Monday, March 2, 2015

Bibi's here and more key political news and opinion


The Coming Collapse of the American Republic: And what you can do to prevent it
Now on Kindle for 99 cents!
All royalties go to The Injured Marine Semper Fi Fund to help wounded veterans. (Print royalties go directly. Kindle ones come to me and I'll forward.

Made my healthy SOS for dinner Monday. Good weather for it. Snow tonight and in the morning. I'm speaking to Pints and Politics Tuesday evening at 5:30 pm CST. Topic is "Running as a R in a D+20 District." ~Bob

General News and Comment

Common Right to Work Myths. From Wisconsin Manufacturing and Commerce.
The Middle Class Argument. Unions often claim that Right to Work hurts the middle class. However, the objective data show that Right to Work states have faster job growth, faster wage growth and higher disposable income. It’s unclear how any of those economic measures are bad for the middle class. The Poverty Argument. Opponents often argue that Right to Work will reduce wages and lead to greater reliance on public welfare programs. On the contrary, welfare utilization is actually lower in Right to Work states at 5.8 TANF recipients per thousand in 2013. That’s less than half the rate of 16.7 welfare recipients per thousand residents in forced-union states. The Anti-Union Argument. Union leaders often characterize Right to Work as a policy to harm unions, but the data shows otherwise. In the period from 2010-2013, Right to Work states collectively grew union membership by 57,000 workers, while forced-union states actually lost 248,000 union members. The Worker Training Argument. Opponents argue Right to Work will jeopardize training in the construction trades, but that has not been the experience in other states. In Wisconsin, skilled training is paid for by employers and is not dependent upon union dues. Moreover, Right to Work states have 28% more operating engineers employed per capita than forced-union states. The Free-Rider Argument. Union leaders claim Right to Work is unfair because the union is required to represent all employees, even if they do not pay dues. However, these “exclusive representation” agreements are not mandatory and unions are not required to negotiate these clauses into their contract.

Excerpt: These days, if you’re running for public office, inane questions from the media are right up there with death and taxes — an absolute certainty. And, let’s be honest, this is particularly true if there’s an “R” after your name. Just ask 2016 presidential GOP hopeful and Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker. He’s been raked over the coals these past couple of weeks for his honest but not always artful responses to three questions of dubious relevance to anything Walker will encounter as governor or might encounter as president — one related to evolution (a media favorite), another about the religious affiliation of President Obama and a third about former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani’s comments about the president’s patriotism. (The correct answer to these gotcha questions is: "I cannot know what is in anyone's heart, so we can only judge Obama's love of country by his actions. As to evolution, I see no contradictions with my Christian faith with how God made everything. But none of these questions are among the thousands of policy decisions which the next president must make, and with a responsible media should concentrate on. " ~Bob)

Beast Is Slain, Publication Admits Walker Was ‘Unfairly Attacked On College Rape’ In Hit Piece. By Matt Vespa 
Excerpt: Yesterday, Daily Beast, acting off of the piece in Jezebel, reported that Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker had removed a provision in his proposed budget that required universities to report rapes on their campuses. ... Well, it turns out the University of Wisconsin asked the governor to remove the provision since it was redundant since the Clery Act and Title IX cover reporting and responding of rapes on college campuses. It took the Beast and Jezebel hours to get their act together and offer retractions.

Scott Walker is Right, Leadership Matters More Than Expertise. By Daniel Greenfield 
Excerpt: Think of a mistake that we made in international affairs. At the time that we were making it, a phalanx of foreign policy experts was standing behind it. It might be a lonely orphan idea today, but last year you could have thrown a rock at a roomful of PhDs without hitting a single person who disagreed with it. When the Tahrir Square protests in Egypt were in their heyday, I had trouble finding any foreign policy people who would even entertain the idea that we should continue backing Mubarak. Back then the revolution seemed inevitable. But I correctly predicted Islamist takeovers and counterrevolutions that would topple them because I didn’t see international relations through the lens of a grand theory.

The Clinton Foundation, Previewing Life under Another Clinton Presidency. By Jim Geraghty, Morning Jolt
Excerpt: So what were, or are, the Clinton Global Initiative and Clinton Foundation? Lots of former presidents have their libraries and related think tanks, their charities, their efforts at remaining in national life after their presidency. Jimmy Carter founded Habitat for Humanity. But for Bill -- and Hillary, who was about to begin a senatorial career at the moment she thought of herself as “dead broke” -- that wasn’t enough. They wanted or needed something bigger. Something with a global reach; something that didn’t work with any one signature good cause but with all of them. Something that could bring in any celebrity -- even Natalie Portman and her dog with first-class tickets. Something on an epic scale, a group that would think nothing of spending more than $10 million a year on travel costs alone. The organization would wed enormous financial resources -- $2 billion -- with unimpeachable motives -- er, maybe a bad word choice. It would combine wealth on an unimaginable scale with an unparalleled ability to generate good press and publicity for their noble motives and actions Of course, foreign governments would want in on the act. Of course, the line between the charitable initiatives and staffers’ corporate consulting grew blurry. Of course there is an “undertow of transactionalism in the glittering annual dinners, the fixation on celebrity, and a certain contingent of donors whose charitable contributions and business interests occupy an uncomfortable proximity.”

Eric Braverman Tried to Change the Clinton Foundation. Then He Quit. Inside the power struggle at Clinton, Inc. By Kenneth P. Vogel
Excerpt: Braverman, who had worked with Chelsea Clinton at the prestigious McKinsey & Company consultancy, had been brought in with the former first daughter’s support to help impose McKinsey-like management rigor to a foundation that had grown into a $2 billion charitable powerhouse. But in January, only weeks after the board's show of support and just a year and a half after Braverman arrived, he abruptly resigned, and sources tell Politico his exit stemmed partly from a power struggle inside the foundation between and among the coterie of Clinton loyalists who have surrounded the former president for decades and who helped start and run the foundation. Some, including the president’s old Arkansas lawyer Bruce Lindsey, who preceded Braverman as CEO, raised concerns directly to Bill Clinton about the reforms implemented by Braverman, according to sources, and felt themselves marginalized by the growing influence of Chelsea Clinton and the new CEO she had helped recruit. 

Trust Us, We're Scientists: Deadly bacteria release sparks concern at Louisiana lab
Excerpt: A dangerous, often deadly, type of bacteria that lives in soil and water has been released from a high-security laboratory at the Tulane National Primate Research Center in Louisiana. Officials say there is no risk to the public.

Chicago May Owe Wall Street $58 Million After Moody's Rating Cut. By Brian Chappatta
Excerpt: Chicago may have to pay $58 million to unwind interest-rate swaps after Moody’s Investors Service cut the city’s credit rating within two steps of junk because of mounting pension liabilities.

Excerpt: We got some terrible news last week; the "Big C", not cancer, more government "Control." Last week the FCC voted in a 317 page plan to take control over the internet. And, like the Obamacare legislation, no one has been allowed to read it. That should tell you something right there. Keep in mind that this was the same FCC proposal that the current FCC opposed just last year. However, after watching how quickly Obama replaces DOD Chiefs who don't agree with him, the chairman of the FCC fell in line and swallowed Obama's massive proposal to take over the internet whole. For those who don't remember, it was not Al Gore who invented the internet, his second major lie, after Global Warming. The internet, an method for computers to talk to each other, was invented by some smart folks back in the fifties, offered it to AT&T, and Ma Bell turned it down, saying "why would we want that when we have the telephone?" 

Important: U.S. millennials post ‘abysmal’ scores in tech skills test, lag behind foreign peers. By Todd C. Frankel
Excerpt: There was this test. And it was daunting. It was like the SAT or ACT -- which many American millennials are no doubt familiar with, as they are on track to be the best educated generation in history -- except this test was not about getting into college. This exam, given in 23 countries, assessed the thinking abilities and workplace skills of adults. It focused on literacy, math and technological problem-solving. The goal was to figure out how prepared people are to work in a complex, modern society. And U.S. millennials performed horribly. That might even be an understatement, given the extent of the American shortcomings. No matter how you sliced the data – by class, by race, by education – young Americans were laggards compared to their international peers. (To be fair, I'm sure the US students excelled at Gender Studies, Pop Culture, Social Justice and Amerika, Understanding White Privilege and Aroma Therapy. ~Bob)

Faith and the President. By Erick Erickson 
Excerpt: What I see of the President reflected in the world is a man who used his faith as a lie to claim he opposed gay marriage when he really did not; who spoke out in favor of allowing abortionists to kill children who survive abortions; who has actively promoted abortion in his Presidency; who has publicly used the courts to curtail the free exercise of religion paring it down to a right to worship; who, when he thought he was off the record, mocked Christians bitterly clinging to guns and religion, etc., etc., etc. In fact, that ultimately is it. The President, when he thought he was off the record and in the advancement of his political agenda, has been no friend to the church and its orthodox teachings. He trots out religion publicly as a political tool to help himself, not others. I do not believe the President is a Christian, but ultimately that is between God and Barack Obama. In my view, he is outside the church family and should be prayed for, not judged. 

Special Interests
From the email with this link: A well done, short video explaining WHY the Government won't cut Spending...

Gun News

Homeowner fatally shoots man kicking in front door, police say
Excerpt: He answered the dispatcher’s questions. Yes, it just happened. Yes, the man was lying motionless at his door at 1915 Faymeadow Ave. No, he didn’t appear to be breathing. No, he didn’t know him. The homeowner’s revolver was still in his hand. “He kicked the door in,” he said. ... Police identified the dead man last night as 31-year-old Michael Rinehart. ... Rinehart served four years in prison after being convicted of burglary in 2010. 

Clerk Fights Back During Tobacco Zone Robbery
Excerpt: A clerk fought two masked men for a gun during a robbery. Police say two men entered the Tobacco Zone on North Broadway on Friday night. One of the men was armed with a handgun. In the video, you can see one of the men go behind the counter, open the drawer and put his gun down. The clerk grabs the gun and points it at the suspects.

Race Card News

Excerpt: Nor is there any doubt that African-American children would be better off living with their married parents. Kids who grow up in households headed by a single mother are far more likely than others to be poor, quit school, get pregnant as teens and end up in jail. But these facts were once inflammatory. Fifty years ago next month, a Labor Department official named Daniel Patrick Moynihan published a paper titled, “The Negro Family: The Case for National Action,” which argued that “a tangle of pathology” afflicting black communities had emerged because “the Negro family in the urban ghettos is crumbling.” His key fact: Nearly one-fourth of black babies were born to unwed mothers. (The same pathologies that destroy the lives underclass blacks in American cities are destroying the lives of underclass whites in English cities. I suggest reading Life at the Bottom by British psychiatrist Anthony Daniels, writing as Theodore Dalrymple. It's not race, it's culture. ~Bob

Myth of Racist Cops: False Narrative of Fact-Averse Liberals. By David L. Goetsch
Excerpt: First, I acknowledge that there are racist cops, although it must be said that not all racist cops are white. Bad cops come in all races. However, I believe that racist cops—regardless of their race—represent a small minority of the nation’s overall police force. Second, I am an advocate of community policing. However, although this strategy can help relieve tension between police officers and black citizens, it will not solve the problem of black crime in America. In fact, the issue of black crime in America will never be effectively dealt with until we can have an honest dialogue about it. And therein is the rub. As things now stand, the myth of racist cops is being controlled by people who benefit from perpetuating the false narrative that currently prevails—people such as Al Sharpton and his supporters in the mainstream media.

Obamacare/Government Healthcare News

Voters Less Hot for Obamacare Fix
Excerpt: Voters still tend to share an unfavorable opinion of the new national health care law and say it has hurt more than helped them. They’re also less enthusiastic this month about fixing the law rather than repealing it. 

Obamacare Is Punishing Working-Class Americans. By Sally Pipes
Excerpt: Employees at Staples will soon get a little bit more vacation — thanks to Obamacare. Unfortunately, that time off will be unpaid — and in most cases, unwelcome. The retailer, which employs 85,000 people, has limited part-time work to 25 hours a week to avoid Obamacare’s fines for not providing insurance to those who work 30 or more hours a week. President Obama refused to acknowledge that his healthcare law played a part in Staples’ decision.

Excerpt: Britain has long had an active cash market for medical care provided by private hospitals, which helps people get around the long waits in the National Health Service, and also serve people from abroad. Nuffield Hospitals advertises firm, fixed, all-inclusive prices good for 60 days after an initial consultation. For more complex procedures, one pays for the initial consultation and the hospital develops the price from that. The Nuffield price generally includes post-operative care, rehab, and required readmissions.

"You're Greener than Gore" News

WaPo Fact Checker: Obama’s claim that Keystone XL oil ‘bypasses the U.S.’ earns Four Pinocchios
Excerpt: The president’s latest remarks pushes this assertion into the Four Pinocchios column. If he disagrees with the State Department’s findings, he should begin to make the case why it is wrong, rather than assert the opposite, without any factual basis. Moreover, by telling North Dakota listeners that the pipeline has no benefit for Americans, he is again being misleading, given that producers in the region have signed contracts to transport some of their production through the pipeline.

Religion of Peace News

Obama Admin. Denies Claim President Threatened to Shoot Down Israeli Fighter Jets Targeting Iran
Excerpt: The Obama administration denied a claim the president last year threatened to shoot down Israeli fighter jets if they tried to destroy Iranian nuclear facilities, the Washington Times reported. According to the Times, a senior administration official said Sunday “that report is totally false.” (I think Obama would love for Israel to take out Iran's nukes. It would relieve him of doing anything, but allow him to inflame Muslims and Progressives against Israel. ~Bob)

Excerpt: While anything is possible in the ongoing struggle between the Obama administration and the state of Israel, a high-level military source told PJ Media that today’s allegation — that an Israeli attack on Iran was supposedly imminent in 2014, but Obama warned Israel that U.S. jets would shoot down the Israelis if they attacked Iran’s nuclear installations — is not likely true. More likely, the report, which emerged from Kuwait, is disinformation timed to discredit Prime Minister Netanyahu and make him seem a warmonger in advance of his address to Congress Tuesday. The source stated that, since 2008, it is no longer possible for the U.S. to intercept Israeli jets flying over Southern Iraq, the normal route to Iran.

Top Netanyahu Aide Suggests Obama Is Withholding Key Information From Congress on Iran Talks. By Sharona Schwartz
Excerpt: A senior aide to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said that Israel knows more than Congress does about the elements in the emerging U.S-negotiated deal over Iran’s nuclear program. “We know many details from the agreement being put together, details that we feel members of Congress are unaware of,” the official told reporters aboard Netanyahu’s plane en route to Washington Sunday, according to multiple Israeli media outlets. (Come on, would "the most transparent administration in history" withhold information? Except, of course, about Obamacare, the IRS targets, fast and Furious, the terrorists behind the Benghazi attack...~Bob. I'm wearing my tin foil psychic hat and predict O will announce a nuke deal with Iran 2 or three days before the Israeli election. This "October surprise" in March will be presented as a cure to all of Israel's fears about Iran in the hope of undermining Netanyahu. But it won't be announced too soon. Don't want those damned intelligent Israelis time to really analyze what will doubtless be a sell out that threatens the peace of the entire world. --Tom H.)

Standing with Our Friends, Standing Up to Our Enemies. By Scott Walker
Excerpt: Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu will address a joint session of Congress this week. We should listen closely as he raises legitimate concerns about Iran — giving him and his country the respect worthy of a close ally. Instead, President Obama and some Democrats have chosen to use this visit as a political football. This is exactly what Americans dislike about Washington. Lost amidst the petty squabbling in our nation’s capital over protocol is the simple fact that the U.S.–Israel relationship is in crisis, perhaps the most serious crisis in our history. 

The Real Crisis in U.S.-Israel Relations Lies Ahead. By Steven J. Rosen
Excerpt: Benjamin Netanyahu's March 3 speech to Congress is diverting attention from more important U.S.-Israel controversies that will escalate soon after this comparatively minor contretemps fizzles out. At the U.N., the Palestinians and Europeans will press forward after the March 17 Israeli election, submitting draft United Nations Security Council resolutions that they postponed at the request of Secretary of State John F. Kerry. They are pressuring the administration to join this effort to impose terms on Israel, and not to veto.

Iraqi premier gives ultimatum ahead of hinted attack on ISIS-controlled Tikrit
Excerpt: Iraq's prime minister called on Sunni tribal fighters to abandon the Islamic State group Sunday, ahead of a promised offensive to retake Saddam Hussein's hometown from the extremists. Haider al-Abadi offered no timeline for an attack on Tikrit, the hometown of the late Iraqi dictator some 80 miles north of Baghdad that fell into the hands of the Islamic State group last summer. However, Shiite militias and Iraqi security forces have stationed themselves around Tikrit as state-run media has warned that the city "will soon return to its people." But sending Shiite militias into the Sunni city of Tikrit, the capital of Iraq's Salahuddin province, could reprise the bloody, street-by-street insurgent battles that followed the 2003 U.S.-led invasion of Iraq.

Interesting: The U.S. Anti-ISIS Strategy's True Cost. By Aymenn Jawad Al-Tamimi
Excerpt: On Monday the Iraqi military launched its largest operation to date against the self-declared Islamic State (IS), also called ISIS, to retake control of the city of Tikrit. Alongside the Iraqi military the coalition fighting IS in Tikrit includes Kurdish and Sunni tribal forces, but it leans heavily on Iranian backed Shia militias and reportedly includes a contingent from Iran's revolutionary guard. The urgent question now as the battle against IS intensifies is whether any US policy to defeat IS in Iraq can achieve its aim without ceding the country as a base for Iranian expansionism. Critics who regard President Obama's regional policy as aiming for a grand d├ętente with Iran have frequently argued that the current approach undermines attempts to counter IS. The bargain for making a deal with Iran, these critics say, has allowed Iran a free hand to assert dominance in Iraq, Syria, Lebanon and Yemen. Exhibit A for this line of thinking is Iran's cultivation of proxy militias in Iraq, principally in the Badr Organization, Kata'ib Hezbollah and Asa'ib Ahl al-Haq,

Worth Reading: Hillary Lied, Four Americans Died
Excerpt: Judicial Watch confirmed Thursday what many Americans already knew: Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s attempt to blame the attacks in Benghazi on an “offensive video” was a bald. As the result of a Freedom of Information Act lawsuit against the State Department, Judicial Watch obtained a series of critical emails that not only reveal State Department officials knew immediately the American compound in Benghazi was under attack but that the attack was perpetrated by assailants tied to a terrorist group. And despite the infamous exasperated question from the Democrats' likely presidential nominee, the truth does make a big difference at this point. (I wonder if the families of those who died can successfully sue Hillary? ~Bob)

Islamic State ‘Fed Murdered Man To His Own Mother.’ By Andre Walker
Excerpt: A British man who went to fight with the Kurds against Islamic State has claimed the terror group fed a desperate mother a meal of meat and rice before revealing she had eaten her own son. Yasir Abdulla, 36, from Yorkshire said that the woman had appealed to IS to release her son when they tricked her.

How Syria's Christians stopped turning the other cheek. By Richard Spencer
Excerpt: Like many of Syria’s warriors, Kino Gabriel was a student four years ago, training to be a dentist. Like many other Syrians, he resisted the call to war, until he saw the threat to the towns and villages where he grew up and worshipped. Like countless thousands, he soon found himself, gun in hand, snow falling in the bitter Syrian winter, fighting for his life, claiming his first kills. (It's one thing to turn your other cheek. It is another to fail to fight and thus tacitly allow the murder of your children and other innocents by exposing their necks to evil. ~Bob)

Obama's War: Rockets kill two, wound 30 in Libya's Benghazi
Excerpt: Rockets hit residential areas in Libya's Benghazi on Sunday, killing at least two people and wounding more than 30 others in continued fighting over the city, officials said. Nearly four years after the fall of Muammar GaddafiLibya is caught up in a conflict between two rival governments, one internationally recognized and the other controlling Tripoli since its fighters took over the capital in the summer.

Muslim cleric: Those who don’t respect Muslims have “no right to live.” By Robert Spencer,
Excerpt: Watch the video. He keeps saying that it is not he who is saying these things, but that they’re Islamic teachings. Will some Muslim spokesmen in the West who claims to abhor what Mullah Krekar is saying kindly explain how he is wrong on Islamic grounds? Of course not. And no one in the mainstream media will ask any of them to do so.

Is Iran Islamic? Authorities in Iran Raid Christians’ Homes, Ask Them to Leave Country.
Excerpt: A Christian in Iran who received 80 lashes for drinking communion wine has been asked to leave the country, human right activists said.
Agents from the Iranian intelligence service, known as VEVAK, on Feb. 16 raided the home of Mehdi Reza Omidi and two other members of house churches in Rasht, Saheb Fadaie and Yasser Mosayebzadeh, according to Christian Solidarity Worldwide (CSW), a United Kingdom-based advocacy group. 

M&S bans customers using the words 'Christ' and 'Jesus Christ' in messages when they are ordering flowers online - but jihad is okay
Excerpt: 'Christ' and 'Jesus Christ' join other banned words including 'f***' and 'gay' - but some terms including jihad, Buddha and Allah are accepted. 'Terrorist' and 'd**k' can also be included in messages.

UK Muslim cleric under fire for views on gays: “Views I hold have been held by Muslims for hundreds of years.” By Robert Spencer,
Excerpt: “It had been reported that Dr al-Haddad’s talk could still go ahead.” Of course. The limiting of the freedom of speech in Britain is all in the direction of shutting down critics of jihad terror, not those who justify and enable it. Haitham al-Haddad is the voice of Britain’s future.

Robert A. Hall is a Marine Vietnam Veteran who served five terms in the Massachusetts State Senate. He is the author of The Coming Collapse of the American Republic. For a free PDF of Collapse, e-mail him at tartanmarine(at) Hall’s eleven books are listed here:

No comments:

Post a Comment