This Is Not Going To End Well

CBS News is reporting today that Oregon is the first state to decriminalize the possession of small amounts of street drugs such as cocaine, heroin and methamphetamine.

The article reports:

The Oregon drug initiative will allow people arrested with small amounts of hard drugs to avoid going to trial, and possible jail time, by paying a $100 fine and attending an addiction recovery program. The treatment centers will be funded by revenues from legalized marijuana, which was approved in Oregon several years ago.

“Today’s victory is a landmark declaration that the time has come to stop criminalizing people for drug use,” said Kassandra Frederique, executive director of the Drug Policy Alliance, which backed the measure.

…Voters in New Jersey and Arizona approved measures legalizing marijuana for adults age 21 and older. In New Jersey, the Legislature now will have to pass another measure setting up the new marijuana marketplace. The Arizona measure also allows people convicted of certain marijuana crimes to seek expungement of their records. The passage of the measure signaled a change of attitudes, after Arizona voters narrowly defeated a legal pot proposal in 2016.

South Dakota on Tuesday became the first state where voters authorized both recreational marijuana and medical marijuana via two separate initiatives in the same election. The legalization of recreational marijuana was approved by voters in Montana, and medical marijuana won approval in Mississippi.

I am not in favor of the legalization of marijuana. There are no guarantees that legal marijuana will be limited to those over 21–how many people under the age of 21 smoke cigarettes illegally? I am not convinced we understand the effect of marijuana on the brain of people under the age of 25. Legalizing marijuana does not improve our society–it simply reduces the productive impact of one sector of that society. Marijuana and other drugs have never been a positive force in any society.

Media Bias?

The Sturgis Motorcycle Rally will be held from August 7th-16th this year. It is interesting to contrast the media’s coverage of this rally with the coverage of the violent protests in various cities across the country.

Townhall posted an article on Saturday about the Sturgis Rally noting:

About a quarter-million motorcycle riders are expected to descend upon the town of Sturgis, South Dakota, taking part in the 10-day annual rally that kicked off on Friday. The rally is not a left-wing protest, so the media is criticizing attendees for not wearing facemasks and participating in a large gathering amid the Wuhan coronavirus pandemic. 

The mainstream media and even medical officials have decided that the best way to avoid contracting the Wuhan coronavirus is to participate in left-wing protests. Crossing back and forth over the border between Mexico and the United States is seemingly another harmless exercise. But when a large gathering doesn’t fit into the media’s list of liberal-approved activities, the press castigates participants for venturing outside during the pandemic. 

As expected, all the usual suspects are running hit pieces about the rally being a superspreader event. The double standard at this point must be apparent to even the most casual of media consumers. 

While many in the town favored postponing the rally this year due to the Wuhan coronavirus, many others in town, including local business owners, were glad to see rallygoers arrive on schedule. 

South Dakota Republican Gov. Kristi Noem was among those supportive of the rally.

“I trusted my people, they trusted me, and South Dakota is in a good spot in our fight against COVID-19. The #Sturgis motorcycle rally starts this weekend, and we’re excited for visitors to see what our great state has to offer!” Gov. Noem tweeted on Thursday.

Appearing on Fox News’ The Ingraham Angle earlier this week, Gov. Noem pointed out how the media wrongly predicted a large surge in coronavirus cases following President Trump’s rally at Mount Rushmore for the Fourth of July holiday.  

The article at Townhall concludes:

The 250,000 expected attendees will be around half the size of last year’s turnout. If it was 250,000 people riding into town on Vespas and calling to defund the police, the media would be praising them for their courage.

The New York Times has a different viewpoint (as expressed in an article August 7):

Save for a few hard-to-spot hand-sanitizer stations, it could have been any other major festival in pre-pandemic times.

“Screw Covid I went to Sturgis,” read a black T-shirt amid a sea of Harley Davidson and Trump 2020 outfits sported by the throng of people walking along Main Street. Their gear did not include face masks, and social distancing guidelines were completely ignored.

South Dakota is among several states that did not put in place a lockdown, and state officials have not required residents to wear masks, giving attendees who rode in from outside the state fewer restrictions than they may have had back home.

…Still, Nelson Horsley, 26, of Rapid City, S.D., said he expects there will be a rise in coronavirus cases in the area once the rally concludes next weekend. But he said he didn’t feel the need to wear a mask while walking around downtown Friday afternoon. He compared the virus to getting the seasonal flu.

“I haven’t seen anyone out here wear a mask so it kind of feels like it defeats the purpose,” he said, to wear a mask himself.

What if there isn’t a rise in coronavirus cases after the rally? What does that tell us about what we have been doing to end the virus?

The article at Townhall notes:

“Not only do we have one of the lowest death rates, we’ve got about 40 people in the hospital today statewide, our infection rates are low, our job losses are low, our economy is doing better than virtually any other state, and I think it’s a real testimony to what could have been possible in other states, but those governors just made the wrong decisions,” Noem told Ingraham.

Experience tells us that if there are even two cases of coronavirus as a result of this rally, they will be shouted about by the mainstream media. We need to pay attention to see what actually happens.

Bad Reporting Is One Of The Things That

Today The Gateway Pundit posted an article that illustrates how misquoting a person can create a totally false impression of the person and of what was said. The thing to keep in mind here is that the mainstream media attacks those who it considers to be a future threat to their narrative and their hold on power.

The article reports:

The far left media is making up completely fraudulent quotes now to smear the Republicans.

The Hill reported on Saturday that South Dakota Governor Kristi Noem called the removal of Confederate statues was an effort to “discredit” our Founding Fathers.

This would be quite a quote if it was true.
But it’s not true.
It was completely made up to make the popular Republican governor and the Republican party look racist and stupid.

The tweet is still up over 24 hours later.

The article posts the actual quote:

Here are Governor Noem’s actual words:

“Across America these last several weeks, we have been witnessing a very troubling situation unfold. In real time, we are watching an organized, coordinated campaign to remove and eliminate all references to our nation’s founding and many other points in our history. The approach focuses exclusively on our forefathers’ flaws, but it fails to capitalize on the opportunity to learn from their virtues. Make no mistake, this is being done deliberately to discredit America’s founding principles by discrediting the individuals who formed them so that America can be remade into a different political image.”

As you can see, there is no reference to the Confederacy or the statues. This is a blatant attempt to stop the forward political progress of a woman who has served her state well, both in Congress and as Governor. This is the sort of reporting that divides rather than informs.

In The Past Americans Celebrated America

As we approach Independence Day, there are those who refuse to celebrate our nation and its history. Their actions are divisive and harmful to the nation. Yesterday Breitbart posted an article about a tweet (since deleted) that illustrates the misguided thinking of some Americans.

The article reports:

The Democrat Party on Monday evening tweeted, then deleted, an attack on Mount Rushmore, negatively portraying an upcoming event President Trump is planning ahead of Independence Day at the historic monument to four great American presidents.

“Trump has disrespected Native communities time and again,” the Democrats wrote on Twitter, with a link to an article in the British newspaper the Guardian, in the now-deleted tweet. “He’s attempted to limit their voting rights and blocked critical pandemic relief. Now he’s holding a rally glorifying white supremacy at Mount Rushmore–a region once sacred to tribal communities.”

There are some factual problems with this tweet. President Trump has neither limited the voting rights of Native communities nor blocked their pandemic relief. The rally does not glorify white supremacy–it glorifies the freedom we all share. It is a shame that one of our political parties has chosen to tear down the freedom and prosperity this country has provided rather than work to make things even better.

The shining light in this is Governor Kristi Noem of South Dakota. She tweeted:

Noem addressed it further in an interview on Fox and Friends last week, saying that this is now about a “radical rewriting of our history.”

“What my message is, is that this is no longer about equality, this is a radical rewriting of our history, and in South Dakota we won’t stand for it,” Noem said. “This is a national monument. The more we focus on the flaws of these men that are on our mountain, the less likely we are to recognize the virtues and the lessons we can learn from their lives. So that really is the message that I have for South Dakotans that love this mountain and Mount Rushmore for this country, that recognize what it represents to us, and we will do all that we can to make sure that that message is loud and clear, that we will make sure that Mount Rushmore stays as majestic as it is today.”

This lady needs to run for President in 2024!

Moving American Energy Forward

The Hill posted an article yesterday stating that the Nebraska Supreme Court ruled Friday that construction of the Keystone XL Pipeline is in the public interest.

The article reports:

The decision paves the way for construction to begin on the heavily stalled gas pipeline project.

Environmental groups who challenged the permit in court denounced the ruling Friday as failing to consider the environmental impacts of the pipeline’s construction.

“It’s disappointing that the court ignored key concerns about property rights and irreparable damage to natural resources, including threats to the endangered whooping crane, but today’s ruling does nothing to change the fact that Keystone XL faces overwhelming public opposition and ongoing legal challenges and simply never will be built,” said Ken Winston, attorney for the Nebraska Sierra Club, in a statement.

“The fight to stop this pipeline is far from over.”

The pipeline still faces further hurdles, including a federal lawsuit in Montana seeking to block construction there, as well as ongoing opposition from Native American tribes throughout Nebraska and South Dakota that have pledged to protest if construction is approved. 

The 1,179-mile pipeline has been in commission since 2010.

Former President Obama rejected the Keystone XL Pipeline plan, which aims to transport crude oil from Canada through the U.S., but it was revived under Trump, who approved a permit in 2017.

When President Obama rejected the Keystone XL Pipeline, he was providing additional income for his friend Warren Buffett.

In April 2014, I reported:

The friendship between President Obama and Warren Buffett is not news. Warren Buffett supported President Obama’s tax increase proposals saying that his secretary paid higher taxes than he did. The failure of the Obama Administration to permit the Keystone Pipeline to be built allows the Burlington Northern Santa Fe railroad, owned by Berkshire Hathaway, owned by Warren Buffett, to transport the oil (see rightwinggranny.com) from the oil fields to other areas of the United States.

One thing to consider when evaluating the pipeline is the fact that the pipeline is actually the safest way to transport the oil. Pipelines have better environmental safety records than trucks or trains.

As America moves to solidify its energy independence, the Keystone XL Pipeline will be an important part of that effort. Those opposing it are working against the American economy and against American national security.

What Did He Actually Do?

On Thursday, The Washington Examiner posted a list of accomplishments of President Trump. The list is divided into categories. Please follow the link to the article to read the entire list, but I will list a few highlights.

Under the category of jobs and the economy:

  • Passage of the tax reform bill providing $5.5 billion in cuts and repealing the Obamacare mandate.
  • Increase of the GDP above 3 percent.
  • Creation of 1.7 million new jobs, cutting unemployment to 4.1 percent.
  • Saw the Dow Jones reach record highs.
  • A rebound in economic confidence to a 17-year high.
  • A new executive order to boost apprenticeships.
  • A move to boost computer sciences in Education Department programs.
  • Prioritizing women-owned businesses for some $500 million in SBA loans.

Under Killing job-stifling regulations:

  • Made good on his campaign promise to withdraw from the Trans-Pacific Partnership.
  • Opened up the North American Free Trade Agreement for talks to better the deal for the U.S.
  • Worked to bring companies back to the U.S., and companies like Toyota, Mazda, Broadcom Limited, and Foxconn announced plans to open U.S. plants.
  • Worked to promote the sale of U.S products abroad.
  • Made enforcement of U.S. trade laws, especially those that involve national security, a priority.
  • Ended Obama’s deal with Cuba.

Under Boosting U.S. energy dominance:

  • The Department of Interior, which has led the way in cutting regulations, opened plans to lease 77 million acres in the Gulf of Mexico for oil and gas drilling.
  • Trump traveled the world to promote the sale and use of U.S. energy.
  • Expanded energy infrastructure projects like the Keystone XL Pipeline snubbed by Obama.
  • Ordered the Environmental Protection Agency to kill Obama’s Clean Power Plan.
  • EPA is reconsidering Obama rules on methane emissions.

Much of this has gone unreported. Please follow the link to the article to see the entire list.

One Possible Reason You May Not See News Of the Planned Parenthood Videos In The Mainstream Media

Yesterday The Blaze posted an article that included a letter sent by Planned Parenthood to KVLY-TV in North Dakota.

The article includes the letter:

To: North Dakota Health and Political Reporters and Producers
From: Jen Aulwes, Planned Parenthood Minnesota, North Dakota, South Dakota
Date: July 27, 2015
Re: Center for Medical Progress Expected to Violate Patient Privacy

The Center for Medical Progress (CMP) is an extreme activist organization whose sole mission is to prevent women from accessing health care and to destroy Planned Parenthood. The board members of this group believe that abortion is “genocide,” and employ people who went to jail for attempting to bomb a women’s health clinic. They are also connected with the man who murdered abortion provider Dr. George Tiller.

CMP has used footage obtained through deceit and unlawful behavior, including possible violations of state recording laws, federal tax laws and falsified state identification. Then, they concoct wildly false stories through selective editing. We expect this video will be no different in that regard; however, footage yet to come is expected to represent an extreme violation of patient privacy by including footage of post-abortion fetal tissue neither patients nor health care professionals authorized be filmed.

When your network decides whether to consider this story newsworthy, or whether to use any of this footage at all, we urge you to keep this in mind: The extremists who entered Planned Parenthood labs under false pretenses violated research protocol, and, worse, violated the privacy of patients involved. Those patients’ privacy should not be further violated by having this footage shared by the media.

The storage and examination processes that CMP used to get this footage are medically necessary. It is necessary medical professionals ensure an abortion is complete so that patients do not get an infection. When tissue is donated for medical research, these steps are also necessary for the donations to be completed. It is also medically necessary that researchers evaluate the laboratory procedures of a medical provider for safety standards and best practices.

Some of the conversations and protocols that occur in medical settings and among professional peers can sound jarring when taken out of context. While this can be difficult to hear or watch, it should not be used as an excuse to defund Planned Parenthood.

CMP gained access to Planned Parenthood facilities under false pretenses and filmed without securing approval from the Planned Parenthood staff being filmed or the patients whose privacy is compromised by this secret videotaping. The material should not be aired.

Please contact me at 651-755-XXXX or XXXXXXX@ppmns.org if you have any questions or need any more information.

This is called damage control. The more people who see these videos, the more people who will want Planned Parenthood defunded. I don’t know how you can watch this and want it to continue. Where are the people who complain when animals are used to test cosmetics?

I should probably make it clear that I do not support bombing abortion clinics or killing doctors who perform abortions. What I am willing to do is pray that the people performing abortions have a change of heart about what they are doing. Aborting a baby to protect a woman’s health is perfectly understandable and should be legal, but turning abortion into a million-dollar industry that sells aborted baby body parts is not something Americans should be proud of.

Voting With Your Feet

CBN News posted a story today about the relationship between tax rates in different states and where people choose to live.

The article reports:

Brown (author Travis H. Brown) discovered that the nine states with no personal income tax gained $146.2 billion in AGI. Those states include Alaska, Florida, New Hampshire, Nevada, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Washington, and Wyoming.

Conversely, the states with the highest personal income tax rates lost a total of $107.4 billion. They are California, Hawaii, Oregon, Iowa, New Jersey, Vermont, New York, and Maine. Washington, D.C., was also included.

Another measurement delivers similar results. Brown looked at the 10 states with the lowest per capita state and local tax burdens and found they netted $69.9 billion in AGI. Those states include Alaska, South Dakota, Tennessee, Louisiana, Wyoming, Texas, New Hampshire, Alabama, Nevada, and South Carolina.

The 10 states with the highest state and local tax burden lost $139 billion in AGI. They are New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, California, Wisconsin, Rhode Island, Minnesota, Massachusetts, Maine, and Pennsylvania.

This story has personal relevance to me. My husband will be retiring at the end of the year, and we are about to put our house on the market. (If anyone wants a five-bedroom house in Southeastern Massachusetts, please leave a comment). We are moving for many reasons–one of those reasons is the cost of living in Massachusetts. We will be headed to North Carolina where we have family and the cost of living is lower.

Recently, Massachusetts raised the taxes on cigarettes. I don’t smoke, so that doesn’t impact me, but I was in a store yesterday in Rhode Island near the Massachusetts state line. The person ahead of me in line was commenting that she would no longer be buying cigarettes in Massachusetts because they were cheaper in Rhode Island. Right now, gasoline is more expensive in Rhode Island than in Massachusetts, but since the gasoline tax in Massachusetts is now indexed to inflation, I wonder how long that will be the case.

When people have an option, they give less money to the government, whether it is state or federal government. The Laffer Curve explains one aspect of that.

At some point, government needs to realize that at some point it has all of the money we have earned that it is entitled to. The question is exactly where the point of enough taxes is reached.

 

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The U-6 Unemployment Number

The U-6 unemployment number was up to 15 percent in July. The overall unemployment number is currently at 8.3 percent.

The DRUDGE REPORT posted the following links today:

THEY BOTH CANT BE RIGHT:

Reuters: Labor market slowed sharply after strong gains in winter, spelling trouble for Obama…

AP: Stronger job creation could help Obama’s re-election hopes…

The unemployment number announced today is 8.3 percent, but that number only includes those people who are currently looking for work. If every unemployed worker stopped looking for work, the number would drop to 0 percent–which logically makes absolutely no sense.

CNBC posted a story today about the U-6 number, which includes discouraged potential employees who have quit looking, and those who are underemployed — wanting to work full-time but forced to work part-time. The U-6 numbers in various states are alarming.

The article at CNBC reports:

Consider: Nevada‘s U-6 rate is 22.1 percent, up from just 7.6 percent in 2007. Economically troubled California has a 20.3 percent real rate, while Rhode Island is at 18.3 percent, more than double its 8.3 percent rate in 2007.

Those numbers compare especially unfavorably to the national rate, high in itself at 14.9 percent though off its record peak of 17.2 percent in October 2009.

Only three states — Nebraska (9.1 percent), South Dakota (8.6 percent) and North Dakota (6.1 percent) — have U-6 rates under 10 percent, according to research from RBC Capital Markets.

Note that the states with the low U-6 rates are the states involved in developing America’s energy resources contained in the Bakken Shale Oil Formation. That might be a clue as to what we need to do to turn around America’s economy.

Meanwhile, the bottom line is simple–the current recovery is as bad, if not worse, than the recession. It’s time to change the people in charge.

Investors.com reports today:

Looked at another way, the labor force participation rate fell to 63.7% in July. That’s down from 65.7% in June 2009, and it’s just above the lowest since January 1982. Back then the economy was in the midst of a deep 16-month recession and the share of women in the work force was still significantly lower.

This continues a trend set since the economic recovery officially started in June 2009. Sluggish job growth has failed to keep pace with population growth, creating an ever larger pool of people who either don’t have jobs or have given up looking for one.

In fact, since June 2009, the number of people in the labor force has climbed just 283,000, while the number of people not in the labor force has exploded by 7.5 million.

This is not a recovery.

So why is the stock market going up today? I suspect it is factoring in the fact that these numbers will make it more difficult for President Obama to be re-elected. Governor Romney is an experienced businessman. If anyone can turn this mess around, he can.

 

 

 

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