What happens when a Congressman doesn’t listen to the NRA?

           Senator Pat Toomey is beginning to see the answer to that question. Toomey a Republican from Pennsylvania helped author the Manchin/Toomey Gun Bill, which of course was shot down, against NRA wishes. Before this he had an A rating with the NRA. Who are the NRA to rate any of our Senators? They are a lobbying group.

The Virginia based National Association for Gun Rights is running a smear campaign against Toomey for that Bill. The Bill required background checks on all gun sales, internet, gun shows and the classifieds. Current law only requires background checks on sales conducted by Federally licensed dealers. They are trying to connect Toomey with President Obama. They are attemptimg to connect him to the manufactured IRS, Benghazi and the NSA scandal. All of which have been proved fruitless. But Toomey is a conservative Republican who is on tge other side of most issues with President Obama.

Toomey now sees what Democrats deal with during each election cycle. Each election cycle the NRA and NAGR go into full attack mode. Portraying anyone who disagrees with their lobbying stance as trying to rob people of their Constitutional rights. All these Senators were trying to do was create sensible gun laws that might help prevent another massacre like Sandy Hook. Lobbyist attack Democrats for going to the bathroom the wrong way. This is what they mean when they say corporate America, politicians owned by corporations and lobbyist groups.

Republicans now on the other side of these attacks, now aren’t so convinced that Super-Pacs are right. They are also questioning the Citizens United decision. They haven’t felt the full effect of lobbyists and corporations trying to get you out of office. Maybe now Campaign Finance Reform can get done. Maybe this will help break the gridlock and help Gun Reform and Immigration Reform get done. But then again any Republican that goes against the grain finds themselves on the outside looking in. The Republican party looks to regress any progress made in America, how else do you explain their support of the Supreme Court gutting the Civil Rights Act. Republicans are beginning to dislike the system they created, it is now hurting them.

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Chineese military and Republican party found using same spying tactics on Liberal organizations and Unions.

                In February a firm called Mandiant and the New York Times revealed that the Chineese military is engaging in a sophisticated campaign of internet spying and cyber attacks targeting U.S. Corporations and government websites caused widespread alarm. What hasn’t been noticed is the Chineese plot has a lot in common with a Republican conspiracy to spy and sabotage Liberal advocacy groups and Unions. A plot developed on behalf of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce in 2010.

Mandiant identified the plot by looking through a database of hacking tools. The tools were managed by the same individuals associated with the American firm that had been enlisted to help the Chamber of Commerce execute its spying and hacking plan. That was before it was exposed by the hacking group Anonymous.

Attorney’s for the Chamber were caught negotiating a contract to launch a cyber campaign using similar methods as the Chineese. These could reportedly be used to cripple vital infrastructure and steal trade secrets from Fortune 100 companies. The Chamber was seeking to undermine its political opposition, including the Service Employee International Union (SEIU) and MoveOn.org. Anonymous again revealed the plan.

Un January 2011 the Chamber recieved a CD with target data. The targets discussed were Labor Unions, SEIU, IBT, UFW, UFCW, AFL-CIO, Change to Win, as well as Progressive organizations like the Center for American Progress, MoveOn.org, Courage Campaign, the Ruckus Society, Agit-Pop, Brave New Films and others. The tactics described in the proposals are illegal. There were no discussions in the leaked emails about the legality of using such tactics. The Chambers lawyers and the contractors quibbled for weeks about the appropriate compensation for these hacking services. At one point, $2 million was demanded.

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce is a powerful business lobbying group that had become a fully functional part of the Republican machine. Republicans condemned President Obama and the NSA for the surveillance of phone and internet activity but hypocritically do it to those who disagree with them. At least the NSA and the Obama administration are doing it in the name of National Security. Republicans condemned the IRS and the Obama administration for targeting Tea Party groups, which Mitch Mcconnell said President Obama was not involved with. Yet hypocrite Republicans do the same type of subterfuge to undermine Democrat leaning adversaries. Republicans are caught in this, yet the conservative media does not report it. I guess that is what happens when you own most of the media.

Republicans need to get their priorities straight.

                 Republicans have the nations attention focused on the IRS and NRA “scandals”. While they have our attention, other very important things are slipping by. The Banking industry’s dirty practices are coming to the forefront, but no one is listening. They are concentrating on subjects that should be resolved but Republicans are hiding the truth.

                Bank of America’s practices are coming out and they are dirty. They were taking bribes to delay paperwork to cost homeowners more money. Telling homeowners they didn’t recieve the paperwork, delaying their applications for HARP, causing them to be denied. These illegal practices led to illegal foreclosures that cost real people their homes. But apparently this is not important to the Republican party, who are to concerned with finding a way to impeach President Obama. That is solid governing skills right there.

Every attempt at reforming the Banking Industry has been met with harsh resistance. Elizabeth Warren has made this her baby, she is attempting to fix it so average Americans don’t have to suffer at the hands of these wealthy banks. Republicans and even some Democrats are in the banks back pockets. Bank Industry lobbyist converge on the capital everytime Bank Reform comes up. Republicans are fine with the status quo, the American people are not. It is time for a change. The midterm 2014 elections are the key to change.

This has become a country where the rich get richer and the poor get poorer. The Income Inequality in our country is one of the highest of all developed countries. The Republicans keep the attention off of important subjects in order to avoid them. Avoidance is not a form of government. Now Republicans want boots on the ground in Syria, another unnecessary war where Americans will die needlessly. Republicans didn’t support President Obama on Libya, where he achieved regime change with no American lives lost. The hypocritical Republicans need to govern, to compromise in order for this great country to remain great.

With a chance to interview heads of departments in charge of NSA surveillance, 53 Senators jump on planes to go home.

                    A briefing by Senior Intelligence Officials on surveillance programs failed to attract the attention of even half of the Senators. Senators, despite all their bluster, don’t seem to care that much about classified security programs. Many Senators, 53 to be exact, chose to leave early rather than attending the briefing.

The Senate held its last vote of the week around noon Thursday. They somehow could not find the time to attend the 2:30 meeting with James Clapper, Director of National Intelligence, Keith Alexander, the head of the NSA and other Senior officials. Clapper, Alexander and other Senior officials told the lawmakers that showed up about the classified programs to monitor millions of phone calls and broad swaths of internet activity. As of now the names of the attendees and non-attendees has not been released.

The exodus of colleagues exasperated Senate Intelligence Committee Chairwoman Dianne Feinstein (D-Ca), who spent all week answering a gauntlet of questions from colleagues and media about the programs. She said ” It’s hard to get this story out. Even now we have this big briefing- we’ve got Alexander, we’ve got the FBI, we’ve got the Justice Department, we have the FISA Court there, we have Clapper there and people are leaving.” I share her exasperation, these Senators attack President Obama and his staff, then don’t show up for the briefing. Maybe they ” don’t know about the programs” because they don’t show for briefings. This was important, yet these Senators couldn’t find time to do their job. Tsk, Tsk, shame on you Senators.

Lawmakers have been quick to call for Congressional oversight but are even quicker out the door. They cannot seem to make the scheduling sacrafices to learn more of the secret details of the programs. You would think that lawmakers would sttend briefings before making votes on the subject. Apparently this is not an uncommon occurrence in Congress. Lawmakers would be better equipped to scrutinize the claims of Senior Intellegence officials if they attended briefings more regularly. Please remember that being a Senator is not a vacation, it is an important job where you represent the people. It would make sense for you to remember that.

Lawmakers often vote to approve the Intelligence Programs with only a vague of what they are authorizing. Feinstein contends that her colleagues have known about the programs from previous debates and meetings. Many Lawmakers say they didn’t know about the programs, but the evidence suggests differently. There are records of hearings, briefings and the renewal process with the FISA Court every 3 months. Something doesn’t jive.

Republicans should hope they were not the ones leaving. If they were, this just proves they don’t care about the people or the country, only about smearing President Obama and stopping his agenda. They offer nothing but cuts to normal people, scream about the defecit, yet will not raise taxes on the wealthy. Not showing up illegitimizes the Republican party. Democrats not showing up is not quite as bad, because most support the President. Those who did not support the programs and didn’t show up deserve the same fate as Republicans. This is not a come and go as you please position, this is governing tye greatest country in the world. Maybe if these lousy politicians looked at it that way we wouldnt have any scandals.

Senators criticize President Obama’s transparency but leave town when a hearing about NSA is taking place.

                    All of these Senators that said they knew nothing of the NSA searching phone records now look really bad. Instead of attending scheduled hearing with the head of the NSA, FBI, the FISA Court and anyone else involved, 53 of those Senators went home. Do you think FOX News or Glenn Beck or Sean Hannity or even the conservative hero Rush Limbaugh are going to report that. No they will spin it as President Obama’s fault that he can’t control Congress.

They were all over the news claiming no one ever told them anything. They were never informed about the program. President Obama is expanding on George W. Bush’s survellience plan. That there is to much secrecy in the White House. Now they have that hearing and less than half show up. I was unable to find a list of names, but I am sure it will pop up soon. That list will be plastered everywhere, calling out these hypocrite lawmakers.

If these Senators are Republicans it removes all credibility from their impeachment hunt. Republicans have been trying to find a reason to impeach President Obama since 7 weeks into his first term. If instead of taking the opportunity to find out how this surveillance went on ” under their nose” they went home. How many times before this have out elected leaders missed a vote in order to get home early. If a normal person leaves early when they are scheduled they recieve some sort of punishment. But not our do nothing Congress.

This is a perfect example of what is wrong with our government. The complain and beat the drum like they really mean it. When it actuality it is a show to placate the people. It will not work if they blow this opportunity. This one is going to blow up in their face. When it does Democrats need to pounce and bury these horrible people. This is our chance to get out from under the Republican agenda that helps the rich and buries the poor. Our elected leaders let us down again.

Lets get real about the NSA collecting phone records.

              The Fourth Amendment;
        The right of the people to be secure ine their persons, houses, papers and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the person or things to be seized.

             After 9/11 fear permeated American life. We were an unsure people who were perplexed by an unwarranted attack on innocent people. The rest of the world had been dealing with this for quite some time, as have we at out foreign interests. After 9/11 many were willing to sacrifice civil liberties to help ensure our safety. The Bush/Cheney regime skirted moral authority and we became a preemptive strike country. Attack and ask questions later. The Patriot Act was pushed through with tremendous support from both sides if the aisle.

In doing so we were opened to a moral dilemma. How far is to far? The FISA Court, which was created in 1978, was given a kind of moral authority. It was up to this court to determine when our government was overstepping its authority. They determined that the so called data mining was legal. By determining that they also established how far these “spying” operations could go.

If the government determined something was wrong and needed to go through the data, they would have to go to court to get clearance. It is not as if they can go right in there and take what they want. Of course people will jump to conclusions to establish President Obama as a bad guy. The truth of the matter is that none of this can happen without the approval of the FISA Court. Which covers the executive and judicial branches.

Now for the legislative branch. The Senators, Republican and Democrat alike were informed. Every 3 months they had to go before the FISA Court to get the order aporoved. They had hearings for all Republicans and Democrats to come in and ask questions. The Senators complain that they were not allowed to talk to anyone who did not have clearance. That is how s TOP SECRET clearance works. You are told TOP SECRET information and you are not allowed to tell anyone else. If it concerned them so much why didn’t they try to learn more about the subject or ask more questions. This is about Senators who knes about something and did nothing to stop it, although then knew the American people wouldn’t like it. Now they are covering their tails.

The fact of the matter is this. It is Constitutionally legal. All branches of government knew about it. Why are American people upset? If you are not doing anything criminal you have nothing to worry about. This is the tradeoff our government chose to make and we chose to live with. It has gone on for 7 years and now it gets leaked. It seems as if the Republican scandal machine is in hyperdrive trying to find anything that sticks.