Delusional liberalism vs. Common Sense: ABC Democratic debate, December 19, 2015.

 

 

 

 

Hillary Clinton hit Bernie Sanders for proposing a universal tax hike to foot the bill for his paid family-leave program — and Sanders shot back that “$1.61 (a week) is a pretty good investment.”

Clinton, at the Democratic presidential debate in New Hampshire, was criticizing Sanders for backing a proposal to impose a 0.2% payroll tax — deducted from checks much like Social Security and Medicare — to cover his plan.

She also made a firm commitment not to raise taxes on the middle class.

“That is off the table as far as I am concerned. That is a pledge that I am making,” Clinton said in the ABC debate.

She said that she’d cover the cost of paid family leave with higher taxes only on the wealthy.

Sanders, though, responded that his plan is backed broadly by Senate Democrats. And he said Clinton’s criticism of payroll taxes is out of step with Democratic giants such as President Franklin D. Roosevelt, who oversaw the creation of Social Security, and Lyndon B. Johnson, who shepherded Medicare into law.

“What the legislation is is $1.61 a week. Now you can say that’s a tax on the middle class. It will provide three months of paid family and medical leave,” Sanders said, arguing it was well worth it.

__________________

Hillary Clinton drew laughs — but a bit of a rebuke from Bernie Sanders — when asked about her ties to corporate leaders.

ABC debate moderator David Muir asked: “Should corporate America love Hillary Clinton?”

A smiling Clinton responded, to cheers: “Everybody should.”

“I have said, I want to be the president for the struggling, the striving and the successful. I want to make sure the wealthy pay their fair share, which they have not been doing. I want the ‘Buffett rule’ to be in effect, where millionaires have to pay 30%,” Clinton said.

But Sanders gave a much different answer when Muir asked whether corporate America would love him.

“No, I think they won’t,” Sanders said.

He added that “Wall Street will like me even less.”

__________________

The Democratic presidential debate’s transition to the economy started with an awkward moment when Hillary Clinton was late returning from a break.

ABC moderator David Muir said he expected Clinton back momentarily, and started a question for Bernie Sanders.

But before Muir could finish the question, Clinton walked on the stage to applause from the crowd gathered in Manchester, New Hampshire.

Clinton stepped to the podium and said only: “Sorry.”

__________________

Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders sparred over the future of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad — and regime change more broadly — during Saturday night’s Democratic presidential debate.

Sanders said Clinton is “too much into regime change and too aggressive without knowing what the consequences may be.”

Clinton swung back in the ABC debate, saying that Sanders had voted for regime change in Libya. She said that she had advocated a process to pursue the political ouster of Assad, saying it should operate on the same track as the U.S. fight against ISIS.

She also warned against any policy that would allow Iran to increase its role in Syria, equating such a move to “asking the arsonist to come and pour more gas on the fire.”

But Sanders stated, “We have got to get our foreign policy and our priorities right. It is not Assad who is attacking the United States — it is ISIS.”

__________________

All three Democrats had sharp words for Republican presidential front-runner Donald Trump in Saturday night’s debate.

“He is becoming ISIS’ best recruiter,” Hillary Clinton said, pointing to the billionaire businessman’s proposal to ban Muslims from entering the United States.

“He thinks low wages are a good idea,” Bernie Sanders said, directing his remarks at attendees of Trump rallies.

And former Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley said that the United States “must never surrender our American values to racists, must never surrender them to the fascist pleas of billionaires with big mouths.”

__________________

The candidates once again struck different tones on gun rights — with Clinton saying more citizens purchasing firearms wouldn’t help matters and Sanders focusing on a search for “consensus” on gun regulations.

“Guns in and of themselves, in my opinion, will not make Americans safer. We lose 33,000 a year already to gun violence. Arming more people — to do what? — is not the appropriate response to terrorism,” Clinton said.

Sanders, though, pointed to his state — Vermont — and said more than half of its residents own guns.

“I’m not going to say that everybody’s in agreement — it’s a divided country on guns. But there is a broad consensus on gun safety regulation,” Sanders said, calling for background checks for potential gun owners and the closure of loopholes that allow easier purchases at gun shows.

O’Malley took a big swing at both candidates, saying that, “Secretary Clinton changes her position on this every election year, it seems.”

“What we need on this issue is not more polls. We need more principle,” O’Malley said.

The other candidates hit back — with Sanders interjecting, “Whoa, whoa, whoa.”

“We can do all the great speeches we want, but you ain’t gonna succeed” without broad-based support, Sanders said.

__________________

Bernie Sanders, at the start of the third Democratic debate, apologized to Hillary Clinton for his staff’s exploitation of a Democratic National Committee computer vendor’s glitch to access her campaign’s proprietary voter files.

“This is not the type of campaign that we run, and if I find anybody else involved in this, they will also be fired,” the Vermont senator said in response to Saturday evening’s first question from ABC.

Sanders did take several shots at Clinton before apologizing, however, saying that “I am not convinced that information from our campaign may not have ended up in her campaign.”

“Don’t know that,” he added, while touting an agreement for an independent investigation.

He also complained of “many press releases from the Clinton campaign of late.”

Clinton, though, ignored those shots and dismissed the issue.

“Now that, I think, you know, we’ve resolved your data, we’ve agreed on an independent inquiry, we should move on, because I don’t think the American people are all that interested in this — I think they’re more interested in what we have to say about all of the issues facing us,” the former secretary of state said.

After addressing the data issue, the candidates quickly pivoted to terrorism, and issue they also each touched on in their opening statements.

Clinton took a shot at Republican contenders, saying that “despite all their tough talk about terrorism, (they) continue to let people who are on the no-fly list buy guns.”

Former Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley touted his recent visit to a Northern Virginia mosque and took a swing at Republican candidate Donald Trump, saying that the country must “must never surrender them to the fascist pleas of billionaires with big mouths.”

Sanders said he’s running for president because he wants a new foreign policy — “one that does not get us involved in perpetual warfare in the quagmire of the Middle East.”

But it was the data imbroglio that shaped the political environment in the hours leading up to the debate.

The encounter comes with Clinton in a dominant position after she survived House Republicans’ inquiries into her private email use during a hearing on the Benghazi attacks and Vice President Joe Biden’s decision not to make a late entry in the race. Sanders is fading from his summer high, struggling to broaden his appeal in a campaign increasingly focused on foreign policy, and O’Malley has failed to break out of the low single digits.

The timing seems unlikely to help Sanders, whose campaign is irked that the DNC slated it for a Saturday night, when viewership is lower than the weeknight bouts that have drawn massive audiences to the Republican debates.

Clinton, a 2-to-1 front-runner in most national polls, has largely avoided punching down at Sanders throughout the campaign, rarely mentioning him at campaign events and taking carefully calibrated swings at him on issues like gun control.

But the data breach left Clinton with a decision: give Sanders a pass, as he did with her use of a private email server while serving as secretary of state, or tear into the Vermont senator over it during the debate, which takes place in New Hampshire and will air nationally on ABC.

Sanders’ campaign seized on a glitch in a DNC-housed program to access Hillary Clinton’s proprietary data on early-state voters this week. In response, the DNC locked Sanders out of all voter data, including information gathered by his own campaign. So Sanders retaliated with a lawsuit seeking $600,000 per day. The two sides announced a settlement in the wee hours of Saturday morning, with Sanders’ access restored.

Clinton’s campaign sent signals Friday that the daggers are out.

Campaign manager Robby Mook called Sanders’ team’s actions “incredibly disappointing” on a call with reporters, playing up the significance of what Sanders’ campaign had accessed.

“This was a very egregious breach and our data was stolen. This was not an inadvertent glimpse into our data,” Mook said.

Clinton spokesman Brian Fallon similarly lashed into Sanders on CNN, saying the senator’s campaign acted “like kids in a candy store and “went hog wild” downloading data.

Clinton’s campaign on Saturday also attempted to drum up focus on the data breach story by publishing an open letter to the Sanders campaign that directs four questions at the senator.

Jennifer Palmieri, Clinton’s communication director, says that while the data breach has been “disturbing to our campaign and the volunteers who worked hard to build a strong organization,” it has also been “a distraction from the issues that the American people care about.”

Palmieri then went on to ask why the campaign said they didn’t store any data, despite logs showing that they may have, and why the campaign claimed the breach “was an accident” when the Sanders aides “conducted 25 targeted searches” within the Clinton data.

 

Comparing reaction to data access, Clinton emails

The Sanders campaign, for its part, has pinned blame on the DNC for the data’s accessibility. It has fired one aide, but has also accused national Democrats of overreacting.

“The failings of one or three or four young people who have made misjudgments in campaign is not cause for them to issue a death penalty on the Sanders campaign,” campaign manager Jeff Weaver told Wolf Blitzer on CNN’s “The Situation Room.”

However, hours before Saturday night’s debate, Weaver told CNN not to expect the same fire from the senator.

“He is a very issue-oriented candidate. Always has been, always will be,” Weaver said. “He will, given the opportunity, talk about the substantive issues facing middle class and working-class people. Period. That is what he will do.”

He did add, though, “Now, if the issue is raised, I think what he will say is that the DNC dropped the firewall between the candidates, some young staffers on our campaign, inappropriately took advantage of that and may have looked at some Clinton data. One of them has been fired, others are being investigated. There may be more discipline handed out to employees as a result.”

Weaver stressed, “There is no one saying what they did is not wrong; it was wrong and we have taken it seriously. We have been investigating it and we will deal with it.”

When asked whether Sanders will echo Weaver when he said the DNC “gave our campaign the death sentence” by shutting off voter file access, Weaver responded, “No.”

The Clinton campaign’s criticism of Sanders’ team, meanwhile, is starkly different from how Sanders has handled Clinton’s use of a personal email address on a private server during her four-year tenure as America’s top diplomat.

Sanders said during the first Democratic debate that the American people are “are sick and tired about hearing about your damn emails” — a line that won applause in the moment but diminished his ability to criticize Clinton on an issue that had hampered her campaign for months.

Republicans have repeatedly seized on the issue to assail the Democratic front-runner as untrustworthy, and have redoubled their criticism as the FBI reviews whether any classified information was mishandled.

 

Sanders challenges party establishment

But the dust-up over the DNC data breach could give Sanders new openings.

His campaign’s relationship with the party establishment has always been strained — and spats such as Sanders’ criticism of the DNC’s limited debate schedule, which Clinton’s challengers view as designed to shield the front-runner, have spilled into the open.

That powder keg of resentment has been ignited.

The timing of the debate could bolster Sanders’ argument. It’s the second Democratic debate to be held on a Saturday night, with the audience likely to be smaller than the viewership that would tune in on a weeknight, when Republicans have so far held their debates.

The debate comes as the 2016 race’s focus increasingly shifts toward national security and terrorism in the wake of the attacks in Paris and California planned or inspired by ISIS.

Sanders’ campaign has focused largely on the issue of income inequality — with Sanders latching Clinton to Wall Street and influential donors.

While Clinton has maintained her large lead nationally, Sanders’ message has resonated in the early voting states of Iowa and New Hampshire — which are both whiter and more liberal than the broader Democratic electorate.

A Des Moines Register/Bloomberg Politics Iowa poll put Clinton ahead there by just nine percentage points — with 48% to Sanders’ 39% and O’Malley’s 4% — earlier this month.

In New Hampshire, Sanders has at times led. An early December CNN/WMUR poll showed him with 50% support to Clinton’s 40% and O’Malley’s 1%.

 

FACT CHECK: Glossed-Over Realities in Democratic Debate

In the latest Democratic presidential debate, oversimplification struck again.

Hillary Clinton spoke of fixing “glitches” in President Barack Obama’s health care law to address rising costs, skimming over deeper issues on matters of affordability and the Affordable Care Act. And in education, fancy dorms and football stadiums aren’t the big reason for higher college costs, as Bernie Sanders suggested.

A look at some of the statements Saturday night and how they compare with the facts:

CLINTON on rising premiums and out-of-pocket costs for the privately insured after enactment of Obama’s health care law: “I would certainly build on the successes of the Affordable Care Act and work to fix some of the glitches.”

SANDERS on his proposed single-payer health care system: “The average middle-class family will be saving thousands of dollars a year.”

THE FACTS: Obama’s law was mainly about expanding coverage for the uninsured, and even former officials of his administration say major work still has to be done on cost control. In other words, rising costs are more than “glitches.”

One of the health care law’s main brakes on costs — a tax on high-value workplace coverage — has been put on hold by the new federal budget deal. Clinton had called for complete repeal of that levy, known as the Cadillac tax. Many economists believe the tax would help keep costs in check by forcing people into leaner insurance plans.

Sanders says his plan for a government-run health care system along the lines of Canada’s and Western Europe’s would save money for families and taxpayers. But such a major transition would involve winners and losers, as well as new taxes in place of premiums.

When the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office looked at the concept back in the early 1990s, it concluded that a single-payer system had the potential to save money but that wasn’t guaranteed. Moreover, individuals would have less freedom to choose their insurance packages, a trade-off that not everyone would accept.

———

SANDERS: “The cost of college education is escalating a lot faster than the cost of inflation. There are a lot of factors involved in that. And that is that we have some colleges and universities that are spending a huge amount of money on fancy dormitories and on giant football stadiums.”

CLINTON: “States have been disinvesting in higher education … So states over a period of decades have put their money elsewhere; into prisons, into highways, into things other than higher education.”

THE FACTS: Clinton comes closest to diagnosing the problem accurately. College expenses are unsustainably high, but luxurious dorms aren’t the big driver that Sanders portrays. Public universities are charging more because they receive less in state government support.

Demos, a left-leaning think tank, said in a May study that the decline in state funding accounted for 79 percent of tuition hikes between 2001 and 2011. Just 6 percent was due to construction costs.

Sanders would make up that lost government money by providing free tuition, paid for with a tax on financial transactions. Clinton would offer federal dollars to encourage states to do more and keep students from having to borrow. It’s unclear how either plan would control colleges’ costs, though.

———

SANDERS, apologizing for his campaign improperly gaining access to Clinton campaign data, raised the possibility that Clinton’s campaign may have done the same thing. “I am not convinced that information from our campaign may not have ended up in her campaign,” he said.

THE FACTS: Sanders is speculating, at best. There’s no evidence so far that Clinton’s campaign has accessed Sanders’ voter lists.

During a conference call with reporters on Friday, Clinton’s campaign manager, Robby Mook, said he could “unequivocally tell you that no member of our staff stole data from theirs.” And the contractor that manages the campaign data for the Democratic Party, NGP-VAN, issued a statement Friday saying “our team removed access to the affected data, and determined that only one campaign took actions that could possibly have led to it retaining data to which it should not have had access.”

———

CLINTON: “Assad has killed 250,000 Syrians.”

THE FACTS: Clinton appears to be blaming the entire estimated death toll of the Syrian civil war on just one side: the forces of Syrian President Bashar Assad. Yet no matter how vicious his forces have been, deaths have come at the hands of all sides in the nearly 5-year-old multi-front civil war.

The Syrian conflict began with anti-government protests before spiraling into a war with many groups emerging in opposition to the brutal regime crackdown. Rebels in some of these groups are fighting and killing each other, in some cases with no involvement by Assad-backed troops.

The United Nations has estimated a death toll of 220,000 since 2011; other estimates are higher, and Clinton’s figure is roughly in line with them. But the death toll is attributable to all parties, not just to Assad.

———

SANDERS: “Middle class in this country for the last 40 years has been disappearing.”

THE FACTS: It’s no secret that the middle class is struggling. The costs of college, health care and housing continue to rise, while wages have barely budged for two decades. The Pew Research Center reported earlier this month that the majority of Americans are no longer “middle income.”

Things are not quite as dire as Sanders suggests.

Pew found the share of Americans that it defines as middle income — a family of three earning $73,392 — has slipped. It’s down to 50 percent of households from 61 percent in 1971.

More Americans are low income, but more are also upper income. “The closer look at the shift out of the middle reveals that a deeper polarization is under way in the American economy,” Pew concluded.

Pew defines the median upper income as starting at $174,625 — a lot of money, but hardly the billionaire class attacked by Sanders.

———

SANDERS: “One of the heroes who we should recognize in the Middle East is King Abdul II of Jordan. This small country has welcomed in many refugees.”

THE FACTS: With each new debate, the presidential candidates come closer to getting the Jordanian king’s name right.

Among Republican and Democratic contenders alike, King Abdullah II is considered an important figure in the struggle for stability in the Middle East. But darned if they can nail down his name.

Sanders said Abdul instead of Abdullah. Invoking the king again, he mumbled the name.

No, Mr. President, the NRA is not to blame

California has the strictest gun control in the nation, so Obama’s politicization of San Bernardino rings sickeningly hollow.

Just when we think that politics can’t sink any lower, President Obama once again proves us wrong by politicizing the tragedy in San Bernardino before the facts were even known. What we do know is that the American people are heartbroken by these horrific crimes — and despite what the president would have us believe — America’s law-abiding gun owners are heartbroken by these horrific crimes as well. At the same time, we are sick and tired of this president suggesting the men and women of the National Rifle Association are somehow to blame.

The National Rifle Association is not to blame. Neither is our Second Amendment freedom. An act of evil unfolded in California. President Obama used it not as a moment to inform or calm the American people; rather, he exploited it to push his gun control agenda. Policy discussions should be intellectually honest and based on facts, not politics. And the fact remains that California has already adoptedPresident Obama’s gun control wish list: “universal” background checks, registration, waiting periods, gun bans, magazine bans and an expansion of prohibited gun categories. But those laws did nothing to prevent this horrific crime from taking place. Nothing.

Here’s another fact: the president’s failed foreign policy has made us less safe. And his domestic gun control agenda would jeopardize our safety even further. In California, President Obama had what he wanted — the strictest gun control in the country — and it did not prevent this evil act. The plain truth is that the president cannot keep us safe. And his policies would leave us defenseless. That’s why our Second Amendment right to defend ourselves must be protected. It’s not just a constitutionally guaranteed freedom. It’s a natural, God-given, human right.

Link

Rush Limbaugh: Why They Won’t Call It Islamic Terrorism

RUSH: I’m gonna try to explain something today, a question that has a lot of people flummoxed.  So they just announced, CNN led the pack, but now everybody is reporting that Syed Farook, which means global warming in Arabic, climate change, and his wife have been influenced by ISIS.  You’ve heard that.  And yet have you noticed the government still is not calling this terrorism.  Have you noticed that?  ISIS inspired the couple, but this is not yet terrorism.  And they’re now angling further down the road of workplace violence or postpartum depression.  Have you heard that one?  The wife was postpartum depressed and she radicalized the guy and they blew up everything.

Since this all began, it has been apparent to you and to me and to anybody with even a pea brain that we were the victims of a terror attack, that this was Islamic terror that took place in San Bernardino, California, and yet the authorities refuse even now to call it that.  And when asked why, they say, “Well, you know, we’re still examining all the evidence.  We haven’t yet figured out a motive.  We’re doing everything we can.”  And finally, after a while, you get the idea here they don’t want to call this terrorism.  And a lot of people are scratching their heads, “What? Why be so obtuse?”  And I am here today to give you the reason.

I want to go back to the situation in San Bernardino, because this is going to answer a lot of people’s questions.  Even now government officials from the FBI to the Regime to whenever, will not say that this was terrorism, even after linking it to ISIS.

And in fact, folks, to just give you a little hint, linking it to ISIS actually helps the government not call it terrorism because ISIS is not Islam.  No, I’m not saying that.  The government says that.  The left, the media says it.  ISIS is not Islam.  You’ve heard Obama say that.  ISIS is making a mockery of Islam.  In fact, what you really need to understand about the way our government looks at Islam, they look at Islam as anti-terror as well.  Islam is anti-terrorism.  Therefore, no terrorism can actually be Islamic.  Islam is the religion of peace.  We say that jokingly.  That’s actually the position of the US government.  It’s rooted in political correctness and fear and a number of other convoluted things.

The religion of peace can’t possibly engage in terrorism.  Therefore, ISIS is not Islam, and what happened in San Bernardino is not terrorism because these were Muslims.  And Muslims are the religion of peace and were influenced by ISIS, but ISIS is not Islam, and therefore there was no official terrorism.  Another word you can bank on hearing, “radicalized.”  What does that mean, the way our government is using it and the media?  “Radicalized” means we had this nice guy and his lovely wife — by the, has anybody seen a picture of her?

She had been vetted. She had a K-1 fiance-type visa.  Has anybody ever seen a picture of this babe?  I haven’t.  Have you?  I don’t think they’ve put one out.  I wonder why.  Anyway, ol’ Syed was running around having a grand old time collecting pipe bombs and stuff for his garage and his car. He’s just a decent guy going to holiday party, and he gets into an argument here with a messianic Jew.  That could be confusing for those of you in Rio Linda.

A messianic Jew is a Jewish person that believes Jesus Christ is the savior.  You may think that’s contradictory but for the purposes of understanding here, just accept that.  You have a messianic Jew that this nice guy, Fareed Syed Farook GPS, whatever, got into an argument with. And apparently the messianic Jew provoked poor old Syed. He was running around minding his own business and this messianic Jew started talking about Islam and the religion of peace and just set the poor guy off.

He ended up being radicalized by that and by his wife.  By the way, a sound bite coming up about how Islamic Muslim women are far more radical than the men.  And it’s our media saying this.  I thought there was a Republican War on Women going on here.  Instead, the Drive-Bys and the Democrat Party are just attacking Islamic women.  So this woman takes this innocent young Syed Farook. As I say, he’s minding his own business, going about his day enjoying the American dream. He’s come back from a couple trips to Saudi Arabia and Pakistan.

He went to the Hajj in Mecca. He’s done it all, and now he’s living his life and he’s loving it. And then, all of a sudden, his coworker starts talking about religion to him, and they get into this big argument! His wife starts radicalizing him, and he snaps.  Radicalized!  “Radicalized” is a new keyword for you to understand that allows our government to not say “terrorism.”

“Oh, he was a nice guy, wasn’t bothering anybody, going about his business, living the American dream; then he got radicalized.  Doesn’t matter by who! Radicalized by coworker, radicalized by his wife, radicalized by ISIS, whatever. And he lost it. Workplace violence. He couldn’t help himself! It was workplace violence.  He was provoked.  Damn it, damn it, the workplace made him do it.”  That’s what is evolving as we sit her at this moment that… (interruption)

Oh, stuff in the garage? Well, that’s part of the radicalization. That’s part of the being radicalized.  The point you have to understand is our government’s official position. This is why they have been waiting and waiting, hoping that some circumstance or series of circumstances could be discovered to allow them to construct a scenario whereby this man is not a terrorist and this was not terrorism.  (interruption)  I’ll… (interruption) I don’t… (interruption)  Well, whether they think we believe it or not, that’s why they’re doing what they’re do.

The real question is: “Why are they so afraid of identifying Islamic terrorism for what it is?” You remember… You might think I’m saying some crazy things.  Don’t forget, immediately after 9/11, the whole posture of our government was: “What did we do to make them so mad?  What did we do to cause this?” And the “religion of peace” line. You know, Obama says we can’t use the word “terrorism.” We can’t use the word “foreign.” We can’t use any of these provocative words that insult them. “Islamic terrorism” is a phrase not permitted to be used by the US government.

I mean, don’t doubt me on this, folks.  It is what it is.  And it’s a… (interruption) I can’t explain why.  The logic here escapes me a bit.  I could just speculate.  Fear of billions of Muslims?  Sympathy?  Some other form of identification with Muslims?  I don’t know.  The fact that the United States is who’s really guilty?  The fact that the United States is responsible for all this that’s happening to us, that we sort of brought it on ourselves, maybe even deserve it?

 

The Washington Examiner has a story.  “Report: Scale of Islamic State Recruitment in US Unprecedented.”  Have you heard, by the way, that one of the places Obama wants to relocate these arriving Syrian refugees is Redlands, California, where Syed Farook “Climate Change” lived?  That’s where Obama wants to put these new Syrian refugees.

And now we have: “Scale of Islamic State Recruitment in US Unprecedented.”  But that doesn’t mean we’re importing terrorists.  Islam is different than ISIS!  Yeah, they’ve got Islamic in their name, but they’re not Islamic. See, Islam’s a religion of peace.  Therefore, ISIS cannot be Islamic.  I don’t care what they call themselves, our official position is: “They are not Islamic.”

I mentioned in the first half hour that much of this comes from Andrew McCarthy who has written extensively about Islam.  He’s tried cases against noted figures such as the blind sheik, Omar Abdel Rahman.  Put him away, in fact, United States attorney.  So Rudy Giuliani comes on television the day after San Bernardino and says, “If you can’t see this is an act of terror, you’re a moron.”

And yet even as we sit here at this very moment, our government still will not call it an act of terror.  They will not even call it terrorism.  They’re looking, as I’ve just previously discussed, for any other number of alternative explanations.  Why?  What’s going on here?  Well, it goes like this.

Our government denies that terrorism is caused by Islamic doctrine.  Now, that is true, and it is a declarative statement.  It’s not arguable.  This administration and even in prior administrations, the Bush administration went to great lengths to exempt Islam from terrorism.  They say Islam is a religion of peace and terrorism is not really Islam.  It’s a weird, way-out bastardization of it, but it is not Islam.

McCarthy decided to read the Koran as part of his preparation for trial because he couldn’t believe this guy, the blind sheik, some of this stuff he was saying. It had to be vitriol, had to be wacko extremism, and it wasn’t.  He found out it was right from the scripture. That the blind sheik and all that he was discussing and promoting, was right from the book.  But our government refuses to see that and instead claims that terrorism is not part of Islamic doctrine.  Islam, the religion of peace and any terrorism that happens, is not really Islamic or Islamic inspired.

This is called a willful blindness.  It’s also political correctness.  Our government is in denial of radical Islam as written. “Unwilling to deal with Islam as it is, the government must make up an Islam of its very own. Regardless of the abundance of evidence to the contrary, the government holds that Islam is a religion of peace, case closed.”

They have made up their own version of Islam to avoid having to deal with the reality of Islam because it’s just too daunting, frightening, scary, whatever, and they don’t want to deal with it.  Therefore to the government, terrorism committed by people who happen to be Muslim is not in any way a reflection of legitimate interpretation of Islam.  You might find this hard to believe, but if you’re doubting any of this, just search your own memory.  All the times that we have heard that Islam’s a religion of peace and that we can’t use the word “terrorism” to describe it and Obama will not use it.  And then remember all the times that this administration actually claims that violence by white right-wing white Christians poses a greater threat to the people of this country than Islam.  Islam’s a religion of peace, and anybody conducting terrorism in the name of Islam is a liar and a fraud.  They are bastardizing the religion of peace.

So again, to the government, terrorism committed by people who are Muslim is not a reflection on the legitimate interpretation of Islam, even if Islamic supremacist ideology, which endorses jihad violence — Islam, standard, mainstream Islam endorses jihad violence, but our government doesn’t want to admit that or deal with it.  Here in America, as in Western Europe, this is the key to understand.  The violence is deemed anti-Islamic.  Meaning, Al-Qaeda, ISIS, they can’t be Islamic.  Islam is the religion of peace.  They are bastardizing it. They are frauds. They are calling themselves Islamic and they are calling themselves Muslim, but they’re not.  Because Islam is as anti-terror as you and I are.  Islam is the religion of peace.

I’m telling you what our government’s position is.  The US military position.  The FBI, you the name, this is why they will not call these acts of terror “terror,” because, if they have any connection to Islam, it can’t be, because Islam is the religion of peace.  And Islam, genuine, real Muslims are as opposed to Al-Qaeda and ISIS as we are.  That is what has been dictated to our law enforcement agents by their superiors.  If those were your instructions, and you have a terror attack and you’re out there reporting to the media, trying to answer questions, you’d sound like a babbling buffoon, too, because you’d have to come up with ways to violate the very common sense you know is true.

So what are the policy implications of the government and this fantasy Islam, what are the policy implications of a United States government that believes Islam is as anti-terror as you and I are?  Well, it means that Islamic doctrine can never be cited as the cause of terrorism, as a matter of policy.  And it never is.  It never is.  This leads, for example, to what is happening right now this very day, this preposterous hand-wringing over radicalization.

We are supposed to believe that young people like Syed Farook “Climate Change,” who just happens to be Muslim, spontaneously, out of the blue, for no reason whatsoever, he was provoked by a coworker or radicalized by his wife, all of a sudden became mean and angry, a radicalized terrorist.  But that’s not who he really was.  Just a young guy running around living his life and then something or a series of things happened to radicalize him, as if there were no doctrine, as if there were no body of thought that was inducing the radicalization.

It’s so absurd. I can understand some of you think that this makes no sense.  It doesn’t make any sense.  That’s the point, folks.  It doesn’t make any sense.  So here you have peaceful, blending into the background, cheap, poor little beard people, making fun of a little guy named Syed Farook, and all of a sudden he becomes radical.  Radicalized by what?  Not just by who, but by what?  What radicalized him?  Well, it isn’t Islam.  No, because Islam’s the religion of peace.  So it must be ISIS.  Yes.

So the news today that this guy was influenced by ISIS is not the administration getting close to calling this terrorism.  This is a classic example of the government taking the occasion to say it isn’t, because Islam is as opposed to ISIS as you and I are.  Because Islam is the religion of peace, ISIS is bastardizing Islam, and if this little guy has been radicalized by his wife or by ISIS or whatever, it’s further proof that Muslims, slash, Islamic terrorism is not at play here.  And it ultimately leads to the decree or the belief that terrorist organizations like ISIS and Al-Qaeda, therefore, are not Islamic.

You have to conclude that they’re either just bad people. They’re just wanton murderers or they’re mentally deranged or they’re sick or they’ve been hijacked or perverted or whatever, but they have perverted and they have hijacked Islam.  ‘Cause Islam’s the religion of peace.  I’m telling you what our government’s position is, and it has been since prior to Obama, by the way.  Islam as a religion of peace can have nothing to do with these acts of terror.  So if the cops come upon a mass murder attack that is clearly instigated by Islamic doctrine, they are not permitted to conclude that it is terrorism because they have been directed by their superiors in law enforcement to maintain that Islam is against terrorism.

It’s part of the propaganda that your kids are taught, part of the propaganda the media spreads that Islam is a religion of peace and is against terrorism, not sponsoring it, not doing it.  Thus the law enforcement agents believe they cannot call terrorism “terrorism” unless and until they uncover evidence proving that the Muslim mass murderers have some tie to a designated non-Islamic terror group like ISIS or Al-Qaeda, and bingo, bingo.  What do we get today?  “There’s an ISIS connection,” and once again none of this has anything to do with Islam.  That’s how it works at the highest levels of our government.

RUSH:  Okay, so now the next thing to happen since this ISIS connection has been magically discovered, now it will slowly be called “terrorism.” Slowly but surely, you will see law enforcement now acknowledge that it is terrorism, but not “Islamic terrorism” because there’s no such thing.  The Islamic religion is a religion of peace!  The agents investigating now have what they claim is a provable link between the jihadists in San Bernardino and ISIS and Al-Qaeda.

And our government has decreed that ISIS and Al-Qaeda are non-Islamic. Therefore, we can call it terrorism.  I don’t think that’s happened yet.  They’re very, very cautious about this.  They need enough time to go by for people to absorb the fact that ISIS inspired this.  ISIS is not Islam.  ISIS is pure evil bastardizing this, and therefore they are indeed terrorists. But Syed Farook was not.  He was radicalized by Islam or his wife.

Here’s Jake in San Bernardino.  Jake, glad you called.  Great to have you up first today.  Hello, sir.

CALLER:  Hey, how you doing today, Rush?

RUSH:  I’m great.  Thank you.

CALLER:  I’m good.  I’m a student on the campus of Cal State San Bernardino.  I’ve been going here for three years now.  And with the shootings that have taken place a couple days ago, it’s just sickening for me that teachers on the liberal left are saying this is still not terrorism.

RUSH:  Did you say your professors are saying that?

CALLER:  Yes, sir.  They’re still saying it.  And if you add up to all the facts with, you know, the type of ammunition they used, the type of gun, the planning, the pipe bomb, how is this still work-related violence?  I mean, it’s just a bunch of crap to me, here, that they’re still saying this.

RUSH:  Well, I’m sorry you missed the first hour.  That’s what I just spent 50 minutes explaining, but let me give it to you briefly again. The reason… Your professors are leftists.  Leftists support Obama.  Obama is the United States government at the moment.  The official position of the US government is that Islam is a religion of peace and is as anti-terror as you and I are, and therefore whatever this guy did is a bastardization of Islam because he was radicalized by, say, ISIS.

ISIS is the bad actor here now.  ISIS radicalized him. But ISIS is anti-Islam.  ISIS is not Islam.  ISIS is a bunch of horrible, rotten, mean people terrorizing people, but that’s not what Islam is.  But you’re soon gonna see this now called terrorism since they can link this guy to ISIS.  The effort here and the reason why so much time has gone by… Nothing has changed from the first moment we heard of this event until now. The events, details, all the same. Nothing’s changed.

But now they’ve got this ISIS link, and so now they will be able to say it’s terrorism.  Because, in their structure, Islam is not in any way associated with terrorism.  There is no militant Islam.  Islam is the religion of peace.  Al-Qaeda, ISIS, their offshoots, are bastardizing Islam.  And that’s why we worry about a backlash against innocent Muslims who have no relationship to this, no tie to this, and they are just as opposed to it as you and I.  That’s why we worry about the backlash.

Now, I know that makes no sense to you.  It doesn’t make any sense.  It is a fantasy version of Islam that our government created some time ago to avoid having to deal with the reality of Islam.  Now, the reasons for that, they’re up for grabs. Is it their Islamic sensibilities, sympathies, is their fear there are so many that we don’t want to go to war. We don’t want to provoke, we don’t want to irritate, we don’t want to…

I don’t have the answer to why the reluctance, other than to say it’s the left and the left considers conservatives and Republicans to be their number one enemy, not Islam.  Certainly not Islam! We conservatives and Republicans are a greater enemy that even Al-Qaeda or ISIS.  And, by the way, this is not just our government.  Folks, this is the way the Brits look at it.  This is the way the United Nations looks at it.  This is why Israel is isolated in the Middle East.

This… Call it a Fantasy Island version of Islam or any other term you want to describe it. But it is a manufactured version of Islam that permits the government to exempt Muslims from any association with these acts from 9/11 on. You name it.  But, Jake, you keep a sharp eye, because your professors, now that the ISIS link has been made, are going to start calling it terrorism.  But they’re gonna make sure you understand it’s not Islamic terrorism, because there’s no such thing.

RUSH:  Okay, you still think that I’m wrong about this?  Well, then, get this.  Criticism of Islam equals Islamophobia, and the attorney general of the United States, Loretta Lynch, has just warned that people will be prosecuted for criticism of Islam — i.e., telling the truth that Islamic terrorism exists.  You can be prosecuted if you tell the truth about Islam.

RUSH:  What a banner day for your host. Right on cue, folks — right on schedule — the FBI agent in San Bernardino just went to the microphones in the latest press conference and said that they can now admit/announce that they are investigating the shooting in San Bernardino as an act of terrorism.  Thank you.  Thank you.  Yes.  Yes, they called it right on the money. But do not be confused.  This is not Obama and the FBI admitting “Islamic terrorism.” What has happened here is, they found this link to ISIS.

They found the possibility that this innocent young man who believed in the religion of peace somehow got radicalized either by this mysterious wife of his, or some contact with ISIS, and that turned him into a wild madman, a madman gunning down coworkers.  This is not Islamic terrorism, because there isn’t any such thing.  Islam is a religious of peace.  And for your purposes, what you need to understand is that Islam and practicing Muslims are as opposed to terrorism as you and I are.  So after all of this, they can now say it’s terrorism, ’cause they’ve got their link to this ISIS group, which is not Islamic.

Make no mistake.

Don’t doubt me.

RUSH: It is terrorism, but if it’s inspired by ISIS, then it isn’t Islam. If it’s inspired by an out-of-control, radicalized wife who poisoned the guy’s mind, that’s not Islam.  If it’s workplace violence, that’s not Islam.  And they weren’t gonna call this terrorism until they had a scenario such as that set up to explain this Islam. As far as our government’s concerned — political correctness and all — it’s a religion of peace.  It does not sponsor terrorism.

It opposes it, much as we do. It does not create terrorism, it doesn’t preach terrorism, and this government…  It’s why the Democrats are going to pray at mosques today to show solidarity with Muslims to show that we don’t blame them.  This is ISIS, which is not Muslim, or it’s not Islam. Or it’s the wife, not Islam. Or it’s workplace violence, not Islam.  That’s the takeaway that you have. It’s still gonna be terrorism.

It can be terrorism and they can still find a way to blame it on mean Americans such as workplace violence if they want to.  That’s my only point here, and it’s why you’ve got to be… The point is here is that your government is lying about this, making all this stuff up and exempting Islam as a religion of peace for whatever politically correct reasons or sympathetic reasons they have or what have you.  This is a long way around of telling you they’re lying, is the point.

Link

Minimum wage effect? Seattle area restaurant jobs have fallen -900 this year vs. +6,200 food jobs in rest of state

In June of last year, the Seattle city council passed a $15 an hour minimum wage law that will be phased in over time, with the first increase to $11 an hour taking effect on April 1, 2015. Additional increases in the city’s minimum wage are scheduled for January 1, 2016. Depending on an employer’s size and fringe benefits, some businesses will be paying new higher minimum wages at the start of the new year of $12, $12.50 or $13 an hour, while some smaller employers will have a minimum wage hike to “only” $10.50 an hour on January 1.

What effect will the eventual 58% increase in labor costs from $9.47 to $15 an hour have on small businesses, including Seattle area restaurants? Actually, it will an increase to $18.55 an hour for many employers once all costs and taxes are added. It’s too soon to tell for sure, but there is already some preliminary evidence that April’s minimum wage hike to $11 an hour, along with the pending increase of an additional $1-2 an hour in a little more than a month for some businesses, has started having a negative effect on restaurant jobs in the greater Seattle area.

The lighter blue line in the top chart above shows that restaurant jobs in the Seattle area started to stagnate and then decline around the first of this year (when the state minimum wage increased to $9.47 per hour, the highest state minimum wage in the country), following steady growth in Seattle MSA food services employment during the previous five-year period between January 2010 and January 2015 (data here). On April 1 of this year, the city’s minimum wage increased to $11 an hour which may have contributed to the loss of 900 Seattle area restaurant jobs between January and October, the largest decline over that period since a loss of 3,400 restaurant jobs in 2009 during the Great Recession (see bottom chart above). What makes the loss of 900 restaurant job this year especially noteworthy is that the average job gain during the January-October period over the previous five years from 2010 to 2014 was more than 3,500, and over the previous three years more than 4,100.

What is also noteworthy about the loss of Seattle area restaurant jobs this year is the fact that restaurant employment in the rest of Washington state outside of the Seattle MSA is booming, as the top chart shows (see dark blue line, state restaurant employment data here). At the same time that Seattle area food services employment has declined this year by 900 (and by -0.67%), restaurant jobs in the rest of the state have increased by a whopping 6,200 new positions (and by 7.1%). Nationally, restaurant employment has increased by 2.4% this year since January.

And overall payroll employment in the Seattle MSA increased 2.1% and by 39,100 jobs between January and October, while employment at the state level increased 1.9% and by 58,900 jobs during that period, with both of those job growth rates above the 1.3% growth in payroll employment at the national level during that period.

Bottom Line: Overall, employment growth this year from January to October in Washington state (1.9%) and in the Seattle MSA (2.1%) is above the 1.3% payroll growth nationally, suggesting that jobs in Seattle and Washington are growing faster than the national average. Further, restaurant employment in the state of Washington outside of Seattle is booming this year, with food services jobs increasing by 6,200 (and by 7.1%) between January and October. Further restaurants nationally have increased payrolls by 2.4% since January, well above the overall payroll growth of 1.3%, indicating stronger-than-average growth in hiring by America’s restaurants.

Meanwhile, there is at least one weak spot in Washington’s employment situation – restaurant employment in the Seattle MSA has declined by 900 jobs since January, the largest decline over that period since 2009 during the Great Recession. Historically, it takes a national recession before Seattle restaurant employment decreases between January and October, and there’s no recession this year to explain the drop in the area’s restaurant staffing levels.

One likely cause of the stagnation and decline of Seattle area restaurant jobs this year is the staggered increase in the city’s minimum wage to $15 an hour. Perhaps Seattle’s restaurant employment will recover, or perhaps it will continue to suffer from the upcoming full 58% increase in labor costs for the city’s restaurants that will be phased in during the coming years (and as high as a 95% increase for some employers after including additional costs and taxes) – time will tell. What we know for sure is that there are now 900 Seattle area restaurant workers who were employed in January who are no longer employed today, while more than 6,000 restaurant jobs have been added statewide outside of Seattle during that period, so it looks like the Seattle minimum wage hike is getting off to a pretty bad start.

Update: And with the pending increases in the minimum wage to between $12 and $13 an hour in about 5 weeks, I think we can expect even tougher times ahead for Seattle’s restaurant industry with continued weakness in food services employment.

Technical Note: The BLS restaurant employment data for the Seattle MSA covers the entire metro area of 3.6 million people, while the population in the city of Seattle, which is the only part of the MSA that is subject to the eventual $15 an hour minimum wage, is only about 652,000. Therefore there are several possibilities when considering the loss of 900 restaurant jobs this year:

  1. The loss of 900 restaurant jobs this year in the Seattle MSA could be spread evenly throughout the entire MSA, even though the non-Seattle part of the MSA is not subject to the city’s pending $15 an hour minimum wage.
  1. The loss of 900 restaurant jobs this year in the Seattle MSA could be concentrated in the non-Seattle parts of the MSA, even though restaurants there are not subject to minimum wage hikes and even though the state’s restaurants beyond the Seattle MSA are experiencing very strong job growth. This possibility doesn’t seem likely.
  1. The loss of 900 restaurant jobs this year could be concentrated in the part of the Seattle MSA – the city of Seattle – which is the only part of the greater Seattle area subject to the minimum wage hikes. That option would make more sense than the other two options above. In fact, the restaurant job losses in the city of Seattle might even be much higher than 900 this year. If we realistically assume that the restaurant industry in the non-city parts of Seattle are booming along with the rest of the state (7.1% job growth this year), then the possible gains in suburban Seattle restaurant jobs could actually be offsetting some of the city’s restaurant job losses. For example, suppose restaurant jobs in suburban Seattle grew by 1,000 this year, while restaurant jobs in the city fell by 1,900. The BLS would then report a loss of -900 restaurant jobs so far this year for the Seattle MSA, even though there was a loss of 1,900 jobs in the one part of the metro area that is burdened with higher minimum wages.

When restaurant jobs are experiencing strong growth both nationally and statewide in Washington outside Seattle, along with above-average growth in overall payroll employment in the Seattle MSA, but restaurants in the Seattle area are shedding almost three jobs per day at a rate unprecedented outside of recessionary periods, there seems to be one obvious reason for the loss of almost 1,000 jobs in the Seattle metro area this year – the city’s $15 minimum wage law.

Link

 

Obama Has Just Begun

How much damage can he do in his last year in office?
Insidiously and inadvertently, Barack Obama is alienating the people and moving the country to the right. If he keeps it up, by 2017 it will be a reactionary nation. But, counterintuitive as it seems, that is fine with Obama: Après nous le déluge.
By sheer force of his personality, Obama has managed to lose the Democratic Senate and House. State legislatures and governorships are now predominantly Republican. Obama’s own favorable ratings rarely top 45 percent. In his mind, great men, whether Socrates or Jesus, were never appreciated in their time. So it is not surprising that he is not, as he presses full speed ahead.
Obama certainly has doubled down going into his last year, most recently insisting on letting in more refugees from the Middle East, at a time when the children of Middle Eastern immigrants and contemporary migrants are terrorizing Europe. What remaining unpopular executive acts might anger his opponents the most? Close down Guantanamo, let thousands more refugees into the United States, free thousands more felons, snub another ally, flatter another enemy, weigh in on another interracial melodrama, extend amnesty to another million illegal aliens, make global warming laws by fiat, expand Obamacare, unilaterally impose gun control? In lieu of achievement, is the Obama theory to become relevant or noteworthy by offending the public and goading political enemies?
An Obama press conference is now a summation of all his old damn-you clichés — the fantasy strawman arguments; the caricatures of the evil Republican bogeymen; the demagogic litany of the sick, the innocent, and the old at the mercy of his callous opponents; the affected accentuation (e.g., Talîban; Pakîstan, Îslám, Latînos, etc.) that so many autodidacts parade in lieu of learning foreign languages; the make-no-mistake-about-it and let-me-be-clear empty emphatics; the flashing temper tantrums; the mangled sports metaphors; the factual gaffes; and the monotonous I, me, my, and mine first-person-pronoun exhaustion. What Obama cannot do in fact, he believes he can still accomplish through invective and derision.
Getting under his critics’ skin is about all that is left of a failed presidency.

In the 2016 election campaigns, most Democratic candidates in swing states will have distanced themselves from the last eight years. Otherwise, they would have to run on the patently false premise that American health care is more affordable and more comprehensive today than it was in 2009; that workforce participation is booming; that scandals are a thing of the past; that the debt has been addressed; that Obama has proved a healer who brought the country together; that immigration at last is ordered, legal, and logical; that the law has never been more respected and honored; that racial relations are calmer than ever; that the campuses are quiet; that the so-called war on terror is now over and won with al-Qaeda and ISIS contained or on the run; that U.S. prestige aboard has never been higher; that our allies appreciate our help and our enemies fear our wrath; that Iran will now not go nuclear; that Israel is secure and assured of our support; and that, thanks to American action, Egypt is stable, Libya is ascendant, Iraq is still consensual, and the Middle East in general is at last quiet after the tumultuous years of George W. Bush.

The hordes of young male migrants abandoning the Middle East for the West are merely analogous to past waves of immigrants and should be uniformly welcome. For Obama, there is no connection between them and his slashing of American involvement in the Middle East — much less any sense of responsibility that his own actions helped produce the crisis he now fobs off on others.

If an American president saw fit to attack fellow Americans from abroad, and lecture them on their illiberality, there are better places from which to take such a low road than from Turkey, the embryo of 20th-century genocide, and a country whose soccer crowds were recently shouting, “Allahu akbar!” during what was supposed to be a moment of silence offered to the Paris dead. Surely an American president might suggest that such grassroots religious triumphalism about mass death is much more reprehensible behavior than are his own fellow citizens’ demands to vet the backgrounds of refugees.

If you suggested to Obama that, in his search for a contrarian legacy, he should do something to stop the slaughter in the Middle East and be careful about letting in more unexamined refugees, in answer, he would be more likely to do less than nothing abroad and vastly expand the influx of migrants. Getting under his critics’ skin is about all that is left of a failed presidency.

Many of our observers still do not quite grasp that Obama will end his presidency by seeking to get his opponents’ goat — and that his resentment will lead to some strange things said and done.

Few foresaw this critical element of the Obama character. The tiny number of prescient pundits who warned what the Obama years would entail were not the supposedly sober and judicious establishment voices, who in fact seemed to be caught up in the hope-and-change euphoria and missed entirely Obama’s petulance and pique: the Evan Thomases (“he’s sort of god”), or the David Brookses (“and I was looking at his pant leg and his perfectly creased pant, and I’m thinking, a) he’s going to be president and b) he’ll be a very good president.” “It is easy to sketch out a scenario in which [Obama] could be a great president.”), or the Chris Matthewses (“the feeling most people get when they hear Barack Obama’s speech. My, I felt this thrill going up my leg. I mean, I don’t have that too often.”), or the Michael Beschlosses (“Uh. I would say it’s probably — he’s probably the smartest guy ever to become President.”), or the Chris Buckleys (“He has exhibited throughout a ‘first-class temperament,’ pace Oliver Wendell Holmes Jr.’s famous comment about FDR. As for his intellect, well, he’s a Harvard man”), or the Kathleen Parkers (“ . . . with solemn prayers that Obama will govern as the centrist, pragmatic leader he is capable of being”), or the Peggy Noonans (“He has within him the possibility to change the direction and tone of American foreign policy, which need changing; his rise will serve as a practical rebuke to the past five years, which need rebuking; his victory would provide a fresh start in a nation in which a fresh start would come as a national relief.”).

Obama feels liberated now that he is free from further elections. He thinks he has a legitimate right to be a bit vindictive and vent his own frustrations and pique.

In truth, it was the loud, sometimes shrill, and caricatured voices of talk radio, the so-called crazy Republican House members, and the grassroots loudmouths of what would become the Tea Party who had Obama’s number. They warned early on that Barack Obama’s record was that of a petulant extremist, that his writing presaged that he would borrow and spend like no other president, that his past associations gave warning that he would use his community-organizing skills cynically to divide Americans along racial lines, that nothing in his past had ever suggested anything other than radicalism and an ease with divisive speech, that his votes as a state legislator and as a U.S. senator suggested that he had an instinctual dislike of the entrepreneur and the self-made businessman, and that his past rhetoric advised that he would ignore settled law and instead would rule by fiat — that he would render immigration law null and void, that he would diminish the profile of America abroad, and that he would do all this because he was an ideologue, with no history of bipartisanship but a lot of animus toward his critics, and one who saw no ethical or practical reason to appreciate the more than 60 years of America’s postwar global leadership and the world that it had built. Again, the despised right-wingers were right and the more moderate establishment quite wrong.

Abroad, from Obama’s post-Paris speeches, it is clear that he is now bored with and irritated by the War on Terror. He seems to have believed either that Islamist global terror was a minor distraction with no potential for real harm other than to bring right-wingers in backlash fashion out of the woodwork, or that it was an understandably radical manifestation of what was otherwise a legitimate complaint of Islam against the Western-dominated global system — thus requiring contextualization rather than mindless opposition.

A lot of ambitious and dangerous powers are watching Obama assume a fetal position, and may well as a consequence act foolishly and recklessly this next year. Not only Russia, China, and North Korea, but also Hamas, Hezbollah, Iran, ISIS, and assorted rogue states may take chances in the next 14 months that they would otherwise never have entertained (given that America is innately strong and they are mostly in comparison far weaker) — on the premise that such adventurism offers tangible advantages without likely negative consequences and that the chance for such opportunities will not present itself again for decades to come.

At home, Obama feels liberated now that he is free from further elections. He thinks he has a legitimate right to be a bit vindictive and vent his own frustrations and pique, heretofore repressed over the last seven years because of the exigencies of Democratic electioneering. Obama can now vent and strike back at his opponents, caricaturing them from abroad, questioning their patriotism, slandering them for sport, and trying to figure out which emblematic executive orders and extra-legal bureaucratic directives will most infuriate them and repay them for their supposed culpability for his failed vero possumus presidency.
The more contrarian he becomes, and the more he opposes the wishes of the vast majority of the American people, all the more Obama envisions himself speaking truth to power and becoming iconic of something rather than the reality that he is becoming proof of nothing.
Hold on. We haven’t seen anything yet.

Link

Bernie Sanders Wants To Tax Americans At 90%. His Reasoning Is Priceless…

Bernie Sanders Questions Morality of US Economy _ Speakeasy _ CNBC - YouTube (1080p).mp4_snapshot_02.36_[2015.10.15_12.36.36]

Yes this is a real thing. No Bernie Sanders didn’t have a public meltdown of epic, Charlie-Sheen proportions. This is what he believes. It’s what he’s always believed.

Remember this when you leftist friends talk about how “radical” the “far right” has become in this country. Please, remember this.

In an interview with NBC News, Bernie Sanders stated:

“When radical, socialist Dwight D. Eisenhower was president, I think the highest marginal tax rate was something like 90 percent.”

The interviewer followed up by asking, “When you think about something like 90 percent, you don’t think that’s obviously too high?” Sanders replied:

“No. What I think is obscene, when you have the top one-tenth of one percent owning almost as much as the bottom 90.”

What I find particularly hilarious is that Bernie Sanders goes on to say that Conservatives are “so greedy, so out of touch with reality”… as he dines in what appears to be an expensive restaurant in the most expensive city in the country. What’s okay for him is not okay for you!
Also it’s important to note that the rich not only pay most taxes in this country, they pay all the taxes, according to one of NBC’s own (albeit buried) reports. When it comes to individual income taxes, the top 40 percent of wage earners in America pay 106 percent of the taxes. The bottom 40 percent…pay negative 9 percent.
And I’m no economist, but if I knew that I’d be working for 90 percent of the year for free… I may consider retirement. Which would result in forced retirement for all of my employees as well. Again, just little ol’ dumb Crowder using his thinky-think ability.

Again, remember that media narrative that Conservatives are becoming “too radical”? Well allow me to compare the two factions through this scientifically calibrated, internet meme below.

Can you spot the “extremist”?

Link

error: Content is protected !!