When Making More Information Available To The Public Is Called A “Cover-Up”

Yesterday President Trump signed a memo allowing for the declassification of the background information on the investigation into Russian-collusion.

Paul Mirengoff at Power Line Blog reported the event this way:

From the White House comes this announcement:

Today, at the request and recommendation of the Attorney General of the United States, President Donald J. Trump directed the intelligence community to quickly and fully cooperate with the Attorney General’s investigation into surveillance activities during the 2016 Presidential election.

The Attorney General has also been delegated full and complete authority to declassify information pertaining to this investigation, in accordance with the long-established standards for handling classified information. Today’s action will help ensure that all Americans learn the truth about the events that occurred, and the actions that were taken, during the last Presidential election and will restore confidence in our public institutions.

Trump’s directive doesn’t mean that information will be declassified willy-nilly. The Attorney General is instructed to adhere to “long-established standards for handling classified information” — the same standards that those who made the initial classification decisions should have applied, but may not have in order to cover their tracks.

This is how the Associated Press reported the event:

The headline reads, “Trump moves to escalate investigation of intel agencies.”

President Donald Trump on Thursday granted Attorney General William Barr new powers to review and potentially release classified information related to the origins of the Russia investigation, a move aimed at accelerating Barr’s inquiry into whether U.S. officials improperly surveilled Trump’s 2016 campaign.

Trump directed the intelligence community to “quickly and fully cooperate” with Barr’s probe. The directive marked an escalation in Trump’s efforts to “investigate the investigators,” as he continues to try to undermine the findings of special counsel Robert Mueller’s probe amid mounting Democratic calls for impeachment proceedings.

Press secretary Sarah Sanders said in a statement that Trump is delegating to Barr the “full and complete authority” to declassify documents relating to the probe, which would ease his efforts to review the sensitive intelligence underpinnings of the investigation. Such an action could create fresh tensions within the FBI and other intelligence agencies, which have historically resisted such demands.

Still think the media is not biased? The Associated Press accuses the President of trying to undermine the findings of Robert Mueller. It fails to mention that Robert Mueller didn’t find anything. Make no mistake–the media is looking for impeachment. They want Watergate all over again. Only this time the illegal spying was the work of the people they support. That is a hard pill to swallow and is going to get even harder as the evidence comes out.

What was done to the President, his campaign, and his transition team was illegal. It was a flagrant misuse of government agencies for political purposes. Unless we want to see this sort of illegal surveillance occur during every election cycle, those responsible have to be held accountable.

Sunlight is the best disinfectant.

Will Solving The Immediate Problem Actually Accomplish Anything?

A website called nffonline.com notes:

‘Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.’ (George Santayana-1905). In a 1948 speech to the House of Commons, Winston Churchill changed the quote slightly when he said (paraphrased), ‘Those who fail to learn from history are condemned to repeat it.’

Today Venezuela was rocked by violence as opposition leader Juan Guaidó attempted to revive his movement to seize power in Venezuela.

The Associated Press is reporting today:

The violent street battles that erupted in parts of Caracas were the most serious challenge yet to Maduro’s rule. Still, the rebellion, dubbed “Operation Freedom,” seemed to have garnered only limited military support.

In one dramatic incident during a chaotic day, several armored vehicles plowed into a group of anti-government demonstrators trying to storm the capital’s air base, hitting at least two protesters.

Russia has troops in Venezuela as does Cuba. The Monroe Doctrine applies to the Russian involvement; it doesn’t cover the Cuban involvement. So should America get involved, to what degree, and how? Well, let’s look at history. I can’t think of any incidence where we have been involved in an overthrow of a government (no matter how tyrannical) and had a positive outcome. The only positive examples that you might be able to come up with would be Germany, Italy, and Japan (World War II). That was an entire world-wide war–not the overthrow of a country’s government. We have no history of replacing dictatorships with democracies and having everyone live happily ever after.

But for the sake of argument, let’s look at how American involvement that put Juan Guaidó in charge would change things. The generals in Venezuela are involved with the drug cartels that ship drugs into America through Mexico. Until we deal with the drug problem on our southern border, the corruption in the Venezuela military will continue. Can a country exist as a free country with a corrupt military that is working with the drug cartels?

We are back again to seeing the impact of a porous southern border that allows drugs to flow into our country and drug lords make enormous sums of money sending those drugs into our country. Unless we take the market away from the military generals in Venezuela and the drug cartels, any move we make to bring freedom to Venezuela will be in vain.

There Is A Difference Between Affectionate and Being Creepy

The media has written a lot about Joe Biden’s style in the past few days. Today the Associated Press posted an article stating that Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi has stated that Joe Biden needs to understand that people have personal space that needs to be respected. Yesterday The American Thinker posted an article noting that even after the dawn of the #MeToo movement, Democrats do not seem overly concerned about Joe Biden’s behavior. Remember, this is the party of Ted Kennedy, Bill Clinton,  etc. Joe Biden’s behavior seems tame. There are numerous pictures showing questionable behavior by Joe Biden, but he gets a pass. There was no actual evidence against Clarence Thomas or Brett Kavanaugh, but they were viciously attacked. The Lt. Governor of Virginia is still in office despite reports of sexual assault that were reported at the time of the incident. There seems to be a bit of a double standard here.

The American Thinker concludes:

My guess — and it is a pure guess, as I have no connections with the Dems’ inner circles — is that Joe Biden is going to see the wisdom of withdrawing from the race, especially since his son Hunter’s connections in Ukraine are at risk.  He’s old and has been making scads of money giving lectures.  He has a choice: retire and reap gratitude, honors, and many more lucrative speaking gigs, or else press forward with his candidacy and become an icon of perversion, with his son facing Trump treatment by the media, an old white male whose apologies for his privilege only further enrage the aggrieved.

I think Joe Biden is probably a very nice man, but I don’t want a man who has no respect for personal space as President. I realize that the media will pretty much leave him alone because he is a Democrat, but there would always be a controversy about his behavior swirling around him.

 

Failed Parenting

One of the most important things a parent can do is lead by example. Any time a parent does something that is not above board, it is a pretty good bet that their child will learn that it is okay to take shortcuts that may not be entirely honest. Unfortunately there seems to be a group of parents that despite their success has not yet figured this out.

The Associated Press is reporting today that federal authorities have charged a number of wealthy and famous people with falsifying information to make sure their children got into their schools of choice. I understand the desire of any parent to provide the best education possible for their children, but this scheme definitely stepped over the line.

The article reports:

Fifty people, including Hollywood stars Felicity Huffman and Lori Loughlin, were charged Tuesday in a scheme in which wealthy parents allegedly bribed college coaches and other insiders to get their children into some of the nation’s most elite schools.

Federal authorities called it the biggest college admissions scam ever prosecuted by the U.S. Justice Department, with the parents accused of paying an estimated $25 million in bribes.

“These parents are a catalog of wealth and privilege,” U.S. Attorney Andrew Lelling said in announcing the results of an investigation code-named Operation Varsity Blues.

…At least nine athletic coaches and 33 parents, many of them prominent in law, finance or business, were among those charged. Dozens, including Huffman, were arrested by midday.

The coaches worked at such schools as Yale, Stanford, Georgetown, Wake Forest, the University of Texas, the University of Southern California and the University of California, Los Angeles. A former Yale soccer coach pleaded guilty and helped build the case against others.

The article continues:

The bribes allegedly were dispensed through an admissions consulting company in Newport Beach, California. Authorities said parents paid William Singer, the founder of the Edge College & Career Network, the bribe money to get their children into college.

Prosecutors said Singer was scheduled to plead guilty in Boston Tuesday to charges including racketeering conspiracy. John Vandemoer, the former head sailing coach at Stanford, was also expected to plead guilty.

Colleges moved quickly to discipline the coaches accused. Stanford fired Vandemoer, UCLA suspended its soccer coach, and Wake Forest did the same with its volleyball coach.

Several schools, including USC and Yale, said they were victims themselves of the scam. USC also said it is reviewing its admissions process to prevent further such abuses.

This is a sad commentary on where we are as a society. Obviously some parents want to take the guess work out of college admissions. What is the lesson they are teaching their children? I wonder exactly how much of these scheme the children involved were aware of. Certainly if a child is recruited for a sport he has no knowledge of, he might notice that something is amiss. I hope the penalties for the parents are severe. As much as I can sympathize with the stress of getting children into good colleges (all three of my daughters are college graduates, two have advanced degrees), what these parents did is inexcusable–first of all because it is patently dishonest and second of all because of the example it sets for the students.

A Ridiculous Lawsuit

CNS News posted an article today about the suspension of Jim Acosta from the White House Press Corps.

The article reports:

CNN is suing President Donald Trump and his aides for revoking its White House correspondent Jim Acosta’s hard pass.

The lawsuit, filed Tuesday in U.S. District Court in Washington, D.C., calls for the immediate restoration of Acosta’s White House access.

As CNSNews.com previously reported, his White House press credentials were suspended last week after he refused to give the microphone back to a White House intern during a press conference with Trump when Trump refused to answer any more of Acosta’s questions.

Sanders said at the time that the White House will “never tolerate a reporter placing his hands on a young women just trying to do her job as a White House intern.” She called his behavior “absolutely unacceptable” and disrespectful to other reporters he refused to allow to ask their questions.

It needs to be pointed out that the White House did not bar CNN–it simply barred a reporter who behaved very rudely.

For those of you with short memories, I would like to highlight a few incidents between the press and the White House during the Obama administration as reported by Breitbart in 2017:

Closing White House events to all but the official photographer. Obama barred the media from events — including, ironically, an award ceremony where he was recognized for “transparency” — and often restricted photographers’ access, only releasing images taken by the official White House photographer.

…Trying to shut out Fox News. The Obama administration targeted Fox News for isolation and marginalization, arguing that it was not a legitimate news organization but “the research arm or the communications arm of the Republican Party.” That served as a warning to other potentially critical outlets.

…Stonewalling FOIA requests. The Obama administration “set a record” for failing to provide information requested by the press and the public under the Freedom of Information Act. The low point was Hillary Clinton’s email scandal, where tens of thousands of emails were hidden on a private server and deleted.

…Prosecuting journalists and their sources. The Obama administration pursued Fox News reporter James Rosen’s private emails — then misled Congress about it. CNN’s Jake Tapper — to his credit — pointed out that Obama had used the Espionage Act against leakers more than all of his predecessors combined.

…Wiretapping the Associated Press. After the Obama administration’s snooping on the AP was exposed in 2013, a senior NBC correspondent excused President Obama on the grounds that he would not have been nasty enough to alienate “one of the president’s most important constituencies, the press.”

There’s more–please follow the link to the article to read the complete list.

The press has treated President Trump horribly since he became the Republican candidate for President. It is no surprise that he removed one of the more obnoxious reporters from the Press Corps. Until Mr Acosta learns some degree of manners, I don’t believe his access should be reinstated. Again, Jim Acosta was barred–not CNN. The First Amendment was not limited–just the access of someone with bad manners.

A Victory For Freedom, A Possible Victory For Taxpayers

The Associated Press posted an article today about the Supreme Court’s decision that government workers can’t be forced to contribute to labor unions that represent them in collective bargaining.

The article states:

A recent study by Frank Manzo of the Illinois Economic Policy Institute and Robert Bruno of the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign estimated that public-sector unions could lose more than 700,000 members over time as a result of the ruling and that unions also could suffer a loss of political influence that could depress wages as well.

Alito acknowledged that unions could “experience unpleasant transition costs in the short term.” But he said labor’s problems pale in comparison to “the considerable windfall that unions have received…for the past 41 years.”

Billions of dollars have been taken from workers who were not union members in that time, he said.

“Those unconstitutional exactions cannot be allowed to continue indefinitely,” Alito wrote.

Kagan, reading a summary of her dissent in the courtroom, said unions only could collect money for the costs of negotiating terms of employment. “But no part of those fees could go to any of the union’s political or ideological activities,” she said.

The court’s majority said public-sector unions aren’t entitled to any money from employees without their consent.

There are two aspects of this decision that are going to make the political left very unhappy. Obviously this will severely limit the amount of money unions can contribute to Democrat political campaigns (to check union political donations, see opensecrets.org). But there is another issue here–pension funds. The other aspect of this decision is union retirement funds.

On October 19, 2012, I posted the following (here):

In a column in the Washington Examiner in April, Mark Hemingway pointed out that the average union pension plan had only enough money to cover 62 percent of its financial obligations.  Pension plans that are below 80 percent funding are considered “endangered” by the government; below 65 percent is considered “critical.”  Union membership is declining, which means that less people are paying into these funds.

The Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation (PBGC) was created by the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 (ERISA).

According to Wikipedia:

The PBGC was created to encourage the continuation and maintenance of voluntary private defined benefit pension plans, provide timely and uninterrupted payment of pension benefits, and keep pension insurance premiums at the lowest level necessary to carry out its operations. Subject to other statutory limitations, PBGC’s insurance program pays pension benefits up to the maximum guaranteed benefit set by law to participants who retire at 65 ($60,136 a year as of 2016).[2] The benefits payable to insured retirees who start their benefits at ages other than 65 or elect survivor coverage are adjusted to be equivalent in value.

In fiscal year 2015, PBGC paid $5.6 billion in benefits to participants of failed single-employer pension plans. That year, 69 single-employer pension plans failed. PBGC paid $103 million in financial assistance to 57 multiemployer pension plans. The agency’s deficit increased to $76 billion. It has a total of $164 billion in obligations and $88 billion in assets.

On 03/23/2010, Senator Robert Casey of Pennsylvania introduced S3157.

The summary of S3157 at congress.gov states:

Create Jobs and Save Benefits Act of 2010 – Amends the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 (ERISA) and the Internal Revenue Code to: (1) permit multiemployer pension plans to merge or form alliances with other plans; (2) increase Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation (PBGC) guarantees for insolvent plans to increase participant benefits; and (3) increase from $8.00 to $16.00 the annual premium rate payable to the PBGC for each individual who is a participant of a multiemployer plan after December 31, 2010. (The underline is mine)

The bill was referred to committee and died there. So what is my point? The danger to the unions in this Supreme Court decision is that they will not have the money to pay their union pensions. The danger to the taxpayers in this decision is that they will be asked to pay the union pensions.

Stay tuned. This is going to get interesting.

 

Somehow I Don’t Get The Logic In This

Yesterday AP News reported that the outdoor recreation club at Penn State will no longer go outside because it is too dangerous in the wilderness. The outdoor recreation club was established in 1920.

The article reports:

The Penn State Outing Club, originally founded in 1920, announced last week that the university will no longer allow the club to organize outdoor, student-led trips starting next semester. The hiking, camping and other outdoors-focused activities the student-led club has long engaged in are too risky, the university’s offices of Student Affairs and Risk Management determined.

 Richard Waltz, the Outing Club’s current president, said that the decision was made by an office that never consulted them.

The decision was based on a two-month review that didn’t include consultation with student leaders at any of the clubs deemed too risky, according to students.

Two other outdoor recreation clubs — the spelunking Nittany Grotto Caving Club and the Nittany Divers SCUBA Club — also have been directed to end trip offerings.

“Safety is a legitimate concern, but it wasn’t an open dialogue,” Waltz said.

So what new hazards have been added to the wilderness since 1920? Is our current crop of students so delicate that outdoors is too dangerous for them?

I suspect this move was made to protect the school from lawsuits in case someone got sunburned or got a splinter from gathering firewood, but I think it is totally ridiculous.

The article concludes:

Penn State conducted a “proactive risk assessment” not based on any previous participant injuries, according to Powers. She said Outing Club activities were rated high risk because they take place in remote environments with poor cell service and distance from emergency services.

Penn State still will offer a university-operated outdoors trip program, Powers said. The university-run program also costs much more for students, Waltz contended.

Michael Lacey, president of the Caving Club, told the Centre Daily Times he’s not surprised by the decision but says the university’s reasons for ending the club trips don’t make sense to him.

There’s a difference between going with somebody you paid to take you on a trip and going with a bunch of your friends, Lacey said.

Powers said Penn State staff members are meeting with student leaders about the transition and how the university might still support each group’s goals.

On June 29, 2014, Time posted an article with the headline, “Pentagon: 7 in 10 Youths Would Fail to Qualify for Military Service.” Do you think there might be a connection between that and not allowing a college outdoor club to go outdoors because it’s too risky?

The “Dreamer” Spin

If your news sources are limited to the mainstream media, you may have the impression that President Trump is randomly breaking up families and deporting illegal immigrants. Stories in the mainstream show crying children whose parent or parents are being deported, and these stories just reek of sympathetic angles. However, when you look past the obvious, you often find out that what you are being told may not be the entire story.

Hot Air posted an article today about one such story about a deported illegal alien.

The article reports:

ICE agents took Armando Nunez Salgado into custody outside his home. According to family members, he was in the backyard when agents walked right in through the side gate. His 14-year-old daughter Isabel Salgado dissolved into tears.

“I cried. I got very emotional, I was really sad,” said Isabel. “I mean to watch someone who is part of your everyday life and then you just have to watch him leave without saying goodbye. It kind of hurts.”

Armando is a construction worker who has been in America more than 30 years. His wife Elena Ponce said his parents brought him to the U.S. when he was only four years old.

The article at Hot Air begins to tell us more of the story:

But it turns out, Armando does have a dangerous past. After our interview, his family members told KPIX 5 he was involved in gangs and drugs for a long time.

In fact, at one point, he was on ICE’s most wanted list for charges of felony force and assault with a deadly weapon.

…“On Sunday, Feb. 25, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) Enforcement and Removal Operations (ERO) San Francisco Fugitive Operations Team arrested ICE fugitive Armando Nuñez-Salgado, 38, a citizen of Mexico and documented Sureño gang member, who has been previously removed by ICE on four prior occasions. Over the past 18 years he has accumulated criminal convictions in California that have resulted in more than 15 years of prison sentencings. His criminal convictions include assault with a deadly weapon (statutorily enhanced because of his gang member status), burglary, hit-and-run causing injury and evading a peace officer.”

The man had been deported four times and done fifteen years in prison! This is not an innocent man who is an asset to America.

Sequential Planning Behind The Release Of The FISA Memo

The Conservative Treehouse posted an article today about the vote last night to approve the release of the memo involving FISA warrants and possible corruption int he FBI and DOJ. It is a rather complex article, and I suggest that you follow the link and read the entire article. The way this memo was released to the President with the intention of its being made public is not random–there seems to be a much larger plan in place here with the ultimate goal being to drain the swamp.

Some highlights from the article:

The White House has five days to review. Any DOJ or FBI officials who have a position against public release are now responsible to make their case known to the Office of the President who is in charge of them, and the executive branch.

Specifically because the Chief Executive (President Trump) granted permission for FBI Director Christopher Wray to see the intelligence memo prior to the House Intel vote; Director Wray and Asst. AG Rosenstein had an obligation to debrief the executive on their findings. That’s why Wray and Rosenstein were at the West Wing yesterday. However, the vote last evening transferred the declassification decision to the executive.

…With the executive holding the memo, opposing political talking-points will now shift their narrative and claim the President is undermining the DOJ and FBI with a pending release.  Opposition does not want the memo released.  It’s just pantomime politics.

The executive branch IS the DOJ and FBI; the President cannot, therefore, undermine himself.  Media opposition have worked earnestly for two years to create a false illusion of the intelligence apparatus being separate from the executive branch, they’re not. President Trump is the Chief Executive over all the agencies; just like President Obama was accountable for James Comey (FBI) and Loretta Lynch (DOJ) previously.

Then again, the prior political abuse by those agencies explains the reasoning for the media’s attempt to conflate the structure of government.  By creating a false separation they are, in essence, also protecting Obama from the discovery of any prior malfeasance within the executive branch Justice Department: James Comey, Andrew McCabe (FBI), or Loretta Lynch and Sally Yates (DOJ) et al.

Traditionally, Democrats would look to dilute any pending damage from the declassification release by leaking to the media the content therein.  However, in this example, until actually released by the executive, any leaks of content by the legislative branch are felony releases of classified intelligence.   And, remember, there’s a leak task force looking for an opportunity to cull oppositional leakers.

…The more the opposition fights against the memo, the more momentum there is to declassify and release the underlying supportive documents. Ultimately, that’s the goal. President Trump would want to draw all fire upon him and the memo bringing increased attention to it, and simultaneously providing support to release the underlying evidence.

The FBI and DOJ, or their immediate intelligence superior, DNI Dan Coats, can declassify all the underlying documents if needed; so long as they go through the appropriate channels – which means asking the Chief Executive (President Trump) for authority to do so; and going through the process of seeking input from all parties of interest including the National Security Council. Ultimately all declassification needs executive approval.    (Underlines are mine)

The article concludes:

Ultimately, not only does President Trump hold authority over public release of the Intelligence Memo, President Trump also holds the declassification authority for all underlying evidence used in creating the memo.

Now you see why the Democrats were/are so apoplectic about how brilliantly Chairman Nunes gamed out the strategy. That’s why Democrats and Media were so violently trying to besmirch Nunes personally. He strategically outmatched them – and they were counting on using the compartmented structure of internal classified intelligence to keep the most damaging information hidden away from public view.

Where things are today appears to have been well thought out since sometime around April, May or June of 2017.

Key strategists: Dan Coats (DNI), Admiral Rogers (NSA), Chairman Nunes (House Intel), Chairman Goodlatte (House Judiciary) and Chairman Grassley (Senate Judiciary); against the complimentary timeline of Inspector General Michael Horowitz and his year-long Justice Department investigation.

None of this is random. All of this is sequential.

The Democrats in Congress have again been outsmarted by someone they considered too stupid to be President.

Bias Can Be What You Leave Out Of A Story As Well As Choosing The Stories You Report

Global warming is one of the sacred cows of the political left. Part of this is due to the fact that climate change can be used as a weapon against capitalism, free markets, and successful democratic nations.

In February of last year, I posted an article that included the following quote:

…Then listen to the words of former United Nations climate official Ottmar Edenhofer:

“One has to free oneself from the illusion that international climate policy is environmental policy. This has almost nothing to do with the environmental policy anymore, with problems such as deforestation or the ozone hole,” said Edenhofer, who co-chaired the U.N.’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change working group on Mitigation of Climate Change from 2008 to 2015.

So what is the goal of environmental policy?

“We redistribute de facto the world’s wealth by climate policy,” said Edenhofer.

So that explains why the political left is so in love with the idea of global warming. Now let’s look at the omissions in a recent Associated Press article about global warming as reported in The Daily Caller.

The article reports:

An Associated Press reporter sent some questions to Dr. Roger Pielke Jr. about what role global warming played in this year’s slew of billion-dollar natural disasters.

Pielke, an expert on natural disaster costs, apparently didn’t give AP reporter Seth Borenstein the answers he was looking for, because his ensuing article didn’t have any quotes from the University of Colorado professor.

The following questions and answers were omitted from the AP article:

Please follow the link to The Daily Caller and read the entire article. It illustrates how the media tries to shape the debate rather than simply reporting facts. As I have stated before, the best website on the internet for climate information is wattsupwiththat.com.

 

What Is True vs. What Is Reported

Media bias is old news, but every now and then it can be really interesting. The following story illustrates why President Trump needs to hold on to his Twitter account.

This morning the Associated Press reported:

WASHINGTON (AP) — The top House and Senate Democrats said Wednesday they had reached agreement with President Donald Trump to protect thousands of younger immigrants from deportation and fund some border security enhancements — not including Trump’s long-sought border wall.

The agreement, the latest instance of Trump ditching his own party to make common cause with the opposition, was announced by Senate Democratic Leader Chuck Schumer and House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi following a White House dinner that Republican lawmakers weren’t invited to attend. It would enshrine protections for the nearly 800,000 immigrants brought illegally to this country as kids who had benefited from former President Barack Obama’s Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, or DACA, program, which provided temporary work permits and shielded recipients from deportation.

Fox News reported today:

President Trump on Thursday denied reports that he struck a “deal” overnight with top Democrats to protect so-called “Dreamers,” while insisting “massive border security would have to be agreed to in exchange for consent.”

Trump’s Twitter post was in response to Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., and House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., announcing after a dinner meeting at the White House that they had “agreed to a plan to work out an agreement to protect our nation’s DREAMers from deportation.”

They also said “we would review border security measures that didn’t include building a wall.”

The president clarified Thursday morning that he intends for the wall to be built — and while he wants to helps Dreamers, there’s no deal yet. 

The political consequences for President Trump if he does not build a wall would be enormous.

On Tuesday The Hill posted an article about support for the wall among Americans.

These are a few highlights from the article:

Last February, Pew reported similar findings: 62 percent of Americans oppose building a wall. Only 35 percent support it.

But are we telling the whole story?

First, it’s worth looking at what Pew asked: “All in all, would you favor or oppose building a wall along the entire border with Mexico?” To me, it’s a confusing question. After all, there already is a wall or fencing along approximately 700 miles of the southern border. It might make more sense to ask, “Would you favor or oppose building a wall along the remaining, unwalled portion of the border with Mexico?”

…While we’re in the weeds, assuming there’s value to asking a poll question about something that nobody is proposing, there’s additional nuance to consider. Pew ended up with a Democrat-heavy sample: 38 percent Republican/Republican leaning and 52 percent Democrat/Democrat leaning. The 14 percentage point difference means Pew interviewed 38 percent more Democrat thinkers than Republican thinkers. I can’t find any estimate that says the actual U.S. population is politically lopsided along those lines.

That is how you skew a poll.

The article at The Hill concludes:

There are two things we could do to provide more meaningful reporting. First, when addressing polls on political topics, we should disclose the breakdown of Democrats and Republicans upfront. To state the obvious: findings from a sample that’s made up of 98 percent Republicans will be entirely different than findings from a sample of 98 percent Democrats. How can meaning be put behind results on any political topic without the partisan makeup of the sample being considered?

Second, our reporting could include opposing findings and trends, if they exist. For example, in the most recent Pew poll, “three-quarters (74 percent) of Republicans and Republican-leaners supported a border wall” and that support had grown substantially in recent months. Conservative Republican support for a wall was up nine points since Trump was elected President (from 71 percent to 80 percent).

Support also grew among moderate and liberal Republicans (from 51 percent to 60 percent). An accurate headline could just as well have been: “Poll shows growing Republican support for a wall under a Trump presidency.”

All things considered, I came up with my own headline that’s more transparent than many of the ones I saw: “In polls with Democrat-heavy sampling, there’s overwhelming opposition to building a wall along the ‘entire’ border; a concept that nobody is, in fact, proposing.”

The article at The Hill was written by Sharyl Attkisson (@SharylAttkisson), an Emmy-award winning investigative journalist, author of the New York Times bestsellers “The Smear” and “Stonewalled,” and host of Sinclair’s Sunday TV program “Full Measure.” If you are not familiar with her story, please search for her on the Internet and read her history. She definitely knows what she is talking about.

More Questions Than Answers

On Saturday, CBS News reported the collision of the USS Fitzgerald and the ACX Crystal, a large container ship. Unfortunately, seven sailors were killed in the collision.

CBS News reported:

The Fitzgerald was struck by the Philippine-registered container ship ACX Crystal. The Philippine ship is 29,060 tons and 730 long, the coast guard said, much larger than the 8,315-ton naval destroyer. Aerial television news footage showed its bow on the left side was dented and scraped, but it did not appear to have suffered any major structural damage.

…The Fitzgerald, an Arleigh Burke-class guided missile destroyer commissioned in 1995, is based in Yokosuka, according to the Navy. Its crew typically includes 23 officers, 24 chief petty officers and 291 enlisted sailors.   

Not so fast. There seem to be some questions surrounding the incident. Thomas Lifson has posted two articles in The American Thinker–one yesterday and one today–that raise some questions as to what actually happened. For the sake of keeping related information together, I am going to combine facts from the two articles.

Thomas Lifson observes:

We received an email from a Navy Mother that raises serious questions. We will redact her name, while the rumors (and that’s how they must be categorized for now) reported by her son aboard the Fitzgerald are checked out. Here is what she wrote to us:

My son is assigned to the USS Fitzgerald. I am unable to share his rate with you.

The information is short and not so sweet. The implications are disturbing.

The ship is registered in the Philippines. We do not know who the owner is. The container ship neither had its running lights or transponder on. That is an action taken willfully. Furthermore, for the container ship to strike with such accuracy is troublesome. Given what some have done with cars in Europe, what a feather in the cap it would be to sink a U.S. Navy warship. Think on that.

My son missed being washed out to sea by the blink of an eye. He was on his way to one of the berthing areas that was rammed.

Yes, language is important. “Rammed” is the perfect word.

Loving and Concerned Navy Mother

If there is any substance to this – that the ACX Crystal disabled protective systems and rammed the Fitzgerald at high speed aimed at crtical facilities (evident from the damage)

…we have to consider the possibility of an asymmetric warfare attack designed to disable missile defense of a carrier strike group, as North Korea demonstrates the ability to make exactly such attacks on a multibillion dollar warship carrying thousands of sailors.

The American Thinker also quotes a report by the Associated Press:

Japan‘s coast guard is investigating why it took nearly an hour for a deadly collision between a U.S. Navy destroyer and a container ship to be reported.

A coast guard official said Monday they are trying to find out what the crew of the Philippine-flagged ACX Crystal was doing before reporting the collision to authorities 50 minutes later.

There may be a very obvious explanation of the reporting of this incident. If the incident is in fact a ramming, rather than a collision, it requires a response. The first thing to find out is who owns the ACX Crystal and who was controlling the helm at the time of the incident. At that point, the Trump Administration has a choice–they can either roll over and play dead as the past administration did when something like this happened or they can respond with force. It is my hope that if this is proven to be no accident, the Trump Administration will respond with enough force to let whoever did this know that doing it again is a really bad idea. I don’t want to see the government overreact, but if this was not an accident, I do want to see our government react with strength.

Sometimes A Change Is Needed

CNS News is reporting tonight that President Trump has fired FBI Director James Comey.  Both Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein and Attorney General Jeff Sessions recommended the firing.

The article reports:

In a letter to Comey on Tuesday, Trump said he received letters from the attorney general and deputy attorney general recommending that Comey be fired, and the president has accepted their recommendation.

“I have accepted their recommendation and you are hereby terminated and removed from office, effective immediately,” Trump said.

“While I greatly appreciate you informing me, on three separate occasions, that I am not under investigation, I nevertheless concur with the judgment of the Department of Justice that you are not able to effectively lead the Bureau,” the president said.

“It is essential that we find new leadership for the FBI that restores public trust and confidence in its vital law enforcement mission. I wish you the best of luck in your endeavors,” he added.

The search begins immediately for Comey’s replacement.

Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) said Tuesday that “this was a difficult decision for all concerned.”

“I appreciate Director Comey’s service to our nation in a variety of roles,” Graham said in a statement.

“Given the recent controversies surrounding the director, I believe a fresh start will serve the FBI and the nation well. I encourage the President to select the most qualified professional available who will serve our nation’s interests,” Graham added.

Although I believe James Comey attempted to be even-handed while at the FBI, there were a few times when he dropped the ball.

A website called grabien lists ten scandals that occurred during James Comey’s tenure at the FBI:

1. Before he bombed the Boston Marathon, the FBI interviewed Tamerlan Tsarnaev but let him go. Russia sent the Obama Administration a second warning, but the FBI opted against investigating him again.

2. Shortly after the NSA scandal exploded in 2013, the FBI was exposed conducting its own data mining on innocent Americans; the agency, Bloomberg reported, retains that material for decades (even if no wrongdoing is found).

3. The FBI had possession of emails sent by Nidal Hasan saying he wanted to kill his fellow soldiers to protect the Taliban — but didn’t intervene, leading many critics to argue the tragedy that resulted in the death of 31 Americans at Fort Hood could have been prevented. 

4. During the Obama Administration, the FBI claimed that two private jets were being used primarily for counterterrorism, when in fact they were mostly being used for Eric Holder and Robert Mueller’s business and personal travel. 

5. When the FBI demanded Apple create a “backdoor” that would allow law enforcement agencies to unlock the cell phones of various suspects, the company refused, sparking a battle between the feds and America‘s biggest tech company. What makes this incident indicative of Comey’s questionable management of the agency is that a) The FBI jumped the gun, as they were indeed ultimately able to crack the San Bernardino terrorist’s phone, and b) Almost every other major national security figure sided with Apple (from former CIA Director General Petraeus to former CIA Director James Woolsey to former director of the NSA, General Michael Hayden), warning that such a “crack” would inevitably wind up in the wrong hands.

6. In 2015, the FBI conducted a controversial raid on a Texas political meeting, finger printing, photographing, and seizing phones from attendees (some in the group believe in restoring Texas as an independent constitutional republic).

7. During its investigation into Hillary Clinton’s mishandling of classified material, the FBI made an unusual deal in which Clinton aides were both given immunity and allowed to destroy their laptops. 

8. The father of the radical Islamist who detonated a backpack bomb in New York City in 2016 alerted the FBI to his son’s radicalization. The FBI, however, cleared Ahmad Khan Rahami after a brief interview. 

9. The FBI also investigated the terrorist who killed 49 people and wounded 53 more at the Pulse Nightclub in Orlando, Fla. Despite a more than 10-month investigation of Omar Mateen — during which Mateen admitting lying to agents — the FBI opted against pressing further and closed its case. 

10. CBS recently reported that when two terrorists sought to kill Americans attending the “Draw Muhammad” event in Garland, Texas, the FBI not only had an understanding an attack was coming, but actually had an undercover agent traveling with the Islamists, Elton Simpson and Nadir Soofi. The FBI has refused to comment on why the agent on the scene did not intervene during the attack. 

There are just too many concerns about some of Director Comey’s actions during his tenure at the FBI. It is time for him to leave so that the agency can regain the confidence of the American people.

 

Does The Truth Matter?

Yesterday The Daily Caller posted an article about the reporting of the recent shooting in Fresno, California.

The article reports:

The Associated Press edited the words of a Muslim man who allegedly killed three white people in downtown Fresno Tuesday afternoon and shouted “Allahu Akbar!”

The suspect, 39-year-old Kori Ali Muhammad, holds fervent anti-Trump beliefs according to his social media profile, and he told police afterward that he hates white people.

Rather than reporting the gunman’s literal words, however, the AP reported the gunman as saying “God is great.”

If David Duke made a racist statement saying ‘n***s are inferior’, would the media report it as ‘white people are wonderful’? I don’t think so. Yet that is essentially what the Associated Press (AP) did. By translating the phrase into English, the report misleads the reader into believing that some sort of Christian fundamentalist with a grudge against President Trump killed these people. There is no way an ordinary person would interpret this as an act of domestic terrorism by a radical Muslim (which it was) from the AP report.

The Mainstream Media Is Still Reporting Fake News

John Hinderaker at Power Line posted an article today about the current discussion about wire taps at Trump Tower.

There are two major points in the article:

  1. There is one item of actual hard news: the House Intelligence Committee will investigate.

      2. Every time the AP mentions FISAgate, it includes this ritual defense of the Obama administration:

Trump has offered no evidence or details to support his claim, and Obama’s spokesman has denied it.

The AP’s statement is false. It is a classic instance of fake news. Barack Obama’s spokesman has not denied that “the Obama administration wiretapped Trump Tower last year.” He only denied that Barack Obama personally ordered such surveillance. But that isn’t the question. Presumably, the order to conduct surveillance came from Loretta Lynch’s Department of Justice. But no one thinks that Lynch would have ordered the opposing presidential candidate’s telephones tapped, or his computers hacked, without her boss’s approval.

Zero Hedge posted an article yesterday that also sheds some light on the issue.

Zero Hedge reports:

The best example of this came from Ben Rhodes, a former senior adviser to President Obama in his role as deputy National Security Advisor, who slammed Trump’s accusation, insisting that “No President can order a wiretap. Those restrictions were put in place to protect citizens from people like you.” He also said “only a liar” could make the case, as Trump suggested, that Obama wire tapped Trump Tower ahead of the election.

It would appear, however, that Rhodes is wrong, especially as pertains to matters of Foreign Intelligence Surveillance, and its associated FISA court, under which the alleged wiretap of Donald Trump would have been granted, as it pertained specifically to Trump’s alleged illicit interactions with Russian entities.

…But what is perhaps most important, is that we may know soon enough. As the NYT reported on Saturday afternoon, a senior White House official said that Donald F. McGahn II, the president’s chief counsel, was working on Saturday to secure access to what the official described as a document issued by the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court authorizing surveillance of Mr. Trump and his associates.

If and when such a document is made public – assuming it exists of course – it would be Trump, once again, that gets the last laugh.

Stay tuned. This is going to be an interesting story. However, it is becoming obvious that we cannot trust the mainstream media to report it honestly.

The Mud Puddle In Your Front Yard Is No Longer Under Government Control

In April 2015, The Heritage Foundation posted an article on the “Waters of the United States” (WOTUS) rule.

The article includes the following:

The proposed rule would assert jurisdiction over numerous types of waters, including “tributaries,” “adjacent waters,” and “other waters.” The definition for “tributaries” covers any water with a bed, banks, and ordinary high water mark that contributes flow, either directly or through another water, to a traditional navigable water, interstate water, territorial sea, or impoundment.[8] This definition is even broader than it sounds. As explained by the American Farm Bureau Foundation:

The agencies use the words “bed” and “bank” and “ordinary high water mark,” which sound like parts of a river or stream. In reality, though, the agencies’ explanation makes clear that those words just mean some kind of channel (land with higher elevation on each side of land with a lower elevation) plus any physical marks left by flowing water.

A broad interpretation of this law means that any mud puddle that forms in your yard in the spring has the potential of being under government control. The could impact your ability to build, landscape, or use your property in other ways.

On February 27, the White House issued the following statement about the Waters of the United States rule:

Presidential Executive Order on Restoring the Rule of Law, Federalism, and Economic Growth by Reviewing the “Waters of the United States” Rule

EXECUTIVE ORDER

– – – – – – –

RESTORING THE RULE OF LAW, FEDERALISM, AND ECONOMIC GROWTH
BY REVIEWING THE “WATERS OF THE UNITED STATES” RULE

By the authority vested in me as President by the Constitution and the laws of the United States of America, it is hereby ordered as follows:

Section 1. Policy. It is in the national interest to ensure that the Nation’s navigable waters are kept free from pollution, while at the same time promoting economic growth, minimizing regulatory uncertainty, and showing due regard for the roles of the Congress and the States under the Constitution.

Sec. 2. Review of the Waters of the United States Rule. (a) The Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency (Administrator) and the Assistant Secretary of the Army for Civil Works (Assistant Secretary) shall review the final rule entitled “Clean Water Rule: Definition of ‘Waters of the United States,'” 80 Fed. Reg. 37054 (June 29, 2015), for consistency with the policy set forth in section 1 of this order and publish for notice and comment a proposed rule rescinding or revising the rule, as appropriate and consistent with law.

(b) The Administrator, the Assistant Secretary, and the heads of all executive departments and agencies shall review all orders, rules, regulations, guidelines, or policies implementing or enforcing the final rule listed in subsection (a) of this section for consistency with the policy set forth in section 1 of this order and shall rescind or revise, or publish for notice and comment proposed rules rescinding or revising, those issuances, as appropriate and consistent with law and with any changes made as a result of a rulemaking proceeding undertaken pursuant to subsection (a) of this section.

(c) With respect to any litigation before the Federal courts related to the final rule listed in subsection (a) of this section, the Administrator and the Assistant Secretary shall promptly notify the Attorney General of the pending review under subsection (b) of this section so that the Attorney General may, as he deems appropriate, inform any court of such review and take such measures as he deems appropriate concerning any such litigation pending the completion of further administrative proceedings related to the rule.

Sec. 3. Definition of “Navigable Waters” in Future Rulemaking. In connection with the proposed rule described in section 2(a) of this order, the Administrator and the Assistant Secretary shall consider interpreting the term “navigable waters,” as defined in 33 U.S.C. 1362(7), in a manner consistent with the opinion of Justice Antonin Scalia in Rapanos v. United States, 547 U.S. 715 (2006).

Sec. 4. General Provisions. (a) Nothing in this order shall be construed to impair or otherwise affect:

(i) the authority granted by law to an executive department or agency, or the head thereof; or

(ii) the functions of the Director of the Office of Management and Budget relating to budgetary, administrative, or legislative proposals.

(b) This order shall be implemented consistent with applicable law and subject to the availability of appropriations.

(c) This order is not intended to, and does not, create any right or benefit, substantive or procedural, enforceable at law or in equity by any party against the United States, its departments, agencies, or entities, its officers, employees, or agents, or any other person.

DONALD J. TRUMP

THE WHITE HOUSE,
February 28, 2017.

Thank you, President Trump. I support clean air and clean water. I don’t support government’s interference in the property rights of Americans.

If Our Leaders Don’t Follow The Law, Why Should We?

On Sunday, Breitbart posted an article about California State Senate President Pro Tem Kevin De Leon.

The article reports:

California State Senate President Pro Tem Kevin De Léon (D-Los Angeles) said last Tuesday that “half his family” was in the country illegally, using false documents, and eligible for deportation under President Trump’s new executive order against “sanctuary” jurisdictions.

De Léon, who introduced the bill, made his remarks at a hearing in Sacramento on SB54, the bill to make California a “Sanctuary State.

…Testifying before the Senate Public Safety Committee, De Léon defended the widespread practice by illegal aliens of using fraudulent documents to work and obtain taxpayer-paid benefits, dismissing any concerns California citizens may have about being the target of identity theft.

In an interview the following day on KPCC 89.3’s Air Talk with Larry Mantle, De Léon expressed outrage that President Trump’s executive order would include those who possess fraudulent documents or committed identity theft to obtain a Social Security number.

“Someone simply who received or purchased a [fraudulent] Social Security card down at McArthur Park, or elsewhere in my district would be eligible immediately for mass deportation,” De Léon said (at 11:45 in the link above).

Senator De Leon was interviewed by Larry Mantle, a talk show host after making the above statements.

Senator De Leon further explained:

Host Larry Mantle asked him: “… First of all, I just — I want to make sure I understand correctly: You don’t think purchasing a phony Social Security card and number should be a deportable offense?”

De Léon replied: “I don’t think so … the vast majority of immigrants — hard working immigrants — have done that.  I can tell you I have family members specifically who came here as undocumented immigrants, and they did the same thing. That’s what you need to do to survive in this economy.”

Mantle objected: “But of course the problem is, — and I know people too — who’ve had their Social Security numbers and identities stolen as a result of that….”

De Léon minimized the problem, saying it was not the same as “Russian” hacking.

So it’s okay to steal someone’s Social Security number if you are here illegally. Wow. That is the leadership in the California legislature. Just wow.

 

 

Why It Is Necessary To Drain The Swamp

Yesterday Lifezette posted a story about problems with leaks in the State Department. This is a security problem as well as a political problem. We need to remind all those in the State Department that they work for the President. We also need to remind them that they are not the elected President and do not have the authority to run the government. Leaking information for the purpose of embarrassing an administration you don’t like should result in job loss. Hopefully under President Trump, it will.

The article reports:

Serious leaks have rocked the White House and likely sent top staffers searching for the individuals in the West Wing and Cabinet-level agencies responsible for the disclosures — some of which may have included classified information.

Washington and the diplomatic enclaves across the world were jolted on Wednesday night when two reports — one by the Associated Press and one by The Washington Post — outlined what Trump said to the leaders of Mexico and Australia.

…Since Trump took office on Jan. 20, the administration has been plagued by a number of leaks about the internal process. Some leaks have panned out, while others have been hotly denied by the White House.

The leaks include: a charge that Homeland Security Secretary John Kelly was not briefed on the executive order on restrictions on travel from seven predominantly Muslim nations; a charge that Trump ended a call with Turnbull; a charge that Trump said he could send troops to deal with Mexico’s “bad hombres”; and a charge that Trump asked U.S. Judge Thomas Hardiman to drive toward D.C. to increase speculation before the selection of Neil Gorsuch for the Supreme Court.

There is no excuse for this. Cleaning up the worldwide mess that President Obama left behind needs the full attention and cooperation of those in the State Department. Using leaks to destroy a President for political purposes is not patriotic, in fact it borders on treason.

This Is A Problem

I grew up watching three major television stations report the news and reading one newspaper. I was lulled into a false sense of security that what I was reading and what I was hearing was reasonably fair and accurate. Unfortunately, even if that was true then, it isn’t true now.

 
Sean Hannity posted a list on his website of the stories the mainstream media misreported this week. These are important stories, and believing the mainstream media could easily lead you to numerous false conclusions.

 
This is a list of the stories from the article:

1.The left lost it after it was reported that Trump was easing restrictions on Russia. The news seemingly confirmed the Democratic narrative that Trump showed favoritism to Vladimir Putin.
In truth, it turned out that the “easing of sanctions” had been a “technical fix” planned under the Obama administration.

2. Earlier this week the Associated Press reported that President Trump threatened to send U.S. troops into Mexico.
The reports were based on a White House readout of a call between Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto and Trump.
Upon the release of the actual transcripts of the conversation, it turned out that President Trump actually offered to send U.S. assets to assist in Mexico’s fight with drug cartels.
Even the Mexican government vehemently denied the story.

3.It was reported that the mother of an Iraqi-born veteran of the fist Gulf war died due to being denied entry under Trump’s so-called Muslim ban.
According to the original report:
A local business owner who flew to Iraq to bring his mother back home to the US for medical treatment said she was blocked from returning home under President Trump’s ban on immigration and travel from seven predominately Muslim nations.
The story eventually fell apart when the man’s Imam came forward and said that the man’s mother had died before the ban had even been signed.

4. On Thursday, the media ran with reports that Trump’s nominee for the Supreme Court Judge Neil Gorsuch founded and presided over a club called the “Fascism Forever Club” while he was in high school.
The “evidence” for the claim came from the Georgetown Preparatory School yearbook from Gorsuch’s time at the school, and was first reported on by the U.K. Daily Mail.
As it turns out, no such club ever existed.
The “Fascism Forever Club” had been a sophomoric joke amongst the students.

5.Trump renamed “Black History Month” to “African American History Month.” “Donald Trump, turns out, did not officially change Black History Month to National African American History Month … it’s been that way for decades,” TMZ laster reported. “Trump’s official presidential proclamation uses the words, ‘African American History Month’ — but President Obama did the same. In fact, since President Carter … almost all Commanders-in-Chief have used the same language in proclamations.”

6. Last, but not least–the following tweets:


If you get your news from the mainstream media, there is a good chance that you are being misinformed.

A Proposed Solution That Will Only Make The Problem Worse

Yesterday the Associated Press posted an article about a proposal to designate election systems as critical infrastructure. On the surface this sounds like a really good idea, but when you examine the idea closely, there are some problems with it.

But first, let’s look at the article, which states:

U.S. Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson announced the move Friday with 30 minutes’ notice to the National Association of Secretaries of State and U.S. Election Assistance Commission, an independent bipartisan federal agency that develops voluntary voting guidelines and certifies voting systems.

Officials at both agencies are criticizing the department for what they said was a failure to work with state officials to fully answer their questions about the designation before making the change.

“We’re having trouble understanding exactly what they’re going to do, that we’re not already doing,” Connecticut Secretary of State Denise W. Merrill, who heads the national secretaries association, told The Associated Press. “States were already doing much of this (security work) themselves using very different products.”

The U.S. Constitution states in Article I Section 4:

The times, places and methods of holding elections for Senators and Representatives, will be decided by each State legislature. Congress may override these regulations at any time by  Law.

The U.S. Constitution states in Article 2 Section 2:

Each State, (and Washington D.C.), must appoint a number of electors equal to the total number of Senators and Representatives which that State (or District) is entitled to in Congress. The legislator of each State may determine the manner in which the electors are chosen. No Senator or Representative, or person holding an official position under the United States, may be appointed as an elector.

What is illustrated here is the fact that the individual states control elections within their states–the federal government does not. One reason it is difficult to ‘hack’ voting machines is that they are often not networked–they are individual machines and must each be ‘hacked’ individually. Although this suggestion by the Obama Administration sounds like an idea that would protect our elections, it would, in fact make hacking easier for hackers by centralizing the voting machines on one network.

Aside from being a federal power grab, this is a really bad idea. The goal here is federal control of elections. This will no longer limit corruption to some of our major cities–anyone will be able to be able to participate!

 

Disturbing On Many Levels

By now we have all heard the story of Matthew Lasner and his husband, who were removed from a JetBlue flight for harassing Ivanka Trump. However, I doubt that you have heard the entire story. A website I am an unfamiliar with, Heavy.com, posted details of some information I have seen referred to elsewhere.

Heavy.com posted a tweet:

The intention here was to harass another passenger on the plane. How noble. It gets even worse. According to Heavy.com, and other sources, Mr.. Lasner is a professor at Hunter College. What kind of example is he setting for his students? What is he teaching his students? According to the article, Matthew Lasner is married to Daniel Goldstein, a New York Attorney. Mr. Goldstein was holding their child as he was yelling at Ivanka Trump. Great example to set for your child.

The Washington Examiner also carried the story yesterday, noting that it had been sanitized in the mainstream media.

The Washington Examiner reported:

Lasner later deleted the tweets, and he appears to have suspended his Twitter account altogether following the incident.

JetBlue later put out a statement reading, “The decision to remove a customer from a flight is not taken lightly. If the crew determines that a customer is causing conflict on the aircraft, the customer will be asked to deplane, especially if the crew feels the situation runs the risk of escalation during flight. In this instance, our team worked to re-accommodate the party on the next available flight.”

I would not have been so accommodating.

Some of the mainstream media reports of the incident are included in The Washington Examiner article:

From the Associated Press: “Man says he and husband removed from JetBlue flight after ‘expressing displeasure’ that Ivanka Trump was aboard.”

From Yahoo News: “Man kicked off JetBlue flight for questioning why Ivanka Trump was on it.”

From the Atlanta Journal Constitution: “Passengers kicked off flight after run-in with Ivanka Trump.”

From the Washington Post: “Passenger who confronted Ivanka Trump gets kicked off Jet Blue flight.”

I can’t remember anyone ever doing anything similar to any of the Obama family members when they were out in the public–the girls at concerts or shopping. This is disgraceful. There need to be serious consequences for this sort of behavior. You can disagree with anyone politically for any reason, but you do not have the right to harass them or their family.

Today’s Shiny Object

One of the main weapons the press uses to manipulate the American public is the choice of which news stories to spend time on and which news stories to ignore. When you look at some of the coverage in this election campaign, it becomes very obvious that the media has taken sides.

Last Friday, The Federalist Papers website reported the following:

Between ABC News, NBC News, and CBS, they covered the Trump tape for 23 minutes during one night of coverage. The Clinton WikiLeaks revelations got just 56 seconds of coverage — with NBC News omitting it altogether.

There are two major differences between the Trump tape (and subsequent spurious allegations) and the Clinton revelations.

First, what Clinton has done has enormous implications for the country and our lives individually. She was First Lady, a senator, and secretary of state. What she’s done as a public servant affects us greatly. What she has said she will do as president if she’s elected has massive implications for the future of this country and the western world.

What Trump said 11 years ago, lewd as it was, has little effect on any of us personally or the future of this country. It’s not terribly likely to have much of an effect on any of our lives — not in the way Clinton’s scandals and policies will.

Today the focus is on an answer to a question Chris Wallace addressed to Donald Trump, but never to Hillary Clinton.

Today The Wall Street Journal reported:

Charges that election results might be rigged have moved from the fringes of U.S. politics to a central issue in the closing days of the 2016 campaign as Republican Donald Trump has repeatedly and without corroborating evidence suggested a fair outcome may be impossible.

You will find some form of this story in all of the major news sources. There is no mention of the times in recent history that Democrats claimed fraud.

From an October 2002 issue of Newsweek (posted at prnewswire)::

At a private fund-raiser in Los Angeles for Democratic Sen. Jean Carnahan of Missouri, Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton told the crowd that President Bush merely had been “selected” president, not elected, Newsweek reports in the current issue. “You know, I’m a fan of Clintonomics,” she told the crowd while standing from a perch on the staircase of movie producer Alan Horn’s art-filled Bel Air home, “and this administration is destroying in months our eight years of economic progress.”

This was two years after the election, and Hillary Clinton was still complaining that the election has been rigged. John Kerry is on the record as saying similar things. There was a definite effort by the Democrats to delegitimize both elections of George W. Bush. The media needs to remember this in their criticism of Donald Trump.

Meanwhile, Project Veritas has released videos showing illegal activity on the part of the Clinton campaign and wikileaks has released emails showing corruption within the campaign and the media has provided very little information on the subject. It is a safe bet that many voters have little or no idea of any of the information contained in those videos or documents. How are voters going supposed to make an informed decision when the media chooses not to inform them?

While We Were All Focused On A Shiny Object Over There…

BizPacReview reported yesterday about some information in the Obama Administration’s Friday night document dump.

The article reports:

Before the start of the Columbus Day holiday weekend, the Treasury Department made it easier for offshore banking institutions to make transactions with Iran, as long as the money doesn’t actually enter the U.S. financial system. Although many sanctions were lifted as a part of the Iran deal, certain “specially designated nationals,” or SDNs, are still subject to the sanctions for reasons which include their human rights record or support for terror groups.

Now, even these SDNs are no longer completely banned from transacting with U.S. businesses.

The Associated Press reports that this change in the rules is the result of complaints from Iran that the remaining U.S. Sanctions have limited Iran in its commercial dealings with other countries.

The article concludes:

Just another bad postscript to a bad deal, and we can expect plenty more of the same if people keep paying attention to the puppet shows instead of the man, or woman, behind the curtain.

The Iran deal was a really bad deal. We are financing terrorism and the development of an atomic bomb by Iran. We can expect more of the same from a President Hillary Clinton.

The Experiment Of The States

America is made up of 50 different states. Each state is unique–politically, economically,  geographically, ethnically, etc. So if people could live anywhere they wanted to, where would they live? Actually, the age of the internet has made that somewhat possible–telecommuting has grown in recent years. So let’s look at where people live.

John Hinderaker at Power Line posted an article yesterday about a study of trends in population growth in states within America. The data for the study came from the IRS. The results were not really surprising.

The article reports the findings of the study:

To measure the states that are most attractive to Americans on the move, we developed an “attraction” ratio that measures the number of domestic in-migrants per 100 out-migrants. A state that has a rating of 100 would be perfectly balanced between those leaving and coming.

Overall, the biggest winner — both in absolute numbers and in our ranking — is Texas. In 2014 the Lone Star State posted a remarkable 156 attraction ratio, gaining 229,000 more migrants than it lost, roughly twice as many as went to No. 3 Florida, which clocked an impressive 126.7 attraction ratio.

Most of the top gainers of domestic migrants are low-tax, low-regulation states, including No. 2 South Carolina, with an attraction ratio of 127.3, as well as No. 5 North Dakota, and No. 7 Nevada.

…Overall, many of the most affluent states are the ones hemorrhaging high-income earners the most rapidly. As in overall migration, New York sets the standard, with the highest outmigration of high income earners (defined as annual income over $200,000) relative to in-migrants (attraction ratio: 53). New York is followed closely by Illinois, the District of Columbia and New Jersey, which are all losing the over-$200,000-a-year crowd at a faster pace than California.

The big winners in terms of affluent migration tend to be historically poorer states, mainly in the Sun Belt and the Intermountain West. Florida has an attraction ratio for people earning over $200,000 a year of 223, the highest in the nation, followed by South Carolina, Montana, Idaho and North Carolina.

Given the opportunity, Americans move to states with lower taxes and less regulation over their businesses and daily lives. Now if we could only teach them to vote that way in national elections…

 

Pay For Play

The Associated Press posted a story today about the link between donations to the Clinton Foundation and State Department appointments given to people outside of the U.S. Government.

The article reports:

More than half the people outside the government who met with Hillary Clinton while she was secretary of state gave money – either personally or through companies or groups – to the Clinton Foundation. It’s an extraordinary proportion indicating her possible ethics challenges if elected president.

At least 85 of 154 people from private interests who met or had phone conversations scheduled with Clinton while she led the State Department donated to her family charity or pledged commitments to its international programs, according to a review of State Department calendars released so far to The Associated Press. Combined, the 85 donors contributed as much as $156 million. At least 40 donated more than $100,000 each, and 20 gave more than $1 million.

When you go to the Charity Navigator that rates charities according to how much money they spend on administrative costs and how much money goes to their various causes and you look up the Clinton Foundation, this is what you find:

Why isn’t this organization rated?

We had previously evaluated this organization, but have since determined that this charity’s atypical business model can not be accurately captured in our current rating methodology. Our removal of The Clinton Foundation from our site is neither a condemnation nor an endorsement of this charity. We reserve the right to reinstate a rating for The Clinton Foundation as soon as we identify a rating methodology that appropriately captures its business model.

What does it mean that this organization isn’t rated?

It simply means that the organization doesn’t meet our criteria. A lack of a rating does not indicate a positive or negative assessment by Charity Navigator.

Loosely translated that means, “We are not willing to take a stand.” I suspect they have seen what happens to people who take a stand to oppose or reveal anything the Clintons are doing.

The Associated Press article continues:

Some of Clinton’s most influential visitors donated millions to the Clinton Foundation and to her and her husband’s political coffers. They are among scores of Clinton visitors and phone contacts in her official calendar turned over by the State Department to AP last year and in more-detailed planning schedules that so far have covered about half her four-year tenure. The AP sought Clinton’s calendar and schedules three years ago, but delays led the AP to sue the State Department last year in federal court for those materials and other records.

S. Daniel Abraham, whose name also was included in emails released by the State Department as part of another lawsuit, is a Clinton fundraising bundler who was listed in Clinton’s planners for eight meetings with her at various times. A billionaire behind the Slim-Fast diet and founder of the Center for Middle East Peace, Abraham told the AP last year his talks with Clinton concerned Mideast issues.

Big Clinton Foundation donors with no history of political giving to the Clintons also met or talked by phone with Hillary Clinton and top aides, AP’s review showed.

Some of the people who have been screaming for years that they wanted to ‘take the money out of politics’ should take a really good look at this. The Clinton family has become one of the most advanced crime syndicates since the Mafia. They need to be investigated.