Monday, February 29, 2016

Hillary, not Trump, Is the Enemy of America

Super Tuesday is here. A CNN poll shows 49% of Republicans say Donald Trump is their choice for nominee, compared to 16% for Rubio and 15% for Cruz. This statistical surface hides a maelstrom of division. Trump has coveted endorsements -- Reverend Jerry Falwell Jr., Governors Chris Christie and Paul LaPage, former Governor Jan Brewer, and Senator Jeff Sessions. Their endorsements name Trump as the most likely to pull together all the critical issues and their supporters into a winning coalition. Senators Marco Rubio and Ted Cruz have more endorsements -- by GOP leaders -- which are bitter personal attacks on Trump and vows never to vote for him. ~~~~~ Trump supporters agree with former Arizona Republican Governor Jan Brewer, who endorsed Trump for President Saturday : “...the politicians in Washington DC have continually failed to secure our border....A nation without borders is like a house without walls – it collapses....Mr. Trump will stand for our law enforcement, our police and our immigration officers. Mr. Trump will actually enforce the rule of law....Mr. Trump gets it. He will listen to the people and fight for the citizens of the United States.” Brewer warned about Trump not becoming President : “This may be our last chance to ensure our children grow up in a country with borders, and with a government that protects its own people. This is our chance -- Donald Trump is our chance -- to save this country and Make America Great Again." ~~~~~ Those who oppose Trump agree with Nebraska Senator Ben Sasse, except perhaps when he says he won't vote for Trump if he's the nominee : "If Trump becomes the Republican nominee my expectation is that I'll look for some 3rd candidate – a conservative option, a Constitutionalist." Sasse says Trump, like President Obama, lacks understanding of the Constitution : "The law is king, and the people are boss....Nebraskans are not looking for a king. We yearn instead for the recovery of a constitutional republic....a framework for ordered liberty -- so that free people can find meaning and their families, their neighborhoods, their work....the President's core calling is to 'preserve, protect and defend the Constitution.'" ~~~~~ Often, it helps to step back and look at an issue as an outsider sees it. Conrad Black was publisher of the London Telegraph newspapers and Spectator, 1987 to 2004, and has written acclaimed biographies of Franklin D. Roosevelt, and Richard M. Nixon. He has been a member of the British House of Lords since 2001, and is a Knight of the Holy See. Black says the United States is divided into two camps : "One side is calling for swinging strokes of a spending scythe on the government with the threat of a shutdown...and the other side is offering more redistributive taxing and, through...ex-communist Bernie Sanders, a trillion-dollar bribe in the forgiveness of all student loans." Black, a Canadian, says Canadians see Trump as a caricature of a 1950s ugly American: loud, boastful, boorish, obscenely materialistic..." But, Black says : "In private, he is charming, solicitous, engaging, companionable, never pompous, devoid of prejudice, abstemious, and a traditional and conscientious family man. He is a generous civic leader in New York, a quality builder, and a generous employer and philanthropist and friend. [We] had a joint venture in Chicago and he delivered on every clause, managed the redevelopment of our property there with great was a very satisfactory experience." Black says the TV Trump reflects the rage of millions of Americans working hard to survive between paychecks. They're angry about rising crime rates, thousands of American lives and trillions of dollars squandered in the Middle East to produce an appalling crisis, and the reduction of their great country to the status of a laughing stock. ~~~~~ Dear readers, as the Super Tuesday vote counts roll in from elections Donald Trump looks set to dominate, remember that no GOP candidate will be as bad as Hillary. She, not Donald Trump, is the real enemy of America.

Sunday, February 28, 2016

Ukraine, the Baltics, Europe : This Is not the Time for NATO to Collapse

Ukraine faces the same threat from corruption that caused its 2014 revolt -- a collapsing economy and widespread cronyism. The conflict in the east costs lives and money, but at stake in Ukraine’s battle with corruption is the support of EU allies and integration with the West, says Germany's ambassador to the US, Peter Wittig. Ukraine leaders are adopting economic and political change, but haven't satisfied EU donors, the IMF or reformists. There's a professional national police force, banks caught money laundering are closed, and subsidies for gas and electric service that raised prices 400% are gone, says Anders Aslund, an economics analyst at the Atlantic Council think tank. An electronic state procurement program saves 2% of economic output. Reduced regulations and a free-floating currency will minimize Ukraine’s debt service for the next four years. ~~~~~ But, Ambassador Wittig -- of Germany, the nation providing the most financial and diplomatic aid to Ukraine since 2014 -- says enforcing the cease-fire agreement with Russia and separatists is key. In eastern Ukraine, government forces are under the worst assault from Russian-backed militants since the cease-fire began. Monitors report that last Thursday hundreds of mortar, artillery and rockets were fired at government forces from territory held by Russian-backed militants. The Ukraine Chief of General Staff told USA Today active Russian military represent 20% of the 35,000 fighters in separatist strongholds. Russia supplies arms, ammunition, fuel and money daily, according to Ukraine’s Main Intelligence Directorate of the ministry of defense. Ukraine also accuses Russia of cyberattacks -- one that temporarily forced a power plant to close in December, and another on the Kiev airport intercepted in January by Ukrainian cyber security analysts. Russian President Vladimir Putin, whose government has denied any military role in eastern Ukraine, admitted in December that his military was conducting "certain tasks" there. ~~~~~ The European Parliament hosts Ukraine this week, and they'll sign an "Administrative cooperation agreement." But while the EU plods along, Latvia is asking NATO to increase security on Europe’s eastern front to counter a growing Russian menace. Alarmed by the number and intensity of nearby Russian exercises, deployment and rhetoric, Latvia is beefing up its defenses, but it needs NATO help. Foreign Minister Edgars Rinkevics says : "To deter Russia in the region, NATO needs more 'boots on the ground,'" increased bigger military exercises, deployment of military equipment and strengthened air defenses. But a Thursday Atlantic Council report says military readiness of major NATO members is so deficient that some would have difficulty fielding troops in an emergency. Rinkevics says Russia sees NATO as a strategic adversary, and Putin has begun a military buildup in Kaliningrad, the Russian enclave in the mouth of the Baltic Sea that houses the Russian Baltic fleet, including Russia’s most advanced anti-aircraft missiles and ballistic missiles capable of reaching EU capitals. Russian drills near NATO borders typically end with a simulated use of nuclear weapons. Russia seems to see nuclear weapons “not as theoretical but tactical, to prevent NATO countries from responding to fulfill their obligations under NATO treaty Article 5” that calls for mutual defense, Rinkevics says : “A clear message and response...can only be that we take those issues seriously and deploy everything necessary for NATO defense.” ~~~~~ Dear readers, Latvia membership in NATO and the EU is key to its independence and security, but the migrant crisis and UK's June referendum on leaving the EU make Rinkevics “worried.” Latvia, he says, will boost defense spending and increase border guards, and it may build a border fence. NATO, the US and EU have taken in the Baltic States. Russia's aggressive acts in Ukraine and the Baltic Sea threaten Latvia, Lithuania, Estonia, Scandinavia -- and Europe. This is not the time to let NATO collapse into unprepared obsolescence.

Friday, February 26, 2016

Trump's Mission Is to Make America Great Again : Panicky Character Assassination Won't Stop Him

Saturday politics is sometimes about the future of America. There are times in every presidential campaign that are watershed moments. Today was such a 2016 moment. New Jersey Governor Chris Christie endorsed Donald Trump for President. He told voters no one is better prepared to lead the country. This is stunning news. It is the biggest endorsement so far for Trump, giving the GOP front-runner a toehold in the party establishment that has tried everything but Paintball to dislodge Trump, all to no avail. Christie, standing with Trump at a Texas news conference, said : “I’ve been on that stage, I’ve gotten to know all the people on that stage. And there is no one better prepared to provide America with the strong leadership that it needs both at home and around the world than Donald Trump." The crowd exploded in cheers when Christie called Trump "the clear standout" on stage at Thursday night's debate and said Trump is "the person who will do exactly what needs to be done to make America a leader around the world....I can guarantee you that the one person that Hillary and Bill Clinton don’t want to see on that stage come September is Donald Trump." As we have come to expect from Chris Christie, his endorsement was full of memorable phrases, like this one describing Bill and Hillary : "They know how to run the standard political playbook against junior senators and run them around the block. They do not know the playbook with Donald Trump because he is rewriting the playbook.” ~~~~~ Friday started on a high for Marco Rubio, as he joked and ridiculed Trump the day after the mainstream media applauded Rubio's debate performance, but Christie's endorsement stole the day. Trump was once again able to blunt rivals' momentum with his own major announcement. ~~~~~ Senators Rubio and Cruz let the Trump train leave the station without them months ago. A Rasmussen Reports survey released Friday shows that 81% of likely Republican voters predict Donald Trump will win the party's presidential nomination. Only 15% believe Trump is “unlikely” to win the nomination. Friday’s results show that major momentum is on Trump’s side heading toward the 12-state Super Tuesday primaries next week. Trump holds a 13-point edge over the other Republican contenders nationwide, according to the latest RealClearPolitics average of polls. And, in the seven southern Super Tuesday states, Trump has a commanding 17-point lead, according to a Bloomberg poll released Thursday -- Trump has 37% support in the seven states, with Marco Rubio and Ted Cruz tied with 20% each. ~~~~~ Dear readers, Americans are angry and disgusted with a tryannical federal government, a renegade socialist Democrat Party and President, and a paralysed and impotent GOP Congress. After Christie's announcement, Trump launched into a campaign speech that hit every button driving his anti-Washington anti-PC march toward the presidency : "I supported McCain and he lost. I supported Romney and he lost. So I said, this time I'm going to do it myself....We're going to protect the Second Amendment 100%....The borders will be protected....Common Core is out....We're going to get rid of Obamacare....We're going to protect Christianity....We're going to say 'Merry Christmas' and 'Happy Holiday' on Christmas." And, everyone knows Donald Trump will use every fiber in his body to achieve those goals. That's why Washington insiders, leftist mainstream media, the Clintons, and the Republican Party apparatus fear him. Their super-Pacs are hitting TV in Super Tuesday states to smear Trump with lies and innuendo intended to defeat him. The super-Pac funding is reported to come from Romney and Rubio insiders, as well as groups angry that Trump is walloping Rubio and Cruz. The ads are not meant to inform. They are meant to destroy Donald Trump through sustained character assassination. But, "Make America Great Again" is not just a catchy campaign slogan. It is Donald Trump's mission -- the culmination and combination of everything he has believed and experienced in his extraordinary life. Trust him.

Thursday, February 25, 2016

Progressive Democrats Are Destroying America

Democrat Progressives trample on America. ~~~~~ The American Enterprise Institute recently revealed that 10 months into Democratic Seattle's boosting the minimum wage to $15 an hour over a period of years, the city has suffered the worst job losses since the Great Recession. Local employers are bracing for coming incremental minimum wage hikes that will increase annual labor costs per full-time minimum wage worker by 61%, that is, $11,300 (taking hourly labor costs from $9.32 to $15 an hour). Seattle’s experiment with the highest-ever minimum wage in US history was meant to be a “model for the rest of the nation to follow." But, AEI says Seattle is rapidly becoming an “economic canary in the coal mine” as other cities and states consider the “bold action” of forcing higher labor costs on employers by as much as $15,500 annually per full-time minimum wage worker (a wage increase from $7.25 to $15 an hour). Bureau of Labor Statistics reports on Seattle monthly employment, number of unemployed workers, and the city’s unemployment rate through December 2015 show that since last April when the first minimum wage hike took effect : (1) Seattle’s employment has fallen by more than 11,000, (2) the number of unemployed workers has risen by 5,000, and (3) Seattle’s jobless rate has increased by more than 1%. The figures reflect employment data for the city of Seattle only - not the wider Seattle area. Employment in neighboring Seattle suburbs has hit a record high. While Seattle experienced a sharp drop in employment of 11,000+ jobs between April and December 2015, employment in the Seattle area outside city limits increased by 57,000 jobs and reached a record high in November 2015. Job declines inside Seattle city limits compared to increasing employment outside the city limits suggests the difference in labor costs was a contributing factor. The AEI analysis notes that not only are people losing their jobs, but the creation of new businesses in the city of Seattle is also lagging. ~~~~~ The Democrat Party thinks its base is stupid. Hillary Clinton won the Iowa caucuses by 6 coin flips, ALL of which went her way. Imagine that ! And, Hillary largely leads Senator Sanders in the delegate count despite tight results in Iowa, New Hampshire and Nevada. Why? Ask Bill -- It's the superdelegates, Stupid. In the unseen battle for these party-controlled insider delegates, Clinton has an overwhelming lead. AP reports that of the 712 Democratic superdelegates, 449 (63%) now support Clinton. Only 19 support Sanders. Yet, primary and caucus results put the overall Democrat-voter-controlled delegate count at 52 for Clinton and 51 for Sanders. Is Sanders serious about winning? If so, why doesn't he explain to his supporters the superdelegate scam, and the loss of 6 coin flips in Iowa, and a 60-40% New Hampshire win with a virtual delegate tie to show for it. Why isn't the revolutionary Bernie Sanders screaming fraud ?? There's something odd about a nomination process so stacked for one candidate that it's becoming a de facto coronation -- no matter how Democratic voters vote. ~~~~~ Dear readers, (1) you can't repeal the laws of economics by fiat. Mandating wages -- based not on the dollar value employees bring to a business, but on an arbitrary notion of "fairness" -- ignores reality. By the time Seattle figure that out, its self-congratulations for being "Progressive" Democrats will have trashed Seattle's economy. (2). The Democratic National Committee and its glaringly pro-Hillary Chair Debbie Wasserman-Schultz can "fix" the Democratic primaries to guarantee that Hillary Clinton is the nominee, thus driving many Democrats away. Disgusted by a President who ignores them and Democratic Party politics that always favors the elite insiders, the Democrat base will have its day in November. Disaffected Democrats will join Republicans to toss out the establishment -- including Hillary and her $650,000 Goldman Sachs speaker fees -- and vote for plain-speaking Donald Trump. "You cannot fool all of the people all of the time." Even Hillary can't.

Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Hillary Is Fighting for ... Banks, Wall Street, Bill & Hillary ... not Us

In a recent Democratic debate, Bernie Sanders challenged Hillary Clinton to join him in promising to apply the Social Security payroll tax to income over $250,000 a year. Clinton said, “I think it's fair to say we don't have a disagreement. We both believe there has to be more money going into the Social Security system....but [I am] also trying to expand the existing tax to passive income that wealthy people have so that we do get more revenue into the Social Security Trust Fund.” When Sanders pushed her, Clinton replied, “I'm going to come up with the best way forward. We're going to end up in the same place. We're going to get more revenue.” ~~~~~ Clinton has been running for president forever, while taking huge speaker fees from bankers, Wall Street and foreign governments. Her July 2015 plan to increase the capital gains tax to 47.4% doesn't hit the Democrat Party base. But she avoided being honest with voters about a Social Security tax increase until Sanders pushed her. Still, Hillary avoided telling the truth -- saying she’s “looking at” it, she’s “going to come up with” something. ~~~~~ The current Social Security payroll tax is 12.4% on wages up to $118,500. Half is paid by the employee and half by the employer, but economists say the half paid by employers is actually borne by employees. Clinton also proposed a 4% surcharge on high-income taxpayers, taking the top marginal income tax rate to 43.6%. A 12.4% Social Security payroll tax would raise the top marginal federal income tax rate to 56%. State and local income taxes -- 13.3% in California and 12.7% in New York City -- would take personal income taxation to a confiscatory 69%. As a comparison, French Socialist President Hollande two years ago raised the tax on all income over 1 million Euros to 100% -- causing wealthy French to flee to other EU countries and even Russia to avoid confiscation. ~~~~~ As for Hillary being 'owned' by Wall Street and big banks, Newsmax reports that Rupert Murdoch is paying $2,700 to attend a London fundraiser for Hillary hosted by one of the world's wealthiest and most successful women. The "ultimate power party" of Natalie Massenet, a source told Breitbart, is "aiming for a million dollars" for Clinton. Daughter Chelsea will attend, along with actor George Clooney and his wife, Amal. The event gives Hillary access to a network of wealthy American bankers living in London, "London for Hillary." Stephanie Stewart, the event organizer, told Breitbart she supports Clinton because she's "a strong Progressive who can move America forward." ~~~~~ Hillary’s Priorities USA super-PAC has spent just $6 million of its $50+ million. Its spend-later strategy means Clinton mega-donors have avoided the spotlight. But new reports filed with the Federal Election Commission name Hillary's major donors and their contributions to Priorities USA since March 2015 : (1) George Soros, $7 million. Soros leads the giant Open Society Foundation and Center for American Progress, headed by John Podesta before he left to head Hillary's campaign. Soros also gave $1 million to the American Bridge 21st Century super-PAC, led by top Clinton ally David Brock. (2) Saban family, $5 million. LA entertainment mogul Saban and his wife have given more money to Bill and Hillary Clinton’s political and philanthropic ventures than any other individuals, according to the Washington Post. (3) Pritzker family, $3.8 million. Heir to the Hyatt Hotel fortune, J. R. Pritzker runs The Pritzker Group, a private equity and venture capital firm. (4) James Simons, $3.5 million. Simons is a New York-based hedge fund billionaire. (5) Herbert Sandler, $2.5 million. Sandler founded the California savings and loan Golden West Financial Corporation. (6) Donald Sussman, $2.5 million. Sussman, a billionaire hedge fund manager, has given $8.5 million to Democratic super-PACs and leftist groups since 2010. ~~~~~ Dear readers, the next time you read a Hillary poster saying "Fighting for Us," you might ask if "Us" is banks, Wall Street, or Bill and Hillary -- it certainly isn't you or America.

Tuesday, February 23, 2016

Obama's Open-Door Immigration Policy Catastrophe

The Democrat Party's and President Obama's socialist policies and laxity reaches to unvetted, untracked illegal immigrants. Brandon Judd, president of the National Border Patrol Council, testified before the House Subcommittee on Immigration and Border Security this month, saying a new federal stand-down order forces border patrol agents to release many arrested illegal immigrants and bans agents from ordering their return to a deportation hearing : "Immigration laws today appear to be mere suggestions, there are little to no consequences for breaking the laws and that fact is well known in other countries. If government agencies...bypass Congress...we might as well abolish our immigration laws altogether." Judd said the new policy is part of the Obama administration "priorities" program that only targets illegal immigrants who enter the US after January 1, 2014 : "...the new policy makes mandatory the release, without a [Notice to Appear], of any person arrested by the Border Patrol for being in the country illegally, as long as they don't have a previous felony arrest and conviction and...they claim to have been continuously in the United States since January of 2014....The policy does not require the person to prove they've been here, simply requires them to 'claim' to have been here since January of 2014." Judd said agents are not only ordered to release the illegals, "we do it without any means of tracking their whereabouts." Judd said the new policy was caused by the administration's "embarrassment" that only half of illegals appear in court. Border Patrol Agents call the court-ordered appearances "Notices to Disappear." The new DHS targeting policy merely prompts more people to sneak across the border, including drug cartel members, Judd said. ~~~~~ Newsmax reports that Cubans now enter the US through Mexico, traveling through Central America to the US-Mexico border, because the Obama administration continues to use the 50-year-old policy of granting Cubans asylum if they can make it onto US soil. Cubans can visit Ecuador without a visa and thousands of them then move 2,000 miles overland north to the US-Mexico border. Senator Marco Rubio and Representative Carlos Curbelo, both sons of Cuban exiles, have filed bills in Congress to limit entry to Cubans who are truly fleeing persecution and not seeking better economic opportunity. The White House resists the move, continuing its process of expanding relations with Cuba. ~~~~~ Wisconsin Senator Ron Johnson says Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau's expedited process for Syrian refugees seeking asylum worries him because terrorists may be embedded with the refugees and then try to enter the US from Canada. But, Johnson said, the biggest threat to the US is the southern border with Mexico. ~~~~~ Illegal immigration from Central America is at a record pace -- with 40,000 families, and children traveling alone, caught on the Mexican border since October, according to new Border Patrol reports. In December 9,000 families were caught -- a 38% increase from November and the highest total ever for a December. Border Patrol agents also caught 6,800 children traveling alone, a 21% increase over November. December marks the largest single month of family and unaccompanied minor border crossings since the surge in spring 2014. DHS Secretary Jeh Johnson has approved a series of raids to capture and deport women and children caught in 2014, who are under deportation orders but refuse to leave. The raids have led to the arrest of a tiny 0.1% of the illegals in the surge -- but Democrats, including Hillary Clinton, demand that Obama halt the raids and find ways to let the illegal immigrants stay. ~~~~~ Dear readers, the DHS "Entry/Exit Overstay Report" for the fiscal year ending September 2015 contains a truly alarming admission -- DHS has lost track of 527,127 people who entered the US last year with visas and then disappeared. Obama/Democrat socialism is flooding America with illegals. Another thing to think about while you are deciding who to vote for in 2016.

Monday, February 22, 2016

Democrats Are Leading America Down the Garden Path to Socialism

Former New York City Police Commissioner Ray Kelly accuses the Obama administration of slashing NYC counterterrorism funding by 50% in retaliation for Senator Chuck Schumer's 2015 refusal to back Obama's Iran deal : "There's...vindictiveness....they remember very well that Senator Schumer did not support their Iran deal." The halved funding would significantly impact New York’s readiness, Kelly said. ~~~~~ Meanwhile, Newsmax charges that advocates for terrorists control the debate and policies for countering the threat from Islamic terrorism in New York City. Newsmax says special interest groups, such as the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), "have law enforcement on a leash." Newsmax cites the New York City Police Department (NYPD) being targeted because of an effective anti-terrorist program that focused on radical Moslems : "The NYPD is the latest law enforcement succumb to pressure of Islamic groups demanding changes in anti-terrorism investigations and training they claim discriminate against Moslems." In a recent court settlement, NYPD agreed to suppress a highly acclaimed report (Radicalization in the West: The Homegrown Threat) that's been a proven tool in terrorism investigations. The settlement ends a 2013 lawsuit by three Moslems, two mosques and a Moslem nonprofit accusing the NYPD of "discriminatory surveillance" after 9/11. Moslem communities and institutions were singled out," they alleged. The now-purged report "stigmatizes an entire faith community and invites discrimination," the Moslem plaintiffs claimed. The report was created to provide law enforcement agencies and legislators with information related to the operations of domestic terrorists after the 9/11 attacks. The NYC agreement to delete it from the NYPD website is a "blatant act of cowardliness," according to Patrick Dunleavy, former deputy inspector general of the New York State prisons’ criminal intelligence division, who has worked with NYPD intelligence. "Seeing the NYPD and city officials caving in to the demands of a few is most disheartening," says Dunleavy. ~~~~~ And, legislation is underway to give illegal immigrants the right to vote in New York City elections next year. The New York Post reports that Bertha Lewis, head of the Black Institute -- part of a coalition of immigration-rights groups pushing the legislation -- says a bill will be introduced this spring : "We want to expand the right to vote for everybody, not suppress the vote." There are an estimated 1.3 million non-citizen non-voting NYC residents, of whom 500,000 are illegals. Lewis says : "We want people to participate in civic life...It will lead to a healthier community." But New York state's Conservative Party chairman, Mike Long, called the idea "outrageous," charging that liberals may be behind the effort to boost Democratic Party enrollment and "buy votes." ~~~~~ Judicial Watch (JW) says Moslem rights groups, especially CAIR, wield great power in the Obama administration, especially about law enforcement agency anti-terrorism training -- forcing the FBI to purge material Moslems found offensive, making Illinois police departments cancel counter-terrorism courses by accusing the instructor of being anti-Moslem, and forcing the FBI to halt an online program aimed at preventing youth radicalization because Moslem and Arab rights groups said it discriminates against Moslems and will cause bullying and religious profiling of students. ~~~~~ Dear readers, a recent American Action Network poll found 60% of Democratic primary voters say socialism has a "positive impact on society." A Bloomberg/Des Moines Register Iowa Poll found 43% of likely Iowa Democratic caucus-goers described themselves as "socialist." Bernie Sanders is a Socialist. NYC Democrat Mayor De Blasio favors a socialist agenda. They risk America's security and sacrifice its values to appease a tiny Moslem minority who bully the left into submission. Think about that while you are deciding who to vote for in 2016.

Sunday, February 21, 2016

No Scalia Replacement until Americans Have Chosen America's Future Path

Barack Obama, State of the Union Address, January 2014 : “So wherever and whenever I can take steps without legislation to expand opportunity for more American families, that’s what I’m going to do." As President, Obama had already vastly expanded the use of executive power to unilaterally defer deportation of younger illegal immigrants, delay enforcement of Obamacare and decline to defend legal challenges against the Defense of Marriage Act, a law barring federal recognition of same-sex marriages. In January 2014, he announced plans to raise the minimum wage for federal contract workers, create a new government-backed private retirement savings plan, and speed up implementation of a previously announced program to connect schools to wireless broadband. The executive orders - notably amnesty and work permits for 5 million illegal immigrants - continue to flow from the pen Obama brandished in the face of a Republican-leaning Congress in 2014. ~~~~~ Obama's refusal or inability to work across the aisle with Congress enormously increased with the GOP's taking control of the Senate in 2014. It left him toothless, leading to an even greater reliance on executive actions and regulations. Most are relatively inconsequential. Those that are serious overreaches of executive power are being challenged in the federal courts, where Obama has yet to win an executive action case. The 'plague' of Obama executive orders has had two consequences. GOP voters -- unable to understand why when voted control of Congress, GOP leaders cannot overturn unpopular laws like Obamacare or prevent more “amnesty” mischief -- have become increasingly vocal, drmanding action against Obama. Ted Cruz tapped into this anger and created an “anti-establishment” campaign, attacking the GOP leadership who, in fairness, could do little in the face of a presidential veto and a Senate Democratic minority large enough to prevent a veto override. The second outcome is that much of Obama’s executive order action has led to lawsuits and he is now at the mercy of the Supreme Court. Among the policies now under review by the Court are Obama’s amnesty orders to protect millions of illegal immigrants from deportation and his EPA regulations aimed at shutting down the US coal industry. Both circumvented Congress and both are considered by many to be an abuse of executive power. The Court’s decision to hear these cases is based on constitutional issues around balance of powers, a question that can only be resolved by the Supreme Court ~~~~~ Obama is now reaping the angry whirlwind of voters who voted for him because they expected economic recovery and brotherhood. What they got was a closet socialist determined to have his way even if it required trashing the Constitution. One facet of their anger was suddenly heightened with the untimely death of Justice Scalia, who was the leader in the battle against Obama's disregard for the rule of law. The liberal-progressive mainstream media is portraying GOP resistance to allowing Obama to choose Scalia's replacement as typical chronic GOP obstructionism. This is untrue, and Republicans need to say clearly and simply that President Obama has acted unlawfully for years, with only the Supreme Court as a brake on his unlawful and unpopular programs. If the American people want to dismantle US energy industries and raise family energy costs, or open US borders to everyone regardless of health, criminal record or terrorist intent, they can vote for Hillary Clinton or Bernie Sanders. If they want rule of law and a government that represents their views, they can vote for Trump, Cruz or Rubio. It is likely the general election choice will be between Trump and Clinton. Trump wants to return America to the rule of law and policies that put Americans first. Clinton wants to expand Obama's socialist lawlessness that will destroy the American system of government. Choosing a President is the preliminary decision America must make before Scalia's replacement is considered. Only the American people have the right to choose America's future.

Friday, February 19, 2016

Saturday Politics : Pope Francis Should Abandon His Liberation Theology Mindset

Saturday politics is rarely about a Pope. But, on Thursday when Pope Francis accused Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump of being "not Christian" if he wants to build a wall on the US-Mexican border to keep out illegal immigrants, the Holy Father stepped onto forbidden political ground. Trump reprimanded the Pope, calling his comment "disgraceful." ~~~~~ In a wide-ranging session on his flight home from Mexico, Francis told reporters, "A person who thinks only about building walls, wherever they may be, and not building bridges, is not Christian." Asked if American Catholics should vote for someone with Trump's views, Francis said : "I am not going to get involved in that. I say only that this man is not Christian if he has said things like that. We must see if he said things in that way and in this I give the benefit of the doubt." ~~~~~ Republican Catholics support Trump more than other Republicans do, according to Reuters/Ipsos polling since the start of the year that shows 43% of likely Republican Catholic voters support Trump, compared to 38% of Republican voters generally. ~~~~~ Trump observed that : "If and when the Vatican is attacked by ISIS, which as everyone knows is ISIS's ultimate trophy, I can promise you that the Pope would have only wished and prayed that Donald Trump would have been President," Trump said in a Thursday speech in Kiawah Island, South Carolina. Trump has often said, and said again on Thursday, that he is proud of being Christian : "I am a very nice person. And I'm a very good Christian. Because the Pope said something to the effect that maybe Donald Trump isn't Christian, ok? And he's questioning my faith. I was very surprised to see it, but I am a Christian. I'm proud of it." Evangelical Christian leader Jerry Falwell Jr agrees. He has endorsed Trump and spent time with him, and he described Trump as generous to his employees and family, adding, "I'm convinced he's a Christian. I believe he has faith in Jesus Christ." ~~~~~ Last week, when asked by Fox Business Network about the Pope's plan to visit the U.S.-Mexican border, Trump said Pope Francis doesn't understand the issues involved. Trump accused the Mexican government of making disparaging remarks about him to the Pope "because they want to continue to rip off the United States, both on trade and at the border...and they understand I am totally wise to them. The Pope is a very political person. I think he doesn't understand the problems our country has. I don't think he understands the danger of the open border that we have with Mexico...the crime, drug trafficking and negative economic impact Mexico's policies have on the United States." ~~~~~ Dear readers, there is no excuse for Pope Francis' labelling Donald Trump "not a Christian." Trump's Presbyterian faith is his own affair with God. Francis was both unjust and unkind to a person he has never met. Further, Francis cannot be treated as an unlettered addleminded parish priest. Francis is the Pope. He is a Jesuit. He knows he should not meddle in politics. We Americans have overlooked his rapprochement with the blood-drenched Castro brothers. We have smiled at his rancorous attack on our free market system that provides the bulk of the world's funding for poor and mistreated people and for his Church. We have forgiven him for bring surprised that we are nice people. We have even tried to deal with his calling the terrorist-ridden Palestinian Authority President Abbas "an angel of peace." But, trying to influence who we vote for is one step too far. ~~~ You, Holy Father, are the human face of Christendom in a world that desperately seeks its love and mercy, as you have said yourself. Show that face of Christendom. "Judge not." Apologize to Mr. Trump and America. Then, give up Marxist liberation theology and its politics -- you are no longer defined by your socialist struggle with the fascist Argentina colonels. Leave politics to your flock. Become what you have been chosen to be : The Vicar of Christ.

Thursday, February 18, 2016

Obama Avoiding the Funeral of Justice Scalia is Hateful but to Be Expected

President Barack Obama and the first lady will not attend the funeral of Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia, White House press secretary Josh Earnest announced yesterday. Vice President Joe Biden and his wife, Jill, will attend the funeral on Saturday at Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception. The Obamas plan to pay their respects Friday when Scalia's body lies in repose in the Great Hall of the Supreme Court building. Earnest didn't say why the Obamas would not attend the funeral. The last member of the Supreme Court to die was Chief Justice William Rehnquist in 2005, and then-President George W. Bush attended the funeral and gave a eulogy. ~~~~~ President Obama has once again proven his contempt for America and its traditions. His decision to avoid the funeral is as divisive as everything else he has done in his seven years as President. Tweets are noting which funerals Obama has attended while in office -- Robert Byrd and Ted Kennedy -- and which funerals he has avoided -- the Benghazi 4, former British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher, Navy SEAL sniper Chris Kyle, and Major General Harold Greene. ~~~~~ This is the President who belittled Republican Senators on Tuesday for threatening not to hold a vote on anyone he nominates to replace Justice Scalia. Obama berated the GOP for saying the Scalia vacancy will not be filled until a new President takes office, arguing “that's not how the system is supposed to work. The Constitution is pretty clear about what is supposed to happen now." ~~~~~ Actually, the Constitution sets no time limits on the President's nominating role or the Senate's Advice and Consent procedure. The Constitution says in Article II, Section 2 (2) : "He [the President] shall...nominate, and by and with the Advice and Consent of the Senate, shall appoint...Judges of the supreme Court,..." That's it -- no pressure to act or to delay acting placed either on the President or on the Senate. ~~~~~ Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell immediately after Scalia’s death said there would be no Senate action this year to confirm any Supreme Court nominee from Obama : “This vacancy should not be filled until we have a new President.” Senate Judiciary Committee chairman Grassley issued a statement an hour later agreeing : “It only makes sense that we defer to the American people who will elect a new President to select the next Supreme Court Justice.” But, the editorial board of the Des Moines Iowa Register ripped Grassley, an Iowa Senator, saying he missed an opportunity “to be less of a politician and more of a statesman.” Grassley, evidently more worried about his own future than that of the nation, backed off. On Tuesday, Grassley said he would wait to see whom Obama nominates before making a decision on hearings, urging colleagues and reporters to “take it a step at a time.” ~~~~~ Republican leaders argue the Supreme Court nomination is much too critical to be made by lame-duck Obama since Scalia’s successor will set the Court’s and America's direction for years to come. They also argue that voters should have a say in who replaces Scalia by holding the confirmation in 2017 after the new President is sworn in. Conservatives also point out that Obama himself filibustered Samuel Alito’s nomination to the Court in 2006. Justice Alito, who was nominated by President George W. Bush, was confirmed. The CEO of the conservative FreedomWorks, said : “My, how quickly we forget history. Republicans run the Senate, they control the process, and President Obama needs to get over it.” ~~~~~ Dear readers, Grassley aside, the GOP leadership will stand firm. Democrats squeal, but it is Obama’s and Harry Reid's Democratic Senate's lawlessness and total disregard for the American public that's now coming home to roost. Naming a new Justice is in the hands of a Republican Senate because Americans are sickened by Obama’s unlawful executive orders and willful refusal to uphold laws. So, Mr. Obama, don't go to Justice Scalia's funeral. Your presence would sully the nation's farewell to a great American.

Wednesday, February 17, 2016

Obama Ignores Strategic Opportunities in South China Sea and Baltics

The BBC reported Wednesday that China "has deployed missiles in the South China Sea." Fox News earlier reported US military confirmation that China has deployed surface-to-air missiles (SAMs) with a 250-mile range on the disputed island. Fox satellite images appear to show two batteries of eight missile launchers, control vehicles and a radar system. Taiwan, which also claims the island, confirmed the SAM deployment. China's Foreign Minister Wang Yi said the reports were invented by Western media, telling a Beijing news conference the media should focus on lighthouses built in the South China Sea that "have been very useful in assuring the safety of passing ships." Chinese SAM deployment significantly increases tensions in the already heated South China Sea dispute caused by China's extensive land reclamation, which it says is legal and for civilian purposes. The reclamation has angered countries who also claim territory in the sea, a major shipping route, as well as fishing grounds supplying the livelihoods of people across the region. ~~~~~ Woody Island is the largest island in the Paracel archipelago, inhabited by 1,000 people -- soldiers, construction workers and fishermen. China established a permanent presence on the island in 1956 and in 2012 established a local government office to administer the whole South China Sea area. The Island, which has a military garrison, hospital, library, airport, school and mobile phone coverage, is claimed by China, Taiwan and Vietnam. Other areas in the sea are claimed by the Philippines, Malaysia and Brunei. South East Asian leaders meeting this week in California discussed the South China Sea. President Obama said they talked about the need for "tangible steps" to reduce tensions, including "a halt to further reclamation, new construction and militarization of disputed areas." A Pentagon spokesman told the BBC : "The United States continues to call on all claimants to halt land reclamation, construction, and militarization of features in the South China Sea." US opposition to navigation restrictions and unlawful sovereignty claims - and China's pushback - cause concern that the area is becoming a global flashpoint. ~~~~~ Meanwhile, Russian movements in waters around Sweden are pushing the traditionally neutral country toward NATO. Russian action in the Baltic Sea have put Sweden's Gotland Island back on a military footing. A new Gotland battlegroup will be ready by the end of next year, with a 300 full- and part-time force. Sweden ended Gotland's military status after the collapse of the Soviet Union and is restarting from zero. The new unit is tiny compared to the 20,000 military personnel stationed on Gotland during the Cold War, but officials say reinforcements could be sent in quickly. Swedish Defense Minister Peter Hultqvist is worried about Russian military activites in the Baltic, where Russian military aircraft frequently infringe Swedish airspace. In 2014, Sweden was on alert for a week after reports of a Russian submarine in the shallow waters near Stockholm. Hultqvist says : "What we can see is that there are more exercises, more military activities in the Baltic Sea...more proactive activities, flying close to our aircraft." Sweden doesn't believe Russia would launch an unprovoked attack on a country outside the former USSR, but Moscow is seen as increasingly unpredictable. Michael Byden, Supreme Commander of Sweden's armed forces, points to Ukraine : "Did we understand, before it happened, the annexation of Crimea? Did we understand that they were very close to starting something in Eastern Ukraine? This is one of the great challenges : what are they up to and why do they do it?" ~~~~~ Dear readers, whatever the reasons, Russia has forced Sweden to boost defense spending and to debate whether Sweden should join NATO. China's aggression is re-coalescing ASEAN nations around the US. It's a prime opportunity for US global strategic leadership but foreign policy isn't high on Obama's agenda, and he mistakes talk and the supply of military hardware for strategy.

Tuesday, February 16, 2016

Iran's Petroleum, Syria and Honor

February 11 was the 37th anniversary of the islamic revolution in Iran. It has had one effect not mentioned in Teheran -- more than 8 million Iranians have fled their homeland to escape the rule of terror. And, one of the reasons given by supporters for the 2015 Iran nuclear deal was that it would strengthen the position of the "moderate" president of the Islamic Republic, Hassan Rouhani, but nothing has changed. Political executions in Iran continue to increase. During the past 12 months, hundreds of Iranians have been tortured and killed without even the pretence of due process. The number of announced executions in Iran in the last six months of 2015 reached nearly 1,000, not including secret executions acknowledged by family members. The Campaign for Human Rights in Iran reported in January that many journalists have been arrested prior to the "Islamic Parliament" election. Human rights groups and other observers report torture, rigged trials, and hangings, all in breach of international law. Strangely, Iran has not faced concerted warnings because of its violations of human rights -- not from the UN or the Western community of nations. Instead, their foreign ministers are leading groups of business leaders to Teheran to make deals with the Iranian regime, whose disregard for human rights, its systematic violations of international law and norms, its support of and connections with international terrorism, its defiant ballistic missile tests (a violation of UN Security Council Resolution 1929) since signing the nuclear agreement with the world powers -- all these speak to the dangers involved in trusting the ayatollahs' islamic regime as a partner in any international agreement, especially one that could lead to Iran developing nuclear weapons. The recent storming of the American embassy, the British embassy and the Saudi Arabian embassy are characteristic of the dictatorial outlaw regime in Iran. The UN General Assembly's human rights committee last November passed a resolution expressing deep concern about human rights violations by the Iran regime. Amnesty International has also called on Iranian authorities to stop hanging juvenile offenders. To mislead the West, most of the executions in 2015 were orchestrated to be for drug offences. Amnesty International has published many reports on physical and psychological torture in Iran, saying the number of torture and ill treatment cases is increasing, making it clear that these violations of human rights not only continue but have expanded in Hassan Rouhani's presidency. Political murders and repression became more widespread in the country in 2015, as reported by the UN's Ahmed Shaheed, whom Iran has refused to let enter the country for years. A recent report by Shaheed to the UN Human Rights Council (UNHRC) reveals that Iran is holding more than 900 political prisoners including journalists, bloggers, lawyers, civic activists, and human rights campaigners. Iran has also incarcerated religious minorities, gays and lesbians. Shaheed has routinely reported about human rights violations affecting women, ethnic minorities and religious activists, as well as retaliatory action against individuals Iran suspects of cooperating with the West. In response to recent accusations by the US Congress, Iran says its human rights record is fine and accuses the US and the West of using the human rights issue as a pretext to add pressure to a country already under sanctions for its nuclear activities. ~~~~~ Dear readers, despite the brutal acts of Iran's rogue regime, Bloomberg reported Tuesday that Iran sent its first oil shipment to Europe since sanctions ended following the nuclear deal. French, Spanish, Russian, Chinese and Greek companies are currently purchasing at least 4 million barrels of petroleum. So while the world piously tries to halt the Syrian civil war and help trapped, starving civilians, some of the key participants are buying oil from Iran, adding to its funds available to support al-Assad directly and through Hezbollah. It seems oil is more important than honor.

Monday, February 15, 2016

Mourn the Loss of Justice Scalia - Work to Save the Constitutuon He Protected

When the full weight of the loss of Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia again and again envelops me, I weep, as I did for most of Saturday night, not knowing how to console myself. Senator Ted Cruz, when the news of Justice Scalia's death broke the heart of America, said : "He was an unrelenting defender of religious liberty, free speech, federalism, the constitutional separation of powers, and private property rights. All liberty-loving Americans should be in mourning." ~~~~~ We can add to that the reminder that Antonin Scalia completely towered over American law for thirty years. Other Justices have moved the Court to the left or right, chosen states rights or federal powers, preferred criminal justice or minority protection, saved the environment or the outcast -- they have had their day and faded into legal history. Few, perhaps only two, Justices by the force of their intellect, their literary sense of the power of words and their encompassing personalities, have literally changed the course of the law. John Marshall, whose decisions in thirty-hour years as Chief Justice reshaped American government, making the Supreme Court the final arbiter. It was 150 years later when Scalia ended Marshall's reign. As long as American law is studied, and in the distant epoch when it has become the last reminder of a long-dead Republic, Scalia's words and principles will be seen as the body of work of a Judge sent by God to lift the ship of the Constitution up out of the swamp it had been dragged into and reset it on its proper course. ~~~~~ Justice Scalia taught the law, taught that it matters, taught that it is not to be confused under the US Constitution with the law-making power of Congress, taught that it is delivered to us by words, taught that those words do not bend or change or cease to have their meaning because of the whims and sensibilities of succeeding generations of politicians. The law for Scalia was likened to the Ten Commandments, written in stone and with meaning that time cannot and should not change. If the Constitution or a law is silent on an issue, then Scalia taught that the legislature should deal with that silence, if it chooses, but should not ask courts to intervene. That was Antonin Scalia's line in the sand between law and politics and he refused to cross it. ~~~~~ Near the end of his time on the Court, Justice Scalia was in the minority in landmark decisions on issues such as gay rights, which he condemned as “the practice of constitutional revision by an unelected committee of nine.” In his dissent to the Court’s 2015 decision in Obergefell v. Hodges recognizing a constitutional right for same-sex couples to marry, Justice Scalia summed up his objections to this and many decisions : "Hubris is sometimes defined as o’erweening pride; and pride, we know, goeth before a fall....With each decision of ours that takes from the People a question properly left to them -- with each decision that is unabashedly based not on law, but on the ‘reasoned judgment’ of a bare majority of this Court -- we move one step closer to being reminded of our impotence." ~~~~~ Dear readers, that impotence looms infinitely larger with the death of Justice Scalia. Who will replace him? No one. But, we who are conservatives of every party and in every nation that attempts the monumental task of governing by rule of law -- not by force or by preference of class or religion or color or ethnicity -- must pray and work to elect an American President who will not slide farther down that slippery slope toward a nation in which political elites reign by "right" over ever-enlarged chosen clusters of people semi-enslaved by elitist handouts and over worker clusters of people semi-enslaved by the tax burden required to keep the elite system in power. The world looks to America to be that beacon of rule of law. God has taken Antonin Scalia from us because, as the Justice often told us, it is time for us to find the strength he gave us, by his words and example, to stand and defend ourselves and our sacred Constitution. And still I weep.

Sunday, February 14, 2016

Justice Antonin Scalia, 1936-2016. Rest in Peace.

Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia, March 11, 1936 - February 13, 2016. Requiescat in Pace. ~~~~~ The Constitution has lost its greatest advocate and protector. He is at peace, but we who revered and loved him are orphans, lost in our grief for ourselves and our Union.

Friday, February 12, 2016

Saturday Politics : Lincoln's Lyceum Address Speaks to Today's American Political Situation

Saturday politics may sometimes be about better understanding the present by considering the past. All agree that America's political system is broken, and many blame this on a failure to compromise. ~~~~~ In his 1838 Lyceum Address, Abraham Lincoln asked : "But, why suppose danger to our political institutions? conclude that no danger may ever arise would itself be extremely dangerous. There are now, and will hereafter be, many causes, dangerous in their tendency, which have not existed heretofore." Lincoln went on to explain that 1789's constitutional government had been maintained "in its original form from its establishment until now." Lincoln thought the success was partly because of the continuing living memory of the 60-year-old Revolution : "At the close of that struggle, nearly every adult male had been a participator in some of its scenes. The consequence was, that of those scenes, in the form of a husband, a father, a son or brother, a living history was to be found in every the limbs mangled, in the scars of wounds received, in the midst of the very scenes related--a history, too, that could be read and understood alike by all, the wise and the ignorant, the learned and the unlearned.--But those histories are gone....They were a fortress of strength....They were a forest of giant oaks....They were the pillars of the temple of liberty; and now, that they have crumbled away, that temple must fall..." Lincoln added that all the great men of the Revolutionary period sought celebrity, fame, and distinction by proving they were right : "their destiny was inseparably linked with it. Their ambition aspired to display before an admiring world, a practical demonstration of the truth of a proposition...namely, the capability of a people to govern themselves.... the basest principles of our nature, were either made to lie dormant, or to become the active agents in the advancement of the noblest cause--that of establishing and maintaining civil and religious liberty." Lincoln warned of those who would destroy the ideals of America : "The experiment is successful....But new reapers will arise....they will as naturally seek the gratification of their ruling passion, as others have so done before them....Is it unreasonable then to expect that some man possessed of the loftiest genius, coupled with ambition sufficient to push it to its utmost stretch, will at some time, spring up among us?" ~~~~~ And dear readers, Lincoln warned : "it will require the people to be united with each other, attached to the government and laws, and generally intelligent, to successfully frustrate his designs." Lincoln lived in a time when the Union was crumbling before people's eyes. Pro- and anti-slavery demagogues were ripping the United States apart. Did Lincoln offer compromise as the solution? No. He said passion had helped the Revolution succeed : "but can do so no more. It will in future be our enemy. Reason, cold, calculating, unimpassioned reason, must furnish all the materials for our future support and defense.--Let those materials be moulded into general intelligence, sound morality, and in particular, a reverence for the Constitution and laws." Lincoln called for the coldly logical application of reason and a reverent attachment to the Constitution and Law. And who did Lincoln hold up as the model to follow? George Washington. Lincoln said the America he described would prevail : "that we improved...that we remained free...that we revered his name to the last; that, during his long sleep, we permitted no hostile foot to tramp over or desecrate his resting place....our WASHINGTON. Upon these let the proud fabric of freedom rest, as the rock of its basis; and as truly as has been said of the only greater institution, "the gates of hell shall not prevail against it." Remarkable advice from the giant who saved the Union -- use reason, do not compromise but be unbending in reverence for the Constitution and the Rule of Law, be as determined to save the Union as Washington was in creating it. Good advice for 2016.

Thursday, February 11, 2016

Lincoln's Lyceum Address on Mob Rule and Rule of Law

Abraham Lincoln, born on February 12, 1809, was struck down in his 56th year, after saving the American constitutional Union and earning his place as the most beloved and greatest of America's Presidents. The Lyceum Address, one of Lincoln's earliest published speeches, is studied for its indications of his later public policies. Lincoln was 28 -- halfway through his life -- when he gave the speech. He had recently moved from a frontier village to Springfield, Illinois. William Herndon, who became Lincoln's law partner in 1844, wrote of the event : "we had a society in Springfield, which contained and commanded all the culture and talent of the place....its meetings were public, and reflected great credit on the community....The speech was brought out by the burning in St. Louis a few weeks before, by a mob, of a negro. Lincoln took this incident as a sort of text for his remarks....The address was published...and created for the young orator a reputation...beyond the limits of the locality in which he lived." ~~~~~ Dear readers, to honor Lincoln -- and reflect on America's current situation -- here is an excerpt from "The Perpetuation of Our Political Institutions" : Address Before the Young Men's Lyceum of Springfield, Illinois, January 27, 1838. ~~~~~ "We, the American People, find...ourselves in the peaceful possession, of the fairest portion of the earth....under the government of a system of political institutions, conducing more essentially to the ends of civil and religious liberty, than any...a legacy bequeathed us, by a once hardy, brave, and patriotic, but now lamented and departed race of ancestors. Theirs was the task (and nobly they performed it) to possess themselves, and through themselves, us, of this goodly land;...'tis ours only, to transmit to the latest generation that fate shall permit the world to know. This task of gratitude to our fathers, justice to ourselves, duty to posterity, and love for our species in general, all imperatively require us faithfully to perform. ~~~ How then shall we perform it?--At what point shall we expect the approach of danger?...Shall we expect some transatlantic military giant, to step the Ocean, and crush us at a blow? Never!--All the armies of Europe, Asia and Africa combined, with all the treasure of the earth (our own excepted) in their military chest; with a Buonaparte for a commander, could not by force, take a drink from the Ohio, or make a track on the Blue Ridge, in a trial of a thousand years. At what point then is the approach of danger to be expected? I answer, if it ever reach us, it must spring up amongst us. It cannot come from abroad. If destruction be our lot, we must ourselves be its author and finisher. As a nation of freemen, we must live through all time, or die by suicide. ~~~ There is...something of ill-omen, amongst us....the increasing disregard for law which pervades the country; the growing disposition to substitute the wild and furious passions, in lieu of the sober judgment of Courts; and the worse than savage mobs, for the executive ministers of justice. This disposition is awfully fearful in any community; and that it now exists in ours, though grating to our feelings to admit, it would be a violation of truth, and an insult to our intelligence, to deny. Accounts of outrages committed by mobs, form the everyday news....They have pervaded the the operation of this mobocractic abroad in the land, the strongest bulwark of any Government...may effectually be broken down and destroyed--I mean the attachment of the People. Whenever...the vicious portion of the population shall be permitted to gather in bands...and burn churches, ravage and rob provision-stores, throw printing presses into rivers, shoot editors, and hang and burn obnoxious persons at pleasure...depend on it, this Government cannot last.... men of sufficient talent and ambition will...seize the opportunity...and overturn that fair fabric, which for the last half century, has been the fondest hope, of the lovers of freedom, throughout the world."

Wednesday, February 10, 2016

Obama Faces the Fall of Aleppo...Will It Be His Saigon?

The endgame is approaching for moderate Syrian fighters. They are almost surrounded in Aleppo, the largest city in northern Syria that since 2011 has been the center of rebel efforts to depose the tyrannical Bashar al-Assad regime. A military and humanitarian disaster is unfolding as 50,000 refugees fleeing Aleppo gather near a closed Turkish border crossing. The UN says 300,000 Aleppo civilians could be cut off from food if al-Assad forces encircle rebel-held parts of the city, leading to a new exodus of refugees. The Russian bombardment of opposition forces north of Aleppo has severed opposition supply lines, making it possible for government-aligned forces to try to encircle the city. The Russian blitz has also allowed pro-government ground forces -- Iranian-trained militiamen from Iraq, Iran and Lebanon’s shiite Hezbollah -- to push north to within 20 miles of the Turkish border, in the same area where the US and Turkey plan to carve out an opposition-held zone to combat ISIS forces approaching from the east. ~~~~~ Secretary of State John Kerry said Tuesday : “We are not blind to what is happening. We are all very, very aware of how critical this moment is.” Kerry spoke as he prepares for a meeting in Munich of stakeholders from outside ­Syria. The Thursday meeting could be the end of a three-month effort by Kerry to unite powerful countries on all sides of the conflict -- from Russia and Iran on behalf of the al-Assad government, to the United States and its partners on the opposition side -- to try to find a political solution permitting them all to focus their efforts on defeating ISIS. But, a senior advisor to Syrian President al-Assad told Reuters she does not expect diplomacy to succeed while foreign states maintain support for insurgents. ~~~~~ A million migrants and refugees fleeing the region, most of them Syrians, have already arrived in Europe, creating political and social tensions that threaten the European Union's unity built since 1945. Peter Wittig, Germany’s ambassador to the United States, describes the situation as an existential threat to Europe : “The United States has been slow to recognize this is a much bigger thing than anything else we’ve experienced since the beginning of the European Union. We didn’t see it earlier, we were totally unprepared....We’re not blaming the United States.” ~~~~~ French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius, who is resigning to take another government position, on Wednesday questioned the US commitment to resolving the crisis in Syria, saying its "ambiguous" policy contributes to the problem : "There are ambiguities, including among the actors of the coalition...I'm not going to repeat what I've said before about the main pilot of the coalition," Fabius told reporters, in a clear reference to the United States, "But we don't have the feeling that there is a very strong commitment...I'm not sure that the end of Mr. Obama's mandate will push him to act as much as his minister declares (publicly)," he added, referring to Secretary of State Kerry. "There are words, but actions are different and obviously the Iranians and Russians feel that." Fabius, whose country has been a key backer of the Syrian opposition, said : "When you add (Assad's) brutality, Russia and Iran's complicity and the ambiguity, you get the drama taking place in Aleppo," Fabius said. ~~~~~ Dear readers, a year ago we worried that President Obama's refusal to engage in Syria and Iraq would give Russia the Middle East power position. We now see this becoming reality, as Russian support drives the al-Assad regime toward victory. And, Putin has collaterally destabilized Europe with a refugee influx, weakening EU support for eastern EU and NATO states facing Russia's Ukraine aggression. Syria peace negotiation collapse could lead Obama finally to decide to fully arm and back rebel groups. It is far more likely that he will remain aloof, making it unlikely US allies can defeat al-Assad. Obama will become the second US President in 40 years to be defeated by Russian-backed regimes. Saigon. Aleppo. Is Kiev next?

Tuesday, February 9, 2016

How Emailgate Could Become Watergate (Part 2)

Is President Obama's dislike of the Clintons serious? One indication is that David Axelrod, Obama's senior advisor and chief strategist during his successful White House bids in 2008 and 2012, used Twitter Monday to suggest Hillary Clinton's campaign problem is Hillary herself. Axelrod's tweet read : "When the exact same problems crop up in separate campaigns, with different staff, at what point do the principals say, "Hey, maybe it's US?" — David Axelrod (@davidaxelrod) February 8, 2016. So, we can only guess how swiftly Obama would have allowed an FBI Emailgate indictment recommendation to be followed up by Attorney General Loretta Lynch and her Justice Department -- if there weren't complications. ~~~~~ Classified information in the thousands of email pages transmitted through and stored on Hillary Clinton’s unsecured private server is so pervasive that the court-ordered disclosure process at the State Department and intelligence agencies is behind the court's release schedule. Reviewing the emails and redacting the portions whose release could harm national security is more complex than anticipated. Thousands of remaining emails, and any embarrassments they contain, will not be released until well into primary voting season. ~~~~~ So, why -- instead of using this scandal to scuttle Hillary for Joe Biden -- has President Obama insisted that Hillary's private email system did not pose a national security problem? Because the State Department recently admitted that 18 emails between Mrs. Clinton and President Obama have been identified, and the government is refusing to disclose them. The Obama administration explanation is based on confidentiality, similar to early Nixon White House arguments for withholding information -- releasing the 18 emails, the Obama White House and State Department say, would compromise “the President’s ability to receive unvarnished advice and counsel” from top government officials. This leads to the conclusion that Obama knew : (1) Hillary was conducting government business on her private e-mail account, (2) the exchanges he engaged in with her over the unsecured system necessarily involved sensitive classified policy issues, and (3) he was asking her for “advice and counsel” about matters the White House judges too sensitive to release. The FBI should have access to these emails for review. Have the emails been turned over to the FBI? Has the FBI requested them? Has the White House refused to turn them over? If or when the White House refuses, the obvious conclusion then would be that the 18 emails somehow incriminate the President or his senior advisors -- because the FBI already has thousands of Hillary emails whose trail must have led to the White House, and the FBI would be seeking to confirm this trail by reviewing the 18 emails. ~~~~~ Thus, it's likely that Clinton has now entangled the President in her email scandal, with constitutional implications. Obama can't ethically continue to preside over this investigation (which he does as President). But removing himself would potentially expose him to criminal liability at the hands of a special prosecutor. The situation would be very similar to Watergate at that point, since government officials would have hidden or erased potentially damaging documents, and President Obama, knowing that, would be presiding over investigations that could subject him, aides, and former aides, to criminal liability. ~~~~~ Dear readers, FBI Director James Comey’s situation is difficult. He knows Attorney General Loretta Lynch is not free to objectively evaluate the FBI evidence. He could ask for a Hillary Clinton criminal prosecution now. But he hesitates -- although he must know he's holding a political time bomb. If he decides to act, putting pressure on Lynch and Obama because he knows there is evidence leading to Obama, then he also must know the administration would simply delay. Comey would then have only one means of pressing his case against Hillary Clinton. Resign. His senior staff might follow. At that moment, Emailgate becomes Watergate.

Monday, February 8, 2016

Emailgate Is One "Executive Privilege" Away from Becoming Watergate (Part 1)

"I can see clearly now... that I was wrong in not acting more decisively and more forthrightly in dealing with Watergate." (President Nixon, a TV interview after resigning the presidency.) ~~~~~ “I can tell you that this is not a situation in which America's national security was endangered.” (President Obama on CBS 60 Minutes in October as the Hillary email scandal heated up.) ~~~~~ President Nixon didn't know about and had no part in the criminal political burglary, but he was forced to resign when it became clear he had participated in the burglary cover-up to protect his presidency. ~~~~~ President Obama didn't know about and had no part in the creation of Hillary Clinton's unauthorized private email server and initial criminal retention and distribution of classified documents, but it is clear he may be participating in a later cover-up by letting the violation continue and now publicly denying it poses a security risk, to protect his presidency. ~~~~~ Both presidential cover-ups became/will become criminal investigations by Congress, the FBI and the Justice Department. In each, the President's lawyer - the Attorney General - has a key role. John Mitchell went to prison. Loretta Lynch now feels the Emailgate spotlight on her. She will be pulled into the Hillary email probe by the FBI. If the FBI recommends criminal prosecution, Lynch’s DOJ will have to decide whether to go ahead. If no prosecution is recommended, Clinton’s critics will not take the word of Lynch, an Obama appointee, and will ask if justice has been subverted. Already, Republicans are calling for a special prosecutor to provide independent legal evaluation. No. 2 Senate Republican John Cornyn has called for a special counsel to be appointed “because of the conflict of interest by asking Attorney General Lynch to investigate and perhaps even prosecute somebody in the Obama administration.” Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley agrees Lynch should consider a special counsel to reassure the country that decisions are made “without regard to any political considerations.” The Justice Department has thus far refused the request. DOJ spokeswoman Melanie Newman said in recently : “This matter is being reviewed by career attorneys and investigators and does not meet the criteria for the appointment of a special prosecutor." ~~~~~ The FBI is investigating Clinton’s private email arrangement, in which classified information was mishandled. Lynch’s critics don't believe she can be neutral. They also point to the October CBS 60 Minutes interview in which Obama dismissed concerns about Clinton’s private server. Cornyn said : “It might appear that he’s trying to influence the conduct of the investigation. That’s a real problem.” ~~~~~ Washington knows how advanced the FBI investigation is. It is now clear that Hillary deliberately mishandled classified information on her private, unsecured e-mail system as Secretary of State. It is also now clear that some of the emails contained “top secret/SAP” information (special access programs) -- defense secrets of the highest order, the compromise of which can destroy vital intelligence programs, get covert agents killed, and imperil national security. The State Department’s refusal to release 18 emails that passed between Obama and Clinton through her unsecured home server : (1) creates a conflict of interest for Obama; (2) raises the likelihood that the President violated national security laws, an impeachable offense. State Department spokesman John Kirby hasn't denied the 18 emails contain classified information, he just says they “have not been determined to be classified,” but are being withheld to preserve confidentiality between the President and his aides. ~~~~~ Dear readers, this is executive privilege said softly. Obama and Clinton discussed foreign leaders and policy on an unsecured private server in violation of an Obama executive order regarding dissemination of foreign intelligence, including conversations with foreign officials and leaders -- all born classified. Emailgate approaches Watergate.

Sunday, February 7, 2016

Hillary's in a Box...Will Obama Let Her Out?

Hillary Clinton had an interview with CNN's Jake Tapper on Sunday, admitting there's a lot wrong in America. She "gets it" that Americans are angry -- nothing new in that, it's the mantra of all 2016 candidates. But, Hillary's explanation is unique -- what's wrong with America is the fault of George W. Bush and the Supreme Court -- not a word of blame for President Obama, the real culprit who has driven the national debt to $19 trillion while killing the recovery with Obamacare, excessive energy and environmental regulations, and over-taxation of an economically crippled middle class to pay for a rapidly expanding welfare agenda. Yet, Hillary wants to follow in Obama's footsteps. ~~~~~ Meanwhile, House Intelligence Committee member Chris Stewart said last week he has read Hillary Clinton's 22 withheld top secret emails and has never "read anything more sensitive..." The Republican told Fox News Clinton "absolutely" sent and received the emails, despite her denials, adding : "They do reveal classified sources, and they do reveal human assets. I can't imagine how anyone could be familiar with these emails...and not realize these are highly classified." Stewart labeled Clinton's defense that the emails were not marked classified "ridiculous." He also said there are more emails withheld by the State Department than the 22 the media has reported, and they raise questions about Clinton's legal status : "There's a legal process that will play out, but we have to ask ourselves this question, 'Did Hillary Clinton demonstrate the judgment and respect for protocol that would allow her to protect national security?'" Alluding to her standard self-excuse, Stewart said : "This is not a vast right-wing conspiracy. Obama administration officials told us these emails were so classified they can't be released. This wasn't something coming from the right. It is coming from the current administration. Her argument is not with me but with the President and his administration." ~~~~~ Chris Stewart is a Republican -- but MSNBC and its "Morning Joe" host Joe Scarborough are as pro-Democrat as it gets. So, when Scarborough commented a few days after the 22 emails were withheld from court-ordered release because they were "top secret" and contained too much highly sensitive information to be released even in redacted form, we might want to pay attention. Scarborough said more "explosive" emails are coming : "A couple people held their breath when we talked about it....Everybody in the government, everybody in the media, everybody that runs anything knows how advanced this investigation is and nobody's telling the American people about it." Bloomberg Politics Managing Editor Mark Halperin, a panelist on the Scarborough show, said : "There's an undefined element in [the Democrat's] campaign...and that's what's going to happen in the Justice can just sense among Democrats...they're right on the edge of their seats trying to figure out what will happen..." Panelist John Heilemann said Sanders is now talking about Clinton's emails, whereas several months ago, he famously commented during a debate that "the American public is sick of hearing about your damn emails." Heilemann added : "Asked about it a couple of days ago, he said, 'Oh, I don't think it's irrelevant at all, there's a process playing out here.'" Scarborough concluded : "When Bernie Sanders is hearing from top leaders in the Obama administration that this is further along than expected, he doesn't want to be caught saying it's not a big deal and then having the FBI suggest it is." ~~~~~ So, dear readers, while Hillary laughs off questions about the FBI probe, she has good reason to blame anyone but Obama for the mess America's in -- because Obama may finally have to pardon her to keep her out of jail. Obama knows even with no indictment, the FBI report could leak out and destroy her campaign. That may be why he met Sanders in the Oval Office last week and why Joe Biden bundlers are publicly telling potential Hillary contributors to wait because Biden may enter the race.

Friday, February 5, 2016

Saturday Politics : Presidents and Religion - Obama and Reagan

Saturday politics is sometimes about Presidents and religion. President Obama visited a Baltimore mosque this week, showing the Moslem world he is with them and trying again to sell America the myth that any connection made between Islam and violence is deliberately or ignorantly hateful, bigoted and entirely un-American. Obama is so blinded by his love of Islam that he protects Moslems from alleged offenses in America instead of facing the reality of daily events in the Middle East. His short checklist of affronts to Moslem-Americans -- "We've seen children bullied, we've seen mosques vandalized" -- ignores the fact that Americans have faced jihadist killings of soldiers on a US military base, recruiting center, and gathering of coworkers — all on Obama's watch. ~~~~~ Obama's first visit to a US mosque -- one with what he called an "all-American story" -- was not just any mosque. He spoke to the Islamic Society of Baltimore, reportedly part of the Islamic Society of North America (ISNA). In 2007, federal prosecutors named ISNA as an unindicted terrorist co-conspirator in a plot to send $12 million to Hamas suicide bombers. It has also been under FBI surveillance. Investor's Business Daily reports that the mosque's Imam Mohamad Adam el-Sheikh told the Washington Post in 2004 that suicide bombings are "acceptable (as a way for Moslems) to defend themselves." ~~~~~ Obama piously said now is a "time of fear" for Moslem-Americans, being "targeted or blamed for the violent acts of the very few." His false lecture to America : "That's not who we are. We are one American family, and when any part of our family starts to feel separate or second-class or targeted, it tears at the fabric of our nation." As always, Obama did not list the beheadings, rapes, enslavement, and children being brainwashed to become jihadist suicide bombers in the name of Islam. Ignoring the facts, he cynically said : "When any religious group is targeted, we all have a responsibility to speak up." While Obama has yet to defend Christianity by criticizing Moslem fanatics currently exterminating ancient Middle East Christian communities, at last year's National Prayer Breakfast he criticized Christians for attacking Moslems -- in the Crusades. ~~~~~ If there is an Obama doctrine, it seems to be the defense of Islam. At the mosque he said : "You've seen too often people conflating the horrific acts of terrorism with the beliefs of an entire faith," claiming that groups like ISIS "twist" the Koran : "I refuse to give them legitimacy. We should never give them that legitimacy. We shouldn't play into terrorist propaganda." With this declaration, Obama consigned much to the dustbin : radical Islamic attacks on the World Trade Center (1993 and 9/11); the assault on the USS Cole; the attack on the military recruiting office in Little Rock; the Fort Hood rampage; the Boston Marathon bombing; the Garland, Texas attack; the Chattanooga and San Bernardino murders; the Charlie Hebdo attacks; the Paris massacre, the Cologne sexual assaults. ~~~~~ It is not the job of the American President to defend Islam. It is the job of Islam's religious and political leaders to defend Islam. Their silence is deafening. We await the Moslem outcry, spoken without caveat, that denounces terrorist acts perpetrated in the name of Islam. ~~~~~ Dear readers, this brings us to Ronald Reagan. He was born on February 6, 1911. President Obama would do well to study President Reagan's remarks in his last Christmas message to America : "As we come home to family and friends this Christmas, let us all remember our neighbors who cannot go home themselves. Our compassion and concern will mean much to the hospitalized, the homeless, the convalescent, the orphaned” and will lead us to the joy and peace of Bethlehem. Citing all the problems and challenges in America and the world, Ronald Reagan offered his final Christmas words: “For it is only in finding and living the eternal meaning of the Nativity that we can be truly happy, truly at peace, truly home.” That is Christianity. No caveat needed.

Thursday, February 4, 2016

America Is Angry -- Everybody but Obama Knows Why

BBC News has published an article titled "Why are Americans so angry?" by Vanessa Barford, noting that : "Americans are generally known for having a positive outlook on life, but...polls show voters are angry. This may explain the success of non-mainstream candidates such as Republican Donald Trump and Democrat Bernie Sanders. What is fuelling the frustration?" Barford answers with polls. A December CNN/ORC poll shows 69% of Americans are "very angry" or "somewhat angry" about "the way things are going" in the US. A November NBC/WSJ poll shows 69% are angry because the political system "seems to only be working for the insiders with money and power, like those on Wall Street or in Washington." A January NBC/Esquire survey shows 61% of Republicans, 54% of whites, 42% of Democrats, 43% of Latinos and 33% of African Americans are more angry now than a year ago. Candidates, says Barford, sense the mood and adopt their rhetoric -- Donald Trump says he is "very, very angry." Ben Carson says he has encountered "many Americans who are discouraged and angry as they watch the American dream slipping away." Even Democratic candidate Bernie Sanders says: "I am angry and millions of Americans are angry," and Hillary Clinton says she "understands why people get angry." ~~~~~ Barford gives five reasons why many voters feel the American dream is fading. (1). Economy : It has failed to deliver progress to middle-class and working-class Americans over the past 15 years, with household incomes falling. In 2014, median household income was $53,657 (US Census Bureau), compared with $57,357 in 2007 and $57,843 in 1999 (inflation-adjusted). Many jobs are lower quality or part-time. Opportunity has vanished. (2). Immigration : the US has taken in 59 million immigrants since 1965. In 1975, 84% of the American population was non-Hispanic white -- by 2015, the figure was 62%, according to Pew Research. Its projections show that by 2055 non-Hispanic whites will be only 46% of the population. "It's been an era of huge demographic, racial, cultural, religious and generational change," says Paul Taylor, author of The Next America. The US now has 11.3 million illegal immigrants, who often become a target of anger, says an immigration expert at the University of Southern California. (3). Washington : When asked if they trust the government, 89% of Republicans and 72% of Democrats say "only sometimes" or "never," Pew Research finds, and 60% of Americans think the government has too much power, says a Gallup survey, while the government has been named as the top problem in the US for the last two years -- above the economy, jobs and immigration. The appeal of Donald Trump and Bernie Sanders is their ability to express frustration with what many see as a failing system. Democratic outsider Bernie Sanders calls for a political revolution. (4). America's place in the world : America is used to being a superpower but Americans who think the US "stands above all other countries in the world" fell from 38% in 2012 to 28% in 2014, Pew Research says, and 70% of Americans think the US is losing respect internationally, according to a 2013 Pew poll. The rise of China, failure to defeat the Taliban, slow progress in defeating ISIS, and fear of terrorism contribute to the anxiety. (5). Divided nation : Democrats and Republicans are deeply ideologically polarized. The typical Republican is now more conservative socially, economically and politically than 94% of Democrats, compared with 70% in 1994, according to Pew Research. The median Democrat is more leftist than 92% of Republicans, up from 64%. ~~~~~ Dear readers, the missing piece in Barford's analysis is President Obama. His rhetoric has divided Americans along racial, income, political and religious lines, turning the US into a welfare state where minorities receive Obama largesse that is paid for by a shrinking majority angry about special treatment that's socially unjust and unconstitutional. The 2016 election is about returning to the non-Hispanic white majority its fair share of America and its Constitution.

Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Is North Korea's Nuclear Weapons Program Really Unstoppable?

The world is again focused on North Korea, which notified UN agencies on Tuesday that it plans to soon launch what it calls an "earth observation satellite." ~~~~~ The US State Department says the international community must respond swiftly to North Korea's plans to launch the satellite, while calling on the UN to impose new sanctions against the North : "The UN Security Council has a role to play by holding it accountable by imposing a tough, comprehensive and credible package of new sanctions and by ensuring vigorous enforcement of the resolutions already adopted." Spokesman John Kirby said : "This latest announcement further underscores the need for the international community to send the North Koreans a swift, firm message that their disregard for UN Security Council obligations will not be tolerated." ~~~~~ **Russia's Foreign Ministry said Wednesday it is deeply concerned about the NK's decision to go ahead with a satellite launch : "...the North Korean side demonstrates an outrageous disregard for the universally recognized norms of international law." **South Korea said Wednesday North Korea's planned launch is really the launch of a long-range missile and warned the North to call off the launch, which is a violation of UN Security Council resolutions, South Korea's president said in a statement : "We strongly warn that the North will pay a severe price...if it goes ahead with the long-range missile launch plan." **Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said he would work with the US and others to "strongly demand" that North Korea refrain from what he called a planned missile launch. Japan issued a military alert Wednesday. Japan's defense minister, General Nakatani, told the media : "We have defenses ready to deal with all threats, but in view of the announcement I have put the Self Defense Force's Aegis destroyers and our PAC-3 units on alert and issued an order to shoot down any ballistic missile threat." **China, North Korea's only major ally, is under US pressure to use its influence to rein in the isolated North. China's Foreign Ministry says the North's right to space exploration is restricted under UN resolutions : "We are extremely concerned about this....we hope North Korea exercises restraint on the issue of launching satellites, acts cautiously and does not take any escalatory steps that may further raise tensions on the Korean Peninsula." ~~~~~ North Korea says it has a sovereign right to pursue a space program by launching rockets, although the world suspects it is covertly testing banned technology for a ballistic missile that could strike South Korea, Japan, the Philippines and the US mainland. The London-based International Maritime Organization said North Korea made a declaration that the launch would occur between February 8 and 25, between 7 a.m. and noon Pyongyang time. UN deputy spokesman Farhan Haq said North Korea also informed the International Civil Aviation Organization and the International Telecommunication Union of the planned satellite launch in order to warn civilians, shipping and aircraft in the area about the rocket and falling debris. It follows North Korea’s January claim that it tested a hydrogen bomb, NK’s fourth nuclear test, and raises concerns that the North is preparing to put a nuclear warhead on a ballistic missile. It is a snub to China, whose representative for Korean affairs landed in Pyongyang Tuesday for talks. ~~~~~ Dear readers, the US military is adding 14 interceptors to the 30 already in place, as defense advocates call for more. The US Senate Foreign Relations Committee has approved a bill to broaden existing NK sanctions over its nuclear program, cyber attacks and human rights record. Intelligence reports of movement of components and propellant at North Korea's Sohae satellite launch facility suggest a test launch within weeks. It is bizarre that the danger is serious and immediate, the world worries, and the UN considers useless sanctions, but there seems to be no way to halt North Korea's rogue nuclear program. Is the Dear Leader really unstoppable ?

Tuesday, February 2, 2016

What We Learned about the 2016 Election in Iowa

What did we learn about the 2016 presidential election in Iowa? ~~~~~ First and foremost, we learned that Marco Rubio is handsome, smart and articulate -- appealing to conservatives and moderates alike, but only at a 23% level. We also learned that 25% of Republicans voted for the self-labeled conservative change agent Donald Trump and 28% voted for the even more conservative Ted Cruz -- so the almost giddy euphoria of the establishment GOP was misplaced because more than half their faithful voted for outsider candidates whose stated goals are similarly anti-establishment. ~~~~~ We learned that 49.5% of Democrats were willing to vote the 74-year-old socialist outsider Bernie Sanders who calls for a Second Revolution rather than vote for Hillary Clinton, the Democrat establishment darling. ~~~~~ The Democrats suffer from a malady that was initially caused by Bill Clinton's rogue presidency. Hillary Clinton aided and abetted her husband's outlawry and went on to build her own rogue empire. She eked out a 0.2% win in Iowa because women, especially women of a certain age, mistakenly believe she cares about them or about their position in politics. Hillary Clinton cares about Hillary Clinton. Period. Bernie Sanders' astonishing performance came in spite of Clinton's brilliant staff operation, full of members who reportedly whispered to reporters that voters weren’t so keen on their candidate. Iowa was a referendum on Clintonland. It failed. Hillary's determination to take the White House for herself at any cost was rejected. ~~~~~ Iowa revealed the scale of the disgust Americans have for a dysfunctional federal government out of control and out of touch with their values and demands as expressed in election after election for 25 years. There is a revolution taking place in American politics, but it is being driven not by Democrats but by Republican voters fighting for a chance to turn their ship of state back to human proportions and constitutional norms. To stand a chance of winning in November as the representative of this grassroots movement, the GOP will have to accommodate the movement instead of scrambling in wild-eyed fear in its wake. Marco Rubio has the potential to do what Reagan did 30 years ago -- mellow the anger of grassroots conservatism with humor and turn it into a strong electoral coalition. Rubio may be the candidate who can pull the GOP's warring factions together, but it is far too early to know this with certainty because Donald Trump, chastened by his second place finish in Iowa, may turn toward the party and provide another path to GOP re-unification. To do this, Trump will have to choose and forcefully articulate the ideals, policies and programs acceptable to both ideological conservatives and lifelong Republicans. Not an easy task, but Donald Trump is a unique force who is new to GOP politics as a candidate and therefore free of the labels all other candidates have pasted on their foreheads. ~~~~~ Dear readers, we learned in Iowa that the November election is truly a watershed precisely because the Republican Party has always stood for the constitutional social and fiscal responsibility that acts as a buffer to the excesses of the Democratic Party. In 2016, if a recognizable America is to continue, Trump or Rubio must find the courage, the grace and the shining inner light to save the GOP by saving America.

Monday, February 1, 2016

Last Night in Iowa, It Was America That Won

God bless you, Iowa. It has been a long cold night of seven years under Barack Obama, but the people of Iowa have led America back into the light by choosing Cruz, Trump and Rubio to lead us forward, and by signaling that even the honest socialism of Bernie Sanders is more trustworthy than the life of lies led by Hillary Clinton. The people of America will take back their country from the socialist-leftist-progressive Democratic Party led by the foreign-government-fed Clinton machine and from the George Soros one-world weak-America force that just gave $6 million to Hillary Clinton's campaign. ~~~~~ Dear readers, now it is on to New Hampshire. God Bless America.