From A Friend On Facebook

This was posted by a friend on Facebook. I am sure it has been all over the internet, but I wanted to post it here as a reminder. Many of our Vietnam vets never really came home. When they got back to America, they were not treated well. If you read the history of the war, you realize that it was lost due to a broken promise on the part of America. Sometimes we need to remember that although America is a great country, we have made some mistakes and some of those mistakes have involved the way we have treated our soldiers who were drafted and loved their country enough to serve.

Richard, (my husband), never really talked a lot about his time in Viet Nam, other than he had been shot by a sniper. However, he had a rather grainy, 8 x 10 black and white photo he had taken at a USO show of Ann Margret with Bob Hope in the background that was one of his treasures.

A few years ago, Ann Margaret was doing a book signing at a local bookstore. Richard wanted to see if he could get her to Sign the treasured photo so he arrived at the bookstore at 12 o’clock for the 7:30 signing.

When I got there after work, the line went all the way around the bookstore, circled the parking lot, and disappeared behind a parking garage. Before her appearance, bookstore employees announced that she would sign only her book and no memorabilia would be permitted.

Richard was disappointed, but wanted to show her the photo and let her know how much those
shows meant to lonely GI’s so far from home.. Ann Margaret came out looking as
beautiful as ever and, as second in line, it was soon Richard’s turn.

He presented the book for her signature and then took out the photo. When he did, there were many shouts from the employees that she would not sign it. Richard said, “I understand. I just wanted her to see it.”

She took one look at the photo, tears welled up in her eyes and she said, “This is one of my gentlemen from Viet Nam and I most certainly will sign his photo. I know what these men did for their country and I always have time for ‘my gentlemen.” With that, she pulled Richard across the table and planted a big kiss on him. She then made quite a to-do about the bravery of the young men she met over the years, how much she admired them, and how much she appreciated them. There weren’t too many dry eyes among those close enough to hear. She then posed for pictures and acted as if he were the only one there.

That night was a turning point for him. He walked a little straighter and, for the first time in years, was proud to have been a Vet. I’ll never forget Ann Margaret for her graciousness and how much that small act of kindness meant to my husband.

Later at dinner, Richard was very quiet. When I asked if he’d like to talk about it, my big, strong husband broke down in tears.. ”That’s the first time anyone ever thanked
me for my time in the Army,” he said.

I now make it a point to say ‘Thank you’ to every person I come across who served in our Armed Forces. Freedom does not come cheap and I am grateful for all those who have served their country.

If you’d like to pass on this story, feel free to do so. Perhaps it will help others to become aware of how important it is to acknowledge the contribution our service people make.

Common Sense Rears Its Head

Breitbart.com posted an article today about a Los Angeles Times reporter who was surprised to find Latinos who are supporting Donald Trump for President. Robin Abcarian attended a Donald Trump rally in Fresno, California, and was surprised to find Latino supporters of Trump there.

The article reports:

It turns out that many of them are American citizens or legal immigrants who care about the country’s borders, and share the same views as fellow conservatives Republicans on a variety of issues.

His rhetoric about Mexicans doesn’t bother you, I asked?

“It’s about illegal aliens!” Jennings said. “Mom and I can’t go to Canada and just squat and get benefits. We couldn’t go to Mexico either without the proper paperwork. They’d put us in jail!”

“I’m Mexican,” Aderhold said, “and I understand that Mexicans do the farm labor, but there are a lot of legal ones. That’s how they should do it, the way my parents did.”

Note that these people were here legally. The people who have come to America legally do not want to see our borders erased–they want other people to stand in line and do things legally as they did. It is not a surprise to hear that many of them are supporting Donald Trump.

Who Has Prospered Under President Obama?

Investor’s Business Daily posted an article on Friday about the growth of regulations under the Obama Administration.

The article includes the following chart:

RegulatorsThe growth of regulations under President Obama has been astounding.

The article reports:

Total spending on federal regulatory activity has jumped almost 18% in real terms since Obama took office, reaching $56 billion this year. That outpaced overall economic growth, which has climbed a total of 13% since 2008.

Over those same years, the number of jobs at these regulatory agencies climbed by 11.8% — to almost 280,000 workers — while the number of private sector jobs has growth by 8.5%.

To put these numbers in perspective: If GDP had grown as fast as the federal regulatory budget, the economy would be $696 billion bigger today. If private sector employment had kept pace with the growth in regulatory jobs, there would be 3.7 million more people at work.

 The study, published jointly by the Weidenbaum Center at Washington University in St. Louis and the Regulatory Studies Center at George Washington University, also breaks down regulatory spending into “social” and “economic” categories. Social regulations cover health, safety and environment, and include agencies such as the FDA, Homeland Security, the EPA, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

The thing to remember here is that regulations cost money. They are an extra burden on small businesses and slow down the growth of the economy.

The article notes:

Based on the administration’s own figures, these Obama-imposed rules cost the economy a total of $108 billion a year, but as Heritage notes, the actual costs are much higher because federal regulators routinely lowball compliance costs.

This is no way to run an economy.

Reporting Spin Instead Of History

Yesterday Yahoo News posted a timeline of President Obama’s visit to Japan. The timeline included the following:

6:10 p.m.

President Barack Obama has signed a guest book and laid a wreath during his historic visit to Hiroshima and its memorial park.

Here is what he wrote:

“We have known the agony of war. Let us now find the courage, together, to spread peace, and pursue a world without nuclear weapons.”

The United States dropped an atomic bomb on Hiroshima during the closing days of World War II, killing some 140,000 people.

Obama is the first sitting U.S. president to visit Hiroshima.

He also laid a wreath near the base of an arched memorial in Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park.

Please reread the italics. The reason it was the closing days of World War II was that the two bombs dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki ended the war.]

In 2006, The Free Republic posted the following:

Invasion Not Found in the History Books

Deep in the recesses of the National Archives in Washington, D.C., hidden for nearly four decades lie thousands of pages of yellowing and dusty documents stamped “Top Secret”. These documents, now declassified, are the plans for Operation Downfall, the invasion of Japan during World War II. Only a few Americans in 1945 were aware of the elaborate plans that had been prepared for the Allied Invasion of the Japanese home islands. Even fewer today are aware of the defenses the Japanese had prepared to counter the invasion had it been launched. Operation Downfall was finalized during the spring and summer of 1945. It called for two massive military undertakings to be carried out in succession and aimed at the heart of the Japanese Empire.

In the first invasion – code named Operation Olympic – American combat troops would land on Japan by amphibious assault during the early morning hours of November 1, 1945 – 50 years ago. Fourteen combat divisions of soldiers and Marines would land on heavily fortified and defended Kyushu, the southernmost of the Japanese home islands, after an unprecedented naval and aerial bombardment.

The second invasion on March 1, 1946 – code named Operation Coronet – would send at least 22 divisions against 1 million Japanese defenders on the main island of Honshu and the Tokyo Plain. It’s goal: the unconditional surrender of Japan. With the exception of a part of the British Pacific Fleet, Operation Downfall was to be a strictly American operation. It called for using the entire Marine Corps, the entire Pacific Navy, elements of the 7th Army Air Force, the 8 Air Force (recently redeployed from Europe), 10th Air Force and the American Far Eastern Air Force. More than 1.5 million combat soldiers, with 3 million more in support or more than 40% of all servicemen still in uniform in 1945 – would be directly involved in the two amphibious assaults. Casualties were expected to be extremely heavy.

Admiral William Leahy estimated that there would be more than 250,000 Americans killed or wounded on Kyushu alone. General Charles Willoughby, chief of intelligence for General Douglas MacArthur, the Supreme Commander of the Southwest Pacific, estimated American casualties would be one million men by the fall of 1946. Willoughby’s own intelligence staff considered this to be a conservative estimate.

During the summer of 1945, America had little time to prepare for such an endeavor, but top military leaders were in almost unanimous agreement that an invasion was necessary.

While naval blockade and strategic bombing of Japan was considered to be useful, General MacArthur, for instance, did not believe a blockade would bring about an unconditional surrender. The advocates for invasion agreed that while a naval blockade chokes, it does not kill; and though strategic bombing might destroy cities, it leaves whole armies intact.

So on May 25, 1945, the Joint Chiefs of Staff, after extensive deliberation, issued to General MacArthur, Admiral Chester Nimitz, and Army Air Force General Henry Arnold, the top secret directive to proceed with the invasion of Kyushu. The target date was after the typhoon season.

President Truman approved the plans for the invasions July 24. Two days later, the United Nations issued the Potsdam Proclamation, which called upon Japan to surrender unconditionally or face total destruction. Three days later, the Japanese governmental news agency broadcast to the world that Japan would ignore the proclamation and would refuse to surrender. During this same period it was learned — via monitoring Japanese radio broadcasts — that Japan had closed all schools and mobilized its schoolchildren, was arming its civilian population and was fortifying caves and building underground defenses.

…In addition to the use of poison gas and bacteriological warfare (which the Japanese had experimented with), Japan mobilized its citizenry.

Had Olympic come about, the Japanese civilian population, inflamed by a national slogan – “One Hundred Million Will Die for the Emperor and Nation” – were prepared to fight to the death. Twenty Eight Million Japanese had become a part of the National Volunteer Combat Force. They were armed with ancient rifles, lunge mines, satchel charges, Molotov cocktails and one-shot black powder mortars. Others were armed with swords, long bows, axes and bamboo spears. The civilian units were to be used in nighttime attacks, hit and run maneuvers, delaying actions and massive suicide charges at the weaker American positions.

At the early stage of the invasion, 1,000 Japanese and American soldiers would be dying every hour.

The invasion of Japan never became a reality because on August 6, 1945, an atomic bomb was exploded over Hiroshima. Three days later, a second bomb was dropped on Nagasaki. Within days the war with Japan was at a close.

Had these bombs not been dropped and had the invasion been launched as scheduled, combat casualties in Japan would have been at a minimum of the tens of thousands. Every foot of Japanese soil would have been paid for by Japanese and American lives.

One can only guess at how many civilians would have committed suicide in their homes or in futile mass military attacks.

In retrospect, the 1 million American men who were to be the casualties of the invasion, were instead lucky enough to survive the war.

Intelligence studies and military estimates made 50 years ago, and not latter-day speculation, clearly indicate that the battle for Japan might well have resulted in the biggest blood-bath in the history of modern warfare.

Far worse would be what might have happened to Japan as a nation and as a culture. When the invasion came, it would have come after several months of fire bombing all of the remaining Japanese cities. The cost in human life that resulted from the two atomic blasts would be small in comparison to the total number of Japanese lives that would have been lost by this aerial devastation.

With American forces locked in combat in the south of Japan, little could have prevented the Soviet Union from marching into the northern half of the Japanese home islands. Japan today cold be divided much like Korea and Germany.

The world was spared the cost of Operation Downfall, however, because Japan formally surrendered to the United Nations September 2, 1945, and World War II was over.

The aircraft carriers, cruisers and transport ships scheduled to carry the invasion troops to Japan, ferried home American troops in a gigantic operation called Magic Carpet.

In the fall of 1945, in the aftermath of the war, few people concerned themselves with the invasion plans. Following the surrender, the classified documents, maps, diagrams and appendices for Operation Downfall were packed away in boxes and eventually stored at the National Archives. These plans that called for the invasion of Japan paint a vivid description of what might have been one of the most horrible campaigns in the history of man. The fact that the story of the invasion of Japan is locked up in the National Archives and is not told in our history books is something for which all Americans can be thankful. 

(The italics in the above quote are mine.)Sometimes when you fight evil, you have to fight hard. I am not saying that the people of Japan are evil, I am saying that they were under the influence of evil leaders. The Japanese leaders began the path to the atomic bombing of Hiroshima with the rape of Nanking. They continued on that path with the attack on Pearl Harbor. The journey was filled with stories of mistreatment of Americans and other prisoners taken and/or killed. The dropping of the atomic bombs was necessary. Without it, many more people would have been killed in the invasion of Japan, and there is a strong possibility that in the destruction of the country, the Japanese culture would have been lost. The dropping of the atomic bomb was a horrible event, but it was a necessary event.

Is This Important? Why Or Why Not?

I have actually attempted to avoid writing about Hillary Clinton’s emails. However, when new information comes out, I feel obligated to say something. One recent bit of new information is the State Department Inspector General‘s report on Secretary of State Clinton’s email server.

On Wednesday, The Los Angeles Times posted an article about Mrs. Clinton’s email server that included the following:

Clinton has long said she used a personal email server solely as a matter of “convenience.” But the result wasn’t very convenient; because of State Department spam filters, Clinton’s emails weren’t getting through to her own department. According to the report, when an aide proposed giving her a government email address, Clinton agreed, but added: “I don’t want any risk of the personal being accessible.”

Clinton has emphasized that the law did not prohibit her from using personal email for official business – and that’s true. But the inspector general notes that State Department rules required her to get permission to use a personal server, and she never complied.

And Clinton has said she turned over all her business-related emails as soon as the State Department asked for them. The inspector general says her submission of documents was “incomplete” and later than the law requires.

On May 28, The Washington Post reported:

Clinton initially sought to downplay the report as old news. “It’s the same story,” she told Univision anchor Maria Elena Salinas. “Just like previous secretaries of state, I used a personal email. Many people did. It was not at all unprecedented.

Except that it was. While other secretaries of state had used personal email addresses, none of them had exclusively done so. And as Helderman and Hamburger noted, the State Department IG report scolded Clinton not only for using the email address exclusively but also for slow-walking the release of those emails to the State Department.

Judicial Watch recently posted a download of an education panel they hosted on March 23 about Hillary Clinton’s emails. Judicial Watch is an organization that has been working toward more transparent government for a number of years. They have held both Republican and Democratic administrations accountable. Their panel included Jason Leopold, an investigative reporter for Vice News, Joe diGenova, attorney and former U.S. attorney, Dan Metcalfe, head of the Collaboration on Government Secrecy for the AU law school; a non-partisan educational project devoted to openness in government, freedom of information, government transparency, and a study of government secrecy in the United States and internationally, Tom Fitton, president of Judicial Watch, and Michael Bekesha, an attorney for Judicial Watch.

The report is twenty-four pages long. Here is one excerpt:

Joe diGenova stated: 

I believe Mrs. Clinton decided from the beginning of her tenure as a constitutional officer — she is a constitutional officer — that she would procure a server with the assistance of the State Department, including having them install it in her home in Chappaqua. When she did that, Chappaqua became the State Department. Those records were in fact in the possession of the United States government at that point. I am going to be fascinated by the argument she is going to make that they were not. She moved the secretary’s office from Foggy Bottom to Chappaqua. There is simply no disputing that. She made a decision that her business would be conducted on that server. That was her decision. It wasn’t anybody else’s decision. When she did that, she transferred federal records into that house and into that server. They may very well argue whatever they want to argue about it, but I think they are going to have a really tough time convincing anybody those were not government records from day one in her possession in that place. What is crucial, is that nobody knows what she ordered deleted. Her representations are irrelevant. They mean nothing. They are of limited evidentiary value, given the scheme that was worked out here to deny access and to deny information.

It does matter that Mrs. Clinton used a private server. The server was not encrypted, and many people who understand computers have stated that it would have been very easy to hack into that server. On May 25th, NBC News reported that Guccifer, a known hacker, claimed that he had broken into Mrs. Clinton’s server. That has not yet been proven, so we will wait for further news.

If you check the sources on this story, you will see that this is not simply the right-wing press reporting on Hillary Clinton’s emails. There is a genuine problem here, and the truth matters. This story shouldn’t be about the election, but because Mrs. Clinton is running for President, it seems to be that way. The story is actually about whether or not all Americans are treated equally under the law. Whether or not that is true remains to be seen.

 

Work Works

Yesterday The Daily Signal posted an article about the House Ways and Means Committee hearing on welfare reform. The Committee is seeking a way to help poor Americans get out of poverty.

The article reports:

The hearing, titled “Moving America’s Families Forward: Setting Priorities for Reducing Poverty and Expanding Opportunity” examined the welfare system. One area of reform examined was work requirements for individuals receiving welfare.

…“I have a personal relationship with this situation, where I started out, and my family started out, in public housing,” Rep. Diane Black, R-Tenn., said at  the hearing. “I know what hard work could do to put me to where I am today, from living in the halls of public housing to serving in the halls of Congress.”

In his testimony, Bragdon ( Tarren Bragdon, CEO of the Foundation for Government Accountability) used two states as examples, Kansas and Maine, that have restored work requirements for welfare programs. In Maine, “Thousands of able-bodied adults leaving food stamps found jobs and increased their hours, leading their incomes to rise by 114 percent on average. And in both states, that higher income more than offset the food stamps they lost, leaving them better off than they had been on welfare,” Bragdon said in his written testimony.

“It turns out work works,” Bragdon said. Bragdon testified that work requirements for able-bodied adults would likely deal with much of the fraud happening in the welfare system.

President Lyndon B. Johnson introduced the idea of ‘declaring war on poverty’ in his State of the Union address in 1964. The chart below shows the impact of the legislation that followed:

PovertyRate1959to2014Although we initially made some progress, it seems as if we have lost the war on poverty. It’s time to rethink our strategy.

The article concludes:

On Tuesday, the Ways and Means Committee passed two bills related to the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) program that provides assistance to families in need.

“These bills are part of a commonsense package of proposals to ensure TANF – one of the nation’s most important anti-poverty programs – effectively spends taxpayer dollars to help those most in need,” a blog post from the committee says.

Robert Rector, a senior research fellow at The Heritage Foundation, says the legislation “undermines work requirements” in the TANF program.

“Rhetoric aside, the Ways and Means Committee legislation actually undermines work requirements in TANF,” Rector, who played a key role in writing the original TANF legislation twenty years ago, told The Daily Signal. “A key principle of workfare is that parents who refuse to participate should have their  welfare checks halted. Ironically, the legislation financially penalizes states for doing this. The bill shifts from the successful ‘work first’ strategy embodied in the original law to a social service and training model that has a very long history of failure.”

If Congress cannot figure out something that is so completely obvious, maybe it is time for a new Congress.

I’m From The Government And I’m Here To Help

“I’m from the government, and I’m here to help.” Those words should strike fear in the hearts of every American. As Milton Friedman one stated, “If you put the federal government in charge of the Sahara Desert, in 5 years there’d be a shortage of sand.” Someone equally knowledgeable in the ways of government amended that statement slightly–“Yes, but if you put Congress in charge from the start, they would start a federal sand reserve to store up most of the sand from the very beginning. Then the sand shortage would start in one year, but when glassmakers needed more, they could dole out the stored sand to their political contributors and claim they did it to ‘keep prices down’.”

Obviously, either way there is a problem. Where am I going with this? The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has just declared war on most of the cars in America. On Tuesday, Investor’s Business Daily posted an editorial about the latest move by the EPA.

The editorial explains:

The EPA’s proposal to increase the amount of ethanol that must be blended into gasoline is a trifecta of regulatory abuse. It will do nothing for the environment, it will do nothing for energy security, and it could wreck millions of car engines.

…The EPA’s proposal would require refineries to blend in almost 19 billion gallons of ethanol and other “biofuels” by 2017, which is 700,000 gallons more than they do now.

But there’s a problem. Americans aren’t consuming enough gasoline. In fact, consumption this year is well below the 2007 forecast, both because cars are more efficient and because people are driving less than expected.

So, if oil refiners are to pump 19 billion gallons of ethanol into their gasoline supplies, they won’t be able to keep ethanol ratio below 10%.

 Why does that matter? Because ethanol is corrosive and can degrade plastic, rubber and metal parts. And the more ethanol in gasoline, the most likely this damage will occur. So going above 10% can wreak havoc with car engines — as well as those in motorcycles, lawnmowers, power boats, you name it — that aren’t built to handle the higher ethanol levels.

The first thing to consider here is that the EPA is not legally entitled to make laws–only Congress can do that. The EPA is not elected and is therefore not accountable to the voters–therefore they do not have the right to enact laws.

The article also points out that increased use of ethanol drives up food prices, which actually hurts the poor. So why in the world isn’t Congress fighting back? If you were running for office in a farm state, would you want to tell the farmers in that state that the price of corn will be going down because ethanol has not been the wonderful thing you thought it was?

The editorial concludes:

So why is the EPA pushing ethanol? Does it help fight global warming? Does it help cities fight smog? Does it help the U.S. become more energy independent?

The answer is: None of the above.

A 2011 study by the National Research Council found that ethanol use could boost overall CO2 emissions. An earlier study published in Science also found that, when you consider the impact of converting forests and grasslands to cornfields, ethanol sharply increases carbon emissions.

Meanwhile, a 2007 study by a Stanford University environmental engineer found that increasing ethanol levels in gasoline can lead to more smog.

The idea that we need ethanol to become energy independent might have made sense in 2007. But the fracking boom since then has unleashed massive new domestic supplies of oil and natural gas, rendering this argument entirely moot.

Here’s an idea. Rather than requiring oil refiners to pump more of this dirty and expensive fuel into gasoline supplies, the federal government should abandon the ethanol requirement altogether.

Big Corn might not like it, but millions of car owners will be grateful.

When the government gets involved in what should be the free market, bad things happen.

Why Europe As We Have Known It Is Lost

Gates of Vienna posted an article today about a funeral to be held in St. Pauli‘s church is Hamburg, Germany. The Christian-Muslim funeral is for a young IS fighter “Bilal” who was killed last summer in Syria at the age of 17.

The article reports:

She is glad to have the opportunity for a funeral, says the mother. “A burden” fell from her heart. Such a farewell ceremony is important for his friends, too. The funeral service will be conducted by Pastor Sieghard Wilm and the Albanian Imam Abu Ahmed Jakobi. Florent Prince N., as his name was originally, was baptized as a Christian and converted to Islam later.

Florent was born in Cameroon, came to Germany as an infant, and grew up in St. Pauli [an inner-city district of Hamburg]. Probably when he was 14, he came into contact with the radical Salafist scene, and converted to Islam. In May last year, he travelled on a fake passport to Syria to fight for the Islamic State.

In Syria, it seems, he realised that the circumstances had little to do with what had been promised to him. He therefore recorded an audio message in Rakka in Southwestern Syria, in which he criticised the IS. Shortly thereafter, he was dead. In early March, the audio file was distributed. The Federal Office for the Protection of the Constitution thinks it is possible that he was punished for his message by the IS.

Pastor Wilm himself knew Florent from his work with youth. He [Florent] had been a friend of the pastor’s foster son for several years, and active in the community. There are photographs of him climbing up the facade of St. Pauli Church. It was important to him, so Wilm, that Christians and Muslims celebrate together, to make it clear that they pray to a “god of peace”.

You mean the ‘religion of peace’ that just killed 25 Iraqis by dissolving them in nitric acid (story here)?

The article at the above link also states:

ISIS has published a list of punishments for crimes, everything from theft and homosexuality to “spying for the unbelievers.”  The punishments seem almost unbelievably cruel to us, but all of them have a sharia law justification.  When it put 13 teenagers to death for watching soccer on television, it cited their ‘breaking religious law’ as the reason for their murder.  When it crucifies people accused of banditry, there is a reason in sharia law for the practice.

Thus, this reported method of execution by acid ought also to have a sharia law justification.  None has yet been forthcoming, but if the report is true there must be some reason why ISIS thought it was an appropriate and fitting punishment for spies.  Regardless of the opinion of Western experts on Islam, ISIS believes it is enacting sharia accurately.  They have studied it carefully, and always have reasons for their atrocities that are rooted in sharia law principles.

The young man died fighting for ISIS. I don’t think a Christian funeral was appropriate. A Muslim funeral would have been appropriate. I am not making a judgement on the fate of the young man’s soul, I am simply reflecting on the fact that he was a Muslim at the time of his death. The god of Islam is not the God of Christianity. If you compare the Koran and the Bible, that fact becomes very evident. The Bible makes it very clear that God loves the Jewish people; the Koran calls for the destruction of both Christians and Jews. Christians who choose to align themselves with Muslims will eventually have a very rude awakening.

I Might Actually Watch This

The Hill is reporting today that Bernie Sanders has agreed to debate Donald Trump as a charity event.

The article reports what Donald Trump said on Jimmy Kimmel live:

Yes, I am,” he said on ABC’s “Jimmy Kimmel Live!” “How much is he going to pay me? If he paid a nice sum toward a charity, I’d love to do that.

“If I debated him, we would have such high ratings and I think I should take that money and give it to some worthy charity,” the GOP’s presumptive presidential nominee added.

Sanders, a Democratic presidential candidate, later accepted Trump’s offer, even offering a potential battleground site.

I think I would be willing to watch that debate.

What Are We Teaching Our Children In College?

If this article were not posted in the National Review, I wouldn’t believe it.

The National Review posted a story today about a trip a professor at Santa Monica College took earlier this month with her students.

The article reports:

A professor at Santa Monica College took a group of students on an “EcoSexual Sextravaganza” trip earlier this month, during which they “married the ocean” and were encouraged to “consummate” that marriage.
Why? Well, as one of its organizers, a professor named Amber Katherine, told Campus Reform, it was to get students to love the environment more through “exocentric passion and even lust.”
Oh, right. Duh.
The leaders of the trip were UC–Santa Cruz professor Elizabeth Stephens and pornographic actress/writer/sex educator Annie Sprinkle — both of whom are “the effective leaders of the ecosexual movement,” according to a writeup on the event in the school’s student newspaper, the Corsair.

I can only wonder if the parents of the students who made this trip feel that the outrageous tuition they are paying for their children’s education is well spent.

Some Interesting News About The Planned Parenthood Videos

On April 6, I posted an article about the charges against David Daleiden who was indicted for making undercover videos of Planned Parenthood. Yesterday CBN News posted a follow-up story of this indictment. It seems that the District Attorney who prosecuted the case violated the instructions of the Texas Attorney General.

The article reports:

Last year, Daleiden released undercover footage through The Center for Medical Progress showing Planned Parenthood officials discussing the sale of fetal tissue. CBN News has reported on the story extensively. 

Instead of finding the abortion giant guilty of criminal charges, the Harris County grand jury indicted the pro-life activist.  He was charged with tampering with government records and using fake identifications to purchase fetal tissue.

Daleiden posted bail last month in response to what his attorneys call bogus charges.

Daleiden’s indictment sparked public outcry from thousands in the pro-life community who argued that the undercover investigations were not criminal.

In the latest twist in the case, the Thomas More Society reports that the court records show Planned Parenthood attorney Josh Schaffer admitting under oath that the DA’s office shared documents and evidence with Planned Parenthood.

The Texas Attorney General had specifically asked the DA’s office not to share the videos with Planned Parenthood.

The article concludes:

“These filings also include evidence that appears to show that the DA’s office worked with Planned Parenthood Gulf Coast to undermine the Texas Attorney General’s independent investigation of that abortion provider,” he continued. “The conduct of Harris County prosecutors in this case is outrageous and illegal. We look forward to pressing our motion to quash this indictment in court.”

According to LifeNews, this is the second time attorneys from Anderson’s office and Planned Parenthood were accused of working together.

Thomas More Society lawyers assert that the National Abortion Federation is fighting “to shut down free speech and to cover-up evidence of the abortion industry’s crimes in aborted baby parts trafficking.” 

The indictment of David Daleiden was a total miscarriage of justice. Hopefully it will be quashed.

Losing The Right To Practice Your Faith In America

On May 18, Representative Joseph P. Kennedy III from Massachusetts introduced H.R. 5272 into the U.S. House of Representatives. On May 23, the bill was referred to the Subcommittee on the Constitution and Civil Justice.

On Monday, CNS News posted an article about the bill. The article reports describes the bill:

…would amend the 1993 Religious Freedom Restoration Act (RFRA) to specify that religious exceptions should not apply to “protections against discrimination or the promotion of equal opportunity” and “access to, information about, referrals for, provision of, or coverage for, any health care item or service.”

The legislation is intended to “clarify that no one can seek religious exemption from laws guaranteeing fundamental civil and legal rights.”

The bill emphasizes that RFRA should not be interpreted to “authorize an exemption from generally applicable law that imposes the religious views, habits, or practices of one party upon another” or authorize “an exemption from generally applicable law that imposes meaningful harm, including dignitary harm, on a third party.”

Kennedy claimed in announcing the bill that “the Religious Freedom Restoration Act has become a vehicle for those seeking to impose their beliefs on others or claim that the tenants of their faith justify discrimination.”

This suggested bill would undo exactly what the 1993 RFRA did. Christians who believe in the Bible cannot condone homosexual behavior without compromising their beliefs. Homosexual behavior is strongly condemned in the Bible. Notice that the behavior is condemned–not the person. Anything a Christian is asked to do that supports the homosexual agenda is automatically against their beliefs. Normally businessmen have the freedom (and right) to do business with whomever they choose. Shouldn’t that right also be given to Christians? This bill would take away that right. It is interesting that the businesses that have come under attack for refusing services for homosexual weddings have all been Christian. I am waiting for the first case to be brought against a Muslim business owner. Do you think it will be handled the same way?

The thing to watch as this moves forward is the changes in the language.

This is part of the text of the bill (taken from Thomas.gov):

SEC. 2. Sense of Congress.

It is the sense of Congress that—

(1) the Religious Freedom Restoration Act of 1993 should not be interpreted to authorize an exemption from generally applicable law that imposes the religious views, habits, or practices of one party upon another;

(2) the Religious Freedom Restoration Act of 1993 should not be interpreted to authorize an exemption from generally applicable law that imposes meaningful harm, including dignitary harm, on a third party; and

(3) the Religious Freedom Restoration Act of 1993 should not be interpreted to authorize an exemption that permits discrimination against other persons, including persons who do not belong to the religion or adhere to the beliefs of those to whom the exemption is given.

SEC. 3. Exception from application of Act where Federal law prevents harm to others.

Section 3 of the Religious Freedom Restoration Act of 1993 (42 U.S.C. 2000bb–3) is amended by adding at the end the following:

“(d) Additional exception from application of Act where Federal law prevents harm to others.—This section does not apply—

“(1) to any provision of law or its implementation that provides for or requires—

“(A) protections against discrimination or the promotion of equal opportunity including the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the Americans with Disabilities Act, the Family Medical Leave Act, Executive Order 11246, the Violence Against Women Act, and Equal Access to Housing in HUD Programs Regardless of Sexual Orientation or Gender Identity (77 FR 5662);

“(B) employers to provide wages, other compensation, or benefits including leave, or standards protecting collective activity in the workplace;

“(C) protections against child labor, abuse, or exploitation; or

“(D) access to, information about, referrals for, provision of, or coverage for, any health care item or service;

“(2) to any term requiring goods, services, functions, or activities to be performed or provided to beneficiaries of a government contract, grant, cooperative agreement, or other award; or

“(3) to the extent that application would result in denying a person the full and equal enjoyment of a good, service, benefit, facility, privilege, advantage, or accommodation, provided by the government.”.

As those who practice deviant lifestyles become politically active and become ‘protected classes’ of people claiming discrimination, we will see this law reach new heights.

The ‘Do No Harm Act’ would also forbid religious objection to ‘any healthcare’ service. Nurses or doctors who believe in the sanctity of life will be required to perform or assist with abortions even if abortion violates their religious beliefs.

Make no mistake. Christianity is under attack in America. Unless Christians begin to pay attention to what is going on in Washington, they will wake up one day and find out that the only place they are free to practice their faith is inside the walls of the church.

 

Can Anyone Stop This Runaway Train?

Actually, there are two runaway trains–one is federal spending and the other is overreach by President Obama. Yesterday The Daily Signal posted an article that illustrates both of them. The article was written by Senator James Lankford of Oklahoma.

The article reports:

Last week, the Senate passed legislation to address and prevent the spread of the Zika virus. However, the Senate failed to pay for it, and instead approved a $1.1 billion “emergency” spending supplemental bill that is not subject to the budgetary caps that were agreed to last year.

While congressional inattention to the budget crisis is inexcusable, it is even more disturbing that the Obama administration already has the authority to pay for a Zika response from existing agency budgets, but chose not to.

…But an international medical emergency has now become a U.S. budget emergency, a major debt crisis that will impact our children as well.

If there was a way to both respond to Zika and prevent new debt spending, wouldn’t it be reasonable to do that? The Department of Health and Human Services, Department of State, and International Assistance Programs currently have about $80 billion in unobligated funds.

A small fraction of this could be reprogrammed and redirected to respond to the Zika emergency and not add any additional debt to our nation’s children. This is exactly the type of authority the Obama administration asked for in 2009 during the height of the H1N1 virus scare.

…In a floor speech last week, I also shed light on the fact that Congress last December provided the Obama administration with authority to pull money from bilateral economic assistance to foreign countries.

They can use those funds to combat infectious diseases, if the administration believed there is an infectious disease emergency. In the middle of the Zika epidemic, the administration did use their authority to pull money from foreign aid and spend it, but they didn’t use it for Zika.

You might ask—so what did the administration spend the infectious disease money on earlier this year?

You guessed it… climate change.

It gets worse.:

In March, President Obama gave the United Nations $500 million out of an account under bilateral economic assistance to fund the U.N.’s Green Climate Fund.

Congress refused to allocate funding for the U.N. Climate Change Fund last year, so the president used this account designated for international infectious diseases to pay for his priority.

While I understand that intelligent people can disagree on the human effects on the global climate, it is hard to imagine a reason why the administration would prioritize the U.N. Green Climate Fund over protecting the American people, especially pregnant women, from the Zika virus.

The U.N. Green Climate Fund is connected to the U.N. Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), which recently accepted the “State of Palestine” as a signatory. There is currently in place a U.S. funding prohibition that forbids any taxpayer dollars to fund international organizations that recognize “Palestine” as a sovereign state. Evidently the Obama Administration chose to ignore that prohibition and also to create more debt that our children and grandchildren will have to deal with. Someone needs to stop this runaway train.

Where Are We Going As A Country?

On Sunday, Glenn Reynolds posted an article in USA Today entitled, “When leaders cheat, followers…follow.” That is not good news considering the current state of affairs in America.

The article reminds us:

I wonder more when I read things like this report from the Washington Examiner: “The CIA’s inspector general is claiming it inadvertently destroyed its only copy of a classified, three-volume Senate report on torture, prompting a leading senator to ask for reassurance that it was in fact ‘an accident.’”

Here’s a hint: It very likely wasn’t.

…Then there’s Hillary’s email scandal, in which emails kept on a private unsecure server — presumably to avoid Freedom of Information Act disclosures — were deleted. Now emails from Hillary’s IT guy, who is believed to have set up the server, have gone poof.

“Destroy the evidence, and you’ve got it made,” said an old frozen dinner commercial. But now that appears to be the motto of the United States government.

So this leads to the question:

So why do the rest of us bother to obey the law? And, yes, that’s an increasingly serious question.

The article describes America as currently a high-trust society. Glenn Reynolds defines that as a place where people extend trust to strangers and follow rules for the most part even when nobody is watching. He defines a low-trust society as a place where trust seldom extends beyond close family, and everybody cheats if they can get away with it.

The article concludes:

High-trust societies are much nicer places to live than low-trust ones. But a fish rots from the head and the head of our society is looking pretty rotten. As Lira (Gonzalo Lira, an American novelist and filmmaker) says, “I’m like Wayne Gretsky: I don’t concern myself with where the puck has been — I look for where the puck is going to be.” Where will our society be in a decade if these trends continue? And what can we do to ensure that they don’t?

If the coming Presidential election is won by a Republican, will the IRS scandal, Fast and Furious, the email scandal, the Clinton Foundation, etc. be investigated? I don’t know, but an honest investigation might restore some of the trust in our government.

How This Presidential Campaign Will Be Unique

On Thursday, The Wall Street Journal posted a commentary on the role that President Obama is not playing in the current presidential campaign. The commentary is titled, “How Obama Gets Away With It.” The commentary notes that normally in a presidential campaign, the record of the sitting President is part of the campaign. In 2016 that does not seem to be the case.

The commentary observes:

Yet at the same time we were seeing those nice photos, videos and articles, a lot of other important stuff was going on where Mr. Obama was hardly mentioned, seen or questioned. For example, the U.S. economy grew at a meager 0.5% in the first quarter of 2016; Russian military planes lately have been buzzing U.S. Navy ships; and China is building its military forces and expanding their reach in the South China Sea. Early in May, a Navy SEAL was killed in Iraq (the president has assured the American public that U.S. troops there, increasing in numbers, are not in combat roles). Islamic State terrorist attacks in Baghdad in recent weeks have killed scores of civilians. The Taliban are on the march in Afghanistan. The vicious war in Syria continues. The Middle East refugee crisis shows no sign of diminishing. Military provocations by Iran and North Korea keep coming.

President Obama’s media handlers try to keep the president as far away from these crises as possible, leaving others in his administration such as Press Secretary Josh Earnest, Vice President Joe Biden, Secretary of State John Kerry, Defense Secretary Ash Carter and Joint Chiefs Chairman Joseph Dunford to be their public face. That way the problems don’t appear to be Mr. Obama’s problem, and he is free to bask in the good news.

The mainstream media has worked very hard to avoid painting the true picture of the negative impact of President Obama’s foreign policy and his domestic policies. Most Americans may not even realize there is a problem until it directly impacts them.

The article concludes:

One of the news media’s main jobs is to hold public officials accountable, from the president on down. But Mr. Obama is the beneficiary of news-media managers and reporters who mostly like his style and agree with his policies, from his reluctance to make strong military commitments to his advocacy for LGBT rights, fighting climate change and supporting tougher gun-control laws. Case in point: The administration’s easy orchestration of the media story line about the Iranian nuclear deal, recently revealed by Deputy National Security Adviser Ben Rhodes, only scratches the surface of the White House’s skill at managing a media happy to be managed.

Given such a congruence of opinion, Mr. Obama’s policies don’t receive the scrutiny and analysis they should. Reporters who criticize or dig too deep are cast by the administration as spoilsports or, worse, cut off from sources.

With Donald Trump now the media obsession—and most in the media don’t like him—it is easy to see why Mr. Obama’s performance over the past seven-plus years is still not a major issue in the 2016 campaign. And that’s the way he likes it.

As the presidential campaign progresses, expect to see a focus on any mistakes Donald Trump has made since the age of three. Expect to see the misdeeds and lies of the Clinton’s swept under the rug as if they did not exist. As more information is discovered about the rather twisted finances of the Clinton Foundation, expect to find that information only in alternative media sources. Unfortunately, that is where we are at the present moment.

 

Quote Of The Week

It’s only Monday, and I already have the quote of the week from The Washington Examiner:

Veterans Affairs Secretary Robert McDonald on Monday compared the length of time veterans wait to receive health care at the VA to the length of time people wait for rides at Disneyland, and said his agency shouldn’t use wait times as a measure of success because Disney doesn’t either.

“When you got to Disney, do they measure the number of hours you wait in line? Or what’s important? What’s important is, what’s your satisfaction with the experience?” McDonald said Monday during a Christian Science Monitor breakfast with reporters. “And what I would like to move to, eventually, is that kind of measure.”

House Speaker Paul Ryan tweeted out the appropriate response:

“This is not make-believe, Mr. Secretary. Veterans have died waiting in those lines.”

 

 

Stuck On An Idea That Isn’t True

On Friday, The Daily Caller posted an article about Al Gore’s latest comments on global warming. Any relationship between Al Gore’s comments and actual reality is purely coincidental.

The article reports:

Former Vice President Al Gore told The Hollywood Reporter his 2006 film “An Inconvenient Truth” actually underestimated how serious global warming would be — despite all the patently false predictions he made in the film.

“I wish the film had over-estimated the seriousness of the crisis, but unfortunately it actually underestimated how serious it is,” Gore told THR in an interview Thursday, just days before the 10th anniversary of his film.

The article lists some of the predictions made in the movie that have proven to be false. Here are a few:

Some of his more famous predictions, including that Mount Kilimanjaro would have no snow by 2016, were hilariously incorrect — and, yes, Kilimanjaro still has snow.

…The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s (IPCC) data doesn’t even support Gore’s claim. The IPCC found in 2013 there “is limited evidence of changes in extremes associated with other climate variables since the mid-20th century.”

In 2014, The New American reported some of Al Gore’s other predictions that haven’t happened:

Five years ago at a UN Conference on Climate Change, Al Gore predicted that, global warming having reached such an unbridled pitch, the North Pole might be completely ice-free during the summer of 2014.

…The Danish Meteorological Institute‘s (DMI) Centre for Ocean and Ice closely monitors Arctic sea ice extent and publishes a monthly plot on its website. According to DMI, 2014 is the second summer in a row that the ice cap has expanded. Data from the U.S. National Snow & Ice Data Center (NSIDC) agrees, showing 2014’s summer ice well within the average range for the years 1961-2010. In fact, NSIDC’s website points out an ice extent decline rate of “slightly less than the average” for the month of August.

To understand what the hype about global warming and carbon footprints is really about, all you need to do is follow the money. Unfortunately for those who tried to sell the climate change scam to Americans, the money hasn’t been what it was expected to be.

In 2009, The Canada Free Press ran an article about the funding and financial connections found in the Chicago Climate Exchange. The Chicago Climate Exchange was supposed to play a major role in the American economy once Congress passed cap-and-trade legislation that would regulate carbon emissions and grant carbon credits. The legislation did not pass, and the Chicago Climate Exchange closed in 2011. Many Democratic Congressmen lost large amounts of money when the Exchange closed–they had made investments figuring they could pass cap-and-trade legislation. If you follow the link to The Canada Free Press article, you can find out who was in on the scam and how it was supposed to work. There is an article on the closing of the Exchange in The New York Times in January 2011. I can almost guarantee that if a Democratic majority is elected in Congress in the near future we will see the Exchange magically reappear with as much corruption as was involved in its original founding.

The story of the Chicago Climate Exchange is only one example of how Congressmen who do not have principles will make investments that will benefit from legislation they plan to pass. That is not the way our government is supposed to work.

The website that I strongly recommend for accurate, scientific information on climate is wattsupwiththat.com.

The House Of Representatives Leadership Does Not Represent Me

Freedomworks posted an article today illustrating how Republicans in the U.S. House of Representatives are trying to silence conservative voices. It is time we had new leadership in both the U.S. House and the U.S. Senate. The people currently serving represent themselves and not the rest of us.

The article reports:

Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) is at it again.

He is using a House procedure to try and pass major legislation in a way that minimizes debate and prevents conservative amendments from being introduced and debated. Last month the majority leader did this to authorize $1 billion in taxpayer dollars for a global food security bill. FreedomWorks drew attention to the bill on our blog.

Today, Majority Leader McCarthy has scheduled H.R. 5077, the Intelligence Authorization Act for fiscal year 2017, for a vote in the House under the same expedited procedure, called suspension of the rules. This procedure is customarily reserved for non-controversial legislation. This bill is anything but non-controversial. It is scheduled for only 40 minutes of debate, as opposed to an hour of debate, which is the norm for bills considered under a rule. Amendments cannot be offered, and the bill can be voice-voted, allowing members to avoid being put on the record with a recorded vote.

H.R. 5077 proposes to spend $521 million of taxpayer and borrowed money over a 5-year period. That is just on the unclassified portion of the legislation. According to the committee report on the bill, the goal of the bill is to “authorize the intelligence and intelligence-related activities of the United States Government for fiscal year 2017. These activities enhance the national security of the United States, support and assist the armed forces of the United States, and support the President in the execution of the foreign policy of the United States.” Majority Leader McCarthy shouldn’t bring up such an important bill in a manner that prevents conservative and liberty movement amendments.

The article points out that there needs to be an opportunity for Representatives to make amendments that will protect the U.S. Constitution, as many of the entities funded in this bill have overstepped their boundaries in the past. It is quite possible that if the bill were allowed to be amended, it might be improved. Unfortunately, that may be exactly what Leader McCarthy wants to avoid.

The article concludes:

The majority leader should be running the floor in a way that allows significant bills to be fully debated with opportunities for members of the House to work their will through an amendment process. The intelligence bill should have come up as a regular rule bill, not under an expedited procedure that keeps member input to a minimum. The House, members, and the intelligence bill deserve better.

It is time for a change of leadership in Congress. We need Congressmen who will represent the interests of the American people–not people who represent only their own interests.

You Really Can’t Hide The Truth Forever

The New York Post reported Saturday that thanks to a judge in Washington, D.C., the story of Justice Department obstruction in the investigation of Fast and Furious is finally coming out.

The article reports:

A federal judge has forced the release of more than 20,000 pages of emails and memos previously locked up under President Obama’s phony executive-privilege claim. A preliminary review shows top Obama officials deliberately obstructing congressional probes into the border gun-running operation.

Fast and Furious was a Justice Department program that allowed assault weapons — including .50-caliber rifles powerful enough to take down a helicopter — to be sold to Mexican drug cartels allegedly as a way to track them. But internal documents later revealed the real goal was to gin up a crisis requiring a crackdown on guns in America. Fast and Furious was merely a pretext for imposing stricter gun laws.

Only, the scheme backfired when Justice agents lost track of the nearly 2,000 guns sold through the program and they started turning up at murder scenes on both sides of the border — including one that claimed the life of US Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry.

While then-Attorney General Eric Holder was focused on politics, people were dying. At least 20 other deaths or violent crimes have been linked to Fast and Furious-trafficked guns.

The article further explains:

The degree of obstruction was “more than previously understood,” House Oversight and Government Reform Chairman Jason Chaffetz said in a recent memo to other members of his panel.

“The documents reveal how senior Justice Department officials — including Attorney General Holder — intensely followed and managed an effort to carefully limit and obstruct the information produced to Congress,” he asserted.

They also indict Holder deputy Lanny Breuer, an old Clinton hand, who had to step down in 2013 after falsely denying authorizing Fast and Furious.

Their efforts to impede investigations included:

  • Devising strategies to redact or otherwise withhold relevant information;
  • Manipulating media coverage to control fallout;
  • Scapegoating the Bureau of Alcohol Tobacco and Firearms (ATF) for the scandal.

For instance, a June 2011 e-mail discusses withholding ATF lab reports from Congress, and a July 2011 e-mail details senior Justice officials agreeing to “stay away from a representation that we’ll fully cooperate.”

The best quote in the article:

Though Obama prides himself on openness, transparency and accountability, the behavior of his administration belies such lofty principles. “Transparency should not require years of litigation and a court order,” Chaffetz pointed out.

Please follow the link and read the entire article. There are a number of people currently in the Obama Administration who, based on their emails, should be in jail for obstructing justice. Unfortunately, whether or not that happens will depend on who the next President is.

Prepare For The Pre-Election Spin

The Washington Examiner today is reporting on a new Washington Post poll taken on the Presidential race. Donald Trump leads Hillary Clinton by two percentage points (within the margin of error) in the poll,  but don’t look for that number early in the story.

The article at The Washington Examiner reports:

It’s not the headline, and it takes 219 words to get there, but a new Washington Post poll on the presidential race reveals that Republican Donald Trump leads Democrat Hillary Clinton among registered voters 46 percent to 44 percent.

Inside the Post’s story about the poll is this paragraph:

“At this point, the two candidates are in a statistical dead heat among registered voters, with Trump favored by 46 percent and Clinton favored by 44 percent. That represents an 11-point shift toward the presumptive Republican nominee since March. Among all adults, Clinton holds a six-point lead (48 percent to 42 percent), down from 18 points in March.”

This is going to be an interesting election. Leading in a poll of people who don’t vote really isn’t worth much. The challenge for the Democrats will be getting voters to register and vote. Many Republicans are angry enough at Washington to come out and vote for anyone. Democrats can’t really blame the Republicans for the mess we are in now–Obama has been President for eight years and Hillary Clinton looks like more of the same.

When Their True Colors Show…

Islam is not a tolerant religion–women are stoned for adultery, thieves have their hands cut off, infidels are beheaded, and homosexual men are thrown off the tops of buildings to their death. In an Islamic country, if you don’t fit the Islamic picture of what you are supposed to be, your life can get very complicated very quickly. There was an example of how this principle works internationally this week.

Fox News reported on Wednesday that the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC), a major voting block in the United Nations, prevented 11 gay and transgender rights organizations from attending a meeting at the United Nations next month on ending AIDS. The OIC was organized in 1969 with the stated goal of “revitalizing Islam’s  pioneering role in the world.” At that time, it was called the Organization of the Islamic Conference. In 2011, it was renamed the Organization of the Islamic Cooperation. The purpose of the organization is to be the voice of the Muslim world and to safeguard and protect the interests of the Muslim world. Its membership includes 57 countries.

The article at Fox News reports:

In Egypt’s letter, a reason for the OIC’s rejection of the groups was not specified, but Samantha Power, the U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, said the groups appeared to have been blocked for their role in LGBT advocacy.

“Given that transgender people are 49 times more likely to be living with HIV than the general population, their exclusion from the high-level meeting will only impede global progress in combating the HIV/AIDS pandemic,” Power wrote in a letter to General Assembly President Mogens Lykketoft.

U.N. officials told Reuters that the E.U. and Canada also wrote letters to Lykketoft in protest.

“The movement to block the participation of NGOs on spurious or hidden grounds is becoming epidemic and severely damages the credibility of the U.N.,” Powers added.

U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon – caught in the middle of the battle for gay rights – has been an advocate for LGBT equality but has faced opposition from African and Arab states as well as Russia and China. In February, the countries protested six new U.N. stamps promoting LGBT equality.

The items on the liberal wish list in America are in direct contradiction to Islamic law. It will be interesting to see when the American left wakes up to this fact. When the gay population that supports the agenda of the political left realizes that under Sharia Law they will be killed, they may stop advocating for American courts to accept Sharia Law.

 

Who Is Paying For Our News?

The Associated Press posted an article in the Las Vegas Sun (and other newspapers) today about the selling of the Iran nuclear deal to the American public. There has been a bit of a dust-up about the Iranian nuclear deal because of a rather lengthy interview Ben Rhodes, one of President Obama’s top foreign policy aides, gave to The New York Times.

As I reported on May 10, Mr. Rhodes felt that the White House reporters he was briefing were so inexperienced he could tell them anything and they would believe it. He also managed to set up a media echo chamber to convince the American people that the Iranian deal was a good idea. Well, it gets worse.

The Las Vegas Sun reports:

A group identified by the White House as a key ally in selling the public on the Iran nuclear deal gave National Public Radio $100,000 last year to help it report on the pact and related issues, according to the group’s annual report. It also financed reporters and partnerships with other news outlets.

The Ploughshares Fund’s mission is to develop and finance initiatives “to reduce and ultimately eliminate the world’s nuclear stockpiles,” one that dovetails with President Barack Obama’s arms control efforts. But its behind-the-scenes advocacy of the Iran agreement got more attention this month after a candid profile of Ben Rhodes, one of the president’s top foreign policy aides.

In The New York Times Magazine article, Rhodes explained how the administration worked with nongovernmental organizations, proliferation experts and even friendly reporters to build support for the seven-nation accord that curtailed Iran’s nuclear activity and softened international financial penalties on Tehran.

“We created an echo chamber,” said Rhodes, a deputy national security adviser, adding that “outside groups like Ploughshares” helped carry out the administration’s message effectively.

There are a lot of reasons this infuriates me. First of all, in this discussion I don’t hear any reference to America’s national security and how it will be impacted by the Iran deal. I also don’t see any admission that Iran will use much of the money the agreement frees up to manufacture weapons to be used against American soldiers in Afghanistan and the Middle East. It also hits home because bloggers are not necessarily seen as a valid source of news for the American people. In this case, conservative talk radio, conservative news outlets, conservative publications, and conservative bloggers were the only ones telling the truth about the Iran deal, and the White House worked very hard to portray them as misinformed.

The article further reports:

Ploughshares boasts of helping to secure the deal. While success was “driven by the fearless leadership of the Obama administration and supporters in Congress,” board chairwoman Mary Lloyd Estrin wrote in the annual report, “less known is the absolutely critical role that civil society played in tipping the scales towards this extraordinary policy victory.”

Ploughshares has set its sights on other media organizations, too.

In a “Cultural Strategy Report” on its website, the group outlined a broader objective of “ensuring regular and accurate coverage of nuclear issues in reputable and strategic media outlets” such as The Guardian, Salon, the Huffington Post or ProPublica.

Previous efforts failed to generate enough coverage, it noted. These included “funding of reporters at The Nation and Mother Jones and a partnership with The Center for Public Integrity to create a national security desk.” It suggested using “web videos, podcasts, photo-based stories” and other “attention-grabbing formats” for “creatively reframing the issue.”

The Center for Public Integrity’s CEO, Peter Bale, confirmed the group received a grant.

“None of the funding received by Ploughshares was for coverage of the Iran deal,” said Bale, whose organization received $70,000. “In general, we avoided that subject because the topic did not lend itself to the type of investigative reporting the center does.”

At some point the American people will realize that the Iranian nuclear deal is a bad deal. By then it may be too late, but at some point the truth will come out. Meanwhile, this looks a lot like the Obama Administration working against the welfare of the American people. Unfortunately, the American people played right along.