The Coming Increase In Gasoline Prices

On Monday, Ed Morrissey at Hot Air reported that the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) is planning a major decrease in oil production in order to get the price of oil back to $100 a barrel.

The article quotes a CNBC article:

An influential alliance of some of the world’s most powerful oil producers is reportedly considering their largest output cut since the start of the coronavirus pandemic this week, a historic move that energy analysts say could push oil prices back toward triple digits.

OPEC and non-OPEC producers, a group often referred to as OPEC+, will meet in Vienna, Austria, on Wednesday to decide on the next phase of production policy.

The oil cartel and its allies are considering an output cut of more than a million barrels per day, according to OPEC+ sources who spoke to Reuters.

“The OPEC ministers are not going to come to Austria for the first time in two years to do nothing. So there’s going to be a cut of some historic kind,” Dan Pickering, CIO of Pickering Energy Partners, said, referring to the group’s first in-person meeting since 2020.

This is the cost of America giving up its energy dependence. I can’t emphasize often enough that we were energy independent under President Trump and were able to help the American economy and the American consumer by the domestic production of oil. The election of Joe Biden changed all of that. Even if the Republicans take Congress this year and a Republican becomes President in 2024, it will take a while to bring American energy back to what it was under President Trump. Hopefully the American economy can hold out that long without collapsing.

The article concludes:

Of course, Biden could put the US on a footing that would allow us to dictate not just production levels but also heavily influence oil prices to deny Vladimir Putin his excess revenue stream. Rather than choke off exploration and extraction, Biden could cancel his EO 13990 and reverse his lease-sales policies to encourage more investment in oil and natural gas production. That would unleash massive new resources for both domestic use and export, and even the initial steps would shock oil futures markets into accounting for sudden new production levels from the US. Biden won’t do it, however, because he’s more in thrall of his progressive-environmental Left than he is focused on economic and strategic national-security concerns.

So once again, we’ll be dancing to any tune that OPEC+ plays. It’s yet another reminder of Joe Biden’s 1970s revival in all the wrong ways.

I could have dealt with leisure suits and platform shoes coming back–but I can’t deal with gas lines and ultra-expensive gasoline again.

The Globalists Have Hit A Snag

On Monday, Ed Morrissey at Hot Air posted an article about the recent Italian elections.

The article reports:

Voters in yet another EU nation turned away from the leftward tilt of Brussels and more toward self-determination. Italy has elected its first right-wing coalition government in decades, and will almost certainly have its first female prime minister. Georgia Meloni led her Brothers of Italy into a dominant role in the coalition, as both CNN and Reuters describe this as “the most right-wing government since World War II”:

The mainstream media is in panic mode.

CNN reported:

Brothers of Italy leader Giorgia Meloni has claimed victory in a general election that seems set to install her as Italy’s first female prime minister, leading the most far-right government since the fascist era of Benito Mussolini.

Addressing the media and supporters in the early hours of Monday morning, Meloni said it was “a night of pride for many and a night of redemption.”

“It’s a victory I want to dedicate to everyone who is no longer with us and wanted this night,” she said. “Starting tomorrow we have to show our value … Italians chose us, and we will not betray it, as we never have,” she said.

Preliminary results put an alliance of far-right parties, led by Meloni’s ultraconservative Brothers of Italy party, on track to win at least 44% of the vote, according to the Italian Interior Ministry.

Ed Morrissey notes:

Ahem. If Italy had elected Mitt Romney, that would also be “the most far-right government” since Mussolini. In American terms, Italy’s politics has ranged from the CPUSA to, say, Bill Clinton since World War II. Even Silvio Berlusconi fit within the left-of-center EU salons while dabbling in populism and narcissism.

The article at Hot Air concludes:

Frankly, from this description, Meloni appears to be a business-as-usual politician. If Draghi finds her mainstream enough to maintain a political engagement with Meloni, and if Meloni has already set in place the relationships that will make coalition-building and consensus possible, that doesn’t sound very “fascist” to me — and not even very “far right,” for that matter. Time will tell, but this looks like yet another media freak-out over not very much except something that doesn’t suit their tastes.

Please follow the link to read the entire article. It’s fun to watch the media go crazy because someone got elected who might actually understand that they work for the people.

Help For Some Homeless People In Denver

On September 19th, Hot Air posted an article about a new program to provide aid to homeless people in Denver.

The article reports:

Just like virtually every city in the United States, Denver, Colorado has seen a significant surge in homelessness over the past couple of years, along with rising crime rates. But rather than seeking to provide more homeless housing, food kitchens, or other typical services, the city is preparing to launch a different type of experiment. They will be giving homeless people $12,000 in cash with no strings attached. The money will be paid out with an initial cash bonanza of six thousand dollars, followed by monthly payments for the following eleven months. This limited form of a basic income guarantee is intended to see if the cash payout will “lift them out of destitution.” That sounds like a pretty sweet deal, doesn’t it? If you are so impoverished that you’re living on the streets, twelve thousand dollars would probably go quite a way and might at least see you through the colder winter months that are quickly approaching.

But there are several major catches to this plan. First of all, the portion of the funding coming from the federal government via the American Rescue Plan will only cover 140 people. That’s out of a homeless population in the city currently estimated to number nearly 7,000. They hope to include another roughly 800 homeless people through charitable donations. But even if you’re luckily enough to wind up being one of the 900 or so who might get the cash, there is another significant hoop to jump through. Nearly all of the recipients will be women or homeless people who identify as being transgender or “non-binary” in terms of gender. In other words, cisgender males need not apply. (Daily Mail)

Obviously, discrimination is illegal in federal programs, so Denver has come up with a way to avoid that particular law.

The article reports:

Denver is trying to work around the rules by taking the federal grant money and giving it to the Denver Basic Income Project, a non-governmental nonprofit group. That way they can discriminate in the distribution of the funds as much as they like. But this also raises questions about the propriety of the program. The American Rescue Plan funds were specifically slated to be put toward stimulus checks, enhanced unemployment benefits, and keeping employers on their feet. How did this money wind up being diverted in this fashion?

As to the limits on who will qualify for the program, there are other issues. It should be fairly easy to identify which of the homeless applicants are women (assuming they have a biologist on the team, of course) but how do they plan to pick out the transgender and “nonbinary” applicants? Once the word gets out on the street that those are the required demographics to get your hands on that kind of cash, every male homeless person is going to show up claiming that they “identify” as a woman now. How will the screeners prove them wrong? Wouldn’t it be either transphobic or homophobic or some other form of phobia to even question them about it?

The article notes that one of the major causes of homelessness is addiction either to drugs or alcohol. The money spent on this giveaway would be much better spent helping those homeless people who are willing to get into some sort of rehab program.

The Numbers On Inflation

On Tuesday, Hot Air posted an article about the consumer price index report that was released.

The article reports:

So much for the second iteration of “inflation’s over!” Today’s consumer price index report shows year-on-year inflation still roaring at 8.3%, thanks in part to soaring food costs, which offset a plateau on gasoline prices.

However, even without food and energy, inflation picked up steam last month, as core CPI rose back above six percent year-on-year, and 0.6% month-on-month:

The Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U) rose 0.1 percent in August on a seasonally adjusted basis after being unchanged in July, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Over the last 12 months, the all items index increased 8.3 percent before seasonal adjustment.

Increases in the shelter, food, and medical care indexes were the largest of many contributors to the broad-based monthly all items increase. These increases were mostly offset by a 10.6-percent decline in the gasoline index. The food index continued to rise, increasing 0.8 percent over the month as the food at home index rose 0.7 percent. The energy index fell 5.0 percent over the month as the gasoline index declined, but the electricity and natural gas indexes increased.

The index for all items less food and energy rose 0.6 percent in August, a larger increase than in July. The indexes for shelter, medical care, household furnishings and operations, new vehicles, motor vehicle insurance, and education were among those that increased over the month. There were some indexes that declined in August, including those for airline fares, communication, and used cars and trucks.

The article concludes:

Even before this report, we knew that real disposable personal income (real DPI) had fallen for five quarters in a row. That too is a compounding measure. The plight of the American worker has gotten worse every single month of Biden’s presidency — and there’s no spinning that.

Please follow the link above to read the entire article. It includes charts and further information on the impact of inflation on every American.

Good News?

I was very unhappy when Senator Manchin signed on to the Inflation Recovery Act. I was not necessarily surprised, as he has caved in the past when his vote was critical. However, it seems as if there might be a silver lining to this atrocious bill. Please follow the link to the bill to read the Associated Press’ comments on the legislation.

On Sunday, Hot Air reported the following:

Some of the Democrats who have been spiking the ball in the end zone after the passage of the so-called “Inflation Reduction Act” probably didn’t read all of the finer details in the bill. They’ve been celebrating its passage along with Joe Biden as the “biggest climate legislation” to ever be passed. They have also been grudgingly thanking West Virginia Democrat Joe Manchin for getting the bill over the finish line. But it turns out that Manchin snuck in a few items that haven’t drawn many headlines yet and the climate warriors aren’t going to be very happy about them. While there were billions of dollars for wind and solar energy incentives in the bill, there were also provisions to bolster the oil and gas industry and keep it viable for quite some time to come. And previously stalled permits for drilling both on federal lands and offshore are about to be back on track. (Associated Press)

The article notes:

The most amusing part of this story is perhaps not the underlying news about new oil and gas leases, but the language the AP reporter chose to employ. After the CBO report came out, along with multiple analyses from economists, they’ve basically given up on calling the recent legislation the “Inflation Reduction Act.” In the title of the article, they simply call it the “climate bill.” They then go on to call it the “climate measure.” You have to dig down to the third paragraph before they bother mentioning the actual name of the bill as it was crafted.

The article concludes:

The oil and gas industry clearly saw this coming and they had been preparing. Despite the CEO of Chevron predicting earlier this year that no new oil refineries might ever be built in the United States again thanks to Joe Biden, we learned in recent weeks that Meridian Energy Group has received approval and is moving forward on construction of a new refinery in North Dakota. Two other previously shuttered refineries are undergoing refurbishment and will reopen later this year.

Don’t get me wrong, here. There are still plenty of awful things in this “climate bill.” But these additions lashing renewables and fossil fuels together have at least brought us a few significant steps closer to the “all of the above” energy policy that America needs to survive into the next century.

There may actually be a silver lining to this monstrosity.

 

A New Level Of Spin

On Friday, Ed Morrissey posted an article at Hot Air about the recent decline in gasoline prices. The article illustrates the spin the mainstream media is trying to put on the current price of gasoline. Although some of us a grateful for the recent decline in prices, most of us are also aware that gasoline prices averaged $2.379/gallon on January 21, 2021 (source here).

The article reports:

Nevertheless, CNN’s Chris Isidore wants us to celebrate the $100 per month “raise” we’re all getting at the pump, courtesy of The Most Beneficent Majesty of Joe Biden:

Next time you stop at a gas station, think of it as a $100-a-month tax cut. Or a maybe $100-a-month raise.

The steady drop in gas prices over the last few months has turned into an unexpected form of economic stimulus, coming at a time when the Federal Reserve is trying to cool the economy and battle rising prices with higher interest rates.

Since hitting a record of $5.02 a gallon on June 14, the national average price for regular gas is down $1.10, or 22%, to $3.92, according to AAA. That average has now fallen for 67 consecutive days.

Since the typical US household uses about 90 gallons of gas a month, the $1.10 drop in prices equals a savings of $98.82.

You can believe that after the mid-term elections the Biden administration will not care what the cost of gasoline is. It will probably rise back up to $4.00 a gallon or more and then magically decrease to about $3.50 just before the 2024 election. That is how things work in Washington.

The article at Hot Air concludes:

Furthermore, the price didn’t drop because the Biden administration brought massive new supplies into the market. The prices dropped due to a fall in demand for gasoline as it got too expensive for American consumers to use on vacations and other non-essential travel. That indicates an economic contraction on the way, not a pay raise.

This argument gets almost obscene when we consider what’s happened to Americans’ disposable income over the Biden presidency and the inflationary wave Biden created. For five straight quarters, real disposable personal income — adjusted for inflation — has fallen in a compounding series of buying-power setbacks for Americans. As I wrote the week before last:

In fact, with the exception of the massive sugar high of Biden’s American Rescue Plan stimulus, real disposable personal income — which is adjusted for inflation — has been in negative territory throughout Biden’s presidency. Those numbers are comparisons to the previous quarter, too, which means that this has a compounding effect. The most recent read of -0.5% on real disposable income is not from a baseline but shows a decline from the previous quarter’s -7.8%, which was a decline from the previous quarter, and so on.

In other words, Q2’s -0.5% wasn’t an improvement. It merely showed that the rate of decline slowed, but that real disposable personal income was still declining.

That’s what CNN has the cojones to describe as a pay “raise” in its economic “analysis.” It’s breathtaking in its intellectual dishonesty.

This is only one example of what we should expect to see as we enter the political silly season.

Ironic?

As Californians flee the inept (and expensive) government of their state, their destinations vary, but there is one very interesting destination.

On Wednesday, Hot Air posted an article with the following headline, “Californians are moving to Mexico City and not everyone is thrilled about it.” Where is the headline, “Illegal immigrants are moving to New York City and not everyone is thrilled about it?” At least the Californians moving to Mexico are immigrating legally–you can’t immigrate to Mexico illegally!

The article quotes the LA Times (this is the link, but it is behind the pay wall):

The influx, which has accelerated since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic and is likely to continue as inflation rises, is transforming some of the city’s most treasured neighborhoods into
expat enclaves.

In leafy, walkable quarters such as Roma, Condesa, Centro and Juarez, rents are soaring as Americans and other foreigners snap up houses and landlords trade long-term renters for travelers willing to pay more on Airbnb. Taquerias, corner stores and fondas — small, family-run lunch spots — are being replaced by Pilates studios, co-working spaces and sleek cafes advertising oat-milk
lattes and avocado toast.

And English — well, it’s everywhere: ringing out at supermarkets, natural wine bars and fitness classes in the park.

The article at the American Thinker continues:

A 38-year-old university professor labeled the trend “modern colonialism.”

“Mexico is classist and racist,” Bustos said. “People with white skin are given preference. Now, if a local wants to go to a restaurant or a club, they don’t just have to compete with rich, white Mexicans but with foreigners too.”

Anyway, the story says that most locals are extremely polite to the Americans who are moving in to their luxury apartments. But I guess it’s not just people in Boise, ID and Austin, TX who get fed up with Californians showing up with a lot of cash and no respect for the local customs. Unfortunately for Mexico City, the exodus from California isn’t likely to stop anytime soon.

There is a certain amount of irony in this story. How often do you hear Spanish spoken in major cities in America? Now the residents of Mexico City are complaining because they hear English. Irony at its best.

Adding Humor To A Serious Announcement

On Sunday, Hot Air reported that Attorney Jonathan Turley announced on Twitter that he has tested positive for Covid.

This is the Tweet:

Makes sense to me.

The article notes:

Does anyone really think that Merrick Garland’s DOJ will indict Hunter Biden? The workings of grand juries are supposed to be secret but it is reported that the grand jury looked at the possibility of criminal charges for alleged influence-peddling with foreign contacts in China, Russia, Ukraine, and other countries. Hunter was very successful in cashing in on his father’s position in the government. We don’t know if the grand jury decided on any indictments. Turley points out that there is clear evidence of some crimes. “For example, Biden seems clearly to have lied on the federal form to acquire a gun by denying his drug use; he also appears to have violated the Foreign Agents Registration Act. And there are obvious tax charges that could be brought, even though he paid outstanding taxes after the investigation began.”

Perhaps he’ll be indicted over tax evasion or for lying on a federal form about that gun. Just don’t count on him being held accountable for his slimy dealings with foreign countries – unless the indictments are postponed.

The article concludes:

Turley points out that since Joe Biden isn’t on a ballot in November and Hunter isn’t a candidate, just using the excuse of not wanting to interfere in the November midterms – and potentially dragging down Democrat candidates- is politicizing the grand jury investigation. Turley makes the case for a special counsel in the Hunter Biden case. Joe Biden (a.k.a. The Big Guy) is directly referenced in Hunter’s documents found on his laptop. The U.S. Attorney is unlikely to include any of that in a report. If Hunter pleads guilty of lesser charges to make a plea deal, he’ll be protected from future congressional hearings – such as are expected when Republicans take back majority control of the House. DOJ could cut a deal with Hunter and decline further charges. On the other hand, the U.S. Attorney could present evidence to a new grand jury, since this one has now expired, but it would take months to do and the midterm elections would be over.

It does not look as though Weiss called any witnesses who could testify about influence-peddling, including the president. Joe Biden would have to be called as a witness to answer any questions about The Big Guy’s involvement. We now know that Joe met with Hunter’s business partners, though he has consistently denied knowing anything about Hunter’s business dealings.

We’ll see what happens and if indictments do come down. Just don’t get your hopes up that Hunter will ever be held to the same standard that others are in these matters. He’ll likely write a check or two if his wrist is slapped and be on his merry way.

That is not equal justice under the law.

Has This Lady Read The U.S. Constitution?

On Friday, The Hill posted an article about a recent comment by Supreme Court Justice Elena Kagan.

The article reports:

Supreme Court Justice Elena Kagan said on Thursday at a conference that the legitimacy of the Supreme Court is tied to its conformity to public opinion, Reuters first reported.

“I’m not talking about any particular decision or even any particular series of decisions, but if over time the court loses all connection with the public and with public sentiment, that’s a dangerous thing for a democracy,” Kagan said at a judicial conference in Montana.

…Kagan said at the conference that the court earns its legitimacy by remaining impartial and nonpartisan.

“Overall, the way the court retains its legitimacy and fosters public confidence is by acting like a court, is by doing the kinds of things that do not seem to people political or partisan,” she said.

Kagan referenced times in history when Supreme Court justices failed to discipline themselves and instead “attempted to basically enact their own policy or political or social preferences,” saying that this puts court legitimacy at risk.

This is an amazing statement. The only thing the Supreme Court is required to be tied to is the U.S. Constitution.

On Saturday, Ed Morrissey posted the following at Hot Air:

Liberal Justice Elena Kagan said on Thursday that it would be a “dangerous thing for a democracy” if the conservative-majority U.S. Supreme Court loses the confidence of the American public.

Speaking in public for the first time since the court’s momentous ruling last month that overturned the landmark Roe v. Wade decision that legalized abortion nationwide, Kagan stressed the importance of the justices staying in their proper roles as judges and not dictating public policy.

The problem with Roe v. Wade actually had very little to do with abortion. The problem with Roe v. Wade was the Tenth Amendment.

The Tenth Amendment states:

The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.

Abortion is an issue that needs to be determined by every state–by legislators voted in by the people of that state and answerable to the people of that state. The Supreme Court simply overturned a decision that was unconstitutional. They did not end abortion–they simply left it up to each state to make the laws that the people in that state want.

Coming To A Town Near You

On Sunday, Hot Air posted an article about the unfolding disaster at America’s southern border.

The article reports:

The largest-ever migrant caravan is beginning its trek to the US-Mexico border. The estimated number of migrants in the caravan ranges from about 11,000 to 15,000. Most of them are women and children. The news of the caravan comes at a particularly awkward time for the Biden administration. Biden’s Summit of the Americas is supposed to begin Monday in Los Angeles.

The article quotes the organizer of the caravan:

“This is the largest mass human migration I have seen in at least the past 10 years,” said Luís Villagrán, an organizer of the caravan and director of the non-profit Center for Human Dignification.

The largest number of migrants in the caravan come from Venezuela, Cuba and Nicaragua – three countries whose authoritarian rulers Joe Biden has conspicuously refused to invite to the summit. But there are also Haitians, Salvadorans, Hondurans, Guatemalans and even citizens of India, Bangladesh, and several African countries.

Earlier this month, the Mexican National Migration Institute (INM), wrote to Villagrán, expressing sympathy for the caravan’s members and pledging to help the most vulnerable among them. The letter also acknowledges that the caravan is a result of the stunning tsunami of migration from nearly every country in the Americas to the United States in the past few years, attributing this migration to elevated rates of violence and economic instability in the continent.

The article concludes:

So, while leaders from Latin countries arrive in Los Angeles to discuss problems facing their countries and their relationship with each other, a massive caravan is beginning to walk the length of Mexico en route to the US border. The Biden administration originally stated that only “democratically-elected leaders” would be invited to the Summit. That would exclude Cuba, Nicaragua, and Venezuela. This caused some heads of state like AMLO to threaten a boycott. This diplomatic crisis (everything is a crisis with this administration) continues right up to the start of the Summit. As I said above, there has still not been a list of participants released. You may remember that Jill Biden was sent to smooth ruffled feathers and encourage the leadership in some of the region to attend the Summit. Let’s just say she didn’t exactly score a victory in her mission. Will Mexico, Brazil, Argentina, Honduras, and Guatemala, as well as others, go ahead and attend the Summit or will they make good on their threats of a boycott?

Biden’s border crisis continues to be a magnet to people around the world. We’ll see if the largest migrant caravan makes its way to the US border. Sometimes a caravan is reported to be organizing and then nothing much happens. We’ll soon know if this is one of those times or if thousands of migrants begin to walk the length of Mexico in hopes of being allowed into the United States.

Even if you don’t live in a border state, the arrival of this caravan will impact you. New York is hardly a border state, yet in recent weeks, the Biden administration has increased the number of flights from the Mexican border carrying illegal immigrants to New York (article here). A country without the will or ability to protect its borders will not remain a sovereign country for long.

Laws Have Consequences

On Saturday, Hot Air posted an article about a recent trend in Washington State.

The article reports:

Last July, a new law went into effect in Washington state that was described as “police reform.” House Bill 1054 made significant changes in how the police are allowed to do their jobs. Police unions had been protesting the measure, saying that it would negatively impact their ability to control crime, but the state’s Democrats cheered the bill as a way to bring more “equity” into the system. One of the changes put in place by the bill was a rule saying the police officers were no longer allowed to engage in high-speed chases except in very limited circumstances. In other words, if the cops see a driver doing something wrong and turn on their sirens and flashers but the motorist doesn’t pull over, there isn’t much they can do about it. To the great surprise of nobody with an IQ higher than tepid water, motorists have begun ignoring the police in increasing numbers and simply refusing to pull over.

I guess it’s equity if no one is held responsible for any lawbreaking while driving.

The article continues:

The police aren’t allowed to give chase unless there is an increased bar of “reasonable suspicion” that the driver is impaired or there is “probable cause” to believe that the driver had committed a violent crime or sexual assault. This has basically put an end to high-speed pursuits because if they guess wrong, they won’t wind up getting a conviction anyway and the department could be tied up in endless lawsuits.

The article concludes:

This was all entirely predictable and, in fact, state Republicans and police unions did predict it last year. This shouldn’t have required a rocket scientist to figure it out. Your average, law-abiding citizen who may have committed a minor traffic infraction is probably still going to pull over when the police hit their lights. But if you know you are driving while intoxicated or you’ve stolen a car or have outstanding warrants, why would you pull over for the cops when you know they can’t chase you? Criminals will clearly be happy to risk hitting the gas and making a clean getaway rather than being hauled off to jail.

This is yet another item in a long list of examples of “police reform” going on around the nation. When you reduce the disincentive for committing a particular crime, you get more of that type of crime. When you announce that the cops can no longer chase you, criminals will flee since they have nothing to lose. And we’re talking about a lot more than just your random person who had a few too many beers. Seemingly random traffic stops are one of the most common ways that people with outstanding warrants wind up being taken into custody. That tool is now unavailable to the police in Washington in most cases, so there are going to be more wanted fugitives out there roaming the roads.

The legislators in Washington State need an infusion of common sense.

Equity Is Different From Equality

On Tuesday, Hot Air posted an article reporting that Oak Park and River Forest High School is transforming its grading systems. The school is bringing equity into its grading system.

The article reports:

School board members discussed the plan called “Transformative Education Professional Development & Grading” at a meeting on May 26, presented by Assistant Superintendent for Student Learning Laurie Fiorenza…

“Traditional grading practices perpetuate inequities and intensify the opportunity gap,” reads a slide in the PowerPoint deck outlining its rationale and goals.

It calls for what OPRF leaders describe as “competency-based grading, eliminating zeros from the grade book…encouraging and rewarding growth over time.”…

Sullivan calls grading based on traditional classroom testing and homework performance “outdated practices” and foster “unconscious biases.”

“Teachers may unintentionally let non-academic factors—like student behavior or whether a student showed up to virtual class—interfere with their final evaluation of students.,” she said. “Traditional student grades include non-academic criteria that do not reflect student learning gains—including participation and on-time homework submission.”

So now students will get credit for simply showing up for class.

The article notes:

The key slide titled “Summary of Findings” reads as follows:

  • Traditional grading practices perpetuate inequities and intensify the opportunity gap
  • Integrating equitable assessment and grading practices into all academic and elective courses requires the collaborative effort of a team of educators committed to improvements that
    benefit all students
  • Many OPRFHS teachers are successfully exploring and implementing more equitable grading practices such as: utilizing aspects of competency-based grading, eliminating zeros
    from the grade book, and encouraging and rewarding growth over time
  • Teachers and administrators at OPRFHS will continue the process necessary to make grading improvements that reflect our core beliefs

The article concludes:

I’m not sure what happens to these equitably graded kids when they get their first job and find out they have to a) show up for work when scheduled, b) get the job done while on the clock and c) not create a disruption in their place of work . All that to say, some of these changes don’t sound very helpful in the long run.

On the other hand, as a parent there is an argument to be made that zeroes in the grade book on one minor assignment can create a real hurdle for students, some of whom may have actual reasons for missing an assignment now and again. The middle school my kids attended also allowed for test corrections in many cases which allowed students to make up some of the missing points by redoing the work after the fact. So I’m not necessarily against everything they are suggesting here but I think I draw the line when showing up and doing the work don’t count against you at all.

At some point, aren’t we supposed to be preparing students for the real world?

An Honest Mistake?

On Thursday, Hot Air posted an article about the 2020 census and some of the mistakes made.

The article includes the following map:

I realize the map is a little difficult to read, but the purple states were under-counted and the green states were over-counted.

The article notes:

So, the bottom line is that it’s too late now for any of this to matter. Still, it’s hard not to notice the pattern. Arkansas, Tennessee, Mississippi, Florida and Texas are all red states. Here’s the breakdown of who these states send to the House of Representatives:

    • Arkansas – 4 Republicans
    • Florida – 16 Republicans, 11 Democrats
    • Mississippi – 3 Republicans, 1 Democrat
    • Tennessee – 7 Republicans, 2 Democrats
    • Texas – 23 Republicans, 13 Democrats (though one, Filemon Vela, resigned in March)

These are the numbers:

I am reaching the end of my ability to believe in amazing coincidences.

Voting In Person Works

On Monday, Hot Air posted an article with the headline, “Popularity of mail-in voting plummets in 2022.” One can only hope that it stays unpopular in 2024. I recently watched the movie “2000 Mules” by Dinesh D’Souza. I don’t claim to understand all of the technology involved, but the movie makes a good case for the fact that there was massive ballot drop box fraud in the 2020 election.

The article at Hot Air notes:

Even with all of the chaos that was seen in 2020 because of massive amounts of mail-in voting during the pandemic, congressional Democrats have continued to push “voting reform” bills that make it permanent on a federal level. We were repeatedly assured that too many people were having a hard time voting, and ubiquitous voting by mail would boost participation because people simply like it better. They may want to take a fresh look at that theory following the first rounds of primary voting heading into this year’s midterms. While total turnout has been fairly typical or even slightly elevated thus far in the early voting states, the Associated Press finds that the lion’s share of votes cast thus far have been in person. By contrast, the number of people opting to mail in their ballots has sunk like a stone. This is starting to look like yet another case of the Democrats failing to read the room.

…The five states where primary voters put this theory to the test were Georgia, Ohio, Indiana, Nebraska, and West Virginia. Numbers are not yet available for Nebraska, but the other four showed a decisive trend. In Georgia’s primary in 2020 there were almost one million people who voted by mail. This year, 85,000 requested mail-in ballots. That’s not even one-tenth of the previous primary numbers. And it’s still not known how many of the ballots that were mailed out were actually returned, but obviously, not all of them were.

The ratios in Ohio, Indiana and West Virginia were similar. While we saw a flood of mail-in ballots during the lockdowns, that number has returned to a trickle. Granted, the states who have voted already were mostly red-to-purple states. Perhaps the percentage will be higher in some of the upcoming blue states. But I’ll be deeply shocked if any of them see even half the number of mail-in ballots that they did two years ago. Of course, that tide could still turn in the other direction. Some analysts that the AP spoke to suggest that it’s just too soon to say.

The article concludes:

In-person voting is the norm. It’s always been the norm and it needs to continue being the norm. It’s far easier to conduct a recount (if required) when all of the physical ballots are submitted straight from the voter’s hand in a centralized location for each precinct. The more boxes, bags, and hands of “agents” a ballot has to pass through, the less confidence the voters will have in the outcome.

On November 20, 2020, The Daily Signal reported:

They (the bipartisan Commission on Federal Election Reform, known informally as the Carter-Baker Commission) called on states to increase voter ID requirements; to be leery of mail-in voting; to halt ballot harvesting; to maintain voter lists, in part to ensure dead people are promptly removed from them; to allow election observers to monitor ballot counting; and to make sure voting machines are working properly. 

They also wanted the media to refrain from calling elections too early and from touting exit polls. 

All of this may sound eerily similar to the issues in the prolonged presidential election battle of 2020. But these were among the 87 recommendations from the 2005 report of the bipartisan Commission on Federal Election Reform, known informally as the Carter-Baker Commission. 

The bipartisan commission’s co-chairmen were former Democratic President Jimmy Carter and former Secretary of State James Baker, a Republican who served in the George H.W. Bush administration. 

If only we had listened.

Unraveling The Lies Of The Past Five Years

On Saturday, Hot Air posted an article reminding us that the trial of Michael Sussmann begins Monday. I suspect the exhibits are going to be far more interesting than the trial itself.

The article reports:

When we last checked in with the John Durham case against Michael Sussmann, Durham’s team had asked the judge to decide whether a small group of Fusion GPS emails were covered by attorney-client privilege. According to lawyers for Clinton’s 2016 campaign, Fusion GPS was hired solely to provide legal advice about defamation and libel laws which meant everything they did was legal consulting work. Judge Christopher Cooper didn’t seem to buy that claim and yesterday announced that Fusion GPS would have to turn over 22 emails to the prosecutors.

The Washington Post reported on May 12th:

The charge against Sussmann is the first Durham case to go to trial. A Washington-based researcher faces trial later this year for allegedly lying to the FBI about how he collected allegations against Trump. In 2020, a former FBI lawyer pleaded guilty to illegally changing a government record.

Robert Mintz, another former federal prosecutor, said the trial next week “will be the first real test” of Durham’s work. By going to trial, he said, Sussmann has “thrown down the gauntlet and challenged the significance of the prosecution and the wisdom of bringing the case.”

…“The strategy,” Assistant U.S. Attorney Andrew DeFilippis said in court Monday, “was to create news stories … to get the government to investigate it … and to get the press to report the government was investigating.”

…Prosecutors signaled this week that they plan to call a host of current and former law enforcement officials to describe how the FBI pursued the Alfa Bank accusations, and to paint Sussmann as part of a “joint venture” that included Joffe, Clinton’s campaign, research firm Fusion GPS and cybersecurity experts.

The article at Hot Air quotes a Wall Street Journal article by Kimberly Strassel:

Over at the Wall Street Journal, Kimberley Strassel argued yesterday that Durham’s team has already gone a long way to revealing the machinations behind the scenes of the Clinton campaign, Perkins Coie, Fusion GPS and the rest: (Please follow the above link to the Hot Air article to read the quote)

…Strassel concludes that Sussmann’s trial “on its face is about one lawyer, but in reality is the continuing tale of one of the dirtiest tricks in modern U.S. history.” I guess we’ll see how the trial goes next week. It looks to me like Durham’s team has the goods on Sussmann. Whether that will allow him to make a larger case about the Clinton campaigns dirty tricks remains to be seen.

This might be a really good time to sit back and get some popcorn ready.

Putting Legislative Action Back In Congress Where It Belongs

On Tuesday, Hot Air reported that a federal judge in New Orleans will hear the case regarding Joe Biden’s executive order imposing a moratorium on the sale of new drilling leases to oil and gas companies.

The article quotes the Associated Press:

A federal appeals court in New Orleans hears arguments Tuesday about whether President Joe Biden legally suspended new oil and gas lease sales shortly after taking office because of climate change worries.

The case has not been tried but a federal judge blocked the order, saying only Congress could suspend the sales.

Federal lawyers say the government has broad power to hold, cancel or defer lease sales.

The article reports:

The plaintiffs appear to have a fairly well-developed argument here. The President and the Department of the Interior only have the ability to offer drilling leases because Congress granted them that authority long ago. There is no provision in the existing federal law allowing for the process to be “paused.” In fact, the opposite is true. In a 1987 update to the law, it specifically states that such leases “shall be made available four times per year” in states with eligible federal lands.

In other words, Biden’s executive order not only gummed up the normal process established by Congress, but it may have been a violation of federal law. It’s not as if he has to worry about his own Justice Department trying to prosecute him for this, but the contrast between the claims of the White House and the laws passed by Congress is glaring.

The article concludes:

The only opposition to the new lease sales these days is actually coming from the oil and gas companies themselves. Industry executives are hesitant to expand their current operations for a variety of reasons. For one thing, there is a shortage of workers available to staff up new operations at the moment. Also, inflation impacts the oil and gas industry as much as anyone else. All of the costs associated with putting up a rig and starting to drill have risen. If the price of oil suddenly starts to crater again when production increases, they could wind up losing money on new drilling sites.

In any event, this entire mess began when Joe Biden took office and decided to keep a campaign promise by shutting down drilling on federal land. The predictable results have been damaging across the board and the President is very late to the party in terms of making a course correction now.

We were energy independent when President Biden took office. We need to be there again.

About That Free Country We Are Supporting

First of all, let me make it clear that what is happening in Ukraine is horrible. Civilians are being targeted, innocent people are being killed, prisoners are being tortured and killed. It’s a horrible situation. I should also mention that the first casualty of war is truth, so we have no way of knowing how much of what we are hearing is true.

On Monday, Hot Air reported that Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky put a program in place following Russia’s invasion of his country. His government is seeking to identify “traitors” who have expressed support for Russia and its war against “Nazis” in Ukraine.

The article reports:

Anyone who has been materially aiding the enemy is of course subject to prosecution, but people have been arrested just for expressing their support for Moscow on social media. That’s what happened to a man known only as “Victor” this month. Ukrainian security officers in full riot gear showed up at his apartment in Kharkiv to talk to him about some of his social media posts before hauling him off to jail. (Associated Press)

“Yes, I supported (the Russian invasion of Ukraine) a lot. I’m sorry. … I have already changed my mind,” said Viktor, his trembling voice showing clear signs of duress in the presence of the Ukrainian security officers.

“Get your things and get dressed,” an officer said before escorting him out of the apartment. The SBU did not reveal Viktor’s last name, citing their investigation.

Viktor was one of nearly 400 people in the Kharkiv region alone who have been detained under anti-collaboration laws enacted quickly by Ukraine’s parliament and signed by President Volodymyr Zelenskyy after Russia’s Feb. 24 invasion.

If four hundred people have been locked up just in the Kharkiv region under these disinformation laws, how many have been detained across the entire country? It’s almost certainly in the thousands, and all in a matter of a couple of months. To his credit, Zelensky at least got the Parliament to write up a law and signed it, which is better than doing it via an executive order the way Joe Biden did, but it’s still an alarming development.

I understand that a lot of bad things can happen during the fog of war, and the Russian invasion of Ukraine is no exception.

The article concludes:

We already know that a similar situation has existed in Russia from the beginning. Anyone who spoke out of turn about the invasion using unapproved language – including journalists – was quickly hauled from the public square and locked up. How is what Ukraine is doing any different? It’s not, at least as far as I can tell.

Of course, the United States has surrendered the high ground in terms of speaking up about this. We now have our own Ministry of Truth in the Department of Homeland Security where our own Orwellian Santa Clause will be making a list and checking it twice to see who is engaging in speech not approved by the Biden administration. How can we criticize Zelenski for doing the same thing that his biggest foreign supporter is doing?

This doesn’t sound like President Zelensky supports free speech.

Preparing?

Let’s not count our chickens before they hatch, but November is looking good for Republicans in Congress. Despite various statements from Democrats that they are not worried, actions speak louder than words.

On Sunday, Hot Air reported the following:

A wave election is on the horizon and the only question is just how strong of a wave it will be. Will it be a traditional kind of victory for Republicans as the minority party typically picks up seats in midterm elections? Or will it be a red tsunami brought about because of deep disapproval of the Biden administration? Either outcome will result in Republicans taking back control of the House and very well may flip the Senate, too. The White House is girding its loins in preparation of the consequences GOP victories will bring.

A top concern for the White House is the new investigations that will be opened up. Republican leadership has already announced that when Republicans are back in charge, Biden and his administration will be under fresh oversight scrutiny not seen to date. And, look for lots of questions being asked about the shady dealings of Biden, Inc. Democrats try to sweep ethical and legal questions about the dealings of Biden’s problem man-child, Hunter, by saying he’s a private citizen, not an elected official. That’s true but that excuse is slowly falling by the wayside as it becomes clear that Joe Biden is in the middle of his son’s sketchy financial deals, especially with foreign governments. That is important now, given Joe is president and dealing with foreign leaders.

So, what’s a nervous White House to do? This White House is bringing back an experienced presidential advisor and message masseuse. Anita Dunn is returning to help Sleepy Joe manage the upcoming electoral disaster that awaits Democrats. Dunn is the ultimate Washington insider. She is currently a senior adviser at the consulting firm SKDK – the ‘D’ is for Dunn. She agreed to work with Biden as he entered the White House as an advisor and then returned to SKDK. She’s an alum of the Obama-Biden administration.

I really hate the idea that every time Congress changes hands we get a new round of investigations. That is so reminiscent of a banana republic. However, there are some needed investigations that have not taken place under the Democrat Congress that need to take place. Among other things, why is it that Congressmen are still trading stocks and have a better profit average than Standard & Poor? (article here) What about the information on Hunter Biden’s laptop? What about evidence of cheating in the 2020 election? There’s a lot to look into.

The article concludes:

Dunn is returning on a full-time basis. There will also be a change in the White House Counsel’s office.

Changes are also expected inside the White House Counsel’s Office. Ian Sams, who currently works at the Department of Health and Human Services, is going to join in a communications position. He previously served as a spokesperson for Vice President Kamala Harris’ 2020 presidential campaign, where he developed a reputation for being outspoken and at times for having a combative style, traits that could be useful while facing aggressive inquiries from Republicans.

“If Republicans take one or more Houses of Congress, this is going to be a full-time job that has the potential to suck a lot of the oxygen out of the room,” the person said. “There is a recognition from both the White House counsel’s office and also the communication’s office that oversight is going to be a major focus of Republican efforts which is going to in turn create a lot of media attention around these issues.”

So, the Biden administration is putting a couple of Democrat pitbulls in key positions for communication and the Counsel’s office. Sounds like the White House is pretty nervous about what may be exposed in oversight investigations. A great exodus is already underway from personnel in Kamala’s office. Look for more of that coming out of the White House, too, when Republicans come back into power in Congress.

Be prepared for an abundance of media spin if the Republicans take Congress.

 

 

Waiting To See The Impact Of The Lies

On Friday, Hot Air reported that The New York Times had the tapes to back up their claim that Kevin McCarthy thought Trump should resign and he would take that recommendation to the president and that he hoped Twitter would ban the MAGA types in the caucus like Marjorie Taylor Greene and Lauren Boebert who had pushed “rigged election” incitement before the insurrection. When initially faced with the accusation, Kevin McCarthy, in the true spirit of a Washington politician, lied about it.

Meanwhile, The Washington Examiner reported on Friday:

House Republicans appear to be in no rush to consider dumping House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy over his double-speak reaction to the Jan. 6 riots and tapped comments that former President Donald Trump should “resign” over the affair.

According to multiple insiders, Republicans are first looking to see what Trump says (or doesn’t) on the growing scandal and then hope to kick questions about leadership toward a time after the fall elections so it doesn’t distract from the goal of taking back control of the House.

It doesn’t matter if the Republicans take control of the House in November if the uniparty is still in control. The statements by Kevin McCarthy indicate to me that he is a member of the uniparty threatened by the popularity of President Trump.

The Washington Examiner concludes:

Importantly, Trump and McCarthy talked Thursday, and the former president isn’t upset in part because McCarthy never pushed for Trump’s resignation, fought impeachment, and subsequently moved to punish Republicans who did vote to impeach.

“It appears that Trump doesn’t care and that McCarthy changing his tune showed he capitulated to him,” said a longtime GOP insider.

Since Trump left office, McCarthy has stayed loyal to the former president and is considered a close ally and adviser himself as the former president eyes another run for office. Trump is also known to hate the press, and the media are already cheering him on to dump McCarthy’s friendship over the resignation call.

Should Trump give McCarthy a pass, “McCarthy will survive,” said a Republican lobbyist close to House GOP leaders.

Helping McCarthy’s cause is the expectation that the GOP will win control of the House and the party’s goal of keeping the focus on Election Day and not internal politics.

Also working for McCarthy, insiders said, is that those on the leadership team, notably No. 2 Rep. Steve Scalise, are not eager to rock the boat because they may get tossed in the storm.

“Scalise wouldn’t challenge McCarthy unless it was a virtual guarantee he’d get the job,” said one ally. “He’s already set to be the House majority leader in a Republican House and McCarthy’s heir apparent,” said the ally, adding, “Why risk it?”

I suspect that there was a deal made that will not be made public that will keep McCarthy in office at least temporarily. This is something to watch over the next two years. It may eventually have a bearing on the next presidential election.

Rumor has it that the tape was leaked by Liz Cheney. The swamp desperately wants to divide the Republican party.

Playing With Fire

On Thursday, Hot Air posted an article about genetically modified mosquitoes in Florida. Yes, you read that right.

The article reports:

…But now there’s a new type of mosquito hanging out in the Florida Keys. It’s one that’s never been seen before because scientists genetically modified the species in an effort to use them in a genocidal war against their own kin. Thus far, the scientists seem to be declaring the experiment a success. But that sort of ignores the fact that there are now five million genetically modified super-mosquitoes roaming around Florida. (Nature Journal)

Researchers have completed the first open-air study of genetically engineered mosquitoes in the United States. The results, according to the biotechnology firm running the experiment, are positive. But larger tests are still needed to determine whether the insects can achieve the ultimate goal of suppressing a wild population of potentially virus-carrying mosquitoes.

The experiment has been underway since April 2021 in the Florida Keys, a chain of tropical islands near the southern tip of Florida. Oxitec, which developed the insects, released nearly five million engineered Aedes aegypti mosquitoes over the course of seven months, and has now almost completed monitoring the release sites.

Based in Abingdon, UK, the firm reported the first results from the experiment during a webinar on 6 April, although it has not yet published the data.

The article explains how the modification is supposed to work:

Okay, so let’s see how this is supposed to work, shall we? This British company, Oxitec, genetically engineered some of the A. aegypti mosquito (also known as the Yellow Fever Mosquito) so that the males inherited a particular new gene. When the males fertilize the eggs of females, the offspring inherit the gene. The gene has no effect on the male offspring but it causes a destructive mutation in all of the female offspring, leading them to die before they can reproduce. In theory, they would begin drastically reducing the population of female mosquitoes until there were so few mating options for the males that the population should shrink drastically.

I don’t want to be anti-science here, but this scares me to death. I realize that scientists know a lot about genetics, but I think they are in dangerous territory here.

As reported by gypsy moth alert:

The gypsy moth was brought to North America from France by Mr. E. Leopold Trouvelot. His purpose was to breed hybrid silkworms that would be hardier than the Chinese species and that could be used to establish a silk industry in the United States. By 1865 he had a million caterpillars feeding under protective netting at his home in Medford Massachussets. In 1869 some of them escaped and were apparently scattered by a windstorm.

Gypsy moths have now spread into most of New England, down the east coast to Virginia, to Michigan and Wisconsin, and to Oregon. They have done tremendous damage to trees in those areas. I am hoping that the genetically modified mosquitoes will at least stay in Florida, but I doubt it.

Two More Weeks Of Masks For Public Transportation

The government does not like to give up control–even when that control is not based on science. To review a few basic facts–the corona virus is smaller than the spaces in the cloth mask–it easily gets through. Wearing a mask to protect you from Covid is like putting up a chain-link fence to protect you from mosquitoes. There is also the fact that wearing a mask has a negative impact on your immune system (my husband and I were recently told this by a pulmonary specialist). The pulmonary specialist is expecting a spike in pneumonia when the masks are permanently gone. At any rate, the Biden administration has extended the requirement for masks on public transportation for two weeks.

On April 13th, NewsMax reported:

The Biden administration will extend for two weeks the nationwide mask requirement for public transit as it monitors an uptick in COVID-19 cases, according to a person familiar with the matter.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention was set to extend the order, which was to expire on April 18, by two weeks to monitor for any observable increase in severe virus outcomes as cases rise in parts of the country. The move was being made out of abundance of caution, the person said, speaking on the condition of anonymity to preview the CDC’s action.

When the Transportation Security Administration, which enforces the rule for planes, buses, trains and transit hubs, extended the requirement last month, it said the CDC had been hoping to roll out a more flexible masking strategy that would have replaced the nationwide requirement. 

Meanwhile, on April 12th, Hot Air reported:

We’re still waiting to find out if President Joe Biden will allow the mask mandate for public travel to expire on April 18th or if he will extend it yet again. While he’s making his decision, he might want to take a peek at a new Axios/Ipsos poll that was just released this week. They asked Americans a variety of questions about how serious the threat from COVID was at this point and if the pandemic was still a major driving concern. While it may come as a great surprise to some people, particularly inside the White House and among cable news hosts, people really aren’t seeing this as a crisis requiring any extravagant government intervention at this point. In fact, it sounds like a large majority of Americans crossing party lines and every other demographic are done with the pandemic. (Daily Caller)

Just 9% of Americans believe COVID-19 is a serious crisis, signaling Americans are ready to move past the pandemic, according to a new Axios/Ipsos poll released Tuesday.

The poll asked Republicans and Democrats to characterize the state of the coronavirus in the U.S. Only 16% of Democrats called it a “serious crisis” compared to just 3% of Republicans. Sixty-six percent of Republicans called it a “problem, but manageable,” compared to 81% of Democrats. Overall, 73% of those polled said it was a “problem, but manageable.”

Meanwhile, 31% of Republicans said it was “not a problem at all” while just three percent of Democrats said the same, according to the poll.

The article at Hot Air also notes:

Another interesting recent finding mentioned in the linked report is the reality that the states which took a more “eased” approach to masking and other mandates had better outcomes than those with the harshest restrictions in terms of deaths, hospitalizations, and all the rest. The lowest grades were given to blue states such as New York, New Jersey and California. Utah, Vermont and Nebraska fared the best.

I don’t know exactly how Covid became political, but it is becoming obvious that very few of the decisions made in the last two years were based on science. Unfortunately, I expect that trend to continue.

When You Don’t Complete Your Assignment At Work…

What would happen at your job if you left exactly at the end of the day and simply put all of your unfinished work in a drawer and left it there? Then, at the end of every month, if you simply emptied the drawer into the trash? I don’t think you would be a valued employee for long. Well, that’s about what President Biden is telling Immigration and Customs Enforcement prosecutors to do.’

On Tuesday, April 5, Hot Air reported:

There is a backlog of about 1.5 million cases pending in immigration courts. The Biden administration sent out a memo Monday instructing ICE prosecutors to dismiss older cases of illegal immigrants who are not considered public safety threats. What could possibly go wrong?

Last fall DHS Secretary Mayorkas distributed some new rules to ICE agents. The focus of the new rules is to deprioritize deportation of illegal immigrants who are not a threat to public safety. They carried out the crime of illegally entering the United States but since then have not posed a threat to the general population. The backlog of cases has grown unsustainable during Biden’s time in the White House, thanks to Biden’s border crisis, so in order to ease the backlog, ICE prosecutors have received permission to just dismiss older cases.

Congress hasn’t reformed any immigration laws. It’s their job to do so but in the meantime, Team Biden is running roughshod over the immigration laws on the books. The memo was distributed as the end of the use of Title 42 at the southern border approaches. The date set for Title 42 to end is May 23. More than 2.2 million illegal migrants have been apprehended at the southern border since Joe Biden took office and that number could triple with the end of Title 42. Title 42 has been an effective tool used during the pandemic, at CDC’s recommendation as a way to mitigate the coronavirus pandemic, but now that the pandemic is waning the Biden administration is ending the program that progressives have demanded he end since he took office.

BuzzFeed News got a copy of the ICE memo. It allows ICE attorneys to exercise “prosecutorial discretion authority” under the guise that such discretion will help “build public confidence in our immigration system.” That’s a take. What about the public confidence of Americans who expect the president to secure our borders and protect the sovereignty of the United States?

What ever happened to the concept of “legal immigration”?

The article concludes:

I am watching a news report of a bus full of illegal migrants arriving in Brownsville, Texas as I write this. They all look to be adult women. This scene is played out daily along the Texas border. Some reports estimate as many as 170,000 migrants waiting along the border to enter the United States. Most are waiting for the green light when Title 42 ends. The Biden administration doesn’t show much concern about the coming explosion in migrants who will be attempting to enter the United States. Dismissing cases and allowing those here illegally to remain in this country is how Team Biden plans to ease the backlog. All this will do is further encourage the waves of migrants to try to make it to the southern border. The Biden border crisis is deliberate and will only get worse.

There really is no excuse for the lack of security at our southern border. It is not a mistake–it is deliberate.

A Really Bad Tax Proposal

Whenever the Democrats want to raise our taxes, they always cry that the rich do not pay their fair share. That claim is totally contradicted by the actual facts, but that has never stopped them. On Sunday, Hot Air posted an article about their latest scheme to ‘tax the rich.’

The article comments on the Biden administration’s plans for a ‘billionaires tax’:

This isn’t technically a “billionaire’s tax” because it hits anyone making more than $100 million. That’s a staggering amount of money for most of us, but not everyone who brings in $100 million actually has a billion dollars in wealth laying around. That’s sort of a nitpick, I admit, but it’s worth pointing out.

Just as a reminder, under the current system, the top ten percent of earners in the United States (those making more than $151K per year) pay more than 70% of the taxes collected by the government. The top one percent (making more than $546K) pay nearly 40% by themselves. The idea that high earners aren’t “paying their fair share” is simply a display of intentional ignorance.

Another detail of the proposed tax hike should also run into opposition and a likely court challenge. The description of the amount of “income” to be taxed includes the phrase “unrealized investment income.” In other words, if the shares comprising your retirement plan or your stock portfolio go up by a given percentage, that increase will be treated as income and you’ll be taxed on it even though you haven’t cashed it in yet.

So why should I leave money in the stock market if I have to pay taxes on it whether I cash it out or not? Why should I invest in a home if it is going to cost me money each year in addition to the real estate taxes and expense of owning a home? What is that going to do to the stock market and the real estate market?

The article concludes:

Here’s another thing to remember about those people with incomes at those levels. They don’t just pay a lot of taxes. They also tend to be max donors to political campaigns and to PACs as well, including to Democrats. I imagine they will all be watching closely to see how each member of Congress plans to vote on this and those planning to vote for it probably shouldn’t expect those donors to be whipping out their pens and checkbooks for them in the midterm races.

Manchin and Sinema have already come out against any big tax hikes while the nation is reeling under the current Bidenflation levels. It would be stunning if you could find a single Republican to vote for it. This sort of “eat the rich” tax proposal is the stuff of dreams on the left, intended to make the Democratic Socialists sequel with delight. But it’s not a serious proposal and you probably shouldn’t start getting your hopes of seeing it pass into law too far up just yet.

I hope the author of the article is right. The Democrats may get desperate to do something as they watch to polling about the approaching mid-terms.

Does America Still Have A First Amendment?

On Tuesday, The Daily Wire reported that Arizona Democrat Representative Ruben Gallego has called for seizing the trucks of protesters headed to Washington, D.C., and then giving the property to businesses looking to grow. Glad to see we have elected representatives who took their oath to defend and protect the U.S. Constitution seriously. Seizing property and giving it to others is generally called robbery. It is also one of the principles of socialism.

The article reports:

“Perfect time to impound and give the trucks to small trucking companies looking to expand their business,” Gallego tweeted in response to the following news headline: “Trucker convoy could shut down DC Beltway tomorrow.”

On Tuesday, Hot Air reported:

American truckers and their supporters are organizing and heading to Washington, D.C. to protest COVID-19 mandates. The People’s Convoy is patterned after Canada’s Freedom Convoy. Truckers will leave California tomorrow and arrive in Washington on Saturday, March 5. D.C. law enforcement is preparing for their arrival.

The People’s Convoy announced plans to launch a “peaceful and unified transcontinental movement” in Southern California. Organizers say their intention is to have a “law-abiding convoy” with truckers, blue-collar workers and supporters participating in it. According to the news release, they expect supporters from all walks of life. Their news release named some conservative-leaning journalists who will join the convoy to cover the event, providing daily updates as they travel across the country.

…D.C. law enforcement agencies are preparing and a request for assistance from the National Guard has been made. U.S. Capitol Police (USCP) released a statement that they are aware of the convoy’s plans and are on alert. The D.C. National Guard, if activated, will test its new activation process put in place after the January 6 riot on Capitol Hill.

I suppose we should be grateful that the National Guard will be called out to make sure the protest remains peaceful. I suspect the protest will be infiltrated by a few ‘bad apples’ to try to tarnish the cause. The question is whether or not those ‘bad apples’ will be government agents.

Meanwhile, not all of the news about the Canadian truckers is bad.

On Monday, The Patriot Journal reported the following:

As it stands, the Freedom Convoy has been painted into a corner and now they’re facing stiff penalties. Though they have plenty of public and financial support, the government’s power is clear.

In response, Rep. Yvette Herrell (R-NV) has introduced a new piece of legislation specifically designed to aid these truckers.

If it’s successful, it would give the protesters a safe port in the storm, so-to-speak. And it would show them that certain politicians in America absolutely support their right to protest.

It’s going to be an interesting week.

 

 

Elections Have Consequences–Sometimes The Voters Don’t Like Those Consequences

On Monday, Hot Air posted an article about the quality of life in Portland, Oregon.

The article reports:

I know you’ll be shocked to hear this but voters in the city which saw a string of nightly riots, beatings and even a murder by an Antifa mob over the past 18 months feels quality of life is on the decline. An annual survey of registered voters in Portland and the surrounding area funded by the Portland Business Alliance found 88% of respondents felt that way. The poll also included a right-track, wrong-track question which found that nearly 3/4 of respondents in Portland felt the city was going in the wrong direction.

Maybe the voters need to ask themselves who voted for the current leadership of Portland. However, it does seem as if the voters have learned their lesson.

The article concludes:

In other words, even in the city of Portland, voters have rejected “defund the police.” It never made sense that it was necessary to cut police funding in order to fund other priorities. The activist left has now lost this argument in the city that was probably most prone to agree with it.

Finally, it looks like voters haven’t forgotten who was pushing those issues. City Councilwoman Jo Ann Hardesty who has been the loudest proponent of defunding the police is going to be facing a tough reelection. Just 18% of respondents support her while 54% say they are ready to vote for someone else.

I think all Americans have learned in the recent past that elections have consequences.