Friday, September 30, 2022

P&D Today

By Rich Kozlovich

Political Cartoons by AF Branco

The number of disastrous decisions and policy blunders by the Biden administration is mind boggling.  How can there be so many incompetent people in so many responsible positions?  It's simple, it's part of "the plan", and get over this clabber there's no plan to dismantle America.  There is, and those in power are part of the plan, and it's been an active plan since the 1890's.  Always adapting, always changing, always willing to adopt the philosophical flavor of the moment,  and until now obfuscating what they really stand for.  But the goal of destroying America as we know it was always their guiding light.   I do wish more people read a history book once in a while......maybe even a few.  

Today's edition of P&D is in my opinion one of, if not the most profound, provocative and informative issues I've published this year.  

There are four commentaries by me, one of which is a blast from the past.

Then we have five more commentaries, two by Dan Mitchell, all of which outline just how damaging the left has been to the nation and the world.  Deep State Corruption isn't a conspiracy theory, it's real, and it's dangerous, it's goal is a form of tyrannous global governance based on central planning and control of everything, including every aspect of your life, by a handful of elitists.

 And I have two posts I think are important as background and clarity of understanding.

This week has been wet, rainy and cold, and I've had time to do some work researching material, and I have to say I really appreciate all the correspondence I get from my e-mail group and others, which are filled with their thoughts on all these issues.  It saves me a lot of time and work.  I've not done any of my regular searches yet today, but my week is done, and I will be back Monday.  

Have a great weekend and best wishes,

Rich

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Constant as the North Star

We Do Need to Return to the Past

By Rich Kozlovich

On Steven Hayward posted this article and video, Thought for the Day: Populism Galls Galston saying:

William Galston, the liberal columnist for the Wall Street Journal‘s editorial page (they always like to have one around) writing every so gently yesterday on the need for Democrats to pay attention to the legitimate grievances of populism lest they get buried in a populist electoral tide:

“Powerful forces in the Democratic coalition oppose crafting the sort of moderate policies that could win back these [working class] voters. But if Democrats refuse to compromise, the alternative may be something like the recent right-wing populist surges in Europe.”

Good luck with that compromising, Bill. The progressives own the Democratic Party now, and are in no mood to compromise.  (start video at the 25 second mark):


His argument about returning government back to 1920 levels is a logical fallacy. No one is suggesting that so it's a non sequitur, simply a distraction to avoid attacking the outrageous size of large government and it's abuses of the Constitution.  But the fact is there's no reason why the federal government should have over two million employees, and that doesn't include all the contractors or grant recipients, especially in the scientific community where government grant money has made scientific integrity an oxymoron. 

If the Departments of Commerce, Labor, Energy, Housing and Urban Development, Transportation and especially the Department of Education were totally eliminated that would only amount to about 52,500 employees.   So, please don't tell me the remaining 1,947,463 employees are really all that necessary, especially since the vast majority work in the defense/intelligence community, and we're seeing the consequences of that, as noted in this piece by Dan Mitchell of an out of control FBI and Department of Justice, not to mention the abuses of the and , all of which has led to a massive levels of

That doesn't count those actually serving in the military, about another million and a half, along with another eight hundred thousand reservists.

Maybe we should be demanding 1920 levels of government, and those reductions should include local and state governments, which currently employs another 16 million people, then maybe we can return to the past and get a 1950 level of government as a compromise.

 

The Brits!

By Rich Kozlovich

In the movie The Patriot, something comes up about French support against Cornwallis's army, and Mel Gibbon snorts, "the French" with a tone of disdain, well please use that tone for the title of this article.  

Bojo was a clown, and good riddance, and the new PM is Liz Truss, and while in her younger years she was clearly on the left, and in England, where that's really left, it appears as her years progressed she seemingly became very conservative, and from the background articles I read about her I was left with the impression she was a tough cookie, and seemed to practice the Teddy Roosevelt concept of "Talk softly but carry a big stick!"" 

Well, it appears she just might end up being as big a clown as Bojo, lacking insight and clarity of vision.  It turns out instead of cracking down on immigration as promised, she's going to loosen immigration rules to boost UK economy.  Did she somehow, in all her years in government, fail to realize immigration is killing Europe?  

It's killing England, and filling all of Europe with crime.  Unbelievable crime, including rape and grooming gangs taking advantage of young British women and girls, really young girls, even some as young as five years old, and guess whose fault it is?  It's the fault of these young girls!  Really!  That's the excuse these law enforcers, who are supposed to be protecting the sheep from the wolves, use to ignore or excuse these vile crimes.

Maggie Oliver, a former detective who blew the whistle on the authorities’ refusal to tackle mostly-Muslim rapist “grooming gangs” in Manchester, England, has called for senior police officers and social workers to be prosecuted amid further abuse revelations.......

She said that “successive governments of both political stripes have refused to grapple with the problem as they have been too afraid of being accused of racism“, but that another factor has also been important in the systemic failure to stop the abuse: classism“There remains an attitude that these victims deserve what has happened to them. They are judged to be making a lifestyle choice, rather than as vulnerable children who are being exploited”.

Let's emphasize!  Who are the exploiters and who are the exploited?  Muslims are exploiting mostly young white British girls, and have been getting away with it because of the cravenness and cowardice of these "officials". 

In Rotherham child sex abuse files go missing from council archive, it's noted:

It’s an all-out attack on the West, and those whom we have entrusted with our safety, our lives, our way of life have all but surrendered. How are these Muslim sex gangs in the UK any different from the raping and trafficking of non-Muslim girls in Iraq and Syria by the Islamic State? The only difference is geography….a desire to keep “good relations” with the local Pakistani community and a worry about “reputational risk” for the council also caused officers to turn a blind eye.  And now the files have “disappeared.”  1,400 British non-Muslim children were gang-raped and brutalized by Muslims. 
And that's just a small list.  The list of these vile acts by these abuses is large, and sickening with the abuses these poor young girls are suffering, and will continue to suffer for all their lives.   These men are vile beasts with no mercy or sense of decency.   Please follow this link to see moreAs Daniel Greenfield notes in his article, A Tale of Two Englands:

It’s a girl who was abandoned to the worst imaginable abuses because intervening would have been politically incorrect. ..........The report chronicles how Operation Augusta was launched and then scuttled after her death in 2003, despite identifying 97 suspects and 57 victims. The victims were, “mostly white girls aged between 12 and 16”, and the perpetrators were, “mostly men of ‘Asian heritage’”. By ‘Asian’, the report means “predominantly Pakistani men” though at least one of the perpetrators was apparently Tunisian. 
 
And what's the commonality?  They were all Muslims! This isn't exclusive to Britain, it's going on all over Europe, with having the worst of it, and those in positions of responsibility and authority all over Europe, including England, have allowed these Muslim wolves to decimate their flocks.  At some point there's going to be a reckoning and I hope these people who are allowing this to go on are someday prosecuted for their vile behavior, clearly in violation of any oath of office or any implied oath of integrity, honesty and morality.  Make no mistake about this, at some point this is going to boil over into violence.  
 
Governments are going to fall, civil unrest will become out of control and there will be pitched battles between Muslims and ethnic Europeans.  What will be the final straw?  Economic collapse of the EU and a number of European countries, and it's coming sometime before 2030, my guess is around 2025.  
 
Is it any wonder they were frothing at the mouth over Trump's trade policy a few years ago?  But that's now the least of their worries with this Russo/Ukrainian War's devastating impact on their energy resources.   It would seem their snotty nosed arrogance about going green hasn't worked all that well.  Imagine that.   However, it's they who will suffer, and in the long run it will not be the U.S., assuming Biden and his band of weirdos, misfits and incompetents are kicked to the curb. 

Let's try to get this at least once, please, it's the Muslims who are the greatest offenders, and Truss wants to bring in more Muslims.  Muslims take, they don't give, and just how many immigrant Muslims in England are already on the public doll refusing to work and out breeding ethnic Brits?  How many more will be added with more immigration?
 
Since Maggie Thatcher died are there any conservatives left in Britain other than Nigel Farage?  Yes, actually there is.  How about Jacob Rees-Mogg? Not only is he a conservative of conviction, he's extremely well spoken, and .....watch out now here it comes.....he really is smart, which in itself would be a dramatic change for a British Prime Minister as of late.
 

Open letter: To the Republican leadership, or perhaps, should I say, lack of leadership in the US Congress?

What’s your choice going to be? Will God and country be number one for you? 

By ——--September 29, 2022 @ Canada Free Press

Editor's Note I've not asked nor received permission to publish this piece in full, but I take the view an "open letter" is meant to be just that, and this is a piece that needs as wide a distribution as possible. RK

US Capitol, Washington, DC
September 29, 2022

Wake up and smell the coffee.  Can’t you see what’s happening in our country?  We elected you to do precisely the opposite of what you are doing.

Your priorities should be God, country, community, family, and self.  In that exact order.  I believe that’s what Tom, George, Ben and the guys that got together in 1776 decided that America was supposed to be.  A country made-up of strong individuals, coming from different phases of life, working together to construct legislation that benefits everyone.

That is not the situation in our Congress, and you know it.

As a citizen, taxpayer, and voter in this country, I am a US government stockholder, and you are on my Board of Directors.  Your job is to work for me, not yourself.

To paraphrase former president Harry Truman, “If you get rich in politics, you’re a crook.”

Old Harry knew what he was talking about.  Too many of you have removed God from priority Number One and moved “me” up to the top of the list.  It’s not that you’re not good people, but your priorities have shifted from country to self.  That’s why we’re in trouble.

Too many of you have never held a job or operated a business.  You do not understand the issues facing the people that hired you.  The one introductory lesson you have never learned: you can’t pay for something with money you do not have.  In your case, tax revenue.  Quit stealing my kid’s future to give away buying votes.

Yes, it is stealing.  Huge Bills are created with nice-sounding names.  The intent of the legislation sounds reasonable; however, in action, it will cost millions more than the problem needs, bloating the government even further as a means for you to buy votes.

Interestingly some of you professional politicians have a multi-million-dollar net worth.  So do your children.  That’s a pretty good trick for someone living on their congressional salary without outside business: or breaking the rules.  Of course, if you read the rulebook, you probably know but don’t care; there are strict rules regarding engaging in business, as you could easily influence its profitability.  Hmmm, I think ole Harry knew of what he spoke. 

You have developed two large classes of people in America, those that live off the government and those who must pay for it.

Heavy yoke of government each and every day

As a result, this is not the country I want to leave my children and grandchildren.  I want to leave them something where they can see a bright future, where they can grow, where they can build a good life for themselves and their families, and they can worship their God if they desire to.  They can be good citizens without carrying the heavy yoke of government each and every day.

They do not need to be told in third grade about the proper use of “pronouns,” if you get my drift.  Everything they do does not need to be regulated by the Federal Government, including the size of their soft drink can.

Oh, yes, I hear Mitch McConnell on the Senate side and Kevin McCarthy, on the House side, stand up and make these heart-wrenching speeches, that oh, our inflation is going through the roof, gas prices are so high, our oil industry has been ruined, we’re becoming the laughing stock of the world!  Oh, and by the way, would you guys on the other side of the aisle, pretty please cut that out?

Your answer is 78 texts I got on my cell phone over the weekend.  They came from candidates all the way across the country, asking for money.  The members of this group with business or military backgrounds probably have the know-how to get us back on track.  They are fighting millions, and millions of “dark money” dollars being slipped into the country from people overseas interested in taking control of our government. 

Thanks to your lack of leadership, I’m now on a fixed income, and sadly, I don’t have money to donate to people with a bit of patriotism who would work for me, one of the nation’s stockholders.

However, you have failed dramatically in your leadership.  Turn off the computers sending out all the texts and emails, and I might mention that some of them are very insulting towards those who receive them.  Shaming people into giving money is fraud and manipulation.

Get off your butts, get out in the country with the people you are supposed to represent and raise the money yourselves.


The folks would donate a buck or two.  Yes, they bought the ticket, and they rode the train

When I first walked off Main Street and entered politics in 1984, hoping to win the election and then do what I could to help turn the economy around, Iowa was in one of the worst economic depressions the state had ever seen.  Jimmy Carter had interest rates at 20%.  Farms were being foreclosed on every day, and we would lose a bank about once a week.  People on the farms and Main Street were suffering; sadly, many didn’t make it.

So how am I supposed to raise what, in those days, was a tremendous amount of money?  Raise $270,000 in a climate like this? 

We did it a dollar at a time.  I was up early.  I knocked on doors, and I went to cafes.  I went to machine shops; I went into welding shops; I walked down Main Street, talked to merchants, and then we’d have a meeting in the afternoon, and following that, I would meet some more people. Then that evening, we would have what we call the “meet and greet,” where we’d have people come to someone’s home, and I would chat with them.  Hopefully, our conversation encouraged them to give me some money.  I went home many nights totally exhausted, arriving well after midnight.

From that experience, the feeling became that if they bought a ticket, they would ride the train.  Our people worked their butts off and raised that $270,000, with an average donation of 17 bucks, one check for $100, and nothing bigger.

We did it with bake sales, no bake bake sales, auctions, and people working hard to organize more people so we could meet them and greet them.  The folks would donate a buck or two.  Yes, they bought the ticket, and they rode the train.

It’s hard work.  I came home one time from being on the road, was very discouraged, and considered dropping out of the race.  As I pulled up in front of our office, a gentleman was standing beside an old pickup that was rusted out.  It had four extremely worn tires, but none of them matched.  He was standing next to the pickup, wearing a pair of not the cleanest overalls in the world.  As I walked past him, he stuck out his hand and asked, “Are you, Jim?”

“Yes, Sir.”


As a taxpayer, understand clearly what I am saying; you work for me, not the other way around

He handed me a folded, dirty old $5 bill.  It had to have been a fortune to him!

“I think you will do a good job for me,” came softly from his lips. 

He turned, opened the door, climbed into his pickup, and drove away without another word.

My eyes stared at that $5 bill as I walked into the office.  There were tears in my eyes.  Because that’s what this was all about.  I was supposed to go to Congress and work for him.

That’s what our forefathers wanted.  Not to represent me.  Not to get some nice soft seat where you didn’t have to worry about getting fired for two years. 

As a taxpayer, understand clearly what I am saying; you work for me, not the other way around. 

You are the only one that can save us.  You must get off your collective rear ends and become men and women who stand for America first.  “Me” should be somewhere way, way down the list.  Demonstrate patriotism rather than personal gain.

I voted against the Americans with Disabilities Act.  My staff went ballistic.  They told me I would probably lose the election, but they stood behind me 100%.  One remark regarding my opponent, “They will run a commercial showing you throwing a guy in a wheelchair off a Cliff!”

Come election time, they did, but we won the election, as I stood solid for what I believed in.  People understood my reasoning when not viewed through the prism of slanted mass media and paid attack commercials.


Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) is excellent in its intent and purpose:  But a massive government program that is nothing more than the full Employment Act for trial lawyers

I believe the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) is excellent in its intent and purpose.  However, it is another massive government program that is nothing more than the full Employment Act for trial lawyers.

I used to forecast the weather and missed it now and then, but I didn’t miss this one.  Time has shown that another bloated program was born, paid for with my kid’s and grandkid’s futures.

Those of us out here in the country are unhappy; we see our savings disappear, we see our grocery bills climb, and our fuel bills mount.  Oh, my goodness, our utility bills are headed sky-high.  We also are watching China and Russia raising their ugly heads again.

Please show some leadership

You might not have liked Trump because his personality could be a little grating from time to time.  However, let’s remember that our economy was doing exceptionally well during his time as president.  Our oil industry had become self-sufficient, and we weren’t buying oil from countries that hate us.  China and Russia were sitting quietly in their corners.  Peace was starting to break out in the Middle East.  America was respected.

And, of course, Congress was spending way too much money.  It seems like we just don’t have people on either side of the aisle, who never had to balance a checkbook.

So, ladies and gentlemen, as a former Member of Congress and a U.S. citizen who wants to leave this country as good or better than he found it, please, please show some leadership.  No more of those fancy speeches concluding with, “and you guys be good.”

Do something about it.  Turn off the computers and the texting.  Get the candidates out on the trail where people can meet them, and learn who they are.  We’ll have a better government if you do, and it will be much more like what George, Tom,  Ben and the boys that got together back in 1776 decided this country should be.

Please, for the sake of my children and grandchildren: don’t throw this great country away.

A few strong words to “leaders” on both sides of the aisle: stop the power game, and start playing the Patriot game.  That’s what you were elected to do!  You should be a group of people with diverse ideas, but you must respect each other.

America must come first.  Stake your lives and futures on the line, as have great soldiers, sailors, and airmen who continue to step up to defend this country. 

Audie Murphy didn’t become the most decorated soldier in World War II by sitting in his foxhole and texting messages.  He got up and got into the fight.  To him, America was number one, and he placed himself somewhere way down the list.

What’s your choice going to be?  Will God and country be number one for you?

Respectfully,

Hon Jim Ross Lightfoot. MC (ret).
Served Iowa Six Terms 1985-1997

The New York Daily News Instructs Us On Progressive Racism

September 28, 2022 @ Manhattan Contrarian

We still have three daily newspapers here in New York — the Times, the Post, and the Daily News. I subscribe to the first two, but not to the Daily News. And I almost never read the Daily News either. From my occasional encounters, my observation is that the Daily News has completely gone over to wokism, and is just a cut-rate, slimmed-down version of the Times, pushing the progressive narrative on all issues without concern for evidence or facts.

But like the Times, the Daily News can sometimes, undoubtedly inadvertently, shine a bright light on the twisted thinking of the progressive mind. Such was the case with a piece that appeared a few days ago (September 24) and that I came across because it was linked at RealClearPolitics. The piece has the headline “The NYPD’s arrest practices are still starkly discriminatory,” The author is Robert Gangi. Here is a picture from 2017 of Gangi announcing his candidacy for Mayor in that year’s election. (He didn’t get far; but then, the guy who won, de Blasio, essentially shared Gangi’s perspective on the issues):

Gangi begins his Daily News piece by identifying himself as running an organization called the Police Reform Organizing Project. PROP makes a thing of sending representatives into the New York criminal court “arraignment” parts to observe the goings on. According to Gangi, “Over the last eight years, PROP volunteers and representatives, numbering more than 100 people through the years, have observed more than 7,000 cases in the arraignment parts of New York City’s criminal courts.” As a result of observing these arraignments, PROP has collected quite a lot of information on the nature of the crimes for which people get arrested in New York, as well as on the races of the people arrested.

PROP is just out with a big Report with the title “Where’s the Outrage: The Persistence of Racist NYPD Arrests.” The Report covers the period January to July 2022. Gangi’s op-ed in the Daily News summarizes some of the information from this latest Report.

The conclusions of the Report are as indicated in the headline of Gangi’s op-ed and the title of the Report itself. NYPD’s arrest practices are “starkly discriminatory” and “racist.” You might find that a little dubious for starters, given that both New York’s Mayor (Eric Adams) and Police Commissioner (Keechant Sewell) for the period in question are black. But Gangi’s op-ed doubles down and elaborates on these themes:

The skewed numbers and harsh human reality we regularly observe in our city’s criminal courts are not an accident. They are a function of NYPD policy and practice going back many years entailing targeting and criminalizing large groups of marginalized New Yorkers: African-Americans and Latinos and the unhoused, drug-addicted, mentally ill and other vulnerable individuals.

The NYPD is “targeting” and “criminalizing” the “marginalized” groups. The remainder of the op-ed gives several examples selected by Gangi to illustrate his thesis. Presumably, the examples he has selected — out of a universe of thousands according to his own account — should be expected to be among the most compelling to prove the point. OK, here are his main examples:

  • A Black woman in Brooklyn is arrested on a petty larceny charge. She was in a grocery store with her two daughters, who attempted to leave the place with fish hidden under their coats. Apparently not knowing where her girls are, she seems distraught. The judge releases her with the directive that she has to return at a later date as her case continues to be processed by the courts.

  • A disabled and elderly Black woman is arrested in Manhattan, also on a petty larceny charge; petty larceny is the NYPD’s second most common misdemeanor arrest. The judge releases her, and, with the aid of a cane, she hobbles out of the courtroom. We follow her and ask about her case. She says that she had taken a package of ham and eggs from the Pathmark in Harlem. We ask why. Perhaps surprised by our question, she explains that she was hungry.

Just curious about the reaction of readers to the news that these two incidents led to the arrest of the perpetrators. My reaction is, of course they were arrested. Both were engaged in blatant shoplifting, known to the criminal laws as “larceny.” Nothing in Gangi’s article suggests in any way that the arrested parties didn’t commit the crimes, and indeed in the second incident the perpetrator admits to the crime, while attempting to justify it on the grounds that she “was hungry.”

Gangi thinks that we should all be “outraged” that these incidents — and thousands of other similar but likely less sympathetic ones — led to arrests. But somehow Gangi is oblivious to the fact that fundamentally what he is advocating is that black people are too stupid or incompetent to be held to the normal standards of behavior that govern society. If they “are hungry,” they should be privileged to steal whatever they need from whatever source they can find. Any attempt of the police, or presumably anyone else, to stop them is “racist.” Because his article is limited to a few instances of theft of food (those being incidents that might give rise to reader sympathy), we don’t find out his attitude toward thefts of other items. Does Gangi think that black people should be privileged to steal expensive sneakers? How about high-end TVs? Jewelry? Cars?

If Gangi has given any thought to the collateral consequences of the criminal justice policies he advocates, he gives no indication of that in this op-ed or Report. Those collateral consequences are of course devastating for black people, and include things like making shopkeepers highly wary of any black customers entering the store; making stores catering to large numbers of blacks unprofitable and leading to dearth of stores in black neighborhoods; making prices higher at stores in black neighborhoods, because the stores must charge the paying customers prices that cover the losses from theft. None of these things makes life better for black people.

Gangi is just a vile racist, and yet unable to see it in himself. In that he exemplifies a wide swath of the progressive movement.

More Evidence of the Need For a 28th Amendment

By Rich Kozlovich

Jim Hoft on September 29, 2022 posted the article U.S. Supreme Court Agrees to Hear Challenge Against New York’s Vaccine Mandate, saying:

The U.S. Supreme Court has agreed to hear a case about vaccine requirements in New York City that was once denied by liberal US Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor. This could lead to a huge ruling about how much power state and local governments have, the Conservative Brief reported. Last month, Sotomayor denied a request by New York City police detective Anthony Marciano to overturn the city’s unconstitutional mandate that all municipal workers get the Covid-19 jab.  Sotomayor denied Officer Anthony Marciano’s emergency request without comment, and she did not ask the city to file a brief in response.  Marciano resubmitted the same petition to Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas..

Looks like Sotomayor got overruled - and quite rightly so! who styled herself as a "wise Latina", which would have drawn outrage from the left if any white man or woman and the nerve to style themself as so wise they deserved to be on the Supreme Court, and has got to be running high on the list of SCOTUS jurists that are either dumb, incompetent, corrupt or blatantly partisan, or all four.

 

But she wouldn't appear anywhere on a list of "wise" jurists.   Her inadequacy may only be exceeded by Ketanji Brown Jackson, who when she was a SCOTUS candidate the Senate questioned her qualifications the left became outraged.  Outraged the Senate had the temerity to question her?  Now they didn't personally attack her as the Democrats did to Kavanaugh, Gorsuch, and the best jurist to have been seated on the Court in my lifetime, Clearance Thomas, they merely questioned the qualifications of a potential jurist.  A potential jurist who couldn't define what a woman is.  Imagine that!

The fact is these nitwits are part the reason people have lost respect for the court. 

Of the three branches of the U.S. federal government, the Supreme Court has traditionally received the most respect. And while all three branches have lost some level of confidence among the American public in recent years, it is the Supreme Court that has faced the most precipitous decline, and now find themselves in rare territory: defending their own legitimacy.

According to Gallup polling, 25% percent of U.S. adults in 2022 say they have "a great deal" or "quite a lot" of confidence in SCOTUS, down from 36% a year ago and five percentage points lower than the previous record low recorded in 2014. Many court-watchers cite a recent spate of controversial decisions as contributing to the drop.
 
Is this lack of integrity and competence anything new for SCOTUS?  No, as the author points out in the 19th century it was understood that court appointees were blatantly partisan, but he also points out court never had the power to alter the social structure of America then as it does now, and it's time to end this unconstitutional judicial tyranny with term limits.  It's time for a 28th Amendment.
 

Consequences for FBI Misbehavior?

September 29, 2022 by Dan Mitchell @ International Liberty 

Two big-picture assumptions guide my views of law enforcement.

 
  • First, there are some very bad people in the world. To protect the rest of us, I want government to catch, convict, and punish those thieves, rapists, murderers, and other low-life scum.
  • Second, government officials have a tendency to misbehave and we should be thankful that America’s Founding Fathers bequeathed us a Constitution that protects our liberties.

In other words, there’s a balancing act.

Many people belong in jail, but I’m glad we have the presumption of innocence, protection against unjust searches, and all sorts of due process legal protections and oversight policies that make it hard for the government to mistreat us or put us in jail (my views even led me to side with Ruth Bader Ginsburg over Clarence Thomas on one occasion).

Let’s consider what happens when law enforcement does not respect that balancing act. In this case, we’re going to look at misbehavior by the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

Here are excerpts from a remarkable story by Michael Finnegan of the Los Angeles Times.


The privacy invasion was vast when FBI agents drilled and pried their way into 1,400 safe-deposit boxes at the U.S. Private Vaults store in Beverly Hills. They rummaged through personal belongings of a jazz saxophone player, an interior designer, a retired doctor, a flooring contractor, two Century City lawyers and hundreds of others. 

Agents took photos and videos of pay stubs, password lists, credit cards, a prenuptial agreement, immigration and vaccination records, bank statements, heirlooms and a will, court records show. …It took five days for scores of agents to fill their evidence bags with the bounty: More than $86 million in cash and a bonanza of gold, silver, rare coins, gem-studded jewelry and enough Rolex and Cartier watches to stock a boutique.

Here are some more details.

The key thing to understand is that what happened with the FBI wasn’t a heat-of-the-moment mistake, like we saw with law enforcement in Uvalde, Texas.

The bureaucrats at the FBI and the U.S. attorney’s office explicitly planned to act in a dishonorable fashion.

…newly unsealed court documents show that the FBI and U.S. attorney’s office in Los Angeles got their warrant for that raid by misleading the judge who approved it. They omitted from their warrant request a central part of the FBI’s plan: Permanent confiscation of everything inside every box containing at least $5,000 in cash or goods, a senior FBI agent recently testified. …

The failure to disclose the confiscation plan in the warrant request came to light in FBI documents and depositions of agents in a class-action lawsuit by box holders who say the raid violated their rights. …

“The government did not know what was in those boxes, who owned them, or what, if anything, those people had done,” Robert Frommer, a lawyer who represents nearly 400 box holders in the class-action case, wrote in court papers. “That’s why the warrant application did not even attempt to argue there was probable cause to seize and forfeit box renters’ property.” …....

The plaintiffs in the class-action suit have asked U.S. District Judge R. Gary Klausner to declare the raid unconstitutional. If he grants the request, it could force the FBI to return millions of dollars to box holders whose assets it has tried to confiscate. It could also spoil an unknown number of criminal investigations by blocking prosecutors from using any evidence or information acquired in the raid, including guns and drugs. …

The 4th Amendment protects people against “unreasonable searches and seizures.” It requires the government to get a warrant by showing in a sworn statement that it has probable cause to believe that a particular place needs to be searched and describing specific people or things to be seized.

In an article for the Federalist, Evita Duffy finds the FBI’s actions to be very disturbing.


…allegations of FBI corruption and hubris are coming to light after a lawsuit last week revealed FBI agents misled a judge so they could illegally seize and withhold property from innocent American citizens. Agents took more than $86 million in cash, jewelry, and gold from 1,400 safe deposit boxes during the raid of a Beverly Hills vault company in March 2021. …the hundreds of citizens whose assets were seized by the FBI are not suspected of any crimes, according to court documents. ….After the raid, the feds demanded that box holders submit to an investigation before having their possessions returned. …as the Institute for Justice points out, the government had no right to seize their property and force them to prove their innocence in the first place.

Ms. Duffy’s article also lists other examples of FBI misbehavior.

And that pattern helps to explain why Charles Cooke of National Review argues it may be time for radical change.


Since 1935 — and, indeed, even before that, back when it was just the Bureau of Investigation — it has been a violent, expansionist, self-aggrandizing, and careless outfit… I now think that the FBI ought to be destroyed from the ground up. End it. Disassemble it. Dissolve it. Repeal its charter, evacuate its building, spoliate its budget and supplies. …

Bit by bit, year by year, case by case, the FBI has turned itself into a sort of unmoored Super Police Force, which, despite being nominally accountable to the executive branch, is “independent” from political control. In essence, the FBI’s pernicious tendency toward empire-building is of a piece with that exhibited by the rest of the modern federal government…

In the heart of its capital city, the United States now has a bureau that intervenes with impunity in our ideological and partisan disputes; that has developed a massive, statutorily unwarranted intelligence-collection wing; and that has never managed to escape the paranoia and corruption of its execrable, tyrannical founder.

I suspect that few if any policymakers will want to follow Cooke’s advice.

But why not at least have some sort of adverse consequences for the bureaucrats who lied? Have any of the FBI officials been fired or charged with lying to the court? Has anyone in the U.S. attorney’s office lost their license to practice law?

The answer almost surely is no. It seems there are never negative consequences when bureaucrats and other public officials misbehave.

P.S. There’s a actually a third big-picture assumption that guides my views on law enforcement, and that’s the notion that there should be far fewer laws (for examples, see here, here, and here).

P.P.S. Heck, I’ll add a fourth big-picture assumption, which is that governments should not use law enforcement as a means of generating extra revenue. That approach leads to terrible outcomes (and understandable reactions).

 

The International Monetary Fund’s Tax-Free Bureaucrats Trying to Sabotage Better Tax Policy in the United Kingdom

September 28, 2022 by Dan Mitchell @ International Liberty

It is disappointing that the bureaucrats at the International Monetary Fund routinely advocate for higher taxes and bigger government in nations from all parts of the world (for examples, see here, here, here, here, here, and here).

 

It is disturbing that the IMF engages in bailouts that encourage bad fiscal policy by governments and reckless lending policies by financial institutions.

And it is disgusting that those IMF bureaucrats get tax-free salaries and are thus exempt from the damaging consequences of those misguided policies.

One set of rules for the peasants and one set of rules for the elite.

The latest example of IMF misbehavior revolves around the bureaucracy’s criticism of recently announced tax cuts in the United Kingdom.

A BBC report by Natalie Sherman and Tom Espiner summarizes the controversy.


The International Monetary Fund has openly criticised the UK government over its plan for tax cuts…In an unusually outspoken statement, the IMF said the proposal was likely to increase inequality and add to pressures pushing up prices. …Chancellor Kwasi Kwarteng unveiled the country’s biggest tax package in 50 years on Friday. But the £45bn cut has sparked fears that government borrowing could surge along with interest rates. …Lord Frost, the former Brexit minister and close ally of Prime Minister Liz Truss, criticised the IMF’s statement. …”The IMF has consistently advocated highly conventional economic policies. It is following this approach that has produced years of slow growth and weak productivity. The only way forward for Britain is lower taxes, spending restraint, and significant economic reform.” …Moody’s credit rating agency said on Wednesday that the UK’s plan for “large unfunded tax cuts” was “credit negative” and would lead to higher, persistent deficits “amid rising borrowing costs [and] a weaker growth outlook”. Moody’s did not change the UK’s credit rating.

So what should be done about the IMF’s misguided interference?

Writing for the Spectator in the U.K., Kate Andrews has some observations about the underlying philosophical and ideological conflict..


…the International Monetary Fund has weighed in on the UK’s mini-Budget, offering a direct rebuke of Liz Truss and Kwasi Kwarteng’s tax cuts. …its spokesperson said…‘Given elevated inflation pressures in many countries, including the UK, we do not recommend large and untargeted fiscal packages at this juncture’… But this rebuke from the IMF is the kind of battle the Truss camp might be happy to have. …The IMF takes a political stance on inequality, viewing its reduction as a good thing in itself. Truss and Kwarteng reject this premise – summed up in the Chancellor’s statement last Friday when he called for the end of redistribution politics – and think it’s far more important to focus on ‘growing the size of the pie.’ The IMF’s ‘intervention’ is likely to become an example of the ‘Treasury orthodoxy’ that Truss was so vocal about during the leadership campaign: her belief that a left-wing economic consensus will not tolerate any meaningful shake-up of the tax code or supply-side reform.

Truss and Kwarteng are correct to reject the IMF’s foolish – and immoral – fixation on inequality.

All you really need to know is that the IMF publishes research implying it is okay to hurt poor people if rich people are hurt by a greater amount.

Let’s close by addressing whether tax cuts are bad for Britain’s currency and financial markets

Paul Marshall explained the interaction (and non-interaction) of fiscal and monetary policy in a column for the U.K.-based Financial Times.


Since 2010, the G7 policy framework has been one of tight fiscal and loose monetary policy. …This combination of fiscal austerity and monetary largesse has not been a success. Austerity has not prevented government debt ratios steadily climbing to historic highs. …Meanwhile quantitative easing has fuelled asset inflation for the super-rich and has more or less abolished risk pricing in financial markets. And…it has produced inflation which is still out of control. But now the global policy consensus is in the process of pivoting… A distinctive feature of the UK’s fiscal pivot is the emphasis on reducing the burden of tax on work and business. This is sensible. …the bigger problem for Liz Truss’s government is the Bank of England. It seems that the governor, Andrew Bailey, did not get the memo. Our central bank has been behind the curve since inflation first started to rise sharply in 2021. …The Bank of England effectively lost control of the UK bond market last Thursday when it raised interest rates by 50 basis points, instead of the 75bp that the US Federal Reserve and the European Central Bank raised by. Its timidity is now having an impact on both the gilt market and sterling. That is the essential context for the market reaction to the mini-Budget. Once you lose market confidence, it is doubly hard to win it back. …a more muscular stance from the BoE to underpin financial market confidence in the UK, even at the expense of some short-term pain.

He is right.

The Bank of England should be focused on trying to unwind its mistaken monetary policy that produced rising prices. That’s the approach that will strengthen the currency.

And Truss and Kwarteng should continue their efforts for better tax policy so the economy can grow faster.

But better tax policy needs to be accompanied by much-need spending restraint, which is what the United Kingdom enjoyed not only during the Thatcher years, but also under Prime Ministers Cameron and May.

P.S. The IMF also interfered in British politics when it tried to sabotage Brexit.

P.P.S. One obvious takeaway is that the IMF should be eliminated.

Covid and the SCOTUS Swamp

By Rich Kozlovich 

Editor's Note:  This was originally published on January 11, 2022 but in light of recent events I think it appropriate to republish.  RK

Political Cartoons by Al Goodwyn 

In Greek mythology Hercules was tasked with cleaning the Augean Stables, which he did by diverting two rivers into the stables, thus washing out all the manure.  The nation is in need of a Herculean effort to wash out the stench of corruption in the nation's federal judiciary, which is filled with political hacks, unfortunately that includes the Supreme Court of the United States, and nothing has exposed this stench like the current case before them involving OSHA and the Biden administration's efforts to by pass the Constitution with their vaccination mandates.

Life is about patterns and cycles, and in order to see those patterns and understand the cycles, we need to understand the learning curve is huge when writing about any issue if you aren't trained in the specific field of expertise you're exploring and writing about.  

When I started writing twenty years ago it was solely in defense of the pest control industry and the tools we use, and I wanted to be absolutely accurate. I was prepared to follow the facts wherever they may lead.  What I found was a wide range of opinions, extreme opposite opinions.  At the beginning you have to wade through a lot of information from all sides of these issues, and a ton of misinformation, logical fallacies, data manipulation, false studies, etc., before you find the right answers and patterns of thought.  Once you've found who to trust, who to believe, what information is provable and what is not you're finally left with those who are reliable and truthful, and those who practice outright lying. 

Let's start with Sotomayor, who stated during her Senate hearings for her seat on the Supreme Court of the United States:

"I would hope that a wise Latina woman with the richness of her experiences would more often than not reach a better conclusion than a white male who hasn't lived that life.”

Wisdom is the application of knowledge and understanding, so I wonder who is the "wise Latina" about whom she references? Because it isn't her.  She's clearly ignorant about much of which she speaks, and this case brings that ignorance of the facts, and her either ignorance of the law or her disdain for the law to the fore.

This RedState article, Sonia Sotomayor Loses Her Ever-Loving Mind at Oral Arguments Over Biden's Vaccine Mandate, by someone named Bonchie on Jan 07, 2022 states: 

It’s been clear for a while now that you have five conservative Supreme Court justices, one left-leaning squish, two liberals, and one absolute nutjob. That’s not to say that Stephen Breyer and Elena Kagan aren’t also incredibly terrible at their jobs, but it is to say that Sonia Sotomayor is in a class by herself.

Apparently she's astonished...astonished mind you....that anyone would stand against these mandates because she knows....absolutely knows....there are "100,000 children in serious condition", then asking "Where do these people obtain their misinformation?

Unfortunately, her 100,000 child in crisis statistic is a lie, and she's the source of that misinformation.  The actual number, according to the he United States Department of Health and Human Services, the number is 3,342.  The reality is children are not significantly at risk from this variety of coronavirus, Covid-19, and they are not filling our hospitals.  

She continues as the source of misinformation claiming that vaccinated people can't transmit the virus, which is known to be blatantly false, and has been known for some time, and the omicron variant is "as deadly and causes as much serious disease in the unvaccinated as delta did."  This is false.  She then stated, "We have hospitals that are almost at full capacity" with many children are now on ventilators as a result of this virus and we're "now having deaths at an unprecedented amount".  Again, false.  

On Jan. 13, 2021, the seven-day average of deaths was 3,421, and the number of deaths on that day was 4,048, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. That’s the peak for the COVID-19 pandemic. As of Jan. 7, the day Sotomayor spoke, the seven-day average was 1,500 deaths, with the total reaching 2,230 that day. Since then, the seven-day average has risen slightly, to 1,552 on Jan. 9.

While there many be a lot of children on ventilators across the nation - the question is - are they on ventilators because of this virus, and there's not one iota of evidence they are, and since children are "extremely unlikely" to be infected with this virus it's clear they're "extremely unlikely" to be on ventilators because of this virus.   She also claimed OSHA has the regulatory authority to impose these mandates and in effect a "federal police power."

So, it seems clear she's either stunningly ignorant or she lies.  Either way, that makes her an incompetent and corrupt myrmidon jurist of the left, and certainly not the brightest pebble in the brook.  

So let's go back to her "wise Latina" comment.  If any conservative or any color, male or female, or just a white male, said anything that arrogant the media would have crucified them, and now we know six things.

  1. She's not that "wise Latina".
  2. She clearly is either ignorant of the law, or chooses to ignore the law.
  3. Her logic is flawed 
  4. Her conclusions are stupid. 
  5. Her views are based on falsehoods
  6. She's unfit to be a judge on any court, let alone the Supreme Court.

If there ever was a member of the federal judiciary that overwhelmingly demonstrates term limits should be imposed on the them via a Constitutional amendment, she's the one.  

Let's deal with Justices Breyer and Kagan, but I don't have a cartoon for them that's appropriate,  and this one is so rich I just had to use it.

 Political Cartoons by AF Branco

 , posted this piece on Breitbart, Fact Check: Justice Breyer Suggests Vaccines, Masks Would Prevent 100% of Coronavirus Infections, regarding Justice Breyer's comments. 

CLAIM: Vaccine mandates and masks would prevent all of the 750,000 daily new coronavirus cases in the current surge.

VERDICT: PARTLY FALSE. While vaccines and masks would prevent many cases, they do not prevent all transmission.

Actually, that statement is almost always false.  "Masks (especially cloth masks) are nearly useless in stopping or even slowing the spread of the Wuhan Virus". But no matter, the issue here is his claim there are 750,000 daily new coronavirus cases in the current surge, or did he say 750,000,000 as some have reported, which is of course impossible since there's only about 330,000,000 people in America, which means each and every one of them had to have contracted this disease twice.  But either way, either number is false.

Justice Breyer also claimed hospitals are full to the maximum as a result of this virus with people who are unvaccinated.  That's false.

The nation's hospitals are are not full of Wuhan Virus patients, and in point of fact, they're  not full of patients in general.  According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS), only about 17 percent of all the patients in hospitals are Covid-19 patients, and it's clear with his wide ranging claim of anywhere between sixty percent and ninety percent capacity, he don's t  have a clue what the number really is.  In short, he's making it up, aka, lying.  

Justice Kagan, not to be outdone by her nutty companions, is claiming this virus is:

 "the greatest public health danger that this country has faced in the last century."  "More and more people are dying every day.  More and more people are getting sick every day.  I don't mean to be dramatic here.  I'm just sort of stating facts." 

Did she say facts?   Claiming its just the facts, presupposes she's telling the truth, or is it as one writer says "telling the truth", "is really just a leftist's way of saying, "I'm feeding you a crock of crap!"'

Let's try and get this right once and for all.  First, these aren't legitimate vaccines as have been defined for decades, that being a vaccine had to do two things.  Prevent infection and prevent transmission, and none of these "vaccines" do either, so they changed the definition to accommodate calling these drugs vaccines, which are experimental drugs since it normally takes ten to twelve years to go through all of the FDA's testing procedures.  In point of fact, they don't work, including Pfizers drug.  Pfizer CEO: Our Vaccines Offer ‘Limited, If Any Protection, otherwise there wouldn't be necessary to have an unending need for boosters Then there's the issue of bad reactions.  It is my view that at some point the long term consequences of these forced vaccinations is going to be this generation's Thalidomide crisis. 

If Sotomayor is the number one demonstration of why we need a 28th Amendment to the Constitution for term limits for the federal judiciary, both Breyer and Kagan both run a close second

And to answer Sotomayor's question about where all the misinformation comes from.  It comes from you, your cohorts on the court, the corrupt media and the Biden administration's Deep Staters.  

Only I think it can reasonable be called lying. 

The Only Important Climate Change Number is Zero!

 
 

Most of us are well aware that the idea that 97% of scientists believe that mankind controls the thermostat of Planet Earth is ridiculous. After all, you could not get 97% of any group to agree on practically anything, especially something as complicated as climate change science. In fact, the percent of scientists who are confident that man’s use of fossil fuels that emit carbon dioxide (CO2) has an insignificant effect on our planet’s climate is likely closer to 50%. Of those who are outspoken on the issue, such as yours truly, many have come to make up a cottage industry. Most of these folks cling to some vague numerical answer to the question of how much is the effect of CO2, even though they admit it to be insignificant.

Unfortunately, these diverse but vocal “luke-warmers” sell their calculations through the media to a near scientifically illiterate public who are led to believe that any small numbered impact of CO2 on our atmospheric temperature is proof that it is actually significant, and, regardless of how small, it could lead to the end of the world as we know it in about 12 years. Or are we down to seven now?

While mostly well-meaning and competent scientists, the luke-warmers are inhibiting our ability to set the world straight as to the delusion that most of the public embrace, namely that burning fossil fuels and emitting carbon dioxide (CO2) are terrible things. In fact, Earth has been starving of CO2 for a very long time and is now, relatively speaking, precipitously close to the 150 parts per million (ppm) of the gas at which plants begin to die, followed by the animals that depend on the plants and ultimately us, Homo sapiens. Of course, we depend on both plants and animals to survive. Before about 1850, only 280 ppm of CO2 existed in the atmosphere, going back thousands of years. Following the growth which occurred since the Industrial Revolution, we have climbed to 420 ppm of CO2, and, happily, the Earth is “greening” very significantly.

Rather than be thankful for the increase in this miracle molecule, which provides for life on our planet, some in search of power and often money desire to change our political and economic system by demonizing it. They wish us to adopt socialism, open our borders, redistribute our wealth and form a “New World Order” where collectivist rules and individual freedom are dramatically reduced.

They tell us that the world could and should run on unreliable, expensive wind and solar power. Many of these ideologues must know it can’t be done but recognize that such an energy transition would subjugate the world’s population to near-total government control, passing out energy as they choose, which is apparently their ultimate goal.

They rely, not on physical evidence, but on mathematical equations that are called models of how this complex system of our climate works. The well-intended luke-warmers do expose some of the fallacies of these models but, unfortunately, generally refuse to declare that the emperor has absolutely no clothes.

In consultation with Astrophysicist Willie Soon and the late Tom Wysmuller, formerly of NASA, the senior author of this article chose the following twelve variables which, simple logic indicates, must be considered when attempting to predict future temperatures and climate impacts on our planet. It turns out that we can only guess at the influence of these factors because we do not fully understand any of them. They include:

1- changes in seasonal solar irradiation
2- energy flows between the ocean and the atmosphere
3- energy flows between the air and land
4- the balance between the Earth’s liquid water, water vapor, and ice
5- the impact of clouds
6- understanding the planet’s ice
7- mass change among ice sheets, sea level, and glaciers
8- the ability to factor in the consequence of hurricanes and tornadoes
9- the impact of vegetation on temperature
10- tectonic movement on the ocean floor
11- the differential rotation between the Earth’s surface and the planet’s core
12- the solar system’s magnetic field and gravitational interaction.

Because these variables are not well understood, if they are considered at all, they require a model maker to make educated guesses as to how they relate to each other and their individual impacts on climate. More specifically: how do they impact the Earth’s thermostat?

A recognition of our ignorance regarding these variables should convince anyone that mathematical modeling predictions are without merit. Solutions to sophisticated mathematical equations obviously prove nothing if they have little relation to physical reality.

Nevertheless, the government has poured billions of dollars into the coffers of academic institutions to churn out useless predictions based on the equations they think simulate a system so complex it is truly beyond comprehension. More than 100 climate models are financed by the United States government, few of which agree with each other (see below for a sample of how models (the many colored lines) compare with actual observations (dark green line). Essentially none have accurately predicted anything meaningful concerning our climate over the past 30 years of their operation.

 

We have thus far failed to educate our politicians, our students of science, and the public in general about the truly impossible task of predicting the Earth’s future temperatures. And yet governments across the world appear willing to destroy their economies by eliminating the use of fossil fuels to support a terrible presumption.

In an appeal to our reader’s common sense, we include two graphics. The first one below shows how much man-produced CO2 exists in the atmosphere as a greenhouse gas relative to all greenhouse gases in the atmosphere. The second chart shows how much CO2 exists in our atmosphere relative to all other gases in our atmosphere. Each chart has 10,000 dots, each representing one ten thousandths of the whole of greenhouse gases in the first chart and one ten thousandths of the atmospheric gas in the second chart.

 


 

On the first chart, you can see that, while CO2 makes up 3.6% of all greenhouse gas, man’s contribution of CO2 from factories, power plants, and automobiles is only 0.12% of all greenhouse gases. On the second chart, you can see that total CO2 in the atmosphere makes up four ten thousandths (.0004) of all atmospheric gases, but man’s contribution is only one ten thousandths (.0001). Every reader should be able to conclude that our way of life is not being endangered by our CO2 emissions.

While there are many scientists building climate models which are scaring the public to enlarge government to “save the planet,” there are also many sound scientists who recognize the absurd exaggeration of the impact of our CO2 emissions on our planet. But many of the latter still work with mathematical models to show how tiny the impact of CO2 is on our Earth. The problem is that by their professing CO2’s impact as being small, these luke-warmers are giving the proverbial “inch,” which allows the alarmists to take a “mile.”

It is high time that we all stop fighting alarmist numbers with our small numbers. The only number that matters is ZERO. The real impact of man-made CO2 on global average air temperature, and consequently on the Earth’s climate, is essentially ZERO.

We are not in a battle over numbers. We are in a battle to protect our way of life. If we lose this battle, the alarmists will take us back to life as it was in the 19th century. However, this time things will be much worse, for, not only do we have billions more to feed, clothe, and shelter, but the alarmists will have installed a government capable of controlling every aspect of our lives. This is the fight of our lifetime! We must not lose it!

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Dr. Jay Lehr is a Senior Policy Analyst with the International Climate Science Coalition and former Science Director of The Heartland Institute. He is an internationally renowned scientist, author, and speaker who has testified before Congress on dozens of occasions on environmental issues and consulted with nearly every agency of the national government and many foreign countries. After graduating from Princeton University at the age of 20 with a degree in Geological Engineering, he received the nation’s first Ph.D. in Groundwater Hydrology from the University of Arizona. He later became executive director of the National Association of Groundwater Scientists and Engineers.

Tom Harris is Executive Director of the Ottawa, Canada-based International Climate Science Coalition, and a policy advisor to The Heartland Institute. He has 40 years experience as a mechanical engineer/project manager, science and technology communications professional, technical trainer, and S&T advisor to a former Opposition Senior Environment Critic in Canada’s Parliament.