~Julius Caesar

“Describing the problem is quite different from knowing the solution. Except in politics." ~ OCS


It doesn't look like the America I

It appears, at least to me, that the minority progressive socialist democrats who run the City of Baltimore are exploiting, and in many ways, promoting the civil unrest that is crippling their city …

How else do you can you explain that the minority-controlled city run by progressive social democrats are running to the progressive mainstream media sounding like socialist agitators … while the order the minority-run Baltimore Police Department to stand down in the face of rioting, looting, and general civil insurrection?

Some possible explanations for what we are seeing …

  • The Mayor and City Council members are following Rahm Emanuel’s dictum as they appear to be in “campaign mode” and speaking in the code words of socialism:  social justice, root causes, lack of opportunity and on-and-on. The Mayor certainly has higher aspirations in the democrat party, possibly running for Governor or Senator.

You never let a serious crisis go to waste. And what I mean by that it's an opportunity to do things you think you could not do before. ~  Rahm Emanuel

  • The Mayor and City Council members are counting on an influx of state and local funds to rebuild the community and funds which they can then exploit for political purposes.
  • The progressive unions are amassing a great deal of overtime which will benefit their membership.


  • Why are officials seemingly unresponsive in light of a potential tinderbox situation?  The proximate cause of this civil unrest is the suspicious death of Freddie Gray who was taken into police custody and later died from severe injuries, his spinal cord 85% severed, three fractured neck vertebrae, and a crushed voice box. And, instead of learning the lessons from the past riots in Ferguson and elsewhere, the public officials apparently delayed their investigation until some local video camera evidence was taped over. According to news reports: “Officials have declined to provide 911 call recordings related to Gray's arrest or injury, citing the open investigation, and police have declined to provide dispatch recordings that would contain any conversations between officers and dispatchers while Gray was in custody. The timeline for when and where the van stopped remains incomplete, and no time has been provided for the van's last stop, back on North Avenue for another pickup before its arrival at the Western District police station.” <Source>
  • Why are officials reporting the possibility that three street gangs (Bloods, Crips, and Black Guerrilla Family) were going to declare a truce among themselves and possibly attack police officers – and then not targeting these gangs as the domestic terrorists they are? Could it have something to do with the fact that they are a minority and that the progressive socialist democrats are not about to tamper with their core constituency? Or that targeting a minority destroys part of their social justice meme that refused to hold minorities accountable for a disproportionate amount of crime?
  • Why is the Chief of Police not resigning after watching his officers stand one block away from an active looting scene – when the media was interviewing people a few hundred or so feet away from the action? It has been suggested that the optics of a black police force cracking down on black rioters would not play well in the political arena.
  • Why hasn’t the community come together to march and protest against the gangs that are killing young black men and providing drugs to children?
  • An why don't the progressive socialist democrats explain which special interests wound up will billions in tax dollars slated to improve life in the impoverished inner cities and upgrade educational opportunities?

What is the city doing to contain outside radicals and agitators? News reports have the communist New Black Panther Party in the area, not to mention members of Louis Farrakhan's Nation of Islam.

Media fail to identify leader of Baltimore riots

Major news media outlets have failed to report one of the main leaders of the “splinter group” of Baltimore protesters who turned violent is a notorious racist and the former national chairman of the New Black Panther Party, WND has found.


The New York Times, the Associated Press, the New York Daily News, CBS local and other news media outlets all name Malik Shabazz as a leader of the breakaway, chaotic protests. Yet each of these news outlets only identify Shabazz only as “president of Black Lawyers for Justice.”

The AP reported: “A smaller ‘splinter group’ looted a convenience store and threw tables and chairs through storefront windows, shattering the glass. One group smashed the window of a department store inside a downtown mall and, at one point, a protester tossed a flaming metal garbage can toward a line of police officers in riot gear as they tried to push back the crowd.

“Earlier, a group of protesters smashed the windows of at least three police cars and got into fights with baseball fans outside a bar.”

Shabazz was a leader of that “splinter group.” <Source>

Nation Of Islam and Gangs To Embattled Cities: We’re In Control

The reaction from authorities and activists to the violence exploding from protests in Baltimore appears to be a start of a pattern.

Baltimore Mayor Stephanie Rawlings Blake “thanked the Nation of Islam” Saturday, “who have been very present in our efforts to keep calm and peace in our city.”

The Daily Caller’s Chuck Ross asked the mayor’s office about her comments relating to giving “space” to those who wish to “destroy.” The mayor’s office would only say her comments were taken out of context.

The thank you came following the riots that erupted from local protests relating to the death of Freddie Gray, a 25-year-old black man who died from spinal injuries he incurred during his detainment by Baltimore law enforcement.

Malik Zulu Shabazz, former chairman of the New Black Panther Party, descended upon the city the day before the protests began and he told supporters at a rally, “Shut it down if you want to! Shut it down!”  <Source

What’s wrong with this picture?

In what world do you thank a racist, an anti-White, anti-America, anti-Semitic cult leader for his assistance in providing intimidating young men to help keep the peace?

The Mayor who is punching her future progressive socialist democrat ticket …

In a press conference Sunday, Rawlings-Blake said, "I ... instructed (the police) to do everything that they could to make sure that the protesters were able to exercise their right to free speech. ... We also gave those who wished to destroy space to do that." <Source>


Baltimore Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake has it all – a female version of Barack Obama – young, Black, telegenic, well-spoken, well-credentialed (BA in Political Science from Oberlin College; Juris Doctor from the University of Maryland School of Law), and all of the right positions and accolades (Mayor Rawlings-Blake was elected to a top leadership position in the Democratic National Committee (DNC) to serve as Secretary, following the historic reelection of President Barack Obama. Mayor Rawlings-Blake also serves as vice president of the U.S. Conference of Mayors (USCM) and in key USCM leadership positions. In 2010, she was elected by her fellow mayors to the USCM Board of Trustees. She is also a member of the Mayor’s Water Council, and the Criminal and Social Justice Standing Committee.). Plus, she has a hyphenated name and well-connected in democrat circles -- she is the daughter of one of the state’s most legendary politicians.

And like President Obama, she may be unable to pull the trigger lest it impact her future political career. Maybe this is her way of voting “present.”

What this mayor sounds like …

  • This particular fire is under investigation. We do not know if it is related to the riot.”
  • “Listen. I am going to protect people’s right to protest. The fact that people exploited that does not mean that I do not have an obligation to protect people’s right to protest.” 
  • “I never said, nor would I ever say, that we are giving people space to destroy our city. So my words should not be twisted.”

Spoken like a lawyer.

Bottom line …

It is almost like public officials want these civil rights protests and police actions to occur – possibly to gin-up their base for the upcoming 2016 election and the reinforce their meme of social justice, police oppression, and income inequality.

It is disgusting that the police are not taking action while the city’s leadership continues to bloviate. Oh well, another checkbox on the Mayor’s race to higher office.

With the police refusing to enforce the law, how can the city’s leadership continue to demand that law-abiding citizens be disarmed and stripped of the ability to protect themselves.

We are not a third-world nation or a banana republic, so what is going on?

-- steve

“Nullius in verba”-- take nobody's word for it!
"Acta non verba" -- actions not words

“Beware of false knowledge; it is more dangerous than ignorance.”-- George Bernard Shaw

“Progressive, liberal, Socialist, Marxist, Democratic Socialist -- they are all COMMUNISTS.”

“The key to fighting the craziness of the progressives is to hold them responsible for their actions, not their intentions.” – OCS

"The object in life is not to be on the side of the majority, but to escape finding oneself in the ranks of the insane." -- Marcus Aurelius

“A people that elect corrupt politicians, imposters, thieves, and traitors are not victims... but accomplices” -- George Orwell

“Fere libenter homines id quod volunt credunt." (The people gladly believe what they wish to.) ~Julius Caesar

“Describing the problem is quite different from knowing the solution. Except in politics." ~ OCS


Every once and awhile, I am reminded that I am walking in a legal minefield, hoping that the document I signed adequately represents the advertised benefits and that it conveys a net benefit to me without having to resort to costly and time-consuming litigation.

An interesting Supreme Court case popped into my email box courtesy of Peter Stris of Stris & Maher LLP …

Supreme Court to Hear ERISA Case Affecting Millions of Injured Americans

The United States Supreme Court agreed to hear Montanile v. Board of Trustees of the National Elevator Industry Health Benefit Plan (No. 14-723), a case involving a $1 billion multi-employer plan that provides health insurance to nearly 100,000 individuals. The Court will decide whether federally regulated insurers can seize the assets of disabled and injured individuals who received disability benefits or personal injury settlements but spent those monies on everyday living expenses.


Robert Montanile was in a car accident that resulted in severe spinal injuries. He received medical treatment which was paid for by his health plan. Montanile sued the drunk driver who caused the accident and recovered $500,000.

Unfortunately, that amount was insufficient to cover Montanile's medical bills, lost earnings, pain and suffering, and legal fees resulting from the accident. Although much of his recovery was the result of damages other than medical expenses, Montanile's health plan demanded that he personally reimburse it for the medical bills it had covered (and for which Montanile had already paid premiums). At issue is whether, under the federal law known as ERISA, Montanile must repay the plan even though he already spent the settlement proceeds on living expenses including the care of his young daughter.


The case will be argued by two of the nation's most influential Supreme Court lawyers, Peter K. Stris and Neal Katyal, both of whom were recently named by Reuters as among the sixty-six most influential lawyers in the country.

The successful petition was filed by Peter K. Stris of Stris & Maher LLP in Los Angeles. Stris routinely appears before the Court, and has been involved in more than half of its ERISA cases over the past decade. "In one respect," said Stris, "this is an easy case. The Court has said that the issue is to be decided based on a particular set of historical rules. And applying those rules, the answer is clear: the insurer loses. The real question is whether the Court will remain faithful to the legal principles it has espoused."

Neal Katyal of Hogan Lovells US LLP will argue the case for the Plan. Katyal is the former Acting Solicitor General of the United States and has argued 24 cases before the Court. According to papers filed by Katyal, "both plans and beneficiaries desperately need clarification as to whether a beneficiary can evade enforcement of a plan's reimbursement provision by reneging on his promise . . . ." "A decline in reimbursement affects more than the individual beneficiaries involved in a particular case; it impacts all plan beneficiaries."

This is not the first time Stris and Katyal have crossed swords. In US Airways, Inc. v. McCutchen (No. 11-1285), an ERISA case decided by the Supreme Court in 2013, Stris also represented an injured beneficiary and Katyal the health plan.

We all believe that we know how insurance is supposed to work. You pay premiums to insure against the risk of some personal catastrophe. And, that the insurer pays your medical bills and that is that. Simplistic and as we are about to learn, wrong. What we tend to overlook are the terms and conditions that are buried in boilerplate legalese that seem to be part of every contract or agreement that I have ever signed.

This is one of those cases that I characterize under the category “there but for the grace of God go I.” A technical argument so profound that two high-powered lawyers will do battle before the Supreme Court of the United States to see if justice just might coincide with the law.

I had two questions about the case that were graciously answered by Dana Berkowitz of Stris & Maher LLP …

Why wouldn’t the insurer, the Health Benefit Plan, proceed against those who caused the injury to recover costs in the same way the plaintiff, Montanile, brought a legal action against those responsible for injury?

That’s a good question. The Plan certainly had the right to proceed against the driver who caused Mr. Montanile’s injury (a common provision in insurance contracts called “subrogation”). We do not know why it chose not to do so here.

Without speculating about the Plan’s choice in this particular case, some reasons why a plan or insurance company might decline to bring suit in general include: (1) expectation of limited recovery from those who caused the injury, (2) expectation of incurring large legal fees to obtain the recovery, (3) inattention or inadvertent inaction, and/or (4) hope that the insured will bring suit anyway, and then the plan or insurance company can seek “reimbursement” without bearing its fair share of the legal fees.

Why would any attorney accept a personal injury case if they knew that another party, a third-party insurance carrier, had the legal right to any damages?

That’s a thorny question. In our experience, many insureds do not fully understand the subrogation and reimbursement provisions buried in their long, detailed, and often dense ERISA plans. And because ERISA law is quite technical, unfortunately many attorneys are not fully aware of these provisions or their implications, either.

We think that the very existence of so many lawsuits that appear to be subject to reimbursement provisions shows the gap in knowledge between plans and insurance companies, who are typically advised by sophisticated ERISA lawyers, and participants, who are typically advised by qualified personal injury lawyers who may not be familiar with the intricacies of ERISA.

How we got here …

Essentially, it appears that the basic facts of the case are undisputed, but Montanile’s lawyers seized upon a technicality and apparently argued that the subrogation and reimbursement provisions were unenforceable as they appeared only in the summary plan description and not in the formal plan documents. It appears that the Court disagreed, in essence rulings that the terms in the summary were as enforceable as those contained in the formal plan.

The Plan’s Right of Recovery

The Plan has the right to recover benefits advanced by the Plan to a covered person for expenses or losses caused by another party. . . .

Amounts that have been recovered by a covered person from another party are assets of the Plan by virtue of the Plan’s subrogation interest and are not distributable to any person or entity without the Plan’s written release of its subrogation interest. . . .

While the NEI Summary Plan Description had this reimbursement provision, the Trust Agreement and the Bargaining Agreement did not have a similar provision

<Source: Case: 14-11678 Date Filed: 11/25/2014 Page: 5 of 18>

The district court found that the NEI Summary Plan Description was an enforceable, governing plan document required by ERISA. Specifically, the district court stated that “[t]here can be no doubt that the NEI Summary Plan Description functioned as both the governing Plan document and the summary plan description mandated by ERISA.” The district court also then found that reimbursement was appropriate equitable relief under § 1132(a)(3)(B) because “[t]he settlement proceeds represent an identifiable fund to which the Plan’s lien attached and such proceeds belong ‘in good conscience’ to the Plan to the extent of the medical expenses it paid on Defendant’s behalf.” Accordingly, the district court denied Montanile’s motion for summary judgment and granted summary judgment in favor of the Board in the amount of $121,044.02, which was what the Board had paid as Montanile’s medical expenses.

<Source: Case: 14-11678 Date Filed: 11/25/2014 Page: 8 and 9 of 18


Appeal from the United States District Court for the Southern District of Florida

(November 25, 2014) IN THE UNITED STATES COURT OF APPEALS FOR THE ELEVENTH CIRCUIT (No. 14-11678 D.C. Docket No. 9:12-cv-80746-DLB)

Defendant-appellant Robert Montanile appeals the district court’s grant of summary judgment in the amount of $121,044.02 in favor of the plaintiff-appellee Board of Trustees of the National Elevator Industry Health Benefit Plan (the “Board”) in its lawsuit against Montanile. After an automobile accident, Montanile received a settlement from a third-party tortfeasor for injuries he suffered in the accident. After that settlement, the plaintiff Board sued Montanile for reimbursement of the medical expenses already paid on defendant Montanile’s behalf.

For all of the foregoing reasons, we affirm the district court’s grant of summary judgment in favor of the Board and denial of Montanile’s summary-judgment motion.<Source>

With the document issue apparently resolved, another argument is being placed before the Supreme Court …



This petition presents a single question about the meaning of an important remedial provision of the Employee Retirement and Income Security Act of 1974 ("ERISA"). Eight of the thirteen circuits have squarely and openly disagreed over the question presented. The result is
a widely acknowledged 6-2 circuit split. In a recent invitation brief, the United States acknowledged the (then) 5-2 circuit split and endorsed the minority position. Brief for the United States as Amicus Curiae, Thurber v. Aetna Life Ins. Co., 134 S.Ct. 2723 (May 6, 2014) (No. 13-130). The government recommended denial, however, solely on vehicle grounds. Id. at 15-20. The petition was denied.

The question presented by this petition is:

Does a lawsuit by an ERISA fiduciary against a participant to recover an alleged overpayment by the plan seek "equitable relief" within the meaning of ERISA section 502(a)(3), 29 U.S.C. § 1132(a)(3), if the fiduciary has not identified a particular fund that is in the participant's possession and control at the time the fiduciary asserts its claim?  <Source: BRIEF FOR PETITIONER>


Whether a beneficiary of a benefit plan governed by the Employee Retirement and Income Security Act of 1974 can defeat enforcement of the plan’s valid equitable lien by agreement—after the lien attaches—by dissipating the fund subject to the lien.


If I am reading this correctly, this appears to be an interesting case of trying to get blood out of a turnip – that is, can one’s insurer recover funds that were already spent at the time the legal action commenced. A far different question than the one posed by the the document issue.

What might happen?

With the hyper-partisan Supreme Court, one never really knows what might influence the Court. On one hand, we have the unions that overwhelmingly support the democrat party and may influence the progressive socialist democrats on the bench. And on the other hand, who knows what that hand might be doing. Perhaps, they will simply make a narrow ruling that pertains only to this case and leave the bigger issue for another day. Or, they might demand that the language of the disclosure be tweaked – a legal version of “Don’t spend a dime of any settlement until you pay your insurer and get a general release -- even though you mistakenly thought your insured was being paid to accept the total risk in return for your premium payments.”

Bottom line …

While it would be easy to say that we all should pay more attention to the terms and conditions contained in the documents we are signing, it would be an almost impossible accomplishment for most laypersons without specific legal training and knowledge of the subject-matter. Thus we need to trust those who purportedly are acting in our best interests.

The other quirky point about this case is that it appears that the union’s plan administrators are willing to throw an individual member under the proverbial bus to benefit the collective. Thus reinforcing my opinion that unions, per se, are more about self-protection than they are about helping their members.

It will be interesting to see how this case plays out and whether or not an insurer can heap additional pain, suffering, and misery on people who are already suffering.

-- steve

“Nullius in verba”-- take nobody's word for it!
"Acta non verba" -- actions not words

“Beware of false knowledge; it is more dangerous than ignorance.”-- George Bernard Shaw

“Progressive, liberal, Socialist, Marxist, Democratic Socialist -- they are all COMMUNISTS.”

“The key to fighting the craziness of the progressives is to hold them responsible for their actions, not their intentions.” – OCS

"The object in life is not to be on the side of the majority, but to escape finding oneself in the ranks of the insane." -- Marcus Aurelius

“A people that elect corrupt politicians, imposters, thieves, and traitors are not victims... but accomplices” -- George Orwell

“Fere libenter homines id quod volunt credunt." (The people gladly believe what they wish to.) ~Julius Caesar

“Describing the problem is quite different from knowing the solution. Except in politics." ~ OCS


What you want in the United States Attorney General is a person who does their job free of outside political influences and does not attempt to corrupt the legal process by even considering a “legacy.” 


Lynch’s Biggest Challenge as Holder Successor Is Ticking Clock -- She'll have just 21 months before the president leaves the Oval Office.

When Loretta Lynch is sworn in next week, one challenge will loom larger than the rest: a ticking clock.

As the new U.S. attorney general, tasked with combating corporate crime and prosecuting terrorists, she will have just 21 months to leave her imprint on the Justice Department before her boss, President Barack Obama, steps down.

She just isn’t going to be around long enough to think in terms of a huge legacy,” said Douglas Berman, a law professor at Ohio State University. “She will likely keep her head down, continue with most of Holder’s policies and make an impact and perhaps shift emphasis where she can.”

Lynch, who was confirmed by the Senate on Thursday, will become the first black woman to serve as the nation’s top law enforcement official, replacing Attorney General Eric Holder. Her confirmation on a 56-43 vote ended a five-month wait over her nomination, which was marked by partisan fights over unrelated legislation and Republican concerns that she won’t be independent enough from Obama.

Holder had more than six years to craft a legacy on issues ranging from civil rights to pursuing terrorists and reforming sentencing laws. Because Lynch agrees with Holder on most issues and faces such a short tenure, she’s likely to make only slight changes to Justice operations.

It is events more than anything that will dictate her legacy,” said James Garland, Holder’s former deputy chief of staff. “Terrorist attacks, police shootings, financial scandals -- these are the sorts of things that will come across the transom and that she will have to respond to. That is mostly how people will judge her.”

Read more at: Lynch’s Biggest Challenge as Holder Successor Is Ticking Clock - Bloomberg Politics

The idea that the top law enforcement official will pick and choose cases based on personal considerations should be an anathema to all citizens, especially since it opens the door to abuse of the process where individual prosecutors will engage in prosecutorial misconduct, evidence tampering, and withholding exculpatory evidence as we have seen in the past.

Attorney General Eric Holder’s legacy …


While some consider Eric Holder’s legacy to be rooted in civil rights and terrorist prosecutions, his real legacy is rooted in political fraud and corruption – starting with the machinations of the Marc Rich pardon and ending with the obstruction of justice that comes with the never ending investigations to protect the Obama Administration, the refusal to prosecute documented voter intimidation by the Black Panthers, the refusal to investigate and prosecute Lois Lerner for IRS scandal which interfered with a Presidential election, and worst of all, providing rulings that appear to sanction President Obama’s unconstitutional activities.

Bottom line …

Enough with the “historic” nominations and the promotion of color over competence and sex over substance. If America does not reverse its trend of political corruption by self-serving elected officials, we are as doomed as the late Roman Empire. The most important nation on the face of the Earth done in by political suicide and the actions of its enemies, both foreign and domestic.

We cannot trust the progressive socialist democrats in matters of morality, legality, constitutionality, safety and security. In fact, they appear to have become the neo-Communist Party of the United States.

Be careful with your vote, it is as dangerous to your health as a loaded gun in the hands of a child.

-- steve

“Nullius in verba”-- take nobody's word for it!
"Acta non verba" -- actions not words

“Beware of false knowledge; it is more dangerous than ignorance.”-- George Bernard Shaw

“Progressive, liberal, Socialist, Marxist, Democratic Socialist -- they are all COMMUNISTS.”

“The key to fighting the craziness of the progressives is to hold them responsible for their actions, not their intentions.” – OCS

"The object in life is not to be on the side of the majority, but to escape finding oneself in the ranks of the insane." -- Marcus Aurelius

“A people that elect corrupt politicians, imposters, thieves, and traitors are not victims... but accomplices” -- George Orwell

“Fere libenter homines id quod volunt credunt." (The people gladly believe what they wish to.) ~Julius Caesar

“Describing the problem is quite different from knowing the solution. Except in politics." ~ OCS


Couldn’t help but think that a communist reading President Obama’s emails would be like reading a dull version of Pravda: who cares?


And, if it was the Russian government behind the scenes, what are they going to find out: Obama strayed from their reservation and somehow became a champion of America and the Constitution?

Bottom line …

It is a shame when one has no faith in the leadership of your country. A President that apologizes for American exceptionalism, denigrates our allies, favors our enemies … and can’t bring himself to tell the truth – about anything.

-- steve

“Nullius in verba”-- take nobody's word for it!
"Acta non verba" -- actions not words

“Beware of false knowledge; it is more dangerous than ignorance.”-- George Bernard Shaw

“Progressive, liberal, Socialist, Marxist, Democratic Socialist -- they are all COMMUNISTS.”

“The key to fighting the craziness of the progressives is to hold them responsible for their actions, not their intentions.” – OCS

"The object in life is not to be on the side of the majority, but to escape finding oneself in the ranks of the insane." -- Marcus Aurelius

“A people that elect corrupt politicians, imposters, thieves, and traitors are not victims... but accomplices” -- George Orwell

“Fere libenter homines id quod volunt credunt." (The people gladly believe what they wish to.) ~Julius Caesar

“Describing the problem is quite different from knowing the solution. Except in politics." ~ OCS


At least former President Richard Nixon said “I am not a crook,” but all you hear from presidential candidate Hillary Clinton is silence. Preferring to hide in her bunker and send forth her acolytes to loudly proclaim her innocence much in the way these acolytes assured us that Monica Lewinsky was a figment of the vast rightwing conspiracy … until the blue dress.

hillary-1 (2)

From the talking points …   

“No one has produced a shred of evidence that Hillary Clinton ever took action as Secretary of State in order to support the interests of donors to the Clinton Foundation.

To suggest the State Department, under then-Secretary Clinton, exerted undue influence in the U.S. government’s review of the sale of Uranium One is utterly baseless.

It mischaracterizes the nature of the State Department’s participation in such reviews, and also ignores the range of other regulatory agencies that ultimately supported this sale.

It is impossible to view this allegation as anything other than just another in the many partisan conspiracy theories advanced in the Clinton Cashbook.”  <Source>


Instead of saying that Hillary Clinton is innocent of all of the allegations that she traded access for donations to the Clinton Foundation or was involved with speech fees paid to Bill Clinton, she sends forth someone to say an apparent  lawyer-crafted statement that nobody has produced “evidence” to support the interests of donors to the Clinton Foundation. Furthermore setting the stage for blaming lower-level employees as the ones who took “action” to support the interests of the Foundation. Curious, because a number of high-level people close to Hillary Clinton at the State Department were also associated with the Clinton Foundation.

So how does Hillary explain the use of a private e-mail server? So how does Hillary claim that the official records were preserved when she sent emails to top State Department personnel … when we have learned that others, including Hillary’s top aids Huma Abedin and Cheryl Mills also used the same private server?

So how does Hillary Clinton claim that 30,000 emails were private and dealt with such things as yoga appointments and Chelsea’s wedding arrangements?

How does Hillary Clinton claim immunity for destroying the emails from her top aides – which were not obviously captured by the State Department’s system and at least one of those aids was working for a private advocacy firm under a “special” agreement with the State Department signed off by Hillary Clinton herself?

How does Hillary Clinton explain how the Clinton Foundation transparency agreement she signed was obviously breached when significant and troubling omissions were discovered by that vast rightwing conspiracy that apparently now includes the progressive New York Times, Washington Post, and Reuters?

And, why is the Clinton Foundation re-stating their IRS government filings for multiple years on an emergency basis?   

The new symbol of Hillary’s Parallel Universe. hcl

Hillary may play the victim card ...   

Now that the Clinton Foundation is re-stating its IRS filings, who wants to bet that Hillary might play the "victim" card and blame the who misunderstanding on the Clinton Foundation's lower level staffers -- possibly to the extent of claiming that someone was only supposed to erase her emails and accidently wiped the server or inappropriately erased the emails of the other State Department staffers who were using the same server? The cry will go up in HillaryLand -- Bill's done it again! Especially if it is found that Bill wrote a letter of mitigation for the convicted pedophile Jeffery Epstein or that someone links Bill to the action on Epstein's "orgy island."

Bottom line …

In light of the scandal, malfeasance, misfeasance, and possibly criminal actions of the Obama Administration, how can the progressive socialist democrats put up a candidate that is thoroughly corrupt, dishonest, and mired in cronyism. Unless they believe vagina-Americans will ignore their lying eyes and ears and vote for another women?

Unless we can stem the tide of political corruption, we, as a nation, are doomed – something the socialist and communists have been working toward for years. And, given the last actions of President Obama, trained by socialists and communists, something we brought upon ourselves.

We are so screwed.

-- steve

“Nullius in verba”-- take nobody's word for it!
"Acta non verba" -- actions not words

“Beware of false knowledge; it is more dangerous than ignorance.”-- George Bernard Shaw

“Progressive, liberal, Socialist, Marxist, Democratic Socialist -- they are all COMMUNISTS.”

“The key to fighting the craziness of the progressives is to hold them responsible for their actions, not their intentions.” – OCS

"The object in life is not to be on the side of the majority, but to escape finding oneself in the ranks of the insane." -- Marcus Aurelius

“A people that elect corrupt politicians, imposters, thieves, and traitors are not victims... but accomplices” -- George Orwell

“Fere libenter homines id quod volunt credunt." (The people gladly believe what they wish to.) ~Julius Caesar

“Describing the problem is quite different from knowing the solution. Except in politics." ~ OCS


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Reporter #1: Madam Secretary, how can you explain all of those donations to the Clinton Foundation and Bill’s $500,000 speaking fees so close to advantageous State Departments findings and ruling?

Clinton: That’s old news that has been seen and vetted by the media.

Reporter #1: Madam Secretary, but that was only last week.

Clinton: Like I said, “Old News.” Next Question.

Reporter #2: To follow-up, what about the re-filing of tax returns?

Clinton:  Absurd conspiracy theories based on old news.

How many times has an elected official been caught omitting information or filing a false report and then allowed to re-file as if the deception was not intended? Or excused from the consequences of their actions by there peers who have similar “issues?”

With all of the money flowing through the Clinton Foundation and their access to the top professionals – lawyers and accountants – why are they refilling five years of tax returns, and will those amended returns be the ONLY ones presented to the country as proof of Hillary’s openness and transparency? Another deception and cover-up in the works?

Exclusive: Clinton charities will refile tax returns, audit for other errors

Hillary Clinton's family's charities are refiling at least five annual tax returns after a Reuters review found errors in how they reported donations from governments, and said they may audit other Clinton Foundation returns in case of other errors.

The foundation and its list of donors have been under intense scrutiny in recent weeks. Republican critics say the foundation makes Clinton, who is seeking the Democratic presidential nomination in 2016, vulnerable to undue influence. Her campaign team calls these claims "absurd conspiracy theories."

The charities' errors generally take the form of under-reporting or over-reporting, by millions of dollars, donations from foreign governments, or in other instances omitting to break out government donations entirely when reporting revenue, the charities confirmed to Reuters.

The errors, which have not been previously reported, appear on the form 990s that all non-profit organizations must file annually with the Internal Revenue Service to maintain their tax-exempt status. A charity must show copies of the forms to anyone who wants to see them to understand how the charity raises and spends money.

Read more at: Exclusive: Clinton charities will refile tax returns, audit for other errors | Reuters

And, how is it that the State Department “negotiated” all of those “special” waivers and deals with the Clintons and their top-level cronies?

State Department IG Investigating Huma Abedin’s Job Under Hillary Clinton

The State Department Inspector General is now investigating the arrangement between Huma Abedin and then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.

Inspector Steve Linick is looking into the program that allowed Clinton to hire Abedin for government work even though she was employed by a private firm.

In May 2013, the New York Times reported that Abedin never disclosed her earnings and the private consulting that she was conducting outside of the State Department while continuing to serve as Clinton’s top adviser.

Abedin worked for Teneo, which was founded by Doug Band, a former adviser to President Bill Clinton. The corporate client list for Teneo has included Coca-Cola and MF Global, the since-folded brokerage firm run by Jon S. Corzine.

While consulting for Teneo and serving as Clinton’s top adviser, Abedin served as a consultant for the Clinton Foundation. During Clinton’s transition from senator to Secretary of State, Abedin worked as her personal assistant. <Source>

And about the 30,000 deleted e-mails …

Both Clinton and Abedin used a private email server and personal email addresses to communicate and conduct official business. Sen. Charles Grassley (R., Iowa) also raised a potential conflict of interest that both Clinton and Abedin had used a private email server. <Source>

Pattern and Practice of Corruption …

There is no doubt that the Clintons, both Bill and Hillary, have a pattern and practice of corruption, falsehoods, perjury, and extreme cronyism … even to the extent that one of their trusted advisors would steal classified documents from the National Archives to protect the Clintons.

At President Clinton's request, he [Clinton's National Security Adviser, Sandy Berger] reviewed highly confidential material during four visits to the Archives over four months. Only Mr. Berger knows what transpired on his first two visits, when he reviewed collections of confidential memos, e-mails, and handwritten notes, including materials taken from counter-terrorism adviser Richard Clarke's office - all of which were not catalogued at the individual item level.

On Mr. Berger's third visit Archives employees became suspicious that he might be removing classified material. Rather than directly confront a former Cabinet-level official, Archives officials simply took steps to identify further theft on succeeding visits. That is how Mr. Berger's thefts on his fourth and last visit were documented.

We don't know what Mr. Berger might have removed from the uncatalogued materials reviewed in his earlier visits, but we know his last visit focused on a memorandum called the Millennium Alert After Action Report (MAAAR). Copies of this report were made available to the 9/11 Commission, but the information in those copies undoubtedly is not what interested Berger most. Berger took five copies of the report and later destroyed three of them.

What was on the copies he destroyed? Handwritten notes from Berger, the President, or some other official? Observations that would be embarrassing to them, evidence they missed an important threat or considered or recommended actions - or decisions not to act - they wouldn't want to defend in public? Evidence, perhaps, that would have supported the Bush Administration? We don't know, and no one who does is saying, but the evidence must have been terribly damning for Berger to take the risks he did. <Source>

Acting with impunity: the Presidential Pardon, the ultimate get-out-of-jail-free card …

It remains to be seen if President Obama will issue blanket pardons to those who committed felonious acts during his Administration.

Bottom line …

Foundations have become the newest wealth-building, influence peddling machine for insulating politicians from directly being charged with bribery and other illegal acts. And, how can one claim openness and transparency where their filings are massively wrong and multiple years must be corrected and re-filed?

Certainly the pattern and practices of the Clintons, including perjury, destruction of government property, obstruction of justice, and other crimes rise to a RICO (Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations) Act investigation and prosecution.

Can we allow any political party to put up a President candidate that is so thoroughly corrupt and untrustworthy that they pose a clear and present danger to the United States of America? And, can we trust the progressive mainstream media to provide accurate information regarding political candidates whose political ideology they support?

I say NO! No to corrupt candidates. No to a corrupt press.

-- steve

“Nullius in verba”-- take nobody's word for it!
"Acta non verba" -- actions not words

“Beware of false knowledge; it is more dangerous than ignorance.”-- George Bernard Shaw

“Progressive, liberal, Socialist, Marxist, Democratic Socialist -- they are all COMMUNISTS.”

“The key to fighting the craziness of the progressives is to hold them responsible for their actions, not their intentions.” – OCS

"The object in life is not to be on the side of the majority, but to escape finding oneself in the ranks of the insane." -- Marcus Aurelius

“A people that elect corrupt politicians, imposters, thieves, and traitors are not victims... but accomplices” -- George Orwell

“Fere libenter homines id quod volunt credunt." (The people gladly believe what they wish to.) ~Julius Caesar

“Describing the problem is quite different from knowing the solution. Except in politics." ~ OCS


Here are the ten Republican Senators who voted to confirm President Obama’s nominee for the United States Attorney General, Loretta Lynch …


  • Sens. Kelly Ayotte (R-NH)
  • Thad Cochran (R-MS)
  • Susan Collins (R-ME)
  • Jeff Flake (R-AZ)
  • Lindsey Graham (R-SC)
  • Orrin Hatch (R-UT)
  • Ron Johnson (R-WI)
  • Mark Kirk (R-IL)
  • Rob Portman (R-OH)
  • Mitch McConnell (R-KY & Senate Majority Leader)

All of whom are considered to be RINOs (Republicans In Name Only).

And, they are telling the American people that Loretta Lynch has the integrity to investigate and pursue criminal wrongdoing in the Obama Administration in spite of the machinations, delay, and obstruction associated with her predecessor Eric Holder.


With scandals swirling about the White House and the Clinton candidacy, will Loretta Lynch take affirmative action or simply allow the Obama Administration to run out the clock.

Bottom line …

Are we going to allow a single party, the progressive socialist democrats, to destroy America with their corruption and toxic political ideology that sees socialists and communists openly feted in the White House and allowed to serve in the Obama Administration.

-- steve 

“Nullius in verba”-- take nobody's word for it!
"Acta non verba" -- actions not words

“Beware of false knowledge; it is more dangerous than ignorance.”-- George Bernard Shaw

“Progressive, liberal, Socialist, Marxist, Democratic Socialist -- they are all COMMUNISTS.”

“The key to fighting the craziness of the progressives is to hold them responsible for their actions, not their intentions.” – OCS

"The object in life is not to be on the side of the majority, but to escape finding oneself in the ranks of the insane." -- Marcus Aurelius

“A people that elect corrupt politicians, imposters, thieves, and traitors are not victims... but accomplices” -- George Orwell

“Fere libenter homines id quod volunt credunt." (The people gladly believe what they wish to.) ~Julius Caesar

“Describing the problem is quite different from knowing the solution. Except in politics." ~ OCS