Wednesday, May 27, 2015

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Worth Reading: Clinton Foundation Donors Got Weapons Deals From Hillary Clinton's State Department. By David Sirota and Andrew Perez 
Excerpt: Israeli officials were agitated, reportedly complaining to the Obama administration that this substantial enhancement to Saudi air power risked disrupting the region's fragile balance of power. The deal appeared to collide with the State Department’s documented concerns about the repressive policies of the Saudi royal family. ... These were not the only relationships bridging leaders of the two nations. In the years before Hillary Clinton became secretary of state, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia contributed at least $10 million to the Clinton Foundation, the philanthropic enterprise she has overseen with her husband, former president Bill Clinton. Just two months before the deal was finalized, Boeing -- the defense contractor that manufactures one of the fighter jets the Saudis were especially keen to acquire, the F-15 -- contributed $900,000 to the Clinton Foundation, according to a company press release. The Saudi deal was one of dozens of arms sales approved by Hillary Clinton’s State Department that placed weapons in the hands of governments that had also donated money to the Clinton family philanthropic empire, an International Business Times investigation has found. (You may recall that if you were anywhere to the right of Michael Moore on the issue of the Iraq War from 2003 to 2008, liberals called you a “warmonger” and “war profiteer” interchangeably. Somehow, because of your desire to see the Iraq invasion through -- in case, say, we withdrew troops too early and the country devolved into chaos and fell to Islamist extremists! -- they insisted you sought to see more “blood for oil” and yearned to see more death and destruction in the name of corporate profits. But now . . . hey, getting a little bonus from arms dealers will be no big deal. It’s the worst case of an administration figure being involved in arms dealing since… well, Fast and Furious, which wasn’t really that long ago. -- Jim Geraghty, Morning Jolt

Getting big money out of politics: Surprise: Most Clinton Foundation donors got larger weapons deals from Hillary’s State Department
Excerpt: Of 20 nations that donated to the Foundation, 17 had more robust weapons transactions in the three fiscal years that State was led by Hillary than in the last three years of the previous administration. How do you convince a president who got elected in 2008 on an anti-war platform repudiating warmongering cowboy George W. Bush to ramp up arms deals to unsavory regimes in the Middle East? Slipping a fat envelope into the Clinton slush fund’s collection box couldn’t hurt. And evidently didn’t. ... however Team Hillary spins this, the sober fact remains for the left that their next nominee will have presided over an unprecedented spree of weapons dealing, including to brutal authoritarian regimes, which complicates the tried-and-true Democratic narrative that Republicans are the party of warmongers.

Carly Fiorina aims to show up Clinton with press conference outside Clinton event. By Anne Gearan
Excerpt: "Carly Fiorina is speaking in downtown Columbia, SC on Wednesday. And guess what? So is Hillary Clinton," Fiorina spokeswoman Sarah I. Flores wrote in an e-mail Tuesday.
"We know it must be hard covering the Hillary for America But Against Transparency campaign," Flores said. "Leading by example, Carly will host a media availability outside the Columbia Marriott at 12:00pm on Wednesday."

The Obama Arms Bazaar: Record Sales, Troubling Results. By William D. Hartung
Excerpt: With the end of the Obama presidency just around the corner, discussions of his administration’s foreign policy legacy are already well under way. But one central element of that policy has received little attention: the Obama administration’s dramatic acceleration of U.S. weapons exports. The numbers are astonishing. In President Obama’s first five years in office, new agreements under the Pentagon’s Foreign Military Sales (FMS) program—the largest channel for U.S. arms exports—totaled over $169 billion. After adjusting for inflation, the volume of major deals concluded by the Obama administration in its first five years exceeds the amount approved by the Bush administration in its full eight years in office by nearly $30 billion. That also means that the Obama administration has approved more arms sales than any U.S. administration since World War II.

The Beginning of a New Trail for Reporters. By Erick Erickson 
Excerpt: A political consultant, earlier this year, told me where she thought the beginning of the end of Hillary Clinton’s campaign for President would begin. She spoke of it matter of factly. She said that on more than one occasion, as a company had business before a foreign government, President Clinton would take a trip to that country, get a meeting with the leader of that country because hey! it’s Bill Clinton, then work into the conversation the issues of that company. The implication as well was that Clinton’s travel was via the Foundation. But the conversation about the business came due to Clinton working for Teneo Strategy LLC.

Clinton Foundation hit with racketeering lawsuit. By Sarah Westwood 
Excerpt: Bill and Hillary Clinton and the Clinton Foundation have been hit with a racketeering lawsuit in Florida court. The lawsuit, filed by Larry Klayman of Freedom Watch, includes a legal request to have the Florida judge seize the private server on which Hillary Clinton and her aides hosted their emails while she served as secretary of state. Klayman has filed dozens of lawsuits against the Clintons and other prominent politicians. The racketeering, influenced and corrupt organizations, or RICO, case alleges the former first couple and their family philanthropy traded political favors for donations or generous speaking fees for Bill Clinton while his wife was the nation's chief diplomat. (Think she'll get out of it ad claim exoneration. ~Bob)

Judicial Watch: State Department Almost Immediately Labeled Benghazi Attack as “Terrorism Event.” State Department Counterterrorism Official Complains About Hillary Clinton-tied Request to FBI
Excerpt: Judicial Watch today released new State Department documents showing the Benghazi attack was called a “terrorism event” almost immediately after the attack took place. Another document suggests that Hillary Clinton tasked an official to contact the FBI, evidently not knowing that the FBI was already on the Benghazi matter under longstanding State Department counterterrorism response protocols. The new documents were forced from the U.S. State Department under court order in a Judicial Watch Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) lawsuit.

Worth Reading: Disasters at Home and Abroad. By Victor Davis Hanson
Excerpt: Things are starting to collapse, abroad and at home. We all sense it, even as we bicker over who caused it and why. ISIS took Ramadi last week. That city once was a Bastogne to the brave Americans who surged to save it in 2007 and 2008. ISIS, once known at the White House as the “Jayvees,” were certainly “on the run” — right into the middle of that strategically important city. ... What is unique about American foreign policy today is not just that it is rudderless, but how quickly and completely the 70-year postwar order seems to have disintegrated — and how little interest the American people take in the collapse, thanks to the administration’s apparent redeeming message, which translates, “It’s their misfortune and none of our own.” ... As far as scandals go, no one much cares any more about the implosion of the Veterans Administration. In the public’s defense, though, how does one keep straight the multitudinous scandals — Lois Lerner and the rogue IRS, the spying on and tapping of Associated Press journalists, the National Security Agency disclosures, Fast and Furious, the serial lying about needless deaths in Benghazi, the shenanigans at the General Services Administration, the collapse of sobriety at the Secret Service, the rebooting of air-traffic controllers’ eligibility to be adjudicated along racial and ethnic lines, and the deletions from Hillary Clinton’s private e-mail server, which doubled as her government server

Santorum launches 2016 campaign, with focus on 'working families'
Excerpt: Rick Santorum announced his second campaign for the White House on Wednesday, striking a populist tone as he railed against "big government" and "big money." 
The former Republican Pennsylvania senator made his announcement surrounded by factory workers on the floor of a business near his western Pennsylvania hometown, a setting designed to showcase his focus on the working class. 

Ohio Gov. Kasich looks to announce 2016 bid this summer
Excerpt: Ohio Gov. John Kasich, who has been actively gauging reactions to a possible campaign for president in 2016, is now moving rapidly to assemble the staff and financial resources for such a bid and is looking to declare his candidacy sometime after June 30, according to knowledgeable Republicans.

U.S. indicts FIFA officials in alleged $150 million bribery scandal
Excerpt: The United States accused top executives of soccer’s world governing body Wednesday of enriching themselves in a 24-year corruption scheme, and Justice Department officials warned that a stunning succession of indictments and arrests was just the beginning of a probe aimed at cleaning up the sport. Attorney General Loretta Lynch said deep-rooted corruption in the governing body, known as FIFA, allowed members and related firms to collect millions of dollars through bribery and kickbacks “year after year, tournament after tournament.”

After years of setbacks, the embattled F-35 fighter jet could soon be ready for combat. By Christian Davenport 
Excerpt: ABOARD THE USS WASP — It has wound a tortured path to get here. The F-35 Joint Strike Fighter has been derided as a trillion-dollar boondoggle, the “plane that ate the Pentagon,” a failed project billions over budget and years behind schedule that should be killed.
And yet here it was Tuesday, the sun glinting off its wings on a beautiful day as it approached this amphibious assault ship for a landing 100 miles off the North Carolina coast. It nestled in undaunted, touching down vertically like a helicopter onto the deck.

Pentagon says ‘live anthrax’ inadvertently shipped across US
Excerpt: The Pentagon revealed Wednesday that "live anthrax" was shipped, apparently by accident, from a lab in Utah to as many as nine states. 
Pentagon spokesman Col. Steve Warren assured "there is no known risk to the general public" and said an investigation is under way. But precautions are being taken for potentially exposed workers in labs where the samples were sent. A U.S. official told Fox News that four people in three companies are being treated for "post-exposure" and being prescribed prophylaxis. 

General McChrystal: Yep, We Knew Bergdahl Was a Deserter Immediately. By Katie Pavlich 
Excerpt: In fact, last year State Department Deputy Spokeswoman Marie Harf said allegations Bergdahl deserted were simply "rumors." Not only did President Obama hold a Rose Garden ceremony to honor Bergdahl, but administration officials Jay Carney and Susan Rice said he "served with honor and distinction." But now, Army General Stanley McChrystal is confirming the accounts of Bergdahl's platoon mates and said in a recent interview with Fox News it was known Bergdahl deserted immediately after his disappearance.

Do You Find Yourself Disrespecting the American Flag? Well, You’re Pissing Off ‘Aunt Boo’

Cuba's crackdown should make Obama think twice
Excerpt: At the time this move was first announced, we questioned just what it was that the Obama administration was receiving in exchange. There was and is still no evidence that Cuba has agreed to the extradition of the many murderers and terrorists who sought and received refuge in Cuba throughout the Cold War. Without something to show for it, Obama seemed to be doing an awfully big favor for an unelected regime that has few if any redeeming qualities. The Cuban regime is more like a national disease than a national government. Its hallmarks are the imprisonment of political dissenters and the suppression of economic and human rights, such as free expression and freedom of religion.

Good suggestions: Graduation Gifts. By Thomas Sowell 
Excerpt: Given the narrow range of left to far left views of the world on most college campuses, and the vast ignorance of other views, even among graduates of elite academic institutions, one valuable gift might be a book giving a different perspective on the world. The recent publication of "American Contempt for Liberty" a hefty, 417-page collection of columns by economist Walter E. Williams, would be an excellent choice. For many college graduates, this book would be virtually an education in itself, covering many issues and presenting many perspectives they have never encountered before, in this era of academic lockstep thinking on social issues. ... Another book that would open the eyes of most of today's graduates to a world they have never encountered or conceived is "Life at the Bottom" by Theodore Dalrymple. ... The fact that "Life at the Bottom" is about low-income whites in England, living lives remarkably similar to the lives of blacks in American ghettos, means that it cannot be dismissed as racism, the way American promoters of the welfare state evade responsibility for the social disasters they have created.

Holy Warriors of the Left and Right. By Jonah Goldberg 
Excerpt: Huckabee has always struck me as a right-wing populist-progressive. A deeply religious -- and by all accounts decent -- man, Huckabee nonetheless has a view of the state that would have jibed almost perfectly with such forgotten titans of the Progressive Era as Richard Ely, Josephus Daniels and even William Jennings Bryan. ... It's worth noting that the progressives of yesteryear Huckabee resembles were not "right-wing" back then. The original progressives, so beloved by contemporary liberals unburdened with historical knowledge of their forebears, were overwhelmingly religious (and quite often very, very racist). 

Honoring America’s forgotten Cold War heroes. By Reps. Steve Israel (D-N.Y.) and David Jolly (R-Fla.)
Excerpt: There also lie heroes that time has forgotten - whose names and actions are not written in the text of history books or etched into the walls of memorials. Millions of brave service members whose commitment to our nation ended the Cold War, after more than forty years. They worked quietly, or behind the scenes but prevented the world from dovetailing into nuclear war.

Rand Paul Isn't Done Yet
Excerpt: Republican Senator Rand Paul said he plans to block any U.S. Senate action to re-authorize surveillance programs that face a June 1deadline unless he gets a vote on ending the bulk collection of phone-call data. “What I’m looking for right now is to see if the other side will negotiate,” Paul of Kentucky said Tuesday on the “CBS This Morning” program. “I would like to have a vote on ending the bulk collection,” he said. “I think we can win that vote.”

Rising Dragon News

What U.S. publishers owe China. By Suzanne Nossel 
Excerpt: In 1962, Chinese President Liu Shaoqi warned Mao Zedong: “History will record the role you and I played in the starvation of so many people, and the cannibalization will also be memorialized!” Their exchange is in “Tombstone,” a 1,200-page history by Yang Jisheng, who documented 36 million deaths under Mao’s agrarian reforms. Yet Liu’s tacit prediction of harm to Mao’s reputation from the horrific revelations was unfounded — at least in China

China Warns of ‘Inevitable’ War with US Over South China Sea
Excerpt: After Chinese state media warned that war with the United States may be “inevitable,” Beijing has published a policy paper detailing how the military will shift its focus from land and coastlines to the open seas. China’s State Council released a white paper today that criticizes “external countries…busy meddling in South China Sea affairs” and sets out an “active defense” military strategy for the country.

Gun News

Excerpt: There have been 50 “shooting incidents’’ since Jan. 1, compared with 31 in the same time period in 2014 — an increase of about 38 percent. Some of these “incidents’’ involved more than one victim. The number of shooting victims nearly doubled, from 33 to 61. (The race baiters were all for eliminating "racist stop-and-frisk, but couldn't care less about blacks murdered by black thugs. ~Bob)

Police investigate home invasion shooting on northwest side
Excerpt: According to IMPD officials, police responded to the report of a person shot at Abington Apartments. Police said two men entered the apartment unit and one of them fired shots. The victim returned fire.

3 Thugs Try to Rape Little Girl, But They Didn’t Count on Grandpa
Excerpt: One of the thugs knocked on the couple’s door, claiming he needed help because he had car trouble. The situation turned ugly when two additional thugs wearing black clothing and ski masks burst into the home and attempted to rape the granddaughter.
That’s when 67-year-old Kenneth Byrd, who was home with his wife, 65-year-old Judy Byrd, grabbed his shotgun and started blasting thugs left and right, with one eventually dying in Byrd’s stolen car.

Race Card News

Liberals Respect Me. By Walter E. Williams
Excerpt: During the early years of the Reagan administration, a Washington news conference was held for me for my first book, "The State Against Blacks." Before making summary statements about the book, I offered the reporters assembled that they could treat me like a white person. They could ask me hard, pressing questions. They could demand proof of the arguments that I was making. People such as former NAACP President Kweisi Mfume and former Chairman Julian Bond and the Rev. Al Sharpton can make ludicrous statements. An intimidated news media just swallow the nonsense. They are probably afraid to challenge, lest they suffer guilt feelings of racism or be seen as racists for demanding that a black person back up his comments with facts.

“Deadly force” kills 9 in Baltimore in 72 hours. By Allen West
So the word is that Rev. Al Sharpton is heading to Cleveland, Ohio because that’s where the Excerpt: cameras and protestors are after the acquittal of a Cleveland police officer.
And of course the media is reporting the agreement reached between the Cleveland Police Department and the U.S. Department of Justice over the use of deadly force. But something is terribly amiss. What about the widespread use of deadly force this past Memorial Day weekend in Baltimore and Chicago? I suppose black lives don’t matter unless the liberal progressive left and their complicit media accomplices say they do.

Aunt Boo on Baltimore

Aunt Boo's Pull-your-pants-up Campaign

K-9 officer saves deputy’s life during ambush (VIDEO)
Excerpt: During the struggle, Frazier hit a remote control device around his neck, which unlocked the backdoor of his patrol car, authorities said. K-9 Officer Lucas, a black Belgian Malinois, sprung out. He bolted toward Frazier and bit one of the suspects, sending all three fleeing into the night, Grannan said. (Story doesn't say, but linking site said the perps were black. ~Bob)

Obamacare/Government Healthcare News

Alabama's Medicaid Drug Program
Excerpt: One million Alabamans are enrolled in Medicaid, a joint federal-state program that provides medical care to nearly 70 million low-income individuals nationwide. Medicaid consumes over one-third of the General Fund, and costs state and federal taxpayers nearly $6 billion annually — about one-tenth of which participants spend on drugs and drug therapies.
Medicaid officials anticipate enrollment will increase as a result of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, says NCPA senior fellow Devon Herrick. In addition, Medicaid spending on drug therapies will rise as the prevalence of costly specialty drugs increases. Thus, slowing the growth of Medicaid drug spending is a fiscal imperative for Alabama's state budget.

Religion of Peace News

Fall of Ramadi Shows That ISIS Has ‘Tactical Awareness.’ By Matt Vespa 
Excerpt: The fall of Ramadi has proven that the Islamic State is evolving, and has adopted a level of tactical awareness that led to them outmaneuvering Iraqi government forces. Moreover, the sectarian division between Shiite and Sunni Iraqis continues to plague the government’s efforts in mobilizing the country against ISIS. More disconcertingly, we now know, or at least the Obama administration should realize, that airstrikes aren’t working. ISIS has learned to evade detection, both in the real world and in the digital realm when it comes to launching their offensives 

Muslims Won't Listen to Hirsi Ali. By Tarek Fatah
Excerpt: Ayaan Hirsi Ali, the incredibly courageous, Somali-born author, has written a new book, Heretic, in which she calls for "nothing less than a Muslim Reformation." Her Muslim critics may spew vitriol at her, but they cannot take away from the unflinching resolve she has demonstrated — in the face of death threats — as she critiques Islam, the religion of her childhood that she has abandoned. She is reaching out to Muslims, but I feel her gesture will resonate only with those who have already abandoned Islam, not those who remain inside its cauldron.

Obama's War: Libyan prime minister escapes assassination attempt in Tobruk
Excerpt: Gunmen tried to assassinate Libya’s internationally-recognised prime minister on his way to the airport in the eastern city of Tobruk on Tuesday. Abdullah al-Thinni told pan-Arab news channel al-Arabiya that after he left parliament in Tobruk and drove off, gunmen in several cars followed his entourage and opened fire. “We were surprised by a lot of bullets … Thank God, we managed to escape,” Thinni said, adding that one bodyguard had been wounded.

Gaza: Hamas killed and tortured, says Amnesty
Excerpt: Hamas forces in the Gaza Strip committed serious human rights abuses including abductions, torture and extra-judicial killings of Palestinian civilians in 2014, a report says. Most of the victims were accused of collaborating with Israel, Amnesty International investigators report. The report says no-one had been brought to account for the abuses, suggesting they were officially sanctioned.

Blurting out the truth: Obama on the defense again as another defense secretary speaks. By Greg Jaffe
Excerpt: President Obama has not had an easy time with his secretaries of defense. Two of his defense secretaries wrote books critical of his administration after they left office, and his third was essentially fired. On Tuesday, the White House scrambled to clarify remarks by Obama’s fourth defense secretary, Ashton B. Carter, who said over the weekend that Iraqi forces who collapsed in their defense of Ramadi lacked the “will to fight” Islamic State militants. Carter’s pronouncement, unusual for its bluntness, angered senior Iraqi officials in Baghdad and seemed to suggest that the president’s strategy, built around supporting Iraqi forces with training and airstrikes, was failing. 

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:

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