VOLUME 74: The Abortion Law in New York
THE NEW RADICAL ABORTION LAW IN NEW YORK
I don’t normally wade into the debates about abortion, but that’s going to change today.
Before I say anything, let me say that I am not dogmatically against or in favor of abortion. I believe there are powerful arguments on both sides of the issue. It is unclear to me when a fetus becomes a person, even though its genetic uniqueness is determined at conception. The line between genetic uniqueness and human personhood is a very gray area for me. Hard liners on either side of this issue rely on their deeply held beliefs supporting their positions. The controversy remains unresolved, even though advances in pre-natal science over the decades have largely supported the belief by the pro-life side that fetuses take on recognizable human characteristics much earlier in their development than was previously believed.
All of this would have seemed to argue in favor of public policies that would serve to limit when a woman could legally get an abortion. As a general proposition, individuals should have control over things that are going on in their body. This is a fundamental tenet of the American experiment: individual sovereignty. The complicating matter of pregnancy demands that we make every good faith effort to protect the individual sovereignty of the pregnant woman, but also of the developing human person inside of her. If we are to remain true to our founding principles, we cannot accept the demand for unlimited abortion rights, even up to the moment of a fully developed, viable human being. Nor should be accept the demand that all abortions should be made illegal because, in the opinion of some, the human being begins at conception. This is only true in a limited sense. That is, genetically.
The politicization of this debate has ripped America apart for nearly half a century. The dehumanizing aspects of abortion prior to Roe v Wade have been outstripped by the loss of over 50 million American lives through legalized abortion. The social consequences of the Roe decision are incalculable. To grant no dignity to the developing human being shocks the senses. Reasonable people can disagree as to the precise moment a fetus takes on the characteristics of a fully human person. We should at least recognize, however, that such a moment exists. The most extreme pro-life side of the debate believes this moment is the moment of conception. The most extreme pro-abortion side of the debate, believes this moment is when the baby’s head passes through the birth canal.
While the extremists on the pro-life side virtually dismiss a woman’s right to control what is happening in her body, the pro-abortion extremists, dismiss altogether the rights of a fully viable, but yet unborn human being to be allowed to live.
Let us consider for a moment what would happen if abortion was completely illegal because it was determined through our laws that a human being begins at conception. Would it end abortion? Or would it simply criminalize it? For abortion to end as a practice, the values in our culture must change. Otherwise, all we have accomplished by outlawing abortion is the criminalization of women who get them, and an untold number of unwanted children. That’s hardly an ideal solution.
Let’s also consider what would happen if abortion was completely legal, even up to the moment a baby is due to be delivered. In my opinion, such a thing would be catastrophic for our entire country. To give no basic dignity to a viable fetus, is a horrible degradation. Remember, there is a point at which a fetus is viable. But to allow the killing of a viable human being, simply at the discretion of the mother, for any reason is the first step toward dehumanizing and degrading everyone for light and transient causes.
Today, they New York State Legislature, to their everlasting shame did just that.
May God damn them.
And may God damn Andrew Cuomo to Hell for applauding this tragic assault on the dignity of human life.
VOLUME 73: The Atlantic Video
THE ATLANTIC VIDEO CALLING FOR TRUMP’S IMPEACHMENT
VOLUME 72: Obama vs Trump
PRESIDENTS OBAMA AND TRUMP: SIMILARITIES AND DIFFERENCES
Let’s start with Barack Obama.
To begin with, he’s not really an American. I don’t mean to say he was born in Kenya. I don’t believe that. I am referring to his life experiences. They are uniquely NON AMERICAN. He’s got almost nothing in common with Americans of any stripe.
He’s biracial, identifies as black, but his life growing up has almost nothing in common with blacks Americans outside of his skin tone. Obama grew up as a “red diaper baby.” That is, his parents were either communists or radical socialists. He lived in Hawaii and Indonesia for much of his formative years and when he lived in the continental United States, from age 11 to 18, he was mentored by Frank Marshall Davis. Davis was a man so dangerous, the FBI had him on a roundup list of Soviet sympathizing communist subversives.
By contrast, Donald Trump grew up in an upper middle class Queens home of a New York real estate developer. From all accounts, Trump had a more or less typical childhood: brash, a bit rebellious, enough for his parents to place him in a military academy. Unlike Obama, Trump was not surrounded by anti-American radicals into adulthood.
Ever since he was a public figure, Trump has always been an outspoken critic of the failures of government to live up to it most basic obligations. Prior to becoming President, Obama was also critical of government, but for other reasons. Obama believed government failed to assume enough obligations and thus spoke out strongly for a more activist government. In other words, Trump believed the government wasn’t adequately fulfilling its obligations it has already assumed, whereas Obama wanted government to assume new obligations it has not yet taken.
When assessing their capacity for sympathy or empathy, Obama was often far more inclined to display it for people who aren’t Americans. He regularly blamed past and current policies of the United States for many of the world’s problems. On those occasions when he demonstrated empathy for Americans, it
often took on a divisive tone, as in “if I had a son, he would look like Trayvon”, or “if you have a business, you didn’t build that.” Trump was not apologetic to foreign audiences for past or current policies. Rather, if he was apologetic at all, it was to Americans for the failure of political leadership that created those policies. Policies, which often, as in the case of trade agreements, took its toll on working and middle class employment and incomes. When speaking to foreign audiences, rather than apologize for American policy, Trump was bold. He acted as an advocate for America, reminding our allies in no uncertain terms what America was doing for them and whether those allies were living up to their obligations to us. This was such a radical departure from Obama and previous Presidents, it had to be jarring to other national leaders.
The media elites are endlessly fascinated by both men in opposite ways. Obama’s treatment was so mild, that the one news outlet which covered his Presidency with a note of skepticism, Fox News, was painted by the Obama Administration as “agenda driven” and “anti-Obama.” But it’s hard to argue that the media didn’t have a virtual love affair with Obama and his Presidency. Both Obama’s appeared regularly on entertainment programs and had one softball interview after another. Barack Obama was extremely sensitive to media criticism on those rare occasions he got it. Despite boasting of having the most “open and transparent administration in history”, Obama hid more from the media than any President since the Founding. More FOIA requests were denied or delayed under Obama. More whistle blowers, leakers and journalists were surveiled or jailed under Obama. Maybe Obama was treated by the media with great deference, but he didn’t return the favor. Still, in aggregate, the media adored him.
The contrast with the media treatment of Donald Trump is painful. It is 180 degrees opposite of Obama’s. Certainly Trump’s behavior in office can fairly account for some of the difference. Trump is given to exaggeration, embellishment, misstatements and untruthful comments in the same way as is just about every other politician. For his entire public life, however, Trump has been known to speak in superlatives much in the manner of a pitch man. This is where the news media began to show its open disdain for Trump.
When Trump was elected, the economy responded positively almost immediately. Obama and Clinton supporting economists such as Paul Krugman and Steven Rattner had predicted the economy would “crash and NEVER recover.” The news media immediately leaped to credit Obama for the economic turnaround, despite failing to point out any policy accounting for it. What should have been obvious to any impartial observer was the country had just elected the most vociferously pro-business President in its history. Obama and his presumed successor, Clinton could never be characterized as pro-business. That anticipated change in direction is what accounts for the immediate turnaround in both markets and economic indicators.
The problem was, the news media really took it on the chin with the Trump victory and were staggered by it. They lost face and continue to lose it because the videos of them dismissing Donald Trump as a potential President will live on forever. Since his election, the same media outlets who thought Trump’s candidacy was a joke, are now treating his presidency as if it were a crime. Their treatment of Trump is driven as much by an attempt to recover a loss of reputation, as much as it is partisan politics. For, if the situation were reversed and Trump were the heavy favorite and Hillary Clinton won in a surprise, it’s hard to imagine the media reacting to the win quite the way they have with Trump.
Some in the Washington, D.C. media elites were perpetually perplexed and bewildered by Obama’s behavior in office, judging him by a standard of governing set by his predecessors, which Obama clearly rejected. Obama sensed that a vast part of the media was willing to give him broad latitude. This enabled him to exceed his constitutional guardrails without consequence in the Congress and outside of Fox News, scarcely a whisper of protest. Obama overrode his authority with War Powers, bombing more countries than any President since the second world war. He rewrote black letter law on no less than 36 occasions with Obamacare. He exceeded his authority with the DACA EO and on many other occasions. All while doing this, especially during his first term, the media kept waiting for Obama to “track to the middle.” He never did because he wasn’t a centrist any more than Joe Stalin was a centrist compared to Leon Trotsky. Obama came to office promising change and he did it by growing government, making it more activist, more centralized, far more powerful over the lives of average Americans than ever before.
Donald Trump also confounds the Washington elites, but in a different way. Obama was there to drive change by empowering the central planners in Washington. Trump was elected to do precisely the opposite: disrupt their power. From the very start, Trump sought to pull back the reins on the centralized Washington power structure. He sought to accomplish this by eliminating regulations. Regulations are how the permanent government, ie., the federal bureaucracies exert their control over our way of life. This is not to say that all regulations are bad or that we should live in a regulation free environment. To Trump’s way of thinking, regulations are a last resort, not the first option. Obama and the central planners suffer from a fatal conceit: that regulations are ALWAYS needed and it’s always better to err on the side of having more than less.
The Obama approach to regulatory authority has led to bureaucratic abuses resulting in nearly two dozen unanimous Supreme Court decisions against the Obama Administration, striking down such abuses.
Barack Obama and Donald Trump may be diametrical opposites on the political spectrum. Their treatment by the media may be as different as black from white. But they are similar in ways, as well. Both are change agents, but for very different visions of America.
The Obama vision for America, is one of a very left socialist agenda. His idea of America would demand less individual liberty. Obama’s view is that of radical egalitarianism where outcomes are determined by group identity. As a leftist, Obama sees Americans as a collection of tribes: in race: the white tribe, the black tribe, the asian tribe, the latino tribe, the native american tribe and on and on. This tribal view exists in all areas of life: economics, religion, and sexual orientation. Obama sees history as having created a preexisting condition advantaging a minority over a majority, necessitating government prescriptions to correct. The fact these prescriptions have been tried elsewhere and have failed miserably doesn’t dissuade the committed leftist at all. That’s Obama.
The Trump vision for America is quite different. Trump rejects the division of Americans along tribal lines. He believes that most of the problems in the country today have been caused by policies that don’t accomplish what they were ostensibly set out to do. In other words, government has made itself the problem. In Trump’s view, the best thing government can do is to first get out of the way of the People. This is manifested through reducing taxes and regulations, renegotiating trade agreements, holding allies and foes accountable and securing the border. Trump seems to believe in America to a greater degree than Obama, who has been accused of believing in a managed decline of the United States. Trump believes if America leveraged all of our natural resources in the right way, the United States would remain the world’s leading economy, technological and military power well into the forseeable future and beyond. There does seem to be much evidence proving him to be correct.
What is the moral of the story here?
Well, it’s simple. Donald Trump REALLY DOES believe in America. He sees this country as the greatest and most unique country in all of human history. He is an American exceptionalist.
Barack Obama, on the other hand, believes more in his ideology than he does in America. He doesn’t hate America, but he doesn’t love it either. He sees us as having a largely unearned reputation, with power, wealth and influence greater than we ought to have. Obama is a GLOBALIST.
So, that is really what all this Trump bashing is all about. Much of the DC establishment is about the international Left pushing for a GLOBALIST agenda, that will look a great deal like the USSR or Communist China to the average person, should it ever happen.
VOLUME 71: The Right to Being Acosta’d
VOLUME 70: Pelosi and the CBC
VOLUME 69: Russian Collusion Mythology
VOLUME 68: Media Manipulation
VOLUME 67: The ‘OK’ Hoax Part III
VOLUME 66: John Brennan: Disloyal American
VOLUME 65: Progressives Play the BS Race Card
VOLUME 64: Here We Go, Again!
VOLUME 63: Democrats and Russians
DEMOCRATS AND RUSSIANS
It’s July 2018 and the mainstream media has been on fire for over 18 months with allegations that President Trump “colluded” with the Russians to win the 2016 Presidential election. So far, we have seen very little in the way of evidence that Trump or any member of his campaign had anything more than a conversation with the occaisional Russian. Still, whatever “new information” the media learns, they feverishly connect dots which have no business being connected.
As a student of politics and history, I have found the behavior of the media as well as Democrats to be appalling.
What I hope to do for you in this podcast is to give you some idea of the history that exists between Democrats and Russians. At the end of this podcast, my hope is you will understand why I am appalled at the current behavior of the Mainstream Media and the Democrat Party.
This story begins in Russia, with the Bolshevik Revolution of 1917. The Bolshevik takeover of Russia was the first successful Marxist revolution and it sent shock waves around the world, particularly in Western countries. European and American intellectuals were swept up in the excitement of revolutionary change and what it could mean for the future of the world.
Remember, in 1917, Marxism had never been attempted as a governing philosophy. Russia would be its first laboratory. The intelligentsia had a rooting interest, hoping for its success.
The early days of the Russian Revolution under the leadership of Vladimir Lenin were bloody in the extreme. Anyone opposing the new Bolshevik government under Lenin was deemed a “counter-revolutionary” and typically met horribly cruel deaths, often by starvation. Although Lenin died in 1924, he was succeeded by Joseph Stalin, who was even worse.
While this was going on in Russia, in the United States, fear was growing. It was fear of the “Red Menace” or the “Red Scare.” Many Americans feared a Marxist revolution would come to America. New immigrants from Europe, particularly Eastern Europe and Italy were often receptive to leftist propaganda. The leftists, however, never really gained a foothold because the rise of organized labor blunted the revolutionary fervor. In short, American businesses adapted. Still, on university campuses around the U.S., the cutting edge of political thought centered on the great collectivist experiment going on in Russia.
To bring Americans a bird’s eye view of what was happening in Russia, the New York Times assigned a journalist named Walter Duranty to cover the progress of the Russian Revolution. Duranty filed news accounts accentuating the positive and to his everlasting discredit, all but ignoring the negative. The trouble was, the negative Duranty either played down or ignored entirely was so monstrous, it was clear he was acting as a propaganda tool for Stalin. Source Link: Crimes of the Bolsheviks
Duranty ignored the deliberate and intentional starvation of as many as 11 million Kulak peasant farmers, an atrocity rivalling the Nazi Holocaust of European Jewry in its immensity. The New York Times still displays Duranty’s Pulitzer Prize in its headquarters offices in New York City. The prize was awarded before it was learned that Duranty was a fraud.
Duranty’s reports from Russia were followed closely by academics, who were excited to know of the revolutionary progress and successes. Although viewed with hostility in the halls of American government as a subversive ideology, antagonism toward Russian Marxism faded completely when the United States found itself allied with Russia after Hitler declared war on the United States in December 1941.
At that moment, many of those left wing university intellectuals as well as others who were just plain, old, pro-Russian Marxists, found their way into the US government in various roles to help defeat Nazism. Immediately after the defeat of Nazi Germany, the US found itself with tons of pro-Russian Marxists all throughout the institutions of government, placed there by the FDR and Truman Administrations. These were people who were favorably disposed toward Stalinist Russia and many of them were current or former members of the Communist Party of the United States. Others were recruited as spies. But all of them were Democrats.
Almost immediately after the war ended, Russia and the United States became Cold War enemies. In 1948, a former American communist and spy for Russia, Whittaker Chambers, revealed that a vast network of Russian spies existed in the United States. Richard Nixon, a California Congressman at the time, listened to what Chambers had to say and what he said was explosive.
Chambers accused a Truman Administration official in the State Department, Alger Hiss, of being a Soviet Russian spy. The accusation mattered a great deal because Hiss accompanied FDR to his meeting with Stalin and Churchill at Yalta, where the construct of post-war Europe was being discussed and decided. Truman also appointed Hiss to draft the UN Charter.
The accusation that a Soviet Russian spy was that close to the President of the United States caused a political earthquake, resulting in an avalanche of cries of partisanship and character assassination directed at both Chambers and Nixon.
Knowing this was political dynamite, Democrats began to line up in defense of Alger Hiss’s loyalty to the United States. Among those Democrats attesting to Hiss’s loyalty were two sitting Supreme Court Justices, one past Democrat Presidential candidate and one future Presidential candidate, Adlai Stevenson.
The Democrats went to the mat for Hiss, sealing Nixon’s reputation as one of the worst and most cynical villains in US political history for condemning an “innocent man” as a disloyal American. Except, there was one problem.
IT WAS ALL TRUE!
Hiss was indeed a spy for Russia. Although the question of his guilt remained unsettled and was debated for decades, after the fall of the USSR, old KGB documents revealed Alger Hiss was indeed a spy for Russia. The damage to the Democratic Party did not end there. Subsequent to the Hiss Affair, Senator Joseph McCarthy held hearings in 1954, accusing many dozens of State Department officals along with many prominent people in business and entertainment of being Communists, loyal to Russia. Although McCarthy did accuse many people later shown to be totally innocent of any disloyalty, while holding leftist or even Marxist political views, those same KGB documents, made available in the mid-1990s, also confirmed that dozens and dozens of those he accused, all of whom were Democrats, were indeed spying for Russia.
Even to this day, the news media refuses to tell the entire truth about Hiss or McCarthy. To this day, despite the existence of incontrovertible evidence of Hiss’s guilt, Democrats playing on the ignorance of Americans, continue to defend Alger Hiss and condemn Whittaker Chambers, Richard Nixon and Joseph McCarthy, who were guilty of only zealously defending the United States, showing great courage and patriotism.
At this juncture, it is fair to point out that the Democratic Party is not pro-Russian, per se. What I hope I am making clear here is that the Democratic Party has been a home for those harboring pro-Russian sentiments. From the 1920s through the 1950s, those sentiments were clearly ideological. But in 1960, America elected a vehemently anti-communist and therefore, anti-Russian President, John F Kennedy, who was a Democrat. He was a true profile in courage, especially during the Cuban Missile Crisis. So, it’s rather ironic that his assassin, Lee Harvey Oswald, a former Marine, who turned Communist, defected to Russia, marrying a Russian woman, returning to the United States, where he murdered President Kennedy. It now seems almost like COSMIC KARMA for the Democratic Party.
As we moved through the 60s, 70s and 80s, left wing, pro-Russian, pro-Soviet extremism became prevalent on both college campuses and in the media. For example, during the 1960s, much of campus rioting was instigated by pro-Russian groups aligning themselves with the Democratic Party. This also carried on through the 1970s. Political parties in the US, which at least tangentially aligned themselves with the Democratic Party had Russian sponsors and were aligned with the policies of the Soviet Union. One example: The Socialist Workers Party, which got its orders directly from Moscow. Russian involvement with Democrats became more pronounced during the 1980s under President Reagan.
While Reagan was President, Russian sponsored movements like “No Nukes” came to fruition. It argued in favor of the Russian position regarding the placement of Pershing II nuclear missiles in Western Europe. Also, the burgeoning environmental movement was secretly funded by Russian interests as a way to keep the US out of the market as a supplier of oil and natural gas, two commodities Russia needs and depends on greatly. Then, of course, there was Ted Kennedy’s appeal to Yuri Andropov, the leader of the USSR at the time. Kennedy was hoping to enlist Andropov’s cooperation in defeating Reagan in the 1984 election. Kennedy’s outreach was an act of treachery, but Reagan won re-election easily, taking 49 of 50 states.
All of this was done to undermine the power and influence of the United States and in every case, found its most vocal support in the Democrat Party.
It should disturb every American when a foreign power, be it friend or foe, attempts to insinuate themselves into our electoral process, but it should not be altogether unexpected. The United States is the greatest and most powerful country in the world. We should be prepared for others to interfere in our elections.
But before they can interfere in our elections, we should take note of how they are interfering in our political system in other ways as I have outlined here.
Russian interference didn’t begin in 2016 and it won’t end in 2018. Questions regarding Bill and Hillary Clinton’s relationship with Russians remain unanswered. The approval of a deal sending 20% of America’s uranium ore and the timing of a $150 million “contribution” to the Clinton Foundation, along with vast sums for speeches given in Russia, deserve as much or more attention than the strained effort to find collusion between the Trump campaign and Russians. If links exist, let us see the evidence. But if we are left with only our suspicions in the absence of evidence, then we ought to have the courage to leave those suspicions wanting.
The Democratic Party for nearly 100 years has never been so ferociously anti-Russian as they are now. It is obvious that their ferocity is fueled by political expediency more than it is by a search for the truth.
Just as it was for Walter Duranty.
Just as it was for Alger Hiss.
Just as it was for Ted Kennedy.
VOLUME 62: Obama’s Gambit in Kenya
VOLUME 61: Transformation: Today’s Leftists and Yesterday’s Liberals.
VOLUME 60: Where we’ve been, are and going
VOLUME 59: Where we’ve been, are and going
WHERE WE’VE BEEN, ARE AND GOING
In every election since Barack Obama won the Presidency in 2008, the Democrat Party has lost ground. By 2010, the Democrats lost
a total of 70 seats in the House and Senate, along with control of a majority of state legislative chambers and governorships.
Even at the local level, Democrats saw their hold on elected offices slip to a low not seen in nearly a century.
What was the cause of this? Democrats believed it was personal animus against America’s first Halfrican American President. In
other words, racism. But was it? Liberal pundits and politicians pointed to the overwhelmingly white opposition to Obama. But did
that necessarily mean the opposition was based on race? Among blacks, Obama enjoyed almost unanimous support. It stood to reason
that any opposition to Obama would lack much, if any, black support. Rather than Obama’s opposition being based in race, it
appeared that his support, at least among blacks was certainly based in it.
The Democrats made an almost unprecedented gross miscalculation assuming opposition to Obama was primarily racial and not policy
driven. Now surely, there were people who opposed Obama’s policies purely on racial grounds and there should be no misunderstanding
about that. But the problem came in assuming the vast majority of his opposition was based in anything but policy. After all,
nearly half of all white voters cast their vote for Obama in 2008. The reversal from support to opposition cannot be explained by
racism, but rather by policy. Democrats miscalculated by not understanding this and paid a heavy price in 2010.
The Democrats also made up other excuses for their losses in 2010: gerrymandering and voter turnout. Both had some element of
truth, but were they the primary cause of their losses? Here again, as with the racial excuse, Democrats miscalculated the anger
of the electorate at what they interpreted as a betrayal by Obama and the Democrats in terms of policy versus promises made.
Had the 2010 losses resulted from low turnout in an off-year election, then 2012 should have delivered a different result. But
instead of clawing back any significant portion of their 2010 losses, Democrats won back only a handful of seats. Furthermore, had
the 2010 losses been the result of gerrymandering, it didn’t explain why Republicans continued to gain ground in statewide elections
for Senator, governor and other statewide offices.
Democrats continued to make gerrymandering and turnout their arguments heading into the 2014 election and again, lost big. This
time, yielding control of the Senate to the Republicans and even more governorships and state legislative chambers.
Heading into the 2016 election, the true Democrat strategy became clear. They were giving up on white middle class voters
altogether, in favor of the anticipated demographic shift to Latin-American voters. Democrats, who have always favored granting
amnesty to illegal aliens, saw it as a way back to political power, even dominance. They even had a sizable share of Republicans
in the House on their side, who represented commercial interests looking for cheap, unskilled labor.
Democrat policies of government safety nets and dependency programs would be enough to lure the desperately destitute in Latin
America. In fact, 70% of all illegal aliens already in the United States receive some form of government assistance. Hundreds of
cities around the country enacted “sanctuary laws” which limited or even in some cases, forbade cooperation with Federal immigration
authorities, even if they were seeking out violent criminal suspects or drug gang members. Again, the Democrats appeared to be
miscalculating, but it appeared very little could be done about it because the election of Hillary Clinton seemed inevitable.
At this point, it would be useful to stop and remind everyone that the issue of immigration has always inflamed passions in the American
people. And it is no different today. The passion today, however, is not directed at the illegal immigrants themselves. Most are decent,
religious, industrious and hard working family people. Rather, the passion and even anger is being directed at the politicians who are
clearly intent upon placing the interests of those illegally in the country on a par with American citizens and sometimes, even ahead of
the interest on American citizens. It appeared to a great many Americans in 2016 and even more today, in 2018, that the Democrats in Congress
and even some Republicans want to nullify the political voice of American citizens when it comes to the issue of immigration, by granting
amnesty, citizenship and voting rights to people who have illegally entered the United States.
This was the predicate for the candidacy of Donald Trump. Make no mistake about it. Donald Trump knew tens of millions of Americans were
feeling ignored by their elected leadership in Washington. The issue is so much more serious than the entrenched power structure inside the
Washington Beltway could even fathom. The American economy had been in a slow growth slog since the end of the 2008 recession. Millions of
unskilled and less educated people remained unemployed, while millions of high skilled, high wage jobs could not be filled. A policy granting
amnesty to millions of unskilled people, would only encourage more to come, creating a wider gap in the skills of the unemployed versus the
skills needed to fill well paying jobs open and available.
If America elected Hillary Clinton, it was heading in that direction on the immigration issue. The wrong direction. Almost miraculously,
Donald Trump defeated Hillary Clinton and immediately went to work on the immigration issue.
The United States is more than $20 Trillion in debt and so far under President Trump, that situation is not improving. Bringing more illegal
aliens into the US, would only make the problem worse. President Trump is attempting to stop the flow by adopting a policy of strict
enforcement that looks to discourage people from illegally entering the US or overstaying visas. He has also proposed other measures, which
look like common sense to most people, but to Democrats who have lost their grip on power, sound more like existential threats to their
party. Ending Chain Migration, Merit Based immigration, A well policied and maintained border wall with Mexico, are all considered threats to
Democrat desires to ascend back into power.
It is in this vein, that Democrats and their allies in the media have amped up the rhetoric against this President. But the rhetoric against
Trump and the Republicans didn’t need any amping up. The inflammatory rhetoric has already led to the attempted assassination of more than
a dozen Republicans and their staff in a shooting that nearly killed House Majority Whip, Steve Scalise. Now, with increasing frequency, the
leftists in the media are drawing comparisons to Adolf Hitler and the Nazis. It’s wrong. It’s beyond the pale. It’s as if the Democrats
have learned nothing from their electoral losses over the last 9 years and are continuing to place all of their bets on race and hate.
President Trump has not broken any law. He is following the law. In the most recent situation, where he had the border agents separate
children from people claiming to be parents or relatives, but could not prove it, the President was protecting children from human traffickers,
which had been a problem under Obama.
It is understandable why many Americans dislike President Trump. There is much not to like about him on a personal level. But we are not
supposed to select or support our leaders on their personalities alone. That leads to a cult of personality where the importance of policy is
diminished and the force of personal charisma is magnified. We need to support leaders with the policies we favor and the ability to get those
policies instituted. Judge politicians on their results, not their intentions or their likability.
President Trump has kept faith with his promises, delivered on them where possible and the country is doing better because of it.
Is he squeaky clean? No.
Does he exaggerate, embellish, say untrue things? Yes.
Does he exaggerate, embellish, or say untrue things about topics that actually affect people’s lives? No.
Usually, when he does these things, it’s a face saving mechanism.
But can any of us say that President Trump has been treated fairly by many of his critics?
Can anyone say honestly that President Trump hasn’t been made the object of the most hate filled and vile comments ever made against a
President? Ladies and gentlement, respectfully, I don’t believe there is any doubt about that.
Can you think of any Presidential Administration who had Cabinet level officials harassed in public places and even in their own homes?
Can you think of any First Family that had to endure threats of physical violence from people in the news media and entertainment industry?
Threats to children as young as 4 years old, as in the case of Don Jr’s daughter, Chloe? Again, I cannot.
Democrats will do what they do. They have never known moderation in tone, despite virtue signaling and morally preening whenever it suits
them politically. I address this to rank and file Democrats. Neighbors, friends and family. Americans on the left and the right, who think
it is their moral duty to hate everyting about this President and his family.
I am profoundly saddened and disappointed in you.
Criticize his policies if you disagree with them. Have a field day doing it.
But enough with the personality nonsense. And enough with threats to Cabinet officials and families.
For the Great Vocal Majority, I am Tony Codispoti.
VOLUME 58: The Case Against Donald Trump?
I woke up this morning and came across an article by Mike Allen and Jim Vandehei on the Axios website called, “The Public Case against Trump.” I figured I had better read it because if there is a public case against this President, I’d like to know what it is.
I was immediately disappointed. The very first sentence in the article makes a false claim. It says, “One thing is true of all major political scandals: What we know in the moment is but a tiny, obscured, partial view of the full story later revealed by investigators.” I thought to myself, “is there even one case where that was true?” The authors claim it has been true “of all major political scandals.” Yet, when I think back to the mother of all political scandals, Watergate, the American public knew pretty early on that President Nixon was involved.
Unlike Watergate, where an office was burglarized and people were arrested, the investigators of Trump and Russia aren’t even investigating a crime. They are investigating hoping to find one. There is nothing to compare that to in previous political scandals. So, right from the jump, Allen and Vandehei want their readers to think all political scandals end in a crescendo of unanticipated revelations. To me, it sounds like the boys have watched way too many movies.
But I digress.
I soldiered on to the meat and potatoes of their “case”. Allen and Vandehei go through a list of “knowns” they believe should have already ended the Trump Presidency. It’s worth addressing each one, because it reveals something really disturbing: Allen and Vandehei are desperately attempting to keep the Russian collusion fantasy alive when they know there’s nothing there. The only other alternative is even more disturbing: that both men believe this set of “knowns” are sufficient grounds upon which to end a Presidency and reverse the results of an election.
1ST KNOWN: “We know Paul Manafort, former Trump campaign chair, has been indicted on 32 counts, including conspiracy and money laundering. We know he made millions off shady Russians and changed the Republican platform to the benefit of Russia.”
Allen and Vandehei fail to point out that the charges against Manafort had nothing at all to do with Russian collusion. They are related to bank and tax fraud charges two year before Manafort’s involvement with the Trump campaign. Incidentally, Manafort was only involved with the Trump campaign from June to August of 2016 and the NY Times admitted that the charges against Manafort were simply an effort by the Mueller team to pressure him. In fact, the Mueller team has been reprimanded by the trial judge publicly for using strong armed tactics.
2ND KNOWN: “We know that the U.S. intelligence community concluded, in a report released in January 2017, that Russian President Vladimir Putin “ordered an influence campaign in 2016 aimed at the US presidential election,” to “denigrate” Hillary Clinton and with “a clear preference for … Trump.””
Allen and Vandehei fail to point out key facts here, as well. For months, Democrats and their allies in the media like Allen and Vandehei, were declaring “all 17 intel agencies agreed about Russian interference.” This was an intentional falsehood designed to give the public the impression that the full weight of the US intelligence establishment agreed, when 13 agencies rendered no opinion and had no interest in weighing in. It was simply a way to make the case sound more overwhelming than it was.
Furthermore, while it was true that Putin and Russia worked to denigrate Clinton, it was not necessarily to benefit Trump. That canard was perpetrated by James Comey in Congressional testimony who said he saw no other motivation. But simple logic would tell you that the Russians, like everyone else, expected Clinton to win the election and their only motivation was to de-legitimize her.
We have evidence this is true, because immediately after Trump won the election, the Russians organized a protest against his victory in New York City. So, the preference for Trump by Putin is belied by the fact that his people organized that protest.
3RD KNOWN: “We know that in May 2016, Trump campaign aide George Papadopoulos told an Australian diplomat Russia had political dirt on Hillary. “About three weeks earlier,” according to the N.Y. Times, “Papadopoulos had been told that Moscow had thousands of emails that would embarrass Mrs. Clinton.””
These were barroom conversations, not evidence of collusion. It would be wise at this point to remember that Hillary Clinton operated a mail server that was so lacking in security, it wasn’t even up to date with the regular security patches issued by Microsoft. And while official Washington has denied there being any evidence her email server was hacked by a foreign power, a number of former government officials have come forward, on the record to state that it is virtually impossible to think Clinton’s server wasn’t hacked because foreign intel agencies continuously attempt to hack the communications of our top officials.
Having an unsecured server isn’t even a challenge for government grade hackers. In other words, whatever was said betwee Papadopoulos and a Russian professor in London, is really almost meaningless because anyone who wanted Clinton’s emails, had them.
4TH & 5TH KNOWN: “We know that in June 2016, Trump’s closest aides and family members met at Trump Tower with a shady group of Russians who claimed to have dirt on Hillary. The meeting was billed as “part of Russia and its government’s support for Mr. Trump.”” “We know the Russian lawyer who helped set it up concealed her close ties to Putin government.”
This meeting was a big nothing. Rather than being evidence of collusion, it’s actually evidence that there was no collusion. Because if there was collusion, the meeting would not have been abruptly ended. The Russian attorney with ties to Putin would have come with information on Clinton pointing to collusion. Yet, she didn’t. Some will say that Trump’s son and son in law attended hoping to get information on Clinton, but even if that is true, nobody at the time knew whether she was tied to Putin.
6TH KNOWN: “We know that in July 2016, Trump said: ““Russia, if you’re listening, I hope you’re able to find the 30,000 [Hillary] emails that are missing,” and urged their publication.”
Of all these so called “knowns”, I find this one to be an embarassment for Allen and Vandehei. Why? Because if a Presidential candidate is going to collude with a hostile foreign power in order to win an election, it would seem that the best way to do that would probably not include a public campaign speech. Anyone who’s seen the video of Trump making this speech knows he was needling the Democrat media as Trump often does to the delight of his supporters.
7TH KNOWN: “We know that on Air Force One a year later, Trump helped his son, Don Jr., prepare a misleading statement about the meeting. We know top aides freaked out about this.”
This is water over the dam, too. Donald Trump and his son are both political novices. Whatever they crafted is of no consequence because Donald Trump Junior’s emails leading up to the meeting with the Russian lawyer have been released to the Special Counsel and made public.
8TH KNOWN: “We know Trump revealed highly classified information to the Russian foreign minister and ambassador in a White House meeting.”
Actually, we don’t know this for a fact. All we know is that an anonymous source to the NY Times revealed this. Even if it occurred, it is neither illegal or an indicator of collusion. The President has the authority by virtue of his office to declassify anything he wishes. Trump’s conversation with Lavrov are not evidence of anything resembling collusion.
9TH KNOWN: “We know Michael Flynn, former national security adviser and close campaign aide, lied to Vice President Pence and FBI about his Russia-related chats. We know he’s now cooperating with special counsel Robert Mueller. We know Trump initially tried to protect Flynn with loyalty and fervency rarely shown by Trump to others.”
What the authors are not telling you here is how those “chats” Flynn had were of no consequence because they didn’t involve collusion of any kind. Furthermore, people associated with the Flynn case within the FBI have asserted he did not lie to them as Allen and Vandehei suggest here. Only James Comey continues to insist he lied to FBI investigators. Even Andrew McCabe, the disgraced 2nd in command at the FBI has said Flynn did not lie to his investigators. Additionally, Flynn is being prosecuted and having his life and reputation destroyed over lies he never told, while Hillary Clinton and her entire team were exonerated and given immunity from prosecution while actually lying to investigators.
10TH KNOWN: “We know that during the transition, Jared Kushner spoke with the Russian ambassador “about establishing a secret communications channel between the Trump transition team and Moscow.” We know Kushner omitted previous contacts with Russians on his disclosure forms.”
The key phrase here is “during the transition.” There is nothing extraordinary about a newly elected President having his team of advisers establishing lines of communication with other governments. To cast suspicion on something as routine for an incoming administration as this, is nothing short of staggering.
11TH KNOWN: We know Trump initially lied about why he fired James Comey, later admitting he was canned because of the “Russia thing.”
Article 2 of the Constitution gives the President broad authority to fire or hire Federal agency officials. In the exercise of those duties under Article 2, the President is not required to justify any firing he makes. He can fire James Comey because he’s too tall or has bags under his eyes. He can fire him for ANY REASON or NO REASON. Therefore, it really doesn’t matter why Trump fired him or what he ever said about it, one way of the other.
12TH KNOWN: We know Michael Cohen was a close adviser and lawyer, the fixer and secret-keeper. We know Trump seethed when the FBI raided Cohen’s office.
The authors here are being blatantly dishonest by not revealing all the facts. We also know that President Trump was not the only person “seething” from the raid on Cohen’s office. The raid was a unnecessarily heavy handed move, rarely used, especially on a cooperating witness as Cohen was, and even more especially on the President’s attorney. Former Federal prosecutors and DOJ officials were highly critical of this action. It’s hardly used even on organized criminals, much less Presidents of the United States. The question readers of Allen and Vandehei need to ask is, why are these authors not giving the entire story?
13TH KNOWN: “We know that in January 2016, just before Republicans began voting, Michael Cohen tried to restart a Trump Tower project in Moscow.”
This is an incredible overstatement of what actually occurred. Donald Trump had only a non-binding letter of intent that was signed in 2015, regarding real estate development in Russia. Felix Sater, a Russian business associate wrote Michael Cohen about getting the project underway, but there is no evidence Cohen ever responded to those emails. So, how Allen and Vandehei could conclude that Cohen tried to restart the project is simply baffling. In addition to that, there is also no evidence that Sater ever delivered on any of his promises, according to the New York Times. So, what the hell are Allen and Vandehei even talking about?
14TH & 15TH KNOWN: “We know Mueller questioned a Russian oligarch who made payments to Cohen who used the money to pay off a porn star who allegedly had an affair with Trump.” “We know that oligarch was a bad enough dude that the Trump administration sanctioned him.”
This is pure speculation. The Russian oligarch being referred to is, Viktor Vekselberg. He was in attendence at the same dinner in which Michael Flynn and others were seated with Vladimir Putin. Also in attendance at that dinner, was Jill Stein, who remarked that Putin sat down for a photo op and was not even introduced to the people sitting at the table. If Vekselberg is such an ally of Trump, it’s difficult to explain why Trump sanctioned him in April of 2018 along with about a dozen other Russian oligarchs.
It should be clear from this incredibly slanted article, that Allen and Vandehei have staked their reputations on the Russian collusion story and are desperately grasping at straws, using selected facts, speculation, mischaracterizations to mislead the public.
This is not to say there was no Russian collusion. Here are a few facts we actually do know.
1. We know that within 24 hours of the election, the Hillary Clinton campaign team talked about floating the idea that Russian interference was responsible for her defeat.
This was mentioned in a book memorializing the Clinton Campaign, written by two liberal reporters, Jonathan Allen and Amie Parnes, “Shattered: Inside Hillary Clinton’s Doomed Campaign.”
2. We know that the Clinton Campaign shelled out millions of dollars to acquire what has come to be known as the “Russian Dossier”, generally regarded as a fraudulent document.
It was relied upon to acquire a FISA warrant to spy on the Trump Campaign and transition. The FBI never interviewed the sources of the claims in the dossier, a violation of their standards and practices.
3. We know that Hillary Clinton maintained an email server that was unsecured in direct violation of her duties as Secretary of State and for which she suffered no legal penalty.
4. We know that former Deputy Director of the CIA, Mike Morell, Michael Hayden, former Director of the NSA, and a number of others have said it is virtually impossible to believe Clinton’s mail server wasn’t breached by a multitude of hostile governments.
5. We know that John Podesta, Clinton’s campaign chairman and his brother in the Podesta Group, lobbied on behalf of Russia.
6. We know that Clinton destroyed numerous electronic devices, which could have been mined for evidence against her.
7. We know that the people leading the FBI investigation of Clinton were anti-Trump, pro-Clinton partisans.
8. We know the FBI investigators broke with their standards and practices by permitting all of Clinton’s staff to be represented by a single attorney, which gave them the opportunity to coordinate their testimony.
This violates protocol because in an investigation, the FBI looks for inconsistencies in testimony.
9. We know that Russian entities donated in excess of $150 million dollars to the Clinton Family Foundation during the same timeframe that Hillary Clinton’s State Department approved the Uranium One deal, which ultimately resulted in Russian control of 20% of American Uranium ore resources.
10. We know that since the Uranium One deal, Russian entities have not given any noteworthy donations to the Clinton Foundation.
11. We know that James Comey wrote the exoneration letter for Clinton, months before she and her team were actually inteviewed.
I could go on, but the point has been more than sufficiently made: Hillary Clinton not only colluded with Russians against Trump, she also was a key player in policy decisions that allowed Russia to have access to strategic nuclear materials and benefited financially, even if only by coincidence, but certainly warranting as deep an investigation as anything Trump is alleged to have done.
To make matters even worse, it appears that high ranking officials in the Obama Administration, DOJ and FBI conspired to exonerate Clinton of any wrongdoing, even though it was clear she had broken the law.
People like Allen and Vandehei don’t even see this as an issue anymore. But their attitude is prevalent throughout the media and it is precisely why growing numbers of people just don’t believe them anymore and have stopped taking them seriously as impartial reporters.
For the Great Vocal Majority, I’m Tony Codispoti. Thanks for listening.
VOLUME 57: Tragedy on the Pacific Coast Highway
VOLUME 56: Repeal the 2nd Amendment?
VOLUME 55: Democrats: From Hiss to McCabe
VOLUME 54: Liberal Lemming
VOLUME 53: Love Letter to Leftists
This video produced by the Media Research Center really captures the problem in the media: they almost all think alike. They are guilty of groupthink. In other words, since they are almost universally predisposed to Liberalism they not only gravitate toward Liberal politicians and causes, in this case, Hillary Clinton as the first woman President, they isolate themselves from those of differing points of view and become captives to conformity of opinion.
It is a dangerous condition because, as is evident in the video, people are genuinely shocked and traumatized. They bypass all efforts at introspection, and leap to the conclusion that the country must be full of racist, hateful people if Donald Trump won the election. They can allow for no other possibility.
VOLUME 52: The Unregulated Internet: Knowledge and Power in Perfect Harmony
VOLUME 51: Mueller’s Henchman
Special Counsel Robert Mueller is abusing his power by appointing prosecutors with a horrible track record of prosecutorial abuse and railroading of defendents.
Sources used for this podcast:
The other side of the Enron story:
Senator Ted Stevens dies in plane crash:
Steven’s conviction to be reversed:
Some Convictions of 4 Merrill Execs Reversed:
Former DOJ Prosecutor “Poster Boy for Misconduct”
Lawyer Sidney Powell: Prosecutor’s Record Destroys Credibility of Mueller Probe
Former Federal Prosecutor Says Mueller’s Team Are “Creeps on a Mission” to Destroy the President
John Stossel: Bully prosecutors ruin lives, get big promotions
Anderson conviction overturned
VOLUME 50: Football Protests
Deconstructing the premise behind the NFL player protests
VOLUME 49: Politicians and Problems
Let me begin with my conclusion: politicians do not solve problems. They live off them. They may careers off them. They enrich themselves by perpetuating these problems. Often, they will make a problem worse, which will compel greater demand for their intervention and resolution. But can you think of any social problem that was ever solved through the intervention of politicians and government?
Some my counter that the issue of slavery was resolved through government and politicians. While it is true that the institution of slavery in America was “solved” by the Civil War, it was not the wars original purpose, even though it might have been its most proximate cause. Slavery was ended by Lincoln to give the north a moral justification for the horrendous waste of life with such a bloody war. Still, it required force of arms and many elements of American society today live with the aftereffects of this solution to the problem.
Social ills of less fundamental importance than slavery have found no solution among political leaders and government. During the Great Depression, FDR discovered that the failure of his employment programs to solve the unemployment problem paradoxically empowered him to attend more of those programs. FDR learned how to turn policy failures into personal political gain.
Government activism to address problems of almost any kind like poverty, unemployment, discrimination, immigration for crime and punishment, invariably result in a political class in whose interest it is to see these problems continue. This class is comprised of bureaucrats in government organizations ostensibly designed to address the problems and those elected officials who championed government as the solution. Consider for a moment what might happen to the career of a politician who champions immigration reform if the immigration laws were actually reformed. Once reformed there is a little left upon which a politician can capitalize. It serves the politicians selfish purposes far better to keep the issue unresolved. Maintaining it as an area of conflict and a rallying point against political opponents.
Once politicians, bureaucrats, and interest groups have sipped from the cup of perpetual grievance, they will turn that sip into a gulp, and the gulp into a guzzle. Until, what began as a legitimate grievance seeking resolution, transforms itself into a racket serving the politicians, bureaucrats and interest groups, but not those they pretend to represent.
Those with the actual grievance are never fully served. The politicians, bureaucrats, and interest groups first and primarily nourish themselves and subordinate the aggrieved. It is not lost on the politicians, bureaucrats and interest groups that if the issue that gave rise to them were to ever be resolved they would be forced either out of existence or two remission to a new cause .
What is the point? There are several.
First, politicians, interest groups and bureaucrats are motivated by self interest no differently than everyone else. It is naïve to think they will act out in any other way without some form of compulsion. It is also naïve to believe they are motivated to solve problems which have led to their political empowerment when solving those problems will lead, potentially at least, to their political disempowerment.
Second, attempting to solve social problems through government intervention leads to the institutionalization of those problems through the creation of more government structures devoted to them.
Here, I would like to provide an example.
The US Department of Agriculture (USDA) spends half of its budget administering the food stamp program. No matter how you feel about hunger and poverty in America, the food stamp program is there with the stated intention of providing sufficient financial resources of which Americans can avail themselves in order to avoid hunger and malnutrition. That is a noble goal.
But how should the USDA measure the success of that program?
Should they measure success by the number of people actually on the program? Should they measure success by the number of people who know longer need the program? Should they measure success by aggressively marketing it to people who may be eligible? Should they try to convince eligible but unwilling participants to be dependent on the program?
Most Americans would probably say that if a person qualifies for the program, it should be up to them whether or not to participate in it. But that’s not how the USDA looked at it.
During the Obama administration, the USDA expanded the program and doubled enrollment, even actively trying to dissuade eligible people from denying it. Was the USDA solving a problem, or expanding itself where it wasn’t really addressing a need of the people but rather expanding the federal bureaucracy put in place to address the problem. This is the danger posed by government solutions to social problems. They redefine the problem to expand their power. Completely lost in all of it, is the measure of success that says: the fewer people who actually need this assistance is the key indicator of the programs success. Instead, they broaden its application to ensure the program and bureaucracy there grow to administer it and profit from it.
Government agencies need to be limited in their missions, lest we have an administrative state without any limiting principal whatsoever.
Government is therefore never going to solve the social problems we ask them to address. The problems which might be economic or cultural are first politicized and then bureaucratized, at which point they are perpetuated without resolution into the body politic, complete with a constituency in the legislature, the permanent government and interest groups, all prepared to act parasitically but keeping the issue alive in perpetuity.
VOLUME 48: Transformational Change – An Analysis
The effect of Obama’s transformational change in the Trump Era
VOLUME 47: A Lie Repeated Often Enough
VOLUME 46: The Evolution of the American Counter-revolution P3
THE “BATTLE OF IDEAS”: FROM FDR TO LBJ TO REAGAN
The debate between the left and the right has often been called, “The Battle of Ideas.” For Progressives, the pinnacle of their power was reached when President Lyndon Johnson enacted the Great Society and War on Poverty programs of the early 1960s. Johnson saw himself as a Progressive in the mold of FDR, who guided the United States through the deprivations of the Great Depression through a series of interventionist policies, most of which proved to be largely ineffective, but were great public relations for activist and interventionist government. It gave the public the impression that their elected leaders were making every effort to alleviate their suffering. How well the programs were working was almost besides the point and without having a better idea, the Republicans were seen as anachronistic, almost brutish.
The Left rejoiced when Johnson declared War on Poverty. Their ideas would finally be put to the test and all the world would be able to witness the results. This form of activism had many political advantages, not the least of which was one the Founders warned as a signal of the end of the Republic itself. Benjamin Franklin is thought to have said, “When the people find they can vote themselves money that will herald the end of the republic.” The political advantage to this is that it allows politicians to demonize anyone opposing these policies.
During the intervening half century, politicians did just that. Faced with program cost overruns, corruption and abuses of all kinds, the Progressives defended against any attempt at reform and improvement of these programs. Nevertheless, the programs were failing to achieve the desired results. Even the dire predictions of the inevitable moral hazards posed by these programs from Progressives were shouted down.
Perhaps the most famous of these were the warnings of Daniel Patrick Moynihan, who saw liberalization of welfare assistance as deleterious to the health of the nuclear family. Moynihan reasoned that if welfare allowances were increased with the number of children in a home without a male, father figure or breadwinner, then the family unit would be destabilized. Financial benefits would be greater to a home without a father present and fathers would be driven out of the home in order to gain a greater benefit. This is what is meant by a moral hazard.
A moral hazard is when a law creates a perverse incentive. Obviously, creating financial incentives which unintentionally drive fathers out of the home is not what the creators of these welfare programs wanted, but that is what they got. Moynihan was ridiculed for predicting this result, which he believed would affect the black family to a much greater degree simply because blacks were disproportionately poorer than whites and therefore more likely to be eligible for the program benefits.
The last half century of experience has proven Moynihan correct. Certainly there are many factors affecting fatherlessness, but the impact of perverse incentives on low income and poor black families cannot be overstated.
This is just one example, but there are many others which reflect how the ideas of the Left have failed with disastrous consequences for the country. By the end of the 1970s, America was ready for a change and they got it with the election of Ronald Reagan.
President Reagan was the most conservative President since Calvin Coolidge. He entered office after a period marked by generations of Progressive Presidents. Hoover, FDR, 1Truman, JFK, LBJ and Nixon would all identify as either left or right Progressives. Harding, Coolidge and Eisenhower were not Progressives. Reagan entered office standing against decades of Progressive history, with the task of undoing its damage. Considering the daunting task it was, Reagan put a significant dent into the Progressives momentum. The fantastic success of his economic policies was astonishing. Though today’s Progressives do level criticism at Reagan’s economic performance, it’s hard to argue with the results: almost 25 years of uninterrupted economic growth and near full employment.
The success of the Reagan Presidency marked the first time Progressive policies suffered a major repudiation through the successful implementation of conservative public policy. At its core, Reagan’s economic policy employed so called “supply side economic theory.” At the risk of oversimplification, the theory treated the macroeconomic inputs of labor and capital as responsive to the change in their prices. Therefore, as the theory goes, if policy could lower the price of both labor and capital, we should witness greater demand for both. Through lowering marginal tax rates on labor and capital, coupled with regulatory reform, the cost of both could be reduced. Increased demand for labor means jobs. Increased demand for capital means investment. The two combined together equals growth. Supply side economics worked.
Progressives have been touting the Keynsian model for economic growth since the Great Depression. The efficacy of the Keynsian model was doubted even by FDR’s Treasury Secretary, Henry Morganthau. The Keynsian model targets demand for goods and services in the aggregate. It relies on government spending in deficit. Essentially, the theory states that a dollar spent by the government trickles its way down through the economy in such a manner that it generates more than a dollar of economic activity. The difference over the amount originally spent by the government is called, “the multiplier effect.” The only trouble is, Keynsianism does not appear to work, or at best is of very limited utility.
In 1939, the aforementioned Henry Morganthau, in the company of Democrats from the House Ways and Means Committee, made the following statement:
“We have tried spending money. We are spending more than we have ever spent before and it does not work. And I have just one interest, and if I am wrong somebody else can have my job. I want to see this country prosperous. I want to see people get a job. I want to see people get enough to eat. We have never made good on our promises. I say after eight years of this administration we have just as much unemployment as when we started and an enormous debt to boot!”
More than anyone else, Henry Morganthau, Jr., was the man most responsible for the Keynsian policies that funded the New Deal.
Despite all of its shortcomings, politicians on both sides of the aisle embraced Keynsian economics. Keynsianism, involves Congress appropriating and spending money targeted toward programs designed to address problems. Often, even when the efficacy of a government program is dubious, spending has a greater political benefit than not spending. When progress toward solving problems is not likely to be had, politicians will settle for the optics of appearing to be doing something constructive. It is in this way that government spending becomes a crutch or an addiction for both the politician and the constituent. In the absence of a better answer, spending on poorly designed and ineffective government programs became deeply entrenched into our government structure and body politic. With Reagan, there seemed to finally be an answer coming from the right. An answer that not only worked, but seemed popular. In his bid for re-election in 1984, Ronald Reagan won a 49 state landslide. But Reagan’s success was limited to macroeconomic policy. He did little to reform the Progressive welfare state and its mentality of government dependency. That would come six years after Reagan left office.
1994: THE REAGAN VICTORY IN THE ‘BATTLE OF IDEAS’
In 1994, with a newly minted Democrat President in the White House, Bill Clinton, the mid-term elections witnessed an historic event. The Republican Party won a majority in the House of Representatives for the first time in 40 years. Led by Newt Gingrich, a Republican Progressive in the mold of Theodore Roosevelt, Gingrich proposed a “Contract with America.” This was the conservatives response to those many consecutive decades of dysfunctional left progressive programs that were rotting due to poor design and moral hazard.
After several attempts, the Contract with America was signed into law by Bill Clinton. Welfare rolls and government dependency was cut in half. People formerly on the government dole were employed and self sufficient. Not everyone celebrated the success of the Contract with America. Its success revealed just how deeply entrenched welfare statists had become.
When governments establish bureaucracies and programs, those bureaucracies and programs develop constituents. When those bureaucracies and programs are aimed at solving a social ill, like poverty, a counter-intuitive dynamic can result: if the problem were solved, there would be no need for the program or bureau. This runs counter to the way people think and behave.
A bureau created to address poverty will cultivate a constituency comprised of the poor. How would such a bureau measure its success? Would it measure it by the number of people it could find who are eligible for their program? Or would it measure success by how many people it lifted out of poverty, away from government dependency and toward self sufficiency?Experience has shown us that bureaucracies behave much like people do and strive for self-preservation at a minimum. This is not surprising since bureaucracies are comprised of people.
This presents us with a gigantic problem. From the early 20th century until the present day, the Federal government has been shaped by a permanent bureaucracy, largely put in place by Left Progressives to address certain domestic social problems. Over several generations, those programs and bureaus have created an entrenched constituency invested in the perpetuation of the social problems as much or more than their resolution. This contradiction and its side effects are exacerbated by poorly designed programs which fail to achieve their goals and often create permanent dependent constituents.
If this were the only problem, Americans would still have their hands full. Ronald Reagan’s Presidency and the later Contract with America, have clearly cut a pathway toward correcting this problem. The challenge is not only in government itself. Tens of millions of Americans have been raised on the notion that government will be their caretaker and they have been taught to feel entitled to it. The Contract with America began to reverse that thinking until 2006, when the Democrats retook the House and Senate and worked quickly to undo all those reforms.
The “Battle of Ideas” ended with the consecutive successes of the Reagan economic policy and the Contract with America. From that moment in the late 1990s forward, the political atmosphere in America turned toxic. Americans noticed its toxicity, but seemed less observant as to its proximate cause. Focusing on personalities of political leaders and less on policy, most of the public failed to notice something a few political observers couldn’t miss: Conservative solutions worked far better than Progressive ones. As the 20th century came to a close, the Progressive Left hardly felt the need to panic. Clinton was a successful two-term President, even though his administration was plagued with scandal. The economy prospered greatly while he was President, owing to much good fortune: the continuation of Reagan era economic policy, the “Peace Dividend” resulting from the fall of the Soviet Union and the Eastern European communist bloc, and the advent of the internet. With the 2000 Presidential election just over the horizon and Vice President Al Gore, the heir apparent to Clinton, the Progressive Left was unconcerned their dominance on the American political landscape would be challenged. It didn’t work out that way.
THE GREAT DIVIDE AND RE-EMERGENCE OF LEFT PROGRESSIVES
The 2000 Presidential race will go down in history as the closest race ever. George W. Bush defeated Al Gore by acquiring just one more electoral vote than needed to win, 271. The controversy was made even greater by the fact that Bush’s brother was governor of the State of Florida, where a recount dragged on for weeks until the Supreme Court decided that the race was over and Bush won Florida by just over 500 votes and with it, the Presidency. It was a very bitter pill to swallow for the Democrats.
In politics, grudges can last a very long time and the 2000 race was no exception. Today, 17 years later, many Democrats still believe Bush was not legitimately elected President. The division resulting from the 2000 race had a wider impact than it would ordinarily have for reasons soon to be described. Inasmuch as Bush was thought to have been fraudulently elected, everything Bush did while President was also thought to be fraudulent as well. Eight months into his Presidency, the 9/11 attacks and the national response to it, brought Americans together briefly. That unity was shattered after the United States failed to find an active WMD program in Iraq. Democrats sensing weakness, accused the President of lying in order to draw the country into a war in Iraq, an extremely serious charge. Such a thing, if true, is traitorous. Although this charge whipped up many Democrat supporters into a frothy frenzy, they weren’t serious. In 2006, after the Democrats took back control of both the House and Senate from the Republicans, they never took any steps toward impeaching President Bush. It’s difficult to imagine why they wouldn’t after accusing the President of being a traitor.
The issue of the Iraq WMDs served to radicalize the Democrat Party from a left leaning party comprised of a mix of moderate so called “blue dog” Democrats, Liberals and Left Progressives. By the 2006 mid-term elections, the party was firmly in control of the most extreme elements of the Left Progressives. Even the Democrats’ 2000 Vice Presidential nominee, Joe Lieberman, was considered “too conservative” for their party and banished from it. Less than a handful of years earlier, Democrats thought Lieberman was good enough to be President, if anything untoward were to happen to Al Gore.
When the 2008 election cycle was in full swing, Americans wanted change. More than change of party, Americans were restless and wanted more drastic change. The Democrats were primed to nominate a full blown Leftist Progressive. Both Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama met that requirement, but Obama was a fresh face, whereas Clinton was a well known quantity. Obama defeated Clinton and won the Presidency easily over a sclerotic John McCain.
When Obama assumed the Presidency in 2009, the economy was hemorrhaging jobs and the contraction of GDP in the most recent quarter was greater than had been seen in decades. In that crisis, the President was given great leeway to boost the economy. But Obama was hardly an experienced veteran in national politics or macroeconomic theory. If anything, Obama was a street organizing academic from Chicago. That’s where he had the most experience and that’s the experience and background he relied on. The key members of Obama’s cabinet and the plethora of other economic advisers were all out of the academic world with few, if any, having any business experience upon which to rely. It was a recipe waiting to become an unmitigated disaster. All the components for a catastrophic policy failure were present:
- An inexperienced leftist ideologue in the Presidency
- A team of advisers who were mostly inexperienced leftist ideologues, as well.
- All of them wedded to the failed notion of Keynsian solutions
- All of them true believers in the cause of Left Progressivism
- A country deep in crisis
Within the first month of being in office, President Obama passed a Stimulus Package without a single Republican vote. He could do that because the Democrats controlled the House with a comfortable margin and the Democrats held a filibuster proof majority in the Senate. The Stimulus package cost more in a single year than either war in Iraq and Afghanistan had cost from the day those two conflicts began until that time. This enormous expenditure was supposed to stimulate the economy to robust growth and regenerate millions of jobs. Of course, it didn’t.
Compounding injury upon insult, a large portion of the Stimulus Package’s appropriations became part of the baseline budget for the agencies receiving the funding. This meant that a large share of the Stimulus Money would be spent out of federal agencies year after year until the Congress passed a new budget. This was Keynsianism on a scale we have never witnessed. By the time Obama left office in 2017, he had doubled the national debt, adding nearly $10 trillion dollars to the total without much to show for it. The economy had not grown. Low wage private sector jobs were created, but not the kind of jobs needed to sustain a growing economy. This grand experiment in Leftist Progressive economics was a catastrophic failure.
Obama’s Left Progressive experimentation was only just beginning. The Affordable Care Act, passed in 2010, was supposed to insure all Americans without disrupting those who already had insurance and doctors and preferred what they had. That promise turned out to be a fraud.
PROGRESSIVISM’S SECOND AMERICAN FAILURE
By the 2010 mid-term elections, the Democrats lost in historic landslides at every level of government. State legislative chambers switch control, Republicans were back in control in the House and many governorships were lost to the Republicans. Despite admitting his party was “shellacked”, Obama never moderated; a sign of a true believing ideologue. Conventional wisdom blamed anger over the passage of Obama’s health care overhaul, The Affordable Care Act(ACA), or Obamacare, as the reason for such a sweeping loss of seats. But voter anger over the ACA hardly explains losses at the state legislative level. The reasons lay deeper. Voters were losing confidence in the elected political leadership’s ability to effectively address issues of concern. The 2010 mid-term elections was a statement to the Left Progressives of the Democrat party that voters didn’t like the direction the country was heading. Those kinds of messages, however, are lost on elitist ideologues like Barack Obama who zealously believe in their ideological prescriptions. It would be one thing if those prescriptions had never been attempted, but they had been tried previously in the US and elsewhere, and simply didn’t work.
Herein lies the problem with true believing ideologues: No amount of failure deters them. They pursue their ideological agenda with a religious fervor. Their failures are inevitably accompanied by alibis. One excellent example are the true believers in Marxism. Even through the fall of the USSR and the rest of the Eastern European Marxist states, true believers today claim those nations weren’t truly Marxist at all. In fact, they believe they never were Marxist. This is denial because for the seven decades the USSR was in existence, no Marxist ideologues anywhere were making such claims. Only when the USSR collapsed and more liberal, capitalistic and open societies took their place, did the ideologues make their dishonest claim.
The Progressive Left in the United States is every bit as wedded to their ideas as those heartbroken European Marxists trying to make sense out of a failed and corrupt ideology. The danger comes when those true believers have access to the levers of power.
WHAT CAUSES AN IDEOLOGY TO SUCCEED OR FAIL
Ideologies when used as organizing principles for societies, succeed or fail to the extent they are successful interpreting basic human nature. Karl Marx failed to properly interpret the basic human condition.
Marx’s ambition was to explain all of reality with what he called scientific socialism. If correct, his theories of Nature could apply to human society, too. His theories were provably false, however.
Essentially, Marx believed all of Nature, including human society, was governed by three laws. These were the Laws of Opposites, Negation and Transformation. Without getting too buried in the weeds, these laws were supposed to explain motion, life cycles, proliferation and change. Marx believed his laws could be observed and applied to the behavior of atoms as well as humans in society. Rather than explain Nature’s laws, Marx’s Laws only presumed much of what it supposedly claimed to explain. Furthermore, Marx’s theories of motion, proliferation and change were repudiated by observations to the contrary. In other words, science itself proved “scientific socialism” to be false.
Perhaps Marx’s biggest mistake was believing human nature, if it evolves at all, can evolve quickly and sufficiently enough to be noticeable. Adherents to Marx’s philosophy have gone even one step further and believed human nature itself could be engineered. The attempts to do so in the 20th century led to the death of over 100 million people.
Progressivism suffers from the same malady as Marxism, but is decidedly less virulent. Progressives believe in progress, naturally. But Progressives never define progress. They only tell us it’s inevitable, but they can’t tell us the direction we are going. Progressives also seem to have internal contradictions in their ideology. For example, if humans are progressing, then we should expect social ills like racism to eventually wither away. If such were the case then laws protecting certain racial minorities could one day be repealed. Progressives find this idea repellent and argue that we must always have anti-racial discrimination laws because they say we will always have racial discrimination. But if humanity is truly progressing, racial discrimination must eventually come to an end. If Progressives assume that racial discrimination will always be with us, then what is Progressiveism really all about? Progressivism seems to be rather subjective and political in this regard.
Also, it is not quite true that human society is always progressing. During the Roman Empire, Roman homes had running water and indoor plumbing. After the Roman Empire fell in the late 5th Century, Europe was without indoor plumbing for a thousand years. That advance in technology was lost for an entire millenium. So, it can hardly be said that human society makes continual forward progress. Like Marxism, Progressive ideology also has a fatal flaw.
Conservatism works because it’s not an ideology in the truest sense of the word and it comes closest to the pin in its interpretation of basic human nature. How does it do this? Well, first of all, Conservatism doesn’t have a view of how the world ought to be. It understands the world as it is. This is very different from both Marxism and Progressivism, which have a very specific view of what society should look like. Secondly, Conservatism acknowledges that human beings will always act in their own self interest, at least as a primary impulse. Our first impulse as human beings is not to act for the collective, as the Utopian Socialist or Marxist might say, but for the individual self. Finally, unlike Marxism and Progressivism, Conservatism does not hold that human nature is changeable. You could say that Conservatives find that human nature today is not very different from those of our ancestors who wrote on cave walls 10,000 years ago.
Conservatism, though not perfect, works best because it interprets the world it sees rather than to change the world. It organizes societies around Man’s basic nature to act in his self interest, rather than endeavor to change Man’s nature into something else. Economic and social relationships are organized around this reality. The results are largely harmonious, prosperous and successful societies. Conservatism has its imperfections, but when compared to the problems in Marxist or Progressive societies, they are minor.
WHERE WE ARE TODAY
Everything I have pointed out here is known to the Left Progressives, Marxists, Communists and others on the Left. They know their ideas have failed, but they have not accepted failure. At the same time, they are well aware of the success of Conservatism. But remember, to an ideologue, their ideology is like a religion. They aren’t going to abandon it. Instead of retreating into a period of introspection and reflection, they are doing all they can to seize as much power through indoctrination and propaganda as possible. Their efforts become for hysterical and radical and in some cases even violent because their only weapon against ideas that actually work for the betterment of society is fear and intimidation whose direct object is to silence the opposition.
The great social experiment into Left Progressivist government has gone on for almost 100 years. Along the way, there have been some good ideas like weekends, and paid vacation time for employees, but many bad ideas too, like Prohibition. It is time for the Progressives to move aside and let Conservatism work instead of impeding it. They aren’t likely to do so because they have learned from the success of the Ronald Reagan Presidency and the later Reagan Revolution in Congress that Conservative solutions work and they represent an existential threat to the Progressive Left agenda which has been a dismal failure for many decades. So, in some sense, their fanatical hysteria understandable. They know that Conservative policy implementation would be very likely to be successful and gain broad popular support. Their opposition to Conservatism has a great deal to do with preserving their power and less with the good of society. Progressives are in both political parties. It’s part of the reason so little ever seems to change in our national politics.
The principles of the Progressive Left amounts to a counter-revolution to our Founding. They seek to fundamentally transform the United States into a centrally planned authoritarian state controlled by one political party.
VOLUME 45: The Evolution of the American Counter-revolution P2
THE EARLY 20TH CENTURY: FROM WILSON TO MARX
By the late 19th and early 20th centuries, American society was undergoing transformational change, ushered in by the Industrial Revolution. The changes were profoundly affecting the way ordinary people lived and worked. Industrialization, the growth of cities, European immigration the emergence of captains of industry and monopolistic corporate power demanded a reaction.
Whenever profound changes occur such as those experienced at the turn of the 20th century, it isn’t altogether surprising that those with unchecked power will tend to act in their own interest at the expense of others. In America, the unchecked power of business over labor led to labor organizing as a countervailing check on that power. This was a natural consequence of the rapid development experienced at the time, but it was not painless.
By 1900, and for about the previous 50 years, new political and economic philosophies were becoming popularized. Two of the most prominent were Progressivism and Marxism, which is often called “scientific socialism” because it is presumably based on the scientific method and observation.
Both ideologies saw themselves as new thinking, but they really were not new at all. It was the same old form of historical despotism, just cloaked in the phony and discredited “science” of “scientific socialism” or “progress.”
Progressives generally share the desire for the central government to be more activist. That is, the default position was 180 degrees out of phase with the position of the Founders and Framers who believed that the Federal government’s default position was to not intervene in social and commercial affairs, except under unusual circumstances.
Whether they were Marxist adherents to the philosophy of scientific socialism, or they were Progressives, both of these veins of thought were counter-revolutionary ideas to the American revolution. The danger in them was their capitulation to the ancient fear the Framers labored so long to avoid: an all powerful central government.
While some right Progressives settled in the Republican Party, Marxists and Left Progressives found their home in the Democratic Party. After the success of the Russian Revolution and the rise of a government based on the principles of scientific socialism, the western democracies, including the United States experienced a “Red Scare”. The threat of international communism, however, was blunted at the time because it was recognized as atheistic and antithetical to any of our founding American principles. For that part of the 20th century between the Russian Revolution and the outbreak of the Second World War, Russian Communism was only a curiosity to some Americans on the political left in that Soviet experiment. Left Progressives, however, were entirely another matter.
The election of Woodrow Wilson became a watershed moment in the counter-revolution against the principles of the American founding. Wilson thought the Constitution was deficient for modern day 20th century America and proposed a new set of rights.
The Constitution has often been referred to as a charter of “negative rights.” The word “negative” here is not used to connote something bad. Rather, the Constitution sets out to limit government because the Framers of the Constitution believed the enemy of Liberty and human freedom was a government without any limiting principle. The rights outlined in the Constitution set forth those limitations on government that our Framers believed were essential for the continuation of our republic.
Wilson believed the Constitution should also contain a charter of “positive rights.” That is, rights you are entitled to and provided to you by the government. Wilson believed this necessary to perfect the American experiment. But Wilson was grievously in error.
One problem with positively stated rights is that they are a zero sum game in rights overall. For example, a positively stated right might be expressed as follows: “every American has the right to health care.” But in order for this right to be delivered to every American, the government must acquire property (ie., money) from someone who has it. In other words, the government must somehow deprive someone of their rights in order to fund the right to health care. Nothing can be a right if it requires some to lose their rights in order for the right to be provided. Another problem with positively stated rights is that they are subjected to the discretion and definition of those in government holding the power to define what those rights mean in real terms. If the government determines an 80 year old man diagnosed with cancer should not be treated for the disease because resources are limited and needed to treat others who are younger, haven’t the health care rights of the 80 year old been violated simply because a faceless government bureaucrat has decided resources cannot be provided? This becomes an exercise in dehumanizing people.
This is what the Framers feared. The bastardization of their ideas and hopes for America. The greater the power and scope of the central government, there is an associated diminishing of importance of the individual and individual freedom. Moreover, a nation also experiencing robust growth in its population either through immigration or birthrates will also experience a dilution of representation. In current day America, each member of the House of Representatives has approximately 725,000 constituents in their district. In 1967, 50 years ago, the average was 460,000. This makes the case of the Framers even more powerful that the best government is that which is closest to the people.
VOLUME 44: The Firing of James Comey
FBI Director James Comey was fired for all the right reasons, but the reaction of Democrats has been irrational and incoherent.
VOLUME 43: The Evolution of the American Counter-revolution P1
How did America today become so divided? This is first in a series explaining the origins of our current day divisions by looking at the historical roots.
THE EVOLUTION OF THE AMERICAN COUNTER-REVOLUTION
FROM THE FOUNDING TO THE EARLY 20TH CENTURY
In 1776, Thomas Jefferson wrote in the Declaration of Independence, “Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes.” Speaking for the Continental Congress, Jefferson was making the point that the American Revolution was not the spontaneous uprising of a mob, but the result of a long series of events, culminating in the Declaration he largely authored.
The result of our American Revolution was the establishment of the first new form of government in 5,000 years of human history. The United States of America was the first country established on the basis of an idea. It was the first time any country or any government anywhere or at any time gave recognition to the dignity and sovereignty of the individual. In monarchies rights flowed from the monarch who was the sole sovereign. In many cases, the monarch as sovereign was designated as such by God. In some cases, monarchs themselves were thought to be dieties. The American Revolution became the culmination of a movement away from monarchy and toward a new, more stable form of democracy.
Democracy by itself is perhaps the worst form of government because it quickly descends into chaos and mob rule. Historically, attempts at democracy have disintegrated. One reason the American Revolution succeeded was that it borrowed elements of democracy without adopting it wholesale, thereby sidestepping most of its pitfalls.
The American Founders also wanted a republic of laws. Here too, they sought to avoid the shortcomings of a purely republican form of government. The genius of the Founders was their ability to blend the legal framework of a republic with the the most cherished principles of a democracy, while at the same time maintaining the rights of those in the minority.
The Founders saw individuals as sovereign and the rights to each as inalienable. That is, a birthright, not a grant of government or kings. These are our God given rights. They require no funding from governments to secure. They are the most critical and essential rights of all. The Declaration of Independence was something totally new. A statement that human beings, as individuals, have sovereignty of their own and rights that come along with that sovereignty which no one can grant or arbitrarily take away.
This revolutionary idea in the Declaration of Independence enabled sovereign individuals to associate and organize their collective interests into a government of the people, comprised by the people and not a class of aristocrats or an ancient line of royalty, in order to act in the interests of the people, deriving their authority to act on the people’s behalf through the consent of the people themselves.
The Declaration of Independence and American Revolution makes every American faithful to those founding principles, partners in the Revolution and in the advance of the whole of humanity away from despotism and toward human liberty and freedom.
Those principles which are embodied in the Constitution are the most unique and truly revolutionary statements ever made. The long train of history makes it quite evident that governments were almost exclusively a succession of powerful men or groups of men, imposing their will on all of society. The rule of men, not the rule of law. The newly formed United States of America stood as the sole departure from that historical trend. It alone was the light in the darkness. For the first time in all of human history, a country and government was organized around the principle of Individual Liberty.
Since the Founding, enemies of the American Revolution and what it stood for, have sought to erode this Constitutional Republic. This was not altogether unforeseen by the Founders and the Framers. Indeed, one of their primary concerns was how previous governments of all varieties, tended to centralize power and authority into fewer and fewer hands over time. Among the countless challenges in fashioning a workable form of government, the power and scope of the central Federal authority was most concerning to them. If they were to be successful, they needed a design that would combat the trend toward centralization.
Their very first attempt, The Articles of Confederation, failed because this concern over Federal power led to an unworkable design. The Constitution that was eventually passed empowered the Federal government just enough to hold the Union together.
All questions of Federal authority were not settled. The divisive and controversial issue regarding the continuation of the slave trade and practice of slavery were not ripened enough to be tackled in the 1780s. Still, the original Constitution did contain a sunset provision for a large part of the slave trade. Article 1 Section 9 of the Constitution banned the importation of slaves 20 years after the Constitution was adopted. It is an often overlooked provision in the Constitution, but it makes clear that the Framers were not silent on the issue of Slavery at all. In fact, it underscores their acknowledgment that the institution of Slavery was abhorrent to a majority of them.
The tragedy was that too much of the economy in the South was dependent on slave labor. This was a problem all over the Western world at the time. The abolitionist movement in Great Britain at the same time was grappling with the same questions: how to eliminate the institution of slavery without completely disrupting the economy?
Abolitionists in America and Britain both believed a two step process was needed. First, to ban the importation and trading of slaves. Second, to ban the practice of slavery. Clearly, Article 1 Section 9 was a step toward the former. Though it had no effect of trading slaves inside the United States, it banned further importation of slaves.
Settling the question of the trade and practice of slavery implied the imposition of a Federal solution at a time when Federal authority was at its low point. Notwithstanding the issue of slavery, there was proper cause to keep Federal authority as weak as it was.
But the issue needed to be resolved one way or the other for the entire country. In the 1780s, there was no way to solve this dilemma and still have a united country.
The Civil War, which broke out just 85 years after the Declaration was a test of Federal authority made necessary by what the Framers left unfinished. The Civil War was not only about the institution of Slavery. Ultimately, it was about who gets to decide momentous questions such as: is a negro a human being or property? The Southern slave states believed they had the right to determine whether slavery was appropriate for themselves. Abraham Lincoln had a different view. In 1854, Mr. Lincoln in response to Stephen Douglas said this:
“The doctrine of self government is right, absolutely and internally right; but it has no just application as here attempted. Or perhaps I should rather say that whether it has any application here depends on whether a negro is not or is a man. If he is not a man, in that case he who is a man may, as a matter of self-government, do just what he pleases with him. But if the negro is a man, is it not to that extent a total destruction of self-government to say that he, too, shall not govern himself? When the white man governs himself, that is self-government; but when he governs himself and governs another man, that is more than self-government, that is despotism.”
Lincoln understood that states do have the right to govern themselves. When it came to the question of slavery, however, faith and allegiance to the Declaration of Independence and our Constitutional principles demanded that we confront the obvious reality that black people are human beings entitled to all the same rights as white people or human beings of any other race.
A few years later in 1858, upon being nominated to the United States Senate, Abraham Lincoln made another speech about the impending crisis:
“A house divided against itself cannot stand. I believe this government cannot endure permanently, half slave and half free. I do not expect the Union to be dissolved, I do not expect the house to fall; but I do expect it will cease to be divided. It will become all one thing or all the other. Either the opponents of Slavery will arrest the further spread of it, and place it where the public mind shall rest in the belief that it is in the course of ultimate extinction; or its advocates will push it forward till it shall become alike lawful in all the states, old as well as new, North as well as South.”
For Lincoln, the question of Slavery was more than a moral question. It challenged the limitations of state’s rights under the 10th Amendment as well as the central government’s authority to impose adherence to the larger Constitutional protections for people.
The divisions over Slavery that led to the Civil War centered on the question of who gets to decide whether there is or is not slavery in a state. It took a bloody war to settle the question. The principle established, resulting from the war, was the Federal government has a duty to ensure that the Constitutional rights of Americans are protected and that no state can enact laws which are determined to violate those rights. It seems like a simple and obvious answer today, but it wasn’t in the mid-19th century. The Civil War resulted in a necessary extension of Federal authority over the states. In effect, it was the footnote to the Constitution missing at the Founding, written in blood.
Over the past 230 years, the power of the Federal government has grown well past anything the Framers would have been comfortable with. Nevertheless, the Civil War was not an overreach of Federal authority, but rather the completion of the unfinished business left by the Framers of the Constitution. It established the conditions under which the Federal government was justified imposing on and overruling state authority.
VOLUME 42: When the Race Card Stops Working
VOLUME 41: The March for Science
VOLUME 40: Leftist Fascism and Fox News
Fox News’s firing of Bill O’Reilly was a victory for the crusading fascist left that seeks to silence all conservative voices in the media. The left poses a grave threat to freedom of political expression and that threat is growing.
VOLUME 39: The Trump Presidency: How did we get here?
VOLUME 38: Dallas: How did we get here?
VOLUME 37: In Defense of Gary Byrne, Author of Crisis of Character
VOLUME 36: Brexit
VOLUME 35: The NYC Human Rights Commission
The NYC Commission on Human Rights has issued legal guidance regarding how to address transgenders, lest one become exposed to serious major legal liabilities, amounting to fines as much as $250,000.
What is the proper way to address a transgender individual? The answer is, what ever way they demand you address them. These new rules, however, are not restricted to transgenders and can be equally applied along lines of race and religion, as well.
The result of these new rules will be chaos because there is no objective determining factor deciding how a person is to be addressed. A white, male, heterosexual, Catholic, could demand to be addressed as Miss Polly Prissypants because that person identifies himself as such. There is no limitation in this ruling by the NYC Commission on Human Rights because it’s all determined by the individual themselves.
If this sounds insane. Good. You’re of those folks who still has both feet on the ground, because this is outrageous.
While people can demand to be addressed however they wish to be addressed, it should not be within the power and scope of government to compel people to address others in such a way. That is a clear violation of freedom of speech, which cannot be countenanced.
It is time for the LGBT movement to step back and reassess. Despite great national controversy, that movement has made some substantial gains even in the face of great national division on their issues.
Not unlike the Prohibitionists of the 1920s, the LGBT movement is refusing to moderate their tone. They are now pursuing ends that are so radical and repellent to people, they will place their entire movement in jeopardy. The reason Prohibition failed was because it was unyielding in its extremism. Like the Prohibition movement, the LGBT movement has the support of moderates. But during the Prohibition, rather than consolidate their gains, and moderate their stand against alcohol, they remained steadfast and unyielding. That turned the country against them. And that is what will happen with the LGBT movement, too. For, there is no indication whatsoever that they plan to moderate themselves in the least.
Frankly, that turnaround in public opinion cannot happen soon enough.
VOLUME 34: The Left, Bathrooms, Obama and the Tyranny of the Minority
THE ATTACK FROM THE LEFT
This is how the left engages in its assault on the fabric of the civil society. They look for the “soft spots” and then pick a fight. Men have been dressing as women and passing for them since dirt was new. It’s hardly an issue for a male passing himself off as a woman in dress and demeanor, to use a woman’s rest room. Who would even notice?
In their effort to undermine the civil society, the Left chooses its targets wisely. The question is first posed to the public narrowly:
Should transgender people be permitted to use public restroom facilities they identify with, rather than be limited to the restroom of the gender they were born to?
THE TYRANNY OF THE MINORITY
It seems almost ridiculous to be having the conversation for a number of reasons. To begin with, what is the legal definition of transgender? Is the controlling factor in this definition, the gender the individual identifies with or the one they were born to? Is no consideration to be given to their anatomical and genetic circumstance? Is transgender, at least for some, really more of a behavioral, rather than a physical condition? Moreover, how many people are we really talking about here? This is an important consideration, given the fact that 99.7% of all Americans who don’t identify as transgender will be compelled to accommodate 3 out of every 1,000 people who at least call themselves, “transgender.”
The most recent data from surveys including the 2006-2008 National Survey of Family Growth, the 2009 California Health Interview Survey and federal data such as the Decennial Census or the American Community Survey were analyzed by Gary Gates, a distinguished scholar at the Williams Institute of the UCLA School of Law. Those surveys state that about 0.3% of the American population “identifies as transgender”. Here’s the problem with that: it’s a subjective determination and the number of people who truly are transgender is likely to be much lower.
Without a clear, legal definition of what is transgender, how could we possibly know who is transgender? In its efforts to dictate federal policy to the states regarding so called transgender people, the Obama Administration has not only politicized the use of bathrooms, but they have issued rules that will now place school children at risk. The risk is not necessarily with a person who is genuinely transgender. Rather, the risk derives from the consequence of not having an objective definition of what a transgender person actually is. Until now, all the discussions have centered on how the individual identifies themselves, leaving that definition entirely in their hands.
As a practical matter, public school officials will have no way to prevent a male high school senior from showering with a 14 year old freshman female, provided the male declares himself as “identifying as a female.” On what basis could that ever be challenged? It also creates conditions where rape and statutory rape are more likely. How will school administrators and faculty police the school showers when they know the blunt instrumentalities of the federal government are arrayed against them? The likely outcome is that school officials will not risk a legal battle that results in the draining of resources from the school system. This will create even more chaos in the school system than already exists.
The current controversy over rest rooms and showers in public facilities and schools should come as no surprise. Since he was first elected in 2008, Barack Obama has unleashed the most militant and radical pro-homosexual agenda on Americans. It began surreptitiously in the school system.
Early in his first administration, Barack Obama appointed a “Safe Schools Czar” named Kevin Jennings. The title “Safe Schools Czar” is very misleading. Most would look at the term and feel comforted that the President cares about making schools safe for children. But that isn’t what the Safe Schools Czar was tasked to do. His job was to make schools safe for lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgenders. It was part of Obama’s pro-homosexual agenda that was hiding in plain sight and ignored by the mainstream media.
Kevin Jennings himself has quite an “interesting” background. A transcript from a 1997 speech shows Office of Safe Schools chief Kevin Jennings in the U.S. Department of Education expressed his admiration for Harry Hay, one of the nation’s first homosexual activists who launched the Mattachine Society in 1948, founded the Radical Faeries and was a longtime advocate for the North American Man-Boy Love Association, NAMBLA.
Obama appointed the most radical person anyone could have ever imagined into a position, the Congress wasn’t required to approve. Kevin Jennings had a past that was so completely off the charts radical, it’s almost impossible to overstate. Kevin Jennings was outspoken in his support of NAMBLA and the repeal of laws governing the age of sexual consent.
In 2002, after the death of Harry Hay, Jennings said, “NAMBLA’s record as a responsible gay organization is well known. NAMBLA was spawned by the gay community and has been in every major gay and lesbian march. … NAMBLA’s call for the abolition of age of consent is not the issue. NAMBLA is a bona fide participant in the gay and lesbian movement. NAMBLA deserves strong support in its rights of free speech and association and its members’ protection from discrimination and bashing,” he said.
Remember, this was Obama’s first appointee for “Safe Schools Czar.”
Kevin Jennings was the founder of the Gay, Lesbian, and Straight Education Network (GLSEN) organization of Massachusetts. GLSEN held its 10 Year Anniversary conference at Tufts University in 2000. This conference was fully supported by the Massachusetts Department of Education, the Safe Schools Program, the Governor’s Commission on Gay and Lesbian Youth, and some of the presenters even received federal money.
During the 2000 conference, workshop leaders led a “youth only, ages 14-21” session that offered lessons in “fisting” a dangerous sexual practice, where the hand is forced into another person’s anus. Fisting kits were distributed to children by Planned Parenthood, another participant in the event (pictured here).
All of this was the handiwork of Kevin Jennings, the man Barack Obama appointed. Fury erupted in Congress and eventually Jennings was forced to resign his position, but today’s actions by the Obama Justice Department and Department of Education are clear indications that Obama’s agenda to promote homosexuality in American society has not abated.
OBAMA’S RADICAL HOMOSEXUAL AGENDA
The Obama administration will send a letter to every public school district in the country telling them to allow transgender students to use bathrooms and locker rooms that match their gender identity as opposed to their birth certificate.
The letter, first obtained by The New York Times, is signed by officials at the Justice Department and Department of Education. It will be sent out to the districts on Friday.
While the letter does not have the force of law, it does warn that schools that do not abide by the administration’s interpretation of civil rights law may face lawsuits or a loss of federal aid, The Times reported.
“There is no room in our schools for discrimination of any kind, including discrimination against transgender students on the basis of their sex,” Attorney General Loretta Lynch said in a statement.
“No student should ever have to go through the experience of feeling unwelcome at school or on a college campus,” Education Secretary John B. King Jr., said in his own statement. “We must ensure that our young people know that whoever they are or wherever they come from, they have the opportunity to get a great education in an environment free from discrimination, harassment and violence.”
Under the guidance, schools are told that they must treat transgender students according to their chosen gender identity as soon as a parent or guardian notifies the district that that identity “differs from previous representations or records.” There is no obligation for a student to present a specific medical diagnosis or identification documents that reflect his or her gender identity, and equal access must be given to transgender students even in instances when it makes others uncomfortable, according to the directive.
“As is consistently recognized in civil rights cases, the desire to accommodate others’ discomfort cannot justify a policy that singles out and disadvantages a particular class of students,” the guidance says.
The administration is also releasing a separate 25-page document of questions and answers about best practices, including ways schools can make transgender students comfortable in the classroom and protect the privacy rights of all students in restrooms or locker rooms.
The move was cheered by Human Rights Campaign, a gay, lesbian and transgender civil rights organization, which called the guidelines “groundbreaking.”
“This is a truly significant moment not only for transgender young people but for all young people, sending a message that every student deserves to be treated fairly and supported by their teachers and schools,” HRC President Chad Griffin said in a statement.
Earlier this week, the Justice Department and the state of North Carolina filed dueling lawsuits over the state’s controversial “bathroom” law, with the Obama administration answering an early-morning lawsuit filed by Republican Gov. Pat McCrory with legal action of its own.
In their suit, the DOJ alleged a “pattern or practice of employment discrimination on the basis of sex” against the state over the law requiring transgender people to use bathrooms that correspond with the sex on their birth certificate.
McCrory, in his lawsuit, accused the administration of a “baseless and blatant overreach” in trying to get the policy scrapped.
“This is an attempt to unilaterally rewrite long-established federal civil rights laws in a manner that is wholly inconsistent with the intent of Congress and disregards decades of statutory interpretation by the Courts,” the state’s suit, filed in U.S. District Court in the Eastern District of North Carolina, said.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.
VOLUME 33: The Radicalization of the Democratic Party
Where Did the Democratic Party Go?
What happened to the Democratic Party? Today, much of the media focuses its attention on the turmoil in the GOP, but the Republicans haven’t gone through the ideological transformation the Democrats have. For the GOP, their rancor is largely centered over whether the party leadership has remained true to its ideals of lower taxes, smaller government, law and order and a muscular national defense. On the Democratic side, the
ideological premise of the Democratic Party has shifted. The shift has been unmistakably left. So far left in fact, Democrats
can now with almost cavalier indifference claim avowed socialists like Bernie Sanders and even communists, like Van Jones as part of their family. It wasn’t very long ago, making such an accusation was fighting words. So, what happened to the Democratic Party? When did this shift occur?
The transformation of the Democratic Party didn’t happen overnight. It happened over decades. During those years, there were a number of events, marking turning points along the way. The purpose here will be to point to the most important milestones in the intellectual and ideological changes that laid the foundations for the radicalism we see today in the Democratic Party.
1: THE MOVE TOWARD PROGRESSIVISM
Many Democrats today call themselves “Progressives.” To the uninformed ear, the term itself connotes movement in a direction that would at first glance seem positive. After all, who is against progress? It was precisely for this reason the early 20th century progressives adopted the term to describe themselves. What role did Progressives play in party politics in the early 20th century and how does that relate to today?
Progressivism was a reactionary response to the rapid social changes brought about by modernization and the Industrial Revolution. Early 20th
century Progressives were reformers. They hailed from both political parties. Teddy Roosevelt, a Republican and Woodrow Wilson, a Democrat, were both Progressives. At their core, Progressives believed in activist government and had little use for strict constitutional interpretations with respect to limiting government’s power and role in people’s lives. They believed a powerful national government was necessary as a countervailing force against the rise of monopolistic corporate power in both industry and finance. Further, they saw national government as a vehicle to enact positive social change.
During the second decade of the 20th century, Progressives accomplished a number of changes. Ending the practice of child labor, organized labor, the enactment of an income tax, enfranchising women with the right to vote and the prohibition of alcohol throughout the United States, were all efforts, spearheaded by Progressives. Although the results of these efforts were not all met with universal approval, Progressivism as a political movement became embedded as a permanent feature in the American body politic.
2. THE RUSSIAN REVOLUTION
Toward the end of World War I, there was a civil war in Russia. Revolutionary Marxists calling themselves Bolsheviks (translated to mean , “The Majority”), overthrew the Tsar, murdering him and the entire royal family. The Russian Revolution marked the first time any country was founded based on the Marxist theories of socialism. The Russian Revolution created a wave of excitement in the west, including the United States. In Russia,
they were beginning an entirely different form of government based on the working classes of people, using the writings of Karl Marx and their practical application by Vladimir Lenin. To call the new Soviet state a bold experiment is an understatement.
The excitement on the Progressive Left in America could hardly have been greater. Revolutionary communists and socialists grew in popularity in the United States, particularly among the academic classes, but also in organized labor, a Democratic Party progressive stronghold. Soviet style communism in the United States stopped short of being widely accepted, but the seeds of subversion were planted in a number of key institutions: namely, academia and organized labor.
3. THE ALGER HISS AFFAIR
Alger Hiss was a top level State Department adviser to President Truman and was appointed by him to represent the United States in drafting the U.N. Charter. Hiss was highly respected by leading Democrats all throughout the Washington, D.C. establishment. In 1948, a Congressman from California, named Richard Nixon accused Hiss of being a Soviet spy based on evidence and testimony of a former communist spy, Whittaker Chambers. The Democrats erupted with outrage against Nixon and Chambers. Leading Democrats rushed to the defense of Hiss, vouching for his
loyalties to the United States in sworn Congressional testimony. Rarely has a defense team ever assembled so impressive a
batch of character witnesses as appeared on behalf of Alger Hiss. The list included two U. S. Supreme Court justices, a former Solicitor General, and both former (John W. Davis) and future (Adlai Stevenson) Democratic presidential nominees. Justice Felix Frankfurter described Hiss’s reputation as “excellent.” Justice Stanley Reed said of Hiss’s reputation, “I have never heard it questioned until these matters came up.”
Ultimately, Hiss could not be charged with espionage since the statute of limitations had expired, but was convicted on two counts of perjury connected to investigation about the alleged espionage. It remained a stain on the reputation of the Democratic Party lasting for many years. Not merely because someone so close to the President was an agent of the Soviet Union, but because he was so prominent, well respected and so many equally prominent Democrats stood up to defend a guilty man.
For Nixon, it both catapulted him into the Vice Presidency and made him the most reviled Republican among Democrats. The Hiss Affair made it possible for the people to question the loyalties of Democrats. After all, what does it say of a Democratic Party when Soviet spies, socialists,
communists and other disloyal Americans can find comfort there? Much of Nixon’s later troubles with the media and Democrats were the residual effects of bitterness over the Alger Hiss affair. Surely, nobody would suggest that all or even most Democrats at the time were less than patriotic. But it did suggest that in at least some precincts of the Democratic Party, subversive thinking was tolerated. The Hiss Affair exposed that dirty little secret and as a result, the nation was shocked. The Alger Hiss controversy occurred in the early part of the Cold War era, when suspicions ran high and often turned into paranoia.
For years after the Hiss’s conviction, the debates over his innocence or guilt raged. It wasn’t until the fall of the Soviet Union in the early 1990s and the declassification of KGB documents, which clearly showed that Hiss was indeed a Soviet spy, was the matter settled. Hiss was a traitor.
It should be remembered that Alger Hiss, like many Soviet sympathizing communists, spent their formative years in the first two decades of the 20th century, which were so consequential in the development of the Progressive left and the effect on it from the Russian Revolution.
The Hiss controversy is important because it is illustrative of how leftist extremists were able to hide amongst rank and file Democrats, gain their trust and avoid detection. Over the decades, as the power of the extreme left of the Democratic party grew, it would become less and less necessary to hide their loyalties, or lack thereof.
4. THE ASSASSINATION OF PRESIDENT KENNEDY AND THE RISE OF THE WELFARE STATE
The seminal event that marked the change in the Democratic Party was the assassination of John F. Kennedy and the ascension of Lyndon Johnson to the Presidency. Johnson, a Texan and former majority leader of the Senate, blocked or watered down every attempt by the Eisenhower Administration at Civil Rights legislation. With the death of Kennedy, however, Johnson, ever the opportunist, was able to forge a new alliance between southern blacks and the Democratic Party with the promise of a War on Poverty, new Civil Rights legislation and laws ensuring voting rights. Ironically, it was Republican support that helped pass those measures.
Johnson, knew he needed to disassociate the Democratic Party from the harsh images of Southern white supremacy, which was entirely owned by the Democrats. He saw his opportunity with the War on Poverty. Johnson was an FDR New Deal Democrat and he took his lessons from the New Deal which secured wide Democratic majorities in Congress. Those majorities were won with high cost government programs which were supposed to address a social ill. In the New Deal, the problem was mass unemployment. Although the New Deal failed to correct the Depression era problems of unemployment, politically, even in failure, they provided the Democrats with Congressional majorities lasting decades. Johnson was a witness to this.
Johnson merely employed the New Deal model. Even if it were possible for a government program to end poverty, that was not his political goal. Rather, Johnson’s political goal with the War on Poverty was to secure voting majorities for Democrats, particularly from Southern blacks, who for more than a century were reliable Republican voters. Secondarily, he could change the image of the Democratic Party in the
South from one of intolerant white supremacists, important in an age where images on broadcast television shaped public opinion.
Prior to the adoption of all of LBJ’s poverty programs, leading Democrats, like Daniel Patrick Moynihan warned that they would create a crippling dependency on government. Moynihan believed these programs could cause the family unit to disintegrate since benefits were distributed based on need only. Without proper administration, Moynihan said, breadwinner males would have a perverse incentive to be out of the home. In other words, fatherlessness would be rewarded. This is called a “moral hazard.” A moral hazard happens when a public policy encourages morally destructive behavior. Those LBJ era programs did just that and people like Moynihan warned about it at the time and were dismissed or ignored.
At the time, the rate of black illegitimacy was at or below the white rate, about 20%. In the half century since the advent of the War on Poverty, black illegitimacy is 73% and showing no signs whatsoever of being reversed. All of this leads to a predisposition on the part of the dependent class to demand more from government. And government is what the extreme left is all about.
While Johnson’s programs had their greatest and most deleterious impact on the population of poor blacks, it was not limited to blacks at all. The majority of Americans affected by these programs were white. What Johnson achieved for the Democratic Party, however, was to change its image. His diabolical gambit was to ensure a permanent voter base of people dependent on government. He targeted blacks because he knew it would be difficult to oppose government programs for the poor without appearing cold blooded or even racist. Everyone wants to help the poor, but not everyone believes it’s government’s role to actually help with financial support for the very reason that it could create the same crippling dependency Moynihan warned about and ultimately do more harm than good.
Over the half century since LBJ’s programs, the black family has virtually dissolved, young black men between 15 and 30 are responsible for at least half of all violent crime, poor blacks are deprived of school choice because of the power of teachers unions, the ever increasing minimum wage promoted by leftists puts more and more unskilled and inexperienced young people out of work, abortion on demand causes more babies to be aborted than born in some major cities like New York, and the sense of hopelessness keeps increasing, placing ever greater demands on government for solutions. But the solutions over the past half century have failed and suggesting a change in direction is often labeled as “racist.” As the demands grow louder, they also become more radical out of a sense of unfairness and disenfranchisement.
With a population of people dependent on the government, the left extremists in the Democratic Party now had a constituency they could nurture and grow with the promise of greater benefits in the name of vaguely defined principles like “fairness.” By 1966, Columbia University professors, Richard
Cloward and Frances Fox Piven devised a strategy to end poverty by “overloading” the US welfare system to force its collapse in the hopes that it would be replaced by “a guaranteed annual income and thus an end to poverty”. Whether this is full blown socialism or not isn’t the point. It is yet another inroad into the mainstream of the American body politic. It is a rallying point, around which truly extreme socialists and communists could organize and subvert the current system of free market capitalism and constitutional government.
Inside the dependent class, leftists have ferreted their way in to promote all manner and form of grievances. The proliferation of a grievance culture is now at epidemic levels. Progressives have teamed with militant radicals to demand fundamental changes to basic institutions. In some cities and states, birth certificates no longer carry “mother” and “father”, but “Parent A” and Parent B”. Marriage no longer means what it always meant for centuries. Government is in your life in every way imaginable and imagining new ways every day.
The people now in control of policy in the Democratic Party are not in the mainstream. They have more in common with Alger Hiss than John F Kennedy or even Lyndon Johnson. These are leftist radicals. What we label them is less important than recognizing what they are and how it got this way.
VOLUME 32: The NRA Challenges Obama to a 1 on 1 debate
Barack Obama likes to punch those he knows won’t fight back. He does it all the time.
The GOP establishment are the most prominent, but least sympathetic of his victims. They seem to fear the image of a nearly all-white contingent of politicians aggressively opposing the first black president. Nevermind the fact that the black president also happens to be the most radical subversive ever elected to the office. That fact is subordinated to GOP concerns over their public image. The Republicans in Congress don’t act out of fear. They don’t wish to offend the racial sensitivities of the Democrats and their allies in the media, lest they unleash a barrage of accusations, however false they may be, that their opposition is based less on principles than on racial antipathies. The shame of the Republican establishment is how little Constitutional principles matter to them, at least when compared to their own political fortunes. The tragedy is the GOP establishment is the one group which could fight back against the radicalism of the Obama Administration, but don’t. And by doing so, they enable the most authoritarian impulses in the President.
Those authoritarian impulses of Obama were evident from the very beginning of his administration. He fired the CEO of General Motors, Rick Waggoner. Something he had no authority to do. Where is it written that the President has the authority to fire the chief executive office of a major American corporation? There was no Congressional response to that overreach. And when there is no response to such things, it encourages more of those things.
About the same time, Chrysler was going through a bankruptcy. Established bankruptcy laws have been in place for centuries. These laws are to the stability of our credit markets. In a typical bankruptcy, creditors have their claims settled first, before the claims of shareholders. This is done to minimize risk to other businesses in securing credit to finance themselves. If the creditors claims are not settled first, uncertainty and risk in lending necessarily increases. After all, would you lend money to a business if you suspected if and when that business failed, a politician might intervene to upend existing laws to help his political allies? That’s exactly what happened in the Chrysler bankruptcy. The Obama Administration intervened and placed the shareholder claims of the United Auto Workers above the claims of the secured creditors. That led to a virtual freeze on business lending.
Again, there was no response from the Congress or the Judiciary.
The Little Sisters of the Poor
Tea Party and Conservative Groups
Spying on Congress
Snubbing allies like Great Britain, Israel, Jordan and Poland
Police organizations all over America
The list goes on and on and on. But there is one group that has stood up to Barack Obama radicalism. The National Rifle Association. Despite being continuously slandered by Obama and his anti-Second Amendment friends, the NRA has stood firm and has hit back. And Obama doesn’t like it one bit. He’s been so conditioned to getting his way on practically everything, he can’t stomach it when the other side pushes back and pushes back hard. Obama’s gutlessness has been exposed by our international adversaries over and over.
He drew a red line in Syria, then backed off.
He gave into Russian aggression in the Crimea as though he was a weak kitten.
He hasn’t supported the Ukraine with the arms they asked for just to defend themselves.
He’s ignored the pleas of Iraqi Kurds for arms.
He abandoned Poland without being prompted.
He’s capitulated to Iran rather than adopt anything resembling a hard line.
He infamously offered flexibility to the notoriously inflexible and difficult Russians.
He has projected weakness and provoked aggression from all of our adversaries. Among world leaders, there is no doubt that Barack Obama is a weakling, fearful of confrontation from anyone who can push back. Domestically, it’s no different. Obama usually only pushes when he knows there won’t be resistance. But Obama is bound and determined to destroy the Constitutional Republic we have. That’s what fundamental transformation is all about. And as history teaches us, one key element to the victory of authoritarian dictatorship over a Constitutional Republic based on individual sovereignty is to end the individual right to keep and bear arms. A disarmed populace is a cornerstone for dictatorship.
There are those who scoff at the idea that the American public could ever be totally disarmed. But I would stipulate that it doesn’t need to be totally disarmed, if it can be substantially disarmed and those remaining armed criminalized. It accomplishes the same thing. But if Barack Obama were truly a man of honor and political courage, he would accept the challenge of Wayne LaPierre of the NRA. If he doesn’t, why doesn’t he? If Obama honestly believes the argument in favor of what he wants to do with respect to firearms, then confront your leading opponent. Debate him. Discredit him. If you have the courage. But we all know what Obama’s answer will be, don’t we?
VOLUME 31: Why Obama Won’t Destroy ISIS
The Islamic State in Iraq and Syria, ISIS, is the richest terrorist organization in history. Much of their funding comes from oil from lands they occupy, which they are able to sell to buyers willing to deal with them. Key to any strategy to defeat ISIS would be to destroy the source of their funding: oil. This would seem to be a rather obvious strategy. Destroy ISIS’s oil supplies. Render them useless and ISIS will be starved of funding. Combined with other actions, the terror group could be routed in relatively short order.
But Barack Obama has refused to bomb the tanker trucks carrying that oil. What possible reasons could exist for not bombing them? The answer to that question is bewildering. You might find the answers irrational at best. Others might find the answers perhaps even treasonous.
Why does Barack Obama refuse to bomb the oil tanker trucks? He’s afraid someone might get hurt. That’s not an exaggeration. The Obama Administration has said, that out of an abundance of caution for the safety of the tanker truck drivers, they have not bombed those trucks. The Obama Administration seems to think the drivers of those trucks are being compelled to drive them at gunpoint by ISIS. There is no evidence of this.
Why then, does Obama not order them bombed? Because he doesn’t want them bombed. It’s as simple as that. If he really wanted to destroy ISIS, he wouldn’t look for reasons not to destroy them.
To further bolster his screwball decision not to bomb the ISIS oil resources that are the lifeblood of that genocidal organization, Obama’s Administration also claimed bombing the tanker trucks would have an adverse impact on environment. Defeating ISIS apparently adds to the “problem” of climate change. That’s not a joke, folks.
Let’s sum it up. The President of the United States, Barack Hussein Obama, refuses to destroy the oil resources of the most genocidal terrorist group on the planet because he’s afraid he’s going to hurt people, litter and cause more global warming. This President, by inaction and cowardice is imperiling the lives of Americans because he’s afraid he’s going to hurt a handful of ISIS sympathizing truck drivers and upset the Democrats largest contributor, environmentalist fanatic billionaire, Tom Steyer.
Obama is fond of making speeches where he lectures us that “the arc of history bends towards justice.” Obama is an idiot. The arc of history doesn’t bend towards justice on its own. It is bent towards justice by men of principled determination who bend it. It doesn’t happen through the empty rhetoric of a coward, who lacks the fortitude to pursue justice with manly firmness.
OBAMA ANNOUNCES RED LINE IN SYRIA
OBAMA DENIES HE ANNOUNCED RED LINE IN SYRIA
VOLUME 30: The Mother of All Social Problems: A Corrupt 4th Estate
THE NEWS MEDIA
America in 2015 faces enormous social problems. Throughout our history, America has always faced enormous social problems. Today’s problems are not any more challenging than those we faced in days gone by. There has never been a time where America experienced a period of unimpeded bliss. Every decade in each generation presented its own challenges to our constitutional guarantees.
THE CHALLENGE OF THIS GENERATION
We live in a period of pervasive institutional corruption. Corruption seems present in every direction we look. This too, is not new. Corruption is what leads to reformation movements. America has had plenty of those. In fact, the great strength of the United States of America, is our ability to renew ourselves and our commitment to the principles of our founding. Nevertheless, what is unique about the corruption we see today is how that corruption has now affected the news media. Media corruption is not new or unique to this generation, but the pervasiveness of that corruption is new.
HOW HAS THE MEDIA BEEN CORRUPTED
In a word, the media has been politicized. Journalists are human and as such are subject to the flaws and frailties everyone experiences. Journalists, reporters, and editorial boards of newspapers have always had their biases. In the past, it was taboo for that bias to bleed into what was supposed to be straight and unbiased news reporting. It still happened, though. Walter Duranty of the New York Times is probably the best example of how journalists can compromise their own credibility when influenced by political leaders they favor. Duranty was the Moscow Bureau Chief for the New York Times during the years Joseph Stalin was deliberately starving 7 million Kulaks to death in 1931-32. All during that time, Duranty was aware of the plight of the Kulaks, but continued to report on the Soviet Union under Stalin in glowing terms. Duranty’s reports were accepted enthusiastically by the left wing progressives in the US, looking for FDR to recognize the USSR. His work has long been discredited. But Duranty was just one man and not indicative of a systemic problem.
Everything began to change after it became acceptable for political operatives to become journalists. In years past, it was acceptable for a newsman to switch careers into politics, but not for anyone involved in a political career to become a newsman. On the surface, this may appear unfair. But it’s precisely about appearances that the news media was concerned. Even the appearance of being less than neutral was enough to be excluded from the ranks of journalists. Clearly, someone who worked in partisan political organizations lost the appearance of impartiality. Once the veil of impartiality has been pierced, it is pierced permanently.
But that standard is no longer held. Today, there are a great many former party apparatchiks posing as unbiased newsmen in critical positions in the news media, both on air and behind the cameras. Although it is possible for these people to come from any political party, they are almost universally Democrats. It should be made clear here that this refers to newsmen, reporters, journalists and anchormen whose job it is to report the news without bias and impartially. News commentary and opinion pundits are not subject to the same standard. In those cases, they only need to fully disclose their former or present political connections.
The media corruption today runs deeper than most Americans may realize. There are also numerous cases of elite media news people with close relatives or spouses also in high positions within the government, which they are supposedly holding accountable. Here again, we seen another ethical violation where the appearance of compromised professional integrity is ignored as if it doesn’t matter at all. see The Incestuous Relationship Between Media and Democrats
THE DEMOCRATIC DEBATE: THE SHILL AND THE PITCHMAN
The behavior of the media in Republican debates is nothing short of appalling. Particularly when contrasted with the same media’s behavior in Democratic debates. Debate moderators should ask tough questions. The character of the questions reflects a striking level of bias. Questions posed to Democrats are not hostile. Media questions to Democrats don’t pit them against each other. If one examines the CNN Democratic debate, there wasn’t a single question designed to bring any of the candidates in conflict with each other. The result was, it wasn’t really a debate. A debate is supposed to compare and contrast the differing views of candidates, where each can have their ideas challenged by other candidates. That isn’t what happened at the CNN Democratic debate. It amounts to something resembling a 2 hour infomercial, where the shill and the pitchman pretend to be conducting legitimate interview. Unfortunately, the media behavior in the Democratic debates have made it transparently obvious they’re all playing on the same team.
CONSEQUENCES FOR AMERICA
Conservatives have legitimate and workable solutions to every problem facing the country but they will never be given a fair hearing as long as the news media remains corrupted. Americans should demand reimposition of ethical standards long abandoned by professional journalists. No one with a previous political career should ever anchor a news program like Meet the Press (eg., Chuck Todd, former staffer for Democrat Senator, Tom Harkin). No one should have editorial control over news programming when they have close family members in a Presidential administration (eg., David Rhodes, CBS News and Ben Rhodes, Obama National Security Adviser). No former Presidential spokesmen should pretend to be unbiased news anchors (eg., George Stephanopoulos, ABC This Week and former Clinton Press Secretary). All of these and many more should be considered violations of journalistic ethics and strictly prohibited. The media must be held to the highest standards or we will lose this republic.
VOLUME 29: Sometimes the Left Catches On
Some on the Left Finally Understand their Leadership Crisis
Most Liberals are a bit slow, but eventually some do catch on. Yesterday, the following article appeared on the website, Vox.com:
What is news today on Vox was highlighted on GreatVocalMajority.com 8 months ago. What is news on Vox was highlighted on GreatVocalMajority.com 8 months ago.
Better late than never. I’ll say this much about the Vox article. At least it is an honest attempt to point out the weakness of the Democratic Party at the state and local level. Not many Democrats are willing to do that. They are so busy crafting excuses for their failures, they never stop to consider that perhaps their political failures are policy related. But not so with Matthew Yglesias, who very cogently, albeit belatedly points out what should have been obvious to Democrats in the immediate aftermath of the 2014 Congressional Midterms.
The question that needs to be asked is why has this catastrophe for Democrats been largely ignored or dismissed? There are several reasons. Mr. Yglesias believes it’s denial. This is true, but it is a denial that is media enabled. Cable news and the blogosphere are almost entirely focused on politics at the national level. Almost no attention at all is given to sate level politics and even when it is, it centers on a controversy. Such was the case with Scott Walker in Wisconsin, for example. Coupled with the fact that Conservative and Tea Party groups have been organizing locally across the nation, without any countervailing answer from the left, the Democrats have allowed the initiative at the state and local levels to be seized away from them and there is little chance they will wrest it back any time soon.
GreatVocalMajority.com Report on Democrat Leadership Crisis in February 2015.
How Democrats are Reacting to the Problem
In response, the national Democratic Party has become much more radicalized. Now, candidates and some other party members are speaking openly of allowing illegal immigrants voting privileges. Although it is hard to imagine with the Motor Voter Law, at least some illegals aren’t already voting. Furthermore, the fear of a wave of newly registered illegal alien voters has created a renewed effort at assuring the integrity of election results with Voter ID laws. It should come as no surprise that Democrats see this as a major threat to their chances. They should.
Nevertheless, the Republicans seem a bit slow footed in their defense of the Voter ID laws. Democrats howl that the Voter ID laws are actually voter suppression and propose to fix a non-existent problem. This argument seems powerful, but it really isn’t once you poke at it. To explain this, think of voting as a process, which it is. It is the process by which we elect people to office.
Many years ago, more than I would admit to, I was an auditor. As an auditor, one of your responsibilities is to ensure there is no fraudulent activity in the organization under audit. But even when no fraud exists, an auditor’s job doesn’t end there. The auditor must ensure that the processes being used by the organization aren’t vulnerable to fraud. This is key to understand when considering the need for Voter ID Laws. The absence of voter fraud is no assurance that the voting process is secure from risk. If the process of voting relies on the honesty of the people engaged in the process, without the necessary safeguards, then it is only a matter of time before the opportunistic fraudster avails themselves of those vulnerabilities.
So, when Democrats say, “there is no evidence of voter fraud”, the correct response from anyone interested in voting integrity should be: “We should’t wait for voter fraud to happen, when the process we now have is vulnerable to it and there is a reasonable solution that will accommodate every single person who is eligible to vote.”
The integrity of the vote should be of paramount importance to all Americans, especially since there have been so many close elections, turning on recounts. Victory in an election is of less importance than assuring the public that the final result is the true voice of the people. Integrity matters. Or at least it should. Even to Democrats. And one must wonder,why on earth it does not if there is no monkey business going on right now.
The divisiveness and radicalization of the Democratic Party that we are now witnessing is a direct result of the clear an unambiguous repudiation of their agenda by the American people at the state and local level. But in their response to it, take a look at what the Democrats are doing. They are demanding the legalization of at least 10 million illegal aliens, most of whom, conventional wisdom dictates, would vote Democratic. They are playing the race card, labeling the Voter ID laws, a “poll tax”, despite the fact that Voter ID cards are free and nobody would be prohibited from voting without one. Every state with a voter id law, provides for free id’s and provisional ballots to those without one, and 10 business days to acquire one in order to vote. That’s hardly a poll tax. But the race card is all about fear and it works on a great many people. Democrats stoke fear on other ways, too. Asserting that the Republicans are conducting a “war on women.” From the Occupy Democrats to the Black Lives Matter movement, Democrat radials are seeking to polarize and divide Americans along lines of race, class and gender.
Slandering wealthy GOP contributors is especially galling since Democrats have an equal number of wealthy contributors who don’t hide their agendas. Men like George Soros, Tom Steyer, Richard Rich, among a number of others. In a nutshell, the Democrats are desperately attempting to juice their base with fear, while adding to it with millions of illegal aliens. They hope to nullify the expressed will of the country. And they don’t seem as interested in how it’s done more than the fact that it is done. They have placed their leftist vision ahead of the will of Americans to support that vision.
For their part, the Republican establishment has offered no alternative and has profited by beating something with nothing. This cannot be sustained. Their political advantage cannot be maintained without presenting their case for governing. But the problem for the Republican establishment is the Tea Party. You see, the Tea Party and other conservative groups are largely responsible for this resurgence, but the GOP establishment has until now been too entrenched to yield power to the Conservatives. The establishment is sensitive media reaction, which is overwhelmingly hostile to Republicans and serves as an arm of the Democratic Party so often, they can be indistinguishable. The timidity of the GOP establishment can be ended by a strong, conservative voice.
VOLUME 28: The Shock Candidate
Republican Presidential candidate, Donald Trump is employing the same type of publicity tactics as were once employed by radio shock jock, Howard Stern. But will Americans continue to embrace Trump’s tactics or ultimately reject them?
VOLUME 27: How Obama Started WW III
VOLUME 26: Charleston and the True Face of American Christians
VOLUME 25: The Iraq War was NOT a Mistake
VOLUME 24: Taking the Low Road
VOLUME 23: The Assassin’s Veto
VOLUME 22: Garland, Free Speech and Hate Speech
VOLUME 21: Why Clinton’s Emails Matter
VOLUME 20: Is the Media Biased?
VOLUME 19: Mandatory Voting: Obama’s Latest Un-American Idea
VOLUME 18: Why NBC News Should Resign…And Brian Williams, Too!
VOLUME 17: Muslim Immigration or Colonization
Although estimates can vary considerably, throughout Europe, there are as many as 56 million Muslims living there. Russia accounts for nearly half with over 27 million. Excluding Russia, over half of the remainder can be found in just five countries:
- France – 6 million
- Germany – 4 million
- United Kingdom – 3 million
- Italy – 1.5 million
- Spain – 1 million
The remainder of Europe’s Muslim population is scattered all over eastern and western Europe. There are just three countries in Europe with majority Muslim populations: Albania, Kosovo and Herzegovina. Elsewhere in Europe, Muslims are only a tiny fraction of the population, but are growing rapidly.
How and why did the major powers of western Europe end up with so many Muslims? And what are we to make of these ‘no go’ areas where it is claimed local police are forbidden to go and where Sharia law and courts reign? How did this happen? Is it true or just a sensationalized news report?
Islam is not native to Western Europe. Insofar as Eastern Europe is concerned, particularly the Balkans, Ukraine and Russia, the Muslim presence is a vestige of Islamic invasions conducted many centuries ago.
Muslims in France
After the end of the second World War, France declared itself an “immigrant country.” In 1961, the French colony of Algeria waged a war for independence from France. Algerian immigration to French cities spiked during that time as Algerians sought to escape the war.
Daniel Pipes is an American historian, writer, the president of the Middle East Forum, and publisher of its Middle East Quarterly journal. In an article written by Mr. Pipes in 2006, he labeled 751 areas in France as “no-go zones.” The 2006 article has been the source of much confusion lately in 2014 and 2015.
Daniel Pipes wrote his original article in 2006, as mentioned, but in 2013, he admitted his article contained errors, which he sought to correct in good faith. In January 2013, Pipes wrote,
“I had an opportunity today to travel at length to several banlieues (suburbs) around Paris, including Sarcelles, Val d’Oise, and Seine Saint Denis. This comes on the heels of having visited over the years the predominantly immigrant (and Muslim) areas of Brussels, Copenhagen, Malmö, Berlin, and Athens.
- For a visiting American, these areas are very mild, even dull. We who know the Bronx and Detroit expect urban hell in Europe too, but there things look fine. The immigrant areas are hardly beautiful, but buildings are intact, greenery abounds, and order prevails.
- These are not full-fledged no-go zones but, as the French nomenclature accurately indicates, “sensitive urban zones.” In normal times, they are unthreatening, routine places. But they do unpredictably erupt, with car burnings, attacks on representatives of the state (including police), and riots.
Although it has been established that these zones are not wholly autonomous, the fact remains their presence has hindered assimilation of Muslims into French society. Instead, the strictest religious elements within these areas appear desirous of bending French society and cultural norms to its own set of cultural preferences.
The French have taken action to resist these efforts. In 2004, France banned headscarves from state run primary and secondary education because it was a “conspicuous religious symbol”, similar to a yarmulke or a Christian cross. In 2011, France became the first nation in Europe to officially ban the burqa.
Recently, several commentators and Fox News needed to issue retractions and apologies for making inaccurate statements about the so called “no go” zones. Still, while the retractions and apologies for those specific statements were completely warranted, it has been reported for years that Muslims in many of these zones are hostile and even violent to the native population, especially Jews.
In 2002, while writing for the New York Times, David Ignatius said, “Arab gangs regularly vandalize synagogues here, the North African suburbs have become no-go zones at night, and the French continue to shrug their shoulders.”
The political left in America and elsewhere is desperate to run down critics of Islam or Fox News. Controversializing news outlets and well respected critics who have admitted to and apologized for errors made, smacks of an agenda unrelated to this issue.
The bottom line: At least according to one Middle Eastern expert respected in conservative American circles, the claim of no go zones in France is somewhat exaggerated. Nevertheless, multiculturalism is failing in France. A society cannot be multicultural when norms within different cultures conflict or are intolerant of harmonious co-existence.
With Muslim birth rates and immigration rates far outpacing the native population growth, which is actually shrinking, the Muslim immigration and resistance to assimilate represents a form of colonization of France. It strains credulity to expect the French to accept this without any nationalistic reaction. When it comes, that reaction will create a great deal of unrest in France and evidence has indicated it already has.
Canadian television reported this attack by Muslim teens on people leaving a Catholic Church mass.
Muslims in Germany
At the same time France was experiencing surging Muslim immigration from Algeria and elsewhere, West Germany created a guest worker program. The number of Muslims in Germany is hard to measure because it is German law to maintain the privacy of one’s religious affiliation. It is believed that most of the Muslim immigrants are from Turkey. The presence of radical Islamists in Germany has been well documented. The 9/11 plot was hatched in a terrorist cell in Hamburg.
A 2013 article in a German newspaper reported that 90% of the criminal behavior committed by youths in Germany, are committed by those “with an immigrant background.” Much of the problem Germany has with Muslim immigrants seems to revolve around youth street gangs.
As with France, the local elected leadership is loathe to admit to a problem. The primary concern of local officials seems to be the anticipated loss of tourism that could result from bad publicity out of fear of radical muslim violence.
Germans seem to have left the problem to localities. By 2012, about one-half of all German states instituted bans on public sector workers wearing veils and head scarves. Still, over 60% of Germans favor an overall ban, recognizing there is a problem.
As with France, the lack of assimilation by young muslims into German society is creating a societal problem, resulting in the same kind of nationalistic backlash. And nobody needs to be reminded of the historical consequences resulting from the backlash of German nationalistic fervor.
Muslims in the UK
In 2008, the Church of England’s only Asian bishop, the Rt Rev Michael Nazir-Ali, the Bishop of Rochester said that people of a different race or faith face physical attack if they live or work in communities dominated by a strict Muslim ideology.
Writing in The Sunday UK Telegraph, he compared the threat to the use of intimidation by the far-Right, and said that it is becoming increasingly difficult for Christianity to be the nation’s public religion in a multifaith, multicultural society.
His comments came at a time when a poll of the General Synod – the Church’s parliament – shows that its senior leaders, including bishops, also believe that Britain is being damaged by large-scale immigration.
The remarks by Nazir-Ali were strongly criticized by Muslim groups and Tories in England, but Conservatives largely supported the comments and asked only for milder language.
CNN reported in 2013, of vigilante groups of Muslim men patroling Muslim areas and enforcing Sharia law.
Another CNN report on the kind of Islamic radicalism present in Great Britain:
It isn’t important whether there are official no go zones in European countries or not. The fact is, the multiculturalist social experiment has hit a brick wall with Islam. A very sizable and dangerous contingent within the Islamic community has no desire or intention of blending into the nations in which they now live. This contingent seeks to alienate itself from the dominant society, behave in a belligerent fashion and bend it to its own will. They refuse to coexist peacefully unless the dominant culture capitulates to its demands. It is irrelevant that a majority of Muslims do not agree with the approach of this radicalized contingent. That is a “nice to know” fact. But just as most Germans were not Nazi murderers, this fact too became wholly irrelevant when the Nazis took the reins of leadership in Germany. It is no different with the Islamist radicals in Europe and the rest of the Muslim population not aligned with them. Without their proactive, animated and effective denunciation and marginalization of the extremists, they will become swept up into their movement as surely as the main body of the German people did in the 1930s and 1940s.
VOLUME 16: Who is This Guy?
WHO IS THIS GUY?
Let me ask a serious question, that may sound over the top and provocative, but is meant in all sincerity: Is there a difference between consciously traitorous actions versus incompetency or naivete when the results are the same for both? Other than consciousness of motive, is there really any difference?
Iran is about to get a nuclear weapon, folks. And Obama is going to let them get it, too. Iran holds regular mass rallies where they chant, “Death to America.” It’s not a euphemism. They mean it. Iran, more than any other nation, has funded terrorism, and is responsible for the death of more Americans than any other country. Iran has sworn to destroy Israel, our closest ally. Well, our closest ally, at least until Obama came to town. Now, who knows where they stand with him?
We’ve had a sense of Obama’s anti-Israel sentiments for years now. He scarcely conceals his hostility toward the Israeli leadership. His pro-Iranian sentiments aren’t new either. There have been hints of it now for a long time.
In 2009, during the Green Revolution in Iran, the regime of the mullahs was teetering on the brink of collapse amidst a wave of popular sentiment for democratic reform. One good push and there was real hope for a democratic Iran. The protesters looked to America, not for arms or material support, but for moral support. They watched and waited for a single word of encouragement from the new President and the so called “leader of the free world.” Obama was silent. Oddly silent. The revolution for democracy in Iran was crushed and thousands jailed or executed very soon afterward.
Why was Obama silent? This President has gone out of his way to weigh in with his opinion on plenty of issues where his opinion was not warranted or solicited. He’s offered his opinion when offering it was guaranteed to be unproductive and even problematic. Yet, when his opinion could have made a difference, when it could have altered the destructive trajectory of world events, even changed history, Obama had nothing to say.
Didn’t he favor democracy in Iran?
Impulsively, we might think, ‘yes’, giving Obama the same benefit of the doubt offered to all of his predecessors But what evidence do we have that Obama favors real democratic reforms anywhere? When has Obama ever given a speech encouraging democratic reforms? He seems almost too embarrassed to do so. Why couldn’t he just speak up for democracy in the world generally, without specifically mentioning Iran? It seems almost impossible to fathom, without considering the possibility that Obama was at a minimum agnostic about the Iranian regime. What other possibilities exist that wouldn’t cast doubt on Obama’s loyalty to America?
Until this President and his administration, Americans presumed, and rightly so, that despite sometimes major differences in policy, all Presidents placed the safety and well-being of the nation above their own selfish motivations. Even when Jimmy Carter badly botched Iran policy in the late 1970s, nobody questioned where his loyalties lay. Carter lacked sober judgment, was shockingly naive, and overly committed to a peace with an enemy that had no desire or intention for peace. But was Carter disloyal? No.
This doesn’t appear to be the case with Obama. He’s conducted himself on Iran policy and elsewhere in a manner that is, well quite frankly, startling. Jarring enough to make the unthinkable thinkable: Does this President have the safety and security of the nation as his top priority. Sadly, it seems the answer to this question isn’t just ‘no’, but ‘hell no!’
Does that go too far?
Should we not consider whether Obama’s most deeply held feelings about America are antithetical to the feelings of well over 90% of Americans?
Do a President’s loyalties stand above and beyond reproach when his behavior through action or lack of it, urge us to question those loyalties?
Why should a President remain unaccountable on something so fundamentally tied to the well being and security of an entire nation?
These and other questions have haunted many Americans over the last six years.
During his time in office, Obama has shown us that he’s the master of the “slow roll.” He’s done it over and over again and he’s doing it here again with Iran’s nuclear program. Let’s take a walk down memory lane. When he first ran in 2008, Obama was unequivocally for traditional marriage. He staked out a position that allowed for civil unions for gays, but never hinted at any softening of his position. Only later, when his campaign contributions from gay rights groups were threatened, did he “evolve” on the issue. But anyone who had examined Obama’s political history knew he was pro-gay marriage all along. He slow rolled the nation on that issue.
Similarly, he slow rolled the country on the Affordable Care Act. Dozens of times, Obama confidently assured the nation that his new health care law would leave them unaffected. Without any reservation, caveat, condition or qualification, Obama slow rolled the entire country into believing the Affordable Care Act would only help the needy and leave their own plans and their own doctors unaffected. His re-election in 2012 was based on this outright lie among others. Obama defrauded his way back into office for a second term and while a mostly supine media protested for a time, this too was swept away by other events, diverting the focus of an already friendly media.
Obama slow rolled the country on the renewed threat by ISIS. He referred to them as “the JV team.” That is, the ‘junior varsity’ of al-Qaeda. When one city after another fell to the ISIS barbarians, as they conducted a campaign of savagery through Iraq, it wasn’t until ISIS was standing at the gates of Baghdad itself before Obama had to sheepishly admit ISIS was no “JV team.” What purpose did slow rolling the renewed danger in Iraq serve? What American interest? Isis announced its intentions to attack America and Americans anywhere in the world they could be found. Several lost their lives as a result. Obama’s response? A token air campaign against these subhuman ISIS animals.
Still, Obama found motivation enough to support a popular movement in Egypt to oust Hosni Mubarak when it suited him. The same kind of democratic uprising Obama failed to support to oust mortal enemies in Iran, was now enthusiastically supported to oust a faithful, albeit authoritarian ally in Egypt. But why did it suit him to help oust Mubarak? Perhaps the fact that the Muslim Brotherhood was pushing for Mubarak’s ouster under the fig leaf of using a democratic election? It wouldn’t be the first time radical totalitarians rose to power on the strategy of ‘one man, one vote, one time.’ So, Mubarak was ousted and the Muslim Brotherhood under Mohammed Morsi controlled Egypt. That is, until Morsi attempted to deconstruct the civil society, and transform it into a Sharia controlled Islamist state. Morsi was a wolf in sheep’s clothing and an unprecedented uprising of millions of Egyptians unseated Morsi. Did Obama support those democratic protesters? No. Why not? Perhaps having no less than six senior national security advisers who are part of the Muslim Brotherhood can offer a hint as to why. But this was now the second time sided against a democratic movement against a radical Islamist government. A pattern has emerged. Let’s not forget who the Muslim Brotherhood is. The Muslim Brotherhood is the parent organization of al-Qaeda. They are also the group claiming responsibility for the assassination of Egyptian President, Anwar Sadat. The top al-Qaeda leader, Ayman al-Zawahiri is a member of the Muslim Brotherhood. The Muslim Brotherhood was also involved in the Holy Land Foundation trial of Sami al-Aryan. In that trial, the strategy document of the Muslim Brotherhood was entered into evidence. It clearly stated that it was the intention of that group to destroy western Christian civilization. At least six men from this group are advising Obama. There may be complex and justifiable reasons Obama seems to curry favor with our mortal enemies, while alienating our allies. If those reasons do exist, they certainly aren’t obvious from the man who promised “the most transparent administration in history.” It has been far from that. In fact, it’s been opposite of that. As America enters the final act of the Obama drama, the world in more dangerous. Our enemies are energized. Our allies deflated. And our President seems unconcerned. It really should cause all of us to ask one simple question: Who is Barack Obama? Link to North American Strategy Paper of the Muslim Brotherhood.
VOLUME 15: Election 2014
A review of the meaning of the 2014 election victory for the Republican Party. Was it a repudiation of the Obama agenda? This podcast explains what happened, but more importantly, where it is going next.
VOLUME 14: Racial Politics
When Barack Obama was elected President in 2008, a great many Americans naively believed it would usher in a new era of racial harmony. Instead, the issue of race in our politics has gotten much worse. In some ways, the relations between the races has been set back years.
What has caused this setback? Why hasn’t the election of America’s first black president improved race relations? The answer to that question rests on a number of factors.
First, the President has not been an active and vocal advocate for harmony and has, at times, stoked the hard feelings existing between Whites, Blacks and Latinos. But Barack Obama didn’t create these hard feelings. They existed long before Obama ever became President. Though it can be said that Obama hasn’t done much to promote reconciliation.
Republicans have suffered a defamation at the hands of the Democrats and their leftist political allies. The slander stretches back over 50 years into the Kennedy and Johnson Administrations, when Martin Luther King agreed to promote the Democratic Party to his followers in exchange for the passage of the Civil Rights and Voting Rights Acts. Although it required more pervasive Republican support for its passage, credit for the Civil Rights and Voting Rights Acts never went to the Republicans. Instead, Democrats took credit for it, just as black voters were switching party affiliation.
By the time Ronald Reagan was running for President in 1980, those generations who grew up and achieved adulthood during the period of Jim Crow, were middle aged and older. An entire new generation, born and raised during the Civil Rights era, knew only of a time when the righteous cause of racial equality was an issue. As the Republican Party struggled to stem the loss of their former black constituents, they appealed to white voters who were feeling ignored by the Democratic Party’s new emphasis on race.
This reversal has been routinely mischaracterized by racist Democrats who charge the Republican Party with puposely recruiting former segregationists, klansmen, white supremacists and other unsavory characters, all of whom were welcomed in the Democratic Party. When the most prominent Dixiecrat of them all, Strom Thurmond, announced he was switching party affiliations, the Democrats had the scapegoat they needed. For, while it was true that Thurmond had been Segregations’s greatest proponent, he renounced those views to become a Republican. The GOP never adopted any Dixiecrat platform items. Furthermore, none of the other Dixiecrat Democrats ever changed their party affiliations, nor were they required to renounce their segregationist views. Despite the fact that all these Southern Senators and Governors remained Democrats, the Republican Party was smeared as the racists. It’s a falsehood that lives on to this very day.
Tragically, the Republican Party has been so savaged by these slanders and the Democratic Party has become so positively entrenched in the mind of the average black voter, Republicans do not compete for the black vote. This has served to reinforce feelings that the Republican Party is hostile to people of color.
Still, over the years, the failure of the Great Society programs and the utter devastation it has wreaked upon the people those programs were intended to help, who are disproportionately black, has opened the door enough to let in a sliver of sunlight. But as that slim opportunity has presented itself to Republicans before and gone untapped, a historic twist of irony may be about to kick that door open a bit wider, shedding the light of opportunity enough, even the Republican Party in its blindness might recognize it.
In the sixth year of the Obama Presidency, no group has had their fortunes suffer more in America than African Americans. As hopeful as Obama’s Presidency was in 2009, today it seems as hopeless. While there is no doubt the vast majority of blacks still support President Obama and support him strongly, it appears clear to even the most casual observer, that between a quarter to one-third of black Obama supporters have had their fill.
Sensing the loss of black enthusiasm diminishing into ambivalence or even support for Republicans, Democrats are playing racial politics in the most vile manner. They even go so far as to warn of racial violence, like lynch mobs, if a Republican is elected. It’s worked in the past, but even if it doesn’t work this time by just a handful of percentage points, it would spell an absolute catastrophe for the Democratic Party.
In the interests of the future of the nation, but also in the interests of all her people, black, white, latin, asian and anyone else, let’s all agree that the use of fear, racism and racial violence need to be repudiated. And today is a good day for it to happen. Right here. Right now.
VOLUME 13: Why President Obama is Always Surprised
President Obama has been heavily criticized by always reacting with surprise at events many others believed were not only predictable, but expected. Criticism has ranged from sheer stupidity to cynical political motivations. Neither are the likely reason.
This podcast examines what I believe to be is the real issue. Using the principles of information theory, President Obama’s continual surprises are analyzed. The result gives an interesting insight into modern Liberalism generally and how it manifests itself in the person of Barack Obama, in particular.
VOLUME 12: The Secret to Economic Growth
On Knowledge and Power
The engine of economic growth is the product of the creative and enterprising mind. No society is able to sustain itself without economic growth and while the engine of economic growth is human creativity, it wasn’t always thought to be so. In fact, classical economists believed human creativity and innovation were limited, leaving economies largely in a static state, requiring government intervention to manage and often redistribute incomes and wealth.
Human beings, however, proved to be quite innovative and their innovation is not limited by the distribution of wealth or knowledge, but by the distribution of power. That is, the means by which ideas can be brought to reality. For, it is precisely the lack of creativity that leads to failure of societies and entire cultures.
The question should always have been, what are the necessary conditions for creativity to flourish and once understood, how can those conditions be harnessed into organizing principles of society? Conversely, it must also be understood how and under which conditions creativity is suppressed. It is the latter that has been so destructive to societies throughout history. Interestingly enough, the answer to those questions are contained in the principles of the American Founding and free market capitalism.
Knowledge without any power is powerless to create, and
power without knowledge is too dumb to create
The ideal, or the equilibrium position is that balance between power and knowledge which allows for the most creativity. Realizing this equilibrium means we must first understand two, often separate things:
- who holds the power?
- who holds the knowledge?
Knowledge, being a function of the human mind is dispersed among all living people. Knowledge is perfectly decentralized. There is no collective brain or center of knowledge. Knowledge is resident in every living, conscious person.
Power, on the other hand, is not. In societies, power tends toward centralization. The American Founders recognized this and ordered a society and government that was the least centralized it could be and still hold a union together.
As power becomes concentrated into the hands of fewer and fewer people, creativity and innovation necessarily decline simply because fewer and fewer people have the power to turn an innovative idea into something tangible. Despite the Founders attempts, centralization of power is inexorable, but resistance to that centralization has ofttimes been wanting.
Today, we live in a country where the move toward the further centralization of power has accelerated, stifling economic growth and giving much of the public a sense of stagnation and decline.
A Simple Example of the Effect of Power on Innovation
Consider for a moment, the brilliant young man with what he thinks is a great idea, entirely the creation of his mind. Without any power to bring his idea into reality, or even attempt it, the economy will not realize any growth, or if the idea fails, it will not realize the new information regarding the failure of the idea. Understanding failure is also important because with failure comes information valuable to successive creators. Information necessary to avoid taking failed pathways. The young man, however, needs to be empowered in some way to simply attempt his creation. But if power is strictly centralized, beyond the reach of the creative, both power and knowledge are wasted.
It is in this model, that we can understand why central governments never seem to work and how societies run in such a manner, have crippling economic conditions. When power is so centralized as to be walled off from the creative minds, economic retardation results, creativity disappears and government does things that appear to be stupid, nonsensical and even tyrannical.
The United States of America, just prior to the Industrial Revolution, was in a state of near perfect equilibrium between knowledge and power. With power so decentralized, in a constitutional republic, where laws and rules were infinitely more predictable than today, creativity exploded and more people were moved out of grinding poverty than at any time in human history. This equilibrium was upset once more when the successes of the Industrial Revolution, ironically, altered the power structure, which has never really been properly addressed since then.
RE-ESTABLISHING THE BALANCE WILL LEAD TO
AN EXPLOSION OF GROWTH
Ultimately, if America is to be a prosperous nation again, it will require great leadership. Leadership with the kind of courage we don’t have now and from the kind of people who don’t run our government today. We need to disempower central government, repeal many thousands of laws and regulations. In other words, we need to re-establish, as close as we can, the conditions nearest equilibrium between power and knowledge. If we can even come close, it will lead to still another great economic boom for America and the world once again.
THE IMPORTANCE OF THE INTERNET
Everyone can understand how the balance between power and knowledge fuels economic growth, simply by looking at the internet. The internet gives us a head start in re-establishing the balance between power and knowledge. The internet has democratized power in a way never achievable at any point in human history. Through the internet, the creativity and ingenuity of the human mind now has a vehicle through which ideas can be tested, proven and realized.
Were it not for the democratizing influence on power resulting from the internet, it is difficult to imagine how a Steve Jobs would have revolutionized the music industry with iTunes, iPods and Apple. It’s hard to imagine how the innovative genius of Mark Zuckerberg could have resulted in Facebook, or how the simple addressing of the need for news and information could have led to the overwhelming popularity of Matt Drudge and his Drudge Report. Those giants are only several of the most prominent beneficiaries of the true influence of the internet: as a tool of democratized economic power available to anyone, limited only by their own ability to be innovative and creative.
The internet, however, is but one realm of the economy. Yet it provides a stark, modern day example of explosive economic growth possible when knowledge and power are in equilibrium.
Our policy makers and representatives ought to be lobbied to bring that same equilibrium to every single aspect of the world economy. The benefits waiting for the entire human race are immeasurable.
VOLUME 11: Exploding Myths – Gas Prices
It’s time to do away with a few myths about the price of gasoline. This podcast will help destroy some common myths:
- The myth of “they”. “They” get blamed for everything, including high gasoline prices. But who are “they”? Do “they” really exist?
- The myth of “greedy oil companies”. Companies of all kinds pursue the maximum profit because they have a fiduciary duty, but are oil companies unlike other companies?
- The myth of who makes the most money on a gallon of gas. The answer will surprise you.
- The myth of oil companies controlling the market supply of gas and oil.
The Myth of “They”
“They control everything.” “They make you pay whatever they want.” Everyone has heard these kind of comments, or made them. But when asked, nobody seems to know quite who “they” are. It is the tendency of people to suspect a conspiratorial force that has the power to control things. The reality, though, is there is no real “they”. The world is much more chaotic than people realize. Sometimes, it’s more comforting to believe someone is in control of things. The bottom line: when it comes to gasoline pricing, there is no “they.”
The Myth of Greedy Oil Companies
The truth is, only one American oil company is among the top producers in the world. According to a 2010 article in Forbes Magazine online, here are the top ten oil companies in the world:
- Aramco, Saudi Arabia 8.2 million barrels per day National Iranian Oil Company
- Iran 3.8 million barrels per day
- Pemex, Mexico 2.9 million barrels per day
- Iraq National Oil Company, Iraq 2.5 million barrels per day
- Exxon Mobil, USA 2.5 million barrels per day
- BP, Great Britain 2.5 million barrels per day
- CNPC, China 2.3 million barrels per day
- ADNOC, Abu Dhabi 2.3 million barrels per day Kuwait Oil Company
- Kuwait 2.3 million barrels per day
- PDVSA, Venezuela 2.2 million barrels per day
The Myth of Who Gets Gas Profits
According to the U.S. Energy Information Administration, a 42 U.S. gallon barrel of crude oil yields about 45 gallons of petroleum products. This gain from processing the crude oil is similar to what happens to popcorn, which gets bigger after it is popped. Once refined, those 45 gallons of product are broken down as follows:
- 19 gallons – gasoline
- 12 gallons – diesel
- 6 gallons – other products
- 4 gallons – jet fuel
- 2 gallons – liquified petroleum gases
- 2 gallons – heavy fuel oil and home heating oil
Products from a 42 gallon barrel of crude oil
Products from a 42 gallon barrel of crude oil Gasoline, comprising about 42% of a barrel’s output, would cost about $2.22 per gallon in terms of the price of the oil itself, if a barrel of oil cost $100. Assuming the cost of the shipping (ie., pipelines & tanker ships) and processing (refineries) are largely sunk costs, and therefore negligible in terms of additional marginal cost for making a gallon of gas, the oil company would add about 28 cents, or 11% to the price of the gas sold to a gas station. Exxon/Mobil averaged about 10% margin on sales. That puts the price to your local gas station, at about $2.50 per gallon.
Then the gas station, naturally, must mark up their cost to you. Let’s assume their take is about the same as Exxon/Mobil’s and they add another $0.25 to the price, making it $2.75. Your’re probably wondering why you don’t pay $2.75. That’s a good question. Strap in, kids. Here’s the answer:
Federal taxes on gasoline sales are about 18 cents a gallon. State taxes vary considerably, which is why you see such variation between states in the price of gasoline. In New York, for example, gas taxes amount to more than 60 cents a gallon. Methodologies can vary because there are so many different taxes levied on fuels and gasoline is a big target. One reason for the variation results from sales taxes which are dependent on the price of the gas. Some states charge a percentage sales tax on the gas you buy, and the amount you pay is more, if the base price of a gallon is higher.
The Tax Foundation publishes a report on state taxes on gasoline. All together, in New York, about 80 cents per gallon is added to the price of gasoline for taxes. The next time you hear a politician or a friend tell you how greedy the oil company is or the gas station owner, ask them if they know how much in taxes they pay per gallon. Chances are, they won’t know.
So let’s do some adding up:
$2.22 the cost per gallon of gasoline to the producer assuming a $100 per barrel
$0.28 the profit margin to the gasoline producer (eg., Exxon)
$0.25 the profit margin to the gas station
$0.80 the taxes on a gallon in New York State
$3.55 the approximate price for a gallon of gas
The Myth of Deliberate Supply Restrictions
Very little widespread “gaming” of the system goes on in the oil business.
When your local gas station raises the price of gas the day after a news stories breaks about a refinery disaster or some other supply disruption, people are naturally suspicious that the station owner is taking advantage of the situation. But is he?
Let’s say the typical busy gas station gets delivery of 40,000 gallons of gasoline every two weeks. If a national supply disruption causes the price to the dealer to go from $2.50 to $2.65, it means the station owner must come up with an additional $6,000 to pay for the next delivery in less than two weeks. Also, some oil companies have a minimum order, so it is also possible that the station owner won’t be able to lower the order to something more accommodative to his cash flow. If these conditions exist, then the gas station owner must raise gas prices as soon as possible to have enough cash available for delivery. Rather than being gouged, the gas station is protecting his business and his customers.
This is not to say that gouging never happens. But more often than not, gas stations are just trying to keep up with the price fluctuations to keep their businesses going.
Sometimes, when oil companies expect the price of crude oil to increase in the short or intermediate term, they ease back on production. This gaming of the system has its shortcomings, because a cut in production could result in a loss of market share. Also, if the prices don’t rise as expected, there is a lost opportunity. Even if the prices increase, the company must weigh the opportunity cost of leaving the oil in the ground for whatever the time period may be and compare it to the expected gain from the increase in price. All of these things are legitimate ways to maximize profit and are neither unlawful or unethical. Companies are doing what consumers do: maximizing the benefit to themselves. Just as consumers look for the best buy, companies seek out the most profitable exchange. They are two sides of the same coin.
♦Don’t believe everything you hear about gas prices.
♦Check out the sources linked to in this article for yourself.
♦Then, the next time your friends talk about gas prices, show them what you know and tell them about greatvocalmajority.com
VOLUME 10: Ebola, Enterovirus, School Children and Immigration
You know something? The whole scare over Ebola spreading doesn’t bother me. I mean, Ebola is deadly, I know. But there has been only one case in the US. That’s not enough to get me to wear a full enclosure hazmat suit. I am far more troubled by a President and an Administration that appear content to politicize everything. Even if the politicization puts American lives at risk.
The head of the CDCP, Tom Frieden said, ““Even if we tried to close the border, it wouldn’t work. People have a right to return. People transiting through could come in. And it would backfire, because by isolating these countries, it’ll make it harder to help them, it will spread more there and we’d be more likely to be exposed here.”
This is utter nonsense. It reflects a point of view based in politics not science. It doesn’t even make any sense. If travel to and from Ebola afflicted countries were halted temporarily, how could that possible increase the likelihood that Americans would be exposed to Ebola? It doesn’t make the least bit of sense. Border countries in the afflicted areas in Africa have closed their borders to travel to and from there. England and France have closed off travel to and from afflicted countries. And England and France are former imperial countries with stronger ties to those nations than the US.
Recently, President Obama encouraged tens of thousands of unaccompanied minors, who were given inadequate medical screenings, to be dispersed throughout the United States and he has refused to inform local and state officials of where and with whom he placed those children.
Not accidentally, just weeks after Obama dispersed these children throughout the country, a new disease, Enterovirus D68 is now spreading like a prairie fire across 43 states, primarily affecting children. Some children have died, while others have been permanently disabled with a polio-like paralysis. Experts in epidemiology have noted that viruses like Enterovirus D68 don’t just show up in 43 states spontaneously. The only existing plausible explanation of the source of the virus are the children from Central America, where the virus is more common.
We already know they were given inadequate medical screenings by professionals who were there. In fact, the Federal agencies, in an effort to keep a lid on the reporting of the medical conditions found in those children, forced doctors and nurses treating them to sign non-disclosure agreements, which, if violated, would result in severe criminal and civil penalties. What the medical staff were expected to overlook, however, so shocked them, some came forward to media outlets anonymously, obviously at great risk to themselves
How do the unaccompanied Central American children relate to the Ebola virus response? Well Ladies and Gentlemen, it makes perfect sense.
When the children were at the border, if it were made public that many of them were carrying a virus not common in the US, which could easily lead to an outbreak and a serious health risk to American school children, public pressure to seal the southern border would have escalated overnight. Obama’s dream of normalizing tens of millions of illegals would have evaporated just as quickly.
Then, Ebola happened. An ugly, deadly disease. Not a direct threat on the Southern border, but Obama was looking a step or two ahead. Closing off flights between the US and Ebola afflicted countries would be a first step, quickly followed by demands to……wait for it………..close off the Southern border. As news of the Enterovirus D68 faded into the background, Ebola took center stage. But in both cases, the Obama administration response is tailored toward the same end.
Politicizing medicine when there is a spreading epidemic of a deadly disease is an immoral act if not a criminal one. What could possibly be the motive? The answer lies in US immigration policy changes threatened by President Obama. This President is expected to act to normalize millions of illegal aliens with the stroke of his pen.
Barack Obama is placing health and safety of school children in America at risk for partisan politics. That may sound incredible. Unbelievable. Incomprehensible. But just look at the facts. They are unforgiving.
As Enterovirus D68 spreads into more states and claims more victims, it is being overshadowed by the even greater horror of Ebola. With the death of America’s first Ebola patient, the Obama administration announced what they call tougher screening at 5 major international airports where they say 94% of all travel from Ebola afflicted countries enter the US. They plan on asking passengers questions and taking their temperatures as they disembark from the plane. Do you find anything curious about that? I certainly do.
First of all, why would we choose to screen less than 100% of flights coming in from West Africa? Does that make any sense with a disease as deadly as Ebola? Second, if a passenger is found to have a fever or other signs of possible infection, what good does it do to screen them as they are deplaning in the US and then again, at only 5 airports? It would mean every single person on the plane is a potential victim, exposed to the virus. The medical professionals say it would require contact with body fluids. Oh! You mean like the kind of body fluids you could be exposed to if you used the restroom after the infected person used it? Or if you sat next to him, or brushed up against him as you moved about the jet in flight? It could also mean that Ebola victims can enter the country through an airport not screening passengers. These measures are not serious.
But if Obama decided to stop flights until the Ebola threat subsided, his capitulation on that would demand he also close that southern border. No matter where you turn on the issue of Ebola or Enterovirus D68, you inevitably come back to the Southern Border and immigration policy.
And what if Ebola happened to hit Central or South America, causing a mass migration to the US without sealing the border?
The US should do the common sense thing: we ought to seal the border and stop all flights to and from Ebola afflicted nations and we should only be flying special charters of medical staff and logistics personnel to and from the hot zone. President Obama is knowingly and with possible malice, hurting the American people with his policies. It’s hard to understand why he would do this, but the only answer seems to be partisan politics.
America deserves a better leader than this.
Politico: CDC Chief on Ebola
CNN: Parents growing anxious about enterovirus
American Thinker: Invasion of Enterovirus EV-D68
CDC: Non-polio Enterovirus
Journal of Virology: Human Rhinoviruses and enteroviruses in influenza-like Illness in Latin America
Sharyl Attkisson: Polio-like illness claims 5th life in US
VOLUME 9: al-Qaeda in Iraq and ISIS
This volume focuses on how al-Qaeda in Iraq(AQI) became ISIS. Through a series of miscalculations on the part of AQI in 2006, they were defeated and their leader, Abu Musab al-Zarqawi was killed. The United States, however, failed to conclude a Status of Forces Agreement and their own miscalculations created by domestic political pressure and the fulfillment of campaign promises, led to the complete withdrawal of American military forces, creating a power vacuum into which ISIS moved.
VOLUME 8: Terrorism
The motto today should be “eternal vigilance.” In this episode, Tony relates an experience he had in early 2002 and its possible connection to terror as an example of how simply paying attention can help law enforcement authorities prevent acts of terror.
VOLUME 7: The Recession
The Great Recession of 2008 and 2009 represented the greatest threat to the economic system since the Great Depression of the early 1930s. While the recession of 2008 and 2009 did not ultimately have the same disastrous impact on the lives of Americans, the pain of the economic downturn has lingered. Most Americans still do not feel the recession is really over, even five years after it officially ended. What were the causes of the 2008 meltdown? Were there warning signs? Why did it seem like all the experts were so surprised? In this podcast, Tony talks about the ultimate cause of the Great Recession. Not all experts were surprised. In fact, there were many warning signs. Policymakers were alerted, but the warnings were largely ignored or shouted down. In the end, it was all about politics and market interventionist policies, which set the predicate for the worst economic disaster in nearly a century. But the scary thing is, was that experience enough to motivate policymakers to change government action in the right direction? There appears to be very little evidence of it and our political leaders are once again taking us down the same road, fraught with risk and potential disaster.
VOLUME 6: Impeachment
Talk of Impeachment Volume Notes:
Article II Section 4 of the U.S. Constitution says: “The President, the Vice-President and all the Civil Officers of the United States, shall be removed from office on impeachment for, and conviction of Treason, Bribery, or other high crimes and misdemeanors.”
James Madison’s notes from the Constitutional Convention of 1787
Until there is broader public support for the impeachment of President Obama, there is almost no possibility of it. Without 67 votes in the Senate to convict, impeachment would be an exercise in symbolism. Symbolism that would come at a steep political price and even further divide Americans. The problems with American government today, transcend the actions of one President.
VOLUME 5: Fundamental Transformation II
Obama’s Vision of Fundamental Transformation (Part II) Volume Notes:
Part II of a series of podcasts providing a detailed exposition of Obama’s vision for America. In this podcast, the ebb and flow of Presidential power is discussed, using examples of past Presidents who used power beyond their Constitutional limits to effect changes. How President Obama is similar and how he differs in also discussed. Further, the concept of negative and positive rights are discussed and why they are critical to understanding President Obama’s point of view.
Woodrow Wilson passed the Sedition Act in 1917, imposing harsh penalties on anyone found guilty of making false statements that interfered with the prosecution of the war; insulting or abusing the U.S. government, the flag, the Constitution or the military; agitating against the production of necessary war materials; or advocating, teaching or defending any of these acts. Those who were found guilty of such actions, the act stated, shall be punished by a fine of not more than $10,000 or imprisonment for not more than twenty years, or both. This was the same penalty that had been imposed for acts of espionage in the earlier legislation.
Woodrow Wilson also formed The American Protective League during World War 1. The APL sought out what it defined as “disloyal Americans.” Disloyalty could amount to something as innocuous as failing to purchase the expected amount of Liberty Bonds to fund the war effort. It was the first attempt at a surveillance state.
VOLUME 4: Fundamental Transformation I
Part 1 of a series of podcasts providing a detailed exposition of Obama’s vision for America. Just prior to his election in 2008, Senator Obama declared, “We are five days away from fundamentally transforming the United States of America.” Although this statement was kept deliberately vague at the time, now, nearly six years into his tenure as President, Americans are still not quite sure of Obama’s vision for America. This podcast begins to define the Obama vision by examining several Supreme Court decisions and what they may tell of of how Obama sees America and the role of Presidential leadership.
VOLUME 3: The Electoral College
A discussion on reforming the Electoral College. If done carefully, a reformation of the Electoral College would increase voter turnout and interest in Presidential elections. The Founders envisioned a decentralized national vote. The winner-takes-all aspect of the Presidential election, state by state, tends to discourage voters living in states that lean heavily toward one political party. They see their vote as a waste because their candidate cannot win. Democrat voters in Texas, Republican voters in New York and California are discouraged from voting as a result. If the Electoral College were reformed, voters would be voting for the winner of the electoral vote represented by their Congressional district. The winner of the statewide vote would earn two additional electoral votes. This kind of electoral architecture would eliminate the whole concept of “swing states”. It would give greater weight to the vote of every voter.
VOLUME 2: THE ECONOMY
VOLUME 1: REPRESENTATION
This podcast discusses the declining nature of representation in a country where the population is growing. While it is in the finest traditions of American society and culture to open our doors to any and all peaceful people seeking to become part of the American family, population growth causes interesting challenges for national representative government. As the elected leaders in the House of Representatives and the Senate represent larger and more diverse numbers of people, discontent with that representation is a predictable result. It should not be any surprise at all, therefore, when grass roots movements arise like the Tea Party and Occupy movements, seeking more effective representation. The solution to these problems is embodied in our Constitution today. It’s Federalism. That is, the decentralized state and local governments envisioned by our Founders, particularly Thomas Jefferson, who believed that government closest to the people was best, since it was closest to their concerns.