We often hear from the left that our criminal justice system is broken. Part of what the left, including our Attorney General, means by this is that too many people are in jail, especially too many Blacks. I take no position in this post about that claim. But in the case of Aaron Alexis — the Navy Yard mass murderer — it looks like the criminal justice system’s breakdown consists of its failure to incarcerate. According to reports, Alexis was arrested in Seattle in 2004 for shooting out the tires of a parked car. Apparently, he did so in a rage because
WASHINGTON — U.S. law enforcement officials are telling The Associated Press that the Navy contractor identified as the gunman in the mass shootings at the Washington Navy Yard had been suffering a host of serious mental issues, including paranoia and a sleep disorder. He also had been hearing voices in his head, the officials said. Aaron Alexis, 34, had been treated since August by the Veterans Administration for his mental problems, the officials said. They spoke on condition of anonymity because the criminal investigation in the case was continuing. The Navy had not declared him mentally unfit, which would have rescinded
Yesterday’s shooting spree at Washington’s Navy Yard reminds us that disarmed military personnel are made-to-order victims for spree shooters. When Army Maj. Nidal Malik Hasan opened fire Nov. 5, 2009 on soldiers preparing to deploy overseas, I was at Camp Basra, Iraq, a combat historian mobilized with the Army Reserve. To the soldiers in my circle, it was similar to the May 5, 2009 shooting spree at Camp Liberty, Iraq, when a joe burst into that camp’s combat stress center (!) and fatally shot five other soldiers. Understand: All military personnel in Iraq were armed, with either a rifle or a handgun, and
WASHINGTON - The deadly attack at the Washington Navy Yard was carried out by one of the military´s own: a defense contract employee and former Navy reservist who used a valid pass to get onto the installation and started firing inside a building, killing 12 people before he was slain in a gun battle with police. The motive for the mass shooting - the deadliest on a military installation in the U.S. since the tragedy at Fort Hood, Texas, in 2009 - was a mystery, investigators said. But a profile of the lone gunman, a 34-year-old Aaron Alexis, was coming into
On Monday, Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) urged House Republicans to not shut down the federal government. “I hope my colleagues in the House who believe we need to shut down the government will understand that that’s not want the American people want,” McCain said on CNN. “They hate government, but they don’t want it to stop functioning.” President Barack Obama and Republicans have to agree on another resolution to fund the government before the current resolution expires on September 30. As The Hill notes, at least a third of House Republicans want the Republican leadership to use the next round of budget
ACORN’s former leader is back on top. Bertha Lewis played critical behind-the-scenes roles in the victorious Democratic primary campaigns of both Bill de Blasio for mayor and Kenneth Thompson for Brooklyn district attorney, The Post has learned. “We’re baacccck. The right wing will have to deal with it,” Lewis chuckled. Lewis, a co-founder of the Working Families Party, was an early backer and adviser to de Blasio. ACORN’s successor group, New York Communities for Change, endorsed de Blasio for mayor in early spring, and a Lewis protege, NYCC field director Harold Miller, helped run de Blasio’s field operation.
In the midst of the Navy Yard attack, former George W. Bush speechwriter David Frum took advantage of the chaos to attack gun rights advocates. Gun control is a repeated hobbyhorse for Frum, who blamed the "gun lobby" for the atrocity at Sandy Hook Elementary in December. His reaction to Navy Yard placed him in common company with a newly-adrenalized Russian diplomat, who used the event to mock America. A few days before, Frum´s ideological ally, David Brooks, took to the airwaves on PBS´ Newshour to attack what he called "the rise of Ted Cruz-ism," his term for the efforts of
WASHINGTON – A critical report issued by the House Oversight & Government Reform Committee has dismissed the findings of a blue-ribbon panel investigating the 2012 Benghazi terrorist attack, asserting that the State Department-appointed commission didn’t properly examine key witnesses and generally failed to perform a comprehensive job. In a 98-page report released Monday, committee staff concluded that “troubling” gaps exist in the work of the Accountability Review Board (ARB) appointed by then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and that the “limitations inherent in the ARB’s mandate and the weaknesses in the ARB’s methodology show that a more thorough investigation is necessary.”
Why do people claim that the Benghazi scandal is “phony”? To answer that, let’s check in with the people fanning the controversy. They assembled Monday morning at the Heritage Foundation, convened by a conservative group to listen to Rep. Frank Wolf (R-Va.) and several experts on the terrorist attack that killed four Americans in the Libyan city last year. Some of those onstage posed questions about Benghazi that pointed to serious, if not scandalous, mistakes the government made before and during the attack. But those legitimate questions were undermined by other participants who rolled around the grassy knoll. The lunacy began when
Medical experts, including the chiefs of major international aid agencies and three Nobel Prize winners, made a heartfelt appeal urging all combatants in Syria to spare hospitals and clinics and to allow doctors and nurses to operate freely, in what they called "the worst humanitarian crises since the end of the Cold War". "Systematic assaults on medical professionals, facilities and patients are breaking Syria´s health-care system and making it nearly impossible for civilians to receive essential medical services," they said in an open letter published by The Lancet. "As doctors and health professionals we urgently demand that medical colleagues in Syria be
Piers Morgan is getting sick and tired of having the same “ridiculous debate” every time there is a mass shooting, and made that abundantly clear when he unloaded on conservative radio host Ben Ferguson and gun rights activist John Lott during a heated argument over gun control Monday night. Ferguson told Morgan the Navy Yard was a gun-free zone, so gun control was “a failure in this base with all the best security in the world.” Morgan complained that the bigger failure is the “failure to do anything” in the wake of countless tragic shootings. After Richard Feldman brought up the
Style points? Seriously? Style points? That’s what President Obama thinks the criticism of his zigzag Syria policy amounts to? As presidential spin, this is insulting. As presidential conviction — if this is what he really believes — it’s scary. Obama’s dismissive remarks came in response to a question from ABC’s George Stephanopoulos, who asked the president about criticisms of his approach as ad hoc, improvised and unsteady. “Folks here in Washington like to grade on style,” Obama sniffed. “And so had we rolled out something that was very smooth and disciplined and linear, they would have graded it well, even
There is a reason American soldiers, judges and political leaders must swear to protect the Constitution. America is a free, prosperous republic because of this charter we celebrate today. It is what makes us a country of laws, rather than one ruled by mobs or dictators. Straying from the Constitution will lead only to national decline. Have we begun that decline already? Not yet. But today, we must defend the Constitution from all-out attacks by courts, legislators and regulators. Just ask Holy Cross Hospital, which will be forced by Obamacare to hire an insurer that will provide tubal litigation and abortifacients
On Monday´s CBS This Morning, Sharyl Attkisson pointed out the "potential conflict of interest" in the ongoing controversy over the Islamist attack on the U.S. compound in Benghazi, Libya. Attkisson detailed how congressional Republican are scrutinizing Undersecretary of State Patrick Kennedy´s involvement in naming staff to the Accountability Review Board, even as it was investigating his role in the lead-up to the September 11, 2012 attack. It was Attkisson´s first report about Benghazi on CBS´s morning and evening newscasts since the May 8, 2013 edition of CBS This Morning. Her report that day was the first time in over five
New York Times columnist David Brooks argued on PBS´ "NewsHour" Friday night that "Sen. Ted Cruz and similar legislators" are obstructionists who care more about undermining the Republican establishment than advancing legislation. Note that I didn´t use "conservative" to modify "columnist" or "David Brooks," though the Times and other mainstream media outlets routinely bill Brooks as conservative. Featuring a left-leaning moderate and depicting him as a conservative is a clever technique the liberal media employ to discredit conservative ideas. Not to mention any names, but we see this technique in practice daily on NBC´s deranged stepchild, MSNBC, where a former Republican congressman
ISLAMIC face veils have become "the elephant in the court room" a judge said today as he ruled a Muslim woman must remove her niqab when giving evidence. [Snip] Making the decision, Judge Peter Murphy called on the Government to make a legal ruling on the issue of veils in legal proceedings as soon as possible. He said the woman would have to show her face to the judge, jury and legal counsel when giving evidence. But she would have the option of taking it from behind a screen that would shield her from the press and public gallery.
The family of the Washington Navy Yard shooter are ´distraught´ to learn that he carried the massacre, relatives said today. A family member said that the mother and sister of Aaron Alexis were also ´shocked´ that he he could have done this. While some neighbors and acquaintances described him as ´nice,´ his father once told detectives in Seattle that his son had anger management problems related to post-traumatic stress brought on by the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001. He also complained about the Navy and being a victim of discrimination during his time as a Navy reservist from 2007
The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) threatened to arrest anyone flying drones over the Colorado flood damage over the weekend, even those volunteering with the relief effort.On Saturday, FEMA grounded Colorado company Falcon UAV — a drone manufacturer that had been helping local authorities map the disaster area in near-real time — and threatened to arrest anyone flying a drone over the disaster area, IEEE Spectrum reports. Drone industry representatives, plagued by the negative stigma drones have earned from their service in war, have been eager to promote the non-lethal uses of unmanned aerial systems.
Here we go again. Over at the Hill this weekend, a report surfaces that House Republicans are in the middle of what is described as a “civil war” over the defunding of Obamacare. This civil war features House Republicans like Georgia Republican Tom Graves and those who, agreeing with Senators Mike Lee and Ted Cruz, want to defund ObamaCare — versus those who are terrified at the notion they will be blamed for “shutting down the government.” It has launched the usual handwringing from the usual “conservative” media suspects, notably the New York Times’ columnist from Canada through New York, David Brooks. Mr.
US authorities investigating the mass shooting at Washington´s Navy Yard, which left 13 people dead and 14 injured, have said the attack was carried out by a lone gunman. "We don´t have any evidence or indication at this stage that there was another shooter, even though we haven´t completely ruled that out," said Washington mayor Vincent Gray. Police chief Cathy Lanier stressed that: "we do now feel comfortable that we have the single and sole person responsible for the loss of life inside of the base today. "If anything changes as we continue to go forward, we certainly will make that available to
If the words we use every day reveal anything about our society, then gone are the days of handkerchiefs, handwriting, soup and suppers. Welcome instead to the new world of mortgages and movies, celebrity and sex. Researchers have ranked 2,500 of our most commonly used words and compared them with the same list from 50 years ago. Linguists at the University of Lancaster used computers to trawl through millions of books, speeches, studies and newspaper articles currently in circulation. They found ‘marriage,’ ‘childhood,’ ‘God’ and ‘religion’ all fell in popularity but ‘Christmas’ was on the up. And although ‘modesty,’ ‘conscience’ and
When Senators Mike Lee and Ted Cruz started pushing their plan back in July for using the upcoming government-funding bill to defund Obamacare, Lee convened a meeting in his office with ten senators and about 20 representatives of conservative outside groups like Heritage Action. One person he didn’t call: Speaker John Boehner. According to a senior House GOP leadership aide, there was “zero” communication between Boehner’s office and Lee, Cruz, and the other top proponents of the defund strategy. Boehner, majority leader Eric Cantor, and other top House leaders were reading the newspapers, obviously, so it’s not like they were unaware of
Britain is willing to send experts to Syria to assist international efforts to rid the Assad regime of chemical weapons, Foreign Secretary William Hague has said. But Mr Hague ruled out UK troops being deployed to provide them with security, adding that such action might create strong feelings within Syria and alternative arrangements would be looked at. Under an agreement between the United States and Russia, Syrian president Bashar al-Assad´s regime is required to submit a full inventory of its chemical stockpile by the end of the week, allow international inspectors into the country by November and complete the surrender
Vice President Joe Biden’s appearance at the Port of Charleston was designed to hail the bipartisan spirit of making South Carolina globally competitive. But then a dose of 2016 crept in. “I wouldn’t have this job if not for the longshoremen,” Biden said, giving a shout-out to the labor crowd who attended Monday’s harbor-side gathering, taking spots up front. Whether Biden runs for president in 2016 is yet to be determined, but his fact-finding visit to the Palmetto State can easily be viewed as a springboard into what many see as a potential duel with Hillary Clinton in the
As the deadline to fund the federal government nears, Republican leaders are struggling mightily to come up with legislation that can pass the House. Over the weekend, leadership staffers fired off anxious e-mails and uneasy veteran House members exchanged calls. Both camps fear that a shutdown is increasingly likely — and they blame the conservative movement’s cottage industry of pressure groups. But these organizations, ensconced in Northern Virginia office parks and elsewhere, aren’t worried about the establishment’s ire. In fact, they welcome it. Business has boomed since the push to defund Obamacare caught on. Conservative activists are lighting up social media,
A Democratic congressman railed against a “right-wing conspiracy” of outside campaign spending and said that voter ID laws could have prevented Barack Obama’s presidency during a 2012 event in which the IRS coached black ministers in how to engage in campaign activity. The Daily Caller reported Friday on a May 30, 2012 meeting at the U.S. Capitol between the Congressional Black Caucus (CBC) and the Conference of National Black Churches. The meeting was attended by Attorney General Eric Holder, then-IRS commissioner Douglas Shulman, and IRS official Peter Lorenzetti, all of whom spoke at the event. The meeting, which was held during