Fact Checking The Democratic Talking Points On Tax Reform

Guy Benson posted an article at Townhall today about the Democrat‘s claim that if the tax reform bill is passed, millions of people will lose their health insurance.

The article reports:

In spite of a torrent of liberal attacks, independent analyses have confirmed that the plan would boost economic growth, create nearly one million new full-time jobs, and reduce the tax burden on the vast majority of Americans; on average, taxpayers in every income group would receive a tax cut.  There will be a small percentage of Americans — many of them wealthier people who itemize deductions and exploit loopholes — who would be worse off under the proposal.  Republicans would be foolish to pretend that every single household and business would emerge as ‘winners’ if reform is implemented; that would echo one of the biggest lies Democrats peddled about Obamacare.  But the data has found that an overwhelming majority of Americans, including (or even especially) the middle and working class, would benefit from the House-approved bill.  

The article explains the impact of cutting the healthcare mandate:

Regardless of where the revised number lands, dumping the mandate liberates millions of Americans to not purchase healthcare plans that they do not want or cannot afford, without getting slapped with government fines.  People making that choice for themselves and their families is absolutely not equivalent to the government taking away coverage.  Healthcare policy expert Avik Roy puts a finer point on this important truth, which underpins liberals’ mendacious claim:

[Another] category of Democratic complaints revolves around the Congressional Budget Office’s estimate that 13 million fewer people would have health insurance in 2026 if Republicans repealed Obamacare’s individual mandate. “We’re kicking 13 million people off health insurance to give tax cuts to the wealthy,” exclaimed Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D., N.Y.) on Wednesday. There are two problems with Schumer’s assertion. As Glenn Kessler, fact-checker at the Washington Post, notes, nobody is being “kicked off” their insurance. People are no longer being fined for not purchasing it. (Kessler gives Schumer two Pinocchios.) The second problem is that the CBO’s projections of the mandate’s magical powers are inaccurate, by their own admission.

The bottom line here is that Democrats do not want to cut taxes. A tax cut will stimulate the economy and undo (and expose) the economic damage done by the Obama Administration. The Washington establishment cannot afford a successful Trump presidency–it would come too close to draining the swamp. It will be interesting to see if the tax bill passes (and in what form). If the Republicans do not pass the tax bill, they will probably lose Congress in 2018. If the Republicans do pass the tax bill, the economy will grow, at least part of the Washington swamp will be drained, and Trump will be a successful President. Get out the popcorn.

 

 

Does This Man Actually Want To Win The Election?

Doug Jones is running for Senate in Alabama against Roy Moore. The Washington establishment (both Republican and Democratic) has tried very hard to get Roy Moore out of the race. Some of the charges against Judge Moore have already been shown to be false, so I am not sure what the voters in Alabama believe or how they will vote. I still think we may see Roy Moore win this election.

Breitbart reported today on a recent statement by Doug Jones:

He (Doug Jones) believes that every right enumerated in the Bill of Rights is limited, and the Second Amendment is no exception.

According to the Alabama Political Reporter, Jones described himself as “a Second Amendment guy,” but stressed that some gun control is necessary. He said, “We’ve got limitations on all constitutional amendments in one form or another.” This position is contrary to the clear language of the amendment, which states that the right to keep and bear arms “shall not be infringed.”

He stressed that he loves to hunt but still believes in “smart” gun laws.

This is a perfect illustration of the reason why Judge Moore should be elected. The statement that every right enumerated in the Bill of Rights is limited is false. The Bill of Rights was added to the U.S. Constitution in order to ensure the rights of the citizens–not to limit them. Also, the Second Amendment clearly states that the right to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed. What does Doug Jones think that means?

We don’t need more limits on gun ownership. We need the government to enforce the current laws. The problem with the recent shooting in Texas was that the Air Force had not fulfilled its duty to report a crime to the people providing information on background checks. It should also be noted that the shooting in Texas was stopped by a legal gun owner. Any attempt to limit the ownership of firearms in America will be followed by a crime spree by those who have been able to obtain firearms illegally. An armed citizenry can protect itself from dishonorable people; an unarmed citizenry cannot.

 

It Doesn’t Have To Be Real To Make The News

Yesterday Byron York posted an article at The Washington Examiner about the Trump dossier that received so much attention during the 2016 Presidential campaign. The article notes that the FBI has not verified the dossier.

The article reports:

FBI and Justice Department officials have told congressional investigators in recent days that they have not been able to verify or corroborate the substantive allegations of collusion between Russia and the Trump campaign outlined in the Trump dossier.

The FBI received the first installment of the dossier in July 2016. It received later installments as they were written at the height of the presidential campaign, which means the bureau has had more than a year to investigate the allegations in the document. The dossier was financed by the Hillary Clinton campaign and compiled by former British spy Christopher Steele.

An August 24, 2017 subpoena from the House Intelligence Committee to the FBI and Justice Department asked for information on the bureau’s efforts to validate the dossier. Specifically, the subpoena demanded “any documents, if they exist, that memorialize DOJ and/or FBI efforts to corroborate, validate, or evaluate information provided by Mr. Steele and/or sub-sources and/or contained in the ‘Trump Dossier.'”

It sounds as if Congress wants the dossier proven or disproven, but the FBI and the Justice Department are dragging their feet.

The article reminds us that some parts of the dossier have already been shown to be untrue:

Some Republicans point out that at least one group of assertions, the ones concerning Michael Cohen, have been convincingly debunked. (Cohen has produced proof that he was not in the Czech Republic, or even in Europe, when the purported meeting took place.) The dossier attributed the Cohen story to a “Kremlin insider” who was “speaking in confidence to a longstanding compatriot friend.” Investigators want to know if that insider-compatriot line of sourcing provided other, equally unreliable information in the dossier.

The article concludes:

That’s fine, as far as it goes — after all, investigators unanimously agree that Russia tried to influence the election — but what about the Trump campaign? What about all those specific allegations of coordination between Team Trump and the Russians? Those were the most explosive parts of the dossier. And they remain unverified.

The bigger question is whether or not the dossier was used as a justification to put the Trump campaign and the Trump transition team under electronic surveillance. If that was done without verifying the information in the dossier, the people who signed off on the surveillance should at the very least be fired.

Washington Adds Another Museum

On Saturday, the Museum of the Bible opened near the National Mall in Washington, D.C. The museum, founded by Hobby Lobby President Steve Green, houses the world’s largest private collection of rare, historic biblical artifacts, collected by Steve Green since 2009.

Breitbart posted an article about the museum today.

The article reports:

Some critics and biblical scholars are frustrated that the Museum of the Bible does not accurately represent other religions.

One professor said that the museum, which opened Saturday to the public and is located near the National Mall in Washington, DC, presents a point of view that favors American Protestantism over other religions such as Islam.

“There are a number of prominent omissions that make it clear that it’s not a museum of the Bible as one might imagine it from a secular perspective,” Joel S. Baden, a professor of the Hebrew Bible at Yale University, told the New York Times. “They don’t do a good job of talking about whether parts of the Bible are historically accurate.”

Baden added that he thinks the museum does not represent Islam and Mormonism to the same degree as other religions.

The 430,000 square foot Museum of the Bible contains six floors filled with a collection of 40,000 biblical artifacts that include first edition Bibles and Torah scrolls.

First of all, archeologists in Israel have found hundreds of artifacts proving the accuracy of the Bible. As far as I know, there have been no artifacts found that dispute anything in the Bible.

Secondly, the Bible is the foundational document of Christianity and Judaism. Why would other religions be represented in the Museum of the Bible? If you want to learn about other religions, all of them have other foundational books.

Thirdly, the Declaration of Independence and the U.S. Constitution were written with Biblical Judeo-Christian principles in mind. Our Founding Fathers talked about the fact that men were endowed with certain inalienable rights given to them by their Creator. That concept was revolutionary in its day (no pun intended) and was essentially based on the Bible.

To expect the Museum of the Bible to have documents relating to religions other than Christianity and Judaism is like going to the New England Patriots sports shop to look for New York Jets memorabilia–it’s not going to be there. I don’t mean to trivialize this, but there is a certain amount of common sense involved in realizing that a Museum of the Bible might focus on Christianity and Judaism.

 

Another Step Toward American Energy Independence

One America News is reporting today that the MMEX Resources Corporation is building a $50 million oil refinery in Pecos County, Texas. This will be the first refinery built in America in forty years.

The article reports:

It will be developed in two phases and is expected to create hundreds of jobs.

Once completed, the 126-acre refinery will be able to process 10-thousand barrels of crude oil each day.

Meanwhile, officials plan to file permits for a second unit which would be able to produce 100-thousand barrels.

The first phase of the project is expected to be completed by the end of 2018.

Like it or not, the world economy is carbon-based. Until someone comes up with a source of green energy that is reliable and does not have to be backed up by carbon-based energy, the world economy will continue to be carbon-based. In March 2011, I posted an article explaining what happened to Spain when they decided to convert to totally green energy. If the free market is allowed to function, we may actually come up with a workable form of green energy in the future. Until then, the search for and use of green energy is somewhat like man’s search for a perpetual motion machine. The laws of physics and principles of matter just keep getting in the way.

Losing Our Moral Authority

In 2004, the country of Afghanistan set up a constitution. The idea of having a free state was encouraged by America, as we had a substantial number of troops there and were trying to establish a viable government.

The constitution Afghanistan set up to be the law of the land contained the following:

Article One

Afghanistan shall be an Islamic Republic, independent, unitary and indivisible state.

Article Two

The sacred religion of Islam is the religion of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan. Followers of other faiths shall be free within the bounds of law in the exercise and performance of their religious rituals.

Article Three

No law shall contravene the tenets and provisions of the holy religion of Islam in Afghanistan.

Article Four

National sovereignty in Afghanistan shall belong to the nation, manifested directly and through its elected representatives. The nation of Afghanistan is composed of all individuals who possess the citizenship of Afghanistan. The nation of Afghanistan shall be comprised of Pashtun, Tajik, Hazara, Uzbek, Turkman, Baluch, Pachaie, Nuristani, Aymaq, Arab, Qirghiz, Qizilbash, Gujur, Brahwui and other tribes. The word Afghan shall apply to every citizen of Afghanistan. No individual of the nation of Afghanistan shall be deprived of citizenship. The citizenship and asylum related matters shall be regulated by law.

There is something here that is important–Article Three states that “no law shall contravene the tenets and provisions of the holy religion on Islam in Afghanistan.” In other words, Sharia Law is the law of the land according to the constitution of Afghanistan. We need to understand that Sharia Law and democracy (i.e. freedom) are incompatible. Sharia Law does NOT allow the free exercise of religions other than Islam. Sharia Law considers saying that Jesus is the Son of God as blasphemy, punishable by prison or possibly death. Sharia Law prohibits the sharing of Christianity–considering it blasphemy. There is no room for personal freedom in a constitution that upholds Sharia Law. That is the constitution that we allowed Afghanistan to write when we were trying to establish a viable nation. As bad as that was, we did something far worse.

On Thursday, The Hill posted an article with the following headline, “Watchdog: Troops say they were told to ignore Afghan child sex abuse.” I have another source that tells me that the troops were also told not to interfere with the poppy crop. Think about that for a minute. I understand that the poppy crop is the major industry of the country, but it is a major source of trouble around the world. Wasn’t there a way to retrain the farmers to plant something less harmful? I also understand that pedophilia is part of the Afghan culture, but it bothers me that we let it continue uninterrupted. If we were there helping the country get out from under the grip of the Taliban, didn’t we have a responsibility to uphold some sort of moral standard–regardless of the ‘cultural norm.’

I am ready for America to leave Afghanistan. However, if we choose to stay there, we have an obligation to help the people of the country find their way out of the fifth century. We can’t bomb them back to the stone age–they are already there. If we are going to continue to sacrifice money and American lives for the people of Afghanistan, we need to begin to change some of their basic customs. Pedophilia and poppy growing are ultimately moral issues. If we can’t stand for the moral issues in Afghanistan, we have no moral authority to be there.

This Really Shouldn’t Surprise Anyone

Breitbart posted an article today about donations to the Clinton Foundation since the 2016 election.

The article reports:

The latest tax filings released by the foundation a week ago showed that contributions dropped 42 percent in 2016 from $108 million to $63 million—right around the time Clinton lost last year’s presidential election, according to the New York Post.

Donations tanked by 37 percent in 2015 after the organization tried to fend off allegations that Clinton had used the foundation to engage in pay-to-play schemes with foreign governments.

The former 2016 Democratic presidential nominee allegedly used the charity to solicit millions of dollars in donations from foreign governments and corporations in exchange for giving these entities favorable treatment while she served as Secretary of State.

The Justice Department announced Monday that the agency is weighing whether to appoint a special counsel to investigate the millions of dollars in Clinton Foundation donations tied to the Uranium One deal, whereby the Obama administration permitted a Canadian company called Uranium One to sell one-fifth of America’s uranium to Russia in 2010.

I don’t wish anyone ill, but the rumors of misuse of funds in the foundation have been around for years. In September 2015, Politico posted an article about the Clinton Foundation’s activities in Haiti.

Anyone who has done some basic research quickly discovers connections between donations to the Clinton Foundation and State Department decisions. There is reason to believe that if Hillary Clinton had become President those connections would have appeared at the executive level of our government. Therefore, it is not a surprise that as the influence of the Clinton family is waning, the donations to the Clinton Foundation are dropping. That’s not really rocket science.

Something To Consider As The Senate Debates Tax Reform

The Heritage Foundation posted an article on Wednesday explaining some of the ways that the Senate version of tax reform is better than the House of Representatives version. It is quite likely that even if the Senate passes its version of the bill, the final bill will be different from both the House and Senate Bill.

Here are some of the things The Heritage Foundation likes about the Senate bill:

1. Lower tax rates at every level.

The House bill does not lower the top rate and in fact raises rates for the very wealthy. While that sounds nice, it is patently unfair–the rich already pay more than their share of taxes.

The National Taxpayers Union reports:

It seems to me that everyone deserves a tax break!

Other things that The Heritage Foundation supported in the Senate bill:

2. Full repeal of the state and local tax deduction.

3. Simpler treatment of business income.

4. Better treatment of investments.

5. Lower tax rate on overseas profits.

6. Repeal of the individual mandate.

Please follow the link to The Heritage Foundation article to see the details and reasons for supporting these points.

I would like to mention what impact the repeal of the individual mandate would have. First of all, does the government have the right to force Americans to buy a product? Second of all, if a person can’t afford health insurance, how are they supposed to afford the penalty for not having it?

The following video was posted at YouTube today explaining the impact of the individual mandate on the middle class:

The individual mandate was put into ObamaCare to gain the support of the health insurance companies–it was a promise to give them more customers. That promise, along with the promise of the government paying the companies to cover their losses under ObamaCare, was the reason the health insurance companies supported ObamaCare–they were in it strictly for their own gain–not because it would improve healthcare in America.

The six reasons listed above are the reasons that The Heritage Foundation supports the Senate tax reform bill. We all need to pay attention to see if the bill passes the Senate and what is done to it after it passes. It’s time to tune out the class warfare rhetoric and stay informed.

Wise Advice From The People Who Know

Yesterday Investor’s Business Daily posted an editorial about the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. This bureau was part of the Dodd-Frank legislation aimed at taking the focus away from the actual cause of the financial meltdown of 2008.

For those of you who are new to this website, the following video is the best analysis of the financial crisis of 2008 available. I have embedded it because at some point YouTube will probably take it down.

Dodd-Frank put a stranglehold on business growth and punished people who were not responsible for the crisis. However, those who like big government and wanted more power pushed the narrative that resulted in Dodd-Frank and the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.

The current head of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, Richard Cordray, has announced that he will resign at the end of November. Investor’s Business Daily suggests that instead of naming a replacement, President Trump should simply shut the agency down.

The editorial at Investor’s Business Daily reminds us of some of the history of the agency:

An October 2016 Supreme Court ruling found CFPB’s structure to be unconstitutional, a violation of the separation of powers in the nation’s supreme law.

One element of the high court’s decision was that Cordray could only be fired by the president for cause — making it very hard to get rid of even an incompetent in the job. Worse, by funding the CFPB from the Federal Reserve, not Congress, the agency lay just outside the direct oversight of Congress. It had massive power over finance in the U.S. economy, with little or no accountability. Cordray did little or nothing to remedy this.

“We are long overdue for new leadership at the CFPB,” said House Financial Services Committee Chairman Jeb Hensarling of Texas. “The extreme overregulation it imposes on our economy leads to higher costs and less access to financial products and services, particularly with lower and middle incomes.”

The editorial concludes:

From nothing in 2010, the agency now employs more than 1,600 people, with $647 million in budgeted spending last year and another $525 million in civil penalty fines — often collected without any due process for those who were forced to pay up.

Last January, Michael McGrady wrote on The Daily Caller website, “Like every new government program, (CFPB) became a corrupt political bargaining chip in Obama’s administration with the sole mission to assert government supremacy over the economy.” Nothing has changed since then. As we’ve said before, shut it down.

Think of the savings for taxpayers!

Let’s Name Names

Yesterday I posted an article about the $15 million of taxpayer money Congress has paid over the last decade to settle harassment cases. To be fair, some of this money was paid out in cases involving racial and religious discrimination cases, and discrimination against people with disabilities, as well as sexual harassment cases.

A friend on Twitter posted the following. I agree.

Ending Some Of Washington’s Political Gamesmanship

Scott Johnson at Power Line posted an article today about the practice of ‘the blue slip courtesy’ used to block judicial nominees in Congress.

The website judicialnominations.org explains the process:

One way in which senatorial courtesy has manifested itself is something called the “blue slip.” This is a device used by the Senate Judiciary Committee to communicate with the home-state Senators about a nomination to the U.S. courts of appeal or district courts, or to be a U.S. marshal or U.S. attorney. When a nominee is referred to the committee, the committee sends a letter (typically on light blue paper) asking the two home-state Senators to take a position on the nomination. The Senators check off the appropriate box on the sheet—either approve or disapprove—and return the paper to the Judiciary Committee.

The blue slip process is used only by the Senate Judiciary Committee —no other Senate committee uses it for other kinds of nominations. The practice of using blue slips dates back to at least 1917. Since mid-2001, the status of blue slips for each judge nominated have been publicly available on the Web.

It is a matter of some debate how important blue slips are in the confirmation process. The blue slip practice is not a formal part of the Judiciary Committee’s rules, and the determination of just how much weight to give to a Senator’s opposition to a nomination is left largely up to the chair of the committee. Among other issues, the chair will decide whether to honor the objections, voiced through blue-slips, from all home-state senators or just those who belong to the same party as the president.

Unfortunately, the process has been occasionally abused. The Judicial Nominations website explains:

Much also has been written that is critical of the blue-slip system. George  Washington University law professor Jonathan Turley described the system this way:  Blue-slipping is a little known process by which senators can block federal judge nominees from their state. This means that judges who may rule in your case often are selected to meet senatorial, not professional, demands. By simply not returning blue slips sent by the Senate Judiciary Committee, a senator can block a nominee for the most nefarious or arbitrary reasons, including a personal grudge, a bargaining tool with the White House or failure of the nominee to be sufficiently fawning in the senator’s presence.

This courtesy has been misused by both sides–it was not meant as a negotiating tool–it was meant to be a courtesy.

The article at Power Line details some changes that Senator Grassley is making in order to expedite the confirmation of President Trump’s judicial nominees.

Power Line reports:

Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley announced that he would not let Franken’s withheld blue slip block the nomination of Minnesota Supreme Court Justice David Stras to the Eighth Circuit (or Senator Kennedy’s block Kyle Duncan to the Fifth Circuit).

Senator Grassley took to the floor of the Senate to explain his disposition of “the blue slip courtesy” and his decision to schedule a committee hearing on the nominations of Stras and Duncan (text of statement here, video below). The Hill reported on Senator Grassley’s statement here.

Washington needs to stop playing games and get its work done. All Congressmen (and Congresswomen) should be paid according to what they actually accomplish. That might actually change how things are done in Congress.

One Way To Save Taxpayers Money

Yesterday Roll Call posted an article stating that the House of Representatives has paid out more than $15 million over the last decade to settle harassment cases, though that number also includes discrimination claims. There has been no information released as to exactly why the payments were made or exactly which members of Congress were involved.

The article reports:

Speier’s (Representative Jackie Speier) office clarified Wednesday that the Office of Compliance, which handles workplace and accessibility issues on Capitol Hill, does not provide a breakdown for the type of discrimination payments made.

The OOC’s $15 million figure covered more than 200 payouts made from fiscal years 1997 to 2016 for all claims the office covered, such as racial and religious discrimination cases, discrimination against people with disabilities and sexual harassment, a Speier staffer said.

Why were the taxpayers paying out this money instead of the people involved?

It seems as if sexual harassment has become the issue of the day. I find this a bit disingenuous. In addition to the pass given to Bill Clinton, where was this issue when Ted Kennedy and Chris Dodd were in Congress? There is a danger of a witch hunt here. There is also a danger that because of the political divide in the country right now, the investigation of sexual harassment in Congress will turn into a very ugly political process.

 

Great Idea Or Poison Pill?

The American Spectator posted an article today about the proposed tax reform bill working its way through Congress.

The article reports:

The Senate majority leader and the Senate finance committee endorsed Senator Tom Cotton’s proposal to include a repeal of Obamacare’s individual mandate alongside tax cuts.

This either kills two birds with one stone or that one stone sinks the tax plan because of its weight. If Senator Bob Corker issued his complaints last month regarding deficit reduction in earnest, one guesses that the former occurs. Aside from moving toward individual freedom and the Constitution, the repeal of the individual mandate makes sense fiscally, particularly with a $20 trillion debt hanging above our heads. The added dynamic alleviates, at least, the concerns regarding the deficit aired by Senators Corker, John McCain, and Susan Collins.

Adding the repeal of the ObamaCare Mandate to the tax bill makes good sense in terms of what is the right thing to do. The move has questionable value politically. The Democrats are complaining that repealing the mandate will mean that low-income people will not have health insurance. Wait a minute. That claim defies logic. Repealing the individual mandate means that low-income people will not have to pay a fine if they don’t have health insurance. If they can’t afford health insurance, how are they supposed to pay the fine? Since when did the government acquire the right to force you to purchase something you don’t want?

The article concludes:

In 1981, when Ronald Reagan slashed the top personal rates from 70 to 50 percent, the federal government imposed the heaviest burden on Americans. Now, the cost of the federal government and the cost of healthcare approaches parity. The former gobbles up the same portion of the GDP, more or less, that it has throughout our lifetimes. The latter has almost tripled in its proportion of the GDP in just a half century.

Donald Trump’s tax plan puts American businesses on a level playing field with their competitors abroad and sensibly allows citizens to keep more of what they earn. This undoubtedly helps the economy. But the Trump tax cut will not boost growth the way the Reagan or Kennedy or Coolidge cuts did because 2017’s economy faces a special health-care challenge that did not exist in the 1920s, 1960s, or 1980s.

Prosperity proves illusory in any economy in which the cost of one commodity outpaces growth. Who cares if a tax cut boosts GDP by one percent if medical inflation devours that increase in the economy?

Good for Republicans for recognizing that relief for citizens requires reforming not just the tax code but the healthcare system, as well. Bad for any of them to imagine the job done, or a boom around the corner, through a modest personal tax cut, a robust corporate rate reduction, and a repeal of the individual mandate.

Adding the repeal of the individual mandate to the tax plan will help low-income people. However, in watching this debate, remember that the Washington establishment does not want Donald Trump to be a successful President–he is an outsider and the establishment thoroughly resents that. My fear is that the tax reform will not pass because the repeal of the ObamaCare mandate will be a poison pill for much of the establishment. At that point, the Republican establishment will whine, “We tried, but the Democrats wouldn’t let us pass tax reform.” If that happens, it will be a long time before I vote for a Republican again.

What Will Be The Impact Of This In Twenty Years?

Yesterday The U.K. Daily Mail reported that sixty percent of babies born in London are born to foreign mothers. That means six out of ten will be raised by people who have not been part of British culture. We need to think about what this means to the future of Britain.

The article explains some of the reasons for the high number of babies born to immigrants:

The new statistics on babies born to foreign-born mothers come after earlier figures from the ONS which showed that in some areas of London they account for more than three-quarters of births.

In the East London borough of Newham in 2014 more than three quarters of babies – 77 per cent – were born to mothers who were themselves born outside Britain.

In that year most of the foreign-born mothers who gave birth in the UK were from Poland, followed by Pakistan and India.

The 2014 figures showed immigrant mothers are more likely to be married than those born in Britain. Some 72 per cent of immigrant mothers were married that year, compared with 45 per cent of UK-born mothers. The ONS said this ‘reflects different expectations between cultures’.

The rise in the number of babies with foreign-born mothers has partly come because fertility rates among immigrants are higher than those of British-born women.

Although fertility rates among foreign-born women fell in 2015, an immigrant could expect to have 2.08 children. For UK-born women, the rate was 1.76.

 In the early days of the country of America, the population was made up of people who were not born here. Those immigrants formed the culture that eventually became the American culture. The shared values of those immigrants formed the basis of that culture–many had fled religious persecution–their faith was important to them and their freedom was important to them. They had a pioneering spirit that allowed them to journey through hardships for the chance to be free and reap the rewards of their efforts. America continued to take in immigrants, but screened them at Ellis Island to make sure they were willing to work and contribute to America. Originally there was no welfare system–an immigrant either worked hard and was successful or went home. Things have changed in America and in other places. Now immigrants are not necessarily encouraged to assimilate, learn the language, or work hard. The are not encouraged to become part of the culture or to help preserve the culture. When sixty percent of mothers in London are foreign born and may not be part of western culture, where will the country be in twenty years? Will Britain still be part of western civilization?

Talking Points vs Reality

Investor’s Business Daily recently posted an editorial about the impact of President Trump’s proposed tax cuts. The editorial notes that the Democrats sudden concern for deficits is a bit disingenuous after the impact President Obama had on the deficit during the past eight years. The editorial also notes that President Trump’s tax plan will not increase the deficit, but will probably decrease the deficit due to the economic growth created by lowering taxes.

The editorial includes the following chart:

The editorial explains:

According to the Congressional Budget Office, the House tax bill would boost deficits over the next 10 years by a total of $1.4 trillion. The added interest on the debt would kick that up to $1.7 trillion.

That looks like a lot of money. Except that equals just a 17% increase in total deficits projected over the next decade.

And that increase is a wild exaggeration, since it doesn’t allow for any extra economic growth from the GOP‘s pro-growth tax cuts — a premise that even some honest liberal economists don’t believe. The actual deficit boost, if there is any, will be far smaller than what the CBO says.

But let’s accept the CBO’s numbers as gospel truth.

Look more closely at the data and you see that what’s driving deficits ever upward isn’t the Republican tax cuts. It is out-of-control spending.

Over the past 50 years, despite all the myriad changes in tax laws, revenues as a share of GDP have remained remarkably close to the average: 17.4%.  In fiscal year 2017, which ended in September, the share was 17.3%. In Bush’s last in office, it was 17.1%. When Bill Clinton took office in 1991, it was 17.3%.

What happens if the Republican tax plan goes into effect? According to the CBO, taxes as a share of the economy in 2027 will be … 17.9%.

That’s right. Even with an allegedly budget-busting tax cut, the federal government will claim a greater share of the nation’s economy in 2027 than it does today, and that share will be above the average for the previous 50 years.

The only reason deficits continue to climb over the next decade is because federal spending is going up at an unsustainable rate.

The editorial concludes:

But the bigger problem is that any reasonable attempt to rein in any of the entitlement programs is met by fierce and unrelenting opposition from all those Democrats who now claim to worry about deficits. They will viciously demagogue any Republican who dares to propose real reforms of these programs, and then brag about any resulting election victories.

So, the next time you hear Democrats pretend to be deficit hawks, ask them what their plan is to bring entitlement spending under control.

 

Insanity?

Posted at Lifezette yesterday:

Republican Sen. Lindsey Graham (S.C.) said on Friday that if the allegations against Alabama candidate for U.S. Senate Roy Moore are true, he should step aside, and “should be dealt with severely.”

But Graham not only hasn’t called for Democrat Sen. Bob Menendez (N.J.), accused of having sex with underage prostitutes, to step aside — he also went to New Jersey on his own dime two weeks ago to testify as a character witness in Menendez’s corruption trial, telling the judge that Menendez is “very honest” and “honorable.”

I’m just going to leave this here for your consideration.

This Is The Way To End Free Speech

If you believe that political debate is wrong and that only one side of a story should be told, you are probably in agreement with the actions of some of the sponsors of the Sean Hannity show. The American Thinker posted an article today about the actions of some recent sponsors of the show.

The article reports:

On Friday, Sean Hannity reignited efforts by enemies of his on the left to take him off the air via putting pressure on his advertisers to dump his show. His telephone interview with Senate nominee Roy Moore, broadcast live on his radio show and replayed later on his nightly Fox News Channel program, actually won more praise than might have been expected from a variety of analysts. 

Hannity asked Moore tough questions and got the former judge to go on the record. The interview represented Moore’s first spoken comments on the controversy since the story was initially reported on Thursday in the Washington Post.

Almost immediately, his enemies, in particular Media Matters for America, struck. Earlier attempts of this kind, including last May after Hannity reported on the unsolved murder of DNC staffer Seth Rich, did not succeed.

The actions of Media Matters are not acceptable. Roy Moore deserves a chance to clear his name. It is obvious that the mainstream media will not give him that chance.

This is the information on Media Matters from discoverthenetworks.org:

Established in May 2004, Media Matters for America describes itself as a “web-based, not-for-profit … progressive research and information center dedicated to comprehensively monitoring, analyzing, and correcting conservative misinformation” in print, broadcast, cable, radio, and Internet media outlets across the United States. Such “misinformation” includes “news or commentary that is not accurate, reliable, or credible and that forwards the conservative agenda.” Moreover, Media Matters is a constituent member of the Shadow Party, which is a network of non-profit activist groups organized by George Soros and others to mobilize resources — money, get-out-the-vote drives, campaign advertising, and policy initatives — to advance Democratic Party agendas.

Using its website, MediaMatters.org, as its principal vehicle for disseminating information, Media Matters posts rapid-response items as well as longer research and analytical reports “documenting conservative misinformation throughout the media.” In its earlier years, Media Matters highlighted such “misinformation” directly alongside what it depicted as examples of wild, angry rhetoric by conservatives. By so doing, it blurred the distinction between research and opinion. Eventually the organization recognized this error and began to list factual challenges in a designated Research section, while attacks on conservative rhetoric were relegated to the Media Matters Blog.

Influence on the Mainstream and Left-wing Media

In addition to its website postings, Media Matters “works daily to notify activists, journalists, pundits, and the general public about instances of misinformation, providing them with the resources to rebut false claims and to take direct action against offending media institutions.” As the Capital Research Center reports, Media Matters “works in conjunction with liberal blogs, using sympathetic reporters and pundits to promote far-left messages to the mainstream media and to attempt to force right-leaning media figures out of the public debate.”

In February 2012 Media Matters was the subject of a damning exposé by Tucker Carlson’s Daily Caller, which revealed the extent to which the organization had become successful in dictating the content of left-liberal media reports. As documented by the Caller, newspapers like the Washington Post, the New York Times and the Los Angeles Times all took their editorial cues from Media Matters’ talking points.

Any time a news outlet gets too close to a truth the left does not want revealed, they can expect to be attacked by Media Matters. This is an attempt by the political left to silence their political opposition. Rather than engage in a battle of ideas and principles, the political left would like to simply shut down free speech. We saw that with the IRS during the Obama Administration. It is nothing new.

The article at The American Thinker concludes:

The stakes in this emerging fight couldn’t be higher. Sean Hannity, and a handful of other high profile conservative hosts on Fox News, represent the last thin line in the mainstream media that is left standing against the almost universal fake news onslaught by the MSM aimed at taking down President Donald Trump. Last April, advertisers who deserted Fox News’ #1 program at the time, The O’Reilly Factor, after allegations of sexual harassment by host Bill O’Reilly resurfaced in the media, got the host of that program summarily fired in less than three weeks.

Obviously it is easier to silence the opposition than to defeat them with sound ideas.

How Is The Money We Spend On Education Actually Spent?

Last week Investor’s Business Daily posted an editorial explaining how the proposed tax bill might impact educational spending.

The editorial included the following chart:

As you can see from the chart, the number of administrators in education has risen much faster than the number of teachers and students, while test scores have remained essentially the same. It is definitely time that we examined our priorities in education spending,

The editorial also points out how the tax bill under consideration might impact education spending:

The National Education Association blasted the GOP tax reform plan saying that eliminating the state and local tax deduction for those who itemize taxes would be a severe blow to schools, putting 250,000 education jobs at risk.

“It would,” says NEA president Lily Eskelsen Garcia, “jeopardize the ability of state and local governments to fund public education. That will translate into cuts to public schools, lost jobs to educators, overcrowded classrooms that deprive students of one-on-one attention, and threaten public education.”

There are other provisions in the tax bill that might worry teachers’ unions, such as letting parents use 529 college savings plans to pay for elementary and secondary school costs. That would help make private schools more affordable — a small step toward encouraging school choice.

But it’s the so-called SALT deduction that has the unions up in arms. Why? Because getting rid of it might force high-tax states — which benefit the most from the deduction — to cut taxes and rein in their own spending.

Of course, that’s pure speculation on the NEA’s part. States won’t be obligated to change anything if the SALT deduction goes away.

I think we need to understand that the Trump Administration is generally a goal-oriented group and sometimes their goals are very subtle. The Secretary of Education is a proponent of school choice, and it seems as if the tax proposals might also encourage school choice. The public schools are not doing their job of educating our children, and parents are becoming more willing to find alternative solutions. The amount of children being home-schooled has rapidly increased in recent years. Part of this is due to the fact that test scores have not improved, and part of this is due to the fact that the schools are teaching children values that in many cases contradict the values of their parents.

It would probably be a really good idea to take a look at where our education dollars are being spent. Somehow our students managed to learn more before there was a federal Department of Education.

 

People With An Agenda Who Make Predictions Rarely Get It Right

Yesterday The New York Post posted an article about the impact the election of President Trump has had on the American economy. The article begins by reminding us of the predictions made that if Donald Trump was elected President, he would ruin the American economy. The people making this prediction chose to overlook the fact that President Trump had a reasonable successful record as a businessman.

The article reports:

Foreign tourism to New York City is set to rise 3.6 percent this year — defying yet another of the many doomsday predictions about Donald Trump’s presidency.

Back in February, the city tourism agency said Trump’s “travel ban and related rhetoric” would mean a drop of 300,000 visitors this year. But the NYC & Co. prophecy proved false.

…Of course, other predictions were more dire — particularly those about the stock market.

Finance expert Steve Rattner foresaw “a market crash of historic proportions” under a President Trump. Moody’s warned of a “weaker” economy. Many said 2 percent GDP growth was the best that could be hoped for.

Other doomsayers included Mark Cuban, CNBC’s Andrew Ross Sorkin and firms such as Bridgewater Associates and Macroeconomic Advisers. (A less-dishonorable mention goes to Nobel-winning economist Paul Krugman, who at least walked back his doomsaying about “a global recession, with no end in sight,” soon after election night.)

In fact, the Dow has climbed more than 25 percent since Hillary Clinton conceded. And the first two full quarters of Trump’s term both saw growth of 3 percent or more. Oops.

The article further reminds us that as President, President Trump has followed the Constitution. The article also reminds us that a downturn of the economy is always a possibility, but currently it seems as if President Trump’s business acumen is paying off for the American economy. It would be nice if Congress would clear the way for President Trump’s full economic agenda to go into effect. I have a feeling that all Americans would enjoy the results of that.

It May Be Time For A New Attorney General

I like Jeff Sessions. I think he is a nice man, but I can’t figure out why he has not enforced some of the laws he is responsible to enforce.

On Thursday, PJ Media posted an article detailing some comments made by former Assistant FBI Director James Kallstrom about James Comey, Robert Mueller, Hillary Clinton, and Barack Obama.

The article reports:

Appearing on Fox News’ Varney & Co., Kallstrom told the host that it “was obvious to anybody that knows anything” that former President Barack Obama was not going to let James Comey indict Clinton.

“It turns out — unfortunately — he was a political hack,” Kallstrom said flatly. “I think he maybe started out in an honorable way. His opinion of himself is sky high —  just an unbelievable guy with just an arrogance about him…. It got him in trouble because I think he thought he was Superman and he found out that he wasn’t.”

Kallstrom blamed the Clintons for Comey’s descent into hackery.

“The dogs are always going to bite your heels when you’re dealing with the Clintons,” he explained. “Look how long the public, the American people have been dealing with the crime syndicate known as the Clinton Foundation… just look at what’s in the public domain. The Clintons have been taking advantage of their stations in life for so long.”

…Kallstrom pointed out that just “the unmaskings of names alone is a major scandal.” Requests to identify Americans whose names surfaced in foreign intelligence reporting — known as unmasking — was done at a freakishly rapid rate in the final months of the Obama administration.

“We got all these major crime things bubbling – all of which were 20 times bigger than Watergate! And nothing seems to be happening… the attorney general is in a coma!” he said.

I like Jeff Sessions. I think he is an honorable man. I also think he needs to investigate some of the corruption that is swirling around the previous administration or find another job.

 

Why American Energy Matters

On Thursday The Daily Signal posted a story about American coal imports to Ukraine. One of the problems in the attempted Russian takeover of Ukraine is the dependence of the country on Russian energy imports.

The article reports:

“In recent years, [Kyiv] and much of Eastern Europe have been reliant on and beholden to Russia to keep the heat on. That changes now,” U.S. Secretary of Energy Rick Perry said in July, announcing an $80 million deal to ship more U.S. coal to Ukraine.

“The United States can offer Ukraine an alternative,” Perry said.

…Since the breakup of the Soviet Union in 1991, Russia has often leveraged its power over Ukraine through the energy economy. Particularly, by cutting off gas supplies in winter. Consequently, energy security remains a linchpin for Ukraine’s fight for sovereignty from Moscow.

“Energy for years has been and continues on a daily non-military basis to be the prime Russian instrument for corrupting and subverting Ukraine,” Stephen Blank, senior fellow for Russia at the American Foreign Policy Council, told The Daily Signal.

American energy independence (and the ability of America to export energy sources) can play an important part in determining world politics. As America becomes more energy independent, the hold that OPEC has had over the American economy lessens. As America becomes more energy independent, we are free to choose our friends and allies on the basis of their commitment to freedom and democracy rather than having to support dictators and tyrants because they supply the oil our economy needs. Green energy is not the solution to this problem–the technology is not yet developed enough to be practical and cost efficient. At this time, the world runs on fossil fuel, and we need to make sure that we can power our economy with our own resources.

Bias Can Be Illustrated As Much By What Is Left Out As By What Is Reported

The big news story this week was the accusations against Judge Roy Moore. The media does not seem to like the concept of innocent until proven guilty (as least as far as Republicans are concerned). Some leading Republicans have pulled their support of Moore based on the accusations and The New York Times is reporting that the Senate Republicans are looking for a way to block Judge Moore’s path to the Senate–over thirty-eight-year-old-unsubstantiated charges. Really? There were, however, some things the mainstream media left out of its reporting,

The Gateway Pundit has run a number of stories about the accuser of Judge Moore. Two of them deal with her past history of bringing charges and her work on behalf of Democratic candidates (here and here). The Republicans have a choice–they can support Judge Moore until something recent and believable is charged or they can use these charges as an excuse to remove a candidate whose primary opponent they funded. If they choose the latter, the base will totally desert them. The actions of the Senate in this matter will determine the future (or end) of the Republican party. If all the Democrats have to do is invent a thirty-year-old charge to cause a candidate to lose the support of the Republican Party, the Republican Party isn’t worth much.

Two Sides Of The Same Coin

There is really one political party in Washington, D.C. It is made up of establishment politicians of both parties. They are an elite group that tends to make a lot of noise when an outsider invades their group. This group wants any outsider to fail, regardless of what that failure would mean to the country. The name of the game is protecting their elite circle and its power. Donald Trump has really messed up that circle and revealed for what it is. That is why ObamaCare is still with us, the wall has not been built, and tax reform is questionable at best. That is also why the media made such a big deal of a Democrat winning a gubernatorial race in a state that previously had a Democratic governor.

The latest attempt at keeping an outsider out of Washington is the current salacious attack on Roy Moore, currently running for the U. S. Senate in Alabama. Suddenly candididate Moore is charged with having inappropriate relationships with underage girls thirty plus years ago. Think Clarence Thomas and Herman Cain–somehow the charges were not pursued after they made the confirmation of Judge Thomas very difficult and after Herman Cain withdrew from the presidential race.

Judge Moore has been a judge since he was appointed in 1992.

Wikipedia reports:

In 1992, Etowah County Circuit Judge Julius Swann died in office. Republican Governor H. Guy Hunt was charged with making a temporary appointment until the next election. Moore’s name was floated by some of his associates, and a background check was initiated with several state and county agencies, including the Etowah County district attorney’s office. Moore’s former political opponent Jimmy Hedgspeth, who still helmed the D.A.’s office, recommended Moore despite personal reservations, and Moore was installed in the position he had failed to win in 1982. “The impossible had happened!” Moore wrote afterward. “God had given me something that I had not been able to obtain through my own efforts.” Judge Moore ran as a Republican in the 1994 Etowah County election and was elected to the circuit judge seat (6 year term) with 62% of the vote. He was the first county-wide Republican to win since the Reconstruction.

That was 25 years ago. If the charges were true, they would have been much more current then. Why were the charges not brought out then? Judge Moore is 70 years old. Even if the charges were true, there have been no other similar charges in the past 25 years. Why?

This has the total appearance of a smear campaign to end the candidacy of someone the Washington establishment does not like. The behavior, if it were true, would be gross, but I seriously doubt it is true. It is more likely that the elites in Washington are threatened by the growing influence of Steve Bannon and by the fact that a man of integrity may show up in the Senate and join forces with the few men of integrity that are already there.,