What Goes Around Comes Around

The American Spectator posted an article today about the latest chapter in the ObamaCare saga. The article reminds us that the health insurance providers were initially supporters of ObamaCare. The article also reminds us that the insurance companies knew that they would not be able to make a profit under the rules of ObamaCare, but the plan was to have the taxpayers make up the loss.

The article reports:

In Christopher Marlowe’s Doctor Faustus, the sinful sawbones eventually thinks better of his bargain with the devil and does his best to weasel out of the deal. A number of health insurers, having made similarly cynical arrangements with the Obama administration, are now attempting to use the court system to escape the consequences of their cupidity. Knowing full well that they couldn’t make legitimate profits selling coverage through Obamacare’s exchanges, they relied on Democrat guarantees that their losses would be covered by the taxpayers. But a funny thing happened on the way to easy profits. Congress refused to appropriate the funds.

The insurance companies in question were told by the Obama administration that they could expect to have their bottom lines propped up by the “risk corridor” program. The magical thinking behind this boondoggle was that insurers enjoying big profits from Obamacare would pay into a pool from which less fortunate plans would be subsidized. In late 2015, however, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) announced that profitable insurers had paid in a mere $362 million while their unprofitable counterparts had requested $2.87 billion to cover their losses. Thus, the losers would be paid only 12.6 percent of their requests.

In 2012 the Republicans took over the House of Representatives and in 2014 they gained a majority in the Senate. The House of Representatives failed to appropriate the funds.

The article concludes:

…The performance of these Republicans has been disappointing in many ways. Still, by making the risk corridors budget neutral, they exposed the fundamental fiscal instability that defines Obamacare. This requirement was inserted largely due to a quiet effort by Senator Marco Rubio for which he has been savaged by the “news” media. The Washington Post, for example, described the Rubio contribution as follows: “a poison pill that is killing Obamacare from within.”

This is not an exaggeration. The restriction on using general funds to keep Obamacare afloat will drive the few remaining CO-OPs out of business and the remaining insurers out of the exchanges. Neither the Obama administration nor the congressional Democrats with whom they made their cynical deal can save them. In the end, the Devil will have his due.

The obvious answer here is to reintroduce the free market into health insurance. Let competition lower the cost. Create a risk pool for people with pre-existing conditions, much like the auto insurance industry does. Allow competition across state lines, and have the insurance follow the person so changing jobs is not a problem. Provide tax deductions for the cost of health insurance–if you don’t pay taxes, you don’t get the deduction. Also, take twenty-five-year-old adults off of their parents’ policies–it is time for them to take responsibility for themselves!

When Political Operatives Use The Legal System To Attack Their Opponents

When political operatives use the legal system to attack their opponents, we all lose. We have seen numerous examples of this in recent years. In 2002 House Majority Leader Tom Delay was charged with money laundering as part of a plan to redraw the Texas political map in 2002. He was finally cleared in 2014, thousands of dollars later. He also lost his position as House Majority Leader. Recently we saw the indictment of David Daleiden who took undercover videos exposing Planned Parenthood‘s selling of aborted baby body parts (later overturned).

Fred and Virginia Attorney General Bob McDonnell

Fred and Virginia Attorney General Bob McDonnell (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

In January 2014, Former Virginia Governor Bob McDonnell and his wife were indicted on federal corruption charges. Yesterday the Supreme Court ruled on the case.

Politico reported yesterday:

A unanimous Supreme Court has overturned the corruption convictions of former Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell, ruling that federal prosecutors relied on a “boundless” definition of the kinds of acts that could lead politicians to face criminal charges.

The decision from the eight-justice court could make it tougher for prosecutors to prove corruption cases against politicians in cases where there is no proof of an explicit agreement linking a campaign donation or gift to a contract, grant or vote.

If you read the details of the case, there was definitely some sleazy behavior there, but the actions of Governor McDonnell were not illegal under Virginia law. Also, note that this was a unanimous decision by the Supreme Court. That is rare.

Our political system has become toxic. It is time for all Americans to do their own research and draw their own conclusions. When you see the media gang up on a candidate or office holder, don’t believe anything you hear. This is an election season, and nothing should be a surprise. When you read in the mainstream media that the Trump campaign is being run by aliens that Donald Trump meets with in Dennis Kucinich‘s back yard, pay close attention–the media has an ulterior motive.

I Am Nonplussed!

The Aspen Times posted an article today that totally amazes me. If someone can email me and tell me this is a hoax, I will actually be happy.

The article reports:

“If taxpayers didn’t pay for my housing, I couldn’t afford to live in Aspen. I’d have to live 20 minutes away and commute to my Aspen office.”

The person who spoke those words gets a $2 million house here in Aspen. Under the city’s “affordable housing” lottery, taxpayers pay 80 percent to 90 percent of the cost for people making as much as $186,000 a year. Some of that subsidy is paid for by people making, oh, about $34,000 a year.

The words quoted above were her defense of that scheme. In short, she says the scheme is good because it’s good for her.

It is one of the great ironies of our time that socialists no longer promote socialism as beneficial to society. Instead, they promote it as beneficial to themselves personally.

As in, “Let’s forgive student loans so that I don’t have to repay mine.” And, “Let’s raise taxes on everyone who makes more than I do.” And, “Let’s use taxpayer money to buy multimillion-dollar houses in resort towns for the upper middle class because I want one.”

Maybe it’s time to officially change the name from “socialism” to “selfish-ism.”

It gets worse:

Speaking of cronyism and conflicts of interest among the “in” crowd, what are the ethical implications of City Council members who are living in taxpayer-subsidized housing making decisions to route additional taxpayer money to those houses?

For their sake, I hope those City Council members have an ironclad legal opinion on the legality and ethics of their conflict of interest. And I hope it’s not an opinion that compounds the conflict. By that, I mean it had better be an opinion from an independent lawyer and not one written at taxpayer expense by their subordinates in the City Attorney’s Office.

Wow. I think they need a new City Council!

Does This Surprise Anyone?

This story is from last year, but in view of recent events, I thought it might be a good idea to post it.

On August 30, 2015, Breitbart.com posted an article about a study conducted by the University of Chicago Crime Lab. Oddly enough, the inmates in the Cook County jail said that they get their guns on the streets from “personal connections” rather than outlets like gun shows and the Internet.

The article reports:

According to the Chicago-Tribune, Crime lab co-director Harold Pollack said the study shows that “some of the pathways [regarding guns] people are concerned about don’t seem so dominant.” He said very few inmates indicated using gun shows or the internet. Rather, they get the guns in undetectable ways on the street. He said the inmates know they run the risk of being caught by police but “were less concerned about getting caught by the cops than being put in the position of not having a gun to defend themselves and then getting shot.”

The vast majority of the inmates used handguns to commit their crimes or protect themselves, very few cited using “military-style assault weapons.” And they said their habit was to get rid of a gun after one year because of the “legal liability” of being caught with a gun that could be linked to crimes they or others committed.”

As for specifics regarding sources for purchasing guns, some of the inmates indicated that gangs have individuals with a Firearm Owners Identification Card who buy guns then sell them to gang members. Others indicated using “corrupt cops” who seize guns then “put them back on the street.”

None of the measures proposed by the Democrats to limit gun sales would have made a difference to these inmates–they would still be able to get guns. The Democratic sit-in was an attempt to manipulate the American voters. We are idiots if we fall for that attempt.

This Is A Rather Incredible Coincidence

What you are about to read is a rather tangled story, but it is relevant to today’s events. In October 2015, The Daily Beast reported that Ng Lap Seng, a mega-rich Chinese national, had been arrested.

The article reports:

Ng Lap Seng is charged with conspiracy to bribe a United Nations official. In the ’90s he funneled $1 million to the DNC and the Clinton-Gore ticket.

…Ng being the mega-rich Chinese national who used a proxy to pour more than $1 million into the Democratic National Committee and the Clinton-Gore campaign back in 1996. Scandal was joined by embarrassment when it turned out that Ng had been favored with 10 visits to the White House, including an elevator ride with Hillary Clinton.

…The complaint charges Ng and an assistant named Jeff Yin with “Conspiracy to Obstruct the Function of and to Make False Statements to United States Customs and Border Protection.” Ng was arrested when he was about to board one of a $30 million fleet of private planes for a flight home. He was sporting a gold and diamond watch said to be worth $200,000. He had three cellphones and 20 credit cards.

…The FBI offered at least a partial answer on Tuesday with a second criminal complaint, this one charging Ng and Yin with “Conspiracy to Bribe a United Nations Official.”

The UN official being John Ashe, one-time president of the General Assembly and still the permanent representative from Antigua and Barbuda.

The complaint alleges that the Chinese billionaire paid Ashe at least $500,000 in bribes to use “his official position to obtain for Ng potentially lucrative investments in Antigua.”

On June 23, 2016, Fox News posted the following:

Former U.N. General Assembly President John Ashe of the twin-island Caribbean nation of Antigua and Barbuda died on Wednesday in the United States as he was facing criminal charges in a bribery case. He was 61.

Ashe died at his home in Dobbs Ferry, New York, according to Sgt. Vincent Ingani, of the Dobbs Ferry Police Department. He gave no other details.

Current U.N. General Assembly President Mogens Lykketoft confirmed his death, saying Ashe died of a heart attack.

…Ashe was a former U.N. ambassador from Antigua and Barbuda who served in the largely ceremonial post of president of the 193-nation assembly from September 2013 to September 2014.

He was accused last year by U.S. federal authorities of turning the position into a “platform for profit” by accepting more than $1 million in bribes.

The alleged conspiracy involves six others including a billionaire Chinese real estate mogul, two diplomats and a humanitarian organization officer.

Ashe pleaded not guilty to the charges and his lawyer had said he would be vindicated. It wasn’t clear how Ashe’s death would affect the bribery case.

It is amazing how many people involved in legal or financial dealings with the Clintons wind up in jail or dead.

Sometimes You Don’t Have To Wait Too Long For The Truth To Come Out

Over the weekend, I  read a couple of news stories about a petition to hold a second vote on Britain’s exit from the European Union (EU). I was somewhat concerned, because I understand that there are some globalists who will do pretty much anything to hold on to their power. I did see a comment on one story from someone who admitted that he had signed the petition illegally, so I wondered. Well, today I have my answer.

Yesterday Townhall posted a story about the petition to hold another Brexit vote. Evidently the person whose comment I read was not the only person who voted illegally.

The story reports:

LONDON, United Kingdom – Pro-European spammers have fooled the British establishment into believing a million people a day have signed a petition to hold a second referendum on Brexit. The petition demands the referendum rules are retrospectively changed forcing a second vote on Britain’s membership of the EU.

But doubts were raised about the authenticity of those signing after evidence that a code was being used emerged.

It shows how the petition website was tricked into registering millions of ‘signatures’ from people who do not exist.

Further questions were raised over the petition after analysis showed that just 353k of the nearly 3 million signatures were from the UK. A total of 3000 were reported to be from Vatican City, a country with a population of just 800.

Most UK national newspapers reported on the petition today, seemingly unaware of the fraud. Both the Sunday Telegraph and Mirror put the story on the frontpage.

The Independent has run multiple stories on the subject, at one stage crowing that the website kept crashing.

Let’s watch and see how long it takes for the British (and American) media to report this.

I Wish The Media Would Get The Facts Right

I just watched Fox News Sunday with Chris Wallace. I was a bit disappointed. Chris Wallace is generally a fairly even-handed newsman, but today he was not. He interviewed a Newt Gingrich about Donald Trump’s campaign and then a campaign spokesman for Hillary Clinton’s campaign. The interviews were not at all even-handed. First of all, I like Newt Gingrich, and I respect him, but I have watched the mainstream media tear him down long enough to know that he may not be the best spokesman for Donald Trump–Newt Gingrich is a brilliant man, but his image needs repairing. Just the choice of Newt Gingrich to be interviewed to speak for Donald Trump is questionable. I am sure there were other choices. It was obvious that the Clinton spokesperson had not properly rehearsed his lines. He stumbled quite a few times when answering basic questions about Hillary’s honesty and other issues. Chris Wallace let most of those things slide, but when it came to questioning Newt Gingrich, Chris Wallace claimed that the statement that Hillary Clinton went to bed during the Benghazi attack was false. The record shows otherwise.

The Gateway Pundit posted an article today about Chris Wallace’s interviews on Fox News Sunday.

The article reports:

FOX News Sunday host Chris Wallace defended Hillary Clinton today like the rest of the liberal media from Donald Trump’s attacks this week.

Wallace said Hillary did not go home and sleep during the Benghazi attack – parroting what the rest of the media has been reporting this week.

The fact is Hillary Clinton DID GO HOME AND SLEEP during the Benghazi attacks and there are records to prove it.

According to official watch logs on September 11, 2012 during the Benghazi attack on the US consulate the first note of the attacks (not protest, another Hillary lie) was posted after 4 PM on that Tuesday afternoon. And Hillary Clinton was home by 10:30 PM as US forces continued to come under attack at the CIA complex in Benghazi.

…There were no official records of any activity by Hillary Clinton or Barack Obama after 10:30 that night. No calls to the Defense Department, no calls to the State Department, no calls to officials in Libya. Hillary was at home and in bed.

Before she went home though she plotted with Obama to blame the attack on a YouTube video – while the annex was still under attack!

The next morning Hillary and Barack blamed a YouTube video for the attack when she knew it was a terrorist attack.

This is what Donald Trump is up against. If voters are paying attention to facts, he will probably win this election. If voters are depending on the mainstream media for their information, Hillary Clinton will be President. That will not be good for the country.

 

Another Terrorist Released From Guantanamo

On Thursday The Washington Free Beacon reported that Abdel Malik Ahmed Abdel Wahab Al Rahabi, Osama Bin Laden’s personal bodyguard, has been released from Guantanamo Prison Camp and sent to Montenegro. Montenegro is a southeastern European country on the Adriatic Sea.

The article reports:

The release was condemned by some in Congress who have opposed the administration’s efforts to shutter Gitmo.

“The administration is playing Russian roulette with America’s safety by releasing 9/11-plotter Abdel Malik Ahmed Abdel Wahab Al Rahabi from Gitmo,” Sen. Mark Kirk (R., Ill.) said in a statement. “Rahabi’s transfer abroad is all the more alarming after terrorist Ibrahim al-Qosi resurfaced in December 2015 in the Arabian Peninsula as the top recruiter for al Qaeda after being transferred from Gitmo to Sudan.”

President Obama’s continuing release of terrorists from Guantanamo poses a risk to our soldiers serving in the Middle East and elsewhere. Congress needs to stand up to the President on this and prevent the further release of terrorists.

Arming The Enemies of America

The Daily Signal posted an article yesterday about one of the consequences of the nuclear treaty with Iran. The treaty paved the way for a transaction that was very profitable for Boeing Aircraft. The treaty got through Congress because both the Republicans and Democrats got something out of it. The American people and the American military, however, did not. The Democrats showed solidarity with their President. The Republicans rewarded Boeing, a major campaign donor, with the lucrative contract to sell airplanes to Iran.

The article reports:

With the blessing of the Obama administration, Boeing Co. has negotiated the sale of a fleet of new jets to the world’s foremost state sponsor of terrorism.

The $17.6 billion deal between the aviation giant and the Islamic Republic of Iran was made possible by the lifting of economic sanctions against Tehran in January. It is a reckless piece of business that Congress must address.

Under terms of the memorandum of agreement, Boeing reportedly will supply 80 planes—including intercontinental jumbo jets—to state-owned Iran Air.

The carrier, according to the U.S. Department of Treasury, has been routinely commandeered by the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps and Iran’s Ministry of Defense and Armed Forces Logistics to transport rockets, missiles, and other military equipment, including materials and technologies with ballistic missile applications.

There is little doubt that the weapons transported by these planes will be used against American soldiers. We are funding our enemy.

The article concludes:

Boeing executives say the proposed sale is necessary to remain competitive against Airbus, the European aviation manufacturer that has struck a $27 billion deal with Iran for 118 planes. But that’s the same lame argument Boeing made in lobbying for reauthorization of the Export-Import Bank—from which Boeing was the top beneficiary of export subsidies.

The fact is, projected demand for commercial planes is forecast to rise for years to come, and both manufacturers are carrying huge backlogs that will take years to fulfill.

Rather than tweak the tax code, Congress should, at the very least, explicitly prohibit financing from the Export-Import Bank for the sale of Boeing planes (or any other product) to Iran.

Additional actions are needed as well. The administration has already increased the risk of yet more death and destruction by the terrorist state. Lawmakers should ensure that Boeing and other U.S. companies don’t become tools of Tehran.

It is time to clean house in Washington.

The Consequences

The Wall Street Journal posted an article today about Britain’s vote to leave the European Union. As many Americans are looking at their losses in the stock market today and wondering what is coming next, we all need to step back and take a deep breath.

The article reports:

The United Kingdom has always had Europe’s most robust democracy, and with Thursday’s vote to leave the European Union it has given its Continental peers a powerful example of the meaning of popular rule. Now we’ll see if the British have the wisdom to make the best use of their historic choice.

The article reminds us that Britain is the second largest and most dynamic economy in the European Union. The exit of Britain will probably cause more problems for the European Union than it does for Britain.

The article reminds us of some of the mistakes made by the European Union:

If the EU wants to prevent other countries from catching the Brexit bug, our advice is to avoid the temptation to punish the U.K. with an arduous renegotiation of terms for its re-entry into the common market. The perception of EU high-handedness is what alienates public opinion across the Continent. Brexit ought to be the wake-up call the EU needs to return to serving as a common market that encourages growth and competition, and not—as it has become since the late 1980s—an innovation-killing superstate obsessed with regulatory harmonization, tax hikes, green-energy dogma and anticompetitive antitrust enforcement.

People don’t vote to leave organizations that are well run and respect their freedom. The Brexit vote is the result of the actions of the European Union. It will be interesting to see if the European Union learns the lessons they need to learn before more countries exit.

It Just Keeps Dripping

Paul Mirengoff posted an article at Power Line today reporting major gaps in Hillary Clinton’s appointment calendar during her tenure as Secretary of State.

The article reports:

AP has identified at least 75 meetings that Hillary Clinton had with longtime political donors, Clinton Foundation contributors, and corporate and other outside interests that were not recorded (or not properly recorded) on her State Department calendar. AP identified the meetings by comparing her calendar with separate planning schedules supplied to Clinton by aides in advance of each day’s events.

In many cases, Clinton’s State Department calendar simply excluded the meeting altogether. On other occasions, the names of those with whom she met were omitted.

It seems clear that the omissions were made to obscure Clinton’s ties to tycoons and big donors. For example, in one omission, Clinton’s State Department calendar dropped the identities of a dozen major Wall Street and business leaders who met with her during a private breakfast discussion at the New York Stock Exchange in September 2009.

The first thing to notice here is that the search for this information was initiated by the Associated Press. Usually the press is supporting Hillary Clinton. Since the press tends to be aligned with the Democratic Party, this is an interesting development.

The article further reports:

AP had to go to court to pry from the State Department the records it needed to expose this latest example of Clinton’s lack of transparency and her ties to the wealthy.

The AP first sought Clinton’s calendar and schedules from the State Department in August 2013, but the agency would not acknowledge even that it had the material. After nearly two years of delay, the AP sued the State Department in March 2015.

The department agreed in a court filing last August to turn over Clinton’s calendar, and provided the documents in November. After noticing discrepancies between Clinton’s calendar and some schedules, the AP pressed in court for all of Clinton’s planning material.

The U.S. has released about one-third of those planners to the AP so far.

Is this a person we want in the White House?

 

Hypocrisy At Its Worst

In 2013, USA Today posted the results of a survey taken of members of Congress that owned guns. Oddly enough, many of those Democrats (26 or so) were involved in the sit-in protesting the fact that Congress was not willing to pass any laws impacting current gun laws. As I have previously mentioned, the Democrats filibustered two of the gun laws that were introduced, staged the sit-in, and used the sit-in as an opportunity to raise money. A website called Heatstreet has the full story.

We need to be very careful about passing any legislation that limits the Second Amendment rights of Americans. At a time when our borders are not secure and there are many people entering the country with ill intentions, Americans need to be trained in how and when to use firearms to protect themselves.

Keeping The Voters Uninformed

Hillary Clinton will probably be the Democratic nominee for President. If she is indicted, the ticket will probably be Joe Biden and Elizabeth Warren. However, I doubt very seriously that Mrs. Clinton will face any serious charges for the corruption and mishandling of classified information that she is guilty of. A recent story at Breitbart illustrates how the news media will minimize the seriousness of some of Mrs. Clinton’s actions.

The story reports:

CNN Money’s “fact-checkers” Cristina Alesci and Laurie Frankel ended up with egg on their faces on Wednesday after they rated as “false” a well-established and proven Clinton Cash fact involving Hillary Clinton’s State Dept. approving the transfer of 20 percent of U.S. uranium to the Russian government, as nine investors in the deal funneled $145 million to the Clinton Foundation.

Under the guise of “fact-checking” Donald Trump’s Wednesday speech, Alesci and Frankel purported to verify whether “Clinton’s State Department approved the transfer of 20% of America’s uranium holdings to Russia while nine investors in the deal funneled $145 million to the Clinton Foundation.”

Well, I guess all fact-checkers are not created equal.

The article further reports:

Why Alesci and Frankel couldn’t confirm the $145 million in Clinton Foundation donations for themselves is curious. Indeed, in a 4,000-word front page story written over a year ago, the New York TimesPulitzer Prize-winning investigative journalist Jo Becker and Mike McIntire verified the Clinton Cash uranium revelation in stunning detail, including charts and graphs laying out the flow of millions of dollars from the nine investors in the uranium deal who flowed $145 million to Hillary’s family foundation.

The article goes on to list a number of large donations to the Clinton Foundation from people who increased their wealth dramatically during Mrs. Clinton’s time as Secretary of State. Much of that increased wealth came from international business transactions that the State Department needed to sign off on. Unfortunately, a lot of the information contained in emails related to these transactions was on Mrs. Clinton’s private server and is missing. What an incredible coincidence.

The American voters are either unaware of this or our moral compass has become so enured to political corruption that no one cares. Either way, it is not good for our country.

About That Democratic Sit-In

There are a few background things all of us need to remember about the Democratic sit-in in the House of Representatives.

The Hill posted an article today about the fund raising efforts the Democrats are relating to the sit in.

The article reports:

The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (DCCC) sent a brief email shortly after the sit-in crossed into Thursday, signed by Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (Calif.)

“This is an historically important moment! John Lewis has been leading a sit-in on the House floor for 11 long hours now. We’re fighting to prevent gun violence,” the email reads. “The Republicans refuse to lift a finger. It’s shameful. I need your help to defeat them once and for all.”
 
The email asks for 6,000 donations and gives several options to donate amounts between $1 and $250. 
 
It was at least the sixth such email from the DCCC as the sit-in gained steam. Several were signed by Lewis, a civil rights leader and Georgia representative who has lead many of the demonstrations on the House floor. 

As usual, follow the money. But wait! There’s more!

The Democrats are complaining about the Republican filibuster of the two anti-Second Amendment gun bills the Democrats wanted to pass. What about the Democratic filibuster of the two common-sense gun bills the Republicans wanted to pass? (further details here) This is political theater aimed at the uninformed voter. Don’t be that uninformed voter.

 

Why Supreme Court Justices Matter

Theoretically the Supreme Court is the third part of the checks and balances in our Representative Republic. They are sworn to uphold the U.S. Constitution and make decisions according to that Constitution. Unfortunately there are Americans who either do not understand the Constitution or choose to ignore it. Right now the Supreme Court is balanced four to four in terms of conservative and liberal interpretations of the law. The next President will have the responsibility of choosing the Justice that will decide cases involving gun rights, voting rights, medical care, religious freedom, and other important issues. A recent case illustrates how important the selection of the next Supreme Court Justice will be.

The Wall Street Journal posted an opinion piece on Tuesday about a recent Supreme Court decision. The case illustrates the problems police face when trying to keep us safe when dealing with the drug problem in America.

The piece reports:

The Supreme Court term is ending on a whimper of narrow decisions without Justice Antonin Scalia. But you wouldn’t know it from the overwrought progressive outrage after a 5-3 majority issued a common-sense ruling Monday concerning the so-called exclusionary rule for admitting evidence in criminal cases.

In Utah v. Strieff, police stopped Edward Strieff on his way out of a building after a tip that it was a drug-dealing location. After discovering an outstanding arrest warrant against Mr. Strieff, a police officer searched him and found methamphetamines and drug paraphernalia. Mr. Strieff claims the police lacked reasonable suspicion to stop him under the Fourth Amendment, so the evidence of his law-breaking should be dismissed.

The majority opinion was written by Justice Clarence Thomas and stated that the discovery of the outstanding arrest warrant required the police to arrest and thus search Mr. Strieff.

There was, however, a different opinion.

The article reports;

The outlier was Justice Sonia Sotomayor, who went off the deep end with an extended polemic about police misconduct, events in Ferguson, Mo., and race in America. “Although many Americans have been stopped for speeding or jaywalking, few may realize how degrading a stop can be when the officer is looking for more,” Justice Sotomayor wrote. And although Mr. Strieff is white, “it is no secret that people of color are disproportionate victims of this type of scrutiny.”

The Justice is getting huzzahs on the left, but her opinion is troubling for her insistence on dragging racial politics into a case that had nothing to do with race. This dissent continues her habit of wandering far from the law or precedent to decide cases based on her personal political and policy views. Her colleagues showed more judicial wisdom.

There are a few things to note here. Mr. Strieff was leaving a place where it was suspected drugs were being sold. Didn’t the police have a responsibility to investigate a tip about a location where drugs were being sold? Shouldn’t that investigation include stopping people leaving that location? If there was an outstanding arrest warrant for Mr. Strieff, didn’t the police have an obligation to arrest him? It is very possible that I am naive, but I believe that Mr. Strieff would have been treated the same way regardless of what color he is. Everything is not about race, and in the majority of cases, police are merely attempting to keep our communities safe and free from illegal drugs and the crime that goes with the drug trade. Bringing race into a situation where it is not relevant only divides Americans–it does not help us solve our problems.

Punishing Little Boys For Being Little Boys

Yesterday Breitbart reported on a court case in Anne Arundel County, Maryland, located near Washington, D.C. and Baltimore, Maryland. The case was an appeal of a case involving a second grade boy who was suspended from school in March 2013 after chewing his pastry into the shape of a gun and “[pretending] to fire it.” The boy’s father took the case to court with the hope that the suspension would be reversed and removed from the child’s school record.

The article reports:

But WJZ 13 reports that an Anne Arundel County circuit judge upheld the suspension, ruling that Joshua’s actions were “disruptive.”

Anne Arundel County Schools reacted to the ruling by releasing a statement which said, “We have believed from the outset that the actions of the school staff were not only appropriate and consistent, but in the best interests of all students.”

Welch family attorney Robin Ficker lamented the ruling and pointed out there was “no violence, no real weapon, no ammunition.” But the suspension will now “be on [Joshua’s] record in school… every time he goes into a new grade.”

I believe our educators have lost their collective minds. I wonder if he would have been suspended had he just pointed his index finger and pretended it was a gun. If you combine the fact that this incident will follow the child through school with the data mining that is part of Common Core, you realize that the report of this action will also follow the child into the workplace–with or without the details. So we have a second grader branded for life as a troublemaker because he acted like a little boy. That is child abuse.

Interesting Deposition

The Blaze is reporting today that former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s former IT specialist Bryan Pagliano pled the Fifth Amendment more than 125 times during a 90-minute, closed-door deposition Wednesday with Judicial Watch. Mr. Pagliano does have an immunity agreement with the government.

The article reports:

An unnamed source with the conservative watchdog group Judicial Watch told Fox News that, during the deposition, Pagliano read a statement off an index card each time he was asked a question, invoking his right not to incriminate himself.

“It was a sad day for government transparency,” the Judicial Watch official said.

The deposition was part of Judicial Watch’s lawsuit seeking the release of Clinton’s emails.

Pagliano played a role in the set-up and management of the private email server Clinton used to conduct official business while serving as secretary of state.

A transcript of Pagliano’s deposition is expected to be released next week.

There are some serious national security issues surrounding Hillary Clinton’s private email server. Mrs. Clinton did not properly handle classified information and needs to be held to the same standard that any other American would be held to.

 

Why We Need Careful Vetting Of Refugees

Not all cultures are alike. There are actions and attitudes that are acceptable in Islamic cultures that are simply not acceptable in America–things like marrying a fourteen-year-old girl, female genital mutilation, honor killings, no rights for women, denying freedom of religion, etc. Unless refugees are willing to accept American views on those (and many other) cultural standards, they need to settle elsewhere. There are countries in the Middle East that share their culture. For whatever reason, those countries have not welcomed the refugees from their neighboring countries.

Fox News posted a story today about an incident in a small Idaho town that illustrates the problem of some of the refugee children now in our schools.

The article reports:

An alleged sexual assault on a five-year-old special needs girl has put a small Idaho city at the center of the debate over the Obama administration’s move to take in hundreds of thousands of refugees.

Much of what occurred in the June 2 incident is unclear, clouded by emotion and rumor and sealed from public record due to the suspects’ ages. At a raucous public meeting Monday, dozens of residents of the city of 44,000 voiced their concerns after word had spread that young Syrian refugees had gang-raped a little girl at knifepoint, defiling her in unspeakable ways.

Some of what they had heard was true, some was not and still more remains unconfirmed speculation. But authorities believe something terrible occurred. Two young boys were arrested Friday and remain in custody.

Snopes reports that the story is ‘mostly false,’ but actually confirms some major parts of the story:

Despite the hot-button issue of refugee resettlement, the story has gained little traction with the national media, and Internet fact-check site Snopes.com has labeled the information circulating on the web as “mostly false.” According to Loebs (Twin Falls County Prosecutor Grant Loebs), the three assailants, ages 7, 10 and 14, are not Syrian, but may be refugees. The girl was not raped, but is believed to have been sexually assaulted, he said.

The article further reports:

Twin Falls Police Chief Craig Kingsbury told reporters the suspects are Iraqi and Sudanese. Loebs said he does not know how long they have been living in the United States.

If you read the Snopes report, the website seems to be concerned about the fact that the attackers were not Syrians. That may be, but they are products of a culture that does not value women and where a women would have to have four witnesses to make a rape charge. They are also from a culture where a woman can be stoned because she has been raped. There have been exaggerations of the attack and misrepresentations of the nationality of the attackers, but the nature of the attack and the culture behind the attack are as reported.

One person interviewed in the story stated:

Twin Falls activists say the case and the lack of information from authorities demonstrates the problem with state and federal programs to resettle refugees in cities and towns.

“We’re worried that these are the kids who will be going to school with our kids,” said Odell. “We want to know what is happening.”

There are a lot of parents who feel this way.

Getting Old In American Just Got Worse

Generally speaking, American senior citizens get reasonable medical care. Medicare takes care of joint replacements, cataracts, and other senior-related ailments. However, that is about to change.

Yesterday The New York Post posted an article discussing changes President Obama is about to make to Medicare. The changes President Obama is suggesting will impact the quality of life that American senior citizens now enjoy.

The article reports:

The president’s Medicare reforms make it harder for seniors to get joint replacements. His new payment rules shortchange doctors, discouraging them from accepting Medicare in the first place. New ER rules clobber seniors with bills for “observation care.” Under ObamaCare, hospitals get bonuses for spending less per senior, despite having higher death rates and infection rates.

Expect the Medicare Trustees’ annual report, due out Wednesday, to ignore these problems.

…The new rules also make seeing Medicare patients a money loser. Annual fee increases for doctors are capped at a fraction of one percent — even though rents and other costs go up every year.

No wonder nine out of 10 solo practitioners admit they’ll avoid Medicare patients — right when 10,000 new baby boomers are joining each day.

Obama’s rules spell trouble for seniors with cancer. Doctors administering chemotherapy are getting a pay cut and being prodded to choose the cheapest drug, regardless of which medication is best for their patient. Dr. Debra Patt warned Congress this’ll hinder access to drugs like the immunotherapy that subdued former President Jimmy Carter’s cancer.

Another Obama rule penalizes hospitals for doing hip and knee replacements on patients likely to need rehab after surgery, causing hospitals to shun older patients with complex conditions. Grandma will have to settle for the painkiller as candidate Obama notoriously suggested.

…Clinton proposes opening Medicare to people in their 50s. That would force seniors to compete with younger patients for resources — like in Britain and Canada, where seniors are labeled “bed blockers,” and certain treatments are reserved for younger patients with more life ahead.

When ObamaCare was first enacted, there were discussions about denying care to senior citizens–we all remember Sarah Palin‘s claim that ‘death panels’ were built into ObamaCare (which actually turned out to be true). My real question in all of this is whether or not the politicians who are going along with these ‘reforms’ are going to have to live under them.

Some Things To Consider When Helping Refugees Flee To America

Yesterday a website called Truth Revolt posted an article about one of the unintended consequences of opening the doors of America wide to refugees from countries where healthcare and disease are not properly handled. Among other things, the information you are about to read is a glaring example of the fact that some civilizations are more protective and caring toward their average citizens than others.

The article reports:

Some bad news for revelers has hit just in time for their celebrations of World Refugee Day: Thanks to resettlement efforts and an overtaxed health care system, diseases that were near extinction in the United States are now experiencing a resurgence.

According to Breitbart, they are: 

  1. Tuberculosis
  2. Measles
  3. Whooping Cough
  4. Mumps
  5. Scarlet Fever
  6. Bubonic Plague

The article gives the actual details of the problem:

Tuberculosis — After 23 years of steady decline, TB has increased by nearly 2%, reaching over 9,000 cases.

Measles — Though declared eliminated in 2000, there were 667 cases reported from 27 states in 2014. Twenty-four states reported 189 people in 2015. The Center for Disease Control states most people with measles are unvaccinated, which is the status of most arriving refugees. The latest outbreak was epicentered at a mosque in Memphis.

Whooping Cough — In 1976, there were only 1,010 cases reported but now has increased more than 30 times that to nearly 33,000 cases in 2014 — the same time frame as a quadrupling of foreign-born residents coming to the U.S.

Mumps — A vaccine introduced in 1967 caused outbreaks to drop by 99%. Reports of new cases are now cropping up again, especially in close-knit communities.

Scarlet Fever — Attacks mostly the young, between 5 and 15, and the UK has had 12,000 cases over the past year. Millions of refugees have entered Europe, bringing with them this nearly-forgotten disease.

Bubonic Plague — This disease persists in parts of Africa, Asia, and South America, according to the Breitbart report. 16 cases of plague with four deaths have been reported inside our borders in the past year.

In the days of Ellis Island, immigrants were examined before they were allowed to immigrate to America. If they were not healthy, they were sent home. This is impossible with the illegal aliens coming across our southern border, but it is possible with refugees. If the government refuses to protect Americans (one of its primary jobs), it is time to elect a new government. We are at risk or a major epidemic of a disease we have previously wiped out and Americans are not vaccinated against or have immunity to. It is time to screen refugees for health issues as well as for terrorism issues. If we are not able to do both, we should not take them in.

There’s Gun Legislation That Makes Sense And Then There Are People Who Want Political Points

John Hinderaker at Power Line posted an article yesterday about the four items related to guns that were voted down in the Senate yesterday. The four items were an overreaction to what happened in Orlando, but the votes and the suggested laws bear looking into.

The article reports:

Senator Chuck Grassley proposed legislation that would have increased funding for the NICS background check system, and would have pressed states to send more records to the FBI on felons and others barred from buying guns. It also revamped language that prohibits some people with mental health problems from buying guns. Grassley’s bill had majority support, 53-47, but wasn’t passed because the Democrats filibustered it.

Senator John Cornyn offered legislation to keep firearms out of the hands of suspected terrorists. His bill would let the government block a sale to a known or suspected terrorist, and prosecutors would then have three days to convince a judge that the would-be buyer was likely a terrorist. This seems like a sensible compromise, and it too had majority support, 53-47, but again the Democrats filibustered and blocked the bill from taking effect.

The Democrats likewise offered two proposals, both of which enjoyed less support. Dianne Feinstein proposed legislation that would bar gun sales to people on any federal terrorism watch list–a list that has included Ted Kennedy, Nelson Mandela, and many random, innocent citizens–without providing any way for people to get themselves taken off the list. I think it is safe to say that this proposal was sheer political grandstanding. It went down to a 47-53 defeat. It is shameful that so many Democrats voted for it.

Chris Murphy’s bill would have required the current, inadequate list of people who can’t buy guns to be applied to even more sales, including sales between friends or relatives. That, too, was defeated 47-53.

Frankly, I am glad to see all of these laws defeated, although the defeat of all of them shows the depth of the political divide currently in America. The first bill listed actually makes sense, but I object to the other three. The problem with Senator John Cornyn’s legislation is that it would set up a nightmare system of paperwork that would quickly be abused. The right political connections and a good lawyer can fairly easily get you removed from the terrorist watch list.

The problem with this entire discussion is that the terrorists are not bound by any laws. Terrorism tends to morph–it can change according to circumstances and can easily do things outside the law–Paris has very strict gun laws–that didn’t stop the terrorists–it just made their attack easier. Criminals don’t pay attention to gun laws–Chicago has some of the strictest gun laws and America and also one of the highest gun murder rates–so does Washington, D.C.

The bottom line here is that we are so politically polarized right now that we cannot even cross party lines to commit common sense. Unless this changes, our country is in serious trouble.

Junior High School Comes To The Democratic Convention

This is a real story from a real online newspaper. It shows how juvenile American presidential politics have become.

The Washington Free Beacon is reporting the following today:

Supporters of Sen. Bernie Sanders (I., Vt.) are planning to consume a large amount of beans prior to Hillary Clinton’s address at the convention and then have a “fart-in” during Clinton’s speech, the Philadelphia Inquirer reports.

The protest is being led by the Poor People’s Economic Human Rights Campaign and their leader, Cheri Honkala. They will accept donations of beans which will be eaten while they gather at mock “Hooverviles,” being dubbed as a “Clintonville.”

There is nothing I can add to this story.