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The Race forn EVs

Chevrolet's Tesla Killer Isn't Selling Very Quickly

July 27th 2017

Better Place

The 2017 Chevrolet Bolt was supposed to be the electric car of the people—around $30,000, about 240 miles of range per charge and decent space in a little package. But nobody’s really feeling that, and the company has such a backlog of Bolts that it had to extend the summer shutdown of the car’s manufacturing plant.

Reuters reports that GM’s U.S. inventory hit a 10-year high in June, meaning the manufacturer has a whole lot of unsold cars hanging around. Reuters reports that Bolt sales are under 8,000 so far this year, which isn’t great. After all, the Nissan Leaf was even beating Bolt sales in April.

To show just how dramatic this sales slump is, Reuters reported that Paul Masse Chevrolet in Rhode Island advertised having more than 200 Bolts in inventory on Monday with prices from $35,688 to $41,488. Jalopnik could only find 83 in its inventory, all new, which is still a lot. The dealership’s advertised inventory as of Tuesday was 688 cars, new and used from seven different manufacturers, and 83 of them were Bolts. That’s over 12 percent. Read more ..


Financing the Flames

New Israel Fund Financed NGO Calls for Investigation of Israeli Border Police

July 19th 2017

Ronn Torossian

While sane people mourned the victims of Friday’s terror attack on the Temple Mount, in which two Druze Border Police officers were murdered, an extremist organization, Adalah – The Legal Center for Arab Minority Rights in Israel - demanded the Border Police be investigated for  “..the police killings of three Palestinian citizens of Israel involved in a shooting attack in the Old City of Jerusalem at the Al Aqsa Mosque.”

Perhaps the police should have thrown flowers at the terrorists and “prayed for peace”?

Adalah sent the letters on behalf of the families of the deceased assailants, demanding an investigation into the “circumstances of the shooting deaths" of the three men. Adalah Attorney Mohammad Bassam wrote in the letters that "the incident raises serious questions regarding police personnel's compliance with very detailed open-fire regulations. Police orders regulate all situations in which officers have an option to make use of firearms including when seeking to make an arrest and to prevent immediate harm to human life. In all situations, use of firearms is permitted only when there is a real and immediate danger to human life and as a final option when all other options to prevent this harm have been exhausted."

IDF soldiers have meticulously worded orders about opening fire. However, they are instructed to neutralize terrorists perpetrating terror attacks in order to stop them from continuing their attempts to murder. In this case, one of the wounded terrorists attempted to stand and continue firing his weapon. He was then shot dead by Israeli fire.

Adalah is funded in part by the radical American non-profit the New Israel Fund, which has given nearly $2 Million to the organization from 2008-2015.  It recently launched a “Discriminatory Laws in Israel” database on its website.  Read more ..


Turkey on Edge

Turkish President Erdogan's Dangerous Autocratic Tactics

July 18th 2017

Erdogan

In 2016, Rifat Cetin, a Turkish doctor, received a suspended one-year jail sentence — he could have been imprisoned for up to five years — for violating Article 299 of Turkish law code, which bars insults to the Turkish President. The criminally insulting tweet in question compares President Erdogan to the villainous character of "Gollum" from the popular fantasy movie series, "Lord of the Rings." During the trial, Peter Jackson, the director of the Lord of the Rings trilogy, intervened to testify that the images were no insult, as they actually depicted Smeagol, Gollum’s good alter-ego. The famous director’s statement may have been enough to get the doctor off, legally speaking, but in the end Mr. Cetin was still stripped of his parental custody rights, and was fired from his job.

Overall, Dr. Cetin did well for himself, in Erdogan’s Turkey. This is because President Erdogan isn’t just an Islamist dictator and insecure bully. He is also crazy. And very dangerous to the Western world. Read more ..


Politics on Edge

Take a Closer Look at the McCain Institute

July 14th 2017

Money Bands=Happiness

Politicians who craft U.S. policy while accepting foreign donations must be closely scrutinized. The Clinton Foundation may have been the biggest pay-for-play scheme in American history.  Critics are drawing parallels to the McCain Institute.  It was started by Arizona Senator John McCain in 2012.

McCain sits on the Homeland Security C0mmitte and chairs the powerful Armed Services Committee.

Much like the Clinton Foundation, the McCain Institute has received millions of dollars from foreign governments, entities and individuals that raise eyebrows.  For example, the Institute received at least $100,000 from a state-run Moroccan company accused of human rights abuses.  At least a hundred grand from an organization that donated to a pro-Iran group.  And one million dollars from Saudi Arabia. Read more ..


The Race for Energy Dominance

‘Energy Dominance’ Requires Alternatives to Oil

July 13th 2017

Sugar Cane

It’s “Energy Week,” and the Trump administration has been touting U.S. potential to achieve international dominance thanks to American-made sources for power generation and transportation fuel.

This is a productive debate for the country. But the goal of achieving American self-reliance in energy can only be attained if we make better use of alternatives to gasoline and diesel for our cars, trucks and SUVs. The reason? We use nothing but domestic resources to make electricity — natural gas; coal; nuclear; wind and solar — but we grudgingly accept that it’s not that way for transportation. If we’re being honest with ourselves, at the current consumption rate for oil, we may never achieve independence.

As Bloomberg Business noted: The U.S. is on track to produce 10 million barrels of oil per day on average next year, according to a forecast from the Energy Information Administration — a milestone that would shatter a record set in 1970. Read more ..


Europe on Edge

Europe Voluntarily Punishes Itself

July 6th 2017

EU flag

The future of EU-Russia relations is even more uncertain than ever before. Everyman may observe only deterioration. Mass media broadly covered the extension of the bloc's economic sanctions against Russia by six months until January 31. European Union leaders made such decision on June, 22 during a two-day summit in Brussels. This step followed the Washington's decision to broaden its sanctions against Moscow.

But this is only a visible part of world politics based on the clear desire to punish Russia for annexation of Crimea. The US and European politics continue to consider the sanctions the only effective mechanism to influence Kremlin. Though there is no great success. Sanction cause counter-sanctions and so on and so forth. May be it is high time to try other tools of international diplomacy? Where are talented diplomats who could reverse the situation and prevent further confrontation? It is absolutely urgent because it turned out that Europe punishes not only Moscow but itself. Read more ..


Jewry on Edge

What Happened to the Anti-Defamation League?

July 4th 2017

boycott Israel t-shirt

Read more ..

Jewry on Edge

On Linda Sarsour’s Politics of Hate and the Pathos of Her Jewish Enablers

July 1st 2017

Campus antizionists

Linda Sarsour is a progressive-media darling. One of Essence magazine’s “Woke 100 Women,” Sarsour was named a leader of the Women’s March that followed President Donald Trump’s inauguration, despite declaring that “nothing is creepier than Zionism”—though her wish to “take away” the “vagina” of clitoridectomy victim and human-rights activist Ayaan Hirsi Ali, praise for Nation of Islam leader Louis Farrakhan, upholding Saudi Arabia as a bastion of women’s lib, embrace of the terrorist murderer Rasmea Odeh, and claim that “Shariah law is reasonable” because “suddenly all your loans & credits cards become interest-free,” are all—at least in my humble estimation—definitely creepier.

Yet Sarsour’s ride on the media wonder-wheel continues—thanks in part to Jewish individuals and organizations who embrace the idea that haters like Sarsour can’t actually hate them. Recently, the “homegirl in a hijab,” as a fawning New York Times profile described her, delivered the commencement address at the City University of New York’s School of Public Health. It was a strange choice on the part of CUNY, not least because Sarsour has zero professional experience in the field.

Read more ..

Media on Edge

Palin Files Libel Lawsuit Against NY Times

June 30th 2017

New York Times Bldg

“A lie can travel half way around the world while the truth is putting on its shoes.”

That quote was attributed to Mark Twain. False stories spread faster than the truth.

On June 14th, the New York Times published an editorial with an outright falsehood that appears to defame Sarah Palin.  The paper claimed Palin incited Jared Loughner.  He was the man who shot U.S. Representative Gabby Giffords and 18 others, killing six back in 2011.  Immediately afterwards, some liberals blamed Palin for instigating the shooting rampage. Palin was widely considered a potential opponent to Barack Obama the following year.  This claim was quickly debunked.  In fact, Loughner was a George Bush-hating liberal. This week, Palin sued the New York Times. Read more ..


The Edge of Healthcare

The Cost of Medicaid

June 28th 2017

medicine and money

The number of Americans enrolled in Medicaid has increased from 29 million in 1990 to 73 million today — an increase of 252 percent over a period when the nation's population increased 30 percent.

Total spending on Medicaid today is $574 billion, 275 percent above the $209 billion of 2000.

Medicaid amounts to about 40 percent of the total spending on the 10 largest means-tested federal government programs targeted at low-income Americans. According to the Congressional Budget Office, spending on these programs has tripled as a percentage of our GDP over the last 40 years.

Does all this mean we are becoming a more fair and compassionate nation?

That might have been the intention. But if we honestly look at what is happening, we will see things have gone badly astray.

Some perspective on this is available in a new article by Harvard University economist Edward Glaeser in the City Journal magazine of the Manhattan Institute.

The article, "The War on Work — and How to End It," paints a dismal picture of the direction in which our national culture is trending. Specifically, the deterioration of our culture of work, particularly among "prime-age" men, those between 25 and 54.

According to Glaeser, 95 percent of "prime-age" men were working in 1967. However, during the last recession, over 20 percent of this group was not working. Today, it remains at 15 percent. Read more ..


Media on Edge

Fake News and the NYT-- Soviet Style

June 15th 2017

New York Times Bldg

We — like every other media outlet — occasionally hear a critic label something “fake news.”  And there are some who call everything they disagree with “fake news.”  Just because you don’t like a fact doesn’t make it fake.  That’s just the way it is.

A recent study revealed something interesting about how people consume information.  When offered ten dollars to read an opinion they disagreed with or offered seven dollars to read an opinion they liked, a majority took less money.  They’d rather consume information that affirms their personal views rather than challenges them.

Still, there is fake news.  The worst of all time goes to the New York Times Moscow Bureau Chief Walter Duranty.  His blatantly false reports in the 1930s covered-up the genocide of millions of Ukrainians by the Soviet Union.  When newspapers ruled the media landscape none influenced more Americans than the New York Times. Read more ..


Author Essay

After Comey's Testimony, There's No Need for a Special Counsel

June 14th 2017

Washington K Street NW

The most startling revelation from fired FBI Director James Comey’s testimony this week was his barefaced admission that he intentionally leaked details of his private conversations with the President to the press in an effort to prompt the appointment a special counsel.

When asked Thursday by Senator Susan Collins of Maine whether he shared the memos he wrote about his conversations with President Trump with anyone outside the Department of Justice, Comey answered:

“I asked a friend of mine to share the content of the memo with a reporter – didn’t do it myself for a variety of reasons – but I asked him to, because I thought that might prompt the appointment of a special counsel.”

Read more ..

The Edge of Terrorism

Lessons from Manchester

June 3rd 2017

Armstrong_Williams

The message from many Europeans with regard to terrorism is this: enough. That sentiment was echoed time and again in interviews conducted during a broadcasting/reporting trip to Europe which is still underway as I write these words.   Europe’s misguided approach to preventing radical Islamic terrorism on its own soil may be the definition of insanity – repeating the same behavior over and again while expecting different results.

The thought of young innocent children who attended the Ariana Grande concert in Manchester being brutally murdered in a radical Islamic terrorist attack is unconscionable and compelled my broadcasting team to travel to Manchester in the aftermath of this deplorable carnage to explore the situation in Europe firsthand.

We visited Manchester, where the radical Islamic extremist suicide bomber Salman Abedi blew himself  up killing 22 innocent people and injuring 116 others, to speak with residents of Manchester whose lives have been forever changed by this jarring act of cowardly terrorism.
 
What I learned from the people I spoke with in Manchester was chilling. While many of the local people with whom I talked to were shocked by the cruel level of inhumanity inherent in the concert attack, they were actually not overly surprised that a terrorist attack took place in their backyard. Many of the people I met in Manchester and London are furious, and they do not feel protected.  Time and again, they complained that the British government is not doing enough to address the United Kingdom’s radicalized population. Read more ..


Campus on Edge

Georgetown's Jonathan Brown Plays Defense For Islamic Supremacism

May 28th 2017

Koran and prayer beads

Georgetown University Professor Jonathan Brown, already notorious for past scandalous comments justifying Islamic slavery (including rape), only worsened his reputation with a recent May 8 lecture. Before about 90 listeners filling Georgetown's small Riggs Library, the Saudi-funded Prince Alwaleed bin Talal Center for Muslim-Christian Understanding (ACMCU) director clinically explicated disturbingly dark Islamic political doctrines.

In conjunction with Cambridge University Professor Philip Sheldrake, a Christian, the American Muslim convert Brown slavishly addressed "Power: Divine and Human—Christian and Muslim Perspectives" in a manner hardly flattering to Islam. He noted that "in the Quran, God's power is the superlative of all superlatives, it is total, absolute, and without exception." Correspondingly, the "word that the Quran uses over and over to refer to human beings" is the "slaves of God." Read more ..


The Trump Era

Why Do Liberals Constantly Deflect Ben Carson’s Wisdom Just To Score Cheap Political Points?

May 25th 2017

Armstrong_Williams

It really is a shame.  During my Town Hall Interview conducted on my Sirius XM 126 Radio in which HUD Secretary Ben Carson began to explain some of the principles and market dynamics affecting policy initiatives at HUD, Carson noted that at its core, poverty is the result of a ‘poverty mindset’ that is often reinforced by family and social conditions.   The media immediately selected that quote and ran with it.  The implication in the mainstream media was that ‘cruel, tone-deaf Carson blames poor people for their poverty.’

But the media totally ignored the other things Dr. Carson said about the subject of housing, and the general formula for avoiding poverty. So, in the interest of full truth, it is only fair that we reset the balance here. Dr. Carson first noted that there are studies that show that there are three major self-initiated behaviors that can ensure that the vast majority of people do not wind up in poverty.  First, finish high school; second, get married; and third, delay childbirth until after marriage.  These three factors alone would filter out almost 95% of all of the poor people in this country. Carson’s remarks were thus focused on what the average person can do to avoid or alleviate poverty.

But this isn’t brain surgery we’re talking about here. Dr. Carson is not some elitist rich guy born with a spoon in his mouth who doesn’t know what he’s talking about. His story is well-documented. He was born to a mother who did not finish high school and was eventually forced to leave a bigamist marriage with two children she had to raise on her own.  She was forced into poverty. Read more ..


Inside America

Shaking My head in Disbelief

May 17th 2017

Baby Boomer

Yale University graduate students launched a symbolic hunger strike. Unlike other hunger strikes this one didn’t pose any health risks. The students still ate meals. This is why they called it a symbolic hunger strike.

A march in Denver, Colorado to protest man-made global warming had to be postponed the last weekend of April. This was due to a foot of fresh-fallen snow.

Mats Järlström developed a mathematical formula justifying increasing the time of yellow traffic lights to accommodate drivers turning right. He submitted his work to the Oregon State Board of Examiners for Engineering and Land Surveying to consider. In return, the State of Oregon fined Järlström $500 for the unlicensed “practice of engineering.”

In San Francisco, U.S. Judge Jon Tigar ruled California prisons must provide — free-of-charge — to transgender inmates clothing, grooming supplies, and jewelry that non-transgender inmates must purchase. He ruled in favor of an inmate serving a life sentence for murder. Read more ..


Broken Budgets

Another Year Another Budget

May 10th 2017

US Capital Day

There’s one consistency with Congress each year. Congress passes — and the president signs into law — unrestrained spending measures.

It happens when Republicans run Washington.  When Democrats are in charge.  And when there’s divided government.  And they always say the same thing: We’ll be responsible — next year.

Last year, Republican leaders promised the very next spending cycle would include 12 stand-alone appropriation bills.  As it is meant to be.

Well, we’re in that spending cycle.  Last week, another omnibus spending measure –separate spending bills wrapped-up into one –was enacted.  The same thing happened when Democrats controlled both Congress and the White House. So, if all 535 members of the House and Senate claim they oppose omnibus spending bills then how does this happen? Read more ..


Broken Education

Potemkin Universities

May 6th 2017

Yale University

Behind the facades, universities have broken faith with a once-noble legacy of free inquiry. College campuses still appear superficially to be quiet, well-landscaped refuges from the bustle of real life. But increasingly, their spires, quads, and ivy-covered walls are facades. They are now no more about free inquiry and unfettered learning than were the proverbial Potemkin fake buildings put up to convince the traveling Russian czarina Catherine II that her impoverished provinces were prosperous.

The university faces crises almost everywhere of student debt, university finances, free expression, and the very quality and value of a university education.

Take free speech.Without freedom of expression, there can be no university. But if the recent examples at Berkeley, Claremont, Middlebury, and Yale are any indication, there is nothing much left to the idea of a free and civilized exchange of different ideas. Read more ..


Palestinians on Edge

“Palestine” is Already a “Failed State”

May 4th 2017

Abbas UN

The impending visit of Mahmoud Abbas to Washington on Wednesday coupled with moves on Capitol Hill to cut off funding to the Palestinian Authority (PA) as a result of Palestinian terrorism makes this a good time to focus on Palestinian governance.

Once the Trump administration does, it will find Palestinian governance has not gone well — despite or perhaps even because of the billions in foreign aid, including American money, pumped into the PA. For example:

The authority’s 2016 budget shows estimated expenditures of $4.25 billion but revenues of only $2 billion. That includes more than $1 billion in contributions from the United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA), the European Union and the United States. In perspective, the gross domestic product (GDP) of the territory under supervision of Mr. Abbas‘ PA (the West Bank and Gaza Strip, population estimated at more than 4 million) is about $12.1 billion; Vermont’s GDP (population approximately 625,000) is $29 billion. The PA was established in 1994 as a result of the Oslo Accords.

Read more ..

The Race for Ethanol

Open Letter on How The Ethanol Mandate Is Killing The American Prairie

April 29th 2017

switchgrass

Two weeks ago I wrote and published a story on TheAutoChannel.com called UNCOVERING THE GAS ROOTS OF CONTEMPORARY ETHANOL OPPOSITION. That story dealt with HOW the petroleum oil industry has worked to distort the truth about ethanol. This story unmasks a specific individual WHO has a history of working to hide the truth from the public about significant health and safety issues, while using his professional and academic credentials as a front for his phony analysis of ethanol.

I just finished reading a new anti-ethanol commentary "How The Ethanol Mandate Is Killing The American Prairie," written by William F. Shughart II, a professor at Utah State University and a Senior Fellow at a think tank called Independent Institute. Professor Shughart is a former economist at the Federal Trade Commission and he has taught at George Mason University, Clemson University, University of Mississippi, and the University of Arizona. Read more ..


The Financial Edge

End the Bank of Boeing

April 28th 2017

Boeing 787

It’s time to shut-down the Export-Import Bank once and for all. The bank was started by FDR in 1934 to loan money to the Soviet Union. That worked well for us, didn’t it? Now it provides low-interest loans to foreign companies to buy U.S. goods. Nearly half of the 172 billion dollars in loans between 2007 and 2014 benefited only 5 U.S. companies. More than a third — 60 billion dollars — benefited just one company — Boeing.  That’s why DC politicians call it the “Bank of Boeing.” So, isn’t selling U.S.-made aircraft to foreign airlines a good thing?

Consider this. In many cases, low-interest loans go to airlines owned by foreign governments, such as China.  Should we be subsidizing foreign governments? Foreign airlines then buy Boeing jets for less than U.S. airlines. This gives foreign carriers a competitive advantage over U.S. carriers in the global market. According to one estimate, it’s cost U.S. airlines nearly 7,500 jobs. Read more ..


The Trump Era

Untangling U.S. Foreign Policy

April 15th 2017

Truman Bldg/State Dept HQ

American geopoliticians in the 100 years the U.S. was coming of age as the superpower had the "luxury" of facing a relatively monolithic enemy. From the early 30s, it was fascism dominated by Mussolini and then Hitler until his downfall at the conclusion of World War II. Stalin and his worldwide Communist apparatus moved into that role in the immediate postwar period.

It was only with the implosion of the Soviet Union in 1990 that Washington planners faced what had been the more normal historical array of a number of powerful national and imperial entities vying for power. Turning their hand to this complex has confronted American policymakers - however the disproportionate size and power of their country - with new and perplexing conflicting interests.
Nowhere is that problem more apparent than with Washington's relations with the Russians. The muddled argument now taking place in the public arena is only the most obvious expression of this. Read more ..


Media on Edge

Dishonest New York Times Fudges the Student Data

April 13th 2017

New York Times Bldg

The New York Times had a stunning headline. Foreign applications to U.S. colleges have fallen by 40%. Except it’s not true. Here’s what’s happening behind the headlines.

The New York Times claims Donald Trump’s immigration ban has damaged U.S. colleges when it comes to foreign students.   It called this the ‘Trump Effect.’

The newspaper relied on this report. So, we read the report, the accompanying press release and the survey results. The truth is far different than what the Times writes.

Nearly 300 colleges and universities were surveyed. When it comes to foreign student applications: 38% reported a decline; 35% reported an increase; and 27% reported no change. In other words — a wash. The difference between this year and last year is statistically insignificant. Read more ..


The Battle for Syria

Why Did Assad Use Nerve Gas?

April 6th 2017

Syria fighting injured baby

It is hard to explain why Bashar Assad used nerve gas -- probably Sarin -- in the town of Khan Sheikhoun in Syria’s northern Idlib province. On the surface, at least, it would seem to be a totally counterproductive and reckless move likely to anger the Europeans, the Americans, and even his patrons the Russians. Then why would he do it?

It was a surprise, coming as it did immediately after U.S. Ambassador Nikki Haley announced that “regime change” in Syria was no longer a priority and the U.S. focus would be on ISIS. This was a major change from the Obama administration and should have reassured Assad that he could hang on as ruler of Syria. But some pundits saw the U.S. policy shift as a perverse incentive for Assad, making it possible for him to believe he could use highly lethal chemical weapons without fear of retaliation. The Sarin would thus be a test of whether the new policy was real. To some degree, the announcement by the British prime minister that the UK had no retaliatory plans despite the attack might seem to be evidence for this argument.

Read more ..

The Edge of Terrorism

Terrorism Trend Setters - The Palestinians

March 29th 2017

Hamas terrorist with toy Kalashnikov

Plowing into crowds in speeding cars to kill large numbers of people and stabbing more when the car is forced to stop, is becoming the rage among jihadists operating in Europe. Most counter-terrorism experts in major media outlets claim these are signs of a new trend of terrorism by individuals "inspired" to commit such heinous crimes by ISIS but decline to mention radical Political Islam as the origin.

The Palestinian loving Europeans are now shocked by jihadist attacks the like Israelis had to cope with for many decades.
Israeli civilians have been terrorized for years by speeding car and knife attacks by Palestinians who are inspired by the same jihadist ideology as the London, Brussels, Paris, Munich and Nice attackers. Read more ..


The Trump Era

Promoting Unrestricted Immigration with a False Equivalent

March 27th 2017

Donald Trump Laconia NM Michael Vadon Jul 16 2015 03

President Trump has issued a modified version of his previous immigration policy Executive Order that was stalled six weeks ago by a lower-level federal judge in the state of Washington. Mr. Trump has been under relentless attack from those on the Left against his efforts to limit immigration from terrorist-producing areas and his call for comprehensive vetting and background checks.  

Beyond doubt, it is the first and most important duty of a President to protect the lives of a country’s citizens, especially where a possibility exists of terrorists being embedded within a particular immigration flow. As the President previously stated, to not strictly enforce our immigration laws is “not compassion but recklessness”. Read more ..


The Race for EVs

Big Oil's Favorite Alternative Fuel is Electric-- Why?

March 24th 2017

Oil Barrels

The reason The Auto Channel decided to spotlight electric-powered vehicles today is because of a press release I received yesterday, Thursday, March 23rd, from NRDC (National Resources Defense Council). The press release is alerting The Auto Channel and other members of the media that California Air Resources Board (CARB) will discuss today the status of the states' clean car standards following the results of their formal review.

The bottom line of CARB's formal review was that the state intends to stick with their existing standards for model years 2022-2025, to begin considering post-2025 standards, and to remain fixed on electric-powered vehicles as their solution to achieving the standards. The impact of these standards, according to the release, "will be felt far beyond California because 12 other states also have adopted California's standards, collectively protecting 113 million U.S. residents from dangerous pollution." (The emphasis on the words dangerous pollution is mine.) Read more ..


The Caliphate

Navigating the Slippery Slope in Iraq and Syria

March 23rd 2017

ISIS on the Street

The good news is various forces are attacking ISIS (the Islamic State) and its control of territory is weakening. But as it does, historical adversaries are converging on the battlefield and American troops are standing between them in ever-increasing numbers. What began as limited airstrikes has become an American ground presence. Changes begun in the previous administration continue in the current one.

This is not Vietnam. But as the numbers increase, it is worth noting that GIs are in Syria, Iraq, Yemen, Libya, Somalia and Afghanistan without the United States being at war with any of these countries or necessarily supporting any of their governments. But neither President Obama nor President Trump has talked to the American people about three essential things here: America’s allies, America’s adversaries, and American military and political goals.

Read more ..

Individual Rights

The Impropriety of Property Rights in Wisconsin

March 17th 2017

Scales of Justice

Each day government is stripping Americans of their rights to private property.

Here’s what’s happening behind the headlines.

Nearly 60 years ago, William and Dorothy Murr bought an acre of land along Wisconsin’s St. Croix River. They built a cabin on it.  It became a family gathering point each summer.

A few years later they purchased the adjacent lot as an investment to either sell or develop. The Murrs have passed away.  But their children continue the tradition of summer gatherings.

In 2004, the Murrs’ children attempted to sell their second lot to fund repairs to the cabin. But local authorities blocked the sale claiming the two contiguous lots were now one single-property.  Sell the whole thing or nothing at all.  According to an appraiser, the Murr’s property value has plummeted. Read more ..


Jewry on Edge

American Liberal Jewish leaders Fuel anti-Semitism

March 16th 2017

Isi Libler

The crass political exploitation of their Jewish identity by American leaders of purportedly “nonpartisan” mainstream Jewish organizations is unprecedented. Today, in what must be described as self-destruction, a substantial number of irresponsible leaders of the most successful and powerful Jewish diaspora community seem to have gone berserk and are fueling anti-Semitism.

Nobody suggests that Jews should not be entitled, like all American citizens, to engage in political activity of their choice. As individuals, they may support or bitterly criticize their newly elected president, but as leaders of mainstream religious and communal organizations, they are obliged, as in the past, to assiduously avoid being perceived as promoting partisan political positions.

What has taken place in leading mainstream American Jewish organizations during and since the elections can only be described as a self-induced collective breakdown. What might have been regarded as a temporary aberration has in fact intensified in recent weeks.

Let us set aside the fact that many of these liberal Jewish organizations have also distanced themselves from or even abandoned Israel. They have done so even though the Trump administration has the potential of restoring the U.S.-Israel alliance that then-President Barack Obama undermined in a vain effort to appease Muslims. It is also clear that, for many assimilated liberal Jews, Israel is no longer a priority, especially now that President Donald Trump has signaled his intentions to renew the alliance.

The facts are that liberal Jewish leaders have declared a hysterical war against the Trump administration. Led initially by the Anti-Defamation League but rapidly joined by the Reform and Conservative wings of the Jewish community, many Jewish community leaders have exploited their positions to endorse a vicious campaign in which Trump is portrayed as a satanic anti-Semite promoting fascism and racism, representing the antithesis of Jewish values. This, despite the reality that his presidency highlights an unprecedented acceptance of Jews at the highest levels of government. Read more ..


The Trump Era

Of Baseball and Boxing

March 13th 2017

baseball glove bat ball

American politics is becoming a blood sport, more like boxing than baseball.  The goal is no longer to defeat the opposition but to knock it out.  Very large segments of the American public, elites, and media believe in one or more of the following propositions:
     *The Democratic candidate for president in 2016 was a threat to the national security of the United States.
     *The Republican candidate, now president, is guilty of treasonous negotiations with a foreign country.
     *The election was stolen.
     *The Republican campaign was spied upon by the previous administration, which continued to do so after the election in the period before the inauguration.
     *The Intelligence community of the United States is engaged in a concerted effort to undermine the new administration.
     *The new administration is dedicated to undermining American democracy and all its institutions as well as dismantling the social safety net as well as the entire structure of civil rights. Read more ..

The Legal Edge

Legal Standing at Standing Rock

March 10th 2017

Scales of Justice

Sometimes the courts get it wrong. This becomes obvious when two different courts reach different conclusions on similar issues. Such as who has legal standing.

Take the case of the Standing Rock Sioux tribe. Last month, the Standing Rock Sioux filed a joint motion with the Cheyenne River Sioux. The motion dealt with the legal battle over the Dakota Access Pipeline.  According to the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia, the tribe had legal standing in the matter.

But back in 2012, the U.S. District Court for North Dakota ruled the Standing Rock Sioux and the Spirit Lake Sioux had no legal standing in a different court battle. Read more ..


The Trump Era

First Lessons for the Trump White House

February 2nd 2017

Armstrong Williams Headshot

We are barely two weeks into the presidency of Donald J. Trump, and a few things are becoming evident, while still others are slowly crystalizing around a man and an administration that will truly be unlike any other this institution has seen.  And the hard truth is:  He is completely comfortable with that characterization and that anomalous reality.  Some quick observations:
A major cold war is brewing with the press
I’m biased on this, but let’s not kid ourselves: the White House is calling a completely different game with the media now.  All decorum is out the window.  We in the press need to get over it, quickly.  It’s not changing anytime soon.  In fact, if ever there was a topic or time where this administration would “double down” on something, it is with the media.  Team Trump is losing no allies and none of its voter base by attacking the media.  They lose credibility, sure.  And one wonders what dividends that will pay during, for example, a terrorist situation or other crisis of some sort.  But Bannon and his team have made this gambit, and they are comfortable with the outcome.  Watch for this cold war to continue, with no sign of a détente anytime soon.
 
Full-court press on the Trump agenda
First, I am simply amazed at the breadth of coverage this White House has made in creating executive orders and directives on policy issues.  From building a wall and immigration, to CIA interrogation policies and Gitmo, to Wall Street and manufacturing, to abortion and even hints of a Supreme Court nominee – this White House has tackled many issues in whirlwind fashion.  Not only is the media struggling to stay on top of the issues and delve deeper into the ramifications, but policymakers are also finding it difficult to draft off of his lead.  That is vintage Trump.  He will say he is merely responding to the people (which makes his much-maligned inaugural address sound more intentional) – a group that has been silenced for far too long.
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Covenant of Democratic Nations

Replacing the UN with The Covenant of Democratic Nations—An Inside Story

January 30th 2017

Edwin Black

For years, foreign policy critics, politicians, and outraged members of the general public have been militating to defund and quit the United Nations. Some have advocated that a rival or successor organization be established. Now, the empty sheet of bitter discontent with the UN has been filled in with a new name, and a new movement calling to “defund and replace” troubled organization with a new world body: The Covenant of Democratic Nations. This writer has been a participating witness to the birth of this movement.

 

Just days after controversial UN Resolution 2334 declared, among other things, that Israel’s Jewish connection to the Western Wall was effectively illegal, to ambassadorial applause in the room, concrete replacement action began. It has started with a conversation of ideas proposing an official international conference which would carefully propound a multilaterally-signed diplomatic convention that would be ratified by countries as a binding treaty that would juridically forge the Covenant into operational reality. The entire process— fraught with hazy puzzlements over a terrain of “what ifs”—would be limited to nations governed by democratic principles. Each member would or could defund the United Nations while it labored to construct a successor entity dedicated to world peace along democratic principles with equal respect for all people regardless of religion, gender, race, identity, or national origin, as well as formulating a mechanism to resolve disputes.

 

A prime mission of the new world body would be to re-ratify, amend, or nullify all acts and resolutions of the United Nations and its agencies such as UNESCO. Thus, the Covenant would create a new body of long-overdue, reformed, clarified, and updated international law. Just as unjust American laws perpetrating slavery, Jim Crow, segregation, and institutional inequality were overturned, updated, and reformed during the civil rights era and right through our present decade, so too, the damage, inequity, and misuse of international law and process would be overturned by the CDN. Sensibly, most CDN nations would remain as vestigial members of the UN overseeing its collapse from economic and bureaucratic processes just as was done when the League of Nations was dissolved after World War Two and replaced with the present UN. Read more ..


The Edge of Terrorism

Outrage as Taxpayer Dollars Helping American Ex-Cons Meet with Palestinian Radicals

January 29th 2017

Hamas head

Should taxpayer dollars be used to fund meetings between American terrorists and Palestinian radicals? San Francisco State University, a public university notorious for sympathy to violent radicals, apparently thinks so. Last year, it sent Americans who served time in prison for crimes ranging from bombing the United States Senate to conspiracy to murder to meet with fellow former "political prisoners" at An-Najah University in the West Bank.

Described by Hamas as a "greenhouse for martyrs," and by the Washington Institute for Near East Policy as a hub for the "terrorist recruitment, indoctrination and radicalization of students," An-Najah entered into a Memorandum of Understanding with SFSU in December 2014. The "Freedom Behind Bars Workshop," organized by Memorandum of Understanding architect and SFSU professor Rabab Abdulhadi, is the first known event facilitated by the memorandum. Read more ..


Campus Hate

Anti-Semitism Awareness Act Sparks Hysteria on Campus

January 25th 2017

boycott Israel t-shirt

The US Senate has unanimously passed the Anti-Semitism Awareness Act, introduced by US Senators Tim Scott (R-SC) and Bob Casey (D-PA). If approved by the House, the bill will give the US Department of Education the statutory tools to examine anti-Semitic incidents in the broadest and effective way possible.

The Anti-Semitism Awareness Act will mirror the State Department's Special Envoy to Monitor and Combat Anti-Semitism's definition of anti-Semitism, including critical language to define where anti-Israel bias crosses the line into anti-Semitism. The new Act would enhance the Education Department's ability to identify, investigate, and punish all forms of anti-Semitism, including anti-Zionism and anti-Israel harassment.

When asked about the Act, Senator Casey channeled Natan Sharansky's "3D" definition of anti-Semitism and listed the following examples of where the bill's tools would be helpful:

1) Calling for, aiding, or justifying the killing or harming of Jews,

2) Accusing the Jews as a people, or Israel as a state, of inventing or exaggerating the Holocaust,

3) Demonizing Israel by blaming it for all interreligious or political tensions,

4) Judging Israel by a double standard that one would not apply to any other democratic nation. Read more ..


Israeli and Palestinians

Ten ‘Humiliating’ Minutes at an Israeli Checkpoint

January 20th 2017

Palestinian Rock Attackers

Remember John Howard Griffin’s 1961 book “Black Like Me,” about a white journalist who posed as an African-American in order to experience what life was like for blacks in the South?  An American journalist recently undertook a Palestinian version of that experiment.

Hearing complaints about Israeli checkpoints that supposedly restrict the movement of Arabs in Judea and Samaria, filmmaker Ami Horowitz of Fox News decided to see for himself. He hired a Palestinian driver and, traveling in a car with Palestinian license plates, they drove “throughout the West Bank.” How often did Israeli troops interrupt their journey? “We were never stopped,” Horowitz reported.

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The Trump Era

Trump Expected to Take on 482 Sanctuary Cities… In California Alone

January 8th 2017

Truncated border fence

During his presidential campaign against the Democrat’s heir apparent Hillary Clinton, President-elect Donald Trump used the murder case of San Franciscan woman Kate Steinle — an American citizen murdered by a notorious illegal alien — to illustrate the evils of so-called sanctuary cities. Now that he’s set to be sworn in as President, he may find his promise an arduous and complicated one since he will have to deal with more than 500 cities, counties and towns in the state of California alone.

There are exactly 482 sanctuary cities and towns in the Golden State plus another 58 sanctuary counties. That is because California is a sanctuary state. And under the Democratic Party, that state’s officials are more concerned with the health, safety and welfare of illegal immigrants than that of U.S. citizens. Read more ..


The Trump Era

From 1970, HHS Has Grown By A Factor Of 10, From $103 Billion To $1.1 Trillion

January 5th 2017

Star Parker right crop

In a new Wall Street Journal/NBC poll, more than half of respondents, 52 percent, said that Donald Trump will either not change the way business is done in Washington or will bring the "wrong kind of change."

This may sound negative, but the fact that 48 percent believe positive change will occur points toward a meaningful note of hope and optimism.

With the nomination of highly motivated reformers, like Rep. Tom Price to head up the largest department in the federal government, Health and Human Services, we should feel hopeful. But history and experience should also keep us sober. Change in Washington is very hard.

President Reagan pledged to close down the departments of energy and education. But both departments survived and spending today for both departments is higher today than when Reagan took office. Read more ..


Obama and Israel

Obama’s Malicious Betrayal of Israel

December 30th 2016

Obama gesticulates

As predicted, on the eve of his retirement President Barack Obama betrayed Israel. The former long-standing congregant of the paranoid anti-Semitic pastor Rev. Jeremiah Wright who has a penchant for supporting to the Moslem Brotherhood, broke with forty years of U.S. bipartisan policy of protecting the Jewish state from the wolves at the United Nations.

His action as a lame duck president was a last ditch effort aimed at undermining his successor’s intended policies, realizing that it is virtually impossible to rescind a Security Council resolution. At the end of his eight years in office he exhibited an unprecedented abuse of power knowing that in his last month he would be unaccountable, despite the fact that his vindictive initiative was totally opposed by Congress, the American people and even by many members of his own party. Read more ..



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