Smelling a RAT

posted at 10:11 am on February 19, 2009 by Ed Morrissey

Byron York smells a RAT.  Charles Grassley smelled a RAT right before the Senate vote on Porkulus, but couldn’t get his statement to the floor on time.  You’ll smell a rat, too, when you’re done reading this post, and it won’t just be the Recovery Accountability and Transparency Board, either:

You’ve heard a lot about the astonishing spending in the $787 billion economic stimulus bill, signed into law this week by President Barack Obama. But you probably haven’t heard about a provision in the bill that threatens to politicize the way allegations of fraud and corruption are investigated — or not investigated — throughout the federal government.

The provision, which attracted virtually no attention in the debate over the 1,073-page stimulus bill, creates something called the Recovery Accountability and Transparency Board — the RAT Board, as it’s known by the few insiders who are aware of it. The board would oversee the in-house watchdogs, known as inspectors general, whose job is to independently investigate allegations of wrongdoing at various federal agencies, without fear of interference by political appointees or the White House.

In the name of accountability and transparency, Congress has given the RAT Board the authority to ask “that an inspector general conduct or refrain from conducting an audit or investigation.” If the inspector general doesn’t want to follow the wishes of the RAT Board, he’ll have to write a report explaining his decision to the board, as well as to the head of his agency (from whom he is supposedly independent) and to Congress. In the end, a determined inspector general can probably get his way, but only after jumping through bureaucratic hoops that will inevitably make him hesitate to go forward.

First, let’s ask ourselves how this stimulates the economy.  Why include this in an emergency stimulus bill when it has nothing to do with stimulus or economics?  This rule change should have come in separate debate in Congress — like so many other portions of Porkulus.

It does, however, have everything to do with Hope and Change.  What the RAT Board can do, as York points out, is direct or quash investigations by Inspectors General throughout the federal bureaucracy.  Until now, IGs have had independence of action in order to avoid charges of politicization (remember that word?) and to conduct probes without interference from the Department of Justice, the White House, or Congress.  Now they will answer to Congress not on general performance, but on the specifics of their probes.

How did it get into Porkulus?  Grassley says it wasn’t in the original bill passed in the Senate, and it suddenly appeared in the conference version.  No one has claimed ownership of the RAT Board yet, but clearly the Democratic majority wants full control over oversight in the bureaucracy — which more or less means an end to effective oversight over the majority, which is the entire point of the IG position.  After all, if we could rely on politicians and bureaucrats to police themselves, we wouldn’t need Constitutional checks and balances at all.

The name of the RAT Board is Orwellian, as is its appearance in the administration that claimed it would have the most transparency in American history.  Putting IGs under Nancy Pelosi’s thumb eliminates transparency and accountability, and calling it an Accountability and Transparency Board is a grim joke.  It’s simply a mechanism to shut down potentially embarrassing (or worse) IG investigations while commanding others against political foes.

Put simply, it brings the worst aspects of the Chicago Machine to Washington DC — a result which we repeatedly warned would happen with Obama’s election.


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Hey, if Obama’a U.S. citizenship is legit, why does he have a team of lawyers (already paid $800K) to keep the public from seeing what his personal recrods really say?

searcher484 on February 19, 2009 at 11:08 AM

searcher484 on February 19, 2009 at 11:04 AM

Determined to hijack the thread, aren’t you?

a capella on February 19, 2009 at 11:09 AM

Obama and the Dems are behaving as though they will always be in power.

Why is that?

Marsh on February 19, 2009 at 11:09 AM

We just want to see Obama’s passport, immigration, and birth records. Is that too much to ask? Apparently it is. Why?

searcher484 on February 19, 2009 at 11:09 AM

We are seeing the government we voted for, turn into a government by intimidation at all levels.

The true tyranny of the majority.

tarpon on February 19, 2009 at 11:10 AM

Determined to get answers —- before we lose this nation to Obama

searcher484 on February 19, 2009 at 11:10 AM

searcher484 on February 19, 2009 at 11:04 AM

Valid point searcher, but it’s hijacking the thread. Stay on topic please and wait for an opportunity to work your point into the appropriate thread. TIA

ex-Democrat on February 19, 2009 at 11:10 AM

Obambi’s favorite movie? Ben or Willard.

platypus on February 19, 2009 at 10:50 AM

The Pied Piper of Hamelin Chicago Kenya.

MB4 on February 19, 2009 at 11:10 AM

Orwellian indeed.

Sorry, but f**k anyone who voted for Obama. McCain was one of the weakest and lamest candidates in U.S. history, but Obama was the worst and most dangerous.

BuckeyeSam on February 19, 2009 at 11:12 AM

Nancy puts the RAT in democRAT. Gee,I wonder what else is lurking in the bill that only a handful of people read befoer signing? Is it possible that cardcheck has been slipped in there as well? Or that the FOCA has too?

eaglewingz08 on February 19, 2009 at 11:13 AM

I’ll bet Michael Steele is “disappointed” in this new development!

But hey…a little bit of Hip Hop should fix this one!

sabbott on February 19, 2009 at 11:14 AM

“It’s not corruption if we don’t say it is — and if you open your mouth one more time, we’ll find some corruption on you.” Mr. Chicago Machine goes to Washington.

Mark30339 on February 19, 2009 at 11:15 AM

The RAT issues is simply more evidence of Obama’s overall policy of manipulation and secrecy. However, the most serious manifestation of Obama’s fraud is his hiding of all his OWN personal records. We let Obama get away with his citizenship fraud and ineligibility and we now see the results. You can bluster about RAT, but unless we deal with and confront Obama on a deeper level (the POTUS eligibiityissue that everyone is afraid to deal with, there is no hope of stopping the Obama agenda.

searcher484 on February 19, 2009 at 11:17 AM

Sorry, but f**k anyone who voted for Obama. McCain was one of the weakest and lamest candidates in U.S. history, but Obama was the worst and most dangerous.

BuckeyeSam on February 19, 2009 at 11:12 AM

So were Reid and Pelosi, and they were known quantities, unfortunately that did not keep the majority from voting massive numbers of democrats into congress.
Turning this around is going to be tough without an honest watchdog media. Conservatives will need to get pretty creative to get our message out.

neuquenguy on February 19, 2009 at 11:18 AM

PURE FURY!!! MIND BLANKING FURY! WHERE THE HELL IS THE MEDIA?? I am screaming in my head…time for a drink

Nyssan on February 19, 2009 at 11:18 AM

In the real world, if you fail to do your job properly, you get fired.

Unless you’re in a union.

reaganaut on February 19, 2009 at 10:35 AM

If I were in front of my drum set, you’d have received a rim shot
on that one. Too good!

elderberry on February 19, 2009 at 11:19 AM

Who will watch the Watchers…

Wow… Can we just change the name from Rats to Peoples Commitee?

And put in during the conference report… this needs to be blasted out by us… this is EXACTLY why Barry said we would have 5 days to vet this… and the House voted to give 48 hours… then didn’t…

Romeo13 on February 19, 2009 at 11:20 AM

As Gomer Pyle used to say, “Surprise, surprise, surprise!” America you have been duped.

bloggless on February 19, 2009 at 11:20 AM

Is this legal? Who or what entity overseas the congressional bill process? Who’s going to challenge this? Questions, questions, no answers. Time to activate the mole.

RepubChica on February 19, 2009 at 11:20 AM

PURE FURY!!! MIND BLANKING FURY! WHERE THE HELL IS THE MEDIA?? I am screaming in my head…time for a drink

Nyssan on February 19, 2009 at 11:18 AM

LOL… I picked a really bad year to quit drinkin…

Romeo13 on February 19, 2009 at 11:21 AM

uy Danish on February 19, 2009 at 10:57 AM

I agree on the thread-hijacking but don’t agree that it’s a moonbat topic. I’ll leave it at that until the proper thread opens up.

ex-Democrat on February 19, 2009 at 11:21 AM

Up next…. Barack’s Little Black Book.

bloggless on February 19, 2009 at 11:22 AM

Actually, that should be Chairman Barack’s Little Black Book.

bloggless on February 19, 2009 at 11:25 AM

Unfortunately, it may be necessary to hijack threads to get people’s attention. Obama has hijacked the CONSTITUTION and hijacked AMERICA. We have become a nation of passive sheep to let him get away with it.

searcher484 on February 19, 2009 at 11:25 AM

So now the Democrats have full control over the candy store and have turned off the security cameras.

workingforpigs on February 19, 2009 at 11:25 AM

PURE FURY!!! MIND BLANKING FURY! WHERE THE HELL IS THE MEDIA?? I am screaming in my head…time for a drink

Nyssan on February 19, 2009 at 11:18 AM

The media is way to invested in Obama , he is too big to fail, whatever the reality is, they will MAKE him the greatest president who ever lived. I doubt you will ever again see one of those presidential ranking polls without him at the top.

neuquenguy on February 19, 2009 at 11:26 AM

I expected Hot Air readers to have more guts. Guess I was wrong. Most of you don’t even care that Obama and his team of lawyers won’t let the public see his personal records. It should matter to you, but it does not, apparently. At least ask yourself why does Obama have to hide his past.

searcher484 on February 19, 2009 at 11:29 AM

Bureau of Economic Planning and National Resources

Recovery Accountability and Transparency Board

Jaibones on February 19, 2009 at 11:33 AM

How are they going to diddle the unemployment figures to show his spending bill is a long term success? He’ll need some help on that. Is the Dow a better indicator?

a capella on February 19, 2009 at 11:34 AM

Oh this is priceless,engineer a DoomsDay Catastrophic
crisis snario economic meltdown,just before an election,

then,ask for 700 Billion dollars,strut to the well,then
blame “8 years of failed Bush policies”,

then after trying to blame the Republican Party,you’re
hoping that the Republicans vote for it,

then,panick and scare the h#ll out of the average American
that the bill needs to be signed ASAP,or all is lost,

then,ever sneaky,and crafty Liberals put in where the sun
doesn’t shine,a ‘No Investigations now or never’ clause,

and since the bill needs to be signed last week,the timing
was crucial,

meanwhile it sits on Hopey/Changes desk,

and now everyone knows why Pelosi had a grin ear to ear!

Outstanding ain’t it!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

canopfor on February 19, 2009 at 11:34 AM

PMA? Who’s that?

Akzed on February 19, 2009 at 11:35 AM

Why is no one talking about the “administrative costs” throughout this bill. Just the accountability section allows for $84 Million dollars to oversee this piece of crap!

http://appropriations.house.gov/pdf/AccountabilityLanguage02-13-09.pdf

sherryande on February 19, 2009 at 11:36 AM

searcher484 on February 19, 2009 at 11:17 AM

I don’t know if the records you speak of are an important issue or not, but I suspect that they are not.

Mostly, I know that everyone else who seems obsessed with whether or not a huge Hawaiian government birth conspiracy exists also generally seems unhinged and deranged.

You might want to slide on to a relevant point.

Jaibones on February 19, 2009 at 11:38 AM

Obama and the Dems are behaving as though they will always be in power.

Why is that?

Marsh on February 19, 2009 at 11:09 AM

Exactly exactly exactly!!! That was one of my first thoughts today listening to the news as I woke up. Why would they be flirting with the Fairness Doctrine unless they didn’t mind it being overturned by Republican adminstrations or congresses, and reinstated by Democrat adminstrations and congresses? It would literally only be in force during Democrat tides, and would be a standing argument against electing them.

But I have had the vague feeling recently that they don’t expect there to be any more Republican anythings.

Akzed on February 19, 2009 at 11:38 AM

PMA? Who’s that?

Akzed on February 19, 2009 at 11:35 AM

http://hotair.com/archives/2009/02/19/culture-of-corruption-100-representatives-on-pma-list/

BuckeyeSam on February 19, 2009 at 11:39 AM

I’ll bet Michael Steele is “disappointed” in this new development!

But hey…a little bit of Hip Hop should fix this one!

sabbott on February 19, 2009 at 11:14 AM

LoL. Was Thinking the same thing. Snarky minds think alike! But hey, at least he’s trying. He must figure if American Idol has been successful for the Dems it must be for the GOP, too.

RepubChica on February 19, 2009 at 11:41 AM

PMA? Who’s that?

Akzed on February 19, 2009 at 11:35 AM
http://hotair.com/archives/2009/02/19/culture-of-corruption-100-representatives-on-pma-list/

BuckeyeSam on February 19, 2009 at 11:39 AM

Um, I know. I was commenting on the memory hole aspect of the “RAT Board.” Sheesh.

Akzed on February 19, 2009 at 11:43 AM

But I have had the vague feeling recently that they don’t expect there to be any more Republican anythings.

Akzed on February 19, 2009 at 11:38 AM

It’s more than a vague feeling for me.

And it’s growing stronger every day.

Marsh on February 19, 2009 at 11:45 AM

Unfortunately, it may be necessary to hijack threads to get people’s attention. Obama has hijacked the CONSTITUTION and hijacked AMERICA. We have become a nation of passive sheep to let him get away with it.

searcher484 on February 19, 2009 at 11:25 AM

Umm seriously? He hijacked the constitution and America? He got elected get over it and work towards challenging his policies by calling your local reps. Your not going to win going down this track and frankly it makes us look foolish like dKos during the Bush years.

I would put the blame more on the media anyway.

Baaaah

Bunsin on February 19, 2009 at 11:45 AM

The name of the RAT Board is Orwellian, as is its appearance in the administration that claimed it would have the most transparency in American history.

What Obama says is becoming a contrarian indicator of what he actually intends.

Seems I underestimated the radicalism and repressiveness of an Obama administration. Hopefully we can survive it, if only we can grow strong into the 2012 election. But I’m starting to worry that we’re going to be left almost powerless and voiceless by then.

petefrt on February 19, 2009 at 11:49 AM

I believe “searcher484″ is trying to make sure we don’t forget this issue is out there.

There is nothing wrong with reminding people that Hawaii does in fact allow foreign citizens to apply for certificates of birth. And let’s not forget, Obama and his legal team did in fact block access to his birth records. Among other records………

While most libs believe that only they can focus on more than one issue – we can too. If searcher484 is this passionate about this issue, I for one believe he is also challenging policies and calling his local reps.

sherryande on February 19, 2009 at 11:52 AM

Sorry for the long read, but thanks in advance for any ideas.

mctowler on February 19, 2009 at 10:50 AM

First of all, God Bless you and thank you for all that you do. I was born in Chicago and have lived in North Carolina and Colorado before returning to Chicago six years ago. It has been my experience that the government works well in some places and not so well in others. In North Carolina and Colorado state employees for the most part worked hard and were honest. In Illinois, this is just not the case. Worse yet the organizational corruption is so widespread (both inside and outside of government) that when citizens even suggest cutting budgets before raising taxes we are laughed at. Seems with President Obama this disease (unchecked corruption) has spread now to Washington.

The solution is and always has been smaller, more efficient, less intrusive government. Sadly, as the payrolls swell, the voices opposing the expansion of government get fewer and fewer. Although we are not listened to, we must continue to speak out in favor of smaller government, particularly in urban areas. Self reliance is a virtue not unique to America, but uniquely American. We need to tell people looking to the government for help, that they are not helpless. Failure is not fatal, we are all born with the tools to succeed. A government that does not promote self reliance breeds pessimism. Chicagoans have become fond of the term social justice, the banding together of those in need to become a political force. As such, social justice here has morphed to the point that everyone is in need and the only sucker is the responsible taxpayer.

My prescription for this disease is to communicate to friends and family the great legacy we have been given, the countless sacrifices that we made on our behalf and the great responsibility we have to pass this legacy on to our children. Let the past be our guide to the future.

Angry Dumbo on February 19, 2009 at 11:53 AM

But I’m starting to worry that we’re going to be left almost powerless and voiceless by then.

petefrt on February 19, 2009 at 11:49 AM

Comrade, it’s only human to feel that way at this time, but fight it. Ultimately, that is their end goal–to completely demoralize you. That’s not moonbattery but truth. Read up on this clown’s schooling in radicalism, including Pelosi and Co. They want you frustrated and angry and cowering in a corner. Ineffective for action.

RepubChica on February 19, 2009 at 12:07 PM

The momentum is building. Obama is quickly building safety nets all around himself. This guy is no box of rocks; he knows exactly what he is doing & is blasting full speed ahead w/his radical agenda. I surely believe this man to be mentally ill. Pathological narcissism – “an overall feeling of grandiosity, craving for admiration, selfishness…….”

p.s. no known cure or treatment

Ris4victory on February 19, 2009 at 12:07 PM

If this had been in place a few years ago it almost certainly would have been invoked to shut down the OFHEO investigation of Fannie Mae.

Fannie and Freddie are now being run by the government. They have just been given another $200 billion and vast new authority to grow their portfolios and start refinancing troubled mortgages.

Last year Republicans were able to make a big enough noise that Dems were forced to remove the ACORN slush fund from the housing bill. Well now they can have one at Fannie and Freddie without worrying about passing a little old piece of legislation. And they can stop the IG from investigating it.

If this doesn’t scare and infuriate you then you don’t have a pulse.

rockmom on February 19, 2009 at 12:13 PM

What we see here is the formation of the American Soviet.

soviet, definition:
One of the popularly elected legislative assemblies that existed at local, regional, and national levels in the former Soviet Union.

MBuck on February 19, 2009 at 12:15 PM

Oh yeah I forgot to add to my post –

Guess who was general counsel at Fannie Mae when the OFHEO ivestigation happened and Fannie tried to shut down the investigation?

Tom Donilon. Now serving in the Obama White House.

Guess who was on the Freddie Mac board of directors when Freddie cooked its books?

Rahm Emanuel. Your White House chief of staff.

NOW does anyone want to guess how this little nicety ended up in the Porkulus bill?

rockmom on February 19, 2009 at 12:15 PM

I never heard of such. I wonder if the three Republicans who voted for it knew?

d1carter on February 19, 2009 at 12:18 PM

rockmom on February 19, 2009 at 12:15 PM

Ah,..thank you.

a capella on February 19, 2009 at 12:18 PM

Grassroots efforts are the only ones that truly work to change people’s minds. Once upon a time, a small group of citizens worked door-to-door to unseat a “popular” but corrupt local official who enjoyed deep pockets and the financial backing of a very powerful local political machine. I was one of those citizens. It took a lot of work and a willingness to sacrifice personal time, but politician was unseated and ended up in disgrace. It can be done, but each has to work on his own representatives to effect change. Instead of tilting at windmills, creating sound and fury signifying nothing (thank you, William Faulkner), get busy contacting your elected officials and speaking to anyone you can about the need to unseat the Democrats. People are naturally suspicious of secrecy, subterfuge, and blatant power mongering, so use every opportunity to hammer home the point. And put your money where your mouth is, assuming you have any money left. Obama won because he had unprecedented financial resources; send money to support conservative candidates and demand that Republicans start calling these folks out on their hypocrisy. Hoist them by their own petard…

College Prof on February 19, 2009 at 12:21 PM

If this doesn’t scare and infuriate you then you don’t have a pulse.

rockmom on February 19, 2009 at 12:13 PM

It does. Thanks for all of your informative comments. And thanks Ed and AP and MM. Thank God I can come here and in five minutes still find out the truth. Without this site, I don’t know where else I’d be able to do that.

JiangxiDad on February 19, 2009 at 12:21 PM

It’s more than a vague feeling for me.

And it’s growing stronger every day.

Marsh on February 19, 2009 at 11:45 AM

I said it last year and was criticized for scare mongering.
If Obama is elected, 2008 will go down as the last fair election this country will ever see.

MarkTheGreat on February 19, 2009 at 12:22 PM

Why include this in an emergency stimulus bill when it has nothing to do with stimulus or economics?

Why indeed?

eucher on February 19, 2009 at 12:24 PM

I never heard of such. I wonder if the three Republicans who voted for it knew?

d1carter on February 19, 2009 at 12:18 PM

Sure — if they had read it first, they might not have signed it

eucher on February 19, 2009 at 12:26 PM

Is this even constitutional? Aren’t the IG’s executive branch employees? As such, the legislative can have no control over them.

MarkTheGreat on February 19, 2009 at 12:27 PM

College Prof on February 19, 2009 at 12:21 PM

To be offset by a few million non-existant voters registered by ACORN. With the state level Democrat AG’s refusing to investigate.

MarkTheGreat on February 19, 2009 at 12:30 PM

What activities do people reading this think will make an impact on changing the direction of where this country is headed currently?
Sorry for the long read, but thanks in advance for any ideas

mctowler on February 19, 2009 at 10:50 AM

Run for elective office.

Based on your accomplishments you are better qualified than most of the US Congress. The country will recover when successful people replace politicians in running the government.

Ted Torgerson on February 19, 2009 at 12:35 PM

Poll Obama voters on the meaning of this expression, and see how few know:

“Pig in a poke”

Christien on February 19, 2009 at 12:37 PM

The provision, which attracted virtually no attention in the debate over the 1,073-page stimulus bill, …

Why would it? Nobody even read the gaddamned thing.

Wonder what other surprises are lurking deep in that behemoth?

BacaDog on February 19, 2009 at 12:42 PM

Why would it? Nobody even read the gaddamned thing.

True dat. I doubt it has been fully read by ANYONE.

sonofdy on February 19, 2009 at 12:52 PM

Searcher484 is exactly right. It’s absurd to expect accountability and transparency from Obama when he refused to be that way on the campaign trail and continues to spend hundreds of thousands of dollars on attorneys to keep his past records sealed. He doesn’t want himself investigated and this RAT Board is just another way to “refrain from conducting an audit or investigation” on any of his buddies as well.

peg on February 19, 2009 at 1:06 PM

…frustrated by things happening in this country and writing on a blog being read by people that share my point of view on things. I enjoy the humor of those that post comments here, but does it make a difference?…

What activities do people reading this think will make an impact on changing the direction of where this country is headed currently?
mctowler on February 19, 2009 at 10:50 AM

This thread has run far afield of the topic – hopefully it will get back to the subject at hand. Not to add to the diversions but you raise a good point.

“Does it make a difference?” Part of our frustration is the lack of reporting by the MSM – this selective reporting is a concerted form of social isolation. We know that when animals & people are socially isolated they become despondent/submissive. So in that sense reading informative threads will replace feelings with facts. It is obvious to the casual observer that this RAT is tantamount to having the fox administrate the hen house. Where’s the MSM? *crickets*

The Moderators & normally folks who have more information on the subject at hand will share their expertise & link to supporting information. Those posts will be of great value to you because it will give you information to bring into your IRL social circles. You will be better informed & armed to argue with facts over emotion. And a little humor is certainly a stress reliever. Just talking to others is an important and under-rated activity to enact change.

And in those thread diversions – some do bring light to other related subjects and some just give you a glimpse into folie á deux.

batterup on February 19, 2009 at 1:08 PM

Chuck Grassley is making a pretty big stink about this thing and he has a strong reputation as a government watchdog. This isn’t some right wing distortion or whining. It’s serious and scary. Democrats have trampled on the Constitution and every principle of honest government in this legislation. We must hold Barack Obama accountable for it or we might as well just go home.

rockmom on February 19, 2009 at 1:10 PM

Actually, that should be Chairman Barack’s Little Black Blue Book.

bloggless on February 19, 2009 at 11:25 AM

FIFY

http://www.amazon.com/Pocket-Obama-Editors-History-Company/dp/0978736842

RickZ on February 19, 2009 at 1:19 PM

Laughable.

What liberals don’t understand (neither do conservatives, but they are closer to realizing this) is that all their efforts to extinguish republicans will have the reverse effect. The more they try to kill opposition and become the one and only party the closer they come to destruction themselves.

Let them do it. Maybe this is how we’ll get a 3rd viable political party in this country.

Spiritk9 on February 19, 2009 at 1:23 PM

What Obama says is becoming a contrarian indicator of what he actually intends.

Seems I underestimated the radicalism and repressiveness of an Obama administration. Hopefully we can survive it, if only we can grow strong into the 2012 election. But I’m starting to worry that we’re going to be left almost powerless and voiceless by then.

petefrt on February 19, 2009 at 11:49 AM

We will become power less and voice less. In Iowa, the National Guard will go house to house with the citizens cooperation, to look for Gun Dealers….???? They say that they have a strategy to take the injured for the proper care. Injured? WTF is that suppose to mean? They are not specific in what they are going to do. This is from a site Manly’s Republic. This is what was posted this morning.

A prelude to…?
Posted on February 19, 2009, 11:54 am, under Constitution, Internet, Media & Info gathering, Politics.

national-guard-northridge-1Ordinarily, I would think nothing of it. National Guardsmen do these kinds of drills all the time. But these days, the nature of the exercise has me sweating a little more than I used to, given the agenda of the both the Executive and Legislative branches of government.

This particular drill will take place in Arcadia, Iowa – a state not renowned for either its electoral acumen or its conservatism.

The Carroll National Guard unit will train on urban military operations by holding a four-day exercise at Arcadia.

The purpose of the April 2-5 drill will be to gather intelligence, then search for and apprehend a suspected weapons dealer, according to Sgt. Mike Kots, readiness NCO for Alpha Company.

Citizens, law enforcement, media and other supporters will participate.

Troops will spend Thursday, April 2, staging at a forward operations base at Carroll. The next day company leaders will conduct reconnaissance and begin patrolling the streets of Arcadia to identify possible locations of the weapons dealer.

The primary phase will be done Saturday, April 4, when convoys will be deployed from Carroll to Arcadia. Pictures of the arms dealer will be shown in Arcadia, and soldiers will go door to door asking if residents have seen the suspect.

The red flag went up as soon as I read the words “weapons dealer.” What kind of weapons dealer? Are they looking for an Al-Qaida terrorist cell suspected of culling a weapons cache in preparation for a domestic terrorist attack? It doesn’t say. All we know is that they are looking for a weapons dealer.

Now I’m nervous. There are, after all, plenty of legitimate weapons dealers throughout the United States who sell weapons such as rifles, shotguns and handguns. Are they looking for these weapons dealers? The article isn’t specific and the details of the drill make the hair on the back of my neck stand on end:

“Once credible intelligence has been gathered,” said Kots, “portions of the town will be road-blocked and more in-depth searches of homes and vehicles will be conducted in accordance with the residents’ wishes.

“One of the techniques we use in today’s political environment is cordon and knock,” Kots explained. “We ask for the head of the household, get permission to search, then have them open doors and cupboards. The homeowner maintains control. We peer over their shoulder, and the soldier uses the homeowner’s body language and position to protect him.”

During this phase of the operation, troops will interact with residents and media while implementing crowd-control measures and possibly treating and evacuating injured persons.

The unit will use a Blackhawk helicopter for overhead command and control, and to simulate medevacs.

The drill will culminate in the apprehension of the suspected arms dealer.

An in-depth search of homes and vehicles – with the homeowner in control, of course. Of course. A Blackhawk chopper for “command and control.” Crowd control and the possibility of treating those who are wounded. Wounded from what? Wounded by whom?

I still want to know what sort of weapons dealer these guys are looking for. Given the hostility of the current administration to the Second Amendment, I trust you will understand my apprehension and not mistake it for paranoia.

After all, this is the same administration that promised to be the most open and ethical ever and then proceeded to demonstrate it is the most secretive and unethical ever.

This is the same administration that adamantly maintains it will not reinstate the Fairness Doctrine even as its Grand Inquisitor of Talk Radio, Henry Waxman (D-Mordor) explains how talk radio and even the Internet will be regulated without actually implementing the Fairness Doctrine.

This is the same administration that calls a nearly $1 trillion bribe for votes an “economic stimulus package.”

Sorry, but I’m not prepared to take anything this administration says at face value. It would not surprise me in the least if the President and the Democrat-controlled Congress enacted legislation that redefines “weapons dealer” to mean “Anyone who purchases or owns a firearm or ammunition.”

I can hear it already: “Oh, Manly, that is absurd. The Second Amendment clearly states that we have the right to keep and bear arms.”

Sure it does…and the First Amendment guarantees freedom of speech.Explain that to Henry Waxman and his Talk Radio & Internet Inquisition.

sheebe on February 19, 2009 at 1:32 PM

In SC and NH, measures have been proposed asserting state sovereignity.

notagool on February 19, 2009 at 1:54 PM

Turning this around is going to be tough without an honest watchdog media. Conservatives will need to get pretty creative to get our message out.

neuquenguy on February 19, 2009 at 11:18 AM

neuquenguy, conservatives not only need to be creative they need a set of cohones because we cant fight the marxist socialists with rules and processes. we have to get out of our comfort zones to fight them or we are all toast.

kooziegirl on February 19, 2009 at 2:08 PM

What the dems don’t get is that what comes around goes around…they are the ones that started the “investigations” into Reagan, setting up special counsels…then when Clinton got in his mess, what did the Republicans have at hand? The special counsels the dems had set up for the dems use, was ready for the Republicans, and the dems squealed like stuck pigs.

right2bright on February 19, 2009 at 2:55 PM

All those people (Rush and Ann Coulter included) who thought Hillary was a greater threat are now reaping the rewards of that folly.

Hillary couldn’t get Hillary-Care through a Democratic Congress in 93 with very little political baggage and she was *more dangerous* than a black,smooth talking Chicago politico?

And the economy provides the perfect Reichstag fire for their radical policies, ones which will be far harder to roll back than simple tax hikes or troop withdrawals.

DavidM on February 19, 2009 at 2:56 PM

In SC and NH, measures have been proposed asserting state sovereignity.

notagool on February 19, 2009 at 1:54 PM

They are not the only ones…

Califemme on February 19, 2009 at 2:56 PM

Boycott The MSM. That includes advertising. The conspiritors ore moving in on out rights and there is no one to stop them.

The sheepish American public can’t be bothered with this kind of fluff.

saiga on February 19, 2009 at 2:58 PM

If Obama really respected separation of powers he would vigorously oppose this as an unwarranted and unconstitutional encroachment by the Legislative Branch on the Executive. [Cue crickets]

Ironwood297 on February 19, 2009 at 3:12 PM

Maybe it’s one of the two rats that were stolen from a bio-research lab in New Jersey (?) that was infected with the bubonic plague.
Uh…this has nothing to do with stimulating the economy, it’s part of the Marxist coup.

Christine on February 19, 2009 at 3:44 PM

Thank you Ed for posting on this. Porkulus is like a Pandora’s box, things just keep pouring out of it.

Obama hoodwinked Congress with the help of some well placed Congressional Organizers.

Ultimately citizens will reject this takeover, this I firmly believe. Can’t wait for the 2010 election cycle.

FireBlogger on February 19, 2009 at 4:26 PM

Obama and the Dems are behaving as though they will always be in power.

Why is that?

Marsh on February 19, 2009 at 11:09 AM

.
That’s the liberal plan, and the very reason they took control of the Census and gave oversight of it to the administration. They’ll do some magical estimating and tweak the electorate to favor liberals in every district of every state in the country.

stacman on February 19, 2009 at 4:41 PM

Gestapo.

Speakup on February 19, 2009 at 4:45 PM

Why is no one talking about the “administrative costs” throughout this bill. Just the accountability section allows for $84 Million dollars to oversee this piece of crap!

http://appropriations.house.gov/pdf/AccountabilityLanguage02-13-09.pdf

sherryande on February 19, 2009 at 11:36 AM

Right off the top, the House version authorized half a percent of funds to be used for oversight, unless other oversight is specifically in the bill to replace it (and in many cases, it is). Only a drop in the bucket? Half a percent of $780 billion dollars is almost 4 BILLION dollars.

hawksruleva on February 19, 2009 at 5:03 PM

Messrs. Steele, Boehner, McConnell??!!?? Where is the outrage?

DrStock on February 19, 2009 at 5:14 PM

It’s pretty clear that whatever words Obama uses take on the opposite meaning of the conventional definition of those words. George Orwell taught us all about this kind of politician.

BottomLine5 on February 19, 2009 at 8:12 PM

Chill. This is what the beginning of revolution sounds like. I’m confident that they’re gonna be done in by their insatiable need to load more and more of their anti-constitutional anti-republic corruption-feeding crap on the camel until…. SNAP.

And it won’t take them four years to get to the last straw. Probably won’t take two at this rate. May not even take one.

Hell, I already have my rucksack packed for the march on Washington.

Changucopia on February 19, 2009 at 8:32 PM

Searcher 484 The “birther” issues have been extensively discussed here and elsewhere. SCOTUS backed out and, without the drive-by media, the issue is dead. We have no test, education or legal forms on The One largely due to the ‘slobbering sluts’ in the same media. So guess how likely any investigation is.

Aside from turning the US into a third world country economically, The One and his friends are trying to empower His friends and punish His enemies despite claims otherwise. There is a growing police paranoia taking place and massive power in the bureaucracy being collected. This is the present issue but stopping Him will be next to impossible. Nobody here (Hot Air) believes that there is much hope for change but knock yourself out.

Elsewhere here it is noted that some of this looks like Chicago politics. A coincidence, I am sure.

IlikedAUH2O on February 19, 2009 at 8:56 PM

PARTIAL LIST OF DOCUMENTS THAT BARACK OBAMA REFUSES TO RELEASE -. (The “new openness” and “transparency” of Obama”)
Indonesian Passport – Not released
Application for U.S. Citizenship (as former citizen of Indonesia) – Not released
Immigration Records – Not released
Original Vault Copy Birth Certificate – Not released
Certificate of Live Birth – Counterfeit Version on Obama Web Site
Obama / Dunham Marriage License – Not released
Soetoro / Dunham Marriage License – Not released
Soetoro Adoption Records – Not Released
Fransiskus Assisi School Application – Not released
Punahou School Records – Not released
Selective Service Registration – Counterfeit version generated
Occidental College records – Not released
Columbia College Records – Not released
Columbia Thesis – Not released
Harvard College Records – Not released
Baptism Certificate – None
Medical Records – Not released
Illinois State Senate Records – Not released
Law Practice Client List – Not released

searcher484 on February 19, 2009 at 9:02 PM

I expected Hot Air readers to have more guts. Guess I was wrong. Most of you don’t even care that Obama and his team of lawyers won’t let the public see his personal records. It should matter to you, but it does not, apparently. At least ask yourself why does Obama have to hide his past….

searcher484 on February 19, 2009 at 9:03 PM

with neo-cons everything Obama and the Democrats do is a conspiracy. People figured out neocon ideology and they voted the gop out. Why is this so hard for you people to accept. The American voters said “get out” what part of that message don’t you people get? Your party wasn’t wanted, they were despised. They were thrown out….get over it.

athensboy on February 19, 2009 at 9:07 PM

What are Obama and Pelosi buying with the stimulus plan? POWER. Raw, naked political power to use $800 billion of our taxpayer money as THEY SEE FIT, with little or no accountability. They seek the power to tell everyone in America how much they should earn and how much of their own money they shall be allowed to keep.

searcher484 on February 19, 2009 at 9:38 PM

with neo-cons everything Obama and the Democrats do is a conspiracy. People figured out neocon ideology and they voted the gop out. Why is this so hard for you people to accept. The American voters said “get out” what part of that message don’t you people get? Your party wasn’t wanted, they were despised. They were thrown out….get over it.

athensboy on February 19, 2009 at 9:07 PM

Don’t you have an Obama house party to go to or something?

rockmom on February 19, 2009 at 9:58 PM

Obama admitted he used to be a citizen of Indonesia – which makes him ineligible to be POTUS. Are you saying he lied?

searcher484 on February 19, 2009 at 10:26 PM

athensboy on February 19, 2009 at 9:07 PM

Don’t you have an Obama house party to go to or something?

rockmom on February 19, 2009 at 9:58 PM

Liberal parties are pretty lame, that’s why he hangs here.

neuquenguy on February 19, 2009 at 10:57 PM

Just flexing a few muscles for now

The RAT acronym is hardly an accident

The arrogance of power revealed in all its glory

Slowly the RAT turns the ship of state in a new direction

Later, if these rats are like all other rats they will make more blatant moves.

When the shark hunts, first it bumpbs the victim several times to test the response before moving rapidly to the kill.

Since King Rat despises this nation he will do what he can to re shape it in the image of the council of wise elders, the village it takes to raise an idiot, and an America that is “mo longer a Christian nation, if it ever was” and he will do it without cheap symbols of patriotism unless the syumbols include pictures of him

entagor on February 20, 2009 at 1:01 AM

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