Bob Stannard

OK, so where are we now? Over the span of a lifetime we have come to the place where we fully accept the fact that our leaders will say or do anything to promote their own agenda; whatever that may happen to be. I realize that it’s not always easy to understand the real agenda, because it’s rarely, if ever, talked about.

For instance, and this by no means is an isolated instance, we’ve been hearing for quite some time now that the Obama Administration (and presidential hopeful, Hillary Clinton) was involved with some sort of nefarious cover-up regarding the attack and tragic loss of life in Benghazi. There is nothing that will bring out the worst in people than a great conspiracy theory. If some people want to spend a lot of time and money trying to resolve who killed President Kennedy more power to them. However, when we’re talking about using taxpayer dollars to promote one’s agenda that should be a different matter altogether.

As reported by MSNBC on Aug. 4, 2014: "Taken together, the deadly violence in Benghazi two years ago has now been investigated by the House Intelligence Committee, the Senate Intelligence Committee, the independent State Department Accountability Review Board, the Senate Armed Services Committee, the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee, the House Armed Services Committee, the House Committee on Oversight & Government Reform, and the House Committee on Foreign Affairs.


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How many of them uncovered evidence of a cover-up? None."

To date roughly $14 million of taxpayer’s money has been spent in a desperate attempt to find something -- anything that can be held up as wrong doing. Why? So one party can discredit the other. The partisanship in Washington has come to the point of being absurd.

Rep. Darrell Issa (R-Calif.), chairman of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, for one, does not seemed to be convinced nor deterred from keeping the Benghazi issue alive, even though it has become abundantly clear that there is no that there was no wrong doing. He apparently is not dissuaded with facts and is willing to perpetuate false accusations even when proven to be wrong.

From PoliticsUSA of Monday, March 3, of this year: "On Sunday, the biggest liar in America, Chairman of the House Oversight Committee Darrell Issa, compulsively lied to Fox News host Chris Wallace without remorse, and for once it was refreshing to see Wallace challenge Issa and reiterate a recent Washington Post fact check accusing him of having the "highest level of falsehood" for his obsession with the attacks in Benghazi.

Issa was still spreading the blatant lie that then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton ordered Defense Secretary Leon Panetta to "stand down" and let the four diplomats fend for themselves instead of alerting the military to "spin up" assets to fight the Benghazi attackers. Wallace reminded Issa that last year a Washington Post fact checker concluded that "Issa is crossing a line when he suggests there was no response -- or a deliberate effort to hinder it." The Fox News host reminded Issa that "for the second time they gave you ‘Four Pinocchios,’ which is their highest level of falsehood." Issa attempted to defend his lie saying he just quoted "something that was in somebody else’s report" as if it exonerated him for repeating a persistent year-and-a-half lie. One thing is clear; if Issa read "something in someone else’s report," he also read, or heard in person, several Department of Defense personnel at the highest levels tell Issa they were not given an order to stand down."

Sadly, the hypocrisy does not stop with this single affair. For the first time in history Congress is suing the President of the United States. Why? Because the president did something that the opposing party had previously wanted him to do, but has now decided that they didn’t like the way he did it. OK, fair enough.

As you no doubt know the suit revolves around the president using what’s known as an executive order to enact policy. As a rule it infuriates Congress no end and there’s a valid case to be made that it should. However, in this particular case the president used the executive order to halt an action in the Affordable Care Act that the opposing party had been insisting he should halt. It was something they wanted. They got it. Now, they’re so unhappy at having gotten what they wanted that they are taking the unprecedented step to sue the president.

OK, I guess you can do that. You can sue the president for using a process used by nearly every other president and feign surprise when you’re referred to as hypocritical. That is unless within a few days of filing your lawsuit you call upon the president to use his powers of executive order to resolve the issue of illegal immigrants. Speaker Boehner called upon the president that he just sued to do exactly what he’s suing him over, because he, Boehner, couldn’t get the necessary votes to pass legislation.

What might George Orwell think of our country today?

Bob Stannard is a Banner columnist.