February 1, 2014

“Obama’s Weaponization of Government” [Darleen Click]

It’s not just the IRS

The weaponization of government is happening and it’s time Americans took notice. For all the folks – primarily on the left – who screamed and yelled that the Patriot Act was shredding the Constitution, far more intrusive tactics that have nothing to do with the NSA or Homeland Security are being deployed right under our noses during this Administration. Those tactics reduce every Americans’ personal and economic freedom.

There is a dangerous arrogance of power among the President and senior-level Democrats that should concern every American. […]

The IRS scandal is well-known and the misuse of the agency by the Democrat Party machine is still apparently going on. However, the IRS is just one of dozens of other agencies under the control of this White House, many of which go unnoticed by the public and are virtually ignored by elected officials.

There are the new revelations about the Administration intimidating banks to prevent them from doing business with a number of legitimate businesses. The until recently covert Operation Choke Point administered through the Departments of Justice and Treasury is already having an impact on the financial industry and other legitimate businesses the Administration is targeting. According to the Wall Street Journal, J.P. Morgan , has been forced to cut ties with thousands of customers in the last year. Sources indicate that out of fear of government scrutiny, the bank is ending relationships with customers even if there isn’t any sign that the customer has done anything wrong. Other major banks have stopped offering certain popular, legal products or services because of government pressure.

Documents inadvertently leaked by the Department of the Treasury from a briefing on Operation Choke Point clearly show that the Administration is looking to significantly impact legal businesses because it believes the public needs to be protected from industries and customers deemed more likely to engage in criminal activity. According to the Administration, those industries interestingly include ammunition sales, gun sales, home-based charities, gambling, pharmaceutical sales, short-term loans, raffles, Amway and Mary Kay-style sales businesses, and credit repair services.

The Administration is refusing to answer any Congressional inquiries about Operation Choke Point. […]

As the Washington Examiner’s Richard Pollack recently reported, “they assume all businesses are predatory,” which allegedly gives them the ability to collect up to 96 separate data points from more than 1 billion credit cards. That’s right – your government is now keeping tabs on how you spend your money.

Congress has asked CFPB questions about the consumer “snooping” program and has been given little in response. The head of CFPB Richard Cordray did however inform Members of Congress that Americans cannot opt out or prevent this personal data collection. […]

So under the guise of consumer protection and fraud prevention, the Administration is using a range of Executive Branch agencies working together and separately to determine which products, services, payment methods, and other previously legitimate activities necessitate steep regulation and public defaming. This will lead to not only an unconscionable interference with the free market but also a restriction of personal choice for every American.

Obama said he was going to fundamentally transform America.

There you go.

Pitchforks and torches, gentlemen and ladies?

Posted by Darleen @ 3:50pm

Tags: ,

Comments (24)

  1. * Repost, just because:

    – At some point, somewhere down the line, all this restless native activity that His Wancer is stirring up just has to come home to roost, no matter how much the media tries to protect him:

    “Labor leaders who have spent months lobbying unsuccessfully for special protections under the Affordable Care Act warned this week that the White House’s continued refusal to help is dampening union support for Democratic candidates in this year’s midterm elections.”

  2. According to the Administration, those industries interestingly include ammunition sales, gun sales…

    This may relate to a situation which came up around a year ago. See here, here, here. These are just the ones I found in a quick search of the site where I remembered hearing about the problem.

  3. What’s the statute of limitations on this? I sold Mary Kay cosmetics and Amway once upon a time.

  4. >What’s the statute of limitations on this?<

    whatever baracky wants it to be.

  5. “Pitchforks and torches, gentlemen and ladies?

    I don’t know…what are they using in Ukraine these days?

  6. Operation Choke Point.

    Just one inadvertently revealed op that this King George-like administration’s running. So many, likely, that one op revealed won’t make a difference, because there’s 10, 20, 100, 1000 more we don’t know about churning away, like Iran’s centrifuges.

    We weren’t prepared for this full-scale assault on our way of life. When Barky said ‘fundamental change’, he meant that every tiny facet of this Republic’s makeup had to change, until we resemble the near-third-world of his childhood, his pre-Hawaii life in Indonesia.

    This Son of Indonesia, this foreign exchange student who was raised to hate America and Americans because of what we have, and what happened during our rise, our past but winning history. That’s what offended him, and set him on a path to CHANGE fundamentally everything he can change to strip away the USA’s wealth and level the playing fields. No matter it’ll bring on the killing fields.

    D’Souza nailed him perfectly. Obama’s America won’t be recognizable, come 2016.

  7. Heh. I favor this fellow’s optimism

    The Democrat Party lost America’s first Civil War because they enslaved Black people. The Democrat party is going to lose the second Civil War because they attempted to enslave the rest of us…

  8. The Panopticon States of America.

  9. Nudge back.

  10. All Cabinet level departments are not only weaponized, but also militarized. And Obama has a pen. But hey, no problem: Orangeman has the Constitution. Could’a fooled me. Cause if he does have a copy – apparently – he’s never actually taken it out of his pocket and read it. This will not end well.

  11. Sow the SAFE-Progressive wind, reap the whirlwind. How to make the Chicago crime rate look better.

  12. OT, but veeerry, very interesting. Thinking past capitalism globalization…

    You say at one point in The Energy of Nations, “I’m now convinced that capitalism as we know it is torpedoing our prosperity, killing our economies, threatening our children with an unliveable world. It needs to be re-engineered root and branch.” Does capitalism still have a place? What would re-engineered capitalism look like, and what does that mean for economic growth?

    “It depends on your definition of capitalism. Economic growth as it’s currently measured? I think its days are over. That used to be that the mantras of the people classified as the lunatic fringe, but not any more. You can read this kind of thinking in the commentary in the Financial Times. In a world with a global economy on route to six degrees, how can such a system be viewed as sane any more, much less survivable?

    The more of us who start using this language, this new type of capitalism – others won’t call it capitalism at all of course – a new type of capitalism. Certainly my point in the book is that modern capitalism, the form of capitalism that’s evolved in the last few decades is basically suicidally dysfunctional and we have to turn our backs on it and introduce an alternative set of systems. That’s what I think we have the opportunity to do in building the road to renaissance.”

    The interview also raised the same question I have discussed in the Musings and blog: What lies beyond the current failing, unsustainable versions of Capitalism and Socialism? I think the basic answer is coming into focus: since the current iterations of Capitalism and Socialism are both systems of increasing centralization (and thus of systemic fragility), the future belongs to the Web-enabled, localized but globally networked models of decentralized capital, currencies, ownership, production and distribution.

    Recalling Pat Buchanan’s post I linked yesterday, Pat laid blame for the GOP’s losing middle America on Bush I’s immigration laxity. One could push back even further, to Nixon’s defrosting relations with Red China, eventually opening up routes for our corporations to globalize and export manufacturing and control to outside our borders.

    I’ve always harbored a disquiet that our current economic system, loosely defined as ‘capitalism’, is innately unsustainable. Especially when it’s dependent on events global and the loci of manufacturing, and thus power and money (capital) is conveniently well outside our borders, or any nation’s border (the so-called multinationals). It’s good to finally see cogent discussion and movement to of what must be our next, hopefully more sustainable and stable, economic model.

  13. @serr8d

    The idea of specialization of labor vis-a-vis China’s manufacturing wasn’t mistaken. The problem, IMO, was economists ignoring the very real differences in various governments’ policies and governing philosophies.

    You cannot depend on cheap manufacturing from a nation whose government may change course at any time.

    So, I suppose I’m agreeing with you.

  14. It depends on your definition of capitalism. Economic growth as it’s currently measured? I think its days are over.

    Yeah, if you are going to use a definition that is false-to-fact, and then claim that whatever it is that your definition is covering is no longer working.

    Capitalism isn’t an ideology. It’s what people do when they are left alone by the government. Trading goods and services such that both parties feel like they got the better part of it.

    The problem is that it has been so thoroughly overregulated and overtaxed that people accept the distortion as “normal”, and the skew involved can have BOTH parties feel like they lost, and even trading between so-called “free” nations will have distortions due to societal differences (such as making US citizens pay more for something so that people in other countries can pay less for exactly the same thing, and make both of them think that is “normal”, because the subsidies are masked by policy). Dumping of products at a loss by nations not even close to “free” results in even more distortions.

    Of course something so distorted isn’t stable and won’t stand for very long, much like an inverted pyramid. But no government on earth has willingly given up power once obtained, no matter how much the citizens will suffer from their actions (see also Cuba and North Korea), even when alternatives are clear and obviously superior, for no other reason than because they are in charge and intend to stay there.

    It has only been the power of capitalism that has fed the growth of the United States and the world, even when hobbled and blindfolded. Reagan managed to remove one set of shackles and the economy exploded and didn’t stop growing until the Internet bubble, almost twenty years later. It has taken twenty years of “compassionate” government to bring about the argument that “Capitalism is a failure” and have so-called “smart” people nod like they know what they are talking about, when capitalism hasn’t been allowed to operate.

  15. Capitalism isn’t an ideology. It’s what people do when they are left alone by the government. Trading goods and services such that both parties feel like they got the better part of it.

    Small-scale, it’s worked just fine. But you can’t look at what’s big picture today and say it upscaled very well.

    Capitalism still works, but not so well at the supra-multinational-global level. Seems it’s failing miserably. Eventually this thing will crash. Capitalism must evolve to better suit what’s still around.

    As one one of the zerohedge commenters correctly states it..

    We don’t need to reengineer capitalism. We just need to actually follow capitalism and not the crony corporatist fascism they keep calling capitalism these days

  16. Zerohedge is a good resource, however its commenters and authors are often a bunch of young’uns and doomsayers.

    That doesn’t make them wrong every time, just a lot of the time.

  17. Redefine a regulatory super-state as “capitalism,” and then capitalism can have failed.

    Redefine a dog as a fish, then you can hold it underwater for its own safety.

    If words don’t mean things, then you can be kookoobananas.

  18. Exactly, Merovign.

    Our becoming trading partners with Communist China didn’t make them capitalist nor did it make us communist.

    We live in a global economy and for the most part that’s a good thing. It allows free enterprise and growth, the betterment of the participants in the marketplace and a higher standard of living for many of the workers. Deplorable working conditions in other countries aren’t the fault of (for instance) Nike, they are the fault of the host country. We job out work to foreign countries because manufacturing seeks cheap labor. If the labor is satisfactory, the jobs will continue to migrate to the lesser expensive countries.

    The fact that our country has the highest corporate taxes on the planet at 35% is a disincentive to return production to the USA.

  19. Capitalism is a theory that attempts to explain how free markets function when the rule of law is operating to protect the rights of all parties.

    Communism is a theory that attempts to explain why giving all government power to a single political party run by criminals and terrorists is in the best interests of anyone but those particular criminals and terrorists.

  20. “a briefing on Operation Choke Point clearly show that the Administration is looking to significantly impact legal businesses because it believes the public needs to be protected from industries and customers deemed more likely to engage in criminal activity. “

    More like the administration wants to control the public’s ability to do business from certain businesses that threaten their powers. You know, “nudge” us into making the proper choices by limiting what choices are available to us. I think there’s even a book on that…

  21. Some Winchester .22LR ammo is being recalled.