Tuesday, August 30, 2016

Blue cities are such cesspits of inequality

JOEL KOTKIN on why Blue cities are such cesspits of inequality.
There’s little argument that inequality, and the depressed prospects for the middle class, will be a dominant issue in this year’s election, and beyond. Yet the class divide is not monolithic in its nature, causes, or geography. To paraphrase George Orwell’s Animal Farm, some places are more unequal than others.
Housing represents a central, if not dominant, factor in the rise of inequality. Although the cost of food, fuel, electricity, and tax burdens vary, the largest variation tends to be in terms of housing prices. Even adjusted for income, the price differentials for houses in places like the San Francisco Bay Area or Los Angeles are commonly two to three times as much as in most of the country, including the prosperous cities of Texas, the mid-south and the Intermountain West.
These housing differences also apply to rents, which follow the trajectory of home prices. In many markets, particularly along the coast, upwards of 40% of renters and new buyers spend close to half their income on housing. This has a particularly powerful impact on the poor, the working class, younger people, and middle class families, all of whom find their upward trajectory blocked by steadily rising housing costs.
In response to higher prices, many Americans, now including educated Millennials, are heading to parts of the country where housing is more affordable. Jobs too have been moving to such places, particularly in Texas, the southeast and the Intermountain West. As middle income people head for more affordable places, the high-priced coastal areas are becoming ever more sharply bifurcated, between a well-educated, older, and affluent population and a growing rank of people with little chance to ever buy a house or move solidly into the middle class.
Ironically, these divergences are taking place precisely in those places where political rhetoric over inequality is often most heated and strident. Progressive attempts, such as raising minimum wages, attempt to address the problem, but often other policies, notably strict land-use regulation, exacerbate inequality.
The other major divide is not so much between regions but within them. Even in expensive regions, middle class families tend to cluster in suburban and exurban areas, which are once again growing faster than areas closer to the core. Progressive policies in some states, such as Oregon and California, have been calculated to slow suburban growth and force density onto often unwilling communities. By shutting down the production of family-friendly housing, these areas are driving prices up and, to some extent, driving middle and working class people out of whole regions.
They’ll turn us all into beggars ’cause they’re easier to please.

The Economic Stimulus Perplex: Could Regulation Be the Problem? Progressives and the failure of massive government spending to boost jobs and economic growth.

YA THINK? The Economic Stimulus Perplex: Could Regulation Be the Problem? Progressives and the failure of massive government spending to boost jobs and economic growth.

In his column, Samuelson asks, “What ails the private sector? Can we do anything about it? Those are the crucial questions.”
Perhaps the answer to what ails the private sector is excessive regulation. A recent study by the conservative American Action Forum estimates that the Obama administration is on track to adopt over 600 major regulations (those costing more than $100 million each) by the end of the president’s term. The total cost of complying with all of the new regulations will add up to $813 billion. The libertarian Competitive Enterprise Institute calculates that extent and cost of Washington’s rules and mandates is $1.8 trillion annually, amounting to about $15,000 per household each year. Even the New York Times on Sunday called President Obama, the regulator-in-chief whose new rules have “imposed billions of dollars in new costs on businesses and consumers.”
I have reported earlier analyses that found that regulatory drag has made the U.S. economy $4 trillion smaller than it would otherwise have been. That amounts to a lot of foregone jobs and consumption. I would like to suggest that hugely escalating regulatory costs under the Obama administration have mostly offset whatever the benefits that orthodox Keynesians would expect from economic stimulus. In other words, President Obama has been trying to use Keynesian stimulation to rev the economy while simultaneously jamming down hard on the regulatory brakes.
Well, regulation is an important source of graft.

Don's Tuesday Column

             THE WAY I SEE IT   by Don Polson   Red Bluff Daily News   8/30/2016

               Threats to freedom from the left

To paraphrase Forest Gump, “Freedom is as freedom does.” Consider America’s diminishing freedom—over the last 8 years, America’s freedom ranking dropped from 17th to 20th among 25 countries. You must take into account something that was not part of the surveys: The sense of freedom that individual Americans have, and how that feeling of being free to act upon our convictions as citizens, in our representative self-government, can be crushed.
I listened to an interview on July 5 with Kimberly Strassel, author of “The Intimidation Game: How the Left is Silencing Free Speech.” It occurred to me that, over those same 8 years, the increasing brazenness of leftist attacks on conservative activists has become a scourge on our streets, the Internet, in abusive lawsuits, and targeted judicial/IRS action. People are inspired to act to affect the legislative process, or weigh in in an organized way, with ads, flyers, petitions and contacts with officials. Those are basic freedoms, even responsibilities, of men and women in our America Republic, a representative democracy; progressives threaten it all.
This is not to say that people who are engaged on the other side of an issue, or an opposing campaign or candidate, are out of bounds to actively support, publicly weigh in, write letters to the editor or hold events of their own. People can be as vocal, as organized, and as passionate as they feel is appropriate to their cause. What they can’t do, if they value civil liberty and fair political practices, is engage in underhanded attacks on people, anonymous character assassination, efforts to hurt the families or businesses of opponents, or use legal means (also known as “law-fare”) to silence, restrict or punish their opponents.
Strassel referenced the California initiative, Proposition 8, which sought to define marriage as between one man and one woman. We all remember that people were passionate both for and against it. Now, I will divide readers based on their opinions of, not the issue itself, but whether it was wrong and out-of-bounds for certain things occur. You might want to think long and hard before answering that you approved of the tactics of the anti-Prop 8 crowds.
Was it wrong to disclose donors’ names, and amounts they contributed in favor of Prop 8, when the law said it was confidential? The U.S. Supreme Court ruled, 50 years ago, in favor of the secrecy of NAACP donors, citing their vulnerability to intimidation and harassment. That meant the Prop 8 disclosures were wrong, even illegal and, given what subsequently happened, abominable as a matter of civic propriety.
Was it wrong for Prop 8 opponents (gay marriage supporters) to then use such information to attack fellow citizens who held an opposing position? Was it wrong to organize boycotts against their employers, their businesses, their spouse’s employers or businesses, their service groups, their theater companies, their vehicles, property, Prop 8 signage, and on and on?
I don’t recall Prop 8 opponents speaking out against gay marriage supporters that were hounding, harassing and physically attacking Mormon churches and church-goers, even little old ladies. Many of us have never forgotten and, never having been asked, we’ve never forgiven.
While at the Republican booth for that year’s fair, among the passers-by was a uniformed Sheriff’s deputy that engaged us in discussing our position supporting Prop 8; the male deputy was opposed. The discussion turned to debate with the deputy loudly saying we were hateful and intolerant—things totally irrelevant to anything we had said. Sounds intimidating, no?
Kimberley Strassel presents an “alarming look at how the Left, once the champion of civil liberties, is today orchestrating a coordinated campaign to bully Americans out of free speech…and how both disclosure and campaign finance laws have been hijacked by the Left as weapons against free speech and free association, becoming the most powerful tools of those intent on silencing their political opposition.”
Among the examples cited—each an outrageous political overreach and scare tactic—that constitute evidence, to this writer, of a “long train of abuses and usurpations”: 1) the left set off a wave of liberal harassment against conservative politicians after the Supreme Court decision, Citizens United (the Court ruled that private citizens, who formed a political corporation to fund and run anti-Hillary Clinton ads, acted legally); 2) the IRS used partisan standards to twist the tax code to target Tea Party groups;
3) Wisconsin prosecutors, state Attorneys General and a Democrat Congress attacked political activists and businesses; 4) the Obama administration politicized a host of government agencies including the FEC, FCC, and the SEC. There are others; I hope to read it this summer.
Here’s what conservative Jonah Goldberg said: Regarding the increasingly repressive climate towards free speech, “no books have connected the dots between the Obama White House, Congressional Democrats, and the spider web of ‘grassroots’ organizations the way Kim Strassel does…It is required reading for those who want to know what’s behind the supposedly spontaneous outrages we see every day.”
Stephen Hayes: “Public shaming encouraged by leading political figures. Pre-dawn police raids. Federal agencies targeting groups and individuals because of their political views. It’s hard to believe these things are happening, and more frequently, in the United States. But they are and in this searing indictment of the systematic attempt of the political left to shut down political debates they cannot win, Kimberley Strassel provides the often-horrifying details. It’s a shocking and assiduously well-reported chronicle of the illiberal tactics of the new progressives.”

When under attack, political freedom, if not vigorously defended, will wither away.

Monday, August 29, 2016

Hillary’s worst scandal is that she really thinks she’s clean

Hillary’s worst scandal is that she really thinks she’s clean



Step back from the endless news of Clinton Foundation/Clinton State Department sleaze and Clinton email abuse, and shake your head at this: Hillary Clinton still believes she did absolutely nothing wrong.
That jaw-dropper surfaced in Annie Karni’s report for Politico on the campaign’s damage-control efforts on the candidate’s scandals: Hillary’s minions plan to just “ride out” the clock to Election Day — “a strategy born … of a belief held deeply by Clinton herself that the email controversy is a fake scandal.”
A year-and-a-half after news of her use of a home-brewed server — plainly, to shield her work communications from Freedom of Information laws — Clinton still sees the whole thing as “nothing more than a partisan attack,” Karni writes after talking to top campaign aides.
Right, because FBI Director Jim Comey was a Republican tool when he condemned Clinton’s conduct — which exposed thousands of classified emails to hackers — as “extremely careless.”
The Associated Press must be partisan, too: This week it reported that more than half of the people outside government who met with Secretary of State Clinton had donated in some way to the Clinton Foundation.
At least 85 of 154 people from private interests who got face time with the secretary had donated to the foundation, according to State Department calendars released so far to the AP. Combined, the contributions total as much as $156 million.
And this on top of multiple email dumps showing Clinton’s top aides at State scrambling to arrange meetings and even jobs to please foundation donors.
Yet the Clintons plainly don’t think they ever did anything wrong. Why else refuse to shut the foundation down? Why now promise you’ll stop taking foreign or corporate donations at only some segments of the foundation, unless you think the giving is clean, because it’s all going to your cause?
Never mind the promises Clinton broke at State — to have the foundation take no foreign cash and insulate State decision-making from foundation influence; to safeguard classified info and ensure State had its own copies of all her work communiques . . .
If she makes it to the White House, be warned: Hillary Clinton will never stop breaking her word and the rules whenever she pleases, because in her mind, whatever she does is ethical.

http://nypost.com/2016/08/24/hillarys-worst-scandal-is-that-she-really-thinks-shes-clean/

WHY OBAMA TURNED HIS BACK ON THE “GREEN REVOLUTION” IN IRAN



WHY OBAMA TURNED HIS BACK ON THE “GREEN REVOLUTION” IN IRAN

Most readers, I’m pretty sure, recall that in the summer of 2009, after the dubious election of Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, Iranians began an uprising. They hoped for support of some kind from the United States. That that support didn’t come.
Instead, as Eli Lake reminds us, President Obama publicly downplayed the prospect of real change, saying that the candidates whom hundreds of thousands of Iranians were risking their lives to support did not represent fundamental change.
Contrast that with his laughable claim that the election of the puppet Rouhani years later showed that Iran had changed to the point where we should end sanctions as part of a nuclear deal.
Behind the scenes, Obama overruled advisers who wanted to do what America had done at similar transitions from dictatorship to democracy, and signal America’s support. He ordered the CIA to sever contacts it had with the green movement’s supporters — this according to a new book, The Iran Wars, by the Wall Street Journal’s Jay Solomon, which Lake discusses.
Obama’s approach to Iran’s “green revolution” stands in marked contrast to how the U.S. has reacted to other democratic uprisings. Lakes points out:
The State Department, for example, ran a program in 2000 through the U.S. embassy in Hungary to train Serbian activists in nonviolent resistance against their dictator, Slobodan Milosevic. Milosevic, too, accused his opposition of being pawns of the U.S. government. But in the end his people forced the dictator from power.
Similarly, when Georgian President Eduard Shevardnadze met with popular protests in 2003 after rigged elections, George W. Bush dispatched James Baker to urge him to step down peacefully, which he did. Even the Obama administration provided diplomatic and moral support for popular uprisings in Egypt in 2011 and Ukraine in 2014.
Egypt’s Mubarak was America’s staunchest ally in the Middle East other than Israel. Iran was (and is) our biggest enemy. Yet, Obama supported the overthrow of Mubarak but not the mullahs.
It has been clear to me for years that Obama failed to back the green revolution because he wanted to negotiate with the Iranian regime. Lake thinks so too:
Obama from the beginning of his presidency tried to turn the country’s ruling clerics from foes to friends. It was an obsession. And even though the president would impose severe sanctions on the country’s economy at the end of his first term and beginning of his second, from the start of his presidency, Obama made it clear the U.S. did not seek regime change for Iran.
(Emphasis added)
How much of an obsession?
As Solomon reports, Obama ended U.S. programs to document Iranian human rights abuses. He wrote personal letters to Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei assuring him the U.S. was not trying to overthrow him. Obama repeatedly stressed his respect for the regime in his statements marking Iran’s annual Nowruz celebration.
Obama’s obsession with dealing with the mullahs seems to have spilled over into his feckless Syria policy:
When he walked away from his red line against Syria’s use of chemical weapons in 2013, Solomon reports, both U.S. and Iranian officials had told him that nuclear negotiations would be halted if he intervened against Bashar al-Assad.
This was only the beginning of Obama’s disregard for his own red lines. As nuclear negotiations proceeded, the president and his Secretary of State demolished one red line after another. Lake provides the details, most of which we presented at or around the time of the deal.
What is the outcome?
“The Revolutionary Guard continues to develop increasingly sophisticated weapons systems, including ballistic missiles inscribed with threats against Israel on their nose cones,” Solomon writes in the book’s concluding chapter. “Khamenei and other revolutionary leaders, meanwhile, fine-tune their rhetorical attacks against the United States, seeming to need the American threat to justify their existence.”
Iran is also a key player in Iraq and Syria. It is the leading power in the Middle East and might well become the dominant one.
Would things have gone differently is the U.S. had backed the 2009 uprising? We’ll never know. Regime change might well have been a long shot, but its rewards would have been massive.
And the risk? Negligible, even if one likes the nuclear deal.
There’s no reason to believe that, in 2015, Iran would have turned down the super-generous nuclear deal Obama offered because of America’s stance in 2009. Either the deal is in Iran’s interests or it isn’t. If it is, the mullahs were always going to snap it up.
It is and they did — unfortunately for the U.S. and the Middle East.

http://www.powerlineblog.com/archives/2016/08/why-obama-turned-his-back-on-the-green-revolution-in-iran.php

Western Leaders Want Islamic Terror to Seem ‘Normal’

Western Leaders Want Islamic Terror to Seem ‘Normal’

As hardly a few days pass without an Islamic terror attack in the West -- recently an “Allahu Akbar”-shouting man stabbed a Jew in France and an “Allahu Akbar”-screaming woman ran over two policemen in Canada -- the West risks becoming desensitized. Of seeing Islamic violence as “just part of life.”
The words and deeds of Western leaders are not helping.
After the Islamic terror attack in Nice, France, where 84 were killed, counterterrorism chief Patrick Calvar said:
Today, France is clearly the most threatened country. The question about the threat is not to know "if" but "when" and "where."
Prime Minister Manuel Valls declared:
Terrorism … is a threat that weighs heavily on France and will continue doing so for a long time.
As if such resignation wasn’t bad enough, at the memorial event for the 84 Nice victims Vallsdeclared:
Times have changed and we should learn to live with terrorism.
Actually, the main thing in France to change with time is its demography. The largest Muslim population of Europe resides there and, in accordance’s with Islam’s Rule of Numbers, is the real reason why France “should learn to live with terrorism.”

More apathy was in the air during the Munich massacre, where a Muslim gunman killed nine.
While somberly addressing the massacre still in progress -- with the usual boilerplate “our hearts go out to [X victim of terror]” -- U.S. President Obama managed to crack a joke, grin, chuckle, and draw laughter from his audience.
After all, what is the big deal? Shouldn’t we be used to Muslims rampaging and killing by now? And really, what’s nine dead compared to the many hundreds killed by Islamic terrorists around the world in recent weeks?
The leader of the nation where the attack took place, Angela Merkel, waited almost 24 hoursbefore she delivered yet another perfunctory speech containing all the usual words, condolences, and platitudes.
Then again, what was the hurry? Muslims abusing, raping, and killing Germans in Germany is old hat.

A new poll by ZDF found that a record 75 percent of Germans “expect -- which is not unlikeaccept -- more terror attacks in their nation. Must a statement be made after every single one?
Smaller Islamic terror attacks which once would have been extremely newsworthy -- and received condemnation from the highest echelons of the political rung -- now receive obligatory or no media coverage, and little comment.
On July 18 in Germany, another “Allahu Akbar”-shouting, axe-waving Muslim attacked train passengers and critically injured five. The next day, in France, a Muslim man stabbed a woman and her three daughters -- the eight-year-old was left with a punctured lung and in critical condition -- for being “scantily dressed.”
There were no immediate comments from Merkel and Valls.
See here for numerous other examples of “minor” and “everyday” Muslim disturbances in Europe -- such as vandalizing churches and urinating on St. Mary statues -- that now receive little or no coverage or comment.

Westerners better wise up: in the field of behavioral psychology, “systematic desensitization” is a well-known and effective form of graduated exposure therapy used “to help effectively overcome phobias and other anxiety disorders.” Consider the following succinct definition with my examples in brackets:
Systematic desensitization is when the client [the West] is exposed to the anxiety-producing stimulus [Islamic violence] at a low level [reports and images of Islamic violence “over there” in the Mideast], and once no anxiety is present a stronger version of the anxiety-producing stimulus is given [reports of violence closer to home, in the West]. This continues until the individual client [the West] no longer feels any anxiety towards the stimulus [Islamic violence].
Is this the plan?
Are the “global elite” producing situations, such as the manufactured “migrant crisis,” that cause the West to experience incrementally worse forms of Islamic violence, until it becomes desensitized, loses its “phobia” -- in this case, “Islamophobia” -- and simply “learns to live with terrorism,” as in the words of France’s prime minister?
Indeed, if the attacks were to fall back to, say, just once a month, many might accept that as a “positive step” they can live with -- at least in comparison to what they’ve been living with, including four Islamic attacks during one recent week in Germany alone.
“Conspiracy theories” aside, a much better way exists.
Acknowledge the truth -- Islam is inherently violent and intolerant -- and build policies on this truth.
A ban on or serious vetting of Muslim immigration -- which a majority of Americans support -- and close monitoring of already existing mosques and Islamic centers would virtually eliminate Islamic terror from America.
The fact remains: unlike natural disasters -- earthquakes, tsunamis, tornadoes, and such -- we actually do not need to live with Islam.
https://pjmedia.com/homeland-security/2016/08/22/western-leaders-want-islamic-terror-to-seem-normal/?singlepage=true

Sunday, August 28, 2016

WHY OBAMA TURNED HIS BACK ON THE “GREEN REVOLUTION” IN IRAN

WHY OBAMA TURNED HIS BACK ON THE “GREEN REVOLUTION” IN IRAN

Most readers, I’m pretty sure, recall that in the summer of 2009, after the dubious election of Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, Iranians began an uprising. They hoped for support of some kind from the United States. That that support didn’t come.
Instead, as Eli Lake reminds us, President Obama publicly downplayed the prospect of real change, saying that the candidates whom hundreds of thousands of Iranians were risking their lives to support did not represent fundamental change.
Contrast that with his laughable claim that the election of the puppet Rouhani years later showed that Iran had changed to the point where we should end sanctions as part of a nuclear deal.
Behind the scenes, Obama overruled advisers who wanted to do what America had done at similar transitions from dictatorship to democracy, and signal America’s support. He ordered the CIA to sever contacts it had with the green movement’s supporters — this according to a new book, The Iran Wars, by the Wall Street Journal’s Jay Solomon, which Lake discusses.
Obama’s approach to Iran’s “green revolution” stands in marked contrast to how the U.S. has reacted to other democratic uprisings. Lakes points out:
The State Department, for example, ran a program in 2000 through the U.S. embassy in Hungary to train Serbian activists in nonviolent resistance against their dictator, Slobodan Milosevic. Milosevic, too, accused his opposition of being pawns of the U.S. government. But in the end his people forced the dictator from power.
Similarly, when Georgian President Eduard Shevardnadze met with popular protests in 2003 after rigged elections, George W. Bush dispatched James Baker to urge him to step down peacefully, which he did. Even the Obama administration provided diplomatic and moral support for popular uprisings in Egypt in 2011 and Ukraine in 2014.
Egypt’s Mubarak was America’s staunchest ally in the Middle East other than Israel. Iran was (and is) our biggest enemy. Yet, Obama supported the overthrow of Mubarak but not the mullahs.
It has been clear to me for years that Obama failed to back the green revolution because he wanted to negotiate with the Iranian regime. Lake thinks so too:
Obama from the beginning of his presidency tried to turn the country’s ruling clerics from foes to friends. It was an obsession. And even though the president would impose severe sanctions on the country’s economy at the end of his first term and beginning of his second, from the start of his presidency, Obama made it clear the U.S. did not seek regime change for Iran.
(Emphasis added)
How much of an obsession?
As Solomon reports, Obama ended U.S. programs to document Iranian human rights abuses. He wrote personal letters to Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei assuring him the U.S. was not trying to overthrow him. Obama repeatedly stressed his respect for the regime in his statements marking Iran’s annual Nowruz celebration.
Obama’s obsession with dealing with the mullahs seems to have spilled over into his feckless Syria policy:
When he walked away from his red line against Syria’s use of chemical weapons in 2013, Solomon reports, both U.S. and Iranian officials had told him that nuclear negotiations would be halted if he intervened against Bashar al-Assad.
This was only the beginning of Obama’s disregard for his own red lines. As nuclear negotiations proceeded, the president and his Secretary of State demolished one red line after another. Lake provides the details, most of which we presented at or around the time of the deal.
What is the outcome?
“The Revolutionary Guard continues to develop increasingly sophisticated weapons systems, including ballistic missiles inscribed with threats against Israel on their nose cones,” Solomon writes in the book’s concluding chapter. “Khamenei and other revolutionary leaders, meanwhile, fine-tune their rhetorical attacks against the United States, seeming to need the American threat to justify their existence.”
Iran is also a key player in Iraq and Syria. It is the leading power in the Middle East and might well become the dominant one.
Would things have gone differently is the U.S. had backed the 2009 uprising? We’ll never know. Regime change might well have been a long shot, but its rewards would have been massive.
And the risk? Negligible, even if one likes the nuclear deal.
There’s no reason to believe that, in 2015, Iran would have turned down the super-generous nuclear deal Obama offered because of America’s stance in 2009. Either the deal is in Iran’s interests or it isn’t. If it is, the mullahs were always going to snap it up.
It is and they did — unfortunately for the U.S. and the Middle East.

6 Things You Need To Know About Hillary's Speech Slamming The Alt-Right

AP Photo/Steven Senne
AUGUST 25, 2016
37 237 203 Comments 6049 
On Thursday, Hillary Clinton gave one of the most cynical, hypocritical, pandering and clever political speeches in recent memory. Targeting the so-called alt-right, a conglomeration of disaffected paleoconservatives, white supremacists, and anti-SJW hangers-on, Clinton simultaneously linked the alt-right to Trump and separated it from traditional conservatism. It was smart politics. It was also unlikely to move the needle very much in a race already so polarized that few Americans either believe Hillary Clinton or like Donald Trump.
Here are six takeaways.



1. Hillary Wasn’t Wrong About The Alt-Right. Hillary listed Trump’s alleged sins, from the “Mexican” judge comments to retweeting alt-right accounts, from his infamous “star of David” tweet to his failure to disavow David Duke. She linked Trump with the National Enquirer and Alex Jones. Then she used Steve Bannon’s presence in the campaign – and his association with Breitbart, which he has openly championed as an alt-right meeting place -- as a hammer against Trump:
The Wall Street Journal describes it as a loosely organized movement, mostly online, that "rejects mainstream conservatism, promotes nationalism and views immigration and multiculturalism as threats to white identity." The de facto merger between Breitbart and the Trump Campaign represents a landmark achievement for the "Alt-Right." A fringe element has effectively taken over the Republican Party…. No one should have any illusions about what’s really going on here. The names may have changed… Racists now call themselves "racialists." White supremacists now call themselves "white nationalists." The paranoid fringe now calls itself "alt-right." But the hate burns just as bright.
All of this is correct. And it’s Trump’s fault it’s true.
2. Hillary Was Smart To Separate The Alt-Right From Traditional Conservatism. Before the speech, conservatives fretted that Hillary would attempt to lump together the conservative movement and the alt-right. She didn’t. Instead, she attempted to divide them. This was smart for her, but rough for her down-ballot Democratic friends – if she’d attempted to turn the issue into a national referendum, that would have allowed potential Senate and Congressional candidates to slam other Republicans with Trump’s words. But Hillary instead offered Republicans a way out: don’t vote for Trump, and you’re not associated with his alt-right-friendly candidacy. Most Republicans who find Trump unpalatable have already ditched him. But that doesn’t mean Hillary isn’t making a smart move.
3. Hillary’s Deeply Hypocritical In Suddenly Singing The Praises of Conservative Figures. Hillary dropped this incredible litany in the middle of her speech:
Twenty years ago, when Bob Dole accepted the Republican nomination, he pointed to the exits and told any racists in the Party to get out. The week after 9/11, George W. Bush went to a mosque and declared for everyone to hear that Muslims "love America just as much as I do." In 2008, John McCain told his own supporters they were wrong about the man he was trying to defeat. Senator McCain made sure they knew – Barack Obama is an American citizen and "a decent person." We need that kind of leadership again.
Hillary doesn’t get to say this. She and her husband destroyed Bob Dole as a human being. She routinely savaged George W. Bush. Her party ripped apart John McCain. And this year, Hillary declared Republicans her enemies. The only good Republicans are the ones in her memory.
4. Hillary’s Own Associations With Racism Are Disgusting. Hillary ripped Trump for being sued by the Justice Department for alleged racism in rental properties, for being fined by state regulators for allegedly “removing black dealers from the floor” of his casino, and for doubting Obama’s place of birth. This neglects the fact that Hillary’s own campaign was responsible for purveying the birther rumor in 2008. Hillary also associates with race-baiters like Al Sharpton, and panders to the racist Black Lives Matter movement, which has called for divestment from Israel (calling Israel an “apartheid state” in the process), and stokes racial divisions on the basis of criminals like Michael Brown being rightly shot. Hillary has thrown her own husband’s successful crime policies overboard to pander to BLM; meanwhile, BLM allies riot in Ferguson, Baltimore, and Milwaukee. Just because the media have mainstreamed BLM doesn’t mean they’re not a racial solidarity movement. And when Hillary attempts to say that there’s no history of a mainstream nominee ever stoking racism, someone ought to ask her about Democrats ranging from George Wallace to Woodrow Wilson. Someone ought to remind her of the 1924 Klanbake – the Democratic National Convention.
5. Democrats Have Cried Wolf On Racism So Often That This Won’t Help Them Much. Hillary led off her speech calling Trump a racist and a race-baiter with the same sort of hackneyed misinterpretation Americans have come to expect from Democrats. Joe Biden once said that eminently non-racist, classy Mitt Romney wanted to put people back in chains; it doesn’t go very far when Hillary calls Trump racist for telling black people that they live in poverty and without proper education and home ownership – particularly when Democrats tell black Americans the same thing routinely. Hearing Hillary talk up the “vibrancy of black-owned businesses…or the strength of the black church” is ridiculous, since we know that if Trump said the exact same thing, she’d label him – wait for it – an out-of-touch racist. Trump pointed this out before the speech, and he’s right, at least in that respect.
6. Hillary Is Awful At Everything. In the midst of the speech ripping Trump for being out of touch racist, uber-white Hillary began quoting the poetry of Maya Angelou. She also quoted a Mexican proverb. The crowd was clearly waiting for her to break out a bottle of her fabled hot sauce. Hillary has all the authenticity of a Pete Rose toupee. And when she claims that young people across America are suddenly bullying one another because of Trumpism, that rings hollow and false.
The electorate is too polarized for Hillary’s speech to make much of a difference. Unless, that is, she has another strategy: to paint Trump as so far outside the mainstream that she need not even debate him. But nonetheless, Trump will now spend a week defending himself from her allegations. If he hadn’t jumped into the alt-right cesspool, that’s one thing he could have avoided.

CIVIL RIGHTS UPDATE

CIVIL RIGHTS UPDATE‘Veto Gunmageddon’ Wants to Pick Off 7 New California Gun Laws.
Veto Gunmageddon launched separate petition drives against each of the seven laws on Aug. 12. The petitions ask for ballot referendums that would ask voters in November to repeal the laws.
Six of the gun control laws in Bahrami’s sights were signed by Gov. Jerry Brown (D) July 1. The seventh was signed July 22. Brown vetoed five others that he felt should be decided by voters.
The new laws that Veto Gunmageddon wants to stop cover assault weapons, ammunition sales and the registration of guns “personally manufactured or assembled,” along with new regulations regarding lost, stolen, or borrowed firearms.
“My goal in signing these bills is to enhance public safety by tightening our existing laws in a responsible and focused manner while protecting the rights of law-abiding gun owners,” Gov. Brown wrote in his signing message.
Amanda Wilcox, a lobbyist with the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence, told the New York Times she especially liked one of the bills. It requires background checks for ammunition purchases.
“It can give us a handle on who has illegal guns in the state, as well as limiting access to ammunition by dangerous people who may have illegal guns,” she said.
Brandon Combs, president of the Firearms Policy Coalition, certainly doesn’t see any of the legislation as being positive.
He described the measures signed by Brown as “constitutionally-illegitimate laws passed by a patently illegitimate government that had the audacity to attack and criminalize millions of its own people in Stalin-esque fashion.”
Read the whole thing.
Absent serious and effective pushback from groups like Veto Gunmageddon, California will soon achieve that Progressive paradise, where everything not compulsory is forbidden.

Saturday, August 27, 2016

HILLARY’S EMAILS AND CLINTON CASH: THE SCANDALS COME TOGETHER

HILLARY’S EMAILS AND CLINTON CASH: THE SCANDALS COME TOGETHER

If you feel that you are hopelessly behind on the news regarding Hillary Clinton’s many breaches of security through her home-brew server as well as the Clinton Cash pay-to-play scandal, in which Hillary more or less auctioned off the State Department, Glenn Reynolds’ latest USA Today column is a good way to catch up.
Back in July, Democratic presidential nominee and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said, “there is absolutely no connection between anything that I did as secretary of state and the Clinton Foundation.”
As we all know now, that was a bald-faced lie.
On Monday of this week, ABC’s Liz Kreutzer reminded people of that statement, as a new batch of emails reveal that there was a connection, and it was cash. As the emails, recovered by the public-interest law firm Judicial Watch, demonstrate, people who made donations to the Clinton Foundation got preferential treatment, and access, at the State Department when Hillary was Secretary of State.
We have written about this several times. It is a miracle that Hillary didn’t sell the State Department’s official seal.
Meanwhile, in an entirely separate email scandal, the FBI found almost 15,000 more emails that Hillary had not turned over from her unauthorized and illegal private email server. As Stephen L. Hayes noted, this illustrates a series of email lies that are catching up with Hillary: She originally said she only used one device to keep things simple (she actually used two), that she didn’t send or receive classified emails on the system (but she did, quite a lot of them, in fact, and many of them highly sensitive), and that she had turned over all work-related emails (except for the 14,900 just discovered by the FBI — and, who knows, perhaps many others we haven’t discovered yet.) …
Now she has another story: That she set up her home-based private email server on advice from former Secretary of State Colin Powell. But Powell says that’s bunk. “Her people have been trying to pin it on me. . . . The truth is, she was using [the private email server] for a year before I sent her a memo telling her what I did.”
And what Powell did was use his personal AOL account, not set up an entire secret non-government server to dodge Freedom of Information Act requests, as Hillary did.
Hillary is unique in American political history in the frequency and shamelessness of her lies. At this point, she is like a character in Greek myth…and not one of the good ones.
Given that it’s been obvious for a while that Hillary was trying to keep her emails out of the public eye, the question has been what she was trying to hide. The answer, at least in part, appears to be her practice of selling access to her in her official capacity via donations to her “nonprofit” foundation.
Then, as Glenn notes, there is the fact that foreign powers like Russia in all probability have Hillary’s “missing” emails in their possession, and have had the whole collection for some time. Has any prior American political figure tangled himself or herself in such a web of lies and deceit? No. Hillary stands alone as a symbol of greed and corruption. Which, as best we can tell, is one of the reasons why the leaders of the Democratic Party are determined to make her our president.

http://www.powerlineblog.com/archives/2016/08/hillarys-emails-and-clinton-cash-the-scandals-come-together.php