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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, June 07, 2019

Biden: Dr. Jekyll and No More Hyde

by Tony Perkins: If you're keeping track of Joe Biden's policy positions, you'd better have plenty of erasers. The former vice president has done so much waffling he ought to buy a maple syrup company. On taxpayer-funded abortion alone, he's had three positions in three weeks. The Democratic front-runner has changed his mind so much that most people probably don't even know which statement he's reversing at this point.

The short version goes something like this: he does, he doesn't, he does again. When an ACLU "volunteer" ambushed Biden at an event May, Barack Obama's second-in-command said twice: the Hyde amendment has to go. Two weeks, later, he told reporters he didn't understand the woman's question -- not the first time he answered it, and apparently, not the second. "He has not at this point changed his [support for] the Hyde amendment," his campaign clarified on ABC News. He "misheard the woman," Biden's staffers explained, "and thought she was referring to the Mexico City policy."

Until 2016, a lot of Democrats felt like Biden did -- that regardless of how people feel about abortion, Americans shouldn't be forced to fund it. Then came the new party platform, which torpedoed Hyde and sent moderates packing. Sticking to his stance would have set Biden apart as the reasonable voice on abortion that his party is not. Instead, after a little tug at the strings from NARAL and Planned Parenthood, he snapped to attention and saluted the new Democratic Party abortion orthodoxy turning his back on 40 years of common sense. Barely a day later, he'd been reeled back to the pack -- like a breakaway rider caught by the peloton.

In a speech Thursday, he might as well have said, "About those four decades I spent defending taxpayers: just kidding!" What he actually told the audience is that he'd been struggling with the "problems" of the Hyde amendment and decided (again) he could "no could "no longer support [it]." "If I believe health care is a right, as I do, I can no longer support an amendment that makes that right dependent on someone's zip code." Huh? It's bad enough that his on-again, off-again relationship with abortion funding is harder to track than a celebrity couple -- but what do zip codes have to do with it?

Planned Parenthood tried to explain in its 'atta-boy tweet, insisting that blocking taxpayer-funded abortion somehow hurts minority women. False. What actually hurts minorities is abortion, which disproportionately targets them -- and has, since Margaret Sanger founded the organization. Even now her eugenics legacy lives on, Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas argued, in a scathing opinion this month on race-based abortion.

Eight decades after Margaret Sanger set up her birth-control clinic in Harlem, Justice Thomas writes, "there are areas of New York City in which black children are more likely to be aborted than they are to be born alive -- and are up to eight times more likely to be aborted than white children in the same area." Leana Wen's clinics alone kill 247 black babies a day. So if you want to talk about zip codes, try Planned Parenthood's. An overwhelming majority are located in black or Hispanic neighborhoods. That's not a coincidence. It's a business model.

Meanwhile, Joe Biden isn't the only one burning through flip-flops. The same radical candidates who welcomed him back to Left field aren't exactly the picture of consistency on Hyde. "Nearly every member of Congress running for president has voted multiple times for spending bills that include Hyde language," the Washington Post reports. "Democratic Sens. Michael Bennet (Colo.), Cory Booker (N.J.), Kirsten Gillibrand (N.Y.), Kamala Harris (Calif.), Amy Klobuchar (Minn.) and Elizabeth Warren (Mass.) all voted for a bill passed in September that funded HHS along with the departments of Labor, Defense and Education. So did Democratic Reps. Tulsi Gabbard (Hawaii) and Seth Moulton (Mass.), as well as former congressman Beto O'Rourke (Texas.)."

Funny, the Post went on, "but those realities didn't stop many of the contenders from piling on Biden, after his campaign said Wednesday that he still backed Hyde. One of those cultural chameleons, Amy Klobuchar, insisted that backing a wall between taxpayers and abortion would have been "a big problem" for Biden. But says who? Certainly not Americans -- or even Democrats -- who support Hyde 2-1. What she probably meant to say is that it would have been a big problem for the extremist fringe calling the shots. Biden, like the other 22 candidates, is just showing himself for what he is: a puppet on the strings of radical abortion, LGBT activists.

It's pathetic, NRO's Rich Lowry agrees. "This isn't a move of a confident front-runner. It shows that whatever is Biden's relative moderation compared to the rest of the field will be eroded during this process. Disorderly retreats like this, if they become a pattern, also have potential to harm his image as a strong general-election candidate. If he's the nominee, his new support for taxpayer-funded abortion will certainly be a liability in the Rust Belt, where Trump currently needs to make up ground."

If there's one thing the president has going for him, it's this: No one has to guess where he stands. Not on abortion -- not ever.
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Tony Perkins (@tperkins) 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.

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Being Honest about Tiananmen Square

by Newt Gingrich: The 30th anniversary of the massacre at Tiananmen Square is a good time to face the truth about the Chinese communist totalitarian dictatorship. The real lesson is one almost no one wants to think about.

My analysis of this event is influenced by my work on a new book on China that will come out in October, a podcast episode we recently released, and reading two books on the cost of ignoring fascist dictators in the 1930s.

Let me explain my thinking about the key lesson from 1989 by taking you back to the 1930s and 1940s.

Carlo Levi’s Christ Stopped at Eboli: The Story of a Year is a haunting memoir of a political prisoner in Fascist Italy who is exiled to an extraordinarily poor town in Southern Italy. It is worth reading on its own right because it is the opposite of the idyllic, romantic vision of Under the Tuscan Sun. Levi’s fascist dictatorship is horrifyingly dehumanizing, corrupt, and brutal. The peasants are repressed and impoverished to a point where they have no hope, only endurance.

Equally pertinent to thinking about the Tiananmen massacre is Lynne Olson’s amazing biography Madame Fourcade’s Secret War: The Daring Young Woman Who Led France’s Largest Spy Network Against Hitler. Olson captures in agonizing detail the human cost of resisting the Nazis, the viciousness and brutality of the Germans during World War II, and the heartrending stories of men and women torn from their homes, their loved ones, and their lives.

President Trump’s visit to Normandy to pay tribute to those who landed 75 years ago is a reminder of the price Americans and the Allies paid to defeat and destroy the Nazi dictatorship.

What does this have to do with Tiananmen Square you might ask. The answer is: Everything.

Tiananmen Square was the test of whether modernity and openness could occur within the Chinese communist totalitarian system or whether standing up to the state would not be tolerated. The price of dissent was prison or death.

Since then, General Secretary Xi Jinping has further consolidated and expanded the power of the totalitarian system to monitor and control the lives of the Chinese people. The private space in which one would have dissenting thoughts or share dissent with one’s family or neighbors is being squeezed more and more every day.

Some human rights activists focus on the plight of the Uyghurs and other Muslim ethnic groups (more than 1 million Muslims are in concentration camps for compulsory re-education in the Xinjiang province) or the Tibetans (who are gradually having their entire culture destroyed).

However, focusing on only two ethnic minorities misses the larger truth. Under the rule of the Communist Party, all of China is a police state. Every Chinese citizen is in danger of the state monitoring their every action and punishing them for deviancy from the party line.

Tiananmen was an aberration only in that there was a split in the senior leadership. There were some senior leaders who wanted a more open system. However, when that toleration for dissent began to spin out of control, the most senior leaders insisted on imposing order and obedience – by force and publicly killing people, if necessary.

General Secretary Xi has combined advancing technological capability for surveillance with an anti-corruption campaign which can also be seen as an anti-opponent campaign. The same goals for dispelling opposition and maintaining leadership control are reflected in the social credit score the Chinese Communist Party has created.

To understand the evolution of the Chinese communist scoring system, which will grant every Chinese citizen advantages or disadvantages depending on their social score, it is helpful to read George Orwell’s 1984 or to look at how the Stasi (the East German secret police) tried to get every East German to spy on every other East German.

The sad reality is that we today have no strategy to change the evolution of China away from a Communist Party-controlled giant surveillance system. We are not even prepared to begin talking honestly about it.

We insist on treating General Secretary Xi as President Xi even though this is a complete misstatement of his true power base. His real power comes from the Chinese Communist Party, for which he is the general secretary.

The lesson of the 1930s and of Tiananmen is that democracies that hide from the reality of brutal dictatorships often ending up paying much higher prices as those dictatorships gain in power and capability. There was a time in the early ‘30s when the democracies could have defeated the dictatorships at minimum cost. By the late ‘30s, it was going to be extraordinarily hard and even when the dictatorships split – with the Soviet Union siding with us (after Hitler attacked it) – it was extraordinarily hard to re-establish freedom in continental Europe.

The China of 1989 that massacred citizens in Tiananmen Square was much weaker than the China of 2019. And the China of 2029 will be much stronger than the current country. At the present rate, it will be an even more controlled dictatorship oppressing people at home and selling the tools of oppression to dictators around the world.

This is the sober lesson of Tiananmen Square after 30 years.
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Newt Gingrich (@newtgingrich) 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. This commentary was shared via Gingrich Productions.

Tags: Newt Gingrich, commentary, Being Honest about, Tiananmen Square To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service and "Like" Facebook Page - Thanks!

Politicizing The Fourth Of July, Left-wing Extremism, Biden Flip Flops On Abortion, Chag Sameach

by Gary Bauer, Contributing Author: Politicizing The Fourth Of July
A left-wing Washington Post columnist is REALLY upset with President Trump. (Shocker, right?!)

What's his offense this time? The president plans to deliver a speech at the Lincoln Memorial during the July 4th celebrations. According to this columnist, Trump's presence will be "a stain on the Lincoln Memorial."

I guess we should be at least a little happy that the left is now defending our monuments rather than encouraging the left-wing mobs trying to tear them down.

But how exactly will Trump "stain" the memorial? The columnist is afraid that Trump will politicize a national symbol that should not be politicized.

This is coming from the movement that has politicized EVERYTHING -- our national anthem, the Pledge of Allegiance, entertainment, sports (see below), the Boy Scouts, religious liberty, etc.

And what about the author's main point that we shouldn't permit the memorial to be politicized? That must be news to George W. Bush, who kicked off four days of inaugural ceremonies at the Lincoln Memorial in 2001.

It must really be a shock to Barack Obama who held a major inaugural event with Beyonce, Garth Brooks and Bruce Springsteen at the Lincoln Memorial in 2009. In fact, they even made a movie about it.

At that event, Obama declared, "You proved once more that people who love this country can change it." Translation: If you didn't vote for him, you don't love the country. Wow! I'm so glad Obama didn't politicize the Lincoln Memorial.

The Lincoln Memorial has been politicized by the left for decades. It was the backdrop for multiple anti-war rallies when the country was divided over the Vietnam War. Left-wing speakers routinely stood on the steps of the memorial and excoriated our soldiers as "baby killers" and "fascists."

Richard Nixon was so upset by the demonstrations that he went down to the memorial at 4 AM on the morning of May 9, 1970, and debated them.

And does anyone remember when a few Catholic boys were having fun on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial? The left was so outraged by their MAGA hats that they tried to ruin their lives with a fake story that they harassed a Native American elder.

The left has no problem politicizing the memorial. So what is this really all about?

They are scared to death that Donald Trump will do exactly what he did yesterday at Normandy, only this time it will be in front of a national audience in prime time.

They are terrified that Trump will talk to the country about America's greatness without the press offering incessant "fact checks" and twisting his remarks into a speech about "white supremacy."

Trump unfiltered, making an unapologetically pro-American speech before the entire country, is what scares them so much.

Left-Wing Extremism
The left's extremism is ruining sports, and especially women's sports by forcing girls to compete against biological men. But polls show the American people are overwhelmingly against this latest left-wing fad.

A new Rasmussen poll finds that just 28% of the public supports "allowing transgender students to participate on the sports team of the gender they identify with, letting biological males, for example, play girls' sports."

Fifty-four percent of the country opposes such policies, while 18% say they don't know. I'm willing to bet that the vast majority of that 18% is simply afraid to say they are opposed.

Beltway consultants and GOP elites often insist that conservatives should avoid social issues in order to attract people in the middle. But on this issue, the people in the middle are solidly with us.

It's the Democrats and their radical allies who have gone off a cliff. We shouldn't be afraid of exposing their extremism.

Speaking Of Extreme. . .
It's been a really rough week for Joe Biden.

First it was revealed that parts of his climate change and education platforms were plagiarized. Now he's flip-flopping like a fish out of water on abortion.

Historically, Biden has taken a "middle-of-the-road approach" to abortion. While he supports Roe v. Wade, he also supported limits on late-term abortions and he did not believe in forcing taxpayers to subsidize abortion.

The law banning federal tax dollars from paying for abortions is known as the Hyde Amendment, named after the great pro-life champion Henry Hyde.

Last month, Biden told an ACLU activist that he wanted to repeal the Hyde Amendment, adding, "It can't stay."

FLIP!

Polls show that Americans are overwhelmingly opposed to having their hard-earned tax dollars used to subsidize abortions. (Here and here.) So it wasn't terribly surprising when Biden's campaign tried to reverse course this week, saying he "misheard the question."

FLOP!

But during a speech last night in Georgia, currently "Ground Zero" in the culture war over the state's new heartbeat law, Biden announced that he did in fact favor repealing the Hyde Amendment.

FLIP!

Biden has spent most of his adult life thinking about running for president. This is his third run for the White House. How much time has he spent thinking about what he actually believes?

Here's something else to think about. I have not seen any ideas from Joe Biden about why he is a better choice for minority voters than Donald Trump, who has reduced minority unemployment to record lows.

Biden wants to help minorities destroy their unborn babies, while Trump will help them get a job. That doesn't seem like a tough choice to me.

Chag Sameach
This weekend Jews will celebrate Shavuot which commemorates the day God gave Moses the Ten Commandments. To our Jewish friends and allies, we wish you a joyous Shavuot!
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Gary Bauer (@GaryLBauer)  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, Politicizing The Fourth Of July, Left-wing Extremism, Biden Flip Flops On Abortion To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service and "Like" Facebook Page - Thanks!

Barr Asking Questions the Media Don't Want Asked

Michael Barone
by Michael Barone: "I'm amused," Attorney General William Barr told CBS News' Jan Crawford, "by these people who make a living by disclosing classified information, including the names of intelligence operatives, wringing their hands about whether I'm going to be responsible in protecting intelligence sources and methods."

He went on after further questions: "Well, the media reaction is strange. Normally the media would be interested in letting the sunshine in and finding out what the truth is. And usually the media doesn't care that much about protecting intelligence sources and methods. But I do, and I will."

You don't have to have been "in the business" for Barr's nearly 50 years to understand what he means. Just flash back 13 years to June 2006 and read The New York Times' revelations about the Swift bank procedures.

The Belgian-based Swift manages foreign currency transfers, and after 9/11, the CIA and Treasury conducted data searches to spot -- and, ultimately, stop -- terrorist financing. The Times' story conceded that this program was successful in obstructing terrorist activity, and it identified no abuses.

Top administration officials pleaded with The Times not to publish the story, and then-President George W. Bush said the publication was "disgraceful." Times editor Bill Keller's justification was that "the administration's" -- not the government's but the administration's -- "extraordinary access to this vast repository of international financial data ... is a matter of public interest."

In other words, The Times didn't care much about weakening America's fight against terrorism by disclosing classified information and revealing intelligence sources and methods. It was more interested in letting the sunshine in on a program that, to the best of its knowledge, had infringed no one's rights.

Some called for prosecution of The Times for violating the Espionage Act of 1917, which criminalizes the publication of classified information, signed by then-President Woodrow Wilson two months after the U.S. entered World War I. But as then-Sen. Daniel Patrick Moynihan pointed out in his 1998 book "Secrecy: The American Experience," the Espionage Act is overbroad, and government tends to overclassify information, including even newspaper articles.

Accordingly, successive administrations up to and including George W. Bush's have declined to prosecute news media for publishing stories, including leaks of classified information, that seem clearly forbidden by the words of Wilson's Espionage Act.

Abandoning that precedent, perhaps surprisingly, was the administration of Barack Obama. He described himself as "a strong believer in the First Amendment" and dismissed "stories about us cracking down on whistleblowers or whatnot" as "a really small sample."

Actually, they were an unprecedentedly large number. As James Risen, co-byliner on The Times' original Swift story, wrote in December 2016, the Obama administration "has prosecuted nine cases involving whistleblowers and leakers, compared with only three by all previous administrations combined."

Obama's Justice Department subpoenaed Associated Press phone records -- of AP trunk lines and 30 separate phones. It identified Fox News reporter James Rosen as a "co-conspirator" in an Espionage leak case. The supposedly liberal and pro-First Amendment Obama administration was actively pursuing what the Columbia Journalism Review called "a massive intrusion into newsgathering operations."

It's true that Obama did not emit as many tart words for the press in his eight years as president as Donald Trump has in his two and a half. But it's also true that Trump has come nowhere near to challenging Obama's record as the president most inclined to sic law enforcement on the press since Woodrow Wilson himself. Liberal Democrats aren't necessarily the best friends of press freedom.

Nor are they, it seems, friends of a citizen's right to privacy or a candidate's right to seek public office without government surveillance. In his testimony before the Senate Judiciary Committee, when Barr made the point that the government "spying" had occurred on the Trump campaign, Democrats and the press expressed horror. You're not supposed to say "spying," apparently, even though Democrats and media like The Times have routinely used it as a conveniently short and understandable synonym for surveillance.

As Barr told Crawford, spying is appropriate if it's "adequately predicated" -- and it's unclear whether the spying on the Trump campaign was. Certainly, the use of the partisan and unverified Steele dossier is not adequate.

Barr is old enough to remember when liberals did not take government legal or intelligence agencies' word that spying on an administration's opponents was justified and did not attack those who questioned it as unpatriotic.

He may be amused that such doings are self-righteously justified today, but it's good that he's willing to ask questions most of the media don't want asked, to determine how the Obama law enforcement and intelligence agencies set about spying on the opposite party's presidential campaign.
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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.

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Bernie & Joe: Two Old White Males Take the Lead

by Patrick Buchanan: Biden and Bernie may be wheezing, but the old white boys are out in front of the pack.

In 2018, a record turnout of women, minorities and young added 40 House seats to Democratic ranks and made Nancy Pelosi speaker.

This, we were told, is the new diversity coalition — women, people of color, millennials — that will take down The Donald in 2020.

So, how has the Democratic field sorted itself out half a year later?

According to the Real Clear Politics average of polls, two old white guys, Joe Biden, 76, and Bernie Sanders, 77, are setting the pace and have together corralled more than half of all Democrats.

There is a good chance the party of minorities, millennials and women will be led in 2020 by a white man who would be the oldest candidate ever nominated by a major party.

Biden and Bernie may be wheezing, but the old white boys are out in front of the pack.

Add Pete Buttigieg and Beto O’Rourke, running fifth and sixth, and 60 percent of Democrats favor white men for the nomination. Only 20 percent favor one of five women: Elizabeth Warren, Kamala Harris, Amy Klobuchar, Kirsten Gillibrand or Tulsi Gabbard.

The African American candidates, Harris and Cory Booker, are backed by only 1 in 10 Democrats. Julian Castro, the lone Hispanic, is at 1 percent, as is the Asian American Andrew Yang.

While the first primaries are half a year off, the odds today favor — after nominating Barack Obama twice and then Hillary Clinton — Democrats returning to the 20th-century traditional candidate — a seasoned white man.

Frontrunner Biden is benefitting from the fact that his closest rival, Bernie Sanders, is a socialist with a large and loyal following from his 2016 campaign. For Bernie sits on a huge pile of votes Biden may not be able to win, but which Bernie is denying to any other challenger.

Indeed, Bernie is becoming a problem for a whole host of Democrats.

If he defeats Biden for the nomination, he pulls Democrats a long way to becoming a U.S. replica of the British Labour Party of Jeremy Corbyn. Many moderate Democrats will not vote for a lifelong socialist who chose to spend his honeymoon during the Cold War in the Soviet Union.

Yet, as long as Bernie holds onto the votes he has, he prevents any candidate of color, any woman, or any new and fresh face from amassing enough strength in the polls to get within striking distance of Biden.

Bernie is thus today a de facto ally of Biden. He holds too few votes to take the nomination from Joe, but sufficient votes to stay in the race through the early primaries and deny any other Democrat a clean shot at Biden.

As of now, there are two lanes to the Democratic nomination — the centrist-moderate lane Biden occupies almost exclusively, and the left lane where Bernie leads but is being challenged by Elizabeth Warren.

Where does the Democratic race, with the largest number of entries in political history, almost two dozen, stand at the first turn?

Though Biden has more than a third of all Democrats behind him, he has slipped from his highest ratings and is under attack from his many rivals who believe a new day has come and who want old white men to go into retirement and get out of the way.

Biden is being hit for a variety of sins over a career that began in 1972. He voted to authorize George W. Bush to take us to war in Iraq. He led the fight for the 1994 anti-crime bill now viewed as tough on minorities. He left Anita Hill twisting in the wind when he was chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee during the Clarence Thomas hearings. He denounced busing for racial balance back in the 1970s and 1980s.

Now the old plagiarism charges from his law school days and his presidential campaign of 1988 are being resurrected, since the Biden campaign distributed materials to back up his plan for combatting climate change with lines plagiarized from other sources.

This week, Biden’s support of the Hyde Amendment which, for decades, has blocked federal tax funding for almost all abortions, is calling down the wrath of pro-choice Democrats who are both militant and many.

Another noteworthy development of recent weeks is the progress of Elizabeth Warren, due to the sheer number and appeal of her ideas for soaking the rich and using the revenue to create new entitlements in the name of “economic patriotism.” Say what you will, she is talking issues.

Mayor Pete seems to have eased back from his earlier highs, and stalled. As for Beto, he may be flailing those arms around like a drowning man — because he is one. The bloom is off the rose. Beto seems frozen at 4 percent. There is truth in what Alice Roosevelt Longworth said of Tom Dewey’s re-nomination in 1948 after having lost to FDR in 1944.

You can’t make a souffle rise a second time.
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Patrick Buchanan (@PatrickBuchanan) is currently a blogger, conservative columnist, political analyst, chairman of The American Cause foundation and an editor of The American Conservative. He has been a senior adviser to three Presidents, a two-time candidate for the Republican presidential nomination, and was the presidential nominee of the Reform Party in 2000.

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3.6 Percent Unemployment, Wages Rising

by Rick Manning: !n response to the latest jobs numbers!

A 3.6 percent unemployment rate is incredible, so it would be misleading to characterize the May labor employment report negatively. Wages continue to rise with 3.1 percent year over year gains continuing in May, meaning Americans have more money in their pockets even when measured against inflation. This is great news.

It is concerning that for the past four months employment growth in the manufacturing field has stalled, and it is incumbent upon Congress that they pass the USMCA trade agreement which will give a shot in the arm to the manufacturing surge from the first two years of the Trump presidency.

While some may nitpick about various aspects of today’s reports, the fact remains that America is working. Blacks, Hispanics, Asians, and Whites are all working. People are finding new jobs when they leave prior employers as evidenced by the time unemployed measurement in the household survey, and once again those who are working are making more money.

One interesting question will be answered by the mid-month state by state employment report. It is quite possible that job growth is being impinged by state lawmakers passing tax increases in states like Oregon trying to wring more dollars for the government out of a great economy, and in doing so creating localized job creation poison pills. We will know more later this month when that specific report comes out.

Having said all this, 3.6 percent unemployment rate with rising wages is great news for America’s economic future.
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Rick Manning (@rmanning957) is President of Americans for Limited Government (@LimitGovt).

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A Future You Don’t Want . . .

. . . The Democrats’ plan to blow up the country.
by David Horowitz: While you were sleeping, the Democrats (abetted by some deviant Republicans) have been working on a plan that would destroy the diversity of the American political system and bring the nation to the brink of civil war.

The plan is called The National Popular Vote Interstate Compact, and tens of millions of dollars have already been spent over several decades trying to implement it. Fourteen blue states and the District of Columbia have already joined the Compact, which means they are 70% on the way to making their proposal the law of the land.

The Democrats’ plan is designed to eliminate the influence of the Electoral College in choosing the nation’s president no doubt because while Hillary won the popular vote she failed win necessary votes in the Electoral College. Eliminating the influence of the Electoral College would end the diversity now embodied in the federal system with its division of powers, between Washington and the fifty states. The fact that a party which presents itself as a defender of diversity should be leading the charge to eliminate the nation’s most powerful source of diversity should be all that is required to understand the threat their agenda poses to what has been the nation’s constitutional way of life for 232 years.

The Electoral College and the division of powers are features of the Constitution. But the National Popular Vote movement does not propose to amend the Constitution because ot doesn’t have the votes to do that. Instead, in the name of “democracy” it proposes to circumvent the Constitution and its requirement of large national majorities for amending what has been the fundamental law of the land. Thank how Orwellian that is, and how concerning it should be for anyone believing the Founders created the most practical, realistic, democratic, diverse and successful polity the world has ever seen.

This is how the Democrats’ circumvention of the Constitution and its provision for an Electoral College would work. Instead of abolishing the College, which would require the support of two-thirds of the states, they are hoping to put together a coalition of states representing 270 electoral votes who would agree to award all their votes to whomever wins the national vote. In other words if the popular vote is won by 10 votes, every state in the Compact would award 100% of their votes to that party, even if a majority of the voters in their state voted against them.

The bottom line (and goal) of this devious plan is to eliminate the influence of rural voters or “Middle America” and create an electoral lock for the large urban population centers, e.g., California and New York, who would then decide the direction of the country.

Currently the Electoral College forces candidates to campaign in states they might otherwise ignore, and thus forces them to compete for diverse constituencies, and therefore to compromise and moderate their positions. It was designed by the Founders to move the country to the center and to prevent an over-zealous majority from tyrannizing the minority.

Consider the practical implications of this radical plan to remove an institution that has stabilized our political life for more than 200 years. The urban centers of America, which would become dominant under the plan, are also the centers of America’s crime problems and gun homicides, its intractable poverty, its failed public schools and political corruption. Do we really want to replicate for all America the failed welfare policies that have created a permanent underclass in cities like Chicago, Detroit, St. Louis and Baltimore?

Or consider California, a one-party state whose government has defied federal law and proclaimed itself a sanctuary for illegal migrants. What will be the consequences for an already deeply divided nation of having an open borders policy imposed by leftist states led by California and New York on Middle American states who are already fiercely opposed to flooding the country with millions of illegal aliens whom no government agency has vetted?

lf New York has legalized the killing of babies already born, how will that go down in states already banning abortions of babies with fetal heart beats? All the blue states pushing this agenda are fans of the Green New Deal which focuses on a problem – global warming - that most of the country doesn’t consider urgent, calls for crushing new taxes to finance new social giveaways while programs like Medicare and Social Security are already on the brink of bankruptcy. Or consider the Green plan to remove 250 million gasoline driven automobiles within ten years and replace them with electric cars. If an incredibly costly and unsettling confiscation scheme like this is imposed on the rest of the country, what can we reasonably expect as a reaction?

The Founders scheme to produce compromise between competing factions and to put checks and balances on radical adventures was never more needed than now when the country is divided in a way that it has not been seen since the Civil War. But apparently this is the perfect time for an out-of-touch and increasingly out-of-control Democratic Party to undermine the constitutional foundations of the nation, push a divisive agenda and move the nation towards a one-party state.
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David Horowitz (@HorowitzCenter) is founder of the David Horowitz Freedom Center's FrontPage Mag and author of many books and pamphlets published over the last twenty years. Horowitz was a left-minded radical who transitioned over his life into a conservative. Yet despite the effort of the left "to deprecate and diminish him, Horowitz has succeeded in his main task of exposing the left's agenda and decoding the way it seeks to control American culture and politics." (The Life and Work of David Horowitz) He is a Contributing Author of the ARRA News Service and the author of most recent book "Dark Agenda: The War to Destroy Christian America.

Tags: David Horowitz, Freedom Center, Future You Don’t Want, Democrats’ plan, to blow up the country To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service and "Like" Facebook Page - Thanks!

Same Old Bird . . .

. . . Joe Biden known for Joe Biden known for plagiarizing years ago in a past presidential campaign, he’s been caught plagiarized again years ago in a past presidential campaign, he’s been caught plagiarizing again.
Editorial Cartoon by AF "Tony" Branco

Tags: Editorial Cartoon, AF Branco, Same Old Bird, Joe Biden, known for plagiarizing, years ago, past presidential campaign, caught plagiarizing again To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service and "Like" Facebook Page - Thanks!

Whoopi Ties D-Day to Illegal Immigrants . . .

. . . 'We fought For Right to Help People From Other Countries!'
by Kristine Marsh: Sometimes you really have to wonder if the hosts of The View actually listen to anything coming out of their mouths. On Thursday’s show alone, the hosts politicized D-Day numerous times, connecting it to gay pride month in one segment, and in another segment, tying it to the southern border crisis. In that latter segment, co-hosts Joy Behar and Sunny Hostin raged at the “illegal” and “despicable” funding cuts to recreational programs for illegal alien minors at the border, while Whoopi Goldberg claimed our soldiers died fighting in Normandy so we could take care of illegal alien kids.

Whoopi began the discussion with this overwrought introduction:WHOOPI: As if migrant kids separated from their families at the border don't have enough to deal with, the White House just announced that they're cancelling all the English classes, recreational activities like soccer and access to legal aid. Why do they think this is a good idea?

JOY BEHAR: They say they want to save money. Despicable! Despicable


Sunny Hostin complained that cutting these programs was “illegal,” to which Joy Behar quipped, “when did that ever stop the Trump administration?” Later, Behar raged at pro-lifers, and her own party, for not protesting at the border over this.Shouldn't a lot of pro-lifers and people who talk about pro-life be protesting this? Also the Democrats, where are the Democrats in all this? I would like to hear Mrs. Klobuchar and the rest of them protesting. Show pictures of these kids at the border. Let’s see what’s going on over there. They need to open their mouths on both sides. You care about life so much? Let's see you at the border! [ Cheers and applause ]
She later urged Democrats to make defending illegal aliens’ rights a central issue on 2020 candidates’ platforms and ranted that she was “ashamed” of America:The Democrats could use this as a good issue. People’s hearts are broken for these children! Why isn’t Biden...Why isn’t Warren...she needs to get on this topic. So people’s minds and hearts can be changed! This is a horrible thing that’s happened in this country. I’m ashamed of the country for this!Perhaps the worst of the stupid takes though was when Whoopi Goldberg tied it all to D-Day. She claimed Americans had “forgotten” the reason why our soldiers stormed the beaches of Normandy 75 years ago to fight the Germans. According to her, it was also to secure our “right” to take care of unaccompanied minors crossing our southern border:

“This is why it's important that people remember what folks fought for. We fought for the right to help people from other countries. We've done it as long as I can remember!” she gushed.
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Kristine Marsh is an analyst for the Media Research Center's News Analysis Division.

Tags: Kristine Marsh, Whoopi Ties, D-Day, Illegal Immigrants To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service and "Like" Facebook Page - Thanks!

Farmers and Suicide

by Kerby Anderson, Contributing Author: If I were to ask you which professions have high suicide rates, you would probably mention military veterans suffering from PTSD. In their latest report, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) have found that the suicide rate for young male military veterans is higher than previously thought. But they found that it is lower in some states than the suicide rate for farmers.

The high suicide rate for farmers is only just now beginning to get media attention. Some mental health experts are saying that we probably need some sort of federally funded prevention resources similar to what is provided to veterans.

Mike Rosman is a psychologist who has been studying this issue for decades and has an appreciation for the stresses on farmers since he is also an Iowa farmer. Writing in the journal Behavioral Healthcare he reminds us that, “Farming has always been a stressful occupation because many of the factors that affect agricultural production are largely beyond the control of the producers.”

This is borne out by the latest statistics from the CDC. If you focus on all the people working in agriculture (farmers, farm laborers, ranchers, fishers, and lumber harvesters), they take their lives at a rate higher than any other occupation. The suicide rate for agriculture workers in 17 states is nearly five times higher compared with that in the general population.

The reasons for this are many. Farmers are often reluctant to seek help. Often their farms are far from health care centers. Pesticide exposure can lead to depression. They are isolated. The cost of feed and equipment continues to rise while the prices they receive for food and fiber remain stagnant.

This is a health care crisis that deserves attention. Perhaps this is the first time you have heard about the suicide rate of farmers. Making citizens and politicians aware of this crisis is the first step.
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Kerby Anderson (@kerbyanderson) is a radio talk show host heard on numerous stations via the Point of View Network (@PointofViewRTS) and is endorsed by Dr. Bill Smith, Editor, ARRA News Service.

Tags: Kerby Anderson, Viewpoints, Point of View, Farmers, Suicide To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service and "Like" Facebook Page - Thanks!

A Movement of Professional Victims and Conspiracy Theories

by Daniel Greenfield: Every movement has a mission statement. “Make America Great Again” is the conservative one. (It’s the “Again” part that makes it conservative.) The enemies of making America great have one too.

If the radicals had red hats, they would say, “They’re Out To Get You.”

TOTGY has been the leftist motto since before Marx learned to shave and then decided to stop doing it. The arc of history may bend toward many places, but the black rainbow serviced by a snarling leprechaun with a PhD and a cocaine problem always begins and ends in the same paranoid place.

They’re destroying the planet. They’re hoarding all the wealth. They start all the wars. They’re dividing the country. They’re killing kids in schools. They’re conspiring with the Russians. They killed JFK.

The Democrats crave inspirational leaders for the same reason that alcoholics need mouthwash. It covers up the ugly stench. Lefties love packaging their hateful ravings, paranoid delusions and plans for world domination with moving soliloquies about everyone coming together to make a difference.

So far coming together and making a difference has killed approximately 200 million people.

Between Stalin, Mao, Pol Pot and Jim Jones, more people have been killed by lefties coming together and making a difference than by AIDS and the Ebola virus combined. Every day the media warns about the threat of unvaccinated children in school spreading measles. There are far more American children infected with the disease that piled up skulls in Cambodia and filled the Russian tundra with mass graves, that starved Chinese peasants to death and served poisoned Kool-Aid to American children.

Schools spread the infection like wildfire and the only vaccine against it isn’t allowed on school grounds.

What killed all those people is a mental bacillus that can be examined under a microscope. It has cilia, no spine and whispered its sour nothings in the ears of commissars and soldiers, of peasants and workers, of Brother Number Three and a thousand frenzied schoolchildren beating their teachers to death.

The thing it whispered in their ears was, “They’re out to get you.”

Normal people do not murder their neighbors for wearing glasses. They do not sink them in boats weighed down with stones. They do not inform on their parents or poison their own children.

But they can be convinced to do these things once they’ve come together to make a difference.

Why do lefties keep coming together to make a difference? Because they’re fighting an unjust society. And what makes the society unjust and in need of fighting with protests, bombs and gulags?

They’re out to get you.

All leftist credos begin with the conviction of a powerful conspiracy against the groups of people they hope to recruit, a conspiracy that is as implausible as it is unsustainable, which can only end in genocide or social transformation. Somehow the Left usually manages to fit both into its busy schedule.

First, it was class. The capitalist pigs, the factory owners, like the Engels family, were maintaining a permanent underclass while reaping all the profits. Mankind was doomed to live in a Dickensian novel of starving orphans cowering beneath puffing smokestacks unless the proletariat rose up in a revolution. Then it was going to be a racial war and now, finally the capitalists are plotting to destroy the planet.

Like any good conspiracy theory, the “they” keep changing. So does the “You”.

One day, it’s the evil factory owners keeping the working class down. The next day it’s the racist working-class whites keeping black people down. And then it’s the homophobic blacks keeping gay people down. And then it’s the Islamophobic gays keeping Muslims down.

Finally, it’s everyone destroying the planet by driving cars without buying carbon credits from Al Gore.

Intersectionality means that everyone is a “You” and a “They”. Everyone has cause to hate and fear, and to be hated and feared. There is no such thing as being too paranoid about identity politics.

In identity politics, the only question is are you paranoid enough?

As with all murderous ideologies, the conspiracy theories begin with conscious actions and end with subconscious crimes. A list of specific charges concludes with one unforgivable offense. Existence.

The final verdict is death.

What sort of monsters go around killing millions? The same sorts of little monsters who shout down professors, assault speakers, and expect an imminent apocalypse if they don’t get their way.

Victims.

To believe that, “they are out to get you”, you need to be a victim.

To be a victim isn’t to experience suffering or to survive a horrifying act of violence. It is to be convinced that the world is an unfair place and it can only be made fair when those responsible are put down.

Or, as they call it, social justice.

Every genocide begins with a conspiracy theory. So does victimhood. The conspiracy theory claims that utopia would be possible, but the bad people insist on selfishly ruining it for everyone. In Rwanda, the bad people were the Tutsis. In Nazi Germany, they were the Jews. In America, they’re everyone.

Racism has its limits. After applying enough DNA tests, there’s someone a racist won’t kill. But when everyone is complicit in the intersectional crimes of everyone else, and, the destruction of the planet, who is really innocent? Killings in leftist societies don’t stop when they run out of people to kill. They only end when the machine runs out of executioners to shoot, beat, torture and mutilate them.

And human nature, being what it is in both evil and goodness, they eventually do.

There comes a point when killing people no longer makes anyone feel good. And that’s when the People’s Republic of Killingstan settles down to a steady decline into corruption and decay like an old gangster passing away his remaining years in a drunken haze to make the time go by more quickly.

The old gangsters died off in Russia and China, and, more recently in Cuba and Venezuela. They’re even showing signs of passing on in North Korea. Human evil is more finite than human good. And weaker.

America’s gangsters have yet to grow old and they haven’t tasted blood in a long time.

Their message, the one that gets neighbors to smash each other’s heads and sons to turn on fathers, is broadcast on every channel and taught in every school. It’s hummed in songs and made into movies.

“They’re out to get you.”

The conspiracy is all the more compelling for being nebulous, shapeless and formless. The villains are oil companies and the working class. At any moment, the progressive male college student can become a rapist. Bigotry is in our subconscious. Carbon is exhaled in our every breath. The enemy is everywhere.

Once upon a time, the conspiracies were simple. Now we live in a world haunted by our own demons.

The crime was never truly capitalism or bigotry. It was human nature. And human nature was also the motive. “They’re out to get you,” is the primal paranoid idea of politics. It taps into the part of our brain that ran from wolves or killed them. The wolves have become men. And sometimes we are them.

Leftist politics is another means of justifying the robbery and abuse of your neighbors. Its sense of oppression is just entitlement misspelled. Its targets are guilty because the perpetrators are greedy.

Cain was the first Communist. He killed Abel because he worked harder and believed in G-d.

When G-d tried to tell the first murderer that the evil was not in his brother, it was in him, he didn’t listen. Modern lefties refuse to listen to this central message of religion, that we fix the world by fixing ourselves, rather than fixing ourselves by remaking the world in our own broken image.

The mark of Cain is a red flag. Where you see it, socialism and spilled blood soon follow. A layer cake of academic theories and violent outrage are used as masks for the same old evils of envy and hate.

And so millions of leftists are coming together to make a difference in America by rioting, punching, deplatforming, firing, harassing, and suppressing, spying on their political opponents, murdering babies and reminding us that they’re a deadlier outbreak than any disease to hit this country in a century.

The cries of, “justice”, really mean power. And the cries of, “change”, really mean murder.

Utopia won’t build itself.
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Daniel Greenfield (@Sultanknish) is a blogger and a Shillman Journalism Fellow at the David Horowitz Freedom Center and an investigative journalist and writer focusing on radical Left and Islamic terrorism.

Tags: Daniel Greenfield, Sultan Knish, Movement, Professional Victims, Conspiracy Theories To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service and "Like" Facebook Page - Thanks!

Big Brother or Barney Fife?

by Paul Jacob, Contributing Author: Alaska, Washington, Oregon, Montana, Missouri, Oklahoma, Louisiana, New Hampshire — these are the states that have shouted a big NO to the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s citizen scanning agenda and its database of 640 million faces.

“As the FBI amasses hundreds of millions of photos for its facial recognition program (with little in the way of safeguards),” asks J. D. Tuccille in Reason, “is it also going to force us to bare our faces for cameras as we move through an increasingly surveilled country?”

Tuccille suggests wearing hats big enough to cover our faces from intrusive cameras.

Most states do not prohibit surveilling people en masse or at random. And though Kimberly J. Del Greco, deputy assistant director of the FBI’s Criminal Justice Information Services Division, assures us of the operation’s above-board character — “there have been no findings of non-compliance, and no observations of unauthorized requests” — the possibilities of abuse are precedented . . . by past government surveillance.

So, is it any solace that it has so far proved wildly inaccurate?

Sure, the aforementioned Del Greco claims the FBI’s algorithm is 99 percent accurate. But another study found one system in place with a sorry 98 percent inaccuracy rate. “It’s a creepy police state as administered by Barney Fife,” writes Tuccille. And while that is “pretty damned funny,” it would be not even a little bit funny if “you’re arrested based on a bad match.”

Constraining governments to forswear such practices on the streets, malls and public places of America is surely a good candidate for citizen use of initiative and referendum rights, where available — in states and cities around the U.S.

For these are not supposed to be the United States of Big Brother.

This is Common Sense. I’m Paul Jacob.
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Paul Jacob (@Common_Sense_PJ ) 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.

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AOC Returns to the Scene of the Minimum Wage Crime

by Larry Elder: Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y., an advocate for a $15 minimum wage, returned to work as a bartender for one day. Ocasio-Cortez said: “All labor has dignity, and the way that we give labor dignity is by paying people the respect and the value that they are worth at minimum. We have to make one fair wage, and we have to raise the national minimum wage to $15 an hour, nothing less.”

The issue is simple: Does a government-mandated minimum wage help or hurt the very workers and job seekers that Ocasio-Cortez wants to help?

Ask her former boss, who owned The Coffee Shop diner in Union Square where AOC used to work. Late last year, The Coffee Shop closed its doors after 28 years, sidelining 150 employees. How successful was the place, where diners often came to celebrate special occasions? About the Coffee Shop, Forbes wrote last year: “For nearly 30 years, serving those many occasions has added up to enormous success. According to Restaurant Business magazine’s 2017 ranking of the 100 highest-grossing independent restaurants in the U.S., Coffee Shop served 314,000 meals and pulled in an estimated $14.3 million in sales, good enough to land in the 79th spot on the list. Coffee Shop stands out as one of few non-steakhouses (there are 24, mostly in New York and Las Vegas) or bottle-service meccas (the Tao Group has five on the list) to crack the top 100, and to do so consistently for nearly two decades.”

But co-owner Charles Milite citied higher rent and the increased minimum wage as the reasons for the closure. New York’s minimum wage law would have added $46,000 a month to his labor costs in 2019. Milite said: “I know it doesn’t sound like much — $2 an hour. But when you multiply it by 40 hours, by 130 people, it becomes a big number. It was going to increase our monthly payroll $46,000.”

New York City’s minimum wage for businesses with 11 or more employees had gone from $11 in 2017 to $13 in 2018. And then it increased to $15 in 2019. Milite said: “It’s a wakeup call for our industry in general. When a restaurant is one of the top-ranked restaurants in America, sales-wise, and can no longer afford to operate, you have to look at that and say there’s a shifting paradigm in the business.”

Proponents of raising the minimum wage argue that it actually stimulates employment. To make that case, they turn to a famous study known as the Card-Krueger study. The study, cited by Democratic politicians such as Bill Clinton and Barack Obama, supposedly demonstrated that when New Jersey hiked its minimum wage, there was either no effect or a small (SET ITAL) positive (END ITAL) effect on employment at fast-food restaurants relative to the adjacent state of Pennsylvania, which did not raise its minimum wage. These results stood the bulk of economic research about the minimum wage on its head.

But there were numerous problems with the study, not least of which is that it covered only an 11-month period, starting two months before the minimum wage increased. Initially, fast-food employers in New Jersey raised prices and saw little to no adverse impact. But medium-term and long-term, other researchers found a lessening of economic activity as a result of the minimum wage, relative to Pennsylvania.

The other problem is that Card-Krueger just asked employers whether they hired people. Other researchers, attempting to replicate the results of Card-Krueger, examined actual payroll records. These researchers found that, contrary to what employers told Card-Krueger, hiring and hours fell off relative the hiring and hours of those in Pennsylvania. Diana Furchtgott-Roth, former chief economist of the U.S. Department of Labor, wrote: “Card and Krueger do not include information on the portion of employment at minimum wage at any date in time. No information was given on whether the minimum law was binding, and to what extent, for this sample. The studies did not include information by county, such as income, unemployment, teen unemployment, labor force, and labor-force-participation rates. Neither did it include changes in state taxes and franchise fees.”

Then there is the December 2014 study by the National Bureau of Economic Research, called “The Minimum Wage and the Great Recession: Evidence of Effects on the Employment and Income Trajectories of Low-Skilled Workers.” The results confirmed the consensus among economists: Minimum wage laws do harm. It concludes: “We find that binding minimum wage increases had significant, negative effects on the employment and income growth of targeted workers. Lost income reflects contributions from employment declines, increased probabilities of working without pay (i.e., an “internship” effect), and lost wage growth associated with reductions in experience accumulation. … We estimate that these minimum wage increases reduced the national employment-to-population ratio by 0.7 percentage point.”

In short, fewer workers get hired, new hiring gets deferred or not done at all, or current workers work fewer hours — just as traditional economics 101 tells us. Or we could simply ask AOC’s ex-boss.
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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.

Tags: Larry Elder, commentary, AOC, Returns to the Scene, Minimum Wage Crime To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service and "Like" Facebook Page - Thanks!

John James Is Running For Senate

John James
Iraq War veteran
by Jake Wagner: He lost to Debbie Stabenow in the 2018 midterm election, now John James hopes to defeat Michigan’s other democratic senator.

On Fox News, John James announced that he would be running against Michigan Senator Gary Peters in 2020.

According to MLive:James, 37, announced he filed to run “after careful consideration and thoughtful prayer” during a Thursday morning appearance on “Fox & Friends.” The announcement comes on the 75th anniversary of the D-Day operation in WWII.

James earned President Donald Trump’s endorsement during an unsuccessful challenge to U.S. Sen. Debbie Stabenow, D-Lansing, in 2018. Stabenow beat James by 6.5 percentage points.
The senate hopeful posted this on Twitter this morning,
The Michigan GOP issued this statement in support of James:“John James is a true patriot who has dedicated his life to the service of our nation. I welcome his entrance into the 2020 U.S. Senate race, and wish him well as he begins his campaign for the Republican nomination.” Cox continued, “I am confident that next year Michigan will send a leader to the U.S. Senate who will get something done for the people of our state. It’s time for a change from Gary Peters, who has been so ineffective that 43% of Michigan voters don’t even know his name.”Peters was elected to his first term in office back in 2014. James’ performance against a two term senator made him an ideal candidate for a future run.

MLive added:After the election, James was considered a rising star. The president twice considered James for U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, but he was not nominated.

The National Republican Senatorial Committee told MLive.com this week it was recruiting James to take another run for Senate. Congressional Republican recruitment organizations actively tried to convince James to run for Senate or try to win back Michigan’s 11th House District, which had turned blue in 2018.

The NRSC expects James to enter the Senate contest as a well-established candidate, allowing him to build on momentum generated during his last campaign.
We’ve got over a year until the 2020 election. One has to wonder if James will be the only one running in the GOP primary.

The logical move for the Michigan GOP would be to dissuade others from entering the primary. Last year, the Pensler vs. James primary probably did more harm to their long term goal of unseating Stabenow.

Starting early is a wise move.
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Jake Wagner (@darthlimitedgov)  is an editor at The Resurgent and former project manager for a legal and civic education non-profit.

Tags: John James, running for Senate, Michigan, Jake Wagner, The Resurgent To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service and "Like" Facebook Page - Thanks!

Trump’s UK Visit Was a Glowing Success

President Donald Trump & Queen Elizabeth II 
by Ted R. Bromund: It’s not too much to call President Donald Trump’s state visit to Britain, which concluded on Wednesday, a big success. The curious thing is that much of the American media went out of their way to ignore that fact.

The New York Times stands in for a lot of the U.S. coverage. “Trump Insults London Mayor as ‘Loser’ as He Pays Tribute to the Queen,” it blared on Monday as the state visit began.

On Wednesday, as the president left Britain, the Times was at it again: “President Trump, Unloved in Britain, Still Tries to Play Kingmaker.” It’s almost like they want him to fail.

The media has a simple script. When the president is a Republican abroad, the correct approach is to blame everything on him and play up as many negatives as possible. But when the president is a liberal, anything less that fulsome applause is a betrayal of the tradition that politics stops at the water’s edge.

But curiously, much of the British media refused to play along.

The coverage there was partisan, too, but better balanced, with the BBC predictably hoping for the worst, while the Daily Mail and the Sun—Britain’s most popular newspapers—put a positive spin on the visit.

In fact, the Daily Mail adopted as its headline the queen’s final word to the president: “I hope you come to this country again soon.”

Now, the queen is consummately gifted and experienced in her role as the British head of state. Her words to the president were what courtesy and protocol demand, no more and no less—not a revelation of her personal sentiments. And that is the point.

The president’s visit was, basically, a normal one. But the expectations were artificially, and ridiculously, low before his arrival.

In the end, Trump’s speech and toast at the formal dinner on Monday at Buckingham Palace were well-received, he got on well with the Queen, and his press conference with outgoing Prime Minister Theresa May was a sensible mixture of agreement and courteously-expressed differences on a few difficult points.

Yes, there were protests in London. As someone who visits London regularly, let me tell you something: There are always protests in London.

The protests that greeted the president were smaller than I expected, and even the protest organizers said that “tens of thousands” of protesters turned out. The police and the BBC said protesters numbered “in the thousands.”

Bearing in mind that about 250,000 people turned out to protest Trump’s last visit to the U.K., and that the organizers had to make excuses this time about the low turnout, I’d say the protests were a failure to launch.

The president, by contrast, had a great ceremonial occasion. He emphasized the points he wanted to make—above all, about the need to complete Brexit so that Britain and the U.S. can make a trade deal—and moved on to the full D-Day commemorations in France.

That looks like a successful state visit to me.
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Ted R. Bromund, Ph.D., (@Bromund) is the Margaret Thatcher senior research fellow at The Heritage Foundation. His article was on The Daily Signal.

Tags: Ted R. Bromund, The Heritage Foundation, Trump’s UK Visit, a Glowing Success To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service and "Like" Facebook Page - Thanks!

The New Neocons

by Christian Alejandro Gonzalez: In the 1960s and ’70s, a group of disillusioned progressive intellectuals began to move slowly right. Figures who had written for left-of-center magazines or worked in Democratic Party politics—Daniel Patrick Moynihan, Nathan Glazer, Irving Kristol, and Norman Podhoretz, to name a few—started feeling disgust at the activities of the radical left. Two leftist commitments were particularly offensive to them. One was the anti-Americanism that accompanied protests against the Vietnam War (as well as the attendant “anti-anticommunism” that such anti-Americanism frequently entailed). The second was the left-wing assault on academia, often committed in the name of minority populations.

Left activism visited all sorts of disturbances upon the universities in the 1960s. Student revolts sometimes turned into tense confrontations with presidents and administrators; protesters managed to occupy and take over various campuses. All this ferment bred opposition, not just from self-styled conservatives, who predictably opposed the chaos in the name of order, but also from some progressives. As George Nash writes in The Conservative Intellectual Movement in America Since 1945:
As campus after campus exploded . . . the need for order, restraint, and standards of excellence seemed ever more apparent to at least a segment of the academic community. The universities were under radical attack. . . . Professors were forced to choose; some suddenly found themselves in a “conservative” situation. This is not to say, of course, that the defense of elementary order, academic freedom, professional standards, an open university, and sheer human civility were in any sense the exclusive concern of conservatives. Nevertheless, the very act of protecting these values . . . had a profoundly “conservatizing” effect on many [progressive] intellectuals.Although certain members of the professoriate found themselves in agreement with the right, they did not immediately join the right. Many of them felt rather uncomfortable agreeing with conservative intellectuals: for much of the ’60s, Norman Podhoretz and other writers associated with Commentary magazine insisted that they were the true progressives and that the campus radical left was a grotesque aberration from an otherwise honorable tradition.

Despite the discomfort of Podhoretz et. al, though, the onslaught of left-activism compelled these thinkers to come to the defense of America’s liberal-democratic order—which is partly why they eventually came to be called the “neoconservatives.” Little by little they began to refute the contentions of the far left. The social scientists among them (Moynihan, Glazer, etc.) argued that African Americans were held back not exclusively by racism but also by internal, cultural factors that state interventions in the economy were not capable of easily resolving. The staunch anticommunists among them contended that although capitalism may not be perfect, it is certainly superior to communism, as only the former system has in fact generated prosperity and freedom. In short, their newfound appreciation for America’s positive characteristics led them to take up other conservative-ish positions.

This move to the right among progressive intellectuals opened up some ground for an alliance with elements on the traditional center-right. The neoconservatives and the establishment conservatives of such magazines as National Review did not agree on everything, at least in the 1960s and ’70s, but they agreed on much: the basic virtue of capitalism, the necessity of order and the norms of civility, and, above all, the pathological nature of the radical left.

THE DIVIDING LINE
All of which brings me to the Intellectual Dark Web (IDW) today, and the parallels between it and neoconservatism. In all the trends mentioned above—the reaction against left-activism, the initial reluctance to fully embrace the right, the defense of standards, the discovery of conservatism’s worth—the IDW resembles its neoconservative predecessor.

There has been much debate about how exactly the IDW’s political position should be characterized. By and large, the IDW’s critics tend to paint the IDW as a movement of the right, or even of the far right. But even within the IDW itself, there is dissension. Uri Harris of Quillette, the IDW’s flagship publication, has suggested that the figures associated with the IDW are united primarily by their opposition to today’s most prominent radical-left movement, namely, the social justice movement. Harris’s argument, however, met with fierce backlash from several IDW figures, many of whom insisted—much like Norman Podhoretz before them—that they are not conservatives in any real sense. Harris’s critics pointed out that with the exception of Jordan Peterson and Ben Shapiro, most IDW members support abortion rights, gay marriage, drug legalization, economic measures to combat income inequality, and other policies not typically associated with conservatism. Hence, they concluded, the IDW is politically diverse and united primarily by support for free and open inquiry.

Quillette editor Claire Lehmann seems to sympathize with Harris’s critics; she does not see the IDW as a manifestation of right-wing politics. For example, she has written that the “relevant distinction today in intellectual circles is not one of Left vs Right, but Liberty vs Authority,” and many people, no doubt, would agree with her. (I cannot help but notice that those who insist that some key matter is not an argument of right versus left but of something else tend to be moderate progressives finding themselves aghast at agreeing with the right.) When one considers the dynamics of what is occurring among intellectuals, however, Lehmann’s objection—and that of Harris’s critics—simply will not do.

Harris’s contention that the IDW is united by opposition to the social justice left is basically correct. Yes, it is true that many IDW figures back some center-left policies but, among intellectuals, those are not the most salient issues of our time. As an aggressive left has expanded its influence in the universities and over culture at large, the issues on its agenda—identity, oppression, social justice, etc.—have largely become the dividing line among intellectuals.

Just about every IDW figure voices vehement opposition to the views of the social justice left; one thinks here of Steven Pinker, Glenn Loury, John McWhorter, Christina Hoff Sommers, Dave Rubin, Joe Rogan, Jordan Peterson, Sam Harris, and Douglas Murray. While there may be a wide divergence of views among these thinkers on a variety of issues, not a single one of them can be described as sympathetic to, let alone supportive of, the social justice left.

CULTURE FIT
For the IDW to count as politically diverse, it would have to begin including people who take the far-left position on the issues of our day—in other words, it would have to include in its ranks intersectional feminists, postcolonial theorists, and so on. Such a development is not even conceivable: a far-left feminist such as Kimberlé Crenshaw would never share a platform with an IDWer or declare herself a proud supporter of the movement. Even Camille Paglia—who describes herself as a left-leaning feminist and is perhaps the closest thing the IDW has to a radical feminist—loathes the social justice movement.

The reason why a social justice leftist could not be part of the IDW reveals much about the subtle process by which diverse IDW figures were pushed together in the first place. The social justice left is, in the view of its opponents, advancing a revolutionary challenge to many of the pillars of Western ideology: capitalism, the Enlightenment, objectivity, rationality, political liberalism, colorblindness, individualism, and more. Even if the IDW’s members are not traditionally conservative, this revolutionary challenge has led them to a certain kind of conservatism, at least insofar as defending the basic ideological and institutional features of one’s societal inheritance is conservative—which, under reasonable assumptions, it is. Thus, in the face of the social justice critique, a Burkean sensibility has come online in much of the IDW—a sensibility that stands up for the things one cherishes or takes for granted. Against the social justice tendency to criticize Western institutions for their white supremacist or patriarchal undertones, the IDW cries out for order, dialogue, standards, the value of one’s inheritance: for a (classically) liberal type of conservatism, in a phrase.

The revolutionary challenge of the social justice left, moreover, has pushed many IDWers toward some very conventionally conservative positions indeed, as can be discerned from some of the essays Quillette has published, to generally warm receptions from its readers. How else can one describe the following pieces if not as conservative? “The French Genocide That Has Been Air-Brushed from History”—a scathing critique of the French Revolution (!); “The Bolivarian God that Failed”—a similarly scathing critique of the Venezuelan revolution; “The Clear Case for Capitalism”—what its title implies; “The High Price of Stale Grievances”—an attack on the racially progressive thought of Ta-Nehisi Coates; and the list goes on.

Support for capitalism, revulsion at revolutionary violence, dissent from racial progressivism—none of this stuff would have been out of place at National Review. Nor am I nitpicking: one might find articles at Quillette that part with some traditionally conservative positions, but one will be hard-pressed to find endorsements of revolution, or critiques of political liberalism, or praise for the notion of structural oppression (and all that is related to it). I submit, then, that the counterrevolutionary impulse is at work in the IDW.

As with the initial phases of the original neoconservatism, many figures in the IDW currently feel uncomfortable in their new intellectual surroundings. They have not forged deep ties with the institutional right. They have not allied themselves with right-wing political parties. They still get upset at those who call them conservatives (and so I offer my apologies in advance for doing precisely that!). They diverge from traditional conservatives on some issues—but not on the most salient ones.

And yet, despite all that, they are the new neoconservatives, and their protestations to the contrary cannot obfuscate what is happening. If history is any indication, the links between the IDW and the more established right are likely to strengthen in the coming years, for better or worse—or, indeed, for better and worse.
------------------
Christian Alejandro Gonzalez (@xchrisgonz) is a political science student at Columbia University and a Research Assistant at Heterodox Academy. His work has appeared in National Review, the American Conservative, Quillette, and elsewhere. His article was shared on and by Intercollegiate Review (IR) which shared this article with the ARRA News Service editor. IR is published by the Intercollegiate Studies Institute (ISI).  Corrections made by ARRA News Service on 6/8/2019

Tags: Christian Alejandro Gonzalez, Intercollegiant Review, Intercollegiante 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!

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