Thursday, May 28, 2015

The Hillary Enigma

Canada Free Press ^ | 05/28/15 | Al Caruba 

I suggest that Hillary ceases to be an enigma if you just think of the Wellesley student who thought the best topic for her senior thesis was the book by a dedicated Communist, Saul Alinsky!

Does it strike anyone as strange that the only candidate for the Democratic Party’s nomination to be the next President of the United States is the wife of a former President? There is no historic precedent for this, no way to measure this against how Americans have selected Presidents in the past.
Like most Americans, I first took notice of her when Bill began his campaign to become President. I recall being struck by the fact that in 1969 as a student at Wellesley College, her 92-page senior thesis was devoted to the community organizer, Saul Alinsky’s book. The title of the thesis was “There is Only the Fight…”: An Analysis of the Alinski Model.” She would request Wellesley to deny access to it.
Alinksy was a Communist. His twelve rules for radicals, unlike the Ten Commandments, are devoid of a moral message. Instead, the message is “this is how you can win.” Hillary would do well to review Rule 7, “A tactic that drags on too long becomes a drag.” She was already old news when she announced her candidacy and it is becoming older with every passing day as she fails to take questions from the media, participating in totally staged events to look like “one of the people.”
(Excerpt) Read more at ...

MSM: Why, This Hillary Character Seems Evasive and Flawed! ^ | 5/28/2015 | Guy Benson 

The keepers of the Beltway flame don't seem terribly impressed by Hillary Clinton's aloof, unavailable presidential campaign thus far. Meet the Press' Chuck Todd thinks she's engaged in awkward ideological "gymnastics" and failing to connect (via the Free Beacon):
videos at link ...

The 'Game Change' boys see the relentless drip, drip, drip of the Clintons' financial irregulaties and serial opacity as "quite threatening" to her viability (via Grabien):

And what is Mrs. Clinton's favorite refuge when her family's multimillion-dollar slush fund is attracting unwanted attention, new details are emerging about her failures and dishonesty as Secretary of State, and her self-created email headaches just won't go away? First! Woman! President! demagoguery:

ABC Planted Story from Liz (via Twitter) ... Per campaign, in speech @HillaryClinton will lay out 1st part of women's agenda/"call out Republicans for standing in the way of equal pay."

Sigh. Economists have found that Democrats' go-to "pay gap" issue is largely a fiction, borne not of discrimination, but of women's choices. But since people like Hillary Clinton insist on flogging this talking point as means of scoring cheap points with under-informed voters, conservatives have no choice but to raise obvious hypocrisy questions -- applying the Left's own anti-intellectual, nuance-free standards:

Treasury Rule Allows Taxpayer Subsidized Health Insurance For Illegal Immigrants!

Forbes ^ | May 28, 2015 | by Grace-Marie Turner 

New research about implementation of the Affordable Care Act finds that Obama administration regulations are allowing taxpayer subsidized health insurance for some people earning less than the statutory income floor and also for unlawful immigrants.
A new study by Andy S. Grewal, an associate professor at the University of Iowa College of Law, explains that the ACA provides tax credits to U.S. citizens with incomes between 100 and 400% of the Federal Poverty Level (FPL). However, IRS regulations were written to extend credits to citizens below 100% FPL in some cases.
Also, Section 36B of the ACA grants credits to some non-citizens with low-incomes only if they are themselves lawfully present in the U.S. and cannot obtain Medicaid coverage. IRS regulations, however, contradict the statute and allow subsidies if “the taxpayer or a member of the taxpayer’s family is lawfully present in the United States,” and “the lawfully present taxpayer or family member is not eligible for the Medicaid program.”
And taxpayers who get a larger subsidy than they were due because they mis-estimated their income do not have to repay the money. “The regulation allows a taxpayer to fully keep her tax credits even if, at the close of the taxable year, the taxpayer’s household income did not meet the statutory floor and the taxpayer was not entitled to any credits.”
(Excerpt) Read more at ...

A $15.00 minimum wage is the greedy taking advantage of the unskilled with the help of the Democrats

Coach is Right ^ | 5/28/15 | Kevin "Coach" Collins 

Raising the wages of low to unskilled workers to $15.00 an hour will only help the Democrats and the extortionist unions who “represent” these workers. If low level salaries are doubled to $15.00 an hour, causing half of a shop’s workforce to be fired, the unions are way ahead. They will just double the dues for the remaining workers and not lose a cent in income. Better still, when employers fire half their workers just to survive, there will be half the number of members to bother union thugs with demands for services. The unions will still be able to grease the Democrats.
Anticipating this huge increase in labor costs, some employers are beginning to replace pricey employees with machines. This will enhance their bottom line and make no mistake, the unions will be very pleased. Unions are run for the benefit of union officials and Democrats not their membership. Given that all three benefit at the expense of the low skilled workers, the drive for a $15.00 an hour minimum wage may be pushed by a coalition of unions, employers and Democrats. It will be workers be damned. Their only job, as always, is paying union extortion and voting Democrat.
The only danger for unions is if employers should fire every worker and go fully automated.
A handy example of this is the way drinks are sold at the United Center in Chicago where the Bulls play. The arena has gone “service employee free.” Alcoholic drinks are sold from vending machines...
(Excerpt) Read more at ...

Commander in Chief's Job is National Defense, Not Climate Change ^ | May 28, 2015 | Star Parker 

A front-page headline in the Wall Street Journal screams out: "Islamic State's Gains Reveal New Prowess on the Battlefield."
The article discusses how the Islamic State recently captured Ramadi, the capital of Anbar province in Iraq. The Islamic State victory, according to the report, involved the execution of a complex battle plan "that outwitted a greater force of Iraqi troops as well as the much lauded U.S.-trained special-operations force known as the Golden Division."
Flipping to the editorial page, an opinion piece discusses the increasing dominance of Russia, Iran and China in their parts of the world "as the U.S. retreats."
But what is keeping America's commander in chief up at night?
President Obama spent most of his recent address to the graduating class of the U.S. Coast Guard Academy talking about climate change.
According to our president, climate change "constitutes a serious threat to global security, an immediate risk to our national security."
The president continued to say that the science regarding climate change is "indisputable."
In 2013, the president tweeted, "Ninety-seven percent of scientists agree: climate change is real, manmade and dangerous."
But this is false.
Ross McKitrick, an economist at the University of Guelph and a senior fellow at Canada's Fraser Institute, and others have pointed out the dubious methodology used to arrive at the claim that 97 percent of scientists agree on climate change science. It's not even close to being accurate.
More representative is a 2012 survey done of the American Meteorological Society. McKitrick reported that less than 30 percent of AMS members participated, and of them, 52 percent said that "they think global warming over the 20th century has happened and is mostly manmade." In the same survey, 53 percent agreed that "there is conflict among AMS members on the question."
So why is our president misrepresenting the facts? And why is the president not focusing exclusively on the job the Constitution assigns to him: assuming the responsibilities of prudently deploying American military power to keep America safe, secure and strong around the world? And why is the president usurping the job of private citizens: assessing scientific data regarding market risks and deciding how private capital should be invested?
We have plenty of experience with what happens when politicians decide it's their business to invest our money.
Several years ago, the Obama administration, under the rationale of developing alternative energy sources, provided a $536 million loan, guaranteed by U.S.taxpayers, to a solar energy technology company called Solyndra.
The president himself went to the plant in California and praised the "incredible cutting-edge solar panels." In his remarks, he went on about the impossibility of fossil fuels continuing to provide our energy needs.
One year later, Solyndra declared bankruptcy, leaving U.S. taxpayers on the hook.
Meanwhile, since 2009, when the U.S. government provided the loan guarantee to Solyndra, U.S. petroleum production has increased by almost 170 percent as a result of new drilling technologies our president never dreamed of. The U.S. is now the largest petroleum producer in the world.
The bottom line: Science in the hands of private individuals who put their own capital at risk and whose survival depends on making good judgments and risk assessments produces the new and unforeseen and drives our economy upward.
Science in the hands of politicians who invest other people's money is a formula for failure and waste.
Why in the world would anyone think it is a good idea for a politician to determine what is good science and impose hundreds of billions of dollars in new burdens on American consumers based on speculation about what is going on with the climate?
Let private citizens make the call on this. And let the president do his job and build our military and properly use it to protect us around the world.

Conservatism 101: Who is Really a Conservative? ^ | May 28, 2015 | Bethany Blankley 

Most Americans, including most Republicans, do not understand what “conservative” philosophy, principles, and policies are.

Merriam-Webster defines conservative as “believing in the philosophy of conservatism,” which it defines as “belief in the value of established and traditional practices in politics and society; dislike of change or new ideas in a particular area.”

However, this definition is wrong. The root of conservatism lies in the concept of “ordered liberty” and the fundamental truth that human rights are God-given, not man-made and that individual liberty and freedom are birthrights.

Calvin Coolidge, America’s 30th president—perhaps the most conservative president of the last century—emphasized the underpinning conservative principle of the rule of law rests solely on “the divine origin of mankind.”

In his speech, The Price of Freedom, Coolidge emphasized that in America’s founding documents “there resulted the recognition that freedom was a birthright. It was the natural and inalienable condition of beings who were created ‘a little lower than the angels.’ With it went the principle of equality, not an equality of possessions, not an equality of degree, but an equality in the attributes of humanity, an equality of kind. Each is possessed of the divine power to know the truth.”

Likewise, conservative commentator Dennis Prager defines conservatism by what he calls “The American Trinity,” which preserves three fundamental truths. First, “In God We Trust” is the foundation for the rule of law. Manmade laws are designed to protect God-given human rights. From that, “E Pluribus Unum,” a unified and diverse people are encouraged to live peaceably, with “liberty” in their pursuit of happiness.

Within the American Trinity and republican form of government, the electorate determines the moral and ethical decisions and laws through representatives acting on their behalf. In theory, the electorate governs through limited local, state, and federal governments that restrain and punish the malfeasant and enable ingenuity, personal responsibility, entrepreneurship, creativity, and a range of its citizens’ pursuits.

The electorate may redefine and change moral and legal constraints but conservatism does not.

Because conservatism fundamentally values life, conservative policies will seek to protect it. Pro-life policies include economic, racial, and societal freedoms regardless of circumstances or socio-economic and political climates. Conservative policies are dictated by conservative principles, not the reverse.

Dividing conservatism between social/fiscal policies is a false dichotomy. The root of conservatism is not laissez-faire economic policies that create personal financial profit and power, but principles that value life-giving activities that improve societal welfare.

Conservatism guided Coolidge to relieve a country crippled by debt and severe economic depression, institutionalized segregation, and class warfare to eliminate the progressive policies Woodrow Wilson and Congress created. Progressives devalued life by institutionalizing oligarchy in America through the 1913 Federal Reserve Act, segregating federal employees, and making illegal interracial marriage.

Coolidge evidenced fiscal responsibility by significantly reducing tax rates and the national debt by nearly one third. Debt, he argued, stifled freedom, limited entrepreneurship and economic growth. He advocated for personal responsibility and accountability through the rule of law, attempting to make illegal lynching and racial segregation, and hate crimes. He also sought to create national commissions to help bridge racial divides—yet progressives fought him at every step.

Contrary to Merriam-Webster’s definition of conservatism, that it “dislike(s) change or new ideas in a particular area,” conservatives have consistently opposed the status quo. Instead, seeking to change the law in order to protect human rights, especially when the law seeks to eliminate equality of natural rights and regulate equality of outcomes.

In this way progressivism replace ordered liberty, the American Trinity, and the principles “No God, No Liberty” and “the divine origin of mankind” with “No God/Morality,” and “No Unity,” and “No Liberty.”

“In God We Trust” is replaced by a Godless society that teaches children the state, not God, creates rights and defines morality. “E Pluribus Unum” (of the many, one) is replaced with divisive policies (of the many, many) and “Liberty,” with regulated inequality. In response to this approach Prager reasons, “I can’t think of anything more demeaning than to tell a group we will change the rules and lower the standards just for you.”

In the name of “progress” individual exceptionalism, ingenuity, creativity, successes and failures and the lessons learned from them are restricted and penalized. Yet, as history has shown “equating” economic or social outcomes results in repeatedly failed consequences that devalue life and eliminate human rights.

Conservatives support policies designed to safeguard the principles of the American Trinity and ordered liberty and thwart attempts to weaken and ultimately destroy them.

Mamas, Don't Let Your Babies Grow Up to Wear Uniforms ^ | May 28, 2015 | Matt Towery 

That's the real message, isn't it? Whether it's the young man or woman who chooses to join one of our military branches or anyone who decides to protect us from harm locally as police or sheriffs or deputies, it's becoming increasingly clear that wearing a uniform makes you a target in today's America.
This isn't about the relatively few police officers who knowingly do wrong. Nor is it about past military incursions. The issue at hand is a growing sentiment among an increasing number of Americans that anyone in a uniform is not to be trusted or given a break or to receive the thanks that they deserve.
Consider the Marine woman who was convicted recently in a court-martial for displaying some Bible verses at her desk. Admittedly, it was a desk she shared with others, but the evidence that they too had their own objects and trinkets at the desk was ruled inadmissible at trial.
She's out. She has a black eye on her record, and as of last reports, she has no job. Thank you, ma'am, for your service. A grateful nation casts you aside because, after all, you're not some kid who chose to steal from a store, run down the middle of a street and ignite a national controversy. You're just a woman who wanted to serve her country and express her personal inspirational faith in a small and unobtrusive way.
Of course, her plight is much worse than that of another service member who was dressed in uniform and dared in recent days to enter the posh bar at New York's upscale hotel The Standard. She was from the Navy, and she was told by the bouncer at the establishment that she could not enter because, "Hey, man, there's a dress code."
Oh, I'm sure there is. I can only imagine the "dress code" one might see there on a Friday or Saturday night. Of course, the "top brass" at the hotel reversed engines in a hurry once stories of this insult reached the news.
And then there are those times when following a legitimate dress code leads to much more -- like the cold-blooded murder of a New Orleans police officer.
Officer James Bennett Jr., who was working the area controlled by the Housing Authority of New Orleans, was shot to death this past week while he was sitting in his patrol car. No chance for him to put his "hands up," as they say. Instead, he caught a cold-blooded coward's bullet that took his life.
So let's just say what is really going on here. We have a new culture that has made it uncool to be in the military or to display patriotism, much less to suggest that there is something exceptional about America.
And it really isn't in fad to be a Christian (of any denomination) because we're standing by and watching Christians get slaughtered by terrorists with virtually no show of outrage by our leaders.
Who wants to be in the military knowing that our current leadership has an understated but oh-so-clear belief that removing American troops from unstable areas of the world is far better than having them keep control of areas we finally liberated, such as in Iraq? No, no military uniforms needed.
And who wants to be a police officer when that uniform can mean sudden death at any moment, and reaction to any situation could lead to criminal charges against you? No, no uniforms needed for that thankless job anymore.
We all know there are problems in our criminal justice system, and we also get the fact that most Americans grew war-weary after the George W. Bush years. But it hasn't been since the late 1960s that we've seen outright disdain, or at least lack of proper respect, for the men and women who wear any type of uniform to keep us safe.
But rest easy. At least the government respects the Taliban. Five of their top leaders will have their travel rights restored next week. And they won't need a uniform.

Obama’s Middle Eastern treachery and treason

Coach is Right ^ | 5/28/15 | John C. Velisek USN (Ret.) 

In 2008 we elected a President that promised to transform the world. Well he has. And the results are dangerous at best. The Middle East is now a cauldron of flame and death for Christians and Muslims alike. It was Colin Powell who said “if you break it, you fix it.” Obama has broken it, but there is little chance he’ll fix it because he sees nothing wrong. Of course he blames others, Bush most of all. Has anyone ever heard Obama blame Carter, who with Zbigniew Brzezinski let the Iranian Revolution play out with the same indifference to results that Obama displays now?
Obama showed his true colors during the Iranian Revolution of 2009. When the people of Iran wanted change and the opportunity to prevent the existence of today’s nuclear Iran presented itself to the United States, Obama did nothing. There are no estimates of how many Iranians died as a result of Obama’s refusal to help build a free nation. Perhaps it was because he thought that is what Bush would have done, perhaps it didn’t poll well among disciples of the left, but the inaction of our President led to another generation of Iranians being forced to live under a brutal a regime that they did not want.
Of course there is one nation for which the Obama Regime has already been an active participant in the attempted forging of regime change. Obama seems willing to try anything which might take down the government of Israel. For decades the United States and Israel have formed a bulwark against the aggression of Middle Eastern nations. Working together and with partners such as Egypt they have succeeded in bringing some semblance of peace to the Middle East.
Today, Obama never mentions Israel unless it is to demand...
(Excerpt) Read more at ...

The Costs of a $15 Minimum Wage ^ | May 28, 2015 | Steve Chapman 

In the 1970s, when oil prices jumped, most liberals embraced a simple solution: price controls. It should be illegal, they thought, to sell oil or gasoline for more than a certain amount. Americans should be able to drive without being fleeced by oil companies and foreign governments.
The impulse was understandable. Gasoline is an essential commodity for most people. When the cost rises, it imposes a heavy burden on consumers, most of whom have few transportation options.
In 1971, in an attempt to tame inflation, Republican President Richard Nixon imposed controls on almost all prices. By 1974, he had lifted most of them. But those on gas remained. Under Democratic President Jimmy Carter, they led to widespread shortages and long lines at service stations -- and didn't keep prices from rising. But the controls lasted until his successor, Ronald Reagan, lifted them in 1981.
Liberals learned an unforgettable lesson: Price controls on gasoline don't work. In recent decades, when gas prices have soared, Democrats have shown no desire to repeat the lesson.
But they embrace a similar approach for another problem: low pay for many workers. Chicago decided last year to boost the minimum wage to $13 an hour by the middle of 2019. Seattle, San Francisco and Los Angeles have gone even higher, raising the floor to $15 an hour in the next few years, and other cities may follow suit. It's a price control on labor.
Their intentions are good. Full-time employment at the current federal minimum of $7.25 an hour provides an income of just $14,500 a year. For an adult supporting one child, that's well below the poverty line of $15,930.
The problem is that a higher legal minimum wage is at odds with the prevailing supply of and demand for labor. If you set the minimum too high, you will get a shortage of jobs. Forbidding employers from paying $9 or $12 an hour means that many of their workers won't get $13 or $15 an hour. They will get zero per hour, because those jobs will disappear.
Some businesses will reduce staffing or hours. Some will scrub expansions they had planned. Some will install machines to handle tasks previously assigned to humans. Some will shut down.
Not all employers will take steps that will curb employment, but many will. Raising the minimum wage collides with one of the basic laws of economics: the higher the cost of something the lower the demand. In the employment realm, the effects may not be immediate, but they are inexorable.
An editorial in The New York Times wished away unwanted responses. It promised that the change will yield "savings from lower labor turnover and higher labor productivity." Higher pay can "be offset by modestly higher prices" and by "paying executives and shareholders less."
But if giving raises paid for itself, companies wouldn't need to be forced to do it. Raising prices means fewer customers will buy what these companies are selling, which reduces the number of employees they need. Executives and shareholders who get paid less can turn to companies that can pay more because they don't rely on low-wage labor.
Some of these consequences have already occurred in Seattle. One pizzeria owner, employing 12 people, told NPR her choice was to go back to working 60 to 80 hours a week or close. She's closing.
"Even Seattle's best-known chef, Tom Douglas, says he may have to close some of his 15 restaurants," it reported. If a famous restaurateur can't make it work, how will obscure ones fare?
Restaurants have other options besides shutting down. They can automate orders with modern technology. They can require diners to pick up their food at a counter instead of having it brought to them. They can use disposable plates and utensils. And if you worry about robots taking your job...
All of these changes reduce the need for employees. Maybe the higher pay to the workers who have jobs will make up, by some calculus, for the unemployment visited on the others. Maybe not. Either way, there's no escaping the tradeoff.
Back in the 1970s, people imagined that stations would supply plenty of gas even if we restrict what they could charge. Today, they imagine businesses will supply plenty of jobs even if we dictate what they must pay. But the laws of economics are not so easy to repeal.





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