February 26, 2015

MSNBC’s Melissa Harris-Perry: I Hope Trayvon ‘Whooped the Sh**’ Out of Zimmerman

While it’s performing a long overdue housecleaning, MSNBC should point its broom in Melissa Harris-Perry’s direction and sweep her off the network for her anti-democratic, violence-advocating rant earlier this week at Cornell University.

Among other things, Harris-Perry told her audience that George Zimmerman deserved whatever injuries he received at the hands of Trayvon Martin in the violent February 2012 confrontation which began with Martin pommeling Zimmerman and ended in Martin’s death.

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February 18, 2015

AP: Indicted North Carolina Shooter’s ‘Creed’ Is the Second Amendment

Several outlets have looked over the Facebook posts of Craig Hicks, who was indicted Monday for the February 10 murders of three Muslims in North Carolina.

Hicks’s alleged murderous motivation appears to have had nothing directly to do with religion, but instead is said to have involved “a dispute over parking spaces at the condo community where Hicks and two of the victims lived.” Whether we need to know anything else about the guy is an open question, but since it was inevitable that people would go there, it’s worth noting that most outlets (examples here, here, and here) have focused on Hicks’s Facebook-expressed atheism and an accompanying hostility towards all forms of religion. As will be seen, that take wasn’t satisfactory to Associated Press reporters Allen G. Breed and Michael Biesecker.

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February 11, 2015

HuffPo Columnist: Joni Ernst, Who Is a Combat Veteran, Shouldn’t Claim to Be One

Very few things drive leftists to distraction more than a strong Republican or conservative woman achieving political power.

Joni Ernst is a perfect example. The strong-willed freshman Senator from Iowa describes herself in three words: “Mother. Soldier. Leader.” Imagine the howls of outrage if a conservative went after a liberal female combat veteran as Andrew Reinbach at Huffington Post did on Friday. Reinbach tried to claim that Ernst is not really a combat veteran, and questioned “The Honor of Senator Joni Ernst.”

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February 10, 2015

Rory Ryan Has a Fever, and the Only Cure Is … Rob Portman?

Filed under: Activism,MSM Biz/Other Ignorance,Scams,Taxes & Government — Tom @ 12:38 pm

Longtime readers here may recall a certain Rory Ryan, publisher and owner of The Highland County Press.

Mr. Ryan may be a generally fine gentleman, hard worker, and most of those other things you might expect from a heartland journalist who genuinely seems to lean conservative.

But in at least two instances one going back over a decade and the other very recent, Ryan has demonstrated that his nose for news and political acumen are, to say the least, awful.

Ryan’s carreer list of endorsed candidates includes the one and only, habitual House Bank NSF check-writing, false incumbent-posingthen-Viriginia residing, habitually illegally voting, election law-violating, Amway/Quixtar scam-selling former Congressman Bob McEwen.

Mr. Ryan had, and perhaps still has, a horrible blind spot with Mr. McEwen.

After McEwen’s decade of illegal voting as an absentee in Ohio while living in Virginia was exposed, I asked how “newspaperman” Ryan, who supposedly is close to the pulse of his area, could possibly not have not known:

  • That McEwen and his wife Liz were using his father’s address as their voter-registration “residence” address during the mid-1990s?
  • That Bob and Liz began using the addresses of others in Hillsboro, places in which they clearly were not living or “residing,” for that same purpose beginning sometime in the late 1990s?
  • The story of the infamous 2003 “Mrs. Lyle’s house is not your home” letter addressed by the Highland County Board of Elections to Bob McEwen, Liz McEwen, and two of their children, in which the Board cancelled the voter registrations of all four of them? (I was told that this matter was brought to the attention of the county prosecutor at the time, yet Ryan still endorsed McEwen’s attempts to return to Congress.)

To be clear, these were matters that McEwen and his campaign completely failed to refute.

If Mr. Ryan indeed was aware of the items just noted, it seems that putting Bob McEwen back into Congress was of such overriding importance that he was willing to overlook, and to keep from the public he has pledged to serve in his profession, matters that made Mr. McEwen objectively unfit to serve in public office.

Based on this background, you’ll have to excuse me for having a hard time not rolling on the floor laughing uncontrollably at the idea that Rory Ryan hearts Rob Portman so much that he thinks he ought to be our next president:

As recently as Feb. 6, his name was still “part of the discussion” for the 2016 campaign. And although he says he is focusing on his re-election to the U.S. Senate – to which he can add our endorsement, I can’t help but think the nation would be better served if the once Grand Old Party would endorse a Portman for President banner at the 2016 convention.

Like I said, one can hope.

Count me out, pal.

What has Rob Portman accomplished in the past four-plus years? … (stone silence) … (If anyone can cite anything meaningful and tangible, please let me know. I am completely unconcerned about getting flooded with substantive responses, because I don’t think anyone can point to anything.)

Would Rob Portman govern with the welfare of the nation at the forefront of his mind, or according to how his actions and decisions will help or hurt him politically?

Here’s the answer, originally delivered to the Cleveland Plain Dealer in 2005:

Back in his Washington office last month, Portman, who usually sits back calmly in his chair, suddenly leans forward when he’s told that one of his colleagues recently questioned how far he’ll go in politics because he seems “risk-averse.”

The description appears to rankle Portman, who has taken more than a few physical risks over the years – from ducking bullets whizzing over his head while kayaking on the Rio Grande, to defying Chinese officials who refused him permission to kayak on the Yangtze River. *

“I probably am a little risk-averse compared to some members [of Congress],” he concedes, “but I think a lot of that is a deliberate decision on my part that some things are worth it for my career and some things aren’t.”

* – I don’t hink I’m alone in sensing potential Brian Williams-like problems with these claims.

His career is clearly more important than taking risks for being right.

Rob Portman will never live that statement down — nor should he.

Rory Ryan has once again shown horrible political acumen. In light of his history with Bob McEwen, that is sadly not a surprise.

February 2, 2015

Press Virtually Ignores Obama’s ‘No Interference’ Hypocrisy on Not Meeting Netanyahu

According to the Israeli publication Haaretz and many other news outlets, President Obama and Secretary of State John Kerry won’t meet with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu because it’s “inappropriate.”

Specifically, "The White House cited the proximity of the Israeli election to Netanyahu's visit, and the desire to refrain from interfering in the election." Certain blatant falsehoods are too much to take, and at Investor's Business Daily, this was one of them. An IBD editorial also tied the actions of those who are clearly acting as Team Obama agents trying to oust Netanyahu in those upcoming Israeli elections to a more comprehensive indictment of the administration's foreign policy (HT to a frequent tipster; bolds are mine throughout this post):

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January 26, 2015

Question of the Day: On the Need for ID

Filed under: Activism,Taxes & Government — Tom @ 9:07 am

As I continue to fight my personal Cold War, an obvious question slapped me in the face: Why am I supposed to simply accept the need to present an ID so I can buy certain cold medicines, while at the same time I’m supposed to be outraged beyond belief that I have to present an ID so I can vote?

January 20, 2015

A ‘Statist of the Union’ Response From C.S. Lewis

Filed under: Activism,Economy,Education,Taxes & Government — Tom @ 11:17 pm

I got an email today suggesting that I post a one-hour video.

Usually, no matter how good it might be, I don’t do that without also posting excerpts for those who don’t have the time to get through a full hour.

When I indicated that to David Theroux of the Independent Institute, he pointed me to a transcript of that video, which effectively serves as a response to yet another “Statist of the Union” speech by President Barack Obama:

Key excerpts (bolds are mine; some paragraph breaks added by me):

… Throughout his work, Lewis infused an interconnected worldview that championed objective truth, moral ethics, natural law, literary excellence, reason, science, individual liberty, personal responsibility and virtue, and Christian theism. In so doing, he critiqued naturalism, reductionism, nihilism, positivism, scientism, historicism, collectivism, atheism, statism, coercive egalitarianism, militarism, welfarism, and dehumanization and tyranny of all forms.

Unlike “progressive” crusaders for predatory government power over the peaceful pursuits of innocent people, Lewis noted that “I do not like the pretensions of Government—the grounds on which it demands my obedience—to be pitched too high. I don’t like the medicine-man’s magical pretensions nor the Bourbon’s Divine Right. This is not solely because I disbelieve in magic and in Bossuet’s Politique. I believe in God, but I detest theocracy. For every Government consists of mere men and is, strictly viewed, a makeshift; if it adds to its commands ‘Thus saith the Lord,’ it lies, and lies dangerously.”

… “Of all tyrannies,” he stated,

a tyranny exercised for the good of its victims may be the most oppressive. It may be better to live under robber barons than under omnipotent moral busybodies. The robber baron’s cruelty may sometimes sleep, his cupidity may at some point be satiated; but those who torment us for our own good will torment us without end for they do so with the approval of their own conscience. They may be more likely to go to Heaven yet at the same time likelier to make a Hell of earth.

… Throughout his books, he defended the rights and sanctity of individuals against tyranny not just because he opposed evil, but because he considered a life in freedom—including both social and economic freedom—to be essential: “I believe a man is happier, and happy in a richer way, if he had “the freeborn mind.” But I doubt whether he can have this without economic independence, which the new society is abolishing. For economic independence allows an education not controlled by Government; and in adult life it is the man who needs, and asks, nothing of Government who can criticize its acts and snap his fingers at its ideology.”

…  (Rodney Stark has pointed out that although almost every other early culture and religion viewed human society in terms of the tribe, polis, or collective, “it is the individual who was the focus of Christian political thought, and this, in turn, explicitly shaped the views of later European political philosophers.” 

This focus produced a radical change in a world where, despite notable but limited exceptions of political decentralization, slavery and nearly universal and unyielding despotism had ruled, where people were treated as mere members of a group without rights. With Christianity, each and every person is “a child of God” or a holy object (res sacra homo) who has free will and is individually responsible for the choices he or she makes.

… As a proponent of natural law, Lewis was a supporter of the “law of equal liberty” but a firm critic of imposed egalitarianism for any reason. He further understood that egalitarianism is too often a cloak for envy (the sin of coveting) and that such appeals for regimentation are tyrannical

… Lewis understood that without this necessary natural-law framing of social, legal, and political culture, mankind would no longer be recognized as worthy of rights or even common decency, but instead would be left defenseless to any and all forms of oppression …

… Lewis fully understood that democracy, if unchecked, becomes egalitarianism and will trample on liberty as a collectivist force for evil by celebrating pride and envy as it fosters tyranny.

… recognizing the implications of every development in the galloping socialism of post–World War II England (Lewis wrote): “The modern State exists not to protect our rights but to do us good or make us good—anyway, to do something to us or to make us something. Hence the new name ‘leaders’ for those who were once “rulers.” … We are less their subjects than their wards, pupils, or domestic animals. There is nothing left of which we can say to them, ‘Mind your own business.’ Our whole lives are their business.”

Certainly damned near it.

January 19, 2015

Pathetic: Both Michael Moore and Seth Rogen Pretend Their Tweets Didn’t Criticize ‘American Sniper’

Your truly noted yesterday (at NewsBusters; at BizzyBlog) how Michael Moore tweeted, in part, that “We were taught snipers were cowards.” Earlier today, Geoffrey Dickens at NewsBusters observed that Seth Rogen, whose “The Interview” movie was at least partially salvaged financially by freedom-of-speech supporters on the left and right who watched it online and in person in select areas, tweeted that “American Sniper kind of reminds me of the (Nazi propaganda) movie that’s showing in the third act of Inglorious Basterds.”

Tonight, both Moore and Rogen are in keister-covering walkback mode. Predictably, both are pretending that they didn’t imply and say what they really implied and said.

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@Sierra Marlee Won Twitter Twice Last Week

Filed under: Activism,General,Taxes & Government — Tom @ 11:00 am

January 11 and January 12, the former with the help of @haff_j:

SierraMarleeJan11andJan12Tweets.png

January 16, 2015

Positivity: Venezuelan bishops condemn imposition of socialism

Filed under: Activism,Positivity — Tom @ 6:00 am

From Caracas, Venezuela (bolds are mine):

Jan 13, 2015 / 01:09 pm

The Venezuelan bishops conference issued a pastoral exhortation on Monday calling on authorities and citizens alike to an ethical and spiritual renewal in order to come out of the current economic and social crisis facing the nation.

The Jan. 12 letter warned that “Marxist socialism is an erroneous path, and therefore should not be instituted.”

The bishops began their letter by recalling the events that took place at the beginning of 2014, when political upheaval lead to 43 deaths and hundreds injured.

“That grave crisis showed the need for dialogue among government leaders, the opposition, and other sectors. Thanks to the exhortations of Pope Francis and the participation of the apostoli cuncio Archbishop Aldo Giordano, among other things, a dialogue was launched that unfortunately never continued beyond the first few meetings,” the bishops said.

In recent months, the situation has worsened due to a growing economic crisis rooted in massive external debt, uncontrolled inflation, the devaluation of the currency, and shortages of basic necessities, they explained.

Adding to this widespread corruption, the drop in oil prices, and government inefficiency, the main problem and cause of this crisis is “the politico-economic system of a socialist, Marxist or communist nature,” the bishops wrote.

“This system is totalitarian and centralist, it establishes control of the state over all aspects of the lives of the citizens and public and private institutions. It also threatens freedom and the rights of persons and associations and has led to oppression and ruin in every country where it has been tried,” the bishops said.

Go here for the rest of the story.

January 14, 2015

Three Major December Media Misfires

All truly “cringeworthy.”

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This column went up at PJ Media late Sunday evening and was teased here at BizzyBlog on Monday.

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The Columbia Journalism Review claims that the mission of its bimonthly magazine and CJR.org, its companion online effort, is “to encourage excellence in journalism in the service of a free society.”

The flip side of that mission should be to identify, criticize and discourage incompetence, dishonesty and bias. CJR.org’s alleged year-end compilation of “the worst journalism of 2014″ — “a recap of this year’s most cringeworthy news blunders” — does an extraordainarily poor job of that.

It’s only an alleged year-end list because CJR published it on December 22, following the herd of dozens of other annual list presenters who couldn’t wait until 2014 actually ended.

It’s also an extraordinarily weak list. Rolling Stone’s now-exposed fabricated account of the fraternity gang rape that didn’t happen at the University of Virginia topped the list, but only one of the other items in its compilation — the entirely made-up story of Mohammed Islam, the 17 year-old who suckered New York Magazine into believing that he had made $72 million in the stock market — is anywhere near as “cringeworthy” as at least three other egregious media misfires in December alone.

Here are those three December candidates, all of which did not become known until after CJR’s premature publication.

1. “Peaceful” Ferguson protester confesses to arson and burglary.

For several months, 18 year-old Joshua Williams was a media and leftist darling at those Ferguson, Missouri mob gatherings serially misidentified as “protests.” Williams “perfected the skill of catching the attention of journalists and using them to elevate his claims of police brutality to national attention,” and was “quoted or photographed in countless articles in publications including the New York Times and USA Today.” The Associated Press photographed him marching “arm in arm” with black radical Cornel West in October. In mid-December, Williams, who was constantly begging others for money, somehow made it to Washington and spoke at one of Al Sharpton’s affiliated whine festivals.

Shortly after Christmas, the media hero was charged with and reportedly confessed to “1st degree arson, 2nd degree burglary and misdemeanor theft” in the torching and looting of a QuikTrip convenience store in Berkeley, Missouri on Christmas Eve. The St. Louis Post-Dispatch apparently had a hard time getting over being jilted, headlining Williams, after his arrest, as a “Protester who advocates peace.”

2. The Lena Dunham postscript.

In early December, John Nolte at Breitbart’s Big Hollywood thoroughly debunked and discredited the details Lena Dunham had included about her alleged rape in her Not That Kind of Girl memoir. “Barry,” a name only later identified as a pseudonym, could not have been Oberlin College’s “campus’s resident conservative.” Among other things, there was no “Barry” who had “a flamboyant mustache,” a job at the campus library, or “purple cowboy boots.” Nolte “could not find a Republican named Barry who attended Oberlin during Dunham’s time there who came anywhere close to matching her description of him.”

On December 9, the day after Random House, Dunham’s publisher, covered its legal keister by exonerating a “Barry” who did attend Oberlin during the time in question, Dunham posted a pathetic I’m-a-victim non-defense at BuzzFeed, claiming that she had made up details about her attacker to conceal his identity. Two days later, responding to several media insinuations to the contrary, Nolte made it redundantly clear that “Breitbart News never once questioned whether or not Lena Dunham was raped.”

What followed is what should have made CJR’s “blunders” list.

On December 31, J.K Trotter at Gawker, who appears to have set out to perpetuate the straw-man criticism against Dunham’s detractors, reported something far more troubling:

The 2012 proposal for Not That Kind of Girl recounted the same night of unwanted unprotected sex—and supplied enough specific biographical detail to identify the man being described.

The final manuscript of Not that Kind of Girl contains a significantly altered version of Dunham’s original account.

Trotter is nearly certain that he has identified the attacker Dunham described in her 2012 proposal. His name is at the link for those who are curious, but the fundamentally important point is that this person “did not affiliate with either major political party until 2012, when he formally registered as a Democrat,” and “does not appear to have ever been an on-the-book Republican.”

Thus, Dunham’s rape story, even assuming she was indeed raped, was from all appearances originally packaged in 2012 to smear Republicans and conservatives for an act committed by someone who was neither. When revised two years later, it was further dressed up with more juicy details not traceable to a specific person to enhance the smear’s memorability.

It would seem that no one at Random House or at any other publisher who might have seen Dunham’s original proposal and read the final product has ever questioned the credibility of her underlying story. This is either astonishing negligence or intensely hostile groupthink. Are these people all that lazy and clueless, or were Dunham’s fabrications okay in publishing land because her story attacked liberalism’s enemies?

3. The Imaginary Kwanzaa “Parade.”

In recent years, the annual late-December Kwanzaa parade in South Central Los Angeles has fallen on hard times. In 2011, the second-last year the Los Angeles Times covered it, the paper claimed that “hundreds” attended, but could only muster a photo showing a half-dozen participants and about the same number of onlookers.

On December 26, 2014, apathy won. A CBS-Los Angeles reporter tweeted a photo showing an empty boulevard with no spectators captioned, “People in #SouthLosAngeles disappointed by lack of turn-out for #Kwanza parade. Parade lasted 10 mins.” (What “people”?) Two minutes later, he tweeted: “Parade is over.” It was never a real parade. It wasn’t even a motorcade.

But then, in an online report, CBS-LA, despite its own reporter calling out a non-event, descended into full fictional cringeworthiness, making it appear as if a genuine parade had occurred:

LA Celebrates Start Of Kwanzaa With Parade Along Crenshaw Boulevard

The 38th annual KwanZaa Gwaride parade made its way down Crenshaw Boulevard Friday, marking the start of the seven-day festival of Kwanzaa.

Some participants walked the parade carrying signs underlining important issues to the community, such as police brutality, home foreclosures, judicial corruption, transparency in government and environmental racism.

Never has one of the favorite sayings of Instapundit’s Glenn Reynolds been truer: “It’s Potemkin villages all the way down.”

And all the way up – to the see no liberal media evil folks at the Columbia Journalism Review.

January 12, 2015

Latest PJ Media Column (‘Three Major December Media Misfires’) Is Up

It’s here.

It will go up on Wednesday morning here at BizzyBlog (link won’t work until then) after the blackout expires.

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The three major misfires identified in the column relating to Joshua Williams, Lena Dunham, and the fake Kwanzaa parade in Los Angeles barely scratch the surface of media malfeasance in December.

The following additional items, all of which appeared or took place in last year’s final month, many of them in its final ten days after many outfits had issued their year-end good/bad lists, were arguably more blatant and deserving than all but two of the items the Columbia Journalism Review designated as “cringeworthy” blunders” of 2014 (as noted in the column, CJR was accurate in selecting the Rolling Stone-UVA gang rape fabrications and New York Magazine falling for the story of a kid who claimed to have made $72 million trading stocks):

  • Politico Magazine arguing the “everything is awesome” for President Obama (article; related NewsBusters post by Tim Graham). I didn’t know ISIS had stopped beheading people. Oh, that’s because they haven’t.
  • Vox.com completely making up and then having to retract its claim that December 21, 2014 would be the longest night ever. This is just one of 46 “f-ups” Kevin Draper at Deadspin identified on December 30. That 46 excludes unhinged opinion pieces like Max Fisher saying that asking Muslims to disavow terrorist acts is “bigoted and Islamophobic,” or Zach Beauchamp arguing that animals should have some citizenship rights. If we were to add those, the real total might be more like 460.
  • CNN including Brittany Maynard on its list of extraordinary persons of 2014. Maynard’s “extraordinary” accomplishment was participating in an assisted suicide — her own. This horrible lack of judgment at least partially explains the network’s awful year in the ratings.
  • The press’s repeated and deliberate promotion of the The “Hands-up! Don’t Shoot!” Myth about Michael Brown before his death in Ferguson, Missouri.
  • Ignoring the dishonesty of Howard Zucker, the Andrew Cuomo administration official who supported a fracking ban in New York to protect his family and his children, when he has neither.
  • Ignoring New York Mayor Bill de Blasio’s efforts to get other politicians to condemn the NYPD while pretending to want reconciliation, and possibly even enlisting the New York Times, which issued a disgraceful editorial smearing Gotham’s police force last week, in that effort.
  • Fox News’s Shepard Smith and unhinged Washingtonian Eleanor Clift separately telling audiences that they hope that a thaw in U.S.-Cuba relations doesn’t ruin what they apparently think is currently an island paradise.
  • The press pretending that a December congressional report on the IRS scandal had nothing new. Horse manure. As the Daily Signal reported, “The nation’s tax chief decided not to tell Congress that the IRS was targeting conservative groups, an action that would have brought to light the misconduct before the 2012 election …
  • And last but certainly not least, the “26 Ways the Media Botched Their Reporting on the Latest Benghazi Report,” documented by Sharyl Attkisson at the Daily Signal.

Even this list leaves about a half-dozen genuine botches on the cutting room floor.

CNN’s Jake Tapper: ‘I Was Ashamed’ by U.S. Leaders’ Absence at Paris March

Reacting this morning to the non-presence of any U.S. official above this country’s ambassador at yesterday 1.5 million-plus-person solidarity march in Paris, CNN’s Jake Tapper pulled no punches.

In a commentary posted at the network’s web site, Tapper wrote that “as an American … I was ashamed.” He questioned how U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder “had time to do the Sunday shows via satellite but not to show the world that he stood with the people of France.” He also quipped that “episodes of The Good Wife’ on CBS” have had more Obama administration representation. Excerpts follow the jump.

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January 11, 2015

U.S. High-Level Absence From Paris March Controversial — Except at AP

Thus far, the nation’s de facto news gatekeepers at the Associated Press, aka the Administration’s Press, have utterly failed to address the growing worldwide controvery over the absence of U.S. representation above the ambassador level at Sunday’s solidarity march in Paris in the wake of Wednesday’s Charlie Hebdo massacre. Crowd estimates for the Paris march range from “hundreds of thousands” to over 1.5 million.

The New York Daily News is calling the absence of a top U.S. leader “a glaring exception,” and devoting its entire front page to telling our government that “You Let the World Down.” The UK Daily Mail is treating the situation as a snub, also observing that Attorney General Eric Holder “was in Paris for a terrorism summit held on the march’s sidelines, but he slipped away and made appearances on four American morning television talk shows just as the incredible rally was starting.” But Angela Charlton and Thomas Adamson at the AP, in report carrying a 7:07 p.m. ET time stamp (saved here for future reference, fair use and discussion purposes), apparently found nothing unusual in the U.S. non-presence:

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Code Pink Gets Reuters Coverage — For a Protest Group of 20

The ability of tiny numbers of far-left fringe group demonstrators to get undue press attention virtually any time they want continues to be intensely annoying.

In mid-2007, Barack Obama made closing the prison at Guantanmo Bay a core promise of his 2008 campaign. That was 7-1/2 years ago. Obama has been in office six years. Gitmo is still open. So naturally, the aggrieved professional protesters at Code Pink organized a demonstration against Gitmo remaining active on yesterday’s 13th anniversary of the prison’s opening — at former Vice President Dick Cheney’s house. They got far more ink and bandwidth than they deserved from the press, including Reuters — i.e., far more than nothing.

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