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One of the penalties for refusing to participate in politics is that you end up being governed by your inferiors. -- Plato (429-347 BC)

Tuesday, August 14, 2018

A Tale Of Two Marches, Strzok Wins Big, Clinton & Collusion

Gary Bauer
by Gary Bauer, Contributing Author: A Tale Of Two Marches - There have been two notable marches in Washington this year. One occurred in the dead of winter as it has every year since 1973. A youthful and diverse crowd marched through downtown Washington in favor of defending innocent unborn life.

Many at the March for Life were particularly heartbroken that minority babies are aborted at much higher rates than other babies.

Big media, and particularly the Washington media, did not write a word announcing that the march would take place. They barely wrote anything after the March for Life took place.

Then there was the announced march this past weekend of people generally described as white supremacists. For more than a week prior to the event, there were articles every day about what this march meant, what the implications were in Trump's America and how it was a threat to the Republic.

This much advertised march, with millions of dollars of free publicity, attracted a grand total of roughly 35 guys.

In what world does 35 losers marching in Washington, surrounded by hundreds of police officers and thousands of counter demonstrators, get more news and attention than 200,000 pro-lifers of all races who selflessly march to protect the most innocent among us?

I'll tell you what world. For many in big media and on the left, those pro-lifers do not fit the narrative of what the left wants the country to think about conservatives.

But to the left and its media allies, those 35 losers, who have no influence or power, are somehow symbolic of the Trump presidency and the millions of "deplorable and irredeemable" Americans who voted for Donald Trump.

Speaking Of Deplorable. . . The left-wing indoctrination and outright hostility toward traditional values in our schools today is beyond deplorable. Of course, this is nothing new on our college campuses. But this rabid anti-Americanism is seeping down to all levels of our educational establishment.

The latest example comes from Newton, Massachusetts, where some high school history teachers staged a mini revolt when they were told to maintain objectivity and keep their politics out of the classroom following Donald Trump's inauguration.

Just consider some of these emails that were exchanged by members of the Newton North High School history department:

"I am concerned that the call for 'objectivity' may just inadvertently become the most effective destructive weapon against social justice."

"Personally, I'm finding it really difficult in the current climate to teach kids to appreciate other perspectives. . ."

"This is hard. I don't want to get fired for being a liberal propagandist."


It is my humble opinion as a former under secretary of education in the Reagan Administration that any teacher who puts "social justice" above objectivity, who has trouble appreciating other perspectives and who sees his job as being a "liberal propagandist" SHOULD BE FIRED!

Not surprisingly, the social justice warriors and liberal propagandists at this school have created an atmosphere of intolerance and hate toward conservatives. So much so that when Jewish students who attended a Trump rally were branded as "Nazis" by their classmates the school administration did nothing.

Strzok Wins Big - That may seem like an odd headline for a guy who just got fired. But the #Resistance movement is becoming one of Washington's most lucrative industries.

You would think given what we know of Peter Strzok's personal values and his abuse of power that this man would slink off someplace and hope people would forget his name. But in this town and in an America where the left is seething with hatred, Strzok knows an opportunity when he sees it.

He set up a GoFundMe page yesterday. This formerly high-paid FBI agent, as of this writing, has raised nearly $250,000 in less than 24 hours. (Fired Deputy Director Andrew McCabe shut down his GoFundMe page after it raked in more than $530,000 in just a couple of days.)

That is how energized and on fire the radical left is right now. The left is sparing no expense in its efforts to fundamentally transform America.

We must fight back, my friends!

Please stand with me as we defend faith, family and freedom.

Clinton & Collusion - From time to time, we have pointed out that the only evidence of collusion in 2016 was Hillary Clinton paying a foreign spy to get dirt on Donald Trump from Russian sources.

There has been new reporting in recent days showing that the Obama Justice Department (through Bruce Ohr) continued talking to ex-British spy Christopher Steele even after the FBI fired him for lying.

Here are some key points to keep in mind:

Bruce Ohr was the associate deputy attorney general in the Obama Justice Department. (He is still employed at the Justice Department.)

His wife, Nellie, worked for Fusion GPS, the firm hired by the Clinton campaign to contract with Christopher Steele who produced the Trump-Russia dossier.

Natalia Veselnitskaya, the Putin-connected lawyer at the center of the infamous Trump Tower meeting, had also contracted to work with Fusion GPS.
As investigative reporter Lee Smith lays out, this is either the most improbable set of coincidences or the entire Trump/Russia collusion scenario was a setup from the very beginning.

Again, as I have argued before, there is mounting evidence that the law enforcement and intelligence agencies of this country were weaponized by the Obama Administration in an attempt to spy on the Trump campaign and destroy the Trump presidency.

That prospect should outrage every American committed to the rule of law.

This Republic has and will survive many things. But what it cannot tolerate is a rogue bureaucracy that operates contrary to and without the consent of the governed.

The immediate solution, my friends, is to vote this November.

If you voted for Donald Trump in 2016, you must vote for his allies in Congress -- that means for Republican candidates.

If you voted against Hillary Clinton in 2016, you must vote against the radical Democrat socialists in 2018.

But if Schumer and Pelosi take control of Congress next year, the investigations into the deep state will be shut down, and we may never learn the truth.
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Gary Bauer is a conservative family values advocate and serves as president of American Values and chairman of the Campaign for Working Families

Tags: Gary Bauer, Campaign for Working Families, Tale Of Two Marches, Strzok Wins Big, Clinton & Collusion To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service and "Like" Facebook Page - Thanks!

California Criminal Guide: Tips For Thugs

by Lloyd Billingsley: Things are getting competitive for criminals these days, but there’s also some good news. All criminals can gain a big edge by moving to California.

In 2014, the Golden State passed Proposition 47, the so-called Reduced Penalties for Some Crimes Initiative. This changed several felonies such as shoplifting, receiving stolen property and car break-ins into misdemeanors.

Aside from assumptions about readers’ morals, under this law, anyone can basically steal nearly $1,000 worth of other people’s stuff and the cops won’t treat it much differently than a traffic ticket. So, no surprise that the smash-and-grab gang is going wild.

Last year in San Francisco, there were nearly 30,000 car break-ins, and in only 1.7 percent of those cases did the cops make arrests. And most of the thieves who got caught never got jail time. Some politicians like the proposition because California’s jails are already overcrowded. So, what’s an aspiring criminal to do?

You can easily sell hot goods on the internet and use the stolen credit cards to get money and other stuff like stolen computers for identity theft and addresses of where the people with the money live and work.

You can also thank California cities for underfunding their workers’ pension costs, because the shortfall means some have cut back on services including police. The city of Oakland won’t even dispatch police to most non-violent or non-emergency crime.

The news is even better if you’re just starting a career in violent crime.

Under Proposition 57, the so-called Public Safety and Rehabilitation Act, prosecutors can no longer try any juvenile as an adult, even if the crime is rape, arson or murder. So one 13-year-old arrested for gunning down a 16-year-old will go to juvenile court and the maximum sentence could be only imprisonment until age 25 in a soft facility. And get this: they are applying Proposition 57 retroactively.

Back in 2013, Daniel Marsh was just 15 years old when he tortured, murdered and mutilated Oliver Northup, 87, and his wife Claudia Maupin, 76, in Davis, California. Aside from Juan Corona and that Manson bunch, Marsh’s mayhem was probably the worst murder in state history.

Marsh was convicted in 2014 and Proposition 57 didn’t pass until 2016, but this year they reversed the killer’s conviction and gave him a new hearing, without presenting new exculpatory evidence. Authorities even let this killer give a TED talk, in which he portrayed himself as a victim, and put the video on the internet (since removed). So Marsh got to testify, without being under oath, and with no possibility of cross-examination.

If judged suitable for juvenile court, this double murderer will be out at age 25 at the latest. So for juveniles who like to kill in creative ways, the California system is basically on your side, kind of a criminals’ lobby. Still, adults have other advantages.

California makes it harder for law-abiding folks to obtain firearms and now even ammunition. This doesn’t affect criminals, who don’t follow the law. Criminals can easily get guns and are now less likely to get shot in the commission of a crime.

Speaking of guns, you might remember American Indian Movement rabble-rouser Dennis Banks, who back in the 1970s shot it out with cops in a North Dakota courthouse. Banks fled to California and Governor Jerry Brown refused to extradite him.

So the governor of California has a soft spot for gun violence. He was pretty quiet when racist felon Luis Bracamontes killed two cops in Sacramento, and he’s is okay with Propositions 47 and 57.

Just so you know, Jerry Brown remains in office until November, so criminals who want that competitive edge should head to California right now.
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Lloyd Billingsley is a Policy Fellow at the Independent Institute and contributor to The Daily Caller and the David Horowitz Freedom Center's FronPage Mag and author of Bill of Writes: Dispatches from the Political Correctness Battlefield and Hollywood Party: Stalinist Adventures in the American Film Industry.

Tags: California Criminal Guide, Tips For Thugs, Lloyd Billingsley, The Daily Caller To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service and "Like" Facebook Page - Thanks!

Saudi Arabia And Iran Reignite The Oil Price War

by Tsvetana Paraskova: The rivalry between Saudi Arabia and Iran is becoming increasingly evident in the oil pricing policies of the two large Middle Eastern producers. The two countries are currently reigniting the market share and pricing war ahead of the returning U.S. sanctions on Iranian oil.

Saudi Arabia, OPEC’s largest producer, has been boosting oil production to offset supply disruptions elsewhere, including the anticipated loss of Iranian oil supply after U.S. sanctions on Tehran return in early November. The Saudis are also cutting their prices to the prized Asian market to lure more customers as they increase supply.

Iran, OPEC’s third-largest producer, is trying to convince its oil customers to continue buying Iranian oil despite stringent U.S. efforts to curb Iranian production.

Iran has slashed its official selling prices (OSPs) for all grades to all markets for September, looking to monetize what could be its last oil sales to some markets in Asia before the U.S. sanctions kick in. Tehran cut the prices for its flagship oil grades to more than a decade low compared to similar varieties of the Saudi crude grades, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

Last week, the National Iranian Oil Company (NIOC) slashed the OSP for the Iranian Light crude grade to Asia by US$0.80 to US$1.20 a barrel above the Dubai/Oman average, used for pricing oil to Asia. The September prices for Iranian Light to Asia are at a 14-year-low compared to the similar Saudi grade sold to the world’s fastest-growing oil market, Bloomberg has estimated.

Earlier this month, the Saudis also slashed the September prices to Asia for their flagship grade, Arab Light, by US$0.70 to US$1.20 a barrel premium over the Dubai/Oman average. The reduction was slightly deeper than expected and the second consecutive monthly cut in pricing. The Saudis cut the prices for all their grades to all markets except for the United States.

Now Iran is also slashing prices for all grades to all markets, with the prices for Iranian Light, Iranian Heavy, Forozan, and Soroush grades to Asia, Northwest Europe, and the Mediterranean all cut by between US$0.50 and US$1.45, depending on the market and grades.

The OSPs for Iranian Heavy and Forozan to Asia were slashed against the similar Saudi grades to their lowest levels since at least 2000, the year in which Bloomberg started compiling the data.

Iranian Light and the Saudi Arab Light for Asia for September are now priced at the same level—US$1.20 a barrel above the Dubai/Oman average.

For the Saudis, the cut is aimed at enticing more buyers in order to take advantage of the refiners in Asia that are looking to cut Iranian oil intake for fear of running afoul of the U.S. sanctions. For Tehran, the cut in prices is an attempt to keep refiners buying by offering yet another incentive for them on top of the extended credit periods and nearly free shipping.

It has also been reported that Iran has started to offer India—its second-biggest oil customer after China—cargo insurance and tankers operated by Iranian companies as some Indian insurers have backed out of covering oil cargoes from Iran in the face of the returning U.S. sanctions on Tehran.

India’s imports from Iran could start to slow from August as some big Indian refiners worry that their access to the U.S. financial system could be cut off if they continue to import Iranian oil, prompting them to reduce oil purchases from Tehran.

The U.S. hasn’t been able to persuade Iran’s biggest oil customer China to reduce oil purchases, but Beijing has reportedly agreed not to increase its oil imports from Iran.

Other relatively large Asian buyers of Iranian oil—South Korea and Japan—are looking for U.S. guidance and (possibly) waivers before deciding how to proceed, but they are currently very cautious and on the lookout for alternative supplies.

Analysts, and reportedly the U.S. Administration itself, currently expect the sanctions to remove around 1 million bpd from the oil market.

Considering the intensity of efforts by the U.S. to cut off as much Iranian oil exports as possible, it is unlikely that even Iran’s significant discounts to Asian customers will save the country’s oil exports.
----------------
Tsvetana Paraskova authored this article contributed by James Stafford the editor of OilPrice.com, the leading online energy news site, to the ARRA News Service.

Tags: James Stafford, Oilprice.com, Tsvetana Paraskova, Saudi Arabia, Iran, Reignite, Oil Price War To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service and "Like" Facebook Page - Thanks!

Florida Pro-Gun Candidate Rebuked By NRA

by Tom Knighton: In the world of pro-gun candidates, the one entity you generally don’t want to piss off is the National Rifle Association. While many gun rights supporters may not be members of the group, most use the organization to vet candidates on their support for the Second Amendment. Earning the ire of the group that can send a lot of votes your way is probably not wise.

However, a Florida candidate agriculture commission managed to cross the group despite having already landed their endorsement.
An NRA-endorsed candidate for agriculture commissioner is “retooling” an ad after the gun-rights group said he made a “mistake” in assigning a failing grade to a primary opponent.

Marion Hammer, the National Rifle Association’s longtime Florida lobbyist, requested that the endorsed candidate, Matt Caldwell, apologize for the ad against Republican primary opponent Denise Grimsley.

Despite Hammer’s request, Caldwell, a state House member from North Fort Myers, issued a statement that adopted a less-conciliatory tone and continued to pound Grimsley’s gun-rights voting record.

Caldwell’s campaign recently sent out a print ad that assigned to Grimsley a “D” grade for 2016 that appeared to be from the NRA. But the gun-rights group, which grades candidates on how they vote on Second Amendment issues, actually gave Grimsley, a state senator from Sebring, a grade of “B” that year, according to Hammer.

The ad and Monday’s statement from Caldwell drew rebukes from Grimsley’s campaign. Hammer repeatedly described the ad copy as a “mistake.”

“It’s clearly a mistake,” Hammer said. “And I would certainly hope that Matt Caldwell, the candidate we have endorsed, would admit that it was a mistake and apologize to her and move on. That’s the professional thing to do.”

Hammer declined to comment further after Caldwell issued a statement that continued to question Grimsley’s record on gun issues.

“In order to avoid confusion, I asked my team to retool the ad this weekend, but we will not back down from the clear contrast between ourselves and our opponents when it comes to defending the Second Amendment,” Caldwell said in the statement.
Oddly enough, this appears to be the same ad that Facebook blocked on their platform last month. Of course, Facebook didn’t block it because the information was erroneous or anything. They just didn’t like Caldwell’s pro-gun stance.

Caldwell’s opponent was less understanding, accusing the state rep of outright lying in the ad, though I’m with Hammer. I don’t see this being something you just make up and hope no one looks. Frankly, the ad has been out long enough that Grimsley should probably have countered that error loudly before.

Unless, of course, she doesn’t want people to know she has a “B” grade from the NRA.

Sure, now that it’s a thing, she’ll use this situation to try and bludgeon Caldwell, but it sounds like she didn’t want to tout her relatively high grade from the NRA. Why is that? Could it be the anti-gun bias running rampant within the Democratic party at the moment?

Look, Caldwell was wrong and needs to fix the mistake.

However, it seems clear that Grimsley, despite the relatively high grade, isn’t exactly a friend of the Second Amendment.
---------------
Tom Knighton is a Navy veteran, a former newspaperman, a novelist, and a blogger at Bearing Arms. He lives with his family in Southwest Georgia.

Tags: Tom Knighton, Bearing Arms, Florida, Pro-Gun Candidate, Rebuked by NRA To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service and "Like" Facebook Page - Thanks!

Rudy Giuliani: 'The Guy Running It Was Brennan'

by Susan Jones: Former CIA Director John Brennan, a man who repeatedly blasts President Donald Trump -- even accusing him of treason after the Helsinki summit -- was the "quarterback" behind the Trump-Russia investigation that is so riddled with irregularities, Rudy Giuliani told Fox News's Sean Hannity Monday night.

President Trump's attorney is demanding an independent counsel to "investigate the investigators."

"I'm going to tell you who was the quarterback for all of this," Giuliani said. "(Former FBI Agent Peter) Strzok, he's a bit of a puppet. Then there's Mueller, he's a puppet...The guy running it is Brennan. And he should be in front of a grand jury."

Giuliani said Brennan took a "false" dossier ("you can look at it and laugh at it") and peddled it to former Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.).

“That led to the request for the investigation,” Giuliani continued. “So he takes a false...dossier; he get the senators involved, and a couple of Republican senators; and they demand an investigation. A totally phony investigation.
“Now, why can't we get an investigation when there are clear facts showing possible violations of the law? Even in the order appointing Mueller, which is completely illegitimate, they don't point out any crime. You have to point out a crime under the independent counsel regulations. They don't point it out, Giuliani said.

"We have lots of crimes and we can't get (Attorney General Jeff) Sessions to move and appoint an independent counsel. He's, look, he's recused from everything. And (Deputy Attorney General Rod) Rosenstein is too much involved in it. And they're possible witnesses.”

Hannity noted that Rosenstein signed the fourth and final FISA warrant to surveil former Trump campaign volunteer Carter Page.

“And that's why he's a possible witness," Giuliani said. "Independent counsel to investigate the investigators," he offered as the segment wrapped up.

In early June, Brennan told MSNBC, "I didn't put eyes on the Steele dossier until December of 2016, after the election, but yet people claim that I was the one that was sharing it around town and briefing it. That is not true," Brennan said.

In his interview with Hannity Monday night, Giuliani said the Steele dossier compiled by a former British spy was "provably false," a "cut and paste job by a down and out ex-spy, English spy, who hated Trump and was paid by the Hillary Clinton and the DNC."

Giuliani said the Trump Justice Department is hiding the affidavits, based on the dossier, that were used to get FISA warrants on Carter Page.

"Well, my goodness, here are the things we need to know about it. Was the fact that Hillary Clinton and DNC-- the people who paid for this -- was that pointed out to the judge? Because if it wasn't you've got a glaring omission,” Giuliani said.

“Was it pointed out during the course of this that Steele was fired by the FBI? Were problems in his background exposed to the judge? I mean, when you present this guy, was he presented as a fully reliable informant or were the questions -- you have to do that in an affidavit. I wrote many of these affidavits.”

Giuliani said it would have been a "nonstarter" if the FISA court was not told that Clinton and the Democrats paid for the dirt on Trump.

"So here's the point," Giuliani said. "Strzok created a false document. When we say is there any evidence that his bias led to action that he took against Trump? Yeah. He perjured himself in the affidavit in order to start his insurance policy investigation.

“They were hoping they could do something with that before the election, but they ran into the same problem Mueller runs into. The president didn't do anything wrong. They couldn't find any evidence. They struck out.”
--------------------
Susan Jones writes for CNSNews a division of the Media Research Center, a not-for-profit 501 (c)(3) organization.

Tags: Rudy Giuliani, John Brennan, Peter Strzok, Susan Jones, CNS News To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service and "Like" Facebook Page - Thanks!

Erdogan's Warning To The USA . . .

. . . What kind of ally and NATO member is Turkey exactly?
by Joseph Klein: Recep Tayyip Erdogan, the autocratic Islamist president of Turkey, wrote an op-ed article published on Monday by the New York Times, entitled “Turkey’s View of the Crisis With the U.S.” He complained that the United States does not respect “Turkey’s sovereignty” and “Turkish democracy.” He warned that failure to reverse the “trend” of “unilateral actions against Turkey by the United States” will require Turkey “to start looking for new friends and allies.” The fact is, however, that under Erdogan’s leadership, Turkey had already embarked on its own trend away from being a reliable NATO member and friend of the United States well before its recent disputes with the Trump administration.

Erdogan’s bill of particulars against U.S. policy set forth in his op-ed column included American support for Kurdish forces in Syria. Although the Syrian Kurds have been fighting effectively against ISIS, Erdogan treats them as terrorists more dangerous than ISIS because they are allied with the Kurds in Turkey seeking autonomy. Erdogan objected to what he considered the U.S.’s failure to adequately condemn the failed coup attempt against Erdogan’s government in 2016. He complained about the U.S.’s rejection of Turkey’s requests to turn over the presumed ring-leader of the coup attempt, Fethullah Gulen, who currently resides in Pennsylvania. Finally, Erdogan expressed defiance over the recent sanctions imposed by the Trump administration in response to the Turkish government’s refusal to free Pastor Andrew Brunson, a U.S. citizen.

Erdogan’s complaints are meritless and his warnings are hollow. He has become a tin pot dictator who turned Turkey away from its secular republic institutions towards becoming an Islamist state molded in his image of a revived neo-Ottoman empire. “The Republic of Turkey, just like our previous states that are a continuation of one another, is also a continuation of the Ottomans," Erdogan said in remarks he made last February during a commemoration ceremony in Istanbul to mark the centenary of the death of Ottoman Sultan Abdulhamid II. Abdulhamid, Erdogan’s role model, is blamed for the genocide of Armenians in the early 20thcentury.

Ramming through changes in the Turkish constitution intended to concentrate power in the presidency after he became president in 2014, Erdogan has used his expanded powers to eliminate an independent judiciary, imprison dissenters and journalists, and suppress freedom of speech. Erdogan’s government has arrested people residing in Turkey, including minors, for allegedly insulting the ruler. And Erdogan has carried his attempts to suppress free speech beyond Turkey’s borders. His government demanded the prosecution of a popular German comedian for insulting Erdogan under an 1871 German law that makes it illegal to insult a foreign head of state. Chancellor Angela Merkel bowed to Erdogan’s wishes. While the comedian did not end up facing criminal charges, he was forbidden from repeating publicly his supposedly objectionable remarks. In an even more egregious example of Erdogan’s attempts to export his suppression of free speech to the West, Erdogan’s thugs attacked protesters carrying a flag of a Kurdish party outside the Turkish ambassador’s residence in Washington, D.C. during Erdogan’s visit to meet with President Trump last year.

On the foreign policy front, Erdogan’s government has made claims to territory within the boundaries of Iraq, invaded and bombed northern Syria, and ramped up tensions with Greece over Greek islands in the Aegean that Erdogan believes rightfully belong to Turkey. These actions reflect Erdogan’s desire to re-assert Turkish leadership of Sunni Islam under his vision of a re-created Ottoman empire. He is not only looking east towards the Arab world. He is looking west towards Europe, which he sees succumbing to its growing Muslim population. Alparslan Kavaklıoğlu, who serves under Erdogan as the head of the Turkish parliament’s Security and Intelligence Commission, recently said “Europe will be Muslim. We will be effective there, Allah willing. I am sure of that." Erdogan himself urged Muslim migrants living in Europe to “[M]ake five children – not just three. For you are the future of Europe."

While Erdogan is relying on migration and demographics to conquer Europe for Islam, he supports violence against Israel. His mouthpiece, the daily Yeni Şafak, ran an article earlier this year calling for an “army of Islam” to be formed that could conduct a joint Muslim attack on Israel. Erdogan called for the world's Muslims to take a "physical stance on Israel." Whipping up a crowd in Istanbul last May in response to the violence at the Israeli-Gaza border and the Trump administration’s decision to move the U.S. embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, Erdogan urged that "with the strength of Jerusalem in our feet, let's march together...let's come and unify and be together and fight the tyrants with one hand, with one strong fist."

Erdogan, who supports Hamas, has perversely accused Israel of “state terrorism” for defending its civilians against Palestinian terrorist rocket attacks. And he has compared the Jews of Israel to Nazis. As far back as 1998, when Erdogan was the mayor of Istanbul, he declared that "the Jews have begun to crush the Muslims in Palestine, in the name of Zionism. Today, the image of the Jews is no different than that of the Nazis." Last month, he said that Israel’s passage of its nation-state law affirming Israel’s Jewish character proved that Israel was "the most Zionist, fascist and racist state" in the world. Erdogan thereby repeated the libel that the Zionist principle of self-determination for the Jewish people in their historic homeland is tantamount to fascism and racism, which even the UN General Assembly repudiated when it repealed a resolution to that effect. "Hitler's spirit has reemerged among administrators in Israel," Erdogan added. Ironically, Erdogan had cited Hitler’s assumption of the presidency in Germany as a positive example when defending his own plans for a new presidential system with expanded powers to govern Turkey under his rule. “There are already examples in the world. You can see it when you look at Hitler’s Germany,” Erdogan said before one of his lackeys tried to clarify the comparison.

In any case, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu properly responded to Erdogan’s latest slander against Israel. He observed that Turkey is becoming "a dark dictatorship" under Erdogan's rule. "Whoever imprisons tens of thousands of his citizens, fires hundreds of thousands, massacres Kurds and occupies both Northern Cyprus and northern Syria should not preach to us about democracy and human rights," Prime Minister Netanyahu said.

Erdogan ended his New York Times op-ed column with the warning that Turkey would “start looking for new friends and allies” if the United States did not cease its “unilateral” actions against Turkey. However, this would be akin to closing the barn door after the horse had already bolted. Erdogan did not wait to find his “new” friends in Russia and Iran. Indeed, Erdogan has been consorting for some time with the leaders of Russia and Iran over plans to divide the spoils in Syria. Turkey had previously decided to buy billions of dollars’ worth of advanced weapons from Russia, ignoring the disapproval of its NATO partners. Turkey and Iran had already agreed to boost their military cooperation with each other and to increase intelligence sharing. This is all part of Erdogan’s long-held desire for geo-political reasons to tilt his country away from the West. Moreover, as author and historian Dilip Hiro explained in an article appearing on YaleGlobal Online last January, Turkey’s “close ties with Russia and Iran” are driven by “economic interests” involving, among other things, Turkey’s “urgent need of a dependable supply of natural gas.” Turkey’s “main sources of gas are Russia and Iran, contributing respectively 60 and 30 percent of the total.”

With “friends” like Erdogan, who needs enemies? He is a NATO “partner” in name only. It is time to take Erdogan’s hostility to Western democratic values seriously as he builds up his Islamic autocracy and increases his already existing military and economic relationships with Russia and Iran. We must start by promptly removing any nuclear weapons that remain stockpiled in Turkey.
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Joseph Klein is a Harvard-trained lawyer and the author of Global Deception: The UN’s Stealth Assault on America’s Freedom Lethal Engagement: Barack Hussein Obama, the United Nations & Radical Islam

Tags: Joseph Klein, FrontPage Mag, Erdogan's Warning, To The USA, ally, NATO member, Turkey To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service and "Like" Facebook Page - Thanks!

Tax Cuts Delivering Relief That Small Businesses Need

Linda McMahon, SBA Administrator
by Linda McMahon: When I visited Cincinnati in September of last year, small business owners who joined a roundtable I hosted were clear on one thing – taxes were a burden taking too much time and money they’d rather be investing in their businesses.

“If I pay less taxes, I can accelerate our growth and create more jobs,” said the owner of a Cincinnati-based restaurant chain.

“Negotiating the large array of taxes we pay is difficult,” an entrepreneur from Fairborn said. “The complex IRS laws necessitate hiring an accountant and are an added burden.”

“Any money I can retain and reinvest in my business helps tremendously,” said the owner of a concrete supply company in Loveland.

In December, President Donald Trump signed the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act into law, giving these entrepreneurs and the rest of America’s 30 million small businesses some welcome relief. Most small businesses will now be able to deduct 20 percent off their business income in addition to having their taxable income taxed at lower rates. And for the first five years, they’ll be able to write off investments in new equipment the year the investment is made.

It’s now been seven months since the tax cuts took effect, and small business owners are making real investments in their businesses and their employees – raising wages, providing bonuses and benefits, and creating more jobs.

The owner of a landscape company in Florida told me he’s using his tax savings to buy a new truck and forklift to expand his services and get more customers – he’s already hired another employee to help with the bigger workload. The owners of a rock climbing gym in North Carolina told me their tax savings are accelerating plans to add another location. The owner of a commercial bakery in Massachusetts told me he’s using his tax savings to buy another oven, add capacity and hire more workers. These are just a few of the stories I hear as I travel around the country as head of the U.S. Small Business Administration.

This truly is a golden age for small business. The unemployment rate is a healthy 4 percent, with more Americans entering the job market (600,000 in June alone!) to access the good jobs employers are now creating. The number of job openings is at a record high, and for the first time on record, there are more job openings than unemployed people looking for work. The unemployment rate for women was recently at the lowest level since 1953. The same can be said for African-American and Hispanic unemployment rates. A Gallup poll found two-thirds of Americans believe now is a good time to find a quality job.

Workers’ pay is improving, too. As a result of the tax cuts, at least 6 million workers have seen bigger paychecks and more benefits. With more money in their pockets, Americans are spending again – and that’s good news for small businesses. In surveys done by the United States Chamber of Commerce, CNBC, NFIB, and the National Association of Manufacturers, members report their highest-ever levels of optimism. A UBS poll found nearly half of America’s small business owners plan to invest more in their businesses and a third plan to increase hiring as a direct result of the tax cuts.

These statistics and surveys tell a clear story, but it’s the stories I hear from small business owners that really inspire action. These are real entrepreneurs and real businesses, with real successes and challenges. I want the ones who asked for lower taxes at last year’s roundtable in Cincinnati to know that I heard them, and the president heard them. We continue to listen to America’s small businesses and work toward their continued success.
-----------------
Linda McMahon is the Administrator of the U.S. Small Business Administrator (SBA). He artilce was shared by the White House and as an opt ed on Cincinnati.com.

Tags: Tax Cuts, Delivering Relief, Small Businesses, Linda McMahon, Small Business Administration, SBA To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service and "Like" Facebook Page - Thanks!

'Queering English' & Other Examples Of Shocking Anti-Faith Indoctrination In Our Schools

Anti-faith radicals see the classroom as their place to experiment on our children and grandchildren with their social engineering ideas that undermine faith and marriage. They even are pushing something they call "Queering English"! 
by Mat Staver: Millions of students across the country returning to school are being thrust into what is increasingly becoming a blatantly hostile climate that attacks faith and family at its very foundations.

Even English class has been corrupted by this radical anti-faith, same-sex push -- and is now being openly positioned as “QUEERING ENGLISH"!

Right now, Liberty Counsel is fighting several critical battles in school districts across the country, but I fear we could see an explosion of attacks in the coming days. And much of this is being done without or against parental consent!

Here's how the radical anti-faith, same-sex advocates are using the public schools to push their agenda...

How they are “Queering English"
Liberty Counsel lawyers are fighting one of the most egregious examples of the “queering" of our public schools originating with the National Council of Teachers of English (NCTE). This organization promotes not just "English" instruction, but a radical "social justice" and critical theory agenda. NCTE trains teachers to indoctrinate students with radical ideology, under the guise of classroom English assignments, and in violation of parental rights.

The NCTE's national conference included a long list of “social justice" sessions, including a featured session entitled, "Queering English Studies: Navigating Politics, Policies, and Practices." The session description stated:

“Queer K–12 teachers and students must continue... constructing learning spaces, creating projects, and pursuing research agendas that move English studies … to transformation so that participants can be proactive in their schools and communities."

It gets worse...

Teacher creates personal “dossier" on students!
Liberty Counsel is now representing concerned parents in a Georgia school district where teachers who were actively involved in the NCTE conference as “presenters" are imposing their agenda.

One English teacher and NCTE presenter actually required her students, without parental consent, to complete an individual "dossier" containing confidential and personally identifiable information including a photograph, a strand of hair, a handwriting sample and fingerprints. These "dossiers" were posted in the classroom where the data could have been taken by students, staff, faculty and school guests, thus violating students' privacy.

In addition, this teacher required the students to complete a politically charge “propaganda" assignment that along with the “dossier" was consistent with the radical agenda promoted by the NCTE.

In any environment and for any reason, it is a gross violation to students' liberties and parental rights to collect such personally identifiable “dossier" information. But when the teacher is openly connected to a radical education program, the danger to students is even more pronounced.

Liberty Counsel has demanded this school district forbid teachers from requiring students to create "dossiers" on themselves or "propaganda" about any subject. Liberty Counsel also is demanding that teachers be counseled regarding parental rights and student privacy, and disciplined if they bring radical NCTE ideologies into the classroom.

But the sad reality is, this is just ONE example of many shocking violations of the rights of Christian students and parents that are taking place across the country. As I write, Liberty Counsel lawyers are responding to incidents in Pennsylvania and Virginia which pose a serious breach of our rights.

And with back-to-school season now in full swing, we must expand our efforts immediately to defend the rights of Christian students and parents.

Petition Supporting Students And Parents Coming Under Attack
Liberty Counsel has launched a national STATEMENT OF SOLIDARY WITH CHRISTIAN PARENTS AND STUDENTS, announcing that you are standing with those who are coming under attack in our schools.

We will gather these STATEMENTS OF SOLIDARITY and use them to express national citizen outrage against these efforts to indoctrination our children and grandchildren. Please take a moment to sign our petition in support of Christian students and parents now.
-------------------
Mat Staver is the Founder and Chairman of Liberty Counsel

Tags: Mat Staver, Liberty Counsel, Queering English, Other Examples, Anti-Faith Indoctrination, schools, students To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service and "Like" Facebook Page - Thanks!

Battle Over Socialism

by Kerby Anderson, Contributing Author: We are in the midst of a battle over socialism. This isn’t an academic debate about socialism. It isn’t even a discussion about the impact of socialism on Venezuela. The battle over socialism is taking place in the mid-term campaigns led in part by self-proclaimed socialists Bernie Sanders and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez.

Two of the key talking points have been free college tuition and “Medicare for All.” These are not just fringe topics only discussed by a few radical leftists but are becoming mainstream in the Democrat Party. Now let me hasten to add, that not all Democrats embrace these ideas. But most of the Democrats who will be running as presidential candidates in less than two years do propose such ideas.

Voters need to be asking these candidates some important questions. Do we really want more government involvement in healthcare? Do we really think we can force doctors and hospitals to accept Medicare-level payments, which are about 40 percent lower than what is paid by private insurers?

Perhaps the most important question is cost. One recent study found that “Medicare for All” would increase federal spending by more than $32 trillion during the first ten years. By the way, total federal spending during that same period is projected to be about $56 trillion. So a good question for these candidates might be: How can we afford an additional $32 trillion?

Rarely are such questions asked. But when they are asked of candidates, you get suggestions like raising the corporate income tax, cutting defense spending, and implementing a carbon tax. Then another question comes to mind: Won’t that completely destroy our growing economy and crush manufacturing and other industries?

This election and the next will be awash in socialist slogans about free tuition and free health care. Responsible voters need to ask these candidates some important questions.
------------
Kerby Anderson is a radio talk show host heard on numerous stations via the Point of View Network endorsed by Dr. Bill Smith, Editor, ARRA News Service

Tags: Kerb Anderson, Point of View, Battle Over Socialism, Bernie Sanders, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service and "Like" Facebook Page - Thanks!

America’s Lengthening Enemies List

by Patrick Buchanan: Friday, deep into the 17th year of America’s longest war, Taliban forces overran Ghazni, a provincial capital that sits on the highway from Kabul to Kandahar.

The ferocity of the Taliban offensive brought U.S. advisers along with U.S. air power, including a B-1 bomber, into the battle.

“As the casualty toll in Ghazni appeared to soar on Sunday,” The Wall Street Journal reported, “hospitals were spilling over with dead bodies, corpses lay in Ghazni’s streets, and gunfire and shelling were preventing relatives from reaching cemeteries to bury their dead.”

In Yemen Monday, a funeral was held in the town square of Saada for 40 children massacred in an air strike on a school bus by Saudis or the UAE, using U.S.-provided planes and bombs.

“A crime by America and its allies against the children of Yemen,” said a Houthi rebel leader.

Yemen is among the worst humanitarian situations in the world, and in creating that human-rights tragedy, America has played an indispensable role.

The U.S. also has 2,000 troops in Syria. Our control, with our Kurd allies, of that quadrant of Syria east of the Euphrates is almost certain to bring us into eventual conflict with a regime and army insisting that we get out of their country.

As for our relations with Turkey, they have never been worse.

President Erdogan regards our Kurd allies in Syria as collaborators of his own Kurdish-terrorist PKK. He sees us as providing sanctuary for exile cleric Fethullah Gulen, whom Erdogan says was behind the attempted coup in 2016 in which he and his family were targeted for assassination.

Last week, when the Turkish currency, the lira, went into a tailspin, President Trump piled on, ratcheting up U.S. tariffs on Turkish aluminum and steel. If the lira collapses and Turkey cannot meet its debt obligations, Erdogan will lay the blame at the feet of the Americans and Trump.

Which raises a question: How many quarrels, conflicts and wars, and with how many adversaries, can even the mighty United States sustain?

In November, the most severe of U.S. sanctions will be imposed on Iran. Among the purposes of this policy: Force as many nations as possible to boycott Iranian oil and gas, sink its economy, bring down the regime.

Iran has signaled a possible response to its oil and gas being denied access to world markets. This August, Iranian gunboats exercised in the Strait of Hormuz, backing up a regime warning that if Iranian oil cannot get out of the Gulf, the oil of Arab OPEC nations may be bottled up inside as well. Last week, Iran test-fired an anti-ship ballistic missile.

Iran has rejected Trump’s offer of unconditional face-to-face talks, unless the U.S. first lifts the sanctions imposed after withdrawing from the nuclear deal.

With no talks, a U.S. propaganda offensive underway, the Iranian rial sinking and the economy sputtering, regular demonstrations against the regime, and new sanctions scheduled for November, it is hard to see how a U.S. collision with Tehran can be avoided.

This holds true as well for Vladimir Putin’s Russia.

Last week, the U.S. imposed new sanctions on Russia for its alleged role in the nerve-agent poisoning of ex-Russian spy Sergei Skripal and his daughter in the British town of Salisbury.

Though the U.S. had already expelled 60 Russian diplomats for the poisoning, and Russia vehemently denies responsibility — and conclusive evidence has not been made public and the victims have not been heard from — far more severe sanctions are to be added in November.

Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev is warning that such a U.S. move would cross a red line: “If … a ban on bank operations or currency use follows, it will amount to a declaration of economic war. … And it will warrant a response with economic means, political means and, if necessary, other means.”

That the sanctions are biting is undeniable. Like the Turkish lira and Iranian rial, the Russian ruble has been falling and the Russian people are feeling the pain.

Last week also, a U.S. Poseidon reconnaissance plane, observing China’s construction of militarized islets in the South China Sea, was told to “leave immediately and keep out.”

China claims the sea as its national territory.

And North Korea’s Kim Jong Un apparently intends to hold onto his arsenal of nuclear weapons.

“We’re waiting for the North Koreans to begin the process of denuclearization, which they committed to in Singapore and which they’ve not yet done,” John Bolton told CNN last week.

A list of America’s adversaries here would contain the Taliban, the Houthis of Yemen, Bashar Assad of Syria, Erdogan’s Turkey, Iran, North Korea, Russia and China — a pretty full plate.

Are we prepared to see these confrontations through, to assure the capitulation of our adversaries? What do we do if they continue to defy us?

And if it comes to a fight, how many allies will we have in the battles and wars that follow?

Was this the foreign policy America voted for?
--------------------
Patrick Buchanan is currently a conservative columnist, political analyst, chairman of The American Cause foundation and an editor of The American Conservative. He has been a senior advisor to three Presidents, a two-time candidate for the Republican presidential nomination, and was the presidential nominee of the Reform Party in 2000. He blogs at the Patrick J. Buchanan.

Tags: Patrick Buchanan, conservative, commentary, America, Lengthening Enemies List To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service and "Like" Facebook Page - Thanks!

Fake News; Real Assault

by Paul Jacob, Contributing Author: I don’t defend the way Twitter, Facebook, and others target users for expressing views that these firms dislike. I do defend the individual rights of all persons, including owners of companies. Our freedom to act includes the freedom to act in ways others consider to be wrong — if we do so while respecting the (actual) rights of others.

But something is extra-disturbing about the way Facebook, Google, Apple, Spotify, etc. (though not Twitter) ejected Alex Jones from their platforms. The firms apparently obeyed journalists and politicians demanding InfoWar’s ouster for purveying “hate speech.”

And now: “These companies must do more than take down one website,” intones incumbent U.S. Senator Chris Murphy.*

Such statements aren’t laws. But every company must worry about the arbitrary government power that incumbents like Murphy can deploy. And fellow U.S. Senator Mark Warner’s leaked paper on the dangers of technology-abetted fake news tells us we’re in for a more direct assault on free speech.

“The size and reach of these platforms demand that we ensure proper oversight, transparency and effective management of technologies that in large measure undergird our social lives . . . and our politics,” says the plan. The goal is to “ensure that this ecosystem no longer exists as the ‘Wild West’,” i.e., unfettered by government.

So . . . the idea is to rescind that wild First Amendment?

I would sooner press for a new law penalizing politicians who threaten the liberty of firms on the basis of catering to the “wrong” customers.

But there is no crying need for this. Let’s stick with “Congress shall make no law . . .”

This is Common Sense. I’m Paul Jacob.

* These companies did not take down a website, by the way. Alex Jones’s InfoWars.com appears to be going gangbusters. Those companies ousted InfoWars from their Web services. This is a distinction with a difference.
------------------
Paul Jacob is author of Common Sense which provides daily commentary about the issues impacting America and about the citizens who are doing something about them. He is also President of the Liberty Initiative Fund (LIFe) as well as Citizens in Charge Foundation. Jacob is a contributing author on the ARRA News Service.

Tags: Paul Jacob, Common Sense, Fake News, Real Assault, on, Alex Jones, Infowars To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service and "Like" Facebook Page - Thanks!

FBI Fires Peter Strzok, Agent Who Vowed to ‘Stop’ a Trump Presidency

FBI fired the agent Peter Strzok Friday based on
a scathing Justice Dept IG report that revealed
 text messages that indicated political bias. 
by Fred Lucas: The FBI has fired Peter Strzok, the agent who in 2016 texted he would “stop” Donald Trump from becoming president and has since been under a cloud of suspicion of political bias in doing his job.

The Washington Post first reported Monday on the firing of Strzok, who last month found himself on the hot seat at a House committee hearing, where he tried to explain the anti-Trump text messages.

Strzok played a key role in the FBI’s probe of 2016 Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton’s private email server and later the investigation of Russian meddling into the 2016 presidential campaign and possible collusion between the Trump campaign and Russians.

However, late last year, special counsel Robert Mueller removed him from the investigative team.

Strzok’s attorney, Aitan Goelman, said FBI Deputy Director David L. Bowdich ordered the firing on Friday, the Post reported.

The FBI office that handles discipline had decided Strzok should only be demoted and be suspended for 60 days.

Goelman said the move undercuts the FBI’s repeated assurances that Strzok would be afforded the normal disciplinary process. The former deputy assistant director for counterintelligence was initially demoted to a human resources job before he was suspended in June.

“This isn’t the normal process in any way more than name,” Goelman complained, according to the Post.

Strzok, an FBI veteran for two dozen years, was largely undone by a series of anti-Trump text messages he exchanged with FBI lawyer Lisa Page on their official government phones.

The texts cast questions over politically charged investigations.

Justice Department Inspector General Michael Horowitz, in a report in June on the FBI’s investigation of the Clinton email server, concluded Strzok showed a “willingness to take official action” through his job with the FBI to hurt Trump politically during the 2016 election.

In possibly the most damning text exchange revealed by the inspector general report, Page wrote Aug. 8, 2016, “[Trump’s] not ever going to become president, right? Right?!”

Strzok replied: “No. No he’s not. We’ll stop it.”

It’s likely more information will come out about Strzok beyond the messages disclosed by the inspector general report. In May, U.S. District Court Judge Reggie B. Walton ordered the FBI to begin processing 13,000 pages of previously undisclosed emails exchanged exclusively between Strzok and Page between Feb. 1, 2015, and December 2017 in a Freedom of Information Act case brought by Judicial Watch, a conservative government watchdog group.

“The firing of Peter Strzok is another body blow to the credibility of the Mueller special counsel operation. Strzok, who hated President Trump, compromised both the Clinton and Trump investigations that saw Hillary Clinton protected and Donald Trump illicitly targeted,” Tom Fitton, president of Judicial Watch, said in a public statement.

“Strzok’s anti-Trump texts show the Russia investigation he helped invent with Clinton campaign operatives is irredeemably compromised. As Mueller’s operation is founded on Strzok’s corrupt activities, it must be shut down,” Fitton said.

Emails already obtained by Judicial Watch through the FOIA request show that Strzok insisted on keeping his security clearance upon joining the Mueller probe.

On Saturday, Trump referenced Strzok in a tweet as “Peter S.”
Referring to Strzok and Page, the June inspector general report said that “the conduct by these employees cast a cloud over the entire FBI investigation.”

During his testimony before a joint hearing of the House Judiciary Committee and House Oversight and Government Reform Committee in July, Strzok denied bias.

“At times, my criticism was blunt, but despite how it’s been characterized, it was not limited to one person or to one party. I criticized various countries and politicians, including Clinton, Sen. [Bernie] Sanders, then-candidate Trump, and others,” Strzok told the committee members.

He later said in the hearing that it wouldn’t likely be possible to bias an investigation.

“At every step, at every investigative decision, there were multiple layers of people above me—assistant director, deputy director of the FBI—and multiple layers of people below me—section chiefs, unit chiefs, and analysts—all of whom were involved in all of these decisions,” Strzok said. “They would not tolerate any improper behavior in me any more than I would tolerate it in them.

“The suggestion that I, in some dark chamber in the FBI, would somehow cast aside all of these procedures, all of these safeguards, and do this is astounding to me,” he added. “It couldn’t happen.”
----------------
Fred Lucas (@FredLucasWH) is the White House correspondent for The Daily Signal.

Tags: FBI Fires, Peter Strzok, Agent, Who Vowed to Stop, Trump Presidency, Fred L:ucas, The Daily Signal To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service and "Like" Facebook Page - Thanks!

Will Congress Ever Do Its Job?

. . . Highlighting why separation of governmental power is necessary.
Alan Keyes
by Dr. Alan Keyes:Private persons can only offer advice and have no coercive power if their advice should not be accepted. And the law should have coercive power in order to induce others effectively to virtue, as the Philosopher says in the Ethics. But the people or a public personage has such coercive power and the right to inflict punishment.... And so, it belongs only to the people or a public personage to make law. Summa, ST I-II, Question 90, Article 3, Reply to Objection 2GOP Congressman Louie Gohmert is one of my favorite representatives in Congress. A report I read recently with the headline "Gohmert: Mueller 'Hoping he will affect the election and screw over' Trump" confirmed my good opinion of him. In the course of describing Mueller's efforts to position himself to have an electoral effect that damages President Trump's ability to govern, he notes that "Mueller should be investigated, but instead he is the special counsel."

As I read it, a rhetorical question immediately came to mind: "That may be right, but who was the Frankenstein responsible for creating this ungovernable monstrosity?" And the answer came just as readily: "The Congress, and in the first instance, the GOP leaders in the House of Representatives."

As a matter of Executive Administration, the president has the responsibility to hold all members of his executive body to account for their actions. But when allegations are bruited about that imply charges of malfeasance against the president himself, what is to be done? If the president fires the person investigating the implied charges, his adversaries will certainly portray it as an indication of guilt. If this probability leads the president to refrain from removing him, the investigator may pursue his own bias with no accountability.

President Trump's situation illustrates the very good reason leading lights of the founding generation approved the constitutional provision that made Congress responsible for dealing with allegations of malfeasance against the president of the United States. Only the House of Representatives has the constitutional power to lay such charges against him. Therefore, only the House of Representatives has responsibility for investigating such charges, from the moment they become a public concern. It is impertinent to pretend this responsibility should be avoided until some other government entity oversees the work of establishing that the charges are credible. This work is vital to the decision to bring or refrain from bringing them forward in a bill of impeachment.

Since no other U.S. government entity can impeach, no other entity has the responsibility for assuring that charges of malfeasance against a president have been properly investigated. To vote on an impeachment bill out of hand, without proper investigation, is a self-discredited farce. And, as we are witnessing every day, the pretense of leaving an investigation to the branch the president has the responsibility to oversee puts him in an impossible situation and has the potential to turn what should be an objective investigation into a biased witch-hunt. Such an inquisition gives the investigator an opportunity to balkanize the executive bureaucracy, crippling the presidency.

Many ascribe to Lincoln the wise saying that, absent effective enforcing power, law is just good advice. It seems to me that, if the ascription is correct, this is a fine example of Lincoln's genius for expressing complex truths directly and simply. In the passage from his "Summa Theologica" quoted above, St. Thomas Aquinas expresses the same common sense more indirectly, so that some reasoning is required to notice his words are congruent with Lincoln's thought. But he too points to the necessary relationship between the lawmaking function and the coercive power of punishment.

Once we understand this intrinsic relationship, we realize that the "separation of powers" featured in the U.S. Constitution ought not to be taken for granted. The French philosopher Montesquieu, whom the leading lights of the Founding generation seriously consulted, observed that judicial power is an aspect of executive action (since every decision to act requires a judgment of circumstances in light of the provisions of law). Combine Montesquieu's observation with the reason and common sense that makes lawmaking questionable in the absence of law-enforcing power, and the doctrine of "separation" starts to appear untenable.

Yet and still, all the experience of the past two hundred and fifty years or so verifies the tenet, universally respected at the time of the founding, that oppressive, unjust tyranny inevitably results when control of executive, judicial, and legislative power is consolidated in the same hands. We call the result by many names – e.g., dictatorship, totalitarianism, one-party rule – but it is invariably connected with the repression of decent liberty, and the spectacle of multitudes arbitrarily imprisoned, abused, and killed.

We can confirm, therefore, that the patriots of the founding generation were not wrong to make provision for the separation of powers. But neither were they wrong to allot to the representatives of the body politic in the legislature the power to oversee the use and abuse of power by the other branches and call them to account for it. The premise of just government stated in the Declaration of Independence is that governments derive their just power from the consent of the governed. As the body held most frequently accountable – by periodic election – to the governed; and the one intended to represent their good character and refined judgment, it makes sense for Congress to take responsibility for holding the government as a whole accountable to them.

This is why the Constitution vests the power to impeach and remove all civil officers of the U.S. government, including the president, in Congress's hands. It is why even the judges and justices of the judiciary are subject to impeachment and removal by majority vote. The absence of such balance of powers has been the reason, more often than not, that pure democracies did not long endure.

Is the United States now poised to add to that history of failure? Is the prudent balance of powers the preeminent founders intended the U.S. Constitution to foster and preserve now failing? If so, that failure owes much to the fact that Congress is now refusing to understand and perform its vital task. If the overall government of our nation has become a swamp, it's because the representatives of the people are failing to use their power to open the sluice gates and remove noxious malefactors. Once they correct this failure, Congressional elections may once again provide the opportunity periodically to refresh our national government's capacity to produce wholesome results that preserve both our individual rights and our common good.

The House should commence the process of impeachment against both Rod Rosenstein and Robert Mueller, citing the need to investigate growing evidence of bias, and addressing the inherently anti- constitutional nature of the special counsel position. Then every true Representative should do everything possible to turn the midterms into a referendum on Congress's constitutional responsibility to Drain the Swamp – as they earnestly call on voters to provide the majorities needed, in both Houses, to do it now.
--------------
Alan Keyes was Asst Secretary of State for International Organizations and an Ambassador to the UN Economic and Social Council under President Reagan. Keyes ran for president in 1996, 2000 and 2008, and was a candidate for the U.S. Senate for Maryland in 1988 and 1992 and for Illinois in 2004 against Barack Obama. He writes for Renew America where he first shared this article and blogs at LoyaltoLiberty.com.

Tags: Alan Keyes, commentary, Will Congress, Ever Do Its Job? To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service and "Like" Facebook Page - Thanks!

Canada Frees Itself From Saudi Oil Imports

by Tim Daiss: The ongoing political row between Canada and Saudi Arabia over Ottawa’s demand that the kingdom release detained women’s rights activists in the country is picking up momentum. Earlier this week, Saudi Arabia ordered the Canadian ambassador to leave Saudi Arabia “within 24 hours” after his country criticized the recent arrest of Saudi women’s rights activists.

However, Saudi Arabia, showing heightened sensitivity into what it perceives as foreign intrusion into its own affairs, upped the ante even more, by saying it would freeze "all new business" between the kingdom and Canada and also in an admittedly knee-jerk response, recalled thousands of Saudi students attending Canadian universities, a move to hurt Canada financially.

Omar Allam, a former Canadian diplomat and head of Allam Advisory Group, said the recall of 12,000 to 15,000 Saudi students from Canada, and accompanying relatives, is going to remove as much as CAD$2 billion in annual investment in the Canadian economy.

Ratcheting up rhetoric
"Any further step from the Canadian side in that direction will be considered as acknowledgment of our right to interfere in the Canadian domestic affairs," the Saudi Foreign Ministry said. "Canada and all other nations need to know that they can't claim to be more concerned than the kingdom over its own citizens."

Canada, however, sees the situation differently. "Canada will always stand up for the protection of human rights, very much including women's rights, and freedom of expression around the world," Marie-Pier Baril, a spokeswoman for Canadian Foreign Minister Chrystia Freeland said in a statement. "Our government will never hesitate to promote these values and believes that this dialogue is critical to international diplomacy."

A CBS News report said that the spate began over a serious of tweets by Canadian diplomats calling for the immediate release of women’s rights activists detained by Saudi Arabia. Chrystia Freeland also said in a tweet that she was "very alarmed" by news of the arrest of Samar Badawi, the sister of Raif Badawi, a prominent Saudi activist. Raif Badawi was arrested in 2012 for running a blog that promoted free speech and women's rights in Saudi Arabia.

This geopolitical row could have more implications that it initially appears. Some analysts are claiming that Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman could be taking advantage of President Trump’s increased focus on the Iranian situation and his history of foregoing human rights concerns in other countries, a claim that could be true. A similar dynamic has played out in several other countries since Trump became president one-and-a-half years ago.

How the political dispute between Canada and Saudi Arabia plays out is anybody’s guess at this point, however its impact on the oil sector might not be so difficult to predict.

Impact on oil imports
Judith Dwarkin, chief economist with RS Energy Group in Calgary, said Wednesday that Canada could easily replace the oil it imports from Saudi Arabia should relations with the kingdom deteriorate to the point that trade in crude is halted. She said that eastern Canadian refineries import about 75,000 to 80,000 barrels per day (bpd) of Saudi crude, adding that since its only 10 percent of total Canadian oil imports, it represents a “drop in the bucket” compared to that of the U.S. which covers two-thirds of Canadian oil imports and could increase that level if needed.

"The Saudis, if they choose to supply less to Canada, will divert those barrels, possibly to China, and U.S. barrels that would have gone to China, but are uncompetitive under Chinese tariffs, come to Canada," Dwarkin said.

"Basically, the cupboard gets rearranged."

According to the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA), Canada is the largest energy trading partner of the U.S. Based on the latest annual data from the U.S. Census Bureau, energy accounted for about 5% percent of the value of all U.S. exports to Canada and more than 19 percent of the value of all U.S. imports from Canada in 2016.

No love-loss
Flashing back 45 years ago, Canada was one of the western powers that was targeted by the 1973 Saudi-orchestrated Arab oil embargo. At that time the country was caught flatfooted by the embargo and the subsequent four-fold increase in global oil prices that quickly ensued.

Since that cataclysmic period, however, Ottawa took action. In December 1973, the government created Petro Canada to boost oil production to boost oil and gas exploration in the North and offshore, to assist in the development of the tar sands and to secure reliable oil imports. By the 1980s, Petro Canada had become of the country’s largest oil companies.

Also, in 1980 the Canadian government introduced the National Energy Program (NEP). Its objectives, though controversial at the time, were to increase Canadian ownership of the oil industry, to achieve oil self-sufficiency and gain a greater share of energy revenues.

In the long-term, Canadian oil production is projected to increase to 5.6 million bpd by 2036, a 33 percent increase over 2-17 levels, according to a new industry forecast. Western Canada production is forecast to account for the bulk of the country's total production, about 95 percent
-----------------
Tim Daiss authored this article contributed by James Stafford the publisher of OilPrice.com, the leading online energy news site, to the ARRA News Service.

Tags: Tim Daiss, James Stafford, Oilprice.com, Canada, Saudi Arabia, oil imports, human rights To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service and "Like" Facebook Page - Thanks!

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