Saturday, May 27, 2017

Cartoon of the Day

Reagan vs. Obama, America vs. Europe

May 27, 2017 by Dan Mitchell @ International Liberty
Every time I’ve gone overseas in the past six months, I’ve been peppered with questions about Donald Trump. It doesn’t matter whether my speech was about tax reform, entitlements, fiscal crisis, or tax competition, most people wanted to know what I think about The Donald.

My general reaction has been to disavow any expertise (as illustrated by my wildly inaccurate election prediction). But, when pressed, I speculate that Hillary Clinton wasn’t a very attractive candidate and that Trump managed to tap into disdain for Washington (i.e., drain the swamp) and angst about the economy’s sub-par performance.

What I find galling, though, is when I get follow-up questions – and this happens a lot, especially in Europe – asking how it is possible that the United States could somehow go from electing a wonderful visionary like Obama to electing a dangerous clown like Trump.

Since I’m not a big Trump fan, I don’t particularly care how they characterize the current president, but I’m mystified about the ongoing Obama worship in other nations. Even among folks who otherwise are sympathetic to free markets.

I’ve generally responded by explaining that Obama was a statist who wound up decimating the Democratic Party.

And my favorite factoid has been the 2013 poll showing that Reagan would have trounced Obama in a hypothetical matchup.

I especially like sharing that data since many foreigners think Reagan wasn’t a successful President. So when I share that polling data, it also gives me an opportunity to set the record straight about the success of Reaganomics.

I’m motivated to write about this topic because I’m currently in Europe and earlier today I wound up having one of these conversations in the Frankfurt Airport with a German who noticed my accent and asked me about “crazy American politics.”

I had no problem admitting that the political situation in the U.S. is somewhat surreal, so that was a bonding moment. But as the conversation progressed and I started to give my standard explanation about Obama being a dismal president and I shared the 2013 poll, my German friend didn’t believe me.

So I felt motivated to quickly go online and find some additional data to augment my argument. And I was very happy to find a Quinnipiac poll from 2014. Here are some of the highlights, as reported by USA Today.
…33% named Obama the worst president since World War II, and 28% put Bush at the bottom of post-war presidents. “Over the span of 69 years of American history and 12 presidencies, President Barack Obama finds himself with President George W. Bush at the bottom of the popularity barrel,” said Tim Malloy, assistant director of the Quinnipiac University Poll. …Ronald Reagan topped the poll as the best president since World War II, with 35%. He is followed by presidents Bill Clinton (18%) and John F. Kennedy (15%).
Yes, Ronald Reagan easily was considered the best President in the post-World War II era.
Here’s the relevant chart from the story. Kudos to the American people from giving the Gipper high scores.

And what about the bottom of the list?

Here’s the chart showing Obama edging out George W. Bush for last place.

By the way, I suspect these numbers will look much different in 50 years. I’m guessing many Republicans picked Obama simply because he was the most recent Democrat president and a lot of Democrats picked W because he was the most recent Republican President.

With the passage of time, I think Nixon and Carter deservedly will get some of those votes (and I think LBJ deserves more votes as the worst president, for what it’s worth).

The bottom line, though, is that I now have a second poll to share with foreigners.

P.S. If there’s ever a poll that isn’t limited to the post-World War II era, I would urge votes not only for Reagan, but also for Calvin Coolidge and Grover Cleveland.

P.P.S. People are surprised when I explain that Bill Clinton deserves to be in second place for post-WWII presidents.

Observations From the Back Row

Russia's military is overrated

By Rich Kozlovich

Recently I've seen reports of all these amazing tanks and jets Russia is unfolding for the world to see. what? 

Nikita Khrushchev, former Premier of the Soviet Union,  claimed “we're turning out missiles like sausages”, and the CIA was either unable or unwilling to confirm or deny it.  It gets tricky here because it's possible the CIA was complicit.  Sound strange?

During WWII the secret agency doing CIA type work was called the Office of Strategic Services (OSS), which became the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA). We now know the OSS was infiltrated by communists, some of whom migrated into the CIA. Did this impact intelligence? I find it hard to think otherwise, especially since we now know there was support in the CIA for Fidel Castro.

However - we now also know Khrushchev's claims were bogus.   And all this sabre rattling by Putin is much the same.  Advanced weapons systems are massively expensive!   And not just for research, development and manufacturing.  Try to understand - the maintenance of advanced weapons systems is shockingly expensive.  It requires a nation that's a natural capital generator, which Russia is not. 

Now, this isn't anything new to my regular readers - I've been saying this for a long time, but now, according to Geopolitical Futures  "signs of distress are mounting in Russia’s defense industry and military acquisitions. The State Armaments Program is undergoing budget cuts, and the Military Industrial Commission decided to stop full-scale production on its most expensive projects, especially ships and aircraft."

There is an attempt to modernize what they have over spending money - money they don't have - on new systems.  That won't work because Russia's overall technology is 25 years behind. 

Putin's public goals are to create a military with advanced air defence systems, and an army with more tanks and more infantry vehicles,  spending "42 percent in ground forces and in the airborne forces 58 percent".   But they're abandoning "development of several weapons programs, including a new aircraft carrier, a new nuclear-powered destroyer, a strategic bomber and a fighter interceptor."

That means - no money! They have no money, a downward spiraling central planned economy, backward technology - and once you scratch the surface of Russia military you will find bad workmanship and equipment that doesn't work as planned.  Their special forces are top notch, but their military overall is ill equipped, ill trained, ill motivated, undermanned and a demographic pyramid that's all out of whack.  The age group between 15 and 50 is so small Putin can only man three of Russia's seven defensive gaps and that age group is rife with alcoholism, drug resistant TB and AIDS. 

Nothing more exposed how great Russia's military systems look - but how badly it performs as did the United States attack in the first Iraq War.  Iraq's defence system was a mimic of the Russian military - and it shocked the Russians how easily the U.S. overcame them. 

Nothing has changed, nor will it change, because Russia is an economic and demographic mess run by amoral central planning thugs and criminals.

Public Education Jihad: Islam Is Infiltrating Our Schools and Indoctrinating Our Youth:

by Martin Slann, Posted May 26, 2017

(Editor's note: Dissident Prof is delighted to feature another post by Professor of Political Science, Martin Slann, on the problem of Islamic indoctrination in our schools, which is spreading from the "Wear a Hijab for a Day" events at a community college where she taught 2007-2010 to such appreciation in elementary schools.)

From Europe to America: In much of Europe, public education is being successfully undermined by the growing Islamic presence in schools at all levels. The problem is not a new one, but has become increasingly pervasive during just the last few years and it is spreading to the United States.

A growing part of the curriculum is being handed over to Muslim religious experts who, parents and school boards are told, simply want to expose children to the real religion of peace in order to give them some immunity against the obnoxious “Islamophobes” who do such discourteous things as quote the dozens of passages from the Koran and the Hadith that prescribe mutilation or death for infidels, apostates, homosexuals, Jews, rebellious women, and, well, anyone who has the temerity to even mildly criticize Islam.

But, of course, you’re familiar with the governments in Muslim countries that go out of their way in their school systems to appreciate the activities associated with Christian holidays and encourage adults and their children to gain more understanding of the Christian faith.  You aren’t?  Yeah, me neither.  Instead, those Christians who haven’t yet fled from Syria, Iraq, Egypt, and Turkey are regularly abused, robbed, beaten, raped, forcibly converted to Islam, and kidnapped and held for ransom.

But I digress.

Most disturbing of all is that Muslim students are increasingly being treated and mainstreamed as a special class. Last January, Jihad Watch, a publication of the Horowitz Freedom Center, reported that in a middle school in southern Indiana there is currently an enthusiastic presentation of Sharia law, the medieval Islamic legal code that insists on amputations for thieves, stoning of adulterers, murder of apostates, and, of course, slapping wives around whenever a Muslim man has had a rough day at the mosque. All of that is not imparted to children, just the importance of modest attire for girls and the importance of dining (when Ramadan isn’t going on) on halal food. In other words, no pork chops or bacon during breakfast and lunch. The majority of students are, of course, non-Muslim, but they need to leave their ham sandwiches at home.  Nor are the parts of Sharia that condemn non-Muslims to excessive taxation and segregation (since they are spiritually unclean). No doubt, students will learn about these particular niceties of Islam once they get to senior high school and have a basis of Islam and the indoctrinated need (provided by their teachers who were trained by politically correct college professors) to violently deal with the evil and predatory Islamophobes.

It gets more bizarre:Last April it was reported that the San Diego Unified School District in collaboration with the Council for American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) decided that all public school students would have to endure more classes about Islam while Muslim students would be protected from bullying with designated safe spaces. Apparently, non-Muslim students never get bullied in San Diego and therefore don’t require safe spaces. (Update: A group of parents is suing.) And, no, there are no special religious classes that focus on Buddhism, Christianity, Hinduism, or Judaism to which Muslim students would be subjected. Doing that would be considered offensive to Muslims.

Whoever thought things in public education couldn’t hit new lows after the miserable and costly failures of Common Core and teachers’ unions was very wrong.  They are getting worse.  Some schools are now celebrating multi-culturalism and diversity with an occasional Muslim Day where little girls get to wear burkas and/or hijabs and adopt typically Muslim names such as Fatima.  Any bets on what proportion of current and future Fatimas will be joining the Islamic State as jihadi brides over the coming decades?

Martin Slann is Professor of Political Science at The University of Texas at Tyler.

He received his doctorate in Political Science from the University of Georgia, and is the author, co-author, and co-editor of several scholarly books and introductory texts. He can be reached at

He is a contributor to the Dissident Prof collection, Exiled: Stories from Conservative and Moderate Professors Who Have Been Ridiculed, Ostracized, Marginalized, Demonized, and Frozen Out. Buy it HERE.

Bloody Hands in Manchester

Posted by Daniel Greenfield 25 May 2017  8 Comments @ Sultan Knish Blog 

In the months before weeping little girls with nails in their faces were carried out of the Manchester Arena, the authorities of that city were hard at work fighting the dreaded threat of Islamophobia.

While Salman Abedi, the second-generation Muslim refugee terrorist who maimed and killed dozens in a brutal terrorist attack, stalked the streets wailing, “There is no god but Allah and Mohammed is the messenger of Allah”, Manchester police were busy with more important things.

The Greater Manchester Police are one of only two police forces to list Islamophobia as a hate crime category. Earlier this year, Chief Constable Ian Hopkins honored Tell Mama for fighting Islamophobia. Tell Mama had lost funding earlier when its claims of a plague of violent Islamophobia fell apart.

Shahid Malik, the chair of Tell Mama, had been photographed with the leader of Hamas. Appearing at the Global Peace and Unity conference, where plenty of terrorism supporters have promenaded, he boasted, “In 2005 we had four Muslim MPs. In 2009 or 2010 we’ll have eight or ten Muslim MPs. In 2014 we’ll have 16 Muslim MPs. At this rate the whole parliament will be Muslim.”

Last year, Hopkins had appeared at a Muslim Engagement and Development (MEND) event at the European Islamic Centre along with Azad Ali. Ali has praised Anwar Al-Awlaki and other Al Qaeda figures. He justified the murder of British and American soldiers, he praised Hamas and Hezbollah. Instead of arresting him, the Chief Constable appeared at the same forum with a terrorist supporter.

Also present was Greater Manchester Police Crime Commissioner and Interim Mayor Tony Lloyd who came by to talk about "eradicating hate". This was at an event attended by Anas Altikriti of the Cordoba Foundation, who had backed terrorists murdering British soldiers and accused Jews of dual loyalty.

Tony Lloyd will be the Labour candidate in Rochdale; home of the Muslim sex grooming cover-up.

Both Manchester Mayor Burnham and Chief Constable Ian Hopkins had appeared at MEND events. MEND’s Director of Engagement is Azad Ali.

After the attack, Manchester Mayor Andy Burnham vowed on camera, “terrorists will never beat us”. The terrorists don’t need to beat Burnham. He’ll eagerly collaborate without so much as a single slap.

Last year the left-wing politician fought the government’s efforts to crack down on Islamic terror. “It is creating a feeling in the Muslim community that it is being spied upon and unfairly targeted,” he whined.

Terrorists will never beat us. Unless they have their useful idiots operating on the inside for whom Muslim feelings come first and little girls being torn to pieces by shrapnel come last.

Burnham accused opponents of Islamic terror of racism, xenophobia and all the usual stuff. He insisted that there was a huge Islamophobia problem that was being hidden because Muslims were too afraid of the police to report this rash of imaginary crimes.

"There’s a lot of people in this country not necessarily at risk from ‘Islamic extremism’ but it’s far-right extremism," Andy insisted.

This is what led to the Manchester Arena bombing. Mayor Burnham sold out the police. The police sold out the people. The authorities were chasing Islamophobia when they should have been fighting Islamic terror.

Mayor Burnham and Chief Constable Hopkins pandered to Islamists, prioritized Islamophobia and dutifully opposed the government's fight against Islamic terror.

The Islamophobia lie killed 22 people in Manchester. It happened on the watch of the GMP.

No one takes Islamophobia more seriously than the Greater Manchester Police. When Muslim sex grooming gangs were abusing little girls in Rochdale, the GMP dutifully covered it up. On one of the recorded interviews, a police officer can be heard yawning as a girl describes her abuse.

An MP who had pursued these cases said that the authorities “were afraid of being called racist."

Even after Judge Clifton brought it out into the open, stating, “You preyed on girls because they were not part of your community or religion", Detective Chief Superintendent Mary Doyle insisted, "I think if we start to get ourselves hung up on race and ethnicity issues, we take away the real issues."

Detective Constable Maggie Oliver resigned from the GMP for its mishandling of the sex grooming cases. She has warned that offenders are still on the loose. “What I saw in Rochdale was police officers and senior cops acting without any shame because it was convenient to ignore the abuse they knew was happening,” she warned.

There’s still no shame.

Oliver blamed Chief Constable Sir Peter Fahy. Fahy had been knighted for “services to policing”. His “services” included warning that the British government’s Prevent crackdown on Islamic terrorists was contrary to “British values” and would alienate “non-violent Muslims”.

"A lot of Muslims feel that there is a constant anti-Muslim narrative in the media,” he mewled.

Fahy was replaced by the GMP’s deputy chief constable. Ian Hopkins had cut his teeth on explaining the importance of Ramadan the same year that the GMP was apologizing to the victims of Muslim sex grooming. Even as the GMP fell from 8,000 to 5,300 officers, the new Chief Constable picked up a £172,000 ($223,000) salary. That was down from Fahy’s £206,000 ($267,000) package.

Chief Constable Hopkins declared that people have a right to be “safe from hatred”. After the Manchester Arena attack by a second-generation Muslim refugee, he warned, "We understand that feelings are very raw right now and people are bound to be looking for answers … it is vital that our diverse communities in Greater Manchester stand together and do not tolerate hate.”

Feelings will occasionally grow raw when picking the nails of the latest Muslim terrorist attack out of your child’s face or knowing that she has been raped by a dozen Pakistani men. It may even be possible that in their final dying moments, the victims of the Manchester Arena attack were afraid of Islam.

If only they could be prosecuted after death.

The cowardly denunciation of Islamophobia was as strong as anything in Hopkins’ statement. It is Islamophobia, not the victims of Islam, that agitates the Chief Constable’s sensitive sympathies.

It was not the victims of Muslim sex grooming in Rochdale or its cover-up that outraged Hopkins. His greatest moment of outrage came when the London Times headlined the story of an Imam murdered by a fellow Muslim for not being Islamic enough as, “Imam beaten to death in sex grooming town.”

The headline was “offensive to the thousands of peaceful law abiding Muslims”, Hopkins complained.

It wasn’t the abuse of little girls that was the problem. It was calling it out for what it was.

The Jihad has been kept quiet through such shameful expediencies. When the head of the Clarksfield primary school complained about threats to blow up her car due to an Islamist “Trojan horse” plot to take control of the institution, the GMP found nothing.

Of course. Finding something might have been Islamophobic.

The Manchester authorities were in the business of fighting Islamophobia. They made that their priority. Not only did they lie about the true threat, but they wasted resources that might have gone to stopping the attack. The blood of innocent children is on their hands. But that’s nothing new.

Just ask the abused little girls of Rochdale.

This time around the consequences were harder to brush under the rug. The world saw what happened in the Manchester Arena. And they were horrified. This time the victims couldn’t be hidden away.

The question is whether anything will be done.

Friday, May 26, 2017

"There Will Always Be An England!" Maybe Not!

By Rich Kozlovich

Recently England suffered a massive terrorist attack killing these people:

The 22 Manchester victims

The victims included 22 people, seven of whom were children, murdered by what the Mayor of Manchester called an "extremist".

He fails to tell the world exactly what kind of extremist he was - so maybe he was an extremist vegan, or an extremist conservative, or an extremist Christian - no, no, that can't be true because he would have let the world know how outraged he is at Christians.  So let's just take a big shot in the dark and say he was an extremist Muslim!  Wow!  What a lucky guess!

His name is Salman Abedi, he's a Muslim, and England isn't going to be England much longer if these lunatics continue to live in England and the weak willed leadership continues to allow more of "them" to migrate to England.    And who are these "them" I refer to?  Muslims!  Get over it - Islam promotes this murderous behavior and that's never going to change, and the Brits had better start getting this right if they wish to continue to exist.  The world is changing and the United States isn't going to be an American hand reaching out to prop them up much longer.  Especially since Europe had been biting it for almost 75 years.   

Definition leads to clarity -and the people of England had better start getting some clarity and start to believe in themselves again - and in the truth of history. Below are some speeches made by Winston Churchill during WWII. Churchill had some serious flaws by modern standards, but Churchill was a man of England, a man of Empire and a man of his times - and he knew how to identify England's enemies and what needed to be done about those enemies of the English people and their way of life.

In his Blood, Toil, Sweat and Tears speech he says:

We are Masters of Our Fate
Winston Churchill "finest hour" (best version)
Winston S Churchill: We Shall Fight on the Beaches

If the British people don't start to get the same level of clarity as had Winston Churchill - there will be no England. 

One more thing.  Does everyone realize under European Union, and British hate speech laws he would be arrested for saying these things today?

Inside Every Liberal is a Totalitarian Screaming to Get Out

Jon Ray @ Dissecting Leftism

Leftist writers usually seem quite reasonable and persuasive at first glance. The problem is not what they say but what they don't say.   Leftist beliefs are so counterfactual ("all men are equal", "all men are brothers" etc.) that to be a leftist you have to have a talent for blotting out from your mind facts that don't suit you. And that is what you see in leftist writing: A very selective view of reality.

Facts that disrupt a leftist story are simply ignored. Leftist writing is cherrypicking on a grand scale. So if ever you read something written by a leftist that sounds totally reasonable, you have an urgent need to find out what other people say on that topic. The leftist will almost certainly have told only half the story.

We conservatives have the facts on our side, which is why leftists never want to debate us and do their best to shut us up.  It's very revealing the way they go to great lengths to suppress conservative speech at universities.

Universities should be where the best and brightest leftists are to be found but even they cannot stand the intellectual challenge that conservatism poses for them. It is clearly a great threat to them. If what we say were ridiculous or wrong, they would grab every opportunity to let us know it.

Leftism is fundamentally authoritarian. Whether by revolution or by legislation, leftists aim to change what people can and must do. When in 2008 Obama said that he wanted to "fundamentally transform" America, he was not talking about America's geography or topography but rather about American people. He wanted them to stop doing things that they wanted to do and make them do things that they did not want to do. Can you get a better definition of authoritarianism than that?

Hatred has long been a central pillar of leftist ideologies, premised as they are on trampling individual rights for the sake of a collectivist plan. Karl Marx boasted that he was “the greatest hater of the so-called positive.” In 1923, V.I. Lenin chillingly declared to the Soviet Commissars of Education, “We must teach our children to hate. Hatred is the basis of communism.”   In his tract “Left-Wing Communism,” Lenin went so far as to assert that hatred was “the basis of every socialist and Communist movement.”

If you understand that leftism is hate, everything falls into place.

Peter Zeihan on Geopolitics: Life After NATO

Life After NATO

For all intents and purposes, the North Atlantic Treaty Organization – the foundation for American security for the past seven decades – ceased existing on May 25, 2017.

While attending a highly anticipated (some might say dreaded) meeting with NATO heads of state and government in Brussels, U.S. President Donald Trump delivered a speech railing against member-states who have failed to meet economic obligations to the defense pact, going so far as to indirectly abrogate the alliance’s cornerstone: the provisions for collective defense under Article V of the treaty.

Article V is the backbone of the NATO alliance: that an attack against any individual member will be treated as an attack against all members, and will be met with a requisite response. Article V is perhaps the biggest piece of what incentivized the Europeans to resist Moscow throughout the nuclear-tinged threat of the Cold War era. But after the fall of the Soviet Union in 1991, the Europeans steadily gutted their militaries, redirecting funds to ballooning social programs and pensions.

I cannot emphasize enough that while the breach between the United States and the rest of NATO is happening on the Trump administration’s watch, this is not a position that will change once Trump is gone.

After the 9/11 attacks, the Bush administration made it clear to the NATO allies that future relations would be viewed through the prism of cooperation on anti-terror programs. In response the French and Germans partnered with the Russians to oppose the Iraq War. During the first Obama administration, the White House explicitly asked NATO to increase its troop commitments to the Afghan conflict to prevent the Taliban’s re-emergence. With a very few exceptions the European allies didn’t just fail to provide, they rejected Obama’s request with fanfare.

I’m not asserting the Americans’ wars were smart plays, or that the link between anti-terror programs and other aspects of strategic policy is what I would have done. I’m saying that the American complaint that the European allies are not carrying their weight – and that there is an explicit link in the American mind between anti-terror support and ongoing NATO security guarantees – is neither new, nor a surprise, nor merely the position of a political outsider like Trump. This is policy. This is bipartisan. This is done.

And holy crap does that throw a lot of things up in the air!

So what does life after NATO look like?
  • United States. Freed from needing to maintain static deployments throughout Europe or from preparing for mass Army deployments to the Continent, and freed from needing to be responsible for global security in general, the United States can revert to their pre-World War II strategic posture: one of permanent offense. Few troops manning front lines. Little need to rush to the aid of every country on the planet. Yet boasting a military capable of intervening anywhere, anywhen. For the roughly 4.5 billion people on this planet whose physical and economic security was dependent upon active, constructive American engagement, an America that is a persistent wild card is quite possibly the worst outcome of all. And what does the U.S. need to put into place to make this happen? Not a damn thing.
  • United Kingdom. Theresa May has already struck a deal with the Trump administration to more closely coordinate strategic policy. This wasn’t done because of NATO’s imminent end, but because of Brexit. The Brits leaving the EU means they need to massively increase the size of their diplomatic and intelligence operations. May offered to trade the information such operations generate for a closer alignment with the Americans. From the point of view of the London-Washington alliance, the hard work has already been done.
  • Russia. Moscow has been praying for a breach between the Americans and the Europeans for decades, and the day has finally arrived. Not a moment too soon either. The Russian demography is in terminal decline and the country will largely lose the ability to field a credible army in just a few years. Russia’s current borders are completely indefensible with its current military, much less a smaller one, so Moscow believes it must expand to something more closely resembling the old Soviet borders. This will bring it into conflict with eleven different countries, five of which are standing NATO members. The one country that could have stopped a Russian assault? The United States. Expect Russian operations within, against and beyond Ukraine to accelerate now that the Americans are no longer a major factor.
  • Poland and Romania. Warsaw and Bucharest are, well, screwed. Poland and Romania are two of the five countries that the Russians feel they must at least partially secure. Neither have a hope of fighting off the Russians without massive amounts of outside assistance, and with the Americans exiting stage west they will be forced to turn to local powers – powers with which both have less than ideal relations.
  • Germany. There is zero hope for Poland without tens of thousands of German troops fighting on Polish soil. Considering that currently Germany doesn’t have tens of thousands of deployable troops, and even if they did, historically German troops haven’t tended to leave Poland after being there, and Warsaw-Berlin relations are about to become dizzyingly complicated. Every time the Germans have armed, the result has been a broad-spectrum European war. It is far too soon to call that inevitable, but unless the Germans prove comfortable with Russian troops within a couple hundred miles of Berlin, the era of German pacifism is nearly over.
  • Turkey. The Turks have been de facto out of NATO for over a decade, following a breach in relations with the George W Bush administration in the run-up to the Iraq war. Now, how much progress the Russians make in the Balkans and Caucasus is largely up to politics in Ankara. Figuring out the specific path forward is an exercise in futility. Not only are the Turks only now waking up from a century long geopolitical coma and they have yet to figure out what about their neighborhood really matters to them, Prime Minister Erdogan is cut from the same nationalistic, populist cloth as the American, Polish and Russian presidents. But whatever happens, relations with the Germans will be key. Germany and Turkey are the only countries in Europe that have the potential manpower to hold off, much less roll back, a Russian advance…and the two are currently in a spat that is dangerously close to severing formal diplomatic relations.
  • Sweden. The final three NATO countries the Russians will target are the Baltic Trio of Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania. All three Baltic states count Sweden as their strongest and most enthusiastic sponsor. Sweden now has a choice to make. Continue with its policy of neutrality and watch its Baltic apprentices die, or act. Sweden has the military, economic and diplomatic strength to forge and lead a Scandinavian alliance to bulwark the Balts against the Russians. Now we’ll see if they have the will.
  • Japan. Shinzo Abe was the first foreign leader to visit Trump after his election (and then the second one, after May, to visit after inauguration), and he came with a big fat bribe. Abe knows that Japan is likely to find itself in a full-court conflict with China in the not-too-distant future and needs to be sure the Americans will at a minimum remain neutral. Assuming no American-Japanese hostilities (and the bribe seems to have done the trick), Japan is highly likely to give the Chinese a drumming. The Chinese are more dependent upon maritime supply lines for both merchandise exports and energy imports, while the Japanese navy has longer reach and less strategic exposure. And now that Japan's second new carrier is fully operational, the Japanese are pretty much good to go.
  • China. For Beijing the Americans leaving NATO is quite possibly the worst outcome of all. If the Americans are not nailed down defending a long land border in Europe, American power becomes far more freeform. That hugely expands the role of the American Navy in American strategic planning, and the Navy is the branch most capable of containing Chinese power. Even if American relations with Japan were to significantly cool, China just became completely boxed in.
One final thought:

We have not had large-scale regional – much less global – competition outside of the American-Soviet rivalry for 70 years expressly because the Americans took care of pretty much everything. But the Americans have been moving slow-motion in the general direction of disengagement from their Cold War alliance system since 1989. Today’s developments are not the final word on that disengagement, this is simply the end of the interim where people didn’t really know where the Americans stood. We are only now starting to understand the degree to which the Americans just are not going to be there.

Remove the Americans and every country in the world – starting with the European nations – needs to figure out how to look after their own economic and physical security. Different countries will have different ideas of how to do that, and many of those ideas will be mutually exclusive. History is about to start moving again.

And history is bloody.

Should you find any of this interesting (or terrifying) you can read more at the link to the archive at the top of this email. And in a shameless plug, my newest book – The Absent Superpower – has a full chapter on the coming war between Russia and the Europeans.

The Most Persuasive Argument for Slashing the Corporate Tax Rate

The Most Persuasive Argument for Slashing the Corporate Tax Rate

What’s the best argument for reducing the onerous 35 percent corporate tax rate in the United States?

These are all good reasons to dramatically lower the corporate tax rate, hopefully down to the 15-percent rate in Trump’s plan, but the House proposal for a 20-percent rate wouldn’t be a bad final outcome.

But there’s a 9th reason that is very emotionally appealing to me.
  • 9. Should the rate be lowered to trigger a new round of tax competition, even though that will make politicians unhappy? Actually, the fact that politicians will be unhappy is a feature rather than a bug.
I’ve shared lots of examples showing how jurisdictional competition leads to better tax policy.
Simply stated, politicians are less greedy when they have to worry that the geese with the golden eggs can fly away.

And the mere prospect that the United States will improve its tax system is already reverberating around the world.

The German media is reporting, for instance, that the government is concerned that a lower corporate rate in America will force similar changes elsewhere.
The German government is worried the world is slipping into a ruinous era of tax competition in which countries lure companies with ever-more generous tax rules to the detriment of public budgets. …Mr. Trump’s “America First” policy has committed his administration to slashing the US’s effective corporate tax rate to 22 from 37 percent. In Europe, the UK, Ireland, and Hungary have announced new or rejigged initiatives to lower corporate tax payments. Germany doesn’t want to lower its corporate-tax rate (from an effective 28.2 percent)… Germany’s finance minister, Wolfgang Schäuble, …left the recent meeting of G7 finance ministers worried by new signs of growing beggar-thy-neighbor rivalry among governments.
A “ruinous era of tax competition” and a “beggar-thy-neighbor rivalry among governments”?
That’s music to my ears!

I”d much rather have “competition” and “rivalry” instead of an “OPEC for politicians,” which is what occurs when governments impose “harmonization” policies.

The Germans aren’t the only ones to be worried. The Wall Street Journal observes that China’s government is also nervous about the prospect of a big reduction in America’s corporate tax burden.
China’s leaders fear the plan will lure manufacturing to the U.S. Forget a trade war, Beijing says a cut in the U.S. corporate rate to 15% from 35% would mean “tax war.” The People’s Daily warned Friday in a commentary that if Mr. Trump succeeds, “some powerful countries may join the game to launch competitive tax cuts,” citing similar proposals in the U.K. and France. …Beijing knows from experience how important tax rates are to economic competitiveness. …China’s double-digit growth streak began in the mid-1990s after government revenue as a share of GDP declined to 11% in 1995 from 31% in 1978—effectively a supply-side tax cut. But then taxes began to rise again…and the tax man’s take now stands at 22%. …Chinese companies have started to complain that the high burden is killing profits. …President Xi Jinping began to address the problem about 18 months ago when he launched “supply-side reforms” to cut corporate taxes and regulation. …the program’s stated goal of restoring lost competitiveness shows that Beijing understands the importance of corporate tax rates to growth and prefers not to have to compete in a “tax war.”

Let’s have a “tax war.” Folks on the left fret that this creates a “race to the bottom,” but that’s because they favor big government and think our incomes belong to the state.

As far as I’m concerned a “tax war” is desirable because that means politicians are fighting each other and every bullet they fire (i.e., every tax they cut) is good news for the global economy.
Now that I’ve shared some good news, I’ll close with potential bad news. I’m worried that the overall tax reform agenda faces a grim future, mostly because Trump won’t address old-age entitlements and also because House GOPers have embraced a misguided border-adjustment tax.

Which is why, when the dust settles, I’ll be happy if all we get a big reduction in the corporate rate.

The Government Investigates!

Definition leads to clarity.  Clarity leads to understanding.  Understanding leads to good decision making and good decision making leads to harmony.

Unless you're in the government. Then there is none of the above. 

Does parasitic worm spit contain the key to healing?

Sean Rossman 

Researchers claim a molecule found in the spit of a parasitic worm can bolster the healing process for diabetics, the elderly and smokers with lingering wounds. A team of scientists from the Australian Institute of Tropical Health and Medicine discovered the molecule granulin, found in the saliva of a parasitic liver fluke in Southeast Asia, can "supercharge" healing. They hope more testing will produce an advanced healing cream for patients. The team came across the molecule and its power while attempting to create a vaccine for a liver cancer caused by the worm. The molecule, researchers said, is "one of a family of protein growth factors involved with cell proliferation." .......To Read More.....

Farmer faces $2.8 million fine after plowing field

Damon Arthur  May 22, 2017

A farmer faces trial in federal court this summer and a $2.8 million fine for failing to get a permit to plow his field and plant wheat in Tehama County. A lawyer for Duarte Nursery said the case is important because it could set a precedent requiring other farmers to obtain costly, time-consuming permits just to plow their fields.

“The case is the first time that we’re aware of that says you need to get a (U.S. Army Corps of Engineers) permit to plow to grow crops,” said Anthony Francois, an attorney for the Pacific Legal Foundation. “We’re not going to produce much food under those kinds of regulations,” he said. However, U.S. District Judge Kimberly J. Mueller agreed with the Army Corps in a judgment issued in June 2016. A penalty trial, in which the U.S. Attorney’s Office asks for $2.8 million in civil penalties, is set for August........To Read More......

SHOCK: Dem rally speaker declares Trump budget designed for ‘ethnic cleansing’

May 24th, 2017 By Victor Skinner

A Philadelphia bishop is accusing the President Trump of attempting to implement “ethnic cleansing” through proposed budget cuts designed to shrink the federal government.   “This budget, if I can be honest with you, is an attempt to implement ethnic cleansing in this nation from people of color, but also poor white folk from whom services being but will be impacted the most,” Bishop Dwayne Royster said at a Wednesday social justice rally broadcast by ABC News.......To Read More....

White Supremacist Teen Converts to Islam, Kills Neo-Nazi Roommates for Insulting His Faith

RT, May 24, 2017
A white supremacist who converted to Islam killed his two Neo-Nazi roommates because they had offended his new faith, local media reported, citing police, who also found bomb-making materials, radioactive substances, and Nazi-propaganda at the crime scene.   The incident came to light on Friday when a man identified as Devon Arthurs, 18, led police to two deceased men in Tampa, Florida that he said he had murdered, police reported.

However, on Monday, police disclosed new details about what had initially been thought to be a common homicide. It appears that Arthurs is a former white supremacist who converted to Islam, police Detective Kenneth Nightlinger said in his report, as cited by Tampa Bay newspaper.........To Read More....

Greece: George Soros’ Trojan Horse Against Europe

Victor Gaetan

One of the few fascinating things you learn by looking closely at George Soros’s output is how often he is wrong.  The financial Dark Lord, who made a billion dollars overnight when he bet against the British pound in 1992, constantly predicts the sky is falling.

Most of the time, it isn’t.

He was mocked for exaggerating risks to the economic order in his 1998 book, The Crisis of Global Capitalism. Last year, he declared, “The EU is on the verge of collapse,” in a New York Review of Books interview. His end-of-year assessment for 2016 was: “Democracy is now in crisis.” At the global elite retreat in Davos, Switzerland, this year, he predicted Donald Trump’s inauguration would be bad news for the stock market.

No, no, nope, and wrong again.

Regarding Greece, Soros routinely anticipated disaster in the first years of its financial crisis......To Read More.....

My Take - Soros is an evil and vile man, but I think he's right - Greece is doomed and so is the EU.   Financially Greece may not even be able to be an independent country by 2030. 

Constitutional Crisis: Government Corruption Under Obama

Criminal Intelligence Gathering

Published on May 25, 2017

Did Brennan Collude with Foreign Spies to Help Hillary?

By Daniel John Sobieski May 25, 2017

John Brennan defended his thesis that Russia interfered in the 2016 election to help Donald Trump win before the House Intelligence Committee. He did nothing to disabuse Congressional Democrats or the mainstream media of the notion that Team Trump colluded with Moscow to change the results of the 2016 election.

Brennan didn’t explain why he thought that the Russians didn’t want Hillary Clinton to win. Perhaps he could explain why they didn’t prefer Hillary, who was Secretary of State when President Obama let Russia violate the INF Missile Treaty and colluded with the Russians to kill missile defense in Europe, telling Then Russian president Dimitri Medvedev to tell Putin he would have more “flexibility” after his reelection.........More

Watch Congressman Trey Gowdy Grill Obama CIA Director Brennan who says He Doesn’t ‘Do’ Evidence

By Onan Coca May 24, 2017

It’s just an amazing series of probing questions and revealing answers. Congressman Trey Gowdy (R-SC), the former prosecutor, once again proves his mettle and unmasks a craven political ploy from another Obama lackey. Former Obama era CIA Chief John Brennan was in Washington, D.C. testifying before Congress on Tuesday morning when Gowdy pressed him for answers to the Russia collusion investigation that Brennan now admits he initiated. However, as the conversation rolled along it became clear that there simply has never been any evidence of any wrongdoing from anyone in the Trump campaign. In fact, Brennan himself admits such during Gowdy’s prodding and even argues that he “doesn’t DO evidence.”....To Read More.....

Feel the Bern: Chinese student forced to apologize for praising 'fresh air of free speech in the US

Heartfelt sentiments regarding "freedom" cannot be censored.

By Rick Moran May 24, 2017

A University of Maryland student was viciously attacked on social media for praising freedom in the U.S. compared to her native China. Breitbart:........... Needless to say, her remarks went immediately viral in China and elicited a storm of opposition from both citizens and the government.......We sometimes forget that despite its economic success, China is still a Communist country that stifles free speech and actively censors different viewpoints that don't toe the official line.  It has enlisted the help of American technology companies to help it police the internet – including social media sites – to regulate the thinking of its citizens...........More

Thursday, May 25, 2017

The War for Jerusalem

Posted Tuesday, May 23, 2017 by Daniel Greenfield  4 Comments @ Sultan Knish Blog

When Jordan's Arab Legion seized half of Jerusalem, ethnically cleansed its Jewish population and annexed the city-- the only entity to recognize the annexation was the United Kingdom which had provided the officers and the training that made the conquest possible. Officers like Colonel Bill Newman, Major Geoffrey Lockett and Major Bob Slade, under Glubb Pasha, better known as General John Bagot Glubb, whose son later converted to Islam, invaded Jerusalem and used the Muslim forces under their command to make the partition and ethnic cleansing of Jerusalem possible.

The Jews living in the free half of Jerusalem continued to be killed by Jordanian Muslim snipers. The victims of those years of Muslim occupation included Yaffa Binyamin, a 14-year-old girl sitting on the balcony of her own house and a Christian carpenter working on the Notre Dame Convent.

Under Muslim occupation, while Muslim snipers were cold-bloodedly murdering their children, the Jewish residents living under fire couldn't so much as put in an outhouse without being reported to the UN for illegal construction. In one case a UN observer organization held four meetings to discuss an outhouse for local residents before condemning Israel for illegal construction.

It did not however condemn Jordan when one of its soldiers opened fire on a train wounding a Jewish teenage girl.

Not very much has changed.

The hysterical condemnations of “illegal construction” did not end when the Muslim occupation did. The great outhouse of the United Nations and the smaller outhouses of the foreign ministries of countries whose leaders tremble whenever Muslims grow agitated over a cartoon or a YouTube video fill the air with the vilest of substances whenever a Jewish family moves into a home in Jerusalem.

It would be inconceivable for the international community to denounce an ethnically cleansed group which survived attempted genocide for moving back into its own city. It is, however, standard policy at the State Department and the Foreign Office to denounce Jews living in those parts of Jerusalem that had been ethnically cleansed by Muslims, as "settlers" living in "settlements," and accuse them of being an "obstruction to peace."

Peace being the state of affairs that sets in when an ethnic cleansing goes unchallenged.

What we are talking about here is not peace, but ethnic cleansing. In 1948, the Jews were ethnically cleansed from Jerusalem to Islamize the city. Their synagogues were blown up by the Muslim occupiers. Their tombstones were used to line the roads traveled by the racist Muslim settlers. In 1948, the Jews were ethnically cleansed from Jerusalem to Islamize the city. Whether they were Zionists or anti-Zionists did not matter. They were not Muslims. That was all that counted.

“For the first time in 1,000 years not a single Jew remains in the Jewish Quarter,” Abdullah el-Talal, a commander of the Muslim invaders, had boasted. “Not a single building remains intact. This makes the Jews' return here impossible.” In his memoirs he wrote, “I knew that the Jewish Quarter was densely populated with Jews who caused their fighters a good deal of interference and difficulty…. Only four days after our entry into Jerusalem the Jewish Quarter had become their graveyard. Death and destruction reigned over it.”

Every politician who denounces Jews building houses in Jerusalem, but not Muslims doing the same thing is endorsing Abdullah’s genocidal vision and all the terrorism that goes with it.

In 1920, racist Muslim settler mobs in Jerusalem had chanted "Mohammed's religion was born with the sword", “Death to the Jews” and “the government is with us” as Muslim policemen under British colonial rule had joined with them in the rape and murder of the indigenous Jewish population.

Too many governments are still with those who wave the sword of Mohammed and cry death to the Jews. They encourage them, defend their agenda and issue weak rebukes when blood is spilled in the name of Islamization in Jerusalem, as it is in Kobani by ISIS and a thousand other places. Those who endorse the Islamization of Jerusalem cannot escape responsibilities for the crimes of the Islamizers.

Describing Jewish homes in Jerusalem, one of the world's oldest cities, a city that all three religions in the region associate with Jews and Jewish history, as "settlements" is a triumph of distorted language that Orwell would have to tip his hat to. How does one have "settlements" in a city older than London or Washington D.C.?

To understand that, you would have to ask London and Washington D.C. where the diplomats insist that one more round of Israeli compromises will bring peace.

They say that there are three religions in Jerusalem, but there are actually four. The fourth religion is the true Religion of Peace, the one that insists that there will be peace when the Jews have been expelled from Judea and Samaria, driven out of their homes in Jerusalem, and made into wanderers and beggars once again. Oddly enough, this religion's name isn't even Islam-- it's diplomacy.

Diplomacy says that the 1948 borders set by Arab countries invading Israel should be the final borders and that, when Israel reunified a sundered city in 1967, it was an act of aggression, while, when seven Arab armies invaded Israel in 1948, it was a legitimate way to set permanent boundaries. When Jordan ethnically cleansed East Jerusalem, it set a standard that Israelis are obligated to follow to this day by staying out of East Jerusalem. To violate that ethnic cleansing endangers peace.

When Muslims move into a Jewish town, there's no clamor. When Muslim countries fund Muslim housing in Israel, there are no angry statements. Muslim housing in Jerusalem or anywhere in Israel is not a problem. Only Jewish housing is.

The issue is not Israel. If it were, then Arabs with Israeli citizenship would also be condemned. It's only the Jews who are the problem.

The entire Peace Process is really a prolonged solution to the latest phase of the Jewish Problem. The problem, as stated by so many diplomats, is that there are Jews living in places that Muslims want. There were Jews living in Gaza before 1948, but they were driven out, they came back, and then they were driven out again by their own government in compliance with international demands. Now only Hamas lives in Gaza and it's as peaceful and pleasant without the Jews as Nazi Germany.

But there are still Jews in the West Bank and they have to be gotten rid of. Once enough Jews have been expelled, there will be peace. That's not a paragraph from Mein Kampf, it's not some lunatic sermon from Palestinian Authority television-- it is the consensus of the international community. This consensus states that the only reason there still isn't peace is because enough Jews haven't been expelled from their homes. The ethnic cleansing for peace hasn't gone far enough.

There will be peace when all the Jews are gone. That much is certainly undeniable. Just look at Gaza or Egypt or Iraq or Afghanistan, which has a grand total of two Jews, both of them in their seventies. Or Pakistan, Saudi Arabia and Syria where peace reigns now that the Jews are gone. Some might say that violence seems to increase proportionally with the number of Muslims, but we all know that would be Islamophobic. On the other hand suggesting that violence increases with the number of Jews living on land that Muslims want, that's just diplomacy. A common sense fact that everyone who is anyone in foreign policy knows to be true.

How will we know when the Muslims have gotten all the land that they want? When the violence stops. Everyone knows that agreements mean nothing. No matter how many pieces of paper are signed, the bombs and rockets still keep bursting. The only way to reach an agreement is by groping blindly in the dark, handing over parcel after parcel of land, until the explosions stop or the Muslims fulfill their original goal of pushing the Jews into the sea.

That's the wonderful thing about diplomacy if you're a diplomat and the terrible thing about it if you are anyone else without a secure way out of the country when diplomacy fails. And diplomacy in the region always fails. Camp David and every single agreement Israel has signed with Muslim countries aren't worth the paper they're written on. The only peace treaty that counts is the one made by tanks and rifles. It's the one made by Israeli planes in Egyptian skies and Israeli soldiers walking the border. It's the one made by Jewish farmers and ranchers, tending their sheep and their fields, with rifles strung over their backs. The only peace that's worth anything is the peace of the soldiers and settlers.

In 1966, Jerusalem was a city sundered in two, divided by barbed wire and the bullets of Muslim snipers. Diplomacy did not reunite it. Israel pursued diplomacy nearly to its bitter end until it understood that it had no choice at all but to fight. Israel did not swoop into the fight, its leaders did their best to avoid the conflict, asking the international community to intervene and stop Egypt from going to war. Read back the headlines for the last five years on Israel and Iran, and you will get a sense of the courage and determination of the Israeli leaders of the day.

When Israel went to war, its leaders did not want to liberate Jerusalem, they wanted Jordan to stay out of the war. Even when Jordan entered the war, they did not want to liberate the city. Divine Providence and Muslim hostility forced them to liberate Jerusalem and forced them to keep it. Now some of them would like to give it back, another sacrifice to the bloody deity of diplomacy whose altar flows with blood and burnt sacrifices.

As we remember Yom Yerushalayim, Jerusalem Day, it is important to remember that the city is united and free because diplomacy failed. The greatest triumph of the modern state happened only because diplomacy proved hopeless and useless in deterring Muslim genocidal ambitions. Had Israel succumbed to international pressure and had Nasser been as subtle as Sadat, then the Six-Day War would have looked like the Yom Kippur War fought with 1948 borders-- and Israel very likely would not exist today.

Even as Jews remember the great triumph of Yom Yerushalayim, the ethnic cleansers and their accomplices are busy searching for ways to drive Jews out of Jerusalem, out of towns, villages and cities. This isn't about the Arab residents of Jerusalem, who have repeatedly asserted that they want to remain part of Israel. It's not about peace, which did not come from any previous round of concessions, and will not come from this one either. It's about solving the Jewish problem.

As long as Jews allow themselves to be defined as the problem, there will be plenty of those offering solutions. And the solutions invariably involve doing something about the Jews. It only stands to reason that if Jews are the problem, then moving them or getting rid of them is the solution. There is less friction in defining Jews as the problem, than in defining Muslims as the problem. The numbers alone mean that is so.

Yom Yerushalayim is a reminder of what the real problem is and what the real solution is. Muslim occupation of Israel is the problem. The Islamization of Jerusalem is the problem. Muslim violence in support of the Muslim occupation of Israel and of everywhere else is the problem. Israel is the solution. Only when we liberate ourselves from the lies, when we stop believing that we are the problem and recognize that we are the solution. Only then will the liberation that began in 1967 be complete.

Only then will we have liberated our Jerusalem. The Jerusalem of the soul. It is incumbent on all of us to liberate that little Jerusalem within. The holy city that lives in all of us. To clean the dross off its golden gates, wash the filth from its stones and expel the invaders gnawing away at our hearts until we look proudly upon a shining city. Then to help others liberate their own Jerusalems. Only then will we truly be free.

The Best Trump Budget Cuts, Part V: Less Foreign Aid

May 24, 2017 by Dan Mitchell @ International Liberty

President Trump’s new budget is getting attacked by politicians and interest groups in Washington. These critics say the budget cuts are too severe and draconian.

My main reaction is to wonder whether these people are illiterate and/or innumerate. After all, even a cursory examination of Trump’s proposal shows that the federal government will expand over the next decade by an average of 3.46 percent every year, considerably faster than inflation.

For what it’s worth, I’m sure most of the critics actually do understand that government will continue growing under Trump’s budget. But they find it politically advantageous to engage in “Washington math,” which is when you get to claim a program is being cut if it doesn’t get a sufficiently large increase. I’m not joking.

That being said, while the overall federal budget will get bigger, there are some very good proposals in the President’s budget to terminate or reduce a few specific programs. I don’t know if the White House is actually serious about any of these ideas, but some of them are very desirable.
  • Shutting down the wasteful National Endowment for the Arts.
  • Defunding National Public Radio and the Corporation for Public Broadcasting.
  • Terminating the scandal-plagued Community Development Block Grant program.
  • Block-granting Medicaid and reducing central government funding and control.
Today, let’s add a fifth idea to our list. The Trump budget proposes a substantial reduction in foreign aid (for numbers, see line 18 of this OMB excel file).

I hope these cuts are implemented.

In part, I want to save money for American taxpayers, but I’m even more motivated by a desire to help the rest of the world. Simply stated, foreign aid is counterproductive.

The great paradox of government-to-government aid transfers is that they won’t work if recipient nations have bad policy. Yet we also know that nations with good policy don’t need handouts.
In other words, there’s no substitute for free markets and small government. That recipe works wherever it’s tried.

My colleague at the Cato Institute, Marian Tupy, embraces the idea of less foreign aid in a Reason column.
President Donald Trump is said to be considering large cuts to foreign aid. Those cuts cannot come soon enough.
And he explains why in the article. Here’s the passage that caught my eye.
Graham Hancock’s 1994 book, The Lords of Poverty: The Power, Prestige, and Corruption of the International Aid Business, is still worth reading. As the author explains, much of foreign aid is used to subsidize opulent lifestyles within the aid establishment. “Only a small portion of [aid money],” Hancock writes, “is ever translated into direct assistance. Thanks to bureaucratic inefficiency, misguided policies, large executive salaries, political corruption, and the self-perpetuating ‘overhead’ of the administrative agencies, much of this tremendous wealth is frittered away.”
The problems are not specific to the United States. Foreign aid also is used as a scam to line the pockets of contractors in the United Kingdom.
The British aid contracting industry has more than doubled in value from £540 million in 2012 to £1.34 billion last year. The proportion of every pound of taxpayers’ aid money that is spent on consultants has risen from 12p in 2011 to 22p. …Budget breakdowns showed the public being charged twice the going rate for workers. One contractor on a project had a margin of 141 per cent between staffing costs charged to Dfid and the cost at market rates.
By the way, one study even found that foreign aid undermines democracy.
Foreign aid provides a windfall of resources to recipient countries and may result in the same rent seeking behavior as documented in the “curse of natural resources” literature. …Using data for 108 recipient countries in the period 1960 to 1999, we find that foreign aid has a negative impact on democracy. In particular, if the foreign aid over GDP that a country receives over a period of five years reaches the 75th percentile in the sample, then a 10-point index of democracy is reduced between 0.6 and one point, a large effect.
Last but not least, Professor William Easterly explains in the Washington Post that foreign aid does not fight terrorism.
President Trump’s proposed budget includes steep cuts in foreign assistance. Aid proponents such as Bill Gates are eloquently fighting back. …The counter-terrorism argument for foreign aid after 9/11 indeed succeeded for a long time at increasing and then sustaining the U.S. foreign aid budget. …the link from aid to counter-terrorism never had any evidence behind it. As it became ever less plausible as terrorism continued, it set up aid for a fall. …the evidence for a link from poverty to terrorism never showed up. …studies since 9/11 have consistently shown that terrorists tend to have above-average income and education. Even if there had been a link from poverty to terrorism, the “aid as counter-terrorism” argument also required the assumption that aid has a dramatic effect on the poverty of entire aid-receiving nations. Today’s proponents of aid no longer make the grandiose claims of aid lifting whole societies out of poverty.
Heck, foreign aid keeps societies in poverty by enabling bigger government.

Yet international bureaucracies such as the United Nations keep peddling the discredited notion that developing nations should have more money to finance ever-bigger government.

The bottom line is that people who care about the world’s poor people should be advocating for freedom rather than handouts.

P.S. If you’re still skeptical, I invite you to try to come up with an example that answers either of these two questions.

Feel the Bern: Venezuela's civil war gets closer as mobs burn Hugo Chavez's childhood home

By Monica Showalter May 23, 2017

Following the toppling of at least five statues of the late Venezuelan dictator Hugo Chávez, angry mobs startled the ruling regime by burning down Chávez's childhood home, set up as a shrine to his socialist revolution by his supporters.

It surely takes the anger and bitterness in the streets to another level.  We no longer hear much in the way of restraining voices for nonviolence in that socialist hellhole.  The mob has taken over, and the monuments are beginning to topple.

It's a sign of a growing civil war, in fact, and like most such events, it could be very bloody.  In the midst of the largely nonviolent Velvet Revolutions of Eastern Europe in 1989, the sorry end of the region's worst dictator, Nicolae Ceauşescu, was the exception – dragged from his palace hideaway to some wall by angry rebel troops and summarily shot as crowds cheered.........Read more

Strong Enough

By David Prentice May 24, 2017

Did anyone realize the onslaught that a Democratic loss would bring? Did anyone predict just how juvenile and inane the Democratic base would be? Did anyone understand the petulance and nastiness Democratic officials would display? Did anyone predict how hyperbolic and crazy the leftist media would become? It is disconcerting how many have become so unhinged over the past years. Even so, it’s not possible to have guessed just how extreme and hyperbolic the left would become.

Championing “resistance” as if they were in a revolutionary cadre in a South American country was not expected. Acting like whining toddlers en masse was not anticipated. A media in total hysterical lockstep to unearth any evidence that Trump was bad, going as low as critiquing two servings of ice cream for him, was not foreseen.

Now that the #nevertrumpers are trying to resurface, trying to become relevant politically one more time, most have joined the chorus on the left. Now they champion how right they were to have pointed out just how bad Trump was going to be. One question to you #nevertrumpers": had a member of the preferred list of GOP candidates won the election against Hillary, would the left have acted any different?......... Read more

Farewell to OPEC

The energy revolution unleashed by President Trump is sure to make the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries an energy relic.

Daniel John Sobieski

Maybe the fly on the wall knows, because nothing was leaked to the New York Times or Washington Post, but one of the topics that may have come up in meetings between American and Saudi officials during President Trump’s historic visit is the energy revolution unleashed by President Trump that is sure to make the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries an energy relic.

Through regulation repeal and executive orders and the changing of the guard at the Environmental Protection Energy, Trump has made fossil fuels great again with expanded shale oil and natural gas production for both domestic consumption and export leading the way. And thanks to the completion of the Keystone XL and Dakota Access pipelines, North American energy independence is soon to become reality.............  More

The Media's Reliance on Skeevy Leaks and Crazy Conclusions

By Russ McSwain May 24, 2017

Our institutions are failing us. The skies are filled with bitter accusations thrown at our president. This is the outcome we should expect when we allow a man to rise to governmental heights beyond his experience and competence.

The problems are aggravated when that man shows no respect for the normal boundaries and limits on his power; When that man is unable to simply do his job, but launches public outbursts that undercut the people with whom he works, he is unfit.

 If you've been following the ongoing soap opera in Washington, you know the man I'm describing is James Comey. Comey's antics are compounded by the utter disregard for the truth displayed by our national media. One need not be a fan of President Trump to appreciate how outrageous the media attacks on him are.......To Read More....