Leaving California

Yesterday Deadline posted an article about The Daily Wire, the conservative media company started by Ben Shapiro, Jeremy Boreing and Caleb Robinson. The Daily Wire, founded in 2015, has always been based in California.

The article reports:

The Daily Wire, the conservative media company started by Ben Shapiro, Jeremy Boreing and Caleb Robinson, plans to move its headquarters from Los Angeles to Nashville.

Boreing said that the move was being made due to a declining quality of life in the city, including high housing costs and homelessness.

The publisher’s 75 employees based in Los Angeles are being given until Oct. 1 to decide whether to make the move, Boreing said. He said that it looked like about 80% would make the move.

The article continues:

“The dream of California and the weather were enough to draw us all here and keep us here, even when it was hard,” he said. “But it’s hubris to think you can keep making it worse and worse for people and that somehow the idea of temperate winters will be enough to make them stay forever.”

He said that he plans to move in November, and much of the staff will follow after that.

“L.A. benefits from the fact that, while it leans left, it draws individualists out to find their fame and seek their fortunes. They’re an ornery bunch. But they aren’t so ornery that this out of control government can’t break them.”

He said that they considered moving to Texas, but chose Nashville because it “offers the creative talent we need to keep growing the business.”

“We were shocked by the reception when we announced the move,” Boreing said. “But, of course, our employees see all of the same challenges we see and it’s even harder for them to afford this place.”

California used to be ‘the place to live,’ but due to bad governance, it has become a haven for homeless people and drug addicts. The cost of living there has gone through the roof as a result of high housing costs, high taxes, and over-regulation. There is still hope for California to return to normal, but it would take a voting population that wanted to correct the errors of the past.

We Need To Protect Our Children

Yesterday WND posted an article about a bill California lawmakers have sent to Democratic Gov. Gavin Newsom for his signature.

The article reports:

California lawmakers have sent a bill to the desk of Democratic Gov. Gavin Newsom that would reduce penalties for adults who have oral or anal sex with a “willing” minor child if the offender is no more than 10 years older than the victim.

The objective is to end “blatant discrimination against young LGBT people engaged in consensual activity,” according to its sponsor, Democratic state Sen. Scott Wiener, who is openly gay.

SB 145, passed by the state Senate on Monday, would allow a judge to decide whether or not the offender should be registered as a sex offender, Breitbart News reported.

Wiener claims the bill “is about treating everyone equally under the law.”

The law aims at the particular sexual practices associated with the LGBT community. Senator Wiener claims that the current law discriminates against that community. For further details on that, follow the link to the article–I would rather not go into detail here.

The article notes:

Before talk-radio host Rush Limbaugh discussed the bill on his nationally syndicated show Thursday, he had to warn listeners to turn down the volume if there were any children nearby.

After describing the bill in detail, he addressed the problem with regarding children as “willing” participants.

“How do you get permission from an 8-year-old? How do you get permission from a 10-year-old? How is permission from a 10- or 12-year-old even valid?” he asked.

He predicted that “once this gets signed into law, that 10 years is gonna become 15 down the road, because, see, the way left operates, nothing is ever solved when they do legislation.”

“It’s just the beginning of the descent into even worse circumstance,” he said.

Limbaugh argued the bill has implications for the presidential election, because “this is who we’re up against.”

Does anyone remember that when sodomy was declared no longer against the law, some people who were labeled ‘right-wing extremists’ claimed that the ruling would lead to legalization of same sex marriage? We were told that we were crazy–they were just fixing an unjust law. What is happening in California will lead to things that many of us would be appalled by if we understood where this was going.

When Facts Get In The Way

Just the News posted an article yesterday dealing with presidential candidate Joe Biden’s claims about President Trump’s response to the coronavirus.

The article reports:

As Democrats and their presidential nominee Joe Biden gear up to attack the president’s response to COVID-19, they must grapple with a harsh reality: a third of all U.S. coronavirus deaths occurred in just three states controlled exclusively by Democrats.

Biden has sharply criticized Trump’s handling of the pandemic since the first case was confirmed in the U.S. in late January. The Democratic presidential candidate claimed last week that Trump has allowed the disease to ravage the country and kill more than 170,000 citizens.

“Just judge this president on the facts,” Biden said during his acceptance speech during the Democratic National Convention. “Five million Americans infected with COVID-19. More than 170,000 Americans have died. By far the worst performance of any nation on Earth.”

The article notes two important aspects of that number:

Biden’s assessment is only partly factual. The U.S. has indeed recorded the highest total number of COVID-19 deaths in the world, but adjusted for population the nation falls to number 10, behind numerous countries in Europe and South America, including the United Kingdsom and Spain.

Perhaps more notably, more than a third of the American deaths Biden cited have occurred in the Democrat-run states of New York, New Jersey and California.

The article concludes:

A range of policies appear to have had varied effects elsewhere. California, another Democratic stronghold, has also been under strict lockdown measures for months, and its adjusted death rate is comparatively low at number 28 in the nation. South Dakota, whose Republican governor has famously refused to institute the lockdown measures of most other states, is even better at number 39.

As November approaches, Biden may continue to criticize the U.S. as having “the worst performance” of any country worldwide, with the blame laid at the feet of the current Republican administration. Democratic-run New Jersey and New York’s respective adjusted death tolls, meanwhile, both remain roughly three times the national average.

One things the article does not mention is the fact that Governor Cuomo of New York sent infected patients into nursing homes. That fact alone resulted in huge numbers of virus deaths. I am hopeful that many Americans will see through the false claims of Joe Biden. Our future depends on it.

American Ingenuity At Work!

The Daily Wire posted an article yesterday about a very unique church service.

The article reports:

In footage of two instances that went viral on Thursday and Friday, Christians gathered in the government-approved venues of a Pennsylvania Wal-Mart and a Las Vegas casino to engage in the worship that authorities have deemed non-essential.

In a Thursday tweet that was retweeted by Vice President Mike Pence, Faith and Freedom Coalition Chairman Ralph Reed posted footage of a worship service in a Vegas casino, writing, “Packed house at #EvangelicalsForTrump prayer & praise event in Las Vegas. NV Governor banned church services but casinos can operate at 50% capacity. So we are praying in a casino.”

…According to The Post Millennial, a similar event also took place recently in the grocery section of a Wal-Mart in North Versailles, Pennsylvania, a town near Pittsburgh. In April, Democratic Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolfe urged churchgoers to find different ways to practice their religion than gathering in churches. “Religious leaders are encouraged to find alternatives to in-person gatherings and to avoid endangering their congregants,” he advised. “Individuals should not gather in religious buildings or homes for services or celebrations until the stay-at-home order is lifted.”

Wolf took flak when he broke his own state’s coronavirus lockdown restrictions in June by marching in solidarity with hundreds of protesters in Harrisburg following the death of George Floyd. In Harrisburg’s Dauphin County, gatherings were restricted to 25 people or fewer at the time, according to Pennsylvania’s color-coded reopening plan.

The article concludes:

The coronavirus pandemic has increased the tension between civil and ecclesiastical authorities nearly to the breaking point in states such as California, where many congregations are defying Democratic California Gov. Gavin Newsom’s July 13 order that re-instated lockdowns for churches and other establishments deemed non-essential by state authorities.

This week, Ventura County sued Godspeak Calvary Chapel in Thousand Oaks, California, for holding no-mask, no-distance indoor services. Rob McCoy, its senior pastor, said, “We would be the first to be masked and distanced, and willingly so, if this were meriting it, and it doesn’t. This isn’t a health issue, it’s an ideological issue.”

Grace Community Church, a congregation in Los Angeles pastored by prominent author and theologian John McArthur, also made headlines last month when he and the church elders penned an extensive statement explaining why they believe the secular government did not have legitimate authority to forbid in-person assembly indefinitely.

Explaining how they complied with state mandates at first, the church leaders justified their civil disobedience in part by claiming that the lockdowns done in the name of public health were causing spiritual damage to their parishioners. “Opportunities for believers to serve and minister to one another have been missed,” they wrote. “And the suffering of Christians who are troubled, fearful, distressed, infirm, or otherwise in urgent need of fellowship and encouragement has been magnified beyond anything that could reasonably be considered just or necessary.”

We need to be very careful not to give up our civil liberties in the name of preventing the spread of a virus. We know a lot more about the coronavirus now than we did at the beginning. We have developed a few successful protocols for treating the virus, and we have a fairly good idea of who is at risk from the virus. It is time to reclaim our civil liberties before we lose them for good.

This Doesn’t Seem To Be The Answer

Just the News reported yesterday that one month after California Governor Newsom unilaterally ordered state residents to wear masks in most public settings, the average daily number of coronavirus cases in the state has increased by over 160%. Wow.

The article reports:

Newsom’s June 18 order “mandate[d] that face coverings be worn state-wide” while in “any indoor public space,” while on public transit, during virtually every form of work in which the public might be involved in some way, while walking through “hallways, stairways, elevators, and parking facilities,” while in “any room or enclosed area where other people (except for members of the person’s own household or residence) are present when unable to physically distance,” and in outdoor settings where six feet of distance between individuals is not possible.

Every state resident older than two years old is bound by the mandate; a small number of exceptions exempt individuals due to medical conditions and other limited circumstances.

…The website of Johns Hopkins University, which offers pandemic tracking tools for every U.S. state, says average daily cases in California have increased from 3,385 on the day of Newsom’s order to 8,889 as of July 16, an increase of 162%.

Though Newsom’s mask mandate appears to have had little effect on the trajectory of the virus in California, the governor nevertheless this week imposed additional mask requirements on the state, ordering that most students who return to school in the fall will be subject to “strong mask requirements,” namely that “all staff and students in 3rd grade and above will be required to wear a mask or face covering” during the school day.

Can you imaging trying to keep a mask on the third grader all day? I don’t know why the masks did not help, but I think we need to look at this carefully. If the coronavirus spread that much with masks, why are we mandating them?

One Of Many Reasons We Should Not Trust The Government With Our Money

Any time the government starts giving away money, you can almost always bet that there will be corruption. The stimulus plan put into effect to help the country get through the coronavirus crisis is not an exception.

The Daily Caller reported yesterday

  • At least $4 million in PPP loans went to a real estate company at the center of a federal bribery investigation involving a Los Angeles city councilman.
  • Shenzhen New World Group, owned by Chinese billionaire Wei Huang, received two PPP loans for hotels it operates in Los Angeles. 
  • Jose Huizar is accused of accepting more than $800,000 in bribes from a real estate company chairman referred to in a federal indictment as “Chairman E.” 
  • Charging documents against Huizar make it clear that the real estate company in question is Shenzhen New World Group, which is working on a 77-story skyscraper project in Huizar’s district. 

The article continues:

The Real Deal, a website that covers the Los Angeles real estate market, first reported the coronavirus relief loans to Shenzhen New World.

The funds, issued under the Paycheck Protection Program, went to two of Shenzhen New World Group’s limited liability corporations (LLCs), Shen Zhen New World I and Shen Zhen New World II. The LLCs control the L.A. Grand Hotel and Sheraton Universal Hotel, respectively.

California business registration documents show that Huang signed the articles of incorporation for both LLCs in 2010. Shenzhen is proposing to redevelop the L.A. Grand Hotel into a 77-story skyscraper.

The Treasury Department on Monday released a database of PPP loan recipients, showing that both of the LLCs received between $2 million and $5 million each.

The article concludes:

The complaint against Huizar, who has held office since 2005, alleges that the Chinese developer provided the bribes in part because of his position as chairman of the city council’s Planning and Land Use Management Committee.

“HUIZAR was poised to significantly benefit Chairman E’s desire and plans to redevelop Property E and transform it into a 77-story skyscraper, making it the tallest building west of the Mississippi River,” the complaint against Huizar says.

“This project would require official acts from HUIZAR at various stages of the City approval process.”

Huizar’s former aide, George Esparza, pleaded guilty on May 27 to racketeering charges as part of the probe.

According to Esparza’s plea agreement, he said that the Chinese developer began paying Huizar after he introduced a motion to keep the head of the Los Angeles Department of Building and Safety in his position.

Virginia Clark, who is listed as the point of contact on Shenzhen New World’s applications for the skyscraper, did not respond to a detailed list of questions about the PPP loans and the FBI investigation of Huizar.

The Small Business Administration, which approves the PPP loans, did not respond to a request for comment. Huizar’s lawyer also did not respond to a request for comment.

Please follow the link above to the article for further details.

The Need To Pay Attention

In a speech in Dublin, Ireland, on July 10, 1790, John Philpot Curran stated, “The condition upon which God hath given liberty to man is eternal vigilance.” The quote has been changed slightly and attributed to other people, but that is the original quote. That quote is particularly applicable right now as there are those (some in our government) who are blatantly attacking one of the pillars of our representative republic.

On July 6th, I posted an article about the Supreme Court decision regarding the requirement that electors in the Electoral College vote for their state’s popular vote winner. That decision was a win for the Constitution. However, that decision is not the last we will hear on the subject.

Yesterday The New York Sun posted an editorial noting the next attack on the Electoral College. Understand that the Electoral College is what stands between the representative republic we now have and mob rule. If you believe that New York, California, and a few other populous states are well run, then abolishing the Electoral College would allow those states to run the entire country. That is a scary thought.

The editorial notes:

Now that the Supreme Court has vouchsafed the power of a state to require its presidential electors to vote in line with their state’s popular vote, a new question glimmers in the constitutional mist: Could a state require its electors to vote against the wishes of the state’s own voters? That might seem a ridiculous question. Feature, though, the National Popular Vote Interstate Compact.

It’s a workaround designed to commit the states to use the Electoral College to deliver the presidency to the winner of the national popular vote. It’s the first thing that came to mind when the Supreme Court today unanimously concluded that states have the power to punish faithless electors. Most justices credited the language in Article 2, which grants states the power to appoint electors.

The key phrase is that each state shall appoint its electors “in such Manner as the Legislature thereof may direct.” The court, in an opinion by Justice Kagan, reckons this gives the states the power to attach conditions to the electors it appoints, such as the requirement that they vote for the candidate their home-state voters prefer. It can punish them if they don’t.

The National Popular Vote Interstate Compact, though, is a scheme under which states agree to instruct their electors to ignore what their own state’s voters want and, instead, vote for the winner of the national popular vote. The compact goes into effect when it has been ratified by states whose combined electoral vote count is 270, i.e., enough to choose a president.

The editorial concludes:

Upholding The Constitution

The New York Post is reporting today that the Supreme Court has ruled that Presidential electors must cast their votes for the person who won the majority of the votes in their state.

The article reports:

The ruling, just under four months before the 2020 election, leaves in place laws in 32 states and the District of Columbia that bind their share of the 538 electors to vote for the states’ popular-vote winner.

The states’ Electors almost always do so anyway.

The unanimous decision in the “faithless elector” case was a defeat for those who want to change the Electoral College, and who believed a win would lead to presidential elections based on the popular or total number of votes.

But it was a win for state election officials who feared that giving more power to electors to make their own choice would cause chaos — and even lead to attempted bribery.

Justice Elena Kagan wrote for the court that a state may instruct “electors that they have no ground for reversing the vote of millions of its citizens. That direction accords with the Constitution — as well as with the trust of a Nation that here, We the People rule.”

The justices had scheduled arguments for the spring so they could resolve the issue before the election, rather than amid a potential political crisis after the country votes.

This was a unanimous decision. When was the last time all the justices on the Supreme Court agreed on anything?

This decision makes sense if you understand the purpose of the Electoral College. The Electoral College was put in place by our Founding Fathers so that a group of densely populated states would not be able to elect a President without the support of less populated states. Without the Electoral College, New York, California, New Jersey, and Connecticut would elect our President. Smaller states would never see a candidate, nor would their votes count. That is what the Electoral College was put in place to prevent.

Did Making Marijuana Legal Solve Any Problems?

Red State Observer posted an article today about the seizure of two tons of marijuana and $1 million in cash from an illegal growing operation in Southern California that was being run by an organization from China. Keep in mind that recreational marijuana use is legal in California, but the state has levied such high taxes on it that illegal growing and distributing operations are flourishing.

The article reports:

Nineteen people were jailed on suspicion of maintaining a drug house, theft of utilities, marijuana cultivation, marijuana sales and conspiracy, the Riverside County Sheriff’s Department said. Authorities served 23 search warrants that resulted in the arrests of residents of Hemet, San Jacinto, El Monte, Rialto, Rosemead, Arcadia and Calexico.

Search warrants also were served in Corona, Eastvale, South El Monte, West Covina and Lower Azusa.

Some 20,000 plants were eradicated and 100 pounds of processed marijuana was seized, a news release said. Deputies also confiscated equipment that can be used in growing operations, including 338 fans, packaging and 620 lights. Southern California Edison found an illegal electrical bypass underneath the electrical meters at 15 indoor grows, the release said.

Deputies froze 25 bank accounts containing an undisclosed amount of U.S. currency.

The searches culminated a four-month investigation into a drug trafficking organization. The San Jacinto Sheriff’s Special Enforcement Team, as it served previous warrants, determined that all the operations were being financed by the same group in the Los Angeles area.

The Los Angeles and San Bernardino counties sheriff’s departments, Hemet Police Department and Riverside County District Attorney’s Office assisted.

Legalizing marijuana may have theoretically brought the tax revenue to the state that they were seeking, but when the state continued to raise those taxes, the illegal marijuana industry began to reemerge. California needs to learn the lessons of the Laffer Curve.

I Think This Problem Was Preventable!

The Daily Wire is reporting today that Fresno County Sheriff Margaret Mims of California has stated that she is not enforcing Democratic Governor Gavin Newsom’s lockdown order because her team has their “hands full trying to re-arrest” criminals who are out on “zero-dollar bail,” a policy implemented in 2019. New York City and California seem to be having a lot of the same problems due to the same ridiculous policies.

The article reports:

In August of 2018, California set in motion their “zero-dollar bail” policy.

“California will become the first state in the nation to abolish bail for suspects awaiting trial under a sweeping reform bill signed by Gov. Jerry Brown,” NPR reported at the time. “An overhaul of the state’s bail system has been in the works for years, and became an inevitability earlier this year when a California appellate court declared the state’s cash bail system unconstitutional. The new law goes into effect in October 2019.”

“Today, California reforms its bail system so that rich and poor alike are treated fairly,” Brown said in a statement.

The reforms to the bail system may treat the rich and poor who are suspected of committing crimes equally, but they are a nightmare for innocent citizens who become victims of the crimes committed by criminals not held in jail.

The article notes:

Moreover, as noted by The Los Angeles Times in March, the blue state granted early release to 3,500 inmates “in an effort to reduce crowding as coronavirus infections begin spreading through the state prison system.”

“Lawyers for Gov. Gavin Newsom on Tuesday told a panel of federal judges the state is taking ‘extraordinary and unprecedented protective measures’ to slow the spread of the virus and protect those who live and work within California’s 35 prisons,” the report said. “The accelerated prison discharges — affecting inmates due to be released over the next 60 days — come in the face of pressure to do much more.”

The voters of California have only themselves to blame for this mess. What percentage of Californians voted in the election of Governor Newsom, and how many people voted for him?

Internet Censorship Can Be Hazardous To Your Health

Yesterday The Gateway Pundit posted an article about a Laura Ingraham interview with Doctors Dan Erickson and Artin Massihi about what they have learned about the coronavirus through their testing and what they believe about what measures should be taken to prevent the spread of the virus.

The article includes the following video:

The doctors had originally placed a video on YouTube explaining what they have learned, but YouTube took that video down. The video was taken down because it did not agree with official WHO policy (which incidentally does not have a great track record for being truthful or helpful).

The article at The Gateway Pundit reports:

Doctors Dan Erickson and Artin Massihi said their facilities have tested over 5,200 patients for the coronavirus throughout the county, making up for over half of all testing in Kern County. According to their data, the death rate of the coronavirus is similar in prevalence to the flu. And they believe only the sick and elderly should be quarantined and that businesses should open. They also revealed that the state of California is pressuring doctors to pad the COVID-19 numbers.

These two doctors are not the only medical professionals stating that the nationwide lockdown is not the answer. It is becoming obvious to many medical professionals and many others that we have made a mistake by shutting down the entire country and need to reopen it.

The article at The Gateway Pundit also includes a longer video by Dr. Erickson explaining what the doctors have learned about the virus and why they believe that the current lockdown is not the right way to protect Americans.

Why Mail-In Voting Is A Really Bad Idea

In December 2018 The Federalist posted an article with the following title, “How Ballot-Harvesting Became The New Way To Steal An Election.” The article is still relevant today. So what is ballot-harvesting? Ballot-harvesting is the practice of party operatives collecting absentee or mail-in ballots and turning bunches of them in at a time. So why is this risky? A person can go into a nursing home with a handful of ballots, sit down with each resident (regardless of their mental capacity), fill out a ballot for them, have the resident sign it, and turn it in as the resident’s vote. There is no way of knowing if the ballot reflected the resident’s wishes.

The article notes:

With ballot-harvesting, paper votes are collected by intermediaries who deliver them to polling officials, presumably increasing voter turnout but also creating opportunities for mischief.

The latter is suspected in North Carolina, where uncharacteristic Democratic charges of vote fraud prompted an investigation into whether Republican-paid political operatives illegally collected and possibly stole absentee ballots in a still-undecided congressional race. A national spotlight was shone by The New York Times, which, like Democrats, often minimizes vote fraud; it flooded the zone in this case, assigning five reporters to a single story.

In California, by contrast, Democrats exulted as they credited a quietly passed 2016 law legalizing ballot-harvesting with their recent sweep of House seats in the former Republican stronghold of Orange County, thereby helping them win control of the House. In that case, it was Republican eyebrows that were arched. House Speaker Paul Ryan said what happened in California “defies logic.”

The article continues:

Only 16 states regulate ballot-harvesting at all, and their rules vary. In Colorado, one of three states to conduct all elections entirely by mail-in ballots, third-party volunteers are allowed to collect up to 10 ballots, though critics have long alleged that the practice is ripe for exploitation.

In November, Montana voters passed a state referendum banning the collection of ballots by third parties. Arizona’s 2016 ban against the practice, which had previously been linked to voter fraud in the state, was recently upheld by a federal appeals court, despite claims that it would disproportionately impact Latino voters who relied on third parties to help navigate the voting process.

Please follow the link to read the entire article. This is an activity that has successfully stolen elections in the past, and there is no reason to believe that it would not be used if voter laws were altered to allow voting by mail.

We Have Lost Critical Thinking (And Civility) In America

I did an experiment on Facebook yesterday. I posted the following observation:

To all of my liberal California friends who are constantly bashing President Trump. Has it occurred to you that if President Trump had not restricted air travel from Chine at the end of January (despite being called a racist by the Democrats for doing it) if you live near an airport that is a point of entry from China, he might have saved your life.

That is a statement based on comments by the medical experts on the coronavirus task force–it is not an original thought. The response the statement got was unbelievable–there were close to fifty comments, many of which (on both sides) used language that caused me to eventually delete the post.

There really are not two sides of that argument–the statement is based on scientific evidence about the virus and how it spreads. There should be nothing controversial about the statement.

So what did I learn? Critical thinking and civil debate are not doing well in America. By the time the comments thread was half way over, the word racist was used, President Trump was accused of acting like a king, the people who supported President Trump in his handling of the coronavirus were simply ignoring facts, and the people who opposed President Trump were simply stupid and uninformed. The basic fact of the statement was totally ignored in the discussion.  I mention this because it is dangerous for America. I wasn’t around for Pearl Harbor, so I don’t know if America came together at that point. I was around for 9/11, and I remember the leaked Democrat memo that suggested a strategy to undermine President Bush by supporting the war in Iraq and then pulling the rug out from under him. That is not the way to unite America, and may have been the beginning of the political games we see now. Just for the record, The New York Times ran an article in 2014 stating that our soldiers found weapons of mass destruction in Iraq, but somehow the rest of the media didn’t pick up the story.

My point is very simple. We are facing a crisis in America. Because a country without freedom chose to lie to the world about a new virus, we are challenged by a pandemic. Everyone has been told to stay at home for at least the past week, and some of us are going stir crazy. Insulting each other and bashing the President does not help the situation. Some of the statements made by our political leaders would be considered treasonous in a different time. It’s time to work together and ignore those who are using this crisis for political gain. We need to bring back critical thinking and civility.

The Homeless Are A Danger To Themselves And To The Rest Of Us

The once beautiful streets of San Francisco are now littered with needles and human waste. The homeless commit crimes to support various drug habits. Diseases that we have not seen in America for decades are appearing in the community. Who knows how the coronavirus will impact these people. The city does not seem to be able to deal with the problem. Where do you start?

On Tuesday The City Journal posted an article about the homelessness problem. The article reminds us that new data undermines the idea that homelessness is the result of high rents and lack of economic opportunity.

The article reports:

But new data are undermining this narrative. As residents of West Coast cities witness the disorder associated with homeless encampments, they have found it harder to accept the progressive consensus—especially in the context of the coronavirus epidemic, which has all Americans worried about contagion. An emerging body of evidence confirms what people see plainly on the streets: homelessness is deeply connected to addiction, mental illness, and crime.

Homeless advocates argue that substance abuse is a small contributor to the problem, and that no more than 20 percent of the homeless population abuses drugs. Last year, when I suggested that homelessness is primarily an addiction crisis—citing Seattle and King County data that suggested half of homeless individuals suffered from opioid addiction—activists denounced me on social media and wrote letters to the editor demanding a retraction. But according to a recent Los Angeles Times investigation, 46 percent of the homeless and 75 percent of the unsheltered homeless have a substance-abuse disorder—more than three times higher than official estimates from the Los Angeles Homeless Services Authority.

In the interest of preventing “stigmatization,” progressives downplay the connection between schizophrenia, severe bipolar disorder, and homelessness. In general, cities have claimed that roughly 25 percent to 39 percent of the homeless suffer from mental-health disorders. As new data from the California Policy Lab show, it’s likely that 50 percent of the homeless and 78 percent of the unsheltered homeless have a serious mental health condition. For residents of cities like San Francisco, Portland, and Seattle, this should come as no surprise. The people smashing up property and yelling in the streets are clearly suffering from mental illness. The numbers confirm the ground-level reality.

The article concludes:

Residents in the most progressive enclaves of West Coast cities have quietly begun to demand policy changes to address the obvious causes of the homelessness crisis. In San Francisco, city leaders have launched a new initiative to focus on the 4,000 individuals who suffer from the “perilous trifecta” of homelessness, addiction, and mental illness. Mayor London Breed has spoken frankly about the human causes of homelessness, and Anton Nigusse Bland, a physician and director of mental health reform for the city, has pledged to “develop a strategic approach to mental health and substance use services for people experiencing homelessness in San Francisco.”

This is a small but promising step. Especially now, with the threat of an infectious disease becoming a national crisis, it is imperative that city leaders come to grips with the dangers of letting people live in encampments that lack even rudimentary sanitation. We can only hope that this new awareness extends to other cities. For now, more than 100,000 people in California, Oregon, and Washington continue to languish in the streets.

Rhode Island has put in place a program that has been successful in dealing with the problem of homelessness. The problem includes counseling, drug rehabilitation, reintegration into the community and reintegration into family units. The program is a public-private partnership that has been successful in getting many of the homeless reintegrated into society. Similar programs need to be instituted on the west coast. It is a disgrace that America has not done more to help those among us living on the street. Throwing money at the problem or ignoring it is not the answer. It takes a commitment to helping the homeless deal with the mental problems that have resulted in their living on the street.

You Are Only Allowed To Be A Whistleblower On Certain Crimes

The Federalist posted an article today about the State of California’s legal case against David Daleiden. David Daleiden is director of the Center for Medical Progress, the group that exposed the sale of aborted baby body parts by Planned Parenthood.

The article reports:

An undercover reporter has been arraigned in California and charged with ten felonies for secretly recording conversations, and it’s time to revisit how the judiciary and the law can stifle the First Amendment’s guarantee of freedom of the press.

The accused, David Daleiden, used standard media undercover techniques to investigate and expose Planned Parenthood’s sale of aborted fetus body parts. While the use of undercover techniques like Daleiden’s is a controversial practice even within journalism circles, Daleiden’s upcoming jury trial has far wider implications for journalists.

Namely, can and should government criminalize undercover reporting, which historically has revealed otherwise hidden wrongdoing of all kinds?

The article cites the history of investigative journalism:

Let’s first put aside that Daleiden, as director of the Center for Medical Progress, is a pro-life activist—which is not a crime. He should have the same right to penetrate the practices of America’s abortion providers and report his findings just as other reporters and publications investigate other matters.

Consider the multitude of covertly conducted investigations exposing threats to public health and safety, racism, and various other injustices, dating back to the dawn of our republic. To mention a few: In a classic case of disguised reporters using hidden cameras, ABC “Prime Time Live” outed Food Lion’s alleged unsanitary food handling practices. “Dateline” NBC deployed decoys and hidden cameras to expose men who solicited sex with minors on the Internet. Vanity Fair had a clandestine reporter join a tour group to the Holy Land to probe then-President George W. Bush’s alleged ties to religious right leaders.

Undercover Chicago Tribune reporters, working from the inside as employees, exposed life-threatening conditions in nursing homes. Another Tribune reporter worked undercover in the city’s election board to reveal widespread election fraud. Chicago Sun-Times reporters, working inside, turned up dangerous practices at abortion clinics. The paper also opened a bar, the Mirage, in a sting using hidden cameras to bare shakedowns by city inspectors.

Unfortunately, David Daleiden exposed something that the media did not want exposed.

The article concludes:

Even if the government’s action were bias-free, Daleiden’s pursuit still jeopardizes quality journalism. The California accusations are based on the claim his targets had an expectation of privacy even when the conversations were conducted in a public place, like a restaurant or hotel convention hall, where bystanders could hear them. It’s a ludicrous assertion, a gross misinterpretation, and an undue and overbroad extension of the law.

…The Los Angeles Times deemed the prosecution “disturbingly aggressive” and an “overreach.”

Possible prison sentences and burdensome fines attached to criminal conduct cannot be ignored in this debate. They are more than a disincentive to expose wrongdoing; they give the upper hand to criminal enterprises, powerful corporations, avenging politicians, ideologues, and special interests to protect themselves from public condemnation and costly penalties for misconduct. This is not a loophole that the Founding Fathers had in mind when they crafted the constitutional protection of freedom of the press.

Even those who disagree with Daleiden and his techniques but care about how the precedent-setting legal actions against him that could define press freedom in the future need to follow this case as it winds through the legal system, possibly all the way up to the U.S. Supreme Court.

Meanwhile, the problem with Planned Parenthood continues. Millions of aborted baby body parts continue to be sold. No one in Congress has the backbone to make this totally illegal–the Democrats are being paid off by Planned Parenthood PAC’s and the Republicans have no spine.

This Story Needs To Stay In The News Until The Truth Is Found

The U.K. Daily Mail posted an article today about the death of Philip Haney. The police department that handled the case is expressing doubts that the death was a suicide.

The article reports:

Authorities have backtracked on initial reports that a Department of Homeland Security whistleblower committed suicide after his body was found with a gunshot wound by a California highway.

Philip Haney, who spoke out against his own agency during the Obama administration, was found dead in Plymouth, about 40 miles east of Sacramento, last Friday. 

His body was found in a park and ride area near Highway 16 and Highway 124.

The Amador County Sheriff’s Office initially said the 66-year-old was found with what appeared to be a ‘self-inflicted gunshot wound’.

They also said a firearm had been found next to Haney and his vehicle. 

The sheriff’s office have since described those initial reports as ‘misinformation’ and said they have asked the FBI for assistance in investigating Haney’s death. 

Let’s hope they get the honest FBI and not the deep state FBI.

The article reports information that might hold some clues to the cause of death:

Haney gained national attention in 2016 when he criticized the agency – which at the time was under the Obama administration – for its handling of radical Jihadists and Islamic extremists.

He testified before the Senate Judiciary Committee that the DHS ordered him in 2009 to delete hundreds of files that showed links between people and Islamic terror groups.

The whistleblower testified that several terror attacks in the U.S. could have been thwarted if some of those files had not been deleted. 

In an opinion piece for the Hill prior to his testimony, Haney wrote: ‘It is very plausible that one or more of the subsequent terror attacks on the homeland could have been prevented if more subject matter experts in the Department of Homeland Security had been allowed to do our jobs back in late 2009.

‘It is demoralizing – and infuriating – that today, those elusive dots are even harder to find, and harder to connect, than they were during the winter of 2009.’

At the time of Haney’s testimony, Republicans questioned former Obama-era DHS Secretary Jet Johnson about the allegations.

Senator Ted Cruz asked: ‘Was Mr Haney’s testimony that the Department of Homeland Security order over 800 documents… altered or deleted accurate?’

Johnson replied he had ‘no idea’ and denied knowing who Haney was.

‘I don’t know who Mr Haney is. I wouldn’t know him if he walked into the room,’ he said. 

Hopefully Mr. Haney left the information for his next book with a reliable person.

I don’t believe that Philip Haney committed suicide. I hope the investigation will be kept open until authorities know exactly what did happen.

The Possible Cost Of Not Respecting The Chain Of Command

Yesterday The Gateway Pundit posted an article titled, “State Department Employee in Japan Ignored President Trump’s Orders and Allowed Americans with Coronavirus to Fly Back to the US.” The State Department employee who ignored the President’s orders is Ian Brownlee, Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary, Bureau of Consular Affairs. He needs to be fired immediately.

The article reports:

‘It’s important to remember this was an emerging and unusual circumstance,’ said Ian Brownlee, Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary, Bureau of Consular Affairs.

‘We had 328 people on buses, a plan to execute and we received lab results on people who were otherwise asymptomatic, un-ill people on a bus on the way to the airport.

‘The people on the ground did exactly the right thing…in bringing them home.’

People who had tested positive were put into isolation units on board the two cargo planes, which then flew to Joint Base San Antonio – Lackland in Texas and Travis Air Base in California.

Although officials reassured the press that the sick passengers were thoroughly contained and every precaution had been taken to ensure the safety of the healthy people onboard, reports later emerged that people on the flights had no idea they were sharing yet another even more confined space with infected individuals.

When the planes landed at their respective destinations late Sunday night, six ‘high risk’ passengers from Lackland and seven from Travis were ushered onto an additional flight to Omaha Eppley Airfield in Nebraska.

Mr. Brownlee did not have the authority to override the President’s orders. Hopefully everything will work out in the end, but Mr. Brownlee has created a risk for American citizens that did not need to be there. He should be immediately terminated for insubordination.

The Murder Of An American Patriot

Philip Haney was well known in intelligence circles. He was an honest man who told the truth and blew the whistle on some of the ‘questionable’ practices of the Obama administration. He was well respected and totally honest in his assessments of terrorist threats. He was murdered in California earlier this week.

Law Enforcement Today posted an article this morning.

The article reports:

We have a quick update for the story we broke earlier today in the apparent murder of our friend, Philip Haney. We will continue to provide details as they become available.

While we and The Gateway Pundit are the only outlets covering this developing news, conversation on Twitter is exploding. 

LET broke this tragic news to the nation this morning. 

A screen shot taken from Frank Andrew Bostom’s Twitter feed shows what appears to be a statement from Frank Gaffney, the Executive Chairman of the Center for Security Policy. 

The statement reads: 

“As you may know, we lost this week one of our most brilliant, most dedicated and most devout comrades-in-arms: Philip Haney. 

While the details are sketchy at the moment, Phil went missing on Wednesday in the area he called home in northern California to which he returned after the passing of his beloved wife, Francesca, following a long struggle with a series of terrible health afflictions. On Friday morning, a sheriff’s deputy finally found his body with a gunshot wound to the chest. 

As of now, we have no word about suspects or motives. 

It is hard to overstate the magnitude of this loss to the cause of freedom…”

The article includes a screenshot of a tweet by Andrew Bostom:

I never met Philip Haney, but I am familiar with his work. He was a dedicated patriot. He will be missed. Hopefully those responsible for his death will be found quickly and arrested.

Why The Census Is An Issue For The Democrat Party

The Democrats have been pursuing two paths regarding the 2020 Census and its impact on the 2020 election–the first is to eliminate the Electoral College and the second is the refusing to distinguish between American citizens and non-citizens during the census. Eliminating the Electoral College will put Los Angeles and New York City in charge of our country’s government (those two cities have not really mastered good government with fiscal responsibility) and counting non-citizens in the census will give more Electoral College delegates to the Democrat states.

On January 5th, The Blaze reported the following:

Population estimates show reliably Democratic states, like New York, California, and Illinois will each lose at least one congressional district and representation in the Electoral College. Conversely, states that tend to vote for Republicans—such as Texas, Florida, and Montana—are expected to increase their presence.

“This is looking to benefit Republicans only because of how the landscape has changed,” said Jenna Ellis, senior legal analyst for the Trump 2020 campaign, according to radio station KTRH.

Ellis also noted that Democrats’ anticipated losses is why they mobilized so strongly to oppose the Trump administration’s addition of a citizenship question on the Census.

“They’re not interested in laws,” she said. “They’re not interested in sound reasoning or fair and accurate representation of every American. They are only interested in concentrating their own political power by any means necessary.”

Most Americans have the option of voting with their feet. That is why California is rapidly losing citizen residents and Texas is gaining them.

The article lists the states gaining and losing population:

Among GOP strongholds expected to lose an electoral vote are: Alabama, Michigan, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and West Virginia. Among the blue states are California, Illinois, Minnesota, New York, and Rhode Island. That’s an even minus five for both parties from the 2016 election night map, according to an analysis by NBC News.

However, when analysts looked at states expected to gain seats, the GOP comes out on top. Three Republican states that went for Trump in 2016—Montana, Arizona, and North Carolina—are likely to pick-up one seat after the Census. On the Democratic side of the ledger, two states (Oregon and Colorado) will each add a seat, resulting in a net gain of one Electoral College seat for Republicans.

The big problem for the Left is that forecasts show Florida and Texas—both of which voted for Trump in 2016—picking up a combined five seats (two for Florida, three for Texas). Thus, if the estimates hold, Republicans will pick-up six Electoral College votes. Of course, this assumes that both the GOP maintains control of the Lone Star and Sunshine States, but that’s a topic for a different day.

The only hope for the Democrats is that the people moving to Republican states bring their big government ideas with them and overwhelm the population. As someone who lives in one of those states, I am hoping that doesn’t happen.

Wisdom From The Mayor Of Livermore California

The article I am referring to is from June 2018, but it is still totally relevant. Linked in posted an article on June 16, 2018, about the success and popularity of President Trump. Obviously that popularity does not extend to the media, but it does extend to the thousands of people who attend his rallies. The article is written by Marshall Kamena, a registered Democrat who is the Mayor of Livermore, California.

The article notes:

My Leftist friends (as well as many ardent #NeverTrumpers) constantly ask me if I’m not bothered by Donald Trump’s lack of decorum. They ask if I don’t think his tweets are “beneath the dignity of the office.”

Here’s my answer: We Right-thinking people have tried dignity. There could not have been a man of more quiet dignity than George W. Bush as he suffered the outrageous lies and politically motivated hatreds that undermined his presidency.

We tried statesmanship.

Could there be another human being on this earth who so desperately prized “collegiality” as John McCain?

We tried propriety – has there been a nicer human being ever than Mitt Romney?

And the results were always the same. This is because, while we were playing by the rules of dignity, collegiality and propriety, the Left has been, for the past 60 years, engaged in a knife fight where the only rules are those of Saul Alinsky and the Chicago mob.

I don’t find anything “dignified,” “collegial” or “proper” about Barack Obama’s lying about what went down on the streets of Ferguson in order to ramp up racial hatreds because racial hatreds serve the Democratic Party.

I don’t see anything “dignified” in lying about the deaths of four Americans in Benghazi and imprisoning an innocent filmmaker to cover your tracks.

I don’t see anything “statesman-like” in weaponizing the IRS to be used to destroy your political opponents and any dissent.

Yes, Obama was “articulate” and “polished” but in no way was he in the least bit “dignified,” “collegial” or “proper.”

The article continues:

The problem is that, through these years, the Left has been the only side fighting this war. While the Left has been taking a knife to anyone who stands in their way, the Right has continued to act with dignity, collegiality and propriety.

With Donald Trump, this all has come to an end. Donald Trump is America ’s first wartime president in the Culture War.

…Trump’s tweets may seem rash and unconsidered but, in reality, he is doing exactly what Alinsky suggested his followers do. First, instead of going after “the fake media” — and they are so fake that they have literally gotten every single significant story of the past 60 years not just wrong, but diametrically opposed to the truth, from the Tet Offensive to Benghazi, to what really happened on the streets of Ferguson, Missouri — Trump isolated CNN.. He made it personal.

Then, just as Alinsky suggests, he employs ridicule which Alinsky described as “the most powerful weapon of all.”… Most importantly, Trump’s tweets have put CNN in an untenable and unwinnable position. … They need to respond.

This leaves them with only two choices. They can either “go high” (as Hillary would disingenuously declare of herself and the fake news would disingenuously report as the truth) and begin to honestly and accurately report the news or they can double-down on their usual tactics and hope to defeat Trump with twice their usual hysteria and demagoguery. The problem for CNN (et al.) with the former is that, if they were to start honestly reporting the news, that would be the end of the Democratic Party they serve. It is nothing but the incessant use of fake news (read: propaganda) that keeps the Left alive.

Imagine, for example, if CNN had honestly and accurately reported then-candidate Barack Obama’s close ties to foreign terrorists (Rashid Khalidi), domestic terrorists (William Ayers & Bernardine Dohrn), the mafia (Tony Rezko) or the true evils of his spiritual mentor, Jeremiah Wright’s church.

Please follow the link above to read the entire article. It is extremely insightful!

The Overlooked Impact Of Illegal Immigration

Breitbart posted an article yesterday about an aspect of illegal immigration that is often overlooked.

The article reports:

Research by the Center for Immigration Studies’ Steven Camarota and Karen Zeigler finds that annual illegal and legal immigration to the U.S. will redistribute political power in the form of 26 House seats away from a number of red states and towards massively populated blue states like California and New York.

“To put this number in perspective, changing the party of 21 members of the current Congress would flip the majority in the U.S. House,” Camarota and Zeigler note.

Ohio, a swing state that voted for President Trump in 2016, will get three fewer congressional seats in 2020 due to mass immigration in other states. Michigan and Pennsylvania, also states that voted for Trump in 2016, will each have two fewer congressional seats. Wisconsin, a Trump-supporting swing state, will have its congressional seats cut by at least one.

Red states such as Alabama, Arkansas, Georgia, Idaho, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, North Carolina, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Tennessee, Utah, and West Virginia, Camarota and Zeigler predict, will all get one less congressional seat in 2020. Smaller blue states such as Minnesota and Rhode Island will each receive one less congressional seat.

Those seats cut from mostly red states will be redistributed to California, the most immigration-inundated state in the country. California, by 2020, is set to gain 11 congressional seats solely due to the fact that noncitizens, rather than just American citizens, are counted in congressional apportionment.

Likewise, New York — where nearly 40 percent of residents are foreign-born — is set to gain four more congressional seats and New Jersey, with a more than 22 percent foreign-born population, will also take an additional two congressional seats.

Texas, which has become increasingly blue due to immigration and out-of-state young people, will gain another four congressional seats, as will the swing state of Florida with its foreign-born population of 4.1 million.

The deeply blue states of Illinois and Massachusetts, both of which went 55 to 60 percent for Democrat Hillary Clinton in the 2016 presidential election, will each gain one congressional seat.

What this is saying is that the influx of non-citizens into blue states will lessen the impact of voters in red states. This is a glaring example of the reason only citizens should be counted when allotting seats in the House of Representatives. The House of Representatives is supposed to represent American citizens. Americans are leaving California and New York in droves. These two states should be losing representatives–not gaining them.

When Politics Gets In The Way Of Solving A Problem

Farming in the Central Valley of California, once the breadbasket of America, has almost ceased entirely because of environmentalist trying to protect a fish that may not even be a unique species, much less endangered.

In February 2014 I posted the following quote from the Herald and News in 2009:

“Thousands of people have also become unemployed or lost the ability to farm, which adversely affects both local and national economies.

“In addition to the California drought, there has been court-ordered protection of a 2-inch smelt fish that has stopped the pumping of water from the delta that is necessary for agriculture in central California. If it is listed as an endangered species, it’s likely that California agriculture, which supplies a third of the nation’s food supply, will be permanently changed.”

I also included the following vacation picture:

Fast forward to the present. One America News posted the following video on YouTube on  November 27th:

Meanwhile, some of the most fertile land in the country lies idle. Common sense has taken a vacation.

I Guess Legalization Was Not The Right Answer

A number of states have legalized recreational marijuana with the intention of collecting tax revenue on the sale of the drug after it becomes legal. There is little thought given to the possible effects of the drug or the long-term consequences–it’s about the money. As far as the long-term consequences, I posted an article in October of last year that included a first-hand account of the effects of continuing marijuana use. Yesterday (updated today) The U.K. Daily Mail posted an interesting article about how the legalization and taxation of marijuana  has worked in California.

The article reports:

California is increasing business tax rates on legal marijuana, a move that stunned struggling companies that have been pleading with the state to do just the opposite.

Hefty marijuana taxes that can approach 50 per cent in some communities have been blamed for pushing shoppers into California’s tax-free illegal market, which is thriving. 

Industry analysts estimate that $3 are spent in the illegal market for every $1 in the legal one.

The California Cannabis Industry Association said in a statement that its members are ‘stunned and outraged.’

The group said the higher taxes that will take effect January 1 will make it even worse for a legal industry struggling under the weight of heavy regulation and fees, local bans on pot sales and growing and a booming underground marketplace.

‘Widening the price … gap between illicit and regulated products will further drive consumers to the illicit market at a time when illicit products are demonstrably putting people´s lives at risk,’ the group said, referring to the national vaping health crisis.

Los Angeles dispensary owner Jerred Kiloh, who heads the United Cannabis Business Association, said the increased levies added to the heavily taxed market ‘seems like a slap in the face.’

The changes involve taxes paid by legal businesses, which ultimately get passed along to consumers at the retail counter.

Josh Drayton of the cannabis association predicted that an eighth-ounce purchase of marijuana buds, typically priced around $40 to $45, would be pushed up to $50 or more in the new year.

There are a few lessons to be learned here. First, increasing taxes on something results in people finding another source or buying less. In this case, people have found another source. A person buying legal marijuana can be reasonably sure that he is getting the product he is paying for; however, buying any drug illegally can be very risky. This is the Laffer Curve at work–raising taxes on something will at some point decrease revenue. Second, companies don’t pay taxes–increased taxes are passed along to the consumer in the form of increased prices.

Legalizing recreational marijuana use may have unseen consequences we haven’t even dreamed of yet. In California it has not ended the illegal drug trade, and the greedy government’s taxes have only exacerbated the problem.