Thursday, October 8, 2015

October, 2015, Part 6, Political Class Insanity: Fudging the Numbers At The Pentagon, Diminishing Economic Freedom and More

It is the beginning of another month which means it is time again to review the latest political class insanity from the American political class. Each month it takes us multiple posts to cover the wasteful spending, incompetent government organizations and employees, government programs that usually make a problem worse than resolving it, inane and idiotic politician comments, etc.

To review past posts on this insanity and idiocy, just click on the first few posts in each month listed to the right of this page. After reviewing just a handful of these insanity post we think you will agree that we are currently being served by the worst set of American politicians ever to hold office in our entire history

Over the next two days we should wrap up the political class insanity that has rained down on us in just the past month or so, an effort that will likely take us a full seven days to document and review:

1) Despite his grandiose campaign promise that he would operate the “most transparent Presidential administration ever,” we have shown dozens and dozens of times that he has actually operated the most opaque, secretive, and deceptive Presidency of all time. He has stifled and block Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests, he has spied on journalists, he has sent the IRS after his political opponents, he has released FOIA information that was severely redacted and useless, his Justice Department has illegally destroyed government documents, his Justice Department has ignored requests from Congress for government documents, his administration has illegally tried to charge Americans for FOIA requests, he has tried to silence whistle blowers, etc. 

And now we find out that we have a very serious breach of integrity and accurate information as it relates to the fight against terrorism and within the Defense Department. Over four dozen professional intelligence experts within the Defense Department have claimed that national security intelligence reports on the major terrorist organizations around the world are being altered to show a more favorable slant for Obama's failing war on terror. These intelligence analysts, working out of the U.S. military’s Central Command (CENTCOM), have made the accusation that the information they are developing is being altered to downplay various terror organizations’ strength.

According to a report from the Daily Beast, senior officials are changing the information: “The cancer was within the senior level of the intelligence command,” one defense official told the reporter. What started with accusations from two senior intelligence analysts has now been strengthened with another four dozen or so analysts supporting the claim.

The Daily Beast, an entity that usually loves anything Obama is involved in, reported the following atrocities of data integrity:

"The accusations suggest that a large number of people tracking the inner workings of the terror groups think that their reports are being manipulated to fit a public narrative. The allegations echoed charges that political appointees and senior officials cherry-picked intelligence about Iraq’s supposed weapons program in 2002 and 2003.

Some of those CENTCOM analysts described the sizeable cadre of protesting analysts as a “revolt” by intelligence professionals who are paid to give their honest assessment, based on facts, and not to be influenced by national-level policy. The analysts have accused senior-level leaders, including the director of intelligence and his deputy in CENTCOM, of changing their analyses to be more in line with the Obama administration’s public contention that the fight against ISIS and al Qaeda is making progress. The analysts take a more pessimistic view about how military efforts to destroy the groups are going…

The complaints allege that in some cases key elements of intelligence reports were removed, resulting in a document that didn’t accurately capture the analysts’ conclusions, sources familiar with the protest said. But the complaint also goes beyond alleged altering of reports and accuses some senior leaders at CENTCOM of creating an unprofessional work environment. One person who knows the contents of the written complaint sent to the inspector general said it used the word “Stalinist” to describe the tone set by officials overseeing CENTCOM’s analysis."

Many described a climate in which analysts felt they could not give a candid assessment of the situation in Iraq and Syria. Some felt it was a product of commanders protecting their own career advancement by putting the best spin on the war.

As always, if this is what Obama thinks is a transparent organization and Presidency, I would hate to see what he considers a secretive and deceptive Presidency.

2) Over the past two days, we spent a lot of time reviewing the putrid economic trends in this country that have occurred under Obama’s administration and in conjunction with the current Congress. Low wage growth, stagnant household earnings, anemic overall economic growth, record number of adults without a full time job, high unemployment among African-Americans, etc. 

These horrible economic results have happened despite the fact that Washington had three major economic tailwinds at its disposal: an $800 billion economic stimulus package, an energy revolution that substantially reduced energy costs, and a Federal Reserve that injected trillions of fake dollars into the economy. And despite these major economic aids, Obama and the rest of Washington still screwed things up. 

Yesterday, we presented four solutions to this anemic economic situation. But R. Williams, writing for Moneynews on September 18, 2015 may have identifiedthe major reason why Washington has led us down this horrible economic path: a recent study now finds that the U.S. has slipped to a depressing 16th place in the world when it comes to economic freedom.

The study uses broad indicators of economic freedoms and is done on an annual basis by Robert A. Lawson of Southern Methodist University, James Gwartney of Florida State University and Joshua Hall of West Virginia University. In 2000, the U.S. was second in the world relative to economic freedom, trailing only Hong Kong. But the latest iteration of the study shows that citizens in countries like Singapore, United Arab Emirates and get this, the former SOVIET republic of Georgia, have greater economic liberties than Americans.

The reasons for this depressing drop from second to 16th is a result of the Federal government enacting more and more regulations and that legal protections for individuals have weakened: “The United States has experienced a significant move away from rule of law and toward a highly regulated, politicized and heavily policed state,” according to Larsen. “During the past decade, non-tariff trade barriers, restrictions on foreign investment and business regulations of various kinds have grown extensively.”

Other countries ranked higher than America in 2015 include the ones listed above plus New Zealand, Switzerland, Jordan, Ireland and Qatar. So now we see that not only is economic freedom better than the U.S. in a previous Soviet Republic but two countries in the oppressive Middle East, Jordan and Qatar, are also ranked higher. 

Thus, we now have a set of numbers and professional analysis that proves what we discussed yesterday: the more government gets involved in the economy, the more unneeded regulations are implemented, the more that economically ignorant politicians involved themselves with the market and economy, the worst the economic outcome is for Americans. The trend over the past fifteen years proves that doing exactly the opposite of what Obama has done in the past six years was the better economic remedy for the country.

But this should not surprise us. In many past political class insanity posts we have proven that usually when politicians get involved with a problem, they almost never resolve it, the often make it worst, and they spend and waste trillions of dollars in the process. That is the insanity of the current set of American politicians.

More insanity tomorrow.

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