by Michael Krieger, Liberty Blitzkrieg:
Johnson: No, again, we were misled that there were supposedly protests and that something sprang out of that — an assault sprang out of that — and that was easily ascertained that that was not the fact, and the American people could have known that within days and they didn’t know that.
Clinton: With all due respect, the fact is we had four dead Americans. Was it because of a protest or was it because of guys out for a walk one night who decided that they’d they go kill some Americans? What difference at this point does it make? It is our job to figure out what happened and do everything we can to prevent it from ever happening again, Senator.
– From the January 23, 2013 Senate Foreign Relations Committee hearing on the Benghazi attacks
“What Difference Does It Make.” Those simple words offer a perfect glimpse into the life and times of Hillary Clinton. A woman who gets away with everything and anything, and who now wants to be President of these United States.
From her earliest days as a public figure, an aura of shadiness and lack of accountability permeates. For starters, there’s the infamous 1978 case of her turning $1,000 into $100,000 by trading cattle futures, an endeavor in which she had no expertise.
As the New York Times reported in its 1994 story:
The White House said today that in 1978 Hillary Rodham Clinton invested $1,000 in commodities futures and that the investment grew in 10 months of trading in the notoriously volatile market into a gain of nearly $100,000.
Seeking to dispel suggestions that the trades were risk-free and improperly arranged by an Arkansas lawyer who represents one of the state’s most powerful companies, the White House issued a statement this afternoon that said the First Lady had put up her own money and that she bore all of the financial risks in a marketplace where three out of four investors lose money.
The string of winning trades began in October 1978, as Mr. Clinton, then the state’s Attorney General, was leading in polls in the race for Governor.
The White House insisted today that Mrs. Clinton received no improper financial assistance on the trades from the lawyer, James B. Blair, a close friend who at the time was the top lawyer for Tyson Foods of Springdale, Ark., the nation’s biggest poultry company. Mr. Blair has said that he had suggested that she get into the commodities market, and that he used his knowledge of trading to guide her along the way.
During Mr. Clinton’s tenure as Governor, Tyson benefited from several state decisions, including favorable environmental rulings, $9 million in state loans, and the placement of company executives on important state boards.
The commodities trades were the most successful investment the Clintons ever made. The nearly $100,000 profit enabled them to buy a house, invest in securities and real estate and provide a nest egg for their daughter, Chelsea.
Naturally, nothing ever came of the cattle trading incident, kicking off a pattern that has continued to play out throughout her career. It’s this reality that has made her increasingly bold — and dangerous.
Indeed, there seems to be a clear correlation between her proximity to power and the blatantly corrupt and shady decisions she’s willing to make. Amongst other things, as Secretary of State she attempted to appoint a wealthy high frequency trading donor with no experience to an expert nuclear panel, she was routinely caught in wide-ranging Clinton Foundation-related conflicts of interest, and she orchestrated one of the biggest foreign policy blunders in a modern U.S. history with her Libya intervention. Then, upon leaving office, she immediately sold herself to the highest bidder on the speech circuit, earnings millions from Wall Street banks and then refusing to release the transcripts.
Then came the email scandal. An episode which exhibited such clear criminal incompetence many people actually believed she might be held to account. Today we found out she won’t. To give you a sense of just how perverse the FBI’s own recommendation not to pursue criminal charges is, take a look at the following excerpts from FBI Director James Comey’s press conference:
Seven e-mail chains concern matters that were classified at the Top Secret/Special Access Program level when they were sent and received. These chains involved Secretary Clinton both sending e-mails about those matters and receiving e-mails from others about the same matters. There is evidence to support a conclusion that any reasonable person in Secretary Clinton’s position, or in the position of those government employees with whom she was corresponding about these matters, should have known that an unclassified system was no place for that conversation. In addition to this highly sensitive information, we also found information that was properly classified as Secret by the U.S. Intelligence Community at the time it was discussed on e-mail (that is, excluding the later “up-classified” e-mails).
None of these e-mails should have been on any kind of unclassified system, but their presence is especially concerning because all of these e-mails were housed on unclassified personal servers not even supported by full-time security staff, like those found at Departments and Agencies of the U.S. Government—or even with a commercial service like Gmail.
In looking back at our investigations into mishandling or removal of classified information, we cannot find a case that would support bringing criminal charges on these facts. All the cases prosecuted involved some combination of: clearly intentional and willful mishandling of classified information; or vast quantities of materials exposed in such a way as to support an inference of intentional misconduct; or indications of disloyalty to the United States; or efforts to obstruct justice. We do not see those things here.
To be clear, this is not to suggest that in similar circumstances, a person who engaged in this activity would face no consequences. To the contrary, those individuals are often subject to security or administrative sanctions. But that is not what we are deciding now.
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