Audit reveals FBI rule-breaking in probes involving politicians, religious groups, media

FBI agents violated agency rules at least 747 times in 18 months while conducting investigations involving politicians, candidates, religious groups, news media and others, according to a 2019 FBI audit obtained by The Washington Times. 

The internal review revealed a ratio of slightly more than two “compliance errors” per sensitive investigative matter reviewed by FBI auditors. These errors included agents’ failure to obtain approval from senior FBI officials to start an investigation, failure to document a necessary legal review before opening an investigation and failure to tell prosecutors what they were doing.

Cato Institute senior fellow Patrick Eddington uncovered the audit in litigation his organization brought against the FBI for access to government records. He said the audit reveals how far “off-the-chain” FBI field offices have strayed.

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A 93-Year-Old Woman Couldn’t Pay Her $2,300 Tax Bill. The Government Sold Her Home and Kept the Money.

Whether or not Geraldine Tyler will live to see the resolution of her case remains unclear.

The 93-year-old left her Minneapolis condominium in 2010 after a nearby shooting and a disturbing encounter left her uneasy. But she was unable to finance both her new apartment and the property tax on her erstwhile condo, accruing $2,300 in debt.

Over the course of the next five years, the government raised that debt by over 550 percent, tacking on almost $13,000 in additional penalties, fines, and interest. And when Tyler couldn’t pay that, it seized her property, sold it for $40,000—and kept the profit.

Last month, a federal appeals court ruled that was OK.

“Tyler does not argue that the county lacked lawful authority to foreclose on her condominium to satisfy her delinquent tax debt,” wrote Judge Steven Colloton of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 8th Circuit. “Rather, Tyler argues that the county’s retention of the surplus equity—the amount that exceeded her $15,000 tax debt—is an unconstitutional taking.”

Put more plainly, Tyler is not contesting that she failed to pay her property taxes, nor is she trying to evade responsibility for doing so. Her suit doesn’t seek the full $40,000 value of the condo but rather the excess proceeds that the government made from the sale of her property.

The court’s conclusion: She has no right to that cash.

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China-Owned Forbes Fired a Top Transparency Columnist After a Pressure Campaign from Fauci’s NIH.

Long-time transparency advocate Adam Andrzejewski had his 8-year-long Forbes column cancelled after pressure exerted by the U.S. government, specifically Tony Fauci’s National Institutes of Health (NIH), the National Pulse can reveal.

Andrzejewski – the CEO and Founder of OpenTheBooks.com – relayed the story in his new Substack column following the termination from Forbes.

After taking umbrage with a number of his Fauci-focused columns, including bombshell revelations about the Fauci household finances, Andrzejewski recalls:

“Two directors, two bureau chiefs, and two top PR officers didn’t send an email to the Forbes’ chief on a Sunday morning because they wanted to correct the record about Fauci’s travel reimbursements. They sent that email to subliminally send a message: We don’t like Andrzejewski’s oversight work, and we want you to do something about it. Unfortunately, Forbes folded quickly.”

An e-mail from Forbes Executive Editor Caroline Howard to Andrzejewski dated January 15th 2022 began: “I see this is your third article on Fauci in 3 weeks. Huh.” Howard then went on to accuse Andrzejewski of advocacy, rather than journalism.

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Legislation mandates residential buildings accommodate EV charging

Ameasure to require newly built residential buildings in Illinois to be electric vehicle capable is being criticized by some as government overreach.

House Bill 3125 passed the Illinois House on Thursday and would require home builders to make new and renovated structures meet certain wiring requirements to be able to charge electric vehicles.

Under the measure from state Rep. Robyn Gabel (D-Evanston), a certain number of spaces would also have to be “electric vehicle ready,” meaning they contain receptacles with the necessary voltage to install an EV charging station.

“We should be doing everything we can to cultivate an electric vehicle economy in this state, and this is one more way we can do that,” said state Rep. Mike Zalewski (D-Riverside).

State Rep. Tim Butler (R-Springfield) who notes that the Illinois Home Builders Association and Illinois Realtors are opposed to the legislation, believes the measure will drive up housing costs.

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The State Took Their Children For 467 Days After An Alleged Slight. Now The Family Is Suing.

A family is suing the state of Illinois, a child welfare investigator contracted by the state, and others, alleging their three children were taken away for more than a year over the investigator’s hurt feelings.

The Center Square reported that Jacob and Patricia Krueger’s three children were taken into custody by the Department of Children and Family Services (DFCS) in 2019 after their child was supposed to be discharged from a hospital for a complex medical issue. Aaron Rapier, the attorney representing the family, told the Center Square that Dr. Channing Petrak, the contractor for DCFS, was at the hospital and prepared to discharge the child following a year-and-a-half long investigation, but reneged after she was slighted by Jacob Krueger.

“While [Petrak] went into the meeting intending to discharge this child home to the family, which means of course that she didn’t suspect any abuse or neglect at that time, she did a complete 180 after she was embarrassed in front of a colleague,” Rapier told the outlet.

The three Krueger children are referred to as AA, BB, and CC, in the lawsuit, which was filed on January 20 in the Peoria Division of the United States District Court for the Central District of Illinois. The oldest of the Krueger children was three when they were taken from their family for more than a year, and the youngest was just three days old.

The Center Square reported that the middle child, referred to in court documents as BB, was being treated for a complex medical issue and about to be discharged when the nightmare began.

“Petrak was not BB’s doctor,” the lawsuit says. “Jacob told Defendant/Petrak he did not want her involved in BB’s care, treatment, or discharge planning. Defendant/Petrak was offended and embarrassed by Jacob’s statements. She left the room, as requested, but Defendant/Petrak was not done with the Krueger family.”

The lawsuit alleges that Petrak contacted the others named in the lawsuit and told them her investigative finding was that the child was medically abused.

Rapier, the family’s attorney, said that the family had previously endured a 17-month long investigation that had found no medical neglect of the middle child being treated, but because Petrak changed her finding at the last minute, according to the lawsuit, all three children were taken from the Krueger’s for 467 days.

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Public Health Erred on the Side of Catastrophe

Throughout the Covid-19 pandemic, proponents of lockdowns, shelter-in-place orders, mask mandates and other coercive government interventions have characterized these measures as benevolently “erring on the side of caution.” 

Now, as the grim toll of those public health measures comes into ever-sharper focus, it’s increasingly clear those characterizations were terribly wrong. 

What’s less readily apparent, however, is how the very use of the “erring on the side of caution” framing was injurious in itself—by thwarting reasoned debate of public health policies, diverting attention from unintended consequences, and buffering the Covid regime’s architects from accountability.

To understand how the misuse of “erring on the side of caution” performed a sort of mass hypnosis that coaxed populations into two years of submission to disastrous, overreaching policies, consider how the expression is typically used. 

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On This Presidents Day, Stop Worshiping the Imperial Presidency

Ah, Presidents Day: a much-needed moment to slow down and commemorate presidents past and present, because we definitely don’t have enough of that in this country.

I jest!

Walking around Los Angeles, you’d be hard-pressed not to pass someone sporting BIDEN-HARRIS merchandise—a shirt, a bumper sticker, a sweatshirt, a mask. Back where I grew up in Virginia, the same is true, though they have a different hero: For years, “MAKE AMERICA GREAT AGAIN” adorned the lawns, cars, and hats of those who wanted you to know they stood, and perhaps still stand, with former President Donald Trump.

That’s not news. Public displays of affection for the U.S. president have become standard in everyday American life, extending well past election cycles and rock-concert-esque inaugurations, as if who you voted for is a personality trait. That’s the conventional wisdom, it seems. So, on this fair Presidents Day, a reminder: Presidents aren’t saints. They aren’t monarchs. They aren’t celebrities. And they aren’t your friends! The executive leader is an employee of the country—someone whose job was, and still should be, limited in size and scope.

It has become something decidedly different over the years, with each president becoming more powerful than the last. That maybe explains, to some degree, why the political fangirling has grown in tandem. Though I can’t step back in time to the 18th and 19th centuries, I would venture to say Americans weren’t donning shirts with presidents’ faces or branding horse-drawn carriages with the names of current and erstwhile U.S. leaders. Nor do I think former President George Washington, whose birthday serves as the inspiration for this holiday, would have wanted that sort of hero worship, when considering that the bedrock of America’s founding specifically sought to create a new order—one without a king or king-like figure.

“The founders of our republic did not want to put that much [power] in the hands of a single leader,” Mark Rozell, the founding dean of the Schar School of Policy and Government at George Mason University, told The Christian Science Monitor. “America’s addiction to executive power has become dangerous for this country.”

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Ottawa City Councillor requests lawsuit to seize GoFundMe funds raised for Canada’s Freedom Convoy

The public participation in online crowdfunding for public protests related to the Freedom Convoy taking place in Canada continues to be hit with roadblocks and is becoming a further threat to free expression and the right to protest.

After first having GoFundMe temporarily block the release of some of the funds that Canadians have donated to help support the livelihoods of the truckers taking place in the demonstration, GoFundMe began to pay out the funds, with the first payment of $1M in Canadian dollars being released, the campaign organizer tweeted on Friday.

However, the campaign has raised more than $7.3 million in Canadian dollars and those funds could now be at risk of being seized by the local government if some politicians get their way.

Mathieu Fleury, the Ottawa City Councillor of Rideau-Vanier Ward, has today announced his support for the government to launch a legal challenge to seize the remaining GoFundMe donations that had been collected online.

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Power Outage? Too Bad. California Just Banned the Sale of Gas-Powered Generators, Lawnmowers, & Leaf Blowers

In an effort to limit greenhouse gas emissions, the California Air Resources Board (CARB) voted this month to ban the sale of new off-road engines such as those found in leaf blowers, lawn mowers and other equipment by 2024. The ruling also bans portable generators by requiring new models to meet more stringent standards in 2024 and meet zero-emission standards starting in 2028.

The decision by the board follows an executive order issued by California Governor and covid tyrant, Gavin Newsom (D) to bar the sale of gas-powered lawn equipment to curb emissions.

“Today’s action by the Board addresses these small but highly polluting engines. It is a significant step towards improving air quality in the state, and will definitely help us meet stringent federal air quality standards,” CARB chair Liane Randolph said in a statement. “It will also essentially eliminate exposure to harmful fumes for equipment operators and anyone nearby.”

The new standards for generator sales for 2024 will reportedly require generator manufacturers to improve their efficiency by somewhere between 40% and 90%, eventually being zero emissions by 2028. The improvements by 2024 are likely unrealistic meaning it will be extraordinarily hard to find a generator in the state by 2024.

The state has set aside $30 million to help landscapers and mowing companies make the transition. But $30 million is a drop in the bucket given the fact that there are hundreds of mom and pop shops currently selling small engines across the state and thousands of landscape and mowing companies.

It is important to point out that folks who currently own a gas powered generator will still be able to use them, however, those who want to get one in a future emergency will soon be out of luck.

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