Thursday, July 20, 2017

Elizabeth Warren Takes Her Deplorable Rhetoric To Disgusting New Low

By Andrew West April 29, 2017

In this modern society filled with hateful liberals and their New Fascist cronies, it was really only a matter of time before one of their own in government turned monstrous. The left has been busy in the wake of the Trump presidency, and previously, the Trump candidacy, doing everything in their power to violently assault the entire conservative population of the United States.

There have been legitimate riots in the streets of California, fence jumpers and intruders at the White House, and more than a few threats of bodily harm aimed at America’s right wing in recent months.

Now, one feisty leftist icon is heading down that same path with a bold and despicable statement regarding their true feelings about American republicans........To Read More.....

Cartoon of the Day

America's record on slavery slammed by ... Spiderman?

Popular movie takes aim at Washington Monument, Founding Fathers

WND EXCLUSIVE

Even “Spiderman” isn’t immune to the endless push for political correctness.  Another attempted reboot for the superhero franchise, “Spiderman: Homecoming,” is receiving attention for its deliberate attempt to incorporate diversity into its casting. And while that isn’t so unusual, an incongruous critique of the Washington Monument as the product of slave labor is raising eyebrows among some theatergoers.  In the scene, the character Michelle Jones, played by biracial actress Zendaya Maree Stoermer Coleman, refuses to enter the Washington Monument with the rest of her decathlon team because it was supposedly built by slaves................“In 1879, after a 25-year hiatus, work resumed on the monument and was largely finished by 1884.........As Barton observes, American slavery was only a memory by this point in history.   “Since slavery ended in 1865 through the addition of the Thirteenth Amendment, none of the work that occurred from 1879 to 1884 involved any slaves – not one,” he said.

“So even if one accepts that the entirety of the work done from 1848 to 1854 was performed solely by slaves, which was definitely not the case, then it would still be the case that about 80 to 85 percent of the work was not done by slaves. However, since most of the early work was not done by slaves, it is possible that from 90 to 95 percent (or even a higher percentage) of the monument was not done by slaves. Those who claim that the monument was built by slaves insinuate that the entire structure was a result of slave labor, when in reality it’s likely closer to only 5 percent or less.”...........Read more

Kinder, Gentler GOP Embraces ‘Cap and Trade’

Lawmakers vote for anti-market measure, then giddily pose with Democratic leaders — in return for zilch.

Steven Greenhut July 20, 2017

California Republican Assembly Leader Chad Mayes of Yucca Valley ought to be embarrassed today, and not just because of the front-page Sacramento Bee coverage about his alleged affair with former GOP Assembly Leader Kristen Olsen, who is now a Stanislaus County supervisor.    Those allegations long swirled around the Capitol. They recently made the news after a conservative blogger wrote about a letter that Olsen’s estranged husband reportedly had sent to the Assembly asking for an investigation into whether state resources were used to hide the alleged relationship. (Mr. Olsen later retracted his request, per the Bee.)

The main reason Mayes should be embarrassed is an apparent reason the blogger wrote about the allegations. Like most conservatives here, he was furious at his lack of principle. This week Mayes backed a plan to extend California’s cap-and-trade program for another decade.

The program is supposed to fight climate change, but has become a state-directed boondoggle that imposes massive new taxes on business and consumers, and creates a sea of revenues to fund the governor’s $68 billion pet bullet-train project; programs that pursue “environmental justice”; and all sorts of unrelated Democratic priorities......To Read More....

The People’s Constitutional Solution to Fixing Washington

David Guldenschuh July 20, 2017

The election of Donald Trump is the product of America’s discontent with an ineffectual and dysfunctional federal government. Key voters in Michigan, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin, among many others, chose a candidate they believed would shake up Washington, D.C. rather than one they viewed as part of its establishment. Thus, they handed the White House to the current administration in the Electoral College, notwithstanding a contrary popular vote.

Both national parties may assume equal credit for the “embarrassment,” to quote Chase CEO Jamie Dimon, that is Washington. Our federal government is completely broken. Congress has only managed to pass a true federal budget on four occasions in the past 40 years, and contrary to what you are told, none of those were actually balanced. Pork-filled continuing resolutions are the order of the day. Each presidential administration increasingly uses executive orders, federal regulation, and the power of agencies such as the IRS and FBI to further extend its influence and control over the everyday lives of Americans.......To Read More....

My Take - At this point the simple wording and understanding of the Constitution has been usurpted by the judiciary and the politicans and turned it into a suicide pact. 

We need far more than a balanced budget amendment because I will guarantee you these profligates will find ways around it, just as Strickland did in Ohio when he was Governor.  Ohio has a balanced budget amendment and yet he passed a budget that ended up with an eight billion dollar deficit.  First we need to pass a 28th Amendment creating term and age limits for the federal judiciary, and add term and age limits for Congress also. 

Then what is really needed is to repeal the 16th amendment - income tax, and the 17th amendment which is how Senators are chosen.  Originally they were appointed by the states to be de-facto ambassadors from the states representing the states.  The House of Representatives were to be chosen by the people and were supposed to represent the people. 

I fear this effort will be an effort in futility simply because this won't fix anything unless they're willing to rewrite the Constitution in order to bring it back to the Founding Father's vision of limited government.  Will that happen?  NO!  No matter what clabber you may read about the personal belief's of the Founding Fathers overall they were Christians and held Judaic/Christian values as the foundation for their work, which they believed was absolutely necessary in order for the Constitution to work.  That's no longer the societal paradigm in America, and without that solid moral foundation no Article V convention will create a worthwhile fix. 

Texas Is Reconvening Its Legislature

And you thought Congressional Republicans were disgusting disappointments…

Jon Cassidy

It’s tempting, at a moment when Republicans are falling just short of the votes they need to accomplish even a mild reform of Obamacare, to imagine what they could do if we just sent a few more of them to Congress.

Texas offers a case study of why that just isn’t the case.

The Texas legislature is reconvening this week for a 30-day special session to fight over 20 things it didn’t get done during the regular 140-day session it holds every other year.  Most of my conservative friends here are going into cheerleading mode, but I remain unenthused. The best I can say about the local Republicans is that at least they’re not Democrats.......To Read More....

My Take - Those who profess to be conservatives in politics are far too often like Governor John Kasich who embraced Obamacare, imposed it on Ohio, promoted it to other states, declared it was God's will and all because he's determined he reserved the right to "define conservativism as he sees fit."  Kasich is a disgrace and so are a great many of these so-called conservatives in government.  In the end - they mostly seem to be nothing more than self promoting hacks.  Make no mistake about this.  If at any time you see any political entity being lauded as a conservative paradise - you need to look closer - and when you do you will find that's nothing more than window dressing. 

Three Cheers for the Republicans Who Let McConnellCare Sink!

You can’t have a workable insurance market and force insurers to cover those with preexisting conditions

David Hogberg July 19, 2017

Kudos to Sens. Rand Paul (R-Ky.), Jerry Moran (R-Ks.), and Mike Lee (R-Utah) for putting an end to the proposed “Better Care Reconciliation Act,” a.k.a. McConnellCare. And kudos to Sen. Susan Collins (R-Me.) for opposing it too, even though she did so for the wrong reasons.

Now the GOP can get on with other issues like tax reform and go back to the drawing board on health care reform. (Editor’s note: As this article was being edited, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell announced the Senate would vote on Obamacare repeal – straight repeal, not replacement – next week.)

As usual, we have conservative commentators accusing these senators of being purists. Jim Geraghty thinks these Republican senators opposed McConnellCare because it left in place some of Obamacare’s tax hikes, ones that could have been removed in tax reform later in the year. “But no,” Geraghty writes, “these guys have to torpedo this particular bill, and its effort at improvement, in the name of some theoretical much better version that has yet to be written.”

Alas, I doubt Moran and Lee would have held out on the taxes. Rather, the main problem was the efforts by Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Tin Ear) to keep Obamacare’s “protections” for preexisting conditions........To Read More.....



3 GOP senators in need of primary challenges

Joseph Farah About | Email | Archive

I’m sure you remember all the promises Republicans made, beginning in 2010 when Americans took them at their word and gave them control of the House.

Then came 2014. Republicans told us they couldn’t repeal Obamacare without control of the Senate. So we gave them control of the Senate.

Then came 2016. Republicans who already controlled both houses of Congress told us they couldn’t repeal Obamacare unless they controlled the White House. So we gave them the White House.
But it turned out Tuesday that Republicans, even with control of the Senate, couldn’t get their own party unified around this simple objective.

Three of them – all women – announced they opposed the idea of repealing Obamacare.  Meet the Democrats masquerading as Republicans in the U.S. Senate:
  • Sen. Shelley Moore Capito, R-W.Va.;
  • Susan Collins, R-Maine; and
  • Lisa Murkowski, R-Alaska.
They have been outed – bigtime............Read more

My Take - And just who was surprised at their position?  There's a raft of these types in the Senate and another good reason for term and age limits for all members of Congress and a repeal of the Seventeeth Amendment. 

Trump let GOP dig its own grave on health care


“Isn’t it obvious they don’t want to do anything?”– Rush Limbaugh, July 17

The above quote from syndicated radio talk-show host Rush Limbaugh reflected his somewhat bemused appraisal of Senate Republicans’ efforts to replace (or more accurately, repair) the Affordable Health Care Act, or Obamacare, with alternative (or more accurately, additional) legislation. Early this week, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell announced that the Senate would not hold a vote on the Better Care Reconciliation Act (BCRA), since it was apparent that there were not enough Republican votes to pass the measure.............

On Tuesday, Rush Limbaugh excoriated Sens. Lisa Murkowski, R-Alaska, Susan Collins, R-Maine, and Shelly Moore Capito, R-W.Va., for helping to spike the BCRA, calling the women “leftists” who are running the Senate, rather than McConnell. The three senators did in fact begin telegraphing their opposition to a full repeal of Obamacare immediately after McConnell cravenly took up the repeal banner anew.

When Nancy Pelosi, Maxine Waters, or Chuck Schumer make incomprehensibly implausible statements or blatantly lie, we expect it because we know that they’re playing to their base, which consists of the deluded and the dizzyingly stupid. It is chilling to consider that House and Senate Republicans have the same low regard for their constituents as Democrats have for theirs, but this is more than suggested given that the Republican base is now expected to summarily accept McConnell as a champion of repeal and his colleagues’ intentions as genuine..............Read more

Evergreen student: 'I'm not allowed to speak because I'm white'

'If you offer any sort of alternative viewpoint, you're kind of the enemy'


Evergreen State College in Washington has been the subject of outrage ever since one of its professors, Bret Weinstein, was driven from campus for rejecting progressive student activist demands to remove white people from the campus in a “Day of Absence.”  Addressing the school’s Board of Trustees this Wednesday, Weinstein and student speakers spoke out on the issue.  One student, who identified herself only by her last name, MacKenzie, stated that she was prevented from voicing her opinions on any issue at the school all because she is white and labeled a “white supremacist” for offering any sort of viewpoint........Read the full story ›

My Take - We can only hope this is the death knell for this fever swamp of leftist radicals.   At some point parents will stop sending their kids there and at some point someone is bound to sue them out of existance and society will demand they no longer receive govenment money.  No loss, and quite frankly, that needs to happen to all universities in the nation.    End student loan programs and make them all for profit institutions with no grant money.  Higher education has become a massive fraud and a racket. 

The Libertarian Hypocrisy Test

July 19, 2017 by Dan Mitchell @ International Liberty
 
I’ve shared several quizzes that people can take to see whether they are libertarian, some of which are very simple and some of which are very nuanced and complex.
I’ve also shared many examples of statist hypocrisy.
So I guess I shouldn’t be surprised to see that someone on the left wants to play this game by combing the concept of quizzes and hypocrisy. I don’t know R.J. Eskow, but he has a quiz on a left-wing website that’s designed to ostensibly measure libertarian hypocrisy.

Though it’s hard to treat the exercise seriously since it is prefaced by some rather silly rhetoric.
Libertarian…political philosophy all but died out in the mid- to late-20th century, but was revived by billionaires and corporations that found them politically useful. …They call themselves “realists” but rely on fanciful theories… They claim that selfishness makes things better for everybody, when history shows exactly the opposite is true. …libertarianism, the political philosophy whose avatar is the late writer Ayn Rand. It was once thought that this extreme brand of libertarianism, one that celebrates greed and even brutality, had died in the early 1980s… There was a good reason for that. Randian libertarianism is an illogical, impractical, inhumane, unpopular set of Utopian ravings. …It’s only a dream. At no time or place in human history has there been a working libertarian society which provided its people with the kinds of outcomes libertarians claim it will provide.
I’m not an ideological enforcer of libertarianism, but I can say with great confidence that Randians are only a minor strain of the libertarian movement. Many of us (including me) enjoyed one or more of her books, and some of us even became libertarians as a result of reading tomes such as Atlas Shrugged, but that’s the extent of her influence

I also find it odd that Eskow didn’t do his homework when conspiracy-mongering about the Kochs or mentioning Cato. We get almost no funds from corporations. Indeed, I’m willing to bet that major left-wing think tanks get a much higher share of their budget from businesses.
…political libertarianism suddenly had pretensions of legitimacy. This revival is Koch-fueled, not coke-fueled… Exxon Mobil and other corporate and billionaire interests are behind the Cato Institute, the other public face of libertarianism.
Though Eskow gives us a bit of credit.
…the unconventionality of their thought has led libertarians to be among this nation’s most forthright and outspoken advocates for civil liberties and against military interventions.
Gee, thanks. What a magnanimous concession!

But I’ve spent enough time on preliminaries. Let’s get to the test.

Though I have to warn you that it’s just a rhetorical test. You can’t click on answers. There’s not even an answer key where you can calculate any results.

For all intents and purposes, the test is just a series of “gotcha” questions. Eskow probably hopes that libertarians will get flustered when confronted by this collection of queries.

But I’m always up for a challenge. So I decided to give my two cents in response to each question.

Are unions, political parties, elections, and social movements like Occupy examples of “spontaneous order”—and if not, why not?

The term “spontaneous order” refers to the natural tendency of markets to produce efficient and peaceful outcomes without any sort of centralized design or command. I’m not sure how this is connected to government and politics, however. Perhaps Eskow is asking whether political pressure groups can arise without centralized design and command. If so, then I’ll say yes. But if the question is designed to imply that market forces are akin to government actions and/or political activity, I’ll say no.
 
Is a libertarian willing to admit that production is the result of many forces, each of which should be recognized and rewarded?

Admit it? That’s an inherent part of our approach to economics. The famous “I, Pencil” essay celebrates this principle, and this video is a modern version that captures many of the same concepts. For what it’s worth, I’m guessing Eskow thinks that the market allocation of recognition and reward is somehow deficient, so he’s making some sort of weird argument that intervention is needed.
 
Is our libertarian willing to acknowledge that workers who bargain for their services, individually and collectively, are also employing market forces?

Yes, we think workers should be able to use any non-coercive tactic to get the maximum pay, including joining unions. And we also recognize the right of employers to use non-coercive tactics to keep costs down. But note that I include “non-coercive” in my analysis. That’s because no employee should be forced to remain at a company that doesn’t pay enough, and no employer should be forced to hire any particular worker or deal with any particular union. Market forces should determine those choices.
 
Is our libertarian willing to admit that a “free market” needs regulation?

Admit it? We view the private economy in part as a giant network of mutually reinforcing regulation. But Eskow probably doesn’t understand how private regulation operates. And besides, I’m sure his question is about command-and-control government regulation. And if that’s the focus of the question, am I a hypocrite for saying yes in some circumstances, but accompanied by rigorous cost-benefit analysis?
 
Does our libertarian believe in democracy?

Most libertarians will avoid the hypocrite label on this question because we are not fans of “democracy.” At least, we don’t believe in democracy if that means untrammeled majoritarianism. Indeed, the U.S. Constitution was created in part to protect some minority rights from “tyranny of the majority.” The bottom line is that we believe in a democratic form of government, but one where the powers of government are tightly constrained.
 
Does our libertarian use wealth that wouldn’t exist without government in order to preach against the role of government?

This question is based on the novel left-wing theory that wealth belongs to government because the economy would collapse without “public goods.” This might be an effective argument against an anarcho-capitalist, but I don’t think it has any salience when dealing with ordinary libertarians who simply want the federal government to stay within the boundaries envisioned by the Founding Fathers. Small-government libertarians are willing to give government 5-10 percent on their income to finance these legitimate activities. But, yes, we will preach when the burden of government expands beyond that point.
 
Does our libertarian reject any and all government protection for his intellectual property?

I’ll admit this is a tough question. I’ve never written on this issue, but libertarians are split on whether governments should grant and enforce patents and copyrights. Though I suspect both camps are probably intellectually consistent, so I doubt hypocrisy is an issue.
 
Does our libertarian recognize that democracy is a form of marketplace?

The “public choice” school of economics was created to apply economic analysis to political action, and most libertarians would agree with that approach. So the obvious answer is that, yes, we recognize that democracy is a type of marketplace. Once again, though, I think Eskow has an ulterior agenda. He probably wants to imply that if we accept market outcomes as desirable, then we must also accept political decisions as desirable. Yet he should know, based on one of the questions above, that we’re not huge fans of majoritarianism. The key distinction, from our perspective, is that market choices don’t involve coercion.
 
Does our libertarian recognize that large corporations are a threat to our freedoms?

Since libertarians are first in line to object when big companies lobby for bailouts, subsidies, and protectionism, the answer is obviously yes. Libertarians opposed Dodd-Frank, unlike the big companies on Wall Street. Libertarians opposed Obamacare, unlike the big insurance companies and big pharmaceutical companies. Libertarians oppose the Export-Import Bank, unlike the cronyists at the Chamber of Commerce. We are very cognizant of the fact that businesses are sometimes the biggest enemies of the free market.
 
Does he think…that historical figures like King and Gandhi were “parasites”?

This question is a red herring, based on Ayn Rand’s hostility to selflessness. As I noted above, very few libertarians are hard-core Randians. We have no objection to people dedicating their lives to others. And if that means fighting for justice and against oppression, we move from “no objection” to “enthusiastic support.”
 
If you believe in the free market, why weren’t you willing to accept as final the judgment against libertarianism rendered decades ago in the free and unfettered marketplace of ideas?

Since we don’t have any pure laissez-faire societies, we libertarians have to admit that we still have a long way to go. But our views aren’t right or wrong based on whether they are accepted by a majority. Heck, I would argue for libertarianism in France, where I’d have several thousand opponents for every possible ally.
 
I’ll close today’s column by briefly expanding on this final question, especially since Eskow also made similar claims in some of the text I excerpted above.

If you look around the world, you won’t find a Libertopia or Galt’s Gulch (egads, a Rand reference!). That being said, there is a cornucopia of evidence that nations with comparatively small and non-intrusive governments are much more prosperous than countries with lots of taxes, spending, and intervention.

Yes, voters do have an unfortunate tendency to elect more bad politicians (in place likes France and Greece) than sensible politicians (in places such as Switzerland and New Zealand), but that’s not the real test. What ultimately matters is that there’s a very strong relationship between liberty and prosperity. Libertarians pass that test with flying colors.

When Institutions Go Left

Columbia has gone to the mattresses.

R. Emmett Tyrrell, Jr. July 19, 2017

I have recently been reminded of one of my earliest conclusions about the American left. I arrived at that conclusion when what we now call the left was relatively civilized. We called it, in those days, American Liberalism, but even then it was fla fla. My conclusion was that when any entity fell under the dominance of Liberalism it lost all sense of its fundamental purpose.
  • A city lost all sense of its purpose, which is governance.
  • A university lost all sense of its purpose, which is education. 
You name the entity, if it falls under the dominance of Liberalism it became utterly confused as to its goal.

Now, under Liberalism’s more extreme evolutionary stage called progressivism or the left, progressivism or the left cannot even maintain a public toilet facility for men or for women. Going to the bathroom at a public comfort station today can be a source of embarrassment, even an actionable civil rights matter where the left is in charge............ If serious infractions of the law are alleged, call in the cops........To Read More....

CFPB Director Shows Contempt for Congress — President Trump Should Fire Him

Iain Murray

Add another one to the long list of reasons why President Trump should fire Richard Cordray, the Director of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. They include spending public money to create a palace for the Bureau, evidence of widespread discrimination against women and minority staffers, and the abuses of authority by the Director that were identified by a Federal Appeals Court in a recent case (which is currently being reheard).  The new reason is that House Financial Services Chairman Jeb Hensarling has identified “contumacy” on behalf of the Director in his refusal to answer a Congressional subpoena.

In a letter to the Director dated yesterday, Chairman Hensarling noted that over a year had passed since the Committee requested records from the Bureau to facilitate an investigation, and that a subpoena was issued on May 11 this year, to which no answer has been forthcoming.  The letter also put the Director on notice that any attempt to promulgate a rule on arbitration agreements (the subject of the Congressional investigation) before answering the subpoena would result in contempt proceedings.....To Read More.....


Time to End Democrat Majority at the National Labor Relations Board

Trey Kovacs

t has been 173 days since President Obama left office. Yet, he still has a stranglehold on a powerful federal agency, the National Labor Relations Board. Despite President Trump holding the executive office for months, Obama’s appointees to the Board, which governs private-sector labor relations, still have a 2-1 majority of the five-member board, and continue to churn out pro-union decisions.

It is past time to end the excessively pro-union majority at the NLRB. During the Obama administration, the Board overturned a whopping 4,559 years of collective precedent, nearly all of which advantages Big Labor over worker freedom. With two vacant positions at the NLRB, it is imperative that the Senate swiftly confirm new pro-worker members to the agency.

Although it has taken too long, the Senate is starting the process of doing just that today. The Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) Committee is holding a nominations hearing on the two nominations to the NLRB, Marvin Kaplan and William Emanuel. However, there are a couple more steps that need to be taken in order to confirm the nominees. They must be voted out of the HELP Committee and then be approved by the full Senate. This is urgent business that should be carried out before the Senate takes its August recess.......To Read More.....

60 Miles From Auschwitz, UNESCO Denies Jewish Connection to Jerusalem and Abraham

Zachary Lemonides

It would seem that there is no limit to the hatred that the UN is willing to direct towards Israel and towards the Jewish people. While the mission of the United Nations Organization for Education, Science and Culture (UNESCO) is apolitical at face value, it has in practice been used as a tool for the systemic delegitimization of Israel as well as denial of Jewish and Christian claims to religious sites shared across all Abrahamic faiths. It has in the past ratified resolutions referring to Jerusalem, Israel’s capital, as an occupied city. It has also referred to the Western Wall and Temple Mount solely by their Islamic names, and deliberately ignored the connection that Jewish and Christian people have to these sites. The Western Wall has for thousands of years been the holiest place that Jewish people have been able to pray, and the Temple Mount is, of course, the holiest site in Judaism as well as the location where Jesus challenged Temple Authorities, likely the act which led to his crucifixion. While UNESCO has been widely criticized for its perceived erasure of Jewish and Christian identities and holy sites, UNESCO has not been deterred from its crusade against Israel.   ........Continue Reading

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Bad Federalism Is Better than No Federalism

July 18, 2017 by Dan Mitchell
 
I don’t like the income tax that’s been imposed by our overlords in Washington. Indeed, I’ve speculated whether October 3 is the worst day of the year because that’s the date when the Revenue Act of 1913 was signed into law.

I don’t like state income taxes, either.

And, as discussed in this interview about Seattle from last week, I’m also not a fan of local income taxes.



From an economic perspective, I think a local income tax would be suicidally foolish for Seattle. Simply stated, this levy will drive some well-heeled people to live and work outside the city’s borders. And when revenues fall short of projections, Seattle politicians likely will compensate by increasing the tax rate and also extending the tax so it is imposed on those with more modest incomes. And that will drive more people out of the city, which will lead to an even higher rate that hits even more people.

Lather, rinse, repeat.

Though I pointed out that this grim outcome may be averted if the courts rule that Seattle doesn’t have the legal authority to impose an income tax.

But I also explained in the discussion that a genuine belief in federalism means that you should support the right of state and local governments to impose bad policy. I criticize states such as California and Illinois when they expand the burden of government. And I criticize local entities such as Hartford, Connecticut, and Fairfax County, Virginia, when they expand the burden of government.
But I don’t think that Washington should seek to prohibit bad policy. If some sub-national governments want to torment their citizens with excessive government, so be it.

There are limits, however, to this bad version of federalism. State and local governments should not be allowed to impose laws outside their borders. That’s why I’m opposed to the so-called Marketplace Fairness Act. And they shouldn’t seek federal handouts to subsidize bad policy, such as John Kasich’s whining for more Medicaid funding.

Moreover, a state or local government can’t trample basic constitutional freedoms, for instance. If Seattle goes overboard with its anti-gun policies, federal courts presumably (hopefully!) would strike down those infringements against the 2nd Amendment. Likewise, the same thing also would (should) happen if the local government tried to hinder free speech. Or discriminate on the basis on race.
By the way, it’s worth pointing out that these are all examples of the Constitution’s anti-majoritarianism (which helps to explain why the attempted smear of James Buchanan was so misguided).

The bottom line is that I generally support the rights of state and local governments to impose bad policy, so long as they respect constitutional freedoms, don’t impose extra-territorial laws, and don’t ask for handouts.

And I closed the above interview by saying it sometimes helps to have bad examples so the rest of the nation knows what to avoid. Greece and France play that role for the industrialized world. Venezuela stands alone as a symbol of failed statism in developing world. Places like Connecticut and New Jersey are poster children for failed state policy. And now Seattle can join Detroit as a case study of what not to do at the local level.
 

The NRA Slams the Liberal Media for Killing Real Journalism

By Onan Coca July 18, 2017

So here’s a suggestion for The Washington Post: Don’t worry about how many guns are in our videos. Worry about how many facts are in your articles. Because if gun owners abused our Second Amendment the way you abuse your paper and the First Amendment, our rights would have been taken away long ago. You people do more damage to our country with a keyboard than every NRA member combined has ever done with a firearm. Your paper’s new slogan may read “Democracy Dies in Darkness.” It should say, “Journalism Dies at The Washington Post.” ....To Read More....

ISIS Isn’t Going Anywhere

Posted by Daniel Greenfield 0 Comments Monday, July 17, 2017 @ Sultan Knish Blog
ISIS has been defeated. That’s the official word out of Iraq. But don’t count it out just yet.

We beat ISIS twice before. Once in its previous incarnation as Al Qaeda in Iraq and in its even earlier incarnation as Saddam Hussein’s regime whose Sunni Baathists went on to play a crucial role in ISIS.

Each time it was reborn as another murderous monstrosity.

We don’t know what the next incarnation will look like, but considering Saddam Hussein’s rape rooms, Al Qaeda in Iraq’s love of suicide bombings and ISIS taking public torture to a new level, it will be bad.

We beat Saddam, Al Qaeda in Iraq and the Islamic State. But it keeps coming back because we don’t understand what it is. And we don’t get it because we don’t understand what Islamic terrorism is.

Islamic terrorists are not a “tiny minority of extremists” who “pervert Islam”.

They are Islam.

ISIS keeps coming back because it’s rooted in the local Sunni Islamic Arab population and the religion of Islam. The Sunni link is why ISIS keeps popping back up. Bush suppressed Al Qaeda in Iraq by allying with Sunni tribes. Obama made a deal with Iran and let its Shiites dominate Iraq. Sunnis flocked to ISIS’ ex-Baathists who promised to bring back the good old days of Saddam’s supremacy for Sunnis.

As long as the Sunni-Shiite tensions in Iraq and Syria, not to mention those between Arabs, Kurds and Turkmen continue to play out, ISIS will stick around in some form waiting to make a comeback. The cycle of Sunnis turning to Al Qaeda/ISIS to beat the Shiites and then to the US to beat ISIS will continue.

Critics who accuse the US of creating ISIS by bombing Iraq miss the point. ISIS is the latest embodiment of Sunni supremacism and historical nostalgia for the Abbasid Caliphate. Both Saddam and the Caliph of ISIS capitalized on that nostalgia the way that Hitler did on Charlemagne. We didn’t create it. And it isn’t going anywhere. We can’t defeat it without breaking the historical aspirations of the Sunni population. That is what we are up against.

We’re not just fighting a bunch of ragged terrorists. We’re fighting against the sense of manifest destiny of a large Muslim population, not just in Iraq and Syria, but in London, Paris and every state in America.

The Islamic terrorist groups of the Middle East are especially dangerous because, as ISIS did with its Caliphate, they can closely link

themselves to crucial epochs in Islam. Al Qaeda leveraged its Saudi face to form a visceral connection with Muslims worldwide. ISIS repeated the same trick with its Iraqi link. And large numbers of non-Arabs and converts to Islam rallied from around the world to the Jihad. ISIS is now the new Al Qaeda. It may not be able to run Mosul, but it has become an international terrorist organization that is even more dangerous than Al Qaeda. And that may be what it wanted.

Like the Palestinian Authority, Hamas and other Islamic terrorist groups, the Islamic State was never very good at running things. The PA won’t make peace with Israel for the same reason that Hamas won’t make peace with the PA: statehood is a compelling imperative, but requires hard work in reality. It’s much easier to send off a few useful idiots to blow themselves up and then collect the Qatari checks.

Civilizations manage societies. Barbarians have more fun destroying things than taking out the garbage or cleaning the streets. That is why ISIS lost and why the Jihad will finally succeed only if civilization implodes too badly to resist its incursions or through the unstoppable force of brute demographics.

The original Islamic conquests wrecked the societies and cultures they overran the way that barbarians always do. They wouldn’t have succeeded if civilization had not been in a state of collapse. Today’s Islamic conquests are a similar reaction to our civilizational decline. But as long as we can send jets and drones to wreak havoc on Islamic terrorists anywhere in the world, the conquests can only work on a demographic, not a military level. ISIS claimed that it could win a military showdown: it was wrong.

But the demographic conquest is going very well. Just ask the frightened natives of Paris and London. The Muslim Brotherhood’s strategy of political and demographic invasion, sneered at by ISIS, may be less glamorous, but it has equally close echoes in Mohammed’s tactics against his non-Muslim foes.

The challenge for Islamic terrorists is turning that demographic growth into military strength. ISIS emerged as the Uber of Islamic terrorism by unlocking the key to turning Muslims anywhere into terrorists with no training or recruitment. While Al Qaeda had pioneered the strategy, ISIS made it work.

Dismissing the terrorists who have been killing for ISIS in the West as “lone wolves” misses the point.

The Islamic terrorist who goes on a stabbing spree in London or a shooting spree in Orlando is no more a “lone wolf” than an Uber driver who picks up a passenger is just some random eccentric. They’re parts of a distributed network that is deliberately decentralized to better fulfill its central purpose.

CVE and other efforts to tackle “online extremism” fight messaging wars that ignore the demographics. But our targeted strikes on ISIS ignore demographics in the same way. We keep looking at the trees while missing the forest. But the forest is where the trees come from. Muslim terrorists emerge from an Islamic population. They aren’t aberrations. Instead they represent its religious and historic aspirations.

ISIS and Islamic terrorists aren’t going anywhere. Defeating them through patronizing lectures about the peacefulness of Islam, as Obama’s CVE policy proposed to do, was a futile farce. Bombing them temporarily suppresses them as an organized military force, but not their religious and cultural origins.

As long as we go on seeing Islamic terrorism as an aberration that has no connection to the history and religion of Islam, our efforts to defeat it will be pinpricks that treat the symptoms, but not the problem.

Only when we recognize that Islamic terrorism is Islam, that the crimes of ISIS and countless others dating back to Mohammed were committed to achieve the goals of the Islamic population, will we be ready to face the war that we’re in and to defend ourselves against what is to come not just in Iraq or Afghanistan, but in America, Australia, Canada, Europe, India, Israel and everywhere else.

We are not fighting a handful of Islamic terrorists. We are standing in the path of the manifest destiny of Islam. Either that manifest destiny will break against us, as it did at the Gates of Vienna, or it will break us. The attacks were once yearly. Now they are monthly. Soon they will become daily.

Every attack is a pebble in an avalanche. A pebble falls in Brussels, in Fresno, in Dusseldorf, in New York, in Munich, in London, in Garland, in Paris, in Jerusalem, in Mumbai, in Boston and in more places than anyone can count. We are too close to the bloodshed to see the big picture. We only see the smoke and hear the screams. We see the boats bringing armies into Europe. We see refugees fill our airports.

Those are the trees, not the forest: the pebbles, not the avalanche. Those are the battles, not the war.

The Islamic State is not going anywhere. It’s not a name. It’s an Islamic imperative. And it’s here.

 

The Challenge of Modernizing Islam: Reformers speak out -- and the obstacles they face.

Editor's note: Jihad Watch writer Christine Douglass-Williams' new book, The Challenge of Modernizing Islam: Reformers Speak Out and the Obstacles They Face, is now out now from Encounter Books. Order your copy here. Robert Spencer contributed a Foreword to the book, which we are running below:

July 18, 2017  Robert Spencer  17 

"This day I have perfected for you your religion and completed my favor upon you and have approved for you Islam as religion.”

So says Allah in the Qur’an (5:3), in words that have vexed Islamic reformers and would-be reformers throughout the history of the religion. Traditional and mainstream Islamic theology holds that Islam is perfect, bestowed from above by the supreme being, and hence not only is reform unnecessary, it is heresy that makes the reformer worthy of death if he departs from anything Islamic authorities believe to be divinely revealed.

On the other hand, the cognitive dissonance created by having to believe that the one and only God mandates death for apostasy (Bukhari 6922), stoning for adultery (Bukhari 6829), and amputation of the hand for theft (Qur’an 5:38), and sanctions the sexual enslavement of infidel women (Qur’an 4:3, 4:24, 23:1-6, 33:50, 70:30), the devaluation of a woman’s testimony (Qur’an 2:282) and inheritance rights (Qur’an 4:11), and above all, warfare against and the subjugation of non-Muslims (Qur’an 9:29), has led, particularly in modern times, to attempts by believing Muslims to reconcile Islamic morality with contemporary perspectives and mores......To Read More.....

My Take - The very concept of "reforming" Islam is irrational. If it's reformed - it's not Islam.  Those who actually believe or promote the idea it can be done are a special kind of stupid, or they're disingenuous.  We have 1400 years of history that demonstrates what Islam was, what it is, and will be forever as long as it exists.  Not only do Islamists hate non-Muslims - they hate any Muslim that doesn't subscribe to their particular flavor of Islam.  If we look at all ....and I mean all...... Muslim controlled countries we find one thing in common.  These are medieval tribal societies with modern weapons, transportation and communications.  That doesn't change the fact they're medieval tribal societies.  When they are in control it's a tyrannical thuggish nightmare.  Islam is anathema to western values and life styles. 

Furthermore we need to get over the idea Islam is a real religion.  It's a criminal movement masquerading as a religion.  The fact they've been able to do it for 1400 years is immaterial.  We also need to get over the two versions of the Koran.  They will always adopt the worst of the two - that's history and that history is incontestable. 

Cartoon of the Day

Is President Trump “Kryptonite” to Smears?

By Onan Coca July 18, 2017

Veteran journalist Sharyl Attkisson is the author of the new book The Smear: How Shady Political Operatives and Fake News Control What you See, What you Think and How You Vote. She recently sat down for an interview with the Daily Caller to discuss the book and what she saw happening in Washington, D.C. today.  Attkisson explains how it is that President Trump can so nimbly avoid the smears that the left attempt to paint him with, and why it is that his base is so loyal to him......Sharyl Attkisson: I call him the anti-smear candidate, because every traditional smear tactic used against him — very effective tactics against other people — just kind of bounced off of him. In fact, he was able to grab it and pull it and co-opt it and turn it around in almost every case. .......Read More and Video.....

Swiss Physicist Concludes IPCC Assumptions ‘Violate Reality’…CO2 A ‘Very Weak Greenhouse Gas’

By on 17. July 2017

A Swiss scientist known to have published hundreds of scientific papers in physics journals has authored a new scholarly paper that casts serious doubts on the effectiveness of CO2 as a greenhouse gas influencing Earth’s temperatures.  This paper has been added to a growing volume of peer-reviewed scientific papers that seriously question estimates of a high climate sensitivity to significant increases in CO2 concentrations.........Based on all these facts, we conclude that CO2 is a very weak greenhouse gas. We emphasize that our simplifying assumptions are by no means trying to minimize the absorption potential of CO2. To the contrary, they lead to overestimating the limiting values. The assumption of a constant temperature and black body radiation definitely violates reality and even the principles of thermodynamics.  Our results permit to conclude that CO2 is a very weak greenhouse gas and cannot be accepted as the main driver of climate change.......To Read More....

Bernie Sanders’ Wife Blames “Sexism” for Investigation into Her Criminal Activities

By Jeff Dunetz July 18, 2017

Last week it was a GOP plot, now Jane Sanders, says Brady Toensing, the person credited with getting the FBI to investigate her for bank fraud, did so for sexist reasons, but the timeline doesn’t quite work.

While Toensing may have pushed the FBI to get involved, Sanders story had already been unraveling. She told the Boston Globe:  “I find it incredibly sexist that basically he’s going after my husband by destroying my reputation, and that’s not OK,” she said in her first interview about the man responsible for an FBI probe that centers on her leadership at Burlington College, a small liberal arts school on Lake Champlain that she led from 2004 to 2011.

The college closed last year as it struggled to pay its creditors and lost its accreditation. As Vice-Chair of the state’s GOP, Toensing has a become well-known as someone who finds a legal attacks any liberal where he finds an opening. His targets have included the former governor and attorney general (both men). His biggest target by far has been the Sanders family..........It is interesting that in the entire Boston Globe article one word isn’t mentioned….innocent...........To Read More....

Levin on Gov’t-Run Health Care: If Gov’t Ran Food Production, ‘We’d All Starve to Death’

By Theresa Smith | July 11, 2017 | 12:14 PM EDT

On his nationally syndicated radio talk show Monday, host Mark Levin compared government-run health care with government-run food production, saying that if the government controlled food production, “we’d all starve to death.”

“Trust me, if the government controlled food production in this country, we’d all starve to death,” said Mark Levin. “If the Department of Housing and Urban Development was truly in charge of housing in your neighborhood and construction costs and everything else, we’d all be homeless.........Why would we take one of the most complex areas of life, and that is health care, which is really and truly a personal decision, and surrender it to the federal government or have it seized from us, and then make all these excuses: why it’s great, and people with pre-existing conditions?.............“And it seems to me that the progressives have won the battle of the minds. It just -- They just have. Just incredible.”............To Read More.....

Tired of Being Wrong, Climate Alarmists Move Doomsday to Next Century

By Stephen Kruiser

If the climate alarmists weren't still so politically powerful and represented in Congress by their devoted cult members, it would almost be easy to pity them. Why? Because they're so spectacularly wrong about so many things.  They keep the hype coming regardless, as in this article that cites the fact that it's hot in the desert in the summertime to say that air travel may be doomed.  The cult's leader — Al Gore — said in 2009 that there was a 75 percent chance that the entire arctic polar ice cap would melt by 2014.

It's still there.

The year before the North Pole was supposed to be gone, noted climate scientist Hans von Storch went against cult orthodoxy in an interview with Spiegel Online in 2013 and had some interesting things to say about the climate prediction models so revered by the alarmists.   After noting that “climate change seems to be taking a break,” von Storch had this to say about the models:.........After so many swings and misses while attempting to predict doomsday as being just around the corner, the alarmists have decided to provide themselves a little cover:   Climate alarmist James Hansen's prediction of Manhattan being underwater by 2018 seems to not be happening, so he's moving his own goal posts and saying “50 to 150 years” now.  That's the beauty of being one of the “we believe in science” people: there's never any penalty for being wrong......To Read More....

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

"First Somali" Officer Mohamed Noor Murdered Australian Woman

Daniel Greenfield July 18, 2017   20   This is what happens when you put diversity over public safety.

Justine Damond, an Australian woman, called 911 to report a sexual assault happening nearby. Instead she was murdered by Mohammed Noor, a Somali migrant with multiple complaints against him after only two years on the force.
And body cameras weren't turned on.





 

 

Social Security’s Creeping Fiscal Crisis

July 17, 2017 by Dan Mitchell @ International Liberty
 
Since it is the single-largest government program, not only in the United States but also the entire world, it’s remarkable that Social Security isn’t getting much attention from fiscal policy wonks.

Sure, Obamacare is a more newsworthy issue because of the repeal/replace fight. And yes, it’s true that Medicare and Medicaid are growing faster and eventually will consume a larger share of the economy.

But those aren’t reasons to turn a blind eye toward a program that will soon have an annual budget of $1 trillion. Especially since the tax-and-spend crowd in Washington is actually arguing that the program should be expanded. I’m not kidding.

If nothing else, the just-released Trustees Report from the Social Security Administration demands attention. As I do every year, I immediately looked at Table VI.G9, which shows the annual inflation-adjusted budgetary impact of the program.

Here’s a chart showing how the program has grown since 1970 and what is expected in the future. Remember, these are inflation-adjusted numbers, so the sharp increase in outlays over the next several decades starkly illustrates that Social Security will be grabbing ever-larger amounts of money from the economy’s productive sector.

 
It’s also worth noting that the program already is in the red. Social Security outlays began to exceed revenues back in 2010.

And the numbers will get more out of balance over time.

By the way, some people say that the program is in decent shape since the “Trust Fund” isn’t projected to run out of money until 2034. That’s technically true, but utterly meaningless since it is nothing but a pile of IOUs.

You don’t have to believe me. A few years ago, I quoted this passage from one of Bill Clinton’s budgets.
These balances are available to finance future benefit payments and other trust fund expenditures–but only in a bookkeeping sense. …They do not consist of real economic assets that can be drawn down in the future to fund benefits. Instead, they are claims on the Treasury, that, when redeemed, will have to be financed by raising taxes, borrowing from the public, or reducing benefits or other expenditures.
Amen.

This is why annual cash flow into and out of the program is what matters, at least if we care about the Social Security’s economic impact.

And for those who want to know about the gap between the inflow and outflow, here’s a chart showing how deficits are going to explode in coming decades. Again, keep in mind these are inflation-adjusted numbers.

 
That’s not a typo in the chart. The total shortfall between now and 2095 is a staggering $44.2 trillion. Yes, trillion.

Remarkably, there’s an even bigger long-run problem with Medicare and Medicaid. Which helps to explain I relentlessly push for genuine entitlement reform.

But let’s focus today on Social Security. The answer to this looming fiscal nightmare is to copy one of the many nations that have shifted to “funded” retirement systems based on real savings. I’m a big fan of the Australian approach. Chile also has a great system, and Switzerland and the Netherlands are good role models as well. Hong Kong and Singapore also rely on private savings for retirement, and both jurisdictions demonstrate that aging populations and falling birthrates aren’t necessarily a fiscal death sentence. Heck, even the Faroe Islands and Sweden have jumped on the bandwagon of private retirement accounts.

P.P.S. You can enjoy some Social Security cartoons here, here, and here. And we also have a Social Security joke if you appreciate grim humor.

Get Trump Mirage - or - Leftist Delusions


 

Studies Find Wind Turbines Unsustainable and Harmful to Wildlife


New studies estimate that wind turbines will produce 43 million tonnes of waste by 2050. Scientists say that wind energy is an unsustainable environmental disaster that fills landfills and harms wildlife.

However, the United States Department of Energy boasts that wind energy is the number one source of renewable energy capacity in the U.S with enough capacity to power over 20 million homes....... The Department’s Wind Vision Study Scenario seeks to increase the nation’s wind energy supply 35% by year 2050, and it uses incentives like government grants and tax credits to achieve this goal............Studies also show that wind turbines can be a threat to wild life. The government admits that spinning turbine blades pose a threat to bats, but the most recent study that they show on the topic is from 2013 and has stats which differ from more recent studies. The Wind Energy Technologies Office (A division of the Office of Energy Efficiency & Renewable Energy) claims that bat fatality rates have been reported at levels between 1-30 bats/MW per year.

A 2017 study states that wind turbines threaten hoary bat populations to the level of extinction.  Scientists estimate that 90% of the the hoary bat population could be lost to turbines in the next 50 years. The scientists state that policy decisions need to include conservation measures that need to be initiated immediately..............To Read More.....

Monday, July 17, 2017

Cartoon of the Day


Who’s Colluding With Whom?

Scott McKay  July 14, 2017

The narrative of the meeting with Donald Trump Jr. and the “Russian Lawyer” doesn’t pass the smell test. Depending on whom you wish to believe, the recent revelations that last June Donald Trump Jr. had a meeting with one Natalia Veselnitskaya, a Moscow attorney advertised to have brought destructive opposition research on Hillary Clinton, prove there is finally meat on the “Trump and the Russians” bones being served to the public.

From this quarter, the story seems to have far more questions than answers to it.

The proposition those damning the president based on this latest revelation are offering involves the fact that Trump Junior is found on an email thread which he voluntarily disclosed on Twitter saying “I love it” in reaction to being told of the information on Clinton, that information having been characterized by its presenter, an English music publicist named Rob Goldstone, as part and parcel of a desire by the Russian government to help his father win........To Read More....

Dick Morris: Bill Clinton Meddled in Russian Election for Yeltsin

Jeffrey Lord
 
September, 2016. The Hillary Clinton/Donald Trump campaign is in full gear. And Newsmax TV’s Steve Malzberg, host of “America Talks Live,” has a scoop. And for some interesting reason in July of 2017, that Malzberg scoop from months ago seems to have gotten lost in the swirl of Trump-Russia stories. Lost most particularly in the latest gusher .........Continue Reading

The Media’s Endless Anti-Trump Show Trial

George Neumayr July 13, 2017

The more it sensationalizes the commonplace, the more boring its coverage becomes. It is a measure of the anti-Trump media’s stupidity and malpractice that the phrase “breaking news” now elicits eye rolls. The media’s “breaking news” about Trump is rarely breaking or news. It is usually recycled and old — some stale piece of information, relating to a practice both parties long ago adopted, that is sensationalized and dished up as novel. Into this category falls much of its breathless “Trump-Russia” coverage, including its all-hands-on-deck stories about Donald Trump Jr.

“It is called opposition research,” said President Trump on Thursday at a press conference in Paris in defense of his son............To Read More