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Sunday, November 25, 2012

Executive Order 13629, Part IV - Gateway To A Police State

This is the final part of the series on Executive Order 13629, given by President Barack Obama on October 26, 2012.  Issued during Hurricane Sandy, Benghazi, and the heat of the election campaign, few probably noticed.  It is, in my opinion, extemely dangerous.  Especially so since many Americans do not trust this man.
For brevity's sake, I am not going to review Parts I, II, and III.  If you aren't familiar with the first 3 posts in this series, please go back and read them, or you can read Part III and get a quick overview that way.

The White House Homeland Security Partnership Council consists of 3 main segments,
  • the Personal Assistant to the President for Homeland Security and Counterterrorism,
  • the Steering Committee,
  • and the Council proper. 
The Personal Assistant to the President is the Chair of both the Steering Committee and the general Council.  This person convenes all meetings, determines the agendas and coordinates the work.  This is a very powerful person.

The Steering Committee is made up of deputy agency head level (Presidential appointees) from 19 Cabinet Agencies.  These are State, Treasury, Defense, Justice, Interior, Commerce, Agriculture, Labor, Health & Human Services, Housing and Urban Development, Transportation, Energy, Education, Veteran's Affairs, Homeland Security, Office of the Director of National Intelligence, Environmental Protection Agency, Small Business Administration, and the FBI.  This is essentially a secondary Cabinet.

This is a very exclusive group, driven top-down, suggesting very close involvement of the President.  The Steering Committee provides guidance to the Council, whose members they also select:
"The nomination process and selection criteria for members of the Council shall be established by the Steering Committee. Based on those criteria, agency heads may select and present to the Steering Committee their nominee or nominees to represent them on the Council. The Steering Committee shall consider all of the nominees and decide by consensus which of the nominees shall participate on the Council. Each member agency on the Steering Committee, with the exception of the Office of the Director of National Intelligence, may have at least one representative on the Council."

Tasks:
(a) The Council shall... [with my comments in blue]
consistent with guidance from the Steering Committee [Read: do the bidding of the Steering Committee]:
(i) advise the Chair and Steering Committee members on priorities, challenges, and opportunities for local partnerships to support homeland security priorities, as well as regularly report to the Steering Committee on the Council's efforts;  [Read:  The Council will be the eyes and ears of the Steering Committee, prowling for opportunities to seize upon.]
(ii) promote homeland security priorities and opportunities for collaboration between Federal Government field offices and State, local, tribal, and territorial stakeholders; [read: spread the word that we're looking for a few useful people]
(iii) advise and confer with State, local, tribal, and territorial stakeholders and agencies interested in expanding or building local homeland security partnerships; [read: make contact with and actively recruit entities looking to expand their influence and willing to be useful]
(iv) raise awareness of local partnership best practices that can support homeland security priorities; [read: Put the federal blessing on and identify these local groups they have empowered]
(v) as appropriate, conduct outreach to representatives of the private sector, nongovernmental organizations, foundations, community-based organizations, and State, local, tribal, and territorial government and law enforcement entities with relevant expertise for local homeland security partnerships, and collaborate with other Federal Government bodies; [read: seek out and recruit groups who have the reputation for getting the job done and are willing to play ball]
(vi) convene an annual meeting to exchange key findings, progress, and best practices.  [read: have an annual bash where we can party and brag about our conquests and recruitments]

(b) The Steering Committee shall:
(i) determine the scope of issue areas the Council will address and its operating protocols, in consultation with the Office of Management and Budget; [read: we will define the parameters of what we're looking for and what homeland security threats exist, bounded only by our budget]
(ii) establish the nomination process and selection criteria for members of the Council as set forth in section 2(b)(ii) of this order; [read: we will handpick those we allow to sit on the Council, so as to be sure that we are getting people who support the President's agenda]
(iii) provide guidance to the Council on the activities set forth in subsection (a) of this section; [read: closely oversee the things the Council members are doing to make sure they are recruiting the "right" kind of people]
(iv) within 1 year of the selection of the Council members, and annually thereafter, provide a report on the work of the Council to the President through the Chair.[read: we will keep the President informed, with the only paper trail being a carefully craftted annual report for him]

Observations and Conclusions:
  1. Everything and everyone mentioned in this Executive Order is inside the Executive branch of government.  There is NO outside accountability, approval, or guidance provided for.
  2. Addressing homeland security threats - no caps, no definition - is generally viewed as a law enforcement job, but this is nearly all-encompassing in its reach. 
  3. The Steering Committee decides how broad the issues of their purview will be, and essentially handpicks the scouts and the recruits to address them.
  4. The broad sweep of this order casts a much wider net for groups "interested in expanding or building local homeland security partnerships", who want to "raise awareness of 'best practices' enforcing homeland security priorities (not threats);
  5. ???
Not proof or even anecdotal, but how easy could this happen:
"Oakland tries to avoid federal control of police" http://www.dailyrepublic.com/usworld/oakland-tries-to-avoid-federal-control-of-police/


Tags: Executive Order 13629, White House Homeland Security Partnership Council, police state, Barack Obama.  Please mention / link to the Conservative Observer AZ. Thanks!

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Sex, Lies, and AUO

I'll finish the Executive Order series next, but first, I need to give you an update about the Border Patrol.

It's an age-old story.  Make bricks without straw and don't you dare lower your output.  Small men (and women) torture and belittle those under them so that they can delude themselves into the fantasy of pretending to be people of consequence.  Mistreating the little people, holding information over their heads like a piece of yarn over a cat.

Such seems to be the lot of the frontline Border Patrol agent these days.  Good people have died and been wounded because of Fast and Furious, but any accountability for those responsible has been lost amidst follow-on scandals and other pressing issues.  Nick Ivie died because drug smugglers were trafficking drugs, regardless of how he died...a fact which seems to be lost on everyone.  Ho-hum.

Meanwhile, back at headquarters, the bigwigs are playing doctor, the good old boys are giving themselves golden parachutes while toying with financial uncertainty in the future of the worker bees.  Read on.

What's AUO?  Well, imagine this:  The good guys are chasing the bad guys and are getting close to catching them, when the whistle sounds signaling that it's quitting time.  I'd like to see the good guys keep going and catch the bad guys and get paid for their perseverence.  That extra time is called Administratively Unavoidable Overtime, AUO, and it's worth a lot to an agent with a spouse and two young kids, like potentially 32% of his or her pay, as I understand it.

But at the same time, while the good old boys are sitting in their offices sipping coffee and figuring out ways to give themselves golden parachutes and early retirement, they're also cutting back on AUO, while saying that they're only "monitoring" it...

You can read about what's happening and how it's going down among those worker bees at www.local2544.org.

Given these conditions, why would anyone continue to serve in the Border Patrol?  Maybe some feel extorted into staying on, having no other place they can go, or maybe there's a deeper sense of mission borne of patriotism, or both, and more.  Next time you see an agent though, thank him or her.  And let the people in Washington know what you think about all this.


Tags: Border Patrol, Local 2544, AUO, Nick Ivie.  Please mention / link to the Conservative Observer AZ. Thanks!

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Presidential Executive Order - Part III

This is the third of four posts about Presidential Executive Order 13629, as it apparently is known. I really don't like reading seemingly endless series' of posts like this. So I ask your pardon and promise that the next post - the 4th - will be the final one. That one will have two final areas of the Order to look at, and then I will close with comments and, for the unconvinced, an estimate of my lack of reality testing.
If you've freshly read the first two posts in this series, then feel free to skip the REVIEW and head to the section titled, CONTINUING, PART III.

REVIEW:
Presidential Executive Order 13629 (October 26, 2012), promulgated by Barack Hussein Obama, establishes the "White House Homeland Security Partnership Council". 
  • to advance the Federal Government's use of local partnerships to address homeland security challenges
  • Partnerships are collaborative working relationships
  • Collaboration, with respect to addressing homeland security challenges, enables the Federal Government and its partners to
    • Use resources more efficiently
    • Build on one another's expertise
    • Drive innovation
    • Engage in collective action
    • Broaden investments
    • Improve performance.
  • National Security Strategy (a 2010 document worth examining at another time) emphasizes the importance of partnerships:
  • "[Federal Government] must tap the ingenuity outside government through stategic partnerships with:
    • Private sector
    • NGOs
    • Foundations
    • Community-based organizations.
  • We will support such partnerships through
    • Opportunities for engagement
    • Coordination
    • Transparency
    • Information sharing.
  • We must institutionalize an all-of-nation effort."
I held up two facts against this backdrop of "homeland security challenges": 1) the mass purchase of hundreds of millions of hollow point bullets by the Social Security Administration, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, and Homeland Security; and 2) Lee DeCovnick's American Thinker post citing Obama's July 2, 2008 speech asserting the need for a civilian national security force equal in strength and support as the U.S. military. 

CONTINUING, PART III
So, Barack Obama wants to establish many - hundreds? - of partnerships with local entities to address homeland security problems.  How will that be accomplished?

This executive order establishes the White House Homeland Security Partnership Council, and appoints as its chair the Assistant to the President for Homeland Security and Counterterrorism. Note that this new position is NOT a Cabinet position, but rather a personal "assistant to the President" position within the White House. A czar, if you will, answerable only to Barack Obama.

Who will be on the Council, and how will they be selected?

The Council will be composed of Federal officials who are from field offices of the executive departments, agencies, and bureaus. In other words, employees who work for agencies of the executive branch of the Federal Government all across America. These are people who would have lots of working knowledge of local organizations and groups who would be willing to be used by the Federal Government the President to address homeland security (lower case) threats. Presumably, these are the people who would specially recruit and recommend those local groups thought to be fit for duty as part of our "all-of-nation" effort to fight homeland security threats.

Do you think they will be forwarding any "fishy" email addresses?

This Council of field officers will be selected by members of the Steering Committee.  The Steering Committee shall include a representative at the deputy agency head level, just below the Cabinet level, from 19 Executive branch agencies.  So these are very high, very powerful people, very close to the Presidential level.

By the way, representatives of Executive branch agencies not represented in the 19 named agencies may be added to the Steering Committee by invitation of the Chair.

Do you get the sense that this whole project is going to be under the very close supervision of the President himself?  I do.

Next: Final installment: The Council's 6 tasks, the enormous power of the Steering Committee, and what all this may - or may not - mean.


Tags: Executive Order 13629, Deputy heads of Executive Agencies, Field Officers, fishy email, White House Homeland Security Partnership Council, Barack Obama, American Thinker, Lee DeCovnick, civilian national security.  Please mention / link to the Conservative Observer AZ. Thanks!

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Executive Order, Part 2

My last post introduced President Obama's Executive Order of October 26, 2012, establishing the White House Homeland Security Partnership Council (let's just say, "Council").  I pointed out that BO wants to "advance the Federal Government's use of local partnerships to address homeland security challenges...".  I then juxtaposed the odd fact that the Social Security Administration, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, and the Department of Homeland Security collectively have ordered 750,220,000 rounds of hollow point bullets last summer, bullets whose use is exclusively to rip apart flesh.

Maybe I'm just being paranoid.  But let's go on anyway...

One final note before getting into Section 2 of the Executive Order.  After reiterating the value of partnerships with "...private sector, nongovernmental organizations, foundations, community-based organizations, and State, local, tribal, and territorial government and law enforcement," the 3rd paragraph ends with the curious phrase, "we must institutionalize an all-of-Nation effort to address the evolving threats to the United States." 

What does this mean?  To institutionalize is to establish "a permanent rule of conduct or of government; something forming a prominent or established feature in social or national life" (Webster).  It is not that DHS wants ordinary citizens to keep their eyes open and report suspicious activity.  This isn't the DHS, and that's not what this is about. 

Well, halfway through this post I discovered that Lee DeCovnick posted a very similar analysis of this Executive Order at American Thinker on November 5, 2012.  There, he reminds us of

"...this quote from Obama's July 2, 2008 speech:
We cannot continue to rely on our military in order to achieve the national security objectives that we've set. We've got to have a civilian national security force that's just as powerful, just as strong, just as well-funded."

DeCovnick speculates on who might be included among the NGOs, community-based organizations, etc. who might make up this civilian security force: 
"Is there any doubt that this administration and its czars would seek partnerships with La Raza, ACORN and its renamed offshoots, Move On, PETA, the Center for American Progress, Media Matters, CAIR and other Islamic organizations, the Sierra Club, AFL-CIO, the SEIU, and the AFT and CTA?"
But then again, maybe I'm just being paranoid, right?
 
More to come.  (I'll try not to drag this out too much more).
 

Tags: Executive Order 13629, hollow point bullets, White House Homeland Security Partnership Council, Barack Obama, American Thinker, Lee DeCovnick, civilian national security.  Please mention / link to the Conservative Observer AZ. Thanks!




Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Presidential Executive Order of 26 Oct. 2012... or... It's Not Paranoia If They're Really After You

Another Executive Order to skirt Congress, issued October 26, 2012,  wasting more millions of your tax dollars.

BO is creating yet another agency, called the "White House Homeland Security Partnership Council," whose purpose is "...to advance the Federal Government's use of local partnerships to address homeland security challenges..."

Did you catch that?  Wait...what?

Let me repeat that, with my own emphasis:  "...to advance the Federal Government's USE OF LOCAL PARTNERSHIPS to address HOMELAND SECURITY CHALLENGES..." 

"...to advance the Federal Government's use of..."
"...to address homeland security challenges..."

Border?  No, this isn't a border issue.  What would this mean in, say, Kansas?  But...let's read more.

"Collaboration enables the Federal Government and its partners to use resources more efficiently, build on one another's expertise, drive innovation, engage in collective action, broaden investments to achieve shared goals, and improve performance."

Remember, we're talking about addressing homeland security challenges.  Resources and expertise... I'll concede those.  But,

What innovation?
What collective action?
What investments?
What shared goals?
What performance?

Does homeland security challenges mean civil unrest?

Remember all of those hollow point bullets Government agencies ordered last summer?
  • Social Security - 174,000 rounds
  • National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) - 46,000 rounds
  • Dept of Homeland Security - 750 million rounds; additional 750 million rounds of miscellaneous bullets including some that are capable of penetrating walls. 
[Note: Hollow points are not used for "practice" because they are so expensive. The Geneva Convention bans the use of hollow points in combat. They are, however, standard issue for law enforcement agencies.]

This is enough ammunition to empty five rounds into the body of every living American citizen.  (via Daily Caller)

We're only in the 2nd paragraph.  More to come....
 

Tags: President, executive order, White House Homeland Security Partnership Council, hollow point bullets, Social Security, NOAA.  Please mention / link to the Conservative Observer AZ. Thanks!

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

CIA Case Officers Attacked by 14 Mexican Federal Police

The event took place on August 24, and the 14 Mexican federal police officers who took part are now being charged.

Read the full story at Drugs, Guns and Politics in Mexico:

"The two CIA Case Officers were wounded in the incident by spawl and bullet proof glass flaking as bullets repeatedly struck it.According to La Jornada, The PGR charged that the 14 Mexican police agents "tried to take the lives" of the three men in the embassy vehicle." [emphasis mine]

Hmmm.  Haven't seen much of this in the MSM.  Nor any outrage from anyone in D.C.

How much longer can we expect good people to stick their necks out while Washington refuses to back them up?


Tags: CIA, Mexican Federal Police, PGR, MSM.  Please mention / link to the Conservative Observer AZ. Thanks!

Monday, November 12, 2012

The Road Ahead

Today is Veteran's Day. To all of you who serve or have served in any of the 5 services (don't forget the Coast Guard)... THANK YOU! Those two words are never enough, but they're all I have for now.

Well, it has been a busy week.  For me, a rollercoaster week that started Monday helping out with Gabby Saucedo Mercer's last minute campaign calls, the huge disappointment of Tuesday night, and the week ending with a Christian retreat that was at once both deeply soul-searching and fun.

Conservative Observer AZ isn't throwing in any towels.  There is enough injustice and hate from the left that will keep me coming back to the keyboard.  For the moment, however, I will be taking a break to think about the fact that the majority of voters who came out to vote are one of the following: 1) Socialist anti-colonialists who deliberately are tearing down America, 2) Shallow ignoramuses who voted for the left because it was "cool", because they fawn over Hollywood stars, or because they get free stuff; or 3) People like one woman I talked to, who voted for the left because she drank the koolaid about Republicans being white, racist people-haters.

More than the fact that people with bad ideas are running the country, what this election shows about American society today is what REALLY bothers me.

Many have said that we have lost our republic.  I hope not, but we shall see.


Tags: Gabriela Saucedo Mercer, election, Veteran's Day, socialists, Hollywood.  Please mention / link to the Conservative Observer AZ. Thanks!

Monday, November 5, 2012

Gabriela Saucedo Mercer: Vote to Break Free From Liberal Stereotypes

Gabriela Saucedo Mercer stands for opportunity to succeed, to go places and to do things!  Follow her lead and stand up on your own feet and prove what you are capable of!  Change things!

What would Raul Grijalva call you if you became prosperous or wealthy?  Evil?  Out of line?  Needing to be put back in your place?
 
The central theme of the liberal bandwagon is the idea that the masses, especially minorities, have been oppressed by rich, influential people.  Liberals portray the masses as essentially powerless, in need of a champion who will fight for them.
Every single election. 
What have the champions changed?  NOTHING!
Are you
  • Powerless?
  • Oppressed?
  • Weak?
  • A 2nd Class Citizen?
  • Shackled to the lie that you are part of a group that is the stereotype of a powerless, oppressed, weak group of 2nd class citizens and that only by voting for the people like Grijalva who label you do you have any hope for the future?
Who painted that picture? Who gave you that label? Raul Grijalva and his liberal friends!
Vote for Gabriela Saucedo Mercer and
BREAK OUT!


Tags: Gabriela Saucedo Mercer, Raul Grijalva, stereotypes, liberal stereotypes, powerless, 2nd class citizen. Please mention / link to the Conservative Observer AZ. Thanks!