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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)

Friday, January 25, 2019

What Americans Are Telling Us

by Newt Gingrich: I have lately been engaged in an important research project with the Job Creators Network and The Winston Group.

We believe the social media and Washington-news media blizzard of arguments, attacks, and harsh words don’t reflect the views or the hopes of the majority of Americans.

To test that idea out we met with focus groups across five states in different parts of the country to ask people how they defined a successful America. Our goal was to collect concrete examples of activities and initiatives that most of the American people believe are successful – and to hear about other specific examples of things Americans want done.

We heard some of that, but we learned something far more interesting and alarming.

Overwhelmingly, Americans wanted to talk about the tone of our national conversation – and the growing division in the country. This was true across every demographic and group we questioned: African-Americans, Asian-Americans, Hispanic-Americans, middle income voters, suburban women, young voters, conservative Republicans, college educated voters, independents, you name it.

When we asked, “what is your view of the state of the country,” every group in all five states had nearly the same answer – that we are deeply divided, and they were concerned. Moreover, their concern over the division diminished the importance or relevance of good news.

This insight brought some clarity to the results of the last election. Why didn’t the brilliant economic results of the previous 18 months under Republican leadership translate to electoral success? Because, even though the economy was successful, people didn’t feel like America was succeeding – or that their personal concerns were being addressed. This sense of deep division is a major reason.

Many groups said social media was a major contributing factor to the division, and they felt trapped by it.

Interestingly, young voters had the strongest feelings in this regard. One of my colleagues in the project observed that this group talked about social media the way addicts might talk about their drug dealers — hostile but dependent. There was a near unanimous sense that social media elevates the most extreme, angry voices and forces people to take sides.

These observations were validated this weekend by the eruption of hysterics and vitriol directed toward a group of high school students who attended the March for Life.

Without any context, evidence, or broad perspective, there was an immediate social media condemnation of these teenagers. If you weren’t whole-heartedly against them – if you didn’t want to punch their faces – you were told you were morally bankrupt.

The Left gleefully pointed to what the students were accused of doing – without evidence – as an example of all that is wrong with the Right.

Many conservatives bought into the smear as well, denouncing the students and trying to make it clear that they weren’t like them.

Nobody bothered to question if the few seconds of video told the whole story. In this age, a side must be taken – immediately and without thought or hesitation.

Even after more videos were released that showed the initial stories were simply false – and the teens were not racist demons – many people felt compelled to stick to their initial outrage. To change your opinion or accept another’s is seen as a win for the other side. This cannot be allowed – truth be damned.

In our hyper-polarized environment, it is becoming clear that many people assume that if the other side is losing, their side must be winning. But if the result is a world in which truth and facts do not matter, getting anything accomplished will be impossible. We will all lose.

While we still have more listening to do with this project, the results so far suggest that there is a sizable majority of Americans who reject this sort of zero-sum thinking. However, they don’t feel like their voices are being heard. It may be that the next election will be decided over who best captures this sentiment that is building in the country. Bringing us together may be more powerful than condemning the other side.

I’ll report more to you as we learn more.
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Newt Gingrich is a former Georgia Congressman and Speaker of the U.S. House. He co-authored and was the chief architect of the "Contract with America" and a major leader in the Republican victory in the 1994 congressional elections. He is noted speaker and writer. The above commentary was shared via Gingrich Productions.

Tags: Newt Gingrich, commentary, What Americans, Are Telling Us To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service and "Like" Facebook Page - Thanks!

Planned Parenthood: Bot and Paid For

Boy Using Computer
by Tony Perkins: ow many of you want Planned Parenthood answering all of your kids' questions about sex? Thanks to the group's new "chatbot," stopping them just got a lot tougher.

As part of a new initiative, gender-neutral robot "Roo" was launched yesterday to give teenagers another way of bypassing parents on some of life's most important topics. "Since so many kids get health information online," the PR team explains, "the artificial intelligence-powered bot is meant to give fast answers in a judgment-free, anonymous setting in a manner that's comfortable for the audience..." Users, Planned Parenthood explains, can find information on anything from STDs and pregnancy (read: abortion) to masturbation and more.

And unfortunately, we don't have to guess what "more" is. More is the video of men groping men and women making out? "More" is indoctrination on gender identity, homosexuality, sex exploration, and other things too graphic to print. If you think the public-school sex ed is bad now, just wait until Planned Parenthood gets its tentacles around teenagers online. This is the group's work-around for kids who aren't exposed to their "if-it-feels-good-do-it" message in schools. And they say as much. "Initiatives like this one are meant to help Planned Parenthood give [advice] to hard-to-reach audiences like teenagers who don't receive sex education or are receiving abstinence-only education."

"Young people process information in a way that's changing," said new Planned Parenthood President Leana Wen. "We wanted to make sure that Roo, for example, is available on mobile because we know that's how most young people are searching for information." They don't want something that "sounds like their parents," one of the creators explained.

But their parents' tax dollars are almost certainly paying for it! Thanks to Title X and Teen Pregnancy Prevention programs, Planned Parenthood has a stash of cash to implement immoral ideas like this one. And Americans who object are still unwilling investors. They give their hard-earned money to the government, which turns around and gives a portion to Planned Parenthood to undermine the values we teach at home.

We don't have to guess what an organization who calls abortion their "core mission" will tell our young people. The bottom line for Planned Parenthood has always been the bottom line. If they can persuade more teens to have sex, then that's just a down payment on future business. They don't care about the lives they're jeopardizing along the way, even in a country whose STD rates are at record highs.

An organization that cheers abortion, harvests baby body parts, and uses materials most adults can't read without blushing doesn't deserve our taxpayer dollars. And more importantly, doesn't need them -- as its annual report makes abundantly clear. If Planned Parenthood wants to attack our values, let them do it with their own money! Demand that Congress end the forced partnership between taxpayers and Planned Parenthood.
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Tony Perkins is President of the Family Research Council . This article was on Tony Perkin's Washington Update and written with the aid of FRC senior writers.

Tags: Tony Perkins, Family Research Center, FRC, Family Research Council, Planned Parenthood, Bot,
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Against the White Male Theory of History . . .

[Was Socrates white? What about Cicero?  And how do “whites” simultaneously hold responsibility for enslaving Africans and saving millions from hunger through food-distribution networks?

White Noise -  In National Review, Christian Alejandro Gonzalez challenges the “white male” interpretation of history. Both left and right interpretations rely on an identity category only recently invented.

And it’s creating generations of historical illiterates. saving millions from hunger through food-distribution networks? ~ Intercollegiate Studies Institute]


. . . Whether advanced by the Left or the Right, it is a dangerous oversimplification.

by Christian Alejandro Gonzalez: In current American political discourse, there is ascendant a highly inane interpretation of history — an interpretation that one might call the White Male Theory of History, or WMTH for short. As with other pathological political movements and ideas (e.g., support for government censorship, or loathing of liberal democracy), the WTMH comes in rightist and leftist variants.

First there is the left-wing version, which more or less dominates the academy. In this version, human history starts in 1492, when white people first made contact with indigenous people in the Americas, beginning immediately to oppress them. Then, in the subsequent 500-plus years, whites spread from Europe to the rest of the world, colonizing and enslaving peoples from India to Africa. Many indigenous groups in those lands were exterminated, and the ones that survived were either enslaved or made into second-class citizens. Plunder of natural resources ensued, from the Spanish heist of Incan silver to the Belgian theft of Congolese rubber. Meanwhile, whites installed themselves in positions of power throughout the world — from South Africa to Latin America — and invented the ideology of white supremacy to legitimate their rule.

Manifestations of the Left WMTH abound. Consider for example this sentence, written by Chauncey Devega at Salon, referring to the “white male anger” and fabricated “victimhood” that Donald Trump’s ideology represents: “Rich white men control every social, economic and political institution in the United States; the lies of white male victimhood remain compelling and intoxicating, as they have since before the founding.” Devega neglects to mention, however, that the category of “rich white men” has not remained static since the era before the Founding (Irish and Polish people were for a long time not considered white); that there are plenty of institutions in the United States not run by rich white men today; and, most crucially, that rich white men have not acted historically as a homogeneous and unified bloc. Referring to the supposed lies of “rich white men” as a collective entity is therefore meaningless.

There is also a right-wing WMTH, less popular among intellectuals and more morally objectionable due to its affinity with fascist politics. It goes something like this: White people have historically been at the forefront of scientific, cultural, and political innovation. They created spectacular works of art, contributed mightily to our scientific understanding of the world, spread food-distribution networks that rescued billions from hunger, and so forth. Sometimes, proponents of the Right WMTH reach back into the Greek and Roman past and attempt to reminisce about an ancient glory that whites no longer enjoy. In any case, the right-wing WMTH posits the following: White men historically have been a boon to the advancement of the human species, and they should be recognized for having done as much. Stefan Molyneux is today probably the most popular propagandist for the Right WMTH.

What both the Right and the Left White Male Theories of History share is the fundamental assumption that the telling of history must monomaniacally focus on the actions of white men — an identity category that is silently assumed to have always existed, but which is in reality a recent concoction. (Homer and Plato were not “white men” in the same way that Donald Trump is a white man.) In the Right WMTH, white men are held to be the epitome of science and progress and glory; in the Left WMTH, they are presented as oppressors, enslavers, and colonizers. In both versions, groups other than whites are assumed to have had little to no agency to decide their future for themselves, whether for good or ill; and even today, they still don’t. In both versions, the world’s peoples are divided into ludicrous binaries: civilizer vs. barbarian on the right, oppressor vs. victim on the left. In both versions, the cleavages that divided men with white skin are dismissed as unimportant; distinctions in class, nation, ideology, and religion are systematically ignored. For the proponents of the White Male Theory of History, there is whiteness, and there is maleness, and such nuisances as the subtleties of history do not much matter.

The influence of the WMTH can be most clearly seen in the debate over the record of “Western civilization.” The loudest and most obnoxious voices in that debate tend to be rightists and leftists who subscribe to their side’s respective version of the WMTH, invariably conflating the history of the West with the history of “white” people. In both cases, historical illiteracy replaces sober thought.

For instance, when Congressman Steve King, Stefan Molyneux, and Faith Goldy hide their white-nationalist prejudices by rattling on about the importance of “defending Western values,” they ignore that much of what makes the West great is precisely its efforts, however imperfect, to abandon tribal bigotry and extend legal rights and protections to people who are not white — an achievement that the Steve Kings of the world rarely trumpet, and that if anything probably oppose. The irony of racists’ and sexists’ championing a culture that has sought to emancipate minorities and women is, of course, lost on such people.

In a homologous fashion, the leftists who chant that “Western Civ has got to go!” do so because they equate Western values and history with white oppression, thereby neglecting to acknowledge that their demand for political equality and individual dignity for minorities was itself influenced by a Western (not “white”) heritage that produced theories of legal, political, and social equality. William F. Buckley made a related point convincingly in his famous debate with James Baldwin. As he put it, “anyone who argued that English civilization ought to have been jettisoned because Catholics were not allowed to vote as late as 1829 and Jews not until 1832 should consider the other possibility. Precisely the reason why they did get the right to vote was because English civilization was not jettisoned.” Buckley reached the conclusion that we should not “rush forward to overthrow our civilization because we don’t live up to our high ideals.”

The point, then, is that exclusively analyzing race (or gender), as both White Male Theories of History do, precludes sound judgment. Without a doubt, any understanding of the history of Western civilization must include a reckoning with and recognition of what the construction of whiteness has entailed — often, an ideological justification for exclusion and oppression. But whiteness is manifestly not the only force in world history, and it is absurd to behave or speak as though it were. By all means let us assess and contest the negative and positive aspects of the Western legacy — but let us begin to do so by properly formulating our identity categories and not reducing everything to skin color.

What is needed is a total rejection of the racial obsessions of the far Right and the radical Left, i.e., a rejection of all conceptions of history that make race the fundamental and omnipresent unit of analysis, at the expense of nuance, precision, and ultimately truth. Peering back through thousands of years of history and lumping people into an unchanging (insofar as it caused good or evil) category of “white” actually reifies that category; it ignores that whiteness has not always been the operative and determinant causal factor behind the actions of people with light skin.

Indeed, if the sole operative identity we have for analyzing history is “white males,” how are we to explain (for example) the European wars of religion, or the Napoleonic wars, or the existence of white abolitionists, or all the various things that caused “white people” to ferociously disagree and go to war with one other? We can’t, because by using an inappropriate historical lens, a relatively recent identity category is extended far beyond helpful applicability. Instead, to really grasp the events of history, we must introduce other categories into our analysis — Catholic and Huguenot, British and French, serf and lord, middle class and aristocrat, conservative and liberal, and so forth.

The error to be avoided, then, is the essentializing of “the white race,” a rhetorical move that functions mainly to turn “whites” into abstractions capable only of great good or great evil. White chauvinists and white-bashers must face the fact that white people are neither inherently more evil nor more capable of greatness than any other “race.” The right-wing and the left-wing White Male Theories of History are wrong morally and historically — and for that reason they should be categorically rejected.
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by Christian Alejandro Gonzalez (@xchrisgonz) is a political-science student at Columbia University and a former editorial intern at National Review.

Tags: Christian Alejandro Gonzalez, White Male Theory of History, National Review, Intercollegiate Studies Institute To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service and "Like" Facebook Page - Thanks!

Time To Negotiate On Border Security

With An Agreement To Reopen The Government, It’s Time For Democrats To Keep Their Word, Come To The Table, And Negotiate Seriously On Border Security

SENATE MAJORITY LEADER MITCH McCONNELL (R-KY): “Going forward, I hope Democrats will stay true to the commitment they have stated constantly over the past weeks – that once government was re-opened, they would be perfectly willing to negotiate in good faith on full-year government funding that would include a significant investment in urgently needed border security measures, including physical barriers. After all, the only way that federal workers are going to have stability and certainty beyond the next three weeks, the only way our border is going to have real security, is if Democrats will stop playing partisan games and get serious about negotiating with the president on a long-term compromise. The days ahead will tell us whether my Democratic colleagues are actually serious about securing our nation; whether they actually mean what they say.” (Sen. McConnell, Remarks, 1/25/2019)

‘Democrats Are Happy To Discuss Border Security Under Regular Order With The Government Open’

HOUSE SPEAKER NANCY PELOSI (D-CA): “Right now, there is a path:  Open up government.  Let’s have this discussion on where we can agree on the best ways to protect our borders, to secure our borders …” (Speaker Pelosi, Press Conference, 1/10/2019)
  • SPEAKER PELOSI: “Democrats were hopeful that the President was finally willing to re-open government and proceed with a much-needed discussion to protect the border.” (Speaker Pelosi, Press Release, 1/19/2019)

HOUSE MAJORITY WHIP JIM CLYBURN (D-SC): “We ought to open the government up…. Get people back to work. And then let’s sit around the table and see where the common ground is.” (“Fox News Sunday,” 1/20/2019)

SEN. CHUCK SCHUMER (D-NY): “Democrats are happy to discuss border security under regular order with the government open. We support stronger border security…. [T]here is no reason we can’t negotiate and figure it out.” (Sen. Schumer, Congressional Record, S. 543, 1/24/2019)

SEN. BEN CARDIN (D-MD): “Let’s open government, let’s have 3 weeks, and let’s all be committed to deal with border security in the manner in which this institution in the past has been able to deal with tough issues.” (Sen. Cardin, Congressional Record, S. 567, 1/24/2019)

SEN. TIM KAINE (D-VA): “I will state complete willingness to negotiate with this President and my colleagues over border security.” (Sen. Kaine, Congressional Record, S. 547, 1/24/2019)

SEN. MARK WARNER (D-VA): “Let’s consider the President’s proposal…. This Senator will commit to good-faith negotiations. This Senator will commit to supporting increased border security beyond what we just voted on in the so-called Democratic proposal.” (Sen. Warner, Congressional Record, S. 561, 1/24/2019)

SEN. CHRIS COONS (D-DE): “[W]e are intent on making a good-faith effort to reopen the government for 3 weeks, to promptly support good-faith negotiations, to address the President’s priorities, to discuss what effective, modern investment in border security …” (Sen. Coons, Congressional Record, S. 561, 1/24/2019)

SEN. KYRSTEN SINEMA (D-AZ): “Recently, the President asked the Congress to consider appropriations for border security. I stand in support of working together across the aisle with my colleagues in the Senate to answer that request. Arizona needs enhanced funding for border security …” (Sen. Sinema, Congressional Record, S. 561, 1/24/2019)

SEN. ANGUS KING (I-ME): “I want to be very clear. I am very supportive of border security and of increasing border security. There also may be cases in which there may be parts of the border at which some kind of barrier makes sense and is cost-effective … Take the problem of the shutdown away. Then we can have a discussion and a debate and find a solution through a process …” (Sen. King, Congressional Record, S. 563, 1/24/2019)

SEN. MAGGIE HASSAN (D-NH): “I join with my colleagues in being here this afternoon to simply say that we need to open the government and that I am committed, as all of us are, to negotiate in good faith going forward to find a solution on border security.” (Sen. Hassan, Congressional Record, S. 566, 1/24/2019)

Congressional Democrats: ‘Physical Barriers Are Part Of The Solution,’ ‘Certainly, You Need Barriers’

SEN. DICK DURBIN (D-IL): “Yes, will we end up with more fences and barriers at the end of the day? We’ve done it for two straight years. We’re likely to do it again.” (CNN’s “Newsroom,” 1/17/2019)

SEN. JOE MANCHIN (D-WV): “I voted to fund President Trump’s wall. Check the vote.” (“Manchin Touts Support For Trump Border Wall In New Ad,” The Hill, 6/14/2018)

SEN. MARK WARNER (D-VA): “I know we’re going to have to add additional border security…. We’ve got about 700 miles of existing fencing. Where folks say we need additional barrier protections, I’m all for it.” (Fox News’ “Your World w/ Neil Cavuto,” 1/23/2019)

SEN. ANGUS KING (I-ME): “Everybody is for border security. The question is, let’s do it in a rational, economic, sensible way. There are places where wall makes sense …” (CNN’s “New Day,” 1/07/2019)

SEN. CHRIS COONS (D-DE): “I personally don’t think that a border wall is in and of itself immoral.” (“Fox News Sunday,” 1/13/2019)

SEN. TOM CARPER (D-DE): “I am a huge advocate of border security. I think fencing makes sense in a lot of places. We have hundreds of miles of fencing, and in a lot of places, fences alongside roads make sense.” (Sen. Carper, Congressional Record, S. 194, 1/15/2019)

SEN. BEN CARDIN (D-MD): “Certainly, you need barriers. And we support barriers.” (CNN’s “The Situation Room with Wolf Blitzer,” 1/04/2019)

SEN. JEFF MERKLEY (D-OR): “Some fencing is useful. Some barriers are useful.” (CNN’s “New Day,” 1/07/2019)

FOX NEWS’ NEIL CAVUTO: “Would you yourself be open for wall funding?”

HOUSE MAJORITY LEADER STENY HOYER (D-MD): “Look, I think physical barriers are part of the solution.”

CAVUTO: “You don’t share Nancy Pelosi’s view that a wall is immoral?”

REP. HOYER: “Look, I think it depends upon what a wall is used for whether it’s moral or immoral. If it’s protecting people, it’s moral, if it’s imprisoning people, it may well be immoral. But that’s not the issue. The issue is we want border security. We want to make sure that people who come into the United States of America are authorized to do so and we know that they’ve come in. We don’t want contraband. We don’t want drugs coming in. We don’t want dangerous people coming into the country. So we’re for border security and I think we can get there. (Fox News’ “Your World w/ Neil Cavuto,” 1/22/2019)

REP. COLLIN PETERSON (D-MN), House Agriculture Committee Chairman: “Give Trump the money… I’d give him the whole thing…and put strings on it so you make sure he puts the wall where it needs to be. Why are we fighting over this? We’re going to build that wall anyway, at some time.” (“Peterson Says Democrats Should ‘Give Trump The Money’ For Border Wall,” KFGO, 1/22/2019)

REP. ADAM SMITH (D-WA), House Armed Services Committee Chairman: “The wall is not in itself a bad idea, it’s just – it’s been done.” (ABC News, 1/06/2019)

REP. CHERI BUSTOS (D-IL), DCCC Chair: “If we have a partial wall, if we have fencing, if we have technology used to keep our borders safe, all of that is fine …” (“DCCC Chair Signals Support For ‘Partial Wall’ Funding: ‘There’s Got To Be Some Give And Take,’” The Washington Times, 1/04/2019)

REP. ANTHIONY BRINDISI (D-NY): “Some element of a physical barrier, better technology, more border agents are all things I support.” (“CNY Reps. Katko and Brindisi Share Common Goals: End the Shutdown, Strengthen Southern Border,” WAER, 1/11/2019)

REP. ELISSA SLOTKIN (D-MI): “[A]m I willing to talk about more fencing and more drones and technology and radar and border agents? Absolutely.” (The New York Times, 1/19/2019)

FOX NEWS’ KRISTIN FISHER: “You were saying that you would support some funding for some kind of physical barrier at the border, is that right?”

REP. KATIE HILL (D-CA): “Yeah…. We know that there’s already fencing and other physical barriers across the border in many different places, but there are gaps, and we need to find ways of filling those gaps, repairing the fencing…. For many of us there’s not really doubt that some kind of physical barrier is necessary.” (Fox News, 1/12/2019)

“Rep. Bill Foster (D-Ill.) stood up in the closed-door meeting Wednesday to urge fellow Democrats to consider trading some amount of wall funding for legal protections for the thousands of immigrants brought the country as children …” (“Freshman Dems Feeling The Heat As Shutdown Drags On,” Politico, 1/09/2019)

“‘I’m not going to rule anything out, I really am not,’ [Rep. Colin] Allred [D-TX] responded when asked if he would support some border wall funding in exchange for Democratic immigration priorities.” (“Freshman Dems Feeling The Heat As Shutdown Drags On,” Politico, 1/09/2019)

REP. JOHN GARAMENDI (D-CA): “And there are numerous things that need to be done to enhance border security. Certainly, fences and walls are a piece of it …” (CNN, 12/13/2018)

REP. ABIGAIL SPANBERGER (D-VA): “If I am getting comments and contact from my constituents expressing concern that the Democrats are not prioritizing security, then I think we can do better.” (“Freshman Dems Feeling The Heat As Shutdown Drags On,” Politico, 1/09/2019)

“A group of centrist House Democrats … led by Rep. Elaine Luria of Virginia, is asking the [Speaker Pelosi] to offer Trump a vote on his border wall sometime in February if he signs a bill reopening the federal government, according to a draft copy of the letter obtained by POLITICO…. Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer have vowed not to negotiate on Trump’s border wall with Mexico until the president reopens the government …” (“Centrist Dems Urge Pelosi To Break Shutdown Stalemate,” Politico, 1/22/2019)

Tags: Time To Negotiate, Border Security To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service and "Like" Facebook Page - Thanks!

Open Again, Trump Takes Action, Restoring Balance To The Courts

Gary Bauer
by Gary Bauer, Contributing Author: Open Again, For Now - Yesterday the Senate failed to act on two proposals to end the shutdown. As a result, 800,000 federal workers missed their second paycheck today.

This morning, major airports began reporting serious flight delays due to an "increase in sick leave." Flights at New York's LaGuardia airport ground to a halt. Several air traffic controllers in Texas reportedly resigned.

Meanwhile, thousands of illegal immigrants are still pouring across the border and another migrant caravan just crossed into Mexico as it marches north.

The crisis at the border is unacceptable, as is the dysfunction in Washington. This stalemate must end.

Moments ago, President Trump announced that he has agreed to temporarily re-open the government. The president praised federal workers and promised that they would receive back pay very quickly.

Throughout the shutdown, Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Democrat Leader Chuck Schumer have repeatedly refused to negotiate with President Trump. They have also repeatedly blocked Republican efforts to pay government workers. (Here, here and here.)

So President Trump is breaking the logjam and giving Schumer and Pelosi one last chance to come to the table.

President Trump said that members of Congress would immediately begin negotiating a homeland security package to secure the border, and that walls must be part of the solution. Without a deal, the president warned that the government would shut down again in mid-February.

Noting that we already have 700 miles of barriers and fencing, the president said, "Walls should not be controversial. Every Border Patrol agent I have spoken to has told me that walls work."

President Trump also had a warning for members of Congress. He said, "I have a powerful alternative, but hopefully it won't be necessary at this time."

I was at the White House yesterday and I can tell you that President Trump is seriously considering declaring the situation at the border to be a national emergency. An emergency declaration would allow the president to use unspent money from various agencies to start building additional border barriers.

Of course, the left will challenge any such declaration in the courts, just as it has challenged virtually everything Trump has done. But there is no questioning the president's authority here. There are currently 32 active national emergencies.

And just as the Supreme Court upheld the president's authority to limit immigration from certain nations, I believe the Court would find that the president has the constitutional right to secure the border.

But as the president said, hopefully that won't be necessary. Hopefully, members of Congress will do their jobs and provide the resources necessary to secure the border.

Trump Takes Action - President Trump isn't allowing the stalemate over the border wall to slow him down. He is taking steps to combat one of the biggest loopholes in our immigration laws -- fake asylum claims.

Currently, any illegal immigrant who manages to cross our border is virtually guaranteed to stay as long they claim to be seeking asylum from something. The law requires that they be released into the country pending a hearing, which takes years.

Because of this loophole, asylum claims have skyrocketed 1,700% over the past decade. But we also know that the vast majority of these claims are invalid and that most illegal immigrants claiming asylum never show up for their hearings.

For those reasons, the Trump Administration announced that Central American migrants making asylum claims will have to remain in Mexico while we process their applications and consider their cases. Starting today, some migrants currently in the U.S. are being sent back to Mexico.

Restoring Balance To The Courts - President Trump this week nominated 51 judges to the federal courts. If confirmed, these judges would fill approximately one-third of the total federal judicial vacancies that currently exist. Their appointments would go a long way toward restoring balance to our courts.

In related news, the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals recently lifted an injunction that had prevented the state of Texas from denying taxpayer funds to Planned Parenthood. The abortion provider stands to lose $3.4 million as a result of the decision.

In its ruling, the court pointed to undercover videos by the Center for Medical Progress proving that Planned Parenthood was harvesting body parts from aborted babies and likely violating laws against late-term abortions.

Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton praised the decision, saying, "Planned Parenthood's reprehensible conduct, captured in undercover videos, proves that it is not a 'qualified' provider under the Medicaid Act."

Prayers For Joni - In an emotional announcement Wednesday, Sen. Joni Ernst (R-IA) revealed she had been raped in college. There have also been public reports about the dissolution of her marriage in recent days.

I know Sen. Ernst. She is a good lady and a strong pro-life voice in the Senate. I am certain she would appreciate your prayers at this difficult time.
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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, Open Again, Trump Takes Action, Restoring Balance To The Courts To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service and "Like" Facebook Page - Thanks!

Exclusive: Mike Rowe Exposes The ‘Dirty’ Truth About America’s Skills Gap And Flatlining Workforce

Mike Rowe 
by Beth Baumann: Mike Rowe is known for going where no man (or woman for that matter) wants to go, which is how his hit TV show “Dirty Jobs” came about. He has traveled across the United States and explored a wide range of blue collar jobs, from crabbing in Alaska to pig farming in Las Vegas. Part of seeing the various blue collar jobs that exist in our country has made Rowe realize one thing: there’s a serious skills gap. Kids are being taught from a young age that they have to go to college and take out student loans in order to be successful for life.

Here’s the problem: America’s landscape has changed over the years. In the 1950s, 60s and 70s America was built on blue collar jobs. There was a desperate need for people to attend college in order to obtain white collar jobs. There was a shortage of educated individuals. But the public relations campaign used to push people into pursing college degrees had the opposite impact and actually tipped the scale the opposite direction. Instead of having a lack of people in vocations that require a college education, we now see a huge vacancy in so-called “dirty jobs,” the jobs that are absolutely vital to our economy, and quite frankly, our way of life.

We need plumbers, electricians, mechanics and a wide range of manufacturing jobs in order to thrive. There’s job vacancies yet our future generations are being told they need to pursue college or else they’re doomed to fail. While we’re building up every single person to believe college is the only way to be successful, our country has more than 44 million borrowers who collectively owe more than $1.5 trillion.

“We have lent over $1.5 trillion to kids who can’t pay it back so they can spend four years trying to get jobs that don’t exist,” Rowe said during his address to those attending SHOT Show’s State of the Industry Reception.

America is doing a disservice to itself by assuming everyone needs to be college graduates or everyone needs to work with their hands.

Why can’t both co-exist? Why can’t both be open for discussion and consideration? Why is education looked upon more favorably and “dirty jobs” are just that…dirty?

Let’s be frank here. It’s not because a job is beneath anyone. It’s because people believe they’re better than others if they have an education.

Think about it.

Did you go to college?

When’s the last time you said you were glad you didn’t have to truck in produce across state lines or collect garbage from local cities?

When’s the last time you were glad you could call a plumber or an electrician to fix something when it’s broken?

We’ve become so focused on jobs that we think we should have verses the jobs we think we need that we’ve actually created our own economic nightmare. But that’s where Rowe and the mikeroweWORKS Foundation come in. Back in 2008, the TV star decided to give back to the people who made “Dirty Jobs” such a success.

“It was ‘Dirty Jobs’ in part, and my grandfather, in part but it was mostly, because in 2008, I had done well by ‘Dirty Jobs.’ It was a hit show and people seemed to love it in a couple hundred countries and then the economy tanked, and what happened was the unemployment numbers went higher and higher and higher every week it seemed and the skills gap got wider and wider and wider at the same time,” Rowe told Townhall. “So, on the one hand, more people were out of work than ever before, on the other hand we had 2.3 million decent jobs that were open and no one was trained to do. So, I started the Foundation, initially, to shine a light on the opportunities that actually existed, that were going unloved.”

Over the last decade, Rowe has done speaking engagements, interviews and talks focused solely on the idea that America needs to embrace these so-called “dirty jobs.” His Foundation now has the Work Ethic Scholarship for those who want to pursue a job in the trades industry. The Foundation has given out more than 1,000 scholarships valued at over $5 million and helped facilitate trainings in more than 15 trades.

“I wanted to give back to the industries that allowed ‘Dirty Jobs’ to prosper and my granddad, who didn’t go to college, didn’t even go to high school, but made a wonderful living and took care of his family and mastered half a dozen different trades,” Rowe explained. “Those men and women, they’re invisible today. It’s like the song ‘Mr. Cellophane,’ you just look right through them.”

We, as a society, can change that narrative, if we’re willing to. And it starts with each and every one of us realizing that there is no job too small or important to pursue. The narrative change starts with every individual person comping to this understanding.

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Beth Baumann (@eb454) is a contributing author at Bearing Arms.

Tags: Beth Baumann, Bearing Arms, Mike Rowe, exposes, dirty truth, America's sills gap, flatlining workforce To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service and "Like" Facebook Page - Thanks!

Week Of Military & Diplomatic Success For Israel; Failure & Humiliation For Iran & The PA

. . . On the political and military fronts, Israel outmaneuvers its enemies.
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu
by Ari Lieberman: Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu secured another diplomatic victory for Israel with the dramatic announcement that Chad and the Jewish State would be reestablishing diplomatic relations. The Muslim majority nation had severed ties in 1972 following intense pressure from Libya, its menacing neighbor to the north, which at the time was led by the dictator, Col. Muammar Qaddafi. But following a visit by Chad’s President Idriss Déby to Jerusalem and a reciprocating visit by PM Netanyahu to N’Djamena, forty-seven years of animosity instantly vanished.

Israel’s historic diplomatic achievement occurred despite intense efforts by the Palestinian Authority and Iran to torpedo the initiative, and reflects a rise in Israel’s standing on the African continent and in the Muslim world at large. Indeed, Israel has much to offer in terms of military expertise, cyber technology, water technology and agricultural technology, commodities that are in high demand in parched, battle-plagued Africa.

Upon Netanyahu’s return flight to Israel, Sudan granted permission for Netanyahu’s plane to fly in airspace controlled by Khartoum. This may seem to be insignificant but considering that Sudan was once firmly in Iran’s camp and served as an Iranian transit point for arms shipments to Gaza, the gesture was remarkable.

Following the breakthrough with Chad, Jerusalem announced that it is preparing to host Mali’s Prime Minister Soumeylou Boubeye Maiga in the “coming weeks.” The West African Muslim majority nation severed diplomatic relations with Israel during the 1973 Yom Kippur War but is now set to restore full diplomatic ties.

Muslim nations from the Near East to Africa are coming to terms with the fact that the source Mideast’s instability is not Israel and its conflict with the so-called “Palestinians” but rather Islamic fundamentalism. Shia Iran is recognized as a malign regional influence while ISIS and the Muslim Brotherhood represent bad actors of the Sunni persuasion. In this context, moderate Muslim nations like Oman, which recently hosted Netanyahu in a well-publicized visit, see Israel as an ally rather than a foe.

Palestinian efforts to isolate Israel have failed miserably and this is a reflection of a rejectionist, maximalist political policy rife with short-sighted, unrealistic goals. In the arena of diplomacy, Israel, led by its savvy statesman Netanyahu, has completely outmaneuvered and outclassed the PA’s crusty octogenarian president, Mahmoud Abbas.

In addition to its political fortunes, Israel this week scored impressive military successes. On January 20, in a rare daylight raid, Israel struck what was believed to be a weapons storage facility near Damascus. Iran, which provides Hezbollah with $800 million in annual military assistance, uses Syria’s Damascus airport as a waystation for transit of weapons to Hezbollah. Soon after the attack, Iranian Quds Force operatives launched a Fateh 110 short-range ballistic missile (SRBM) at northern Israel. The missile, which is made in Iran, incorporates Chinese components and carries a ½ ton warhead. Had it landed in a populated area, it could have caused massive civilian casualties.

Israeli missile defense crews detected the launch and intercepted it with a Tamir interceptor fired by an Iron Dome battery. Israeli skiers enjoying themselves at the Golan Heights ski resort watched the drama unfold as Israel’s wonder weapon blew the Iranian missile out of the sky. As an aside, the U.S. Army recently announced that it will be acquiring two Iron Dome batteries with 12 launchers, 240 interception missiles, two battle-management systems and two radar systems to shield American ground troops from missile, rocket and drone threats. On January 20, Iron Dome proved that it is as adept at shooting down ballistic missiles fired by Iran as it is at shooting down Qassam and Katyusha rockets fired by Hamas.

Israel could not let the Iranian aggression stand unanswered. In the early hours of Monday morning, Israel launched massive and successive strikes against Quds Force munition storage sites, intelligence sites and training camps, reducing them to ash. According to the London-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, the attack caused the death of at least 21 enemy combatants of whom 12 were Iranian, six were Syrian regime soldiers and three were foreign mercenaries of unspecified nationality. An Israeli warning to the Syrians to keep their anti-aircraft defenses in check went unheeded and so, Israel was forced to destroy a number of Syrian anti-aircraft platforms. The Israeli Army released dramatic video footage showing the destruction of Syrian anti-aircraft batteries.

Syria’s anti-aircraft defenses are formidable but despite the presence of Russian SA-17, SA-22, S-200 and S-300 anti-aircraft batteries, Israel retains complete air supremacy over the skies of Syria. Syria’s main patron Russia responded angrily to the Israeli strikes referring to them as “arbitrary.” But the Russians, who assured Israel that they would keep Iran far from Israel’s borders, have not kept up to their end of the bargain. A report which surfaced in Arab media alleged that a visit by Quds Force Commander, Qassem Soleimani, to a location less than 40km from the Golan Heights triggered the Israeli reaction. Israel’s intelligence apparatus in Syria is excellent and Israeli intelligence units had apparently been monitoring Soleimani’s movements.

This was a good week for Israel both militarily and politically. Israel continues to charter inroads on the African continent while at the same time, its military stands ready to check aggression emanating from nefarious elements to the north, south and east.
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Ari Lieberman is an attorney and former prosecutor who has authored numerous articles and publications on matters concerning the Middle East and is considered an authority on geo-political and military developments affecting the region.  He is an author at FrontPage Mag an outreach of the the David Horowitz Freedom Center.  David Horowitz is a Contributing Author of the ARRA News Service.

Tags: FrontPage Mag, Ari Lieberman, Military, Diplomatic Success, Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, Israel, Iran, The PA, Failure,Humiliation To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service and "Like" Facebook Page - Thanks!

This Little-Known Fact Will Make It Harder To Tackle The National Debt

by Dennis W. Jansen and Thomas R. Saving: Federal Reserve contributions toward national debt payments are falling!

The federal government is skirting dangerous shoals with an irresponsible fiscal policy.

We are running massive budget deficits in a booming peacetime economy. These deficits are increasing our federal debt—which means we are also paying more to service the debt and more interest on every dollar of debt.

Although the Federal Reserve has been covering a significant portion of those servicing costs since the debt started ballooning in 2007, Fed revenues are declining, so it won’t be able to shoulder as much of that burden.

Revenue from the Fed
It is not widely recognized that the Fed is a source of federal government revenue. The Fed creates money and uses that money to purchase assets, typically government bonds. These assets earn interest, generating revenue for the Fed. After paying its expenses, the Fed returns the remainder of its revenues to the U.S. Treasury, which has been using it to service the federal debt.

In 2006, prior to the financial crisis and the Great Recession, the Fed held assets of $873.4 billion and had relatively few actual liabilities.

That year, the Fed’s interest earnings were $36.8 billion and interest expenses were $1.3 billion. After paying operating expenses, the Fed returned $29.1 billion to the Treasury.

Fed’s Balance Sheet Expands
In the aftermath of the Great Recession, several changes occurred. First, the Fed greatly expanded the assets and liabilities on its balance sheet. In doing so, it created an equally large amount of funds in the form of reserves or currency.

Second, to keep the money supply from expanding proportionally with the increase in assets—that is, in order to keep inflation in check—the Fed began for the first time to pay interest on bank reserves. The Fed did this to give banks an incentive to hold part of the newly issued funds as bank reserves in lieu of putting these funds into circulation.

Third, because the interest rate on Fed assets was greater than the interest rate on these bank reserves, the interest earned on the increase in Fed assets exceeded the interest it paid on the higher bank reserves.

The net effect was a large increase in both Fed net revenue and, therefore, in Fed payments to the Treasury. In fact, by 2010, the Fed was financing 39 percent of the interest cost of the national debt, and such high levels of financing continued through 2016, when Fed transfers to the Treasury reached $100 billion and covered 48 percent of the interest cost of the debt. But since 2016, the Fed has been covering less of that cost.

Declining Fed Transfers
In fiscal year 2018, the debt service cost was $322 billion and Fed transfers are projected to be $60 billion, or only 21 percent of the debt servicing cost. The Congressional Budget Office projects that in 2019, Fed transfers will cover only 11 percent of debt servicing cost, and by 2020 the Fed will cover less than 10 percent of a debt service cost of $485 billion.

This decline is dramatic: in a mere four years, the Fed will move from covering half of the debt servicing cost and one quarter of the deficit to under 10 percent of debt servicing and 5 percent of the deficit.

Rising Debt Service Costs
What is behind this decline in the Fed’s contribution to the Treasury?

First, it’s important to understand why interest payments are rising. As mentioned, as the national debt grows, the cost of servicing it for a given interest rate also grows. Another reason is that the interest rate on government bonds was unusually low in the aftermath of the financial crisis but has now returned to more typical levels, meaning that newly issued debt now incurs a higher interest rate than it did before. Further, some portion of the outstanding debt matures each year and is rolled over by the Treasury into new debt, and this new debt is refinanced at current, higher interest rates.

Rising Long-Term Rates
But why are the Fed’s contributions falling so dramatically? Fed earnings are tied to the difference between the interest earned on its assets and the interest paid on its liabilities (that is, bank reserves). The Fed’s assets are mostly comprised of long-term securities for which the interest payments were set on their issue date. As long-term interest rates rise and existing securities mature, the Fed replaces them with securities paying the higher interest rate. In essence, the rise in rates affects the Fed’s earnings, but with a long lag.

To maintain control of the money supply, the Fed must quickly raise the short-term interest rate it pays on bank reserves. To make matters worse, short-term rates are rising faster than long-term rates, and the interest rate the Fed pays on reserves is rising faster than interest rates in general.

What does this mean for U.S. fiscal policy? The deficit and the cost of servicing the debt now take up more than half of all federal income tax revenue. The days of the Treasury counting on the Fed to help out with government finances are coming rapidly to a close, and the full bill for our fiscal policy choices is coming due.
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Dennis W. Jansen is director of the Private Enterprise Research Center and a professor of economics at Texas A&M University. Thomas R. Saving is director emeritus of the Private Enterprise Research Center and university distinguished professor of economics emeritus at Texas A&M University. Article shared by The Heartland Institute (@HeartlandInst).

Tags: Little-Known Fact, Will Make It Harder, To Tackle, The National Debt, The Heartland Institute, Dennis W. Jansen, Thomas R. Saving To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service and "Like" Facebook Page - Thanks!

Omega Girl . . .

. . . Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez says the world will end due to Global Warming in 12 years, some say she should be more concerned for her party with crazy ideas like that.
Editorial Cartoon by AF "Tony" Branco

Tags: Editorial Cartoon, AF Branco, Omega Girl, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, says, world will end, due to Global Warming, in 12 years, she should be more concerned, for her party, crazy ideas To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service and "Like" Facebook Page - Thanks!

Does the Media Deserve to Be Respected and Believed?

Michael Barone
by Michael Barone: Is it true that Donald Trump's bad habits are contagious? Is it true that his Democratic opponents and, even more, his critics in the press are increasingly given to terminological inexactitudes, if not downright lies?

Sure looks like it. Last week, large parts of the press -- we're looking at you, CNN and MSNBC -- were gleefully reporting and commenting on the BuzzFeed story about President Trump having allegedly ordered his former personal lawyer Michael Cohen to lie to members of special prosecutor Robert Mueller's staff.

There were lots of smiles and (if we can use the word to describe liberals) smirks on their faces as they contemplated the ramifications. Some did note perfunctorily that the story was only noteworthy "if true." Others pointed out, accurately, that several conservative commentators opined that the charge would justify Trump's impeachment and removal from office.

The fun stopped suddenly last Friday night when a spokesman for Mueller's office said in a statement, "BuzzFeed's description of specific statements to the Special Counsel's Office, and characterization of documents and testimony obtained by this office, regarding Michael Cohen's Congressional testimony are not accurate."

Time to reprise all those 40-year-old Emily Litella riffs from "Saturday Night Live." In this case, the "never mind" moment came from CNN chief legal analyst Jeffrey Toobin. "The larger message that a lot of people are going to take from this story," he said to four glum panel members, "is that the news media are a bunch of leftist liars who are dying to get the president, and they're willing to lie to do it."

"I don't think that's true," he added, "but ... I just think this is a bad day for us. ... It reinforces every bad stereotype about the news media." Yup.

So does the media reaction the next day to a snippet of video, taken near the Lincoln Memorial after the March for Life, that shows Kentucky school students from Covington Catholic High School wearing red MAGA (Make America Great Again) hats and facing Omaha Indian elder Nathan Phillips. Multiple members of the media, including some notable conservatives, accused the students of behaving in a bigoted, disrespectful and threatening manner. There were calls for them to be expelled from school and doxxing attacks launched against their families. Student Nick Sandmann was mocked for the nervous smile ("smirk") he gave as Phillips banged his drum just short of his face.

More extensive video footage, covering nearly two hours at the memorial, told a different and opposite story. (The best accounts to date are two articles by Robby Soave in Reason magazine.) They made it clear that the Covington Catholic students were pummeled for an hour by vicious and racist comments ("crackers," "faggots," "pedophiles") from four or five black men calling themselves the Black Hebrew Israelites.

And they made it clear that amid the hubbub of the students singing school chants, it was Phillips who, rather than being surrounded by the students, approached them, banging loudly on a drum while making chants of his own. No one listening to the tape has publicly supported Phillips' claim that the students chanted, "Build the wall!"

Apologies came in from many, including conservatives but also some liberals who had contributed to the tweetstorm castigating the students. Many deleted their negative tweets. Others continued to insist that the students are bigoted oppressors.

The media responded, too, whether out of a desire to report accurately or to avoid a libel action. "Fuller Picture Emerges of Viral Video of Native American Man and Catholic Students," read the headline on a Sunday New York Times story.

American libel law requires actual malice, or reckless disregard of facts, by the media before a public figure can collect. But the students were not public figures as they gathered at the Lincoln Memorial to meet their bus, and the ready availability of exonerating videotape suggests that the first accusatory stories were rushed into print with reckless disregard of available facts. I sure wouldn't want to defend them before a Kentucky jury.

Anyone reading through the tweetstorms, especially of those who continue to vilify the Covington Catholic students, cannot help but be struck by the visceral and seething hatred of so many in the press for adolescents whose behavior was, at worst, a bit discourteous, but who are guilty of the offenses of being white, male, Catholic, pro-life and supportive of the current president.

Is this the behavior of a press that deserves to be respected and believed?
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Michael Barone is a Senior Political Analyst for the Washington Examiner and a Resident Fellow at the American Enterprise Institute, a Fox News Channel  and co-author of The Almanac of American Politics Shared by Rasmussen Reports.

Tags: Michael Barone, editorial, Rasmussen Reports, Media, Respected, Believed To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service and "Like" Facebook Page - Thanks!

Democrats’ America: The Heart of Darkness

by Patrick Buchanan: If it was the dream of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. that black and white would come together in friendship and peace to do justice, his acolytes in today’s Democratic Party appear to have missed that part of his message.

Here is Hakeem Jeffries, fourth-ranked Democrat in Nancy Pelosi’s House, speaking Monday, on the holiday set aside to honor King:

“We have a hater in the White House. The birther in chief. The grand wizard of 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue. … While Jim Crow may be dead, he’s still got some nieces and nephews that are alive and well.”

At the headquarters of Al Sharpton’s National Action Network, wrote The New York Times, Jeffries’ remarks were “met with … much cheering.”

At a Boston breakfast that same day, Sen. Elizabeth Warren chose to honor King’s memory in her way: “Our government is shut down for one reason … So the president of the United States can fund a monument to hate and division along our southern border.”

At a rally in Columbia, South Carolina, Sen. Cory Booker declaimed — in what could be taken as a shot at his New Jersey colleague, the lately acquitted Sen. Bob Menendez — “We live a nation where you get a better justice system if you’re rich and guilty than poor and innocent.”

Booker urged the crowd “to apply the ideals of Dr. King” and avoid vitriol in dealing with political adversaries.

But his Senate colleague Bernie Sanders, also in South Carolina, wasn’t buying it. Routed by Hillary Clinton in the South Carolina primary in 2016, Sanders is determined not to lose the party’s African-American majority that badly in 2020.

“Today we talk about racism,” said Sanders. “It gives me no pleasure to tell you that we now have a president of the United States who is a racist.”

Sanders apparently connected, with his remarks “drawing applause.”

Joe Biden spoke in D.C. in the full apology-tour mode made famous by his former boss, Barack Obama. He brought up the 1994 crime bill he shepherded though the Senate, which treated consumption and distribution of crack cocaine as more serious crimes than the use of powder cocaine, and then confessed to the crowd that it was “a big mistake.”

“We were told by the experts that, ‘crack you never go back,’ that the two were somehow fundamentally different. It’s not. But it’s trapped an entire generation.”

Biden meant that lots of black folks got locked up for a long time, unjustly, conceding, “We may not have always got things right.”

Biden then proceeded to slander the nation that has honored him as it has few of his generation: “Systematic racism that most of us whites don’t even like to acknowledge” is “built into every aspect of our system.”

Is America, 50 years after segregation was outlawed in our public life, really a land saturated with systemic racism?

Mayor Michael Bloomberg was also in D.C.

The mayor’s problem with African-Americans is that he pursued a policy of stop-and-frisk with criminal suspects in New York. So, he sought to find common ground with his audience by relating “a series of events that had shaped his recent thinking about race.”

The mayor said he had “recently learned about the deadly race riots in which white residents destroyed the Greenwood district of Tulsa, Oklahoma, in 1921, and murdered several dozen black residents.”

But why did his honor have to go all the way back to 1921 and Tulsa to find race riots, when Harlem, in the heart of the town he served as mayor for 12 years, exploded in a riot in 1964 that spread to Brooklyn and Queens and lasted six days?

Why did Bloomberg not bring up the worst riot in U.S. history, when Lincoln sent Union veterans of Gettysburg to shoot down Irish immigrants protesting the draft in New York?

“It’s up to us to bring these stories out of the shadows so they never happen again,” said the mayor.

But where are black communities threatened by white mob violence in 2019? Was the Watts riot of 1965, were the Detroit and Newark riots of 1967, was the rioting, looting and arson that ravaged 100 cities after King’s death a result of rampaging whites assaulting black folks?

Was the LA riot of 1992, which targeted Koreatown, the work of white racists?

Monday, after a meeting with Sharpton, Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand offered her message of conciliation. Said the successor to Sen. Hillary Clinton, President Trump has “inspired a hate and a darkness in this country that I have never experienced myself.

“It is wrong to ask men and women of color to bear these burdens every single day. … White women like me must bear part of this burden.”

Does there not come a time when the pandering has to stop?

Ronald Reagan preached America as the Pilgrim fathers’ “shining city on a hill.” For Democrats today, America is the heart of darkness.

Can people lead a republic that they have come to see as a sinkhole of racism?
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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.

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Use The Government Shutdown To Reform The Government

by Robert Romano: By now, more than a month into the partial federal government shutdown, affected departments and agencies should be learning a lot about which of their non-essential employees are in fact simply not necessary in order to achieve their missions.

Towards that end, the Office of Management and Budget can invoke federal regulations that allow departments and agencies to issue plans to reorganize themselves. According to 5 CFR 351.201(a)(1): “Each agency is responsible for determining the categories within which positions are required, where they are to be located, and when they are to be filled, abolished, or vacated. This includes determining when there is a surplus of employees at a particular location in a particular line of work.”

If it determines that certain employees or positions are unnecessary, it can then proceed with plans to downsize its workforce, starting with administrative furloughs and, eventually, reductions in force.

As noted by the American Thinker’s Thomas Lifson, who wrote in a recent column, “it would require an actual reorganization plan that would make furloughed positions permanently identified as unnecessary, in order for the furloughs to be [reduction in force]ed.”

Such a plan would take time to implement, but is not contingent on the government being shut down. Again, per federal regulations, “Each agency is responsible for determining the categories within which positions are required…” By now, each agency should have a lot of data from the shutdown to make that determination, and such a review could continue even after the government is reopened.

During this particular shutdown about half of the 800,000 furloughed workers were deemed non-essential. That’s a good place to start, since taxpayers may naturally begin to wonder why non-essential employees are even on the job.

And in terms of resolving the current disagreement between President Donald Trump and Congressional Democrats, such a government reorganization plan could provide an additional item for lawmakers to consider. After all, the debate is not merely about border security and the wall, but what funding levels ought to be for the entire fiscal year.

A timely review by departments and agencies across the board could result in a means to reduce the size and scope of government, in time for September 30, when Fiscal Year 2019 ends. With nearly $22 trillion in national debt and perhaps another $1 trillion to be added this year alone, now would be a good time to figure what parts of the government we need—and those we can do without.

Every year, households manage to budget their finances. Shouldn’t we expect the same thing from Congress?
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Robert Romano is the Vice President of Public Policy at Americans for Limited Government.

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Meet the Heretics: Not Every Liberal has Trump Derangement Syndrome

Larry Elder
by Larry Elder: Regular viewers of ABC, NBC and CBS evening newscasts could be forgiven it they believe every liberal despises President Donald Trump. According to the Media Research Center, a conservative media watchdog, the broadcast networks’ 2018 coverage of President Trump remained as hostile as that of the year before. MRC reports, “The tone of coverage remains incessantly hostile: 90 percent negative, vs. just 10 percent positive (excluding neutral statements), matching the historically bad press we documented in 2017.”

Trump-haters feast on three big supposed outrages.

First, they claim that Trump operates as Russian President Vladimir Putin’s lap dog. The President counters that he has “been FAR tougher on Russia than Obama, Bush or Clinton. Maybe tougher than any other President.” Second, on immigration, they accuse Trump of hatred and xenophobia. Trump argues that his position merely mirrors that of recent Democratic leadership. Third, they insist that Trump colluded, conspired or coordinated with Putin to win the presidential election. Trump angrily dismisses this investigation as a “witch hunt,” and claims Special Counsel Robert Mueller lacks evidence that implicates him in some sort of “collusion.”

Most liberals completely dismiss Trump’s defenses. But not all liberals.

Trump and Putin

A July 2018 NPR “Morning Edition” broadcast called “Is Trump the Toughest Ever on Russia?” examined Trump’s assertion, “There’s never been a president as tough on Russia as I have been.” NPR largely agreed, “That might sound like hyperbole, but in this case, there’s actually some basis for the President’s boast.” Trump, said NPR, increased spending on the European Deterrence Initiative; sent lethal weapons to Ukraine (which President Barack Obama resisted doing); changed our military’s rules of engagement in Syria, which resulted in hundreds of dead Russian soldiers; pushed for greater domestic energy production, potentially harming Russian oil market share; and sanctioned dozens of Russian “oligarchs.” NPR quoted Daniel Vajdich, a senior fellow at the Atlantic Council, who said, “When you actually look at the substance of what this administration has done, not the rhetoric but the substance, this administration has been much tougher on Russia than any in the post-Cold War era.”

Trump on immigration

Peter Beinart, a liberal columnist at The Atlantic, has also written for Time magazine and The New York Times. In August 2017, he took fellow liberals to task for their complete turnaround on the issue of illegal immigration. In “How the Democrats Lost Their Way on Immigration: In the Past Decade, Liberals Have Avoided Inconvenient Truths About the Issue,” Beinart said liberals used to sound like Trump: “In 2006, a liberal columnist wrote that ‘immigration reduces the wages of domestic workers who compete with immigrants’ and that ‘the fiscal burden of low-wage immigrants is also pretty clear.’ His conclusion: ‘We’ll need to reduce the inflow of low-skill immigrants.’ That same year, a Democratic senator wrote: ‘When I see Mexican flags waved at pro-immigration demonstrations, I sometimes feel a flush of patriotic resentment. When I’m forced to use a translator to communicate with the guy fixing my car, I feel a certain frustration.’ … The columnist was (New York Times’) Paul Krugman. The senator was Barack Obama.”

Beinart said Democrats used to argue that illegals took jobs away from Americans and put downward pressure on Americans’ wages. But Democrats switched their position when political winds switched. “A larger explanation is political,” writes Beinart. “Between 2008 and 2016, Democrats became more and more confident that the country’s growing Latino population gave the party an electoral edge. To win the presidency, Democrats convinced themselves, they didn’t need to reassure white people skeptical of immigration so long as they turned out their Latino base.”

Trump and Russian “Collusion”

T.A. Frank, who writes for Vanity Fair, is a self-described liberal. He recently warned “Trump haters” to brace themselves for a letdown when Mueller releases his report, because “those who hope for an unveiling of indictments linking Putin and Trump in a grand conspiracy have no more reason to celebrate than they did a week or a month ago.” As to Trump’s alleged softness toward Russia, Frank concurs with NPR. “Trump’s White House,” he wrote, “has pursued what is arguably the harshest set of policies toward Russia since the fall of communism.”

Frank, of course, acknowledged the guilty pleas of several Trump associates and has slammed them and Trump for their “sleazy” behavior. “But,” writes Frank, “the purpose of the investigation was to address suspicions of underlying conspiracy — that is, a plan by Trump staffers to get Russian help on a criminal effort. Despite countless man-hours of digging, this conspiracy theory, the one that’s been paying the bills at (“The Rachel Maddow Show”) for a couple of years now, has come no closer to being borne out.”

So, for those of you who did not vote for Trump and yet do not consider him a combination of Darth Vader, Adolf Hitler and Alfred E. Neuman, take comfort. You are not alone. At least, not completely alone.
---------------
Larry Elder (@larryelder) is a best-selling author and radio talk-show host, an American lawyer, writer and radio and television personality who is also known as the "Sage From South Central." To find out more about Larry Elder. Visit his website at LarryElder.com for list of other articles.

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