Propaganda Masquerading As News

On June 28, The New Yorker posted an article with the following headline:

Many Gazan Women Are No Longer Able to Enter Israel for Cancer Treatment

Horrible if true. Thankfully it is not true.

The article cites claims by patients Amani Abu Taema and Dena Mekhael, stating:

In 2012, Israel approved ninety-two per cent of medical permits for Gazans. In 2014, a year of deadly conflict, eighty-two per cent of patients were allowed in. But, since the beginning of 2018, with no announcement of a change in policy, more than half of applications for medical permits from Gaza have been turned down or left unanswered, according to Physicians for Human Rights – Israel, or P.H.R.I., a nonprofit organization that represents many of these patients. A 2017 directive from the Defense Ministry gave Israel twenty-three working days to process requests for medical permits, an increase from the previous ten-day processing time. (The extension, according to the ministry, was due to a backlog of some sixteen thousand travel-permit requests, the result of an overwhelming number of applications and the time needed to run proper security checks.) The average case now takes months—if it’s approved at all.

Since Mekhael’s last checkup in Tel Aviv, a year ago, she has found a new lump, this time in her right breast. She applied for a medical permit last December (the permits are only valid for a few weeks) but has not been approved to cross the border. “I never got a refusal, but they keep saying it’s ‘under review,’ ” she told me. Her options in Gaza are dismal: its public hospitals provide very limited and sporadic access to functional MRI and mammogram machines, so she has no way of receiving a diagnosis, let alone treatment.

This is shenanigans. According to reliable sources:

• Had reporter Ruth Margalit bothered to check Dena Mekhael’s account with the Israeli authorities, she would have learned that it is the Palestinian side which is holding up her permit approval; she has valid security clearance from Israel but the Palestinian committee has failed to provide the needed updated hospital appointment information necessary for her request to be approved.

• It is not true that Israel “turned down or left unanswered” over half of the applications for medical permits from Gaza in 2018. According to figures from the World Health Organization and Israel’s COGAT (Coordination of Government Activities in the Territories), Israel approved more than half of the applications this year.

…Regarding Amani Abu Taema, Margalit had reported, “In January, she was allowed into Israel for an MRI and radiation therapy, but since then her application for a permit has been declined four times without explanation.” According to the Israeli spokesman, Abu Taema did indeed enter Israel in January for medical treatment, but since then has not reapplied for an additional entry. The Palestinian Civil Affairs Committee has likewise not received any requests from Abu Taema since her January visit. Thus, Abu Taema’s claim that her application permit was declined four times was flatly rejected and refuted by the Israeli authority, with whom New Yorker never consulted.  

In addition, the claim that there are no MRI machines in Gaza is also false:

…according to the United Nations, a scientific  journal, Palestinian sources, and the European Gaza Hospital (a public institution), along with mainstream media, there are indeed MRI machines in Gaza. Notably, a 2017 report in The Journal of Radiation Research and Applied Sciences (“Evaluation of advanced medical imaging services at Governmental Hospitals – Gaza Governorates, Palestine“), noted there are two MRI machines in the Gaza Strip per one million inhabitants. This compares to four MRI machines in Israel per one million inhabitants. Both Israel and the Gaza Strip lag significantly behind other countries, including Turkey, France, Australia, and especially Germany.

There are a few things that are noteworthy in this article. First of all, the women were able to get treatment for cancer in Israel. After all the money the world has poured into Gaza, why aren’t the medical facilities there adequate? Where is the money going? With all the rockets, etc., Gaza has aimed at Israel, Israel is still treating patients from Gaza. It seems to me that Israel is the humanitarian force here–not Gaza.

The story in The New Yorker is an example of misstating facts in order to achieve a specific goal–anti-Israel sentiment. Nowhere does the writer question the lack of infrastructure in Gaza after all the money poured in there. Nowhere does the writer note that Israel routine helps with medical needs in Gaza. Nowhere does the writer mention the terrorist activities against Israel that originate in Gaza–the rockets, the tunnels, the suicide bombers, etc.

This is a blatant example of fake news with the purpose of stirring up anti-Israel sentiment while Gaza continues its terrorist activities with no repercussions.

Why Many Americans Think That The Second Amendment Is Threatened

Yesterday The Gateway Pundit posted an article about an incident at Jackson Elementary School in Everett, Washington.

The article reports:

…Riley Malone was talking with one of his classmates this past May. They got on the subject of guns, and Riley mentioned that he had a .22 bolt action rifle and that he occasionally goes to the gun range with his parents. The other boy thought it would be cool to try shooting some time. That was the end of the conversation. Or so they thought.

Another student overheard the talk about guns and shooting ranges, and she told her parents about it. In turn, her parents notified the school.

The saga continues:

Riley’s mother, Christine Malone, received a phone call from Principal Falicia Green, who was “understandably concerned” that students would be talking about firearms.

She said, ‘You don’t have any guns in the house, do you?’ I told her my son does not have access to guns. Christine Malone tells The Gateway Pundit. “At the time I was very worried my son would be targeted in some way by the school. My son’s rifle is locked up, along with all other guns in the house. He cannot access them – our safe has a finger print lock.”

Christina Malone, Riley’s mother, talked to her son about the conversation. Riley thought he was in trouble and was very upset. She explained to him that he was not in trouble, but it was not a good idea to talk about guns in school because some people might freak out. Obviously she was right.

The article concludes:

The next day, my son was pulled out of the classroom by a school counselor. She sat him down and asked him if he ever used guns. He was terrified. He told her he has a rifle and that Mom and Dad have hand guns. He told her they are all locked up and that Mom and Dad have taken shooting classes. Apparently, the counselor was satisfied with his answers and I didn’t hear anything more about it from the school.

While this has apparently concluded, it’s entirely possible that 10 year old Riley is now on some watch list at the school, and surely this non-incident has been added to his record somewhere.

This comes on the heels of similar story involving a New Jersey veteran whom police tried to disarm because his son mentioned something about guns in school.

A child who is taught gun safety and taken to the gun range is not a child who is going to shoot up a school. To treat this child the way he was treated was ridiculous. The mother who reported the incident to the school should have sat down with her son and told him that owning a gun is a legal right in America and that some people have guns. She also might have mentioned that it was rude to eavesdrop!  When the mother of the child who overheard the conversation contacted the principal, the principal should have thanked her for her concern, documented the call, and mentioned to Mrs. Malone that the call was made. That should have been the end of it. As I have previously stated, in the elementary school my husband attended, the children were taught gun safety. The junior high school had a gun range. The high school had a shop where students could bring their guns to work on them. Before you decide that this was some middle American town–it wasn’t–it was Great Neck, New York.

The Law Of Unintended Consequences

On Friday Investor’s Business Daily posted an article about a recent bill sponsored by Washington, D.C.’s city council.

The article reports:

On Tuesday, 7 of the 13 members of Washington’s city council sponsored a bill to jettison the wage hike for tipped workers that 56% of D.C. voters had approved by a ballot initiative less than a month before.

Under Initiative 77, the workers would see their minimum wage climb from the current $3.89 an hour to $15 an hour by 2026, erasing the difference between tipped and nontipped workers.

Keep in mind that D.C. is about as heavily Democratic as you can get. It went for Hillary Clinton by a 91%-4% margin.

But the D.C. council members came to understand what economists — and D.C. restaurant workers themselves — already know. Sharp increases in the minimum wage will cost lost hours, lost jobs and lost income.

The article concludes:

This wage mandate, just like the one the council is trying to repeal, will also end up hurting the very people it’s supposed to help.

That’s not speculation. It’s what happened in Seattle, which four years ago decided to gradually hike the city’s minimum to $15. Researchers from the University of Washington found that the average low-wage worker lost $125 a month as the mandate took effect and employers cut back on hours and jobs.

Other parts of the country are catching on as evidence rolls in of the job-killing side effect of these mandated wage hikes. The mayor of heavily Democratic Baltimore vetoed a minimum-wage bill last year. The city council in Flagstaff, Ariz., decided to scrap the planned hike to $12, and cap it at $10.50.

“Fight for $15” makes a good bumper sticker. But as Democrats are finding out first hand, it makes bad public policy.

Maybe the answer is not raising the pay for minimum-wage jobs, but in better educating our children so that when they enter the workforce at minimum jobs, they are able to learn skills and progress to better paying jobs. In many cases, companies have responded to increases in the minimum wage by replacing workers with machines. Minimum-wage jobs are valuable–they teach workers entering the workforce the basic principles of holding a job–showing up, working hard, being courteous to fellow employees and customers, and being dependable and on time. Drastically increasing the minimum wage will result in many minimum-wage jobs being eliminated.

The Democrat Party Moves Further Left

Yesterday The Los Angeles Times reported that California Democrat leaders have endorsed Kevin de León for Senate in a stinging rebuke of Democratic Senator Dianne Feinstein. Senator Feinstein has been in the Senate since 1992. While some voters might see her an a poster child for term limits, she has been a mostly rational voice on the liberal side of the aisle during her time in the Senate. However, she has been rejected in favor of someone who has espoused views very much to the left of her views.

The article reports:

De León’s campaign has focused on the party’s energized liberal faction. He supports single-payer healthcare, aggressive goals for renewable energy and helped lead the successful effort to raise the state’s minimum wage to $15 an hour. He has criticized Feinstein, known for having moderate tendencies, for being too conciliatory toward Trump, such as when she urged people to have “patience” with the president last year.

Senator Feinstein needs to remember that today’s Democrat party does not allow ‘moderate tendencies.’ It will be interesting to see in November if Americans in states other than California approve of ‘moderate tendencies.’

Where Some Of The Political Money Comes From

The Daily Caller is reporting that Demand Justice (DJ), a group organized and financed by a 501(c)(4) called the Sixteen Thirty Fund, which collected some $2.2 million in contributions from the Open Society Policy Center (OSPC), one of George Soros’ primary donation vehicles, between 2012 and 2016, has pledged to put $5 million behind an effort to stop Judge Brett Kavanaugh’s confirmation to the U.S. Supreme Court . If George Soros opposes Judge Kavanaugh, then I have one more reason to support the Judge.

The article reports:

A Daily Caller News Foundation review has found that the group’s primary financial supporter is a nonprofit to whom Soros has given millions.

The group, Demand Justice (DJ), is organized and financed by a 501(c)(4) called the Sixteen Thirty Fund, which collected some $2.2 million in contributions from the Open Society Policy Center (OSPC), one of Soros’ primary donation vehicles, between 2012 and 2016.

…Demand Justice was formed in the spring of 2018 as the progressive counterpart to a constellation of conservative advocacy groups which advertise and organize around judicial confirmations. Republicans have significantly outpaced Democrats in this space in recent years, given conservative voters’ sustained interest in the federal courts.

Executive director Brian Fallon told The New York Times that DJ hopes to “sensitize rank-and-file progressives to think of the courts as a venue for their activism and a way to advance the progressive agenda.”

Its ranks are staffed by alums of the Obama administration and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s 2016 presidential campaign: Fallon, the former Clinton campaign press secretary, serves as executive director and longtime Obama aide Christopher Kang is chief counsel. Other Clinton veterans involved with the group include Gabrielle McCaffrey and Diana Bowen, according to LinkedIn.

The Fund serves as Demand Justice’s fiscal sponsor. As such, DJ does not have to submit its own tax returns or disclose its supporters. The Fund registered the trade name “Demand Justice” with the Washington D.C. Department of Consumer and Regulatory affairs on May 2.

George Soros is an naturalized American citizen and can legally donate his money to any cause he chooses. However, I would like to remind him that money in politics does not always equal success. On November 7, 2016, CNBC reported the following:

Still, the spending patterns offer some insight into the strategies pursued by the two rivals. As of Oct. 19, Clinton had raised some $513 million and spent $450 million on itemized expenses. The Trump campaign had raised $255 million and spent $239 million.

I hope the Soros-funded group is as successful in blocking Judge Kavanaugh as Hillary Clinton was in winning the presidency.

Lying To Congress Is Not A Good Idea

It is no secret that the Department of Justice has been slow walking documents requested by Congress since Congress began their oversight investigation of corruption in the FBI and DOJ. However, with the testimony of Lisa Page, that slow walking has taken a new turn.

This article is based on articles posted at The Gateway Pundit yesterday and at The Conservative Treehouse yesterday.

The headline at The Gateway Pundit article is:

REPORT: House Conservatives Prepare to Impeach Rosenstein as Soon as Monday

This is about lying to Congress.

The article reports:

Freedom Caucus Chairman Mark Meadows dropped a bombshell Friday afternoon and said it appears the DOJ is continuing their efforts to keep material facts and even witnesses from Congress.

Meadows tweeted: Remarkably, we learned new information today suggesting the DOJ had not notified Lisa Page of Congress’ outstanding interview requests for over 7 months now. The DOJ/FBI appear to be continuing their efforts to keep material facts, and perhaps even witnesses, from Congress.

Rosenstein was defiant, smug and laughed off lawmakers during a recent Congressional hearing and refused to answer many pertinent Spygate questions.

The Deputy Attorney General has been working overtime to obstruct House conservatives from oversight while running offense for the Deep State with the Mueller witch hunt.

Both Mueller and Rosenstein are out of control and need to be prosecuted and thrown in prison.

Friday’s revelation the DOJ had not notified Lisa Page of Congress’ outstanding interview requests for over 7 months may be the last straw for GOP lawmakers; it’s way past time to get rid of Rod Rosenstein.

The Conservative Treehouse reports:

On January 3rd, 2018, House Intelligence Chairman Devin Nunes and DOJ Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein entered an agreement for witness testimony.   One of those witnesses was FBI Attorney Lisa Page, Andrew McCabe’s former special counsel.

WASHINGTON – January 4th – House investigators will get access this week to “all remaining investigative documents” – in unredacted form – that they had sought as part of their Russia inquiry, under a deal between Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein and House Intelligence Committee Chairman Devin Nunes, R-Calif., according to a letter obtained by Fox News.

[…] According to the letter, committee investigators also will get access to eight key witnesses this month including FBI agent Peter Strzok and FBI lawyer Lisa Page, who exchanged anti-Trump text messages during an affair and previously worked on the special counsel’s Russia probe.  (link)

The conversation was documented in a confirmation letter shared by Devin Nunes back to Rod Rosenstein the following day, January 4th, 2018Except there’s a problem, Lisa Page told congress today that no-one from the DOJ ever contacted her.  That means Rod Rosenstein was lying:

The impeachment of Rosenstein should be bi-partisan, but it won’t be. Both parties should be concerned when the oversight responsibilities of Congress are ignored. However, the spygate scandal runs so deep and is so obviously linked to a Democrat administration’s politicization of federal law enforcement, I will be totally surprised if any Democrats support this impeachment. That being said, I suspect many Americans are getting tired of watching people obviously break the law and not be held to the standard an average American would be held to. The Democrats block this impeachment at their own peril–the voters may protest, and there may come a day when they want the DOJ and FBI to cooperate with Congress.

 

Sharing Classified Information

On Thursday The Daily Caller posted an article about something the Intelligence Community Inspector General (ICIG) found related to Hillary Clinton’s server that the FBI chose not to explore.

The article reports:

The Intelligence Community Inspector General (ICIG) found an “anomaly on Hillary Clinton’s emails going through their private server, and when they had done the forensic analysis, they found that her emails, every single one except four, over 30,000, were going to an address that was not on the distribution list,” Republican Rep. Louie Gohmert of Texas said during a hearing with FBI official Peter Strzok.

“It was going to an unauthorized source that was a foreign entity unrelated to Russia,” he added.

Gohmert said the ICIG investigator, Frank Rucker, presented the findings to Strzok, but that the FBI official did not do anything with the information.

Strzok acknowledged meeting with Rucker, but said he did not recall the “specific content.”

“The forensic examination was done by the ICIG and they can document that,” Gohmert said, “but you were given that information and you did nothing with it.”

The article further reports:

In late 2017, ICIG Chuck McCullough — who was appointed by former President Barack Obama —  took the unusual step of coming forward publicly to say that he perceived pushback after he began raising the alarm about issues with Clinton’s servers to then-Director of National Intelligence James Clapper.

He said he found it “maddening” that Democrats, including Sen. Dianne Feinstein of California, were underselling the amount of classified information on the server.

McCullough said he “expected to be embraced and protected,” but was instead “chided” by someone on Capitol Hill for failing to consider the “political consequences” of his investigative findings, Fox News reported.

The ICIG has not publicly disclosed the findings Gohmert described in the meeting between Rucker and Strzok, but the congressman said the watchdog can document them.

It is time to retire the upper echelon of both the FBI and the DOJ. They either don’t know what they are doing or are so politically biased they can’t see past their noses. It is time for them to go before we turn into a republic where the government bureaucracy spies on anyone who disagrees with it and protects anyone who does.

Releasing The Documents That Will End The Circus

The Daily Caller is reporting the following today:

The White House has ordered the Department of Justice and FBI to expand congressional access to FBI files about a confidential informant who met with members of the Trump campaign.

The New York Times reports that the White House overrode concerns from FBI Director Christopher Wray and Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats regarding FBI documents about Stefan Halper, a former University of Cambridge professor who was a longtime FBI and CIA source.

Halper, a veteran of three Republican administrations, made contact during the 2016 campaign with three Trump advisers: Carter Page, Sam Clovis and George Papadopoulos.

The information on Halper had been restricted only to the Gang of Eight, a group of lawmakers that consists of the Republican and Democratic leaders of both houses of Congress and the two intelligence committees. The White House push will allow all members of the intelligence committees to view the Halper records.

Democrats on the Gang of Eight sent a letter to Coats on Thursday expressing concern over expanding access to the Halper files.

“We believe your decision could put sources and methods at risk,” reads the letter, according to The Times.

The only sources and methods put at risk by expanding access to this information are the methods for misuse of the government to spy on a presidential candidate. The real solution to this is for President Trump to declassify all of this information and make it available to the public. If he is totally smart, he will do that about three weeks before the November election. At that point those responsible for this will have nowhere to hide.

Please follow the link above to read the entire article. It explains some of the behind-the-scenes activity about the spying on the Trump campaign. The fact that the government used government agencies to interfere in a political campaign for President is disturbing. Were we on the road to having the government determine the outcome of our elections?

Some Thoughts On Brett Kavanaugh

Investor’s Business Daily posted an editorial today about some of the reactions to the nomination of Brett Kavanaugh as a Supreme Court Justice. Some of the attacks on this man by the political left are so ridiculous they are funny.

The editorial cites one example of the attacks:

The Washington Post red-flagged the fact that Kavanaugh racked up nearly $200,000 in credit card debt to buy season tickets to the Washington Nationals baseball team and also for “home improvements.”

A big chunk of change, to be sure. But…what? It’s a bit hard to argue Kavanaugh wasn’t gainfully employed. The Post further makes a big deal that Kavanaugh’s most recent financial form shows less than $70,000 in assets. Sound poor? Does that disqualify him from service on the Supreme Court? Do we now have an asset test for all Court nominees?

What’s absurd about the “assets” is they don’t include his six-figure income and generous pension from being a federal judge. Nor does it include the value of his home. We don’t know what those are, but we’re pretty sure the net value of both is well north of $1 million.

It gets worse:

The Post also “reported,” if that’s the word, that Kavanaugh proclaimed himself Treasurer of the “Keg City Club — 100 Kegs or Bust” in his high school yearbook, and referred to the “Beach Week Ralph Club” and “Rehoboth Police Fan Club.”

So, teenage hijinks are now a solid disqualification for service on the federal bench?

Of course, this is all recycled pap from Kavanaugh’s approval process to be a federal judge. It’s mostly all known. Why repeat it? Anything to sully a man’s reputation. After all, recall how both Robert Bork and Clarence Thomas were smeared by the left during their confirmation battles. Together, they were two of the most disgusting and unfair spectacles in American political history.

I that is all the dirt they can find on this man, he totally deserves to be confirmed in the next two months!

What We Learned From Congressional Hearings Yesterday

This article is based on an article at The Federalist today which lists five things Mollie Hemingway learned from the hearings. I agree with her conclusions.

Here is her list:

1. This Is What DOJ Obstruction Looks Like

2. Strzok Somehow Came Off Even Worse Than He Did In His Texts

3. Democrats Run Interference

4. DOJ Clearly Hiding Its Relationship With Democratic-Funded Smear Group

5. The Mystery Of Why The Investigation Started

The goal of the obstruction seemed to be to minimize where the authorization to spy on the Trump campaign came from. There were a number of questions about how the FBI got hold of the Steele Dossier and the links between the dossier and the Clinton campaign. Generally speaking, those questions were not fully answered. Peter Strzok replied to any substantive questions by saying his lawyers at the Department of Justice told him not to answer questions about an ongoing investigation. Basically he very carefully told us nothing.

Peter Strzok came across as the snotty little kid who lived on the block who simply annoyed everyone with his arrogance and self-righteousness. He could not have been more obnoxious if he had tried.

The Democrats were almost comical in making sure no significant information came out in the hearings. They made sure that the hearings took on the appearance of a rather undisciplined circus. It has become obvious in recent years that the Democrat party is expert at circling the wagons around any Democrat, regardless of what they have done. President Trump was trashed for what he said about women, Bill Clinton was never trashed even when he was believably accused of rape.

The article details the relationship between the DOJ and Fusion GPS (these were questions Peter Strzok generally refused to answer):

But Strzok did admit that Bruce Ohr, husband of Fusion GPS operative Nellie Ohr, funneled documents to the FBI related to the Russia case. He refused to say what those documents were. Yesterday, Sen. Chuck Grassley asked DOJ to declassify the dozen reports summarizing Ohr’s 12 information-sharing meetings with the FBI.

The FBI used Fusion GPS-hired Christopher Steele until the end of October, when he was terminated for lying about his leaks to the media. But Fusion and Steele were able to continue funnelling information to the FBI using colleague Nellie Ohr and her husband Bruce Ohr, a top DOJ official who worked closely with acting Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein.

When the Russia story first broke, Americans didn’t realize that the dossier was a secret Clinton/DNC operation, or that the unverified opposition research was sent to various Obama officials in multiple agencies. Americans didn’t know that a top DOJ official was married to an employee of the group that created the dossier, or that he was used to get information into the government.

The article concludes:

The entire investigation has major problems from start to finish, whether it’s the use of a dossier that Steele created and Bruce Ohr sent to the FBI, or the fact that Strzok ended up having to be removed from the investigation for his obvious and extreme bias. Strzok said Mueller never asked him about his texts, and didn’t seek to find out more from him about what his “insurance policy” or “impeachment” rhetoric meant.

Again, the hearing was less than substantive because of the ongoing obstruction and stonewalling campaign engaged in by DOJ. That was itself instructive.

It will be a miracle if anyone in the DOJ or FBI is ever held accountable for their use of government agencies to influence the 2016 election. Russia is not guilty of election meddling–our own government is.

 

How Things Actually Work In Washington

Yesterday Paul Mirengoff at Power Line posted an article about the confirmation vote that will eventually take place to confirm Brett Kavanaugh as a Supreme Court Judge. The article explains exactly how things work in Washington. If Judge Kavanaugh has enough Republican votes to be confirmed, he will probably receive a few votes from Democrats in favor of his confirmation. This has nothing to do with his qualifications or what those Democrats believe about his willingness to uphold the Constitution–it has to do with their election prospects in 2018. If there are enough Republican votes to confirm Judge Kavanaugh (and the votes of Democrats will not change the outcome), Democrat Senators from states that voted for President Trump will probably vote to confirm. If there are not enough Republican votes to confirm Judge Kavanuagh, all of the Democrat Senators will vote against him. The good of the country or the man’s qualifications have nothing to do with the way they will be voting. That should give all of us pause.

The article includes a quote from Senator Joe Manchin on the vote:

“I think he seems to be a very fine person of high moral standards, a family person who’s very involved in his community, has all the right qualities. He’s well-educated. And with that, you know, we have to just look at making sure that the rule of law and the Constitution is going to be followed, and that’s going to basically preempt anything else he does.

“Most importantly. . .I intend to hear from West Virginians. And during that period of time, I just announced, I’ll be hearing from West Virginians and their opinion. And I think they have, also, a right. And that’s who I work for. They’re my boss. And we want to hear from them, too, during this process. .”

The article notes:

A new poll released on Tuesday by Susan B. Anthony List (SBA List) found that 59 percent of West Virginia voters want Manchin to vote to confirm Kavanaugh.

I looks to me like Manchin will do so unless something is discovered that causes one or two Republican Senators to defect.

The same poll finds that 56 percent of Indiana voters want their Senator, Joe Donnelly, to vote to confirm the Kavanaugh. Sen. Donnelly has not, to my knowledge, praised the nominee the way Sen. Manchin has. But Donnelly echoed Manchin when he said, “I work for the people of Indiana and I want them to have a voice in this.”

The article concludes:

Meanwhile, it will be interesting to see whether Sen. Heidi Heitkamp begins to make mildly pro-Kavanaugh statements. The poll I cited above found that 68 percent of North Dakota voters want Heitkamp to vote to confirm Kavanaugh. If that number holds, the pressure on her to comply will be enormous.

Stay tuned.

Get out the popcorn!

The Facts vs The Talking Points

Remember when the Democrats said that the Trump tax cuts would blow a huge hole in the deficit because of the money that would not be collected. Those who believed the Democrats need to study the Laffer Curve. Although liberals keep saying it doesn’t work, the history of tax cuts proves it does.

Yesterday Investor’s Business Daily posted an editorial about the impact of President Trump’s Tax Cuts.

The editorial states:

The latest monthly budget report from the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office finds that revenues from federal income taxes were $76 billion higher in the first half of this year, compared with the first half of 2017. That’s a 9% jump, even though the lower income tax withholding schedules went into effect in February.

The CBO says the gain “largely reflects increases in wages and salaries.”

For the fiscal year as a whole — which started last October — all federal revenues are up by $31 billion. That’s a 1.2% in increase over last year, the CBO says.

The Treasury Department, which issues a separate monthly report, says it expects federal revenues will continue to exceed last year’s for the rest of the 2018 fiscal year.

The editorial concludes:

As we have said many times in this space, the problem the country faces isn’t that taxes are too low, but that spending is too high. The CBO projects that even with the Trump tax cuts in place, taxes as a share of GDP will steadily rise over the next decade, and will be higher than the post-World War II average.

But bringing in more tax revenues doesn’t help if spending goes up even faster. And that has, unfortunately, been the case, as the GOP-controlled Congress has gone on a spending spree.

Look at it this way. Tax revenues are up by $31 billion so far this fiscal year compared with last year. But spending is up $115 billion.

In other words, the entire increase in the deficit so far this year has been due to spending hikes, not tax cuts.

There are too many Republicans in Congress who don’t understand why the American voters sent them there. The Democrats have always loved to spend other people’s money, but the Republicans were supposed to be the alternative to that. Unfortunately, many Republicans have failed the voters. The only way to fix Washington is to unelect every Congressman who votes for spending increases. Otherwise the spending will only get worse.

America Is Reducing Its CO2 Emissions

bp Global posted an article recently detailing CO2 emissions for 2017.

The article reports:

Global CO2 emissions from energy in 2017 grew by 1.6%, rebounding from the stagnant volumes during 2014-2016, and faster than the 10-year average of 1.3%.

This is not really a surprise since the worldwide economy improved during 2017. However, the article reports which countries increased emissions and which countries decreased emissions.

The article reports:

Carbon emissions from energy use from the US are the lowest since 1992, the year that the UNFCCC came into existence. The next largest decline was in Ukraine (-10.1%).

The largest increase in carbon emissions in 2017 came from China (1.6%), a reversal from the past three years when the largest increases in emissions came from India. China’s emissions in 2017 were 0.3% higher than the previous peak in 2014. China has had the world’s largest increments in carbon emission every year this century except in four years – 2000 and between 2014-16.

The next highest increment came from India where emissions rose by 4.4%, though lower than its 10-year average (6% p.a.).

Together, China and India accounted for nearly half of the increase in global carbon emissions.EU emissions were also up (1.5%) with just Spain accounting for 44% of the increase in EU emissions. Among other EU members, UK and Denmark reported the lowest carbon emissions in their history.

President Trump withdrew from the Paris Climate Accord. It is important to look at the above information in view of that agreement.

According to The New York Times on May 31, 2017:

Under the deal (The Paris Climate Accord), the Obama administration pledged to cut domestic greenhouse gas emissions 26 to 28 percent below 2005 levels by 2025 as well as to commit up to $3 billion in aid for poorer countries by 2020. (The United States has delivered $1 billion to date.) China vowed that its emissions would peak around 2030 and that it would get about 20 percent of its electricity from carbon-free sources by then. India would continue to reduce its carbon intensity, or CO2 output per unit of economic activity, in line with historical levels.

So under the Paris Climate Accord, the U.S. would cripple its economy and pay money to other countries. China would not really do much before 2030, while America would have to be below 2005 emission levels before 2025. President Trump again withdrew America from an unfair deal, while actually accomplishing the aim of the agreement without crippling the American economy. Meanwhile, China and India, who signed the deal, are increasing their carbon emissions. This is typical of how those who want to weaken America to achieve their goal of one-world government operate. Americans need to understand that America is the biggest obstacle to one-world government, particularly with President Trump in charge.

 

 

Be Careful Who You Rescue

The Gateway Pundit posted an article today about some recent events on an Italian ship that rescued a group of migrants off the coast of Libya.

The article reports:

The Italian ship Vos Thalassa rescued 67 migrants, including six children, off the coast of Libya on Sunday while responding to a distress call.

But when the Italian crew turned to to meet the Libyan coast guard the migrants threatened to behead the Italian crew.

The Italian government then intervened to rescue the crew of the rescue ship.

The report from Euronews quoted in the article states:

However, international shipping company Vroon, which operates Vos Thalassa, an oil rig supply vessel, told Euronews that the ship “never requested to enter an Italian port or even Italian territorial waters.”

‘Severely outnumbered’
Vroon said that when the vessel turned to meet with the Libyan coast guard to transfer the migrants, they “started to threaten the crew, surrounding and pushing them and making ‘cut your throat’ gestures.”

“Because of these threats the vessel returned to its position and reported this situation to the MRCC [Maritime Rescue Coordination Centre] in Rome.”

The shipping company said being “severely outnumbered on board a merchant vessel by an angry crowd that has very little to lose is very frightening”.

“We are very proud of the professionalism of our crew in these very challenging circumstances.”

There are differences between cultures. We need to consider that when dealing with migrants.

America’s Genocide

Yesterday Jason Riley at The Wall Street Journal posted an article about a rarely mentioned item in the debate over President Trump’s nominee for the Supreme Court.

The article states:

As Judge Brett Kavanaugh’s Supreme Court nomination tees up another national debate about reproductive rights, is it too much to ask that abortion’s impact on the black population be part of the discussion?

When the Supreme Court decided Roe v. Wade in 1973, polling showed that blacks were less likely than whites to support abortion. Sixties-era civil rights activists like Fannie Lou Hamer and Whitney Young had denounced the procedure as a form of genocide. Jesse Jackson called abortion “murder” and once told a black newspaper in Chicago that “we used to look for death from the man in the blue coat and now it comes in a white coat.”

I don’t know why Jesse Jackson changed his mind. It is very unfortunate that he did.

The article cites the impact of abortion on minorities:

What’s not in doubt is the outsize toll that abortion has taken on the black population post-Roe. In New York City, thousands more black babies are aborted than born alive each year, and the abortion rate among black mothers is more than three times higher than it is for white mothers. According to a city Health Department report released in May, between 2012 and 2016 black mothers terminated 136,426 pregnancies and gave birth to 118,127 babies. By contrast, births far surpassed abortions among whites, Asians and Hispanics.

Nationally, black women terminate pregnancies at far higher rates than other women as well. In 2014, 36% of all abortions were performed on black women, who are just 13% of the female population. The little discussed flip side of “reproductive freedom” is that abortion deaths far exceed those via cancer, violent crime, heart disease, AIDS and accidents. Racism, poverty and lack of access to health care are the typical explanations for these disparities. But black women have much higher abortion rates even after you control for income. Moreover, other low-income ethnic minorities who experience discrimination, such as Hispanics, abort at rates much closer to white women than black women.

Those are chilling statistics.

Many years ago (in the late 1960’s), I sat in the living room at a party that I was invited to because of the person I was visiting (those at the party were way above my pay grade!) and listened to some highly educated people express fear that the black population would overtake their city if the growth of that population was not checked. These were otherwise compassionate people who would have been offended at being called racists (although that’s what they were). This was a major southern city, and the people stating this opinion had no problem with what they were saying. These were people in their twenties who were among our best and brightest and probably became political leaders as they matured. Those statements have always stayed with me, and I wonder if they are happy with what has happened to the black population under Roe v. Wade. It seems to me that the pro-abortion people need to look at the damage abortion has caused to the black community before they start demonizing people who want to stop the genocide.

Grasping At Straws

The focus on the Mueller investigation seems to be Paul Manafort. Manafort is currently being held in solitary confinement in a Virginia jail because of alleged witness tampering. Does anyone doubt that this is an attempt to get him to make something up that Mueller can use against President Trump? Meanwhile, The Washington Examiner reported yesterday that Mueller has now revealed the relationship between the Trump campaign and Manafort.

Most of the 32 counts against Manafort in the Virginia case concern alleged crimes that took place long before there was a Trump campaign. Some go back as far as 2006. But four of the counts involve a pair of loans Manafort took out between April 2016 and January 2017. For a few months during that time period, Manafort worked for the Trump campaign.

The loans totaled $16 million and came from a financial institution Mueller refers to as Lender D. According to Mueller, Manafort lied to get the loans, overstating his income and understating his debts.

Mueller says that some workers at Lender D knew there was a problem with Manafort’s application, but that one top executive there, a man who wanted a place in the Trump campaign, granted the loan anyway. From the Mueller filing:

“The government intends to present evidence that although various Lender D employees identified serious issues with the defendant’s loan application, the senior executive at Lender D interceded in the process and approved the loan. During the loan application process, the senior executive expressed interest in working on the Trump campaign, told the defendant about his interest, and eventually secured a position advising the Trump campaign. The senior executive later expressed an interest in serving in the administration of President Trump, but did not secure such a position.”

The lending company and the senior executive are not identified in the indictment, but the loans appear to fit an episode reported in the New York Times involving a small bank in Chicago, the Federal Savings Bank, and its chief executive, Stephen Calk, who was named an economic adviser to the Trump campaign in August 2016 but did not join the administration.

The article concludes:

In May, the Wall Street Journal reported that Mueller is investigating whether the loans were “made as part of a quid pro quo arrangement to secure Mr. Calk a job in Mr. Trump’s administration.” Calk has denied any such arrangement.

In any event, Mueller has not suggested that Donald Trump was involved in any of the actions outlined in the Manafort charges. The two Lender D loans are, apparently, the only connection between the Trump campaign and the broad array of criminal activity, some of it more than a decade old, alleged in the Manafort indictments. And Trump himself played no role in it.

Was a special counsel needed for that?

If Mueller investigated every horse trade that took place in Washington, I am sure he would find an awful lot to keep him busy and nothing noteworthy!

 

Some Good News For A Change

CNBC reported today that all twelve soccer players have been rescued from the cave in Thailand where they have been trapped for more than two weeks. Unfortunately Petty Officer Saman Gunan, a former Thai navy diver, died while delivering oxygen to the trapped boys.

The article reports:

The eight boys brought out on Sunday and Monday were in good health overall and some asked for chocolate bread for breakfast, officials said earlier.

Two of the boys had suspected lung infections but the four boys from the first group rescued were all walking around in hospital.

Volunteers from as far away as Australia and the United States helped with the effort to rescue the boys. U.S. military personnel also helped.

…The boys were still being quarantined from their parents because of the risk of infection and would likely be kept in hospital for a week for tests, officials said earlier.

This is news we can all celebrate.

 

 

This Is Dangerous And Those Responsible Need To Be Held Accountable

Last Thursday Breitbart posted a list of “305 Acts of Violence and Harassment Against Trump Supporters.” I don’t care what you think of President Trump or what you think of anything he has done, this is not acceptable. Some of the political left is using the argument that ‘he started it’ and then naming some outrageous statement by the President. However, that is no excuse–President Trump is not assaulting people, throwing drinks at them, harassing them in public places or stealing or destroying their property. Some of his opponents are.

Here are only the top 25 items on the list:

  1. July 10, 2018: Fox News Reporter Harassed, Threatened And Forced To Leave Supreme Court By Leftist Mob
  2. July 9, 2018: Far-left blog Talking Points Memo mocks Stephen Miller over report of confrontation with bartender.
  3. July 9, 2018: Trump senior aide Stephen Miller harassed on street by angry bartender.
  4. July 9, 2018: Motorists scream curse words at Sean Spicer in his yard.
  5. July 9, 2018: Trump senior aide Kellyanne Conway harassed in grocery store
  6. July 9, 2018: Anti-Trump activists vandalize New York DHS office
  7. July 8, 2018: LISTEN: Idaho GOP Rep. Receives Threatening Voicemails, Emails Because of This Facebook Post
  8. July 8, 2018: Longtime Hillary Clinton aide publishes contact information about bookstore owner who stopped the harassment of Steve Bannon, Reines’s  obvious goal is to see the bookstore owner harassed.
  9. July 8, 2018: Far-left Daily Beast writer defends public harassment of Steve Bannon
  10. July 7, 2018: Sen. Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) menaced outside restaurant. We know where you live!
  11. July 7, 2018:Steve Bannon harassed at bookstore; police called
  12. July 7, 2018: Left-wing AntiFa terrorists attack peaceful Tommy Robinson supporters in San Francisco
  13. July 7, 2018: New York Times editorial calls for Dems to “take a page from The Godfather” to “go to the mattresses” to stop Trump’s Supreme Court nominee.
  14. July 6, 2018: CNN analyst justifies violence against Trump supporters
  15. July 6, 2018:  Long Island Man Threatened to Kill Supporters of Republican Congressman, Trump: Police
  16. July 6, 2018: Florida man attacked over Trump flag in yard.
  17. July 6, 2018: Woman threatens to stab Alan Dershowitz in heart.
  18. July 5, 2018: Founder of #WalkAway campaign refused service at camera store.
  19. July 5, 2018: Trump supporter wearing Make America Great Again hat allegedly assaulted in burger joint (video at link).
  20. July 3, 2018: Left-wing Catholic calls for sending Trump supporters to the guillotine
  21. July 3, 2018: Nebraska GOP office vandalized.
  22. July 3, 2018: EPA head Scott Pruitt harassed at restaurant.
  23. July 2, 2018: MAGA hat wearer harassed at seafood restaurant
  24. July 2, 2018: Mother of cancer survivor harassed online for thanking Eric Trump for $16 million in St. Jude support
  25. July 2, 2018: Cher accuses ICE of “Gestapo tactics.”

At some point we all need to get along. We are never going to agree on everything. The press is playing a large role in this–they have been running around with their hair on fire since the 2016 election. The press has refused to report on much of this and refused to condemn on what it has reported. The left political spin is that any violence is President Trump’s fault because he is so over the top. The actual truth is that the deep state is feeling backed into a corner and is reacting like a cornered animal. Unfortunately, until the American voters wake up and realize that the press is manipulating them, we will probably see more of this.

Surprising Sanity From The New York Times

The insanity of the political left has reached new heights in recent days, so it was a bit of a surprise when The New York Times posted a very rational article last night praising President Trump for the nomination of Judge Brett Kavanaugh to be the next Supreme Court justice. Contrast this attitude with comments made by ABC’s Nightline before the nominee was named (from Newsbusters):

I suppose we should all be grateful that they at least corrected their initial statement.

At any rate, The New York Times article has a very rational suggestion about the hearings on Judge Kavanaugh’s appointment:

Fair questions would include inquiries not just about Judge Kavanaugh’s past writings and activities but also about how he believes various past notable judicial cases (such as Roe v. Wade) should have been decided — and even about what his current legal views are on any issue, general or specific.

Everyone would have to understand that in honestly answering, Judge Kavanaugh would not be making a pledge — a pledge would be a violation of judicial independence. In the future, he would of course be free to change his mind if confronted with new arguments or new facts, or even if he merely comes to see a matter differently with the weight of judgment on his shoulders. But honest discussions of one’s current legal views are entirely proper, and without them confirmation hearings are largely pointless.

The compromise I’m proposing would depart from recent confirmation practice. But the current confirmation process is badly broken, alternating between rubber stamps and witch hunts. My proposal would enable each constitutional actor to once again play its proper constitutional role: The Senate could become a venue for serious constitutional conversation, and the nominee could demonstrate his or her consummate legal skill. And equally important: Judge Kavanaugh could be confirmed with the ninetysomething Senate votes he deserves, rather than the fiftysomething votes he is likely to get.

A praiseworthy statement from The New York Times.

Responding To Union Extortion

On Saturday, PJ Media posted an article a recent lawsuit filed by seven in California.

The article reports:

Less than a week after that ruling, Janus v. Association of Federal, State, City, and Municipal Employees (FSCME), seven California teachers have filed a class-action lawsuit to recoup unjustly forced fees.

“This lawsuit will enable teachers like me to recover the agency fees that we were wrongly forced to pay against our will,” Scott Wilford, the plaintiff in the new lawsuit, told Education Week. Wilford filed the lawsuit in the Central District of California’s federal court on Tuesday.

Wilford and six others filed the class-action lawsuit against the National Education Association (NEA), the American Federation of Teachers (AFT) and others. The suit seeks “redress for the defendants’ past and ongoing violations of their constitutionally protected rights. The defendants have violated the representative plaintiffs’ constitutional rights by, among other things, forcing them to pay fair share service fees as a condition of their employment.”

The AFT, like other unions, used “non-political” agency fees for its annual convention in 2016, at which Hillary Clinton spoke.

It is not news to anyone that union dues were used for political purposes. It does seem unfair that people would be compelled to support candidates and causes that are against their political ideology.

The article concludes:

As Thomas Jefferson wrote in the Virginia Statute for Religious Freedom, “To compel a man to furnish contributions of money for the propagation of opinions which he disbelieves and abhors, is sinful and tyrannical.”

The Supreme Court put an end to these ill-gotten gains last month, and Wilford, Friedrichs, and their fellow plaintiffs deserve an apology if nothing more. Wilford and Friedrichs especially deserve something, since their case was blocked for two years by a deadlocked Supreme Court.

Unfortunately, it seems unions are unlikely to give even that, as they staunchly attacked Janus as an unjust decision. Some contrition, and a direct settlement for Wilford and Friedrichs, might save the unions a huge headache — and a multi-million dollar lawsuit. Instead, it seems they’re in for the long haul.

Stay tuned. I suspect this is just the beginning.

When You Begin To Peel An Onion, It Smells

As Congress and some of the press begin to peel back the layers of scandal surrounding the government surveillance and investigation into the Trump campaign, it is truly starting to smell like corrupt government agencies. The more we know, the worse it smells.

The Daily Caller posted an article yesterday about some events that occurred before the appointment of a Special Prosecutor. There was definitely a strategy among those who wanted to undo the 2016 presidential election.

The article reports:

Justice Department documents released on Friday confirm that the DOJ attorney known as Robert Mueller’s “pit bull” arranged a meeting with journalists in April 2017 to discuss an investigation into Paul Manafort.

The documents show that Andrew Weissmann arranged a meeting with DOJ and FBI officials and four Associated Press reporters on April 11, 2017, just over a month before Mueller was appointed special counsel.

Manafort’s lawyers obtained the documents on June 29 and revealed them in a briefing filed in federal court in Virginia. The attorneys are pushing for a hearing into what they say are possible leaks of secret grand jury information, false information and potentially classified materials from the meeting.

“The meeting raises serious concerns about whether a violation of grand jury secrecy occurred,” a lawyer for Manafort, Kevin Downing, wrote in a motion requesting a hearing. “Based on the FBI’s own notes of the meeting, it is beyond question that a hearing is warranted.”

The article continues:

The existence of meeting between AP reporters and DOJ officials was first reported in January. The government confirmed it for the first time in a pre-trial hearing held on June 29.

In the hearing, FBI Special Agent Jeffrey Pfeiffer said that the FBI may have conducted a May 2017 raid of a storage locker that Manafort was renting based on a tip from AP reporters. He also said that the purpose of the meeting was for the DOJ and FBI to obtain information from The AP.

Manafort is set to go to trial on July 25 for a slew of money laundering and bank fraud charges related to his consulting work for a Ukrainian politician years before joining the Trump campaign.

Friday’s court filing includes two reports about the April 11, 2017 meeting: one written by Pfeiffer and another written by Supervisory Special Agent Karen Greenaway.

“The meeting was arranged by Andrew Weissmann,” Greenaway wrote in her report, for the first time establishing that Weissmann took part in the meeting.

Greenaway also said that Weissmann provided guidance to the reporters for their investigation. According to Greenaway, Weissmann suggested that the reporters ask the Cypriot Anti-Money Laundering Authority, a Cypriot government agency, if it had provided the Department of Treasury with all of the documents they were legally authorized to provide regarding Manafort.

The AP journalists, Chad Day, Ted Bridis, Jack Gillum and Eric Tucker, were conducting an extensive investigation of Manafort, including payments he received through various shell companies set up in Cyprus.

There are a few things to remember here. Paul Manafort may or may not have committed crimes, but the accusations have to do with events years before he joined the Trump campaign. This is totally out of the jurisdiction of the Special Prosecutor. Meanwhile, Paul Manafort is being held in solitary confinement in a Virginia prison cell for 23 hours a day because correctional officials “cannot otherwise guarantee his safety.” Does anyone actually believe this is in accordance with Mr. Manafort’s constitutional rights?

The article also reports:

DOJ officials provided other guidance to the reporters, according to Greenaway’s report. She noted that when the journalists asked DOJ officials to tell them if they were off base in their findings about Manafort, “government attendees confirmed that the AP reporters appeared to have a good understanding of Manafort’s business dealings in Ukraine.”

Downing said that the special counsel’s office has previously confirmed that at the time of the meeting with the AP reporters, “there was an ongoing grand jury investigation of Mr. Manafort in the Eastern District of Virginia.”

In addition to Weissmann, Pfeiffer and Greenaway, Justice Department officials George Mceachern, Ann Brickley and Ariel Shreve attended the meeting.

It is time for Congress to put a stop to this charade. The only solution to this corruption is to change all the documents related to this investigation that were previously classified to unclassified and let the American people see what has gone on. That is the only way the credibility of the FBI and DOJ will recover.

 

Who Was Running This Circus?

On July 6, The Conservative Treehouse posted the following tweet:

So what is this about?

The article explains:

Yes, FBI Agent Peter Strzok failed his polygraph and his supervisors were notified on January 16th, 2016, his results were “out of scope“. Meaning he failed his polygraph test.  Yet he was never removed from any responsibilities; and against dept policy, he did not have his clearance revoked until he could clear.

The article includes a video of Rod Rosenstein’s testimony before Congress regarding the matter.

The article explains what happened after Strzok failed his polygraph:

After Strzok was recently removed from official responsibility within the FBI, his security clearances were retroactively revoked.  That revocation was due to OPR review and was a retroactive revocation action initiated by career officials within the FBI to cover-up (ie. CYA) the two-and-a-half years he was allowed to work when he should not have been.

Current FBI officials, including Trump appointed FBI Director Christopher Wray, are covering up the scandal within the FBI in a misguided effort to save the institution.

This is the same reason the FBI hid the Strzok/Page memos and emails away from IG review and congressional oversight.

There is a massive, ongoing, ‘institutional’ cover-up within the DOJ and FBI.  These are simply examples highlighting the severity therein.  Peter Strzok and his legal team are counting on the need for the institution to be protected as their shield from any prosecution.

Americans are rapidly losing faith in both the FBI and DOJ because of the lack of accountability of their leadership. It is time to remove the leadership and restore the integrity of these agencies.

Their Concept Is Correct, The Patriotism Is Lacking

The Washington Examiner posted an article today about some recent comments by Senate Minority Whip Dick Durbin.

The article reports:

Senate Minority Whip Dick Durbin, D-Ill., was pressed on this “dilemma” that Democrats face as the 2018 midterms approach during an interview on NBC’s “Meet the Press.”

“Staying united to stop the Supreme Court pick could cost you red state senators. Not fighting it as hard might allow the red state senators to get re-elected and get Democrats in control of the Senate. That’s your dilemma,” host Chuck Todd posited on Sunday.

Durbin conceded that it is a dilemma “in one respect,” but made that case for how it is a trade off Democrats are willing to make.

“It is a dilemma in one respect, but not in another. I will tell you, the men and women that I work with on the Democratic side really take this seriously. They understand it’s an historic decision. It’s about more than the next election,” he said, adding that the issue is about setting the future course for the country.

The balance on the Supreme Court has been slightly left on social issues because of the views of Justice Kennedy. Replacing Kennedy with a conservative justice who believes that the Constitution is the law of the land might change the court for generations. That might change many things. The main thing the Democrats are worried about is Roe v. Wade.

In 2013 Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg made a very interesting comment about Roe v. Wade (article here):

Those more acquainted with Ginsburg and her thoughtful, nuanced approach to difficult legal questions were not surprised, however, to hear her say just the opposite, that Roe was a faulty decision. For Ginsburg, the landmark 1973 Supreme Court decision that affirmed a woman’s right to an abortion was too far-reaching and too sweeping, and it gave anti-abortion rights activists a very tangible target to rally against in the four decades since.

Ginsburg and Professor Geoffrey Stone, a longtime scholar of reproductive rights and constitutional law, spoke for 90 minutes before a capacity crowd in the Law School auditorium on May 11 on “Roe v. Wade at 40.”

“My criticism of Roe is that it seemed to have stopped the momentum on the side of change,” Ginsburg said. She would’ve preferred that abortion rights be secured more gradually, in a process that included state legislatures and the courts, she added. Ginsburg also was troubled that the focus on Roe was on a right to privacy, rather than women’s rights.

Roe isn’t really about the woman’s choice, is it?” Ginsburg said. “It’s about the doctor’s freedom to practice…it wasn’t woman-centered, it was physician-centered.”

What the frantic pro-abortion people are not telling you is that overturning Roe v. Wade would not end abortion–it would simple give the states the right to decide the issue for themselves (in accordance with the Tenth Amendment) as was the case before 1973.

What the hysteria over this judicial pick illustrates is that we have wandered from the intent of our Founding Fathers. The Founding Fathers envisioned the judiciary as the weakest branch of government–they were not elected and theoretically had little power–they did not make laws–Congress did. In 1803 Marberry v. Madison established the principle of judicial review, and the courts assumed power they were never intended to have. It is telling that American law students do not study the U.S. Constitution–they study case law.

President Trump has every right to have his nominee for the Supreme Court approved. Hopefully the Democrats will respect that right. Candidates should be judged on their qualifications–not their politics. Democrats pushed through some very left wing judges under President Obama after invoking the nuclear option. The Democrats demanded that the Republicans vote on qualifications rather than politics. It’s time for the Republicans to demand that same courtesy from the Democrats.

Another Reason FOIA Requests Are Valuable For Providing Transparency

John Solomon at The Hill posted an article on Friday about more information found in the memos recently released to various Senate and House Committees. The memos reveal government agencies misused to achieve a political goal. Thankfully, in spite of all their efforts, that goal has not been achieved. However, I have no doubt that the people behind the attempt to undo the 2016 presidential election have not given up.

Here are some of the highlights of the information in the recently released memos (as noted in the article):

The memos show Strzok, Lisa Page and others in counterintelligence monitored news articles in September 2016 that quoted a law enforcement source as saying the FBI was investigating Carter Page’s travel to Moscow.

The FBI team pounced on what it saw as an opportunity as soon as Page wrote a letter to then-FBI Director James Comey complaining about the “completely false” leak.

“At a minimum, the letter provides us a pretext to interview,” Strzok wrote to Lisa Page on Sept. 26, 2016.

Within weeks, that “pretext” — often a synonym for an excuse — had been upsized to a Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) court warrant, giving the FBI the ability to use some of its most awesome powers to monitor Carter Page and his activities.

To date, the former Trump adviser has been accused of no wrongdoing despite being subjected to nearly a year of surveillance.

Some internal memos detail the pressure being applied by the FBI to DOJ prosecutors to get the warrant on Carter Page buttoned up before Election Day.

In one email exchange with the subject line “Crossfire FISA,” Strzok and Lisa Page discussed talking points to get then-FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe to persuade a high-ranking DOJ official to sign off on the warrant.

This group did not give up after the election:

The day after Trump’s surprising win on Nov. 9, 2016, the FBI counterintelligence team engaged in a new mission, bluntly described in another string of emails prompted by another news leak.

“We need ALL of their names to scrub, and we should give them ours for the same purpose,” Strzok emailed Page on Nov. 10, 2016, citing a Daily Beast article about some of former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort’s allegedly unsavory ties overseas.

“Andy didn’t get any others,” Page wrote back, apparently indicating McCabe didn’t have names to add to the “scrub.”

“That’s what Bill said,” Strzok wrote back, apparently referring to then-FBI chief of counterintelligence William Priestap. “I suggested we need to exchange our entire lists as we each have potential derogatory CI info the other doesn’t.” CI is short for confidential informants.

It’s an extraordinary exchange, if for no other reason than this: The very day after Trump wins the presidency, some top FBI officials are involved in the sort of gum-shoeing normally reserved for field agents, and their goal is to find derogatory information about someone who had worked for the president-elect.

The article concludes:

These and other documents are still being disseminated to various oversight bodies in Congress, and more revelations are certain to occur.

Yet, now, irrefutable proof exists that agents sought to create pressure to get “derogatory” information and a “pretext” to interview people close to a future president they didn’t like.

Clear evidence also exists that an investigation into still-unproven collusion between a foreign power and a U.S. presidential candidate was driven less by secret information from Moscow and more by politically tainted media leaks.

And that means the dots between expressions of political bias and official actions just got a little more connected.

Please follow the link to read the entire article. It is chilling to think that supposedly non-partisan members of the government used the powers of government for political purposes. It is more chilling to realize that at this moment they have not paid for their crimes. Unless someone is held responsible for these crimes, Americans will totally lose faith in what used to be upstanding organizations–the FBI and the Department of Justice.