Drudge Retort: The Other Side of the News
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"I take some comfort in knowing that this horrible decision will be stuck in the courts for some time, where its opponents will have a very strong argument against implementation.

The test for whether a proposed rule or regulation by a Federal Agency is permissible is whether the Agency instituted that new regulation in an "arbitrary or capricious" way. That's why the notice and public comment period is so important in administrative law. A reviewing court needs to make sure that any new Agency rules are not simply created on the whim of those Agencies' boards, but rather are the result of careful research. This arbitrary and capricious standard applies to decisions by Agencies to enact new regulations as well as decisions to rescind existing regulations (Motor Vehicles Manufacturers Association v. State Farm, 463 U.S. 29 (1983)).

The court that reviews decisions by major agencies like the FCC is almost always the DC Circuit Court of Appeals. Presently, of the 11 current (non-senior) justices on the DC Circuit, 7 were appointed either by Obama or Clinton. It is not a conservative court.

Since the notice and public comment period in Agency procedure is so important for the reasons above, it's very likely that the liberal DC Circuit (Chief Justice Merrick Garland, remember him?) would find that the rampant use of bots and fraudulent commenting in that period provide substantial evidence that the actions of the FCC in rescinding Net Neutrality rules were arbitrary and capricious. This isn't over."

Lie of the Year, 2009 to 2016

2016: Fake news

Conspiracy theories and hoaxes have always been part of America's political conversation, but in 2016 they took off online. Fake news found a willing enabler in Donald Trump, who repeated and legitimized made-up reports. We defined fake news as fabricated information, manipulated to look like credible news reports, then easily spread online.

2015: The campaign misstatements of Donald Trump

From "thousands and thousands" cheering in New Jersey on Sept. 11 to dubious accounts of his own record and words, Trump's 2015 inaccurate statements exhibited range, boldness and a disregard for the truth.

By December 2015, we had rated 76 percent of Trump's claims Mostly False, False or Pants on Fire. No other politician had clocked more falsehoods on our Truth-O-Meter, and our only real contenders for Lie of the Year were Trump's. We rolled all them into one big trophy in 2015.

2014: Exaggerations about Ebola

In 2014, there were just two Ebola-related deaths in the United States, yet fear of the disease stretched nationwide, stoked by exaggerated claims from politicians and pundits. They said, wrongly, that Ebola was easy to catch, that illegal immigrants may be carrying the virus, and that it was all part of a government or corporate conspiracy.

The false claims distorted the debate about a serious public health issue and edged the nation toward panic. In all, PolitiFact and PunditFact rated 16 separate Ebola claims as Mostly False, False or Pants on Fire, so we chose this collection as our 2014 Lie of the Year.

2013: 'If you like your health care plan, you can keep it'

President Barack Obama and other Democrats made this claim when marketing the Affordable Care Act. But in the fall of 2013, people started to receive insurance cancellation notices, definitively proving the statement wrong.

Boiling down the complicated health care law to a soundbite proved treacherous. Obama and his team made matters worse, suggesting the claim had been misunderstood all along. The stunning political uproar led to a rare presidential apology.

2012: Mitt Romney campaign's ad on Jeeps made in China

During the 2012 presidential campaign, Mitt Romney's campaign unleashed an ad suggesting that Jeep was pulling its plants out of Ohio, a critical swing state, for China. But the Ohio Jeep plants weren't going anywhere; the moves in China were to expand into the Chinese auto market.

2011: 'Republicans voted to end Medicare'

After two years of being pounded by Republicans with false charges about the ACA, Democrats turned the tables. They slammed Republicans in the U.S. House of Representatives for voting for a cost-cutting budget resolution promoted by Rep. Paul Ryan, R-Wis. (Ryan is now speaker of the House.)

Democrats said voting for this resolution amounted to voting to end Medicare. But Ryan never proposed ending Medicare; instead he wanted to bring more private insurers into the program. Democrats later modified their talking point to say Republicans wanted to end Medicare "as we know it."

2010: 'A government takeover of health care'

As lawmakers finalized the Affordable Care Act, Republicans couldn't stop repeating their mantra that the law is a government takeover of health care. It's not.

"Government takeover" But the Affordable Care Act relies largely on the free market, and it does not nationalize the country's health system in any way.

2009: 'Death panels'

Sarah Palin was the first to say the Affordable Care Act included "death panels" -- PolitiFact's very first Lie of the Year. Government boards would determine whether seniors and the disabled were worthy of care were wholly fictional. Yet about 30 percent of the public in 2009 believed they were part of the health care law.

This wasn't hard to fact-check. There were not any such death panels in the law.

And it's not just Trump who is down in the polls:

Democrats lead GOP by 15 points in generic 2018 ballot

If Republicans think their new tax cut plan (for the wealthy) is going to help them in 2018, I think Democrats are looking forward to calling their bluff. Personally, I can't wait for them to start talking about the deficit and cutting Medicare, SS and Medicaid after the first of the year.

Looks like another view of the same spending bill...

Pentagon's Cloud Transition Under Hush Order From Weapons Buyer

...Pentagon weapons buyer Ellen Lord has ordered senior officials not to make any further public comments about the Defense Department's looming initiative to move its data into the cloud, a major contract opportunity for technology companies.

"It is imperative that no one speaks outside the Department" about the Enterprise Cloud Adoption project, Lord, the under secretary of defense for acquisitions, said in a Dec. 5 email obtained by Bloomberg News. "This memo is effective immediately and is especially pertinent to those attending/speaking at external engagements with members outside the government."

Lord is leading the effort to move the Pentagon toward cloud computing in a bid to preserve the U.S. military's technological advantages over China and Russia while finding new ways to secure sensitive databases. She has said separate data silos -- even within each military service -- prevent real-time sharing of information among war-fighters and adoption of new technologies such as machine learning and artificial intelligence....


Drudge Retort


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