SalemNews.com, Salem, MA

Opinion

June 5, 2013

Anderson: Escaping the news of the world

(Continued)

The IRS. Lois Lerner, who oversaw the tax-exempt department that targeted conservative groups, taking the Fifth at the Congressional hearing on the Treasury Department’s inspector general audit of this targeting. New report by same inspector general on IRS spending $50 million on 220 conferences for employees between 2010 and 2012, including $4 million for a conference at Anaheim that featured a $17,000 speaker on “leadership through art.” The IRS will be adding employees to oversee ObamaCare.

Massachusetts EBT cards for dead people, or as Rob Eno at RedMassGroup was the first to call it, “the rise of the Mass Zombies.” A report by state Auditor Suzanne Bump found $18 million in suspicious welfare payments, including $2.39 million sent to more than 1,160 recipients listed as dead. It also seems that some beneficiaries may have sold their electronic benefit cards, which is illegal; one person “lost” and had to replace his card 127 times. No one in the Department of Transitional Assistance, so-called, seemed to notice.

An earlier state auditor, John Finnegan, once explained to me the problem with audits: It takes awhile to do them, so when you release the results, audited departments acknowledge the problem but say it was fixed last month. When you check and find it wasn’t, the response is sorry, misspoke, but it was fixed yesterday, and so on….

New Obama betrayal. From a U.S. News & World Report last month: “the families of 17 SEAL Team 6 commandos who were killed in an ambush in Afghanistan during a helicopter flight to help Army Rangers pinned down by Taliban gunmen accused the Obama administration of deliberately endangering their loved ones for political ends.” They blamed a White House decision to announce shortly after the killing of Osama bin Laden that SEAL Team 6 was responsible for the raid. “In releasing their identity, they put a target on their backs,” said Doug Hamburger, whose son, Army Staff Sgt. Patrick Hamburger, served among the helicopter’s crew.

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