12:20 PM, Jun 4, 2013 • By GEOFFREY NORMAN
High officials in the Obama administration are using "secret e-mail accounts," according to the Associated Press, and stonewalling when asked about them, even by establishment media operations.
Most U.S. agencies [having] failed to turn over lists of political appointees' email addresses, which the AP sought under the Freedom of Information Act more than three months ago. The Labor Department initially asked the AP to pay more than $1 million for its email addresses.
Ordinary, non-sanctioned media and private citizens would likely not have a chance, of course. Even if they could raise the million.
Still, they can take comfort in the fact that the phantom government employee behind one of these secret e-mail accounts – the one belonging to the head of the Environmental Protection Agency – did such outstanding work that he was certified as a “scholar of ethical behavior.” He didn't exist but he was an exemplary public servant, leading one to think that there may be the germ of a very large, transformational idea here. A government of non-existent employees, all of them doing a first class job, as the rest of us go on about our lives.
Does it not seem, sometimes, that Washington is the creation of a post-modernist Franz Kafka?
Philip Terzian, circumspect fanFeb 11, 2013, Vol. 18, No. 21 • By PHILIP TERZIAN
Stan Musial, the St. Louis Cardinal who died a few weeks ago, seems to have been one of those great athletes of good character—player-hero, civic monument, example to youth—that sportswriters forever seek but seldom find.
11:42 PM, Jun 21, 2011 • By MARK HEMINGWAY
Democrats were no doubt looking for a bit of a breather now that the Anthony Weiner scandal is receding. But this news won't help with that one bit:
A congressional ethics panel is investigating allegations that Florida Democratic Rep. Alcee Hastings sexually harassed a member of his staff, according to people familiar with the matter.
3:12 PM, Apr 7, 2011 • By MICHAEL WARREN
The Washington Post reports that some Federal Deposit Insurance Commission officials cried foul back in 2008 when Democratic congresswoman Maxine Waters of California allegedly sought special treatment for a bank run by a close friend. According to internal emails obtained by the Post, one FDIC bank examiner called the situation a "travesty of justice":
Who ate the cupcake?2:42 PM, Mar 31, 2011 • By DANIEL HALPER
Bureaucrats, like all of us, love cupcakes. But is it always appropriate for them to accept cupcakes, especially when the gift-givers clearly want to curry favor? The notion that someone could sway millions – and perhaps billions – of dollars worth of business in their favor simply by delivering a bunch of cupcakes to bureaucrats might seem preposterous, but that’s exactly what happened last December.
4:00 PM, Dec 30, 2010 • By FRED BARNES
Elections have consequences, and in Alabama the consequences have come quickly and decisively.
9:01 AM, Dec 3, 2010 • By DANIEL HALPER
Steve Hayes, with Nia-Malika Henderson and Charles Krauthammer, last night on Fox News:
4:31 PM, Jun 4, 2010 • By JOHN MCCORMACK
Attorney General Holder apparently only selectively follows ethical rules governing what prosecutors can say about pending criminal investigations. Compare his comments on the Sestak scandal and the BP oil spill, only three weeks apart:
4:12 PM, Apr 2, 2010 • By JOHN MCCORMACK
The Hill reports:
Lawmakers living at the C Street House are violating congressional gift rules, a watchdog charged Thursday.
Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW) filed a complaint Thursday with the Senate Ethics Committee and the House Office of Congressional Ethics, charging members residing at C Street with paying below-market rent.
The complaint lists Sens. Sam Brownback (R-Kan.), Tom Coburn (R-Okla.), Jim DeMint (R-S.C.) and John Ensign (R-Nev.) as well as Reps. Mike Doyle (D-Pa.), Heath Shuler (D-N.C.), Bart Stupak (D-Mich.) and Zach Wamp (R-Tenn.) as allegedly receiving improper housing benefits.
4:52 PM, Mar 22, 2010 • By EDWIN D. WILLIAMSON and RICHARD W. PAINTER
One neglected issue in the controversy over the revelation that there are at least nine (or ten, if you count Attorney General Eric Holder) Justice Department lawyers who represented, or filed briefs in support of, Guantanamo detainees is whether those lawyers are complying with applicable ethics rules--and whether those rules are being applied evenly.
The two basic ethics rules are (a) the “inward” revolving door ban found in President Obama’s executive order imposing ethics obligations on his administration’s appointees and (b) the conflict of interest rules found in codes of professional conduct defining lawyers’ duties to clients.
6:46 PM, Mar 10, 2010 • By JOHN MCCORMACK
The Washington Post reports that the House Ethics committee will close its ethics investigation into Eric Massa:
The committee concluded that Massa's resignation put him outside the reach of any punishment the committee could dole out, and would render any findings of wrongdoing irrelevant. But the move appears likely to set up a political battle with House Republicans, who are already complaining in campaign ads that Congressional Democrats are unwilling to look too deeply into or punish the ethical transgressions of their own.
While the committee traditionally loses jurisdiction over a member when that member resigns, that's not the case when the allegations involve someone else working for Congress. For example, in 2006, Republican Mark Foley resigned on September 28, and the House Ethics committee didn't release its report until December 8.