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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, August 02, 2019

Racism: The Left’s Only Answer

by Newt Gingrich: As I watched the Democratic debates this week, something struck me that I believe will prove important in 2020: The Democratic candidates have nothing they can defend and nothing tangible to attack.

The American economy is in great shape. Unemployment remains incredibly low (historically low for African Americans and Latinos, in fact). And despite clear hurdles, Republicans have been taking proactive steps to fix the biggest problems in health care – consistently the No. 1 issue on the minds of Americans.

So, the Democrats have been aggressively on offense and pulling from the radical Left’s playbook. What they seem not to realize is most of the American people aren’t with them.

Consider Senator Elizabeth’s Warren’s comments:

“We need to call out white supremacy for what it is — domestic terrorism — and it poses a threat to the United States of America… We live in a country now where the president is advancing environmental racism, economic racism, criminal justice racism, health care racism. The way we do better is to fight back and show something better.”

Recall, that this is a candidate who lied about her own ethnicity to advance her career. Then couple this with recent calls by Warren and other Democrats to tax Americans to pay reparations for slavery based on genealogical tests. (Slavery was indeed a horrible, un-American institution in our nation’s history – but no one alive today was a slave or a slaveowner).

I’m fairly certain that average Americans don’t consider themselves racists. They probably don’t think getting a raise makes them racist. They likely don’t think driving a gas-powered car makes them racist. They probably don’t think wanting to choose their own health insurance or doctor makes them racist. And I’m certain most don’t believe it’s racist to not go along with a zany genealogical reparations scheme.

The Democratic candidates are using this aggressive, radical language and name-calling because it fires up their base, and they’ve got nothing left to attack (save occasional comments from President Trump, which they distort). It’s too hard for them to come to grips with the fact that the Mueller story collapsed. So, calling everyone and everything racist gets them applause from diehard audiences and helps the candidates to avoid thinking.

Meanwhile – when they aren’t declaring American tradition, history, and culture inherently racist – the Democrats are promoting open borders, free health care for people who enter our country illegally, the end of private insurance and choice in health care, and the death of our economy through fanatical environmental regulations.

I suspect all these ideas get 15-to-20 percent approval when you take them nationwide. But in their mania (which is bolstered by much of the mainstream media and liberal echo chambers) the Democrats are dragging themselves further and further to the Left.

As I’ve mentioned before, I believe we are heading toward another Nixon-McGovern-style landslide.

When Richard Nixon won the presidency in 1968, many on the Left were convinced the Democrats needed to go as radically left-wing as they thought Nixon was right-wing. They nominated George McGovern, who was exactly the kind of radical they believed they needed. In 1972, Nixon won with more than 60 percent of the vote – the most in modern history. The McGovern movement had completely alienated most Americans.

Similarly, the Democrats today are on track to nominate the most radical candidate they can in 2020. Watch as the few moderate, center-left candidates in the massive field become more and more marginalized.

Because of this, the big winner of the last two nights of the Democratic debate was President Trump. The Democrats are unbelievably invested in adopting policies and creating a country that average Americans simply don’t want.

The potential for a Trump landslide in 2020 is growing by the day.
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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, Racism, The Left’s Only Answer To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service and "Like" Facebook Page - Thanks!

Navy Unmoored by Latest SEAL Scandals

Navy Seals
by Tony Perkins: For most soldiers, the memo that they're getting shipped home is good news. But for a platoon of Navy SEALs in Iraq, the departure was nothing to celebrate. The order came after "a deterioration of good order and discipline" -- and unfortunately, Rear Admiral Collin Green says, this scandal isn't the first.

"We have a problem," the U.S. commander of all SEAL teams wrote. That's an understatement, members of the military are now saying. After a series of controversies -- from heavy drinking and sexual abuse to cocaine -- top brass are sounding the alarm that these elite warriors are in desperate need of a wake-up call. "I don't know yet if we have a culture problem, I do know that we have a good order and discipline problem that must be addressed immediately. Good order and discipline [are] the foundation for every military organization and it is a leadership responsibility." As Commander, I own it. As Commodores, you also own it."

Another person who deserves to own it isn't around. But after almost a decade of social experimentation in the military, Barack Obama is just as to blame for the decline of troop culture as anyone. From the minute he was elected, the 44th president set to work tearing down the moral standards that have kept our force focused and disciplined for more than 200 years. The fact that our troops can't get their ethical bearings is a reflection of two terms of liberal leadership at the highest levels.

When Obama shoved faith, pride, and country to the background, it was only a matter of time before mission readiness and discipline collapsed too. Watching the SEALs crumble, one of the world's most elite warrior classes, is more evidence that we're finally reaping what the years of Obama extremism have sown. Vice Admiral Michael Gidlay, picked to head up Naval Operations, told the Senate during his confirmation hearing on Wednesday that these fundamental values have to be restored -- and soon. "It's especially important in combat," he insisted, since as Special Operations Command Chief Master Sgt. Greg Smith pointed out, "these ethical breaches affect the entire command... and the credibility of our entire force."

But just as it took time for Obama's radicalism to take root, the Trump administration will need patience repairing the damage. What motivates the military, especially these top platoons, has to come from within. They have to have the moral restraint and commitment to carry out their jobs -- or the entire country will pay. Fortunately, this commander-in chief has taken the opposite course -- welcoming freedom and religion and the morality that flows from both. The simple fact that his commanders felt free to sound this alarm -- without fear or political correctness holding them back -- is a sign that the military is at least on the right road.

For three years, President Trump has been trying to restore the proud military tradition that existed before Barack Obama. We continue to be grateful that he had the backbone to roll back the gender confusion the last administration tried to inject into the military in 2016. But on some issues -- like this one -- it's tough to put the genie back in the bottle. Thank goodness he has leaders who are willing to try.
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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.

Tags: Tony Perkins, Family Research Center, FRC, Family Research Council, Navy Unmoored, Latest SEAL Scandals To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service and "Like" Facebook Page - Thanks!

How Faulty Assumptions in Climate Predictions Could Mean Big Costs for Americans

by Kevin Mooney: Family incomes will take a severe hit and household electricity prices will jump rapidly if policymakers use the “social cost of carbon” to justify new environmental regulations, a Heritage Foundation statistician warned during a climate change conference in Washington.

Since computer climate models are grounded in assumptions about the impact of carbon dioxide emissions, the results “can be all over the map,” Kevin Dayaratna said at the Heartland Institute’s conference.

These results then can be “rigged by policymakers” to achieve their desired results, Dayaratna said during his presentation.

The Heartland Institute is a libertarian, free-market think tank based in Illinois. Its 13th International Conference on Climate Change was held July 25 at the Trump International Hotel in Washington.

Dayaratna, a senior statistician and research programmer at The Heritage Foundation, a leading conservative think tank, was part of a panel discussion on “Energy and Climate Economics” that probed the costs of the Green New Deal and the benefits of fossil fuels.

The statistical models used by the Obama administration to set regulatory policy are flawed because they are highly prone to user manipulation, Dayaratna told conferees.

In fact, only one of the three models in use during the Obama years considered potential benefits, but did so with “outdated assumptions,” he said.

President Barack Obama’s Environmental Protection Agency defined the social cost of carbon as the “economic damages per metric ton of carbon dioxide emissions.”

Climate models seek to measure the long-term impact of carbon dioxide emissions. Dayaratna and his team at Heritage’s Center for Data Analysis adapted and tested two of the three models.

After making “very reasonable changes to the assumptions in the social cost of carbon,” Dayaratna said, they found that costs could drop dramatically anywhere from 40% to 200%. And under reasonable assumptions, he said, costs could become negative and thus net benefits to society.

>>> Commentary: The Flimsy Statistical Models Obama Administration Used to Justify Environmental Agenda

Heritage Foundation statistician Kevin Dayaratna at the International
Conference on Climate Change organized by Heartland Institute.
“The sheer fact that these models can be manipulated to get any result you want speaks volumes to their uselessness in regulatory policy and the danger of putting them into the hands of policymakers,” Dayaratna said.

Dayaratna’s full talk may be viewed here.

The left’s proposed Green New Deal is the latest in a series of proposals aimed at restricting, and even eliminating, fossil fuel use to combat climate change.

On Feb. 7, Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y., introduced House Resolution 109 while Sen. Ed Markey, D-Mass., introduced Senate Resolution 59. Both call for a “10-year national mobilization effort” to completely end the use of fossil fuels in the U.S. and transition the nation’s economy to so-called renewable energy sources.

But like other proposals before it, the Green New Deal is predicated on assumptions about the social cost of carbon that do not hold up under rigorous testing, Dayaratna said.

A Devastating Impact
Estimating the costs and benefits of the Green New Deal is challenging, Dayaratna said, because proponents have stated only “what their goals are” without outlining “any meaningful steps to achieve these goals.”

But in a recently published research paper assessing costs and benefits, Dayaratna and Heritage economist Nicolas Loris seize upon a carbon tax as one possible mechanism to achieve the Green New Deal’s policy goals. That’s partly because Ocasio-Cortez identifies the carbon tax as an option on her website.

The Heritage Energy Model used by Dayaratna and Loris in their study, which is based on U.S. Energy Information’s National Energy Model, also accounts for potential regulations imposed on the manufacturing industry.

What they found in their simulations of a “phased in” carbon tax is that by the time a $300-per-ton tax on carbon dioxide is reached, emissions would be reduced by only 58%.

The researchers found that a carbon tax, “coupled with government regulations and mandates,” would have a devastating impact on the American economy. By 2040, the Green New Deal would lead to an annual shortfall of 1.2 million jobs, “with a peak of more than 5.3 million jobs lost in 2023,” according to the paper.

Dayaratna and Loris also found that the typical family of four would lose an average of $8,000 in income every year, or more than $165,000 through 2040.

And, they concluded, the Green New Deal would make household electricity costs “skyrocket,” estimating these costs “would rapidly increase by well over 30%.”

In his presentation, Dayaratna stressed that the Green New Deal would not have any significant impact on the climate. Heritage’s models found that the planet would be only 0.2 degree Celsius cooler by the year 2100, and sea-level rise would slow by less than 2 centimeters.

‘Best President’ on Related Issues
Jim Lakely, communications director for the Heartland Institute, told The Daily Signal in an interview that the focus of this year’s conference was “a bit different” with Donald Trump in the White House:

The environmental left is unified in a way that it wasn’t before the election of Trump, because you now have issues on the table they didn’t expect to have on the table going back to October 2016. At that time, they felt like they had the wind at their back.

So, on our side, we felt we needed to be just as unified in our messaging and our goals. Trump is probably the best president we have had on our issues.
Other conference speakers included Myron Ebell, director of the Center for Energy and Environment at the Competitive Enterprise Institute, a libertarian think tank in Washington. Ebell was part of a panel discussion called “Winning Public Policy Options.”

“For us, the Green New Deal is a winning public policy option, and it is going to be the gift that keeps on giving,” Ebell said.

But he also voiced concern that the Green New Deal is spurring some Republican lawmakers to proceed with their own version of “light green” proposals, so they can appear “moderate and reasonable.”

Republicans who may be inclined to support a carbon tax should pay heed to recent election results from across the globe that suggest they would pay a steep political price, Ebell told the audience.

Government figures in Australia and parts of Canada who have advanced their own version of a carbon tax have been voted out of office, he said. And in Washington state, which he described as “a rather green state,” voters defeated a carbon tax proposal.

Trump’s Success on Energy Front
“There is an alternative to the Green New Deal and it’s called the Trump deregulatory agenda, and it’s working,” Ebell said.

Thanks to Trump’s deregulatory policies and tax cuts, the U.S. economy is growing at a robust clip, he said.

Those parts of the country that “stagnated and declined” under the Bush and Obama administrations, including “heartland states,” are now the faster growing parts of the nation’s growing economy, Ebell said.

Ebell credited Trump for helping to unleash America’s oil and gas resources.

“President Trump has had success on the energy front,” he said. “As a result of the shale, oil, and gas revolution and letting it loose, we are now the world’s largest producer of oil and gas.”

Ebell’s full talk may be viewed here.

The Competitive Enterprise Institute just released its own study in partnership with Power the Future, a nonprofit that advocates American energy jobs. It shows that the Green New Deal would cost households in Alaska, Florida, New Hampshire, New Mexico, and Pennsylvania tens of thousands of dollars in higher costs for energy, housing, transportation, and shipping.

Dayaratna, the Heritage statistician, suggested that too many political figures lack a sufficient appreciation for what sensible energy policy means for average Americans.

“Energy is literally the fundamental building block of civilization,” Dayaratna said. “From enabling you to light up your home, from enabling you to drive your car, to enabling this very conference to operate. Energy has literally become the basis of anything and everything we do.”

“Unfortunately,” he said, “many people, particularly lawmakers, take the concept of energy for granted.”
-------------------------
Kevin Mooney (@KevinMooneyDC) is an investigative reporter for Heritage Foundation's The Daily Signal.

Tags: Kevin Mooney, The Daily Signal, How Faulty Assumptions, in Climate Predictions, Could Mean, Big Costs for Americans To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service and "Like" Facebook Page - Thanks!

Two Debates One Rally, A Striking Contrast, America First

by Gary Bauer, Contributing Author: Two Debates, One Rally
The two nights of Democrat debates produced a lot of hot air about socialism and climate change, but no ideas on economic growth. Several candidates tried to outdo one another on open borders. And they offered nothing that would help America's inner cities.

At a rally in Ohio last night, President Trump talked about the great strides that are being made by his economic policies, saying:

"We've created six million new jobs since Election Day. . . More than seven million Americans have been lifted off of food stamps. . . Unemployment has reached the lowest rate in over half a century, and unemployment for African Americans, Hispanic Americans and Asian Americans have all reached the lowest rates ever recorded."

He threw down the gauntlet, vowing to compete with the Democrats over America's urban minority vote. He blasted the condition of America's inner cities after decades of one party control.

He told the Ohio audience that the "rage-filled" socialists care more about illegal immigrants than they do native born Americans living in our cities.

The left's media allies sense the danger that Trump might cut into the Democrat Party's support among black and Hispanic voters, which is why they are working overtime to convince Americans that the president is a racist.

As you know, there were concerns going into last night's rally that Trump's enthusiastic fans might break into chants. Alas, for many on the left, there was spontaneous chanting that rose up from the deplorable crowd.

They kept yelling, "USA! USA! USA!" -- you know, the country the left continually trashes as having been built on racism and genocide.

A Striking Contrast
If you think about Republican primaries or debates, it's not uncommon for a candidate to slam his opponent for being soft on crime.

But in the Democrat debates, Joe Biden, Cory Booker and Kamala Harris were attacked because they were too tough on crime. That speaks volumes about today's Democrat Party.

Republicans are proud to be law and order candidates, while Democrats have seemingly embraced a "no law and disorder" message. The left is extremely vulnerable on this issue.

Over the years, the left has chosen powerful teachers unions over the minority children trapped in failed inner city schools. When forced to choose between the criminals and their inner city victims, the left's definition of being "pro-minority" was to side with the criminals.

While Republicans have always fought for school choice and safe streets, Donald Trump is taking the fight to the left in a way no one else ever has. And it's driving the left nuts!

America First
Trump continues to mystify his critics with a strong America First foreign policy. Let's start with China.

The president announced yesterday that he will impose an additional 10% tariff on $300 billion of imported Chinese products beginning September 1. The announcement came in response to Beijing's backtracking in the trade talks.

Washington's corporate elite don't like the president's tough stand against China, but the Chinese are taking a huge hit (here and here) and, as the Wall Street Journal notes, Beijing is running out of options. Thankfully we have a president who is putting American workers first.

The Trump Administration announced that it is withdrawing from a dead-end arms control treaty with Russia because Moscow was not complying its terms. This was not a rash action on the president's part. Trump gave Putin six months to comply and he did not. A senior administration official told Fox News:

"Russia alone is to blame for this situation. We have taken every opportunity -- dozens and dozens of opportunities across two administrations -- to bring Russia back into compliance. . . They are a serial violator of arms control agreements."

And there's more. Yesterday, the president slapped Russia with a second round of sanctions for its use of chemical weapons in the attempted assassination of former Russian spy Sergei Skripal.

Cancelling an arms control treaty and imposing additional sanctions. Those aren't the actions of "Putin's puppet" or a "Russian asset." Those are the actions of a president who is putting America's national security first.

Finally, there are reports today that the administration is preparing to bring thousands of troops home from Afghanistan. Hardline NeverTrumpers are screeching in opposition, accusing Trump of making a mistake and insisting that he is not "finishing the job."

U.S. forces have been dying in Afghanistan for 18 years. If "finishing the job" means defeating the Taliban, we will be there for the next century and hundreds of thousands of additional soldiers will have to be deployed. There is no stomach for that.

After all the help we have poured into that country, if the Afghan people and the Afghan government cannot defeat the Taliban, we cannot do it for them. It's time to bring the troops home and let them defend our borders rather than Afghanistan's.

This president campaigned on getting us out of no-win endless wars, and he is doing just that.

Other Headlines
  • While the Democrat's crazy debates dominated the headlines this week, the GOP-led Senate confirmed 13 more Trump judges.
  • 164,000 new jobs were created last month, the unemployment rate remained at 3.7% and wages also grew.
  • Gillette's liberal virtue signaling doesn't seem to be good business. The company reported losing billions last quarter.
  • Meanwhile, Chick-fil-A's strong commitment to customer service and traditional values earned it the top spot as America's favorite fast food restaurant.
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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, Two Debates One Rally, A Striking Contrast, America First To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service and "Like" Facebook Page - Thanks!

Nationalism, Rightly Understood, Is a Necessary Ingredient of Political Success

Michael Barone
by Michael Barone: Nationalism has a bad name. For many Americans, mention of the word summons up visions of Hitler and Nazism. Some condemn nationalism as thoughtless bragging that your nation is better than others, which should be discouraged just as second graders are told not to brag, lest they hurt classmates' feelings.

Historical and international perspective is supplied by one of the conveners of the well-attended National Conservatism conference in Washington last month, Israeli think tank head Yoram Hazony, in his 2018 book, "The Virtue of Nationalism." Hazony argues that nationalism first emerged in the northwest corner of Europe, in Tudor England and in the Dutch republic rebelling against the overlordship of the king of Spain. These were small maritime nations, growing rich through international trade even while threatened by massive monarchies. In the years of religious wars, they were the most religiously diverse and tolerant polities in Christendom.

Hazony contrasts nationalist states with what he calls imperialist polities, which include international organizations such as the United Nations and political entities such as the Holy Roman Empire, the Soviet Union and Nazi Germany, which was not just trying to govern Germany but to conquer "untermensch" peoples. As an Israeli, he is very much aware that his successful nationalist state is under constant attack from such imperialist bodies.

Nationalist states, he argues, can provide peaceful havens for those of differing cultural views and economic interests who share a common citizenship. They will, he argues, protect their individual liberties and (here some readers will disagree) abjure external conquests. "The best political order that is known to us," he writes, "is an order of independent national states."

This is congruent with the words of two of President Trump's thoughtful speeches, delivered in Warsaw, Poland, in July 2017 and in Normandy on D-Day this year. In them he pays generous tribute to other nations' nationalism and how they have advanced human liberty. It is also congruent with the rhetoric of British Prime Minister Boris Johnson as he tries to give effect to British voters' decision to leave what, in Hazony's terminology, is an increasingly imperialistic European Union.

Hazony seems to me on solid ground in arguing that nationalism, rightly understood, can be a force for good. Trump's words on D-Day, and those of presidents before him on earlier anniversaries, should remind us that the Allies who cooperated in that enterprise were all led by nationalists -- America's Franklin Roosevelt; Britain's Winston Churchill; France's Charles de Gaulle; and the leaders of Canada, Poland, Norway and Australia.

One might add that an ally left unmentioned, the Soviet Union dictator Josef Stalin, temporarily portrayed himself as a nationalist rather than a communist to rally his people to fight on the Eastern Front even as democratic nationalists worked together to open the front on the West.

The nationalist sensibility is an important part of domestic partisan politics. In an article I wrote for The Public Interest in 1993, I argued that the political parties and political leaders of Western democracies partake, in varying proportions, in four different dispositions -- religious, socialist, liberal and nationalist.

Each has its strengths and weaknesses. Religious parties come to grief when people abandon religion (like the Christian Democrats in largely secular Western Europe), and they struggle to amass majorities in religiously diverse nations like the United States.

Socialist parties' weakness is that socialism just doesn't work. When that became apparent in Britain, Margaret Thatcher controversially rolled back postwar Labour Party policies in the 1980s. More quietly, Scandinavian nations rolled back their welfare states in the 1990s. Now venerable social democratic parties have all but disappeared in Germany, France and Italy.

Liberal parties -- liberal in the 19th-century sense: secular and free market -- have sometimes governed effectively but proved incapable of defending themselves against destruction. Britain's Liberals, dominant in 1916, were ground to bits between the Conservatives and Labour in 1924. The dominant secular party in Italy was swept from power by Mussolini's brownshirts in 1922, and the one in France by Hitler's troops in 1940.

Only parties with a strong nationalist strain have proved to be lasting -- including, over most of their histories, America's Democratic and Republican parties. Today we're told that Donald Trump's Republicans are dangerously and self-destructively nationalist. Headline speakers at Hazony's conference -- tech mogul Peter Thiel, Fox News' Tucker Carlson, national security adviser John Bolton, Sen. Josh Hawley -- seemed to disagree. And many observers are wondering whether Democratic presidential candidates' enthusiasm for open borders is a politically hazardous trashing of a sensible nationalism long essential for political success.
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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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Being a Racist Is Easy Today

Dr. Walter E. Williams
by Dr. Walter E. Williams: Years ago, it was hard to be a racist. You had to be fitted for and spend money on a white gown and don a pointy hat. You celebrated racism by getting some burlap, wrapping it around a cross, setting it ablaze and dancing around it carrying torches.

Sometimes, as did Lester Maddox, you had to buy axe handles for yourself and your supporters to wield to forcibly turn away black customers from your restaurant. Or, as in the case of Theophilus “Bull” Connor, you had to learn to direct fire hoses and vicious police attack dogs against civil rights demonstrators.

Younger racists, along with their parents, had to memorize poems for whenever a black student showed up for admission to their high school or college. For example, “Two, four, six, eight, we don’t want to integrate!” Of course, there were a host of racial slurs and epithets that could be hurled, with impunity, at any black person in your presence. In earlier times, you didn’t have to be sophisticated, but it took a bit of work, to be a racist.

Today, all that has changed. To be a racist today takes little effort. For example, one can sit back in his easy chair and declare that he’s for across-the-board tax cuts. That makes you a racist. If you don’t believe me, think back to 1994 when the Republican-led Congress pushed for a tax-cut measure. Former U.S. House of Representatives member Charles Rangel, D-N.Y., denouncing the Republicans’ plan before a Manhattan audience as a form of modern-day racism said: “It’s not ‘spic’ or ‘n——-‘ anymore. (Instead,) they say, ‘Let’s cut taxes.’” A few months later, he compared the GOP’s “Contract with America” to measures in Nazi Germany saying, “Hitler wasn’t even talking about doing these things.”

One can be labeled a racist through a set of “microaggressions” listed in “Diversity in the Classroom, UCLA Diversity & Faculty Development” from 2014.

Here are a few statements one should avoid: “You are a credit to your race.” “Wow! How did you become so good in math?” “There is only one race, the human race.” “I’m not racist. I have several Black friends.” “As a woman, I know what you go through as a racial minority.”

But most instances of microaggressions are less overt. There are college microaggressions such as a male student rolling his eyes when a female student speaks, or people not wanting to be in study groups with those of different races.

Perhaps the easiest way to be labeled a racist is to suggest that a wall be built on our border with Mexico in order to keep people from Mexico and points south from entering our nation illegally. Also, a slam-dunk charge of racism is to say that the standard practice of separating children from parents is Nazi-like. But imagine you are stopped with your child in the car and charged with a DUI in any of our 50 states. You’re going to be arrested and your child taken to protective child services. The identical practice on our southern border becomes racism.

As veteran journalist Brit Hume said about the uproar over President Donald Trump’s latest bomb-throwing: “Trump’s ‘go back’ comments were nativist, xenophobic, counterfactual and politically stupid. But they simply do not meet the standard definition of racist, a word so recklessly flung around these days that its actual meaning is being lost.” The president cleaned up his remarks a few days later saying: “These are people that hate our country. If you’re not happy in the U.S., if you’re complaining all the time, very simply, you can leave.” By the way, leaving isn’t Trump’s idea. Many leftists pledged to flee America altogether if Trump were elected president.

The bottom line is that when leftists have no other winning argument, they falsely accuse others of racism. Republicans cower at the charge and often give the leftists what they want. Black Americans who are octogenarians, or nearly so, need to explain what true racism is, not to correct white liberals but to inform young black people.
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Dr. Walter Williams (@WE_Williams) is an American economist, social commentator, and author of over 150 publications. He has a Ph.D. and M.A. in Economics from the UCLA and B.A. in economics from California State University. He also holds a Doctor of Humane Letters from Virginia Union University and Grove City College, Doctor of Laws from Washington and Jefferson College. He has served on the faculty of George Mason University in Fairfax, Virginia, as John M. Olin Distinguished Professor of Economics, since 1980. Visit his website: WalterEWilliams.com and view a list of other articles and works.

Tags: Walter Williams, commentary, Being a Racist, Is Easy Today 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 Multicultural Mugging of Uncle Joe

Joe Biden
by Patrick Buchanan: “Everybody’s talking about how terrible I am on these issues,” wailed Biden. He fought back gamely. But he also stammered, mumbled, misspoke and some of his answers seemed to be canned rebuttals.

In his opening statement at Wednesday’s Democratic debate in Detroit, Joe Biden addressed Donald Trump while pointing proudly to the racial and ethnic diversity of the nine Democrats standing beside him.

“Mr. President, this is America and we are strong and great because of this diversity, not in spite of it. … We love it. We are here to stay. And we certainly are not going to leave it to you.”

Whereupon the other nine — three women, two African Americans, one Asian American and one Hispanic — began a multicultural mugging of Biden that at times took on the aspect of a flash mob.

Said The Washington Post, Biden “faced relentless attacks on his decades-long Senate record on race and criminal justice, immigration and health care, and his commitment to women’s rights.”

The 1994 crime bill, of which Sen. Biden was once proud and which cut U.S. crime rates for decades, was trashed as a reactionary and racist measure that led to the imprisonment of countless thousands of black Americans who were guilty only of minor drug offenses.

Cory Booker called Joe the “architect of mass incarceration.”

Biden’s Senate friendships with segregationists and opposition to busing to integrate the public schools came in for yet another hiding by Sen. Kamala Harris.

His support of President Barack Obama’s border policies that led to the deportation of hundreds of thousands seeking asylum and entry into the country was denounced as heartless.

Did he never object in the Obama Cabinet meetings to what was happening to these unfortunates being turned back, Biden was asked?

For two hours, when the Democratic candidates were not attacking each other, they were piling on Joe.

Kirsten Gillibrand, a self-described “white woman of privilege,” attacked him for a long-ago op-ed that warned that women who enter the workforce imperil the family.

He was attacked anew by Harris for having supported the Hyde Amendment that denies federal funding for abortions.

On and on it went. Biden’s support of NAFTA was attacked as was his vote for the war in Iraq. He was made to recant his support of the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade deal he helped to forge. The TPP was once seen by U.S. elites as uniting the democracies of Asia and the Americas to counter the Chinese drive for trade hegemony.

“Everybody’s talking about how terrible I am on these issues,” wailed Biden. He fought back gamely. But he also stammered, mumbled, misspoke and some of his answers seemed to be canned rebuttals.

Biden eased some fears that he has lost more than a step as a presidential candidate. Yet this is not the same Joe who bested Mitt Romney’s vice presidential nominee, Paul Ryan, in 2012.

In closing Biden misidentified his website, “If you agree with me, go to Joe 3 0 3 3 0 and help me in this fight.”

In a city that was stunned by the halting public testimony of Robert Mueller, Biden’s debate performances raise a valid question: Can the Joe Biden we saw in the two debates be an articulate and energetic leader and president until January 2025, five and a half years from now?

While every candidate scored points Wednesday night, much of the scoring was done at the expense of other Democrats on stage. The GOP has a new library of videos of Democratic fratricide, and sororicide.

Bottom line of the July Democratic debates: It seems astonishing how far the Democratic Party’s center of gravity has moved to the left.

Today, much of the career record of Joe Biden — his opposition to busing, his credentials as tough-on-crime, his support for NAFTA, his backing of the Iraq War, his career-long support of the Hyde Amendment — is seen not as a record to be proud of, but a record to be ashamed of, and a record to apologize for.

How do progressives, many of whom regard Biden’s career as an embarrassment, embrace him as their leader and agent of progressive change if he wins the nomination?

Biden today seems to be the kind of candidate, like Congressman Joe Crowley of Queens whom Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez ousted in a primary in 2018, that progressives want desperately to be done with.

After the July debates, Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren sit in the second and third positions, with one of the two the almost certain beneficiary of a Biden fade.

Yet, if the Democratic Party nominates either — both are committed to a sweeping restructure of society and the economy — are the American people ready to buy into a radical or outright socialist agenda?

Are Americans looking for an alternative to Trump who will abolish private health insurance, embrace open borders and reparations for slavery, extend the ballot to felons in prison, add half a dozen justices to the Supreme Court and vote for free college tuition and forgiveness of student loans?

Where is the evidence of that?
--------------------
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.

Tags: Patrick Buchanan, conservative, commentary, Multicultural Mugging, of Uncle Joe, Joe Biden To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service and "Like" Facebook Page - Thanks!

New Evidence Unveils Disturbing Facts About Hillary's Email Scandal

. . . FBI is implicated in destroying evidence to benefit Hillary Clinton.
by Deborah Weiss: In breaking news, the American Center for Law and Justice or ACLJ (Jay Sekulow's organization, not related to his role as the President's attorney), has obtained actual copies of the immunity agreements pertaining to Cheryl Mills and Heather Samuelson in the Hillary email scandal. This was a stunning litigation win, hard-fought after years of litigation by the ACLJ attorneys, who were unable to extract the documents through the normal FOIA processes, due to a lack of cooperation by the government.

In reviewing what the agreements uncovered, keep in mind that Cheryl Mills was Secretary Clinton's Chief of Staff at the State Department and then bizarrely, she subsequently served as Clinton’s attorney, representing her in the email scandal. Heather Samuelson worked on Hillary Clinton's 2008 campaign, and then became a Senior Advisor to her at the State Department, as well as the White House liaison. Somehow, she also became one of Clinton's personal attorneys during the email scandal.

The immunity agreements issued by the government, were crafted so that the agencies could extract information from the parties, despite the fact that this is not necessary because DOJ has the power to require that the information be turned over. Clinton kept classified emails on a private server in violation of Federal law, and the immunity agreements reveal that both Cheryl Mills and Heather Samuelson were actively involved in the cover-up of these emails as well as in the destruction of evidence. According to Jordon Sekulow, Executive Director of the ACLJ, it is extremely unusual for someone involved in a criminal cover up, who needs an immunity deal to ensure the evasion of jail time, later becomes the attorney representing the other potential criminal or co-conspirator.

The agreements issued were with DOJ and the FBI. They asserted that Mills and Samuelson would turn over the computers to them, but stipulated that they weren't turning over "custody and control". This critical point is a legal and factual bunch of bunk. The FOIA statute applies to information in the agencies' "custody and control". Anything not in their custody or control cannot be FOIA'd. It is impossible to have an agency physically have a computer and not have it in their "custody or control." Custody and control is not something that suspects have to expressly give over or agree to give over.

When they give over the evidence, then obviously, as a matter of fact, they are also giving the agency "custody and control" over that evidence. Suspects cannot withhold "custody and control" by mere words or lack of consent, as consent is not required. In other words, these agreements are extremely flawed and whomever signed off on them should be investigated and perhaps prosecuted. It is clear that the purpose of this clause was to make the arguably illegal activities of Mills and Samuelson out of the reach of FOIA --- in other words, it would be withheld from the public. This is the very definition of corruption.

Additionally, the immunity agreements were broad in scope. There were numerous charges that the agreements gave them immunity from including potential violations of the Federal Records Act, the Classified Information Act and the Espionage Act. According to the ACLJ, nobody has ever gotten immunity from the Espionage Act before. Normally, immunity is for lesser crimes like obstruction of justice, but not espionage. If Mills and Samuelson were charged and convicted of every crime from which they received immunity, they would be potentially subject to twenty-eight years in jail each.

After Clinton illegally sent classified emails on a private server and cell phones (and by the way, people have gone to jail for this even when they did so accidentally because it's that serious), and after Mills and Samuelson purposely worked to cover up and conceal both the emails and the destruction of evidence, and after they were given a sweetheart deal that nobody in history has ever gotten, they became the attorneys for Clinton, representing her in the email case. This shouldn't be allowed because it is a conflict of interests, and not only gives the appearance of impropriety, but indeed, constitutes actual impropriety.

Subsequently, Mills and Samuelson finally gave the computers over to the FBI, which per their agreements, limited the FBI’s investigation. The FBI agreed to limit a) the method by which the emails investigated would be obtained; b) the scope of files which would be investigated, and c) the time-frame parameters for investigated emails. In other words, the FBI agreed in the immunity contracts not to do a full investigation on the Clinton emails.

To make matters worse, again, per the immunity agreements, the FBI agreed to destroy the computers that had the back-up emails. As Congressman Jim Jordan referenced during the Mueller hearings recently, the FBI used bleachBit to purge the server so the information could never be accessed in the future and used hammers to smash the cell phones involved. In other words, the FBI and DOJ participated in the destruction of the evidence. In effect, this constitutes is a conspiracy between the Obama DOJ (under Loretta Lynch) and the Comey-led FBI to cover up Clinton’s crimes.

Shortly thereafter, Comey came out publicly and held a press conference exonerating Clinton from any criminal activity, knowing full well that she was never thoroughly investigated, and that his own agency had participated in the destruction of evidence.

To reiterate Comey’s assertions, he stated that Clinton had been "extremely careless" in her handling of classified and sensitive information, but not "grossly negligent", even though the definition of grossly negligent is extremely careless. Gross negligence is the language in the statute necessary to prosecute someone who does this and Comey inaccurately professed that no prosecutor would pursue a case based on these facts, even though those with lesser evidence have indeed been charged.

Currently, there are investigations taking place pertaining to the Clinton email scandal cover-up, as well as the origins of the Trump investigation by the Mueller team, including the roots of the FISA applications. All of the documents uncovered by the ACLJ’s legal win will constitute valuable evidence for AG Bill Barr, the IG and others. Many who follow what is really going on, on a day to day basis have been repeatedly disappointed in the biased and one-sided investigations and the cover-up or blatant disregard of critical facts implicating the pro-Clinton, anti-Trump teams. But Bill Barr and his team are fairly new to the process. He and others, including John Durham, will finally have the opportunity to get to the bottom of all this --- and finally disclose the real collusion, corruption, and obstruction. There’s still hope.
--------------------
Deborah Weiss, Esq. is a regular contributor to Frontpage Magazine. She is also a contributing author to the book, “Saudi Arabia and the Global Islamic Terrorist Network”, the main researcher and writer for “Council on American-Islamic Relations: Its Use of Lawfare and Intimidation” and the author of “The Organization of Islamic Cooperation’s Jihad on Free Speech.” Her work can be found at VigilanceNow.org.

Tags: IDeborah Weiss, FrontPage Mag, new evidence, Disturbing Facts, Hillary's email scandal, FBI. implicated, in destroying evidence, to benefit, Hillary Clinton To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service and "Like" Facebook Page - Thanks!

Above and Beyond . . .

. . . Democrats say “no one is above the law” but exempt illegal aliens coming into our country.
Editorial Cartoon by AF "Tony" Branco

Tags: Above and Beyound, Democrats say, no one above the law, but exempt illegal aliens To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service and "Like" Facebook Page - Thanks!

In Time of Trump, Caligula Biography Topical

Caligula
by Ralph Benko, Contributing Author: The Great Oracle Google reports, today, 3,790,000 occasions of a comparison between Donald Trump and Caligula. Some representative samples: Donald Trump has ‘fascinating parallels’ with Caligula, says historian; Caligula and Trump: Two disturbingly similar despots centuries apart; Ask a classicist: is Donald Trump more of a Caligula or a Nero; Trump is Caligula; Trump Makes Caligula Look Pretty Good….

One could go on. And on.

Yet ars longa vita brevis.

Trump, unclear on the concept of “search engine” – or card catalogue -- may find all this very, very Unfair. Perhaps so. That said, the cultural leitmotif makes Caligula: The Mad Emperor of Rome (Turner Publishing) by military historian Stephen Dando-Collins extremely topical.

Before Hitler, before Stalin, before Pol Pot … if one wanted to conjure the concept of a monstrous national leader Caligula was your man. Or as Wikipedia has it, “[S]ources focus upon his cruelty, sadism, extravagance, and sexual perversion, presenting him as an insane tyrant.”

“Caligula,” for those, like me, who dozed through ancient history in school, is a nickname. As a tot, he was affectionately called “Little Boot” – Caligula – by the troops of his wildly popular father, General Germanicus. The troops made him their mascot.

As an adult he was generally known as Gaius, short for Gaius Julius Caesar Augustus Germanicus. After an extremely perilous youth he served as the third Roman Emperor, after Augustus and Tiberius. He ruled for a little less than four years before his well-earned enemies assassinated him.

He has gone down in history reviled yet known by his affectionate diminutive. A bit of a paradox, as if Hitler came to be generally known in history and pop culture as “Dolpho.”

Dando-Collins briefly and cryptically alludes to a column of mine at Forbes.com, headlined Donald Trump, Caligula, Michael Wolff, Suetonius, Infamia, And The 'Fake News' Wars. I am a lonely neutral Switzerland in the #NeverTrump #ForeverTrump war. I saw the widespread use of Caligula to vilify Donald Trump as an opportunity to ponder “fake news,” then and now.

“M. Icks and E. Shiraev, in Character Assassination throughout the Ages, put it:
"Suetonius makes no attempt to hide the polemical bias of his sources. He does not cite these texts because he believes them to be accurate per se, but rather because their mere existence serves as proof of the existence of infamia. This might seem trivial at first glance, but I consider it central: Suetonius’s use of such sources permits us to assess to a certain extent how effective the Romans considered such invectives. In several passages, Cicero refers to the topical character of sexual allegations that seem scarcely believable on their own merits. In order to be truly effective, an orator has to seize upon existing rumors of infamia and, building on them, attach all the remaining characteristics of the stereotypical vir mollis [effeminacy].”

… “[A]s Vivian Green wrote in The Madness of Kings:
“The reliability of many of the Roman historians has been questioned. Tacitus and Suetonius were writing long after the events which they described; they were anti-imperialist in attitude and republican in sympathy. Both Dio Cassius and Herodian have been described as gossipy and anecdotal. Yet the force of their writing, and the stories they tell, if they need to be questioned, must be admitted.”

Thus, without exonerating his many mortal sins, Caligula presents as something of an enigma. We are left with many vivid stories, some plausible, some dubious. Enter Dando-Collins.

I found his story of “the mad emperor of Rome” a compelling page-turner. It reads like a political thriller. It reads like a work of investigative journalism. It reads like a myth-busting period history. Indeed it is all the above, while also presenting a drama – ending in Caligula’s assassination – of Shakespearean proportion.

The author is clearly familiar with, yet never pedantic about, all the sources of evidence. He deftly presents and dispels many old libels taken, for centuries, as history. Not infrequently, Dando-Collins persuades us that some of the accusations against Caligula are what the president calls “fake news.” The author assesses other (often blood curdling) stories to be reliable. It is gratifying to have the Caligula stories lucidly recounted and put into perspective by a master literary detective.

As a bonus we are presented with many piquant historical details. It is recorded that Caligula forced Pontius Pilate, the Roman procurator who washed his hands of the crucifixion of Jesus, to commit suicide. For those who might like to make a pilgrimage to the grave of he who asked quid est veritas? lore locates Pilate’s tomb at la Pyramide, in Vienne, France.

For those simply looking for a compelling read, Dando-Collins provides an abundance of felonies and capital offenses by his protagonist. He also provides a transfixing, little known, back story. Many of his stories are so lurid as to dwarf the incumbent president’s mere unseemly tweets and rhetorical excesses. President Trump presents as a piker by comparison.

Caligula: The Mad Emperor of Rome may herald the perfection of a whole new literary genre: "forensic history." Long ago I was tipped off to an open secret. Colleen McCulloch's pulp masterpieces in Masters of Rome were so uncannily accurate as to be held in awe as a kind of occult secret history by the "secret fraternity of Latin Teachers.”

For pure pleasure, if you enjoy historical fiction surely you’ll find much to love among the historical facts of Caligula: The Mad Emperor of Rome. And by way of improving the mind this small masterpiece reminds us just how venerable “fake news” is.
-----------------
Ralph Benko is a contributor to the ARRA News Service.. He is a former deputy general counsel in the Reagan White House, is the principal of the public affairs firm of RalphBenko.com. He serves as editor-in-chief of the Supply Side Blog, was short-listed as Nonprofit Blogger of the Year for his work for the Lehrman Institute, is a member of the Advisory Board of The Transpartisan Review, and is a political columnist and professional blogger for a variety of outlets. He also served in an unrelated area as a deputy general counsel in the Reagan White House. He also shared this article on RealClear Politics.

Tags: Ralph Benko, Time of Trump, Caligula Biaography Topical To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service and "Like" Facebook Page - Thanks!

Huckabee Wonders if Michelle Obama Could Be 2020 Wild Card Candidate

Michelle Obama
by Todd Starnes: After two debates it’s pretty clear to just about everyone that the current field of Democrats do not have a chance of beating President Trump.

So if not the 27 Democrats already in the race, who then?

How about Hillary Clinton?

“I think that’s like the Republicans bringing back Mitt Romney,” former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee said on the Todd Starnes Radio Show.

I’ve been speculating for a few weeks on the radio program that Michelle Obama could be the one candidate that would unite the Democrat Party.

“I’ve said for a long time and I’ve got friends who say the same thing – that the ultimate candidate that would really change things would be Michelle Obama,” Huckabee told me. “I don’t think she wants to run. I don’t think she will.”

But there’s always a possibility.

“It’s possible that enough people could get to her and say, ‘You know, take one for the team,'” Huckabee said. “It’s not that she’s got great policy positions or that she’s prepared to do this in any way. But as far as within the Democratic Party, she would suddenly I think just end 27 campaigns and she would be basically out there by herself.”

And the Democrats are desperate for someone who can restore the Obama legacy that has been gutted by the Trump administration.

“Deep down they know it’s not Joe Biden,” Huckabee said. “I don’t think any of them actually believe Joe will make it to the finish line – much less limp his way to the front of the finish line.”
------------------
Todd Starnes (@toddstarnes) is A Christian Conservative, the host of Fox News & Commentary and heard daily on 250+ radio stations and on his iTune podcasts.

Tags: Todd Starnes, commentary, Huckabee Wonders, if Michelle Obama, 2020 Wild Card Candidate 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 Increases Pressure On China For Trade Deal With New 10 Percent Tariff On The Other $300 Billion Of Goods

Editorial Cartoon by AF  Branco
by Robert Romano: China has proven itself to be an unreliable trade partner in its negotiations, says President Donald Trump, and now he is levying another 10 percent tariff on $300 billion of Chinese goods that were untaxed.

This comes atop the 25 percent tariff on another $250 billion of goods that was hiked in May, which is expected to raise more than $50 billion in revenue this year to the U.S. Treasury.

Trump cited failure by Chinese President Xi Jinping to follow through on commitments he has made, stating on Twitter, “Our representatives have just returned from China where they had constructive talks having to do with a future Trade Deal. We thought we had a deal with China three months ago, but sadly, China decided to re-negotiate the deal prior to signing. More recently, China agreed to… buy agricultural product from the U.S. in large quantities, but did not do so. Additionally, my friend President Xi said that he would stop the sale of Fentanyl to the United States — this never happened, and many Americans continue to die!”

The President still held out hope that a deal could be reached, with the tariffs being a bit of additional incentive, writing, “Trade talks are continuing, and… during the talks the U.S. will start, on September 1st, putting a small additional Tariff of 10% on the remaining 300 Billion Dollars of goods and products coming from China into our Country. This does not include the 250 Billion Dollars already Tariffed at 25%… We look forward to continuing our positive dialogue with China on a comprehensive Trade Deal, and feel that the future between our two countries will be a very bright one!”

The breakdown of trade talks in May led directly to Trump putting the 25 percent tariff on $200 billion of goods — it had been at 10 percent — in addition to the 25 percent that had been levied on another $50 billion of goods.

The trade deal was said to have been in its final stages, but at the eleventh hour, Beijing changed the terms of the deal and promptly walked back prior concessions. According to a May 8 Reuters report, “In each of the seven chapters of the draft trade deal, China had deleted its commitments to change laws to resolve core complaints that caused the United States to launch a trade war: Theft of U.S. intellectual property and trade secrets; forced technology transfers; competition policy; access to financial services; and currency manipulation.”

Adding to the mix, the trade in goods deficit with China hit a record high in 2018 at $419.1 billion according to the U.S. Census Bureau. And that was with some of the tariffs in place.

Ostensibly, the only reason China had come to the table in the first place was President Trump’s threat of further tariffs and an attempt string along negotiators in the hopes of avoiding them. It appears to have been designed to test Trump, betting that perhaps he would not follow through on the tariffs.

Which, it’s hard to blame China for miscalculating. It’s used to just getting its way with the U.S. without consequence or blowback. Since China entered the World Trade Organization in 2001, U.S. manufacturing market share has dropped from 13.4 percent to 7.5 percent in 2017, according to World Bank data. China has risen from 5.3 percent to 16.6 percent in 2017, although their percent of global manufacturing market share has peaked in 2015 at 18.8 percent. During that time, the U.S. economy has not grown above 4 percent since 2000, and not above 3 percent since 2005 on an annual basis.

What they didn’t plan on was Trump. Now, there’s tariffs on $550 billion of goods. Either way, the decision to end the deal may have been so it could wait Trump out with 2020 right around the corner. If Trump loses his bid for reelection, their problem is solved.

For Trump’s part, he seems to be betting China has more to lose in a trade war than the U.S. According to data by the U.S. Trade Representative, China’s $539.5 billion of goods exports to the U.S. comprised almost 4.1 percent of its $13.28 trillion Gross Domestic Product in 2018 and about 22.5 percent of its $2.4 trillion of goods exports. In contrast, American goods exports to China were $120.3 billion, comprising 0.58 percent of the 2018 annual GDP of $20.5 trillion, and comparatively 7.2 percent of its $1.66 trillion of goods exports.

And Trump may be right.

On June 17, “The Coming Collapse of China” author Gordon Chang on Fox Business reported to host Neil Cavuto, “China right now has an economy which is crumbling, could have been contracting last month. We saw that with bellwether car sales down 16.4 percent, the eleventh straight month of decline, the worst monthly decline eves. And imports were down 8.5 percent year on year, a real indication of declining domestic demand.”

Chang added, “This is an economy that is in severe trouble. They need the U.S. market desperately.”

So, maybe the tariffs are working. In this confrontation, Trump does not need a deal as much as China does, for he can inflict damage merely by encouraging manufacturers to move their business elsewhere, whether back to the U.S. or somewhere else. In “The Art of Deal,” Trump wrote, “Use your leverage.” That’s exactly what he’s doing — and it’s about time.
----------------------
Robert Romano is the Vice President of Public Policy at Americans for Limited Government.

Tags: Robert Romano, Americans for Limited Government, President Trump, Increases Pressure On China, Trade Deal, With New 10 Percent Tariff, Other $300 Billion of Goods To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service and "Like" Facebook Page - Thanks!

Lies, Democrats’ Damned Lies About Wages, And Statistics

by J. Frank Bullitt, I&I Editorial: As is their well-practiced custom, the Democratic presidential candidates continue to screech about stagnant wages, and an economy that doesn’t work for everyone.

We’re not saying they’re lying. Let’s just say the truth is out there and they’re missing it.

In the first set of debates, New Jersey Democratic Sen. Cory Booker said that he was seeing “every single day that this economy is not working for average Americans.” Sen. Elizabeth Warren, Massachusetts Democrat, groused about “an economy that does great for those with money and isn’t doing great for everyone else.”

Tuesday night, the first evening of the second round of debates, Ohio Democratic Rep. Tim Ryan complained that union members’ “wages have been stagnating.” The following evening, Julian Castro, secretary of Housing and Urban Development under President Obama, was quite sure that “the idea that America is doing just fine is wrong.”

It’s a familiar beef. Not long ago, Democratic Sen. Bernie Sanders claimed that “for the last 45 years the average American today has not seen a nickel more in real wages than he or she got 45 years ago.” More recently, Warren has lamented “a generation of stagnant wages.”

Even President Trump has brought up “decades of flat wages.”

The numbers don’t seem to back the narrative, though. Factcheck.org, using Bureau of Labor Statistics data, has shown that after falling for about 20 years, wages have been climbing since the mid-1990s.

Not all agree that the measurement used by Factcheck.org is the best way to determine if we’re better off than we were in previous decades. So forget for one moment the data and think about what today’s wages can bring compared to wages in the 1960s and 1970s.

Economist Donald Boudreaux, inspired by work done in 1999 by Michael Cox, then chief economist at the Dallas Federal Reserve, and journalist Richard Alm, has produced a particularly useful method of comparing different eras — how many hours it takes the average worker to buy goods and services. Boudreaux looked at 400 items from a 1975 Sears catalog and found only a single item that required the buyer to put in more time at work to purchase today than it did four decades earlier — men’s work boots.

A microwave oven, however, requires only six hours of labor now but took 93 hours of work in 1975. A man had to toil for 1.5 hours in those days to earn enough to buy a pair of jeans yet needs only 20 minutes today. That same fellow who makes enough before his lunch hour to buy an automobile battery today would have had to put in a full day and another hour the following morning to afford it in 1975.

“For all of the other goods in my sample — including, but not limited to, clothing, household appliances and furniture, recreational equipment, and auto supplies — the amount of time that a typical American worker today must work to earn enough income to buy those goods is less than in 1975, and in most cases it is much less.”

At about the same time, Buffalo, New York, journalist Steve Cichon looked at a 1991 Radio Shack newspaper ad and found that of the 15 electronics products on the page, 13 of them, costing a total of $3,055 then ($5,225 in today’s dollars), could be replaced with a $200 cell phone, which alone performs all of the functions of those items.

Incidentally, paying for that phone, says economist Mark J. Perry, would take “fewer than 10 hours (9.82) of work at the average hourly wage today of $20.35,” while those 13 products would in 1991 have required “290.4 hours of work” — nearly two months — “at the average hourly wage then of $10.52.”

No matter how long anyone worked 30 years ago, few could afford a mobile phone then. They “were so rare that the sight of them generally caused people to stop and gawk,” says columnist and economic adviser John Tamny. And they were phones only at that point. Cell phones now “are actually supercomputers that fit in our pockets” using technology that “would have set consumers back many, many millions not too long ago.”

Consequently, nearly everyone has a cell phone today no matter what their wages are.

Despite what the Democrats are saying, we’re all better off than we were three, four, or five decades ago. Even those at the low end of the wage scale have material goods today that would have taken a big bite out of a rich man’s wallet 30 years ago. Tamny points out that a Tandy 5000 — marketed as the “most powerful computer ever!” — cost $8,900 in 1989, yet “nowadays one can buy a brand new Hewlett-Packard computer that’s exponentially more powerful than the 5000 for $200.”

Despite the facts, we will keep hearing throughout the Democratic debates and the 2020 campaign that Americans are falling behind, the implication being that freedom is failing and the government needs to commandeer the economy. But it’s capitalism performing its “miracles” in a free market that has created an environment in which an American needs to work only a little more than one day to acquire the modern conveniences that would take seven weeks of work to buy not that many years ago.
------------------------
I&I Editorial writen for the Issues & InsightsI & I Editorial Board's new site is formed by the seasoned journalists behind the legendary IBD Editorials page.

Tags: J. Frank Bullitt, I&I Editorial, Lies, Democrats’ Damned Lies, About Wages, Statistics To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service and "Like" Facebook Page - Thanks!

Into and Out of the Muck

by Paul Jacob, Contributing Author: Yesterday I referenced “pigs flying” . . . and Icarus’s waxed-wing fail.

Today, it’s just about the muck.

Now, I am on the road and definitely not catching every word of the Democratic debates. But amidst much nonsense and embarrassment — and there was a lot of it, from what I can tell, not excluding the much-googled New Agey blather of Oprah’s favorite guru, Ms. Marianne Williamson — one exhange stood out: Representative Tulsi Gabbard’s takedown of Kamala Harris’s shockingly punitive and ugly career as a prosecuting attorney.

Now, Rep. Gabbard snuck in her attack* on Harris in place of answering a question about Harris’s own sneak attack, in the previous debate round, on former U. S. Senator and Vice President Joe Biden’s 1970s’ opposition to mandatory bussing. Gabbard ably shifted away from dealing at all with Sleepy Joe — who is a buzzkill and soon-to-be buzzard lunch. She deflected, addressing, instead, a real issue, Kamala Harris as callous crime-fighter.

This shows that Gabbard is developing real politicians’ chops — if you cannot carefully answer a question different from the one asked, you aren’t a true [sic] politician in America.

After the debate, the two candidates took further whacks at each other. The Jezebel article I consulted used the metaphor of “wrestling match” rather than my pigs-in-muck figure, but we are talking about the same thing.

But note, Rep. Gabbard is always calm and well-spoken. She seems able to descend into the muck and coming out without too much stink.

Does this give her an advantage over Donald Trump?

This is Common Sense. I’m Paul Jacob.

* “Senator Harris says she’s proud of her record as a prosecutor and that she’ll be a prosecutor president. But I’m deeply concerned about this record. There are too many examples to cite, but she put over 1,500 people in jail for marijuana violations and then laughed about it when she was asked if she ever smoked marijuana: she blocked evidence . . . that would have freed an innocent man from death row until the courts forced her to do so; she kept people in prison beyond their sentences to use them as cheap labor for the state of California. . . .” etc.
------------------
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.

Tags: Paul Jacob, Common Sense, Into and Out of, the Muck 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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