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Wednesday, May 25, 2016

States sue feds over bathroom policy

photo credit: elitereaders.com

11 states sue US government over transgenderbathroom policy

Why isn’t Ohio one of them?

One of the three core Tea Party values is “limited government.” Whatever one may think of the controversies over bathrooms and sexual identity, the feds are clearly overreaching. From the AOL report:

The state of Texas is the lead plaintiff and was joined by Alabama, Wisconsin, West Virginia, Tennessee, Oklahoma, Louisiana, Utah and Georgia, plus the Arizona Department of Education and the governor of Maine.

School districts from Texas and Arizona also joined the suit, which names the U.S. government and a host of federal agencies and officials as defendants.

Alison Gill, the vice chair of the Trans United Fund, a political advocacy group, said the states' challenge did not reflect the position of most school boards and administrators, who have come out in favor of the administration's order.

"This action puts students at risk for the sake of politics," Gill said.
The White House did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Arizona Attorney General Mark Brnovich said, "President Obama has no business setting locker room and restroom policies for our schools."

"School policies should be determined by individual states, educators and parents - not dictated by a presidential decree," added West Virginia Attorney General Patrick Morrisey.

Read the rest here. Email Gov. John Kasich (the son of a mailman) here
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Paid protests coming to Cleveland?

Conservative Treehouse posted this Astroturf flyer that recruited protesters to disrupt the Albequerque Trump rally yesterday. Gateway Pundit has a report of the violence with photos here and video here. Ugly.

A scary preview of the RNC in Cleveland in late July...
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Saturday, May 21, 2016

Phyllis Schlafly Elected as GOP Delegate

photo credit: cnmnewz.com

This just in: News release from Eagle Forum (h/t conservative treehouse):

Phyllis Schlafly Elected as National Delegate at Missouri Convention

CONTACT: Ryan Hite, Communications Director O 314.721.1213 /Ryan@EagleForum.org

Branson, MO: Today at the Missouri Republican State Convention in Branson, Phyllis Schlafly, founder and chairman of Eagle Forum, was elected as a national delegate to the Republican National Convention in Cleveland, Ohio. Phyllis has participated in every convention since 1952.

“Politics is where the action is and the Republican Party is where we can make a difference. I am proud to be a Republican and attend our Conventions,” Schlafly said. “I look forward to joining other conservatives in Cleveland to pass our solid, conservative platform that includes a strong defense of the unborn, traditional marriage, and the American military superiority that has given us ‘peace through strength.’
. . .

“In Cleveland, I will proudly cast my vote for the next President of the United States of America, Mr. Donald J. Trump.”

Good to see Ms. Schlafly is still chairman of Eagle Forum, after the recent attempted coup.

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Friday, May 20, 2016

Illegal Immigration in an Obama World

photo credit: rare.us

NumbersUSA tracks legislation, executive orders, developments, and issues concerning immigration laws and enforcement. I thought I would share their lead story from today’s depressing newsletter.

Top Obama official admits executive actions & sanctuary cities to blame for lower deportation numbers

Fri, May 20th
The days of Pres. Obama being called the "Deporter-in-Chief" are long over. Overall removals are way down and removals of illegal aliens from the interior by Immigration Customs and Enforcement (ICE) agents are down 70% from the early years of the Administration.
Why such a decline?
A Senate panel heard the answer Thursday from Thomas Homan, Executive Associate Director for ICE's Enforcement And Removal Operations. He said the decline is a result of both the Administration's executive actions issued in 2012 and 2014 and the existence of sanctuary jurisdictions.
"There are a number of reasons why the numbers are down," Homan said and listed them.
"Sanctuary cities"
"Jurisdictions not honoring my detainers"
"The Trust Act [2013 California law limiting holds on illegal aliens]"
"In 2012, John Morton, the Assistant Secretary of ICE, issued a policy in who we issue detainers on. Virtually took Level 3s off the table. This is a law-abiding society, so most crimes are Level 3."
" Executive actions. Executive actions have narrowed my target pool down."

Then, there was this exchange between Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-Ala.) and Homan.
SESSIONS: Isn't it true that ICE gets calls every single day from police officers all across America that are not Sanctuary Cities and you're not responding to them because they don't meet the guidelines or the priorities established by the President?
HOMAN: That is true.
SESSIONS: So it's not true then that the reason your numbers are down is because you don't have people to deport. You have them to deport, but you have policies that tell you not to deport whole categories that are here unlawfully. Isn't that correct?
HOMAN: That's a factor, yes sir.
Homan made it a point to praise the men and women of ICE, and their commitment to the "mission". Of course, he's not allowed to comment on his opinion of Pres. Obama's policies, so we don't know where he, a career ICE agent stands, but morale among ICE agents is among the lowest of all federal employees, which would lead one to believe that the agents don't necessarily agree with the Administration's policies.
Border Patrol Union President Brandon Judd also testified and shed further light on the Administration's policies, specifically its catch-and-release policies. According to Judd, the Border Patrol releases almost every illegal alien it comes into contact with -- even if the alien has a criminal history.
"The second part of the catch-and-release program is releasing people without NTAs [Notices to Appear]. This is actually the most disconcerting part. We can actually arrest somebody with an actual criminal arrest record here in the United States, and if it does not meet these priority guidelines, we have to walk them out the door if they've been here since, if they claim to have been here (his emphasis), since January of 2014, we have to walk them out our door. And we don't even issue them an NTA. In effect, we're saying stay in the country as long as you want."
Judd went on to say that anyone caught crossing the border illegally who is not from Mexico is released by the Border Patrol and that approximately 80% of Mexicans who are caught crossing the border illegally are released. Again, all of this is not a reflection on the men and women of the Border Patrol or of Immigration and Customs Enforcement. It's all under the direction of the Obama Administration.
Civil Rights icon and Chair of the last bipartisan Commission on Immigration, Barbara Jordan, once told Congress, "Credibility in immigration policy can be summed up in one sentence: those who should get in, get in; those who should be kept out, are kept out; and those who should not be here will be required to leave."
The Obama Administration has sent a message to the world that unless you're convicted of a violent crime, you'll never be required to leave.
 Maybe Rep. Paul Ryan can put a stop to this.s/o Anyway, the NumbersUSA website is here
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Thursday, May 19, 2016

Facebook and Conservatives

Photo credit: Breitbart.com
Paul Ryan, Eric Cantor, Kevin McCarthy – the RINO leadership in 2014
with Mark Zuckerberg 

About that meeting between Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg and concerned conservatives, via Breitbart Big Journalism:

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg met with a range of establishment conservatives in Silicon Valley on Wednesday to discuss the reported suppression of conservative content.

There were reportedly 16 attendees at the meeting, which included:

Glenn Beck, founder of the The Blaze
Barry Bennett, an adviser to Donald Trump
Jim DeMint, former GOP Senator from South Carolina [now at Heritage Foundation]
Robert Bluey, editor in chief of the The Daily Signal
Dana Perino, host at Fox News
Alex Skatell, founder of the Independent Journal Review
Mary Katharine Ham, Hot Air Editor at Large
S.E. Cupp, CNN political commentator
Jenny Beth Martin, CEO of the Tea Party Patriots
Brent Bozell, President of Media Research Center
Zac Moffatt, part of Mitt Romney’s campaign
Arthur Brooks, American Entreprise Institute

Representatives from Breitbart were asked to attend but declined the invitation, as did American Conservative Union Chairman Matt Schlapp.

While Breitbart is not entirely free of bias itself (see here and here), its report today expressed a viewpoint that, if indeed embraced by Breitbart, that most conservatives would share.

We do not want, nor do we need, Facebook’s corporate “validation.” We understand algorithms. Our social media team works relentlessly each day using state of the art analytics to monitor and leverage Facebook traffic. We strive for excellence, and we do not need Facebook’s condescension.

Here’s what we and our tens of millions of readers are interested in:

An interview between Breitbart Tech editor Milo Yiannopoulos and Mark Zuckerberg on the topic of free speech and Facebook’s suppression of conservative media. Milo will interview Zuckerberg anytime, anywhere—and we’ll agree to have it broadcast on your live video platform.

Facebook to immediately cease its active suppression of conservative media, as extensively reported by Gizmodo, The Guardian, and myriad other news outlets. Indeed, Facebook’s Trending News chief, Tom Stocky, is a maximum political donor to Hillary Clinton. So there’s no need to “discuss” anything. Facebook did it, Facebook got caught, and it must end.

Bottom line: be interviewed by Milo and stop screwing conservatives.

Free speech is not for sale, and neither are we.

But look at some of the names on the list of “Vichy” conservatives who DID meet with Zuckerberg. I now expect names like Bozell, Beck, and Perino on the list. But it is more than a bit alarming to this Tea Party patriot (small case “p” for patriot is deliberate) that Jenny Beth Martin is on the list. She is not keeping good company these days. And why is she now listed as the “CEO” of Tea Party Patriots, originally organized as a grassroots bottom-up loose organization of disparate Tea Party groups across the country. Cleveland Tea Party does not answer to a CEO. From a philosophical standpoint, we are closer to the Breitbart position quoted above.

This meeting was all about damage control. Once again Sundance exposes the charade.

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Wednesday, May 18, 2016

Airport nightmares: The TSA’s Union Power Grab

photo credit: dailymail.co.uk

Everyone has seen the awful headlines, photographs, and videos of thousands of passengers stuck in endless lines at airports in Chicago, Atlanta, and elsewhere. Many are blaming the GOP curmudgeons in Congress for failing to adequately fund the TSA. Michelle Malkin has an alternative take:

When it comes to public employee unions, there’s no such thing as a coincidence.

All you travelers stuck in mile-long TSA security lines are pawns. Convenient political pawns. Big Labor bosses want more power and more money. Stranded travelers are just the latest victims in this age-old game of D.C. extortion.

Union leaders want you to think the fault lies with a stingy Congress unwilling to fork over enough money to fill screener shortages. White House spokesman Josh Earnest poured more partisan fuel on the fire last week by blaming the nationwide slowdowns on “the inability of Republicans in Congress to govern the country.”

What a load of flying horse hockey.

The 15-year-old Transportation Security Administration now has a massive annual budget of nearly $7.6 billion and a workforce of nearly 60,000. They had enough tax dollars to waste on an idiotic $1.4 million iPad app that randomly points left or right; $3 million on more than 200 useless explosive detection “puffer” machines that didn’t detect explosives reliably; and unknown gobs in awards and automatic bonuses to senior TSA managers at a time when the agency was repeatedly failing internal tests of its ability to stop weapons, bombs and terror threats.

Yet, last week, with airlines, airports and customers all raising holy hell, Congress scraped together $34 million more to pay TSA screeners overtime and fund nearly 800 more screeners to address the summer travel crush.

It’s still not enough of course. It’s never enough. 
. . .
TSA union leaders hungry for new members and fattened coffers don’t care about your security. This is all about control and money. Multiply 55,000 by $50/month in mandatory union dues and — voila! — they’ll have $33 million a year to shower on politicians who’ll do their bidding.

Read the rest here
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Monday, May 16, 2016

Ludwig Erhard’s plan for massive deregulation

Ludwig Erhard’s plan for massive deregulation &
Brexit The Movie

James Delingpole blogs at Breitbart London, and he is one of my favorite commentators. He specializes in climate issues, solar power, wind power, and the like, but his weekend blog was about Brexit, that is, the campaign in favor of the UK leaving the European Union (EU). He makes several points about the UK that could apply as well to America:

Against the odds, campaigners for Brexit are winning the argument on leaving the European Union (EU).

At the London premiere of Martin Durkin’s Brexit The Movie – which you can now watch in full here or here – we got an inkling why.
. . .
Immigration isn’t mentioned once. Not because Durkin has copped out but because he understands that even without drawing attention to the elephant in the room, it’s more than possible to construct a coherent and compelling argument for Brexit.

What it boils down to is this: does Britain want to go on being shackled to the sclerotic, anti-democratic, moribund trading bloc that is the European Union or would it rather be liberated to set its own laws, regain its sovereignty and trade freely and profitably with the burgeoning rest-of-the-World economy?

Put like that, it’s a no-brainer. To prove his point, Durkin comes up with three paradigmatic models – one of them involving the very country small-minded, xenophobic, racist Brexit types are supposed to loathe: Germany.

Specifically, he refers to the Germany of just after the war: the place which, though bombed to rubble emerged from the ashes with extraordinary alacrity to become the world’s third largest economy.

What was the cause of this economic miracle, known as the Wirtschaftswunder?

Largely, the genius of a man whose name really ought to be better known: Ludwig Erhard, the long-serving Minister of Economics, who understood that the surest way to guarantee economic growth is through a massive programme of deregulation. The easier it is for entrepreneurs to do business, the faster an economy grows and the richer its people grow. (John Cowperthwaite, the last British Financial Secretary to run Hong Kong, worked on similar classical liberal principles).

Erhard’s economic liberalism – which many of his colleagues opposed – was in marked contrast to the British post-war policy of state ownership, rationing, regulation, labour restrictions, exchange controls and propping up hidebound, outmoded industries. That’s why Germany’s economy grew even as Britain’s declined.
. . .
Durkin nails the absurdity of a line you often hear from the Remain camp: that without EU membership Britain just couldn’t compete on the international stage. Yet we could – of course we could, as indeed we once did. Sure if you were unaware of history, you might find it implausible to conceive that a small, rainy island could be one of the world’s economic powerhouses. But that is what Britain demonstrably was – and could be again. We just need to regain our optimism, our self-confidence and get over all that self-loathing in which the English intellectual class has so long specialised.

I urge you to see this film. (And not just because I’m the first talking head you see in it). It’s brilliant, inspiring and uplifting. Also it’s free.

You can watch the film at the two links above or at the blog here.
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