November 1, 2008

A state employee says her supervisor had her run a child-support check on Joe the Plumber.

The woman, Vanessa Niekamp, says she acted under the impression that it was a routine check after an inquiry from Joe himself.

Attacking Joe the Plumber has been the stupidest move by Obama supporters. There was nothing to be gained, even if the man could have been personally destroyed. (Not that I recommend destroying private citizens for political gain.)


Pete the Streak said...

Well, since Joe is just an average guy working to support himself, looking to get ahead and wanting government out of his life as much as possible, of course he should be attacked. He's obviously unpatriotic, and immensely selfish.

So saith Team Obama.(Book of Barack 1:3)

AJ Lynch said...

Interesting that few of the wire services or papers other than the Columbus Dispatch are reporting this story.

Of course it's not like partisan operatives tried to determine what books Joe The Terrorist borrowed from the library.

martha said...

Obama's "Aunti Zeituni" Onyango featured in Obama's best-selling memoir has been found by an British newspaper to be living not in Africa but in the US--ILLEGALLY--- in Boston in public housing AND Ms. Onyango has contributed ILLEGALLY to Obama's campaign several times.

Press scrutiny can cut both ways. Of course it took the British to investigate/find Obama's aunt and the British press' investigative reporting was LEGAL.

AllenS said...

Since her supervisor, Director Helen Jones-Kelley, is a black woman, nothing will happen to the supervisor. Just wait until Obama becomes president.

Meade said...

"Attacking Joe the Plumber has been the stupidest move by Obama supporters."

Even less brilliant than attacking Sarah Pallin's womb.

Pogo said...

Gee, it was like clockwork, almost as if the entire thing were coordinated.

"Will no one rid me of this meddlesome plumber?"

Just a foretaste of the Obama Administration, from the Ministry of Information, enforced by the Obama Truth Squad.

AJ Lynch said...

This story on Obama's aunt is all about our elected and appointed officials consciously deciding which laws they will ignore. In doing so, they are increasing our country's deficit.

It is not about race.

The story on Joe The Plumber is all about arrogance and civil rights law violations by partisan Democrats.

AJ Lynch said...

I hope Joe The Plumber hits the jackpot on his civil rights being violated.

Heck I'll be glad to see the state of Ohio have to pay him a Million Bucks or so.

Original George said...


There is still time to support the other guy.

Knowing Sen. McCain's temper and rectitude, it's fair to say he would immediately fire anyone doing such a thing, just as he said he would have fired the SEC chief.

The man (or woman) at the top sets the tone.

Palladian said...

Obama should hire Ari Fleischer to come out at the inauguration and deliver his classic line:


Seven Machos said...

It really was dumb. But there's a pattern here. Plumbers getting illegally investigated for political reasons. All the silly dirt on Palin and her family. The reporters getting blackballed from the Obama plane.

Wake up, people! Especially you, Althouse. You've seen enough vapid showmanship in your day to know better. I'm not calling you old; I'm calling you (potentially) wise.

This guy is the exact opposite of post-partisan unity, whatever hokum that is.

Vote McCain. Millions of Americans will and you can, too.

Bissage said...

Why is no one checking to see who was checking to see if anyone was checking into Mr. Wurzelbacher?

Seven Machos said...

So Bissage, are you suggesting that someone needs to check on the checkers of the checkers? Sounds good in theory, but who will check on them. The checkers of the checkers of the checkers will not a thorough checking.

But by whom? And who will check them?

AJ Lynch said...

"Mr. Wurzelbacher" sounds like the name they would use for a character in a old TV show like The Jack Benny Show or The Honeymooners.

peter hoh said...

There are people who do stupid things in support of their preferred candidate. This is news? Ashley, anyone?

peter hoh said...

Let me know when Joe gets the full Georgia Thompson treatment.

Scrutineer said...

Original George - Knowing Sen. McCain's temper and rectitude, it's fair to say he would immediately fire anyone doing such a thing, just as he said he would have fired the SEC chief. The man (or woman) at the top sets the tone.

McCain also said he would make Andrew Cuomo the new SEC chief. McCain is spastic.

Palladian said...

"There are people who do stupid things in support of their preferred candidate. This is news? Ashley, anyone?"

Ashley didn't have access to private government records.

AJ Lynch said...

Yeah Peter that is a very consistent apples to apples logic. You want to excuse this lawbreaking by comparing a young idiotic campaign volunteer (Ashley Todd) to very well paid, appointed partisan govt officials.

BTW so far Joe's records have been accessed illegally by at least four separate govt agencies.

Quayle said...

What is the liberal press going to do if Obama gets elected?

How is CNN and MSNBC going to keep any viewers? How is the NY Times going to keep selling papers?

Nobody wants to read Christmas letters every day of the year.

I can hardly stand them when they come only in December.

save_the_rustbelt said...

Ohio Democrats justifiably defeated the Ohio GOP on a reform platform.

The Ohio Democrats, starting with the reform (former) Attorney General, have been setting their own standard for corruption.

I guess Ohio is just corrupt. Swell.

TitusAskMeIwontsayno said...

I don't care about Joe the plumber.

somefeller said...

I hope Joe The Plumber hits the jackpot on his civil rights being violated. Heck I'll be glad to see the state of Ohio have to pay him a Million Bucks or so.

If this was an example of state action being used to violate Joe's civil rights, he'd be well within his rights to sue, and he could get a good judgment. And rightfully so. State employees should not be doing such things, and if this is something more than the actions of a rogue employee, a price may need to be paid.

And if he won a civil rights case because of this incident, this would be yet another example of Joe getting a benefit from society created by liberals (conservatives haven't done much in the way of creating civil rights litigation opportunities for people), like the tax cut he'd receive in an Obama administration (since he, aside from not being a real licensed plumber, also apparently doesn't make $250,000 per year, either). Of course, Joe would also be too much of an ingrate and ignoramus to understand such things and how they came about.

TitusAskMeIwontsayno said...

I just pinched my morning loaf.

It was firm, slid out easily, I clipped it off with my tight hole and required very few wipings.

The color was a nice dark brown with a hint of tomato.

There were three loafs all together. First, the primary loaf which was the largest, about the size of my hog hard. Then there were two smaller secondary loafs about the size of my hog soft.

All three loafs congregated together before I flushed.

The entire loaf required only one flushing.

thank you.

Jim Hu said...

save the rustbelt: the argument for McCain-Palin in this context is not that all Republicans are intrinsically les corrupt than all Democrats, in Ohio, or anywhere else. It's that these specific Republicans are reformers who have a track record of attacking corruption in both parties, while these specific Democrats talk the talk (sometimes) but don't walk the walk.

Whether you buy it or not is a judgement call depending on how you weight different data points. But pointing out corrupt Republicans isn't entirely relevant, unless you want to argue that the R ticket is a continuation of their political culture. You also don't have to buy that Obama-Biden is either part of or condones the corruption on the left.

Personally, I find the preponderance of evidence is that McCain-Palin are, mostly, reformers and Obama-Biden are, at best, condoners. YMMV.

TitusAskMeIwontsayno said...

The primary loaf shot out of my hole rather briskly. It created a rather large splash in the bowl.

The secondary loafs were more of an afterthought. For some reason they did not want to attach to the primary loaf. Each secondary loaf required very little effort to come out.

The entire loaf required three wipings.

Pinching a Loaf.

Terri said...

Please, someone, explain to me why Obama would be a good president? Why would our country benefit from full Dem control (we've had a dem majority for the last two years and it's been anything BUT an improvement). When I think of Joe the Plumber, I hear that speech Obama made where he kept saying "a plumber! A plumber making 250,000 a year" The contempt was dripping out of his mouth and slopping onto his shirt. That kind of contempt is exactly why I cannot listen to anything Obama says. He is always talking down to me.... Thank you, but NO.

Now, can someone explain to me how we are going to be better off with the Dems in full control of the legislative and executive branch of this country? Anyone? Bueller?

TitusAskMeIwontsayno said...

How were your morning loafs fellow republicans?

TitusAskMeIwontsayno said...

After I pinched the loaf I tinkled.

I always tinkle after pinching a loaf.

Seven Machos said...

Somefeller, please, educate us. Please tell us how the causes of action under which Joe may sue originated. Tell us more. Don't merely assure us that because they are good they must be the fruit of liberal do-gooders. You are better than that, so much more erudite.

Please make the history of the causes clear. Do they stem from common law or legislation, or both? When was the first case? What was the result? What elements does one need to prove to win the case? What is the standard of proof? Why?

I rest assured that you know the answers to these questions, and you aren't merely making humorously gross generalization that basically equate to the claim that all good stems from leftism. I mean, really. You aren't that much of a stupid putz. right? Right?

TitusAskMeIwontsayno said...

The tinkle was a golden yellow. It was a nice strong stream. There was a main gush and then two or three secondary tinkles.

Some of the tinkle hit the loafs which caused them to break apart in many smaller loafs.

TitusAskMeIwontsayno said...

Sometimes I talk to my loafs.

I say hi there loaf. How are you? Welcome to the world. Sorry that you have been cooped up in my hole. Don't you feel glad to be out.

And then before flushing I say bye loaf. Have a good trip. I hope you are able to meet other loafs in your new home.

TitusAskMeIwontsayno said...

Sometimes I like to tinkle on my loaf to see how much damage I can do to it.

I don't think loafs appreciate that.

Ann Althouse said...

Come on! "Loafs" is a verb. The noun is "loaves."

Did you know there was a Miracle of the Loaves?

TitusAskMeIwontsayno said...

Sorry teacher.


Oligonicella said...

peter hoh --

"Let me know when Joe gets the full Georgia Thompson treatment."

Not a dichotomous situation. They're both cases of wrong doing. Ta dah.

Crimso said...

"like the tax cut he'd receive in an Obama administration"

Because Obama said so, right? How's that public campaign financing working out for him?

Nichevo said...

I guess Ohio is just corrupt. Swell.

Yeah, Ohio sucks. Damn job-stealing bitchez.

Ann Althouse said...

Loaves. It's closer to loves. And laves. Loafs is ugly. I picture clumsy oafs. But why isn't it oaves?

Reminds me of this:

“Brian, how do you make a word a plural?”
“You put a ‘s’…put a ‘s’ at the end of it.”
“On weekends and holidays...”
“No, Brian. Let me show you.” So she asked this kid who knew everything. Irwin. “Irwin, what’s the plural for ox?”
“Oxen. The farmer used his oxen.”
“Brian, what’s the plural for box?”
“Boxen. I bought 2 boxen of doughnuts.”
"No, Brian, no. Let's try another one. Irwin, what's the plural for goose?"
"Geese. I saw a flock of geese."
(half-crying) "Wha-at?"
"Brian, what's the plural for moose?"
"Moosen! I saw a flock of moosen! There were many of 'em. Many much moosen. Out in the woods- in the woodes- in the woodsen. The meese want the food. The food is to eatenesen. The meese want the food in the woodingesen! In the, food in the woodenesen!"
"Brian! Brian. You're an imbecile."
"What are you speaking? German, Brian?"
"German. Jermain. Jermaine Jackson. Jackson Five. Tito!"
"Brian, what the hell are you talking about!?"
"I don't know, I don't know really."

somefeller said...

Seven Machos asks: Please tell us how the causes of action under which Joe may sue originated.

I'm not an Ohio lawyer, and generally don't give legal advice for free. But I suspect that if an Ohio state employee is accessing confidential records of a private citizen and then providing them to an outside party, they may be violating state policies regarding confidentiality of state records (this assumes the records were confidential, which the articles on this incident imply), and such accessing of records and provision of the records to other parties may constitute invasion of privacy, a common-law tort (admittedly, a tort with an ancient history, but defenses of privacy rights tend to come from the liberal or libertarian side in recent times). Plus, bad actions of state employees can, in certain circumstances, constitute state action, thus opening up the possibility of civil rights claims, which is why I mentioned possible civil rights litigation opportunities (and, of course, civil rights litigation opportunities tend to have been created by the left side of the bar, particularly with regard to expansion of claims against state actors). But all these things relate to matters of fact and law that go beyond my knowledge of the situation, which, like everyone else here, comes from a few news articles.

This is all just shoot-from-the-hip commentary, of course, and if Joe is reading this, he shouldn't consider my comments, or the comments of anyone else in a weblog combox, to be legal advice. I would suggest to him, however, that he might want to contact appropriate counsel in Ohio to investigate this matter further, particularly if more disconcerting details arise. I would never discourage a person whose rights may have been violated to simply do nothing. Turning the other cheek is a fine Christian virtue, but it can encourage bad behavior.

Nichevo said...

What's wrong with "boxen?" It's a perfectly cromulent word. Ask any UNIX guy.

Seven Machos said...

Where to start? Let's go with this gem: particularly with regard to expansion of claims against state actors

Because in Somefeller world, non-state entities are the primary violators of civil rights

Alrighty then. You just keep chugging along on the old left side of the bar, the good side.

somefeller said...

Because in Somefeller world, non-state entities are the primary violators of civil rights

No, because in Somefeller world (which, by chance, also happens to be the mainstream legal world in the US), it is recognized that state actors often are, appropriately, held to a different standard than non-state actors with regard to civil rights issues, and as such actions that might not be considered to be civil rights violations if performed by a non-state party may be considered to be civil rights violations if performed by state actors. Depends on the facts at hand and the laws on the books in that jurisdiction. Also, in Somefeller world, it is also generally recognized that the people who pushed for more civil rights litigation opportunities, particularly against state actors, tended to be on the left, just as, for example, it is generally recognized in Somefeller world that the people who have pushed for more restrictive laws with regard to abortion have tended to be on the right. Also, in Somefeller world, water is wet.

Thanks for playing.

blake said...

They were just following the rules.

RULE 12: Pick the target, freeze it, personalize it, and polarize it." Cut off the support network and isolate the target from sympathy. Go after people and not institutions; people hurt faster than institutions. (This is cruel, but very effective. Direct, personalized criticism and ridicule works.)

TMink said...

Freder? Where is your post condemning the police state tactics used against Joe? It must have been deleted. Please post a replacement, my friend in fighting the power!


Stephanie said...

LOL Saul Alinsky's Rules for Radicals...

Silly republicans thought we were playing by American rules..

BTW...Did you know that Ayers "adopted" son (the weather underground chick's) is a top advisor to Hugo Chavez?

Trooper York said...

I must congratulate Senator Obama in something he has recently done right in his campaign. Recently he banned the New York Post, the Dallas Morning News and the Washington Times from his aircraft. These publications are among the few that do not support his candidacy and have printed many stories critical of him and detrimental to his campaign. It is a good thing that he refuses to coddle them and make it easy for them to cover his campaign. I understand he replaced them with writers from Ebony and Jet magazines. Good job Senator. I salute you.

The only thing worse than a journalist is a lawyer.

Trooper York said...

Similarly, I would expect that Senator McCain and Governor Palin will ban CBS, NBC, ABC, CNN, MSNBC, The New York Times, The Washington Post, The LA Times, Time, Newsweek, O Magazine, The Boston Globe and numerous other rags which should be banned from the McCain plane and forced to pay their own way. These are basically part and parcel of the Obama campaign and should receive absolutely nothing. They are to be scorned and thwarted at every turn. Let us follow Senator Obama’s lead.

The only thing worse than a journalist is a lawyer.

Seven Machos said...

Somefeller -- Civil rights are rights against the state. Period. The fact that you don't understand this makes you an idiot.

The fact that you think that left and right go back to time immemorial is simply funny.

Pastafarian said...

Althouse said: "...there was nothing to be gained..."

But of course, what they gained was the silencing of future critics or questioners through intimidation. We'll see much more of this in the next 4 to 8 years. Who doesn't have some little thing from their past that they don't want paraded in front of the entire country? Who would risk this just to stand up to Obama?

somefeller said...

Civil rights are rights against the state. Period. The fact that you don't understand this makes you an idiot.

Actually, one can make civil rights claims against private actors, in certain circumstances. For example, if a private employer discriminates against an employee because of his race, that employer may be subject to a civil rights claim. That's a basic point of employment law in the US in 2008. Try again.

And I don't think that left and right go back to time immemorial. Just the Revolution in France. See, e.g., Edmund Burke. Once more, try again.

somefeller said...

Also, as I stated above, the issue in the Joe the Plumber case may be an issue of state action (state employees were involved in this situation, so that at least opens the possibility of a state action claim - a local Ohio attorney might be able to shed light on that for Joe), so the extent of civil rights protections (if any) beyond the world of state action issues isn't relevant here.

If Joe had his rights violated by the state employees who accessed his file (that depends on Ohio law, which I'm not commenting on), then he has a claim, and I encourage him to act on it. While I may disagree with Joe's politics, no one should have his rights violated by the state. So Joe, if you are reading this, talk to a local Ohio attorney. Perhaps my friends at the Ohio ACLU can help you. And don't listen to Seven Machos, as he or she is a moron who is incapable of addressing issue directly, and whose thoughts should be ignored with a wave of the hand.

somefeller said...

Oh, in rereading that, the last sentence should refer to "an" issue directly. Hate to drop a word, even if it's not important.

AJ Lynch said...

Somefeller recomended JTP call the Ohio ACLU.

That is too funny . LOL. As if they would take a case against their Dem friends in Ohio.

Kristina said...

I don't believe governmental agencies should be releasing Mr. Plumber's records private information illegally, just like I don't believe that governmental agencies should be releasing confidential immigration information about Obama's aunt.

Outside of that, I have very little sympathy for Mr. Plumber, given that his immediate reaction to reporters being camped on his lawn was to grant several interviews. Then hire an agent. Then look into a book deal and running for public office. Then stump for McCain at his rallies. Joe opened himself up to public scrutiny, by becoming a public figure.

Obama supporters have every right to attack McCain's people (McCain made Mr. Plumber one of his people by including him at rallies and lifting him up to be the "iconic American" ideal), public figures who have sought a public image, and visa versa. It goes too far when you attack people who have not actively sought publicity or fame (anyone's kids, distant aunts, etc.), but I hardly think that applies to Joe.

AJ Lynch said...


Your timeline was wrong so you made some mistakes in your analysis.

Joe did not do those things "immediately". He did those only after he was researched and attacked by the media and Obama and Biden and Obama's campaign.

Obama's aunt is an issue because she has broken our laws while she is taking advantage of govt benefits which in principle Obama supports as a "distribute the wealth" kind of candidate.

So Obama's aunt is fair game IMO. She highlights how the current govt failed to enforce our laws and spends our money unwisely and ineffectively.

peter hoh said...

I didn't make it clear in my earlier comments: I agree that efforts to attack Joe are stupid. Doing anything illegal or unethical in support of that effort is wrong.

I don't know that the campaign can be tarred with the efforts of supporters. That's why I brought up Ashley, who I think should be left alone, too.

Terry said...

A google news search for "civilian national security force" plus the word "obama" yields 17 results...

It is strange that the MSM have studiously ignored a pledge from a presidential candidate to create a new governmental entity that is as big, powerful and expensive as our current military.

Ignoring the question of where Obama will get the half-trillion dollars to fund the CNSF, what exactly is Obama planning to do with his Civilian National Security Force that is "just as powerful, just as strong, and just as well funded" as the military?

What powers will the CNSF have relative to the FBI, NSA, CIA, Homeland Security, etc.?

What exactly are they going to do with all that money?

Will the CNSF report directly to the President?


Terry said...

Nevermind. I know what Obama's going to do with the CNSF. He'll need it to quell the citizen uprisings after he bankrupts coal power and makes electricity prices "skyrocket".

Obama speaking about his cap and trade plan. Jan 2008, SF Chronicle:

"So, if somebody wants to build a coal plant, they can — it’s just that it will bankrupt them, because they are going to be charged a huge sum for all that greenhouse gas that’s being emitted."

"You know, when I was asked earlier about the issue of coal, uh, you know — Under my plan of a cap and trade system, electricity rates would necessarily skyrocket."