Views on the News
Views on the News*
May 6, 2017
Americans are fighting the Second Civil War. The deep chasm that has opened up between the left, not liberals, the left, and the rest of the country is so wide and so unbridgeable that there is no other way to describe what is happening. Thus far, unlike the First Civil War, this war is not violent. Unfortunately, there is now reason to believe that violence is coming. Left-wing thugs engage in violence and threats of violence with utter impunity. They shut down speakers at colleges; block highways, bridges and airport terminals; take over college buildings and offices; occupy state capitals; and terrorize individuals at their homes. Left-wing mobs are almost never stopped, arrested or punished. Colleges do nothing to stop them, and civil authorities do nothing to stop them on campuses or anywhere else. Police are reduced to spectators as they watch left-wing gangs loot stores, smash business and car windows, and even take over state capitals (as in Madison, Wisconsin). It's beginning to dawn on many Americans that mayors, police chiefs and college presidents have no interest in stopping this violence. Left-wing officials sympathize with the lawbreakers, and the police, who rarely sympathize with thugs of any ideology, are ordered to do nothing by their emasculated police chiefs. Given the abdication by all these authorities of their role to protect the public, some members of the public will inevitably decide that they will protect themselves and others. This ability of the left to get away with violence is one of the gravest threats to American society in its modern history. Since the Civil War, there have been only two comparable eruptions of mob violence that authorities allowed. One was when white mobs lynched blacks. The other was the rioting by blacks, such as the Los Angeles riots 25 years ago, and the recent riots in Ferguson, Missouri, and Baltimore, Maryland. The left can now shut down places and events just by threatening violence. Meanwhile, the press lies about alleged white supremacists in President Trump's administration and an alleged massive surge in anti-Semitism in order to do what the left has done since Lenin: blame others while it alone organizes violence. If college presidents, mayors and police chiefs won't stop left-wing mobs, other Americans will. Then the left-wing media will enter hysteria mode with reports that "right-wing fascists" are violently attacking America, and that's when mayors and college presidents will finally order in the police.
(“Will the Second Civil War Turn Violent?” by Dennis Prager dated May 2, 2017 published by Town Hall at https://townhall.com/columnists/dennisprager/2017/05/02/will-the-second-civil-war-turn-violent-n2320819 )
In the fallout of President Donald J. Trump’s historic victory, the Democrat Party is in a state of panic. They suffered record-breaking defeats across the country, and are still trying to clean up the mess caused by Hillary Clinton, a candidate who explored uncharted depths of political corruption. One of the Democrats’ biggest problems is how their grassroots base was ignored by elites who used a complicated process of “Super-delegates” to steal the primary election from Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders. Now, there’s new leadership at the Democrat National Committee. Chairman Tom Perez on a “Unity Tour” has committed himself to bringing back the “Bernie Bros” and embracing a far-left agenda. All the marketing will not save them from the looming disaster known as Elizabeth Warren. The Massachusetts senator, who was once paid more than $400,000 to teach a single class at Harvard, has made a name for herself as a shrill defender of income redistribution. Now, she is quickly emerging as the most likely 2020 presidential candidate. In the United State Senate, Warren has been a factory of bad ideas. She wants to raise corporate-tax rates, which scares companies out of the country. She protests crony capitalism in the financial markets, yet supports the Import-Export bank. She wants to lower student interest rates which only encourages more irresponsible borrowing. She supports taxpayer-funded, late-term abortion. She wants to raise the minimum wage to $22 per hour and have the IRS prepare your taxes. The list of her bad big-government ideas is endless. When it comes to healthcare, Warren is a staunch defender of Obamacare. One of the more unusual ways Warren is keeping healthcare expenses high involves regulating over-the-counter hearing aids. Warren has introduced a special-interest backed bill to increase FDA regulations for over-the-counter hearing devices. In practice, imposing new regulations on existing over-the-counter devices would restrict access to auditory health care. The bill would drastically disrupt the doctor-patient relationship. In short, Warren’s bill does two things: drastically increases FDA regulations, and eliminates states’ rights to govern their Medicaid systems as they see fit. Warren is so intent on pushing a bill on behalf of big corporations, because she is taking the Hillary Clinton-route by signaling to major donors that she is willing to sell-out to the highest bidder. It seems like bizarro world on Capitol Hill, but this is a classic example of why the process of repealing and replacing Obamacare is so complicated. Americans deserve more market innovation to provide quality health coverage at lower prices.
(“Elizabeth Warren: A Factory of Bad Ideas” by Ken Blackwell dated April 29, 2017 published by Town Hall at https://townhall.com/columnists/kenblackwell/2017/04/29/elizabeth-warren-a-factory-of-bad-ideas-n2319833 )
Republicans never have been particularly good at the culture war. Sure, they won battles here and there, but even most of those victories turned into losses through court decisions anyway. Now we’re in the midst of the ultimate battle in the culture war – the battle for the First Amendment – and if Republicans don’t recognize this is a war and fight like their existence depends on victory, nothing else will matter. It’s easy to dismiss the violent mobs in Berkeley, Portland, Washington, D.C., and everywhere else as a “fringe element” because there are relatively few of them and their actions are fringe. The fringe of the political left is the tail wagging the progressive dog called the Democrat Party. The most popular Democrat in the party is a slouching, cranky, unkempt septuagenarian who publicly and proudly refuses to call himself a Democrat. Senator Bernie Sanders of Vermont happily criticized the party when he toured the country with its new chairman on a so-called “unity tour.” When Bernie lost the nomination to Hillary Clinton, he did the bare minimum to get on board with the Democrat Party’s establishment. He made appearances, but he kept the organization he’d pulled together to himself, much like President Obama did with his campaign. Obama rolled what he’d created for himself into Organizing for Action, essentially a campaign infrastructure that exists to create and protect his legacy. Sanders took his campaign and created “Our Revolution,” an organization dedicated to moving the Democratic Party even further to the left. Bernie must revel in this position since he correctly understands the nomination process was rigged in favor of Clinton, but for Democrats it’s a horribly short-sighted strategy. Uniting those sides is the best hope for Democrats, but Bernie’s fringe isn’t interested in moving toward the party, so the party is moving toward it. This radical element is becoming the mainstream of the Democrat Party. Sanders and Senator Elizabeth Warren, the second-most-popular Democrat, both have been critical of the violence and intimidation by this mob, but not until they were put on the spot about it. They weren’t moved by principle to do it because, in principle, they agree with the mob. This small, violent rabble now steers the ship of the Democrat Party. The party, its members, and the academic institutions that helped create them are afraid to speak out against them or their fascistic demands. Don’t be fooled: Small groups of violent leftists have done significant damage to countries in the past. The Bolsheviks were a tiny group of determined thugs who took over Russia. The Nazis were a distant second in the 1932 election, yet a year later, through threats and violence, they were in power. On paper, Mao and his allies should have been defeated easily by Chaing Kai-shek and his much larger forces and western supporters, but it went the other way. History has shown a small group of people, especially when they’re willing to oppress others and commit violence against their fellow countrymen, can attain power. This dance is made easier when both sides sit silently, one out of fear, the other of impotence. That’s the problem: Democrats won’t speak out forcefully against their violent fringe because they’re convinced they need them and are busy trying to co-opt and appease them. Republicans won’t for reasons I simply can’t explain. Maybe Republicans think the American people see what’s happening and they need only to stay out of the way of the Democrats’ circular firing squad. Someone has to stand up forcefully to them. Someone has to stand up for the Constitution. You’d think elected officials who’d sworn an oath to preserve, protect and defend it would speak up when a part of what makes this country fundamentally different than any other on the planet is under assault. But they haven’t. It’s easier to ignore unpleasant things, but that’s not leadership. The left-wing fringe is at war with our fundamental rights, with an essential part of what it means to be an American. They’re winning, mostly because everyone else is afraid to fight. Refusing to fight back might make you feel superior; it’s also the most effective way to lose. We’re in an ideological war over what kind of country we’re going to be going forward, and our elected officials are standing silently as the First Amendment is trampled in the name of “tolerance.”
(“This is War” by Derek Hunter dated April 30, 2017 published by Town Hall at https://townhall.com/columnists/derekhunter/2017/04/30/this-is-war-n2320187 )
According to Karl Max, socialism is the transition stage to communism. Communist countries such as the former Soviet Union and China under Mao, never claimed that they had achieved Communism. Instead, Lenin, Stalin, Mao, and their Communist cadre, committed crimes against humanity, which caused a total of 80-100 million death in the 20th century, under the banner of socialism. It's also important to remember that the full name of Nazi is National-Socialist German Workers' Party. Socialism and communism are similar shades of darkness and we need to condemn both of them in the same sentence. In the meantime, we ought to commemorate victims of communism/socialism on the same day. Professor Ilya Somin wants to designate May Day as the "Victims of Communism Day," or more accurately the "Victims of Communism/Socialism Day." In 1966, when Chairman Mao launched his most brutal political campaign: the Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution. Millions of Chinese people’s lives were turned upside down, and this movement, unlike any other of Mao’s political campaigns, hit young people especially hard. Mao declared “young people should go to the countryside and learn from the poor peasants.” From 1966 to 1968, nearly all high school students and young adults were forced out of cities. Some were sent to the countryside; many were sent to the most remote and most under-developed areas of China. The communists wanted to sever family ties so people could devote themselves 100% to the Party’s causes. Transitioning from a city girl to a peasant wasn’t an easy process. Chinese farm work was very primitive. Local communist leaders didn't care if one worked hard or not. Anyone who showed up would earn a day’s work points, which were tied to a food ration. It turned out that the daily food ration wasn’t enough even for a girl, so many suffered famine edema. After Mao’s passing in 1976, the youth who had been forced to the countryside started returning to the city. Many young girls of this generation who went to either the countryside or to the northwest wildness were raped, starved, or even murdered. Many of them never saw their families again. If these girls lived in a free society, they could be teachers, doctors, dancers, or any professionals they wanted to be. A dictator’s decree altered millions’ lives forever, and they were China’s lost generation.
(“Victims of Communism / Socialism Day” by Helen Raleigh dated May 1, 2017 published by Town Hall at https://townhall.com/columnists/helenraleigh/2017/05/01/victims-of-communismsocialism-day-n2320467 )
Progressives and liberals, in their pursuit of "diversity," smugly assert that no matter what differences exist among people from various cultures, nations, and regions of the world, the similarities are more important because in the end, people care about the same basic thing: making a better life for themselves, their children, and their families. This appeal to emotion deliberately ignores a crucial fact: large numbers of people from many other cultures, nations, and regions either reject outright, oppose, or are indifferent to individual rights; specifically, the unalienable rights of individuals, set forth in the Declaration of Independence, upon which the United States was founded and built. From the very beginning of U.S. history, the acceptance of these individual rights has been the core element of American culture. In 1965, the federal government adopted Progressive-liberal ideology on immigration; Congress passed and the president signed a law that amended the Immigration and Nationality Act. This law resulted in a surge of immigration, and began to change America's cultural makeup. Since 1965, the vast majority of legal immigrants (more than 80 percent) have come from cultures, nations, and regions that have traditions not of individual rights but of collectivism or authoritarian rule. Overall, the federal government has been permitting about one million people a year to legally immigrate. (These statistics on immigration do not include illegal immigrants, widely estimated at eleven million, the vast majority of whom also have come from cultures and nations with traditions of collectivism or authoritarian rule.) Many experts on history and politics have demonstrated that cultural, national, and regional factors play a decisive role in human behavior, and that people with a collectivist or authoritarian heritage are far more likely to support violations of individual rights by a government, or authoritarian conduct by a government, or both, for the purpose of securing government-invented group rights and other collectivist policies. Cultures and civilizations are fatally weakened from within by a rejection of the principles upon which they were built, and then after being so weakened, are finished off by outsiders who "submerge" (i.e., inundate) them. For the last half-century, Progressives and liberals have been pushing the United States down this same road to ruin. Nevertheless, some people claim that none of these lessons from history apply to America, because the United States is a nation of immigrants, and they argue that concerns expressed in prior centuries about immigration turned out to be unfounded. However, circumstances today are not the same as circumstances during earlier periods of immigration from Europe. American society itself expected immigrants to assimilate; specifically, to learn and to adopt the elements of American culture, including the principles set forth in the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution. But during recent decades, in the name of diversity, Progressives, liberals, and many advocacy organizations (including Hispanic advocacy organizations such as La Raza, and Muslim advocacy organizations such as CAIR) have been encouraging immigrants to keep their native cultures. Progressives and liberals aggressively insist that diversity is a good thing, while denouncing as hateful anyone who favors taking a stronger position on immigration or refugees. Moreover, even Republican politicians, when framing their own arguments, often weaken their own case by timidly refusing to counter the Progressive-liberal dogma on diversity. Ultimately, the diversity issue, when framed correctly, is one primarily of rights. Governments do not exist to pursue ideological concepts or utopian fantasies such as diversity; governments exist to secure the rights of the people. Indeed, the United States was created on this principle, which is enshrined in the Declaration of Independence. The federal government's policies on immigration and refugees, though, not only undermine the securing of the unalienable rights of the nation's citizens, but also pose a serious threat to the nation's future.
(“The ‘Diversity’ Trap” by Paul Pauker dated May 2, 2017 published by American Thinker at http://www.americanthinker.com/articles/2017/05/the_diversity_trap.html )
One of the painful realities of our times is how long a political lie can survive, even after having been disproved years ago, or even generations ago. A classic example is the phrase "tax cuts for the rich," which is loudly proclaimed by opponents, whenever there is a proposal to reduce tax rates. The current proposal to reduce federal tax rates has revived this phrase, which was disproved by facts, as far back as the 1920s, and by now should be called "tax lies for the gullible." A simple check of the facts shows how lower tax rates would lead to higher tax revenues. One hard fact is that the revenues collected from federal income taxes during every year of the Reagan administration were higher than the revenues collected from federal income taxes during any year of any previous administration. This because tax RATES and tax REVENUES are two different things. Tax rates and tax revenues can move in either the same direction or in opposite directions, depending on how the economy responds. There were in fact rising deficits in the 1980s, but that was due to spending that outran even the rising tax revenues. Congress does the spending, and there is no amount of money that Congress cannot outspend. As for "the rich," higher-income taxpayers paid more tax revenues into the federal treasury under the lower tax rates than they had under the previous higher tax rates. That happened not only during the Reagan administration, but also during the Coolidge administration and the Kennedy administration before Reagan, and under the G.W. Bush administration after Reagan. All these administrations cut tax rates and received higher tax revenues than before. More than that, "the rich" not only paid higher total tax revenues after the so-called "tax cuts for the rich," they also paid a higher percentage of all tax revenues afterwards.
(“Tax Cuts for the Rich?” by Thomas Sowell dated May 1, 2017 published by Town Hall at https://townhall.com/columnists/thomassowell/2017/05/01/tax-cuts-for-the-rich-n2320748 )
There is so much published each week that unless you search for it, you will miss important breaking news. I try to package the best of this information into my “Views on the News” each Saturday morning. No updates have been made this week to the issue sections.