Clear and warm this early Tuesday on California’s north coast — the low-roar sound of the peaceful Pacific seems to come from afar, though, the ocean is only a mile or two away.
Noise depends on the air.
And in DC, the din has become nearly oppressive. President Obama has most-likely shit in his mess kit, even if he doesn’t know it yet. In the wake of the GOP facade-attempt in scandalizing Benghazi, the Obama administration faces more political shit from his own people, and if he can’t herd together the growing gap in ‘truthiness,’ then the next three years ain’t gonna be pretty.
(Illustration found here).
This morning, beyond Angelina Jolie’s startling new revelation, the piecing together of the horror of Cleveland, theÂ unmasking of the New Orleans shooter, and various other nasty bits of ugly, there’sÂ this warped-out story that will give eventually give Obama great grief:
The Justice Department secretly obtained two months of telephone records of reporters and editors for The Associated Press in what the news cooperativeâ€™s top executive called a â€œmassive and unprecedented intrusionâ€ into how news organizations gather the news.
The records obtained by the Justice Department listed outgoing calls for the work and personal phone numbers of individual reporters, for general AP office numbers in New York, Washington and Hartford, Conn., and for the main number for the AP in the House of Representatives press gallery, according to attorneys for the AP.
It was not clear if the records also included incoming calls or the duration of the calls.
Of course, the GOP jumped head first — Darrell Issa, head witch-hunter for Benghazi-gate, blubbered: “They had an obligation to look for every other way to get it before they intruded on the freedom of the press.”
Issa is such a nasty wisenheimer.
The Justice Department areÂ watching their words in this newest flak storm:
The US attorneyâ€™s office in Washington, which is part of the Justice Department, in a statement sent to AFP, did not specifically mention the AP but stated that it follows specific laws and regulations in seeking records of media organizations.
â€œThose regulations require us to make every reasonable effort to obtain information through alternative means before even considering a subpoena for the phone records of a member of the media,â€ the statement said.
â€œWe must notify the media organization in advance unless doing so would pose a substantial threat to the integrity of the investigation.
Because we value the freedom of the press, we are always careful and deliberative in seeking to strike the right balance between the public interest in the free flow of information and the public interest in the fair and effective administration of our criminal laws.â€
And, of course, this tid-bit is the second balloon pop for the Obama people — the first the IRS scrutinizing right-wing Tea Party groups. That shit will smell bad for a long time.
(Via) The Internal Revenue Service on Friday apologized for targeting groups with â€œtea partyâ€ or â€œpatriotâ€ in their names, confirming long-standing accusations by some conservatives that their applications for tax-exempt status were being improperly delayed and scrutinized.
On top of all the current shit, from out in the world to down on the homestead, Obama now has three “scandals” he’s got to deal with in the coming weeks, and, he really doesn’t know how to deal with these kinds of stuff. He’s too mild-mannered, or something.
And this ‘stuff’ has a way of interrupting everything — from Reuters:
It happened when the president had to interrupt his news conference with Prime Minister David Cameron of Britain to answer questions about the widening investigation into the Benghazi attacks in Libya and the Internal Revenue Service’s targeting of Tea Party and other conservative groups.
By the end of the day he was facing a third major problem when the Associated Press said the Department of Justice had secretly seized some of its reporters’ phone records last year.
It is all leading to comparisons with the second term of President Bill Clinton, in which his agenda was severely disrupted by the Monica Lewinsky scandal.
Obama, unlike Clinton, has not been accused of personal misconduct.
But his ability to steer the Washington “conversation” could be compromised.
“I think the IRS scandal comes at a very inopportune time for the president and the Democratic agenda,” said Sarah Binder, a George Washington University scholar of Congress.
“The challenge for Obama and the Democrats in the coming weeks and months will be to keep the public’s attention focused on Obama’s policy goals when Republicans and the media will be focused on scandal.”
Since that’s all the GOP has to go on — scandal — you can bet the shitfire storm will only get worse.
Obama surely must wishÂ Miss Pope was on his cellphone speed-dial.