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Sunday, June 23, 2013

The Stunning Hypocrisy of the U.S. Government

MR. OOPS! House Majority Leader Rep. John Boehner (R-OH)

Posted on June 23, 2013 by WashingtonsBlog
The Government’s Hypocrisy Is the Core Problem

Congress has exempted itself from the prohibition against trading on inside information … the law that got Martha Stewart and many other people thrown in jail.

There are many other ways in which the hypocrisy of the politicians in D.C. are hurting our country.

Washington politicians say we have to slash basic services, and yet waste hundreds of billions of dollars on counter-productive boondoggles.  If the politicos just stopped throwing money at corporate welfare queens, military and security boondoggles and pork, harmful quantitative easingunnecessary nuclear subsidies,  the failed war on drugs, and other wasted and counter-productive expenses, we wouldn’t need to impose austerity on the people.

The D.C. politicians said that the giant failed banks couldn’t be nationalized, because that would be socialism.  Instead of temporarily nationalizing them and then spinning them off to the private sector – or breaking them up – the politicians have bailed them out to the tune of many tens of billions of dollars each year, and created a system where all of the profits are privatized, and all of the losses socialized.

Obama and Congress promised help for struggling homeowners, and passed numerous bills that they claimed would rescue the little guy.  But every single one of these bills actually bails out the banks … and doesn’t really help the homeowner.

The D.C. regulators pretend that they are being tough on the big banks, but are actually doing everything they can to help cover up their sins.

Many have pointed out Obama’s hypocrisy in slamming Bush’s spying programs … and then expanding them  (millions more).

And – while the Obama administration is spying on everyone in the country – it is at the same time the most secretive administration ever (background).    That’s despite Obama saying he’s running the most transparent administration ever.

Glenn Greenwald – the Guardian reporter who broke the NSA spying revelations – has documented for many years the hypocritical use of leaks by the government to make itself look good … while throwing the book at anyone who leaks information embarrassing to the government.

Greenwald notes today:

Prior to Barack Obama’s inauguration, there were a grand total of three prosecutions of leakers under the Espionage Act (including the prosecution of Dan Ellsberg by the Nixon DOJ). That’s because the statute is so broad that even the US government has largely refrained from using it. But during the Obama presidency, there are now seven such prosecutions: more than double the number under all prior US presidents combined.


Please read this rather good summary in this morning’s New York Times of the worldwide debate Snowden has enabled – how these disclosures have “set off a national debate over the proper limits of government surveillance” and “opened an unprecedented window on the details of surveillance by the NSA, including its compilation of logs of virtually all telephone calls in the United States and its collection of e-mails of foreigners from the major American Internet companies, including Google, Yahoo, Microsoft, Apple and Skype” – and ask yourself: has Snowden actually does anything to bring “injury to the United States”, or has he performed an immense public service?

The irony is obvious: the same people who are building a ubiquitous surveillance system to spy on everyone in the world, including their own citizens, are now accusing the person who exposed it of “espionage”. It seems clear that the people who are actually bringing “injury to the United States” are those who are waging war on basic tenets of transparency and secretly constructing a mass and often illegal and unconstitutional surveillance apparatus aimed at American citizens – and those who are lying to the American people and its Congress about what they’re doing – rather than those who are devoted to informing the American people that this is being done…
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