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Comment Re:Why no mention of gulf coast?? (Score 1) 59

Probably because most other places had competent City and State governments in place who knew how to handle the crisis. NO went to hell because no one knew what to do and took forever to even officially request federal aid and even then tried to retain control over things they had no clue how to handle.

People forget than FEMA is not a first response organization. They are suppose to come in to assist already established State and Local teams, take over centralized command if the locals are not capable and to help spread around federal funds where needed. They can do a lot of stuff but it all comes down to what the local governments allow them to do and what aid they can get at the local level.

Comment Re:I can tell from the comments (Score 1) 366

Florida's issues are generally man-made in nature but they have a lot less to do with climate change than greed. Bulldozing natural flood plains and marshes to build new oceanview condo developments tends to leave the water with fewer choices as to where to go.

In the University town I went to there was a store that had a flood sale every year because they had to make sure their bottom shelves were empty during the spring thaw when a foot of water routinely went through the store. Was it because of global warming? No, it was because the idiot town planners built a terrible bridge across the main waterway and whenever the ice started to melt it blocked the flow causing the river to go up over the banks. A few years after I left they redesigned the bridge to actually allow large chunks of ice to pass underneath and lo and behold, no more flooding.

Comment Re:3mm is the key (Score 1) 366

Over 60% of the 'subsidies' the oil and gas companies get in the US are from 3 programs; the national oil reserve, farmers fuel exemption and the home heating oil credit.

The oil reserve is simply the government buying oil and storing it in tanks for later use. The farmers exception is because gas used for farm equipment is not subject to the regular taxes used to pay for road maintenance (since they don't operate on roads). Finally, the home heating credit is to help pay for heating oil for homes in the northern part of the country for lower income families. Feel free to demand each of those programs be stopped.

Most of the rest of the credits are standard business practices of R&D expenditures, investments and depreciation write-offs. In many cases thee write-offs available to the oil industry are actually below the standard business levels because they are capped at a lower percentage.

Comment Re:She deserves to be in prison (Score 0) 303

1) From Hillary's team and only Hillary's teams accounts the material wasn't marked classified and apparently wasn't classified till after the fact and even that state may be in question.


From every other security specialist the documents described by the IGs and the FBI investigators were possibly mislabeled (not marked classified in the subject line) but were always classified. Some were described as 'born classified' which usually includes secrets provided by other governments or specifications of US Nuclear capabilities. I'd guess that's the main reason Hillary has gone from claiming none of her emails "contained classified material" to "were labeled as classified".

Comment Re: Here's hoping she's charged (Score 1) 676

Certain aspects of the law were changed in 2014 but she was already in violation of other aspects that have been in place for a very long time. The laws about federal records require all records be turned over to the archives in a timely manner. There is no indication that until subpenas started flying she ever intended to send her emails to archives (and 2 years is hardly timely).

Some of the post Hillary changes were to set a hard timeline on transfers to archives (about 30 days), require the records be sent in an electronic form and grant a few more powers to the national archivist. These changes did not fundamentally change existing law.

Besides all that, State Department policy from 4 years prior to Hillary's term already barred the use of personal emails for classified information use.

Comment Re:What a clusterfuck (Score 1) 676

In fact at the time she took office this was directly against policy. The State department policy restricting the use of personal emails for government business was published in 2005, 4 years before she took office.

The law itself wasn't updated till much later but she was still in violation of part of that law which was in place during her tenure. The law required all work records (all email sent as SoS related to State business is considered work records) to be sent to archives for proper storage in a timely manner. Over 2 years later and only after a federal subpena would not be considered timely to anyone. That law was later revised to actually set a official timeline of about 30 days which was the only real part of the law that was changed AFTER her time in office.

Comment Re:What a clusterfuck (Score 4, Interesting) 676

The 'retroactively classified' was simply a pr lie Hillary's team has been pushing from the beginning.

2 IG's reviewed a small handful of her emails and found information that was always considered classified by various intelligence agencies. These latest emails supposedly contained the type of information that goes beyond general classification of 'top secret' to the point that only people officially 'read in' are allowed to view it.

Comment Re:This order is worthless without funding (Score 1) 223

The neo-cons/tea partiers had nothing to do with Obama's budgeting woes. Between the House and Senate his proposed budget has only been able to get about 3 positive votes in the last few years. Most years the Senate under Reid simply refused to bring it to the floor for a vote it was so laughable. Only Republican pressure managed to get it to the floor where it managed to get 1 "yea" vote in 3 years.

Only the House actually bothered to do their duty and propose a budget each year. The Senate, once again under Reid;s leadership, generally just ignored all budgetary requirements and simple kept passing short term continuing resolutions which lead to the almost annual face off and threatened government shutdown.

The way the process is suppose to work is the President proposes a budget (usually after some discussion with leaders from both parties which was not going to happen under Obama since his own party members claim he never talks to them), both the House and Senate consider the Presidents proposals and write their own budgets (this can be anything from a direct copy of the Presidents or completely fresh). Then after both house pass a budget they two version go into reconciliation to see if a common ground can be found. While not legally binding, this finalized budget then gives way for appropriation bills to be passed in both houses to fund each budget concern.

For most of Obama's 2 terms things have not worked out that way. The presidents proposals have been seen as a joke by both parties in both houses, the Senate is fine with zero planning and the House passes their own budgets that had no real legal standing and since they know that, can effectively just be a Republican wish list with little or no Dem input.

Comment Re:Oil companies will spend up big on Republicans (Score 1) 574

The top 3 'subsidies' for oil are:
1) The national oil reserve
2) farmers fuel exemption
3) Home heating oil credit

Those together make up over 60% of all the 'subsidies' big oil receives.

You can debate the need for the oil reserves but that is often considered a national security issue.
The farm credit excludes farmers for paying road and highway taxes on equipment not driven on roads.
The heating oil credit is used to pay for oil for low income families.

Unlike green subsidies which are mostly focused on the producers, the bulk of oil subsidies are for the consumers. Farmers will still need to buy fuel for their equipment and families in the northern states will still need heating oil. All ending those subsidies will do is cause both of those groups to have to pay more while having little impact on big oils bottom line since the additional cost will all go to the government anyway (which will then have to be given out as some other form of subsidy/welfare payment to keep costs of food down and help people not freeze to death).

Comment Re:Two birds with one stone (Score 1) 574

As has been mentioned earlier in the comments sections a lot of the O & G subsidies aren't actually there to benefit the gas companies but in fact are meant to help poor families. The largest 'subsidy' received by big oil is the purchase of oil for the strategic oil reserve. This is followed closely by the farmers fuel tax exemption. Simply put, farmers are not required to pay the potion of fuel taxes used to maintain roads and highways on equipment that is not driven on roads and highways. In third place is the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program which, as the name implies, is used to pay for home heating oil for low income families.

Those 3 'subsidies' together make up between 60% - 70% of total oil subsidies in a given year. Much of the rest is the standard accounting type tricks available to any business to write off depreciation/R&D/etc.. In fact in some cases oil companies are more limited in claiming these standard deductions that other companies, like Apple for example, because the max percentage they are allowed to claim is lower.

Currently 'green' energy subsidies are much higher in the US than O&G and while they also include the standard accounting tricks, they also include many times more in direct payments to the companies as well as other questionable programs like car subsidies on luxury hybrids.

Comment Re:pulp and rubbish (Score 1) 434

Just sending of classified emails is not the issue. I deal with information that would be classified as confidential and secret all day. I know you can email some classified data around (when the proper encryption methods are used). Of course I only use secure servers and only send to authorized receivers on other trusted servers. The problem is with retention.

Having an unauthorized server retain ANY classified information is a violation of several statues and governmental rules.

And this wasn't just data Hillary classified, the information in question was considered classified by the various intelligence agencies. Some of it included minute by minute details as to the whereabouts of Ambassador Stevens and his team.

Comment Re:pulp and rubbish (Score 1) 434

She has already been caught destroying documents.

By her own admission 100% of all her emails were read prior to deletion to ensure no work emails were missed and "accidentally" deleted and yet they have copies of emails sent from her account to other people containing State related matters that were never handed over by her. Those other emails were also on external email accounts but when they were subpenaed the owner actually complied with the law and allowed the investigators access.

Comment Re:pulp and rubbish (Score 1) 434

Actually Powell claims to have never used his email to send classified communications; make of that what you will.

The bigger issue is that now the IG's have reported that not only were there classified info sent through her email but that it reached the level of "secret" (as opposed the the less rare but still classified "confidential" level). They also confirmed that those emails contained data that was secret at the time of the sending, and not items that were retroactively re-classified.

Comment Re:pulp and rubbish (Score 1) 434

Google destruction of federal records and read the legal links.

Within 1 or 2 links you'll find this little statue governing federal records management:

(b) Whoever, having the custody of any such record, proceeding, map, book, document, paper, or other thing, willfully and unlawfully conceals, removes, mutilates, obliterates, falsifies, or destroys the same, shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than three years, or both; and shall forfeit his office and be disqualified from holding any office under the United States.

There is little question she "willfully and unlawfully conceal"d documents (all work emails from the SoS are considered Federal Documents) and more and more is coming to light that she also possibly met at least a few of the other conditions.

Will she ever be charged and convicted, my guess is probably not under the current admin, but there isn't much questions that it is a legal possibility that a conviction could be used to bar her from running for President.

Comment Re:pulp and rubbish (Score 1) 434

Section 1924 of Title 18 makes it illegal to store classified information at an unauthorized site. This is not new. Hilary's only real defense is that she never transmitted any classified information during her term as SoS (you can be the judge on the likelihood of that).

Most of the post-Hilary changes to either procedures or guidelines had to do with shortening reporting periods (they made it mandatory for records to be shipped to retention withing 20 days) but States internal rules about email retention already forbade the use of personal email for work related communications.

These general guidelines were in place as far back as Powell although back then it was considered ok to just cc a state rep to ensure all his emails were stored on site. That was later determined to be too loose a rule and was changed to requiring a State dept. address. That requirement was in place before Hilary ever took the job but as I stated, it was a State Dept. rule and not a law.

The laws deal with the contents of the emails she stored on her server (as stated above) as well as the requirement to ensure all work related communications be sent to the National Archive (which she also failed to do).

The interesting thing is that some of these records laws she's been skirting actually have as a penalty the inability to ever hold public office in the United States.

Nothing is finished until the paperwork is done.