Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Today's important political news and opinion


General News and Comment

Are the Clintons Corrupt?

Middle Class Champions: AP: You Know Bill Clinton Has A Shell Company That Was Never Disclosed, Right? By Matt Vespa 
Excerpt: Because the company, WJC, LLC, has no financial assets, Hillary Clinton's campaign was not obligated to report its existence in her recent financial disclosure report, officials with Bill Clinton's private office and the Clinton campaign said. They were responding to questions by The Associated Press, which reviewed corporate documents. The officials, who spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to provide private details of the former president's finances on the record, said the entity was a "pass-through" company designed to channel payments to the former president. (Hey, doesn't everyone have a pass-through shell company? ~Bob)

Clinton’s State Dept Approved Arms Deals To Govts Who Gave Millions To The Foundation. By Matt Vespa 
Excerpt: According to the International Business Times, governments with appalling human rights records who donated to the Clinton Foundation received billions in arms deals approved by the Clinton State Department that far surpassed anything doled out by the Bush administration. A review of the 2009-2012 fiscal records by the IBT discovered the transactions:
Under Clinton's leadership, the State Department approved $165 billion worth of commercial arms sales to 20 nations whose governments have given money to the Clinton Foundation, according to an IBTimes analysis of State Department and foundation data. 

2 Of Hillary’s Libya Emails Are Missing. By Chuck Ross
Excerpt: Sidney Blumenthal emailed Hillary Clinton at least two intelligence reports about Libya which were not included in the trove of 296 emails released by the State Department on Friday. Clinton has claimed that in December she turned over all official government emails she sent or received from her personal account while in office. In turn, the agency has claimed it turned all Clinton emails related to Libya or Benghazi over to the House Select Committee investigating the Benghazi attack. But a screenshot of Blumenthal’s email inbox, which the Romanian hacker Guccifer published in March 2013, shows two reports about Libya emailed to Clinton which were not released in Friday’s batch.

Bernie Sanders: When You ‘Hustle Money’ Like The Clintons, You Become Out of Touch
Excerpt: “When you hustle money like that you don’t sit in restaurants like this, you sit in restaurants like where you are spending hundreds of dollars for dinner,” said Sanders. “That’s the world that you are accustomed to and that’s the worldview that you adopt.”

Important: GM set to face criminal charges and fine in excess of $1 billion over ignition switch defect that led to deaths of 104 people
Excerpt: General Motors is negotiating what could be a record fine with US Justice authorities after a federal investigation into a defect linked to at least 104 deaths uncovered criminal wrongdoing. A settlement, likely to surpass the $1.2billion paid out by Toyota over sudden unintended acceleration, could be reached in the next few months, according to the New York Times. (Yes, this is the same GM that cost taxpayers an $11.2 billion loss in the bailout. So we spent a lot of money to help save a company that was allegedly engaged in a criminal conspiracy to cover up the fact that they were selling unsafe cars. (When the government sold its first shares, President Obama boldly predicted, “American taxpayers are now positioned to recover more than my administration invested in GM.”) Back in April 2014, an unnamed source told Bloomberg BusinessWeek that GM didn’t tell the task force anything about the defective switches. It’s an unsurprising excuse, but not quite as exculpatory as that unnamed source may think. The task force’s job was to get an accurate portrait of GM’s assets, liabilities, and problems, and the source said GM’s board and the task force did discuss product-liability claims. The Obama administration bragged about the thoroughness of its review. At this point, it is unclear whether the task force spoke with anyone in the engineering department. At the precise moment the president’s task force was supposedly confronting GM about a dysfunctional corporate culture that had brought the company to the brink of ruin, it accepted everything GM’s leaders told it at face value. -- Jim Geraghty, Morning Jolt http://www.nationalreview.com/newsletters)

Survey: Federal employees commemorate Memorial Day by watching porn. By M.D. Kittle 
Excerpt: Nothing says honoring our nation’s fallen service members like downloading some porn on Memorial Day. But that’s apparently how some federal employees will spend this holiday, according to a newly released survey by a Florida-based spyware company. EnigmaSoftware.com found that personal computers in Washington, D.C., which, obviously, boasts the highest concentrations of federal employees in the country, experience a 51 percent spike in computer infections on federal holidays.

If true, so much for "choice.":17-Year-Old Girl Forced to Have Abortion Against Her Will “No! Please Don’t Make Me!”
Excerpt: Lavonne Wilenken worked as a nurse practitioner at a Planned Parenthood clinic. She shares some anecdotes about her time at Planned Parenthood in the book Bad Choices: A Look inside Planned Parenthood by Douglas R Scott. This little-known 1992 book contains information about Planned Parenthood. Although dated, it has some interesting statistics, facts, and testimonies from Planned Parenthood patients and staff. In one anecdote, Wilenken describes what happened when a teenage girl scheduled for an abortion changed her mind at the last minute:

Why Florida, Other Free-Market-Friendly States Are Booming. Bt Ed Dean
Excerpt: Florida and Republican-leaning states are booming, while traditionally Democratic states are getting left behind -- all because of their economic policies. Heritage Foundation economists Stephen Moore, Arthur B. Laffer and Joel Griffith teamed up on a study, “Why Red States Are Getting Richer and Blue States Poorer," looking at how the economy is managed in various states, including Florida. The report covered issues ranging from personal income taxes, the corporate income tax rate, tax burdens, estate taxes, property taxes, sales taxes, state and local government debt, minimum wage, workers’ compensation costs, right-to-work issues and government pensions.

Most Voters In Democrat-Run States Think Government Too Big
Excerpt: Voters in states run mostly by Democrats are more likely than those in GOP-run states to feel their state government is too big, but all give similar performance reviews to those governments.

America on Parade. By Andy Weddington
Excerpt: Tens of thousands lined Washington D.C.'s Constitution Avenue for Monday afternoon's National Memorial Day Parade. What a tribute! What a grand, fitting spectacle honoring and celebrating those who fought and died to preserve freedom. 

Heavy rains in Texas, Oklahoma fuel hope for California drought relief
Excerpt: Five years of extreme drought have come to a dramatic end in Texas and Oklahoma as a month of heavy rains has replenished reservoirs, dampened parched soil across both states and unleashed floodwaters on vulnerable residents....In one bizarre incident early this month, an Oklahoma City woman, taking cover from a storm, drowned after her tornado shelter flooded. Another tornado shelter in Norman emerged from the ground like a submarine after the owner's yard flooded.

Rising Dragon News

US-China war 'inevitable' unless Washington drops demands over South China Sea. Warning from state-run China newspaper as Beijing reveals plans for development of disputed South China Sea islands
Excerpt: China’s armed forces are to extend their operations and its air force will become an offensive as well as defensive force for the first time, in a major shift in policy that will strengthen fears of accidental conflict. A policy document by the state council, or cabinet, said China faced a “grave and complex array of security threats”, justifying the change. The People’s Liberation Army, including its navy and air force, will be allowed to “project power” further beyond its borders at sea and more assertively in the air in order to safeguard its maritime possessions, the white paper stated.

Race Card News

Surprise: With 27 Shootings This Weekend, Baltimore Sees Its Most Violent Month This Century. By Chuck Ross
Excerpt: Baltimore has seen 27 shootings and eight deaths so far over Memorial Day weekend, as the month of May promises to be the most violent the city has seen this century. “It is disheartening that we are seeing such an increase in violence, especially when we think about the progress that we’ve made,” Baltimore mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake told WJZ. “We’ve come too far to have this type of setback.”

Police will back off: Justice Department reaches settlement with Cleveland over police conduct. By Sari Horwitz
Excerpt: The Justice Department has reached a settlement with the city of Cleveland over the conduct of its police officers, according to a Justice official, the latest case in which the Obama administration has investigated excessive use of force and the violation of constitutional rights by a local department. The settlement, amid the growing national debate about American policing, is expected to be announced early this week, the official said. It comes just days after a judge acquitted a Cleveland police officer for his role in the fatal shooting of two unarmed people in a car in 2012 after officers thought the sound of the car backfiring was gunshots. (Crime and murder rates will increase. most of the victims will be black, but as long as they are killed by blocks, Obama and the DOJ couldn't care less. Result: Baltimore. ~Bob)

Obamacare/Government Healthcare News

Excerpt: You’ve got to give credit to Congressman Tom Price, MD: He introduced his first post-Obamacare bill as early as 2009 and has reintroduced an updated version in every Congress since then. The latest Empowering Patients First Act (H.R. 2300), introduced this month, is the fourth iteration. Many critics complain Republicans in Congress have taken too long to develop an alternative to Obamacare. However, President Obama is running the show until January 2017. It is responsible for Congressional Republicans to take all the time and space they need to develop their alternative for the next president’s consideration. A fully baked repeal and replacement bill today would serve no purpose, while doing nothing until a president committed to patient-centered health reform takes office risks a confused mess of lobbyists’ priorities thrown together by politicians who barely know what they are doing – a Republican Obamacare, in other words. (Dr. Price is an orthopaedic surgeon--I'm met him more than once. He has been pushing this bill while the media and Democrats have been saying the Republicans have no alternative to O-care. If you have the media helping, you can tell any lie. ~Bob)

Voters Expect Problems Ahead from Obamacare
Excerpt: Voters still tend to think the new national health care law isn't working and expect things to get even worse. 

Oh, Look, Those Big Insurance Premium Hikes That Weren’t Supposed to Happen. By Jim Geraghty, Morning Jolt
Hey, remember Obamacare? Remember this bold Obama promise that probably persuaded a lot of people to vote for him? “I will sign a universal health care bill into law by the end of my first term as president that will cover every American and cut the cost of a typical family’s premium by up to $2,500 a year.” Surprise! It turns out that when a lot of people who didn’t previously have health insurance are required to buy it (or join Medicaid), they end up using it. And that ends up with higher costs for the insurer . . . which they turn around and use to justify higher premiums.

Important: Sticker Shock for Some Obamacare Customers. By Megan McArdle
Excerpt: So the proposed 2016 Obamacare rates have been filed in many states, and in many states, the numbers are eye-popping. Market leaders are requesting double-digit increases in a lot of places. Some of the biggest are really double-digit: 51 percent in New Mexico, 36 percent in Tennessee, 30 percent in Maryland, 25 percent in Oregon. The reason? They say that with a full year of claims data under their belt for the first time since Obamacare went into effect, they're finding the insurance pool was considerably older and sicker than expected. ... So the proposed 2016 Obamacare rates have been filed in many states, and in many states, the numbers are eye-popping. Market leaders are requesting double-digit increases in a lot of places. Some of the biggest are really double-digit: 51 percent in New Mexico, 36 percent in Tennessee, 30 percent in Maryland, 25 percent in Oregon. The reason? They say that with a full year of claims data under their belt for the first time since Obamacare went into effect, they're finding the insurance pool was considerably older and sicker than expected.

Obamacare Insurance Premiums To Jump, Up To 51%
Excerpt: The Affordable Care Act was rushed into law and implemented with what now appears to have been grossly defective actuarial assumptions regarding costs. The same consumer groups that fought for Obamacare are already demanding federal and state officials put premiums under the microscope to curb some increases. But with healthcare inflation running far ahead of inflation and insurers saying their huge proposed rates only reflect the revenue they need to pay claims, Obamacare seems destined to loom as a financial and political crisis this summer.

We told you so: Skimpy insurance seen by Democrats as next health care issue
Excerpt: After paying premiums, many low- and middle-income patients still face high costs when trying to use their coverage. There's growing concern that the value of a health insurance card is being eaten away by rising deductibles, the amount of actual medical costs that patients pay each year before coverage kicks in. "I think it's going to be the next big problem," said Rep. Jim McDermott, D-Wash., a congressional leader on health care. "We've got some 17 million more people covered ... but they can't access the care they seem to be entitled to," McDermott said. "It costs too much to use the care. That's the deceptive part about it."

Undocumented Democrat News

Appeals court rules against Obama on immigration. By David Nakamura 
Excerpt: A federal judicial panel in New Orleans on Tuesday denied the Obama administration’s request to lift an injunction on President Obama’s expanded deferred action program for illegal immigrants, throwing into doubt whether the program will begin before the president leaves office.

Everything's free in Obama's America

Religion of Peace News

Spray and Pray- I detect a training problem.

Islamic State crisis: Iraq will take back Ramadi 'in days' - PM Abadi
Excerpt: The Iraqi city of Ramadi could be taken back from Islamic State (IS) militants "in days", Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi has told the BBC. But he said more support was needed from international coalition partners. Iraqi forces have suffered a number of defeats at the hands of IS over the past year, and fled from a smaller militant force in Ramadi last week.

Obama’s Iraq War. By Daniel Greenfield
Excerpt: Even by the war-shy standards of Democrats, Obama’s word games with war have been something else. Obama’s wars are complex shell games. When he goes to war, he claims that it was at the request of a third party, which was actually fulfilling his request to file a request that it later takes back, based on a pretext that turns out to be false, to carry out a mission that turns out to be a pretext for regime change. At least that’s how it happened in Libya.

Tiny Minority of Extremists Alert: Shock Poll: 81% Of Al Jazeera Arabic Poll Respondents Support Islamic State
Excerpt: In a recent survey conducted by AlJazeera.net, the website for the Al Jazeera Arabic television channel, respondents overwhelmingly support the Islamic State terrorist group, with 81% voting “YES” on whether they approved of ISIS’s conquests in the region.

Paging Paul Ehrlich: Muslim world faces fertility crisis
Excerpt: SOMETHING startling is happening in the Muslim world – and no, I don’t mean the Arab Spring or the growth of Islamic fundamentalism. According to a leading demographer, a “sea change” is producing a sharp decline in Muslim fertility rates and a “flight from marriage” among Arab women.

Veteran Suspended from Mississippi College, Labeled ‘Threat’ After Requesting Non-Muslim Counselor. By Pamela Geller
Excerpt: A former active-duty Marine who served two combat tours in Iraq and is diagnosed with combat-related PTSD was suspended from Mississippi College in Clinton, Mississippi after he requested to meet with a non-Muslim counselor in the school’s Office of Counseling and Disability Services. Do you blame him? How many Muslim groups demanded their university(s) cancel American Sniper screenings? The country’s “leading Muslim civil rights group,” the terrorist organization CAIR, today questioned if US troops should be honored on Memorial Day.

Worth Reading: Negotiating with the Executors of Children. By Majid Rafizadeh 
Excerpt: Despite pressure from global community and human rights organizations, a young man, Hamid Ahmadi, is at imminent risk of execution, according to Amnesty international. A few months ago, a Kurdish Juvenile “offender” was executed for charges such as “enmity against God” and “corruption on Earth.” Iranian authorities carried out the execution despite international pressure. His family members were asked to collect his body the next day. In addition, although the increasing number of executions for minor crimes is appalling in itself in the Islamic Republic, the execution of children adds more evidence of the egregious human rights abuses committed by the ruling clerics of the Islamic Republic.

There will be blood: ‘Revitalizing’ Detroit with 50,000 Syrian Refugees? By Michael Cutler 
Excerpt: Our primary concern, however, must be on how any actions to address this will impact the United States and its citizens. We will begin by considering the impact large numbers of refugees would likely have on American workers, particularly focusing on a proposal for the resettlement of 50,000 Syrian refugees in Detroit, Michigan. First of all, the proposal for this program would come with a huge price-tag. Consider just how much the proposal admits this would cost:

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. http://www.amazon.com/Coming-Collapse-American-Republic-prevent/dp/1461122538/ref=sr_1_5?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1304815980&sr=1-5 For a free PDF of Collapse, e-mail him at tartanmarine(at)gmail.com. Hall’s eleven books are listed here:

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