News behind the news. This picture is me (white spot) standing on the bridge connecting European and North American tectonic plates. It is located in the Reykjanes area of Iceland. By-the-way, this is a color picture.
On August 3rd, The Washington Times posted an article about the cost of illegal immigration. The article pointed out that the cost of deporting all of the estimated 11 million illegal immigrants would cost nearly $125 billion. However, the cost of the government services involved in allowing them to stay would be nearly $750 billion from taxpayers over their lifetimes. This represents a major departure from the past when immigrants came to America to earn success rather than to have the country support them. So what impact has the election of President Trump had on the numbers of illegal immigrants in America?
Katie Pavlich at Townhall posted an article today reporting statistics on one aspect of illegal aliens in America.
The article reports:
The Department of Justice released new numbers Tuesday afternoon showing voluntary departures and deportations of illegal immigrants are up by 30 percent. Here are the numbers between February 1 and July 31, 2017:
Total Orders of Removal: 49,983
Up 27.8 percent over the same time period in 2016 (39,113)
Total Orders of Removal and Voluntary Departures: 57,069
Up 30.9 percent over the same time period in 2016 (43,595)
The court system has also streamlined a number of deportation cases to final decisions.
I am not opposed to legal immigration. Controlling our borders and controlling who is allowed to come into America is part of the responsibility of the government. It would be nice if they took that responsibility seriously.
The article states the probable reason for the change in numbers:
DOJ officials are touting the numbers as a “return to the rule of law” under the Trump administration. For months the Department has been cracking down on sanctuary cities and Homeland Security has conducted a number of ICE raids to rid communities of violent criminal aliens.
Leadership in Washington makes a difference. There are a limited number of things the President can do without Congress, but in those areas, President Trump has accomplished a number of things that will help average Americans earn more and live better. One of the major problems with illegal immigration is the downward pressure it exerts on the wages of low-skilled workers. Corporations like illegal immigration because it provides labor at a lower cost than what they would have to pay an American citizen. Corporations donate to Congressmen, and Congressmen are slow to act on the problem of illegal immigration. That is an instance where an Executive Order from the President can get something done that Congress is not interested in doing.
On August 4th, Daniel Greenfield posted an article at Front Page Magazine about National Security Council head H.R. McMaster. Daniel Greenfield has concluded that McMaster is part of the deep state and is working against the interests of both America and the Trump Administration. At this point I should mention that like it or not, Donald Trump is the President, and working against Donald Trump is working against the interests of America. It is not patriotic to oppose anything and everything the Trump Administration proposes–it is obstructionism. The Washington establishment’s worst nightmare is for the Trump Administration to succeed–that will be the end of their stranglehold on our government and their success as an elite class.
The article notes:
Derek Harvey was a man who saw things coming. He had warned of Al Qaeda when most chose to ignore it. He had seen the Sunni insurgency rising when most chose to deny it.
The former Army colonel had made his reputation by learning the lay of the land. In Iraq that meant sleeping on mud floors and digging into documents to figure out where the threat was coming from.
It was hard to imagine anyone better qualified to serve as President Trump’s top Middle East adviser at the National Security Council than a man who had been on the ground in Iraq and who had seen it all.
Just like in Iraq, Harvey began digging at the NSC. He came up with a list of Obama holdovers who were leaking to the press. McMaster, the new head of the NSC, refused to fire any of them.
McMaster had a different list of people he wanted to fire. It was easy to make the list. Harvey was on it.
All you had to do was name Islamic terrorism as the problem and oppose the Iran Deal. If you came in with Flynn, you would be out. If you were loyal to Trump, your days were numbered.
And if you warned about Obama holdovers undermining the new administration, you were a target.
One of McMaster’s first acts at the NSC was to ban any mention of “Obama holdovers.” Not only did the McMaster coup purge Harvey, who had assembled the holdover list, but his biggest target was Ezra Watnick-Cohen, who had exposed the eavesdropping on Trump officials by Obama personnel.
It seems as if the NSC under McMaster has turned political, gotten totally out of control, and needs to be promptly reined in.
After protests by Bannon and Kushner, President Trump overruled McMaster. Watnick-Cohen stayed. For a while. Now Ezra Watnick-Cohen has been fired anyway.
According to the media, Watnick-Cohen was guilty of “anti-Muslim fervor” and “hardline views.” And there’s no room for anyone telling the truth about Islamic terrorism at McMaster’s NSC.
McMaster had even demanded that President Trump refrain from telling the truth about Islamic terrorism.
Another of his targets was Rich Higgins, who had written a memo warning of the role of the left in undermining counterterrorism. Higgins had served as a director for strategic planning at the NSC. He had warned in plain language about the threat of Islamic terrorism, of Sharia law, of the Hijrah colonization by Islamic migrants, of the Muslim Brotherhood, and of its alliance with the left as strategic threats.
Please follow the link to read the entire article. It is chilling to think that a group of people have become so entrenched in a government agency that they will risk the security of America to remain in power.
“Minuteman Health is subject to certain co-op rules that limit Minuteman Health’s ability to adjust its business model to mitigate the impact of the dysfunctional risk adjustment program,” the company stated in June.
“The program also unfairly penalizes issuers like Minuteman Health that are small, low cost, and experience high growth,” the co-op said. “The significant negative impact from risk adjustment has been the principal driver of a reduction in Minuteman Health’s surplus and capital over time.”
If Minuteman Health opts to create a new insurance company, that company will not be subject to these rules.
As I have said before, government programs don’t understand actuary tables–insurance companies do. Insurances companies are in business to make money. That is legal and should be encouraged. When the government interferes with the free market, bad things happen. Obamacare is a shining example of that principle.
I am not an economist, and I don’t play one on television, but I am capable of basic observations. The July jobs numbers came out Friday. This put the rather biased media in a position of having to say that the report beat expectations. When do they ever get their expectations right?
The economy created 209,000 jobs in July, well above this year’s average monthly gain of 184,000.
…The jobless rate fell by a tenth of percentage point to 4.3%, matching May as the lowest level of unemployment in 16 years. It declined despite an expansion in the labor force.
…The average hourly wage for private-sector workers grew 2.5% in July. That’s a modest pace historically, but it looks better when considering inflation is so low.
…The share of Americans holding jobs or actively looking for work rose a tenth of a percentage point last month to 62.9%. That’s very slight progress.
…A measure underemployment—one that takes into account jobless workers, reluctant part-time workers and Americans too discouraged to look for work—remained at 8.6%. That’s two tenths of percentage point higher than May’s level, though it’s down more than a point from the prior year.
You can’t turn eight years of anemic economic growth around in seven months. However, we are definitely moving in the right direction. Despite the lack of cooperation from the Washington establishment, President Trump is deregulating and moving forward. If we are to see real economic growth, we need to drain the swamp of those establishment politicians who are blocking President Trump’s economic policies. We need to find primary challengers to many of the so-called leaders in Washington.
The Gateway Pundit posted an article today about Californiavoters. The article notes that 10 out of 11 counties where there are more registered voters than adults of voting age voted for Hillary Clinton. Obviously it is possible that fact is simply a coincidence, but then it is also possible that 90-foot alligators live in the sewers of New York City.
The article includes the following graph:
In a number of those counties, illegal Democratic voters would not have changed the election result. However, we need to remember that every illegal vote cancels out the vote of a legitimate voter. That is unacceptable.
The article concludes:
In June California Secretary of State Alex Padilla told the Trump administration the state will not cooperate with the election integrity commission because it would “only serve to legitimize the false and already debunked claims of massive voter fraud.”
That statement is a really good example of the concept of ‘spin.’ Don’t confuse the issue with facts!
It has been understood by those of us who look behind the curtain that ObamaCare was simply a step toward a single-payer healthcare system. ObamaCare was designed to collapse under its own weight (as it is doing) so that the Democratic Party and President Hillary Clinton could be heroes by replacing it with a wonderful single-payer system. Some Democrats (despite losing the White House and being a minority in both the House and the Senate) are suggesting that it is now time to move to a single-payer system. So how has single-payer worked in other places it has been instituted?
The report illuminates that a “typical Canadian family of four will pay $12,057 for health care in 2017—an increase of nearly 70 percent over the last 20 years.”
Canada operates under a medicare system that is understood as single-payer. Not only does the federal government use money from its general revenue to finance this taxpayer-funded health care system, individual provinces also contribute by raising money through special levies that are deducted when Canadians pay their income tax.
The article continues:
The think-tank compiled information from Statistics Canada and the Canadian Institute for Health Information to base its claim that the “average Canadian family with two parents and two children with a household income of $127,814 will pay $12,057 for public health-care insurance this year.”
Barua told The Daily Caller that Canada is in a health care crisis. “Services are being rationed. In our last report on wait times in Canda, we discovered that the average wait time from referral to treatment was 20 weeks. That was the longest wait time in the history of our survey,” he said
The senior economist emphasized that the study was designed to show Canadian families what kind of value they’re getting for their health care dollar. They will have reason to look at things differently if they read this study,” Barua (Bacchus Barua, senior economist with the Fraser Institute’s Centre for Health Policy Studies) told The Daily Caller.
The free market works every time it is tried. Socialism, not so much.
On Thursday, Legal Insurrection posted an article about the continuing attacks on President Trump. The title of the article is, “The Slow-Motion Coup d’Etat picks up steam.”
The article lists the attempts made by the political establishment to undo the results of last November’s election. Hopefully their efforts will result in a miserable failure. I did not start out as a Trump supporter, but I believe he won the election honestly (and probably by a wider margin than is reported due to illegal votes for Hillary Clinton). The attempts to find any excuse to remove him from office are shameful.
The article reminds us:
Chuck Schumer, for example, used the alleged fact of Donald Trump being under FBI investigation as an argument against confirming Neal Gorsuch to the Supreme Court, even though Schumer (but not the public) knew from intelligence briefings that Trump was not personally under investigation.
All the while, the permanent bureaucracy, particularly in the intelligence community, started an unending and almost daily series of leaks meant to paralyze the administration.
Then FBI Director James Comey refused to tell the public what he privately told Trump on three occasions, that Trump personally was not under investigation, thereby aiding and abetting this false media attack on the administration. Comey then himself leaked non-public government information, after his termination, to manufacture an excuse to have a Special Counsel appointed. That Special Counsel, Robert Mueller, turns out to be a good friend of Comey, and is building a massive prosecutorial infrastructure in the attempt to find a crime.
At the same time, there has been unprecedented obstruction of Trump’s ability to staff his administration. Even non-controversial nominees are slow-walked by Democrats. Vast swaths of the federal bureaucracy remain under the sway of Obama holdovers and those who consider Trump illegitimate.
The purpose in all this has been to freeze and paralyze the Trump administration. If Trump could not be prevented from taking office, and cannot be physically removed from office, he will be prevented from functioning as president.
Those elected officials participating in this effort need to be removed from office.
The article lists numerous examples of career government employees working against the President and his policies. This used to be called treason.
The article concludes:
Not only is the Trump administration under unprecedented attack from outside, the foxes are inside the henhouse, and are gutting it from the inside out.
The attempt to unwind the 2016 election through paralyzing the Trump administration is a serious threat to our liberty. Our most basic of institutions, the transfer of power through elections, is under attack.
The actions of those people in government working against President Trump are not patriotic–they are treasonous and the people committing them belong in jail. It is up to the American voters to let those working to undermine a sitting President will not receive the support of the voters.
First, the Comey FBI lied to us. Last July, we sent FOIA requests to both the Comey FBI and the Lynch DOJ asking for any documents related to the Clinton Lynch plane meeting. The FBI, under the then directorship of James Comey, replied that “No records responsive to your request were located.”
The documents we received today from the Department of Justice include several emails from the FBI to DOJ officials concerning the meeting. One with the subject line “FLAG” was correspondence between FBI officials (Richard Quinn, FBI Media/Investigative Publicity, and Michael Kortan) and DOJ officials concerning “flag[ing] a story . . . about a casual, unscheduled meeting between former president Bill Clinton and the AG.” The DOJ official instructs the FBI to “let me know if you get any questions about this” and provides “[o]ur talkers [DOJ talking points] on this”. The talking points, however are redacted.
Another email to the FBI contains the subject line “security details coordinate between Loretta Lynch/Bill Clinton?”
On July 1, 2016 – just days before our FOIA request – a DOJ email chain under the subject line, “FBI just called,” indicates that the “FBI . . . is looking for guidance” in responding to media inquiries about news reports that the FBI had prevented the press from taking pictures of the Clinton Lynch meeting. The discussion then went off email to several phone calls (of which we are not able to obtain records). An hour later, Carolyn Pokomy of the Office of the Attorney General stated, “I will let Rybicki know.” Jim Rybicki was the Chief of Staff and Senior Counselor to FBI Director Jim Comey. The information that was to be provided to Rybicki is redacted.
Also of note several of the documents contain redactions that are requested “per FBI.”
It is time to ask Robert Mueller to investigate the actions of his friend James Comey when James Comey was the FBI Director. Please follow the link above to read the entire post at the ACLJ, it is disturbing that the media and the government worked together to squelch information that might have had a negative impact on the Hillary Clinton campaign for president.
For seven years, Republicans promised to repeal ObamaCare if voters gave them the House, the Senate, and the White House. Last week they failed to repeal ObamaCare. What were some of the things that kept them from keeping their promise.
Yesterday CBN News posted an article about some of the things about the relationship between Congress and ObamaCare that were not widely reported.
The article reports some of that history:
In 2009, when lawmakers were debating Obamacare, Sen. Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, put forth an amendment calling for congressional employees to subject themselves to insurance coverage under the Affordable Care Act. The amendment was unanimously adopted.
“The whole point of this provision was to make them feel the pain if it didn’t work,” Kerpen (Phil Kerpen, president of American Commitment) said in an interview Wednesday with CBN’s Pat Robertson.
One flaw in the final Senate bill was that the amendment did not include employer contributions. Consequently, when Obamacare passed, it terminated coverage that members and their staff previously had through the Federal Employee Health Benefit program, which subsidized about 75 percent of their health care plans.
Kerpen says one person filed “blatantly false documents,” which were obtained by Judicial Watch, in order to sign up 12,000 people in an exchange that should only apply to companies with 50 employees or fewer.
…When President Trump threatens to end the bailouts for members of Congress for Obamacare, he is threatening to direct the OPM to reverse Obama’s regulation allowing employer contributions to exchange plans.
If this rule is reversed, members and their staff would lose their government-funded subsidies and be subjected to paying the premiums people without employer coverage have to pay that make too much money to qualify for subsidies.
“This is mandatory work they’ve got to get done for the American people,” Kerpen said.
This is the tweet from President Trump:
I hope that the President follows through on that threat–Congress is supposed to live under the laws they pass! Insurance Companies should not be compensated for the campaign donations they make!
The Kennedy immigration law abolished the national origins quota system, which had favored immigrants from nations with a similar heritage to our own, and opened up American immigration visas to the entire world.
While about nine in ten of the immigrants who came to the United States during the 19th and 20th century hailed from Europe, the 1965 law inverted that figure. Today about 9 out of every 10 new immigrants brought into the country on green cards come from Latin America, Africa, Asia or the Middle East.
The size of the numbers also grew exponentially as well. According to Pew Research Center, 59 million immigrants entered the United States following the Act’s passage. Including their children, that added 72 million new residents to the U.S. population.
In 1965, according to Pew, the country was 84 percent white, 11 percent black, 4 percent Hispanic and less than 1 percent Asian.
In 2015, as a result of Kennedy’s immigration law, the country is now 62 percent white, 12 percent black, 18 percent Hispanic and 6 percent Asian.
Numbers USA notes the range and scope of the reforms in the 1965 Immigration and Nationality Act passed:
The 1965 revamp of the entire immigration system. It ended 40 years of low immigration, got rid of solid numerical caps and opened up chain migration into every overpopulated country in the world, exploding annual immigration numbers.
Massive expansion of the refugee programs in the late 1970s, opening up massive loopholes and encouraging a domestic resettlement industry that became a major lobby for more and more overall immigration.
The 1986 blanket amnesty. Kennedy’s skills may have been best seen here where he got legislators on our side to agree to the amnesty in exchange for enforcement rules that he made sure were written in a way that would not work. Within a decade, he would be using the inability to enforce the 1986 rules as an excuse for why we needed more green cards and more amnesties. An example of Kennedy’s great skill was that he persuaded Ronald Reagan to enthusiastically support this bill.
The 1990 immigration act, which increased overall immigration by another 35%. The first Pres. Bush was Kennedy’s co-partner, just as the second Pres. Bush was Kennedy’s eager co-partner in trying to force through another blanket amnesty 2001-2008.
The 1990 act also established the lottery whereby we randomly give away 50,000 green cards a year to people in countries picked because they have the least ties and cultural association with the United States, and which disproportionately are terrorist-sponsoring countries. This was something of a compromise for Kennedy who was able to ensure that during the first few years, much of the lottery winners would be illegal aliens from Ireland — his own ethnic group.
The H-1B visas which have enabled corporations to keep hundreds of thousands of American kids from getting a foothold in the high tech industry.
The total defeat of liberal civil rights champion Barbara Jordan’sblue-ribbon commission recommendations to reduce overall immigration and eliminate chain migration and the lottery in 1996.
In February of this year, Senator Tom Cotton and Senator David Perdue unveiled the Reforming American Immigration for Strong Employment (RAISE) Act, which would undo some of the damage done by the 1965 Immigration and Nationality Act.
Yesterday Paul Mirengoff at Power Line posted an article about RAISE.
The article at Power Line reports:
Today, President Trump, with the two sponsoring Senators by his side, publicly backed the RAISE Act. Subsequently, at a press briefing, CNN’s Jim Acosta invoked the words on the Statue of Liberty, as he tried to debate White House policy adviser Stephen Miller on the merits of the legislation. Putting it nicely, Scott observed that Acosta was in over his head (Steve was more graphic).
This is the video of Jim Acosta debating White House policy advisor Stephen Miller (when did it become the job of the press to debate the White House policy advisor instead of simply reporting the news?);
The problem with our current immigration system is that it lowers the wages of of workers in jobs that don’t require a lot of training or education.
The Power Line article explains:
As Sen. Cotton has pointed out, wages for Americans with only a high school diploma have declined by two percent since the late 1970s. Wages for those who didn’t finish high school have declined by nearly 20 percent. Wage pressure due to immigration doesn’t explain all of this decrease, but unless the law of supply and demand has been repealed, such wage pressure explains a good deal of it.
The American Dream is at least as fundamental to our national identity as the “nation of immigrants” theme. The collapse of wages described above threatens to create a near permanent underclass for whom the American Dream is always out of reach.
The RAISE Act seeks to vindicate the American Dream while permitting historical levels of immigration. It does so by placing the priority on high-skilled immigrant — immigrants who won’t squeeze the wages of our low-skilled workers, but who instead will spur innovation, create jobs, and make America more competitive.
The article at Power Line concludes:
We can expect Senate Democrats to block the RAISE Act. But before they do so, Democrats should ask themselves how they expect to return to the good graces of the working class if they put the interests of foreigners ahead of the interest of working Americans at the lower end of the economic spectrum. How is this “A Better Deal”?
I was living in Massachusetts when Ted Kennedy died. A friend of mine who is a lawyer commented on how much damage Senator Kennedy had done to America. Because my friend is a conservative, I at first assumed he was referring to what was done to Judge Bork and some of the other ridiculous charges the Senator levied at various Republicans. It wasn’t until later that I began to look at the damage done to America by the 1965 immigration law that Senator Kennedy had pushed through. It is time to begin to undo that damage. Hopefully it is not too late.
One final comment from the article at Numbers USA:
He (a friend of the author of the article) also said that he believes that, despite all the liberal veneer, Kennedy was deeply beholden to the country’s banking titans and other globalist business entities who have so much interest in the free flow of international labor and in keeping the wages of Americans stagnant. (This was given credibility later when Kennedy was lauded for the great work he did to help the high-tech industry of Massachusetts to hire foreign computer programmers.)
The 1965 Immigration and Nationality Act illustrates the damage the ‘Washington swamp’ can do to average Americans.
It seems as if there were some major infringements on the privacy and civil rights of American citizens during the last year or so of the Obama Administration. Fortunately, it looks as though these violations will be investigated and the guilty parties will be held accountable.
The Washington Free Beacon posted an article today about the ongoing investigation into the unmasking of the names of American citizens who were named in classified intelligence community reports. Oddly enough, many of these citizens were associated with the Donald Trump campaign for President or his transition team.
The article reports:
Rep. Devin Nunes (R., Calif.), chair of the House Intelligence Committee, which is handling the probe, petitioned Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats last week to request his help in addressing the unmasking issue.
Nunes disclosed in his letter that the former Obama administration had “easy access” to sensitive classified information and that they may have used it to “achieve partisan political purposes, including the selective, anonymous leaking of such information.”
Congressional investigators uncovered that “one official [whose] position has no apparent intelligence-related function”—now believed to be Power—”made hundreds of unmasking requests during the final year of the Obama administration.”
Little justification was provided for the request of this sensitive classified information, which government insiders described as outside the purview of a U.N. ambassador.
“Of those requests, only one offered a justification that was not boilerplate and articulated why that specific official required the personal information for the performance of his or her official duties,” according to Nunes.
One former senior U.S. official intimately familiar with the national security infrastructure told the Free Beacon that Power would have little reason to be requesting such information, particularly information that included in raw intelligence reports related to Trump and his team.
“Asking for an unmasking is rare at the [National Security Council] or the State Department. It is frankly shocking that anyone would be asking for dozens, and if there are really hundreds it is indefensible,” said the former official. “It does make me wonder why [National Security Agency] didn’t stop her [Power], by questioning this practice and getting the head of NSA to raise it with the president or the national security adviser.”
In addition to Power, the House Intelligence Committee has subpoenaed former National Security Adviser Susan Rice and other top officials as part of its investigation into these leaks.
This is NOT politics as usual. The unmasking of American citizens and then leaking classified information is an example of using a government position for political purposes. Not only is it illegal, it is a danger to our republic.
The article concludes:
One veteran congressional adviser who has been briefed by senior Intelligence Committee members told the Free Beacon that the emergence of Power’s role in these unmasking efforts could point to the improper use of this information, given her unrelated role at the U.N.
“The outrage about Obama officials spying on Americans, let alone on the Republican candidate and then incoming president, is both real and legitimate,” said the source, who would only discuss the sensitive matter on background. “But there are still a lot of known unknowns, which could make things a lot worse.”
“The Obama folks may have made a deliberate decision to use Power, even though they knew it would risk giving away their unmasking campaigns, because she had no business making those requests,” the source said. “What was so bad they had to use her for the requests, rather than someone who would have had a better excuse but may have balked?”
Stay tuned. Even if the mainstream media ignores this story, you will be hearing more about this in the future.
CNS News posted a very interesting article today. The article asks the question, “Why No Warning Label on Marijuana?” That is a fascinating question. The government puts warning labels on everything–my hairdryer reminds me not to use it in the shower, my iron reminds me that it can get hot, the coffee I buy at Dunkin’ Donuts (I did live in Massachusetts for a very long time) tells me on the cup that the contents may be hot. So why is marijuana exempt from big daddy government?
The article reports:
The best known warning label, of course, is the one that the United States Surgeon General has required on cigarette packs since 1966. Also well-known is the warning label on alcoholic beverage containers, which states that drinking alcohol during pregnancy may cause birth defects, that people should not drink and drive, and that alcohol may cause other health problems.
That marijuana is a drug there is no doubt. The FDA states that “marijuana and marijuana-derived products” are “drugs.”
The Surgeon General’s 1996 report entitled “Facing Addiction in America” describes marijuana as one of the “addictive drugs.”
Likewise, marijuana is not safe.
Despite all the recent changes in many state laws over the last five years and the massive public advocacy and lobbying of the emerging multi-billion-dollar marijuana industry, the FDA has not changed its position on marijuana but continues to hold that it “has not approved marijuana as a safe and effective drug for any indication.” Now, within the last nine months, two new reports on the dangers of marijuana have been issued.
So why are reports of the dangers not resulting in warning labels?
The article contains on example of the warning that would be appropriate for marijuana:
WARNING. Using cannabis can lead to the development of schizophrenia, other psychoses and other mental-health problems. Cannabis can cause hallucinations, delusions, and panic attacks. Cannabis can cause an increase in suicide ideation and suicide attempts. Smoking cannabis can worsen respiratory infections and bronchitis episodes. Using cannabis can lead to an increased risk of motor vehicle crashes. Maternal cannabis smoking is associated with the lower birth weight of babies.
The crusade against cigarettes included both warning labels and an extensive public-education campaign. Today, public education about marijuana consists in emphasizing that legalized marijuana will supply both “jobs and taxes.”
The usual answer to the type of question the article asks is ‘follow the money.’ In this case, it seems that many states are more interested in the tax money they will receive from the legalization of marijuana than the damage it will cause to the people using it. I don’t object to the legitimate use of marijuana for medical purposes, but if you look at the ads in the back of the newspaper in states where medical marijuana is legal, you quickly realize that an unethical doctor can write a prescription for marijuana to cure an ingrown toenail. There are so many areas where the government interferes to ‘protect’ Americans, it is interesting that the government chooses to remain silent about a danger that is rapidly becoming socially acceptable.
In a major shift from lax Obama-era regulations, the Trump administration is finally allowing customs officers to screen all cargo trucks entering the U.S. from Mexico and sources on both sides of the border tell Judicial Watch Mexican drug cartels are fuming. U.S. Customs and Border Protection is using X-ray technology and other non-intrusive tools to screen 100% of cargo trucks crossing the southern border after eight years of sporadic or random screening permitted under the Obama administration.
“We felt like we were the welcoming committee and not like we were guarding our borders,” said veteran U.S. Customs agent Patricia Cramer, who also serves as president of the Arizona chapter of the agency’s employee union. “The order was to facilitate traffic, not to stop any illegal drugs from entering the country,” Cramer added. “We want to enforce the law. That’s what we signed up for.” Cramer, a canine handler stationed at the Nogales port of entry in Arizona, said illicit drugs are pouring in through the southern border, especially massive quantities of fentanyl, an opioid painkiller that the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) says is more potent than morphine.
Approximately 471,000 trucks pass through the U.S-Mexico border monthly, according to figures published by the U.S. Department of Transportation. The busiest port of entry is in Laredo, Texas where 167,553 trucks enter the U.S. from Mexico monthly, followed by Otay Mesa in California (76,953), El Paso, Texas (58,913), Hidalgo, Texas (45,355) and Nogales with 29,439. Other busy ports include East Calexico, California (29,173), Brownsville, Texas (16,140) and Eagle Pass, Texas (12,952). Trucks bring in everything from auto parts to appliances, produce and livestock. In fact, a veteran Homeland Security official told Judicial Watch that cattle trucks passed without inspection during the Obama administration because Mexican farmers complained that the security screenings frightened their cows. “Our guys were livid that we were not allowed to check cattle,” the federal official said.
Frontline customs agents stationed along the southern border confirm that trucks containing “legitimate” goods are often used by sophisticated drug cartels to move cargo north. This is hardly surprising since most illegal drugs in the United Statescome from Mexico, according to the DEA, and Mexican traffickers remain the greatest threat to the United States. They’re classified as Transitional Criminal Organizations (TCOs) by the government and for years they’ve smuggled in enormous quantities of heroin, cocaine, methamphetamine and marijuana. Last year the Congressional Research Service (CRS), the nonpartisan agency that provides Congress with policy and legal analysis, published a disturbing report outlining how Mexican cartels move record quantities of drugs into the U.S. Because cartels move the drugs through the Southwest border, western states have become part of what’s known as the “heroin transit zone,” according to the CRS.
Federal law enforcement sources tell Judicial Watch Mexican cartels operate like efficient businesses that resort to “other more treacherous routes” when necessary, but driving through a port of entry in a cargo truck is a preferred method of moving drugs. Cartels station shifts of spotters with binoculars in Mexican hills near border checkpoints to determine the level of security screenings. “They know if we’re on the job, the level of screening that we’re conducting,” Cramer said. “The cartels watch us all the time.” Nogales is a favorite for cartel spotters because the U.S. checkpoint sits in a valley surrounded by hills on the Mexican side, where unobstructed views facilitate surveillance. “They see everything,” Cramer said. For years the cartel spotters saw that much of the cargo passing through the checkpoint was waved through, according to agents contacted by Judicial Watch.
We have no right to complain about the opiate epidemic in America if we are not willing to take the actions necessary to stem the flow of illegal drugs coming into the country.
The purpose of journalism in a representative republic is to keep the voters informed on the issues so that they can make intelligent choices at the voting booth. The idea is that the voters will elect people who represent them and who make wise decisions. In theory that is a really great idea. In practice, it currently does not work.
Yesterday Investor’s Business Daily posted an article about some of the recent reporting by the mainstream media on ObamaCare. Now that the repeal of ObamaCare has failed in Congress, evidently the media feels comfortable reporting the truth about how bad ObamaCare is.
The article reports:
Up until last week, the Times had been reassuring its readers that ObamaCare was doing just fine. In an April story, for example, it said that “growing evidence suggests that the markets are far from collapse. Several recent analyses argue that this year’s increase was a market correction, and that a smoother market would follow in the years ahead.”
It added that “many insurers had been struggling to make money but now seem closer to breaking even.”
In fact, we were told that the only reason the ObamaCare markets were struggling now was because Republican repeal threats were creating “uncertainty.”
Now the Times is telling readers that “even people who rely on its coverage agree that it still has big problems.”
Reuters, meanwhile, published a story the day after the Senate repeal votes failed, reporting that “hundreds of U.S. counties are at risk of losing access to private health coverage in 2018 as insurers consider pulling out of those markets in the coming months.” This information has been widely available for months, but was apparently of no interest to Reuters before the repeal effort collapsed.
Much of the mainstream media is now reporting that ObamaCare is unsustainable and will collapse under its own weight. So where were those stories when the votes were taken? There is a lot going on here. The Democrats want ObamaCare to fail so that they can institute single-payer, totally government-controlled healthcare. If you think that is a good idea, take a look at how it has worked at the Veterans Administration. Also consider the fact that the British healthcare system has considered denying people needed care because they were overweight or smokers or drinkers. Do you really want the government telling you how to live your life?
The Republicans (specifically John McCain and Lisa Murkowski) betrayed the voters when, after seven years of promising to repeal ObamaCare, they voted not to repeal. It is time to put the Washington elites under the same health insurance as the average American. The media does not realize what single-payer will do to them, but the Washington elite knows they can avoid the hazards of single-payer by exempting themselves (as they have in the past). If the current Congress will not create a healthcare system that covers themselves as well as the rest of the country, it is time to elect a new Congress. ObamaCare does not need to be modified–it needs to be destroyed. It was a bad idea from the beginning.
The article includes a video that explains how seriously the activities of this family may have impacted the security of the United States. Here is the video:
The article reports:
Democrats were willing or unwillingly compromised by the Awans and sensitive information leaked to foreign Enemies
On Monday Judge Napolitano dropped this bomb on the Imran Awan investigation. Judge Nap says Awan was selling US secrets to foreign agents.
Judge Napolitano: He was arrested for some financial crime. That’s the tip of the iceberg. The real crime against him was that he had contact, he had access to emails of every member of Congress and he sold what he found in there. What did he sell and to whom did he sell it. That’s what the FBI wants to know. This may be a very, very serious national security investigation.
At some point it would be nice if the mainstream media would follow this story.
The following video was posted on YouTube on July 18th. It was posted in an article on the One America News website.
There is a history of people closely associated with the Clinton family dying under mysterious circumstances. The expression “Arkancide” was coined to describe the mysterious deaths in Arkansas of many people who opposed the Clintons. The death of this man and the other deaths need to be looked at as part of a pattern.
In other words, Mattis wants a full examination of all the hours of burdensome, irrelevant training service members have to undergo before deployment.
“I want to verify that our military policies also support and enhance warfighting readiness and force lethality,” Mattis said.
Mattis also asked for a review into what should be done about permanently non-deployable service members.
We are sending our soldiers into war. They need to have the best military training possible, but we need to remember that there are only so many bits of information that a brain can handle. It is time to reconsider our priorities in order to protect our national security.
The recommendations resulting from the review of current training are due by Dec. 1, 2018.
The military is not a social experiment. Any policy or training that interferes with the readiness or cohesiveness of a military unit needs to end quickly. This is a very definite step in the right direction.
Executive Order #1: President Trump should issue an immediate Executive Order forcing every member of Congress to use the same healthcare plan as the rest of us. Let Senator McCain come off his high horse and live under the rules of Obamacare. Make every member of Congress live by same rules as the rest of us.
Executive Order #2. My gut instinct is usually on the money. I feel it in my bones. The Senators who voted against the repeal are corrupted, bribed, on the take. Senators and Congressmen are making an unimaginable fortune off of Obamacare. That’s why they are against the repeal. They don’t want to end the gravy train.
…President Trump should issue an immediate Executive Order demanding disclosure of all financial interests and ownership in healthcare related companies or stock by every member of Congress- including all family members and offshore accounts. Failure to disclose will result in a long prison term.
I think that about covers it! I have nothing to add.
Yesterday Investor’s Business Daily posted an editorial about the current price of oil. Any person familiar with basic economic theory understands the law of supply and demand. When there is a lot of something, the price goes down. When something is scarce, the price goes up. Some of our recent political leaders missed this point, but we are now seeing the principle of supply and demand at work in the oil industry.
The editorial reports:
Energy: Last week Royal Dutch Shell (RDSA) told investors that it expects oil prices to be “lower forever.” We’re still waiting for all those people who were only recently complaining about higher-forever oil prices to admit their mistake.
It wasn’t that long ago that President Obama was mocking Republicans for their “three-point plan for $2 gas: Step one is drill, step two is drill, and step three is keeping drilling.”
He went on to say that “the American people aren’t stupid. They know that’s not a plan.”
Renewable energy, he said, was the only way to solve the “problem” of high oil prices.
Of course renewable energy came with numerous government subsidies and taxes on ‘old energy.’
The editorial explains the results of ‘drill, baby, drill’:
Domestic oil production was skyrocketing even as Obama made those remarks — thanks to advanced drilling technologies that have opened up vast new domestic supplies to production.
The Energy Information Administration projects that, next year, U.S. oil production will average almost 10 billion barrels a day, which would beat the previous record of 9.6 billion in 1970. What’s more, a quarter of this production is coming from one oil field: the Permian Basin in West Texas.
Those “obscene” industry profits? They’ve fallen as well. ExxonMobil’s (XOM) revenue in 2016 was about half what it was in 2011. In its most recent quarter, the company earned $3.4 billion — or 78 cents share. In the same quarter in 2011 it earned $10.7 billion, or $2.18 a share.
Oil companies for a time even had to borrow money to pay dividends.
Low oil prices have also led to a sharp drop in the taxes paid by the industry to the federal government. In 2016, the federal government collected about $6 billion in royalties, rental costs, and other fees from oil production on federal lands. That’s down from $14 billion in 2013.
Now Shell is saying that it’s bracing for low oil prices forever.
Lower energy prices have a positive impact on the American economy–consumers have extra money to spend, it is cheaper to manufacture goods here, and tourist-related industries thrive when Americans can travel and not worry about the cost of fuel.
The article concludes:
Even if the current oil glut causes some pain to the oil industry and crimps tax revenues, it is good news for the economy, since lower energy prices reduce the cost of doing business across the board, and make the U.S. a more-attractive place to do business on a global scale.
But it does raise some important questions: Where are those people who were screaming about Big Oil? Why aren’t they being asked to explain how they could have been so wrong? And just who, exactly, was being stupid?
Economic principles work–every time they are allowed to.
Yesterday Breitbart posted an article about the Russian investigation. It seems as if this investigation has been going on forever, and so far nothing has been found. I am waiting for the eventual charge that someone went to a Russian tea room for a cup of tea and therefore should be prosecuted. Unfortunately, because special prosecutors tend to want to charge someone with something, all these lawyers with political leanings may eventually charge someone with a process crime (they forgot something in their testimony and gave an answer on a minor point that did not satisfy the investigators). However, it is becoming rather obvious that the tale the left has been spinning since the election of foreign intrigue tied to the Trump campaign or Trump Administration is pure fiction.
Investor William Browder testified at the Senate Judiciary Committee on Thursday that Fusion GPS, the firm that had been responsible for creating and pushing the so-called “Russia dossier” against Donald Trump, had been paid by the Russian government to push for the repeal of the human rights sanctions in the Magnitsky Act of 2012. In other words, the Russian government may have been paying to smear Trump with false and salacious accusations.
Until now, the media and the Democrats have proceeded under the assumption that Russia intervened in the 2016 election by hacking the email server of the Democratic National Committee, as well as the private email of Hillary Clinton campaign chair John Podesta, and releasing their emails via Wikileaks. They have further claimed — with no evidence — that the Trump campaign may have colluded with the Russians in obtaining or releasing the emails.
The entire theory rests on the ridiculous claim that Trump had invited Russia to hack Clinton and the Democrats when he joked last July about the Russians releasing the emails Clinton had deleted from her illicit private server. (The left-wing HuffPost observed Thursday as the anniversary that Trump “asked for Russian help in the election.”) That joke prompted then-CIA director John Brennan to convene an investigation of alleged Russian interference.
Thursday The Wall Street Journal posted an article by Kimberly Strassel (the article is not linked here because it is subscribers only) noting a connection between Fusion GPS and the Democratic party.
In an interesting move, Congressional Democrats, who were ready to hold public hearings about Russian election interference featuring Donald Trump Jr. and Paul Manafort, have decided to hold those hearings in private (where they can’t pontificate instead of asking questions). Why? Because if Donald Trump Jr. and Paul Manafort were questioned in public, then Fusion GPS co-founder Glenn Simpson would also be questioned in public. For whatever reason, the Democrats were willing to give up their dog and pony show to avoid Glenn Simpson’s public testimony (where he would have been asked who paid for the false dossier on Donald Trump).
The Wall Street Journal article asks:
What if, all this time, Washington and the media have had the Russia collusion story backward? What if it wasn’t the Trump campaign playing footsie with the Vladimir Putin regime, but Democrats? The more we learn about Fusion, the more this seems a possibility.
We know Fusion is a for-hire political outfit, paid to dig up dirt on targets. This column first outed Fusion in 2012, detailing its efforts to tar a Mitt Romney donor. At the time Fusion insisted that the donor was “a legitimate subject of public records research.”
The article at Breitbart concludes:
Or the truth could be that Russia was trying to embarrass both parties, to weaken the eventual winner. Browder told the Senate Judiciary Committee that it is common for Russia to back both sides in elections, simply to create chaos.
Regardless, the Russia conspiracy theory has now collapsed. There is no evidence that Russia was colluding with the Trump campaign. But there is evidence Russia was working against it. And the truth is only beginning to emerge.
The following quote is from Shakespeare’s Macbeth:
Life’s but a walking shadow, a poor player, That struts and frets his hour upon the stage, And then is heard no more. It is a tale Told by an idiot, full of sound and fury, Signifying nothing.
The same thing can be said about the investigation into President Trump’s ties to Russia.
The article also includes a video of an interview of Lt. Col. Shaffer by Laura Ingraham. You can watch that video here.
The video is also available at The Gateway Pundit article.
The bottom line here is that members of Congress employed people who should not have been given security clearances and paid them exorbitant amounts of money. Debbie Wasserman Schultz continued to employ one of the Awan brothers up until the point he was arrested.
This is an obvious national security issue that should be investigated.
Last night the Senate voted on a bill to repeal certain aspects of ObamaCare. The Senate failed to repeal ObamaCare. The Gateway Pundit reported the story. Three Republicans voted against the bill to repeal ObamaCare–Sens. Susan Collins of Maine, Lisa Murkowski of Alaska and John McCain of Arizona. The first thing that needs to happen here is that all members of Congress and their staffs need to no longer be exempted from ObamaCare. Let’s make these legislators live under the laws they are forcing the voters to live under. The second thing that needs to happen is that the Republicans in Congress need different leadership. The third thing that needs to happen is that the three Republicans that voted against the partial repeal need to have primary challengers when they run for re-election.
According to the article, the bill to end ObamaCare that was voted on late last night included:
It would repeal the individual mandate, which is the requirement that most Americans buy insurance or pay a penalty. The provision was intended to help control costs by encouraging younger, healthier people to enter the market. Republicans have said it forced people to buy plans they did not want.
The bill would roll back the employer mandate, a similar provision that says large employers have to provide insurance for their workers.
The plan would expand a program that allows states to waive certain provisions under Obamacare.
It would suspend the medical device tax.
The proposal would increase contribution limits for tax-free health savings accounts.
This bill was an extremely stripped-down version of repeal. It is a reflection on the swamp in Washington and those Republicans who are part of it that the Republicans promised to repeal ObamaCare for seven years. The promise was, “Give us the House, and we will repeal ObamaCare. Give us the Senate, and we will repeal ObamaCare. Give us the White House, and we will repeal ObamaCare.” I guess the real solution is, “Give us a Republican Congress with integrity and a spine, and we will repeal ObamaCare. It is truly a shame that Senator McCain chose to reappear in Congress only to submarine the wishes of the American public.
ABC, CBS, and NBC spent so much time covering the controversies of the Trump administration, that they had hardly any time to talk about its successes, according to a new study by the Media Research Center.
…All networks ignored the fact that the Dow Jones’ Industrial Average hit another all-time high Wednesday.
…The networks also ignored the arrest of Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz’s IT aide while he was attempting to flee the country, a story The Daily Caller has been covering for months.
A free press is one of the foundations of a representative republic. Our foundation has forgotten its job.