Sunshine Really Is The Best Remedy

Last night The Daily Wire reported the following:

House Republicans filed a resolution to impeach United States Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein on Wednesday, citing the Justice Department’s lack of transparency and obstruction of congressional oversight.

“I just filed a resolution with Jim Jordan and several colleagues to impeach Rod Rosenstein,” Meadows wrote on Twitter. “The DOJ has continued to hide information from Congress and repeatedly obstructed oversight–even defying multiple Congressional subpoenas.”

The lack of transparency is not the only problem–Rod Rosenstein signed one of the FISA warrants. He might be totally conflicted in deciding what documents to turn over to Congress.

The saga continues. Yahoo News reported today:

U.S. House Speaker Paul Ryan on Thursday rejected a move by fellow Republicans to impeach Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, the No. 2 Justice Department official, who oversees the federal probe of Russia’s role in the 2016 presidential election.

“Do I support impeachment of Rod Rosenstein? No, I do not,” said Ryan, whose stance could make it easier for other Republican members to oppose the measure.

This is not a surprise. Paul Ryan will be stepping down from his role as Speaker and probably looking for a job in Washington. Although I believe the impeachment of Rosenstein would be appropriate (for conflict of interest as much as anything else), I don’t think Paul Ryan is willing to do anything that might rock the boat right now. He wants to stay friends with everyone. (That is probably why he should resign today!)

On Tuesday, Byron York posted an article at The Washington Examiner which outlined a solution to this whole sordid mess.

The article points out:

While the lawmakers support maximum declassification, they also gave the president another option: declassify two key sections of the application that Republicans believe are particularly revealing. In the letter, the GOP committee members made a very specific request.

“To enable the public to understand the DOJ’s and FBI’s basis for obtaining the FISA warrant and three subsequent renewals,” the lawmakers wrote, “we respectfully request that you declassify and release publicly, and in unredacted form, pages 10-12 and 17-34, along with all associated footnotes, of the third renewal of the FISA application on Mr. Page. The renewal was filed in June 2017 and signed by Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein.”

So what is on pages 10-12 and 17-34? That is certainly a tantalizing clue dropped by the House Intel members, but it’s not clear what it means. Comparing the relevant sections from the initial FISA application, in October 2016, and the third renewal, in June 2017, much appears the same, but in pages 10-12 of the third renewal there is a slightly different headline — “The Russian Government’s Coordinated Efforts to Influence the 2016 U.S. Presidential Election” — plus a footnote, seven lines long, that was not in the original application.

As for pages 17-34, there appear to be, in the third renewal, new text and footnotes throughout the section headlined “Page’s Coordination with Russian Government Officials on 2016 U.S. Presidential Election Influence Activities.” (That is the same headline as the original application.) The Republican lawmakers ask that it be unredacted in its entirety, suggesting they don’t believe revealing it would compromise any FBI sources or methods.

Clearly, the GOP lawmakers believe pages 10-12 and 17-34 contain critical information, so it seems likely that the release of those pages would affect the current public debate over the FISA application. That would, in turn, lead to charges that the Republicans were cherry-picking the application and did not want the public to see information that undercuts their position.

Which is why the application should be released in its entirety, or as closely to its entirety as is possible. Will that happen? At the moment, it appears the only person who can answer that question is Trump.

Sunlight is the best disinfectant.

The Positive Economic News Continues

Yahoo News is reporting today that jobless claims expectantly fell last week. (Why was it unexpected–the trend has been going downward for a while?) Because of this, the Federal Reserve is expected to raise interest rates next week to keep the economy from overheating. I have mixed emotions about this. We do have to get back to reasonable interest rates, but it seems as if the federal reserve also has a habit of overreacting and slowing down (or speeding up) the economy a little too quickly.

This is a chart of interest rates starting in approximately 2008 taken from trading economics:

As you can see, the rates were kept very low during the Obama Administration in order to avoid an economic crash. Ideally, the Federal Reserve will raise them very slowly so as to protect the economic growth we are currently seeing.

Yahoo News reports:

The dollar was trading lower against a basket of currencies. Prices for longer-dated U.S. Treasuries rose marginally and stocks on Wall Street were mixed. The labor market is considered to be close to or at full employment. Nonfarm payrolls increased by 223,000 jobs in May and the unemployment rate dropped to an 18-year low of 3.8 percent.

The jobless rate, which has declined by three-tenths of a percentage point this year, is now at a level where the Fed projected it would be by the end of this year.

The number of people receiving benefits after an initial week of aid increased 21,000 to 1.74 million in the week ended May 26. The four-week moving average of the so-called continuing claims dropped 13,250 to 1.73 million, the lowest level since December 1973.

…The strong job market conditions were also underscored by the publication on Thursday of the Labor Department’s Contingent and Alternative Employment Arrangements survey, which showed 1.3 percent of U.S. workers in May 2017 held jobs they considered temporary or did not expect to last beyond a year.

That is a decline from 1.8 percent in February 2005 when the government last conducted a similar survey.

When self-employed individuals and independent contractors were included, the share of workers was 1.6 percent in May 2017, down from 2.3 percent in February 2005. Most contingent workers were under the age of 25.

The Labor Department will publish its Contingent Worker Supplement report in September. It is expected to shed light on the so-called gig economy.

Like him or not, President Trump is a successful businessman who understands how economics works. It might be a good idea in the future to elect businessmen to the presidency instead of politicians.

The Legislature Got It Right–The Court Got It Wrong

Two of the key provisions in North Carolina’s new voting law have been overturned by a a 2-1 ruling of the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals. Yahoo News posted an article yesterday explaining the details.

The two parts of the law that were overturned were same-day registration and out-of-precinct voting. The court claimed that to end these practices would disenfranchise some voters. I beg to differ. The reason the legislature ended same-day registration was that it did not provide ample time to check the address information given by the voter. A friend of mine, a North Carolina resident, checked the voter registration in her town and found that there were five people registered at her address that did not live there. I don’t know whether those five people had voted in recent elections or not, but if they did, they cancelled the vote of legal voters–disenfranchising legal voters. Stopping out-of-precinct voting is a good idea because ballots are different in different precincts–precinct elections include local candidates that vary by precinct. If a person votes in the wrong precinct, he may not get to vote for the officials in his precinct–thus he is disenfranchising himself!

The article reports:

State House Speaker Thom Tillis, the Republican challenging incumbent Democratic U.S. Sen. Kay Hagan, said he and state Senate leader Phil Berger, also a Republican, would appeal the ruling to the U.S. Supreme Court.

The article at Yahoo attempts to portray the passage of this law as a political issue related to the Republicans wanting to take the Senate. The question we need to ask is, “Why does ensuring the integrity of our elections give a political advantage to Republicans?”

The new North Carolina voting law is a step toward more honest elections. Why are there politicians who are fighting this?

 

It Just Gets Worse

Yahoo News has posted an article today reporting that the five terrorists that were released from Guantanamo to Qatar have been moved to a residential community and will be allowed to move freely around the country. There is a one-year ban imposed on the terrorists that will theoretically prevent them from traveling outside the country. How long will it be before they make internet contact with their friends and resume terrorists activities?

The article reports:

Following the deal under which freed the last American soldier held in Afghanistan was freed, concerns have been expressed by some U.S. intelligence officials and congressional advisers over the role of the Gulf Arab state as a bridge between Washington and the world of radical Islam.

The Gulf official said the Taliban men, who have been granted Qatari residency permits, will not be treated like prisoners while in Doha and no U.S. officials will be involved in monitoring their movement while in the country.

“Under the deal they have to stay in Qatar for a year and then they will be allowed to travel outside the country… They can go back to Afghanistan if they want to,” the official said.

The more we learn about this deal, the worse it gets.

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Sharia Law And Freedom Are Not Compatible

Yahoo News reported yesterday that Mariam Yahya Ibrahim, a Sudanese woman, has been sentenced to death for converting to Christianity.

The article reports the following statement by a Sudanese government official:

Sudan is committed to all human rights and freedom of faith granted in Sudan by the constitution and law,” Foreign Ministry spokesman Abu-Bakr Al-Siddiq said. He added that his ministry trusted the integrity and independence of the judiciary.

Mariam Yahya Ibrahim has also been charged with adultery for marrying a Christian man.

This sentence is appropriate under Sharia Law. It is considered a capital offense to convert to Christianity. Remember that this is the same Sharia Law that CAIR would like to introduce into America. Freedom and Sharia Law are incompatible. We do not want Sharia Law in America.

 

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The Final Chapter Of The General Motors Bail Out

Yesterday Yahoo News reported that the Treasury Department has announced that all government-held shares of General Motors will be sold by December 31.

The article reports:

…On Thursday, it (Treasury Department) announced it sold 70.2 million shares of General Motors (GM) stock and intends to sell its remaining 31.1 million shares by Dec. 31.

Once the final sale is complete, however, US taxpayers will have lost nearly $10 billion of the $49.5 billion the federal government used to prevent the auto giant from collapsing in 2008, Treasury officials say. The loss offsets a greater calamity that would have occurred – the disappearance of 1 million jobs – if the federal government had not intervened, says Treasury Deputy Assistant Secretary Tim Bowler.

I guess the question I have at the end of this is how did Ford Motor Company continue without the government bailout, and could General Motors have done the same thing? The taxpayers lost nearly $10 billion in this transaction. What would have been the result of simply dividing that amount of money between those Americans who pay taxes? I think in the long run, it would have had a more positive long term effect on the economy.

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A Great Weekend Story

Yesterday Yahoo News posted a story that reminds us that compassion is still a part of our world. Inbar Chomsky of Rehovot, Israel, was on her way to Camp Simcha in Glen Spey, New York, a camp for children who suffer from cancer and other hematologic illnesses. As she was seated on the plane in Israel, preparing for the flight to New York, the flight attendants could not find her passport. After an extensive search, her passport was not found, she was taken off the plane and her mother was called to pick her up. The plane prepared for take off and headed for the runway.

As the plane approached the runway, someone located Inbar Chomsky’s passport. The plane turned around, picked up the child and headed for New York.

The article reports:

Although Yahoo! Shine could not reach an El Al spokesperson for comment, the airline sent a statement to the Times of Israel that read, “Planes rarely return to the gate after departing. The plane was on its way to the runway, when the passport was found on the plane. After consulting with El Al crew on the plane and El Al staff at the airport the decision was made and the plane returned to pick up Inbar. El Al was honored and proud to help Inbar’s dream to go to the camp in the USA come true. We wish Inbar full recovery and health.”

What a fantastic story!

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Received In My Email Today

March 27,2013

By Len Mead

Get most of your information from local newspaper front pages?  From TV news?  You may be a “Low Information Voter!”  You’re not stupid. You’re just not well informed.

Fortunately, as your conservative watch-dog and friend,  I’m here to help.  So brace yourself.  Here comes the ugly truth you don’t get from the “main street” media.    The average “family” on welfare takes home about  $61,000 a year compared to the working stiff median family income after taxes of about $48,000 (from a December, 2012 report of the Weekly Standard.)   Wonder why welfare recipients aren’t anxious to work?

This tragedy began in the 1950s.  That’s when misguided Democrat welfare programs started paying fornicating teenagers money for bearing illegitimate children.  Teens qualified under “Aid to Families with Dependent Children” if there was no father or husband around!  Go figure.

After 50 plus years,  the American Family with a loving father and mother has been destroyed by these welfare incentives.  Dear Reader, 40% of today’s births are to single mothers with no acknowledged father.  A population of 315 million today has only 113 million American taxpayers but 100 million on welfare (excluding social security and Medicare), 47 million on food stamps, and 23 million desperate Americans who can’t find work.

You’re told that your government will take care for you — that you’re a victim— that the rich aren’t paying enough taxes.  That too many guns, not untreated mental illness threatens schoolchildren.   You’re told cutting our military won’t threaten your safety while Iran proclaims it is now a nuclear power with its first stated goal to launch a bomb wiping out Israel.

While millions of illegals invade our country you’re told these criminals are just “undocumented.”   Your healthcare – once the best in the world — is collapsing with  higher rates, bureaucracy, mandated fines and jail if you don’t buy Obamacare insurance.  Lastly, you’re told that when the current Democrat regime in DC spends $1.40 for each $1.00 they collect,  this is not a problem.  $17 trillion in US debt now and trillions of overspending each year as far as the eye can see – no problem?  Click on the US Debt Clock.

Getting the picture?  See —  you are getting “low information” news.  Daily front page and TV “reporting” of these problems is non-existent and actually suppressed.  Why?  Because struggling regional publications don’t have the resources to have reporters in DC or around the world.  So they meekly claim they must depend on national wire services such as the Associated Press (AP) for national stories.

But AP “news” stories preach that all goodness comes from government, that self-reliance is foolish, that limited constitutional government is passé,  that whatever Obama does must be celebrated and mistakes protected!  (Criticism is racist!)  Continually ingesting this hogwash has produced generations of “low information voters” who now vote foolishly for “more government” against their own best interests.  Regional TV and newspapers’ professional role demand that they actually verify what they print or show.  Most don’t.  And those that don’t shouldn’t be bought, viewed, or used by advertisers.

So what now?  Re-read our Declaration of Independence and Constitution so you re-learn that our rights of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness come from our creator – GOD – not from government.  Discover that our 2nd Amendment right to keep and bear arms exists NOT so we can shoot squirrels but so we can shoot government tyrants as we did fighting off King George’s troops.

Friends, start getting  your information from internet news sources – the Drudge Report, Yahoo News, Google News,  talk radio, The Wall Street Journal, Forbes Magazine and Fox News.  Acknowledge that the lies and deceptions  from the Associated Press or wire service broadcasts boil down to: life on “government” welfare is better than success on your own. 

Our great wealth and freedom has come from low taxes, limited government, self-reliance, freedom, a strong military and a strong private system of charity through neighbors and faith organizations.  Becoming a “High Information Voter” means you will start returning to elected office individuals who agree with these principals.

What’s a great first political step?  Demand that your taxes stop going to new pregnant teenagers for each new illegitimate birth.  This will finally stop the cancer of welfare which is destroying the traditional family– the building block of any society.   Continue in the low information mode,  and your future and that of your children will be dismal at best – serfs to the cruelest of masters – entrenched government.

Len Mead is a Tea Party Activist, past “Citizen of the Year” award winner from Citizens for Limited Taxation and can be reached anytime at mead1720@gmail.com

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While We Are In The Silly Season Of American Politics, The Middle East Is Preparing For War

Yahoo News reported that the Israeli air force shot down a drone in Southern Israel on Saturday.

The article reports:

The drone was first spotted above the Mediterranean in the area of the Hamas-ruled Gaza Strip to the west of Israel, said military spokeswoman Avital Leibovich.

It was kept under surveillance and followed by Israeli air force jets before it was shot down above a forest in an unpopulated area near the border with the occupied West Bank.

It was reported that the drone was not carrying any explosives. Security sources have stated that it is unlikely that the drone came from the Gaza Strip. Defense officials were also not confirming a statement made by Israeli parliament member Miri Regev, a former chief spokesman of the military, that the drone was an “Iranian drone launched by Hezbollah.”

 

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This Really Isn’t A Victory

Yahoo News reported yesterday that a federal judge has cleared to way for the cross in the Mojave Desert to be restored.

The article reports:

A federal judge approved the lawsuit settlement on Monday, permitting the park service to turn over a remote hilltop area known as Sunrise Rock to a Veteran of Foreign Wars post in Barstow and the Veterans Home of California-Barstow.

The park will give up the acre of land in exchange for five acres of donated property elsewhere in the 1.6 million acre preserve in Southern California.

The swap, which could be completed by the end of the year, will permit veterans to restore a cross to the site and end a controversy that became tangled in the thorny issues of patriotism and religion and made its way to the U.S. Supreme Court in 2003.

Think about this for a minute. France has graveyards of American soldiers marked with crosses to honor those who died. What has happened to America?

The article reports the history of the cross in the Mojave:

Wanda Sandoz said a wooden cross was first erected on Sunrise Rock in 1934 by a World War I veteran, Riley Bembry. He and other shell-shocked vets had gone out to the desert to recover and would hold barbeques and barn dances near the site, she said.

Her husband knew Bembry and promised the dying vet that he would look after the cross, Wanda Sandoz said. He kept the promise for decades.

“We love the cross,” she said. “It’s in a beautiful spot. … My husband is not a veteran but he feels like this is something he can do for our country.”

The wooden cross was eventually replaced with one made of steel pipes. However, the site became part of the national preserve in 1994 and that meant the cross was then on public land.

The settlement involves a lawsuit filed in 2001 by the American Civil Liberties Union on behalf of a retired park service employee who argued that the Christian religious symbol was unconstitutionally located on government land. Federal courts ordered the removal of the cross.

Does this mean that whenever you see a cross by the side of the highway to mark the spot where someone was killed, you should sue someone to have it removed? I am sorry that the ACLU chose to be offended by this cross, but there is nothing in the Constitution that protects Americans from being offended. The cross as a symbol to honor those who sacrificed their lives for America is a tradition more than a religious item. It’s time for everyone to just relax.

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Drug Testing Welfare Recipients

A friend of mine lost his job before Christmas and thankfully has recently found a new job. He is fairly high on the chain of command, and I was rather surprised that even when you are a responsible adult family man with a good work history, you are generally required to take a drug test before being approved for employment.

That situation entered my mind when I began reading about the idea of drug testing welfare recipients. Just as my friend was drug tested before he could be gainfully employed, should welfare recipients be drug tested before they receive taxpayers’ money?

Townhall.com posted an Associated Press article yesterday about the move to drug test people who receive money from the government.

The article reports:

Data show that about 8 percent of the population uses drugs. And before a random drug testing program in Michigan was put on hold by a court challenge, about 8 percent of its public assistance applicants tested positive.

In years past such legal challenges had a chilling effect on state legislatures, but that seems to have thawed.

Michigan’s program was halted after five weeks in 1999, eventually ending with an appeals court ruling that it was unconstitutional.

For more than a decade, no other state moved to implement such a law.

Drug use is a problem. If people are drug tested to get a job, why shouldn’t they be drug tested to be paid money from the government?

The article states:

This year conservative lawmakers in 23 states from Wyoming to Mississippi _ where lawmakers want random screening to include nicotine tests _ are moving forward with proposals of their own.

Romney, in an interview this month in Georgia, supported the idea. “People who are receiving welfare benefits, government benefits, we should make sure they’re not using those benefits to pay for drugs,” Romney said to WXIA-TV in Atlanta.

Newt Gingrich addressed the topic with Yahoo News in November, saying he considered testing as a way to curb drug use and lower related costs to public programs.

Drug use can prevent people from being responsible and holding down a job. Why should we support the drug habit of someone who would rather stay home and do drugs than work? I object to the idea of testing for nicotine–cigarettes are still a legal product–but I think testing for illegal drugs is a good idea. If people who want to be hired for a job need to be drug tested, why shouldn’t welfare recipients also be tested?

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Why We Need To Be Energy Independent

 

British map showing the Strait of Hormuz

Image via Wikipedia

Yahoo News posted a Reuters story yesterday about a recent statement by Parviz Sarvari, a member of the Iranian parliament’s National Security Committee. Mr. Sarvari stated that the military was preparing for a military training exercise to practice closing the Straits of Hormuz. At least 40 percent of the oil traded in the world leaves the Gulf States through the Straits of Hormuz. United States warships patrol the area in order to protect shipping in that area. To close those Straits would create chaos in the world’s oil markets. 

The article reports:

Tension over the program has increased since the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) reported on November 8 that Tehran appears to have worked on designing a nuclear bomb and may still be pursuing research to that end. Iran strongly denies this and says it is developing nuclear energy for peaceful purposes.

Iran has warned it will respond to any attack by hitting Israel and U.S. interests in the Gulf and analysts say one way to retaliate would be to close the Strait of Hormuz.

When America has a weak president, the world is less safe. The current actions of Iran are further proof of that.

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