Dan Mitchell: My main argument during the program is that gun control simply does not work. Such laws might deter law-abiding people from owning guns, but bad people – especially the nutjobs – obviously don’t care about breaking rules!

A Lesson from the Texas School Shooting

I support the the right to keep and bear arms. That said, the horrific school shooting in Texas almost leads me to wish that guns did not exist. Here’s some of what I said as part of a recent episode of The Square Circle.

My main argument during the program is that gun control simply does not work. Such laws might deter law-abiding people from owning guns, but bad people – especially the nutjobs – obviously don’t care about breaking rules.

It is true that nationwide guns bans and gun confiscation might make it harder for these evil people to obtain firearms, but watch this video from Reason (or look at this polling data) if you actually think that’s a practical approach.

Some people argue that it would be better to allow teachers and other school staff to possess weapons.

That would be better than nothing, but who knows if that would have a measurable impact.

Other people say the problem is mental health and/or societal decay.

I’m sure those are factors as well, but pointing out problems is not the same as devising solutions.

Though maybe there is a way we can strengthen “red flag laws” while also guarding against abuse. I’m skeptical, but would like to be proven wrong.

For purposes of today’s column, I want to focus on what appears to be negligent behavior by the cops in Texas. Here are some excerpts from a report by the New York Times.

The grief of families in Uvalde, Texas, was compounded by anger and frustration on Thursday as police leaders struggled to answer questions about the horrific hour it took to halt a gunman who opened fire on students and teachers inside Robb Elementary School.…Parents had massed outside the school on Tuesday as gunfire erupted inside, urging the police who were holding them at bay to go in and stop the carnage. …An armed Uvalde school district officer, who had been nearby, responded…the gunman began firing at the windows and entered the building. The officer did not open fire. …the gunman…went through an unlocked door at 11:40 a.m…and began shooting inside. Police officers, including the school district officer, went into the school minutes later. By the time officers reported that the gunman had been killed around 1 p.m., he had shot dead 19 students and two teachers.

We don’t yet know how quickly this dirtbag killed the kids, but a delay of more than one hour obviously gave him plenty of time.

During that terrifying time — well over an hour — parents of students who were trapped in the school gathered outside the building… Some were physically restrained by the police in a scene that witnesses described as disorder bordering on mayhem. …“Parents were crying and some were fighting verbally with the police and screaming that they wanted their children,” Marcela Cabralez, a pastor, said. Miguel Palacios, a small-business owner, said frantic parents were so upset that at one point they tried to take down the school’s chain-link fence. “The parents were on one side of the fence, the Border Patrol and police were on the other side of the fence, and they were trying to tear it open,” he said. Some of the parents implored the heavily armed police officers at the chaotic scene to storm the school. Others, including those who were off-duty members of law enforcement, went inside themselves to try to find their own children. “There were plenty of men out there armed to the teeth that could have gone in faster,” said Javier Cazares, 43, who arrived at the school on Tuesday as the attack was taking place. He said he could hear gunfire; his daughter, Jacklyn, was inside.

Sadly, the cops in Uvalde either lacked modern training or they disregarded that training.

…questions remained about the decision by the police at the scene to await the arrival of specially trained officers from the Border Patrol to finally storm through the classroom door roughly an hour after officers had first pulled back. …Officers are now trained to disable an active shooter as quickly as possible, before rescuing victims and without waiting for a tactical team or special equipment to arrive.

As I said in the interview, I would not want to charge into a classroom and face hostile gunfire. But if I signed up to be a cop, I would understand that periodic bravery was part of my employment contract.

If I then failed to act, I would live in shame for the rest of my life and would not argue about getting fired and losing my pension.

P.S. When writing on gun-related issues, I always like to share what some honest folks on the left have written.

  • In 2012, I shared some important observations from Jeffrey Goldberg, a left-leaning writer for The Atlantic. In his column, he basically admitted his side was wrong about gun control.
  • Then, in 2013, I wrote about a column by Justin Cronin in the New York TimesHe self-identified as a liberal, but explained how real-world events have led him to become a supporter of private gun ownership.
  • In 2015, I shared a column by Jamelle Bouie in Slate, who addressed the left’s fixation on trying to ban so-called assault weapons and explains that such policies are meaningless.
  • In 2017, Leah Libresco wrote in the Washington Post that advocates of gun control are driven by emotion rather empirical research and evidence.
  • Last but not least, in 2019, Alex Kingsbury confessed in the New York Times that his long-held dream of gun confiscation was utterly impractical.

Open letter to President Obama (Part 557)

(Emailed to White House on 6-25-13.)

President Obama c/o The White House 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue NW Washington, DC 20500

Dear Mr. President,

I know that you receive 20,000 letters a day and that you actually read 10 of them every day. I really do respect you for trying to get a pulse on what is going on out here.

The federal government debt is growing so much that it is endangering us because if things keep going like they are now we will not have any money left for the national defense because we are so far in debt as a nation. We have been spending so much on our welfare state through food stamps and other programs that I am worrying that many of our citizens are becoming more dependent on government and in many cases they are losing their incentive to work hard because of the welfare trap the government has put in place. Other nations in Europe have gone down this road and we see what mess this has gotten them in. People really are losing their faith in big government and they want more liberty back. It seems to me we have to get back to the founding  principles that made our country great.  We also need to realize that a big government will encourage waste and corruptionThe recent scandals in our government have proved my point. In fact, the jokes you made at Ohio State about possibly auditing them are not so funny now that reality shows how the IRS was acting more like a monster out of control. Also raising taxes on the job creators is a very bad idea too. The Laffer Curve clearly demonstrates that when the tax rates are raised many individuals will move their investments to places where they will not get taxed as much.

______________________

Gun Control explained

Buy a Shotgun Joe Biden Lying AR-15

Make your own Gun Free Zone

PRK Arms on CBS 47 news,  Fresno

Gun control can cost lives!!!!!

Virtue Is Its Own Reward, but Using a Gun to Save a Child’s Life in DC Will Get You a $1,000 Fine

This story belongs in my “Great Moments in Local Government” series, which features examples of bureaucratic and political stupidity (see here, here, here,here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, and here) that will make you laugh, cry, yell, or all of the above.

Not surprisingly, the deeply dysfunctional local government in Washington, DC, wants to be part of this collection.

We have what at first seems like a feel-good story. A little boy is attacked by some vicious pit bulls. Other people in the neighborhood flee to protect themselves. But one man acts quickly and saves the child’s life.

Here are some details from the Washington Times report.

…11-year-old Jayeon Simon and his friend rode bicycles near Eighth and Sheridan streets Northwest in the Brightwood neighborhood. According to court records filed in D.C. Superior Court, three unleashed pit bulls pounced on Jayeon and attacked him. Seeing the attack, Mr. Srigley went inside his home to get his Ruger 9 mm pistol while several other men hopped over fences to get away from the dogs, court records state. From behind the wooden fence of his front lawn, Mr. Srigley began firing at the dogs. His shots attracted the attention of a Metropolitan Police Department officer on bicycle patrol nearby, and he also opened fire on the dogs, killing the other two. The boy survived the attack but now bears scars on his elbow, torso and leg as a reminder.

Mr. Srigley seems like a great guy. Or at least a guy who did something great. Surely he was rewarded, right?

Did he get a commendation from the police department? A ceremonial key to the city from the Mayor?

Mr. Srigley should have been a good liberal, called 911, and relied on the cops to arrive after the child was dead

Don’t be silly. We’re talking about Washington, DC.

…Benjamin Srigley, 39, was required to pay a $1,000 fine…for the three unregistered firearms and the ammunition that investigators found in his possession, said Ted Gest, a spokesman for the office of the attorney general.

But showing great mercy, they decided not to try to send him to prison.

“We took it into account that he saved this boy’s life,” Mr. Gest said.

Gee, what a bunch of swell guys in the DC government. Mr. Srigley is “only” hit with a $1,000 fine.

One hopes that this won’t cause a potential Good Samaritan to let some kid get killed or some woman get raped in the future.

P.S. At least the pit bulls weren’t in a dorm room providing federally-mandated “emotional support.”

P.P.S. One of the comments below reminds me that Mr. Srigley should have been a housebroken journalist since that entitles you to a get-out-of-jail-free card for gun offenses in Washington, DC>

Gun Control cartoon club knife

_____________

Thank you so much for your time. I know how valuable it is. I also appreciate the fine family that you have and your commitment as a father and a husband.

Sincerely,

Everette Hatcher III, 13900 Cottontail Lane, Alexander, AR 72002, ph 501-920-5733, lowcostsqueegees@yahoo.com

Related posts:

Gun control arguments just don’t make any sense, but President Obama still supports gun control

Gun control arguments just don’t make any sense, but President Obama still supports gun control. Laughing at Obama’s Belly Flop on Gun Control April 23, 2013 by Dan Mitchell I’ve shared serious articles on gun control, featuring scholars such as John Lott and David Kopel. I also posted testimonials from gun experts and an honest liberal. […]

My favorite 10 videos on gun rights and gun control

Gun Control explained Merry Christmas  from the 2nd Amendment Buy a Shotgun Joe Biden Lying AR-15 Make your own Gun Free Zone PRK Arms on CBS 47 news,  Fresno Suzanna Gratia Hupp explains meaning of 2nd Amendment! Penn and Teller – Gun Control and Columbine Somebody Picked the Wrong Girl 5 Facts About Guns, Schools, […]

The United Nations is full of gun control nuts (includes gun poster)

  The United Nations is full of gun control nuts.   The United Nations and Gun Control: Two Negatives Don’t Make a Positive April 15, 2013 by Dan Mitchell Citing the analysis of America’s former Ambassador to the United Nations, I wrote last year about a treaty being concocted at the United Nations that would threaten […]

Comparison of crime data and concealed carry gun laws between Houston and Chicago (includes funny gun control posters)

Sometimes you just have to look at the facts!!! An Inside Look at Left-Wing Social Science Gun Research March 20, 2013 by Dan Mitchell In a presumably futile effort to change their minds by learning how they think, I periodically try to figure out the left-wing mind. Why, for instance, do some people believe in Keynesian […]

Michael Moore’s idea that pictures from Sandy Hook will help gun control argument (includes editorial picture)

I do love Michael Moore’s movie “Canadian Bacon” and I have blogged about it before. However, I am not a big Michael Moore fan. Take a look at this excellent article by Trevor Burrus of the Cato Institute on Moore’s latest stupid claim. March 15, 2013 3:50PM Some Pictures for Michael Moore By Trevor Burrus […]

Open letter to President Obama (Part 256) (on gun control)

(This letter was mailed before October 1, 2012) President Obama c/o The White House 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue NW Washington, DC 20500 Dear Mr. President, I know that you receive 20,000 letters a day and that you actually read 10 of them every day. I really do respect you for trying to get a pulse on what […]

Letter from David Kopel of Cato Institute to Senator Cruz on constitutional issues in federal gun control proposals (Great yardsign on gun control)

  Great yardsign on gun control from Dan Mitchell’s blog. Here’s a quiz. What do you do after seeing this sign? Letter to Senator Cruz on constitutional issues in federal gun control proposals David Kopel • February 11, 2013 2:25 pm On Tuesday, the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee Subcommittee on the Constitution, Civil Rights and Human […]

Gun control posters from Dan Mitchell’s blog Part 5

The rear of the Bath School after the May 18, 1927 bombing. Wikimedia Commons ___________ I have put up lots of cartoons and posters from Dan Mitchell’s blog before and they have got lots of hits before. Many of them have dealt with the economy, eternal unemployment benefits, socialism,  Greece,  welfare state or on gun control. Did […]

Gun control posters from Dan Mitchell’s blog Part 4

I have put up lots of cartons and posters from Dan Mitchell’s blog before and they have got lots of hits before. Many of them have dealt with the economy, eternal unemployment benefits, socialism,  Greece,  welfare state or on gun control. There is no doubt that Hitler took away guns from those he wanted to persecute and […]

Ilya Shapiro’s Feb 8, 2013 testimony before Senate subcommittee on proposals to reduce gun violence (gun control cartoon)

  Max Brantley of The Arkansas Times again on 2-18-13 is complaining about those who believe strongly in the 2nd amendment. Another good cartoon from Dan Mitchell’s blog on gun control. It seems that Colorado is the only state that has passed sensible gun control laws after a gun tragedy and that was after the […]

By Everette Hatcher III | Posted in Arkansas Times, Cato Institute, Gun Control, Max Brantley | Edit | Comments (0

May 27, 2022 READING A PROVERB A DAY (PROVERBS 27) Adrian Rogers “Friends” Proverbs13:20 Proverbs 15:12 Proverbs1:20-22 Proverbs 14:15; 22:3; 27; Proverbs 17:10

Proverbs 27New Living Translation

27 Don’t brag about tomorrow,
    since you don’t know what the day will bring.

Let someone else praise you, not your own mouth—
    a stranger, not your own lips.

A stone is heavy and sand is weighty,
    but the resentment caused by a fool is even heavier.

Anger is cruel, and wrath is like a flood,
    but jealousy is even more dangerous.

An open rebuke
    is better than hidden love!

Wounds from a sincere friend
    are better than many kisses from an enemy.

A person who is full refuses honey,
    but even bitter food tastes sweet to the hungry.

A person who strays from home
    is like a bird that strays from its nest.

The heartfelt counsel of a friend
    is as sweet as perfume and incense.

10 Never abandon a friend—
    either yours or your father’s.
When disaster strikes, you won’t have to ask your brother for assistance.
    It’s better to go to a neighbor than to a brother who lives far away.

11 Be wise, my child,[a] and make my heart glad.
    Then I will be able to answer my critics.

12 A prudent person foresees danger and takes precautions.
    The simpleton goes blindly on and suffers the consequences.

13 Get security from someone who guarantees a stranger’s debt.
    Get a deposit if he does it for foreigners.[b]

14 A loud and cheerful greeting early in the morning
    will be taken as a curse!

15 A quarrelsome wife is as annoying
    as constant dripping on a rainy day.
16 Stopping her complaints is like trying to stop the wind
    or trying to hold something with greased hands.

17 As iron sharpens iron,
    so a friend sharpens a friend.

18 As workers who tend a fig tree are allowed to eat the fruit,
    so workers who protect their employer’s interests will be rewarded.

19 As a face is reflected in water,
    so the heart reflects the real person.

20 Just as Death and Destruction[c] are never satisfied,
    so human desire is never satisfied.

21 Fire tests the purity of silver and gold,
    but a person is tested by being praised.[d]

22 You cannot separate fools from their foolishness,
    even though you grind them like grain with mortar and pestle.

23 Know the state of your flocks,
    and put your heart into caring for your herds,
24 for riches don’t last forever,
    and the crown might not be passed to the next generation.
25 After the hay is harvested and the new crop appears
    and the mountain grasses are gathered in,
26 your sheep will provide wool for clothing,
    and your goats will provide the price of a field.
27 And you will have enough goats’ milk for yourself,
    your family, and your servant girls.


Friends Proverbs 17:17 #2059
We are grateful for the opportunity to provide this outline produced from a sermon preached by Adrian Rogers while serving as pastor of Bellevue Baptist Church in Memphis, Tennessee.
This outline is intended for your personal, non-commercial use.
In order to ensure our ability to be good stewards of Adrian Rogers’ messages, Love Worth Finding has reserved all rights to this content.
Except for your personal, non-commercial use and except for brief quotations in printed reviews, no part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted in any form or by any means —electronic, mechanical, photocopy, recording, or any other— without the prior permission of the publisher.
Copyright ©2021 Love Worth Finding Ministries, Inc.

FRIENDS | PROVERBS 17:17 | #2059
1) INTRODUCTION
a) Teenagersaremoreaffectedbyfriendsthanalmostanythingelse,including
sometimes parents and pastors combined.
b) Thedeepestneedofallofus,whetheryoungorold,isforenduring
friendships.
i) The deepest longing of the human heart is for a friend who loves us.
(1) Someone we can share with and commune with.
(2) Someone who truly understands our deepest needs, highest
aspirations and our worst fears.
c) Atruefriendisagreattreasure,butthewrongkindoffriendisthegreatest
danger that a teenager can possibly have.
d) Proverbs17:17
e) Today’smessagewillexplaintwodifferentcategoriesoffriends,three
different categories of teenagers, and will give practical advice to parents as they help their children choose friends wisely.
2) TWOCATEGORIESOFFRIENDS
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a) b)
c)
d)
e) f)
Wehavecasualfriendsthatweministerto.
i) We all have casual friends.
ii) Theseareacquaintancesthatincludeunsavedfriends. Weneedtomakeacquaintanceswiththeunsaved.
i) The Lord Jesus did.
(1) Luke 7:34
(a) Jesus was crucified for being a friend to sinners.
Therearecertaincasualfriendsthatwearetohave.
i) As Christians, we are to be the salt of the Earth.
ii) Wearetobeseparate,butseparationisnotisolation.
(1) We’re to be separated from the sin but not the sinner.
iii) We are to have these casual friends so that we can bring them to Christ. 1Corinthians9:20-23
i) The Apostle Paul is saying in this passage that he knew how to
accommodate unsaved people without making them angry and without compromising his convictions.
(1) This does not mean that those casual friends are to become intimate
friends.
(2) This does not mean that we are to have fellowship with them so that
they are to become our companions. 2Corinthians6:14,17-18
i) The word for “fellowship” in this passage means “intimacy.”
ii) Wearenottohavefellowshipandcommunionwithunsavedpeople. With casual friends, we are making friends for Jesus.
i) Accommodation without compromise
ii) Weinvitethemtochurch.
iii) We show love and friendship.

FRIENDS | PROVERBS 17:17 | #2059
iv) But we have no communion, fellowship or intimacy with casual friends. g) Therearecasualfriendswhomwewitnessto,andthenthereareintimate
friends that we fellowship with.
i) Parents should know who their children’s intimate friends are.
(1) Children will be made or broken by their companions. h) Proverbs13:20
i) This passage is not referring to casual acquaintances but is talking about companionship and fellowship.
ii) Ifwehaveungodlypeopleforourcompanions,thenwewillbedestroyed. i) 2 Samuel 13:1-29, 2 Samuel 18:9
i) This is one of the saddest stories in the Bible.
ii) Thiswholetragic,sordidmessbeganbecauseAmnonhadafriend.
(1) Amnon’s friend made a devilish suggestion. j) We will be like our friends.
i) It is not uncommon for teenagers to begin drug habits or drinking because of a friend.
ii) Kidsgethookedonpornographybecausetheywereatsomeone’shouse watching R-rated or X-rated movies.
k) Parentscanevaluatethespiritualconditionoftheirchildrenbytheirfriends.
i) Kids who don’t want to serve God will find other kids just like them.
ii) Godlykidswillalsofindoneanother.
iii) You can learn the spiritual state of your children by watching their
friends.
(1) Listen to their conversation.
(2) See how they are dressed.
(3) Pay attention to the music they listen to.
3) THREECATEGORIESOFYOUNGPEOPLE(PROVERBS1:20-22) a) Proverbs1:20-22
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Copyright ©2021 Love Worth Finding Ministries, Inc.
b)
i) This passage contains the three categories of young people. ii) Everyteenagerisinoneofthesecategories. Thefirstcategoryisthesimple.
i) If your child is simple, it does not mean that he isn’t intelligent or smart.
ii) Theword“simple”means“open.”
iii) Proverbs 1:22
(1) The simple one loves simplicity.
(a) This means that he loves the easy way.
(b) He wants to go through life without any restraint or discipline.
iv) The simple also lacks understanding.
(1) Proverbs 9:1-4
v) A simple person is easily led into sin and error.
(1) Proverbs 14:15
(2) If the simple does not believe God’s Word, then he will believe
anything.

FRIENDS | PROVERBS 17:17 | #2059
(a) He will believe Madison Avenue. (b) He will believe false cults.
(c) He will believe sinful friends.
(d) The simple is living in danger.
vi) By nature, all teenagers are simple.
vii) Proverbs 22:3
viii) Simple teenagers think that they are indestructible.
ix) Being simple doesn’t mean that they don’t have character, but they just
don’t understand until they get wisdom from God.
c) Everyteenagerstartsoutassimple,buthecanbecomeascorner.
i) Proverbs 1:22
(1) The simple one loves simplicity, but the scorner delights in scorning.
(a) The scorner has a warped character.
(b) He’s an evil person.
ii) Youcan’ttellhimanything.
(1) You can instruct the simple, but you can’t instruct the scorner.
(2) Proverbs 13:1
iii) He refuses instructions, and he despises godly people.
iv) Proverbs 15:12
(1) Rebuke a scorner, and he will insult you to your face.
v) Proverbs 9:7-8
vi) Proverbs 13:1
vii) Proverbs 13:13

(1) This is referring to everlasting destruction.
viii) A synonym for “scorner” is “smart-aleck.”
d) Thethirdcategoryisthefool.
i) Proverbs 1:22
(1) Fools hate knowledge.
ii) Proverbs1:7
iii) A fool will ridicule righteousness.
(1) Proverbs 14:9
(2) He will laugh at ungodliness, such as immorality, homosexuality,
drunkenness, etc.
iv) He rejoices in sin.
(1) Proverbs 15:21
(2) His moral sense has been perverted.
(a) He doesn’t know the difference between right and wrong.
(b) Isaiah 5:20
v) Proverbs 26:11
vi) Proverbs 17:10

vii) His heart is hard, his conscience is seared, and his mind is defiled. (1) Punishment will not change him.
(2) His moral sensibilities have been destroyed.
viii) Don’t let your children hang around scorners or fools.
PAGE 4 Copyright ©2021 Love Worth Finding Ministries, Inc.

FRIENDS | PROVERBS 17:17 | #2059
4) WHATCANPARENTSDOTOHELPTHEIRCHILDREN?
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Copyright ©2021 Love Worth Finding Ministries, Inc.
a)
Helpthemunderstandthedangersthatareinvolved. i) They do not understand the dangers.
ii) Proverbs19:25
(1) Young people do not see the consequences of sin because we have so dumbed down those consequences.
(2) Young people need to understand that there are consequences to sin. iii) Parents should take their children to the rescue mission so that they can
see the other side of addictions.
(1) The advertising that kids see for alcoholic beverages will never show
this other side.
iv) Your children need to understand that sin has repercussions. Carefullyguardtheircompany.
i) Proverbs 13:20
ii) Proverbs22:10

iii) Don’t allow your kids to hang around a scorner or fool.
iv) Parents should meet any boy who wants to date their daughter. Teachthemtheimportanceoftheirchoices.
i) Life is the sum total of our choices.
ii) Everychoicechangesus.
iii) We are free to choose, but we’re not free to choose the consequences of
our choice.
(1) After we choose, then our choice chooses for us. Helpyourchildrenselecttheirfriends.
i) One of the best things you can do is to make your home the most fun
place in town.
ii) Haveyourchildrenandtheirfriendsinyourhomesothatyoucanwatch
them and see what they’re like. Refusetohonorfools.
i) Proverbs 26:1
(1) Don’t get your entertainment from a fool.
ii) Don’tletyourchildrengotoconcertsorotherentertainmentvenues
where they will be entertained by those who have set themselves against
God and against wisdom.
There are additional things that parents need to do:
i) Have a positive attitude.
(1) Don’t talk down to your kids. (a) Words can hurt children.
(2) Don’t use words that belittle or put them down.
(3) Use words that build them up.
ii) Learntolistentothem.
iii) Try to see life from their point of view.
(1) Kids today are facing things that their parents never had to face.
b)
c)
d)
e)
f)

FRIENDS | PROVERBS 17:17 | #2059
iv) Be gentle with them.
(1) Psalm 18:35
(2) Fathers whose children adore them are strong and wise, but gentle.
(a) They are not harsh, and they don’t yell. v) Learn to touch and hug your teenager.
(1) Learn to show non-verbal expression.
(2) Be gentle with your kids. vi) Be transparent.
(1) Let them know your faults.
(a) They already know that you’re not perfect.
(2) Your kids don’t necessarily want you to be perfect; they just don’t want you to be a phony.
vii) Be available to your kids.
(1) A lack of a close relationship with a father is one of the biggest factors
to encouraging promiscuity in young girls, even more so than poverty. (a) Promiscuity is much less likely when there is a close relationship to
the father.
5) CONCLUSION
a) Itisokaytohavecasualfriendships.
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b) c)
d)
e) f)
g) h)
i) Invite them to church.
ii) Befriendly.
iii) Go out to eat together after the church service.
iv) But your teenagers should not make these kids their companions.
(1) Proverbs 13:20
Atruefriendissomeonewhoisfaithful.
i) Proverbs 17:17 Atruefriendissomeonewhoencouragesyouandmakesyoubetter.
i) They will sharpen you.
ii) Proverbs27:17 Oneofthemarksastowhetherornotyourfriendisatrue,godlyfriendis are you a better person for having been with that friend, or is he or she a better person for having been with you?
i) A true friend will challenge you.
ii) Proverbs27:6
Chooseyourfriendscarefully.
One of the greatest joys of your life or one of the greatest disappointments will be your friends. Thereisonefriendwhostickscloserthanabrother,andHisnameisJesus. i) Proverbs 18:24
ii) He’stheonewhowillguideyoutotherightfriendships. DoyouknowJesuspersonally?Ifnot,youcanpraytoHimtodaybyasking Him to come into your life.

FRIENDS | PROVERBS 17:17 | #2059
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i)
Call upon Jesus today. Repent (turn) from your sins, and turn to Jesus. Ask Him to forgive you of your sins, and acknowledge Him as Lord of your life.
i) Romans 3:23
ii) Romans10:9-10
iii) Romans 10:13
iv) Acts 16:31
v) John 3:16

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Seeing Jesus in Proverbs, Ecclesiastes, and Job

July 16, 2013 – 1:28 am

Ecclesiastes 8-10 | Still Searching After All These Years Published on Oct 9, 2012 Calvary Chapel Spring Valley | Sunday Evening | October 7, 2012 | Pastor Derek Neider _______________________ Ecclesiastes 11-12 | Solomon Finds His Way Published on Oct 30, 2012 Calvary Chapel Spring Valley | Sunday Evening | October 28, 2012 | Pastor Derek Neider […]By Everette Hatcher III | Posted in Current Events | Edit | Comments (0)

John MacArthur on Proverbs (Part 10) Summing up Proverbs study

May 30, 2013 – 1:06 am

Over and over in Proverbs you hear the words “fear the Lord.” In fact, some of he references are Proverbs 1:7, 29; 2:5; 8:13; 9:10;14:26,27; 15:16 and many more. Below is a sermon by John MacArthur from the Book of Luke on 3 reasons we should fear the Lord. (I have posted John MacArthur’s amazing […]By Everette Hatcher III | Posted in Adrian RogersCurrent Events | Edit | Comments (0)

John MacArthur on Proverbs (Part 9) “Love your neighbor”

May 28, 2013 – 1:23 am

Over and over in Proverbs you hear the words “fear the Lord.” In fact, some of he references are Proverbs 1:7, 29; 2:5; 8:13; 9:10;14:26,27; 15:16 and many more. Below is a sermon by John MacArthur from the Book of Luke on 3 reasons we should fear the Lord. (I have posted John MacArthur’s amazing […]By Everette Hatcher III | Posted in Adrian RogersCurrent Events | Edit | Comments (0)

John MacArthur on Proverbs (Part 8) “Manage your money”

May 23, 2013 – 1:35 am

Over and over in Proverbs you hear the words “fear the Lord.” In fact, some of he references are Proverbs 1:7, 29; 2:5; 8:13; 9:10;14:26,27; 15:16 and many more. Below is a sermon by John MacArthur from the Book of Luke on 3 reasons we should fear the Lord. (I have posted John MacArthur’s amazing […]By Everette Hatcher III | Posted in Adrian RogersCurrent Events | Edit | Comments (0)

John MacArthur on Proverbs (Part 7) “Pursue your work”

May 21, 2013 – 1:05 am

Over and over in Proverbs you hear the words “fear the Lord.” In fact, some of he references are Proverbs 1:7, 29; 2:5; 8:13; 9:10;14:26,27; 15:16 and many more. Below is a sermon by John MacArthur from the Book of Luke on 3 reasons we should fear the Lord. (I have posted John MacArthur’s amazing […]By Everette Hatcher III | Posted in Adrian RogersCurrent Events | Edit | Comments (0)

John MacArthur on Proverbs (Part 6) “Enjoy your wife and watch your words”

May 16, 2013 – 1:23 am

Over and over in Proverbs you hear the words “fear the Lord.” In fact, some of he references are Proverbs 1:7, 29; 2:5; 8:13; 9:10;14:26,27; 15:16 and many more. Below is a sermon by John MacArthur from the Book of Luke on 3 reasons we should fear the Lord. (I have posted John MacArthur’s amazing […]By Everette Hatcher III | Posted in Adrian RogersCurrent Events | Tagged Gene BartowJohn Wooden | Edit | Comments (0)

John MacArthur on Proverbs (Part 5) “Control your body”

May 14, 2013 – 1:44 am

Over and over in Proverbs you hear the words “fear the Lord.” In fact, some of he references are Proverbs 1:7, 29; 2:5; 8:13; 9:10;14:26,27; 15:16 and many more. Below is a sermon by John MacArthur from the Book of Luke on 3 reasons we should fear the Lord. (I have posted John MacArthur’s amazing […]By Everette Hatcher III | Posted in Adrian RogersCurrent Events | Edit | Comments (0)

John MacArthur on Proverbs (Part 4) “Bad company corrupts…”

May 9, 2013 – 1:10 am

Over and over in Proverbs you hear the words “fear the Lord.” In fact, some of he references are Proverbs 1:7, 29; 2:5; 8:13; 9:10;14:26,27; 15:16 and many more. Below is a sermon by John MacArthur from the Book of Luke on 3 reasons we should fear the Lord. (I have posted John MacArthur’s amazing […]By Everette Hatcher III | Posted in Adrian RogersCurrent Events | Edit | Comments (0)

John MacArthur on Proverbs (Part 3) “Guard your mind and obey your parents!!”

May 7, 2013 – 1:43 am

Over and over in Proverbs you hear the words “fear the Lord.” In fact, some of he references are Proverbs 1:7, 29; 2:5; 8:13; 9:10;14:26,27; 15:16 and many more. Below is a sermon by John MacArthur from the Book of Luke on 3 reasons we should fear the Lord. It is tough to guard your […]By Everette Hatcher III | Posted in Adrian RogersCurrent Events | Edit | Comments (0)

John MacArthur on Proverbs (Part 2) What does it mean to fear the Lord?

May 2, 2013 – 1:13 am

Over and over in Proverbs you hear the words “fear the Lord.” In fact, some of he references are Proverbs 1:7, 29; 2:5; 8:13; 9:10;14:26,27; 15:16 and many more. Below is a sermon by John MacArthur from the Book of Luke on 3 reasons we should fear the Lord. What does it mean to fear […]By Everette Hatcher III | Posted in Current EventsUncategorized | Edit | Comments (0)

The Wisdom of Solomon and the Book of Ecclesiastes

July 8, 2013 – 12:01 am

https://bidding-test.devops.iponweb.net/automattic/dio-passback.html

Ecclesiastes 6-8 | Solomon Turns Over a New Leaf Published on Oct 2, 2012 Calvary Chapel Spring Valley | Sunday Evening | September 30, 2012 | Pastor Derek Neider _____________________ I have written on the Book of Ecclesiastes and the subject of the meaning of our lives on several occasions on this blog. In this series on Ecclesiastes I […]By Everette Hatcher III | Posted in Current Events | Edit | Comments (0)

Why is Solomon so depressed in Ecclesiastes? by Brent Cunningham

July 3, 2013 – 7:00 am

Ecclesiastes 1 Published on Sep 4, 2012 Calvary Chapel Spring Valley | Sunday Evening | September 2, 2012 | Pastor Derek Neider _____________________ I have written on the Book of Ecclesiastes and the subject of the meaning of our lives on several occasions on this blog. In this series on Ecclesiastes I hope to show how […]By Everette Hatcher III | Posted in Current Events | Edit | Comments (0)

Robert Leroe on Ecclesiastes (Mentions Thomas Aquinas, Princess Diana, Mother Teresa, King Solomon, King Rehoboam, Eugene Peterson, Chuck Swindoll, and John Newton.)

June 19, 2013 – 1:30 am

Ecclesiastes 1 Published on Sep 4, 2012 Calvary Chapel Spring Valley | Sunday Evening | September 2, 2012 | Pastor Derek Neider _____________________ I have written on the Book of Ecclesiastes and the subject of the meaning of our lives on several occasions on this blog. In this series on Ecclesiastes I hope to show how […]By Everette Hatcher III | Posted in Current Events | Edit | Comments (0)

Solomon was the author of Ecclesiastes

June 11, 2013 – 1:55 am

Ecclesiastes 8-10 | Still Searching After All These Years Published on Oct 9, 2012 Calvary Chapel Spring Valley | Sunday Evening | October 7, 2012 | Pastor Derek Neider _______________________ Ecclesiastes 11-12 | Solomon Finds His Way Published on Oct 30, 2012 Calvary Chapel Spring Valley | Sunday Evening | October 28, 2012 | Pastor Derek Neider […]By Everette Hatcher III | Posted in Current Events | Edit | Comments (0)

Ecclesiastes: Solomon with Life in the Fast Lane

June 3, 2013 – 1:19 am

Ecclesiastes 6-8 | Solomon Turns Over a New Leaf Published on Oct 2, 2012 Calvary Chapel Spring Valley | Sunday Evening | September 30, 2012 | Pastor Derek Neider _____________________ I have written on the Book of Ecclesiastes and the subject of the meaning of our lives on several occasions on this blog. In this series […]By Everette Hatcher III | Posted in Current Events | Edit | Comments (0)

Ecclesiastes a scathing and self-deprecating attack on hedonism and secular humanism by Solomon

May 31, 2013 – 1:17 am

Ecclesiastes 4-6 | Solomon’s Dissatisfaction Published on Sep 24, 2012 Calvary Chapel Spring Valley | Sunday Evening | September 23, 2012 | Pastor Derek Neider ___________________ I have written on the Book of Ecclesiastes and the subject of the meaning of our lives on several occasions on this blog. In this series on Ecclesiastes I hope […]By Everette Hatcher III | Posted in Current Events | Edit | Comments (0)

Solomon was right in his cynicism–unless……unless there is a God who created us and cares about us

May 22, 2013 – 1:34 am

Ecclesiastes 8-10 | Still Searching After All These Years Published on Oct 9, 2012 Calvary Chapel Spring Valley | Sunday Evening | October 7, 2012 | Pastor Derek Neider _______________________ Ecclesiastes 11-12 | Solomon Finds His Way Published on Oct 30, 2012 Calvary Chapel Spring Valley | Sunday Evening | October 28, 2012 | Pastor Derek Neider […]By Everette Hatcher III | Posted in Current Events | Edit | Comments (0)

The Humanist takes on Solomon and the Book of Ecclesiastes

May 20, 2013 – 1:13 pm

Ecclesiastes 8-10 | Still Searching After All These Years Published on Oct 9, 2012 Calvary Chapel Spring Valley | Sunday Evening | October 7, 2012 | Pastor Derek Neider _______________________ Ecclesiastes 11-12 | Solomon Finds His Way Published on Oct 30, 2012 Calvary Chapel Spring Valley | Sunday Evening | October 28, 2012 | Pastor Derek Neider […]By Everette Hatcher III | Posted in Current Events | Edit | Comments (0)

Tom Brady , Coldplay, Kansas, Solomon and the search for satisfaction (part 3)

December 23, 2011 – 11:12 am

Tom Brady “More than this…” Uploaded by EdenWorshipCenter on Jan 22, 2008 EWC sermon illustration showing a clip from the 2005 Tom Brady 60 minutes interview. _______________________ Tom Brady ESPN Interview Tom Brady has famous wife earned over 76 million dollars last year. However, has Brady found lasting satifaction in his life? It does not […]By Everette Hatcher III | Posted in Current Events | Edit | Comments (0)

Adrian Rogers on gambling

July 18, 2013 – 12:44 am

Adrian Rogers: How to Be a Child of a Happy Mother Published on Nov 13, 2012 Series: Fortifying Your Family (To read along turn on the annotations.) Adrian Rogers looks at the 5th commandment and the relationship of motherhood in the commandment to honor your father and mother, because the faith that doesn’t begin at home, […]By Everette Hatcher III | Posted in Adrian RogersCurrent Events | Edit | Comments (0)

Book of Ecclesiastes

July 17, 2013 – 1:40 am

https://bidding-test.devops.iponweb.net/automattic/dio-passback.html

Ecclesiastes 1 Published on Sep 4, 2012 Calvary Chapel Spring Valley | Sunday Evening | September 2, 2012 | Pastor Derek Neider _____________________ I have written on the Book of Ecclesiastes and the subject of the meaning of our lives on several occasions on this blog. In this series on Ecclesiastes I hope to show how secular humanist man […]By Everette Hatcher III | Posted in Current Events | Edit | Comments (0)

Adrian Rogers: Are fathers necessary?

July 16, 2013 – 12:43 am

Adrian Rogers – How to Cultivate a Marriage Another great article from Adrian Rogers. Are fathers necessary? “Artificial insemination is the ideal method of producing a pregnancy, and a lesbian partner should have the same parenting rights accorded historically to biological fathers.” Quoted from the United Nations Fourth World Conference on Women, summer of 1995. […]By Everette Hatcher III | Posted in Adrian RogersCurrent Events | Edit | Comments (0)

Tom Brady, Coldplay, Kansas, Solomon and the search for satisfaction (part 2)

December 22, 2011 – 11:56 am

Tom Brady “More than this…” Uploaded by EdenWorshipCenter on Jan 22, 2008 EWC sermon illustration showing a clip from the 2005 Tom Brady 60 minutes interview. To Download this video copy the URL to http://www.vixy.net ________________ Obviously from the video clip above, Tom Brady has realized that even though he has won many Super Bowls […]

New Ricky Gervais Netflix comedy special torched by media critics for ‘bigotry,’ ‘humiliation of trans people’ 

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Peter Singer on Richard Dawkins and cancellation for comments on transge…

Richard Dawkins loses Humanist of the Year award over trans comments


New Ricky Gervais Netflix comedy special torched by media critics for ‘bigotry,’ ‘humiliation of trans people’

Gervais’ new stand-up special ‘SuperNature’ was released on Netflix Tuesday

By Gabriel Hays | Fox News

TODAY -- Pictured: Ricky Gervais on Tuesday, March 13, 2018 -- (Photo by: Nathan Congleton/NBCU Photo Bank/NBCUniversal via Getty Images via Getty Images)

TODAY — Pictured: Ricky Gervais on Tuesday, March 13, 2018 — (Photo by: Nathan Congleton/NBCU Photo Bank/NBCUniversal via Getty Images via Getty Images)

Multiple liberal media outlets are having a hard time dealing with taboo-breaking comedian Ricky Gervais’new Netflix comedy special because of its jokes about transgender people.

Gervais’ new special, titled “SuperNature,” debuted on the streaming platform Tuesday and has already received multiple scathing reviews for containing several outrageous jokes about trans people and the activists who aggressively insist that the public respect their pronouns. 

Hollywood magazine Variety, and British outlets Metro and The Independent clutched their collective pearls over the special. 

Variety’s opening salvo skewered it for trying to “score points off of a marginalized group of people.” The Hollywood outlet slammed the special as a “collision between two malign forces,” namely Gervais and Netflix. It blasted Gervais as a mere attention seeker and slammed Netflix for publishing the special, reminding readers that the platform stood by comedian Dave Chappelle when he made jokes the trans community found detestable last year.

WAPO, NYT SPILL TONS OF INK EXPLAINING AWAY BIDEN’S TAIWAN GAFFE: ‘HIS STRENGTH IS AUTHENTICITY’

Netflix is taking heat for publishing a Ricky Gervais stand-up special that mocks trans people. 

Netflix is taking heat for publishing a Ricky Gervais stand-up special that mocks trans people. 

The Variety piece brutalized the comedian, stating, “Gervais, since the end of his British comedy series ‘The Office,’ has lived his life in public as an escalating series of bids for attention often mistaking a substantial portion of the audience’s boredom with his routine as a sign that he was shocking the right people.”

It then skewered Netflix for promoting “hateful speech,” adding, “And Netflix, stung by a recent employee revolt over jokes about trans people in Dave Chappelle’s 2021 special ‘The Closer,’ is repositioning itself as a place where free speech means the streamer financing, distributing, and promoting hateful speech.”

Variety described Gervais’ set as “graphically describing the things he hates about a group of people already forced to the margins of our society by prejudice and, increasingly, by law.” 

It slammed Netflix again, stating, “It may come as a surprise to those who took Netflix at their word: The streamer’s social channels, including one staffed by queer and trans people, have worked to create the impression that the service is a place with a vested interest in celebrating trans people.”

British outlet The Independent gave “SuperNature” a two-star (out of five) review for its offensive jokes. The subheading read, “As is all too frequent these days, the longest riff is reserved for the humiliation of trans people.”

The review added, “The problem with SuperNature, as with much comedy these days, progressive or irreverent, is that it finds itself sucked into the self-referential death spiral of the culture wars.” It described Gervais as a “master of this,” reveling in the “’you can’t say that anymore’ element of taboo comedy.”

“Being offended by the content is a victory for Gervais, who is more comfortable in the composition of quips that rely on a cheap shock factor than any emotional or creative truth,” the review added. 

Gervais angered several outlets on Tuesday for his transgender jokes in a recent Netflix stand-up special.

Gervais angered several outlets on Tuesday for his transgender jokes in a recent Netflix stand-up special. (Photo by Paul Drinkwater/NBCUniversal Media, LLC)

The piece also went after the audience, claiming, “They hoot and holler along with all the bigotry, seeming to enjoy it more the closer it gets to the edge, the more buttons it pushes.”

UK outlet Metro described Gervais’ special was packed with “cruel jokes,” and said, “Ricky Gervais used ample time in his new Netflix special to mock trans people, saying that ‘old-fashioned women’ are ‘the ones with wombs’ and joking about transitioning to become ‘Vicky Gervais.’”

The reviewer complained, “However, the comedian claimed he is a supporter of trans rights, saying as such to his audience – before making yet another derogatory quip about the community.”

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Gabriel Hays is an associate editor at Fox News. Follow him on Twitter at @gabrieljhays.

Kentucky lawmakers override governor’s veto of bill banning transgender athletes from girls’ sports

A.F. Branco for Jan 12, 2022

The Republican-controlled legislature in Kentuckyvoted Wednesday to override Democrat Gov. Andy Beshear’s veto of legislation that would prohibit transgender athletes from competing in sex-segregated sporting events from sixth grade through college.

The expected move came after Beshear refused to sign Senate Bill 83 last week and claimed it was most likely unconstitutional. He said the legislation “discriminates against transgender people” and therefore would not hold up in court.

Kentucky State Capitol in Frankfort, Kentucky on July 29, 2019.

Kentucky State Capitol in Frankfort, Kentucky on July 29, 2019. (Photo By Raymond Boyd/Getty Images)

The measure is now law in the state after the Republicans overrode the veto of the legislation, which originally passed through the state House with a 70 to 23 vote and the state Senate with a 26 to 9 vote.

Under the new law, a student’s gender will be determined by the “biological sex” indicated on the student’s certified birth certificate “as originally issued at the time of birth or adoption.” This means individuals who transitioned to female later in life could not participate on sports teams designated female in the state.

Republican Sen. Robby Mills, the bill’s lead sponsor, has said the measure would ensure girls and women compete against other “biological females.”

Andy Beshear, governor of Kentucky, speaks during a news conference in Frankfort, Kentucky, U.S., on Thursday, Jan. 27, 2022.

Andy Beshear, governor of Kentucky, speaks during a news conference in Frankfort, Kentucky, U.S., on Thursday, Jan. 27, 2022. (Jon Cherry/Bloomberg via Getty Images)

Mills has said the bill reflects concerns from parents across the Bluegrass State. He said it “thinks ahead” to prevent situations where girls or women are unfairly competing against biological males.

“It would be crushing for a young lady to train her whole career to have it end up competing against a biological male in the state tournament or state finals,” Mills said during a previous debate on the bill.

In vetoing the measure, Beshear said its backers had failed to present a “single instance” in Kentucky of someone gaining a competitive advantage as a result of a “sex reassignment.”

A car is seen at driving by the Capitol Building on January 16, 2021 in Frankfort, Kentucky.

A car is seen at driving by the Capitol Building on January 16, 2021 in Frankfort, Kentucky. (Jon Cherry/Getty Images)

“Transgender children deserve public officials’ efforts to demonstrate that they are valued members of our communities through compassion, kindness and empathy, even if not understanding,” the governor wrote.

The measure also faced criticism from others in the state.

“This bill is a solution in search of a non-existent problem,” said Samuel Crankshaw, a spokesperson for the American Civil Liberties Union of Kentucky. “It is rooted in hate and unconstitutional.”

Fox News’ Timothy H.J. Nerozzi and The Associated Press contributed to this article.


A Proclamation on Transgender Day Of Visibility, 2022

MARCH 30, 2022PRESIDENTIAL ACTIONS

BY THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA

A PROCLAMATION

In the past year, hundreds of anti-transgender bills in States were proposed across America, most of them targeting transgender kids.  The onslaught has continued this year.  These bills are wrong.  Efforts to criminalize supportive medical care for transgender kids, to ban transgender children from playing sports, and to outlaw discussing LGBTQI+ people in schools undermine their humanity and corrode our Nation’s values.  Studies have shown that these political attacks are damaging to the mental health and well-being of transgender youth, putting children and their families at greater risk of bullying and discrimination.

Transgenderism: Why Stop There?

Deroy Murdock  / April 01, 2022

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LGBT activists rally on the steps of New York City Hall in support of transgender people on Oct. 24, 2018. (Photo: Drew Angerer/Getty Images)

COMMENTARY BY

Deroy Murdock

Deroy Murdock is a Manhattan-based Fox News contributor, a contributing editor with National Review Online, and a senior fellow with the London Center for Policy Research.

“Identifying” as someone who one is not has become all the rage. If you think you’re somebody you’re not, the whole world is expected to nod its collective head, if not stand up and cheer.

This is especially true for gender identity, as William “Lia” Thomas has demonstrated so vividly in collegiate swimming pools. Unheralded male swimmer William Thomas became NCAA champion female swimmer Lia Thomas—Shazam!—just by saying so.

What a cool magic trick.

Gone are the days when a guy had to put some skin in the game to pull this off. Or, more accurately, pull something off to get some skin out of the game; namely, his penis. The old carving-station requirement for gender transition has gone the way of the rotary telephone. Today, mere affirmations will suffice.

“Hey, I’m a girl!” And you are.

As Yogi Berra might say, if he were alive and not in shock: “Only in America.”

Since simple declarations of identity can change people more swiftly than scalpels, what’s next after the triumph of transgenderism?

Why not transnationalism?

Visualize Lupita Martinez. She lives in poverty in Honduras. The mean streets of Tegucigalpa keep her at wits’ end. A crime surge on public transportation is the last macaw that breaks the branch of her patience.

So, Martinez joins a caravan and heads north, to the U.S.-Mexican frontier.

When she comes face to face with a Border Patrol agent, Martinez says the magic words: “I identify as an American.”

“Welcome home, Lupita!” the federal agent says with a warm smile, as he waves this Honduran American citizen back where she belongs.

And why not transracialism?

Picture Ludwig Von Thannhausen, age 18. He lives in suburban Chicago with his native German parents who brought him to America as a baby. He has blond hair, blue eyes, and looks like a young man born in Oberpfaffenhofen who also happens to be white.

But Von Thannhausen can’t get enough of things black.

He is obsessed with the Harlem Renaissance. He knows the literature of Langston Hughes better than Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, the paintings of Aaron Douglas more than Max Ernst, and the music of Duke Ellington deeper than Richard Wagner.

His heroes stretch from Frederick Douglass to the Tuskegee Airmen to Denzel Washington. He listens to everything from Motown to Parliament Funkadelic to Prince to Kanye West.

He dreams of majoring in black studies at Howard University in Washington, D.C., a historically black college. In fact, he’s applying as a black student and seeks scholarships intended for black applicants.

Von Thannhausen resembles a recruit for the Aryan Nation, but he said the secret words: “I identify as black.”

Who are we to disagree? If that’s his identity, that’s his identity.

And if his good grades, decent SAT scores, and impressive baseball record land him a spot at Howard, plus a $50,000 minority scholarship, then who are we to say that he is not really black?

But what would we say to the kid who actually is black (you know: dark skin, dark hair, etc.), applies to Howard, and misses out on admission, a scholarship, or both? If not for Von Thannhausen, those blessings would be hers.

Why not transindividualism?

Imagine that Bob Glenwood has multiple-personality disorder. He identifies as Bob Glenwood, but also as Steve Jones, Myron Shapiro, Jackie Washington, and Concepcion Gomez.

So, he fills out five voter registration applications and requests five absentee ballots.

Who are we to say that Glenwood deserves just one ballot? How dare we disenfranchise the other four people who live inside his brain? That would be Jim Crow 3.0.

As these (for now) fictional scenarios show, America will plunge into ever deeper chaos if we simply let people “identify” as those they are not and then deprive others of goods and benefits meant for people who legitimately embody those identities.

I identify as Walter Cronkite, and that’s the way it is.

The Daily Signal publishes a variety of perspectives. Nothing written here is to be construed as representing the views of The Heritage Foundation.

Have an opinion about this article? To sound off, please email letters@DailySignal.com and we’ll consider publishing your edited remarks in our regular “We Hear You” feature. Remember to include the url or headline of the article plus your name and town and/or state.

SOCIETYNEWS

The Equal Rights of Female Athletes Are Being Infringed’: Women’s Group Files Civil Rights Complaint Over Transgender Swimmer

Maggie Hroncich  / March 18, 2022

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Female swimmers (from left) Emma Weyant, Erica Sullivan, and Brooke Forde place behind Lia Thomas (left), the biologically male transgender swimmer who won the NCAA Division 1 women’s 500-yard freestyle on Thursday. (Photo: Justin Casterline/Getty Images)

Concerned Women for America filed a formal civil rights complaint against the University of Pennsylvania on Thursday, contending the school is violating Title IX requirements designed to protect the rights of female student athletes. 

The complaint came the same day transgender University of Pennsylvania swimmer Lia Thomas, a biological male, won the 500-yard freestyle at the NCAA’s Division 1 Women’s Swimming and Diving Championships in Atlanta. Thomas is set to compete in the 100-yard and 200-yard freestyles today and tomorrow.

Thomas, who had previously competed on the men’s team, has been dominating women’s competitions and shattering records since switching to the women’s team in 2020.

“Thomas is anatomically and biologically a male with physical capacities that are different from anatomically and biologically female athletes, which extends an unfair advantage and strips female student athletes of opportunities afforded to them by law,” according to a statement from Concerned Women for America, a Christian conservative public policy organization. 

The complaint cites federal Title IX requirements for schools to provide equal educational opportunities, including in athletics, to receive federal funding. 

The future of women’s sports is at risk, and the equal rights of female athletes are being infringed,” said Penny Nance, CEO and president of Concerned Women for America. “Any school that defies federal civil rights law by denying women equal opportunities in athletic programs, forcing women to compete against athletes who are biologically male, must be held accountable.”

Jay Richards, a senior research fellow at The Heritage Foundation’s DeVos Center for Religion and Civil Society, expressed support for Concerned Women for America’s complaint against the University of Pennsylvania. (The Daily Signal is the news outlet of The Heritage Foundation.)

“The case of Lia (formerly Will) Thomas at the University of Pennsylvania is a highly visible example of how gender ideology is already wreaking havoc in our schools,” Richards said. “And it’s clearly a violation of the spirit and letter of Title IX. I just hope that courts have the courage to recognize that. If justice is to be served, then CWA should prevail.” 

Before I show the clip from AFTER LIFE let me show you how inconsistent humanists can be with this article below. Humanist claim to be the biggest supporters of women’s rights!!

A.F. Branco for Jan 12, 2022

By Canceling Richard Dawkins, the American Humanist Association Has Betrayed Its Values

The drive to punish dissenters from various orthodoxies is itself illiberal.

ROBBY SOAVE | 4.26.2021 1:00 PM

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(Katja Ogrin/Empics Entertainment/ZUMA Press/Newscom)

Last week, the American Humanist Association (AHA) stripped British author Richard Dawkins of his 1996 Humanist of the Year award after he made a comment on Twitter that offended some in the transgender community.

“Regrettably, Richard Dawkins has over the past several years accumulated a history of making statements that use the guise of scientific discourse to demean marginalized groups, an approach antithetical to humanist values,” said the AHA. “His latest statement implies that the identities of transgender individuals are fraudulent, while also simultaneously attacking Black identity as one that can be assumed when convenient.”

This is nonsense: Dawkins had raised a point that it is perfectly worthy of discussion, in accordance with the rationalist philosophy of the humanist movement. But it would also have been ridiculous for the organization to punish Dawkins even if the remark had been offensive, given that many of its past awardees have espoused controversial views, and even said insensitive things on Twitter.

Here was Dawkins’ tweet, which concerned Rachel Dolezal, a chapter president of the NAACP who engendered controversy for identifying as black even though she was a white woman:

If it’s disqualifying to express confusion about progressives’ simultaneous embrace of transgender people and vehement rejection of transracial people, I suppose that I will never win a Humanist of the Year award. I wrote the following in my 2019 book, Panic Attack: Young Radicals in the Age of Trump:

If we accept, as many on the left do, that people can identify as female even though they were born male, why is it unthinkable for people to identify as black when they were born white? How can the left embrace transgender people without even considering the possibility that there could be transracial people? (Race, after all, is more obviously socially constructed than gender. While our conception of gender is at least partly based on biological differences between the sexes, the same is not true for race.)

The point is not to demean transgender people, but to question why people like Dolezal instantly warranted pariah status. Dawkins subsequently clarified that it was not his intention “to ally in any way with Republican bigots in US now exploiting this issue.”

But according to the AHA, this clarification evinced “neither sensitivity nor sincerity.” Dawkins’ name is no longer listed on the website’s awardees page.

Perusing this page reveals something interesting: There are far more controversial past winners than Dawkins. The AHA gave Humanist of the Year awards to the author and activist Alice Walker—who promoted anti-Semitic conspiracy theories—and also to Margaret Sanger, the founder of Planned Parenthood who promoted eugenics and white supremacy. Sanger’s legacy is so complicated that her own organization is currently disowning her.

The AHA has also given lesser awards to several individuals with a history of provocative statements and bad tweets: Jessica ValentiCenk Uygur, and others. To be clear, the AHA is within its rights to give or rescind awards to anyone it wishes, for any reason. But people who support the organization’s mission have the same right to criticize it for hypocrisy.

Two such critics are Rebecca Goldstein and Steven Pinker, who won the Humanist of the Year award in 2011 and 2006, respectively. Goldstein and Pinker wrote an open letter to the AHA calling on it to reverse course:

Dawkins did not call for discrimination against or marginalization of any individual or group. And he explicitly denied any intention to disparage anyone or to lend support to transphobic or racist political movements.  Now, it would still be completely appropriate for those of you who objected to the substance of his tweets to criticize them in The Humanist or other forums, explaining the nature of their objections. But to seek to punish, dishonor, or humiliate a writer rather than engage with his words is a betrayal of humanism.

The Humanist Manifesto III declares that “the lifestance of humanism [is] guided by reason.” Since no one is infallible, reason requires that a diverse range of ideas be expressed and debated openly, including ones that some people find unfamiliar or uncomfortable. To demonize a writer rather than address the writer’s arguments is a confession that one has no rational response to them.

This illiberal response is all the more damaging to an organization that claims to repudiate the repressive practices of religion. It has not been lost on commentators that an association of “freethinkers” has deemed certain thoughts unthinkable, nor that it is enforcing dogmas and catechisms by excommunicating a heretic. The AHA is turning itself into a laughingstock.

Goldstein and Pinker are quite right. The AHA’s own values require tolerance of difficult conversations around public policy subjects, rather than a knee-jerk drive to punish dissenters from orthodoxies.

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After Life #1 Trailer

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I listened to this question and answer session at Harvard in 1992 on cassette tapes and was captivated with Ravi Zacharias. His responses were so much better than Kath’s responses to Tony in AFTER LIFE. I have referenced work by Ravi many times in the past and Especially moving was Ravi’s own spiritual search which started in a hospital bed after a failed suicide attempt. I also want you to check out his talk at Princeton and the question and answer time afterwards which are both on YOU TUBEat these two links: Link for talk, Link for Q/A.

After Life 2 Trailer

On Saturday April 18, 2020 at 6pm in London and noon in Arkansas, I had a chance to ask Ricky Gervais a question on his Twitter Live broadcast which was  “Is Tony a Nihilist?” At the 20:51 mark Ricky answers my question. Below is the video:

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If Death is the end then what is the point Kath asks below:

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Francis Schaeffer passed away on May 15, 1984 and on the 10th anniversary of that date I wrote many skeptics such as Carl Sagan and corresponded with them on the big questions covered by the Book of Ecclesiastes.

Kath: You are an atheist?

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Adrian Rogers on Evolution

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Ravi Zacharias  (March 26, 1946 – May 19, 2020) 

Francis Schaeffer (January 30, 1912 – May 15, 1984[1]

Francis Schaeffer.jpg


I grew up at Bellevue Baptist Church under the leadership of our pastor Adrian Rogers and I read many books by the Evangelical Philosopher Francis Schaeffer and in 1992 I heard cassette tapes of Ravi Zacharias in all his brilliance in his sessions at Harvard and have had the opportunity to contact many of the evolutionists or humanistic academics that they have mentioned in their works. Many of these scholars have taken the time to respond back to me in the last 20 years and some of the names  included are  Ernest Mayr (1904-2005), George Wald (1906-1997), Carl Sagan (1934-1996),  Robert Shapiro (1935-2011), Nicolaas Bloembergen (1920-),  Brian Charlesworth (1945-),  Francisco J. Ayala (1934-) Elliott Sober (1948-), Kevin Padian (1951-), Matt Cartmill (1943-) , Milton Fingerman (1928-), John J. Shea (1969-), , Michael A. Crawford (1938-), Paul Kurtz (1925-2012), Sol Gordon (1923-2008), Albert Ellis (1913-2007), Barbara Marie Tabler (1915-1996), Renate Vambery (1916-2005), Archie J. Bahm (1907-1996), Aron S “Gil” Martin ( 1910-1997), Matthew I. Spetter (1921-2012), H. J. Eysenck (1916-1997), Robert L. Erdmann (1929-2006), Mary Morain (1911-1999), Lloyd Morain (1917-2010),  Warren Allen Smith (1921-), Bette Chambers (1930-),  Gordon Stein (1941-1996) , Milton Friedman (1912-2006), John Hospers (1918-2011), Michael Martin (1932-).Harry Kroto (1939-), Marty E. Martin (1928-), Richard Rubenstein (1924-), James Terry McCollum (1936-), Edward O. WIlson (1929-), Lewis Wolpert (1929), Gerald Holton(1922-), Martin Rees (1942-), Alan Macfarlane (1941-),  Roald Hoffmann (1937-), Herbert Kroemer (1928-), Thomas H. Jukes(1906-1999) and  Ray T. Cragun (1976-).

 Adrian Rogers (September 12, 1931 – November 15, 2005) 

Adrian Rogers.jpg

Charles Darwin Autobiography


Francis Schaeffer “The Age of NONREASON”

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(Above) Tony and Anne on the bench at the graveyard where their spouses are buried.

July 9, 2020 
Ricky Gervais 


Dear Ricky,  

This is the 83rd day in a row that I have written another open letter to you to comment on some of your episodes of AFTER LIFE, and then I wanted to pass along some evidence that indicates the Bible is historically accurate from Francis Schaeffer and Dr. C. Everett Koop Book WHATEVER HAPPENED TO THE HUMAN RACE?

In the 6th episode of the second season of AFTERLIFE Tony and Lenny interview a 50 year old person who pretends to be a 8 year old little girl when everyone in his family knows this person has been around for 50 years. 

Just pretending something is true does not make it true. This was true too for Jean Paul Sartre. The atheist Sartre said that this Godless universe has no meaning but “Let’s pretend the universe has meaning.” But this is just fooling ourselves. 

Let me share a portion of an article by William Lane Craig with you.

The Absurdity of Life without God

William Lane Craig

SUMMARY

Why on atheism life has no ultimate meaning, value, or purpose, and why this view is unlivable.

Francis Schaeffer has explained this point well. Modern man, says Schaeffer, resides in a two-story universe. In the lower story is the finite world without God; here life is absurd, as we have seen. In the upper story are meaning, value, and purpose. Now modern man lives in the lower story because he believes there is no God. But he cannot live happily in such an absurd world; therefore, he continually makes leaps of faith into the upper story to affirm meaning, value, and purpose, even though he has no right to, since he does not believe in God.

Let’s look again, then, at each of the three areas in which we saw life was absurd without God, to show how man cannot live consistently and happily with his atheism.

Meaning of Life

First, the area of meaning. We saw that without God, life has no meaning. Yet philosophers continue to live as though life does have meaning. For example, Sartre argued that one may create meaning for his life by freely choosing to follow a certain course of action. Sartre himself chose Marxism.

Now this is utterly inconsistent. It is inconsistent to say life is objectively absurd and then to say one may create meaning for his life. If life is really absurd, then man is trapped in the lower story. To try to create meaning in life represents a leap to the upper story. But Sartre has no basis for this leap. Without God, there can be no objective meaning in life. Sartre’s program is actually an exercise in self-delusion. Sartre is really saying, “Let’s pretend the universe has meaning.” And this is just fooling ourselves.

The point is this: if God does not exist, then life is objectively meaningless; but man cannot live consistently and happily knowing that life is meaningless; so in order to be happy he pretends life has meaning. But this is, of course, entirely inconsistent—for without God, man and the universe are without any real significance.

Value of Life

Turn now to the problem of value. Here is where the most blatant inconsistencies occur. First of all, atheistic humanists are totally inconsistent in affirming the traditional values of love and brotherhood. Camus has been rightly criticized for inconsistently holding both to the absurdity of life and the ethics of human love and brotherhood. The two are logically incompatible. Bertrand Russell, too, was inconsistent. For though he was an atheist, he was an outspoken social critic, denouncing war and restrictions on sexual freedom. Russell admitted that he could not live as though ethical values were simply a matter of personal taste, and that he therefore found his own views “incredible.” “I do not know the solution,” he confessed.” [7] The point is that if there is no God, then objective right and wrong cannot exist. As Dostoyevsky said, “All things are permitted.”

But Dostoyevsky also showed that man cannot live this way. He cannot live as though it is perfectly all right for soldiers to slaughter innocent children. He cannot live as though it is all right for dictators like Pol Pot to exterminate millions of their own countrymen. Everything in him cries out to say these acts are wrong—really wrong. But if there is no God, he cannot. So he makes a leap of faith and affirms values anyway. And when he does so, he reveals the inadequacy of a world without God.

The horror of a world devoid of value was brought home to me with new intensity a few years ago as I viewed a BBC television documentary called “The Gathering.” It concerned the reunion of survivors of the Holocaust in Jerusalem, where they rediscovered lost friendships and shared their experiences. One woman prisoner, a nurse, told of how she was made the gynecologist at Auschwitz. She observed that pregnant women were grouped together by the soldiers under the direction of Dr. Mengele and housed in the same barracks. Some time passed, and she noted that she no longer saw any of these women. She made inquiries. “Where are the pregnant women who were housed in that barracks?” “Haven’t you heard?” came the reply. “Dr. Mengele used them for vivisection.”

Another woman told of how Mengele had bound up her breasts so that she could not suckle her infant. The doctor wanted to learn how long an infant could survive without nourishment. Desperately this poor woman tried to keep her baby alive by giving it pieces of bread soaked in coffee, but to no avail. Each day the baby lost weight, a fact that was eagerly monitored by Dr. Mengele. A nurse then came secretly to this woman and told her, “I have arranged a way for you to get out of here, but you cannot take your baby with you. I have brought a morphine injection that you can give to your child to end its life.” When the woman protested, the nurse was insistent: “Look, your baby is going to die anyway. At least save yourself.” And so this mother took the life of her own baby. Dr. Mengele was furious when he learned of it because he had lost his experimental specimen, and he searched among the dead to find the baby’s discarded corpse so that he could have one last weighing.

My heart was torn by these stories. One rabbi who survived the camp summed it up well when he said that at Auschwitz it was as though there existed a world in which all the Ten Commandments were reversed. Mankind had never seen such a hell.

And yet, if God does not exist, then in a sense, our world is Auschwitz: there is no absolute right and wrong; all things are permitted. But no atheist, no agnostic, can live consistently with such a view. Nietzsche himself, who proclaimed the necessity of living beyond good and evil, broke with his mentor Richard Wagner precisely over the issue of the composer’s anti-Semitism and strident German nationalism. Similarly Sartre, writing in the aftermath of the Second World War, condemned anti-Semitism, declaring that a doctrine that leads to extermination is not merely an opinion or matter of personal taste, of equal value with its opposite. [8] In his important essay “Existentialism Is a Humanism,” Sartre struggles vainly to elude the contradiction between his denial of divinely pre-established values and his urgent desire to affirm the value of human persons. Like Russell, he could not live with the implications of his own denial of ethical absolutes.

A second problem is that if God does not exist and there is no immortality, then all the evil acts of men go unpunished and all the sacrifices of good men go unrewarded. But who can live with such a view? Richard Wurmbrand, who has been tortured for his faith in communist prisons, says,

The cruelty of atheism is hard to believe when man has no faith in the reward of good or the punishment of evil. There is no reason to be human. There is no restraint from the depths of evil which is in man. The communist torturers often said, ‘There is no God, no Hereafter, no punishment for evil. We can do what we wish.’ I have heard one torturer even say, ‘I thank God, in whom I don’t believe, that I have lived to this hour when I can express all the evil in my heart.’ He expressed it in unbelievable brutality and torture inflicted on prisoners. [9]

And the same applies to acts of self-sacrifice. A number of years ago, a terrible mid-winter air disaster occurred in which a plane leaving the Washington, D.C., airport smashed into a bridge spanning the Potomac River, plunging its passengers into the icy waters. As the rescue helicopters came, attention was focused on one man who again and again pushed the dangling rope ladder to other passengers rather than be pulled to safety himself. Six times he passed the ladder by. When they came again, he was gone. He had freely given his life that others might live. The whole nation turned its eyes to this man in respect and admiration for the selfless and good act he had performed. And yet, if the atheist is right, that man was not noble—he did the stupidest thing possible. He should have gone for the ladder first, pushed others away if necessary in order to survive. But to die for others he did not even know, to give up all the brief existence he would ever have—what for? For the atheist there can be no reason. And yet the atheist, like the rest of us, instinctively reacts with praise for this man’s selfless action. Indeed, one will probably never find an atheist who lives consistently with his system. For a universe without moral accountability and devoid of value is unimaginably terrible.

The Success of Biblical Christianity

But if atheism fails in this regard, what about biblical Christianity? According to the Christian world view, God does exist, and man’s life does not end at the grave. In the resurrection body man may enjoy eternal life and fellowship with God. Biblical Christianity therefore provides the two conditions necessary for a meaningful, valuable, and purposeful life for man: God and immortality. Because of this, we can live consistently and happily. Thus, biblical Christianity succeeds precisely where atheism breaks down.

Conclusion

Now I want to make it clear that I have not yet shown biblical Christianity to be true. But what I have done is clearly spell out the alternatives. If God does not exist, then life is futile. If the God of the Bible does exist, then life is meaningful. Only the second of these two alternatives enables us to live happily and consistently. Therefore, it seems to me that even if the evidence for these two options were absolutely equal, a rational person ought to choose biblical Christianity. It seems to me positively irrational to prefer death, futility, and destruction to life, meaningfulness, and happiness. As Pascal said, we have nothing to lose and infinity to gain.

  • [1]Kai Nielsen, “Why Should I Be Moral?” American Philosophical Quarterly 21 (1984): 90.
  • [2]Richard Taylor, Ethics, Faith, and Reason (Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice Hall, 1985), 90, 84.
  • [3]H.G. Wells, The Time Machine (New York: Berkeley, 1957), chap. 11.
  • [4]W.E. Hocking, Types of Philosophy (New York: Scribner’s, 1959), 27.
  • [5]Friedrich Nietzsche, “The Gay Science,” in The Portable Nietzsche, ed. and trans. W. Kaufmann (New York: Viking, 1954), 95.
  • [6]Bertrand Russell, “A Free Man’s Worship,” in Why I Am Not a Christian, ed. P. Edwards (New York: Simon & Schuster, 1957), 107.
  • [7]Bertrand Russell, Letter to the Observer, 6 October, 1957.
  • [8]Jean Paul Sartre, “Portrait of the Antisemite,” in Existentialism from Dostoyevsky to Satre, rev. ed., ed. Walter Kaufmann (New York: New Meridian Library, 1975), p. 330.
  • [9]Richard Wurmbrand, Tortured for Christ (London: Hodder & Stoughton, 1967), 34.
  • [10]Ernst Bloch, Das Prinzip Hoffnung, 2d ed., 2 vols. (Frankfurt am Main: Suhrkamp Verlag, 1959), 2:360-1.
  • [11]Loyal D. Rue, “The Saving Grace of Noble Lies,” address to the American Academy for the Advancement of Science, February, 1991.

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This reminds me of an illustration from Francis Schaeffer of what existentialism means: 

When we speak of irrationalism or existentialism or the existential methodology, we are pointing to a quite simple idea. It may have been expressed in a variety of complicated ways by philosophers, but it is not a difficult concept.
Imagine that you are at the movies watching a suspense film. As the story unfolds, the tension increases until finally the hero is trapped in some impossible situation and everyone is groaning inwardly, wondering how he is going to get out of the mess. The suspense is heightened by the knowledge (of the audience, not the hero) that help is on the way in the form of the good guys. The only question is: will the good guys arrive in time?
Now imagine for a moment that the audience is slipped the information that there are no good guys, that the situation of the hero is not just desperate, but completely hopeless. Obviously, the first thing that would happen is that the suspense would be gone. You and the entire audience would simply be waiting for the axe to fall.
If the hero faced the end with courage, this would be morally edifying, but the situation itself would be tragic. If, however, the hero acted as if help were around the corner and kept buoying himself up with this thought (“Someone is on the way!” – “Help is at hand!”), all you could feel for him would be pity. It would be a means to keep hope alive within a hopeless situation. The hero’s hope would change nothing on the outside; it would be unable to manufacture, out of nothing, good guys coming to the rescue. All it would achieve would the hero’s own mental state of hopefulness rather than hopelessness.
The hopefulness itself would rest on a lie or an illusion and thus, viewed objectively, would be finally absurd. And if the hero really knew what the situation was, but consciously used the falsehood to buoy up his feelings and go whistling along, we would either say, “Poor guy!” or “He’s a fool.” It is this kind of conscious deceit that someone like Woody Allen has looked full in the face and will have none of.
Now this is what the existential methodology is about. If the universe we are living in is what the materialistic humanists say it is, then with our reason (when we stop to think about it) we could find absolutely no way to have meaning or morality or hope or beauty. This would plunge us into despair. We would have to take seriously the challenge of Albert Camus (1913-1960) in the first sentence of The Myth of Sisyphus: “There is but one truly serious philosophical problem, and that is suicide.”92 Why stay alive in an absurd universe? Ah! But that is not where we stop. We say to ourselves – “There is hope!” (even though there is no help). “We shall overcome!” (even though nothing is more certain than that we shall be destroyed, both individually at death and cosmically with the end of all conscious life). This is what confronts us on all sides today: the modern irrationalism.

Francis Schaeffer has correctly argued:

The universe was created by an infinite personal God and He brought it into existence by spoken word and made man in His own image. When man tries to reduce [philosophically in a materialistic point of view] himself to less than this [less than being made in the image of God] he will always fail and he will always be willing to make these impossible leaps into the area of nonreason even though they don’t give an answer simply because that isn’t what he is. He himself testifies that this infinite personal God, the God of the Old and New Testament is there. 

Instead of making a leap into the area of nonreason the better choice would be to investigate the claims that the Bible is a historically accurate book and that God created the universe and reached out to humankind with the Bible. Below is a piece of that evidence given by Francis Schaeffer concerning the accuracy of the Bible.

TRUTH AND HISTORY (chapter 5 of WHATEVER HAPPENED TO THE HUMAN RACE?)

We now take a jump back in time to the middle of the ninth century before Christ, that is, about 850 B.C. Most people have heard of Jezebel. She was the wife of Ahab, the king of the northern kingdom of Israel. Her wickedness has become so proverbial that we talk about someone as a “Jezebel.” She urged her husband to have Naboth killed, simply because Ahab had expressed his liking for a piece of land owned by Naboth, who would not sell it. The Bible tells us also that she introduced into Israel the worship of her homeland, the Baal worship of Tyre. This led to the opposition of Elijah the Prophet and to the famous conflict on Mount Carmel between Elijah and the priests of Baal.

Here again one finds archaeological confirmations of what the Bible says. Take for example: “As for the other events of Ahab’s reign, including all he did, the palace he built and inlaid with ivory, and the cities he fortified, are they not written in the book of the annals of the kings of Israel?” (I Kings 22:39).

This is a very brief reference in the Bible to events which must have taken a long time: building projects which probably spanned decades. Archaeological excavations at the site of Samaria, the capital, reveal something of the former splendor of the royal citadel. Remnants of the “ivory house” were found and attracted special attention (Palestinian Archaeological Museum, Jerusalem). This appears to have been a treasure pavilion in which the walls and furnishings had been adorned with colored ivory work set with inlays giving a brilliant too, with the denunciations revealed by the prophet Amos:

“I will tear down the winter house along with the summer house; the houses adorned with ivory will be destroyed and the mansions will be demolished,” declares the Lord. (Amos 3:15)

Other archaeological confirmation exists for the time of Ahab. Excavations at Hazor and Megiddo have given evidence of the the extent of fortifications carried out by Ahab. At Megiddo, in particular, Ahab’s works were very extensive including a large series of stables formerly assigned to Solomon’s time.

On the political front, Ahab had to contend with danger from the Aramacaus king of Syria who besieged Samaria, Ahab’s capital. Ben-hadad’s existence is attested by a stela (a column with writing on it) which has been discovered with his name written on it (Melquart Stela, Aleppo Museum, Syria). Again, a detail of history given in the Bible is shown to be correct.

This brings me to the message of Solomon in ECCLESIASTES and below are comments by Francis Schaeffer:

Ecclesiastes 9:7-12

Go, eat your bread with joy, and drink your wine with a merry heart, for God has already approved what you do.

Let your garments be always white. Let not oil be lacking on your head.

Enjoy life with the wife whom you love, (DOES IT SOUND OPTIMISTIC? NOW COMES THE BACKLASH) all the days of your vain life that he has given you under the sun, because that is your portion in life and in your toil at which you toil under the sun. 10 Whatever your hand finds to do, do it with your might, for there is no work or thought or knowledge or wisdom in Sheol, to which you are going.

11 Again I saw that under the sun the race is not to the swift, nor the battle to the strong, nor bread to the wise, nor riches to the intelligent, nor favor to those with knowledge, but time and chance happen to them all. 12 For man does not know his time. Like fish that are taken in an evil net, and like birds that are caught in a snare, so the children of man are snared at an evil time, when it suddenly falls upon them.

Solomon when at work takes off his hat and he stands by the grave of man and he says, “ALAS. ALAS. ALAS.”

But interestingly enough the story of Ecclesiastes does not end its message here because in two places in the New Testament it is picked up and carried along and put in its proper perspective.

Luke 12:16-21

16 And he told them a parable, saying, “The land of a rich man produced plentifully, 17 and he thought to himself, ‘What shall I do, for I have nowhere to store my crops?’ 18 And he said, ‘I will do this: I will tear down my barns and build larger ones, and there I will store all my grain and my goods. 19 And I will say to my soul, “Soul, you have ample goods laid up for many years; relax,eat, drink, be merry.”’ [ALMOST EVERYONE WHO HAS PROCEEDED HERE HAS FELT CERTAINLY THAT JESUS IS DELIBERATELY REFERRING TO SOLOMON’S SOLUTION.]20 But God said to him, ‘Fool! This night your soul is required of you, and the things you have prepared, whose will they be?’ 21 So is the one who lays up treasure for himself and is not rich toward God.”

Christ here points out the reason for the failure of the logic that is involved. He points out why it fails in logic and then why it fails in reality. This view of Solomon must end in failure philosophically and also in emotional desperation.

We are not made to live in the shortened environment of UNDER THE SUN in this life only!!! Neither are we made to live only in the environment of a bare concept of afterlife [ignoring trying to make this life better]. We are made to live in the environment of a God who exists and who is the judge. This is the difference and that is what Jesus is setting forth here.

I Corinthians 15:32

32 What do I gain if, humanly speaking, I fought with beasts at Ephesus? If the dead are not raised, “Let us eat and drink, for tomorrow we die.

There is no doubt here he is reaching back to Solomon again and he is just saying if there isn’t a resurrection of the dead then let’s just follow Solomon and let’s just eat and drink for tomorrow we die!!!! If there isn’t this full structure [including the resurrection of the dead] then just have the courage to follow Solomon and we can eat and drink because tomorrow we die and that is all we have. If the full structure isn’t there then pick up the cup and drink it dry! You can say it a different way in the 20th century: If the full structure is not there then go ahead and be an EXISTENTIALIST, but don’t cheat. Drink the cup to the end. Drink it dry! That is what Paul says. Paul  the educated man. Paul the man who knew his Greek philosophy. Paul the man who understood Solomon and the dilemma. Paul said it one way or the other. There is no room for a middle ground. IF CHRISTIANS AREN’T RAISED FROM THE DEAD THEN SOLOMON IS RIGHT IN ECCLESIASTES, BUT ONLY THEN. But if he is right then you should accept all of Solomon’s despair and his conclusions. 


The answer to find meaning in life is found in putting your faith and trust in Jesus Christ. The Bible is true from cover to cover and can be trusted.

Thank you again for your time and I know how busy you are.

Sincerely,

Everette Hatcher, everettehatcher@gmail.comhttp://www.thedailyhatch.org, cell ph 501-920-5733, 13900 Cottontail Lane, Alexander, AR 72002

PS: What is the meaning of life? Find it in the end of the open letter I wrote to you on April 23, 2020. 

Below is the workforce of THE TAMBURY GAZETTE 

Seen below is the third episode of AFTERLIFE (season 1) when Matt takes Tony to a comedy club with front row seats to cheer him up but it turns into disaster!!!

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Part 1 “Why have integrity in Godless Darwinian Universe where Might makes Right?”

Part 2 “My April 14, 2016 Letter to Ricky mentioned Book of Ecclesiastes and the Meaninglessness of Life”

Part 3 Letter about Brandon Burlsworth concerning suffering and pain and evil in the world.  “Why didn’t Jesus save her [from cancer]?” (Tony’s 10 year old nephew George in episode 2)

Part 4 Letter on Solomon on Death Tony in episode one, “It should be everyone’s moral duty to kill themselves.”

Part 5 Letter on subject of Learning in Ecclesiastes “I don’t read books of fiction but mainly science and philosophy”

Part 6 Letter on Luxuries in Ecclesiastes Part 6, The Music of AFTERLIFE (Part A)

Part 7 Letter on Labor in Ecclesiastes My Letter to Ricky on Easter in 2017 concerning Book of Ecclesiastes and the legacy of a person’s life work

Part 8 Letter on Liquor in Ecclesiastes Tony’s late wife Lisa told him, “Don’t get drunk all the time alright? It will only make you feel worse in the log run!”

Part 9 Letter on Laughter in Ecclesiastes , I said of laughter, “It is foolishness;” and of mirth, “What does it accomplish?” Ecclesiastes 2:2

Part 10 Final letter to Ricky on Ladies in Ecclesiastes “I gathered a chorus of singers to entertain me with song, and—most exquisite of all pleasures— voluptuous maidens for my bed…behold, all was vanity and a striving after wind, and there was nothing to be gained under the sun” Ecclesiastes 2:8-11.

Part 11 Letter about Daniel Stanhope and optimistic humanism  “If man has been kicked up out of that which is only impersonal by chance , then those things that make him man-hope of purpose and significance, love, motions of morality and rationality, beauty and verbal communication-are ultimately unfulfillable and thus meaningless.” (Francis Schaeffer)

Part 12 Letter on how pursuit of God is only way to get Satisfaction Dan Jarrell “[In Ecclesiastes] if one seeks satisfaction they will never find it. In fact, every pleasure will be fleeting and can not be sustained, BUT IF ONE SEEKS GOD THEN ONE FINDS SATISFACTION”

Part 13 Letter to Stephen Hawking on Solomon realizing he will die just as a dog will die “For men and animals both breathe the same air, and both die. So mankind has no real advantage over the beasts; what an absurdity!” Ecclesiastes

Part 14 Letter to Stephen Hawking on 3 conclusions of humanism and Bertrand Russell destruction of optimistic humanism. “That Man is the product of causes which had no prevision of the end they were achieving; that his origin, his growth, his hopes and fears, his loves and his beliefs, are but the outcome of accidental collocations of atoms—no philosophy which rejects them can hope to stand. Only within the scaffolding of these truths, only on the firm foundation of unyielding despair, can the soul’s habitation henceforth be safely built.”(Bertrand Russell, Free Man’s Worship)

Part 15 Letter to Stephen Hawking on Leonardo da Vinci and Solomon and Meaningless of life “I hate life. As far as I can see, what happens on earth is a bad business. It’s smoke—and spitting into the wind” Ecclesiastes Book of Ecclesiastes Part 15 “I hate life. As far as I can see, what happens on earth is a bad business. It’s smoke—and spitting into the wind” Ecclesiastes 2:17

Part 16 Letter to Stephen Hawking on Solomon’s longing for death but still fear of death and 5 conclusions of humanism on life UNDER THE SUN. Francis Schaeffer “Life is just a series of continual and unending cycles and man is stuck in the middle of the cycle. Youth, old age, Death. Does Solomon at this point embrace nihilism? Yes!!! He exclaims that the hates life (Ecclesiastes 2:17), he longs for death (4:2-3) Yet he stills has a fear of death (2:14-16)”

Mandeep Dhillon as Sandy on her first assignment in ‘After Life’. (Twitter)

A still from ‘After Life’ that captures the vibe of the Tambury Gazette. (Twitter)

Michael Scott of THE OFFICE (USA) with Ricky Gervais 

After Life on Netflix

After Life on Netflix stars Ricky Gervais as a bereaved husband (Image: Netflix)

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Psychiatrist played by Paul Kaye seen below.

The sandy beach walk

Tony Johnson with his dog Brandi seen below:

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Taking on Ark Times Bloggers on various issues Part I “Old Testament Bible Prophecy” includes the film TRUTH AND HISTORY and article ” Jane Roe became pro-life”

April 12, 2013 – 5:45 am

I have gone back and forth and back and forth with many liberals on the Arkansas Times Blog on many issues such as abortion, human rights, welfare, poverty, gun control  and issues dealing with popular culture. Here is another exchange I had with them a while back. My username at the Ark Times Blog is Saline […]By Everette Hatcher III | Posted in Biblical ArchaeologyFrancis SchaefferProlife | Edit|Comments (0)

John MacArthur on fulfilled prophecy from the Bible Part 2

August 8, 2013 – 1:28 am

I have posted many of the sermons by John MacArthur. He is a great bible teacher and this sermon below is another great message. His series on the Book of Proverbs was outstanding too.  I also have posted several of the visits MacArthur made to Larry King’s Show. One of two most popular posts I […]By Everette Hatcher III | Posted in Adrian RogersCurrent Events | Edit|Comments (0)

John MacArthur on fulfilled prophecy from the Bible Part 1

August 6, 2013 – 1:24 am

I have posted many of the sermons by John MacArthur. He is a great bible teacher and this sermon below is another great message. His series on the Book of Proverbs was outstanding too.  I also have posted several of the visits MacArthur made to Larry King’s Show. One of two most popular posts I […]By Everette Hatcher III | Posted in Adrian RogersCurrent Events |Tagged Bible Prophecyjohn macarthur | Edit|Comments (0)

John MacArthur: Fulfilled prophecy in the Bible? (Ezekiel 26-28 and the story of Tyre, video clips)

April 5, 2012 – 10:39 am

Prophecy–The Biblical Prophesy About Tyre.mp4 Uploaded by TruthIsLife7 on Dec 5, 2010 A short summary of the prophecy about Tyre and it’s precise fulfillment. Go to this link and watch the whole series for the amazing fulfillment from secular sources. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qvt4mDZUefo________________ John MacArthur on the amazing fulfilled prophecy on Tyre and how it was fulfilled […]By Everette Hatcher III | Posted in Biblical Archaeology | Edit|Comments (1)

John MacArthur on the Bible and Science (Part 2)

August 1, 2013 – 12:10 am

John MacArthur on the Bible and Science (Part 2) I have posted many of the sermons by John MacArthur. He is a great bible teacher and this sermon below is another great message. His series on the Book of Proverbs was outstanding too.  I also have posted several of the visits MacArthur made to Larry […]By Everette Hatcher III | Posted in Current Events | Edit|Comments (0)

John MacArthur on the Bible and Science (Part 1)

July 30, 2013 – 1:32 am

John MacArthur on the Bible and Science (Part 1) I have posted many of the sermons by John MacArthur. He is a great bible teacher and this sermon below is another great message. His series on the Book of Proverbs was outstanding too.  I also have posted several of the visits MacArthur made to Larry […]By Everette Hatcher III | Posted in Current Events | Edit|Comments (0)

Adrian Rogers: “Why I believe the Bible is true”

July 9, 2013 – 8:38 am

Adrian Rogers – How you can be certain the Bible is the word of God Great article by Adrian Rogers. What evidence is there that the Bible is in fact God’s Word? I want to give you five reasons to affirm the Bible is the Word of God. First, I believe the Bible is the […]By Everette Hatcher III | Posted in Adrian RogersBiblical Archaeology | Edit|Comments (0)

The Old Testament is Filled with Fulfilled Prophecy by Jim Wallace

June 24, 2013 – 9:47 am

Is there any evidence the Bible is true? Articles By PleaseConvinceMe Apologetics Radio The Old Testament is Filled with Fulfilled Prophecy Jim Wallace A Simple Litmus Test There are many ways to verify the reliability of scripture from both internal evidences of transmission and agreement, to external confirmation through archeology and science. But perhaps the […]By Everette Hatcher III | Posted in Biblical ArchaeologyCurrent Events | Edit|Comments (0)

Taking on Ark Times Bloggers on various issues Part M “Old Testament prophecy fulfilled?”Part 3(includes film DEATH BY SOMEONE’S CHOICE)

April 19, 2013 – 1:52 am

  I have gone back and forth and back and forth with many liberals on the Arkansas Times Blog on many issues such as abortion, human rights, welfare, poverty, gun control  and issues dealing with popular culture. Here is another exchange I had with them a while back. My username at the Ark Times Blog is […]By Everette Hatcher III | Posted in Francis SchaefferProlife | Edit|Comments (0)

Evidence for the Bible

March 27, 2013 – 9:43 pm

Here is some very convincing evidence that points to the view that the Bible is historically accurate. Archaeological and External Evidence for the Bible Archeology consistently confirms the Bible! Archaeology and the Old Testament Ebla tablets—discovered in 1970s in Northern Syria. Documents written on clay tablets from around 2300 B.C. demonstrate that personal and place […]By Everette Hatcher III | Posted in Biblical Archaeology | E

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Calling Us Terrorists Wasn’t Enough: NSBA Wanted Military to Crack Down on Concerned Parents

Calling Us Terrorists Wasn’t Enough: NSBA Wanted Military to Crack Down on Concerned Parents

School Board Association

It’s not domestic terrorism when parents disagree with their school boards. Yet the National School Boards Association requested that the Army National Guard and military police monitor parents in board meetings. Pictured: A mother arrives to demonstrate outside a meeting of the Brevard County, Florida, school board to discuss face masks. (Photo: Paul Hennessy/SOPA Images/LightRocket/Getty Images)

Parental rights in education is not domestic terrorism. Any organization that says otherwise should have no influence over public policy whatsoever.

And yet, in a first draft of a letter to President Joe Biden, the National School Boards Association requested the Army National Guard and military police to monitor parents in school board meetings. Why? Because parents voicing concern about woke curriculum is tantamount to “domestic terrorism.”

When I read that I thought, “This has to be a joke.” The National Guardsmen would die of boredom. Parents are not a threat to national security, and we have a right to have our voices heard.

I myself am a parent who has been very concerned about what my child is exposed to when she goes to school. In fact, I filed public record requests with my school district last year to find out if critical race theory was being taught in the classroom. As a result, I was sued by a teachers union, the National Education Association Rhode Island, and its local branch, the National Education Association South Kingstown.

On top of that, I, along with many parents across the country, were labeled “domestic terrorists” by the FBI—at the request of the National School Boards Association.

Never in my wildest dreams did I imagine I’d be called a domestic terrorist. It’s laughable that while begging my 3-year-old to eat his broccoli and coaxing my 6-year-old to start her bath, I would be on some FBI watch list. But, thanks to the National School Boards Association and Department of Justice, that’s exactly what moms like myself were labeled in October 2021.

How did wanting transparency in education become dangerous extremism? When did parents being involved in their child’s education become a concerning trend for federal law enforcement—let alone the military?

I hope that any American soldier receiving orders to loom in the tater tot-scented cafeteria of a middle school, monitoring mothers opposing equity initiatives and mask policies, would be too embarrassed to follow such blatantly unconstitutional orders. Surely our military is not so cuckolded that its last effective function is harassing moms.

The fact that the National School Boards Association’s interim director, Chip Slaven, even considered militarizing school boards speaks volumes to the fundamentally disconnected nature of the association and organizations like them, which exist only with the consent of the taxpayers it targeted.

Twenty-three states have ended their membership with the National School Boards Association, and it’s time the remaining states disband for the sake of parental rights in education. The threat to parents’ free speech will permanently linger as long as the National School Boards Association exists.

The only threats I make are for timeouts and early bedtime. I also count to three a lot, and my kindergartner finds that very threatening. The National School Boards Association, however, colluded with the FBI to threaten my constitutional rights. Most of the “threats” cited in Attorney General Merrick Garland’s memo weren’t even legitimate threats of violence. It’s clear where the real threat lies here.

My own state of Rhode Island is one of those remaining states clinging to National School Boards Association membership. In fact, the Rhode Island Association of School Committees’ executive director, Tim Duffy, was so gleeful about targeting parents that he immediately galvanized his Rhode Island school committee membership.

The day after Garland released his memo, Duffy emailed Rhode Island school committee officials stating that the Rhode Island Association of School Committees would coordinate with the FBI and U.S. attorney general for Rhode Island. He directed school committees to report to him “any issues you have had during your school committee meetings.”

Well, this certainly must have been an exciting turn of events for a boring executive director of a nonprofit! One day you’re writing model school board policies, and the next you’re an FBI-deputized bounty hunter of moms. Who can resist such a power rush? Well, 23 other school board associations resisted it. I’m sorry to say my expectations for the Rhode Island Association of School Committees are terribly low, at least under the leadership of Duffy.

Now, it’s easy to view this National School Boards Association debacle as a story unique to public education, but it is not a standalone event.

An investigation into the events surrounding the September 2021 letter from the National School Boards Association concluded that “lack of internal controls” at the association and an aimless board of directors were to blame for the association’s recklessness, but this targeting of parents is not simply the result of its disorganized workplace and lack of leadership. This is a culmination of the Biden administration’s repeated attempts to identify political dissidents and weaponize government power to silence their dissent.

The same ideological opponents in the military were purged under the pretext of fighting extremism. For the Biden administration, parents are just more “enemies [that] lie within our own ranks” and pose a threat to keeping America “safe.” This notion cannot stand and will die only with the dissolution of the National School Boards Association.

Parents aren’t thinking about upcoming elections when they oppose racialized and sexualized curriculum in school. They’re thinking about the welfare of their kids. It’s not a political ploy to want to know what your child is being taught in school. It’s a parental right.

Under the regime of the National School Boards Association, parents will always be viewed as domestic terrorists because their objections threaten the ideology of a politicized public education regime. Parents haven’t made physical threats of violence. Any perceived threat by parents is a threat to an ideology. And those are absolutely permissible.

The good news is that the Biden administration and the National School Boards Association drastically underestimated the resiliency of American parents.

As for myself, parenting a 3-year-old and 6-year-old has equipped me for dealing with my local school board and other anti-parent groups. Both deal in tantrums, emotional manipulation, and fear tactics; both require constant attention and coddling; and both need timeouts. The National School Boards Association needs a permanent timeout.

When parents were first threatened with federal investigations in 2021, my response was “arrest me!” Had the military actually been deployed to school board meetings, parents still would not have been shaken.

Nevertheless, the power and control of local school boards must be restored to elected representatives, unencumbered by special-interest groups like the National School Boards Association hijacking public education to impose its progressive political agenda.

This restoration will be a long haul because the National School Boards Association is not the only special-interest group leeching off public education tax dollars. Teachers unions, consulting agencies, and equity grifters have been riding that public education gravy train for decades. Now that the National School Boards Association has overreached, we must hold it accountable by demanding more than empty mea culpas. Some things you can’t come back from.

If colluding with the FBI to investigate innocent parents after seriously considering siccing the Army National Guard and military police on school board meetings is forgivable, then there are no bounds to government abuse of power. A society that values freedom and government restraint cannot tolerate the continued existence of the National School Boards Association.

President Harry Truman said in a special message to Congress in 1950, “Once a government is committed to the principle of silencing the voice of opposition, it has only one way to go and that is down the path of increasingly repressive measures until it becomes a source of terror to all its citizens, creating a country where everyone lives in fear.”

The National School Boards Association has shown itself to be that source of terror. It is now falling apart, and with its radical views, it should be.

The Daily Signal publishes a variety of perspectives. Nothing written here is to be construed as representing the views of The Heritage Foundation.

Have an opinion about this article? To sound off, please email letters@DailySignal.com and we’ll consider publishing your edited remarks in our regular “We Hear You” feature. Remember to include the URL or headline of the article plus your name and town and/or state.

Another Minority Convert to Gun Rights

Charles Blow is a doctrinaire left-wing columnist for the New York Times. But I applauded him late last year for expressing sympathy for black gun ownership.

He’s certainly not a full-blown supporter of the Second Amendment.

And I don’t think he realizes that many of the first gun control laws had racist motivations.

But I’m not going to nit pick. I welcome converts, even half-hearted ones.

Which is why today’s column will cheer another newcomer to the cause.

In a column for the Washington Post, Danielle King describes her decision to become a gun owner.

I never thought I’d own a gun. But there I was, in Hazard, Ky., in the middle of a pandemic on a Saturday, buying a .38 snub-nosed revolver. I’m not your stereotypical gun owner…as a Black woman, I am a statistical rarity… But I had come to believe that I had two choices: take steps to protect myself, or become a victim. I decided I needed to be armed.…it wasn’t until one night last April at my Kentucky home that I decided to become a gun owner myself. The brightness of the living room light startled me from my sleep. …The rustling sounds confirmed that we had an intruder. …The invader eventually made his way to the bedroom door. …The intruder slammed against the door like a battering ram in an attempt to take it down. He nearly succeeded, shattering the frame, but my husband held the rest of the door shut while I hid on the balcony and called the police.It took officers more than 45 minutes to arrive… I realized we needed protection. …Three days after the break-in, with my husband’s encouragement, I went to the gun store and purchased my revolver and some hollow-point bullets.

Ms. King notes that many other blacks are joining her and becoming gun owners.

The National Shooting Sports Foundation reported a 58 percent surge in gun purchases by Black men and women in the first six months of 2020 compared with the same period in 2019, citing a survey of gun retailers. Of all purchasers, 5.4 percent were Black women. I strongly support private gun ownership and the Second Amendment… To be honest, I am still afraid of having guns in my home — and even of having one in my possession. But we are products of a violent nation, and ultimately, I don’t feel like the police can or want to protect me. …My first practice shot was a couple of feet from my backyard, bordering the woods. My husband created a target for me to practice on. …Terrified, my hands trembling, drenched in sweat, I anxiously grasped the revolver’s handle while searching for the trigger. Then, lining up the target while calming my breath, I pressed the trigger to hear a POP. Now, I thought, we are protected.

By the way, I hope what she wrote about the police isn’t true. I’d like to think they want to protect her and her family.

But Ms. King is definitely correct to fear that the police may not have the ability to protect her. Just consider the fact that it took 45 minutes for cops to arrive when her family was threatened by an intruder.

And it would be especially foolish to rely on the government for safety during a pandemic. Or during a period of civil strife.

If you read Ms. King’s full column, it’s clear that she hasn’t embraced the full libertarian view on gun ownership. But just as was the case with Charles Blow, I welcome her shift in the correct direction.

P.S. Here are the other columns celebrating folks on the left who have had epiphanies on gun rights.

  • In 2012, I shared some important observations from Jeffrey Goldberg, a left-leaning writer for The Atlantic. In his column, he basically admitted his side was wrong about gun control.
  • Then, in 2013, I wrote about a column by Justin Cronin in the New York Times. He self-identified as a liberal, but explained how real-world events have led him to become a supporter of private gun ownership.
  • In 2015, I shared a column by Jamelle Bouie in Slate, who addressed the left’s fixation on trying to ban so-called assault weapons and explains that such policies are meaningless.
  • More recently, in 2017, Leah Libresco wrote in the Washington Post that advocates of gun control are driven by emotion rather empirical research and evidence.
  • Last but not least, Alex Kingsbury in 2019 acknowledged the futility of gun control in a column for the New York Times.

P.P.S. Here’s a column on race and gun control.

P.P.P.S. If you want unintentional comedy, here’s a column by a British leftist who equates gun ownership and slavery.

Karl Marx: Worst Person in World History?

Since more than 100 million people have been killed by communist regimes, should we conclude that Karl Marx is the worst person in world history?

To address that question, let’s start with this video from Prager University, which is narrated by Professor Paul Kengor of Grove City College.

At the risk of understatement, the video is a damning indictment of Marx’s legacy.

His political ideas provided the justification for the genocides of dictators such as Stalin, Mao, and Pol Pot.

His economic ideas led to policies that produced mass deprivation, starvation, and immense human suffering.

Now let’s take a closer look at Marx rather than just his ideas.

Was he a good person who simply had some horribly misguided ideals?

Hardly. Everything we know suggests he was a sickeningly despicable excuse for a human being.

Professor Richard Ebeling has some of the sordid details in an article for Intellectual Takeout.

Karl Marx was born on May 5, 1818, in the Rhineland town of Trier. …he was generally a lazy and good-for-nothing student. …Marx’s only real jobs during his lifetime were as occasional reporters for or editors of newspapers and journals most of which usually closed in a short period of time…He had sex enough times with the family maid that she bore him an illegitimate son… He often used racial slurs and insulting words to describe the mannerisms or appearance of his opponents in the socialist movement.  …In Marx’s mind, the Jew in bourgeois society encapsulated the essence of everything he considered despicable in the capitalist system… Marx’s caricaturing description of the asserted “Jewish mindset” rings amazingly similar to those that were later written by the Nazi “race-scientists” of the 1930s.

All told, it appears that Marx lacked a single redeeming feature. He was a very bad person with very bad ideas.

Indeed, it’s safe to assume that the best thing he did in his life occurred on March 14, 1883.

P.S. For those seeking more economic analysis, Marx advocated for the pure version of socialism, meaning government ownership of the means of production (state factories, collective farms, etc).

P.P.S. It’s disgusting that there’s a statue of Marx in his birth city and it’s equally disgusting that the former President of the European Commission went there to celebrate the 200th anniversary of his birth.

P.P.P.S. Marx gets featured frequently in my collection of jokes mocking communism.

The Beatles were good friends of Allen Ginsberg and Terry Southern and many others who were involved in the FREE SPEECH MOVEMENT in Berkeley in the 1960’s. The movement started off just being about FREE SPEECH, but then it turned quickly to the New Left and the Marxist-Leninist point of view. It was in this atmosphere in the mid-sixties that caused KARL MARX to be a logical choice to be on the cover of Sgt. Pepper’s.

Beatles 1966 Last interview

69 THE BEATLES TWO OF US

As a university student, Karl Marx (1818-1883) joined a movement known as the Young Hegelians, who strongly criticized the political and cultural establishments of the day. He became a journalist, and the radical nature of his writings would eventually get him expelled by the governments of Germany, France and Belgium. In 1848, Marx and fellow German thinker Friedrich Engels published “The Communist Manifesto,” which introduced their concept of socialism as a natural result of the conflicts inherent in the capitalist system. Marx later moved to London, where he would live for the rest of his life. In 1867, he published the first volume of “Capital” (Das Kapital), in which he laid out his vision of capitalism and its inevitable tendencies toward self-destruction, and took part in a growing international workers’ movement based on his revolutionary theories.

#02 How Should We Then Live? (Promo Clip) Dr. Francis Schaeffer

Karl Marx is seen next to Oliver Hardy on the cover of  Stg. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band. 

1. Sri Yukteswar (Indian Guru)
2. Aleister Crowley (black magician)
3. Mae West
4. Lenny Bruce
5. Stockhausen (modern German composer)
6. W.C. Fields
7. Carl Jung (psychologist)
8. Edgar Allen Poe
9. Fred Astaire
10. Merkin (American artist)
12. Huntz Hall (Bowery Boy)
13. Simon Rodia (creater of Watts Towers)
14. Bob Dylan
15. Aubrey Beardsly (Victorian artist)
16. Sir Robert Peel (Police pioneer)
17. Aldous Huxley (philosopher)
18. Dylan Thomas (Welsh poet)
19. Terry Southern (author)
20. Dion (American pop singer)
21. Tony Curtis
22. Wallace Berman (Los Angeles artist)
23. Tommy Handley (wartime comedian)
24. Marilyn Monroe
25. William Buroughs (author)
26. Mahavatar Babaji (Indian Guru)
27. Stan Laurel
28. Richard Lindner (New York artist)
29. Oliver Hardy
30. Karl Marx
31. H.G. Wells
32. Paramhansa Yogananda (Indian Guru)
33. Stuart Sutcliffe
35. Max Muller
37. Marlon Brando
38. Tom Mix (cowboy film star)
39. Oscar Wilde
40. Tyrone Power
41. Larry Bell (modern painter)
42. Dr. Livingstone
43. Johnny Weissmuller (Tarzan)
44. Stephen Crane (American writer)
45. Issy Bonn (comedian)
46. George Bernard Shaw
47. Albert Stubbins (Liverpool footballer)
49. Lahiri Mahasaya (Indian Guru)
50. Lewis Carol
51. Sonny Liston (boxer)
52 – 55. The Beatles (in wax)
57. Marlene Dietrich
58. Diana Dors
59. Shirley Temple
60. Bobby Breen (singing prodigy)
61. T.E. Lawrence (Lawrence of Arabia)
In these pics from alternate shots of the cover photo, you can still see Leo Gorcey, who was removed because he requested a fee, next to his fellow Bowery Boy pal Huntz Hal, and Ghandi, who was removed because EMI felt his inclusion might offend record buyers in India.
http://www.beatlesagain.com/btsgtppr.html

About BED PEACE

1969 was the year that John & Yoko intensified their long running campaign for World Peace.

They approached the task with the same entrepreneurial expertise as an advertising agency selling a brand of soap powder to the masses. John & Yoko’s product however was PEACE, not soft soap, and they were determined to use any slogan, event and gimmick in order to persuade the World to buy it.

BED PEACE (directed by Yoko & John and filmed by Nic Knowland) is a document of the Montreal events and features John & Yoko in conversation with, amongst others, The World Press, satirist Al Capp, activist Dick Gregory, comedian Tommy Smothers, 

protesters at Berkeley’s People’s Park,

Rabbi Abraham L. Feinberg, quiltmaker Christine Kemp, psychologists Timothy Leary & Rosemary Leary, CFOX DJs Charles P. Rodney Chandler & Roger Scott, producer André Perry, journalist Ritchie Yorke, DJ & Promoter Murray The K, filmmaker Jonas Mekas, publicist Derek Taylor & personal assistantAnthony Fawcett.

Featured songs are Plastic Ono Band’s GIVE PEACE A CHANCE & INSTANT KARMA, Yoko’s REMEMBER LOVE & WHO HAS SEEN THE WIND & John’s acoustic version of BECAUSE.

“As we said before: WAR IS OVER! (If You Want It) – yoko

BED PEACE starring John Lennon & Yoko Ono

WHY WAS KARL MARX ON THE COVER? The answer is very simple. Back in Berkeley in 1964 there were the riots that broke out and the Free Speech Movement and this movement was encouraged later by John Lennon and Yoko as they spoke with the protesters by phone in the above video. Also Allen Ginsberg and Terry Southern were good friends with Paul McCartney and they were involved in the Free Speech Movement.  The movement started off just being about FREE SPEECH, but then it turned quickly to the New Left and the Marxist-Leninist point of view. It was in this atmosphere in the mid-sixties that caused Karl Marx to be a logical choice to be on the cover.

Jean Genet, Allen Ginsberg, William Burroughs, Terry Southern
Chicago, 1968

genet_burroughs_ginsberg_terrysouthern_chgo1968

_______________

John Lennon with Allen Ginsberg below:

Paul and Linda McCartney with Allen Ginsberg below:

___________

Francis Schaeffer asserted:

In some places the Marxist-Leninist line or the Maoist line took over…But the Marxist-Leninism is another leap into the area of nonreason-as idealistic as drug-taking was in the early days. The young followed Marxism in spite of clear evidence that oppression was not an excess of Stalin, but was and is an integral part of the system of communism. 

William Lane Craig’s book THE ABSURDITY OF LIFE WITHOUT GOD.   Without God there is no meaning in life.

William Lane Craig notes:

First, the area of meaning. We saw that without God, life has no meaning. Yet philosophers continue to live as though life does have meaning. For example, Sartre argued that one may create meaning for his life by freely choosing to follow a certain course of action. Sartre himself chose Marxism.

Now this is utterly inconsistent. It is inconsistent to say that life is objectively absurd and then to say that one may create meaning for his life. If life is really absurd, then man is trapped in the lower story. To try to create meaning in life represents a leap to the upper story. But Sartre has no basis for this leap. Without God, there can be no objective meaning in life. Sartre’s program is actually an exercise in self-delusion. For the universe does not really acquire meaning just because I happen to give it one. This is easy to see: for suppose I give the universe one meaning, and you give it another. Who is right? The answer, of course, is neither one. For the universe without God remains objectively meaningless, no matter how we regard it. Sartre is really saying, “Let’s pretend the universe has meaning.” And this is just fooling ourselves.

The point is this: if God does not exist, then life is objectively meaningless; but man cannot live consistently and happily knowing that life is meaningless; so in order to be happy he pretends that life has meaning. But this is, of course, entirely inconsistent—for without God, man and the universe are without any real significance.

Sartre’s worldview is discussed in the film series “How should we then live?” by Francis Schaeffer below.

Transcript from “How Should we then live?”:

Humanist man beginning only from himself has concluded that he is only a machine. Humanist man has no place for a personal God, but there is also no place for man’s significance as man and no place for love, no place for freedom.

Man is only a machine, but the men who hold this position could not and can not live like machines. If they could then modern man would not have his tensions either in his intellectual position or in his life, but he can’t. So they leap away from reason to try to find something that gives meaning to their lives, to life itself, even though to do so they deny their reason.

Once this is done any type of thing could be put there. Because in the area of nonreason, reason gives no basis for a choice. This is the hallmark of modern man. How did it happen? It happened because proud humanist man, though he was finite, insisted in beginning only from himself and only from what he could learn and not from other knowledge, he did not succeed. Perhaps the best known of existentialist philosophers was Jean Paul Sartre. He used to spend much of his time here in Paris at the Les Deux Magots.

Sartre’s position is in the area of reason everything is absurd, but one can authenticate himself, that is give validity to his existence by an act of the willIn Sartre’s position one could equally help an old woman across the street or run her down.

Reason was not involved, and there was nothing to show the direction this authentication by an act of the will should take. But Sartre himself could live consistantly with his own position. At a certain point he signed the Algerian Manifesto which declared that the Algerian war was a dirty war. This action meant that man could use his reason to decide that some things were right and some things were wrong and so he destroyed his own system.

Berkeley’s Campus Free Speech Movement at 50

The Free Speech Movement: civil disobedience in Berkeley 1964

Mario Savio, leader of the Free Speech Movement at UC Berkeley (1964) – from THE EDUCATION ARCHIVE

I have dedicated several posts to this series on the Beatles and I don’t know when this series will end because Francis Schaeffer spent a lot of time listening to the Beatles and talking and writing about them and their impact on the culture of the 1960’s. In this series we have looked at several areas in life where the Beatles looked for meaning and hope but also we have examined some of the lives of those  writers, artists, poets, painters, scientists, athletes, models, actors,  religious leaders, musicians, comedians, and philosophers  that were put on the cover of Sergeant Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band album. We have discovered that many of these individuals on the cover have even taken a Kierkegaardian leap into the area of nonreason in order to find meaning for their lives and that is the reason I have included the 27 minute  episode THE AGE OF NONREASON by Francis Schaeffer. In that video Schaeffer noted,  ” Sergeant Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band…for a time it became the rallying cry for young people throughout the world. It expressed the essence of their lives, thoughts and their feelings.”

 Sergeant Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band Album really did look at every potential answer to meaning in life and to as many people as the Beatles could imagine had the answers to life’s big questions. One of the persons on the cover did have access to those answers and I am saving that person for last in this series on the Beatles. 

During this long series on the Beatles it has become quite evident that there were reasons why certain writers, artists, poets, painters, scientists, athletes, models, actors,  religious leaders, musicians, comedians, and philosophers were put on the cover of Sergeant Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band and that is the Beatles had made it to the top of the world but they were still searching for purpose and lasting meaning for their lives. They felt they were in the same boat as those pictured on the cover and so they called it appropriately Sergeant Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band.  In his article “Philosophy and its Effect on Society  Robert A. Sungenis, notes that all these individuals “are all viewing the burial scene of the Beatles, which, in the framework we are using here, represents the passing of idealistic innocence and the failure to find a rational answer and meaning to life, an answer to love, purpose, significance and morals. They instead were leaping into the irrational, whether it was by drugs, the occult, suicide, or the bizarre.”

Communism catches the attention of the young at heart but it has always brought repression wherever it is tried. “True Communism has never been tried” is something I was told just a few months ago by a well meaning young person who was impressed with the ideas of Karl Marx. I responded that there are only 5 communist countries in the world today and they lack political, economic and religious freedom.
Tony Bartolucci noted that Schaeffer has correctly pointed out:
Hope in Marxism-Leninism is a leap in the area of nonreason. From the Russian Revolution until 1959 a total of 66 million prisoners died. This was deemed acceptable to the leaders because internal security was to be gained at any cost. The ends justified the means. The materialism of Marxism gives no basis for human dignity or rights. These hold to their philosophy against all reason and close their eyes to the oppression of the system.
WHY DOES COMMUNISM FAIL?
Communism has always failed because of its materialist base.  Francis Schaeffer does a great job of showing that in this clip below. Also Schaeffer shows that there were lots of similar things about the basis for both the French and Russia revolutions and he exposes the materialist and humanist basis of both revolutions.

Schaeffer compares communism with French Revolution and Napoleon.

1. Lenin took charge in Russia much as Napoleon took charge in France – when people get desperate enough, they’ll take a dictator.

Other examples: Hitler, Julius Caesar. It could happen again.

2. Communism is very repressive, stifling political and artistic freedom. Even allies have to be coerced. (Poland).

Communists say repression is temporary until utopia can be reached – yet there is no evidence of progress in that direction. Dictatorship appears to be permanent.

3. No ultimate basis for morality (right and wrong) – materialist base of communism is just as humanistic as French. Only have “arbitrary absolutes” no final basis for right and wrong.

How is Christianity different from both French Revolution and Communism?

Contrast N.T. Christianity – very positive government reform and great strides against injustice. (especially under Wesleyan revival).

Bible gives absolutes – standards of right and wrong. It shows the problems and why they exist (man’s fall and rebellion against God).

WHY DOES THE IDEA OF COMMUNISM CATCH THE ATTENTION OF SO MANY IDEALISTIC YOUNG PEOPLE? The reason is very simple. 

In HOW SHOULD WE THEN LIVE? The Rise and Decline of Western Thought and Culture, the late Francis A. Schaeffer wrote:

Materialism, the philosophic base for Marxist-Leninism, gives no basis for the dignity or rights of man.  Where Marxist-Leninism is not in power it attracts and converts by talking much of dignity and rights, but its materialistic base gives no basis for the dignity or rights of man.  Yet is attracts by its constant talk of idealism.

To understand this phenomenon we must understand that Marx reached over to that for which Christianity does give a base–the dignity of man–and took the words as words of his own.  The only understanding of idealistic sounding Marxist-Leninism is that it is (in this sense) a Christian heresy.  Not having the Christian base, until it comes to power it uses the words for which Christianity does give a base.  But wherever Marxist-Leninism has had power, it has at no place in history shown where it has not brought forth oppression.  As soon as they have had the power, the desire of the majority has become a concept without meaning.

Is Christianity at all like Communism?

Sometimes Communism sounds very “Christian” – desirable goals of equality, justice, etc but these terms are just borrowed from the New Testament. Schaeffer elsewhere explains by saying Marxism is a Christian heresy.

Below is a great article. Free-lance columnist Bradley R. Gitz, who lives and teaches in Batesville, received his Ph.D. in political science from the University of Illinois.

This article was published January 30, 2011 at 2:28 a.m. Here is a portion of that article below:
A final advantage is the mutation of socialism into so many variants over the past century or so. Precisely because Karl Marx was unclear as to how it would work in practice, socialism has always been something of an empty vessel into which would be revolutionaries seeking personal meaning and utopian causes to support can pour pretty much anything.
A desire to increase state power, soak the rich and expand the welfare state is about all that is left of the original vision. Socialism for young lefties these days means “social justice” and compassion for the poor, not the gulag and the NKVD.
In the end, the one argument that will never wash is that communismcan’t be said to have failed because it was never actually tried. This is a transparent intellectual dodge that ignores the fact that “people’s democracies” were established all over the place in the first three decades after World War II.
Such sophistry is resorted to only because communism in all of those places produced hell on earth rather than heaven.
That the attempts to build communism in a remarkable variety of different geographical regions led to only tyranny and mass bloodshed tells us only that it was never feasible in the first place, and that societies built on the socialist principle ironically suffer from the kind of “inner contradictions” that Marx mistakenly predicted would destroy capitalism.
Yes, all economies are mixed in nature, and one could plausibly argue that the socialist impulse took the rough edges off of capitalism by sponsoring the creation of welfare-state programs that command considerable public support.
But the fact remains that no society in history has been able to achieve sustained prosperity without respect for private property and market forces of supply and demand. Nations, therefore, retain their economic dynamism only to the extent that they resist the temptation to travel too far down the socialist road.

Francis Schaeffer notes:

At Berkeley the Free Speech Movement arose simultaneously with the hippie world of drugs. At first it was politically neither left nor right, but rather a call for the freedom to express any political views on Sproul Plaza. Then soon the Free Speech Movement became the Dirty Speech Movement, in which freedom was seen as shouting four-letter words into a mike.  Soon after, it became the platform for the political New Left which followed the teaching of Herbert Marcuse. Marcuse was a German professor of philosophy related to the neo-Marxist teaching of the “Frankfurt School,” along with...Jurgen Habermas (1929-). 

Herbert Marcuse, “Liberation from the Affluent Society” (1967)

Brannon Howse talks some about the Frankfurt School in some of his publications too. 

During the 1960’s many young people were turning to the New Left fueled by Marcuse and Habermas but something happened to slow many young people’s enthusiasm for that movement.

1970 bombing took away righteous standing of Anti-War movement

Francis Schaeffer mentioned the 1970 bombing in his film series “How should we then live?” and I wanted to give some more history on it. Schaeffer asserted:

In the United States the New Left also slowly ground down,losing favor because of the excesses of the bombings, especially in the bombing of the University of Wisconsin lab in 1970, where a graduate student was killed. This was not the last bomb that was or will be planted in the United States. Hard-core groups of radicals still remain and are active, and could become more active, but the violence which the New Left produced as its natural heritage (as it also had in Europe) caused the majority of young people in the United States no longer to see it as a hope. So some young people began in 1964 to challenge the false values of personal peace and affluence, and we must admire them for this. Humanism, man beginning only from himself, had destroyed the old basis of values, and could find no way to generate with certainty any new values.  In the resulting vacuum the impoverished values of personal peace and affluence had comes to stand supreme. And now, for the majority of the young people, after the passing of the false hopes of drugs as an ideology and the fading of the New Left, what remained? Only apathy was left. In the United States by the beginning of the seventies, apathy was almost complete. In contrast to the political activists of the sixties, not many of the young even went to the polls to vote, even though the national voting age was lowered to eighteen. Hope was gone.

After the turmoil of the sixties, many people thought that it was so much the better when the universities quieted down in the early seventies. I could have wept. The young people had been right in their analysis, though wrong in their solutions. How much worse when many gave up hope and simply accepted the same values as their parents–personal peace and affluence. (How Should We Then Live, pp. 209-210

______________________

Sunday, August 28th, 2011, 11:11pm

Aug. 24 marked the 41st anniversary of the Sterling Hall bombing on the University of Wisconsin-Madison campus.

Four men planned the bomb at the height of the student protests over the Vietnam War. Back then, current Madison Mayor Paul Soglin was one of the leaders of those student protests in the capitol city. This weekend, Soglin recalled the unrest felt by UW-Madison students.

“The anti-war movement adopted a lot of its tactics and strategies from the civil rights movement which was about ten years older,” said Soglin. “It was one of picketing, demonstration, and passive resistance.”

The four men who planned the bombing focused on the Army Mathematics Research Center housed in Sterling Hall because it was funded by the U.S. Department of Defense and therefore, worked on weapons technology. Karl Armstrong was one of the four men and he recently spoke with CBS News in his first television interview detailing the moments right before the bomb was set off.

“He asked me, he says, ‘Should we go ahead? Are we gonna do this?’ I think I made a comment to him about something like, ‘Now, I know what war is about,'” remembered Armstrong. “And I told him to light it.”

The bomb killed one researcher and father of three, 33-year-old Robert Fassnacht, although Armstrong maintains they planned the attack thinking no one would get hurt. The four men heard about the death as they were in their getaway car after the bomb went off.

“I felt good about doing the bombing, the bombing per se, but not taking someone’s life,” recalled Armstrong.

The researcher’s wife told CBS News that she harbors no ill will toward Armstrong and the other bombers. Three of the four men were captured and served time in prison. Armstrong served eight years of a 23-year sentence.

The fourth man, Leo Burt, was last seen in the fall of 1970 in Ontario and is to this day, still wanted by the FBI, with a $150,000 reward for his capture.

E P I S O D E 9

T h e Age of Personal Peace and Affluence 

I. By the Early 1960s People Were Bombarded From Every Side by Modern Man’s Humanistic Thought

II. Modern Form of Humanistic Thought Leads to Pessimism

Regarding a Meaning for Life and for Fixed Values

A. General acceptance of selfish values (personal peace and affluence) accompanied rejection of Christian consensus.

1. Personal peace means: I want to be left alone, and I don’t care what happens to the man across the street or across the world. I want my own life-style to be undisturbed regardless of what it will mean — even to my own children and grandchildren.

2. Affluence means things, things, things, always more things — and success is seen as an abundance of things.

B. Students wish to escape meaninglessness of much of adult society.

1. Watershed was Berkeley in 1964.

2. Drug Taking as an ideology: “turning on” the world.

3. Free Speech Movement on Sproul Plaza.

a) At first neither Left nor Right.

b) Soon became the New Left.

(1) Followed Marcuse and Habermas.

(2) Paris riots.

4. Student analysis of problem was right, but solution wrong.

5. Woodstock, Altamont, and the end of innocence.

6. Drug taking survives the death of ideology but as an escape.

7. Demise of New Left: radical bombings.

8. Apathy supreme. The young accept values of the older generation: their own idea of personal peace and affluence, even though adopting a different life-style.

C. Marxism and Maoism as pseudo-ideals.

1. Vogue for idealistic communism which is another form of leap into the area of non-reason.

2. Solzhenitsyn: violence and expediency as norms of communism.

3. Communist repression in Hungary and Czechoslovakia.

4. Communism has neither philosophic nor historic base for freedom. There is no base for “Communism with a human face.”

5. Utopian Marxism steals its talk of human dignity from Christianity.

6. But when it comes to power, the desire of majority has no meaning.

7. Two streams of communism.

a) Those who hold it as an idealistic leap.

b) Old-line communists who hold orthodox communist ideology and bureaucratic structure as it exists in Russia.

8. Many in West might accept communism if it seemed to give peace and affluence.

III. Legal and Political Results of Attempted Human Autonomy

A. Relativistic law.

1. Base for nonarbitrary law gone; only inertia allows a few principles to survive.

2. Holmes and sociological (variable) law.

3. Sociological law comes from failure of natural law (see evolution of existential from rationalistic theology).

4. Courts are now generating law.

5. Medical, legal, and historical arbitrariness of Supreme Court ruling on abortion and current abortion practice.

B. Sociological law opens door to racism, abrogation of freedoms,  euthanasia, and so on.

IV. Social Alternatives After Death of Christian Consensus

A. Hedonism? But might is right when pleasures conflict.

B. Without external absolute, majority vote is absolute. But this justifies a Hitler.

V. Conclusion

A. If there is no absolute by which to judge society, then society is absolute.

B. Humanist thinking—making the individual and mankind the center of all things (autonomous) — has led to death in our culture and in our political life.

Note: Social alternatives after the death of Christian consensus are continued in Episode Ten.

Questions

1. What was the basic cause of campus unrest in the sixties? What has happened to the campus scene since, and why?

2. What elements — in the life and thought of the communist and noncommunist world alike — suggest a possible base for world agreement?

3. “To prophesy doom about Western society is premature. We are, like all others who have lived in times of great change, too close to the details to see the broader picture. One thing we do know:

Society has always gone on, and the most wonderful epochs have followed the greatest depressions. To suggest that our day is the exception says more about our headache than it does about our head.” Debate.

4. As Dr. Schaeffer shows, many apparently isolated events and options gain new meaning when seen in the context of the whole. How far does your own involvement in business, law, financing, and so on reveal an acquiescence to current values?

Key Events and Persons

Oliver Wendell Holmes: 1841-1935

Herbert Marcuse: 1898-1979

Jurgen Habermas 1929-

Alexander Solzhenitsyn: 1917-

Hungarian Revolution: 1956

Free Speech Movement: 1964

Czechoslovakian repression: 1968

Woodstock and Altamont: 1969

Radical bombings: 1970

Supreme Court abortion ruling: 1973

Solzhenitsyn’s The Gulag Archipelago: 1973-74

Further Study

Keeping one’s eyes and ears open is the most useful study project: the prevalence of pornographic films and books, more and more suggestive advertising and TV shows, and signs of arbitrary absolutes.

The following books will repay careful reading, and Solzhenitsyn, though long and horrifying, should not be skipped.

Os Guinness, The Dust of Death (1973).

Alexander Solzhenitsyn, The Gulag Archipelago: Parts I-II (1973), Parts III-IV (1974).

_____________

A Christian Manifesto Francis Schaeffer

Published on Dec 18, 2012

A video important to today. The man was very wise in the ways of God. And of government. Hope you enjoy a good solis teaching from the past. The truth never gets old.

The Roots of the Emergent Church by Francis Schaeffer

#02 How Should We Then Live? (Promo Clip) Dr. Francis Schaeffer

10 Worldview and Truth

Two Minute Warning: How Then Should We Live?: Francis Schaeffer at 100

Francis Schaeffer “BASIS FOR HUMAN DIGNITY” Whatever…HTTHR

_______________________

Karl Marx’s most important work was THE COMMUNIST MANIFESTO and ironically Francis Schaeffer’s most popular book was A CHRISTIAN MANIFESTO in 1981 and A.T.Coates in a review noted:

It’s more than a catchy title: A Christian Manifesto. On a flyleaf, Schaeffer names his book’s predecessors to mark his as a Christian political document: “The Communist Manifesto, 1848/ Humanist Manifesto I, 1933/ Humanist Manifesto II, 1973.” Keeping in mind that this book came out in 1981, it’s clear that this move serves two purposes: 1) it places Schaeffer’s book both in the tradition of and in opposition to these other manifestos, and 2) it posits a genealogical connection between communism and humanism—even in the capitalist world, Schaeffer implies, “humanism” springs from Marxism. For Schaeffer, Christianity and “humanism” are mutually incompatible “world views.” A “world view” describes “the overall way people think and view the world and life as a whole” (17). According to Schaeffer, humanism considers ultimate reality to be a random flux of energy and matter, our world to be nothing but the result of pure chance. In the period from 1933-1973, this world view took over American culture, which was founded on “Judeo-Christian” values (55).

_______

EARLIER IN THIS POST I NOTED THAT Francis Schaeffer asserted:

In some places the Marxist-Leninist line or the Maoist line took over…But the Marxist-Leninism is another leap into the area of nonreason-as idealistic as drug-taking was in the early days. The young followed Marxism in spite of clear evidence that oppression was not an excess of Stalin, but was and is an integral part of the system of communism….

The universe was created by an infinite personal God and He brought it into existence by spoken word and made man in His own image. When man tries to reduce [philosophically in a materialistic point of view] himself to less than this [less than being made in the image of God] he will always fail and he will always be willing to make these impossible leaps into the area of nonreason even though they don’t give an answer simply because that isn’t what he is. He himself testifies that this infinite personal God, the God of the Old and New Testament is there. 

Instead of making a leap into the area of nonreason the better choice would be to investigate the claims that the Bible is a historically accurate book and that God created the universe and reached out to humankind with the Bible. Below is a piece of that evidence given by Francis Schaeffer concerning the accuracy of the Bible.

The Bible and Archaeology – Is the Bible from God? (Kyle Butt 42 min)

You want some evidence that indicates that the Bible is true? Here is a good place to start and that is taking a closer look at the archaeology of the Old Testament times. Is the Bible historically accurate? Here are some of the posts I have done in the past on the subject: 1. The Babylonian Chronicleof Nebuchadnezzars Siege of Jerusalem2. Hezekiah’s Siloam Tunnel Inscription. 3. Taylor Prism (Sennacherib Hexagonal Prism)4. Biblical Cities Attested Archaeologically. 5. The Discovery of the Hittites6.Shishak Smiting His Captives7. Moabite Stone8Black Obelisk of Shalmaneser III9A Verification of places in Gospel of John and Book of Acts., 9B Discovery of Ebla Tablets10. Cyrus Cylinder11. Puru “The lot of Yahali” 9th Century B.C.E.12. The Uzziah Tablet Inscription13. The Pilate Inscription14. Caiaphas Ossuary14 B Pontius Pilate Part 214c. Three greatest American Archaeologists moved to accept Bible’s accuracy through archaeology.

TRUTH AND HISTORY (chapter 5 of WHATEVER HAPPENED TO THE HUMAN RACE?, under footnote #94)

There is also a confirmation of what the Bible says concerning the Egyptian King Tirhakah who came up to oppose the Assyrians. Confirmation of his reality is typified by a sphinx-ram in the British Museum (British Museum Ref. B.B.1779). The small figure between the legs of the ram is a representation of King Tirhakah. The Bible says that when Sennacherib heard that  Tirhakah, king of Eqypt, was coming to fight against him, he sent messengers to tell Hezekiah that help from Egypt would be of no use to him.

2 Kings 19:9, 10 Now the king heard concerning Tirhakah king of Cush, “Behold, he has set out to fight against you.” So he sent messengers again to Hezekiah, saying,10 “Thus shall you speak to Hezekiah king of Judah: ‘Do not let your God in whom you trust deceive you by promising that Jerusalem will not be given into the hand of the king of Assyria. (Isaiah 37:9-10 also says about the same thing.)

The date of Sennacherib’s campaign in Palestine is 701 B.C., and something which has often puzzled historians is the role of Tirhakah, who was not king of Egypt and Ethiopia until 690 B.C. But the solution to this problem is simple. In 701 B.C. Tirhakah was only a prince at the side of his military brother, the new Pharaoh Shebitku, who sent Tirhakah with an army to help Hezekiah fend off the Assyrian advance. But the story in Kings and Isaiah does not end in 701 B.C. It carries right through to the death of Sennacherib in 681 B.C., which is nine years after Tirhakah had become king of Egypt and Ethiopia. In other words, the biblical narrative, from the standpoint of 681 B.C., mentions Tirhakah by the title he bore at that time (that is, 681 B.C.), not as he was in 701 B.C. This is still done today, using a man’s title as he is known at the time of writing even it one is speaking of a previous time in his personal history.

Unaware of the the importance of these facts, and falling into wrong interpretations of some of Tirhakah’s inscriptions, some Old Testament scholars have stumbled over each in their eagerness to diagnose historical errors in the Books of the Kings and Isaiah. But as the archaeological confirmation shows, they were quite mistaken. What is striking about these archaeological finds is the way they often converge; there is often not just one line of evidence but several in which the biblical account is confirmed. We do not have confirmation of every single detail in the biblical account, by any means. Nor do we need such total confirmation in view of the amount of evidence there is. To insist on confirmation at every point would be to treat the Bible in a prejudiced way, simply because it is the Bible. The fact that is a religious book does not mean that it cannot also be true when it deals with history.

Not all archaeological finds have a convergence of many different interrelated lines like these around the life of Hezekiah, but they are no less striking. For example, take the “ration tablets” discovered in the ruins of Bablyon. The Bible tells us that after the Assyrians had destroyed the nothern kingdom of Samaria (around 721 B.C.), the southern kingdom, Judah, survived for almost another 150 years until approximately 586 B.C. By this time Assyria, one of the greatest military powers of the ancient world, had been defeated by Bablyon, a neighboring state to the east. That was in 609 B.C. Four years later the Babylonian general, Nebuchadnezzar–then the crown prince–came west and completely defeated Necho II, king of Egypt, at the battle of Carchemish. As a result of this victory he laid claim to Judah, which had previously been in the sphere of influence of Egypt. King Jehoiakim of Judah thus now paid tribute to the Babylonians. The Bible tells us that Jehoiakim rebelled three years later: “During Jehoiakim’s reign Nebuchadnezzar king of Bablyon invaded the land, and Jehoiakim became his vassal for three years. But then he changed his mind and rebelled against Nebuchnezzar” (II Kings 24:1).

The political background for this step can be understood from the Babylonian Chronicles (British Museum, Ref. 21946, records events from 597 B.C. down to 594). These were a compressed chronological summary of the principal events from the Babylonian court. There had been a crucial battle in 601 B.C. between the Egyptians and the Babylonians. This had left both sides weakened, and Jehoiakim took this opportunity to declare his independence of the Babylonian king. His independence, or rather Judah’s independence, did not last long, for Jehoiakim himself died in 598 B.C., leaving his throne and the crisis to his son, Jehoiachin. Second Kings (II Kings 24:10-12, 17) tells us what happened:

10 At that time the servants of Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon came up to Jerusalem, and the city was besieged. 11 And Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon came to the city while his servants were besieging it, 12 and Jehoiachin the king of Judah gave himself up to the king of Babylon, himself and his mother and his servants and his officials and his palace officials. The king of Babylon took him prisoner in the eighth year of his reign. 17 And the king of Babylon made Mattaniah, Jehoiachin’s uncle, king in his place, and changed his name to Zedekiah.

The story of Jehoiachin does not end there, however. The royal family were kept at the court of Nebuchadnezzar, and the Bible says that they , like other royal captives, were provided for by the king with rations of grain and oil (II Kings 25:27-30):

27 And in the thirty-seventh year of the exile of Jehoiachin king of Judah, in the twelfth month, on the twenty-seventh day of the month, Evil-merodach king of Babylon, in the year that he began to reign, graciously freed[a] Jehoiachin king of Judah from prison. 28 And he spoke kindly to him and gave him a seat above the seats of the kings who were with him in Babylon. 29 So Jehoiachin put off his prison garments. And every day of his life he dined regularly at the king’s table, 30 and for his allowance, a regular allowance was given him by the king, according to his daily needs, as long as he lived.

The records of these allowances referred to in the Bible were unearthed in excavations in Babylon in basement storerooms of the royal palace (in Staat-Liches Museum, East Berlin, Vorderas Abteilung; Babylon 28122 and 28126). These are known as the “ration tablets” and they record who received such “rations.” In these, Jehoiachin is mentioned by name.

We also have confirmation of the Babylonian advance towards Judah in Nebuchadezzar’s first campaign. Among the ruins of Lachish were discovered a number of ostraca. Ostraca are broken pieces of earthenware called postherds, which were used for writing on in ink. (The Lachish ostraca are in the Palestinian Archaeological Museum, Jerusalem.) These brief letters reveal the increasing tensions within the growing state of Judah and tie in well with the picture given in the Bible by the Book of Jeremiah the Prophet. In Ostracon VI, the princes are accused of “weakening our hands” (that is, discouraging the writers), which is the very phraseology used in the Bible by the Judean princes against Jeremiah. Also, the use of fire beacons for signaling is found in both Ostracon IV and Jeremiah 6:1, each using the same terminology.

These events took place around the year 600 B.C. Events we considered earlier in relation to the capture of Lachish by Sennacherib during the reign of Hezekiah were around the year 700 B.C.

Statue of Tirhakah discovered in Sudan

Owen Jarus reports in The Independent the discovery of a massive statue of Pharaoh Taharqa [English Bible: Tirhakah] deep in Sudan.

No statue of a pharaoh has ever been found further south of Egypt than this one. At the height of his reign, King Taharqa controlled an empire stretching from Sudan to the Levant.

A massive, one ton, statue of Taharqa that was found deep in Sudan. Taharqa was a pharaoh of the 25th dynasty of Egypt and came to power ca. 690 BC, controlling an empire stretching from Sudan to the Levant. The pharaohs of this dynasty were from Nubia – a territory located in modern day Sudan and southern Egypt.

Taharqa statue. Photo: Berber-Abidiya Archaeological Project.

The Nubian pharaohs tried to incorporate Egyptian culture into their own. They built pyramids in Sudan – even though pyramid building in Egypt hadn’t been practised in nearly 800 years. Taharqa’s rule was a high water mark for the 25th dynasty. By the end of his reign a conflict with the Assyrians had forced him to retreat south, back into Nubia – where he died in 664 BC. Egypt became an Assyrian vassal – eventually gaining independence during the 26th dynasty. Taharqa’s successors were never able to retake Egypt.

In addition to Taharqa’s statue, those of two of his successors – Senkamanisken and Aspelta – were found alongside. These two rulers controlled territory in Sudan, but not Egypt.

. . .

While this is the furthest south that a pharaoh’s statue has been found, it doesn’t necessarily mean that Dangeil is the southern border of Taharqa’s empire. It’s possible that he controlled territory further up the Nile.

The statue of Taharqa is truly monumental. “It’s a symbol of royal power,” said Dr. Anderson, an indicator that Dangeil was an “important royal city.”

It’s made of granite and weighs more than one ton. It stood about 2.6 meters (8.5 feet) when it had its head. In ancient times it was smashed into several pieces on purpose. This was also done to the two other statues. It’s not known who did this or why. It happened “a long time after Taharqa,” said Anderson.

. . .

The largest piece of Taharqa’s statue is the torso and base. This part of the statue is so heavy that the archaeological team had to use 18 men to move it onto a truck.

“We had trouble moving him a couple hundred meters,” said Anderson. The move was “extremely well planned,” with the team spending eight to nine days figuring out how to accomplish it without the statue (or the movers) getting damaged.

The full account from The Independent may be read here. A longer article by Jarus, with several photos, may be found in Heritage Key.

After the Assyrian king Sennacherib captured Lachish, he headed for Jerusalem. On the way he heard that King Tirhakah of Ethiopia (Cush) had come out to fight against him.

The king heard that King Tirhakah of Ethiopia was marching out to fight him. He again sent messengers to Hezekiah, ordering them: “Tell King Hezekiah of Judah this: ‘Don’t let your God in whom you trust mislead you when he says, “Jerusalem will not be handed over to the king of Assyria.” Certainly you have heard how the kings of Assyria have annihilated all lands. Do you really think you will be rescued? (2 Kings 19:9-11 NET; cf. Isaiah 37:9)

Hezekiah was king of Judah from 716/15 – 687/86 B.C. (Thiele). The events recorded in the Bible took place shortly before 700 B.C. Tirhakah evidently came to power before 690 B.C., was already a leading commander of the army, or there may be another solution to the problem.

HT: Biblical Paths.

September 19, 2011

By Elvis Costello

My absolute favorite albums are Rubber Soul and Revolver. On both records you can hear references to other music — R&B, Dylan, psychedelia — but it’s not done in a way that is obvious or dates the records. When you picked up Revolver, you knew it was something different. Heck, they are wearing sunglasses indoors in the picture on the back of the cover and not even looking at the camera . . . and the music was so strange and yet so vivid. If I had to pick a favorite song from those albums, it would be “And Your Bird Can Sing” . . . no, “Girl” . . . no, “For No One” . . . and so on, and so on. . . .

Their breakup album, Let It Be, contains songs both gorgeous and jagged. I suppose ambition and human frailty creeps into every group, but they delivered some incredible performances. I remember going to Leicester Square and seeing the film of Let It Be in 1970. I left with a melancholy feeling.

PAUL McCARTNEY & WINGS – LIVE 1976 – “Lady Madonna”

86

‘Lady Madonna’

the beatles 100 greatest songs
Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images

Main Writer: McCartney
Recorded: February 3 and 6, 1968
Released: March 18, 1968
11 weeks; No. 4

Like many of McCartney’s finest songs, “Lady Madonna” is a tribute to working-class womanhood, expressed through Irish-Catholic imagery. “‘Lady Madonna’ started off as the Virgin Mary, then it was a working-class woman, of which obviously there’s millions in Liverpool,” he later said. “There are a lot of Catholics in Liverpool because of the Irish connection.” The Madonna of the song is a long-suffering but indestructible matriarch, as tough as the title character of “Eleanor Rigby,” yet as comforting as Mother Mary from “Let It Be.”

Musically, “Lady Madonna” has an earthier inspiration: the New Orleans piano boogie of Fats Domino. McCartney called it “a Fats Domino impression,” composed while trying to play something bluesy on the piano. The recorded version is a full-on tribute to the New Orleans R&B sound, with tootling saxophones. Domino must have taken it as a compliment. A few months after the song came out, he released his own cover version, which became the last Top 100 hit of his career.

Appears On: Past Masters

Paul McCartney — Back In The USSR (Live in Kiev 2008)

Uploaded on Jun 15, 2008

Paul McCartney’s “Back In The USSR” in Kiev’s historic Independence Square
14.06.2008

This RIP was made from NOVY TV Channel (http://www.novy.tv/ )

The beatles – Back in the USSR

85

‘Back in the USSR’

the beatles 100 greatest songs
S&G Press Agency/Redferns/Getty Images

Main Writer: McCartney
Recorded: August 22 and 23, 1968
Released: November 25, 1968
Not released as a single

The witty opening track to the White Album got a helping hand from one of the American rock stars it parodied: In February 1968, McCartney played his variation on Chuck Berry’s “Back in the U.S.A.” for Beach Boys vocalist Mike Love while the two were visiting India. Love suggested that McCartney add a “California Girls”-style section about the women of the Soviet Union. McCartney then recorded a loose, jovial demo of the song in May.

By the time they started work on the album version on August 22nd, though, the Beatles were at each other’s throats. When McCartney criticized Starr’s drumming on “USSR,” Starr announced he was quitting the band, walked out and headed off for a Mediterranean vacation. The other three Beatles got back to work, recording the basic track with McCartney on drums and Lennon playing six-string bass. They finished it the next day with jet-airplane noise from a sound-effects collection. When Starr returned two weeks later, they covered his drum kit in flowers to welcome him back.

Appears On: The Beatles

Today’s featured artist is George Petty

Article on George Petty:

George Petty - skating majorette

George Petty - signature

George Petty - skater with ponytail
George Petty is most famous for his pin-up drawings that appeared in Esquire magazine in the 1930’s and the covers for many Ice Capades programs. There is an excellent 1997 book on him, Petty – The Classic Pin-Up Art of George Petty. It’s worth getting and I hereby credit it as my main source of information on Petty.
George Petty - Telephone Petty was born in 1894 in Louisiana, the son of a photographer, also named George, who moved his family to the potentially more prosperous Chicago around 1900. George survived traditional schooling, though he thrived at evening classes at the Chicago Art Institute. He spent a great deal of time in his father’s photography studio where he mastered the airbrush, a tool invented around 1889 and used solely to retouch photographs (or their negatives). Petty would help change that.
Prior to World War I, study in Europe was de rigueur for the aspiring artist. After his graduation from high school, Petty’s mother took George and his sister to Paris where he was enrolled at the Académie Julian. This art school was quite famous and had such illustrious alumni as John Singer Sargent, Alfonse Mucha, Matisse, and, most significant to Petty, J.C. Leyendecker. George studied in Paris until 1916, then returned to Chicago. At the age of 18, he should have been prime fodder for the War, but shortly after Petty’s return from Europe, his father died, leaving George the head of the family and so exempt from service.
George Petty - 1933 World's Fair Not wanting to be a photographer or a photo-retoucher, he closed his father’s studio and went to work for an ad agency, where his first published work was a stylish ice skater on the cover of the 1920 Marshall Field catalog (at right). Ice skaters were to figure prominently in his future. At the agencies, Petty excelled at retouching and his skill with the airbrush was prodigious. He did lots and lots of retouching, all the while focusing his efforts on breaking into the illustration market. There were plenty of advertisements, but his few covers and magazine assignments led nowhere. He began using the airbrush in his drawings, not a common medium at the time, but the results were stunning, like the poster at left that won Petty first prize in the 1933 Chicago World’s Fair poster contest. George Petty - fashion ad

George Petty - girl in gown with gunIn the early Thirties, George opened his own studio and started to get more and more work that relied on pretty women. His daughter Marjorie Jule, born in 1919, was modeling for him and her body topped with an endless variety of faces would appear in many of these ads. In 1933, the depths of the depression, Esquire Magazine was started. At a time when The Saturday Evening Post was a nickel, The Ladies Home Journal a dime, and Good Housekeeping and Cosmopolitan a quarter, Esquiredebuted at 50 cents. Only Fortune, started in 1930, just three months after the stock market crash, was priced higher at $1. And just as Fortune had confounded the prophets by being successful, Esquire‘s first issue sold out – even with a print run of 100,000.

Petty’s work was in that first issue, a cartoon. He wasn’t a cartoonist, but that’s what the magazine needed and they were willing to supply him with situations and gags. The drawings he submitted were printed full page on good paper and the magazine’s 10″x14″ format was perfect for the slick, well-rendered images George was capable of. With his command of the airbrush, a strong foundation in drawing, plenty of practice drawing lissome women, and a willing model, Petty had assembled the components of a meteoric career. His cartoons appeared in seven of the first dozen issues and were thinly disguised excuses for rendering the female body. Even when they were fully clothed, his women looked like, if you’ll pardon the expression, their clothes were airbrushed on.Witness the “cartoon” at above right from a 1935 issue and also issued as part of a spiral-bound portfolio of Petty cartoons from 1937 titled aptly enough, Petty – A Portfolio. Click for larger image.

The exposure brought Petty to the attention of national ad agencies and within two years George was doing monthly ads for Old Gold Cigarettes and Jantzen Swim Wear as well as others, many of which appeared in the same issues of Esquire as his cartoons.The cartoons were a huge success. Quickly dubbed The Petty Girl, the public clamored for more of her and Esquire was more than happy to oblige. With its high production values, the magazine was able to add fold-outs as a design feature. In the Christmas, 1939 issue, one (of four) of these was devoted to the largest Petty Girl yet seen. That’s about 1/2 of her at the right. Fully 30″ long, the modern pin-up was born and Esquire‘s circulation soared yet again.

George Petty - Esquire Petty Girl

George Petty - Girl in bathing suit runningIt’s rather difficult to convey just how famous Petty became – and how fast! This rather obscure Chicago commercial artist was suddenly thrust upon the national stage, literally, overnight. His signature was prominently displayed in all of his advertising work. Jantzen created the “Petty Girl” swimsuit in 1940. Old Gold offered prints of the Petty Girls in their ads. His hands, a brush, and Petty Girl appeared in a watch ad. He was given highly publicized commissions to paint posters for films. The aforementioned portfolio was released. In 1942, when 3700 Chicago high school art students cast their votes for most important artist from their three years of art studies, Petty won first place – as a write-in. He did a cover for Time in 1942 as well as the first in a line of covers for the annual Ice Capades revue. And it would be incorrect to attribute all the fame to the Esquire pin-ups. If anything, it was his national advertising images that got him the most attention – and money.

George Petty - girl in cat suitIt was money that finally severed the Esquire relationship. The money Esquire paid bought less and less of Petty’s time as his advertising career soared. Alberto Vargas had been brought in as a replacement during negotiations and in 1942, after a year of uneasy coexistence, the Petty Girl made way for the Varga Girl in Esquire, anyway. Petty continued his high-profile commercial art and spent the war years doing ads and posters (see “It’s for YOU…” below). In 1945, he began a three year alliance with little-known True Magazine and helped them double their circulation. While many of the images still retained his trademark telephone, he was beginning to branch out into more lively poses as the True page above left and “The Panther Girl” (at right) done for the 1946 Ziegfield Follies clearly show.

George Petty - It's For You adPetty had always been a sharp businessman and insisted on retaining all secondary rights to his images as well as the return of his original paintings. He licensed their use on playing cards, on drinking glasses, and elsewhere. At left is from an ad I just found in a 1943 issue of The American Weeklywherein for $2 sent directly to Petty, you’d get a set of four 12″x18″ posters printed in six colors!

And he never ceased working. He did a calendar for Ridge Tools in 1953. He returned to Esquire with a 1955 calendar, designed the hood ornaments for the 1954 and 1955 Nash automobiles and in the early Sixties was back doing paintings for The Ice Capades. Petty died in 1975 after witnessing a minor revival of his work, including a new pin-up for the 40th anniversary issue of Esquire.

George Petty

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

The Ballerina – 1965

George Brown Petty IV (April 27, 1894 – July 21, 1975) was an American pin-up artist. His pin-up art appeared primarily in Esquire and Fawcett Publications’s True but was also in calendars marketed by Esquire,True and Ridgid Tool Company. Petty’s Esquire gatefolds originated and popularized the magazine device of centerfold spreads. Reproductions of his work were widely rendered by military artists as nose artdecorating warplanes during the Second World War, including the Memphis Belle, known as “Petty Girls”.

Birth and early career[edit]

George Petty was born in Abbeville, the seat of Vermilion Parish in south Louisiana to George Brown Petty III and his wife, Sarah. George, IV, was the couple’s second child; his sister Elizabeth had been born in 1891. The Petty family moved to Chicago, Illinois, just before the turn of the century, where George, III, a photographer of some note, enjoyed considerable success with images of young women, madonnas, and nudes.

Petty was not a particularly good student in high school, spending a great deal of time on extracurricular activities instead of schoolwork. His artistic bent first became obvious in high school, where he was the staff artist for the school newspaper.

During his high school years, he enrolled in evening classes at Chicago Academy of Fine Arts under the tutoring of Ruth VanSickle Ford, where he taught his own art course, charging classmates $5.00 per session. He also worked in his father’s photo shop where he learned how to use an airbrush. Petty studied art at the Académie Julian with Jean-Paul Laurens and others until 1916, when World War I caused Joseph P. Herrick, ambassador at that time, to order all Americans to return home.

Petty returned to Chicago, and worked as an airbrush retoucher for a local printing company. He was able to establish himself as a freelance artist, painting calendar girls and magazine covers for The Household. By 1926, he was able to open his own studio.

Artistic influences[edit]

George Petty never discussed in detail those artists who influenced him, other than J. C. Leyendecker (an artist for The Saturday Evening Post during George’s high school days) for his interpretation of men, Coles Phillips for his technique, and Maxfield Parrish for his use of light. However, it can be inferred from his later work that other influences included artists who were extremely popular in Paris at the time, such as Alfons Mucha, George Barbier and, in particular, the watercolor technique of England’sWilliam Russell Flint.

“The Petty Girl”[edit]

Petty is especially known for “the Petty Girl”, a series of pin-up paintings of women done for Esquire from the autumn of 1933 until 1956. Petty frequently depicted these women with the relative lengths of their legs being longer—and the relative sizes of their heads being smaller—than those of his actual models.

Petty appeared as a guest on the popular TV program What’s My Line.

Petty died in San Pedro, California, on July 21, 1975.

Use in popular culture[edit]

Crew of the Memphis Belle with the Petty Girl nose art

Sources[edit]

Reid Stewart Austin (The Best of Gil Elvgren) examined the life and art of George Petty in the 192-page Petty: The Classic Pin-Up Art of George Petty. Published by Gramercy in 1997, the lavish volume features a foreword by Hugh Hefner and an introductory essay by Petty’s daughter, Marjorie Petty, who was his main model. In The New York Times Book Review, famed designer George Lois praised this collection of Petty’s creations, commenting:

Just as the cool, unapproachable Gibson Girl was the feminine ideal of young men at the turn of the century, the voluptuous Petty Girl became the ideal of their wide-eyed sons. I’m going on the record to swear that George Brown Petty IV consistently created better-designed women than God, and now I’ve got a big beautiful book to prove it.

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Related posts:

FBI Reveals How Many Active Shooters Were Stopped by Citizens

FBI Reveals How Many Active Shooters Were Stopped by Citizens

Citizens stopped six active shooters in 2021, according to a report by the FBI. (Photo Illustration: Dejan Markovic/EyeEm/Getty Images)

The FBI announced Monday that citizens stopped six active shooters in 2021, according to a report on active shooting incidents.

Citizens stopped six active shooters, whom the FBI defines as “one or more individuals actively engaged in killing or attempting to kill people in a populated area,” in 2021, killing four of them, according to the report “Active Shooter Incidents In The United States In 2021.” There were 61 active shooter incidents in 2021, 12 of which met the FBI’s criteria for a “mass killing,” up from 40 the previous year.

dailycallerlogo“The active aspect of the definition inherently implies the ongoing nature of an incident, and thus the potential for the response to affect the outcome, whereas a mass killing is defined as three or more killings in a single incident,” the FBI said in a Monday release.

In one incident, armed employees at the Jefferson Gun Outlet in Metairie, Louisiana, returned fire after an active shooter killed two people and injured two others on Feb. 20, 2021, the report said.

Citizens detained an active shooter in the Gaslamp Quarter of San Diego on April 22, 2021, according to the report. In Rigby, Idaho, a middle school teacher disarmed a 12-year-old female student who was firing a handgun on May 6, 2021, at a middle school.

An armed citizen killed an active shooter in an incident outside the Three Corners Townhouses in Fort Smith, Arkansas, on May 15, 2021, the report said.

An active shooter killed two people and wounded another on Oct. 21, 2021, before an armed employee fatally shot the shooter at Agrex Elevator in Superior, Nebraska, the report said.

The FBI report noted that 14 active shooters were killed by law enforcement, 11 committed suicide, 30 were taken into custody, one was killed in a car crash, and one was still at large.

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Have an opinion about this article? To sound off, please email letters@DailySignal.com and we’ll consider publishing your edited remarks in our regular “We Hear You” feature. Remember to include the url or headline of the article plus your name and town and/or state.

(Emailed to White House on 3-20-13.)

President Obama c/o The White House
1600 Pennsylvania Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20500

Dear Mr. President,

I know that you receive 20,000 letters a day and that you actually read 10 of them every day. I really do respect you for trying to get a pulse on what is going on out here.

Sometimes you just have to look at the facts!!!

In a presumably futile effort to change their minds by learning how they think, I periodically try to figure out the left-wing mind.

Why, for instance, do some people believe in Keynesian economics, when it is premised on the fanciful notion that you can increase “spending power” by taking money out of the economy’s left pocket and putting it in the economy’s right pocket?

I actually think part of the problem is that folks on the left focus on how income is spent rather than how it’s earned, so I sometimes try to get them to understand that economic growth occurs when we produce more rather than consume more. My hope is that they’ll better understand how the economy works if they look at the issue from this perspective.

But I’m getting off track. I don’t want to get too serious because the purpose of this post is to share this satirical look at the how leftists rationalize their anti-gun biases.

Let’s take a look at two cities that are quite similar in terms of demographics and income. But they have very different murder rates. Your job is to pretend you’re a leftist and come up with an explanation.

Houston Chicago Guns Weather

To be fair, we can’t rule out cold weather as a possible explanation given this limited set of data.

Make your own Gun Free Zone

For what it’s worth, however, scholars who actually do real research, like David Kopel and John Lott, reach different conclusions.

Returning to satire, the Houston-Chicago comparison reminds me of this IQ test for criminals and liberals.

And since we’re having some fun with our liberal friends, let’s close with this comparison of liberals, conservatives, and Texans.

I have posted some cartoons featured on Dan Mitchell’s blog before and they are very funny.

I’ve shared a very clever Chuck Asay cartoon about gun-free zones, so let’s now enjoy four posters on the topic.

Let’s begin with a good jab at one of the anti-Second Amendment groups.

But remember the serious point. If you’re a bad guy and know that a potential victim is sure to be unarmed, does that make you happy or sad?

I realize that an anti-gun zealot will respond by arguing that they want a world where the thugs and crooks also will be disarmed, but how likely is it that such people will turn in their weapons? In any event, most criminals are young men and potential victims need guns to compensate for the inability to match the physical strength of their attackers.

Next let’s look at a poster showing the kind of instructions that statists such as Mayor Bloomberg should post in public places.

These clowns expect us to have blind faith in the ability of public authorities, but the odds of a cop being immediately available when trouble strikes are almost nonexistent.

Here’s a poster that captures the blind naiveté of anti-gun activists. I don’t think I need to add any commentary.

Last but not least, here’s a sign that all anti-gun leftists – assuming they have the courage to publicly celebrate their beliefs – should post outside their homes.

If you enjoy these posters, you can view previous editions here, hereherehere, and here.

___________

Thank you so much for your time. I know how valuable it is. I also appreciate the fine family that you have and your commitment as a father and a husband.

Sincerely,

Everette Hatcher III, 13900 Cottontail Lane, Alexander, AR 72002, ph 501-920-5733, lowcostsqueegees@yahoo.com

Dan Mitchell: America’s fiscal future is very grim, largely because of an ever-expanding burden of entitlement spending!

How to Solve America’s Worsening Fiscal Mess

America’s fiscal future is very grim, largely because of an ever-expanding burden of entitlement spending.

To see the magnitude of the problem, let’s peruse the Budget and Economic Outlook, which was released yesterday by the Congressional Budget Office has some.

Most people are focusing on how deficits are going to climb from $1 trillion to $2 trillion-plus over the next 10 years.

That’s not good news, but we should be far more worried about the fact that the burden of government spending is growing faster than the private economy. As a result, government will be consuming an ever-larger share of national output.

The budget wonks who (mistakenly) focus on red ink say the problem is so serious that we need higher taxes.

They look at this chart, which is based on CBO’s baseline forecast (what will happen if taxes and spending are left on autopilot), and assert we have no choice but to raise taxes.

They point out that the annual deficit in 2032 will be almost $2.3 trillion and that it’s impossible cut spending by that much.

Needless to say, it would be a near-impossible political undertaking to cut $2.3 trillion in one year (though it would fulfill libertarian fantasies).

But what if, instead of kicking the can down the road, policymakers imposed some sort of overall spending cap to avoid a giant deficit in 10 year.

This second chart displays that scenario. I took CBO’s baseline (autopilot) numbers and assumed that spending could only increase by 1.4 percent annually starting in 2024.

As you can see, that modest bit of fiscal discipline completely eliminates the project $2.3 trillion annual deficit in 2032.

In other words, there is no need for any tax increase.

Especially since politicians almost certainly would respond to the expectation of additional revenue by increasing spending above the baseline (as would happen with Joe Biden’s so-called Build Back Better scheme).

I’ll close by noting that there’s no need to fixate on whether the budget is balanced by 2032. What matters is trend lines.

It’s not good for government to grow faster than the private economy in the long run. And it’s not good for deficits and debt to climb as a share of economic output in the long run.

Both of those outcomes can be avoided if we have some sort of spending cap so that outlays grow slower than the private sector.

The stricter the cap, the quicker the progress.

  • I prefer actual cuts (a requirement to reduce nominal spending each year).
  • I would be happy with a hard freeze (like we had for a few years after the Tea Party revolt).
  • As noted above, a 1.4 percent spending cap balances the budget by 2032.
  • But we would make progress, albeit slow progress, even if the spending cap allowed the budget to grow by 2.0 percent of 2.5 percent per year.

P.S. I start the spending cap in 2024 because spending is not projected to grow by very much between 2022 and 2023. That’s not because today’s politicians are being responsible, however. It’s simply a result of one-time pandemic emergency spending coming to an end. But since that one-time spending has a big impact on short-run numbers, I delayed the spending cap for one year.

P.P.S. The blue revenue line has a kink in 2025 because the baseline forecast assumes that many of the Trump tax cuts expire that year. If those tax cuts are extended or made permanent, revenues would be about $400 billion lower in 2032. As such, balancing the budget by that year would require a spending cap that allows annual outlays to increase by less than 0.9 percent per year.

P.P.P.S. President Biden is bragging that the deficit is falling this year, but that’s only because the one-time pandemic spending is coming to an end.

P.P.P.P.S. A spending cap is a simple solution, but it would not be an easy solution. In the long-run, it would require genuine entitlement reform.

Another Reason for Spending Caps

The United States needs a constitutional spending cap, sort of like the “debt brake” that has been producing positive results in Switzerland for the past two decades.

Imposing a limit on annual spending increases would be a much-needed way of stopping politicians from saddling the nation with “Goldfish Government.”

The best-case scenario is that a spending cap is very stringent (say, limiting annual spending increases to 2 percent annually). This level of fiscal restraint reduces the burden of government spending compared to the private sector (i.e., it fulfills fiscal policy’s Golden Rule).

The avoid-harm scenario is that a spending cap prevents government from becoming a bigger burden. Given dismal long-run fiscal forecasts (a consequence of demographic change and poorly designed entitlement programs), this actually would be an impressive achievement.

There are also some auxiliary benefits of a spending cap.

A new working paper from Italy’s central bank, authored by Anna Laura Mancini and Pietro Tommasino, considers whether spending caps can mitigate the problem of dishonest budgeting by politicians.

…policy-makers have an incentive to “plan to cheat”. That is, they promise an amount of expenditures higher than what they will actually deliver, because this allows them to cater to the demands of the various groups of voters, and at the same time they present overoptimistic revenue forecasts, in order to preserve the appearance of fiscal discipline. Once the extra revenues hoped for by the government fail to materialize, budgeted investment expenditures are downsized or abandoned altogether. In this context, caps on realized spending can contribute to more realistic ex ante spending plans. Indeed, politicians have less room to inflate planned expenditures, once there is a legal ceiling in place.

The authors crunch the numbers and conclude that spending caps result in a greater level of fiscal honesty.

In this paper, we provide evidence in favour of this theoretical intuition, exploiting a unique dataset including the ex-ante budget plans as well as ex-post budget outcomes of…a rule that constrains capital expenditures in municipalities with more than 5,000 residents. …Our analysis show that the municipalities subject to the new capital-spending rule significantly reduced their over-optimism in expenditure projections… Furthermore, in the new regime revenue projections are also more accurate (less over-optimistic). …The reform reduced the forecast error concerning capital expenditures… The effects is significant both statistically and in economic terms. …the introduction of the cap on investment reduced the forecast error on investment expenditures by almost €1 mln, or 35% of the pre-reform average error.

For wonky readers, Figure 1 shows some of relevant data.

For what it’s worth, we seem to have a different problem in the United States.

Rather than exaggerate potential spending on so-called public investment, as seems to have been the case in Italy, American politicians generally low-ball cost estimates for infrastructure projects.

And then, once the projects get started, we get absurd cost overruns (with the high-speed rail project in California being an especially absurd example).

The good news is that a spending cap solves both the Italian version of the problem and the American version of the problem.

As the authors found in their research, it removes the incentive for dishonest budgeting in Italy. And, if adopted in the United States, politicians would learn that it doesn’t help to produce laughably low cost estimates if a spending cap means there is no way of financing cost overruns in the future.

P.S. There is a spending limit in Hong Kong’s constitution, and it has generated very positive results. Given China’s increasing control, it’s unclear how effective it will be in the future.

P.P.S. There’s also a spending limit in Colorado’s constitution, known as the Taxpayers Bill of Rights. It has been very successful.

P.P.P.S. Last month, I wrote about research from both the IMF and the ECB about the benefits of spending caps.

Steve Forbes is 100 percent correct, as was Milton Friedman. Bloated and wasteful government spending is the problem, not inadequate revenue. Deficits are merely a symptom of over-spending:

The late Nobel Prize-winning economist Milton Friedman once famously observed that he would prefer a federal government budget of $1 trillion (this was when a trillion bucks was real money) with a big deficit to a federal budget of $2 trillion that was balanced. His obvious point was that the bigger Washington is, the more of a burden it puts on the economy, whether it finances its spending via taxation, borrowing or printing money. So it’s not President Obama’s mind-numbing, from-here-to-eternity deficits that we should be worrying about but the increasing deadweight put on the rest of us by Washington’s burgeoning budget bloat. Senate Republicans were right to put the kibosh on the formation of a formal bipartisan deficit-fighting commission. Those things always end up increasing taxes while doing little to reduce spending. …One of the biggest economic myths since the Great Depression is that governments can ameliorate or counteract the ebbs and flows of free markets. Government spending has never worked as a trigger for sustained and vibrant economic growth. Ever. Scholarship has demonstrated that the New Deal perpetuated the Depression rather than cured it. On the eve of the Depression the U.S. had the lowest unemployment rate among developed nations. But a decade later, despite six years of FDR’s New Deal, our unemployment rate was one of the highest among developed economies. Japan’s serial stimulus programs over the past two decades have repeatedly underscored this truth. The more the government takes as a proportion of the economy, the worse equity markets do and the higher the unemployment rate.

Everything You Need to Know about the National Debt

The title of this column is an exaggeration. What we’re really going to do today is explain the main things you need to knowabout government debt.

We’ll start with this video from Kite and Key Media, which correctly observes that entitlement programs are the main cause of red ink.

I like that the video pointed out how tax-the-rich schemeswouldn’t work, though it would have been nice if they added some information on how genuine entitlement reform could solve the problem  (as you can see here and here, I’ve also nit-picked other debt-themed videos).

Which is why I humbly think this is the best video ever produced on the topic.

As you can see, I’m not an anti-debt fanatic. It was perfectly okay, for instance, to incur debt to win World War II.

But I’m very skeptical of running up the nation’s credit card for routine pork and fake stimulus.

But my main message, which I’ve shared over and over again, is that deficits and debt are merely a symptom. The underlying disease is excessive government spending.

And that spending hurts our economy whether it is financed by taxing or borrowing (or, heaven forbid, by printing money).

Now let’s look at some recent articles on the topic.

We’ll start with Eric Boehm’s column for Reason, which explains how red ink has exploded in recent years.

America’s national debt exceeded $10 trillion for the first time ever in October 2008. By mid-September 2017 the national debt had doubled to $20 trillion. …data released by the U.S. Treasury confirmed that the national debt reached a new milestone: $30 trillion.…Entitlements like Social Security and Medicare are in dire fiscal straits and will become even more costly as the average American gets older. Even without another unexpected crisis, deficits will exceed $1 trillion annually, which means the debt will continue growing, both in real terms and as a percentage of the economy. The Congressional Budget Office estimates that the federal government will add another $12.2 trillion to the debt by 2031.

As already stated, I think the real problem is the spending and the debt is the symptom.

But it is possible, of course, that debt rises so high that investors (the people who buy government bonds) begin to lose faith that they will get repaid.

At that point, governments have to pay higher interest rates to compensate for perceived risk of default, which exacerbates the fiscal burden.

And if there’s not a credible plan to fix the problem, a country can go into a downward spiral. In other words, a debt crisis.

This is what happened to Greece. And I think it’s just a matter of time before it happens to Italy.

Heck, many European nations are vulnerable to a debt crisis. As are many developing countries. And don’t forget Japan.

Could the United States also be hit by a debt crisis? Will we reach a “tipping point” that leads to the aforementioned loss of faith?

That’s one of the possibilities mentioned in the New York Timescolumn by Peter Coy.

It’s hard to know how much to worry about the federal debt of the United States. …Either the United States can continue to run big deficits and skate along with no harm done or it’s at risk of losing investors’ confidence and having to pay higher interest rates on its debt, which would suppress economic growth. …the huge increase in federal debt incurred during and after the past two recessions — those of 2007-09 and 2020 — has used upa lot of the “fiscal space” the United States once had. In other words, the federal government is closer to the tipping point where big increases in debt finally start to become a real problem. …any given amount of debt becomes easier to sustain as long as the growth rate of the economy (and thus the growth rate of tax revenue) is higher than the interest rate on the debt. In that scenario, interest payments gradually shrink relative to tax revenue. …but it doesn’t explain how much more the debt can grow. …Past a certain point, there’s a double whammy of more dollars of debt plus higher interest costs on each dollar. …sovereign debt crises tend to be self-fulfilling prophecies: Investors get nervous about a government’s ability to pay, so they demand higher interest rates, which raise borrowing costs and produce the bad outcome they feared. It’s a dynamic that Argentines are familiar with — and that Americans had better hope they never experience.

For what it’s worth, I think other major nations will suffer fiscal crisis before the problem becomes acute in the United States.

I really this will make me sound uncharacteristically optimistic, but I’m keeping my fingers crossed that this will finally lead politicians to adopt a spending cap so we don’t become Argentina.

P.S. The Wall Street Journal recently editorialized on the issue of government debt and made a very important point about the difference between the $30 trillion “gross debt” and the “debt held by the public,” which is about $6 trillion lower.

…the debt really isn’t $30 trillion. About $6 trillion of that is debt the government owes to itself in Social Security and other IOUs. …The debt held by the public is some $24 trillion, which is bad enough.

As I’ve noted when writing about Social Security, the IOUs in government trust funds are not real.

They’re just bookkeeping entries, as even Bill Clinton’s budget freely admitted.

Indeed, if you want to know whether some is both honest and knowledgeable about budget matters, ask them which measure of the national debt really matters.

As you can see from this exchange of tweets, competent and careful budget people (regardless of whether they favor big government or small government) focus on “debt held by the public,” which is the term for the money government actually borrows from credit markets.

If you want to know the difference between the various types of government debt – including “unfunded liabilities” – watch this video.

P.P.S. This column explains how and when debt matters. If you’re interested in how to reduce the debt, there’s very good evidence that spending restraint is the only effective approach. Even in cases where debt is enormous.

P.P.P.S. By contrast, the evidence is very clear that higher taxesactually make debt problems worse.

Yes, Starve the Beast

As part of a recent discussion with Gene Tunny in Australia, I explained why I support “Starve the Beast,” which means keeping taxes as low as possible to help achieve the goal of spending restraint.

The premise of Starve the Beast is very simple.

Politicians like to spend money and they don’t particularly care whether that spending is financed by taxes or financed by borrowing (both bad options).

As Milton Friedman sagely observed, that means they will spend every penny they collect in taxes plus as much additional spending financed by borrowing that the political system will allow.

The IMF published a study on this issue about 10 years ago. The authors (Michael Kumhof, Douglas Laxton, and Daniel Leigh) assert that there’s no way of knowing whether Starve the Beast will lead to good or bad results.

…there is no consensus regarding the macroeconomic and welfare consequences of implementing a starve-the-beast approach, henceforth referred to as STB. …it could be beneficial in the ideal case in which it results in cuts in entirely wasteful government spending. In particular, lower spending frees up resources for private consumption, and the associated lower tax rates reduce distortions in the economy. On the other hand, …lower government spending may itself entail welfare losses…if it augments the productivity of private factors of production. …the paper examines whether the principal macroeconomic variables such as GDP and consumption, both in the United States and in the rest of the world, respond positively to this policy. …In addition, the paper assesses how the welfare effects depend on the degree to which government spending directly contributes to household welfare or to productivity.

The authors don’t really push any particular conclusion. Instead, they show various economic outcomes depending on with assumptions one adopts.

Since plenty of research shows that government spending is not a net plus for the economy (even IMF economists agree on that point), and because I think a less-punitive tax system is possible (and desirable) if there’s a smaller burden of government spending, I think the findings shown in Figure 4 make the most sense.

Now let’s shift from academic analysis to policy analysis.

In a piece for National Review back in July 2020, Jim Geraghty notes that Starve the Beast has an impact on government finances at the state level.

…we’re probably not going to see a massive expansion of government at the state level in the coming year or two. …Thanks to the pandemic lockdown bringing vast swaths of the economy to a halt, state tax revenues are plummeting.…So states will have much less tax revenue, constitutional balanced-budget requirements that are not easily repealed, and a limited amount of budgetary tricks to work around it. State governments could attempt to raise taxes, but that’s going to be unpopular and hurt state economies when they’re already struggling. Add it all up and it’s a tough set of circumstances for a dramatic expansion of government, no matter how ardently progressive the governor and state legislatures are.

For what it’s worth, Geraghty warned in the article that fiscal restraint by state governments wouldn’t happen if the federal government turned on the spending spigot.

And that, of course, is exactly what happened.

Now let’s look at the most unintentional endorsement of Stave the Beast.

A couple of years ago, Paul Krugman sort of admitted that cutting taxes was a potentially effective strategy for spending restraint.

…the same Republicans now wringing their hands over budget deficits…blew up that same deficit by enacting a huge tax cut for corporations and the wealthy. …this has been the G.O.P.’s budget strategy for decades. First, cut taxes. Then, bemoan the deficit created by those tax cuts and demand cuts in social spending.Lather, rinse, repeat. This strategy, known as “starve the beast,” has been around since the 1970s, when Republican economists like Alan Greenspan and Milton Friedman began declaring that the role of tax cuts in worsening budget deficits was a feature, not a bug. As Greenspan openly put it in 1978, the goal was to rein in spending with tax cuts that reduce revenue, then “trust that there is a political limit to deficit spending.” …voters should realize that the threat to programs… Social Security and Medicare as we know them will be very much in danger.

In other words, Krugman doesn’t like Starve the Beast because he fears it is effective (just like he also acknowledges the Laffer Curve, even though he’s opposed to tax cuts).

Let’s close by looking at some very powerful real-world evidence. Over the past 50 years, there’s been a massive increase in the tax burden in Western Europe.

Did all that additional tax revenue lead to lower deficits and less debt?

Nope, the opposite happened. European politicians spent every penny of the new tax revenue (much of it from value-added taxes). And then they added even more spending financed by additional borrowing.

To be fair, one could argue that this was an argument for the view of “Don’t Feed the Beast” rather than “Starve the Beast,” but it nonetheless shows that more money in the hands of politicians simply means more spending. And more red ink.

P.S. I had a discussion last year with Gene Tunny about the issue of “state capacity libertarianism.”


Friedman & Sowell: Should Our School System Be Privatized?

Regular readers know that the two things that get me most excited are the Georgia Bulldogs and the fight against a bloated public sector that is ineffective in the best of circumstances and more often than not is a threat to our freedoms.

So you will not be surprised to know that I am delighted that former Georgia Bulldog star Fran Tarkenton (who also happened to play in the NFL) has a superb piece in the Wall Street Journal ripping apart the inherent inefficiency of government-run monopoly schools.

Here is the key passage.

Imagine the National Football League in an alternate reality. Each player’s salary is based on how long he’s been in the league. It’s about tenure, not talent. The same scale is used for every player, no matter whether he’s an All-Pro quarterback or the last man on the roster. For every year a player’s been in this NFL, he gets a bump in pay. The only difference between Tom Brady and the worst player in the league is a few years of step increases. And if a player makes it through his third season, he can never be cut from the roster until he chooses to retire, except in the most extreme cases of misconduct. Let’s face the truth about this alternate reality: The on-field product would steadily decline. Why bother playing harder or better and risk getting hurt? No matter how much money was poured into the league, it wouldn’t get better. In fact, in many ways the disincentive to play harder or to try to stand out would be even stronger with more money. Of course, a few wild-eyed reformers might suggest the whole system was broken and needed revamping to reward better results, but the players union would refuse to budge and then demonize the reform advocates: “They hate football. They hate the players. They hate the fans.” The only thing that might get done would be building bigger, more expensive stadiums and installing more state-of-the-art technology. But that just wouldn’t help.

This sounds absurd, of course, but Mr. Tarkenton goes on to explain that this is precisely how government schools operate.

If you haven’t figured it out yet, the NFL in this alternate reality is the real-life American public education system. Teachers’ salaries have no relation to whether teachers are actually good at their job—excellence isn’t rewarded, and neither is extra effort. Pay is almost solely determined by how many years they’ve been teaching. That’s it. After a teacher earns tenure, which is often essentially automatic, firing him or her becomes almost impossible, no matter how bad the performance might be. And if you criticize the system, you’re demonized for hating teachers and not believing in our nation’s children. Inflation-adjusted spending per student in the United States has nearly tripled since 1970. According to the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, we spend more per student than any nation except Switzerland, with only middling results to show for it.

Actually, I will disagree with the last sentence of this excerpt. We’re not even getting “middling results.” Here’s a chart from an earlier post showing that we’ve gotten more bureaucracy and more spending but no improvement over the past 40 years.

So what’s the solution to this mess? Well, since government is the problem, it stands to reason that competition and markets are the answer.

Sweden, Chile, and the Netherlands are just some of the countries that have seen good results after breaking up state-run education monopolies.

Watch this video to get more details.

Economics 101: School Choice Example Shows Why Government Monopolies Are Bad

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Milton Friedman’s FREE TO CHOOSE “The Tyranny of Control” Transcript and Video (60 Minutes) In 1980 I read the book FREE TO CHOOSE by Milton Friedman and it really enlightened me a tremendous amount.  I suggest checking out these episodes and transcripts of Milton Friedman’s film series FREE TO CHOOSE: “The Failure of Socialism” and […]

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In 1980 I read the book FREE TO CHOOSE by Milton Friedman and it really enlightened me a tremendous amount.  I suggest checking out these episodes and transcripts of Milton Friedman’s film series FREE TO CHOOSE: “The Failure of Socialism” and “What is wrong with our schools?”  and “Created Equal”  and  From Cradle to Grave, […]

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In 1980 I read the book FREE TO CHOOSE by Milton Friedman and it really enlightened me a tremendous amount.  I suggest checking out these episodes and transcripts of Milton Friedman’s film series FREE TO CHOOSE: “The Failure of Socialism” and “What is wrong with our schools?”  and “Created Equal”  and  From Cradle to Grave, […]

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In 1980 I read the book FREE TO CHOOSE by Milton Friedman and it really enlightened me a tremendous amount.  I suggest checking out these episodes and transcripts of Milton Friedman’s film series FREE TO CHOOSE: “The Failure of Socialism” and “What is wrong with our schools?”  and “Created Equal”  and  From Cradle to Grave, […]

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In 1980 I read the book FREE TO CHOOSE by Milton Friedman and it really enlightened me a tremendous amount.  I suggest checking out these episodes and transcripts of Milton Friedman’s film series FREE TO CHOOSE: “The Failure of Socialism” and “What is wrong with our schools?”  and “Created Equal”  and  From Cradle to Grave, […]

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_________

ADL Report Exaggerates Threat of White Supremacist Killers


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ADL Report Exaggerates Threat of White Supremacist Killers

James Varney  / May 26, 2022

Murders attributed by the Anti-Defamation League to white supremacists from 2012 through 2021 account for a mere .001% of such violent deaths. Pictured: The scene outside a Tops market May 15 in Buffalo, New York, after a gunman opened fire, killing 10 and wounding three. (Photo: Scott Olson/Getty Images)

In May 2021, two members of the Family Values, a white supremacist prison gang, allegedly killed a member of the rival Southwest Honkeys prison gang over a longstanding beef. Three months later, a New Jersey man who had vandalized synagogues and distributed neo-Nazi pamphlets strangled his wife. 

On the surface, the crimes would appear to have little more in common than their brutality. But the Anti-Defamation League includes these murders by white men of other whites in its tally of right-wing and white supremacist murders in its report, “Murder & Extremism in the United States in 2021.”

“In 2021, white supremacists were responsible for more murders than any other type of extremist; in many years, they comprised an outright majority of the extremist murders that year,” the report says. “Indeed, over the past 10 years, white supremacists have committed 244 (55%) of the 443 killings that the [Anti-Defamation League Center on Extremism] has documented.”

The ADL also claims that other “right-wing extremists” were responsible for another 20% of extremist killings during the 10-year-period from 2012 through 2021—including those it describes as “anti-government” and “incel/manosphere” (typically, involuntary celibates or misogynists).

ADL’s report has been cited repeatedly in media pieces as evidence of the lethal threat posed by far-right extremists since a mentally disturbed 18-year-old white supremacist murdered 10 African Americans and injured three others at a Buffalo market May 14. The report’s stark warning has helped provide a backdrop for the narrative advanced by the White House, advocacy groups, and national media outlets that toxic white nationalism permeates American society. 

“White supremacy is a poison. It’s a poison … running through our body politic,” President Joe Biden said in his speech in Buffalo after the shooting. “… And it’s been allowed to grow and fester right before our eyes.”

But a closer examination of the statistics compiled by the ADL—which did not respond to multiple requests for comment—casts doubt on their use as evidence that African Americans or any other Americans are under increasing or serious threats from racist white zealots. 

Significant Problems

The ADL report was publicized in a month of back-to-back massacres by mentally disturbed young men, the latest by a member of a heavily Hispanic community in Texas, suggesting mass killings defy pat analysis.

Critics cite significant problems with the ADL presentation. Like other organizations tracking extremism, the ADL rarely offers context to claims regarding extremist murders by comparing them to broader homicide statistics. 

During the same 10-year period cited by the ADL in its 2021 report identifying 244 murders by white supremacists, there were at least 165,000 murders in the U.S. That means the murders the group attributes to white supremacists accounted for .001% of such violent deaths over the decade.

That statistic pales in comparison with those of major cities that have seen shocking increases in bloodshed, with recent annual murder totals breaking or nearing records set in the 20th century. 

Chicago had 797 murders in 2021, the highest total in 25 years. Much smaller Minneapolis, one year after George Floyd died in police custody there, had 96 murders, one shy of the city’s 1995 record. Huge jumps in murders also occurred in Philadelphia, Los Angeles, and other metropolitan areas.

“The FBI has not issued the official number of murders in the U.S. in 2021, but it is expected to exceed the number of murders in 2020: 21,570—of which, according to ADL, 23 were committed by extremists,” Carl Moody, an economist at the College of William & Mary who studies crime, told RealClearInvestigations.

“The data presented by the ADL could also be characterized as follows: The number of murders committed by extremists is very small, only 29 in 2021, of which less than half were committed by white supremacists,” Moody said, adding:

It is also 63% lower than the maximum number (78) in 2016, so extremism is down since 2016. In 2020, according to the [Centers for Disease Control and Prevention], 1,080 people were killed falling out of bed. Therefore, you are 47 times more likely to be killed by a bed than by an extremist.

‘Creating Divisions’

“It’s important that we get the numbers right and in perspective,” said John Lott, president of the Crime Prevention Research Center. “And we’ve had mainstream narratives that make it sound like they are all like the Buffalo killer.”

“But there are very specific circumstances to a number of these shootings,” Lott said. “If there is a significant threat to blacks from these kinds of mass attacks, they need to know that. Otherwise, you’re creating divisions that don’t need to be there.”

Crime experts also note that many of the killings cited by the ADL—such as the slaying committed by Shawn Lichtfuss, the New Jersey man who killed his wife, or John Hilt and Justin Murphy, the allegedly lethal members of the Family Values prison gang—were not hate crimes aimed at terrorizing blacks or other minorities. 

These cases include:

  • A white supremacist with a “swastika and SS tattoos on his face” who killed another man in an extended-stay hotel “following an argument over a social media post.”
  • A member of a white supremacist street gang in Fresno, California, who “allegedly [shot] a man with whom he had long been feuding.”
  • Four members of the New Mexico Aryan Brotherhood who “were involved in a shootout amongst themselves inside a vehicle.”

Excluding Other Mass Murders

At the same time, critics say, the Anti-Defamation League overstates the percentage of white supremacist murders because it omits some high-profile crimes committed by nonwhites. 

Lott provided eight examples of mass killings—traditionally defined as those with four or more fatalities—excluded by the ADL in its decadelong tally. One of those was the 2016 attack a black man launched against white police officers in Dallas that killed five and wounded 11.

The ADL report also doesn’t include the more recent carnage in Waukesha, Wisconsin, in November when a black man with a history of racist social posts drove into a mostly white crowd in a Christmas parade, killing six and injuring 62. 

For 2021, the ADL lists just two murders by people it classifies as “black nationalists.” If the Waukesha victims were included, black racist murders would account for 23% of extremist murders (eight of 35) for 2021. 

“The Wisconsin car attack is one that is very hard to miss,” Lott said. “It is such an obvious and well-known case that you have to wonder if they omitted it because it goes against ‘their narrative.’”

The ADL’s own report indicates that many of the killings it attributes to white supremacists do not fit common understandings of racist hate crimes. 

The report says, for example, that 76 of the 244 killings, or 31%, were committed by members, suspected members, or associates of white supremacist prison gangs. They were the deadliest group profiled, and “given the nature of prison gangs as organized crime groups, it is predictable that many of the murders would be related to traditional criminal activities, ranging from drug-related murders to killings committed in robberies.”

Killings That Aren’t Ideological

Indeed, the ADL admits that the majority of murders it attributes to white supremacists were non-ideological. 

“Over the past 10 years, only 86 of the 244 white supremacist killings (35%) were ideological murders,” the report says. “The remainder were group-related but not ideological attacks, were related to traditional criminal activities, or were murders for which no clear motive could be determined.”

That finding tracks with a March 2021 report from Lott’s organization addressing what it called “the false narrative of white supremacists doing mass public shootings.” Examining all shootings involving four or more fatalities from 1998 to March 2021, it found in 71% of them “no mention of political affiliation” of the shooters. 

Of the remainder, “4% are right-wingers or conservatives or Republicans, 6% were liberals or Democrats or left-wing, and 10% were Muslim,” the report from the Crime Prevention Research Center determined. “About 9% are white supremacist, neo-Nazis, or anti-immigrant, but these people come from both the left and the right. Mass public shootings make up a small percentage of murders, and anti-minority mass public shooters are not the biggest threat even in that group.”

Brian Levin, who heads the Center for the Study of Hate & Extremism at California State University-San Bernardino, said it can be difficult to pinpoint precise motivations of mass murderers, as “we are seeing less rigid ideological killers who increasingly seem to browse at a buffet of hatreds.”  

The Buffalo killer’s overwhelming hatred, however, was racist, as he expressed both the belief that blacks are inferior and angst over a kind of global conspiracy called “the great replacement theory,” Levin said. 

In his 180-page rant published while he was allegedly opening fire in Buffalo, the extremist described himself at various points as a “mild/moderate left authoritarian,” and he viewed conservatism with contempt as a corporate catspaw. 

“In whole or in part, he’s a Nazi,” Levin said of the shooter. “He hates Jews, he hates blacks—hatred is the primary driver.”

A Misleading Emphasis

To be sure, targeted racist mass murders invoke a terror that everyday murders do not—massacres such as those by a 21-year-old white shooter at an African-American church in Charleston in 2015 (nine dead, one injured); the Pittsburgh Tree of Life synagogue shooting in 2018 (11 dead, six injured); the 2019 attack at the El Paso Walmart (23 dead, 23 wounded); as well as the recent attack in Buffalo. 

When such killers target African Americans, Jews, or others on racist terms, the crimes have a disproportionate impact on how they and all Americans may perceive the atmosphere, Levin said.

“Not all crimes have the same effect on the American psyche,” Levin said. “I’ll leave it to others to talk about how the media covers it, but when Tony Soprano knocks off another criminal family wiseguy it does not have the kind of impact these manifesto mass killers do.”

Levin said his research supports the idea that right-wing extremists are a huge threat and he pointed to other studies that have drawn the same conclusion. 

Nevertheless, critics say the evidence indicates that the emphasis the White House and media outlets have thrown on the threat posed by white supremacist killings is misleading.

“Death by extremist is an incredibly rare event,” said Moody, the William & Mary economist. “It is absurd to try to generalize from such tiny numbers.”

This report first appeared at RealClear Investigations.

Have an opinion about this article? To sound off, please email letters@DailySignal.com and we’ll consider publishing your edited remarks in our regular “We Hear You” feature. Remember to include the URL or headline of the article plus your name and town and/or state. 

The January 6 Insurrection Hoax

 • Volume 50, Number 9 • Roger Kimball

Roger Kimball
Editor and Publisher, The New Criterion


Roger Kimball is editor and publisher of The New Criterionand publisher of Encounter Books. He earned his B.A. from Bennington College and his M.A. and M.Phil. in philosophy from Yale University. He has written for numerous publications, including The Wall Street Journal and The New York Times Book Review, and is a columnist for The Spectator WorldAmerican Greatness, and The Epoch Times. He is editor or author of several books, including The Long March: How the Cultural Revolution of the 1960s Changed AmericaThe Rape of the Masters: How Political Correctness Sabotages ArtTenured Radicals: How Politics Has Corrupted Our Higher Education, and Vox Populi: The Perils and Promises of Populism.

The following is adapted from a lecture delivered at Hillsdale College on September 20, 2021, during a Center for Constructive Alternatives conference on “Critical American Elections.”

Notwithstanding all the hysterical rhetoric surrounding the events of January 6, 2021, two critical things stand out. The first is that what happened was much more hoax than insurrection. In fact, in my judgment, it wasn’t an insurrection at all.

An “insurrection,” as the dictionary will tell you, is a violent uprising against a government or other established authority. Unlike the violent riots that swept the country in the summer of 2020—riots that caused some $2 billion in property damage and claimed more than 20 lives—the January 6 protest at the Capitol building in Washington, D.C. lasted a few hours, caused minimal damage, and the only person directly killed was an unarmed female Trump supporter who was shot by a Capitol Police officer. It was, as Tucker Carlson said shortly after the event, a political protest that “got out of hand.”

At the rally preceding the events in question, Donald Trump had suggested that people march to the Capitol “peacefully and patriotically”—these were his exact words—in order to make their voices heard. He did not incite a riot; he stirred up a crowd. Was that, given the circumstances, imprudent? Probably. Was it an effort to overthrow the government? Hardly.

I know this is not the narrative that we have all been instructed to parrot. Indeed, to listen to the establishment media and our political masters, the January 6 protest was a dire threat to the very fabric of our nation: the worst assault on “our democracy” since 9/11, since Pearl Harbor, and even—according to Joe Biden last April—since the Civil War! 

Note that phrase “our democracy”: Nancy Pelosi, Joe Biden, and various talking heads have repeated it ad nauseam. But you do not need an advanced degree in hermeneutics to understand that what they mean by “our democracy” is their oligarchy. Similarly, when Pelosi talks about “the people’s house,” she doesn’t mean a house that welcomes riff-raff like you and me.

I just alluded to Ashli Babbitt, the unarmed supporter of Donald Trump who was shot and killed on January 6. Her fate brings me to the second critical thing to understand about the January 6 insurrection hoax. Namely, that it was not a stand-alone event. 

On the contrary, what happened that afternoon, and what happened afterwards, is only intelligible when seen as a chapter in the long-running effort to discredit and, ultimately, to dispose of Donald Trump—as well as what Hillary Clinton might call the “deplorable” populist sentiment that brought Trump to power. 

In other words, to understand the January 6 insurrection hoax, you also have to understand that other long-running hoax, the Russia collusion hoax. The story of that hoax begins back in 2015, when the resources of the federal government were first mobilized to spy on the Trump campaign, to frame various people close to Trump, and eventually to launch a full-throated criminal investigation of the Trump administration. 

From before Trump took office, the Russia collusion hoax was used as a pretext to create a parallel administration shadowing the elected administration. Remember the Steele dossier, the fantastical document confected by the “well-regarded” former British spy Christopher Steele? We know now that it was the only relevant predicate for ordering FISA warrants to spy on Carter Page and other American citizens. 

But in truth, the Steele dossier was just opposition dirt covertly paid for by the Democratic National Committee and the Hillary Clinton campaign. From beginning to end, it was a tissue of lies and fabrications. Everyone involved knew all along it was garbage—rumors and fantasies fed to a gullible Steele by shady Russian sources. But it was nonetheless used to deploy, illegally, the awesome coercive power of the state against a presidential candidate of whom the ruling bureaucracy and its favored candidate disapproved. 

The public learned that the Democratic National Committee paid for the manufactured evidence only because of a court order. James Comey, the disgraced former director of the FBI, publicly denied knowing who paid for it, but emails from a year earlier prove that he knew all along. And what was the penalty for lying in Comey’s case? He got a huge book deal and toured the country denouncing Trump to the gleeful satisfaction of his anti-Trump audiences. 

What was true of Comey was also true of the entire intelligence apparat, from former CIA Director John Brennan to Congressman Adam Schiff and other Democratic members of the House Intelligence Committee to senior members of the FBI. All these people said publicly that they had seen clear evidence of collusion with Russia. But they admitted under oath behind closed doors that they hadn’t.

General Michael Flynn, Trump’s original National Security Advisor, had his career ruined and was bankrupted as part of this political vendetta. Meanwhile James Comey, Andrew McCabe, Lisa Page, John Brennan, Peter Strzok, and all the rest of the crew at the FBI, the CIA, and other intelligence agencies suffered nothing. When it came to light that an FBI lawyer altered an email in order to help get a FISA warrant—in other words, that he doctored evidence to spy on a political opponent, which is a felony—he got probation.

The recent news that Special Counsel John Durham is indicting Michael Sussman, a lawyer who covertly worked for the Clinton campaign and lied to the FBI, is welcome news. But it seems like small beer given the rampant higher-level corruption that saturated the Russia collusion hoax.

At least 74 million citizens voted for Donald Trump in 2020, which is at least 11 million more than voted for him in 2016. Many of those voters are profoundly disillusioned and increasingly angry about this entire story—the years-long Robert Mueller “investigation,” the two impeachments of President Trump, the cloud of unknowing that surrounds the 2020 election, and the many questions that have emerged not only from the January 6 protest at the Capitol, but even more from the government’s response to that protest.

Which brings me back to Ashli Babbitt, the long-serving Air Force veteran who was shot and killed by a nervous Capitol Police officer. Babbitt was a useful prop when the media was in overdrive describing the January 6 events as an “armed insurrection” in which wild Trump supporters, supposedly at Trump’s instigation, attacked the Capitol with the intention of overturning the 2020 election.

According to that narrative, five people, including Babbitt, died in the skirmish. Moreover, it was said, Capitol Police Officer Brian Sicknick was bludgeoned to death by a raging Trump supporter wielding a fire extinguisher. That gem of a story about the fire extinguisher, reported in our former paper of record, The New York Times, was instantly picked up by other media outlets and spread like a Chinese virus. 

Of course, it is absolutely critical to the Democratic Party narrative that the January 6 incident be made to seem as violent and crazed as possible. Hence the comparisons to 9/11, Pearl Harbor, and the Civil War. Only thus can pro-Trump Americans be excluded from “our democracy” by being branded as “domestic extremists” if not, indeed, “domestic terrorists.”

The Sixth Amendment to the Constitution accords American citizens the right to a speedy trial. But most of the political prisoners of January 6—many of whom have been kept in solitary confinement—are still waiting to be brought to trial. And although the media was full of predictions that they would be found guilty of criminal sedition, none has. 

Indeed, the prosecution’s cases seem to be falling apart. Most of the hundreds who have been arrested are being charged with trespassing. Another charge being leveled against them is “disrupting an official proceeding.” This is a felony charge designed not for ceremonial procedures like the January 6 certification of the vote, but rather for disrupting Congressional inquiries—for example, by shredding documents relevant to a Congressional investigation. It originated during the George W. Bush administration to deal with the Enron case.

The indisputable fact about January 6 is that although five people died at or near the Capitol on that day or soon thereafter, none of these deaths was brought about by the protesters. The shot fired by Capitol Police Officer Michael Byrd that hit Ashli Babbitt in the neck and killed her was the only shot fired at the Capitol that day. No guns were recovered from the Capitol on January 6. Zero.

The liberal commentator Glenn Greenwald further diminished the “armed insurrection” narrative in an important column last February titled “The False and Exaggerated Claims Still Being Spread About the Capitol Riot.” The title says it all. Kevin Greeson, Greenwald notes, was killed not by the protesters but died of a heart attack outside the Capitol. Benjamin Philips, the founder of a pro-Trump website called Trumparoo, died of a stroke that day. Rosanne Boyland, another Trump supporter, was reported by The New York Times to have been inadvertently “killed in a crush of fellow rioters during their attempt to fight through a police line.” But later video shows that, far from that, the police pushed protesters on top of Boyland and would not allow other protesters to pull her out.

Four of the five who died, then, were pro-Trump protesters. And the fifth? Well, that was Officer Sicknick—also a Trump supporter, as it turned out—who, contrary to the false report gone viral of The New York Times, went home, told his family he felt fine, but died a day later from, as The Washington Post eventually and grudgingly reported, “natural causes.” No fire extinguishers were involved in his demise.

***

The January 6 insurrection hoax prompts lots of questions.

Why, for example, did the government mobilize 26,000 federal troops from all across the country to surround “the people’s house” following January 6? Why were those troops subjected to FBI vetting, with some of them sent packing? 

Why is there some 14,000 hours of video footage of the event on January 6 that the government refuses to release? What are they afraid of letting the public see? More scenes of security guards actually opening doors and politely ushering in protesters? More pictures of FBI informants covertly salted among the crowd?

My own view is that turning Washington into an armed camp was mostly theater. There was no threat that the Washington police could not have handled. But it was also a show of force and an act of intimidation. The message was: “We’re in charge now, rubes, and don’t you forget it.”

In truth, there is little threat of domestic terror in this country. But there is plenty of domestic conservatism. And that conservatism is the real focus of the establishment’s ire.

It is important to note that while the government provides the muscle for this war on dissent, the elite culture at large is a willing accomplice. Consider, for example, the open letter, signed by more than 500 “publishing professionals” (authors, editors, designers, and so on), calling on the industry to reject books written by anyone who had anything to do with the Trump administration. 

These paragons pledged to do whatever they could to stop “enriching the monsters among us.” But here’s their problem: over 74 million people voted for Trump. That’s a lot of monsters. 

Many people have been quoting Benjamin Franklin’s famous response when asked what sort of government they had come up with at the Constitutional Convention of 1787. “A republic,” Franklin said, “if you can keep it.” Right now, it looks like we can’t. It looks as if the American constitutional republic has given way, as least temporarily, to an American oligarchy. 

As the years go by, historians, if the censors allow them access to the documents and give them leave to publish their findings, may well count the 2016 presidential election as the last fair and open democratic election in U.S. history. I know we are not supposed to say that. I know that the heads of Twitter and Facebook and other woke guardians of the status quo call this view “The Big Lie” and do all they can to suppress it. But every honest person knows that the 2020 election was tainted.

The forces responsible for the taint had tried before. Hitherto, their efforts had met with only limited success. But a perfect storm of forces conspired to make 2020 the first oligarchic installation of a president. It would not have happened, I think, absent the panic over the Chinese virus. But that panic, folded in a lover’s embrace by the Democratic establishment, was not only a splendid pretext to clamp down on civil liberties; it also provided an inarguable excuse to alter the rules for elections in several key states.

“Inarguable” is not quite the right word. There could have been plenty of arguments, and many lawsuits, against the way the executive branches in these states usurped the constitutionally guaranteed prerogative of state legislatures to set the election rules when they intervened to allow massive mail-in voting. But the Trump administration, though foreseeing and complaining about the executive interventions, did too little too late to make a difference. 

Among the many sobering realities that the 2020 election brought home is that in our current and particular form of oligarchy, the people do have a voice, but it is a voice that is everywhere pressured, cajoled, shaped, and bullied. The people also have a choice, but only among a roster of candidates approved by the elite consensus. 

The central fact to appreciate about Donald Trump is that he was elected president without the permission, and over the incredulous objections, of the bipartisan oligarchy that governs us. That was his unforgivable offense. Trump was the greatest threat in history to the credentialed class and the globalist administrative state upon which they feed. Representatives of that oligarchy tried for four years to destroy Trump. Remember that the first mention of impeachment came 19 minutes after his inauguration, an event that was met not only by a widespread Democratic boycott and hysterical claims by Nancy Pelosi and others that the election had been hijacked, but also by riots in Washington, D.C. that saw at least six policemen injured, numerous cars torched, and other property destroyed. 

You will search in vain for media or other ruling class denunciations of that violence, or for bulletins from corporate America advising their customers of their solidarity with the newly-installed Trump administration. As the commentator Howie Carr noted, some riots are more equal than others. Some get you the approval of people like Nancy Pelosi and at least the grudging acceptance of oligarchs of the other party. Others get the FBI sweeping the country for “domestic terrorists” and the lords of Big Tech canceling people who defend the protesters’ cause.

Someday—maybe someday soon—this witches’ sabbath, this festival of scapegoating, and what George Orwell called the “hideous ecstasy” of hate will be at an end. Perhaps someday people will be aghast, and some will be ashamed, of what they did to the President of the United States and people who supported him: the chairman of the House Homeland Security Committee, for instance, proposing to put Senator Ted Cruz on a “no fly” list, and Simon & Schuster canceling Senator Josh Hawley’s book contract. 

Donald Trump is the Emmanuel Goldstein (the designated principal enemy of the totalitarian state Oceania in Orwell’s 1984) of the movement. But minor public enemies are legion. Anyone harboring “Trumpist” inclinations is suspect, hence the widespread calls for “deprogramming” Trump’s supporters, who are routinely said to be “marching toward sedition.”

Michael Barone, one of our most perceptive political commentators, got it right when he wrote of the rapid movement “from impeaching incitement to canceling conservatism.” That is the path our oligarchs are inviting us to travel now, criminalizing political dissent and transforming policy differences into a species of heresy. You don’t debate heretics, after all. You seek to destroy them.

Donald Trump’s accomplishments as president were nothing less than stunning. Trump was, and is, a rude force of nature. He accomplished an immense amount. But he lacked one thing. Some say it was self-discipline or finesse. I agree with a friend of mine who suggested that Trump’s critical flaw was a deficit in guile. That sounds odd, no doubt, since Trump is supposed to be the tough guy who mastered “the art of the deal.” But I think my friend is probably right. Trump seems never to have discerned what a viper’s nest our politics has become for anyone who is not a paid-up member of The Club. 

Maybe Trump understands this now. I have no insight into that question. I am pretty confident, though, that the 74 plus million people who voted for him understand it deeply. It’s another reason that The Club should be wary of celebrating its victory too expansively. 

Friedrich Hayek took one of the two epigraphs for his book, The Road to Serfdom, from the philosopher David Hume. “It is seldom,” Hume wrote, “that liberty of any kind is lost all at once.” Much as I admire Hume, I wonder whether he got this quite right. Sometimes, I would argue, liberty is erased almost instantaneously.

I’d be willing to wager that Joseph Hackett, confronted with Hume’s observation, would express similar doubts. I would be happy to ask Mr. Hackett myself, but he is inaccessible. If the ironically titled “Department of Justice” has its way, he will be inaccessible for a long, long time—perhaps as long as 20 years. 

Joseph Hackett, you see, is a 51-year-old Trump supporter and member of an organization called the Oath Keepers, a group whose members have pledged to “defend the Constitution against all enemies foreign and domestic.” The FBI does not like the Oath Keepers—agents arrested its leader in January and have picked up many other members in the months since. Hackett traveled to Washington from his home in Florida to join the January 6 rally. According to court documents, he entered the Capitol at 2:45 that afternoon and left some nine minutes later, at 2:54. The next day, he went home. On May 28, he was apprehended by the FBI and indicted on a long list of charges, including conspiracy, obstruction of an official proceeding, destruction of government property, and illegally entering a restricted building. 

As far as I have been able to determine, no evidence of Hackett destroying property has come to light. According to his wife, it is not even clear that he entered the Capitol. But he certainly was in the environs. He was a member of the Oath Keepers. He was a supporter of Donald Trump. Therefore, he must be neutralized.

Joseph Hackett is only one of hundreds of citizens who have been branded as “domestic terrorists” trying to “overthrow the government” and who are now languishing, in appalling conditions, jailed as political prisoners of an angry state apparat.

Hayek’s overriding concern in The Road to Serfdomwas to combat the forces that were pushing people further along that road to servitude. His chief concern was unchecked state power. In a new preface to the book’s 1956 edition, Hayek noted that one of its “main points” was to document how “extensive government control produces a psychological change, an alteration in the character of the people.”

 “This means,” Hayek wrote, “that even a strong tradition of political liberty is no safeguard if the danger is precisely that new institutions and policies will gradually undermine and destroy that spirit.”

 This dismal situation, Hayek continues, can be averted, but only if the spirit of liberty “reasserts itself in time and the people not only throw out the party which has been leading them further and further in the dangerous direction but also recognize the nature of the danger and resolutely change their course.”

Note the power of that little word “if.” It was not so long ago that an American could contemplate totalitarian regimes and say, “Thank God we’ve escaped that.” It’s not at all clear that we can entertain that happy conviction any longer. 

That’s one melancholy lesson of the January 6 insurrection hoax: that America is fast mutating from a republic, in which individual liberty is paramount, into an oligarchy, in which conformity is increasingly demanded and enforced.

Another lesson was perfectly expressed by Donald Trump when he reflected on the unremitting tsunami of hostility that he faced as President. “They’re after you,” he more than once told his supporters. “I’m just in the way.”

Bingo.

Dershowitz Warns Against ‘New McCarthyism’ of Left

alan dershowitz walks downs the steps of the capitol with the dome lit behind him.Attorney Alan Dershowitz, in 2020 when he was a member of President Donald Trump’s legal team. (Sarah Silbiger/Getty Images)By Newsmax Wires 
Sunday, 14 Feb 2021 1:56 PM

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Former Harvard law professor Alan Dershowitz on Sunday blasted the “new McCarthyism” of the Democrats’ “hard left.”

In an interview on Fox News’ “Sunday Morning Futures,” Dershowitz, a constitutional law expert, said some liberals have become radical censors of free speech.

“Common Cause, which purports to be a liberal, not a radical organization, has now demanded that Facebook keep Donald Trump off its platform,” he said. “We are getting liberals… [calling for] Fox News [to be] taken off the networks. I hated communism but I defended the rights of lawyers to defend accused communists.”

“If any lawyer is the subject of this kind of McCarthyism, I will represent you pro bono, in front of universities and bar associations,” he added. “I will dedicate myself that the new McCarthyism of the hard left doesn’t become American culture.”

Dershowitz called the Senate trial acquittal of former President Donald Trump a “great day” for the Constitution and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., — but “not such a good day” for Trump himself.

“McConnell “taught us a civic’s lesson: You don’t have to support President Trump or Donald Trump, you don’t have to agree with the speech, but support the First Amendment and the Constitution’s limitations on the power of the Senate to put a former president on trial,” he said.

“McConnell accepted the constitutional argument I’ve been making from the very beginning — that Congress has no power to put on trial Citizen Trump.”

On the flip side, Dershowitz said, Saturday was “not such a good day for Donald Trump because McConnell and others criticized him.”

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Tucker Carlson Tonight 2/10/21 | Tucker Carlson Tonight February 10, 2021

Alan Dershowitz to Newsmax TV: Dems Making Trump’s Case

By Eric Mack 
Wednesday, 10 Feb 2021 5:35 PM


In laying out a long-running objection to election fraud by former President Donald Trump, House impeachment managers are effectively making the case for the defense because the speech under the microscope is protected, even if they disagree with it, according to constitutional law expert Alan Dershowitz on Newsmax TV.

“Very good theater, terrible constitutional law,” Dershowitz told “The Chris Salcedo Show” of the House Democrats’ opening statements Wednesday.

“The videos make good theater; they’re very riveting,” the noted legal scholar said. “”But they prove President Trump’s constitutional defense.”

House Democrats are emphasizing that Trump had long argued the election was stolen, but then they show how the president challenged it “by all lawful means and all political means,” Dershowitz told host Chris Salcedo.

“The Constitution protects a person that says the Earth is flat as much as a person who says it’s round,” Dershowitz said. “The Constitution protects a Holocaust denier as much as it does a historian who can prove that 6 million Jews were killed.

“And the Constitution, the First Amendment, protects a president who’s wrong about the election as much as a president who’s right.”

Instead of tying the lone article of impeachment — incitement of insurrection — solely on Trump’s Jan. 6 “Stop the Steal” rally speech, which was delivered at a rally just before the Capitol siege, House Democrat impeachment managers are making a case that he’d long objected to a stolen election as a predicate to inciting the storming of the U.S. Capitol Building.

“Matters of opinion cannot be disputed or taken outside of constitutional protections,” Dershowitz said. “So I think the House managers were actually helping the Trump defense by trying to prove that what he said was false.”

Dershowitz did suggest that Democrats’ gaffe might be part of a plan to “lay a trap” for Trump defense lawyers — getting them to argue the validity of a stolen-election claim, which could derail the president’s case.

“That would be a serious mistake, because it would lose a number of senators who are now on their side,” Dershowitz concluded.

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I have read several books by Alan Dershowitz and he is a liberal but he does look at the constitution honestly and here he has made some very insightful observations that I am sure will upset Democrats but nonetheless will not slow them down from impeaching the President a second time because of their hate of all things Trump!

Dershowitz: Senate Rules Would Prevent Impeachment Trial Of Trump

Dershowitz: Senate Rules Would Prevent Impeachment Trial Of TrumpAn image from video of Alan Dershowitz, an attorney for President Donald Trump, walking from the podium after speaking on behalf of the president during the impeachment trial in the Senate on Jan. 27, 2020. (Senate Television via AP)By Newsmax Wires 
Sunday, 10 Jan 2021 2:42 PM

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Harvard law professor and constitutional law expert Alan Dershowitz on Sunday warned an impeachment of President Donald Trump won’t go to trial — but could “lie around like a loaded weapon” for both parties in the future.

In an interview on Fox News’ “Sunday Morning Futures,” Dershowitz said a Senate trial of citizen Trump would be unconstitutional.

“It will not go to trial,” he said. “All Democrats can do is impeach the president in House of Representatives, for that you only need a majority vote. 

“The case cannot come to trial in the Senate” because of rules that do no allow it until, “according to the Majority Leader [Mitch McConnell, R-Ky.), until 1 p.m. on Jan. 20” — an hour after Trump leaves office.

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“Congress has no power to impeach or try a private citizen, whether it’d be a private citizen in Donald Trump or …. Barack Obama or anyone else,” he said. “The jurisdiction is limited to a sitting president and so there won’t be a trial.”

But Dershowitz said he worried more about  is“the impact of impeachment on the First Amendment.”

“For 100 years the Supreme Court and other courts have struggled to develop a juris prudence which distinguishes between advocacy and incitement.”

“To impeach a president for having exercised his First Amendment rights would be so dangerous to the Constitution, it would lie around like a loaded weapon ready to be used by either party against the other party and that’s not what impeachment nor the 25th amendment were intended to be,” Dershowitz said.

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Mark Levin Podcast * Mark’s radio show | 08 January 2021

Levin: Media ‘exploiting’ Capitol riot to ‘silence conservatives’ as Democrats work to ‘choke the system’

‘The media have played a huge, huge role in what’s going on in this country,’ says ‘Life, Liberty & Levin’ host

By Charles Creitz | Fox News

The mainstream media is “exploiting” Wednesday’s riot at the U.S. Capitol building in an effort to “silence” conservatives and Republicans, Mark Levin says on this week’s episode of “Life, Liberty & Levin.”

The host emphasizes that “we should be furious about what happened on Capitol Hill,” but adds that “the media have played a huge, huge role in what’s going on in this country.”

“We need to reject all this violence, but what about the media?” asks Levin before displaying front pages of various newspapers from around the country. 

“The New York Times: ‘Trump Incites Mob’. This is projection,” Levin contends. “This is projection. He never did that. Or The Washington Post: ‘Trump mob storms Capitol’. There were hundreds and hundreds of thousands of people there … That’s an awfully broad brush. Or the [New York] Daily News: ‘President Incites Insurrection’ … or USA Today: ‘Pro-Trump Mobs Storm US [sic] Capitol’. How about ‘Thugs Storm U.S. Capitol’? How about ‘Lawbreakers Storm U.S. Capitol’?”

Levin then calls out politicians like Rep. Adam Kinzinger, R-Ill., and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., who he says are also “exploiting the situation.”

“They’re talking about impeaching the president of the United States or [invoking] the 25th Amendment nine days before he leaves office,” the host says. “Do they even know what’s involved in the 25th Amendment?

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“So they double down, they triple down, they quadruple down. They’re not going to change at all. On one side of their mouth, they talk about unity. Out of the other side of their mouth, they spit on people,” he goes on. “Seventy-four million [Trump-voting] people and more, they’re not going away. Their concerns still exist.”

Meanwhile, Levin says, House Democrats are working toward their goal to “choke the system even further” by passing a rules package for the 117th Congressthat makes it “virtually impossible for Republicans to even propose legislation or amend legislation, even though [they] only has a 10- or 11-person majority in the House.”

“Nancy Pelosi … eliminated 100 years of tradition …”, the host argues, “and the media are trying to intimidate conservatives and constitutionalists by projecting onto them the violence that occurred by reprobates and others who need to be tracked down and punished.

“So it seems that the lessons have not been learned,” Levin concludes. “They certainly haven’t been learned by the left, they certainly haven’t been learned by the media, and they certainly haven’t been learned by the Never Trumpers.”

—-

December 13, 2020

Office of Barack and Michelle Obama
P.O. Box 91000
Washington, DC 20066

Dear President Obama,

I wrote you over 700 letters while you were President and I mailed them to the White House and also published them on my blog http://www.thedailyhatch.org .I received several letters back from your staff and I wanted to thank you for those letters. 

I have been reading your autobiography A PROMISED LAND and I have been enjoying it. 

Let me make a few comments on it, and here is the first quote of yours I want to comment on:

The story of how this postwar consensus broke down—starting with LBJ’s signing of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and his prediction that it would lead to the South’s wholesale abandonment of the Democratic Party—has been told many times before. The realignment Johnson foresaw ended up taking longer than he had expected. But steadily, year by year—through Vietnam, RIOTS…and Nixon’s southern strategy; through busing, Roe v. Wade, urban crime, and white flight; through affirmative action, the Moral Majority, union busting, and Robert Bork; through assault weapons bans and the rise of Newt Gingrich…and the Clinton impeachment—America’s voters and their representatives became more and more polarized.

During 2020 I have noticed lots of riots and looting across the USA and I wanted to ask you why it is always the liberals doing that? AND WHY DIDN’T ANYONE CONDEMN THESE ACTIONS AT THE 2020 CONVENTION AND DIDN’T YOU SPEAK AT THE CONVENTION TOO?

Philadelphia Riots Another Case of Street Violence Used to Advance Radical Political Agendas

https://www.dailysignal.com/2020/10/28/philadelphia-riots-are-another-case-of-street-violence-used-to-advance-radical-political-agendas/embed/#?secret=TeMODTeKco

Philadelphia Riots Are Another Case of Street Violence Used to Advance Radical Political Agendas

James Carafano @JJCarafano / October 28, 2020 / 4 Comments

Philadelphia Riots

In Kenosha, Portland, Seattle, and Chicago, city officials have tolerated criminal activity performed by mobs for politically motivated reasons. Philadelphia appears to be the next hotspot for mob violence to go unchecked. Pictured: A barricade is set on fire during a night of looting and violence in Philadelphia on Oct. 27. (Photo: Gabriella Audi/AFP/Getty Images)

COMMENTARY BY

James Carafano@JJCarafano

James Jay Carafano, a leading expert in national security and foreign policy challenges, is The Heritage Foundation’s vice president for foreign and defense policy studies, E. W. Richardson fellow, and director of the Kathryn and Shelby Cullom Davis Institute for International Studies. Read his research.

Like the replay of a bad movie, a law enforcement incident in Philadelphia triggered an excuse for violence and looting. It remains to be seen whether the City of Brotherly Love will become the next “Kenosha,” where city officials moved quickly to restore order and seek state and federal support—though sadly after 48 hours of opportunistic looting, violence, and destruction devastated the city.

Or perhaps Philadelphia will be the next PortlandSeattle, or Chicago, where systemic attacks seem to be a daily occurrence.

Police in Philadelphia are fully capable of restoring peace. The open question is whether the mayor and Larry Krasner, the former defense attorney-turned elected rogue prosecutor, will do their job and hold people accountable for their crimes.

When local, state, and federal governments work together, act quickly, and demonstrate no tolerance for organized violence to advance radical agendas, communities are kept safe and equal protection under the law is afforded for all citizens.

The left is actively working to undermine the integrity of our elections. Read the plan to stop them now. Learn more now >>

On the other hand, when local officials, the media, and politicians ignore, excuse, normalize, and enable violence, everyday Americans pay the price.

There is a plague sweeping this country that many don’t want to talk about: The deliberate use of street violence to advance radical political agendas, often under a smoke screen of campaigning for civil liberties. The evidence of organized criminal activity at the root of the outbreaks in American cities is mounting.

The list of people enabling this violence sadly includes some public officials, who are principally responsible for ensuring public safety. For example, a growing threat to peaceful communities is “rogue prosecutors,” former criminal defense attorneys recruited and funded by liberal billionaire backers, who—once elected—abuse their office by refusing to prosecute entire categories of crimes.

These rogue prosecutors are usurping the power of the legislature in the process, and ignoring victim’s rights—all to advance their politics.

Baltimore is a perfect  example. Since being sworn into office, under the watch of Baltimore City State’s Attorney Marilyn J. Mosby.

Rogue prosecutors fuel street violence by refusing to prosecute rioters and looters. When confronted with the rising crimes rates, Mosby called the statistics “rhetoric.”

The only way to break the cycle of violence is for local and state officials to work with each other, and if necessary, the federal government. They need to stop enabling the destruction of property and lives on their streets, and start investigating and prosecuting the individuals (and organizations) behind the riots.

It’s time to start shaming and calling out the media, politicians, and advocates who excuse and normalize the violence.

There is a proven action plan for making our streets safe. It is past time for officials to start following this blueprint.

There is no time—zero time to waste. There are already fears of more violence in our streets, regardless of the outcome of the national elections.

In my hometown of Washington, D.C., downtown buildings are already boarding up in anticipation of violence on our streets after the election. If Trump wins, violence. If Biden wins, violence. This makes no sense, and it’s time for it to stop.

It is time for every official and public figure, every political party, in every part of the country to publically reject violence on American streets as a legitimate form of protected speech. Violence is not protected speech, period.

The notion of deliberately destroying the lives and property of our neighbors to advance a radical political agenda is abhorrent. American leaders—of all stripes—should stand up now as one and reject these violent acts. It has gone on for too long, well before the death of George Floyd.

Leaders in Philadelphia and across America must take a principled stand to demand the end to this violence, and they need to do it before the election. In one voice, they should demand: “Leave our streets alone.”

Sincerely,

Everette Hatcher III, 13900 Cottontail Lane, Alexander, AR 72002, ph 501-920-5733 everettehatcher@gmail.com

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April 10, 2013 – 7:02 am

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The Founding Fathers views concerning Jesus, Christianity and the Bible (Part 5, John Hancock)

May 8, 2012 – 1:48 am

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The Founding Fathers views concerning Jesus, Christianity and the Bible (Part 4, Elbridge Gerry)

May 7, 2012 – 1:46 am

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The Founding Fathers views concerning Jesus, Christianity and the Bible (Part 3, Samuel Adams)

May 4, 2012 – 1:45 am

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The Founding Fathers views concerning Jesus, Christianity and the Bible (Part 2, John Quincy Adams)

May 3, 2012 – 1:42 am

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May 2, 2012 – 1:13 am

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President Obama and the Founding Fathers

May 8, 2013 – 9:20 am

President Obama Speaks at The Ohio State University Commencement Ceremony Published on May 5, 2013 President Obama delivers the commencement address at The Ohio State University. May 5, 2013. You can learn a lot about what President Obama thinks the founding fathers were all about from his recent speech at Ohio State. May 7, 2013, […]By Everette Hatcher III | Posted in Founding FathersPresident Obama | Edit | Comments (0)

Francis Schaeffer’s own words concerning the founding fathers and their belief in inalienable rights

December 5, 2012 – 12:38 am

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David Barton: In their words, did the Founding Fathers put their faith in Christ? (Part 4)

May 30, 2012 – 1:35 am

America’s Founding Fathers Deist or Christian? – David Barton 4/6 There have been many articles written by evangelicals like me who fear that our founding fathers would not recognize our country today because secular humanism has rid our nation of spiritual roots. I am deeply troubled by the secular agenda of those who are at […]By Everette Hatcher III | Posted in David BartonFounding Fathers | Tagged governor of connecticutjohn witherspoonjonathan trumbull | Edit | Comments (1)

Were the founding fathers christian?

May 23, 2012 – 7:04 am

3 Of 5 / The Bible’s Influence In America / American Heritage Series / David Barton There were 55 gentlemen who put together the constitution and their church affliation is of public record. Greg Koukl notes: Members of the Constitutional Convention, the most influential group of men shaping the political foundations of our nation, were […]By Everette Hatcher III | Posted in Founding Fathers | Edit | Comments (0)

John Quincy Adams a founding father?

June 29, 2011 – 3:58 pm

I do  not think that John Quincy Adams was a founding father in the same sense that his  father was. However, I do think he was involved in the  early days of our government working with many of the founding fathers. Michele Bachmann got into another history-related tussle on ABC’s “Good  Morning America” today, standing […]By Everette Hatcher III | Posted in David BartonFounding Fathers | Edit | Comments (0)

“Sanctity of Life Saturday” Taking on Ark Times Bloggers on various issues Part E “Moral absolutes and abortion” Francis Schaeffer Quotes part 5(includes the film SLAUGHTER OF THE INNOCENTS) (editorial cartoon)

July 6, 2013 – 1:26 am

I have gone back and forth and back and forth with many liberals on the Arkansas Times Blog on many issues such as abortion, human rights, welfare, poverty, gun control  and issues dealing with popular culture. Here is another exchange I had with them a while back. My username at the Ark Times Blog is Saline […]By Everette Hatcher III | Posted in Arkansas TimesFrancis SchaefferProlife | Edit |Comments (0)

Article from Adrian Rogers, “Bring back the glory”

June 11, 2013 – 12:34 am

I truly believe that many of the problems we have today in the USA are due to the advancement of humanism in the last few decades in our society. Ronald Reagan appointed the evangelical Dr. C. Everett Koop to the position of Surgeon General in his administration. He partnered with Dr. Francis Schaeffer in making the […]By Everette Hatcher III | Posted in Adrian RogersFrancis Schaeffer | Edit | Comments (0)

“Schaeffer Sundays” Francis Schaeffer’s own words concerning the possibility that minorities may be mistreated under 51% rule

June 9, 2013 – 1:21 am

Francis Schaeffer: “Whatever Happened to the Human Race” (Episode 4) THE BASIS FOR HUMAN DIGNITY Published on Oct 7, 2012 by AdamMetropolis ____________ The 45 minute video above is from the film series created from Francis Schaeffer’s book “Whatever Happened to the Human Race?” with Dr. C. Everett Koop. This book  really helped develop my political […]By Everette Hatcher III | Posted in Francis Schaeffer | Edit | Comments (0)

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A Cabinency of Dunces

A Cabinency of Dunces

Victor Davis Hanson  @VDHanson / May 26, 2022

Transportation Secretary Pete Buttiegieg, left, and Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas—seen here at the White House on March 3—are among members of President Joe Biden’s Cabinet that columnist Victor Davis Hanson regards as incompetent or worse. (Photo: Anna Moneymaker/Getty Images)

COMMENTARY BY

Victor Davis Hanson@VDHanson

Victor Davis Hanson is a classicist and historian at the Hoover Institution at Stanford University, and author of the book “The Second World Wars: How the First Global Conflict Was Fought and Won.” You can reach him by e-mailing authorvdh@gmail.com.

As the nation sinks inexplicably into self-created crisis after crisis, debate rages whether President Joe Biden is incompetent, mean-spirited, or an ideologue who feels the country’s mess is his success.

A second national discussion revolves around who actually is overseeing the current national catastrophe, given Biden’s frequent bewilderment and cognitive challenges.

But one area of agreement is the sheer craziness of Biden’s Cabinet appointments, who have translated his incoherent ideology into catastrophic governance.

Secretary of Homeland Security Alejandro Mayorkas has essentially nullified federal immigration law. More than 2 million foreign nationals have illegally crossed the southern border without audit—and without COVID-19 vaccinations and tests during a pandemic.

Mayorkas either cannot or will not follow federal law.

But he did create a new Disinformation Governance Board. To head his new Orwellian Ministry of Truth, he appointed Nina Jankowicz—an arch disinformationist who helped peddle the Russian collusion, Steele dossier, and Alfa Bank hoaxes.

While Jankowicz’s adolescent videos and past tweets finally forced her resignation, Mayorkas promises his board will carry on.

In the days before the recent Virginia election, grassroots parent groups challenged critical race theory taught in the schools.

In reaction and under prompts from teachers unions, Attorney General Merrick Garland directed both the FBI and the Justice Department to establish a special task force apparently to “investigate threats” from parents against school board members.

The FBI recently has been knee-deep in political controversies. It illegally doctored a FISA application to entrap an American citizen. Its former directors, under oath before Congress, either claimed faulty memory or admitted lying to federal investigators.

The last thing a scandal-plagued FBI needed was to go undercover at school board meetings to investigate parents worried over their children’s education.

We are in a fuel price spiral that is destroying the middle class.

Yet when Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm was asked about plans to lower gas prices, she laughed off the idea as “hilarious.”

Later, Granholm preposterously claimed, “It is not the administration policies that have affected supply and demand.”

Apparently haranguing those who finance fossil-fuel production, canceling the Keystone pipeline, suspending new federal oil and gas leases, and stopping production in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge all had nothing to do with high fuel prices.

Currently, supply chain disruptions are paralyzing the U.S. economy.

The huge Port of Los Angeles has been a mess for more than a year. Since last fall, dozens of cargo ships have been backed up to the horizon. Thousands of trucks are bottlenecked at the port.

During the mess, Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg was not at work. Instead, at the height of the crisis, he took a two-month paternity leave to help out his husband and two newborn babies.

Such paternal concern is a noble thing. But Buttigieg is supposed to ensure that life-or-death supplies reach millions of strapped Americans.

This winter, trains entering and leaving Los Angeles were routinely looted in the Old West style of train robbing—without much of a response from Buttigieg’s transportation bureau.

In Senate testimony, Secretary of the Interior Secretary Deb Haaland refused to explain why her department is slow walking federal oil and gas leases at a time when Americans are paying between $5 and $6 a gallon for gas.

Haaland was unable to provide simple answers about when new leases will result in more supplies of oil and gas. Her panicked aides slid talking points to her, given that in deer-in-the-headlights fashion, she seemed incapable of providing senators with basic information about U.S. energy production on federal lands.

The United States is sending many billions of dollars worth of sophisticated weapons to Ukraine to combat Russian aggression. We rightly claim it is not a proxy war against Russia, but instead an effort to help stop a brutal Russian invasion.

Why then did Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin tell the world the very opposite in a fashion that could only convince Russians that our real aim in Ukraine is to destroy Russia as a superpower?

As Austin put it publicly, “We want to see Russia weakened to the degree that it can’t do the kinds of things that it has done in invading Ukraine.”

Even if that description of the agenda is true, why broadcast it, given Russia has more than 6,000 nuclear weapons and its president, Vladimir Putin, is increasingly erratic and paranoid?

The common denominator to these Biden appointees is ideological rigidity, nonchalance, and sheer incompetence.

They seem indifferent to the current border, inflation, energy, and crime disasters. When confronted, they are unable to answer simple questions from Congress, or they mock anyone asking for answers on behalf of the strapped American people.

We don’t know why or how such an unimpressive cadre ended up running the government, only that they are here and the American people are suffering from their presence.

The Daily Signal publishes a variety of perspectives. Nothing written here is to be construed as representing the views of The Heritage Foundation.

Have an opinion about this article? To sound off, please email letters@DailySignal.com and we’ll consider publishing your edited remarks in our regular “We Hear You” feature. Remember to include the url or headline of the article plus your name and town and/or state.

Milton Friedman in 2004

Portrait of Milton Friedman.jpg

Power of the Market – Immigration

MILTON FRIEDMAN ON IMMIGRATION

MILTON FRIEDMAN ON IMMIGRATION PART 2

March 18, 2021

Office of Barack and Michelle Obama
P.O. Box 91000
Washington, DC 20066

Dear President Obama,

I wrote you over 700 letters while you were President and I mailed them to the White House and also published them on my blog http://www.thedailyhatch.org .I received several letters back from your staff and I wanted to thank you for those letters. 

There are several issues raised in your book that I would like to discuss with you such as the minimum wage law, the liberal press, the cause of 2007 financial meltdown, and especially your pro-choice (what I call pro-abortion) view which I strongly object to on both religious and scientific grounds, Two of the most impressive things in your book were your dedication to both the National Prayer Breakfast (which spoke at 8 times and your many visits to the sides of wounded warriors!!

I have been reading your autobiography A PROMISED LAND and I have been enjoying it. 

Let me make a few comments on it, and here is the first quote of yours I want to comment on:

WHEN IT CAME to immigration, everyone agreed that the system was broken. The process of immigrating legally to the United States could take a decade or longer, often depending on what country you were coming from and how much money you had.Meanwhile, the economic gulf between us and our southern neighbors drove hundreds of thousands of people to illegally cross the 1,933-mile U.S.-Mexico border each year, searching for work and a better life. Congress had spent billions to harden the border, with fencing, cameras, drones, and an expanded and increasingly militarized border patrol. But rather than stop the flow of immigrants, these steps had spurred an industry of smugglers—coyotes—who made big money transporting human cargo in barbaric and sometimes deadly fashion. And although border crossings by poor Mexican and Central American migrants received most of the attention from politicians and the press, about 40 percent of America’s unauthorized immigrants arrived through airports or other legal ports of entry and then overstayed their visas.
By 2010, an estimated eleven million undocumented persons were living in the United States, in large part thoroughly woven into the fabric of American life.Many were longtime residents, with children who either were U.S. citizens by virtue of having been born on American soil or had been brought to the United States at such an early age that they were American in every respect except for a piece of paper. Entire sectors of the U.S. economy relied on their labor, as undocumented immigrants were often willing to do the toughest, dirtiest work for meager pay—picking the fruits and vegetables that stocked our grocery stores, mopping the floors of offices, washing dishes at restaurants, and providing care to the elderly. But although American consumers benefited from this invisible workforce, many feared that immigrants were taking jobs from citizens, burdening social services programs, and changing the nation’s racial and cultural makeup, which led to demands for the government to crack down on illegal immigration. This sentiment was strongest among Republican constituencies, egged on by an increasingly nativist right-wing press. However, the politics didn’t fall neatly along partisan lines: The traditionally Democratic trade union rank and file, for example, saw the growing presence of undocumented workers on co
    nstruction sites as threatening their livelihoods, while Republican-leaning business groups interested in maintaining a steady supply of cheap labor (or, in the case of Silicon Valley, foreign-born computer programmers and engineers) often took pro-immigration positions.

     Back in 2007, the maverick version of John McCain, along with his sidekick Lindsey Graham, had actually joined Ted Kennedy to put together a comprehensive reform bill that offered citizenship to millions of undocumented immigrants while more tightly securing our borders. Despite strong support from President Bush, it had failed to clear the Senate. The bill did, however, receive twelve Republican votes, indicating the real possibility of a future bipartisan accord. I’d pledged during the campaign to resurrect similar legislation once elected, and I’d appointed former Arizona governor Janet Napolitano as head of the Department of Homeland Security—the agency that oversaw U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) and U.S. Customs and Border Protection—partly because of her knowledge of border issues and her reputation for having previously managed immigration in a way that was both compassionate and tough.
My hopes for a bill had thus far been dashed. With the economy in crisis and Americans losing jobs,few in Congress had any appetite to take on a hot-button issue like immigration. Kennedy was gone. McCain, having been criticized by the right flank for his relatively moderate immigration stance, showed little interest in taking up the banner again. Worse yet, my administration was deporting undocumented workers at an accelerating rate. This wasn’t a result of any directive from me, but rather it stemmed from a 2008 congressional mandate that both expanded ICE’s budget and increased collaboration between ICE and local law enforcement departments in an effort to deport more undocumented immigrants with criminal records. My team and I had made a strategic choice not to immediately try to reverse the policies we’d inherited in large part because we didn’t want to provide ammunition to critics who claimed that Democrats weren’t willing to enforce existing immigration laws—a perception that we thought could torpedo our chances of passing a future reform bill. But by 2010, immigrant-rights and Latino advocacy groups were criticizing our lack of progress..And although I continued to urge Congress to pass immigration reform, I had no realistic path for delivering a new comprehensive law before the midterms.

Milton Friedman wisely noted,  “It’s just obvious you can’t have free immigration and a welfare state,” 
Is it prudent to allow illegal immigrants (60 percent of whom are high-school dropouts) access to Social Security, Medicare, and, over time, to 60 federal means-tested welfare programs? I don’t think so either!


FREE TO CHOOSE “Who protects the worker?” Video and Transcript Part 

In 1980 I read the book FREE TO CHOOSE by Milton Friedman and it really enlightened me a tremendous amount.  I suggest checking out these episodes and transcripts of Milton Friedman’s film series FREE TO CHOOSE: “The Failure of Socialism” and “What is wrong with our schools?”  and “Created Equal”  and  From Cradle to Grave, and – Power of the Market. Milton Friedman shows in this episode how the worker is best protected and it is not by the government!!!!!!!

The essence of what Milton Friedman is saying in this episode is found in this statement:

“The situation of immigration restrictions really has to do with the question of a welfare state. As I say in the film, I would favor completely free immigration in a society which does not have a welfare system. With a welfare system of the kind we have, you have the problem that people immigrate in order to get welfare, not in order to get employment. You know, it’s a very interesting thing, if you would ask anybody before 1914 the U.S. had no immigration restrictions whatsoever, I’m exaggerating a little bit, there were some immigration restrictions on orientals, but it was essentially, mainly free. If you ask anybody, any American economic historian was that a good thing for America, everybody will say yes it was a wonderful thing for America that we had free immigration. If you ask anybody today, should we have free immigration today, everybody will __ almost everybody will say no. What’s the difference? I think there’s only one difference and that is that when we had free immigration it was immigration of jobs in which everybody benefited. The people who were already here benefited because they got complementary workers, workers who could work with them, make their productivity better, enable them to develop and use the resources of the country better, but today, if you have a system under which you have essentially a governmental guarantee of relief in case of distress, you have a very, very real problem.”

L. WILLIAMS: Dr. Friedman and Walter Williams go back in history and they take a look at a situation where America was empty, where we didn’t have anything like the sophisticated industrial economy we have today, but had a much more agricultural and rural kind of economy and of course when the __ when the impoverished peasants of Europe, my ancestors and most of our ancestors, except for the slaves, which is another situation, but when these people came from Europe and came to a wide open continent with the most fertile soil then available to anyone in the world, naturally there was progress; and I or any of us would be mad to deny progress. But as that developed and as population increased and as we moved into a much more sophisticated industrial economy, we moved then into the situation in the 1930s, or earlier than that , at the end of the century. As some of the more skilled jobs came along, the labor movement didn’t happen by accident. Didn’t happen because there wasn’t a need there. The results of this development, even with all the wealth available in America, the results of this development was that many working people were not having anything like, by standards of civilization or whatever, anything like their fair share in this progress.

MCKENZIE: Now you’re arguing that in a free market, for labor, everyone benefits. Does that mean that you would favor abolition of all immigration restrictions?

FRIEDMAN: The situation of immigration restrictions really has to do with the question of a welfare state. As I say in the film, I would favor completely free immigration in a society which does not have a welfare system. With a welfare system of the kind we have, you have the problem that people immigrate in order to get welfare, not in order to get employment. You know, it’s a very interesting thing, if you would ask anybody before 1914 the U.S. had no immigration restrictions whatsoever, I’m exaggerating a little bit, there were some immigration restrictions on orientals, but it was essentially, mainly free. If you ask anybody, any American economic historian was that a good thing for America, everybody will say yes it was a wonderful thing for America that we had free immigration. If you ask anybody today, should we have free immigration today, everybody will __ almost everybody will say no. What’s the difference? I think there’s only one difference and that is that when we had free immigration it was immigration of jobs in which everybody benefited. The people who were already here benefited because they got complementary workers, workers who could work with them, make their productivity better, enable them to develop and use the resources of the country better, but today, if you have a system under which you have essentially a governmental guarantee of relief in case of distress, you have a very, very real problem.

MCKENZIE: But this is true of every western industrialized country.

FRIEDMAN: That’s right and that’s why today __

MCKENZIE: Yeah.

FRIEDMAN: __ under current circumstances you cannot, unfortunately have free immigration. Not because there’s anything wrong with free immigration, but because we have other policies which make it impossible to adopt free immigration.

MCKENZIE: Well I’d like other reactions. Is it at all feasible to open the door of the labor market internationally now? Bill Brady?

BRADY: I would __ I would say yes providing they open the door to us. I think that the door to not only the labor market, the door to all markets should be __ should be open. That is the product markets.

W. WILLIAMS: My feelings about the undocumented workers of Mexican-Americans are inscribed at the foot of the Statue of Liberty. I think that the people should have the right to come to this country. Now, those who would say, you know, I hear a number of people saying that, well the immigrants are contributing to our unemployment problem. And I point this out to some people, I said, “look, you know, this is the same rhetoric that the Irish used when the blacks were coming up from the north, ” you know, they’re using blacks as scapegoats. They’re saying, “get those people back where they came from so that our members can get jobs, ” you know. Unions were as well doing this, you know, they called them scabs, strikebreakers, etcetera, etcetera. So I do not wish for Mexican-Americans to become the new scapegoats of our particular national problems. They are not the problem, and our nation benefits to the extent that these people come here and work. And to that extent __ to that extent__ so it’s kind of good for them to remain illegal aliens as opposed to being legal aliens where they’re subject to our welfare programs, so that we don’t want them to come here to __

(Several people talking at once.)

GREEN: I think that this country cannot have a group of workers to remain outside the framework of our laws and our protection. And as long as we have workers who are attracted to the United States because of the standards of living; and I think minimum wages play a part in that as part of that attraction. But it seems to me to have undocumented workers without providing either a means of protection for them and it seems to me that we’ve got to go to the question of providing the amnesty for those generations of workers who have come here over a period of time, now two, three, maybe four generations. We have to see that they have the same rights and protection of all other workers. And as it stands now, large numbers of them live outside the framework of the laws and statutes that we have on the __ on our books.

MCKENZIE: Comment Milton.

FRIEDMAN: They do and the tragedy of the situation, as what Walter Williams point out, that as long as they are undocumented and illegal they are a clear net gain, the nation benefits and they benefit. They wouldn’t be here if they didn’t. The tragedy is that we’ve adopted all these other policies so that if we convert them into legal residents it’s no longer clear that we benefit. They may benefit, but it’s no longer clear that we do. What Lynn Williams said before is again a travesty on what was actually going on. The real boost to the trade union movement came after the Great Depression of the 1930s; that Great Depression was not a failure of capitalism; it was not a failure of the private market system as we pointed out in another one of the programs in this series; it was a failure of government. It was not the case that somehow or other there was a decline in the conditions of the working class that produced a great surge of unionism. On the contrary __ unions have never accounted for more than one out of four or one out of five of American workers. The American worker benefited not out of unions, he benefited in spite of unions. He benefited because there was greater opportunity because there were people who were willing to invest their money because there was an opportunity for people to work, to save, to invest. That’s still the case today. You say, we have to provide them with something or other Ernest. Who are the “we”?

Sincerely,

Everette Hatcher III, 13900 Cottontail Lane, Alexander, AR 72002, ph 501-920-5733 everettehatcher@gmail.com

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April 10, 2013 – 7:02 am

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President Obama and the Founding Fathers

May 8, 2013 – 9:20 am

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Francis Schaeffer’s own words concerning the founding fathers and their belief in inalienable rights

December 5, 2012 – 12:38 am

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May 23, 2012 – 7:04 am

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John Quincy Adams a founding father?

June 29, 2011 – 3:58 pm

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Article from Adrian Rogers, “Bring back the glory”

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June 9, 2013 – 1:21 am

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Buffalo vs. Waukesha: To Biden, Some Mass Killings Are Worse Than Others

Buffalo vs. Waukesha: To Biden, Some Mass Killings Are Worse Than Others

President Joe Biden delivers remarks May 17 in Buffalo, New York, decrying the mass shooting that occurred there three days earlier. Biden’s failure to travel to Waukesha, Wisconsin, after a similar massacre there six months earlier raises questions about his motivation for going to Buffalo. (Photo: Scott Olson/ Getty Images)

If the following news headlines were paired in an essay question on a high school Advanced Placement civics test, it might well be framed as “Compare and contrast.”

“Biden will travel to Buffalo on Tuesday following mass shooting, official says” — CNN, May 15

“Psaki says Biden has NO [emphasis in original] plans to visit Waukesha after the deadly Christmas parade attack ‘at this time’ because sending the president to a community ‘requires a lot of assets.’”— Daily Mail, Nov. 29

How can one explain the Biden administration’s diametrically different responses to these two mass killings, one week shy of six months apart?

Granted Buffalo, N.Y., is less than half the distance from Washington, D.C., that Waukesha, Wisconsin, is, but does sending the president to upstate New York really require fewer “assets”?

On May 14, a gunman killed 10 people and wounded three others at a Buffalo supermarket. Eleven of the victims were black, two of them white. Facing a first-degree murder charge is Payton Gendron, 18, who is white.

Last Nov. 21, an SUV struck and killed six people and injured 62 others at a Christmas parade in Waukesha. Police said the driver deliberately drove in a “zig-zag pattern” to hit as many people as possible.

Darrell Brooks, now 40, was arrested and charged with six counts of first-degree intentional homicide and 77 other charges. Brooks is black. All six who died were white, as were most of those who were injured. As if to downplay the racist angle, however, CNN initially reported: “A car drove through a city Christmas parade, killing six people,” as though it was one of those newfangled self-driving cars.

Gendron and Brooks each posted hateful, incoherent, racist rants online before their attacks.

Given the particulars of the two massacres, then, one might be forgiven for suspecting President Joe Biden’s visit to Buffalo after shunning Waukesha was a partisan political calculus aimed at feeding red meat to his left-wing base. If true, that would be both shameless and indefensible.

Absent any other explanation, we’re left to conclude that Biden views some crime victims as more equal than others and, by extension, some perpetrators as more heinous than others. In point of fact, both Buffalo and Waukesha were incidents of domestic terrorism and deserving of equal condemnation.

While there’s a role for a president as “comforter-in-chief” in the face of senseless tragedies like these, it’s hard to see how its helps comfort those who are grieving over losing family members, friends, and loved ones for Biden to inject politics into what should be a somber and solemn occasion.

“White supremacy is a poison. It’s a poison. It really is. Running through our body politic. And it’s been allowed to fester and grow right in front of our eyes,” the president thundered May 17 in remarks at Buffalo’s Delavan Grider Community Center.

“We need to say as clearly and forcefully as we can that the ideology of white supremacy has no place in America. None,” he added.

While few if anyone would dispute that, Biden would have been on firmer ground had he also denounced, with equal vehemence, Brooks’ online anti-white screeds for what they were—black supremacy. Racism is despicable, regardless of the color of its practitioners.

Also, in recounting other mass killings, Mr. Biden inexplicably left out Waukesha altogether, as though it never happened, citing Charleston, South Carolina; El Paso, Texas; Pittsburgh; Atlanta; Dallas; “and now in Buffalo. In Buffalo, New York.”

“[W]e are seeing an epidemic of hate across our country that has been evidenced by acts of violence and intolerance,” Vice President Kamala Harris said in a statement the day after the Buffalo shootings. “We must call it out and condemn it. Racially motivated hate crimes or acts of violent extremism are harms against all of us, and we must do everything we can to ensure that our communities are safe from such acts.”

That’s a keen grasp of the obvious, Madame Vice President, but it would come across as more sincere if all hate crimes and mass killings were condemned equally, regardless of the race and ethnicity of the victims and perpetrators—and without regard to any perceived political advantage in condemning some, but not others.

This article first appeared at WashingtonTimes.com.

Open letter to President Obama (Part 656)

(Emailed to White House on 6-25-13.)

President Obama c/o The White House 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue NW Washington, DC 20500

Dear Mr. President,

I know that you receive 20,000 letters a day and that you actually read 10 of them every day. I really do respect you for trying to get a pulse on what is going on out here.

The federal government debt is growing so much that it is endangering us because if things keep going like they are now we will not have any money left for the national defense because we are so far in debt as a nation. We have been spending so much on our welfare state through food stamps and other programs that I am worrying that many of our citizens are becoming more dependent on government and in many cases they are losing their incentive to work hard because of the welfare trap the government has put in place. Other nations in Europe have gone down this road and we see what mess this has gotten them in. People really are losing their faith in big government and they want more liberty back. It seems to me we have to get back to the founding  principles that made our country great.  We also need to realize that a big government will encourage waste and corruptionThe recent scandals in our government have proved my point. In fact, the jokes you made at Ohio State about possibly auditing them are not so funny now that reality shows how the IRS was acting more like a monster out of control. Also raising taxes on the job creators is a very bad idea too. The Laffer Curve clearly demonstrates that when the tax rates are raised many individuals will move their investments to places where they will not get taxed as much.

______________________

I hope we get the bottom of this mess at the IRS!!!

  • June 7, 2013, 6:40 p.m. ET

Cleta Mitchell: How to Investigate the IRS

Cleta Mitchell, the attorney who helped expose the tax agency’s abuses, has a road map for identifying the culprits. It doesn’t stop in Cincinnati.

By JAMES FREEMAN

Washington

The woman who helped expose IRS abuse of conservative activists has more news to share: The abuse continues, and she sees no evidence that the White House, the IRS or the Justice Department is doing anything to end it. “This is not in the past tense. This is still going on,” says Cleta Mitchell, perhaps the country’s pre-eminent expert on campaign-finance and political tax law.

In 2012, Ms. Mitchell worked to persuade members of Congress that reports of IRS harassment of conservative groups were credible. GOP lawmakers demanded information from the IRS and triggered the internal audit that finally forced the agency last month to acknowledge abuses it had previously denied. Now Ms. Mitchell is determined to end the abuse and identify the culprits.

Don’t bet against her. A partner at elite international law firm Foley and Lardner, Ms. Mitchell is sketching out a road map to uncover the truth and force reform—whether or not the Obama administration cooperates.

So far it looks like the administration will not. Ms. Mitchell represents nine conservative organizations that, beginning around 2010, were subjected to unusual delays, in many cases unlawful demands for information, and in some cases unlawful releases of their confidential data. But she reports that despite filling out the paperwork required by law and regulation, only one of the nine has received the customary IRS approval letter to operate as a tax-exempt group. She says another client received a new letter from the IRS with “very bizarre questions” as recently as three weeks ago.

The Justice Department is allegedly conducting a criminal investigation of the IRS abuse. Has anyone from Justice contacted her or her clients to gather evidence? “Not about this. The FBI’s contacted some tea party leaders about their meetings and who comes to their meetings,” she says. “I guess they viewed the tea party as domestic terrorists.” She is puzzled that the feds aren’t asking about IRS targeting: “You’d think that they would, wouldn’t you?”

Terry Shoffner

They should, and perhaps the Securities and Exchange Commission ought to start a case file as well. Ms. Mitchell says she learned this week that the IRS even intervened in the business dealings of a donor to conservative causes. “There were two public companies that were in the process of trying to do a merger and somehow the IRS stepped in and demanded all this information and said, ‘If you don’t give it to us we’ll stop this merger,’ ” she says. “But I cannot get [the donor] to come forward . . . ‘Look I’ve been through this hassle with the IRS. I don’t need any more.’ People are really afraid and the donors are the most afraid.”

She has heard “a number of reports” of conservative donors “having been audited or hassled,” but she doesn’t have a sense of how many cases there might be. “I hear about them all the time, but so far they’ve been the most reluctant of all to talk.”

Ms. Mitchell, on the other hand, shows no fear as she talks strategy in Foley’s Georgetown office overlooking the Potomac River. Maybe that’s because this Oklahoma native has already overcome her share of daunting challenges.

“I was raised by a single mom. My dad was kind of a no-account,” she says with a chuckle. “But my mother made up for it. She was a very strong woman. Raised six kids.” And she demanded excellence from all of them. After Ms. Mitchell’s first term at the University of Oklahoma, “I made one B and my mother went around telling everyone that I hadn’t done very well but she hoped I’d do better the next semester.” She graduated with high honors and a Phi Beta Kappa key.

Like many of her classmates, she also developed a love for the school’s famed football team and proved to be as demanding about the Sooners as her mother had been about grades. Shortly after the team’s current coach, Bob Stoops, was hired in 1999, she met him at a Washington reception. “You know, coach,” she recalls telling him, “the good thing for you is you only need to win three games a year”—against powerhouses Nebraska, Oklahoma State and Texas. When Mr. Stoops responded that Nebraska wasn’t on the schedule that year, she replied: “Well, lucky you, you only have to win two games.”

These days, winning for her clients doesn’t necessarily mean collecting big damage awards. She says the harassed conservative groups are more focused on getting the truth out and ensuring that the IRS’s appalling conduct is stopped and never repeated. But the lever of potential monetary penalties could be useful in persuading senior government officials to come clean. Ms. Mitchell is hopeful that, even if the Justice Department sits on its hands, a combination of private lawsuits and congressional investigations can help ascertain who gave the order to target conservatives.

She has filed a lawsuit in federal court on behalf of an organization called True the Vote that names the IRS as well as previous and current IRS officials as defendants. She promises more lawsuits, including one on behalf of the National Organization for Marriage that had its documents leaked to its antagonists at the Human Rights Campaign.

Ms. Mitchell credits attorney Jay Sekulow for his suit on behalf of other conservative organizations and is encouraged by the work of lawmakers like Sen. Orrin Hatch (R., Utah) and Rep. Darrell Issa (R., Calif.). “They’re just getting started to get to the answers. The first round is the IRS dissembling, denying, deflecting. And now hopefully we’re beginning to get to some real information,” she says.

Thus far, senior IRS officials in office when the abuses began have often provided untruthful answers, first by telling Congress in 2012 that the IRS wasn’t targeting President Obama’s ideological opponents and more recently by suggesting that low-level employees were to blame. Sometimes they’ve been unwilling to provide any answers at all, such as when Lois Lerner, the head of the IRS unit overseeing tax-exempt organizations, asserted her Fifth Amendment privilege to avoid self-incrimination, but not before proclaiming her innocence at a congressional hearing.

In the civil lawsuits, government defendants will still enjoy their Fifth Amendment rights, but the truth may come out anyway. Ms. Mitchell notes that “civil discovery is much broader and doesn’t allow for as much opportunity to refuse to answer. There’s a magistrate who is appointed to oversee” and resolve disputes on specific questions. And if a person is forced to answer a question during a deposition, “the perjury statutes apply.”

But even if officials find ways to remain silent, they might not be able to contain the relevant information. Ms. Mitchell adds that “we are most interested in seeing documents,” and that includes emails. Such documents have hardly been examined, because while the IRS’s internal audit recently forced the agency to acknowledge abuses it had previously denied, the inquiry consisted mainly of interviews of staff with a supervisor present.

After denying for a year that IRS employees were targeting conservatives, IRS brass were forced by the imminent release of the audit last month to change their story. But they settled on another inaccurate claim: that the problems centered on a few misguided employees in a Cincinnati office. This was contradicted by a Wall Street Journal report this week that Cincinnati workers were being directed and even “micromanaged” by Washington, according to what one IRS employee told congressional investigators.

“I think the press has done a good job of exposing that it wasn’t just in Cincinnati,” Ms. Mitchell says. “I knew it wasn’t.” One of her clients has been waiting for approval for nonprofit status since 2009, she says, and for all that time the application was being considered in Washington. “I was told by the agent in Cincinnati, ‘Oh well, you send this stuff to us, but we have to send it all to Washington.’ ” She says that some unusual information requests to conservative groups have also come from the IRS office in Ogden, Utah.

She adds: “I just want to know who did what and when, and I want them to issue the letters and I want them to stop targeting and go back to the process” that prevailed before the current era of abuse.

This current era appears to have begun sometime after the 2008 election of Barack Obama as president, though the Obama campaign itself offered something of a preview. As the Journal’s Kimberley A. Strassel has noted, in the summer of 2008 Obama campaign General Counsel Bob Bauer urged the Justice Department’s criminal division to investigate the officers and donors of a group called the American Issues Project after it ran a negative ad about Mr. Obama.

The organization was a client of Ms. Mitchell’s, so she learned firsthand about the tactics of the Obama campaign and Mr. Bauer: “He would send a letter to the Justice Department demanding that my clients be criminally prosecuted for exercising their First Amendment rights. And then I would write a response, and then he’d write another letter, and I’d immediately write a response.”

Mr. Bauer was named White House counsel in late 2009, shortly before the IRS appears to have begun its harassment of conservatives. Now in private practice, he seems like the kind of former official that conservatives might want to question under oath. Could it happen?

“We’d have to find that there was some communication between him and the IRS or something like that,” says Ms. Mitchell. Though much may remain to be discovered, she says, the targeting of conservatives in recent years has been remarkably open: “The communications were all pretty public. That’s one of the things that I don’t think has gotten enough attention, is the use of the IRS as a political tool. There are 17 Democratic senators who will literally sign anything put in front of them going after conservative organizations.”

She is referring to letters sent during the last election cycle by various Democrats urging IRS investigations, some of the letters even referencing specific conservative organizations. But Ms. Mitchell might just as easily mention the many speeches in which Mr. Obama has vilified groups opposing his policies and denounced them as threats to democracy or foreign-backed front groups.

All of this history inspires skepticism that the Obama Justice Department will make the abuse of conservatives a high priority for prosecution. So the job may fall to private attorneys like Cleta Mitchell. If she is intimidated at the prospect of taking on the IRS, she is showing no signs of it. “Where I come from in Oklahoma,” she says, “the wide open spaces are not just geography. It’s a mentality. You can be whatever you’re hoss enough to be.”

Maybe it’s the IRS’s turn to worry.

Mr. Freeman is assistant editor of the Journal’s editorial page.

A version of this article appeared June 8, 2013, on page A13 in the U.S. edition of The Wall Street Journal, with the headline: How to Investigate the IRS.

_____________

Thank you so much for your time. I know how valuable it is. I also appreciate the fine family that you have and your commitment as a father and a husband.

Sincerely,

Everette Hatcher III, 13900 Cottontail Lane, Alexander, AR 72002, ph 501-920-5733, lowcostsqueegees@yahoo.com

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Political Vendetta’: Sen. Grassley Slams FBI’s Role in Trump-Russia Collusion Narrative

Political Vendetta’: Sen. Grassley Slams FBI’s Role in Trump-Russia Collusion Narrative

Daily Signal Staff  / May 25, 2022

“The Clinton campaign fabricated evidence trying to connect [Donald] Trump to [Russia]. They fed it to the media to start a yearslong wildfire of false allegations,” says Sen. Chuck Grassley. Pictured: Hillary Clinton speaks at the Museum of Modern Art on May 24. (Photo: Cindy Ord/Getty Images)

COMMENTARY BY

Daily Signal Staff

Sen. Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, is accusing the FBI of having “a get-Trump-at-all-costs attitude.”

Speaking on the Senate floor Tuesday, Grassley, the ranking member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, highlighted new information that had come to light during the ongoing trial of Michael Sussmann, a lawyer for Hillary Clinton’s 2016 presidential campaign. 

“The Clinton campaign fabricated evidence trying to connect [Donald] Trump to [Russia],” Grassley said. “They fed it to the media to start a yearslong wildfire of false allegations. They fed it to the FBI to trigger a federal investigation into their opposing candidate.”

As part of the continuing probe by special counsel John Durham, Sussmann is charged with lying to the FBI about whether he was coordinating with the Clinton campaign when he came forward with a tip that a Russian bank secretly communicated with Trump’s circle. Sussmann, the FBI’s source in pursuing alleged collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia, has pleaded not guilty.

In his remarks, Grassley highlighted how the FBI later suggested that the source of the Trump-Russia ties was the Justice Department, not an individual with ties to the Clinton campaign.

“I fear these recent developments are just the tip of the iceberg,” Grassley said. “The FBI’s exposure to false information and actually using that false information for investigative purposes reeks of a political vendetta. It points to a get-Trump-at-all-costs attitude.”

“Whether Sussmann is convicted or not, the evidence introduced by Durham shows serious government misconduct, misconduct by the federal government of the United States of America,” the Iowa Republican added.

Read Grassley’s full speech, pasted below, or watch it here:

On Sept. 23, 2021Nov. 30, 2021; and again on Feb. 15, 2022, I spoke on this floor about the fake Russia/Alfa Bank narrative.

That narrative started in 2016.

It took on a new life when Clinton campaign lawyer Michael Sussmann met with FBI general counsel James Baker.

In that meeting, Sussmann provided information and data files that allegedly contained evidence of a secret communication channel between the Trump Organization and a Russian bank—Alfa Bank.

The evidence was fabricated by the Clinton campaign. The allegations about the Trump Organization being linked with a Russian bank were false.

Of note, Sussmann also provided Baker information Fusion GPS gave him as part of their work for the Clinton campaign.

This was an all-hands-on-deck strategy to destroy the Trump presidency and the campaign.

With the ongoing Sussmann trial, now underway here in D.C., the false Alfa Bank narrative is more relevant now than ever before. So I want to tell you why. 

A mere several days after the meeting with James Baker, the FBI opened a full investigation on Sept. 23, 2016.

And around that time, an FBI agent working on cyber matters reviewed the information provided by Sussmann.

That agent said, “We didn’t agree with the conclusion … that this represented a secret communication channel.”

He also stated, “Whoever had written that paper had jumped to some conclusions that were not supported by the data,” and, “the methodology they chose was questionable to me.”

And here is the kicker: “I didn’t feel that they were objective in the conclusions that they came to. The assumption that you would have to make was so far-reaching that it just didn’t make sense.”

So last Friday in the courtroom, Robby Mook, Hillary Clinton’s campaign manager, testified that Hillary Clinton was asked about the plan to share this fake information with the media.

Hillary Clinton approved that plan.

Jake Sullivan was involved in that decision as well. He’s, of course, as we know, [President Joe Biden’s] national security adviser.

The Clinton campaign fabricated evidence trying to connect [Donald] Trump to [Russia]. They fed it to the media to start a yearslong wildfire of false allegations. They fed it to the FBI to trigger a federal investigation into their opposing candidate.

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: The Clinton campaign was the conspiracy. And it was a big bag of dirty tricks.

This false Alfa Bank information eventually landed with the media outlet Slate, which ran an article on Oct. 31, 2016. After that article, Sullivan, the now-national security adviser, issued his now-infamous tweet: “This could be the most direct link yet between Donald Trump and Moscow.”

Hillary Clinton also tweeted: “Computer scientists have apparently uncovered a covert server linking the Trump Organization to a Russian-based bank.”

They weren’t the only ones pleased with this fake news. On Oct. 13, 2020, Sen. [Ron] Johnson and I wrote a letter to the FBI where we made public texts between [then-FBI Deputy Director] Andrew McCabe and [then FBI lawyer] Lisa Page.

Page says to McCabe: “The alfa bank story is in Slate.”

McCabe replied: “Awesome.”

The FBI’s excitement didn’t end there. This week, [special counsel John] Durham’s prosecutors introduced a message between FBI agents that said, “People on 7th floor to include Director are fired up about this server.”

… They were fired up about fake information, which is just terrible. The FBI’s job—the FBI’s job is really to get fired up about fake information? It’s more than that, however. It’s a gut-wrenching attack on our system of government.

Now, there’s another data point that I want to share. Durham recently released notes from a March 6, 2017, meeting between the Justice Department and FBI officials. In that meeting, they discussed predication and Crossfire Hurricane issues.

This meeting was two weeks before [then-FBI Director James] Comey publicly announced his investigation into Trump. On that very day, March 6, 2017, I wrote a letter to Comey asking him questions about the Steele dossier. 

My press release for that letter is titled “FBI Plan to Pay Ex-Spy for Trump Intel During Campaign Sparks Questions of Obama Administration’s Use of Federal Authorities for Political Gain.” That was from March 6, 2017. Now, in May of 2022, that title just about sums up Crossfire Hurricane as best as it can be described.

Now, in closing, I’d like to make a few notes with respect to predication.

[The] Sept. 23, 2016, FBI electronic communication opened a full investigation into the Alfa Bank allegations. But let’s unpack the first few lines from that document.

“The FBI received a referral of information from the U.S. Department of Justice.”

“The Department of Justice provided the FBI with a white paper that was produced by an anonymous third party.”

Well, the information didn’t come from the Department of Justice. It came from Sussmann and the Clinton campaign. Hardly an anonymous third party, since Sussmann himself showed up at the door.

By wording it this way, the document almost blesses this so-called white paper. Mind you, the white paper is the false Alfa Bank information.

By the looks of it, the FBI document contains false information.

I fear these recent developments are just the tip of the iceberg. The FBI’s exposure to false information and actually using that false information for investigative purposes reeks of a political vendetta. It points to a get-Trump-at-all-costs attitude.

Whether Sussmann is convicted or not, the evidence introduced by Durham shows serious government misconduct, misconduct by the federal government of the United States of America.

Special counsel Durham can’t let government misconduct go unpunished.

I yield.

The Daily Signal publishes a variety of perspectives. Nothing written here is to be construed as representing the views of The Heritage Foundation. 

Have an opinion about this article? To sound off, please email letters@DailySignal.com and we’ll consider publishing your edited remarks in our regular “We Hear You” feature. Remember to include the URL or headline of the article plus your name and town and/or state. 

MEDIAPublished December 11, 2020Last Update 12 hrs ago

From ‘smear campaign’ to ‘Russian disinformation,’ liberal media teamed up to dismiss Hunter Biden story

NPR declared, ‘We don’t want to waste our time on stories that are not really stories’

By Joseph A. Wulfsohn | Fox News

There has been plenty of criticism in recent days of the mainstream media’s refusal to cover the New York Post’s bombshell reporting on Hunter Bidenever since the Biden transition issued a press release acknowledging that he was under investigation over his so-called “tax affairs,” but the media went far beyond simply ignoring the controversy. 

Washington Post columnist Greg Sargent quickly declared the day after the New York Post first began reporting on the alleged contents of Hunter Biden’s laptop that it was “Trump’s fake new Biden scandal,” calling the allegations “laughably weak.”

“While Trump and his propagandists would surely prefer to have a more compelling scandal to tout, the thinness of this new gruel is largely secondary,” Sargent wrote on Oct. 15, stressing Steve Bannon’s involvement in the distribution of the laptop’s contents. “Trump’s last-ditch hope is to cast a vague pall of corruption over Biden… But plainly, the mere fact of covering smears and disinformation, even negatively, itself rewards their purveyors.”

That same day, The New York Times ran a report sounding the alarm about “Russian disinformation,” claiming that President Trump was warned that Russians were “using” his personal attorney Rudy Giuliani, who was given the laptop before providing its contents to the press, to spread false claims about the Bidens. 

“The intelligence agencies warned the White House late last year that Russian intelligence officers were using President Trump’s personal lawyer Rudolph W. Giuliani as a conduit for disinformation aimed at undermining Joseph R. Biden Jr.’s presidential run, according to four current and former American officials,” the Times reported at the time.

It is not clear whether the ongoing taxes probe is in any way connected to the laptop’s contents.

Back in October, Politico published a joint letter signed by “more than 50 former senior intelligence officials,” who insist that the published emails that allegedly came from Hunter Biden’s laptop had “all the classic earmarks of a Russian information operation.”

The letter, which was parroted by much of the mainstream media, baselessly suggested that the emails were hacked and that they could have been tampered with by the Kremlin in order to make its contents look incriminating. 

Signatories of that letter included outspoken Trump critics John Brennan, James Clapper, Michael Hayden, Leon Panetta, and Jeremy Bash, many of whom work as on-air analysts on MSNBC and CNN.

NPR public editor Kelly McBride addressed a listener’s question about the news outlet’s blackout of the Hunter Biden story. After claiming that the Post’s reporting had “many, many red flags,” including its potential ties to Russia, NPR apparently determined that the “assertions don’t amount to much.”

“We don’t want to waste our time on stories that are not really stories, and we don’t want to waste the listeners’ and readers’ time on stories that are just pure distractions,” NPR managing editor Terence Samuel told McBride. “And quite frankly, that’s where we ended up, this was … a politically driven event and we decided to treat it that way.”

DAILY BEAST PANNED FOR CLAIMING HUNTER BIDEN CONTROVERSY WENT ‘LARGELY UNNOTICED’ BEFORE THE ELECTION

Unlike NPR, CNN wasn’t nearly as transparent with its efforts to spike the Hunter Biden story. Last week, Project Veritas leaked audio recordings of conference calls featuring CNN’s top executives urging staff to avoid the Biden scandal during the election. 

“Obviously, we’re not going with the New York Post story right now on Hunter Biden,” CNN political director David Chalian said during a conference call on Oct. 14, the same day the Post published its first story on Hunter Biden’s emails. Chalian later insisted the report was “giving its marching orders” to the “right-wing echo chamber about what to talk about today.”

“The Trump media, you know, moves immediately from — OK, well, never mind — the [Michael Flynn] unmasking was, you know, found to be completely nonsensical to the latest alleged scandal and expects everybody to just follow suit,” CNN president Jeff Zucker told his staff on Oct. 16. “So, I don’t think that we should be repeating unsubstantiated smears just because the right-wing media suggests that we should.”

Apparently such messaging was received by CNN star anchor Jake Tapper, who dismissed the allegations against Hunter Biden as “too disgusting” to repeat on-air and that the “rightwing is going crazy.” 

CNN’s discomfort in covering the Hunter Biden story was put on full display when GOP spokesperson Elizabeth Harrington challenged CNN chief international anchor Christiane Amanpour to dig into the Biden family’s foreign ties during a heated exchange.  

“As you know perfectly well, I’m a journalist and a reporter and I follow the facts and there has never been any issues in terms of corruption,” Amanpour asserted. 

“Wait, wait, wait, how do you know that?!?” Harrington pushed back. 

“I’m talking about reporting and any evidence,” Amanpour responded. 

“OK, I would love if you guys would start doing that digging and start doing that verification,” Harrington said, referring to the published Hunter Biden emails. 

“No, we’re not going to do your work for you,” Amanpour scolded the GOP spokesperson. 

“That’s a journalist’s job!” Harrington exclaimed. “It’s a journalist’s job to find out if this is verified.”


Of all the media deceit and propagndizing disseminated in the lead-up to the election to justify their refusal to report on the Hunter Biden documents — despite knowing they were genuine and not from Russia — this on CNN from @camanpour may be the most amazing:

A similar exchange took place on “60 Minutes,” when veteran journalist Lesley Stahl laughed off President Trump’s claim that Biden was “in the midst of a scandal” in an interview that aired just days before the election.

RIC GRENELL CALLS OUT CNN’S JAKE TAPPER FOR BELATEDLY COVERING HUNTER BIDEN STORY

“He’s not,” Stahl gleefully replied. 

“Of course he is, Lesley,” Trump sternly doubled down. 

“No, c’mon,” Stahl continued to reject the president’s claim, before lecturing him, “This is ’60 Minutes’ and we can’t put on things that we can’t verify.”

During the campaign, Joe Biden was mostly successful at avoiding the Post’s report as the pool reporters who followed him on the campaign trail refrained from asking him about it. However, the one reporter who did, CBS News correspondent Bo Erickson, faced hostile pushback by other journalists, including one of his own colleagues. 

“My @CBSEveningNews report clearly lays out warnings about Giuliani & Russian disinformation,” CBS News White House correspondent Paula Reid tweeted, attempting to undercut the legitimacy of Erickson’s question to Biden. 

“The View” co-host Sunny Hostin attempted to comfort Dr. Jill Biden during an interview on the ABC daytime program while tip-toeing around the subject, accusing President Trump of “disrespecting” her family with “personal attacks.” 

MSNBC anchor Katy Tur mocked the Post’s story, saying it “dropped like a bomb,” but to “wither under scrutiny, not really dropping like a bomb.” NBC News national security correspondent Ken Dilanian called it a “fishy story” despite acknowledging that various emails and images that came from the laptop looked “legitimate.”

“We have no idea, and neither does the New York Post, whether any of it was doctored or forged or faked. And that’s why the mainstream news media has declined to really touch the story because it just lacks credibility,” Dilanian told Tur. “We now know that Russian disinformation… is as dangerous to our democracy as anything exposed in these emails.”

Ahead of the final presidential debate, where President Trump hammered his Democratic rival on his son’s business dealings, NBC News correspondent Hallie Jackson offered a slanted preview of what was to come in the political showdown. 

“The President’s also expected to bring up Hunter Biden and unverified emails of his business dealings, described by many intelligence experts as having hallmarks of a foreign disinformation campaign,” Jackson reported. “The Biden campaign says they’re ready for the attack, hoping to flip the script to argue the President’s more obsessed with Biden’s family than American families.”

Jackson also made an effort to degrade President Trump’s debate guest, former Hunter Biden associate Tony Bobulinski, who claimed the former VP was directly involved with his son’s business dealings.

“While President Trump is expected to bring a former business associate of Hunter Biden’s, Joe Biden is expected to bring small business owners struggling in this pandemic,” Jackson told NBC’s Lester Holt. 

Following the debate, CBS political analyst John Dickerson pointed out that Biden “has an ally in the news cycle,” suggesting that media’s coverage of the ongoing coronavirus pandemic will bury the scandal, which would benefit the former VP. 

“If President Trump tries to shift the turf onto the Biden family for the purposes of muddying Joe Biden, the news cycle keeps returning to the central piece of this campaign, which is the coronavirus and the president’s response to it and the country has a very negative view on that,” Dickerson explained to “CBS This Morning” co-host Anthony Mason. “And as these numbers continue, it keeps voters focused on that very bad issue for the president.”

MSNBC anchor Stephanie Ruhle attacked those who were covering the Hunter Biden controversy, referring to it as a “so-called story” with “unverified claims.”

“We are now four days away from the election and the truth is more important than ever,” Ruhle told her viewers. “The truth is that we’re in the middle of a pandemic. The truth is that millions of Americans are out of work. The truth is we have to listen to science. And in these final days, instead of debating crowd size or unverified claims or conspiracy theories, we should be talking about policy, values, and ideas.”

—-

4 Big Takeaways From Senate Hearing on Tech Bias

Fred Lucas @FredLucasWH / October 28, 2020 / 2 Comments

Sen Roger Wicker, R-Miss., chairman of the Senate Commerce, Science, and Transportation Committee, listens Wednesday as Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey appears on a monitor while testifying remotely during the panel’s hearing. (Photo: Michael Reynolds-Pool/Getty Images)

The CEOs of Twitter, Facebook, and Google defended themselves Wednesday on Capitol Hill from charges of political bias in how they share news and other information.

They testified before a Senate committee roughly a week after Twitter and Facebook suppressed a New York Post expose on the lucrative foreign business dealings of Hunter Biden, son of former Vice President Joe Biden. 

But the hearing went well beyond the Post’s coverage two weeks ago of the files contained in a laptop computer purportedly belonging to Hunter Biden, delving into what Republicans called a consistent double standard in blocking content on the digital platforms.  

Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey, Google CEO Sundar Pichai, and Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg testified under oath before the Senate Commerce, Science and Transportation Committee. The three agreed to appear voluntarily and remotely to avoid a subpoena during what has become a hot issue this election year.

The left is actively working to undermine the integrity of our elections. Read the plan to stop them now. Learn more now >>

Several Republicans have talked about revoking the protection from litigation that social media platforms enjoy under Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act. The provision  exempts the companies from being sued for published content they didn’t originate–such as the New York Post’s coverage of the Hunter Biden scandal. 

If the companies are blocking or suppressing  online content based on political leaning, some lawmakers have argued, they are functionally publishers and not neutral platforms, and can be exposed to the same defamation laws as news organizations such as the Post.

Section 230 should be “carefully refined” to fit the law’s original intent but not scrapped, even if  social media giants and other tech firms have squandered the public’s trust, contends Klon Kitchen, director of the Center for Technology Policy at The Heritage Foundation, in a reportpublished Tuesday.  

“Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act has been critical to the development of today’s Internet and Internet services,” the report’s summary states, adding:

But the expanding presence of these services in the lives of Americans and a growing political distrust of the companies providing these services highlight the need to refine the scope and language of Section 230 to better fit the statute’s original intent and to assuage these concerns. Such refinement is the best way to fan the flames of economic freedom and creativity while protecting individual and corporate freedom of speech.

Here are four key takeaways from the Senate committee’s hearing on the perceived bias of tech firms such as Facebook, Google, and Twitter. 

1. ‘Just One Example?’

Sen. Mike Lee, R-Utah, noted several cases in which digital platforms put restrictions on conservative politicians and media outlets, and pressed the CEOs to name one example of a liberal individual or entity that got the same scrutiny. Only Google’s CEO was able to give a specific answer. 

“I see these quotes where each of you tell consumers about your business practices. Then you seem to do the opposite and take censorship-related actions against the president, against members of his administration, against the New York Post, the Babylon Bee, The Federalist, pro-life groups, and there are countless other exammples,” Lee said. 

The Utah Republican clarified what he meant. 

“When I use the word ‘censor,’ I mean block content, fact check, or label content or demonetize websites of conservative, Republican, or pro-life individuals or groups or companies, contradicting your commercial policies,” Lee said. “But I don’t see this suppression of high-profile liberal commentators.” 

Facebook’s Zuckerberg said examples exist, but he just couldn’t think of any. 

“There are certainly many examples that your Democratic colleagues object to when a fact-checker might label something as false that they disagree with,” Zuckerberg said. 

Lee responded: “I get that. I’m just asking if you can name one high-profile liberal person or company who you have censored. One name.” 

Zuckerberg replied, “I’d need to think about it and get you a list.” 

Dorsey of Twitter responded, “We can give a more exhaustive list.” 

Lee reiterated, “I’m not asking for an exhaustive list, just one example, one entity. Anyone.”

Twitter’s Dorsey said, “Two Democratic Congress people. … I’ll get those names to you.” 

By contrast, Google’s Pichai seemed prepared for the question. 

“We have turned down ads from Priorities USA, from Vice President Biden’s campaign,” the Google chief said. “We have had compliance issues with World Socialist Review, which is a left-leaning publication. We can give you several examples. We have a violent graphic content policy.”

World Socialist Review apparently was last published in 2011.

Lee said the tech companies have the right to set their own terms of service. 

“But given the disparate impact of who gets censored on your platforms, it seems that one, you are to enforce your terms of service equally, or two, you’re writing your standards to target conservative viewpoints,” Lee said. 

2. Who Elected You?

Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, didn’t mince words, declaring: “The three witnesses we have before this committee collectively pose, I believe, the single greatest threat to free speech in America and the greatest threat we have to free and fair elections.”

Cruz jumped into the example of the New York Post’s explosive Oct. 14 story on Hunter Biden. Twitter blocked the Post’s Twitter account after the newspaper posted the story, and prevented Twitter users from sharing it.Twitter also blocked the account of a Politico reporter who tweeted the story until he removed it from his feed, the Texas Republican said. 

“You forced a Politico reporter to take down his post about the New York Post as well. Is that correct?” Cruz asked.

Dorsey said the company changed its policy on the story. 

“Within that 24-hour period, yes. But as the policy has changed,” Dorsey said.  

Dorsey said if the New York Post deleted the story it would have the account back, and would be free to re-pose the story. 

Cruz responded by talking about the power of Twitter’s platform:

So Twitter can censor Politico, you can censor the New York Post. Presumably you can censor The New York Times or any other media outlet. Mr. Dorsey, who the hell elected you and put you in charge of what the media are allowed to report and what the American people are allowed to hear? And why do you persist in behaving as a Democratic super PAC, silencing views to the contrary of your political beliefs?

Dorsey defended his company, stating it plans to publish the process for content moderation and provide greater transparency to gain public trust. 

“We’re not doing that [censoring the media]. That is why I opened this hearing with calls for more transparency,” Dorsey said. “We realize we need to earn trust more. We realize that more accountability is needed to show our intentions and to show the outcomes. So I hear the concerns and acknowledge them. But we want to fix it with more transparency.”

3. Sticking Up for Tech Giants

Democratic senators on the committee generally denied any anti-conservative bias on social media, and in some cases said there should be more censorship. 

Sen. Brian Schatz, D-Hawaii, went a step further than colleagues by casting the three CEOs as victims who were being bullied by Republicans on the committee. 

“We never do this and there is a good reason we do not haul people before us to yell at them for not doing our bidding during an election,” Schatz said. “It is a misuse of taxpayer dollars.”

Schatz added: 

What we are seeing today is an attempt to bully CEOs of private companies into carrying out a hit job on a presidential candidate by making sure that they push out foreign and domestic misinformation meant to influence the election. 

To our witnesses today, you and other tech leaders need to stand up to this immoral behavior. The truth is that because some of my colleagues accuse you, your companies, and your employees of being biased or liberal, you have institutionally bent over backwards and overcompensated. You’ve hired Republican operatives, hosted private dinners with Republcian leaders, and in contravention of your terms of service, given special dispensation to right-wing voices and even throttled progressive journalism. 

Schatz cited no examples of such “throttled” news sites.

4. Tweets by Iran, China, Trump 

Committee Chairman Roger Wicker, R-Miss., first called out Dorsey about a Chinese government official’s tweet that the U.S. Army created COVID-19, the disease caused by the new coronavirus that originated in China. 

Wicker asked about a disclaimer that Twitter quickly attached to a Trump tweet about problems with mail-in ballots, in which Twitter claimed there is no security problem. By contrast, when a Chinese official tweeted that the U.S. created COVID-19, it took two months for Twitter to add a similar disclaimer. 

“How does a claim by Chinese communists that the U.S. military is to blame for COVID remain up for two months without a fact check, and the president’s tweet about the security of mail-in ballots gets labeled instantly?” 

Twitter’s Dorsey responded that he didn’t know exactly how long the Chinese tweet on COVID-19 remained up, but said Twitter’s gatekeepers decided that Trump’s tweet on mail-in ballots would misinform the public. 

Wicker also asked about tweets from Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei that promised or advocated violence. 

“These tweets are still up, Mr. Dorsey. How is it that they are acceptable based on your policies at Twitter?” Wicker asked. 

Dorsey responded: “We believe it’s important for everyone to hear from global leaders.”

“We have policies around world leaders,” the Twitter CEO continued. “We want to make sure we are respecting their right to speak and to publish what they need. But, if there is a violation of our terms of service, we want to label it.” 

Wicker: “They are still up. Do they violate your terms of service?”

Dorsey: “We did not find those to violate our terms of service because we considered them saber rattling, which is part of the speech of world leaders in concert with other countries.”

Later in the hearing, Sen. Cory Gardner, R-Colo., expressed caution about making changes to Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act. 

“I don’t like the idea of unelected elites in San Francisco or Silicon Valley deciding whether my speech is permissible on their platforms,” Gardner said, adding:

But I like even less the idea of unelected Washington, D.C., bureaucrats trying to enforce some kind of political neutral content moderation. We have to be very careful and not rush to legislate in ways that stifle speech. You can delete Facebook, turn off Twitter, and ditch Google. But you cannot unsubscribe from government censors.

Still, Gardner was tough on Dorsey, asking why the platform didn’t delete tweets by the Iranian leader that denied the Holocaust, yet flagged tweets by Trump. 

“It’s strange to me that you flagged the tweets from the president but haven’t hidden the ayatollah’s tweets on Holocaust denial or calls to wipe Israel off the map?”

Dorsey said it is a different type of misinformation. 

“We do have other policies around incitement to violence,” Dorsey said. “Some of the tweets that you mentioned are examples that might fall afoul of that.”

Gardner: “So, somebody who denies the Holocaust happened is not [spreading] misinformation?”

Dorsey: “It’s misleading information, but we don’t have a policy against that type of misleading information.”


WATCH: Ted Cruz Slams Jack Dorsey For Twitter Censorship And Election Interference

OCTOBER 28, 2020 By Jordan Davidson

Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas slammed Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey for his company’s censorship of the New York Post and the bombshell Hunter Biden story published two weeks ago.

“Mr. Dorsey, who the hell elected you and put you in charge of what the media are allowed to report and what the American people are allowed to hear?” Cruz asked. “Why do you persist in behaving as a Democratic super PAC, silencing views to the contrary of your political views?”

Twitter previously blocked verified and unverified users from sharing the Post’s article link. Instead, users were met with a message stating that the Post’s story link “has been identified by Twitter or our partners as being potentially harmful.”

Twitter also locked the New York Post’s account, which still is unable to post 14 daysafter they published their story.

Dorsey defended Twitter’s actions by continuing to echo the big tech company’s claims that the article violated their hacked materials policy. He then went on to claim that for the New York Post to regain access to posting from their account, they have to log in and delete their original content, saying that Twitter’s policy was reworked to avoid bad enforcement.

“Anyone can tweet, we are not blocking their post,” Dorsey claimed.

Cruz, however, continued to grill Dorsey about Twitter’s censorship, saying that “Twitter’s conduct is by far the most egregious” of all the big tech companies.

“The New York Post is not some random guy tweeting. It is the fourth-highest circulation of any newspaper in America. It is 200 years old and founded by Alexander Hamilton,” Cruz said. “And it is your position is that you can sit in Silicon Valley and demand of the media that you can tell them what stories they can publish and the American people what reporting they can hear, is that right?”

Cruz also pointed out that Twitter’s censorship of the New York Post was hypocritical and that their claims about “hacked material” were not applied to the New York Times’s story publishing President Donald Trump’s tax returns.

“They purported to publish federally published material. It’s a federal felony to distribute someone’s tax returns against their knowledge,” Cruz said. “So that material was based on something distributed in violation of federal law, and yet Twitter gleefully allowed people to circulate that.”

“But when an article was critical of Joe Biden, Twitter engaged in rampant censorship and silencing,” Cruz continued.

Cruz’s questioning comes as members of the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation questioned Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg, Dorsey, and Alphabet Inc., Google CEO Sundar Pichai over the companies’ content moderation policies. The hearing entitled “Does Section 230’s sweeping immunity enable big tech bad behavior?” was called in response to repeated calls for Section 230 reform by members on both sides of the political aisle.

“The three witnesses we have before this committee collectively pose, I believe, the single greatest threat to free speech in America and the greatest threat we have to free and fair elections,” Cruz stated. Jordan Davidson is a staff writer at The Federalist. She graduated from Baylor University where she majored in political science and minored in journalism.

2 years ago

today

Silicon Valley an ‘extremely left-leaning place,’ admits Zuckerberg

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg reacts to a question about the hotel he stayed in last night as he testifies before a joint hearing of the Commerce and Judiciary Committees on Capitol Hill in Washington, Tuesday, April 10, 2018, about the use of Facebook data to target American voters in the 2016 election. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)
 Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg reacts to a question about the hotel he stayed in last night as he testifies before a joint hearing of the Commerce and Judiciary Committees on Capitol Hill in Washington, Tuesday, April 10, 2018, about the …

By Dan Boylan– The Washington Times – Tuesday, April 10, 2018 

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg acknowledged that Silicon Valley is an “extremely left-leaning place” but said he tries to make sure his firm doesn’t “have bias in the work that we do.”

Sen. Ted Cruz, Texas Republican, questioned the social-media mogul about a long-running concern conservatives have that Facebook and other Silicon Valley tech firms have a clear bias against users on the right side of the political spectrum.

“A great many Americans are deeply concerned Facebook and other tech companies are engaged in a pervasive pattern of bias and political censorship,” Mr. Cruz said.


TOP STORIES

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Appearing before a joint hearing of the Senate Judiciary and Commerce committees to explore the massive social networking company’s recent failures protecting private data and inability to stop the spread of fake news during the 2016 presidential election — Mr. Zuckerbergcountered that Facebook was “a platform for all ideas.”

But Mr. Cruz interrupted and argued content from more conservative companies, including Chik-fil-A, had been removed whereas posts from Planned Parenthood and other progressive outfits, had not.

Mr. Zuckerberg replied that he was unaware of the deleted posts and explained that Facebookregularly removed content related to terrorism or hate speech or self harm.

Mr. Cruz, who ran for the Republican presidential nomination in 2016, has argued in the past the Facebook has policies and algorithms that effectively “shadow ban” conservatives.

On Tuesday, the Texas Republican also grilled Mr. Zuckerberg over Facebook’s hiring policies, pressing the CEO to explain the firing of Palmer Luckey — a virtual-realty executive who supported Donald Trump.

Mr. Zuckerberg explained Mr. Luckey’s departure had nothing to do with politics and was a personnel matter.

“We don’t ask people their political affiliation when they are hired,” Mr. Zuckerberg told the hearing.https://www.google.com/amp/amp.washingtontimes.com/news/2018/apr/10/zuckerberg-admits-silicon-valley-extremely-left-le/

By Adriana Cohen | Creators Syndicate

https://www.foxnews.com/opinion/twitter-facebook-censorship-adriana-cohen

Adriana Cohen: Censorship of conservatives proves Twitter & Facebook are enemies of free speech, free press

Twitter is not keeping ‘all voices on the platform’ — far from it

Big Tech titans Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey and Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg better lawyer up.  These enemies of free speech and a free press will be hauled in to testify before the Senate Judiciary Committee to explain their brazen censorship of conservatives. The ever-growing list of those censored includes the president of the United States, his White House press secretary and the New York Post, whose account was locked for posting a credible story about Joe Biden and his son during an election.

In light of Twitter’s unprecedented and willful censorship, Jack Dorsey could also be facing charges for lying to Congress in 2018.

FACEBOOK’S ZUCKERBERG, TWITTER’S DORSEY TO VOLUNTARILY TESTIFY BEFORE SENATE ON ALLEGED CENSORSHIP

While testifying before the House Committee on Energy and Commerce Dorsey told lawmakers: “Let me be clear about one important and foundational fact: Twitter does not use political ideology to make any decisions, whether related to ranking content on our service or how we enforce our rules.”

That’s an outright lie, given the overwhelming and well-documented evidence of the social network’s extreme bias and disproportionate censorship against conservatives over the years.

The Media Research Center, a watchdog group, released a study earlier this month that showed Twitter and Facebook have censored President Trump and his campaign 65 times. His political opponent, Joe Biden, hasn’t been censored once.       

Hardly impartial, wouldn’t you say?       

Yet, that’s not what Dorsey told Congress. He said: “We believe strongly in being impartial, and we strive to enforce our rules impartially. We do not shadow ban anyone based on political ideology. In fact, from a simple business perspective and to serve the public conversation, Twitter is incentivized to keep all voices on the platform.”       

Is that a joke?    

First off, scores of conservatives, including myself, are being shadow-banned on Twitter, something I testified about in 2018 before Congress alongside other leading conservative voices being wrongfully censored.     

So, no, Twitter is not keeping “all voices on the platform” — far from it. Recently it locked the White House press secretary’s Twitter account for simply posting a link to the New York Post’s verified story on Hunter Biden’s explosive emails.

Twitter locked the New York Post’s account for doing its job — reporting on a presidential candidate’s sketchy foreign business dealings and an alleged influence-peddling scheme. Amid other instances of censorship, Twitter also blocked the House Judiciary GOP from posting a link to the Post’s story to a government website.       

There’s nothing impartial about this un-American suppression of information, especially if one considers that Twitter and Facebook gave Democratic Rep. Adam Schiff of California, legacy media outlets and scores of blue-check “journos” the green light to peddle stories about the fake dossier and Russia collusion hoax against President Trump and his administration the past four years. This five-alarm conspiracy theory has since been debunked by Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation and various congressional probes.       

Twitter permitted China’s mouthpiece, the World Health Organization, to tweet last January that the coronavirus wasn’t transmittable between humans —  false information that put millions of lives at risk worldwide. And yet it routinely silences right-leaning accounts such as Dr. Scott Atlas, a member of the White House Coronavirus Task Force, for what it considers to be misleading information about the virus.  

Atlas, the former chief of neuroradiology at Stanford University Medical Center and a fellow at the Hoover Institution, was censored by the oligarchs at Twitter this month for simply questioning the efficacy of masks when data shows that infection rates soared in Japan, the Philippines, Hawaii, Miami and Los Angeles and elsewhere despite mask mandates.       

The frightening reality is the social media speech police won’t even allow health care medical experts, like Atlas, to question anything that strays from their narrow point of view. The rest of us must regurgitate the approved left-wing talking points or risk being silenced or deplatformed from these almighty digital monopolies.    

Congress must stop these rampant abuses once and for all.       

CLICK HERE TO GET THE FOX NEWS APP

Perhaps lawmakers will begin by holding Dorsey accountable by recommending perjury charges to the Department of Justice.       

Stay tuned.



Link

‘Plausible deniability’: Tony Bobulinski says Joe Biden knew about Hunter Biden’s China deal pursuits

By Jerry Dunleavy & Joseph SimonsonOctober 27, 2020 – 11:06 PM

Hunter Biden’s ex-business partner Tony Bobulinski claimed Joe Biden’s brother, Jim, said that he and Biden’s son were relying upon “plausible deniability” as they pursued a lucrative deal with a Chinese Communist Party-linked company. 

During an hour-long interview with Tucker Carlson of Fox News conducted exactly one week before Election Day, Bobulinski, a Navy veteran, insisted he had firsthand knowledge that the former vice president was aware of the Biden family’s Chinese endeavors, contrary to the 2020 Democratic nominee’s claims.

After meeting with Joe Biden the evening of May 2, 2017 at the Beverly Hills Hilton and then briefly again the following day after the former vice president spoke at the Milken Institute Global Conference, Bobulinski said on Tuesday that he had a two-hour conversation with Biden’s brother at the Peninsula Hotel. Bobulinksi said he thought to himself, “How are they doing this? I know Joe decided not to run in 2016, but what if he ran in the future? Aren’t they taking political risk or headline risk? … How are you guys doing this? Aren’t you concerned that you’re going to put your brother’s future presidential campaign at risk? You know, the Chinese, the stuff that you guys have been doing already in 2015 and 2016 around the world?” 

Bobulonski said he asked Jim Biden directly, “How are you guys getting away with this? Like, aren’t you concerned?”

“He looked at me and he laughed a little bit and said, ‘Plausible deniability.’ … Anyone watching this interview can look up what plausible deniability, what he means, and the definition is very distinct,” Bobulinski said. 

Newly released  texts from Bobulinski back up his claims that Joe Biden met with him in 2017. At the time, Hunter, James, and their associates were pursuing a lucrative deal with a Chinese tycoon, complicating claims from the former vice president that he never discussed business dealings with his son.

The texts are part of a trove of hundreds of documents from Bobulinski  obtained by the  Washington Examiner, including dozens of WhatsApp messages, emails, letters, and business proposals. The records show that James Biden  planned outreach to a host of Democratic politicians and world leaders as the group pursued business deals with China in 2017, and that Hunter Biden aimed to avoid having to register as a foreign agent. Bobulinski has provided the records to the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee and to the FBI. Bobulinski did a sit-down interview with the bureau on Friday. His records are separate from those purportedly on Hunter Biden’s laptop. 

“So I initially was sitting — because I got there a little earlier — was sitting with Jim Biden and Hunter Biden. And Joe came through the lobby with his security and Hunter basically said, ‘Hey, give me a second, I’ll go over and give me 10 minutes to brief my dad and read him in on things.’ And so then Hunter and his father and security came through the bar and I was just stood up out of respect to shake his hand,” Bobulinski said. “And Hunter introduced me as, ‘This is Tony, Dad, the individual I told you about that’s helping us with the business that we’re working on and the Chinese.’ … You know, we didn’t go into too much detail on business because prior to Joe showing up, Hunter and Jim had coached me. ‘Listen, we won’t go into too much detail here. This is just a high level discussion and meeting.’ So it’s not like I was drilling down with Joe about cap tables and details.”

Carlson asked if it was clear to him that the Biden family had told Joe Biden about his business, and Bobulinski replied, “Crystal clear.” 


In September 2019, after being pressed by Fox News, Joe Biden  said, “I have never spoken to my son about his overseas business dealings.” 

Joe Biden denied during the final debate last week that he has been involved in any family business dealings or any overseas deals, saying, “I have not taken a penny from any foreign source ever in my life.” 

“Yeah, that’s a blatant lie,” Bobulinski said. “When he states that that is a blatant lie. Obviously, the world is aware that I attended the debate last Thursday. And in that debate, he made a specific statement around questions around this from the president. And I’ll be honest with you, I almost stood up and screamed liar and walked out because I was shocked that after four days or five days that they prep for this, that the Biden family is taking that position to the world.” 

Bobulinski, a former Navy lieutenant who has done business around the world, is listed as one of the recipients of a May 13, 2017, email detailing a business deal between a Chinese company and Hunter Biden.

“I am the CEO of Sinohawk Holdings, which was a partnership between the Chinese operating through CEFC/Chairman Ye and the Biden family. I was brought into the company to be the CEO by James Gilliar and Hunter Biden. The reference to ‘the Big Guy’ in the much-publicized May 13, 2017, email is, in fact, a reference to Joe Biden,” Bobulinski said on Thursday, adding, “Hunter Biden called his dad ‘the Big Guy’ or ‘my chairman’ and frequently referenced asking him for his sign-off or advice on various potential deals that we were discussing.” 

The “big guy”  email is from Gilliar to Hunter Biden and others, sent May 13, 2017, and it says, “We have discussed and agreed the following renumeration packages.” The email noted that Hunter Biden would receive “850” ($850,000) and lists him as “Chair/Vice Chair depending on agreement with CEFC” — the China Energy Fund Committee.

“Hunter and everyone was in town and they wanted to coordinate me meeting with Joe. And so it was set up for the night of May 2 at the Beverly Hilton,” Bobulinski said on Tuesday. “I met first met with Hunter Biden and Jim Biden and just had a light discussion where they briefed me that, ‘Listen, you know, my dad’s on the way and we won’t go into too much detail on the business front, but we’ll just spend time talking at a high level about you, your background, the Biden family. And then, you know, he’s got to get some rest because he’s speaking at the conference in the morning.’ … Because they were sort of wining and dining me and presenting the strength of the Biden family to get me more engaged and want to take on the CEO role. And, you know, develop SinoHawk both in the United States and around the world in partnership with CEFC.” 

Carlson pressed him for further details about the purpose behind that discussion.

“As you can imagine, I’ve been asked by one hundred people over the last month, you know, ‘Why would you be meeting with Joe Biden?’ And I sort of turn the question around to the people that asked me why at 10:30 on the night of May 2, would Joe Biden take time out of his schedule to sit down with me in a dark bar at the Beverly Hilton sort of positioned behind a column so people can’t see us to have a discussion about his family and my family and business at a very high level where Jim Biden sat and Hunter Biden participated?” Bobulinski said. “And I’m irrelevant in the story. They weren’t raising money from me. There was no other reason for me to be in that bar meeting Joe Biden other than to discuss what I was doing with his family’s name with the Chinese CEFC.” 

During a brief second meeting with Joe Biden after the former vice president’s speech at the conference, Bobulinski said Biden “just sort of asked me to keep an eye on his son and his brother.”

“Joe Biden has never even considered being involved in business with his family nor in any overseas business whatsoever,” Biden campaign spokesman Andrew Bates told the Washington Examiner last week. “He has never held stock in any such business arrangements nor has any family member or any other person ever held stock for him.” 

The former vice president has repeatedly denied any wrongdoing by him or his son and dismissed the Hunter Biden laptop story as part of a “Russian plan.” Director of National Intelligence John Ratcliffe  said that “Hunter Biden’s laptop is not part of some Russian disinformation campaign.”

ELECTIONSPublished October 19, 2020Last Update 13 hrs ago

Ratcliffe says Hunter Biden laptop, emails ‘not part of some Russian disinformation campaign’

‘There is no intelligence that supports that,’ Director of National Intelligence Ratcliffe says

Brooke Singman

 By Brooke Singman | Fox News

Director of National Intelligence John Ratcliffe on Monday said that Hunter Biden’s laptop “is not part of some Russian disinformation campaign,” amid claims from House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff suggesting otherwise.

Ratcliffe, during an exclusive interview on FOX Business’ “Mornings with Maria,” was asked about the allegations from Schiff, D-Calif., who over the weekend said that the Hunter Biden emails suggesting Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden had knowledge of, and was allegedly involved in, his son’s foreign business dealings.

“It’s funny that some of the people who complain the most about intelligence being politicized are the ones politicizing the intelligence,” Ratcliffe said. “Unfortunately, it is Adam Schiff who said the intelligence community believes the Hunter Biden laptop and emails on it are part of a Russian disinformation campaign.”

He added: “Let me be clear: the intelligence community doesn’t believe that because there is no intelligence that supports that. And we have shared no intelligence with Adam Schiff, or any member of Congress.”

Ratcliffe went on to say that it is “simply not true.”

WFP USA Board Chair Hunter Biden introduces his father Vice President Joe Biden during the World Food Program USA's 2016 McGovern-Dole Leadership Award Ceremony at the Organization of American States on April 12, 2016, in Washington, D.C. (Kris Connor/WireImage)

WFP USA Board Chair Hunter Biden introduces his father Vice President Joe Biden during the World Food Program USA’s 2016 McGovern-Dole Leadership Award Ceremony at the Organization of American States on April 12, 2016, in Washington, D.C. (Kris Connor/WireImage)

“Hunter Biden’s laptop is not part of some Russian disinformation campaign,” Ratcliffe said, adding again that “this is not part of some Russian disinformation campaign.”

Ratcliffe’s comments come after Schiff over the weekend described the emails as being part of a smear coming “from the Kremlin,” amid claims the revelations are part of a Russian disinformation campaign.

“We know that this whole smear on Joe Biden comes from the Kremlin,” Schiff said on CNN. “That’s been clear for well over a year now that they’ve been pushing this false narrative about this vice president and his son.”

A senior intelligence official backed up Ratcliffe’s assessment.

“Ratcliffe is 100% correct,” the senior intelligence official told Fox News. “There is no intelligence at this time to support Chairman Schiff’s statement that recent stories on Biden’s foreign business dealings are part of a smart campaign that ‘comes from the Kremlin.’ Numerous foreign adversaries are seeking to influence American politics, policies, and media narratives. They don’t need any help from politicians who spread false information under the guise of intelligence.”

Ratcliffe went on to say that the laptop is “in the jurisdiction of the FBI.”

“The FBI has had possession of this,” he said. “Without commenting on any investigation that they may or may not have, their investigation is not centered around Russian disinformation and the intelligence community is not playing any role with respect to that.”

He added: “The intelligence community has not been involved in Hunter Biden’s laptop.”

A senior Trump administration official, however, told Fox News that the FBI was not investigating the emails as Russian disinformation.

The FBI declined to confirm or deny the existence of an investigation, as is standard practice.

Meanwhile, the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee is investigating Hunter Biden’s emails which reveal that he introduced his father, the former vice president, to a top executive at Ukrainian natural gas firm Burisma Holdings in 2015.

Ratcliffe went on to say that his role as director of National Intelligence, which he assumed earlier this year, is “to not allow people to leverage the intelligence community for a political narrative that’s not true.”

“In this case, Adam Schiff saying this is part of a disinformation campaign and that the intelligence community has assessed and believes that — that is simply not true,” he said. “Whether its Republicans or Democrats, if they try to leverage the intelligence community for political gain, I won’t allow it.”

Meanwhile, the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee is investigating Hunter Biden’s emails. 

The emails in question were first obtained by the New York Post and, in part, revealed that Hunter Biden introduced the then-vice president to a top executive at Ukrainian natural gas firm Burisma Holdings less than a year before he pressured government officials in Ukraine to fire prosecutor Viktor Shokin, who was investigating the company.

“We regularly speak with individuals who email the committee’s whistleblower account to determine whether we can validate their claims,” Johnson told Fox News. “Although we consider those communications to be confidential, because the individual in this instance spoke with the media about his contact with the committee, we can confirm receipt of his email complaint, have been in contact with the whistleblower, and are in the process of validating the information he provided.”

The Post report revealed that Biden, at Hunter’s request, met with Vadym Pozharskyi in April 2015 in Washington, D.C.

The meeting was mentioned in an email of appreciation, according to the Post, that Pozharskyi sent to Hunter Biden on April 17, 2015 — a year after Hunter took on his lucrative position on the board of Burisma.

“Dear Hunter, thank you for inviting me to DC and giving an opportunity to meet your father and spent [sic] some time together. It’s realty [sic] an honor and pleasure,” the email read.

But Biden campaign spokesman Andrew Bates last week hit back against the New York Post story, saying: “Investigations by the press, during impeachment, and even by two Republican-led Senate committees whose work was decried as ‘not legitimate’ and political by a GOP colleague have all reached the same conclusion: that Joe Biden carried out official U.S. policy toward Ukraine and engaged in no wrongdoing. Trump administration officials have attested to these facts under oath.”

“The New York Post never asked the Biden campaign about the critical elements of this story. They certainly never raised that Rudy Giuliani—whose discredited conspiracy theories and alliance with figures connected to Russian intelligence have been widely reported—claimed to have such materials,” Bates continued. “Moreover, we have reviewed Joe Biden’s official schedules from the time and no meeting, as alleged by the New York Post, ever took place.”

The Biden campaign also told Fox News Sunday that the former vice president “never had a meeting” with Pozharskyi.

Biden, prior to the emails surfacing, repeatedly has claimed he’s “never spoken to my son about his overseas business dealings.”

Hunter Biden’s business dealings, and role on the board of Burisma, emerged during the Trump impeachment inquiry in 2019.

Biden once famously boasted on camera that when he was vice president and spearheading the Obama administration’s Ukraine policy, he successfully pressured Ukraine to fire Shokin, who was the top prosecutor at the time. He had been investigating the founder of Burisma.

“I looked at them and said: I’m leaving in six hours. If the prosecutor is not fired, you’re not getting the money,” Biden infamously said to the Council on Foreign Relations in 2018.

“Well, son of a b—,” he continued. “He got fired.”

Biden and Biden allies have maintained, though, that his intervention prompting the firing of Shokin had nothing to do with his son, but rather was tied to corruption concerns.

Meanwhile, the Post reported Wednesday the emails were part of a trove of data recovered from a laptop which was dropped off at a repair shop in Delaware in April 2019.

The Post reported that other material turned up on the laptop, including a video, which they described as showing Hunter smoking crack while engaged in a sexual act with an unidentified woman, as well as other sexually explicit images.

The FBI reportedly seized the computer and hard drive in December 2019. The shop owner, though, said he made a copy of the hard drive and later gave it to former Mayor Rudy Giuliani’s lawyer, Robert Costello.

The Post reported that the FBI referred questions about the hard drive and laptop to the Delaware U.S. Attorney’s Office, where a spokesperson told the outlet that the office “can neither confirm nor deny the existence of an investigation.”

A lawyer for Hunter Biden did not comment on specifics, but instead told the Post that Giuliani “has been pushing widely discredited conspiracy theories about the Biden family, openly relying on actors tied to Russian intelligence.”

Giuliani did not respond to Fox News’ requests for comment.

Another email, dated May 13, 2017, and obtained by Fox News, includes a discussion of “renumeration packages” for six people in a business deal with a Chinese energy firm. The email appeared to identify Hunter Biden as “Chair/ Vice Chair depending on an agreement with CEFC,” in an apparent reference to now-bankrupt CEFC China Energy Co.

The email includes a note that “Hunter has some office expectations he will elaborate.” A proposed equity split references “20” for “H” and “10 held by H for the big guy?” with no further details.

Fox News spoke to one of the people who was copied on the email, who confirmed its authenticity.

Sources also told Fox News that “the big guy” was a reference to the former vice president. The New York Post initially published the emails, and others, that Fox News has also obtained.

While Biden has not commented on that email, or his alleged involvement in any deals with the Chinese Energy firm, his campaign said it released the former vice president’s tax documents and returns, which do not reflect any involvement with Chinese investments.

Fox News also obtained an email last week that revealed an adviser of Burisma Holdings, Vadym Pozharskyi, wrote an email to Hunter Biden on May 12, 2014, requesting “advice” on how he could use his “influence to convey a message” to “stop” what the company considers to be “politically motivated actions.”

“We urgently need your advice on how you could use your influence to convey a message / signal, etc .to stop what we consider to be politically motivated actions,”  Pozharskyi wrote.

The email, part of a longer email chain obtained by Fox News, appeared to be referencing the firm’s founder, Mykola Zlochevsky, being under investigation.

Brooke Singman is a Politics Reporter for Fox News. Follow her on Twitter at @BrookeSingman.https://www.google.com/amp/s/www.foxnews.com/politics/ratcliffe-hunter-biden-laptop-emails-not-russian-disinformation-campaign.amp

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Tucker Carlson: New emails reveal exactly what Burisma wanted from Joe Biden

Did Joe Biden subvert American foreign policy to enrich his own family?

Tucker Carlson

 By Tucker Carlson | Fox News

Editor’s Note: This article was adapted from Tucker Carlson’s opening commentary on the Oct. 15, 2020 edition of “Tucker Carlson Tonight.”

Tom Cotton said it best below:

We knew Joe Biden’s son Hunter pocketed $50,000 a month for a job with a Ukrainian gas company. Joe Biden allowed his son to make millions in Ukraine and China while Joe was Vice President. 

Now, the New York Post is reporting that Vice President Biden may have been introduced to some of the corrupt Ukrainian businessmen paying Hunter… at the same time Vice President Biden was supposed to be overseeing our policy towards Ukraine.

Not everything you hear is untrue and not every story is complex. At the heart of the growing Biden-Ukrainescandal, for example, is a very straightforward question: Did Joe Biden subvert American foreign policy in order to enrich his own family?

In 2015, Joe Biden was the sitting vice president of the United States. Included in his portfolio were U.S. relations with the nation of Ukraine. At that moment, Vice President Joe Biden had more influence over the Ukrainian government and the Ukrainian economy than any other person on the globe outside of Eastern Europe.

Biden’s younger son, Hunter, knew that and hoped to get rich from his father’s influence. Emails published Wednesday by The New York Post, documents apparently taken directly from Hunter Biden’s own laptop, tell some of that story.

“Tucker Carlson Tonight” have obtained another batch of emails, some exclusively. We believe they also came from Hunter Biden’s laptop. We can’t prove that they did, we haven’t examined that computer. But every detail that we could check, including Hunter Biden’s personal email address at the time, suggests they are authentic.

TUCKER CARLSON: THE JOE BIDEN STORY FACEBOOK AND TWITTER DON’T WANT YOU TO READ

If these emails are fake, this is the most complex and sophisticated hoax in history. It almost seems beyond human capacity. The Biden campaign clearly believes these emails are real. They have not said otherwise. We sent the body of them to Hunter Biden’s attorney and never heard back. So with that in mind, here’s what we have learned.

On Nov. 2, 2015, at 4:36 p.m., a Burisma executive called Vadym Pozharskyi emailed Hunter Biden and his business partner, Devon Archer. The purpose of the email, Pozharskyi explains, is to “be on the same page re our final goals … including, but not limited to: a concrete course of actions.”

So what did Burisma want, exactly? Well, good PR, for starters. Pozharskyi wanted “high-ranking US [sic] officials” to express their “positive opinion” of Burisma, and then he wanted the administration to act on Burisma’s behalf.

“The scope of work should also include organization of a visit of a number of widely recognized and influential current and/or former US [sic] policy-makers to Ukraine in November, aiming to conduct meetings with and bring positive signal/message and support” to Burisma.

The goal, Pozharskyi explained, was to “close down for [sic] any cases/pursuits” against the head of Burisma in Ukraine.

BIDEN CAMP HITS BACK AT HUNTER BIDEN EMAIL REPORT

It couldn’t be clearer what they wanted. Burisma wanted Huter Biden’s father to get their company out of legal trouble with the Ukrainian government. And that’s exactly what happened. One month later to the day, on Dec. 2, 2015, Hunter Biden received a notice from a Washington PR firm called Blue Star Strategies, which apparently had been hired to lobby the Obama administration on Ukraine. “Tucker Carlson Tonight” have exclusively obtained that email.

“Hello all …” it began. “This morning, the White House hosted a conference call regarding the Vice President’s upcoming trip to Ukraine. Attached is a memo from the Blue Star Strategies team with the minutes of the call, which outlined the trip’s agenda and addressed several questions regarding U.S. policy toward Ukraine.”

So here you have a PR firm involved in an official White House foreign policy call. How could that happen? Good question. But it worked.

Days later, Joe Biden flew to Ukraine and did exactly what his son wanted. The vice president gave a speech slamming the very Ukrainian law enforcement official who was tormenting Burisma. If the Ukrainian government didn’t fire its top prosecutor, a man called Viktor Shokin, Biden explained, the administration would withhold a billion dollars in American aid. Now, Ukraine is a poor country, so they had no choice but to obey. Biden’s bullying worked. He bragged about it later.

The obvious question: Why was the vice president of the United States threatening a tiny country like Ukraine to fire its top prosecutor? That doesn’t seem like a vice president’s role. Well, now we know why.

Viktor Shokin has signed an affidavit affirming that he was, in fact, investigating Burisma at the moment Joe Biden had him removed. Shokin said that before he was fired, administration officials pressured him to drop the case against Burisma. He would not do that, so Joe Biden canned him

That’s how things really work in Washington. Your son’s got a lucrative consulting deal with a Ukrainian energy company, you tailor American foreign policy — our foreign policy– to help make him rich.  Even at the State Department, possibly the most cynical agency in government, this seemed shockingly brazen.

During the impeachment proceedings last fall, a State Department official named George Kent said it was widely known in Washington that the Bidens were up to something sleazy in Ukraine. 

“I was on a call with somebody on the vice president’s staff and … I raised my concerns that I had heard that Hunter Biden was on the board” of Burisma, Kent recalled. This, he noted, could create a perception of a conflict of interest.

So how did the vice president’s office respond to this concern? According to George Kent, “The message that I recall hearing back was that the vice president’s son, Beau, was dying of cancer and there was no further bandwidth to deal with family-related issues at the time.”

Family-related issues? This was America’s foreign policy being tailored to Joe Biden’s son. Five years later, Joe Biden still has not been forced to explain why he fired Ukraine’s top prosecutor at precisely the moment his son was being paid to get him to fire Ukraine’s top prosecutor, nor has Joe Biden addressed whether or not he personally benefited from the Burisma contract.

But there are tantalizing hints. On Wednesday, former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani published what he said was yet another email from Hunter Biden’s laptop. It’s a note to one of his children. At the end of the email, there’s this quote: “But dont [sic] worry unlike Pop I won’t make you give me half your salary.”

WHILE CENSORING HUNTER BIDEN STORY, TWITTER ALLOWS CHINA, IRAN STATE MEDIA

What does that mean, exactly? Well, we don’t know. There may be more detail on the laptop, but unfortunately, we don’t have access to that. But the question remains, how has Joe Biden lived in extravagance all these years on a government salary? No one has ever answered that question. And the tech monopolies are working hard to make certain no one ever does.

Thursday morning, the New York Post published another story based on the emails. This one describes a business venture Hunter Biden was working on in China. One email describes a “provisional agreement that the equity will be distributed as follows … 10 held by H for the big guy?” 

The big guy? Is the big guy Joe Biden? If so, how much did Joe Biden get and how much of that came from the Communist Chinese government? Those are real questions, this man could be elected president in three weeks. But Twitter doesn’t want you to wonder. It won’t allow you to ask those questions. Twitter restricted the New York Post story as “unsafe,” like it was a lawn dart or a defective circular saw. And that was enough for the Biden campaign.

All day Thursday, they deflected questions about Joe Biden’s subversion of our country’s foreign policy by invoking Twitter’s ban on the New York Post story. So the tech monopoly censors information to help their candidate, that candidate uses that censorship to dismiss the story. One hand washes the other. 

It doesn’t matter who you plan to vote for Nov. 3, you should be terrified. Democracies cannot exist and never will be able to exist without the free flow of information. That is a prerequisite and without it, we’re done. But companies like Facebook and Google and Twitter do not care because they don’t believe in democracy. They worship power and they don’t need to be consistent. Melania Trump’s private phone conversations, the president’s stolen tax returns, they were happy to publish all of that. But if you criticize the Democratic candidate, their candidate, you are banned.

“Facebook and Twitter have policies to not spread things that are utterly unreliable, that have been debunked, and where their origin is untrustworthy,” Sen. Chris Coons, D-Del., said Thursday. “They’re practicing their own internal controls, as I wish they had over the past four years … An active Russian disinformation campaign in 2016 had an influence on that election. They are trying even harder in this election. I’m glad that they are managing the content on their own websites.” 

Chris Coons is a liar.

Not one word of this story has been debunked, not one word in those emails has been “debunked.” And if it is debunked, we’ll be the first to report it because we’re not liars. But did you catch the phrase he wanted you to hear: “Russian disinformation”? That’s what they’re claiming these emails are. And it’s all over the Internet, in fact-free, conspiracy-laden conjecture crazier than anything the QAnon people ever thought of.

But none of their garbage, their lunatic lies about Russia is ever censored by the tech monopolies. It’s not “unsafe” because it helps Joe Biden. Therefore, you can read it.

And where are the real journalists, now that we need them more than ever? They’re gone. They’re cowering. They’re afraid. They don’t want to upset power. Jake Sherman of Politico, who claims to be a news reporter, actually apologized on Twitter for asking the Biden campaign about Hunter Biden’s emails. These people are craven. They have no standards. They have no self-respect. Like their masters in Silicon Valley, they worship power alone.


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Twitter, Facebook Suppress New York Post Report on Hunter Biden

Andrew Kerr4 hours ago

Twitter on Wednesday afternoon began blocking tweets from being posted that contained links to the New York Post’s report on alleged emails that purportedly show Hunter Biden offered to introduce then-Vice President Joe Biden to an executive of the Ukrainian gas company Burisma.

“We can’t complete this request because this link has been identified by Twitter or our partners as being potentially harmful,” Twitter told users who attempted to post a tweet containing a link to the Post’s story.dailycallerlogo

A Twitter spokesperson told the Daily Caller News Foundation that the platform took action to limit the spread of the Post’s report because of the lack of authoritative reporting on the origins of the materials cited by the outlet.

“In line with our Hacked Materials Policy, as well as our approach to blocking URLs, we are taking action to block any links to or images of the material in question on Twitter,” the spokesperson said.

There’s no evidence at the moment the Post relied on hacked materials for its report.

According to the Post, the email was part of a “massive trove of data recovered from a laptop computer” that was dropped off at a Delaware computer repair shop in April 2019. The owner of the repair shop said the customer never came back to pay for the service and retrieve the computer, the Post reported.

The Post uploaded an invoice signed by the customer that states that equipment left with the repair shop “after 90 days of notification of completed service will be treated as abandoned.”

The repair shop owner later alerted the FBI to the existence of the laptop and its hard drive after it went unclaimed, both of which were seized by federal authorities in December, according to a federal subpoena obtained by the Post.

Before the laptop was seized, however, the shop owner reportedly made a copy of its hard drive and turned it over to a lawyer for former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani, who in turn provided a copy of the hard drive’s contents to the Post.

The Daily Caller News Foundation has not confirmed the authenticity of the emails reported by the Post, and the Biden campaign issued a statement on Wednesday denying that Biden met with the Burisma executive in 2015 as alleged in the Post’s report.

Link to New York Post story blocked by Twitter. (Screenshot: Andrew Kerr)

Also on Wednesday afternoon, Twitter began blocking any tweet from being posted that contained links to one of the two documents the Post uploaded to document sharing platform Scribd.

One of the documents depicts an alleged email sent by Hunter Biden in April 2014 to his former business partner Devon Archer, and the other is an alleged email that Vadym Pozharsky, an advisor to Burisma’s board of directors, sent to Hunter Biden and Archer in May 2014.

Link to New York Post Scribd document titled, “Email from Vadim Pozharskyi to Devon Archer and Hunter Biden” blocked by Twitter. (Screenshot: Andrew Kerr)

story.

https://d-3624628980887906306.ampproject.net/2010010034001/frame.html

Content created by The Daily Caller News Foundation is available without charge to any eligible news publisher that can provide a large audience. For licensing opportunities of this original content, please contact licensing@dailycallernewsfoundation.org.https://www.google.com/amp/s/www.dailysignal.com/2020/10/14/twitter-facebook-suppress-new-york-post-report-on-hunter-biden/amp/

Link to New York Post Scribd document titled, “Email from Robert Biden to Devon Archer” blocked by Twitter. (Screenshot:Andrew Kerr)

Facebook spokesman Andy Stone, a former staffer for the Democratic House Majority PAC and former California Democratic Sen. Barbara Boxer, announced earlier Wednesday it would reduce the distribution of the Post’s report despite the lack of any fact-checks against the story.

6 Highlights From the Pence-Harris Debate

Fred Lucas @FredLucasWH / Jarrett Stepman @JarrettStepman / October 08, 2020 / 182 Comments

During the vice presidential debate Wednesday night, Sen. Kamala Harris, D-Calif., and Vice President Mike Pence sparred over a variety of policies, revealing significant differences on several issues.

The debate, which was moderated by USA Today Washington bureau chief Susan Page, featured the two contenders discussing issues ranging from climate change and COVID-19 to abortion and the Supreme Court. 

Here are six highlights from the debate:

1) COVID-19

Harris aggressively attacked the Trump administration’s handling of the COVID-19 pandemic. After the opening question, she laid out what could be called a prosecutor’s case. How are socialists deluding a whole generation? Learn more now >>

“The American people have witnessed what is the greatest failure of any presidential administration in the history of our country,” the California senator said. “And here are the facts: 210,000 dead people in our country in just the last several months, over 7 million people who have contracted this disease, 1 in 5 businesses closed. We are looking at frontline workers treated like sacrificial workers. We are looking at 30 million people who in the last several months had to file for unemployment.”

That was in response to a question from Page about what the Biden administration would have done differently than Trump to address the COVID-19 pandemic. Harris then went on to summarize the Biden-Harris plan. 

“Our plan is about what we need to do around a national strategy, for contact tracing, for testing, for administration of a vaccine, and make sure it’s free,” Harris said. 

Pence, who headed the White House coronavirus task force, defended the administration’s record. 

“I want the American people to know that from the very first day, President Donald Trump has put the health of America first,” the vice president said. “Before there were more than five cases in the United States—all people who had returned from China—President Donald Trump did what no other American had ever done. That was, he suspended all travel from China, the second-largest economy in the world.”

Pence added: “Joe Biden opposed that decision.”

“He said it was xenophobic and hysterical. I can tell you, having led the White House coronavirus task force that decision alone by President Trump gave us invaluable time to set up the greatest mobilization since World War II,” Pence said. “I believe it saved hundreds of thousands of American lives.” 

As for the Biden plan, Pence said, the Trump administration was already doing much of what it recommends. He also took a shot at a Biden scandal that effectively ended his 1988 presidential bid. 

“The reality is, when you look at the Biden plan, it looks an awful lot like what President Trump and I and our task force have been doing every step of the way,” he said. “ … It looks a little bit like plagiarism, something Joe Biden knows a little bit about.” 

In September 1987, Biden came in for withering criticism for borrowing lines from a speech by then-British Labor Party leader Neil Kinnock without attribution, knocking him out of the race when it was subsequently revealed to be part of a larger pattern of borrowing lines from other politicians without credit.

Asked about the race to develop a vaccine, Harris said she wouldn’t trust a Trump-endorsed vaccine, but would take one approved by Dr. Anthony Fauci, the director of the National Institutes of Allergy and Infectious Diseases.

“If the public health professionals, if Dr. Fauci, if the doctors tell us that we should take it, I’ll be the first in line to take it. Absolutely,” Harris said. “But if Donald Trump tells us that we should take it, I’m not taking it.”

Pence fired back that the California senator was politicizing the vaccine. 

“The fact that you continue to undermine public confidence in a vaccine, if a vaccine emerges during the Trump administration, I think, is unconscionable,” the vice president said. “Senator, I just ask you, stop playing politics with people’s lives. The reality is, we will have a vaccine by the end of this year, and it will continue to save countless American lives.”

2) Taxes and the Economy

Harris and Pence sparred over the tax cuts passed by Congress in 2017 and debated Biden’s tax plan.

Harris said that the Biden administration would repeal the 2017 tax cuts “on Day One,” and that they were passed to benefit the “rich.”

“Joe Biden believes you measure the health and strength of America’s economy based on the health and strength of the American worker and the American family,” Harris said. “On the other hand, you have Donald Trump, who measures the strength of the economy based on how rich people are doing.”

Pence defended the tax cuts and said: “Joe Biden said twice in the debate last week that he’s going to repeal the Trump tax cuts,” Pence said. “That was tax cuts that gave the average working family $2,000 with a tax break.”

In 2017, Congress passed the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, which reduced federal income taxes and made various other changes to the U.S. tax code.

Following the tax cut, the American economy experienced record low unemployment, wage growth, and an overall increase in business investment, according to Adam Michel, a specialist on tax policy and the federal budget as a policy analyst in the Thomas A. Roe Institute for Economic Policy Studies at The Heritage Foundation.

Harris said that Biden’s tax plan would end tax breaks for the wealthy but wouldn’t raise taxes on American making under $400,000.

“He has been very clear about that,” Harris said, adding, “Joe Biden is the one who, during the Great Recession, was responsible for the Recovery Act that brought America back, and now the Trump and Pence administration wants to take credit for Joe Biden’s success for the economy that they had at the beginning of their term.”

According to The Washington Post, “most Americans received a tax” cut in 2017, not just the rich.

Biden’s tax proposal would raise taxes about $3 trillion over the next decade, according to the nonpartisan Tax Foundation.

“… The Biden tax plan would reduce [gross domestic product] by 1.47 percent over the long term,” according to the Tax Foundation’s General Equilibrium Model. “On a conventional basis, the Biden tax plan by 2030 would lead to about 6.5 percent less after-tax income for the top 1 percent of taxpayers and about a 1.7 percent decline in after-tax income for all taxpayers on average.”

According to the left-leaning Tax Policy Center, Biden’s proposal “would increase taxes on average on all income groups, but the highest-income households would see substantially larger increases, both in dollar amounts and as a share of their incomes.”

3) Climate Change and Fracking 

Harris said a Biden administration would grow the economy through green energy, but she also denied past support for banning fracking. 

“Joe Biden will not ban fracking. That is a fact. I will repeat that Joe Biden has been very clear that he thinks about growing jobs,” Harris said, adding, “Part of those jobs that will be created by Joe Biden are going to be about clean energy and renewable energy, because Joe understands that the West Coast of our country is burning, including my home state of California.”

Harris also spoke about climate-related problems in the Southeast and in the Midwest. 

“Joe sees what is happening in the Gulf states, which are being battered by storms. Joe has seen and talked with the farmers in Iowa, whose entire crops have been destroyed because of floods,” she said. “So, Joe believes again in science. … We have seen a pattern with this administration, which is, they don’t believe in science. Joe’s plan is about saying we are going to deal with it, but we are going to create jobs.” 

Pence addressed the issue of climate change, but also attacked the Biden campaign’s promises for the environment. 

“As I said, Susan, the climate is changing. We’ll follow the science,” he said. 

“With regard to banning fracking, I just recommend people look at the record. You yourself said repeatedly you would ban fracking,” Pence said of Harris. “You were the first Senate co-sponsor of the Green New Deal. 

“While Joe Biden denied support for the Green New Deal, Susan, thank you for pointing out the Green New Deal is on [the Biden-Harris] website. As USA Today said, it’s essentially the same plan as you co-sponsored with AOC.”

That was a reference to Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y., the main sponsor of the Green New Deal in the House. 

“You just heard the senator say she was going to resubmit America to the Paris Climate Accord. The American people have always cherished our environment, and we’ll continue to cherish it,” Pence said. “We’ve made great progress reducing [carbon dioxide] emissions through American innovation and the development of natural gas through fracking. 

“We don’t need a massive $2 trillion Green New Deal that would impose all new mandates on American businesses and American families. … It makes no sense. It will cost jobs.”

4) China

Pence and Harris sparred over U.S. relations with China, including its role in the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“China and the World Health Organization did not play straight with the American people,” Pence said. “They did not let our personnel into China … until the middle of February.”

The vice president defended the administration’s aggressive trade policy with Beijing. “But China has been taking advantage of the United States for decades, in the wake of Biden cheerleading for China,” he said.

Harris said that the Trump administration had “lost” the trade war with China. “What ended up happening because of a so-called “trade war” with China? America lost 300,000 manufacturing jobs,” she said.

Pence countered that a Biden administration would go soft on the communist country.

“Joe Biden has been a cheerleader for communist China over the last several decades,” he said. 

The vice president criticized the record of the administration of Biden’s boss, President Barack Obama, saying that it had dismissed the idea that manufacturing jobs could ever come back to America.

“In our first three years, this administration saw 500,000 manufacturing jobs created, and that’s the type of growth we’re going to see,” Pence said.

5) Supreme Court and Abortion

With the nomination of federal appeals court Judge Amy Coney Barrett to the Supreme Court, Page asked both candidates what they would want their respective states of Indiana and California to do if the high court were to overturn the 1973 Roe v. Wade decision that legalized abortion nationwide and sent the matter back to the states to decide for themselves.

Neither candidate directly addressed the question, but both spoke of the abortion issue in the context of the Supreme Court. 

“The issues before us couldn’t be more serious,” Harris said. “There is the issue of choice, and I will always fight for a woman’s right to make a decision about her own body. It should be her decision and not that of Donald Trump and the vice president, Michael Pence.”

Pence reiterated his pro-life stance, and called out the Biden-Harris ticket. 

“I couldn’t be more proud to serve as vice president to a president who stands unapologetically for the sanctity of human life. I will not apologize for it,” he said. “This is another one of those cases where there is such a dramatic contrast. Joe Biden and Kamala Harris support taxpayer funding of abortion all the way up to the moment of birth, late-term abortion.” 

Pence asked Harris at one point if she would support packing the courts, meaning increasing the number of Supreme Court justices to 10 or more, and then he accused her of not answering the question.

“Once again you gave a non-answer, Joe Biden gave a non-answer,” Pence said. “The American people deserve a straight answer.”

In his remarks, Pence noted the Supreme Court has had nine justices for the past 150 years.

6) Race Relations

The vice presidential candidates also had a heated exchange on race relations amid social unrest in major American cities. 

Harris called out Trump for what she claimed was his reluctance to condemn white supremacists, referring to last week’s presidential debate between Trump and Biden. 

“Last week, the president of the United States took a debate stage in front of 70 million Americans and refused to condemn white supremacists,” Harris said. “It wasn’t like he wasn’t given a chance. He didn’t do it, and then he doubled down. Then he said, when pressed, ‘Stand back, stand by.’ This is part of a pattern with Donald Trump.” 

She also cited the deadly 2017 Charlottesville, Va., Unite the Right rally. 

Pence countered by citing Trump’s comments regarding the Charlottesville violence. 

“This is one of the things that makes people dislike the media so much in this country, that you selectively edit so much,” Pence said, arguing that the media had distorted what Trump had said about there being “very fine people” on both sides in Charlottesville.

“After President Trump made comments about people on either side of the debate over monuments, he condemned the KKK, neo-Nazis and white supremacists,” the vice president said. 

“He has done so repeatedly. Your concern that he doesn’t condemn neo-Nazis, President Trump has Jewish grandchildren. His daughter and son-in-law are Jewish. This is a president who respects and cherishes all of the American people.”

Pence then went on offense about Harris’ prosecution record as a district attorney in San Francisco.  

“When you were D.A. in San Francisco, African Americans were 19 times more likely to be prosecuted for minor drug offenses than whites and Hispanics,” Pence said to Harris. “You increased the disproportionate incarceration. You did nothing on criminal justice reform in California. You didn’t lift a finger to pass the First Step Act on Capitol Hill.” 

The First Step Act is a bipartisan criminal justice reform bill signed into law by Trump in December 2018.

Harris didn’t directly defend her record as district attorney of San Francisco, but pivoted to her record as California attorney general. 

“Having served as the attorney general of California, the work I did is a model of what our nation needs to do and what we will be able to do,” she said, adding, “I was the first statewide officer to institute a requirement that my agents would wear body cameras and keep them on full time. We were the first to initiate that there would be training for law enforcement on implicit bias.”

——

I grew up and went to EVANGELICAL CHRISTIAN SCHOOL in Memphis and ran some of our track meets at RHODES COLLEGE and I know that campus well and I even was contacted by a official at Rhodes with some recruiting material after a good performance in my sophomore year in my mile run there in 1978. Also during the late 1970’s I helped my friends Byron Tyler and David Rogers in a Christian Rock Saturday morning show on Rhodes’s radio station!!! My brother-in-law graduated from Rhodes but I graduated from University of Memphis in 1982.

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Amy Coney Barrett: A View from Rhodes College

Tim H.

By Tim H.

Tim H.

 | September 23, 202027 COMMENTS

President Trump is going to announce his nomination for the Supreme Court later this week, and all the talk is about Amy Coney Barrett, currently a Notre Dame professor of law and a judge on the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals. As it happens, Amy was a classmate of mine at Rhodes College, a small (1,400 students at the time) liberal-arts school in Memphis. I didn’t know her well, but she was a friend of other friends, and we were acquainted a bit through being in a club together.

I can tell you a few things about her, though. For one thing, she did not have a wild reputation, so I think that if she’s nominated, the Senate hearings will have to find something else to complain about. She was an English major and served on the Honor Council, a student body that enforced our honor code against lying and cheating (a great feature of academics at Rhodes that allowed us take-home tests in many classes). We were both in Mortar Board, an honor society. She wasn’t a political activist and was never a member of the College Republicans (I was, and we had a much larger membership than the College Democrats).Amy at the homecoming game senior year

Popular, as far as I knew, and by our senior year, she shows up in the yearbook’s candid photos taken around campus.Candid photo in the social room (the ironing board refers to another picture)

I hadn’t thought about her for a long time, until three years ago when friends were pointing out she’d been nominated for the Seventh Circuit, and Sen. Dianne Feinstein grilled her over her religion, proclaiming that “the dogma lives loudly within you.” At the time, I thought that was a rough Senate hearing.

My daughter was a Notre Dame student, and two years ago, I stopped by to visit Amy at her home in South Bend and catch up. She had been listed as being on the president’s shortlist for a Supreme Court seat, and Kavanaugh was going through his own nomination process at that time.L to R: Me, Amy Barrett, and my daughter

My daughter had been treating the accusations against him as probably true by default and took an unconcerned view towards the behavior of the press. Amy knows Kavanaugh, spoke well of him, and described what it was like seeing the press contacting her and digging through rumors about him. That changed my daughter’s opinion of how these things go, she told me. I meant to ask her if she were named to the Supreme Court if she’d be willing to go through all of the hatred and attacks on her reputation that would surely be a part of it. But I can’t remember if I did. I reckon we’ll all find out soon enough, though.

As a footnote, if Amy is confirmed to the court, she would be the second Supreme Court justice to come from Rhodes. Our first was Abe Fortas (class of 1930), who was named by President Johnson in 1965. Fortas resigned in 1969 after a series of ethics scandals, but the college gives out the Abe Fortas Award for Excellence in Legal Studies each year. Quite understandable; we’re a small school, and we should still be proud one of our own was elevated to the Supreme Court. May Amy Barrett bring us more honor.Published in LawTags: SCOTUS; SUPREME COURT; Amy Coney Barrett

Amy Coney Barrett (born January 28, 1972)[1][2] is an American lawyer, jurist, and academic who serves as a circuit judge on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit. Barrett considers herself a public-meaning originalist; her judicial philosophy has been likened to that of her mentor and former boss, Antonin Scalia.[3] Barrett’s scholarship focuses on originalism.

Amy Coney Barrett
Barrett in 2018
Judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit
Incumbent
Assumed office 
November 2, 2017
Appointed byDonald Trump
Preceded byJohn Daniel Tinder
Personal details
BornJanuary 28, 1972(age 48)
New OrleansLouisiana, U.S.
Spouse(s)Jesse Barrett
EducationRhodes College (BA)
University of Notre Dame(JD)
Academic background
Academic work
DisciplineJurisprudence
InstitutionsNotre Dame Law School
WebsiteNotre Dame Law Biography

Barrett was nominated to the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals by President Donald Trump on May 8, 2017 and confirmed by the Senate on October 31, 2017. While serving on the federal bench, she was a professor of law at Notre Dame Law School, where she has taught civil procedure, constitutional law, and statutory interpretation.[4][2][5][6] Shortly after her confirmation to the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals in 2017, Barrett was added to President Trump’s list of potential Supreme Court nominees.[7]Trump reportedly intends to nominate her to succeed Ruth Bader Ginsburg on the United States Supreme Court.[8]

Early life and education

Barrett was born in New Orleans, Louisiana, in 1972.[2] She is the eldest of seven children, with five sisters and a brother. Her father Michael Coney worked as an attorney for Shell Oil Company, and her mother Linda was a homemaker. Barrett grew up in Metairie, a suburb of New Orleans, and graduated from St. Mary’s Dominican High School in 1990.[9]

Barrett studied English literature at Rhodes College, graduating in 1994 with a Bachelor of Arts magna cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa membership.[10] She then studied law at Notre Dame Law School on a full-tuition scholarship. She served as an executive editor of the Notre Dame Law Review[11] and graduated first in her class in 1997 with a Juris Doctor summa cum laude.[12]

Career

Clerkships and private practice

After law school Barrett spent two years as a judicial law clerk, first for Judge Laurence Silberman of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit from 1997 to 1998,[13] then for Justice Antonin Scalia of the U.S. Supreme Court from 1998 to 1999.[13]

From 1999 to 2002, she practiced law at Miller, Cassidy, Larroca & Lewin in Washington, D.C.[11][14]

Teaching and scholarship

Barrett served as a visiting associate professor and John M. Olin Fellow in Law at George Washington University Law School for a year before returning to her alma mater, Notre Dame Law School in 2002.[15]At Notre Dame she taught federal courts, constitutional law, and statutory interpretation. Barrett was named a Professor of Law in 2010, and from 2014 to 2017 held the Diane and M.O. Miller Research Chair of Law.[16] Her scholarship focuses on constitutional law, originalism, statutory interpretation, and stare decisis.[12] Her academic work has been published in journals such as the ColumbiaCornellVirginiaNotre Dame, and TexasLaw Reviews.[15] Some of her most significant publications are Suspension and Delegation, 99 Cornell L. Rev. 251 (2014), Precedent and Jurisprudential Disagreement, 91 Tex. L. Rev. 1711 (2013), The Supervisory Power of the Supreme Court, 106 Colum. L. Rev. 101 (2006), and Stare Decisis and Due Process, 74 U. Colo. L. Rev. 1011 (2003).

At Notre Dame, Barrett received the “Distinguished Professor of the Year” award three times.[15] She taught Constitutional Law, Civil Procedure, Evidence, Federal Courts, Constitutional Theory Seminar, and Statutory Interpretation Seminar.[15] Barrett has continued to teach seminars as a sitting judge.[17]

Federal judicial service

Nomination and confirmation

President Donald Trump nominated Barrett on May 8, 2017, to serve as a United States Circuit Judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit, to the seat vacated by Judge John Daniel Tinder, who took senior status on February 18, 2015.[18][19]Judge Laurence Silberman, for whom Barrett first clerked after law school, swearing her in at her investiture as a judge on the Seventh Circuit.

A hearing on Barrett’s nomination before the Senate Judiciary Committee was held on September 6, 2017.[20] During the hearing, Senator Dianne Feinstein questioned Barrett about a law review article Barrett co-wrote in 1998 with Professor John H. Garvey in which she argued that Catholic judges should in some cases recuse themselves from death penalty cases due to their moral objections to the death penalty. The article concluded that the trial judge should recuse herself instead of entering the order. Asked to “elaborate on the statements and discuss how you view the issue of faith versus fulfilling the responsibility as a judge today,” Barrett said that she had participated in many death-penalty appeals while serving as law clerk to Scalia, adding, “My personal church affiliation or my religious belief would not bear on the discharge of my duties as a judge”[21][22] and “It is never appropriate for a judge to impose that judge’s personal convictions, whether they arise from faith or anywhere else, on the law.”[23] Worried that Barrett would not uphold Roe v. Wade given her Catholic beliefs, Feinstein followed Barrett’s response by saying, “the dogma lives loudly within you, and that is a concern.”[24][25][26] The hearing made Barrett popular with religious conservatives,[11] and in response, the conservative Judicial Crisis Network began to sell mugs with Barrett’s photo and Feinstein’s “dogma” remark.[27]Feinstein’s and other senators’ questioning was criticized by some Republicans and other observers, such as university presidents John I. Jenkins and Christopher Eisgruber, as improper inquiry into a nominee’s religious belief that employed an unconstitutional “religious test” for office;[23][28][29]others, such as Nan Aron, defended Feinstein’s line of questioning.[29]

Lambda Legal, an LGBT civil rights organization, co-signed a letter with 26 other gay rights organizations opposing Barrett’s nomination. The letter expressed doubts about her ability to separate faith from her rulings on LGBT matters.[30][31] During her Senate confirmation hearing, Barrett was questioned about landmark LGBTQ legal precedents such as Obergefell v. HodgesUnited States v. Windsor, and Lawrence v. Texas. Barrett said these cases are “binding precedents” that she intended to “faithfully follow if confirmed” to the appeals court, as required by law.[30] The letter co-signed by Lambda Legal said “Simply repeating that she would be bound by Supreme Court precedent does not illuminate—indeed, it obfuscates—how Professor Barrett would interpret and apply precedent when faced with the sorts of dilemmas that, in her view, ‘put Catholic judges in a bind.'”[30] Carrie Severino of the Judicial Crisis Network later said that warnings from LGBT advocacy groups about shortlisted nominees to replace Justice Anthony Kennedy, including Barrett, were “very much overblown” and called them “mostly scare tactics.”[30]

In 2015, Barrett signed a letter in support of the Ordinary Synod of Bishops on the Family that endorsed the Catholic Church’s teachings on human sexuality and its definition of marriage as between one man and one woman. When asked about the letter, she testified that the Church’s definition of marriage is legally irrelevant.[32][33]

Barrett’s nomination was supported by every law clerk she had worked with and all of her 49 faculty colleagues at Notre Dame Law school. 450 former students signed a letter to the Senate Judiciary Committee supporting Barrett’s nomination.[34][35]

On October 5, 2017, the Senate Judiciary Committee voted 11–9 on party lines to recommend Barrett and report her nomination to the full Senate.[36][37] On October 30, the Senate invoked cloture by a vote of 54–42.[38] It confirmed her by a vote of 55–43 on October 31, with three Democrats—Joe DonnellyTim Kaine, and Joe Manchin—voting for her.[10] She received her commission two days later.[2] Barrett is the first and to date only woman to occupy an Indiana seat on the Seventh Circuit.[39]

Notable cases

Title IX

In Doe v. Purdue University, 928 F.3d 652 (7th Cir. 2019), the court, in a unanimous decision written by Barrett, reinstated a suit brought by a male Purdue University student (John Doe) who had been found guilty of sexual assault by Purdue University, which resulted in a one-year suspension, loss of his Navy ROTC scholarship, and expulsion from the ROTC affecting his ability to pursue his chosen career in the Navy.[40] Doe alleged the school’s Advisory Committee on Equity discriminated against him on the basis of his sex and violated his rights to due process by not interviewing the alleged victim, not allowing him to present evidence in his defense, including an erroneous statement that he confessed to some of the alleged assault, and appearing to believe the victim instead of the accused without hearing from either party or having even read the investigation report. The court found that Doe had adequately alleged that the university deprived him of his occupational liberty without due process in violation of the Fourteenth Amendment and had violated his Title IX rights “by imposing a punishment infected by sex bias,” and remanded to the District Court for further proceedings.[41][42][43]

Title VII

In EEOC v. AutoZone, the Seventh Circuit considered the federal government’s appeal from a ruling in a suit brought by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission against AutoZone; the EEOC argued that the retailer’s assignment of employees to different stores based on race (e.g., “sending African American employees to stores in heavily African American neighborhoods”) violated Title VII of the Civil Rights Act. The panel, which did not include Barrett, ruled in favor of AutoZone. An unsuccessful petition for rehearing en banc was filed. Three judges—Chief Judge Diane Wood and Judges Ilana Rovner and David Hamilton—voted to grant rehearing, and criticized the panel decision as upholding a “separate-but-equal arrangement”; Barrett and four other judges voted to deny rehearing.[11]

Immigration

In Cook County v. Wolf, 962 F.3d 208 (7th Cir. 2020), Barrett wrote a 40-page dissent from the majority’s decision to uphold a preliminary injunction on the Trump administration’s controversial “public charge rule“, which heightened the standard for obtaining a green card. In her dissent, she argued that any noncitizens who disenrolled from government benefits because of the rule did so due to confusion about the rule itself rather than from its application, writing that the vast majority of the people subject to the rule are not eligible for government benefits in the first place. On the merits, Barrett departed from her colleagues Wood and Rovner, who held that DHS’s interpretation of that provision was unreasonable under Chevron Step Two. Barrett would have held that the new rule fell within the broad scope of discretion granted to the Executive by Congress through the Immigration and Nationality Act.[44][45][46] The public charge issue is the subject of a circuit split.[44][46][47]

In Yafai v. Pompeo, 924 F.3d 969 (7th Cir. 2019), the court considered a case brought by a Yemeni citizen, Ahmad, and her husband, a U.S. citizen, who challenged a consular officer’s decision to twice deny Ahmad’s visa application under the Immigration and Nationality Act. Yafai, the U.S. citizen, argued that the denial of his wife’s visa application violated his constitutional right to live in the United States with his spouse.[48] In an 2-1 majority opinion authored by Barrett, the court held that the plaintiff’s claim was properly dismissed under the doctrine of consular nonreviewability. She declined to address whether Yafai had been denied a constitutional right (or whether a constitutional right to live in the United States with his spouse existed) because even if a constitutional right was implicated, the court lacked authority to disturb the consular officer’s decision to deny Ahmad’s visa application because that decision was facially legitimate and bona fide. Following the panel’s decision, Yafai filed a petition for rehearing en banc; the petition was denied, with eight judges voting against rehearing and three in favor, Wood, Rovner and Hamilton. Barrett and Judge Joel Flaumconcurred in the denial of rehearing.[48][49]

Second Amendment

In Kanter v. Barr, 919 F.3d 437 (7th Cir. 2019), Barrett dissented when the court upheld a law prohibiting convicted nonviolent felons from possessing firearms. The plaintiffs had been convicted of mail fraud. The majority upheld the felony dispossession statutes as “substantially related to an important government interest in preventing gun violence.” In her dissent, Barrett argued that while the government has a legitimate interest in denying gun possession to felons convicted of violent crimes, there is no evidence that denying guns to nonviolent felons promotes this interest, and that the law violates the Second Amendment.[50][51]

Fourth Amendment

In Rainsberger v. Benner, 913 F.3d 640 (7th Cir. 2019), the panel, in an opinion by Barrett, affirmed the district court’s ruling denying the defendant’s motion for summary judgment and qualified immunity in a 42 U.S.C. § 1983 case. The defendant, Benner, was a police detective who knowingly provided false and misleading information in a probable cause affidavit that was used to obtain an arrest warrant against Rainsberger. (The charges were later dropped and Rainsberger was released.) The court found the defendant’s lies and omissions violated “clearly established law” and thus Benner was not shielded by qualified immunity.[52]

The case United States v. Watson, 900 F.3d 892 (7th Cir. 2018) involved police responding to an anonymous tip that people were “playing with guns” in a parking lot. The police arrived and searched the defendant’s vehicle, taking possession of two firearms; the defendant was later charged with being a felon in possession of a firearm. The district court denied the defendant’s motion to suppress. On appeal, the Seventh Circuit, in a decision by Barrett, vacated and remanded, determining that the police lacked probable cause to search the vehicle based solely upon the tip, when no crime was alleged. Barrett distinguished Navarette v. California and wrote, “the police were right to respond to the anonymous call by coming to the parking lot to determine what was happening. But determining what was happening and immediately seizing people upon arrival are two different things, and the latter was premature…Watson’s case presents a close call. But this one falls on the wrong side of the Fourth Amendment.”[53]

In a 2013 Texas Law Review article, Barrett included as one of only seven Supreme Court “superprecedents“, Mapp vs Ohio (1961); the seminal case where the court found through the doctrine of selective incorporation that the 4th Amendment’s protections against unreasonable searches and seizures was binding on state and local authorities in the same way it historically applied to the federal government.

Civil procedure and standing

In Casillas v. Madison Ave. Associates, Inc., 926 F.3d 329 (7th Cir. 2019), the plaintiff brought a class-action lawsuit against Madison Avenue, alleging that the company violated the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA) when it sent her a debt-collection letter that described the FDCPA process for verifying a debt but failed to specify that she was required to respond in writing to trigger the FDCPA protections. Casillas did not allege that she had tried to verify her debt and trigger the statutory protections under the FDCPA, or that the amount owed was in any doubt. In a decision written by Barrett, the panel, citing the Supreme Court’s decision in Spokeo, Inc. v. Robins, found that the plaintiff’s allegation of receiving incorrect or incomplete information was a “bare procedural violation” that was insufficiently concrete to satisfy the Article III‘s injury-in-fact requirement. Wood dissented from the denial of rehearing en banc. The issue created a circuit split.[54][55][56]

Judicial philosophy and political views

Barrett considers herself an originalist. She is a constitutional scholar with expertise in statutory interpretation.[10] Reuters described Barrett as a “a favorite among religious conservatives,” and said that she has supported expansive gun rights and voted in favor of one of the Trump administration’s anti-immigration policies.[57]

Barrett was one of Justice Antonin Scalia‘s law clerks. She has spoken and written of her admiration of his close attention to the text of statutes. She has also praised his adherence to originalism.[58]

In 2013, Barrett wrote a Texas Law Review article on the doctrine of stare decisis wherein she listed seven cases that should be considered “superprecedents”—cases that the court would never consider overturning. The list included Brown v. Board of Education but specifically excluded Roe v. Wade. In explaining why it was not included, Barrett referenced scholarship agreeing that in order to qualify as “superprecedent” a decision must enjoy widespread support from not only jurists but politicians and the public at large to the extent of becoming immune to reversal or challenge. She argued the people must trust the validity of a ruling to such an extent the matter has been taken “off of the court’s agenda,” with lower courts no longer taking challenges to them seriously. Barrett pointed to Planned Parenthood v. Casey as specific evidence Roe had not yet attained this status.[59] The article did not include any pro-Second Amendment or pro-LGBT cases as “Super-Precedent”.[30][31] When asked during her confirmation hearings why she did not include any pro-LGBT cases as “superprecedent”, Barrett explained that the list contained in the article was collected from other scholars and not a product of her own independent analysis on the subject.[32][33]

Barrett has never ruled directly on a case pertaining to abortion rights, but she did vote to rehear a successful challenge to Indiana’s parental notification law in 2019. In 2018, Barrett voted against striking down another Indiana law requiring burial or cremation of fetal remains. In both cases, Barrett voted with the minority. The Supreme Court later reinstated the fetal remains law and in July 2020 it ordered a rehearing in the parental notification case.[57] At a 2013 event reflecting on the 40th anniversary of Roe v. Wade, she described the decision—in Notre Dame Magazine‘s paraphrase—as “creating through judicial fiat a framework of abortion on demand.”[60][61] She also remarked that it was “very unlikely” the court would overturn the core of Roe v. Wade: “The fundamental element, that the woman has a right to choose abortion, will probably stand. The controversy right now is about funding. It’s a question of whether abortions will be publicly or privately funded.”[62][63] NPR said that those statements were made before the election of Donald Trump and the changing composition of the Supreme Court to the right subsequent to his election, which could make Barrett’s vote pivotal in overturning Roe v. Wade.[64]

Barrett was critical of Chief Justice John Roberts’opinion in the 5–4 decision that upheld the constitutionality of the central provision in the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare) in NFIB vs. Sebelius. Roberts’s opinion defended the constitutionality of the individual mandate of the Affordable Care Act by characterizing it as a “tax.” Barrett disapproved of this approach, saying Roberts pushed the ACA “beyond it’s plausible limit to save it.”[64][65][66][67] She criticized the Obama administration for providing employees of religious institutions the option of obtaining birth controlwithout having the religious institutions pay for it.[65]

Potential Supreme Court nomination

Barrett has been on President Trump’s list of potential Supreme Court nominees since 2017, almost immediately after her court of appeals confirmation. In July 2018, after Anthony Kennedy‘s retirement announcement, she was reportedly one of three finalists Trump considered, along with Judge Raymond Kethledge and Judge Brett Kavanaugh.[16][68] Trump chose Kavanaugh.[69]Reportedly, although Trump liked Barrett, he was concerned about her lack of experience on the bench.[70] In the Republican Party, Barrett was favored by social conservatives.[70]

After Kavanaugh’s selection, Barrett was viewed as a possible Trump nominee for a future Supreme Court vacancy.[71] Trump was reportedly “saving” Ruth Bader Ginsburg‘s seat for Barrett if Ginsburg retired or died during his presidency.[72] Ginsburg died on September 18, 2020, and Barrett has been widely mentioned as the front-runner to succeed her.[73][74][75][76]

Personal life

Judge Barrett with her husband, Jesse

Since 1999, Barrett has been married to fellow Notre Dame Law graduate Jesse M. Barrett, a partner at SouthBank Legal in South BendIndiana. Previously, Jesse Barrett worked as an Assistant U.S. Attorneyfor the Northern District of Indiana for 13 years.[77][78][79] They live in South Bend and have seven children, ranging in age from 8-19.[80] Two of the Barrett children are adopted from Haiti. Their youngest biological child has special needs.[79][2][81]Barrett is a practicing Catholic.[82][83]

In September 2017, The New York Times reported that Barrett was an active member of a small, tightly knit Charismatic Christian group called People of Praise.[84][85] Founded in South Bend, the group is associated with the Catholic Charismatic Renewalmovement; it is ecumenical and not formally affiliated with the Catholic Church, but about 90% of its members are Catholic.[85][86]

Affiliations and recognition

From 2010 to 2016, Barrett served by appointment of the Chief Justice on the Advisory Committee for the Federal Rules of Appellate Procedure.[15]

Barrett was a member of the Federalist Society from 2005 to 2006 and from 2014 to 2017.[25][10][11] She is a member of the American Law Institute.[87]

Selected publications

See also

References

—-

​Amy Coney Barrett was appointed to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit in November 2017. She serves on the faculty of the Notre Dame Law School, teaching on constitutional law, federal courts, and statutory interpretation, and previously served on the Advisory Committee for the Federal Rules of Appellate Procedure. She earned her bachelor’s degree from Rhodes College in 1994 and her J.D. from Notre Dame Law School in 1997. Following law school, Barrett clerked for Judge Laurence Silberman of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit and for Associate Justice Antonin Scalia of the U.S. Supreme Court. She also practiced law with Washington, D.C. law firm Miller, Cassidy, Larroca & Lewin.

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Taking on Ark Times Bloggers on various issues Part G “How do moral nonabsolutists come up with what is right?” includes the film “ABORTION OF THE HUMAN RACE”)

April 9, 2013 – 6:36 am

I have gone back and forth and back and forth with many liberals on the Arkansas Times Blog on many issues such as abortion, human rights, welfare, poverty, gun control  and issues dealing with popular culture. Here is another exchange I had with them a while back. My username at the Ark Times Blog is Saline […]By Everette Hatcher III | Posted in Francis SchaefferProlife | Edit | Comments (3)

Taking on Ark Times Bloggers on various issues Part E “Moral absolutes and abortion” Francis Schaeffer Quotes part 5(includes the film SLAUGHTER OF THE INNOCENTS) (editorial cartoon)

April 7, 2013 – 6:25 am

I have gone back and forth and back and forth with many liberals on the Arkansas Times Blog on many issues such as abortion, human rights, welfare, poverty, gun control  and issues dealing with popular culture. Here is another exchange I had with them a while back. My username at the Ark Times Blog is Saline […]By Everette Hatcher III | Posted in Francis SchaefferProlife | Edit | Comments (2)

“Sanctity of Life Saturday” Abortion supporters lying in order to further their clause? Window to the Womb (includes video ABORTION OF THE HUMAN RACE)

April 6, 2013 – 12:01 am

It is truly sad to me that liberals will lie in order to attack good Christian people like state senator Jason Rapert of Conway, Arkansas because he headed a group of pro-life senators that got a pro-life bill through the Arkansas State Senate the last week of January in 2013. I have gone back and […]By Everette Hatcher III | Posted in Arkansas TimesFrancis SchaefferMax BrantleyProlife | Edit | Comments (0)

Taking on Ark Times Bloggers on various issues Part D “If you can’t afford a child can you abort?”Francis Schaeffer Quotes part 4 includes the film ABORTION OF THE HUMAN RACE) (editorial cartoon)

April 5, 2013 – 6:30 am

I have gone back and forth and back and forth with many liberals on the Arkansas Times Blog on many issues such as abortion, human rights, welfare, poverty, gun control  and issues dealing with popular culture. Here is another exchange I had with them a while back. My username at the Ark Times Blog is Saline […]By Everette Hatcher III | Posted in Francis SchaefferProlife | Edit | Comments (0)