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Conservative News and Views

Once Again, President Trump Hands Democrats Enough Rope…

 

July 3, 2020

Donald Trump trumps the competition

Here’s an old, irrefutable chestnut: If you find yourself in a hole, stop digging! But Regressives refuse to learn that lesson. So yet again they fall into the chasm of a trap President Trump has set for them.

President Trump, where art thou? Say the very ones egging it on…

Listen to the uproar the mostly-leftist media bleat every minute of every day. Why aren’t the president and his Republican colleagues saying anything, doing anything about all the destruction and madness that the [Democrat-approved] anarchists are wreaking throughout the country—the arson, smashed windows, destroyed businesses, separatist zones in Seattle and NY City, defund-the-police initiatives, out-of-control thuggery, on and on?

Yet the silence persists. Does even one person on the planet think this is a coincidence? A fluke? A historical aberration?

The meme thing. President Trump has a meme: silence is golden!

Just as Democrats send out daily talking points—remember the Dick Cheney “gravitas” meme that every media person echoed ad nauseam and then never said the word again after Bush 2 was elected?

Same thing today after Regressives learned that the word “defunding” polled badly so they uniformly switched to “reimagining” police reform.

I’m imagining that the president or his surrogates sent the Republicans and Conservatives a memo to refrain from addressing the vast destruction we’ve been witnessing for weeks. Because even in this Age of Communication—where instant text messages and emojis and YouTube videos and Instagram pictures invade the airways literally billions of times a day— doing nothing and saying nothing can still be more powerful!

President Trump offers the world a bird’s-eye view

By letting the 24-7 TV pictures speak for themselves, President Trump is providing all 330-million people in America—and the other eight-billion people around the world—an up-front bird’s-eye-view of what leftism/liberalism/regressivism is all about.

All those people are watching the president faithfully adhere to the U.S. Constitution’s mandate to allow the states to conduct their own affairs. He is giving those states the rope he knows will hang them. This is already obvious in the imploding cities of:

  • Seattle
  • Manhattan
  • Baltimore
  • San Francisco
  • Los Angeles
  • Chicago
  • Portland

And all the other Democrat-run cities and states where chaos reigns.

President Trump lets the world observe! In Seattle…

He’s allowing all the world to see the startling incompetence and hypocrisy of the Democrat Mayor of Seattle, Jenny Durkan. Who embraced Antifa and Black Lives Matter when they commandeered and blockaded a six-block area of the city. Which they called CHOP (Capitol Hill Organized Protest).1 Then she told the police force to stand down and, in essence, to ignore the escalating pillaging, rapes and murders. But when the protesters approached her own home, what did she do? She called the police!

… and New York, Chicago,…

President Trump is providing a front-row seat for the world to witness the aberrational behavior of the man who NY Post columnist Michael Goodwin calls Mayor Putz. That would be Democrat NY City Mayor Bill DiBlasio, who just slashed $1 billion dollars from the police budget. Then he put his America-loathing Democrat wife Chirlane in charge of the destruction of historic statues. The same woman who cannot account for another billion she received for mental-health programs.

In the same way, President Trump is allowing America and the world to see the ongoing—for years—black-on-black carnage that takes place every week in Chicago, and to wonder why clueless Democrat Mayor Lori Lightfoot is so busy with her platform platitudes of Equity*Diversity & Inclusion* that she personally makes it appear that Black Lives Don’t Matter at all in Chicago.2

… Los Angeles and San Francisco

Not to omit the first-hand look the entire world is getting at the way in which California Democrat Governor Gavin Newsom—who is fighting a recall vote—has let the major cities in his state, Los Angeles and San Francisco (Democrat House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s turf), to become meccas of homelessness, with thousands of crude tents and cardboard shanties lining street after street after street, while tens of thousands of mentally ill and addicted people lie in the gutters, used needles and disease-carrying filth are everywhere, and there are piles of animal and human **** every few feet.

President Trump: still the smartest guy in the room

All of the above—and hundreds of other equally shameful and sordid examples—is what Democrat leadership actually looks like. Not to be outdone, to be sure, by the aspiring “leader” of the free world. Who remains sequestered in his basement, the true victim of a heartless and ambitious wife and a ruthless former boss who directs his lackeys to continue to prop up the place-holder while he makes sure that his second try at rigging a presidential election will not fail as it did in 2016.

Meanwhile, President Trump can take full credit for issuing the Executive Order on Protecting American Monuments, Memorials, and Statues. With a mandatory penalty of 10 years in prison. And also combating recent criminal violence.

Look at the economy!

Now, on this glorious July 4th weekend, full credit also goes to President Trump for opening up America and seeing:

  • The U.S. economy add an incredible 4.8 million jobs in June— beating estimates by 1.7 million jobs—the largest monthly increase ever recorded!
  • Addition of an amazing 7.5 million jobs over the past two months.
  • The unemployment rate also fall to 11.1%!
  • That the nation has now recovered roughly one-third of the 22 million jobs it lost to the pandemic.
  • The DOW have the best quarter in 33 years (up 17.77%).
  • NASDAQ up 30.63% in 90 days!

Summing up

The bottom line is that except for the clinically insane politicians on the East and Left coasts, the vast majority of American citizens want to pursue their careers, raise their families, and have money in their pockets, peace in their hearts and safety in their homes.

President Trump knows this in every fiber of his being. But not one single Democrat has a clue.

Editor’s Notes

1 Recall that at first they called it Capitol Hill Autonomous Zone. They obviously thought better of that when someone pointed out that they risked indictment for treason.

2 To say nothing of her lack of sympathy for an alderman who demanded an answer from her on this point. She scornfully dismissed him, “I know you like to preen.”

Cat Ok GIF by Leroy Patterson

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The Medical Examiner’s Report of George Floyd’s Death

By Paul Craig Roberts

PaulCraigRoberts.org

July 9, 2020

Once again, here is the link to the official medical examiner’s report of the autopsy which was released “with the consent and cooperation of Mr. George Floyd’s family and their legal representatives”.

First notice the case title:

CARDIOPULMONARY ARREST COMPLICATING LAW ENFORCEMENT SUBDUAL, RESTRAINT, AND NECK COMPRESSION

What is this telling us?  According to the Oxford English Dictionary, subdual means overcoming or quietening.  The title says that the ability of the police to deal with Floyd was complicated by Floyd’s undergoing cardiopulmonary arrest and that the report investigates the issues of restraint and neck compression.  As for the restraint and neck compression, no life-threatening injuries resulted.  As for Floyd’s cardiopulmonary arrest, that is explained by the toxicology report. Floyd was already experiencing breathing and cardiopulmonary arrest prior to police restraint.

Note the extensive heart disease that Floyd had:

II.  Natural diseases

     A.   Arteriosclerotic heart disease, multifocal, severe

     B.   Hypertensive heart disease

          1.   Cardiomegaly (540 g) with mild biventricular

               dilatation

          2.   Clinical history of hypertension 

Note the finding of No life-threatening injuries:

III. No life-threatening injuries identified

     A.   No facial, oral mucosal, or conjunctival petechiae

     B.   No injuries of anterior muscles of neck or laryngeal

          structures

     C.   No scalp soft tissue, skull, or brain injuries

     D.   No chest wall soft tissue injuries, rib fractures (other

than a single rib fracture from CPR), vertebral column

          injuries, or visceral injuries 

Notice the fatal dose of the opioid fentanyl in the toxicology report:

VI.  Toxicology (see attached report for full details; testing

     performed on antemortem blood specimens collected 5/25/20 at

     9:00 p.m. at HHC and on postmortem urine)

     A.   Blood drug and novel psychoactive substances screens:

          1.   Fentanyl 11 ng/mL

          2.   Norfentanyl 5.6 ng/mL

          3.   4-ANPP 0.65 ng/mL

          4.   Methamphetamine 19 ng/mL

          5.   11-Hydroxy Delta-9 THC 1.2 ng/mL;

               Delta-9 Carboxy THC 42 ng/mL; Delta-9 THC 2.9 ng/mL

          6.   Cotinine positive

          7.   Caffeine positive

Floyd died on May 25, 2020. The autoopsy was done on May 26, 2020. On June 1, 2020, a press release was issued from Hennepin County that lists “Manner of death: Homicide.”

This is a puzzle. Homicide is not supported by the medical examiner’s report. When the autopsy finds Floyd with a fatal amount of fentanyl and serious heart disease which would make the fentanyl even more lethal and “no life-threatening injuries” to neck or elsewhere, how was homicide committed?

A press release is not a medical examiner’s report.  Who knows the biases of a PR person or the effect on the person of seeing the video. I read an explanation that for medical examiner’s “homicide” has a meaning different from the normal meaning.  If this is the case, could a medical examiner or expert speak up and clarify the issue?

A lot of pressure has been put on the medical examiner, a young man whose report makes him a target. He no doubt feels isolated. Some readers report that the local newspaper, the Minneapolis Tribune Star, is creating a different position for him, with or without his consent. 

To a rational objective person who is not emotionally involved, the issue is the irresponsibility of the media.  Not only are race relations at stake but also the fate of accused police officers who have been convicted in the media prior to trial.  I find it very disturbing that no media has mentioned the fatal level of fentanyl in flood’s blood or the medical report itself except to lie that it supports the conclusion of a non-existent “second autopsy” that the police killed Floyd.

It is clear that if the autopsy supported the media’s propagandistic account, the examiner’s report would be all over the news, not swept under the rug. The withholding of such critical information from the public—especially when it is known that an overdose of fentanyl causes precisely Floyd’s symptoms—amounts to a lynching of the police officers.  From the little information we have, it seems that the police were careful with Floyd. They recognized that he was in trouble from drugs, called for medics, and used restraint to keep him still on his stomach.  As far as I can ascertain, these are the prescribed procedures. The reason for Floyd being kept on his stomach is that “fentanyl’s effects include nausea”.

A person on his back can choke on his own vomit.

Paul-Craig-Roberts5.pngThis interpretation of police behavior seems to accord with the facts, but it does not fit the predetermined conclusion of “white racist murder” which the media have imposed on the event.  

The irresponsibility of the American media has resulted in enormous death and destruction in the 21st century. Seven countries have been destroyed in whole or part by transparent lies supported by the US media. Millions of people have been killed, maimed, orphened, widowed, and displaced by American invasions and bombings based entirely on lies.  Always the media withheld the real facts and gave us fake news.

The media did the same thing with Russiagate and impeachgate and again with Russian subsidies to the Taliban to kill American troops.

They have done the same thing yet again with their propagandistic coverage of George Floyd’s death.

A multi-racial country with a media that foments racial conflict has no future.

The Best of Paul Craig Roberts

Paul Craig Roberts, a former Assistant Secretary of the US Treasury and former associate editor of the Wall Street Journal, has been reporting shocking cases of prosecutorial abuse for two decades. A new edition of his book, The Tyranny of Good Intentions, co-authored with Lawrence Stratton, a documented account of how americans lost the protection of law, has been released by Random House. Visit his website.

Copyright © Paul Craig Roberts

Previous article by Paul Craig Roberts: There Is No Second Autopsy of George Floyd’s

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Reliable Reporting. The Right Opinion.
 

Supreme Court sides with Trump in dispute over tax records with House Democrats

The U.S. Capitol dome is seen, Monday, July 9, 2018, in Washington. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster) ** FILE **

The U.S. Capitol dome is seen, Monday, July 9, 2018, in Washington. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster) ** FILE ** more >

State prosecutors can demand to see the president’s tax returns but Congress faces a much higher hurdle, the Supreme Court ruled in a pair of cases Thursday, closing out its 2019-2020 term with a major statement on presidential powers.

The rulings, both 7-2 decisions, likely will shield President Trump’s financial records at least through the election. They give a win to Mr. Trump’s campaign because he has long refused to make his tax returns public as presidential candidates customarily have done for decades.

The high court, led by Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr., rejected the president’s legal argument that he has “absolute immunity” from subpoenas for his personal financial records.

“Two hundred years ago, a great jurist of our court established that no citizen, not even the president, is categorically above the common duty to produce evidence when called upon in a criminal proceeding,” the chief justice wrote in one of the cases. “We reaffirm that principle today and hold that the president is neither absolutely immune from state criminal subpoenas seeking his private papers nor entitled to a heightened standard.”

That means prosecutors in New York can subpoena the president’s tax returns as part of an ongoing criminal probe, though the justices said Mr. Trump may fight them other ways. Even if the documents are turned over, they may be bound by grand jury secrecy rules.

When it comes to Congress, neither the president nor the Democrat-led House properly settled an important separation of powers issue as they fought over access to the tax returns, the court ruled.

The case was sent back to lower courts to determine whether Congress had a legitimate legislative need to see the president’s personal information or whether it was launching an out-of-bounds political attack.

Mr. Trump, on Twitter, called the attempts to pry loose his financial documents “political prosecution.”

“I won the Mueller Witch Hunt, and others, and now I have to keep fighting in a politically corrupt New York. Not fair to this Presidency or Administration!” the president said.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, California Democrat, said the ruling provides a road map for continuing the battle in lower courts.

Congress‘ constitutional responsibility to uncover the truth continues, specifically related to the president’s Russia connection that he is hiding,” she said.

Republicans said Democrats will be hard-pressed to prove they have a legitimate reason for pursuing the president’s records.

Although presidents have to file financial disclosures, they are not bound by law to make their tax returns public. Every major party nominee has done so voluntarily for decades, but Mr. Trump has broken with that tradition.

He has said he is under an IRS audit and that it would not make sense to release his records in the meantime.

His determination to shield the records has been matched by his opponents’ eagerness to see them. During the 2016 campaign, those opponents speculated that his tax returns would expose ties to Russia or show other red flags.

Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance, meanwhile, subpoenaed Mazars USA LLP, Mr. Trump’s accounting firm, for his financial records as part of a probe into financial dealings of individuals surrounding the president.

The president sued to block his accountants from complying and argued that he is immune from a subpoena while in office.

The high court rejected that broad claim, saying courts have long held that even presidents must comply with the justice system.

Sending the case back to lower courts, Chief Justice Roberts said the president could challenge the subpoena on other grounds, such as claiming it is overbroad, issued in bad faith or causing an undue burden.

“He can challenge the subpoena as an attempt to influence the performance of his official duties,” the chief justice wrote.

Mr. Vance called the ruling a “tremendous victory.”

“Our investigation, which was delayed for almost a year by this lawsuit, will resume, guided as always by the grand jury’s solemn obligation to follow the law and the facts, wherever they may lead,” he said.

Congress‘ access to documents is less clear.

The court ruled that neither Mr. Trump nor House Democrats stayed in legal bounds.

Congress does have the power to subpoena the president for some records, even personal ones unrelated to official actions, but those requests must be narrow and must be aimed at important legislative purposes, the court said.

To allow Congress to demand anything it wanted would violate the separation of powers, reducing the authority of the White House and short-circuiting the usual give-and-take, Chief Justice Roberts wrote.

“We would have to be ‘blind’ not to see what ‘[a]ll others can see and understand’: that the subpoenas do not represent a run-of-the-mill legislative effort but rather a clash between rival branches of government over records of intense political interest for all involved,” the chief justice wrote.

When a congressional subpoena to the president is challenged in court, judges must assess the legislative purpose lawmakers use to justify the demand, must insist that the subpoena is as narrow as possible, and should be aware of the burdens placed on a president by complying, he said.

Justices Neil M. Gorsuch and Brett M. Kavanaugh, Mr. Trump’s two picks to the high court, joined the majority in both cases.

Justices Clarence Thomas and Samuel A. Alito Jr. dissented in each case.

In the New York dispute, Justice Thomas said he agrees with the majority that the president doesn’t have absolute immunity but that he should not be subject to the prosecutors’ demands if he can prove “his duties as chief magistrate demand his whole time for national objects.”

As for Congress, Justice Thomas said he would have ruled that lawmakers can’t compel the president to turn over personal documents. He said if Congress wants to force the president’s hand, then the correct tool is impeachment.

Three congressional committees sought Mr. Trump’s financial documents for investigations into terrorism, money laundering and other matters.

A fourth committee, the House Ways and Means panel, is trying to force the IRS to provide the president’s tax returns to Congress. That fight is also in the courts.

Some legal analysts said Democrats bungled their effort by pursuing the subpoenas and that Thursday’s ruling places new limits on Congress now and in the future.

“The court’s decision is another illustration of the principle, ‘Be careful what you ask for,’” said Thomas G. Hungar, a former House general counsel who called the ruling “a major judicial loss that threatens to undermine congressional oversight powers going forward.”

Rep. Bill Pascrell Jr., a New Jersey Democrat who has been the loudest voice demanding Mr. Trump’s tax returns, agreed that the rulings were a setback for Congress. He said they allow the president “to run out the clock.”

“The Supreme Court has failed the American people,” he said.

⦁ Stephen Dinan contributed to this report.

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A 'Divisive' Speech? Only If You Don't Believe in America

 

COMMENTARY
.By Katrina Pierson

It was a late Friday evening and then-candidate Barack Obama was fatigued following a full day of campaigning. It was May 30, 2008, and Obama was in South Dakota visiting Mount Rushmore, a monument dedicated to four presidential giants of America’s past.

The New York Times, in its report that weekend, described the massive sculpture as a “granite visage” and the “Pride of South Dakota.” Obama even joked with reporters that his ears were too large to be added to the massive wall face.

A dozen years later, President Donald Trump made a Friday night visit of his own to the impressive monument, on the eve of America’s 244th birthday—the Fourth of July. The president delivered an inspirational, inclusive message rooted in the American ideals of life, liberty, and self-determination. He spoke of our shared belief in equal opportunity, equal justice, and equal treatment for citizens of every race, background, religion, and creed.

The New York Times’ report on this president’s visit to Mount Rushmore was strikingly different than its report on Obama’s visit 12 years earlier. Following the president’s address, his usual detractors, including the Times, attacked his message as “divisive.”

So, what led to such a mischaracterization? The answer, I’m afraid, isn’t very nuanced. The Democrat establishment and its media allies have chosen to elevate the radical left’s hatred of America in order to achieve its short-term goal of defeating Donald Trump in November.

The president’s message could only be interpreted as divisive by individuals who do not love America, and who do not believe in the idea that the great American experiment continues to march toward a more perfect union despite inequities of the past. The president highlighted the famous words enshrined in the Declaration of Independence that declared “all men are a created equal,” words he described as setting into motion the “unstoppable march of freedom.”

The Democrat Party and its media allies don’t’ see it that way. They see an America that is dark, evil, and irredeemable. The radical left, now being fully supported by the Democrat establishment and many in the mainstream media, are stoking tensions, fear, and destruction by mobs.  They celebrate what Lance Morrow, writing in the Wall Street Journal, calls “ideology as performance” and “outage with a touch of holiday.”

This is not a holiday for the majority of Americans who love this country. It’s why this election is so important. Joe Biden has fully embraced the radical left—seeing it as another path towards taking down President Trump and the Republican Party in November. 

Listen, Biden has been a dull ornament in politics for generations, as naïve in his understanding of the devastating consequences of his 1994 crime bill to the black community as he is of the consequences of the street violence he is now helping fuel from the comfort of his basement.

The Democrat Party has its partisan reasons for taking on Trump, but this is much more complex than just a partisan battle of ideas. This election is a confrontation between those who believe in America and the ideals it stands for, and those who wish to tear down America in exchange for an imaginary socialist future where there is global control of American life.

The New York Times’ description of the president’s message as a “harsh diatribe” meant to “sow division during a national crisis,” ignores the fact that Joe Biden has spent the last six months engaged in divisive rhetoric and political cheap shots, rather than a unifying message for the American people.

None of this is about racial justice, as Biden wants Americans to believe. Nor is it about the social revolution that Biden claims to support. It’s about sowing enough division, hate and fear to convince enough voters to turn back to the old ways of Washington—where empty vessels like Biden feed empty promises and rhetoric to the masses while personally enriching themselves and their families behind the scenes.

This is the Joe Biden who stood shoulder to shoulder with some of the Senate’s most prominent segregationists of the latter half of the 20th century. This is the Joe Biden who served as a driving force behind mass incarceration policies in America.

Americans can both believe in America and the ideals for which it stands—as a majority of Americans do—while also acknowledging, and working to fix, systemic injustices faced by the black community.

We cannot allow the unwinding of hundreds of years of progress. The radical left, with the full support of the Democrat establishment, wants to decimate this great American experiment in favor of mob rule and a socialist future. If Joe Biden is elected, that’s exactly what will happen.

Katrina Pierson is a senior adviser to Donald J. Trump for President Inc.

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Has the Durham Investigation of the Russiagate Hoax Been Deep-Sixed?

Has the Durham Investigation of the Russiagate Hoax Been Deep-Sixed?

Paul Craig Roberts

I never had any expectation that the Trump Justice (sic) Department would investigate the Obama DOJ, FBI, and CIA officials who commited felonies while creating the Russiagate hoax that was intended to drive President Trump from office.  The Washington Establishment never lowers the boom on its own.  

Attorney General William Barr and US Attorney John Durham are establishment figures.  So are the alleged targets of their investigation.  But Trump is not an establishment figure.  He challenged the establishment openly in his inaugeration speech, and the establishment has been after him ever since.

The alleged investigation by Durham has been going on far too long to be anything but a sham.  An indictment of senior Obama officials would hurt the Democrat’s chance in four months to remove Trump from the scene. The two political parties are both creatures of the establishment, and the establishment wants Trump gone.

Moreover, there is no point to the Durham investigation.  The crimes commited by the Obama officials are well known.  The evidence against them has been available for a long time.  But it is unlikely to ever result in indictments.

This concerns Senator Chuck Grassley. And it should. Once high officials abuse power and commit felonies in order to frame the President of the United States and get away with it, you can kiss good-bye any possibility of the government ever being held accountable or restrained by law or Constitution. 

Conservatives think the problem is a double standard that favors Democrats and works against Republicans.  The problem is entirely different. Trump underestimated the power of the establishment and went against them on bringing American jobs home, immigration, and normal relations with Russia. The establishment doesn’t want the jobs home—they cost too much here.  The establishment wants immigration, which is almost entirely people of color, because it introduces conflict and prevents the people from uniting against the establishlment.  The establishlment wants tensions with Russia; otherwise there is no enemy to justify the massive power, constitutional erosion, budget, and profits of the military/security complex.

I predicted accurately that Trump would fall into the hands of advisers who would staff him with an establishment government that would prevent change.  

I do not know whether four years of all-out-assault on President Trump by the presstitute media and his inability to deliver to those who elected him have deprived him of re-election.  Whether he is re-eleted or not, we will not see another president after Trump attempt to put the people before the establishment. Not only has Trump made clear to future candidates the high cost of displeasing the establishment, but also the population is too divided to provide a president with a political base.  Not even the 60% white population, which has been turned into second class citizens and placed under racial threat, can unite.  What is to stop the United States from crossing the line from democracy into tyranny? 

 

Paul Craig Roberts

Institute for Political Economy
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Cancel Culture Will Decimate Us…If We Let It

By Boyd D. Cathey

July 10, 2020

Often as I work at my computer I keep on the Sirius FM Classical Music Service, “Symphony Hall,” with an occasional switch-over to a Bluegrass channel. Both, I believe, reflect at their finest superior elements of our Western cultural tradition with deep popular roots in our civilization, in the songs and compositions of people—our ancestors—which are inspired by their faith, their heroes, their tragedies and triumphs, events in their cumulative history.

Sometimes at night I try to catch a classic film on Turner Classic Movies (TCM) or on my preferred Encore Westerns Channel. Not so much on Encore Westerns, at least not yet, but TCM has begun bracketing certain politically-incorrect classics with “woke” commentary, usually by black and/or gay film critics. Some films, once shown on network television, will probably never see the light of day again. They are far too reactionary, mired in a time long ago, unable to be salvaged even by the most superficially talented social justice progressive movie maven.

Over recent years, certainly since the end of World War II and more aggressively since the momentous civil rights years of the 1960s, there has been a progressive and widespread effort to both “deconstruct” our cultural tradition and alter its expression, with a specific emphasis on the influence of women and minorities who, we are told, have been underrepresented. There is nothing intrinsically wrong with that. Of course, women and minorities, especially racial minorities, have played a distinctive and important role in our artistic heritage and traditions. And there have been some significant and worthy contributions made by them. But always to be understood in perspective and in the context of two millennia of Western culture, with its roots in, to quote the late philosopher Eric Voegelin, “Jerusalem, Athens, and Rome,” and the predominate role of notable men who were uniformly white.

But increasingly cultural elites in literature, music, art, and film have attempted to treat the essential characteristics and aspects of our culture, those emanations and glories of our heritage by radically re-interpreting them, recasting them completely, and they have done so by excluding, even censoring or banning certain works long held to be of great value and grandeur. Indeed, a long festering anti-Western and anti-Christian animus, always present but for decades percolating just beneath the surface, now aims to reign supreme and totally dominate. Woe to anyone who would oppose it; to do so means you are a “racist” and partake of “white supremacy.” And once that death knell is sounded, once that fatal sentence is pronounced by some poorly educated “woke” lunatic on Twitter or in some corporate board room, well, there is nothing to do but subserviently crawl on all fours, beg forgiveness for everything your ancestors may have done, essentially for being white.

Especially since the death of George Floyd, a drug addict and convicted felon now apparently up for sainthood (by both Democrats AND too many Republicans), the madness we’ve witnessed in the actions of our political class now is also translated with a renewed vigour into the arts, into education, into religion, into sports, into practically everything that makes life interesting, varied and rewarding.

Ominously, the goal lines are advancing rapidly in all of those areas, as we see each day recounted by brain-dead Marxist apparatchiks on television. Outright censorship and banning are becoming the rule…and it seems that those who should be stoutly opposing them are giving in readily to the lunacy.

Consider that such “conservatives” as US Senators James Lankford (R-Oklahoma) and Ron Johnson (R-Wisconsin) now propose replacing Columbus Day as a national holiday with Juneteenth to celebrate the manumission of the last slaves in 1865. Tell me, please, what is the difference between these pusillanimous fake conservatives and those “woke” social justice warriors out in the streets who actually pull down monuments to Christopher Columbus? At least the rioters are honest about their designs. Lankford and Johnson think they can “compromise” their way around what is going on. Their lack of conviction, their cowardice, is revealed for all to see. And in the end the mob will not spare them, either.

Recently, Paul C. Graham, author of the book Confederaphobia (Shotwell Publishing, Columbia, South Carolina), received notice from Amazon.com that they planned to stop marketing his volume.

Here is part of Amazon’s message to Graham (June 23, 2020):   “Greetings from Kindle Direct Publishing. I have received feedback from our technical team. They advised that your book has been identified as confederate flag merchandise [sic!]. Amazon policy prohibits the listing or sale of confederate flag merchandise. For more information, please see our seller help pages…. We’ve unpublished this title and placed a publishing hold. Thank you for reaching out to KDP. If you require any further assistance please do not hesitate to get back into contact with us.  Regards, Haashim S., Kindle Direct Publishing.”

Amazon forbids and will not sell anything that promotes what it says involves Confederate flag merchandise. You see, for Amazon’s highly educated technical staff a “book” is actually “Confederate flag merchandise.”

Not only that, but the list of banned and forbidden items grows even as I write these words. Anything deemed to be racist, Confederate, misogynist, “Nazi” and so on by Amazon’s “technical team” will be eventually proscribed, and you won’t be able to get it from the world’s major seller of merchandise.

The ramifications of this massive assault reach into every sphere of our culture, including notably film. Consider Gone With the Wind, the Civil War epic considered a classic of American cinema, that has been pulled by HBO Max (until maybe at some future date a politically correct version can be confected). As The Hollywood Reporter puts it: “The move comes as media companies reappraise content in light of nationwide protests over police brutality and systemic racism after the death of George Floyd, a Black man killed by Minnesota police…Long considered controversial for its depiction of Black people and its positive view of slavery, Gone With the Wind faced renewed scrutiny…. “

I know what you are thinking: Americans just won’t tolerate that and won’t let this happen.

But you are wrong, deadly wrong: it IS happening all around us, such that the patrimony we leave to our children and grandchildren will be immeasurably poorer and barren, only a remote memory, and after we pass from the scene, not even that.

This is one of the aspects of the culture war we find ourselves in. Indeed, Pat Buchanan back in 1992 spoke of it in what were then considered stark and divisive terms. But what he said back then was only a mild forecast of what has occurred since 1992: that conflict “is about who we are. It is about what we believe. It is about what we stand for as Americans. There is a religious war going on in our country for the soul of America. It is a cultural war, as critical to the kind of nation we will one day be as was the Cold War itself.”

It is not just those public symbols, those statues and monuments which are coming down, it is practically everything that differentiates and distinguishes our culture, our inheritance, the very essence and emanation of who we are and what we hold dear, our art, music, literature, our very soul as a people, that is at stake.

If we fail in this battle, in this culture war—and it IS a war—our civilization is finished, it is over, consigned to the dust bin of history—a goal so earnestly desired and pushed by the militant mobs of Black Lives Matter, Antifa, and associated groups. There is absolutely no room for compromise a la Lankford and Ron Johnson. For compromise leads to surrender, and surrender leads to extinction.

The Russian people suffered under seven decades of Communism, to emerge from the catacombs in the early 1990s with a reborn and vigorous religious faith and devotion to their pre-Soviet traditions.

My question for us all is this: are we prepared to do likewise until that day that God ordains when His justice and triumph arrive?

Reprinted with the author’s permission.

 

Copyright © Boyd D. Cathey

LewRockwell.comanti-stateanti-warpro-market

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Re:

The Russian people suffered under seven decades of Communism, to emerge from the catacombs in the early 1990s with a reborn and vigorous religious faith and devotion to their pre-Soviet traditions.

 

Their life under the czars were not any better either.

I'm not Catholic but after Consecration of Russia to the Immaculate Heart of Mary by a specific act of a Pope along with all the other Catholic bishops of the world was allegedly ordered in an apparition by Our Lady of Fátima in 1917, the Consecration  on March 25, 1984 things went from bad to good very fast.  Seeing how they are living today is quite incredible far as their standard of living.

XZETQXh075SDrhtfzw_JQaBexYZFBUbrfxdV2bKY

 

He came on the scene a year later and everything else is history.

Mikhail-Gorbachev-Overview-perestroika-d

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Chronicles Magazine of American Culture

 July 10, 2020

The New 'Systemic Racism' That Is Coming
By Patrick J. Buchanan

nowhitemen

Before our Black Lives Matter moment, one had not thought of the NBC networks as shot through with "systemic racism."

Yet, what other explanation is there for this week's draconian personnel decision of NBCUniversal chairman Cesar Conde? According to Conde, the white share of NBC's workforce, now 74 percent and divided evenly between men and women, will be chopped to 50 percent. Persons of color—Blacks, Hispanics, Asians, Native Americans and multiracial folks—are to rise from the present 26 percent of NBCUniversal's workforce to 50 percent.

What does this mean? White men will be slashed as a share of NBCUniversal's employees from the present 38 percent to 25 percent—a cut of one-third—and then capped to ensure that people of color and women reach and remain at 50 percent. White men can fall below one-fourth of the workforce, but their numbers will not be permitted to go any higher.

To impose race and gender quotas like this on the workforce at NBCUniversal—half women, half persons of color—would seem to trample all over the spirit, if not the letter, of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. Why is Conde doing this?

"(W)e have a unique responsibility to look like and reflect all of the people of the country we serve," he says.

But whence comes this responsibility, the realization of which means active discrimination against new employees because they are the wrong gender or race: i.e, they are unwanted white men?

America has succeeded as a meritocracy where excellence was rewarded, be it in athletics or academics. Our Olympic teams have triumphed when we send the best we had in every event.

This egalitarian and ideological revolt against excellence is also arising in Fairfax County, Virginia, at Thomas Jefferson High School for Science and Technology, which, concedes The Washington Post, "often ranks as the top public high school in the United States." Why does TJ have a problem? Writes the Post reporter, the school is "notorious for failing to admit black and Latino students."

Does TJ discriminate in its admissions against Blacks and Hispanics? Is the school a throwback to the old days of "massive resistance"? Of 486 students in the freshman class this fall at the school, the number of Black students is tiny, smaller even than the 3 percent of the class that is Hispanic. Is this yet another example of "white privilege" at work? Hardly. Whites make up only 17 percent of TJ's incoming class.

The problem, if it is a problem, is Asian Americans. Three of four members of the fall freshman class at TJ are of Asian heritage. Why do Asian American kids predominate? Are they being admitted on the basis of their race or ethnicity? No, again. Asians are 73 percent of the incoming class because they excelled on the admissions tests in math, reading and science, and on the essay-writing assignment. They won admission to TJ not based on their ethnicity or race but their academic excellence as demonstrated in standardized tests taken by students all over Fairfax and surrounding counties.

Thomas Jefferson principal Ann Bonitatibus says of her school, "We do not reflect the racial composition" of the Fairfax County Public School System. No, it does not. But so what, if Thomas Jefferson ranks among the top STEM schools in the entire United States? And Bonitatibus' comment raises a legitimate question: Is it possible to reflect the "racial composition" of Fairfax Country and to remain "the top public high school In the United States?"

A related issue is up in California. In 1996, in a state referendum, Californians voted 55-45 to embed a colorblind amendment in their state constitution:

The State shall not discriminate against, or grant preferential treatment to, any individual or group on the basis of race, sex, color, ethnicity, or national origin in the operation of public employment, public education, or public contracting.

Clear, coherent and colorblind. The Democratic legislature, however, wants to be rid of this amendment as it outlaws the kind of racial and ethnic discrimination in which Sacramento wishes to engage. An amendment is on the November ballot to repeal the colorblind amendment and allow California to start discriminating again—in favor of African Americans and Hispanics and against Asians and white men—to alter the present racial balance in state university admissions and the awarding of state contracts.

If this passes, more Hispanics and Blacks with lower test scores will be admitted to elite state schools like UCLA and the University of California, Berkeley, based on race, and fewer Asians and whites. Practices that were regarded as race discrimination and supposedly outlawed in the Civil Rights Act of 1964 will henceforth be seen as commendable and mandatory.

There will be racial and ethnic discrimination, as in the days of segregation. Only the color of the beneficiaries and the color of the victims will be reversed. And that is the meaning of the BLM revolution, which might be encapsulated: "It's our turn now!"

Patrick J. Buchanan is the author of Nixon's White House Wars: The Battles That Made and Broke a President and Divided America Forever. To find out more about Patrick Buchanan and read features by other Creators writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators website at www.creators.com.

COPYRIGHT 2020 CREATORS.COM

 
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Chronicles Magazine of American Culture
 
Remembering the Right
 
July 2020

Remembering James Burnham

 

The ideological trajectory followed by the first generation of neoconservatives, from their early fascination with Marxism during the Great Depression to their embrace of Cold War anti-communism and subsequent takeover of the Conservative movement, is by now a well-known chapter in American political history. The life and career of James Burnham followed a similar trajectory, provoking British academic Binoy Kampmark to label Burnham as “the first neoconservative.”

Burnham, however, was a thinker who bore only an incidental resemblance to the neoconservatives. Indeed, Burnham was something of an enigmatic figure within the wider spectrum of the American Right. Most importantly, it is from Burnham that we acquired an understanding of what he termed the “managerial revolution,” a concept that continues to shed a penetrating light on our social and political life today.

A Chicago native, Burnham was born in 1905 to a Catholic family. His father was a railroad executive and immigrant from England. He attended Princeton and Oxford (where he studied under J.R.R. Tolkien), and soon began teaching philosophy at New York University. During the 1930s, Burnham was associated with prominent left-wing figures such as A. J. Muste and Sidney Hook, and became both a proponent of Trotskyism and Leon Trotsky’s personal friend and correspondent.

above: James Burnham (left) with Hungarian-British writer and journalist Arthur Koestler (photo by Hannes Betzler/Sueddeutsche Zeitung Photo/Alamy Stock Photo)

However, Burnham would eventually break with Trotskyism over the question of the Soviet Union. Trotsky and his leading American followers such as James P. Cannon contended that the USSR under the leadership of Joseph Stalin was a “degenerated workers’ state” that should nevertheless be defended against imperialism. However, Burnham regarded the Soviet Union as a new form of class society with imperialist ambitions of its own, particularly after the Nazi-Soviet pact of 1939, and Soviet incursions into Eastern Europe during the period prior to World War II.

Eventually, Burnham came to reject Marxism altogether, regarding its core philosophy of “dialectical materialism” as untenable. He was briefly employed by the Office of Strategic Services during World War II as a specialist in “political and psychological warfare.” By the late 1940s, Burnham was a staunch proponent of aggressive anti-Communism. During the Cold War era he sought not merely containment of Communism, but a “rolling back” of the influence of the Soviet Union and other communist regimes. This agenda would reach political fruition in the 1980s under the Reagan administration.

Burnham was also considered to be one of the key intellectual figures in the postwar conservative movement that emerged in the 1950s under the leadership of William F. Buckley, Jr., and his magazine National Review. Buckley considered Burnham to be one of the movement’s most important intellectuals, and after the death of his own father, Buckley even came to regard Burnham as a father figure.

Even prior to his long association with Buckley, Burnham advocated a unipolar American hegemony, expressing skepticism towards multipolarity, and was especially dubious about peace agreements. At the onset of the Cold War, Burnham even called for the formation of a “World Federation” for the purpose of fighting Communism. In his 1947 book The Struggle for the World he called for “[a] World Federation initiated and led by the United States.” Such a federation, he argued, would be nothing short of a “World Empire” in which the U.S., “with a monopoly of atomic weapons, would hold a preponderance of decisive material power over all the rest of the world.” Clearly, Burnham rejected any notion of a “balance of power.”

The Managerial Revolution

Superficial parallels can be identified between Burnham’s outlook and the much later advocacy of “benevolent global hegemony” favored by the neoconservatives following the end of the Cold War. However, upon closer inspection, profound philosophical differences emerge.Throughout his intellectual career following his break with Trotskyism, Burnham was a proponent of pragmatic realism in the Machiavellian tradition. He was far less interested in the use of American power for the purpose of remaking other societies in the image of abstract ideals like “equality” that have become the essence of neoconservative thought.

Burnham’s pragmatism was illustrated by his positions on domestic politics. In 1964, when much of the conservative movement enthusiastically backed Senator Barry Goldwater for the Republican nomination, Burnham remained a Rockefeller Republican, believing that Goldwater had no chance of winning a general election and that supporting his candidacy was a waste of effort. Indeed, throughout his life Burnham continued to hold views that were essentially those of a liberal Republican, albeit with a hawkish stance on foreign policy.

Burnham’s most important intellectual contribution was his theory of the “managerial revolution,” first articulated in a 1941 book bearing that name. His primary argument was that classical bourgeois capitalism, which had become dominant in the West in the 19th century, was becoming obsolete in light of subsequent events. The older bourgeoisie was being replaced by a new class of managerial elites, educated technocrats that specialized in the management of large organizations. Within the realm of business, technocrats had largely supplanted the shareholders and the boards of directors as the dominant decision-makers. However, a similar process was taking place in government, labor unions, universities, foundations, and other organizations.

The managerial revolution transcended not merely the differences between the public and private sectors, but also national, cultural, and ideological boundaries, as well as specific forms of government. Burnham believed that a comparable managerial revolution was taking place in both the Western liberal democracies and in totalitarian regimes such as Nazi Germany and the Soviet Union. Arguing against the Marxist view that dominance of the bourgeoisie within classical capitalism would eventually result in revolutions leading to the creation of workers’ states, Burnham instead argued that it was the new managerial elite that were destined to supersede the older bourgeoisie.

In 1943 Burnham published The Machiavellians, which examined the ideas of several Italian theorists of the early 20th century—Vilfredo Pareto, Gaetano Mosca, and Robert Michels—along with the French “national syndicalist” Georges Sorel. These thinkers postulated that modern democracy is largely an illusion, and that elites within key political, economic, and cultural institutions continue to hold the reins of power, albeit in a way that allows for superficial opposition in the form of competing electoral parties and a general freedom of the press.

In reality, genuine political conflict occurs within the ranks of existing elites as factional elements attempt to advance their own interests and objectives, and between the governing elites and the non-governing elites that seek to replace them. The masses generally accept the rule of elites based on what Sorel considered to be popular myths that provide a veneer of legitimacy for the elite factions that happen to hold power.

Burnham was concerned with the question of how freedom could be maintained within a political framework where democracy and equality were impossible fantasies. Within the managerial context, he saw three possibilities for the preservation of a relative degree of freedom: the maintenance of a balance of power between different factions within the elite and their contending institutions; the circulation of personnel among the ranks of the elite; and the retention of the trappings of democracy.

Burnham’s ideas on both the managerial revolution and elite theory mirror those of numerous other thinkers who came both before and after him. While Burnham had rejected his earlier Marxism, his thought continued to reflect Marxist influences, particularly the emphasis on economic and technological determinism. However, his recognition of sources of power beyond the strictly economic resembled Max Weber’s earlier criticisms of Marxist economic determinism.

Likewise, Burnham’s suggestion that classical bourgeois capitalism was being replaced by emerging technocratic elites was foreshadowed by Lawrence Dennis’ previous advocacy of an American “fascism,” which amounted to a technocratic collectivist state similar to that of fascism but without the racialist, militarist, or national chauvinist excesses that characterized European fascism. In addition, Burnham’s critique of the Soviet Union as a new form of class domination mirrored that of earlier anarchist and left-communist critics of Bolshevism.

Similar theories have also been developed by a range of subsequent thinkers from the left and right, including C. Wright Mills, Thomas Ferguson, and others. The work of such thinkers has sought to refute the dominant “pluralist” paradigm in American political science, represented by figures ranging from Robert A. Dahl to Seymour Martin Lipset, who argue that American institutions are largely democratic, representative, and competitive in ways that are accessible to many contending interests.

However, the focus of the theorists opposed to the pluralist paradigm has varied considerably in terms of the specific forces that are alleged to be the most influential or dominant within the framework of a liberal democratic state. Burnham’s unique contribution to this body of thought was his emphasis on the managerial class as opposed to, for example, Mills’ emphasis on traditional capitalist elites or Ferguson’s emphasis on investors in political parties and campaigns.

Burnham’s argument that the managerial revolution had replaced classical bourgeois capitalism also generated a response from the neoconservatives, who argued that Burnham’s critique was too radical. For example, Daniel Bell suggested that the rise of the managerial class represented a contradiction within capitalism rather than a replacement of it. Irving Kristol argued that a “new class” had indeed emerged within the context of modern corporate capitalism that was hostile to capitalism itself, or at least hostile to the norms of traditional bourgeois societies. Despite this, in Kristol’s view, capitalism remained capitalism.

0720-BURNHAM-5.jpg

In a posthumously published work, Leviathan and Its Enemies, the late paleoconservative scholar Samuel T. Francis expounded on Burnham’s thought. In fact, Francis’s embrace of Burnham’s managerial theory serves to illustrate an essential difference between paleoconservatives and both the “movement conservatives” and neoconservatives. The difference involves the relationship between the array of institutions and organizations that could collectively be referred to as modern American capitalism, on the one hand, and the political right, on the other.

Both movement conservatives and neoconservatives have regarded themselves as defenders of capitalism. The reasons for this affinity have included economic efficiency, anti-socialism, anti-statism, a defense of property rights, and the belief that capitalists are natural allies against the left. Neoconservatives have been more willing to compromise with the welfare state, but have embraced a paradigm that includes paeans to so-called “democratic capitalism,” even if this embrace may have been partly cynical and opportunistic. Irving Kristol, in a candid moment, once admitted that he could give capitalism only “two cheers.”

By contrast, Francis was perhaps the strongest critic of capitalism on the American right. Following Burnham, Francis argued that capitalist corporations were just as much a part of the “managerial elite” as the government bureaucracies, public sector unions, universities, mass media conglomerates, left-leaning mainline churches, liberal political interest groups, and liberal NGOs so commonly reviled by conventional conservatives.

Additionally, Francis argued that the New Left and the New Right (remnants of the old bourgeoisie) had both been unsuccessful in mounting an effective challenge to the managerial regime. Drawing on Burnham’s Marxist-influenced sociology, Francis argued that the classical bourgeoisie was simply outdated and had been superseded by subsequent economic and technological developments. The New Left was easily co-opted and neutralized by the managerial elite because the proponents of the New Left were largely products of the managerial class, and shared its basic values and “cosmopolitan” assumptions. Meanwhile, the New Right was co-opted in a similar fashion because it simply sought to unleash the managerial class in the economic sphere. Hence, the rise of neoliberalism in the 1970s—essentially a post-capitalist social and economic order—and its coming to power in the U.S. while masquerading as a conservative counterrevolution.

above: James Burnham (right) seated with National Review staff and contributors, including William F. Buckley, Jr., Priscilla Buckley, and Linda Bridges. (Photo by Alfred Eisenstaedt/The LIFE Picture Collection via Getty Images)

Indeed, in the 40 years since the Reagan Revolution began, the power and pervasiveness of the managerial elite has become progressively more entrenched in ways that were hardly imaginable in 1980. Meanwhile, the economic values of the New Right have largely served to abet the rise of a corporate class increasingly committed to a leftist cultural regime. The long-term legacy of both the New Left and the New Right has been a convergence of the two forces: the co-opted remnants of the New Left having achieved hegemony in the cultural realm, and the equally co-opted New Right having achieved dominance in the economic realm. The result is a class of corporate capitalist elites that are in many ways the vanguard of the cultural left.

Burnham’s earlier theory is further vindicated by the role of technology in facilitating these developments. In his The New Class Conflict (2014), Joel Kotkin argues that the tech industry has produced a class of oligarchs that is surpassing both Wall Street and traditional industrial corporations as the dominant force among the economic elite. These new techno-oligarchs largely share the cultural values of what Kotkin calls the “new clerisy,” the urban, cosmopolitan professional class and what economist Robert Reich called the “symbolic analysts” involved in journalism, education, public relations, entertainment, law, human resources management, and public administration.

This explains the rise of contemporary “woke capitalism,” even as the disparities between social classes are greater than they have been since the 1920s. Globalization and outsourcing have hollowed out what Francis called the “post-bourgeois proletariat,” which, in the 20th century, encompassed both blue-collar and middle classes.

Another influential work by Burnham, Suicide of the West (1964), merits consideration as well. In that seminal book he argued that liberals lack confidence in their own civilization to such a degree that they are not able to engage in an effective defense of its values against existential threats. Burnham’s arguments were largely in the vein of Robert Frost’s quip that a liberal is someone who is incapable of taking his own side in a fight.

Of course, Burnham was writing during the Cold War, and was dismayed by what he regarded as the liberals’ lack of anti-communist resolve. However, a parallel, and perhaps even more forceful, argument could be made within the context of the present era. Seemingly, contemporary liberals not only lack confidence in their own civilization, but actively work to undermine the heritage of Western civilization in favor of globalism and multiculturalism by expressing a greater fear of “Islamophobia” than of Islamic terrorism, and a greater fear of “xenophobia” than of demographic displacement and cultural dispossession.

Burnham might agree in essence with Kotkin’s argument that the result of the alliance between the techno-oligarchs and the new clerisy has had the effect of producing a static and stratified social order similar to that of pre-modern Europe. Kotkin compares the new clerisy to the First Estate of pre-revolutionary France, the techno-oligarchy and financial elites to the Second Estate, and ordinary citizens to the Third Estate.

While such claims are hyperbolic, they also contain some degree of analogous truth. In the late Middle Ages, European elites had achieved a “transnational” unity. Our emerging Western ruling classes are being amalgamated into a global super class with similar relations to the populations over which they rule. Writing in the 1990s, Francis presciently pointed out that the major political conflicts of the future would be less about partisan differences between the traditional left and right, and more about the wider conflict between managerial elites and ordinary folks.

Francis’ s arguments have been vindicated in recent years by the rise of populist movements on both the left and right, which reject the neoliberal consensus that now defines the establishment. In three of the world’s leading liberal democracies—the U.S., United Kingdom, and France—populist figures from the right and left have gained considerable influence and electoral victories. The examples of Donald Trump and Bernie Sanders in the U.S., Boris Johnson and Jeremy Corbyn in the UK, and Marine Le Pen and Jean-Luc Mélenchon in France are illustrative of this trend. However, it remains to be seen whether any of these populists or the movements they represent will be capable of challenging the rule of the managerial elite. Indeed, the managerial revolution identified by James Burnham appears by now to be as deeply entrenched as the medieval Catholic Church. Perhaps only a political cataclysm as far-reaching as the Protestant Reformation will be capable of dislodging it.

 
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Obama Granted Clemency to Terrorists and Traitors, But Democrats Are Angry About Roger Stone

 
BY MATT MARGOLIS JUL 11, 2020 11:36 AM EST
 
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AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta
 
Soon after it was announced that President Trump had commuted the prison sentence of Roger Stone, the outrage mob mobilized. Nancy Pelosi went on CNN to suggest that a law should be passed limiting the president’s clemency powers.

“There ought to be a law, and I’m recommending we pass a law that presidents cannot issue a pardon if the crime that the person is in jail for is one that is caused by protecting the president, which this was. It’s appalling,” she told CNN’s Anderson Cooper.

Adam Schiff couldn’t help invoking the debunked Trump/Russia theory when he responded. “Stone lied and intimidated witnesses to hide Trump’s exploitation of the Russian hack of his opponent’s campaign,” he tweeted. “With Trump there are now two systems of justice in America: One for Trump’s criminal friends and one for everyone else.” Cory Booker echoed the same talking point in his own tweet, “There should not be two justice systems in the U.S.—we can and we must do better.”

This is hardly the first time Democrats have claimed to be outraged at Trump’s acts of clemency. Last year, President Trump granted full pardons for Army First Lt. Clint Lorance and Army Maj. Mathew Golsteyn, who’d been accused of war crimes for taking actions to defend themselves on the battlefield.  Yet, when President Trump pardoned them, it immediately sparked controversy and outrage.  Earlier this year, Trump commuted the sentence of former Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich, a Democrat, once again, sparking outrage from Democrats and calls for investigations.

But, these same people who pounced on Trump’s acts of clemency yawned and looked the other when Barack Obama commuted the sentence of terrorists and traitors.

Just before leaving office in 2017, Barack Obama commuted the sentence of Bradley Manning (you may also know him as Chelsea), who leaked hundreds of thousands of sensitive government documents to WikiLeaks. A traitor in every sense, in 2013 Manning was convicted and sentenced to 35 years in prison. But, Bradley Manning became a hero of the political left for declaring himself to be transgender, and Obama made his controversial commutation literally just days before leaving office. Manning maintains hero status amongst the left today.

Obama also commuted the sentence of convicted terrorist Oscar Lopez Rivera, the leader of the Fuerzas Armadas de Liberación Nacional Puertorriqueña (FALN), a Puerto Rican terrorist group. FALN was responsible for 130 attacks in the United States, and at least six deaths. An unrepentant Lopez-Rivera was serving a 70-year sentence when Obama set him free. The Congressional Black Caucus had repeatedly lobbied for Lopez’s release during the Obama years, and the commutation was met with praise from Democrats like Bill de Blasio, Congressman Luis Gutiérrez, Bernie Sanders, and others.

Obama also granted clemency to hundreds of drug offenders he claimed were non-violent offenders who deserved a second chance, because of racism or something. It later came out that many of the people he released were actually violent offenders guilty of gun crimes. Obama granted more acts of clemency than any president since Truman, though he saved much of that executive use of power for the latter months and days of his presidency.

I’m sure there were some individuals Obama granted clemency to who legitimately deserved it, but who in their right mind believes granting clemency to an unrepentant terrorist or a traitor responsible for the biggest national security breach in history was just?

Roger Stone was caught up in a bogus investigation over bogus allegations of Russian collusion, but Democrats would rather see him in jail than the leader of a terrorist group responsible for the deaths of American citizens. In Obama’s system of justice, all it takes to above the law is to claim to be a victim of racism, an unrepentant terrorist, or transgender.

_____

Matt Margolis is the author of the new book Airborne: How The Liberal Media Weaponized The Coronavirus Against Donald Trumpand the bestselling book The Worst President in History: The Legacy of Barack Obama. You can follow Matt on Twitter @MattMargolis

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Your "law and order" President gives clemency to criminal friends who don't flip on him.

The fact that Donald Trump, aside from his racist divisions and complete lack of leadership in the greatest health crisis of a century, is also the most corrupt President in your nation's history doesn't bother you at all, does it, Jake? Quite the opposite, how long will it be before you once again hail him as your "Emperor?"

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As the author of The Art of the Deal, Tony Schwartz just said, Trump has zero empathy and no moral compass whatsoever.  He truly does not care how many tens of thousands of Americans will die just so long as he is reelected.  That is who people like Jake are supporting.

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1 hour ago, Bogie56 said:

As the author of The Art of the Deal, Tony Schwartz just said, Trump has zero empathy and no moral compass whatsoever.  He truly does not care how many tens of thousands of Americans will die just so long as he is reelected.  That is who people like Jake are supporting.

Trump is a classic sociopath

A sociopath is a term used to describe someone who has antisocial personality disorder (ASPD). People with ASPD can’t understand others’ feelings. They’ll often break rules or make impulsive decisions without feeling guilty for the harm they cause.

People with ASPD may also use “mind games” to control friends, family members, co-workers, and even strangers. They may also be perceived as charismatic or charming.

 

Anyone voting for Trump is enabling a racist, and they know it. The racial divisions in America, widened even further by Trump for his own political gain at the cost of society, his supporters own that when they vote for him. A so-called "leader" who turns his back on a pandemic with his initial slow response, later mixed messaging and now, at the cost of the lives of thousands of Americans, his attempts to re-open the economy too soon, they own that, too, by voting for him. And that's not even touching on the man's personal corruption, which now includes giving clemency to a felon who could provide testimony against him.

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John H. Durham, U.S. Attorney for the District of Connecticut since February 2018. (United States Department of Justice)

No, Mr. Durham. We Need Your Report Before Election Day

July 9, 2020 Updated: July 12, 2020

Roger L. Simon

 

Commentary

Fox’s Brooke Singman, who has been perspicacious in her coverage of the probe of the Russia probe, had a disturbing “exclusive” on July 9, with the headline: “Durham, under pressure to wrap up investigation, could ‘punt’ to after Election Day: source

Wouldn’t we love to know who her “source” or “sources” were? But never mind for the moment. The story begins:

“U.S. Attorney John Durham is under pressure to wrap up his investigation into the origins of the Russia probe by the end of the summer, but if he doesn’t, he could wait to reveal his findings or initiate prosecutions until after the 2020 presidential election, Fox News has learned.

“Two sources familiar with Durham’s investigation told Fox News this week that Durham is working expeditiously to try to finish the probe by the end of summer, but that several lines of investigation are not yet complete.

“‘He believes it’s critical to do them,’ one source said. ‘He is feeling more pressure to get this done and wrapped up.’

“The source also told Fox News that Durham “does not want this to be viewed political,” and the closer it gets to November, Durham could “punt it to after the election.”

Durham doesn’t want his report “to be viewed political”? He must be dreaming. Nothing could be more political. It’s inextricably so, no matter what he says or does or when he does it.

To wit, what Durham is said to be investigating is whether one or more of our most important law enforcement and intelligence agencies (Justice Department, FBI, CIA, State Department, and so forth) were hijacked and used illegally to prevent Donald Trump from being elected president and/or for undercutting his presidency and administration after he was.

What in the Sam Hill could be more political than that?

Yes, it would be a crime as well, but a crime for the most obvious and extreme political ends.

And if Durham does “punt” until after the 2020 election, it could become more political still, pushing our society to the edge of civil war and beyond.

Imagine this: Joe Biden wins the election and come January 2021, just before his inauguration, the Durham report comes out. Several major players in the aforementioned government agencies, household names at this point, are indicted.

These indictments go all the way to the top but not quite, leaving Obama and Biden unscathed, at least technically. (I am taking William Barr at his word that the former president and vice president aren’t being investigated, although it will more than likely be clear that they aren’t, shall we say, in the clear.)

How does Durham, or any reasonable person, expect the losers in the election, the tens of millions of Trump supporters, to react then?

With massive justifiable outrage is my guess.

They will do any number of things, from refusing to pay taxes, to acts of sabotage, to taking to the streets in a more militarily organized fashion than anything we are seeing today.

And, for that matter, how could Biden possibly govern with criminal indictments of his and Obama’s previous administration all around him? Whatever moral authority he had would be gone.

In all, the country would start to disintegrate. You name the way.

No, Durham had better think twice about “punting” his report until after the election.

Of course, that’s assuming Singman’s “sources” are reliable. We have seen many instances where journalists’ sources haven’t been. The anonymous source is the rotten underbelly of journalism, frequently used for nefarious ends and often is the cause of rewards, such as a Pulitzer Prize, that seem ludicrous months or even weeks later.

I’m hoping this is the case here, but I wonder.

Whatever is true, Mr. Durham, please finish quickly, before the election. You owe it to the American public.

Roger L. Simon is an award-winning author, Oscar-nominated screenwriter and co-founder of PJ Media.

Views expressed in this article are the opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of The Epoch Times.

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42% of All COVID-19 Deaths Occurred in Nursing Homes

By Joseph Mercola

Mercola.com

July 11, 2020

Early on in the pandemic it became clear that older individuals were at disproportionate risk of severe COVID-19 infection and death.

According to an analysis1 conducted by the Foundation for Research on Equal Opportunity, which included data reported by May 22, 2020, an average of 42% of all COVID-19 deaths in the U.S. had occurred in nursing homes, assisted living and other long-term care facilities. This is beyond extraordinary, considering this group accounts for just 0.62% of the population.

Avik Roy, president of the Foundation for Research on Equal Opportunity, wrote an article2 about their findings in Forbes, pointing out that “42% could be an undercount,” since “states like New York exclude from their nursing home death tallies those who die in a hospital, even if they were originally infected in a long-term care facility.” Roy also testified before Congress June 17, 2020, about racial disparities in COVID-19 and the health care system.3

Why Do Some States Have Exaggerated Nursing Home Death Rates?

Disturbingly, some states have nursing home mortality rates that are significantly higher than the national average of 42%. Minnesota4 tops the list in this regard, with 81.4% of all COVID-19 deaths having occurred in nursing homes and assisted living facilities. Ohio comes in second, with a rate of 70%.

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As reported by Roy:5

“Another way to cut the data is to look at nursing home and assisted living facility deaths as a share of the population that lives in those facilities. On that basis, three states stand out in the negative direction: New Jersey, Massachusetts, and Connecticut.

In Massachusetts and Connecticut, COVID deaths per 10,000 nursing home and assisted living facility residents were 703 and 827, respectively. In New Jersey, nearly 10 percent of all long-term care facility residents — 954 in 10,000 — have died from the novel coronavirus.”

Thousands Have Died Unnecessarily

By and large, nursing homes are ill equipped to care for COVID-19 infected patients.6 They’re set up to care for elderly patients, whether they are generally healthy or have chronic health problems, but they’re not typically equipped to quarantine and care for people with highly infectious disease.

It’s logical to assume that comingling infected patients with noninfected ones in a nursing home would result in exaggerated death rates, as the elderly are far more prone to die from any infection, including the common cold.

March 17, 2020, Stanford epidemiologist John Ioannidis wrote an op-ed in STAT news,7 stating that “even some so-called mild or common-cold-type coronaviruses have been known for decades [to] have case fatality rates as high as 8% when they infect people in nursing homes.”

March 25, 2020, instructions from the New York Department of Health stated nursing homes were not allowed to deny admission or readmission of a COVID-19-positive patient. Nursing homes were even “prohibited from requiring a hospitalized resident who is determined medically stable to be tested for COVID-19 prior to admission or readmission.”

In other words, we should not be surprised that COVID-19 disproportionally affects older people. Most elderly are frail and have underlying health problems that make them more prone to death from any infection whatsoever. Since this is common knowledge, why did some states decide to violate federal guidelines and send COVID-19 patients back into nursing homes?

New York Governor in the Hot Seat

Democratic governor of New York, Andrew Cuomo, appears to have been among the most negligent in this regard. March 25, 2020, instructions from the New York Department of Health stated nursing homes were not allowed to deny admission or readmission of a COVID-19-positive patient.

Nursing homes were even “prohibited from requiring a hospitalized resident who is determined medically stable to be tested for COVID-19 prior to admission or readmission.” As reported by Roy:8

“As recently as April 23, Cuomo declared9 that nursing homes ‘don’t have a right to object’ to accepting elderly patients with active COVID infections. ‘That is the rule and that is the regulation and they have to comply with that.’

Only on May 10 — after the deaths of nearly 3,000 New York residents of nursing homes and assisted living facilities — did Cuomo stand down and partially rescind his order.”

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Cuomo’s order seems particularly dubious considering the Navy hospital ship USNS Comfort was docked in New York City harbor. The ship, which had a 1,000-bed capacity, was barely used.10 It departed NYC on April 30, having treated just 182 patients.11

A temporary hospital facility at the Javits Convention Center was also erected to deal with predicted hospital overflow. It had a capacity of 2,500, and closed May 1, 2020, having treated just over 1,000 patients.12 With all that available surplus space equipped for infectious disease control, why were COVID-19 patients forced back into nursing homes where they would pose a clear infection risk to other high-risk patients?

Several Governors Violated Federal Guidelines

June 22, 2020, Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services administrator Seema Verma condemned the actions of Cuomo and “other Democrat governors” — including Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf, New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy, Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer and California Gov. Gavin Newsom — who contradicted federal guidelines for nursing homes in their own state guidance.

“Our guidance was absolutely crystal clear,” Verma said in an exclusive interview with Breitbart reporter Matthew Boyle, adding:13

“Any insinuation to the contrary is woefully mistaken at best and dishonest at worst. We put out our guidance on March 13 … It says … ‘When should a nursing home accept a resident who is diagnosed with COVID-19? …

A nursing home can accept a resident diagnosed with COVID-19 and still under transmission-based precautions,’ which means if this person is infectious you have to take precautions.

It says ‘as long as the facility can follow CDC guidance for transmission-based precautions.’ It says: ‘If a nursing home cannot, it must wait until these precautions are discontinued,’ meaning if you are not able to care for this patient — somebody is still positive and you’re not equipped to care for the patient, then you shouldn’t accept the patient into your care.

That’s really important because longstanding discharge — when you’re discharging a patient from the hospital, longstanding guidelines require when you transfer them somewhere you transfer them to a place that can take care of their needs whether they’re going home or they’re going to a nursing home or some other facility …

I just don’t think we should ever put a nursing home in a situation or a patient where we force them to take a patient they are not prepared to care for. That not only jeopardizes the patient but it jeopardizes the health and safety of every single resident in that nursing home.”

Stark Differences Between Nursing Homes

While Cuomo has tried to deflect criticism for his devastating nursing home directive, the facts seem to speak for themselves. ProPublica published an investigation14 June 16, 2020, comparing a New York nursing home that followed Cuomo’s order with one that refused, opting to follow the federal guidelines instead. The difference is stark.

According to ProPublica,15 by June 18, the Diamond Hill nursing home — which followed Cuomo’s directive — had lost 18 residents to COVID-19, thanks to lack of isolation and inadequate infection control. Half of the staff (about 50 people) and 58 patients were also sickened.

In comparison, Van Rensselaer Manor, a 320-bed nursing home located in the same county as Diamond Hill, which refused to follow the state’s directive and did not admit any patient suspected of having COVID-19, did not have a single COVID-19 death. A similar trend has been observed in other areas. As reported by ProPublica:16

“New York was the only state in the nation that barred testing of those being placed or returning to nursing homes. In the weeks that followed the March 25 order, COVID-19 tore through New York state’s nursing facilities, killing more than 6,000 people — about 6% of its more than 100,000 nursing home residents …

In Florida, where such transfers were barred, just 1.6% of 73,000 nursing home residents died of the virus. California, after initially moving toward a policy like New York’s, quickly revised it. So far, it has lost 2% of its 103,000 nursing home residents.”

Florida Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis actually took the opposite position with regard to nursing homes. Not only were hospitals not permitted to discharge COVID-19 patients into nursing homes, but all nursing home workers were also required to be screened for symptoms before entering facilities each day, and ensuring availability of personal protective equipment was prioritized.

In California, Los Angeles County nursing homes are such a hotspot, and local leaders describe the situation as a “pandemic within a pandemic.”17 There, the fact that many of the facilities are unusually large appears to be part of the problem.

They also have a higher percentage of people of color — another high-risk group — both working and residing in these facilities. Low pay, poor quality of care and inferior infection control add to the problem.

COVID-19 Primarily Spread in Health Care Settings

Overall, COVID-19 transmission appears to be rampant within our health care system in general, not just in nursing homes. As noted in “20% of COVID Patients Caught Disease at Hospital,” British data suggests 1 in 5 COVID-19 patients actually contracted the disease at the hospital, while being treated for something else.

SARS-CoV-2 is being transmitted not only between patients but also from health care workers to patients. When you add it all together, nursing homes and nosocomial infections (i.e., infections originating in or acquired from a hospital18), plus the spread from workers to family members, likely account for a vast majority of all COVID-19 deaths.

Without doubt, if nursing homes don’t start getting this right, they eventually won’t have enough patients to stay in business. Unfortunately, rather than tackle the problem head-on and implement sensible safety measures across the board, the nursing home industry is instead seeking immunity from COVID-19 related lawsuits. I discussed this in “COVID-19 and Nursing Homes: The No. 1 Place Not to Be.” According to NBC News:19

“So far at least six states have provided explicit immunity from coronavirus lawsuits for nursing homes, and six more have granted some form of immunity to health care providers, which legal experts say could likely be interpreted to include nursing homes …

Of the states that have addressed nursing home liability as a response to the outbreak, two — Massachusetts and New York — have passed laws that explicitly immunize the facilities. Governors in Connecticut, Georgia, Michigan and New Jersey have issued executive orders that immunize facilities.”

In other words, New York not only issued rules requiring COVID-19 infected patients to be admitted into nursing homes, and barred them from testing, it also granted nursing homes immunity against lawsuits.

Talk about triple injury. Clearly, New York nursing home patients have gotten ill and died due to willfully negligent directives. On top of that, families have been deprived of due process and any legal recourse for these beyond-reprehensible criminal actions.

Congressional Members Demand Answers

While several states have failed to protect their most vulnerable, New York’s actions stand out as being particularly egregious and, so far, no sound justifications have been forthcoming.

June 15, 2020, House Minority Whip Steve Scalise, R-La., and four Republican members of the Select Subcommittee on the Coronavirus sent letters20 to the governors of New York, Michigan, California, New Jersey and Pennsylvania, demanding answers:21

“Why did they give those orders? Why did they go against the safety guidelines that were issued from CMS? And why won’t they give us all the disclosure of the patient information that they were giving and then all of a sudden when we started discovering this they clammed up and they’re not letting the public see what these numbers really are?” Scalise said.

Curiously, Select Subcommittee Democrats not only declined to join Republicans in the proposed nursing home oversight effort, they also refused Scalise’s call to “get to the bottom of what motivated these decisions” in New York, Michigan, California, New Jersey and Pennsylvania, and they did not sign the letters to the governors of those states.22

In a press release by Scalise, Select Subcommittee member Jackie Walorski (R-Ind.) is quoted saying:23

“Just about the worst possible thing to do is knowingly introduce coronavirus to the most vulnerable populations, yet that’s exactly what several states did by mandating nursing homes accept infected patients.

These misguided policies deserve close scrutiny, and the leaders who put them in place have a lot of tough questions to answer. Now is not the time to look the other way while placing blame for this crisis on states that are taking a measured, responsible approach to reopening our economy and protecting our communities.”

Sources and References

The Best of Joseph Mercolaarch for:

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Poll: If Election Were Held Today, Trump Would Beat Biden By A Lot

2020
Poll: If Election Were Held Today, Trump Would Beat Biden By A Lot
Despite recent polls showing Joe Biden with a commanding lead over Donald Trump, a new shock poll reveals Americans aren’t quite as eager to hand over their freedom as it has appeared.

By Elizabeth Vaughn
JULY 13, 2020

Despite the spate of recent polls showing former Vice President Joe Biden with a commanding lead over President Donald Trump, a new shock poll reveals Americans aren’t quite as eager to hand over their freedom as some have said.

According to RealClearPolitics’ latest aggregate of polls, Biden leads Trump by 8 points, 49.6 percent to 40.8. But a poll conducted for the Sunday Express by the Democracy Institute, a Washington-based think tank, reveals Americans aren’t buying the narrative the U.S. media are trying to advance.

Contrary to what the media would have us believe, 77 percent of the 1,500 likely voters surveyed do not view Mount Rushmore as a racist monument. When asked which of two phrases better fit their own thinking about race in America, 29 percent of participants indicated “Black Lives Matter,” and 71 percent marked “All Lives Matter.”

Most notably, rather than showing Biden with a sharp advantage, the survey forecasts a much tighter race, with each candidate receiving 47 percent of the national popular vote. Moreover, the Democracy Institute predicts that if the election were held today, Trump would win 309 electoral votes and Biden 229.

State-by-state data isn’t conclusive, considering the limited sample size, but the data indicates Trump is ahead in the battleground states of Florida, Iowa, Michigan, Minnesota, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin by a margin of 48 percent to 44 percent, with 8 percent undecided. The poll puts Wisconsin in the Biden column, while giving Trump Minnesota and New Hampshire.

Trump is considered less likable than Biden. When asked which candidate respondents would be more inclined to invite for a barbecue, 33 percent chose Trump, while 51 percent chose Biden. Sixteen percent said neither. When asked if they believe Biden is in the early stages of dementia, however, 55 percent answered yes, and 40 percent no.

As virtually all recent polls have found, the Democracy Institute identified the massive enthusiasm gap between the two candidates. Seventy-seven percent of Trump voters are very enthusiastic about their candidate, compared to only 43 percent of Biden supporters. That explains why 81 percent of Trump voters say their choice was “a positive vote for [their] candidate” rather than a “negative vote against his opponent.” For Biden, only 29 percent said it was a positive vote, while a whopping 71 percent said it was negative.

Notably, participants were asked if they were “comfortable with your relatives, friends, and coworkers knowing how you vote.” Only 29 percent of Trump voters said yes, versus 82 percent of Biden voters. This “shy” vote phenomenon was one of the reasons polls were so wrong in 2016. Many pro-Trumpers, wanting to avoid stigma, simply won’t tell a colleague or even a pollster whom they plan to vote for.

Fifty-two percent of those surveyed believe Trump will be reelected. While 4 percent of Trump supporters indicated their vote could change by Election Day, 12 percent of Biden backers said they could change their minds.

Other signs bode well for Trump. Although he had no serious competition for the 2020 Republican presidential nomination, his supporters have still turned out in large numbers throughout Republican primaries.

Just the News pointed out that in Pennsylvania, for example, 934,524 voted for Trump while only 914,904 voted for Biden. In Ohio, the candidates received 682,843 and 623,186 votes, respectively. In Florida, 86,000 more voted for Trump than for Biden. This pattern began early in the primary season, with Trump significantly outperforming past incumbent presidents in their equivalent primaries.

Moreover, not all of Bernie Sanders’s supporters will vote for Biden. As they did in 2016, some will stay home, and some will vote for Trump. NBC’s Shannon Pettypiece reported that “in 2016, about 216,000 Michigan, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin voters backed the Vermont senator in the spring and Trump in the fall, according to an analysis of exit polling — well over twice the president’s total margin of victory in those states, which were critical to his electoral vote win in the face of a decisive popular vote loss.”

After the Russian collusion hoax, the impeachment hoax, and everything in between, corporate media has lost a lot of credibility. Americans have recently watched MSNBC’s Ali Velshi tell viewers the Minneapolis riots were “not generally speaking unruly” as an out-of-control fire raged in the background. They saw the Washington governor and Seattle mayor condone an “autonomous zone” set up by anarchists in the heart of the state’s largest city, and they’ve witnessed the toppling of statues of great Americans throughout the country.

It should come as no surprise that most voters do not believe Mount Rushmore is a racist monument, that America is an irredeemably racist nation that must be burned down and rebuilt, nor that Biden’s victory is a foregone conclusion. Not everybody is ready to hop on board the socialism train. Thank God for that.

Note: This poll of 1,500 likely voters was conducted July 1-3 by the Democracy Institute. Thirty-eight percent of those surveyed were Democrats, 38 percent were Republicans, and 24 percent were independents, with a margin of error of +/- 2.5 percent and a confidence interval of 95 percent.

 

Elizabeth is a conservative political writer. Please view her work at redstate.com/elizabeth-vaughn. Email Elizabeth at Eliza.vaughn13@gmail.com.
 
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WUHAN VIRUS
How Hospitals’ Refusal To Prepare For A Pandemic Screwed America

While small business owners and hourly, low-skilled workers suffer from the economic effects of the coronavirus, the hospital industry is richer than ever.

By Vik Khanna
JULY 13, 2020

When the eventual COVID-19 post-mortem is conducted, the big culprit in the economic mayhem unleashed upon Americans is going to be the health-care industry, specifically hospitals.

When my wife and I attended a socially distanced evening happy hour at a neighbor’s home, the conversation turned quickly to COVID-19. I criticized our county’s heavy-handed response to the epidemic, and the hospital executive in the group solemnly intoned, “The shutdown saved the health-care industry … we could not care for large numbers of people all at once.” This person also went on to define a COVID-19 case as “any person who tests positive.”

A person who tests positive for COVID-19 but is asymptomatic is no more a “case” than any one of the 80 million American adults harboring latent (frequently harmless) human papillomavirus constitutes a case of a sexually transmitted disease. But this executive knew his script by heart, and spoke his lines earnestly. On the walk home, my wife posited that hospitals owed their communities a financial debt because of how much everyone sacrificed to protect them from their lack of readiness for a pandemic that their own leaders have talked about for more than 20 years.

Indeed, the COVID-19 economic cataclysm has disproportionately affected hourly workers, small business owners, and low-skilled workers who cannot plug in, turn on, and Zoom in from home. If the Fed is right and the downturn erased 6.5 percent from the gross domestic product, then Americans — particularly people who cannot afford it — have sacrificed their jobs, their businesses, and even their life savings for a trillion-dollar industry that wastes 30 cents of every dollar it receives.

What is owed to these people? Are they owed free care for the depression and anxiety they suffer? Will they obtain free counseling to treat the substance abuse and domestic violence resulting from the relentless emotional and financial strain? What about compensation for the homes and businesses destroyed by rioting all around the country, no doubt influenced by the loss of 20 million jobs so we could save the hospitals?

Thanks to President Obama, the hospital industry has never been richer. The profit margin at American acute care hospitals is 8 percent, according to a detailed report by the Center for American Progress. Hospital profits have increased by roughly 50 percent during the Obamacare years. The 8 percent margin exceeds profits for retail pharmacies, pharmacy benefit managers, and widely vilified health plans.

The margin pales compared to profits for device and drug makers, but their products have moved large amounts of care out of hospitals and into less expensive outpatient settings over the past three decades. The ripple effect was that hospitals gave lip service to things like pandemic planning, but robustly invested in cash cows like palatial birthing suites, sports medicine, joint replacement centers, and worthless disease management programs, to make up for heart and cancer care now done on a short-stay or ambulatory basis.

Hospitals already bleed American taxpayers for quite a lot. Half of U.S. hospitals are not-for-profit, at least in name (about equal proportions are government-owned or for-profit). While non-profits supposedly care for uninsured patients in exchange for their tax exemption, no one can say conclusively whether communities benefit.

Hospitals also guzzle from the public trough in who pays for care. Medicare and Medicaid pay for lmost 60 percent of hospital care. Another 30 to 35 percent of hospital income is from private health plans, which are tax-advantaged because employees who get health insurance through their employers pay premiums with pre-tax dollars. Additionally, 84 percent of people buying insurance on the exchanges are taxpayer-subsidized. Only a pittance of hospital revenues are self-pay patients or worker’s comp.

Despite all these public benefits, cost-shifting and outlandish charges are commonplace. Hospitals protest that Medicare and Medicaid pay them too little so they must artificially jack up prices and then negotiate discounts with insurers. In reality, many hospitals have no idea of the true costs of care; they just know what they can get people to pay. It’s a scam that would make the most deceptive used car salesman blush.

Still, it is not enough, and hospitals lobby for more at every turn. The industry spends tens of millions on lobbying, and its executives give more to Democrats than to Republicans. Hospitals were amongst the first groups in line when COVID-19 panic set in, getting $175 billion in emergency funding from the CARES Act bailout. Despite this unprecedented largesse, hospitals are already claiming that they are running out of personal protective equipment for staff. With another relief bill in the offing, hospitals will assuredly jostle to the front of the line.

Hospitals in every community who begged, nay, demanded that their local economies self-immolate on pain of state enforcement owe their communities both data and money. They should commit 6.5 percent of their revenues to their local areas for as long as it takes to return to something that resembles business as usual. Recycling their extravagant public benefits is the least hospitals can do. But they won’t.

The whole game is, of course, a political con. The hospital industry — indeed all of health care — is desperate to carry Joe Biden across the finish line to ensure a veritable IV drip of taxpayer money remains wide open. They will obscure or obfuscate any data to do it.

Take, for example, recent reports about surging hospital admissions in Texas. If one examines the details, the data shows hospital critical care capacity utilization rose to 15 percent from 10 percent, but this is shouted as “hospitalizations surge 50 percent!”

There is no reason other than politics for the failure to disclose the age, race, sex, and insurer for all patients hospitalized for COVID-19, as well as their length of stay and discharge status. Truly, it’s time to stop repeating the lie of hospital neediness and poverty, and reject using the cudgel of the state to enforce the mythology.

Vik Khanna is a retired health-care consultant and an alumnus of the Johns Hopkins University School of Hygiene and Public Health.

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