Tag Archives: transparency

Conservatives attacked on campus: Sucker-punched at UC Berkeley; Tulane U. dorm room door set on fire

Did you see this on TV news?

But the demon MSM persist in portraying the Right, not the Left, as violent loonies.

(1) Assault on U. C. Berkeley

On February 19, 2019, Hayden Williams, a conservative activist was viciously assaulted while recruiting for conservative student group Turning Point USA on the University of California-Berkeley campus.

Williams was passing out information about the group when he was approached by two angry men. A verbal altercation ensued. One of the men, Zachary Greenberg, viciously assaulted Williams with a sucker punch, as seen in this video footage and a GIF I had made from the video.

Donlad Trump Jr. tweeted about the assault:

On March 1, 2019, Zachary Greenberg, 28, was identified and arrested by UC Police — law enforcement booked him into jail at 1 PM. He is a former employee of UC Berkeley as a lab assistant in the Psychology Department who was briefly a non-degree seeking student at UC-Berkeley. (Heavy)

(2) Arson in Tulane University

Just after midnight on Saturday, March 25, 2019, three students set fire to the dorm room door of Tulane University sophomore, Peyton Lofton, whom university spokesman Mike Strecker “confirmed” as the president of Tulane’s chapter of the “right wing group Turning Point USA” and a member of a Libertarian organization called the Young Americans for Liberty (YAL). (WVUE Fox 8)

Fortunately, flames were quickly put out. No injuries were reported, and the door only had “minor damage.”

Strecker said the incident was caught on security cameras, and the suspects were identified as Tulane University students Robert Money, 21, and David Shelton, 20, and Brown University student Naimi Okami, 20.

All three were arrested late Saturday for aggravated arson — a crime defined by Louisiana statute as intentionally setting a fire where it is foreseeable that human life is endangered — and booked into New Orleans Justice Center jail. They appeared in court the next day, where Orleans Parish Magistrate Commissioner Robert Jonathan Friedman set their bonds at $10,000 each. As of Sunday night, it appeared all three had been released on bail.

Lofton’s roommate, Jackson Arnold, told the university’s student newspaper Tulane Hullabaloo: “I think it was probably a drunk prank. I don’t want to rule out the idea that it was politically motivated. Don’t have any proof that it is, don’t have any proof that it isn’t.” Arnold said he did not have a relationship with any of the charged individuals and doesn’t believe Lofton did either.

According to Strecker, Tulane Police are still investigating the incident, and as of Sunday night, the reason for the crime was “not yet clear.” Strecker insists there is “no indication” the act was politically motivated, despite reports Lofton was targeted for his involvement in multiple conservative groups on campus. However, Strecker said the university is taking the incident very seriously and campus police are “thoroughly investigating” it:

“Tulane University is committed to protecting the safety of all in our community and to protecting free speech on campus. Our campuses are and should remain places where ideas can be expressed free of disruption, intimidation and violence.”

In a statement released by YAL, however, Lofton called the arsonists “radical activists”. He said:

“It’s a sad day in American when radical activists are lighting dorm room doors on fire because they disagree with you politically. I’m proud of the work I’m doing on and off campus with YAL and TPUSA to bring students to the principles of the Constitution and individual liberty. This only encourages me to continue the battle to reach my classmates with the message of freedom.”

Young Americans for Liberty (YAL) claims the door was set on fire after Lofton was identified as a member of YAL online. In a tweet, Turning Point USA executive director and founder Charlie Kirk also says Lofton was “doxxed by the violent left for being a conservative.” and calls the suspects “sick and dangerous”.

Donald Trump Jr. retweeted Kirk’s post, calling the incident a “horrible crime” and asks “Wonder if the media will report this horrible crime against a campus conservative?”.

Doxxing refers to the publishing of an individual’s personal information (e.g., name, address, phone number) online, which is typically done to encourage harassment or even physical harm.

Strecker would not comment on any possible disciplinary actions that may be taken against the students involved, saying federal law prohibits universities from disclosing such matters.

(3) President Trump Executive Order to Protect Free Speech

All of which finally prompted President Trump, on March 21, 2019, to sign an executive order to protect free speech on college campuses and universities, directing his cabinet agencies to tie federal grants for education and research to more aggressive enforcement of the First Amendment. (See Executive Order on Improving Free Inquiry, Transparency, and Accountability at Colleges and Universities)

But as noted by The Daily Wire‘s Ashe Schow, the executive order was largely ignored by the mainstream media.

H/t Big Lug

~Eowyn

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Kate Brown, the most transparent governor of Oregon?

Gov. Kate Brown: Can she #betransparent?

Kate Brown, the first openly bi-sexual demorat governor of Oregon, is up for re-election this November. She claims she “has already done more to improve transparency in state government than any other governor in Oregon’s history.”

Let’s take a look at her record, shall we?

According to a report from Forbes earlier this year, their audit of Gov. Brown revealed nearly 4,000 redacted items from her official state calendar. The governor redacted calendar entries on nine out of every ten days since taking office. In addition to these transparency issues, we found potential violations of Oregon state law regarding Brown’s credit card spending.

More from their report:

“The governor is flouting Oregon open records laws and blurring the line between the taxpayer-funded agency resources and her campaign activities. Furthermore, Brown used public funds for private purposes – during her time as secretary of state and as governor.

Now we’ve discovered systemic redactions from Brown’s calendar. Through Brown’s first 1,156 days as governor (February 2015 through April 2018), 994 days on her official calendar included redacted information. There are up to 14 line-item redactions per day.

Oregon State Law (ORS 192.355 Section 2a) allows redactions for information of a “personal nature” (i.e. doctor’s appointments). But in Brown’s calendar, there were nearly 4,000 items redacted, including names of people Brown met with, travel locations, campaign events, and even entire calendar days.

Brown’s calendar was packed with 500 events tagged as “campaign,” with further details redacted. When we asked the governor for comment, spokesperson Chris Pair cited a circuit court case – not a completely settled law – arguing the public has no right to know.”

Read their whole story here.

Guess what else Gov. Brown has done to improve transparency in state government? According to Oregon Live, she and the state agencies she oversees have kept proposed bills confidential while legislative lawyers draft legislation.

This is significant because how the state plans to pay for her policies in 2019, if re-elected, is not being made available to the voting citizens of her state before the November election. Fortunately, a judge in Marion County ordered that she release approximately 250 draft proposed bills by Friday.

More details from Oregon Live:

“Sarah Weston, a lawyer for the Oregon Department of Administrative Services, said the state plans to ask the Oregon Court of Appeals to halt the records release and reverse the Marion County court’s decision.

“The request forms are fundamentally a communication between the client and the client’s lawyer,” Weston said. She cited a statute that says legislative lawyers may draft bills requested by agencies, if the governor signs off on them.

In previous years, Portland business attorney Greg Chaimov – himself a former legislative lawyer – had asked for the agencies’ bill request forms and obtained them relatively quickly, according to his lawyer John DiLorenzo. The firm where Chaimov and DiLorenzo work, Davis Wright Tremaine, shares the information with its clients and friends free of charge, DiLorenzo said. Those entities often want to see what state officials are proposing so they can lobby against bills they dislike. In response to a reporter’s question, DiLorenzo confirmed that one of Chaimov’s clients is the business-allied political nonprofit Priority Oregon, which has been running attacks ads against Brown.  

This year, the governor’s office told Chaimov he would have to deal with the Department of Administrative Services, and that agency said it would not release the records because they were protected by attorney-client privilege.

The administrative department had also informed other state agencies in May that legislative concepts would “be temporally exempt from disclosure [under the Public Records Law] until Legislative Counsel has submitted bill drafts to the Governor’s Office for final approval (this should be done by November 30, 2018),” DiLorenzo wrote in a court filing. He noted that would be well after the election.

“Although it is expected that agencies will have discussed legislative concept ideas with stakeholders, agencies are directed to treat this document as confidential and privileged and, accordingly, not to share the text of this form outside of state government before legislation is drafted and finalized,” the department wrote, according to a court record.”

Read the whole story here.

Prove that you are all for “transparency” Gov. Brown: Release the proposed bills before the November election. If you are so confident of your plans and policies, you should be quite proud to let the citizens of Oregon know how you plan to spend their hard-earned tax dollars!

DCG

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So Much for Transparency

You want transparency?


Administration Refused More Than a Third of FOIA Requests Last Year
Via CNSNews.com: Two years into its pledge to improve government transparency, the Obama administration handled fewer requests for federal records from citizens, journalists, companies and others last year even as significantly more people asked for information. The administration disclosed at least some of what people wanted at about the same rate as the previous year.
People requested information 544,360 times last year under the U.S. Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) from the 35 largest agencies, up nearly 41,000 more than the previous year, according to an analysis by The Associated Press of new federal data. But the government took action on nearly 12,400 fewer requests.
From the White House website: My Administration is committed to creating an unprecedented level of openness in Government.  Openness will strengthen our democracy and promote efficiency and effectiveness in Government. Government should be transparent.  Transparency promotes accountability and provides information for citizens about what their Government is doing.  My Administration will take appropriate action, consistent with law and policy, to disclose information rapidly in forms that the public can readily find and use. Executive departments and agencies should harness new technologies to put information about their operations and decisions online and readily available to the public. Executive departments and agencies should also solicit public feedback to identify information of greatest use to the public.
The Obama administration even censored 194 pages of internal e-mails about its Open Government Directive that the AP requested more than one year ago. The State Department received and handled three times as many requests in 2010 than the previous year. It ended up with a backlog of more than 20,500 overdue cases, more than twice as many as the previous year.
Overall, the decidedly mixed performance shows the federal government struggling to match the promises Obama made early in his term to improve transparency and disclose more information rapidly. So much for that hope and change! Even the majority of comments on HuffPo are critical of Obama for this. Elections have consequences.
DCG

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