A Really Dumb Political Decision

Ted Cruz‘s speech last night was a mistake–his making a speech was not a mistake–what he said was a mistake.

On March 3, 2016, Real Clear Politics posted the following:

Echoing the iconic moment from the first debate of the cycle, Marco Rubio, Ted Cruz, John Kasich and Donald Trump all agree to definitely support the Republican nominee, no matter who it is, at Thursday’s GOP presidential debate on the Fox News Channel.

RUBIO: I’ll support the Republican nominee.

…BAIER: Senator Cruz, yes or no, you will support Donald Trump is he’s the nominee?

CRUZ: Yes, because I gave my word that I would. And what I have endeavored to do every day in the Senate is do what I said I would do. You know, just on Tuesday, we saw an overwhelming victory in the state of Texas where I won Texas by 17 percent.

…BAIER: Governor Kasich, yes or no, would you support Donald Trump as the Republican nominee?

KASICH: Yeah. But — and I kind of think that, before it’s all said and done, I’ll be the nominee.

…WALLACE: Yes, you will support the nominee of the party? TRUMP: Yes, I will. Yes. I will.

There were a few moments during the campaign when it looked as if Donald Trump was going to disavow that pledge, but generally speaking, he stayed with it. Governor Kasich and Senator Cruz simply chose not to keep their pledge. Governor Bush was also conspicuous in his absence from the Republican Convention.

I believe Donald Trump is the only logical choice for President right now. I believe he will support the U.S. Constitution, and he obviously loves America. I was truly disappointed in Ted Cruz’s speech last night. I believe Senator Cruz is a good man who simply made a bad decision in making that speech. As for the other Republicans who are behaving like two-year olds, they need to get over themselves and help elect Donald Trump. The irony here is that there is a strong possibility that Donald Trump will not run for a second term if he is elected. The behavior of some Republican leaders now will determine if the American people are willing to vote for them in the 2020 primary elections.

The End Of Free Speech On The Internet

Investor’s Business Daily reported yesterday on the plan to hand control of the internet over to the United Nations. That’s the same United Nations that includes a voting bloc of fifty-seven Muslim nations (Organization of Islamic Cooperation-OIC) that has been attempting to alter the Universal Declaration of Human Rights to make it a crime to criticize Islam. Can you imagine what speech laws the United Nations could come up with if they had control of the internet?

The article reports:

The National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA), part of the Commerce Department, has given its stamp of approval to transfer oversight to a little-known, but mighty, Los Angeles-based private nonprofit group called the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers, or ICANN.

…The internet is one of the few places where, with some notable exceptions, free speech still reigns supreme. If some of the rest of that “multistakeholder community” doesn’t like that, what’s to keep it from exerting enormous pressure on ICANN to regulate away free exchange on the internet?

To keep this from happening, Texas Sen. Ted Cruz (You wondered what he was up to since he stopped his campaign? Now you know.) and Wisconsin Sen. Sean Duffy have introduced a bill to halt transferring the internet domain name system away from the U.S. government unless Congress explicitly authorizes it.

There is also the matter of fees.

The article further reports:

Nor is this solely about freedom of speech. ICANN already charges fees to users. What happens when it’s free to raise fees with no oversight?

As Rick Manning of Americans For Limited Government noted recently, “nonprofit” ICANN had $219 million in revenue last year. When other countries gain clout, “it is guaranteed that they will seek to grab the pot of gold through a U.N. structure that would more directly benefit them and increase their power.”

Hopefully Ted Cruz’s bill will pass and keep the internet free from speech codes and increased fees.

Welcome To The Silly Season

Usually, the last three or four weeks before an election becomes the silly season. It is a time when you really can’t believe anything you read. There are more lies told in those three to four weeks than in the preceding six months and the following six months. Usually this occurs three to four weeks before a national election, but the current presidential campaign has not followed any of the rules that applied in the past, so I suppose we shouldn’t be surprised that the silly season started months ago.

The current story that reflects the silly season is the National Inquirer story about Ted Cruz having had multiple affairs. Although that is something that Donald Trump seems to admit doing himself (and voters ignore it), evidently this is an important issue for Ted Cruz. Sometimes the double standard amazes me–remember when what Bill Clinton did in his spare time was off limits?

Hot Air posted some information on the supposed scandal that may shed some light on the truth (or lack thereof) of the charge.

The article reports:

For months and months, anti-Cruz operatives have pitched a variety of #CruzSexScandal stories to a host of prominent national publications, according to Republican operatives and media figures. The New York Times, The Washington Post, Bloomberg News, Politico, and ABC News—reporters at all those outlets heard some version of the Cruz-is-cheating story. None of them decided to run with rumors. Those publications’ representatives all declined to provide on-the-record comments when The Daily Beast reached out for this article.

Breitbart News, the notoriously Trump-friendly conservative outlet, was also pitched the story of Cruz’s extramarital affairs, according to a source close to the publication. That source said an operative allied with Marco Rubio—but not associated with his official campaign—showed the publication a compilation video of Cruz and a woman other than his wife coming out of the Capitol Grille restaurant and a hotel on Tuesdays and Thursdays. But the outlet opted not to report on the video, which demonstrated no direct evidence of an affair.

“We got it from a Rubio ally,” said the source. “It was too thin, so [Breitbart’s Washington political editor Matt Boyle] decided not to run it. There was no way to verify the claims.”

I have no way of proving or disproving this story. Neither does Ted Cruz. That is the reason the opposition makes charges like this. One of the women named has come forward and said that the story is not true. Ted Cruz has, of course, denied it. Unfortunately, this story is simply a further example of how nasty this presidential campaign is. This campaign is anything but presidential. It is my hope that whoever is the actual source for this story, if they are currently holding public office, will be removed from that office in disgrace. This story, unproven, is simply not appropriate in any political campaign.

One Reason Washington Insiders Fear Ted Cruz

Senator Ted Cruz is not a Washington insider. Despite the fact that his career path has taken him to Washington, he is not part of the ‘in-crowd.’ He has shown numerous times that he has basic principles and that he is willing to take a stand on those principles whether anyone joins him or not. This sort of thinking is dangerous to the Washington establishment–of either party. That is one reason the attacks on him will increase as the primary elections continue.

Currently the Internal Revenue Service Tax Code is a tribute to the effectiveness of lobbyists. The tax code is used to encourage certain behavior and discourage other behavior. There are times when the tax code has been used to encourage marriage and families and times when it has been used to discourage marriage. Certain business with strong lobbyists have received tax breaks in the past. The tax code has been used to subsidize certain industries and behaviors. Crony capitalism has been a major force behind changes and writing of the tax code. It is time for that to end, and Ted Cruz has an interesting suggestion as to how to end it.

The following is taken from Ted Cruz’s webpage:

FlatTaxPlanWouldn’t it be nice to be able to pay your taxes on this simple form?

The website further reports:

PERSONAL INCOME TAX – SINGLE RATE: 10%

The Simple Flat Tax creates a simple, single-rate flat tax for individuals. The existing seven different rates of individual income tax will become one low rate: 10%.

  • A family of four will pay no taxes on their first $36,000 of income.
  • The plan exempts a large amount of initial income for low- and middle-income taxpayers, with a $10,000 standard deduction and $4,000 personal exemption. It also keeps the Child Tax Credit and expands and modernizes the Earned Income Tax Credit with greater anti-fraud and pro-marriage reforms.
  • The plan keeps the charitable giving deduction and features a home mortgage interest deduction, capped at principal value of $500,000.

BUSINESS FLAT TAX – SINGLE RATE: 16%

The corporate income tax along with the payroll tax are abolished, replaced by a 16% Business Flat Tax.

  • The current corporate tax code is riddled with years of accumulated loopholes and special favors, burdening U.S. businesses with the highest top tax rate among the advanced nations. This convoluted and anti-competitive structure will be replaced with a simple 16% tax on net business sales (gross sales minus expenses and capital expenditures).
  • The current payroll tax discourages work and job creation. The vast majority of Americans pay more in payroll tax than in income tax. The Simple Flat Tax will eliminate the payroll tax, boosting jobs and wages for working Americans, while guaranteeing funding for Social Security and Medicare.

UNIVERSAL SAVINGS ACCOUNTS (USA)

The Simple Flat Tax creates Universal Savings Accounts (USA) allowing savings of up to $25,000 per year in tax-deferred dollars.

Savers can withdraw the funds at any time for any reason – whether it be for college tuition, a down payment on a home, or their son or daughter’s wedding. This savings feature harmonizes with the tax elements of the Cruz Simple Flat Tax to move toward encouraging savings and investment – a recipe for economic growth and jobs.

There are other tax reform plans out there, but this plan looks possible and interesting. The plan also eliminates the death tax, the overseas profits tax, the Alternative Minimum Tax, and the ObamaCare taxes.

I would just like to note that there is some serious double taxation in our current tax code–the death tax taxes money that taxes were paid on during the life of the person who died. Taxes paid on Social Security income are being paid on money that was already taxed when it was earned. The government needs to become considerable less greedy and allow Americans to keep more of the  money they earn.

 

 

It’s About Time

On Tuesday The Washington Free Beacon reported that lawmakers in Congress have filed legislation to designate the Muslim Brotherhood as a terrorist organization. It’s about time.

Who is the Muslim Brotherhood?

Gamal al-Banna, the brother of Hassan al-Banna, the man who founded of the Muslim Brotherhood in 1928, was interviewed for a Norwegian television documentary, called “Freedom, Equality and the Muslim Brotherhood,”, He stated, “They (the Muslim Brotherhood) do not believe in freedom at all. There is no Islamic authority that respects freedom or democracy.”

Al Qaeda and the Muslim Brotherhood are cut of the same cloth. The documents uncovered in the Holy Land Foundation Trial (if you follow the link, the first half is in Arabic, the second half is the English translation) explained clearly that the Muslim Brotherhood was (and is) in the process of implementing a plan to bring America under Sharia Law and create a world-side caliphate. The plan of the Brotherhood is to do this by infiltrating the American government and influencing policy. Al Qaeda has the same goal–they just want to do it by violent means rather than peaceful means.

Unfortunately, the Muslim Brotherhood has successfully infiltrated the American government at all levels. In 2012 US Army Lieutenant Colonel Matthew Dooley was condemned by the Joints Chiefs of Staff (JCS) and relieved of teaching duties at Joint Forces Staff College for teaching a course judged to be offensive to Islam. Former CIA agent Claire M. Lopez commented on the state of things: “All US military Combatant Commands, Services, the National Guard Bureau, and Joint Chiefs are under Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Martin Dempsey’s Muslim Brotherhood-dictated order to ensure that henceforth, no US military course will ever again teach truth about Islam that the jihadist enemy finds offensive (or just too informative).”

The Washington Free Beacon reports:

“I can say at the outset that elements of the Muslim Brotherhood both here and overseas have supported terrorism,” said Robert Mueller, the former director of the FBI, during testimony in 2011.

Intelligence officials have established that elements of the Brotherhood run terrorist financing operations in the United States. Much of this information, however, remains classified.

Other officials have explained that terror groups such as Hamas, Islamic Jihad, and al Qaeda can all trace their roots back to the Muslim Brotherhood and its leaders.

Cruz has also led congressional efforts to designate Iran’s Revolutionary Guard Corps an official state sponsor of terrorism.

That bill, submitted at the end of September, would likely mitigate the impact of sanctions relief provided to Iran under the recently inked nuclear deal.

“Branches of the [Revolutionary Guard Corps] have murdered hundreds of Americans,” Cruz said in a statement at the time. “They have attacked our allies, notably Israel. They have provided material support for other designated terrorist groups, such as Hezbollah and Hamas. Yet for years the United States has sanctioned [Revolutionary Guard Corps] entities while leaving the organization itself untouched.”

It is about time we declared the Muslim Brotherhood a terrorist organization.

Bias? What Bias?

Brent Bozell posted an article at Townhall.com today contrasting the reporting on Ted Cruz and Elizabeth Warren during the Senate budget debate. The contrast is amazing.

The article reports:

Sen. Ted Cruz and Sen. Elizabeth Warren are polar opposites, a Tea Party conservative and an Occupy Wall Street socialist. Then there are the similarities: Both were elected in 2012, both have Harvard on their resume and both are mentioned as presidential material. But the media’s read of the two demonstrates an unquestionable slant.

Both senators have shaken up the Senate over heavy spending and regulation. When Warren does it, she’s promoted as a profile in courage, standing up for fairness. When Cruz does it, he’s a selfish brat causing meltdowns.

The article reminds us to look for this type of reporting as the 2016 Presidential campaign begins.

The article cites an example of bias in The Hill:

William Jacobson at the blog Legal Insurrection found another example in The Hill newspaper, reflecting the Capitol’s own tilt like a funhouse mirror. His examples were less than 24 hours apart. Warren drew the Dec. 12 headline “Warren makes her mark,” and on Dec. 13, the headline was “Cruz center of Senate meltdown.” The articles even had the same author, a hack named Alexander Bolton.

The article concludes:

All this provides a precise GPS location for our liberal media. To them, Ted Cruz is a dangerous extremist, but Warren is their heroine — compassionate, professorial and politically and economically correct. Anyone who expects objectivity from the press is badly out of touch.

Look for this pattern throughout the 2016 campaign.

Padding the National Defense Authorization Bill

Yesterday Breitbart.com reported that the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) includes some provisions that have nothing to do with defense.

The article reports:

According to Cruz (Senator Ted Cruz), the “extraneous” land grab provisions in the NDAA include:   

250,000 acres of new wilderness designations 400,000 acres withdrawn from productive use (for energy, mining, timber, etc.) 

Fifteen new national park units or park expansions 

Eight new studies for national parks 

Three new wild and scenic river designations

3 new studies for additional designations 

Study to begin the National Women’s History Museum 

The federal government already owns an estimated 640 million acres of land, more than one-third of the entire country.  

Breitbart News reported that the text of the NDAA compromise reached by a bipartisan group of lawmakers from both chambers included a slew of unrelated public lands measures. The NDAA is considered must-pass legislation.   

Again, we are left wondering who Congress actually represents–I don’t think it is the American people.

The article further reports:

The NDAA agreement includes close to 100 natural resources provisions from across the nation, including eight Nevada public land provisions that have been priorities for Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) and his Republican counterpart Dean Heller.  

In a statement celebrating the attachment of the public lands provisions to the NDAA, Sen. Heller, a member of the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee, acknowledges that he “worked behind the scenes for months to attach these Nevada priorities, spurring economic development and enhancing national security, to the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA).”  

“This is great news for the entire state of Nevada. I’ve worked tirelessly from my first days in the House of Representatives to take the lead and ensure these lands bills were top priorities. I’ve been committed from the very beginning and am glad to see the fruits of this labor,” he states. “I’m grateful my colleagues from the delegation, specifically Senator Reid and Congressman [Mark] Amodei [R-Nev.], collaborated in making these bills important action items this Congress.”  

“It was not an easy lift but the needs of Nevada were addressed, and I’m happy to achieve this goal,” he adds. “As this legislation becomes law, it will not only spur economic development in our state but enhance national security as well. Those are things we should all be proud to accomplish.”  

This NDAA is a bad bill–it cuts military benefits of active duty military and it includes a land grab that needs to be discussed on its own–not added to something unrelated. I understand that it would be inconvenient for the bill not to pass, but I hope there are enough people in the Senate who are paying attention and will say ‘no.’