Appeals court says White House visitor logs can be kept from public

President Obama and his successors in the Oval Office are not obligated to make public the names of individuals visiting the White House, according to a decision of the federal Circuit Court for the District of Columbia made public Friday.

The case was brought by Judicial Watch, the government watchdog nonprofit that has been fighting a long legal battle seeking to force release of the White House visitor logs as public records under the Freedom of Information Act.

But in a decision that is drawing intense criticism from across the ideological spectrum, the circuit court said the president has a “constitutional perogative” not to tell the American people who he or his staff meets with in the White House.

The court said the president has such a prerogative because he is not covered by the FOIA and because of “special policy considerations” that allow exemption of visitor logs from classification as agency records subject to release under the public records law.

President Obama began making public some of the White House visitor logs in 2009, but refused a Judicial Watch request for all of the logs.

Administration spokesmen have often pointed to the partial release of the logs to support the president’s claim that his is “the most transparent administration in history.”

Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton was extremely disappointed by the decision, saying “a president that doesn’t want Americans, under law, to know who his visitors are is a president who doesn’t want to be accountable. The appellate court decision punches another hole in the Freedom of Information Act, the law which allows Americans to know what their government is up to.”

Fitton’s group is considering filing an appeal, which would be to the Supreme Court. There is no guarantee that the high court would accept the case.

“The legal gymnastics in this unprecedented decision shows that President Obama is not only one willing rewrite laws without going through Congress. And this legal fight, in which President Obama is fighting tooth and nail full disclosure under law of his White House visitors, further exposes his big lie that his administration is the most transparent in history. The silver lining is that at least the appellate court opened up the records of tens of thousands of White House visits that Obama was trying to keep secret,” Fitton said.

The Obama administration is not solely responsible for the status of the logs, however, as the court repeatedly cited in its decision a 2006 memorandum of understanding between President George W. Bush and the U.S. Secret Service, which has custody of the records.

Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington, another nonprofit watchdog group that, like Judicial Watch, often focuses on FOIA-related issues, pointed to the MOU’s role in the decision:

“Central to the court’s ruling was a 2006 memorandum of understanding (MOU) the White House and Secret Service entered into after CREW made requests and then sued for access to the visitor logs. That MOU specified that White House visitor records are controlled at all times by the White House. The timing and circumstances surrounding the creation of the MOU strongly suggest it was manufactured solely to buttress the government’s litigation posture, but the D.C. Circuit refused to consider the government’s motives.”

Melanie Sloan, CREW’s executive director, said the “White House visitor records have proven of enormous value to the public in exposing the outside influences brought to bear on presidential decisions and policies. With this ruling, that window on the White House is now shut.”

Mark Tapscott is executive editor of the Washington Examiner.

Full article here:


A man dedicated to transparency.

The guy who leads our country—we don’t even know one grade he made in college.


The Man With The Golden Shoe

Gold Shoe

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Student Suspended for Refusing to Wear RFID Chip Returns to School

A Texas girl suspended for refusing to wear a student ID card implanted with a radio-frequency identification chip is being re-admitted to her former high school where fall classes begin Monday, her lawyers said today.

The flap concerns Andrea Hernandez, who will be a junior at John Jay High in San Antonio. She was suspended in January and sued the Northside Independent School District on privacy and religious grounds.

She lost the case and began attending another school that did not require pupils to wear the ID badges. The girl’s lawyers said today that she is returning to the magnet school where the highly contested legal battle commenced. That’s because the district has abandoned its year-long RFID-student monitoring program.

Radio-frequency identification devices are a daily part of the electronic age — found in passports, and library and payment cards. Eventually they are expected to replace bar-code labels on consumer goods. Schools across the nation are slowly adopting them as well, despite the Northside district quietly deciding last month to discontinue RFID chips on the grounds that they were ineffective.

After losing a court battle, the girl opted to attend a different school than wear the ID card around her neck, which was a requirement for the 4,200 students of John Jay High and a neighboring middle school. Her lawyers said today the legal battle with the district is over.

“There are very few happy endings for those who stand up to the government and say ‘no more.’ Hopefully, Andrea Hernandez will prove to be the exception and will use this opportunity to continue to stand strong for freedom,” said the girl’s attorney, John W. Whitehead, president of the Rutherford Institute.

The district said the purpose of the RFID-chipped ID cards was to increase attendance.

Like most state-financed schools, the district’s budget is tied to average daily attendance. If a student is not in his seat during morning roll call, the district doesn’t receive daily funding for that pupil because the school has no way of knowing for sure if the student is there.

But with the RFID tracking, students not at their desk but tracked on campus are counted as being in school that day, and the district receives its daily allotment for that student. But average-daily-attendance did not increase at the two schools mandating the RFID chips, the district said.

Among other complaints, Hernandez, who is Christian, said the badge signified Satan, or the Mark of the Beast warning in Revelations 13:16-18.

Tagging school children with RFID chips is uncommon, but not new. A federally funded preschool in Richmond, California, began embedding RFID chips in students’ clothing in 2010. An elementary school outside of Sacramento, California, scrubbed a plan in 2005 amid a parental uproar. And a Houston, Texas school district began using the chips to monitor students on 13 campuses in 2004 for the same reasons the Northside Independent School District implemented the program. Northside was mulling adopting the program for its other 110 schools.

In the Hernandez case, the federal judge concluded the girl’s right of religion was not breached. The court found that the school district eventually agreed to accommodate the girl and allow her to remove the RFID chip while still demanding that she wear the identification like other students — a proposition the girl rejected.

The girl’s high school has 200 cameras monitoring the campus.


Original article: Student Suspended for Refusing to Wear RFID Chip Returns to School

Children are the prey of choice for bad people.

1 Thessalonians 5:3

For when they shall say, “Peace and safety” then sudden destruction cometh upon them, as travail upon a woman with child; and they shall not escape.

Liberties are always taken away in the name of national security.

It is an age-old cycle of self-defeat.

  1. Nations, countries and kingdoms always start out conservative, wholly dedicated to a wise and central set of disciplines.
  2. After about two centuries, their successes lead to apathy and the inclusion of the less remarkable ideas—liberalism, multiculturalism and relativism. With their original, strong strain of self-governance corrupted by a thousand delusions and even their oldest, most sacred tenets compromised, immorality spreads like wildfire. Soon, even depravity is tolerated.
  3. The government encourages immorality because financial, economic, social and sexual misconduct invariably creates crises. Through constant crises the government can expand its power, demand more taxes to fund its growing supervision, increase its police force, curtail civil liberties, seize assets and strike even the founding principles of their society from the register.
  4. A heavily policed, fascist regime now rises to oppress the people.

Buy a history book, pick a century at random and see if this refrain in not found through the ages.