How Fake News Works

Breitbart posted an article today that is a stunning example of how fake news works. Washington Post reporter Dave Weigel posted the following on Twitter to support his claim that the Trump rally in Pensacola was poorly attended:

What Mr. Weigel failed to mention was that the picture was taken before the Trump rally began.

President Trump called him out on his dishonesty with a Tweet:

I doubt the mainstream media made the correction (although Mr. Weigel’s tweet was deleted). This is the reason the President tweets–to get the truth out when the mainstream media lies.

The article at Breitbart concludes:

But how do Weigel’s elite colleagues respond? No reprimands. No embarrassment. No reaction that indicates in any way that they are concerned with holding on to whatever residual integrity might remain in their discredited institution. Instead, they all make excuses for the inexcusable and attack the president as though he does not have his own free speech rights, as though the elite media is exempt from criticism.

If you wanted to destroy the media by planting confederates in newsrooms all around the country, over this last week, none of your saboteurs could have been anywhere near as effective as the self-destructive Weigel, Maggie Haberman, Brian Ross, Alisyn Camerota; and everyone at CNN, the Washington Post, Reuters, and PolitiFact.

The Insanity Being Taught In Our Colleges

If we expect America to survive at a nation, we had better take a long look at what our children are being taught in college and begin to change it. As a nation, we send our future leaders to college in the hope that they will learn critical thinking and leadership skills that will preserve us as a nation. We also hope that they will begin to understand the foundations of our nation. The obvious foundations are freedom, right to private property, free speech, etc. The more subtle foundation of our nation is the family. An intact family unit protects our children as they grow up and builds the foundation of leadership for the next generation. Unfortunately, not everyone sees it that way.

Fox News posted an article today about a City University of New York sociology professor, Jessie Daniels, who posted the following on Twitter:

There was a time in America that starting a family and wanting the best for your children was seen as a virtue. Wanting the best for your children meant encouraging them to work hard in school, learn a marketable skill, and if possible, continue their education. It is unfortunate that those goals are now considered ‘white supremacy.’ Those goals are attainable by any American of any race–ask Ben Carson about his background. If every young American accepted the goal of doing well in school, learning a marketable skill, waiting until after high school to get married, and waiting until marriage to have children, the poverty rate in America would be almost non-existent.

The Professor continues:

“Until white people are ready to confront their own family’s racism (and) participation in systemic white supremacy, it’s not getting dismantled,” she wrote. “Beyond just calling out interpersonal racism, white people who want to be engaged in the work need to ask themselves about housing wealth.”

She added: “White people: do you own your home? When you die, where’s wealth in that house going? If it’s to your children, you’re reproducing (inequality).”

If I understand her correctly, success=racism. Is she saying that people who are not white cannot be successful? I would encourage her to look at the number of non-while immigrants to America who have come here in the past fifty years or so and started businesses and become successful. Maybe the problem isn’t the color of a person’s skin, maybe its the attitude and unwillingness to try to succeed that makes the difference.

Be Careful What You Say And Who You Say It To

Project Veritas has struck again. The Daily Caller posted a video of a New York Times bragging about opposing President Trump.

This is one of the videos involved, currently posted at YouTube:

I have embedded this video in case it disappears from YouTube.

The article further reports:

Conservative activist group Project Veritas released the video on Tuesday, showing Dudich joking about being objective, before saying: “No, I’m not. That’s why I’m here.” Dudich emphasized his influence within the Times newsroom, saying that his “imprint is on every video we do.”

The editor also claimed to be a former antifa member who frequently assaulted alleged neo-Nazis. “Yeah, I used to be an antifa punk once upon a time,” Dudich says, referring to the militant far-left movement that has repeatedly attacked conservatives and Trump supporters.

Are you still willing to believe what The New York Times is reporting?

In case you are not convinced, this is the longer version of the video:

Again, it is embedded here in case YouTube takes it down.

Confirming What We Knew All Along

On Monday, Hot Air posted an article about media coverage of President Trump. Those of us who thought that according to the media President Trump could do nothing right have been proven correct.

The article includes the following:

Aside from being unfair, this is not good for Americans. This is divisive and accomplishes nothing.

The article reminds us:

The obvious counterpoint is that Trump’s first 60 days had an unusual amount of bad news in them so of course the coverage would be negative to match. He rolled out the travel ban in late January without much of a heads up to John Kelly or James Mattis; he watched the House GOP introduce a fantastically unpopular health-care bill and fail to pass it; his national security advisor resigned over discussions he’d had with the Russian ambassador about sanctions; and Trump himself did what Trump tends to do, popping off on Twitter about Obama wiretapping his phones, assuring congressional leaders that he actually won the popular vote, and so on.

Still, the first 60 days were also when Trump delivered his well-received address to Congress, and it was a period in which various well-regarded cabinet members were nominated and/or confirmed. He nominated the eminently qualified and amiable Neil Gorsuch to the Supreme Court just 10 days into his term. Still: 5/62 on the coverage. Even allowing for the fact that there’s more overtly partisan media now than there was when Obama took office, let alone Bush or Clinton, some of the media outlets and programs tracked by Pew for this survey include *overwhelmingly* pro-Trump entities like Breitbart, Sean Hannity, Rush Limbaugh, and Tucker Carlson. Exclude them from the data and what’s the split on positive and negative coverage overall? 1/62? 0/62?

As the mainstream media becomes more irrelevant because of alternative news sources, they are jockeying for a place in the new news paradigm. Today’s reporters live in a politically left vacuum where facts are irrelevant. When today’s liberals are confronted with facts, they either change the subject or personally attack. It is my belief that the anti-Trump bias we are seeing in the mainstream media is the result of the fact that the 60’s hippies became college professors and chose to indoctrinate their students rather than teach them to think. That may be why the average liberal reacts the way he/she does when confronted with facts.

 

When News Media Forgets To Check Facts

The New York Post posted an article yesterday criticizing Joel Osteen for closing his church to refugees from the hurricane in Houston. I don’t know enough about Joel Osteen to compliment or criticize his ministry, but I tend to get annoyed when criticism is unwarranted.

Boston 25 News posted pictures of Joel Osteen’s church at the present time. Would you seek shelter here?

Meanwhile, the church has posted on its Twitter page that it is coordinating with the city and collecting supplies to distribute to Houston area shelters.

The media loves to criticize anyone claiming to be a Christian. As I said, I am not familiar with this man’s ministry, but obviously the criticism in this case is totally bogus.

The Danger Within

The biggest danger to America right now is not from outside the country–it is from within. The danger comes from a well-established, well-funded, totally entrenched group of people in Washington who are afraid that President Trump will upset their apple cart and take away their goodies. What they don’t realize is the the success of President Trump is very closely related to the success of America–if President Trump is driven from office, it is quite possible that our representative republic will dissolve into chaos. At that point, no political party wins and everyone loses.

The Washington Free Beacon posted an article today about the efforts to undermine and eventually oust President Trump by a coalition of Marxists, globalists, bankers, Islamists, and establishment Republicans.

The article reports:

Rich Higgins, until recently director of strategic planning at the NSC, revealed the program in a seven-page memorandum produced in May that warns of a concerted information warfare campaign by the Marxist left, Islamists, and political leaders and government officials opposed to the populist president.

“The Trump administration is suffering under withering information campaigns designed to first undermine, then delegitimize and ultimately remove the president,” Higgins states.

“This is not politics as usual but rather political warfare at an unprecedented level that is openly engaged in the direct targeting of a seated president through manipulation of the news cycle,” he said.

Higgins, an Army veteran and former Pentagon official who specialized in irregular warfare and who was dismissed last month for writing the memo, said the attacks should not be confused with normal partisan political attacks or adversarial media attention.

The former aide criticized the White House for failing to counter the activities and said the political warfare attacks threaten the Trump presidency.

I am not sure there is a way to counter these activities other than by the use of the President’s Twitter account and the basic economic success of the President’s programs. Actually, I think the opponents of the President fear his economic success more than they fear anything else. The idea that someone outside the ‘club’ can be successful is frightening to any member of the Washington establishment.

What is currently going on in Washington is the equivalent of the ‘cool’ kids in high school holding tight control over who sits at their lunch table. A kid they do not consider cool has become popular and has chosen not to join them at their table. Every smear campaign possible that might put the cool kids back in control will be attempted. That is where we are.

Inappropriate Behavior

While the media is focusing on whether or not President Trump’s tweets are appropriate, they are ignoring some extremely inappropriate behavior by former President Obama.

The Federalist Papers posted an article today about the recent violation of the Logan Act by former President Obama.

The article reports:

President Moon Jae-in renewed his resolve to pursue sanctions and dialogue to tackle North Korea’s nuclear program during a meeting with former US President Barack Obama on Monday, saying now is the “last chance” for the regime to return to the negotiating table.

During the 40-minute talk, Moon shared the results of his recent summit with his incumbent US counterpart Donald Trump, asking for Obama’s advice on ways to advance the relationship.

The article then explains the problem:

This could be construed as a violation of the Logan Act as defined by Cornell Law School:

Any citizen of the United States, wherever he may be, who, without authority of the United States, directly or indirectly commences or carries on any correspondence or intercourse with any foreign government or any officer or agent thereof, with intent to influence the measures or conduct of any foreign government or of any officer or agent thereof, in relation to any disputes or controversies with the United States, or to defeat the measures of the United States, shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than three years, or both.

However, the article includes a quote from The New York Times:

The Logan Act appears to be a so-called dead letter, meaning a law that remains technically on the books but is essentially defunct or toothless.

A study by the Congressional Research Service in 2015 said nobody has ever been prosecuted under the statute and identified only one instance of an indictment under the law: in 1803, the United States attorney in Kentucky obtained from a grand jury an indictment of a Kentucky farmer who had written an article in support of creating a separate nation in the territory west of the fledgling United States that would be an ally to France. But the prosecutor dropped the case. A recent draft scholarly paper posted online by a Federal Appeals Court law clerk identified a second apparent such indictment, involving the reported arrest in 1852 of a man who wrote a letter to the president of Mexico.

What President Obama did in meeting with the South Korean President was tacky, inconsiderate, breaking with tradition, and a further attempt by a now irrelevant politician to regain the spotlight.

Meanwhile the media is focused on Donald Trump’s tweets. Really?

How Media Bias Works

Media bias is reflected in the slant of stories. It is also reflected by the stories the media promotes and the stories the media ignores.

On Friday The Washington Examiner posted an article that illustrates what media bias looks like.

The article states:

The House voted to pass two immigration measures on Thursday, but both ABC and CBS completely omitted that information from their nightly news programs.

On “NBC Nightly News,” anchor Lester Holt dedicated just 26 seconds to the story after leading his program with a three minute segment on President Trump‘s tweets about Mika Brzezinski and Joe Scarborough, according to a survey of the coverage conducted by the conservative Media Research Center.

One of the immigration reform bills voted on by the House, Kate’s Law, passed with bipartisan support, a newsworthy development amid heightened partisanship in Washington. The bill also touches a topic about which people have very strong feelings. Although it’s unlikely the legislation will survive a vote in the Senate, the decision by two of the three major networks simply to blow it off is somewhat remarkable. The law passed more than an hour before either broadcast aired, a development that had been widely anticipated all week.

Kate’s Law increases the penalties for deported aliens who try to return to the United States. It passed by a vote of 257 to 157, with one Republican voting no and 24 Democrats voting yes. A bipartisan vote in the House of Representatives should be news–it hasn’t happened a lot lately.

Why was the media concentrating on President Trump’s tweets instead of the passage of Kate’s Law? There are many people on both sides of the political spectrum who didn’t like what President Trump tweeted. When you ignore the constant attacks on President Trump and his family by Mika Brzezinski and Joe Scarborough (as the media coverage generally did), President Trump was being rude. However, when you look at the tweet in the context of the constant attacks on President Trump and his family, why would you expect him not to fight back? The media used to respect the privacy of children of presidents. Under the Trump Administration, that no longer holds true. I think the attention and the slant the mainstream media is giving President Trump’s tweets while ignoring a major news story explains why no one believes them or depends on them for honest news.

Comments On A Current Scandal

This is not a news article—this is a rant from an old person who is concerned about the activities of the current younger generations. There is no source for this article although it is the result of the news we have recently seen about the scandal in the Marine Corps regarding nude pictures and videos. Admittedly, I come from a generation that was more accustomed to privacy—we didn’t have Facebook, Twitter, Snapchat, Instagram, etc. to post pictures of our lunch and other activities. The older generation had a different concept of privacy than the current generations.

I don’t find it odd that men would look at pictures of naked women. I don’t find it odd that a man would look at an explicit video. I do question the wisdom of the women posting these pictures or videos. A good rule of thumb is to never put anything on the internet that you wouldn’t mind seeing on the front page of The New York Times or on the evening news. Even if the pictures of videos were not intended for the internet, there is no guarantee when you give a person a picture or a video that the picture or video will never be seen by anyone else. Again, wisdom is called for. Never put anything on film or in your phone or laptop that you don’t want to go public. These pictures and videos could create a serious problem if a future employer were to see them.

I don’t know what the eventual punishment of the people involved in this scandal will be. It is my hope that the people who created the pictures and videos will be disciplined as well as those who set up the Facebook page to view them. There are no victims here—the women who created the pictures and videos are not victims—the pictures and videos were created with their consent. They are guilty of bad judgement, just as the men who set up the Facebook page are guilty of bad judgement.

As I have previously stated, I am part of a generation that believed in privacy. These pictures and videos devalue the women that made them. They are the result of the lies that many women are told about their value and about their role as women.  My advice to a woman whose boyfriend or husband asks for such a picture or video is to find another boyfriend of husband. You are worth more than that.

I am sure there will be some serious consequences for the people involved in this scandal. It is my hope that they will learn from their mistakes and be more prudent in their actions in the future. I also hope that the women involved begin to realize their true worth and that the men involved begin to respect the women in their lives rather than viewing them as sex objects.

I Wonder What They Think Of Latin

On Monday, The Daily Caller posted an article about some recent insanity at one of our college campuses.

The article reports:

An “antiracist” poster in a college writing center insists American grammar is “racist” and an “unjust language structure,” promising to prioritize rhetoric over “grammatical ‘correctness.’”

The poster, written by the director, staff, and tutors of the University of Washington, Tacoma’s Writing Center, states “racism is the normal condition of things,” declaring that it permeates rules, systems, expectations, in courses, school and society.

Sounds like a junior high student who is tired of diagramming sentences.

The article further reports:

In an article accompanying the poster, the University of Washington, Tacoma revealed Friday that Dr. Asao Inoue, director of the writing center, is behind the new push for social justice.

On his Tacoma faculty page, Inoue states that he does “research that investigates racism in writing assignments.” Meanwhile, the professor’s Twitter presence indicates no love for President Donald Trump:

“[The statement] is a great example of how we are striving to act against racism,” said Dr. Jill Purdy, Tacoma’s vice chancellor of undergraduate affairs. “Language is the bridge between ideas and action, so how we use words has a lot of influence on what we think and do.”

The Tacoma Writing Center’s prioritization of social justice over grammar resembles previous concerted efforts to legitimize incorrect speech, such as Ebonics, “inventive spelling,” and “whole language.”

The purpose of language is communication. Using ‘inventive spelling’ may actually cause your message to be misunderstood. Legitimizing incorrect speech will only make effective communication more difficult. As the article states, “Language is the bridge between ideas and action…”  However, if your language is incorrect and misunderstood, the actions resulting from that language may not be what you had in mind.

The majority of Americans speak English, and as far as I know, some degree of English is taught in our schools. Taking away correct English will not only create problems in our communication with each other, it will prevent students from reading the classic literature that forms the basis of our society. Hopefully that is not the actual goal of this particular Professor.

The Double Standard At Work

From Twitter:

bathroombillLet that sink in a minute. Michael Moore, Bruce Springsteen, and a few other celebrities have decided to boycott North Carolina because of House Bill 2, which says that men should use men’s bathrooms and women should use women’s bathrooms. That is their privilege. However, if they have the privilege of doing business (or not doing business) with whomever they choose based on whatever reason, do Christians have to bake a cake for a homosexual wedding? Do they have to host a homosexual wedding? Do Christians have the same freedom of association that Michael Moore and other celebrities do?

Your Tax Dollars At Work

CBN News posted an article today about the release of Republican Sen. Tom Coburn‘s annual “Wastebook” report, which lists 100 examples of wasteful government spending totaling $25 billion.

The article reports:

Examples of wasteful federal spending include the following:

$10,000 to watch grass grow at a Florida reserve

$19 million in paid vacations for government workers, about a third of whom were placed on “administrative leave” for disciplinary reasons, including criminal offenses

$350 million to build a launch pad tower that was mothballed immediately because the rockets it was designed to test had been scrapped years ago

The report also found the State Department used part of its $3 million counterterrorism communications budget to debate terrorists on Twitter.

Why are we debating terrorists on Twitter? Why not use their smart phones to located them and deal with them in a way that prevents terrorism (use your imagination)?

This is another reason we need a new Congress that will put a stop to this foolishness.

Voters, Beware, Things May Not Be What They Seem

Fox News is reporting today about a very unsettling early voter mishap. Early voting has already begun in Illinois, and on Monday Republican state representative candidate Jim Moynihan went to cast his vote in the Schaumburg Public Library. When he attempted to vote for himself, the machine cast a vote for his opponent.

The article reports:

The conservative website Illinois Review reported that “While using a touch screen voting machine in Schaumburg, Moynihan voted for several races on the ballot, only to find that whenever he voted for a Republican candidate, the machine registered the vote for a Democrat in the same race. He notified the election judge at his polling place and demonstrated that it continued to cast a vote for the opposing candidate’s party. Moynihan was eventually allowed to vote for Republican candidates, including his own race.

Moynihan offered this gracious lesson to his followers on Twitter: “Be careful when you vote in Illinois. Make sure you take the time to check your votes before submitting.”

Cook County Board of Elections Deputy Communications Director Jim Scalzitti, told Illinois Watchdog, the machine was taken out of service and tested.

“This was a calibration error of the touch-screen on the machine,” Scalzitti said. “When Mr. Moynihan used the touch-screen, it improperly assigned his votes due to improper calibration.”

I hate to be cynical, but I really do wonder if that is the only machine in Illinois that has a calibration error. This makes me very concerned about voting in America. I am ready to go back to paper and pencil if that’s what it takes to have an honest election. The fact that this happened in Cook County makes me even more suspicious.

Israel Did Not Hit The Hospital And The Playground

Scott Johnson at Power Line posted an article today about the hospital in Gaza that was supposedly attacked.

The article quotes The Algemenier:

The Israeli army said it was not operating in the vicinity of Shifa Hospital in northern Gaza on Monday, where an explosion reportedly killed and wounded dozens of Palestinians.

“A short while ago Al-Shifa Hospital and Al-Shati Refugee Camp were struck by failed rocket attacks launched by Gaza terrorists,” the army said in a statement sent to reporters.

The failed attempt to fire the projectile apparently hit a car near the center, according to Israel’s Channel 2 News, causing the casualties.

The station said that a “Hamas Fajr-5 rocket aimed at central Israel, which was fired from a playground outside the Shifa hospital and exploded on the site causing casualties, had at least a 100 kg (220 lbs) warhead,” according to The Times of Israel.

The article at Power Line includes a photo with the comment:

The Algemeiner performs the service of running the suggestive photograph below with the caption: “Nick Casey, The Wall Street Journal’s Middle East Correspondent, posted a photo to Twitter of a Hamas spokesman being interviewed on camera at Gaza’s Al Shifa Hospital, which Hamas uses as a base. The photo has since been removed. Photo: Nick Casey / Twitter.”

The fact that Hamas uses a hospital as a base of operations and fires rockets from a playground tells us all we need to know about how Hamas feels about protecting civilians.

Lying With Statistics

Investor’s Business Daily posted an article about the recent discussion on wealth inequality in America. French economist Thomas Piketty has written a book called Class Warfare in which he decries the unequal distribution of wealth in America and calls for extreme taxing of the ‘rich.’

The article includes the following chart and explanation:

“There are transcription errors from the original sources and incorrect formulas,” the FT noticed. “It also appears that some of the data are cherry-picked or constructed without an original source.”

But the bigger problem is that just looking at the actual data on U.S. inequality — using what is called the Gini ratio, a measure of how incomes are dispersed across society — you can see Piketty’s thesis is wrong.

As the chart below shows, contrary to claims by left-leaning economists such as Piketty, individual inequality hasn’t changed at all since 1960. But there has been an increase in household inequality.

Why? As economist Don Boudreaux and the website Political Calculations have noted, the changing composition and size of households are the reason.

Households have shrunk markedly. Since 1960, the average size has plunged from more than 3.4 persons to about 2.55, Census data show. One-person households have nearly quintupled since 1960 and today make up nearly 30% of all households.

When charted, the household Gini ratio looks as if there is growing inequality. But in fact it shows that households are smaller, with fewer earners.

Our point is that using tendentious data to bolster a case for taking even more private-sector output for government use is dishonest at best.

It is possible to make statistics say pretty much anything you want them to say. Mr. Piketty’s book is a current example of that fact.

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This Was A Really Bad Trade

Yesterday the Weekly Standard reported that President Obama made a trade with the Taliban to allow Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl to return to America. The deal was to return Sgt. Bergdahl in exchange for five members of the Taliban held at Guantanamo. There is a whole lot more to this story than meets the eye.

The Washington Post posted a story yesterday that included the following paragraph:

Top Republicans on the Senate and House armed services committees went so far as to accuse President Obama of having broken the law, which requires the administration to notify Congress before any transfers from Guantanamo are carried out.

Today Andrew McCarthy posted the following at National Review Online:

In return, thanks to the president’s negotiations with the terrorists, we receive U.S. Army Sergeant Bowe Bergdahl—who, according to several of his fellow soldiers, walked off his post in 2009 before being captured by the Taliban. (For more on this, see Greg Pollowitz’ spost at The Feed.) This was shortly after Sgt. Bergdah lreportedly emailed his parents that “The US army is the biggest joke the world has to laugh at”; that he was “ashamed to even be an American”; and that “The horror that is America is disgusting.”

Sgt. Bergdahl’s father, Robert, was by Mr. Obama’s side during Saturday’s Rose Garden press conference, at which the president announced Sgt. Bergdahl’s return but carefully avoiding mention of the jihadi-windfall the Taliban received in exchange. Mr. Bergdahl is an antiwar activist campaigning for the release of all jihadists detained at Guantanamo Bay. His Twitter account, @bobbergdahl, has apparently now deleted a tweet from four days ago, in which he said, in echoes of Islamic supremacist rhetoric, “@ABalkhi I am still working to free all Guantanamo prisoners. God will repay for the death of every Afghan child, ameen!”

Andrew McCarthy at the National Review describes the Taliban prisoners released:

At the Weekly Standard, Tom Joscelyn profiles the five Taliban commanders Obama has released. They include Mullah Mohammed Fazi, perhaps the Taliban’s senior warrior (its “army chief of staff”) and longtime al Qaeda ally; Mullah Norullah Noori, a senior military commander who fought side-by-side with al Qaeda; Abdul Haq Wasiq, a senior Taliban intelligence official who helped train al Qaeda and fought with it against U.S. forces after 9/11; Khairullah Khairkhwa, a Taliban governor and al Qaeda trainer who brokered an alliance with Iran to collaborate against American-led forces; and Mohammed Nabi, who worked with the Haqqani network and al Qaeda to coordinate attacks against American and Coalition forces.

The title of Andrew McCarthy’s article at the National Review Online is “Obama Replenishes the Taliban … Or ‘How Wars End in the 21st Century’”

Another title would be “How An American President Shows Total Disregard For The Lives Of American Soldiers.” I really don’t want to see the country go through an impeachment trial, but this is an impeachable offense.

 

 

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The President’s “Get Out Of Jail Free” Card

On Monday The Washington Times reported that in 2013 immigration officers released 36,000 immigrants from custody.

The article describes these immigrants:

Among the 36,000 immigrants whom U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement released from custody last year there were 116 with convictions for homicide, 43 for negligent manslaughter, 14 for voluntary manslaughter and one with a conviction classified by ICE as “homicide-willful kill-public official-gun.”

The immigrants were in deportation proceedings, meaning ICE was trying to remove them from the country and could have held them in detention but released them anyway, according to the Center for Immigration Studies, which published the numbers Monday. The Washington Times also obtained the data.

…The 36,007 criminal aliens counted in the data had more than 87,000 convictions among them: 15,635 for drunken driving, 9,187 for what ICE labeled “dangerous drugs,” 2,691 for assault, 1,724 for weapons offenses and 303 for “flight escape” — a category that would seem to make them bad candidates for release.

I will admit that I am having trouble figuring out the rationale behind releasing them rather than deporting them. Releasing these prisoners puts the safety of American citizens at risk. They should have been deported.

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The Internal Revenue Service Audit Rate For Tea Party Donors

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) Audit Rate for Tea Party donors is something I take personally–my husband and I were audited for the first time in 43 years after making a donation to the Tea Party. Nothing in our tax return had changed, and after a year of being told that the IRS needed more time, nothing was found.

Yesterday the Washington Times reported that after checking the donor lists the IRS collected from the Tea Party, 10 percent of those donors were audited. Kiplinger posted a story in March 2013 stating:

The IRS audits only slightly more than 1% of all individual tax returns annually.

…2012 IRS statistics show that people with incomes of $200,000 or higher had an audit rate of 3.70%, or one out of every 27 returns. Report $1 million or more of income? There’s a one-in-eight chance your return will be audited. The audit rate drops significantly for filers making less than $200,000: Less than 1% (0.94%) of such returns was audited during 2012, and the vast majority of these exams were conducted by mail.

I think there is a problem here. Until we find out who ordered the audits, I think we need to ask the ‘public servants‘ involved why they were not serving the public.

The article at the Washington Times reminds us:

Ms. Lerner ran the division overseeing nonprofit groups. She has since retired from the IRS but has refused to testify to Congress about her role in the targeting, citing her Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination.

The House voted Wednesday to hold her in contempt of Congress for refusing to talk.

The Washington Times also mentions another recent problem with the IRS:

On another matter, the commissioner told the panel that he is taking steps to be able to deny agency bonuses to IRS employees who hadn’t paid their taxes. The agency’s inspector general last month reported that more than 1,000 employees received bonuses within a year of having tax problems.

Mr. Koskinen said he is working with the IRS union to rewrite their agreement so that those employees can’t be paid bonuses.

“Going forward, if someone has been disciplined for failure to comply with the tax code, they will be ineligible for a performance award,” he said.

He also said the agency would try to fire employees who cheat on their taxes.

Doesn’t all of the above fall under the category of basic common sense?

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Small Business Pay The ObamaCare Tax A Year Early

There was a dust-up on the internet this week when Matt Drudge of The Drudge Report tweeted, “Just paid the Obamacare penalty for not ‘getting covered’… I’M CALLING IT A LIBERTY TAX.” The reaction from the media was immediate–“He lied.” The mainstream media immediately informed him that the ObamaCare penalty was not in effect until next year, so he could not possibly be telling the truth. Well, not so fast. Depending on how they are organized, many small business pay estimated income taxes during the year prior to actually filing–Matt Drudge has already paid the ObamaCare penalty.

So why is that important? Small business are the job creators in the American economy. The chart below is from the Small Business Administration:

sba2The ObamaCare penalty is already negatively impacting small business. This will in turn impact job creation, slowing down whatever economic recovery is actually taking place.

The bottom line here is simple. ObamaCare is bad for the economy. It is also bad for healthcare. It is time for the Republicans to come out with an alternative plan, publicize that plan, and get rid of national healthcare once and for all. It also needs to be understood that for whatever reason the media is not going to let ObamaCare go down easily. They (and the government under President Obama) are going to attack anyone who speaks out about the negative consequences of ObamaCare. Let the battle begin.

The source for this story is Breitbart.com.

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Can We Just Replace Congress?

Yesterday the Washington Times posted an article about the farm bill that is making its way through Congress. Included in the bill is a fee (a fee as opposed to a tax?) of two-tenths of a cent on every gallon of home heating oil sold. Last week the farm bill passed the House of Representatives with a  bipartisan 251-166 vote.

The Minneapolis-St. Paul Star Tribune is reporting today that the Senate voted to close debate on a five-year farm bill late Monday afternoon paving way for its passage Tuesday.

The article at the Washington Times reported:

Lawmakers in the House and Senate sponsored bills to try to renew the National Oilheat Research Alliance, but the legislation got bottled up in committee. The farm bill offered them a chance to short-circuit the usual legislative process and avoid the kind of scrutiny that accompanies a stand-alone bill.

Indeed, it was not raised at all during the debate on the House floor last week.

Damn the consumer–full speed ahead! This Congress needs to be very quickly voted out of office!

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We The People Need To Act

On Wednesday, MilitaryOneClick.com posted the following:

Making it in the MilLife®

Grassroots Efforts to Repeal Bipartisan Budget Act

Jan 15 2014

Published by Karen

A provision in the Bipartisan Budget Act (BBA) that reduces working age retirees’ annual cost-of-living adjustment (COLA) by one percentage point until the age of 62 has evoked outrage in the military community. To date, over 250,000 MOAA suggested messages have been sent to Congress on this issue alone.

Leading the grassroots efforts is the #KeepYourPromise Alliance. The alliance started on December 14, when various military organizations pulled together a grassroots campaign stating “enough is enough” to the continual military benefit cuts targeted by legislators seeking to balance the national budget. MOAA participated in a Twitter Town Hall that took place on December 16, quickly generating over 44,327 tweets. A second Twitter Town Hall and Facebook Spreecast took place on January 7th generating almost 10,000 tweets and nearly 6,000 Facebook views.

“MOAA strongly supports the groundswell of grass roots activities currently serving and retired military families are taking part in to voice their outrage about the COLA cut in the 2013 Bipartisan Budget Act,” MOAA President Vice Adm. Norb Ryan, USN (Ret) said. “They also correctly surmise that this step is only the beginning, and that if they don’t speak up now, more attacks on the All-Volunteer Force will surely be easier to accomplish.”

To join the social media action, visit and “like” the MOAA Spouse on Facebook or follow us on Twitter @MOAA_MilLife.

– See more at: http://militaryoneclick.com/grassroots-efforts-to-repeal-   bipartisan-budget-act/#sthash.8nlRIYv8.dpuf

The omnibus budget bill passed by the House and the Senate is a breach of contract with the American military. Our military has been fighting wars overseas for the past twelve years–this is how we reward them. It is a shame that the only budget cuts in this budget are to military retirement–there are no other budget cuts until later years, when Congress will probably repeal them.
It’s time for Americans to speak out on behalf of our military. There should be some serious outrage about this bill.
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Your Tax Dollars At Work

CBN News is reporting today on the annual release of Senator Tom Coburn‘s “Wastebook.” The book details some of the government programs funded by taxpayer dollars in the past year.

Some of the examples listed in the article:

…the U.S. State Department spending $630,000 to attract followers to its Facebook and Twitter accounts.

…a study on angry wives allowed the government to spend $300 million to learn that women would find marriage more satisfying if they could calm down faster during arguments with their husbands.

…in Nevada, $17 million in tax exemptions went to brothels. Deductions ranged from breast implants to promotional free passes to bring in new customers.

Fort Hood shooter Nadal Hassan collected $278,000 in military benefits because the military Code of Justice doesn’t allow a soldier to be suspended until they are found guilty.

It is disturbing that this spending is continuing while the retirement pay of our military is in danger of being cut. If Congress can’t deal with this spending before cutting in places that will actually do harm to Americans, we need to elect a new Congress.

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