- Posted May 1, 2014 by
This iReport is part of an assignment:
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Did Transparency in Government Really Mean That We Will Still Mislead and even Lie to You, But We Will Be Obvious About It?
We all know that politicians run most of what they say and do through the spin cycle before it is released to the public. When they speak to us we expect an agenda driven, watered down version of a partial truth. We expect them to tell us only part of the story so that our opinions are shaped a certain way.
What I don’t understand about this administration is why they are not better at concealing things that make them look bad. It is like they don’t think it through or that they don’t care if they get caught.
The most recent example of this is everyone in the administration from Susan Rice to Hillary Clinton and even the president saying that the Benghazi attack was linked to a You Tube video that insulted Islam. The video footage, the transcripts of what they said are easily accessed on the internet and yet Jay Carney is spinning and new tale.
But before we look at what his is saying, let’s review what he said in 2012.
CARNEY: We also need to understand that this is a fairly volatile situation and it is in response not to United States policy, and not to, obviously, the administration, or the American people, but it is in response to a video, a film that we have judged to be be reprehensible and disgusting. That in no way justifies any violent reaction to it, but this is not a case of protests directed at the United States writ large or at U.S. policy, this is in response to a video that is offensive to Muslims.
The confidence, no the arrogance he projects when he speaks to the American people makes you think that he believes that he is smarter than all of us or that we are the biggest idiots in the world.
But, before I go to the transcripts of the recent press briefing let’s review just one of Susan Rice’s statements after the Benghazi attack
Meet the Press Sept. 16th, 2012
"Putting together the best information that we have available to us today, our current assessment is what happened in Benghazi was in fact initially a spontaneous reaction to what had just transpired hours before in Cairo, almost a copycat of the demonstrations against our facility in Cairo, prompted by the video."
I guess since it was so long ago they thought we could not remember…
This is part of the transcript of the 4/30/14 White House press briefing…starring Jay Carney.
Q Jay, I guess you’re aware that Judicial Watch obtained an email from Ben Rhodes to staff members about the Benghazi attack.
MR. CARNEY: That’s incorrect. But go ahead.
Q Oh, okay.
MR. CARNEY: The email and the talking points were not about Benghazi, they were about the general situation in the Muslim world where you saw, as you may recall, protests --
Q It was an email to prepare Susan Rice for those talk shows.
MR. CARNEY: Correct. But you misstated it. In fact, this was not -- it was explicitly not about Benghazi. It was about the overall situation in the region, the Muslim world, where you saw protests outside of embassy facilities across the region, including in Cairo, Sana’a, Khartoum and Tunis. And the so-called talking points around Benghazi, as you know -- because it’s been substantially reported on -- were prepared by the CIA. And in this case, the overall issue of unrest in the Muslim world and the danger posed by these protests to our embassies and our diplomatic facilities was very much a topic in the news when --
Q But the slug of the email says prep call. So, I mean, obviously the thrust --
MR. CARNEY: Right, it was a prep call for --
Q -- the thrust of the reason for the email and the prep call was to prepare Susan Rice for those talk show appearances, which, by and large, were about the attack on the Benghazi mission. And I just wanted to ask you about one portion of it where it says that the point is “to underscore that the protests were rooted in an Internet video, and not a broader failure of policy.” It just seems that there is a political calculation that was being made in these emails that the political considerations were being made in preparing Susan Rice for those appearances.
MR. CARNEY: Jim, again, if I may, let me read to you -- this is interesting in particular -- Fox News Sunday’s promo for that appearance begins, “Anti-U.S. protests are spreading across the Arab world.” So when we prepare administration officials to appear on television, Sunday shows -- when my colleagues prepare me to come out here every day, they prepare me to answer questions that we think you’re going to ask. And what was happening that week, in addition obviously to the tragic killings of four Americans in Benghazi, was upheaval around the region. And for that reason, there was a question-and-answer document prepared for Ambassador Rice that would respond to -- that were recommended answers and anticipated questions around the upheaval in the Middle East, in the Muslim world, related to the inflammatory video that had caused so many protests around the world.
The amount of coverage that CNN and other outlets appropriately gave to those protests is often forgotten now, but this was an enormous story. And here’s a Reuters report: “Egyptian protestors scaled the walls of the U.S. Embassy in Cairo, tore down the American flag and burned it during a protest over what they said was a film being produced in the United States that insulted Prophet Muhammad.” CNN reported that, in Sana’a, on September 11th, “Demonstrators breached a security wall and stormed the embassy.”
So obviously, any senior foreign policy administration official who would be appearing before the press and taking questions that week would have to be prepared for questions about that specific subject. What was unique, in fact, about this circumstance is that because members of Congress of both parties from the intelligence committees had asked the CIA for talking points that they could use for public discussion, including on Sunday shows and on other television programs, including cable shows, the decision at the White House was that those talking points produced by the intelligence community, produced by the CIA for members of Congress, were the same talking points that Ambassador Rice ought to use with regards to the matter of Benghazi, and that is what she used.
Q But then in your office, you were also involved in the preparation of those talking points for those appearances. That’s what this email demonstrates. Isn’t that true?
MR. CARNEY: I was on email -- every time an administration official goes out on a Sunday show, communications people in the White House are involved in preparation. That’s the case in this White House; it’s the case in the last White House, which I covered. It was the case in the White House before that, which I covered. I dare say it’s been the case since the advent of Sunday news shows. And that’s wholly appropriate. I would remind that you Ben Rhodes –
Sometimes I think Jay forgets that all the transcripts from his press briefings and gaggles are posted on the White House website for all Americans to peruse at their leisure. I suppose he counts on the fact that most people don’t take the time to actually look at what has been said and when it was said.
Just a few more things…if the president says there is not even a “smidgen” of corruption with the IRS, how come Lois Lerner has taken the 5th twice? What about that alarming connection between Elijiah Cummings and the targeting of conservative groups?
E-mail has unraveled their deceit, why do they put things in a place where they never really go away? It seems that if they really wanted to be covert they would tape things that would self-destruct after the message has been played, you know, like in the movies.
Anyway…why do you think about the new revelations about Benghazi and the new talking points?