Good Question: Why Is Eric Holder In Charge Of Investigation Of Eric Holder Spying On Journalists?

from the doesn't-make-much-sense dept

We noted earlier that President Obama has expressed concern about the chilling effects his own administration has caused on investigative reporting by aggressively spying on journalists reporting on government actions, even to the point of accusing some of being co-conspirators and/or using the Espionage Act against whistleblowers and reporters. That seemed weird enough already, but one point that was even stranger deserves to be called out separately. In asking for a review of the administration's policy, Obama has asked Attorney General Eric Holder to run that review. And that's ridiculous. It's asking Eric Holder to review his own surveillance of journalists. We're not even talking conflict of interest at this point, we're just talking ridiculous. He needs to do a review to determine if his own actions are problematic? How's that likely to turn out?
It would seem putting Eric Holder in charge of these investigations is like putting a shoplifter in charge of inventory.

While both Obama and Holder have talked about press freedom, they both have defended the Justice Department's actions and have not even mildly second-guessed the broad AP subpoenas or the “co-conspirator” label.

The only action they've taken so far is to push for a renewed debate on a federal shield bill that would supposedly protect the media's sources in scandals like these. Of course, the Justice Department already have the power to not subpoena reporters, they apparently just can't help themselves. As  Ted Boutrous pointed out, their call for a shield bill is akin to saying “stop us before we kill again.”
How can there not be someone independent in charge of exploring this issue?


Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

  1.  
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    silverscarcat (profile), May 28th, 2013 @ 6:59am

    How can there not be someone independent in charge of exploring this issue?

    You mean like some sort of 3rd party that wouldn't be biased?

    Mike, that's just crazy talk.

     

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  2.  
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    Ninja (profile), May 28th, 2013 @ 7:00am

    Happens all the time. Like having copyright maximalists in charge of IP laws. Judges that work with anti-piracy business to judge a case (TPB, STC etc) regarding copyright infringement...

    It's happening everywhere. Question is, how do we, the people, put a stop in that?

     

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  3.  
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    Akari Mizunashi (profile), May 28th, 2013 @ 7:05am

    Good Answer: To ensure those violating the law are in position to cover up their actions and step above it.

     

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  4.  
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    dennis deems (profile), May 28th, 2013 @ 7:25am

    If only there were some other branch of government that we could empower to keep the executive branch in check. #pipedream

     

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  5.  
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    That One Guy (profile), May 28th, 2013 @ 7:27am

    Well how else are they supposed to get the 'Everything is fine, nothing to worry about' answer they already decided on?

    Get an independent, unbiased agency investigating and they might actually have to work a bit, polish up those lies and do a little stonewalling, whereas if they do it in-house they can just have a hearty laugh before getting back to the business of ignoring the laws they are supposed to be enforcing.

     

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  6.  
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    Anonymous Coward, May 28th, 2013 @ 9:06am

    What do you expect to happen when you ask a fox guarding the hen house to investigate missing hens!

     

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  7.  
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    Anonymous Coward, May 28th, 2013 @ 9:08am

    My understanding is Holder claimed he had nothing to do with that as he was involved with the IRS thing or something else at the time.

    The buck still stops with him. If his department did soemthing wrong, it's still his fault.

    What would be proper would be for Obama to call for Holder to have a proper review/investigation of what is going on. Still that would have to involve an unbiased 3rd party do the investigation.

    Chances of that happening? My magic 8-ball says: "Outlook not good".

     

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  8.  
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    weneedhelp (profile), May 28th, 2013 @ 9:12am

    They're just not even trying anymore

    No need to hire additional PPL to hide the misdoings... They know no matter the outcome there wont be a peep from the American people... The President and congress wont do anything. The US Gov out of control.

     

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  9.  
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    Spaceman Spiff (profile), May 28th, 2013 @ 9:19am

    Don't trust politicians!

    I stopped trusting Obama (even though I voted for him - the alternative was just unconscionable) when he backtracked on his opposition to FISA as Senator. That's when I knew he was as corrupt as the rest of that kettle of stinking fish! FWIW, I think Holder is just doing what his masters command... :-(

     

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  10.  
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    Some Guy, May 28th, 2013 @ 9:27am

    The fox in the hen house says: "There are no foxes in the hen house."

     

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    out_of_the_blue, May 28th, 2013 @ 9:31am

    Why does Mike's editor run such trivial, last week, pieces?

    Oh. ... Kind of obvious after a second.

     

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  12.  
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    Anonymous Coward, May 28th, 2013 @ 9:35am

    Oh shit. I thought this was the Kern County article about a cover-up. Well then, if a county can do it... Bigger government can.

     

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  13.  
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    Nastybutler77 (profile), May 28th, 2013 @ 9:36am

    Re: Don't trust politicians!

    I stopped trusting Obama (even though I voted for him - the alternative was just unconscionable)

    You do realize there are more than two choices on any ballot, don't you? You can even write in a candidate of your choice. Choosing the lesser of two evils is still choosing evil, as Jerry Garcia used to say, so you, and everyone who voted this guy into office, are partially responsible for what is happening. Until people wake up and stop voting only Dem/Rep this cycle of abuse of power will never end.

    /rant

     

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  14.  
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    Nastybutler77 (profile), May 28th, 2013 @ 9:38am

    Re: Why does Mike's editor run such trivial, last week, pieces?

    Why does OOTB keep posting such trivial, useless comments?

    Oh. ... Kind of obvious after a second.

     

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  15.  
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    pjcamp, May 28th, 2013 @ 9:46am

    But what do you do when you agree?

    This is exactly what I would expect Obama to do if he actually agreed with what Holder did. Why would you take a risk someone would question it? And I think that's really the subtext here -- Holder didn't go off the reservation. He did exactly what his boss told him to do. People, for some reason, think a lot more highly of Obama on these sorts of security state issues than is really warranted by his behavior.

     

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  16.  
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    MAC, May 28th, 2013 @ 9:46am

    Two sets of laws...

    There are two (2) sets of laws in this country; those for us and those for them.

    Don't think so? It is still legal for congress and the senate to engage in insider trading.

    When is the last time you saw a high government official brought up on anything?

    Two laws, those for us and those for them...

     

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  17.  
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    Ron, May 28th, 2013 @ 9:47am

    Why do you post here OOTB? Everyone here does not like you, but you still post anyway. Why is that?

     

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  18. This comment has been flagged by the community. Click here to show it
     
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    Anonymous Coward, May 28th, 2013 @ 9:53am

    It would seem putting Eric Holder in charge of these investigations is like putting a shoplifter in charge of inventory.

    It would seem putting Eric Holder in charge of these investigations is like putting Mike Masnick in charge of intellectual property enforcement.

    Much stronger analogy in my opinion.

     

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  19. This comment has been flagged by the community. Click here to show it
     
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    Anonymous Coward, May 28th, 2013 @ 9:54am

    Re:

    Why do you post here OOTB? Everyone here does not like you, but you still post anyway. Why is that?

    I like him fine. It's odious douchenozzles like you I can't stomach. Why do you post here anyway?

     

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  20.  
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    jupiterkansas (profile), May 28th, 2013 @ 10:14am

    Re: Re: Don't trust politicians!

    The same rant I've heard for 30 years now. It's not going to happen.

     

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  21.  
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    Anonymous Coward, May 28th, 2013 @ 10:15am

    LEAK: FIRST DRAFT OF INVESTIGATION REPORT

    After a careful and thorough review, we have found Eric Holder to be completely innocent of all charges and accusations.
    We also found that he is intelligent and attractive, has excellent taste in clothing, and is a consummate lover.

    In closing, we recommend that Eric "Paragon of Awesome" Holder be given the Employee of the Month award, like he SHOULD have gotten last month except that snake Barbara spread COMPLETELY UNFOUNDED LIES about him having an affair. We were just friends, you stupid cow! FRIENDS! Not that you'd know what friends are, since you're too busy gossiping about people behind their backs to make any!

     

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  22.  
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    Anonymous Coward, May 28th, 2013 @ 10:19am

    Let me guess, in the case of The People Vs Eric Holder The People "Eric Holder" find Eric Holder not guilty.

    Well I guess that's one way to play the game.

     

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  23.  
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    Anonymous Coward, May 28th, 2013 @ 10:33am

    Re:

    Actually the first thing, would be to fire Holder immediately before even starting the investigations. The man is more than mud wrestling dirty...

     

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  24.  
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    Anonymous Coward, May 28th, 2013 @ 10:43am

    House Judiciary investigating whether Holder lied under oath

    ďIn regard to potential prosecution of the press for the disclosure of material -- this is not something Iíve ever been involved in, heard of, or would think would be wise policy,Ē Holder said during the hearing.

    However, NBC News reported last week that Holder personally approved a search warrant that labeled Fox News chief Washington correspondent James Rosen a co-conspirator in a national security leaks case.

    Link: http://thehill.com/blogs/blog-briefing-room/news/302131-house-judiciary-investigating-whether-holder -lied-under-oath

     

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  25.  
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    Anonymous Coward, May 28th, 2013 @ 10:44am

    Went shopping

    Just to make it a bit more fun for the tabloids it only took Holder 3 tries to find a judge willing to sign his BS warrant.

    http://www.breitbart.com/Big-Journalism/2013/05/28/Holder-Went-Court-Hopping-Until-Final ly-Getting-His-Fox-News-Subpoena

     

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  26.  
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    Anonymous Coward, May 28th, 2013 @ 11:00am

    Re: Re:

    Well, that tells us quite succinctly that you're not a rational human being.

     

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  27.  
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    RyanNerd (profile), May 28th, 2013 @ 11:36am

    This is just a set up for:

    "To suppress an internal government report, rewrite it as official advice to the President. Then it is against the rules to publish it, so you can then leak the bits you want to friendly journalists."

     

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  28.  
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    Anonymous Coward, May 28th, 2013 @ 12:01pm

    Crickets

    Where is the total Outrage from the "media"?

    Mark Halperin: 'The Media Is Very Susceptible to Doing What the Obama Campaign Wants'

    Lap Dogs do not make good Watch Dogs...

    Jay Carney claims "Obama canít just call up Eric Holder to find out whatís going on with the subpoena of the APís phone records because it will show up on Fox News"

    Translation: Thank you Media "Lackey" Lap Dogs for not doing your jobs as investigative reporters, we sure would have egg on our face if you weren't our Bitches...

     

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  29.  
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    Anonymous Coward, May 28th, 2013 @ 12:02pm

    he's not trying to be bias or pervert the course of justice. he's trying to make sure no one (else) lies through their teeth and gets away with it!!

     

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  30.  
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    art guerrilla (profile), May 28th, 2013 @ 1:28pm

    Re: Re: Don't trust politicians!

    1. thank you, you'll be ignored: if it ain't tweedle-dee or tweedle-dum, the sheeple just don't wanna hear about it...

    (been voting non-rethugs/dem'rats for last 3 pres elections, a pox upon both their houses...)

    2. i gotta know: nastybutler1 - nastybutler76 were already taken ? ? ?
    hee hee hee

    art guerrilla
    aka ann archy
    eof

     

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  31.  
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    Internet Zen Master (profile), May 28th, 2013 @ 2:13pm

    Re: House Judiciary investigating whether Holder lied under oath

    And any American who was paying even a little attention to the shit that the DOJ's been pulling under Obama (continuing Fast and Furious, spying on journalists, playing Hollywood's rent-a-cop with the Megaupload fiasco/illegal seizure of Dotcom's servers, etc.) is going: "Wait, they're investigating this idiot now? He should've been kicked out a long time ago!"

     

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  32.  
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    Anonymous Coward, May 28th, 2013 @ 3:40pm

    Re:

    Eric Holder: Mr. Holder, did you spy on those journalists?
    Eric Holder: No sir.
    Eric Holder: Case closed!

    Makings of a classic Southpark episode right there.

     

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  33.  
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    John Fenderson (profile), May 28th, 2013 @ 4:41pm

    Re: Re: Don't trust politicians!

    You do realize there are more than two choices on any ballot, don't you?


    And every single one of them was incompetent, evil, or insane. So you're still choosing the lesser of n evils.

     

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  34.  
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    Anonymous Coward, May 28th, 2013 @ 6:33pm

    Re:

    What a load of crap.

    Putting Mike Masnick in charge of Intellectual Property Enforcement would lead to a lot of changes being made to what is enforced. You and your ilk would be up on charges for DMCA abuse and copyfraud so fast that it would make your head spin .

    Putting Eric Holder in charge of the investigation will lead to no changes at all.

     

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  35.  
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    artp (profile), May 28th, 2013 @ 8:39pm

    Re: Re: Don't trust politicians!

    I agree completely.

    There is the infamous claim that voting for anything but the two major parties is "wasting your vote".

    So to those who follow this advice, how are you feeling about the value of your vote now? Perhaps voting for those minor (!) parties isn't wasted after all. I mean, if we got this out of not "wasting our votes", then how much worse can it get?

    The system is only broken because we don't want to put the time into investigating candidates' positions, and because we keep voting for those who are buying their seats. Perhaps it's time to quit voting for those with big campaign chests.

    It's up to us to make it work, and it begins with our research of who to vote for based on the positions that they stand for, AND the integrity of the candidate. Political integrity. Find me a person that you can't dig up some dirt on, and I'll find you a stolen identity.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]


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