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Writing for Salon, Curtis Morrison, a self-titled “liberal activist,” admits to bugging Mitch McConnell’s office. He claims to have been inspired by Julian Assange and claims, “If given another chance to record him, I’d do it again.”
“Earlier this year, I secretly made an audio recording of Sen. Mitch McConnell, the most powerful Republican on the planet, at his campaign headquarters in Kentucky. The released portion of the recording clocks in at less than 12 minutes, but those few minutes changed my life,” writes Morrison.
Last week, the state of California claimed that its version of Obamacare’s health insurance exchange would actually reduce premiums. “These rates are way below the worst-case gloom-and-doom scenarios we have heard,” boasted Peter Lee, executive director of the California exchange. But the data that Lee released tells a different story: Obamacare, in fact, will increase individual-market premiums in California by as much as 146 percent.
One of the most serious flaws with Obamacare is that its blizzard of regulations and mandates drives up the cost of insurance for people who buy it on their own.
This problem will be especially acute when the law’s main provisions kick in on January 1, 2014, leading many to worry about health insurance “rate shock.”
On May 23, delegates representing the Boy Scouts of America voted to adopt a change in their membership policies. For many years, the Scouts held that homosexual activity was inconsistent with the spirit of scouting and that therefore openly gay people could not be admitted to the organization. This will no longer be the case.
The change the delegates voted for is a compromise of sorts. For the last decade and a half, liberal activists have sought a complete repudiation of the ban. During the same period traditionalists have sought to retain it. The new policy appears to split the difference: It permits openly homosexual boys to be members of the Scouts, but it does not allow openly homosexual men to be Scout leaders.
Whatever else one thinks about the new policy, this much is certain: It can’t last. No doubt many of the delegates thought they would be buying peace and quiet by enacting this compromise, but they are bound to be disappointed.
The compromise policy’s short life is predictable, in the first place, in light of the kind of people it is meant to placate, people that the Scout delegates have seriously misjudged. Socially liberal political activists don’t believe in compromise. They believe in winning.
If they believed in compromise, there would be no constitutional “right” to abortion, but a variety of more or less permissive abortion regimes across the states. If they believed in compromise, there would be no legal crusade for same-sex marriage, but a willingness to accept same-sex civil unions.
Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) was the only featured guest at a New York Republican Party dinner Wednesday night, which a spokesman said raised nearly $750,000.
During his 35-minute speech that roused a crowd of high-profile New York Republicans, it couldn’t have been clearer where the GOP’s rising star from Texas wanted to move — away from the divisive rhetoric of a failed 2012 for Republicans and onto a path that could set them up for success in 2014 and 2016.
His speech served as a direct rebuke to the campaign of 2012 Republican nominee Mitt Romney. It will only further chatter about his future ambitions, including a potential 2016 run for president.
“I am going to suggest that the last election can be explained in two words: 47 percent,” Cruz said, referencing Romney’s infamous speech to donors at a fundraiser last year. At this fundraiser, Cruz took a profound shot at Romney’s narrative.
“I think Mitt Romney’s a good and decent man, and he ran a very hard campaign. But what I mean is the narrative of the last election. The narrative of the last election was, ‘The 47 percent of Americans who are not paying income taxes, who in some way are dependent upon government. We don’t have to worry about them.’ That’s what was communicated in the last election.
“I have to tell you, as a conservative, I cannot think of an idea more opposite to what we believe. I think Republicans are and should be the party of the 47 percent.”
In its latest effort to protect followers of Islam in the U.S. the Obama Justice Department warns against using social media to spread information considered inflammatory against Muslims, threatening that it could constitute a violation of civil rights.
The move comes a few years after the administration became the first in history to dispatch a U.S. Attorney General to personally reassure Muslims that the Department of Justice (DOJ) is dedicated to protecting them. In the unprecedented event, Attorney General Eric Holder assured a San Francisco-based organization (Muslim Advocates) that urges members not to cooperate in federal terrorism investigations that the “us versus them” environment created by the U.S. government, law enforcement agents and fellow citizens is unacceptable and inconsistent with what America is all about.
“Muslims and Arab Americans have helped build and strengthen our nation,” Holder said after expressing that he is “grateful” to have Muslims as a partner in promoting tolerance, ensuring public safety and protecting civil rights. He also vowed to strengthen “crucial dialogue” between Muslim and Arab-American communities and law enforcement.
Evidently that was a precursor of sorts for an upcoming Tennessee event (“Public Disclosure in a Diverse Society”) that will feature the region’s top DOJ official, who serves as U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Tennessee, and an FBI representative. The goal is to increase awareness and understanding that American Muslims are not the terrorists some have made them out to be in social media and other circles, according to a local newspaper report. The June 4 powwow is sponsored by the American Muslim Advisory Council of Tennessee.
You don’t really need more than that headline, do you?
As a metaphor for U.S. interventionism in Syria, it’s hard to do better than this:
Senator John McCain’s office is pushing back against reports that while visiting Syria this week he posed in a photo with rebels who kidnapped 11 Lebanese Shi’ite pilgrims…
“A number of the Syrians who greeted Senator McCain upon his arrival in Syria asked to take pictures with him, and as always, the Senator complied,” Rogers said. “If the individual photographed with Senator McCain is in fact Mohamed Nour, that is regrettable. But it would be ludicrous to suggest that the Senator in any way condones the kidnapping of Lebanese Shia pilgrims or has any communication with those responsible. Senator McCain condemns such heinous actions in the strongest possible terms,” Rogers said.
Of course he doesn’t condone it. The State Department doesn’t condone jihadism as an ideology either, yet in both cases we’d be asked to make common cause with it in the name of replacing a Shiite fundamentalist regime’s puppet with a Sunni fundamentalist “democracy.” Watch McCain’s interview about his Syria trip below and count how many bad arguments there are for intervention. One, at around 2:40, has him arguing that we can “handle” this because, after all, we have the world’s greatest military. That implication, that we should take this challenge on in part to show that we’re equal to it, is both very McCain-esque very unconvincing. If Russian-made Syrian missiles end up shooting down a few American planes, what’s the next step in the challenge that we’re required to accept? If we succeed in decimating Assad from the air, how do we meet the challenge of restraining Sunni fanatics from ethnically cleansing the Alawites? He says the status quo is terrible, which is true, without ever explaining how deviating from it would necessarily be an improvement.
Ever since 9/11, every time some place or another on the planet has been struck by a major jihadist act, the mainstream media have reliably come out with stories about “backlash” against Muslims. Not accounts of actual backlash, mind you, but pieces in which various academics, public officials, Muslim leaders, and other sensitive souls have been described as wringing their hands over the dreaded possibility that some of us boorish infidels might respond to this latest action by going on the warpath against innocent Muslims. If these “backlash” articles have been such a staple of post-9/11 journalism, it’s obviously because they’ve offered the media an opportunity to focus not on the innumerable Muslim-on-infidel atrocities that have actually taken place but, rather, on hypothetical, and violent, infidel-on-Muslim responses – and thus to persist in casting Muslims in the role of victim, even while the bodies of those they have slaughtered in Islam’s name have yet to go cold.
Yet the fabled “backlash” has never really materialized – not, at least, on anything remotely resembling the scale that the media have repeatedly predicted. On the contrary, with a very small number of minor, isolated exceptions, people in the non-Muslim world have routinely responded to Muslim violence with civilized restraint. Indeed, it’s hard to think of anything that more dramatically reflects the difference between the Islamic and Western cultures than the contrast between the brutality and scale of the jihadist attacks on the West in recent years and the extraordinarily low level and modest scale of actions taken against Muslim targets in revenge. This refusal of non-Muslims to take an eye-for-an-eye approach in response to jihadist acts is a remarkable testament to the native tolerance of Christians, Jews, and other non-Muslims – and, indeed, to the black-and-white distinction between pretty much every other religion in the world and Islam, which, alone among major faiths, instructs its adherents to see offense everywhere and to respond even to the merest cartoon with murderous violence on a global scale.
A Wall Street Journal editorial notes the Obama administration gave special scrutiny to the tax-exempt status of certain pro-Israel organizations and cites a front-page, 5,000 word article in the New York Times published July 6, 2010 as a possible signal to the IRS:
“Why the special scrutiny for pro-Israel groups? A New York Times article in July 2010 provided a clue: Tax-exempt groups were donating to West Bank settlers, and State Department officials wanted the settlers out. ‘As the American government seeks to end the four-decade Jewish settlement enterprise and foster a Palestinian state in the West Bank,’ the Times wrote, ‘the American Treasury helps sustain the settlements through tax breaks on donations to support them.’
“Did the T-men take their political cues from such stories, or did Administration officials give them orders? Either explanation would be a violation of public trust.”
Let me provide another possible clue, found in the June 16, 2009 minutes of the Palestinian negotiating unit headed by Saeb Erekat–part of the Palestine Papers published by Al Jazeera in 2011.
In a classic case of “now you tell me,” the Associated Press reports today that a whole swath of people who like their health insurance might be losing it. You see, ObamaCare requires all Americans get the equivalent of a Cadillac health plan. Millions of us don’t have Cadillac plans, which means that we are about to be in violation of government policy.
State insurance regulators say many people who buy their own health insurance could get surprises this fall: cancellation notices because their policies aren’t up to the basic standards of President Barack Obama’s overhaul.
These people, and some small businesses, will have to find replacement plans _ and that has some state officials worried about consumer confusion.
The changes don’t seem to square with one of the president’s promises: “If you like your health care plan, you’ll be able to keep your health care plan.”
Can you believe this is happening in America? The government is telling us what kind of health insurance coverage we have to purchase.
Last week, the executive board of Boy Scouts of America voted to allow openly gay kids into their programs, thus compromising their long standing set of Christian morals and values. When I heard about their vote, it saddened me to see them succumb to the pressures of a debauched society.
In my report last week about their compromise, I predicted that a number of church sponsored Boy Scout programs would be ended the same way it happened in Canada when they allowed the gays to go camping with them. Well, it seems the exodus has begun.