Good News From The Senate?

On Friday, The Daily Caller reported that Senators Tom Cotton and Mark Kelly have sponsored a bill that aims to end U.S. reliance on rare-earth metals sourced from and produced in China.

The article reports:

The Restoring Essential Energy and Security Holdings Onshore for Rare Earths (REEShore) Act would prevent supply disruptions and bolster domestic production of the minerals, according to Sens. Tom Cotton and Mark Kelly, the bill’s sponsors. They said the legislation is important for American national security and development of advanced technologies.

“The Chinese Communist Party has a chokehold on global rare-earth element supplies, which are used in everything from batteries to fighter jets,” Cotton said in a statement. “Ending America’s dependence on the CCP for extraction and processing of these elements is critical to winning the strategic competition against China and protecting our national security.”

The REEShore Act would order the Department of Defense and Department of the Interior to create a national stockpile of rare-earth metals by 2025, according to the announcement. The Department of Energy controls a strategic reserve of crude oil, which was created in the 1970s.

The article concludes:

On Thursday, the Congressional Western Caucus and House Natural Resources Republicans hosted a roundtable on the implications of U.S. mining policy. Several House Republicans and business leaders explained the importance of bolstering the American mining industry.

“As global demand is growing to meet the needs of technological development, especially with minerals needed for alternative sources of energy, it’s time we start responsibly sourcing them here in the United States instead of relying on foreign, and often hostile, nations for them,” said Republican Minnesota Rep. Pete Stauber, the ranking member of the House Natural Resources Subcommittee on Energy and Mineral Resources.

In November I reported that Samsung is building a facility in Texas to manufacture computer chips (article here). In order to run that factory, they will need a dependable supply of rare-earth minerals. Securing that supply from political or diplomatic interruptions is a really good idea. Hopefully this is one idea both political parties can agree on.

 

The Democrats Use The Filibuster Right After Trying To Get Rid Of It!

On Thursday, The Daily Caller reported that the Democrats in the Senate used the filibuster to block a bi-partisan bill that would reimpose sanctions on the Russian pipeline Nord Stream 2 from being sent to the House for consideration. There were 55 votes for the bill, but the Democrats used the filibuster to block it. Aren’t these the same  people who earlier in the week were calling for the end of the filibuster?

The article reports:

Several Democrats, including Sens. Tammy Baldwin, Catherine Cortez Masto, Mark Kelly and Raphael Warnock, voted alongside Republicans.

“Today, the Senate rebuked Joe Biden’s surrender to Vladimir Putin on Nord Stream 2,” Cruz said in a statement shared with the Daily Caller News Foundation. “Despite furious White House lobbying, a large bipartisan majority of senators (55-44) once again voted for immediate sanctions on Putin’s pipeline.”

“President Biden should listen to the Senate and to the people and government of Ukraine, and reverse his catastrophic decision to grant Russia waivers from congressionally mandated sanctions,” the statement continued. “Only immediately imposing sanctions can change Putin’s calculation, stop a Ukrainian invasion, and lift the existential threat posed by Nord Stream 2.”

Construction of the pipeline, which travels directly from Russia to Germany via the Baltic Sea, was completed in September 2021, but the German government has yet to give the final green light for the project to come online.

The reason American energy independence is so important both for the national security of America and the well being of Europe is that Russia uses energy as a weapon against Europe during the winter months. If America is energy independent, we can help meet the needs of Europe and lessen the political sway of Moscow over the region. The pipeline needs to be sanctioned, but American needs to up its energy production to make sure Europe is warm this winter.

Forgetting The Past While Criticizing The Present

On Tuesday, The Daily Caller posted an article about President Biden’s remarks in Georgia about the voting bill currently before the Senate. In that speech, the President referred to those who oppose the voting bill as being similar to segregationists. First of all, the bill has nothing to do with race. The issue that the Democrats find so appealing in the bill is that it would outlaw voter id requirements in all states. That’s not segregation–everyone in America has an equal opportunity to obtain an id or some sort.

The article reports:

Advancement Act and the Freedom to Vote Act, would effectively nationalize election laws by restoring a legal provision allowing the Justice Department to challenge state laws as discriminatory. The bills would also mandate extensive early voting and absentee ballot provision, as well as prohibit bans on ballot-harvesting. Neither bill is supported by Republicans, leading Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris to call for the elimination of the filibuster to pass them.

Both former senators had defended the filibuster throughout their careers in the upper chamber.

“Every senator, Democrat, Republican and Independent, will have to declare where they stand. Not just for the moment but for the ages,” Biden claimed of the two proposals.

“History has never been kind to those who’ve sided with voter suppression over voters’ rights, and it will be even less kind for those who side with election subversion. So I ask every elected official in America, how do you want to be remembered? Consequential moments in history, they present a choice. Do you want to be on the side of Dr. King or George Wallace? The side of John Lewis or Bull Connor? The side of Abraham Lincoln or Jefferson Davis?”

Isn’t that interesting that President Biden would say that those who oppose his agenda are segregationists. President Biden was one of the speakers at the funeral of Robert Byrd of West Virginia. According to thoughtco.com, in the early 1940s, Byrd formed a new chapter of the Ku Klux Klan in Sophia, West Virginia.

The article at thoughtco also notes:

In a 1944 letter to segregationist Mississippi Senator Theodore G. Bilbo, Byrd wrote,

“I shall never fight in the armed forces with a Negro by my side. Rather I should die a thousand times, and see Old Glory trampled in the dirt never to rise again than to see this beloved land of ours become degraded by race mongrels, a throwback to the blackest specimen from the wilds.”

As late as 1946, Byrd wrote to the Klan’s Grand Wizard: “The Klan is needed today as never before, and I am anxious to see its rebirth here in West Virginia and in every state in the nation.”

I am being a little unfair here because times have changed. However, the fact that President Biden would accuse those who oppose an unconstitutional federalization of elections of being racist after his support of someone who obviously was racist is a bit much.

 

Not Surprising

It is no surprise to anyone that the media is acting as cheerleaders for the Biden administration. Currently that job is rather difficult–rising gas prices, rising inflation, supply chain issues, open borders, Afghanistan, vaccine mandates, the end of American energy independence, saber rattling by our enemies, etc. It’s not a pretty picture. However, in true Biden administration fashion, the President is meeting with the media to try to change their spin on the various crises rather than trying to solve the problems.

On Tuesday, The Daily Caller posted an article about the Biden White House’s attempts to persuade the media to report on the disasters the Biden administration is creating with a more positive spin.

The article reports:

The White House has been working with major news outlets “behind the scenes” to “reshape coverage” on the economic crisis, according to CNN.

The administration has been “briefing major newsrooms over the past week” while “discussing with newsrooms trends pertaining to job creation, economic growth, supply chains, and more,” CNN reports, citing an anonymous source.

The administration has argued that “the country’s economy is in much better shape than it was last year.” CNN reported the conversations have “been productive, with anchors and reporters and producers getting to talk with the officials.”

The article quotes a Dana Milbank article where he states that the press has done more negative reporting on President Biden than it did on President Trump:

“Sure, Biden has had his troubles, with the delta variant, Afghanistan and inflation,” Milbank continued. “But the economy is rebounding impressively, he has signed major legislation, and he has restored some measure of decency, calm and respect for democratic institutions.”

A recent CBS News/YouGov poll found that three out of 10 Americans think the country is doing “somewhat well” under Biden. Biden received a higher disapproval rating when polled on the economy, immigration, race relations and inflation.

News coverage of Biden’s first 100 days in office were “modestly more negative than positive,” according to a Pew Research Center study.

Gaslighting at its best. After a while, you just wonder what the media is looking at that they continuously get things so wrong. Would someone please list the accomplishments of President Biden for me.

 

Aren’t The Rules Supposed To Be For Everyone?

The Daily Caller posted an article on Wednesday that included a really good question asked by Peter Doucy.

The article reports:

White House chief medical adviser Dr. Anthony Fauci said Wednesday that new testing requirements might be required for all people traveling into the U.S., but with regard to new COVID-19 restrictions for illegal immigrants, Fauci said, “That’s a different issue.”

“You advised the president about the possibility of new testing requirements for people coming into this country, does that include everybody?” Fox News White House Correspondent Peter Doocy asked Fauci at a briefing Wednesday.

“The answer is yes,” Fauci said. “Anybody and everybody who’s coming into the country needs to get a test within 24 hours of getting on the plane to come here.”

“What about … these border crossers?” Doocy pressed.

“That’s a different issue,” Fauci replied.

That would be comical if it were not so serious.

The article concludes:

President Joe Biden’s policy, which is being considered, would require all travelers entering the country, including U.S. citizens, to provide proof of a negative test regardless of vaccination status no more than three days before their flight, according to Fox News.

Biden announced new travel restrictions Friday from South Africa, Botswana, Zimbabwe, Namibia, Lesotho, Eswatini, Mozambique and Malawi, due to the Omicron COVID-19 variant.

But anyone who comes through the southern border illegally is exempt from these requirements.

Don’t Expect To Learn All Of The Gory Details

The Ghislaine Maxwell trial begins today. According to a Daily Caller article posted today, The presiding judge will be U.S. District Judge Alison Nathan, who was appointed by former President Barack Obama in 2011. Judge Nathan has already agreed with Ghislaine Maxwell’s request to keep certain details in the criminal case against her secret — finding that information would be too “sensational and impure” to reveal to the public.

The New York Post is reporting today:

Ghislaine Maxwell, the accused longtime madam of pedophile financier Jeffrey Epstein, is going on trial Monday — beginning the final act of criminal proceedings against the disgraced socialite that could be the last chance at justice for the duo’s alleged victims.

The first order of business was to finalize jury selection — picking the 12 jurors and six alternates who will hear the sensational case — with opening statements expected to follow later in the day.

The start of Maxwell’s highly awaited trial drew a mass of media to the Lower Manhattan courthouse. Alleged Epstein victim Sarah Ransome, attorney Lisa Bloom and Maxwell’s sister Isabel were also spotted arriving.

Maxwell, who has been in custody since her arrest last year, was hauled into court in a white sweater.

If convicted on all counts, Maxwell faces a maximum sentence of 70 years in prison — effectively a life sentence for the 59-year-old, who has been jailed in a Brooklyn lockup since her arrest.

Maxwell faces six counts for allegedly recruiting, grooming and abusing four minor girls with Epstein at multiple locations in the US and the UK from 1994 through 2004. 

Her crimes included engaging in “group sexual encounters” with Epstein and an underage girl — identified in court documents as “Minor Victim-1” — from 1994 to 1997, prosecutors charge in the indictment against her.

Obviously under normal circumstances there would be the potential for some very recognizable people to be named in this trial. I think the Judge’s ruling will probably prevent that. The fact that Ghislaine Maxwell is still alive could be considered an indication that the people who might have been implicated by a Jeffrey Epstein trial are somehow now protected. The trial might also be an indication that the Clinton family is no longer powerful enough to prevent any embarrassment that might come from the trial. There are a number of high-level government and corporate executives whose names appear on the flight logs of the plane to Epstein’s island. It will be interesting to see how much press those flight logs get. They have been public for a while, but not posted in mainstream sources. Let’s see if that changes.

Reversing A Policy That Punished Bad Behavior

On Sunday The Daily Caller posted an article about another Trump administration policy reversed by the Biden administration.

The article reports:

The Biden administration quietly reversed a Trump-era decision halting conservation grants being used to indirectly fund human rights atrocities in Central Africa.

Eco-guards hired by WCS and the World Wildlife Fund (WWF), and funded through the Central Africa Regional Program for the Environment (CARPE), had allegedly committed horrific atrocities including rape, torture and murder stretching back a decade, a March 2019 Buzzfeed News investigation found. In one alleged incident, guards beat and raped four women, including two who were pregnant, and in another incident, three men were hung by their penises from a tree branch by the guards.

The article notes:

“It was my conclusion that the federal agencies simply did not have the means and the practical ability to ensure that the money that they gave wouldn’t go to parties who would commit grave and horrific crimes,” Former Interior Secretary David Bernhardt — who left the department in January after leading it for two years — told the DCNF in an interview.

“And as a result of that, I was not comfortable with this approach,” he continued. “Apparently, the Biden administration is.”

Following the Buzzfeed reports, Bernhardt ordered $12.3 million in CARPE program funds to be frozen in September 2019 and initiated an internal investigation into how wildlife grants were awarded to groups operating in Central Africa. One year later, the Interior Department (DOI) doubled down on its decision to halt funds, saying no further CARPE funding would be awarded to wildlife organizations until proper controls were put in place, according to an internal agency memo.

American tax dollars should not be funding any group that engages in the sort of behavior these groups engaged in, regardless of their cause.

This Is Actually A Good Thing

Yesterday The Daily Caller reported that the Biden administration auctioned off over 80 million acres in the Gulf of Mexico for oil drilling Wednesday. Obviously this contradicts many statements made by President Biden during his campaign, but it is a reasonable decision. America has lost its energy independence under the Biden administration. This move might be a step in the right direction to bring that independence back. The move may also be in response to the rising cost of gasoline that is part of what is bringing President Biden’s approval ratings down.

The article reports:

The auction is the largest offshore oil and gas lease sale in the United States, according to the Boston Globe. The new leases will produce 1.1 billion barrels of oil and 4.4 trillion cubic feet of natural gas, according to a Department of the Interior estimate, the Globe reported.

“This morning was met with extreme disappointment, depleted hope, and shattered trust,” Legal Director for Friends of the Earth Hallie Templeton said, the Globe reported.

Just four days before the sale, the Biden administration signed the COP26 pact, which requires countries to eliminate subsidies for the fossil fuel industry. Biden previously pledged to ban new oil and gas leasing on public land and water.

A federal judge ruled in favor of 13 states in June when they sued the Department of the Interior after Biden issued an executive order temporarily pausing the sale of the leases, according to the Globe. However, the Department of the Interior has appealed the court’s decision.

The decision goes against the Interior’s obligation to protect the environment through selling oil and gas leases, according to Jane Patton, a campaigner with the Center for International Environmental Law, the Globe reported.

This is one campaign promise I am glad to see broken.

This Really Isn’t A Surprise

Yesterday The Daily Caller posted an article about President Biden’s spending plans.

The article reports:

President Joe Biden’s administration is facing a daunting reality check after claiming for months that their spending agenda will “cost zero dollars,” with the head of the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) saying the White House drastically overestimated the revenue the IRS could gain by cracking down on tax loopholes.

Biden and numerous other senior Democrats in the White House and on Capitol Hill have repeatedly insisted that their $1.85 trillion social spending package will add nothing to the national debt. They argued the package included enough pay-fors to offset the spending programs. CBO chief Phillip Swagel brought that claim down on Monday, however, saying that the tax loophole crackdown in the bill would only garner $120 billion, a far cry from the White House’s projected $400 billion, according to The New York Times.

Why didn’t these numbers come out before they voted on the Infrastructure Bill?

The article notes:

The CBO, which is a non-partisan organization, is set to release its official report Friday. The White House is shoring up support and urging lawmakers to disregard the report ahead of its release.

“In this one case, I think we’ve made a very strong empirical case for CBO not having an accurate score,” Ben Harris, assistant secretary for economic policy at the Treasury Department, told the NYT. “The question is would they rather go with CBO knowing CBO is wrong, or would they want to target the best information they could possibly have?”

Why do we have the CBO if lawmakers are going to disregard their research? Again, why didn’t the lawmakers wait for the report before they voted on the spending?

Unfortunately She Fits Right In With The Program

Yesterday The Daily Caller posted an article about Saule Omarova, who has been nominated to serve as comptroller of the currency by President Joe Biden.

The article includes a past quote from Ms. Omarova::

“Here what I’m thinking about is primarily the coal and oil and gas industry. A lot of the smaller players in that industry are going to probably go bankrupt in short order, at least we want them to go bankrupt if we want to tackle climate change,” Saule Omarova — who the Senate is considering to lead the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency — remarked in a clip uncovered Tuesday by the American Accountability Foundation (AAF), a conservative research group.

The comments were originally made during a March talk Omarova gave as part of the Jain Family Institute’s “Social Wealth Seminar” series.

The article notes:

“At the end of the day, these are people’s lives, people are going to lose their jobs because she’s going to support policies that are there to drive them out of work,” AAF Founder Thomas Jones told the Daily Caller News Foundation in an interview.

“It’s people who are not going to be able to send their kids to college, who will not be able to make their mortgage payment because Saule Omarova has a classical Marxist view where she wants the government to run all sectors of the economy and part of that is implementing the Green New Deal,” he continued. “And you can only do that by destroying the oil and gas industry.”

She fits in perfectly with the goals of the Biden administration.

Yesterday The Conservative Treehouse posted an article about the war on everyone even remotely connected to President Trump. That article made some very good points about President Trump’s desire to put America first and the globalists’ idea of destroying America’s freedom and prosperity. The Biden administration is obviously on the side of the globalists.

The Conservative Treehouse article notes:

After eight years of the Obama team attempting to destroy nationalism in favor of globalism, their response to Trump’s “America First” popularity made sense. Donald Trump was positioned to deconstruct almost a decade of Obama-era policy which was specifically intended to diminish American value, economically and socially.

The far-left was in a state of panic; however, it was a panic felt by both the Republicans and Democrats in Washington DC. Politicians within the UniParty were direct financial beneficiaries from the Wall Street multinational corporate strategies which underpinned Obama’s economic outlook.

That’s why there was so much opposition to candidate Trump from the GOP establishment. That’s also why so many Republicans abandoned their re-election efforts in 2018 in the aftermath of Donald Trump’s successful election outcome in 2016. Masks were dropping at an alarming rate inside the RNC as well as traditional GOP media and GOP politicians on Capitol Hill.

Wall Street was essentially unable to manipulate the America First economic policy agenda of President Trump. Their lack of influence applied to all aspects of policy from Climate to Trade and in U.S. geopolitical strategy.

Evidence of their inability was found in the U.S. Chamber of Commerce being locked out of the White House trade and policy discussions. That is why you currently see the U.S. CoC in alignment with, and funding the campaigns of, congressional Democrats.

It was Donald Trump, and Donald Trump alone, who changed the economic outlook of the Republican party from Globalism to Nationalism. The economic policy is essentially the cornerstone of what we now call the MAGA agenda. Trump gave voice to the forgotten blue-collar workforce, the middle class and the silent majority of the American electorate.

This MAGA coalition cuts through gender, race, creed and national origin. The MAGA agenda lifts up all workers at a much more significant rate than any previous economic policy. The results were obvious and only took a few months to begin surfacing as the U.S. economy was unleashed to the benefit of the working class.

The battle we are currently in is between those who want to destroy America’s working class and those who want to strengthen America’s working class. One of the major signs of a healthy economy is a healthy middle class. When the middle class is eliminated, you have only the elites and the lower class. Unfortunately there are many in Congress who want to be the elites while ignoring the voice of America’s middle class. Those members of Congress need to be voted out of office quickly.

Spin Instead Of Solutions

I am not a big fan of the current gasoline prices. I doubt anyone is. How in the world did we go from being energy independent to sky-high gasoline prices? Well, it might have started with the shutdown of the Keystone XL Pipeline on day one of the Biden administration.

Yesterday The Daily Caller posted an article about the Biden administration’s current excuse for high gasoline prices.

The article reports:

President Joe Biden claimed Tuesday that gas prices have skyrocketed due to Russia and the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) refusing to “pump more oil.”

Biden delivered his remarks during the United Nations climate conference (COP26) in Glasgow, Scotland, where he was asked to comment on when Americans could expect to see everyday prices come down, including those of gas.

When America was energy independent, we didn’t have to worry about the output of Russia or OPEC.

The article notes:

Despite his decisions to revoke the permit for the Keystone XL pipeline and impose a moratorium on new oil and gas leasing and drilling permits for U.S. lands and waters, the president has accused OPEC of being unwilling to significantly ramp up their production of oil to combat rising gasoline prices.

“[T]he idea that Russia and Saudi Arabia and other major producers are not going to pump more oil so people can have gasoline to get to and from work, for example, is not right,” Biden said Sunday at the G20 summit.

Many OPEC members have shunned Biden’s pleas, arguing that they shouldn’t produce oil at a faster rate due to the uncertainties associated with the pandemic, according to Al Jazeera.

U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) released a report mid-October, forecasting that American households could see their energy expenditures go up as high as 54% compared to the winter of 2021.

Gasoline prices are not going down until American voters wake up and remove the current administration (and their congressional allies) from power. We can begin in 2022 by voting for conservatives for Congress and continue by re-electing President Trump in 2024. If you want to see gasoline prices go back down, that is the solution.

A Not-So-Veiled Threat?

Yesterday The Daily Caller posted an article about the Taliban regime in Afghanistan’s request for recognition as legitimate by the nations of the world.

The article reports:

The Taliban warned the U.S. and the rest of the global community Saturday that their decision to withhold formal recognition of Afghanistan’s new government may result in consequences for the world.

“Our message to America is, if unrecognition continues, Afghan problems continue, it is the problem of the region and could turn into a problem for the world,” Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid said at Saturday’s press conference, according to Reuters.

Mujahid noted that absence of formal diplomatic ties between Afghanistan and the U.S. led to the military invasion in 2001, Reuters reported.

I don’t think the absence of formal diplomatic ties was actually the problem.

The article concludes:

Although not yet recognized by a single country in the world, the Taliban are counting on China to provide financial assistance to Afghanistan’s struggling economy. China’s Foreign Minister Wang Yi met with Taliban officials in Doha, Qatar, in late October, Reuters reported.

The spokesperson also added that China had vowed to inject funds into Afghanistan’s transport infrastructure, as well as to provide Kabul’s exports access to Chinese markets via neighboring Pakistan.

U.S. Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs Victoria Nuland said the Biden administration’s strategy in regard to the Taliban was a “far cry” from formal recognition during a briefing in September. However, she did not claim that the U.S. would never recognize the organization.

There are a few things to consider here. China has moved quickly to fill the vacuum left by the American withdrawal from Afghanistan. It is quite possible that China will be able to use the infrastructure America left behind to exploit the rare earth elements that could bring Afghanistan into the twenty first century. China has been working for decades on cornering the market on the elements needed for the computer technology of today. Also consider the fact that much of our Washington ‘leaders’ are indebted to (that’s a polite word for owned by) China. I only wish that we could afford to pay our national leaders as well as China pays them. There are many aspects of the Afghanistan debacle that have much wider ramifications than simply leaving Afghanistan.

The Risk Of Resettlement

Resettling thousands of people from a country with a culture radically different from the American culture has its risks. One of the places where those risks are going to be most apparent is in the way women are treated in America in contrast to the way women were historically treated in Afghanistan. I will admit that I hadn’t really thought about the impact of the twenty years of the American presence in Afghanistan had on the people until I watched the video I embedded yesterday. The young lady in the interview tearfully thanking the Americans for the fact that she was allowed to go to school caused me to rethink a lot of my ideas about our presence in Afghanistan. An article that appears today in The Daily Caller makes me wonder about the wisdom of bringing the Afghan refugees to America rather than resettling them somewhere in the Arab world where the culture would be similar to the culture in Afghanistan before Americans arrived.

The article reports:

An Afghan refugee was charged with raping an 18-year-old after resettling in Missoula, Montana, Fox News reported on Thursday.

Zabihullah Muhmand, 19, ended up in Montana as part of a State Department effort to resettle people evacuated from Afghanistan after the government fell to the Taliban in mid-August, Republican Montana Gov. Greg Gianforte announced, according to Fox News. Gianforte asked the Biden administration to stop resettlement efforts so officials can look into the vetting process of evacuees.

“911 received a call from the victim and also from the local motel who wanted to report seeing some concerning behavior between a male and female,” police official Lydia Arnold said, local outlet KGVO reported. “Officers were able to connect the victim with the resources in Missoula to aid the victim with immediate medical assistance, conduct a preliminary investigation, and take a preliminary statement from the victim.”

Unfortunately there have been similar incidents in other areas of the country involving Afghan refugees. Some European countries who have accepted large numbers of Arab refugees have also had similar problems with the lack of respect for women that is woven into the Arab culture. I am not sure this is a matter of vetting–I suspect it may be a cultural matter that needs to be addressed very quickly. Any refugees coming to America from countries where women are routinely mistreated need to be educated quickly on the role of women in America. It is the responsibility of our government to protect ALL of its citizens.

The Results Of Really Bad Planning

Yesterday The Daily Caller reported that the Air Force has reported that one of the evacuation flights leaving Kabul airport in the midst of the chaos of the American withdrawal carried individuals who “intended” on hijacking the aircraft.

The article reports:

Officials followed an intelligence tip that five people aboard one of the various commercial flights “intended to hijack the aircraft,” the report stated.

“Our team worked to get them clear of the NATO ramp, relocated to the north side away from friendly forces, then ultimately onto the south side where the situation was handled,” Lt. Col. Brian Desautels said, according to the Air Force statement.

No other details about the attempted hijacking were provided in the report.

The article also reports:

Two private flights leaving Kabul carrying nearly 800 people were stuck in Afghanistan for weeks after Sayara International, the development organization in charge of the departure and arrival of flights to the U.S., said negotiations between the Taliban and U.S. State Department prolonged, the Washington Examiner reported.

We have not heard anything recently about the school children stranded in Afghanistan when the evacuation was so poorly handled. I suspect there are many Americans still in Afghanistan living in nightmarish conditions. Meanwhile the Biden administration is having ‘civil’ negotiations with the new Taliban government of the country. This is not a good look for America.

Who Decides?

Yesterday The Daily Caller posted an article about the Taliban’s request for representation at the United Nations. The article includes a list of the countries that will decide whether the current Afghanistan Ambassador to the United Nations remains in place or the Taliban gets to seat its Ambassador. The nine countries which will make this decision are the United States, China, Russia, Sweden, the Bahamas, Bhutan, Chile, Namibia and Sierra Leone.

The article reports:

The Islamic militant group wrote the U.N. Secretary-General, Portugal’s Antonio Guterres, Monday to request permission to participate in the ongoing gathering of world leaders at the U.N. General Assembly, according to The Associated Press. Five days prior, Afghanistan’s current ambassador to the U.N., Ghulam, Isaczai, provided Guterres with a list of the Afghan government’s delegation for the proceedings.

The Taliban letter was written with the letterhead “Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan, Ministry of Foreign Affairs,” and was signed by the Taliban’s appointed Minister of Foreign Affairs, Ameer Khan Muttaqi, U.N. spokesman Stephane Dujarric said. The letter said that former Afghan President Ashraf Ghani was removed from power by the Islamic militants Aug. 15, and that the global community no longer recognized him or his government as the leaders of Afghanistan. As a result, Muttaqi said, Isaczai could no longer represent Afghanistan at the U.N.

It should be noted that if the Taliban is seated in place of the current Afghan Ambassador, the Taliban inherits Afghanistan’s seat on the U.N. Women’s Rights Commission. I suspect that I am not the only person that has a problem with that.

Showering Terrorists With Cash

The Daily Caller reported yesterday that the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) will be sending $64 million in humanitarian aid to Afghanistan to address the “compounding effects of insecurity, conflict, recurring natural disasters and the COVID-19 pandemic.” That makes my head hurt. How about sending $64 million in aid to America to house our homeless veterans and improve healthcare for our veterans?

The article reports:

The funding will come from USAID and the State Department, and will be distributed through the United Nations and independent aid groups, the agency said in a press release. The humanitarian aid will help provide vulnerable Afghans with “critically needed food, health care, nutrition, medical supplies, protection, hygiene supplies and other urgently needed relief.”

USAID also said it has created a Disaster Assistance Response Team to lead the U.S. government’s humanitarian response in Afghanistan and work with partners on the ground to provide assistance.

Does anyone actually believe that the money will be used for humanitarian purposes and not to arm terrorists in the Middle East?

The article concludes:

Secretary of State Antony Blinken on Monday urged Afghanistan’s neighbors to keep their borders open to refugees and promised to ensure the Taliban does not block humanitarian assistance, particularly to groups such as women and girls.

“The United States will also work with the international community to help ensure that the Taliban follow through on its commitments and advance unhindered humanitarian access, freedom of movement for aid workers of all genders, safety and security of humanitarian staff, and safe passage for all those who wish to leave Afghanistan,”  he said in a statement.

I think it’s time to remove the State Department from our government. They obviously do not work for us.

 

We Still Have Friends Who Remember

Yesterday The Daily Caller reported that Buckingham Palace played the U.S. national anthem Saturday morning at the “changing of the guard” to commemorate 9/11. That is touching.

The article reports:

“Just as they did at Buckingham Palace twenty years ago to show solidarity with our US allies, the Band of the @WelshGuards this morning played the US National Anthem at changing of the guard,” tweeted the British Army in London.

Many American institutions are commemorating the 20 year anniversary of 9/11. The Boston College football team will wear special uniforms Saturday to honor a 9/11 hero. The Florida Gators will also be wearing patriotic helmets to recognize the 20 year anniversary.

The British have been dependable allies for a long time. Hopefully that will continue.

A Little Gratitude Would Be Appreciated

Yesterday The Daily Caller posted an article about an Afghan interpreter referred to as Mohammed.

The article reports:

An interpreter who reportedly helped save Joe Biden and Antony Blinken after their helicopter was forced to make an emergency landing during a snowstorm was left behind in Afghanistan following the U.S. withdrawal, the Wall Street Journal (WSJ) reported Tuesday.

“I can’t leave my house. I’m very scared,” the interpreter, identified only as Mohammed, told WSJ. Mohammed added that although he, his wife, and his four children were able to make it to the gates of Hamid Karzai International Airport (HKIA), his wife and children were denied entry.

Mohammed was serving at Bagram Air Base in 2008, when a pair of Black Hawk helicopters carrying then-Democratic Sens. Joe Biden of Delaware and John Kerry of Massachusetts, and then-Republican Nebraska Sen. Chuck Hagel, was forced by a snowstorm to land in a valley that was near the site of a recent battle. Blinken, then a foreign policy adviser to Biden, was also on the trip, according to CNN.

The translator joined the 82nd Airborne Division, driving into the mountains to rescue the group.

Mohammed reportedly fought in more than 100 firefights along with American troops.

“His selfless service to our military men and women is just the kind of service I wish more Americans displayed,” Lt. Col. Andrew R. Till wrote in support of Mohammed’s Special Immigrant Visa (SIV) application.

The withdrawal from Afghanistan is a disgrace. The military strategists who approved this plan need to be relieved of their positions. The difference in what has happened under President Biden and the fact that no American was killed in Afghanistan for eighteen months under President Trump is the concept of ‘Peace through Strength.’ When America projects strength, she can protect her people and innocent people around the world. When America has a weak President, the entire world is in danger. It is my hope that American and the world can survive the Biden administration.

A Kinder, Gentler Taliban?

The Daily Caller is reporting that Afghans who helped America or American allies in any way are getting letters pinned to their front doors at night (“night letters”) telling them to attend a Taliban-conducted court or face death.

The article reports:

One of those to receive a warning was Naz, a 34-year-old father-of-six whose construction company helped the UK military build roads in Helmand and the runway at Camp Bastion.

He had applied for sanctuary in Britain under ARAP, the Afghan relocation programme, but had been rejected.

Naz said yesterday: ‘The letter was official and stamped by the Taliban. It is a clear message that they want to kill me. If I attend the court, I will be punished with my life.

If I don’t, they will kill me – that is why I am in hiding, trying to find a way to escape. But I need help.’

Another victim, a former British military translator, was warned he was a ‘spy of the infidel’ and must give himself up or pay with his life.

A third night letter warned the brother of an interpreter that he had been sentenced to death for sheltering him while a fourth was found in the shoe of an ex-British military translator as he left prayers at a mosque.

The letters are a traditional Afghan method of intimidation. They were used by mujahideen fighters during the Soviet occupation and then by the Taliban as both a propaganda tool and a threat. Often used in rural communities, they are now being widely circulated in cities.

A related article in the U.K. Daily Mail reports:

For Naz, the letter was specific. It named his father and their village and was stamped by the Islamic Emirate. 

The warning said he had been a ‘slave’ of Nato forces and had ignored warnings to stop working with them.

He was ordered to ‘present yourself’ to the court otherwise it would be ‘forwarded to the Sharia Court of Appeal where the judgment of death penalty will be passed in your absence. This would be the path you have chosen for yourself’.

Naz said: ‘The message of night letters is clear: you must comply or die. We have moved but we can’t keep moving. We must escape.’

There is no good news in this surrender. It was time to leave Afghanistan, but we could have done it very differently.

I Wish They Would At Least Get Their Stories Straight

One of the various methods police use to catch criminals is to separate the people apprehended at a crime scene and have them tell their stories separately without being able to hear each other. Generally the truth will be found somewhere in the contradictions. Right now we seem to be getting a number of contradicting stories from the Biden administration on Afghanistan.

Yesterday The Daily Caller posted an article about one of those contradictions. In this case, the story and the contradiction both came from the same person.

The article reports:

Secretary of State Antony Blinken claimed Sunday that the United States had not given lists of American citizens and allies to the Taliban.

Blinken joined “Meet the Press” with NBC’s Chuck Todd and disputed the accuracy of reports indicating U.S. officials had handed over lists of people the Taliban should allow through checkpoints and into the airport in Kabul. Just moments later, however, Blinken appeared to concede that U.S. officials had handed over passenger manifests for busloads of Afghan allies who were supposed to be allowed through security.

…“Chuck, it’s simply not the case. The idea that we’ve done anything to put at further risk those that were trying to help leave the country is simply wrong. And the idea that we shared lists of Americans or others with the Taliban is simply wrong,” Blinken immediately pushed back.

“What was shared?” Todd pressed.

Blinken went on to detail the lists of people U.S. officials had given to the Taliban in order to ensure their safe passage.

“When you’re trying to get a bus or a group of people through and you need to show a manifest to do that — particularly in cases where people don’t have the necessary credentials on them or documents on them — then you’ll share names of the lists of people on the bus so they can be assured those are the people we’re looking to bring in. By definition, that’s exactly what’s happened,” Blinken said.

“We’ve gotten 5,500 American citizens out of Afghanistan,” Blinken continued, saying again that the U.S. had provided passenger manifests or verified the names of individuals — especially those who might not have proper documentation on them.

“But the idea that we put anyone in any further jeopardy is simply wrong,” he concluded.

If you were dealing with humane, rational people who are willing to help you evacuate Americans and friendly Afghans from Afghanistan, that might be a reasonable course of action. However, if you are dealing with people who routinely cut people’s heads off for any minor slight or infraction, you might want to reconsider giving them a list of  your allies. I really can’t believe that the people in our State Department are that naive. Unfortunately if they are not that naive, this is being done on purpose. That thought is even more scary.

Creating Further Division In America

On June 16th, I posted an article about Biden administration’s plan “to create ways for Americans to report radicalized friends and family to the government, in an effort to fight domestic terrorism.” I am sure that the idea that your family and neighbors (or children for that matter) could report you for anything you say will help bring Americans together ((note sarcasm).

Well, it’s getting worse.

Yesterday The Daily Caller reported the following:

The FBI took to Twitter Sunday to encourage families to watch out for “homegrown violent extremism.”

“Family members and peers are often best positioned to witness signs of mobilization to violence. Help prevent homegrown violent extremism,” the FBI’s tweet read in part.

Family members and peers are often best positioned to witness signs of mobilization to violence. Help prevent homegrown violent extremism. Visit https://t.co/bql36iSbig to learn how to spot suspicious behaviors and report them to the #FBI.

This is the tweet:

The article continues:

The link included in the tweet takes readers to the 2019 edition of the Homegrown Violent Extremism Mobilization Indicators report.

The report separates extremism into three groups based on whether the action is highly, moderately, or minimally diagnostic on its own.

Behaviors that are considered highly diagnostic include taping a martyrdom video or last will, preparing travel in order to join a terrorist group, or “communicating intent to engage in violent extremist activity,” especially on social media. (RELATED: DOJ Considering New Domestic Terrorism Laws Aimed At Violent Domestic Extremism)

In June, Attorney General Merrick Garland said white supremacy was the greatest “domestic violent extremist threat” facing the U.S. as he announced President Joe Biden’s National Strategy for Countering Domestic Terrorism.

This is frightening. We currently have an open southern border allowing members of MS-13 and other violent gangs to enter America and the FBI is worried about politically incorrect opinions being expressed on social media. Wow.

I realize that a lot of this is a reaction to what happened on January 6th, when some unarmed people forced their way into the Capitol. However, I firmly believe that January 6th is being used as an excuse to shut down any opposition to the current administration–on social media or elsewhere. We have watched the media censor news they didn’t like (Hunter’s laptop, election fraud, coronavirus deaths in nursing homes in various states, etc.). What is being proposed here is the next step to creating a one-party government which punishes political dissent.

Yesterday The Epoch Times noted:

Richard Grenell, a former acting director of national intelligence, wrote that the FBI’s tweet “is outrageous” because the agency “has a growing credibility problem and this type of sinister snitching is clearly unhelpful.” Several Republican lawmakers also criticized the tweet, saying the FBI is encouraging Americans’ family members to spy on one another.

“In both Cuba & China, they also ask children to spy on their parents,” Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) wrote.

Rep. Dan Bishop (R-Texas) wrote: “These people protected Hillary, abused NSA surveillance databases against Americans, used known, unreliable DNC-funded propaganda to spy on Trump, perpetuated the Russia hoax, & lied to the FISC repeatedly. And now they tell you that you should spy on your family.”

It’s not clear if the FBI posted the tweet in reference to the Biden administration’s campaign against “domestic violent extremists” or the longstanding intelligence operations against Islamist terror groups. Officials at the agency didn’t respond to a request by The Epoch Times for comment by press time.

 

This Will Not Keep Our Country Safe

Yesterday The Daily Caller posted an article about a recent report on domestic violent extremism.

The article reports:

Republican Indiana Sen. Mike Braun suggested to Attorney General Merrick Garland Wednesday that a report on domestic violence extremism placed disproportionate interest on the pro-life movement in a “wild attack” that identified “abortion-related violent extremists” as a principal threat.

Garland testified before a Senate subcommittee Wednesday where Braun brought up a declassified intelligence report on domestic violence extremism released by the Director of National Intelligence (DNI) in March. That report, Braun said, identified abortion-related violent extremists as a principal threat.

I don’t think the burning and looting of major cities last summer had anything to do with abortion.

The article continues:

“To me this seemed like kind of a wild attack on the pro-life community,” Braun said. “It did not list groups like BLM and Antifa, who have had a clear recent record of violent acts.”

“So can you explain what that was about?” Braun asked. “Why there would have been focus on that, and has there been a rash of incidents related to it?”

Garland said that the report described leading threats that were racially or ethnically motivated violent extremists, particularly white supremacists, adding that he doesn’t know where pro-life activists fit on the “threat matrix.”

What we are watching is the criminalization of political thought. It’s okay to burn down cities, destroy businesses and loot if you are on the political left, but if you hold conservative views, you are suspected of being potentially violent. This is a serious threat to our freedom in America.

The article concludes:

The DNI report specifically mentions that abortion-related violent extremists have ideological agendas in support of pro-life or pro-choice beliefs. The declassified report does not make specific mention of Antifa or Black Lives Matter, though it explains the category that Garland mentioned — anti-government/anti-authority violent extremists, a category which includes militia violent extremists, anarchist violent extremists, and sovereign citizen violent extremists.

DNI declined to comment for this story.

An Upside Down Department Of Justice

Yesterday The Washington Times posted an article about the priorities of the Department of Justice under Attorney General Merrick Garland.

The article reports:

Attorney General Merrick Garland acknowledged Wednesday that the Justice Department is prioritizing prosecuting those who participated in the Jan. 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol over those who rioted and looted during last summer’s social justice demonstrations.

“I think it’s fair to say in my career as a judge and in law enforcement, I have not seen a more dangerous threat to democracy than the invasion of the Capitol,” Mr. Garland said in testimony before the Senate Appropriations Committee. “There was an attempt to interfere with the fundamental element of our democracy — the peaceful transfer of power.

“If there has to be a hierarchy of things that we prioritize, this would be the one we would prioritize because it is the most dangerous threat to our democracy,” he continued.

It should be noted that on April 15th, MSN reported:

Federal prosecutors in Portland, Ore., have moved to dismiss almost half the cases they charged in connection with violence accompanying last year’s protests over racial injustice, as authorities grapple with how to tamp down politically motivated unrest that has arisen since then.

Of 96 cases the U.S. attorney’s office in Portland filed last year charging protesters with federal crimes, including assaulting federal officers, civil disorder, and failing to obey, prosecutors have dropped 47 of them, government documents show. Ten people have pleaded guilty to related charges and two were ordered detained pending trial. None have gone to trial.

The penalties levied so far against any federal defendants, most of whom were arrested in clashes around federal buildings in Portland including the courthouse, have largely consisted of community service, such as working in a food bank or encouraging people to vote.

On January 3rd, The Daily Caller reported:

  • At least $4 million in physical damage was done to businesses downtown during the first month of protests, according to the Portland Business Alliance.
  • The riots cost downtown Portland another $18 million in revenue, according to the PBA.

I think it’s time for the Attorney General to re-examine his priorities. Those who participated in the riot at the Capitol deserve to be punished, but none of the rioters had weapons and the only person killed was killed by the Capitol Police. The destruction and threats to human life in Portland were far more serious. The only reason for the priorities the Attorney General is stating is political bias. No wonder many Americans have lost faith in the legal system in our country.

Undermining American Sovereignty

On Friday The Daily Caller reported that the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) will no longer collect fines for illegal immigrants who fail to leave the United States. So let’s just encourage people to break out laws.

The article reports:

At the direction of Secretary of Homeland Security, Alejandro Mayorkas, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) rescinded two delegation orders relating to financial penalties. The fines, which were first put in place in 2018 by the Trump administration, collected “civil financial penalties for noncitizens who fail[ed] to depart the U.S,” according to the press release.

ICE Delegation No. 006-2020, “Delegation of Authority to Administer Certain Provisions Relating to Civil Penalties for Failure to Depart,” was deemed as counterintuitive “to the agency’s best interests.”

So what incentive does an illegal immigrant now have to leave America?

The article notes:

Mayorkas and Acting ICE Director Tae Johnson agreed the fines were “not effective” and “had not meaningfully advanced the interests of the agency.”

The DHS press release also stated that ICE would work with the Department of Treasury to cancel the existing debts of those who had been fined.

“The rescission marks ICE’s latest move toward focusing its limited resources on those posing the greatest risk to national security and public safety in accordance with the current guidance on civil immigration enforcement and removal priorities,” the statement concluded.

How many people have to come to America illegally before we realize that is a threat to our national security?

 

Undoing The U.S. Constitution

On January 30th, The Daily Caller posted an article about the possibility of Washington, D.C., becoming a state. The article asks the question as to whether or not statehood for Washington, D.C., requires a Constitutional Amendment.

On Friday Breitbart reported that the House of Representatives will vote on Tuesday on whether or not to make Washington, D.C., a state.

The article reports:

The House of Representatives will vote Tuesday on whether to make Washington, D.C., a State.

The House Oversight Committee, chaired by Rep. Carolyn Maloney (D-NY), voted the bill, H.R. 51, out of committee by a vote of 25-19 to create D.C. statehood Wednesday.

Arizona Republican Rep. Andy Biggs has stated that the move is unconstitutional and simply a partisan power grab.

The article reports:

Biggs’ view is supported by legal scholars, who opposed D.C. statehood’s feasibility without a Constitutional amendment to the 23rd Amendment. The Office of Legal Counsel in 2007 believed it was unconstitutional, the Justice Department under former President Reagan and former President Carter stated the transformation was unconstitutional, and so did Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia, when he sat on the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals.

Additionally, twenty-two state Attorneys General sent a letter Tuesday to President Joe Biden and Congress arguing Washington, D.C., cannot transition into a state via legislation, but only through the method of a Constitutional amendment.

The primary arguments against D.C. statehood are:

  1. Our nation’s capital was always meant to be unique. The Framers established in the Constitution’s District Clause that the nation’s capital is a federal district, existing beyond the borders or influence of any state.
  2. H.R. 51 is doubly unconstitutional, violating both the plain meaning of the District Clause as well as the necessary implications of the Twenty-Third Amendment.
  3. Even those who support D.C. statehood admit district residents enjoy special benefits due to where they live and would enjoy an outsize influence in Congress.

The Founding Fathers purposely avoided making Washington, D.C., a state. If our current legislators want to change that, they need a Constitutional Amendment (which can be difficult to do–further proving that our Founding Fathers knew what they were doing). If this is passed, I suspect court cases will quickly follow. I would feel better about that if I trusted the courts.