Category: Hope and Change


Netanyahu Speech Divides Dems

 

 

 

 

” Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Tuesday delivered a blistering rebuke of President Obama’s Iran strategy, warning in an address to Congress that the nuclear disarmament talks would “all but guarantee” a march to war.

  The fiery takedown of one of Obama’s top foreign policy priorities split leading Democrats, with some hailing the speech as a thoughtful warning from America’s closest ally in the Middle East and others condemning it as an underhanded attack on the White House.

  More than 50 Democrats boycotted the speech to protest both Netanyahu’s censure of Obama’s policies and Speaker John Boehner’s (R-Ohio) decision to invite the prime minister without first consulting the White House or Democratic leaders on Capitol Hill. 

  House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), who attended the speech, issued a scathing statement afterward.

“ I was near tears throughout the Prime Minister’s speech — saddened by the insult to the intelligence of the United States as part of the [negotiating] nations, and saddened by the condescension toward our knowledge of the threat posed by Iran and our broader commitment to preventing nuclear proliferation,” Pelosi said.”

 

 

    Pelosi is an anti-semite and an idiot . If she was in tears it was only because Prime Minister Netanyahu exhibited a level of diplomacy and leadership that is conspicuously absent among Ms Pelosi and her boy in the White House and it must have been terrifying for that contrast to have been so starkly displayed for all the world to see .

   Other dems , from districts more dependent on Jewish voters , saw things a little differently …

 

 

” That view wasn’t shared by other top Democrats, who praised Netanyahu’s message as both powerful and necessary amid a time of rising terrorist threats in the Middle East.

  Rep. Joseph Crowley (N.Y.), vice chairman of the House Democratic Caucus, said it was “a very strong speech” in defense of Israel’s position.

  Rep. Nita Lowey (D-N.Y.), ranking member of the Appropriations Committee, called it a “powerful, strong, factual, inspiring” address that “sent a very strong message to the entire world.”

  And Rep. Steve Israel (N.Y.), chairman of the Democratic Policy and Communications Committee, said it was “a brilliant speech” that did “a very effective job” warning Congress of the risks surrounding Obama’s Iran negotiations.

“ I was skeptical about the deal going in, I’m just as skeptical after the speech, and I think a significant number of my colleagues are where I am,” Rep. Israel said. “He changed minds. The question is: How many minds did he change?” “

 

 

    For future voting consideration , here is The Hill’s list of House and Senate democrats that boycotted the Prime Minister’s speech to Congress yesterday : 

 

 

House (48)

Rep. Karen Bass (Calif.)

Rep. Earl Blumenauer (Ore.)

Rep. Corrine Brown (Fla.)

Rep. G.K. Butterfield (N.C.)

Rep. Lois Capps (Calif.)

Rep. Andre Carson (Ind.)

Rep. Joaquin Castro (Texas)

Rep. Katherine Clark (Mass.)

Rep. Lacy Clay (Mo.) 

Rep. James Clyburn (S.C.)

Rep. Steve Cohen (Tenn.)

Rep. Bonnie Watson Coleman (D-N.J.)

Rep. John Conyers (Mich.)

Rep. Danny Davis (Ill.) 

Rep. Rosa DeLauro (Conn.) 

Rep. Peter DeFazio (Ore.)

Rep. Diana DeGette (Colo.)

Rep. Lloyd Doggett (Texas)

Rep. Donna Edwards (Md.)

Rep. Keith Ellison (Minn.)

Rep. Chaka Fattah (Pa.)

Rep. Marcia Fudge (Ohio)

Rep. Raúl Grijalva (Ariz.)

Rep. Luis Gutiérrez (Ill.)

Rep. Denny Heck (Wash.)

Rep. Ruben Hinojosa (Texas)

Rep. Eddie Bernice Johnson (Texas) 

Rep. Marcy Kaptur (Ohio)

Rep. Rick Larsen (Wash.)

Rep. Barbara Lee (Calif.)

Rep. John Lewis (Ga.)

Rep. Dave Loebsack (Iowa)

Rep. Zoe Lofgren (Calif.)

Rep. Betty McCollum (Minn.)

Rep. Jim McDermott (Wash.)

Reps. Jim McGovern (Mass.)

Rep. Jerry McNerney (Calif.)

Rep. Gregory Meeks (N.Y.)

Rep. Gwen Moore (Wis.)

Del. Eleanor Holmes Norton (D.C.)

Rep. Beto O’Rourke (Texas)

Rep. Chellie Pingree (Maine)

Rep. David Price (N.C.)

Rep. Cedric Richmond (La.)

Rep. Jan Schakowsky (Ill.)

Rep. Bennie Thompson (Miss.)

Rep. Mike Thompson (Calif.)

Rep. John Yarmuth (Ky.)

 

Senate (8)

Sen. Al Franken (Minn.)

Sen. Tim Kaine (Va.)

Sen. Patrick Leahy (Vt.)

Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.)

Sen. Brian Schatz (Hawaii)

Sen. Martin Heinrich (N.M.)

Sen. Elizabeth Warren (Mass.)

Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse (R.I.) 

 

 

   As the terrorist regime in Tehran inches ever closer to membership in the exclusive “nuclear club” remember these names , along with Barack Obama and that other incompetent fool John Kerry .

 

 

 

 

Read more at The Hill

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Top Clinton Aides Used Secret Email Accounts At State Dept.

 

 

 

 

 

” Hillary Clinton is defending her use of a private email address, hosted at ClintonEmail.com, to conduct official State Department business by claiming that her emails were captured by official @state.gov accounts that other agency employees were instructed to use to contact her. But according to a knowledgeable source, at least two other top Clinton aides also used private email accounts to conduct government business—placing their official communications outside the scope of federal record-keeping regulations.

“ Her top staffers used those Clinton email addresses” at the agency, said the source, who has worked with Clinton in the past. The source named two staffers in particular, Philippe Reines and Huma Abedin, who are said to have used private email addresses in the course of their agency duties. Reines served as deputy assistant secretary of state, and Abedin as Clinton’s deputy chief of staff. Both rank among Clinton’s most loyal confidantes, in and out of the State Department.”

 

 

     Read our stories on Hillary’s breaking of the law here and here and read more on her aides doing the same here at Gawker.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Hillary Clinton Used Personal Email At State Dept., Possibly Breaking Rules

 

 

 

 

 

” Hillary Rodham Clinton exclusively used a personal email account to conduct government business as secretary of state, State Department officials said, and may have violated federal requirements that officials’ correspondence be retained as part of the agency’s record.

  Mrs. Clinton did not have a government email address during her four-year tenure at the State Department. Her aides took no actions to have her personal emails preserved on department servers at the time, as required by the Federal Records Act.

  It was only two months ago, in response to a new State Department effort to comply with federal record-keeping practices, that Mrs. Clinton’s advisers reviewed tens of thousands of pages of her personal emails and decided which ones to turn over to the State Department. All told, 55,000 pages of emails were given to the department. Mrs. Clinton stepped down from the secretary’s post in early 2013.

  Her expansive use of the private account was alarming to current and former National Archives and Records Administration officials and government watchdogs, who called it a serious breach.”

  How could this secretive practice in any way be acceptable in a public official ? We fail to understand how this could be conceived as anything other than a blatant attempt to control what parts of her “official” business are made available for public view .

I can recall no instance in my time at the National Archives when a high-ranking official at an executive branch agency solely used a personal email account for the transaction of government business,” said Mr. Baron, who worked at the agency from 2000 to 2013.

  Regulations from the National Archives and Records Administration at the time required that any emails sent or received from personal accounts be preserved as part of the agency’s records.

  But Mrs. Clinton and her aides failed to do so.

  How many emails were in Mrs. Clinton’s account is not clear, and neither is the process her advisers used to determine which ones related to her work at the State Department before turning them over.”

   No matter how one looks at it , EVERY correspondence of EVERY government official , making allowances for certain matters of national security , are PUBLIC property , generated in the public interest and paid for with public funds and thus are required to be archived and saved for future investigation . 

   How is Hillary’s staff picking and choosing exactly what correspondence the taxpayers , historians , reporters and regulators have access to any different than shredding documents or Nixon’s missing Watergate tapes ? And this woman thinks she deserves to be president . Shame , shame , shame …

   It’s not like Mrs Clinton has a stellar record of forthrightness to fall back on . As a matter of fact her past history belies exactly the opposite what with her being fired from the Watergate investigation , Travelgate , Whitewater , Rose Law firm billing records etc. On the contrary the woman is the picture of obfuscation and secrecy , much like her old boss .

Read it all at the NY Times 

Record 290 Newcomers Join Forbes Billionaires List, Including Michael Jordan

 

 

 

 

 

” A record 290 newcomers joined the Forbes billionaires list in the last year as world markets defied international turmoil. While wars, diseases and currency crises made headlines, tycoons from every continent but Antarctica managed to mint new 10-figure fortunes.

  Nearly 25% of this year’s first-time billionaires hail from China, which produced a world-leading 71 newcomers. The United States came in second, with 57, followed by India, with 28, and Germany, with 23.

  The most famous rookie on the billionaires list? Michael Jordan, arguably the greatest basketball player of all time and indisputably the best-paid athlete of all time. Forbes first outed Jordan as a billionaire last June. Most of his cash comes from Nike payouts on his iconic brand. The Jordan brand grossed an estimated $2.25 billion in 2013, earning his Airness some $90 million. But his most valuable asset is his stake in the Charlotte Hornets, worth more than $500 million. When ex-Microsoft MSFT +0.07% CEO Steve Ballmer bought the Los Angeles Clippers for a stunning $2 billion, values of all NBA teams skyrocketed, creating three new billionaires. Jordan’s old boss Jerry Reinsdorf, owner of the Chicago Bulls, joined the list with a fortune of $1.3 billion, and Houston Rockets owner Leslie Alexander boosted his net worth to $1.6 billion.

  Aside from Jordan, the Silicon Valley kids are the stars of the incoming class. Garrett Camp, Travis Kalanick and Ryan Graves, the trio of early Uber members, have seen plenty of bad publicity over the last year. India temporarily banned their service, Spain shut it down entirely, and an Uber executive brought on a torrent of criticism when he suggested digging up dirt on the personal lives of journalists. None of the news has scared away investors, who have put over $4 billion into the company already, valuing it at $41.2 billion. Camp and Kalanick are now worth an estimated $5.3 billion, and first-employee Graves is worth $1.4 billion.

  Brian Chesky, Nathan Blecharczyk and Joe Gebbia, the three Airbnb creators, are also facing regulatory concerns, with their couch-crashing business coming up against legal issues in New York City. No matter: The company has 1 million listings for places to stay and is worth more than Hyatt Hotels. Each of the cofounders have $1.9 billion fortunes.

  The youngest newcomers to the list are Bobby Murphy and Evan Spiegel, the Snapchat founders who brazenly turned down $3 billion in cash from Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg for their disappearing photo app in 2013. Smart move: Snapchat is now reportedly getting offers that would value the company at $19 billion, and Forbes estimates Murphy and Spiegel are worth $1.5 billion apiece.”

 

 

    Read more at Forbes and see the entire list of new billionaires here . For some the Obama economy is booming , just not for us peons .

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Border Agent Brian Terry Statue Unveiling Ignored By Obama And Holder

 

 

 

 

 

 

” The unveiling of a new statue built to memorialize the murdered U.S. Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry on Saturday at the Homeland Security Department’s Brian Terry Border Patrol Station in Bisbee, Arizona, received minimal news coverage by the nation’s media except for the Fox News Channel, a news agency maligned and denigrated by President Barack Obama and his administration. In fact, no official from the Obama government attended the event and the sycophants in the legacy media made certain not to cover the story.

” That iconic image of Brian carrying his BordTac team member on his shoulders represents everything good about Brian, his strength, his determination, his attention to detail, his love for the Border Patrol and his love for his fellow agents,” Terry’s cousin, Robert Heyer, told FNC’s anchor Arthel Neville while standing next to the image of the hero cop.

  One police official noted that while President Obama made certain to appear with illegal aliens, promising them that he would punish any immigration enforcement agents or officers who did not follow his anti-deportation policy, he appeared to be indifferent to the deaths of law enforcement officers killed by illegal aliens or foreign gangs. “This is a leader who regularly disrespects law enforcement officers while being concerned about the treatment of terrorists, criminal aliens and lawbreakers,” said police officer Anna Colon.”

 

 

Read more

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Foreign Workers Fill Hundreds Of Sacramento-Area IT Jobs

 

 

 

 

” It’s nearly 8 p.m., and inside a state office building two dozen computer experts design and troubleshoot a system that will take and process millions of unemployment claims each year.

  It’s a $200 million Employment Development Department project, but with the exception of two managers, everyone inside the office is from outside of the U.S. They are employed by Deloitte, a major U.S. IT company hired by the state to create and manage its Unemployment Insurance Modernization project. The mostly Indian nationals are allowed to work here under a visa program called H-1B.

” It’s not any different than what illegal aliens have done to construction workers,” said Kim Berry, the webmaster of two sites that almost exclusively address the influx of foreign workers in the U.S. IT job market. “Why hire an American to do the roofing when you can have a truckload of illegals do it for $30 per day each?” “

 

   Read more about foreigners being hired to do the jobs from which Americans are laid off . Perhaps if a college education in America didn’t cost more than a house the US education system could produce the specialized workers domestically .

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Feds Raid Texas Political Meeting

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

” In a deliberate “show of force,” federal and local police forces raided a political meeting in Texas, fingerprinting and photographing all attendees as well as confiscating all cell phones and personal recording devices.

  Members of the Republic of Texas, a secession movement dedicated to restoring Texas as an independent constitutional republic, had gathered Feb. 14 in a Bryan, Texas, meeting hall along with public onlookers. They were debating issues of currency, international relations and celebrating the birthday of one of their oldest members. The group, which describes itself as “congenial and unimposing,” maintains a small working government, including official currency, congress and courts.

  According to MySanAntonio.com: “Minutes into the meeting a man among the onlookers stood and moved to open the hall door, letting in an armed and armored force of the Bryan Police Department, the Brazos County Sheriff’s Office, the Kerr County Sheriff’s Office, agents of the Texas district attorney, the Texas Rangers and the FBI.

“ In the end, at least 20 officers corralled, searched and fingerprinted all 60 meeting attendees, before seizing all cellphones and recording equipment in a Valentine’s Day 2015 raid on the Texas separatist group.” “

 

 

WorldNetDaily has the story of the crushing of political dissent by the State

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Senate Unanimously Welcomes Netanyahu To America

 

 

 

 

” The Senate on Thursday unanimously passed a resolution welcoming Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to America and endorsing his speech before a joint session of Congress.

  Critics of the Obama administration view the unanimous approval as a rebuke to the White House and Democrats, who have vowed to boycott Netanyahu’s address and work to counter his warnings about the dangers of a nuclear Iran.

  No Senate Democrats sponsored the measure, which attracted 50 Republican cosponsors. However, none attempted to block its passage, signaling that support for Israel and Netanyahu’s message has outweighed a pressure campaign by the Obama administration to sabotage the address.

“ The Senate warmly welcomes the Prime Minister of Israel, Benjamin Netanyahu, on his visit to the United States, which provides a timely opportunity to reinforce the United State-Israel relationship,” the resolution states.

  Congress “eagerly awaits the address of Prime Minister Netanyahu before a joint meeting of the United States Congress,” it continues.”

 

Read more

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

With White-Knuckle Grip, February’s Cold Clings To New York

 

 

 

 

” As it limps away, February will not be missed. With the average temperature for the month lingering around 24 degrees, some 11 degrees shy of normal by the National Weather Service’s calculation, this insult of a month looks as though it will clock in as the coldest recorded February in New York City since 1934. That is 81 years of weather. That is all the way back to the Depression, when there were so many more dire things to worry about than whether 7-Eleven had salt or whose turn it was to walk the dog.

  That year, February averaged 19.9 degrees and included the lowest daily reading ever registered for New York: On Feb. 9 the mercury sank to a ridiculous 15 degrees below zero. “

 

Read more at The New York Times

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Snow For All 50 States Forecast In Next 7 Days

 

GFS total snowfall forecast for the 7 days ending Friday morning, March 6, 2015.

 

 

” The unseasonable cold is expected to continue over much of the U.S., with some interruptions, and the latest GFS model forecast shows some snow for portions of all 50 states in the next seven days. (Graphic courtesy of Weatherbell.com, click for full-size). “

 

Read more from Dr Roy Spencer PhD

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Judge Jeanine Rips Obama Over Iran, Israel And ISIS

 

 

 

 

DNI: 2014 Was Deadliest Year For Terror Attacks In 45 Years

 

 

 

 

 

 

” Terrorist attacks and resulting deaths increased sharply last year, according to statistics made public Thursday by the director of national intelligence.

“ When the final counting is done, 2014 will have been the most lethal year for global terrorism in the 45 years such data has been compiled,” DNI Director James Clapper told Congress, adding that about half of all attacks took place in three states: Iraq, Pakistan, and Afghanistan.

  Last year from January to September, around 13,000 terror attacks were carried out, killing 31,000 people. By contrast, in 2013, 22,000 people were killed in terrorist violence in over 11,500 attacks, Clapper disclosed during a wide-ranging world threat briefing before the Senate Armed Services Committee.

  More than 3,400 foreign jihadists have joined the al Qaeda offshoot known as the Islamic State (IS) that is showing signs of establishing its own nation state, Clapper said.

  The DNI also testified that IS (also known as ISIL or ISIS) is expanding outside Iraq and Syria into the Arabian Peninsula, North Africa, and South Asia. The group also is planning terror attacks on Western interests and against Shiite Muslims, he said.”

 

 

    Contrast the Obama administration’s own DNI chief’s testimony with his boss’s statement of just a few months ago wherein “President Peace Prize” asserted that the “world has never been safer”. Read more .

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

IRS Watchdog Reveals Lois Lerner Missing Emails Now Subject Of Criminal Probe

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

” The IRS’s inspector general confirmed Thursday it is conducting a criminal investigation into how Lois G. Lerner’s emails disappeared, saying it took only two weeks for investigators to find hundreds of tapes the agency’s chief had told Congress were irretrievably destroyed.

  Investigators have already scoured 744 backup tapes and gleaned 32,774 unique emails, but just two weeks ago they found an additional 424 tapes that could contain even more Lerner emails, Deputy Inspector General Timothy P. Camus told the House Oversight Committee in a rare late-night hearing meant to look into the status of the investigation.

“There is potential criminal activity,” Mr. Camus said.”

    The accompanying video , while not directly addressing the latest news on the “destroyed” emails’ recent recovery , provides readers willing to spend the time watching it with a broad overview of the entire scandal .

    Washington Times has much more on the latest developments in what is finally turning into a criminal investigation of Obama’s IRS .

The Mises Institute Presents The Truth About “Net Neutrality” 

 

 

AF Branco

 

 

” Yet again, the government wants to fix a problem that doesn’t exist. According to the Obama administration and the FCC, it is necessary to regulate internet service providers so that they don’t interfere with people’s access to the web. The claim immediately prompts one to ask: Who is being denied access to the web?

  In the past twenty years, access to the internet has only become more widespread and service today is far faster for many people — including “ordinary” people — than it was twenty years ago, or even ten years ago. Today, broadband in Europe, where the internet is more tightly regulated, has less reach than it has in the United States.

  The administration’s plan is rather innocuously called “net neutrality,” but in fact it has nothing at all to do with neutrality and is just a scheme to vastly increase the federal government’s control over the internet.

What is Net Neutrality?

  We don’t know the details of the plan because the FCC refuses to let the taxpayers see the 300-page proposal before the FCC votes on it today. But, we do know a few things.

  Currently, ISPs are regulated by the FCC, but as an “information service” under the less restrictive rules of so-called Title I. But now, the FCC wants to regulate ISPs as utilities under the far more restrictive Title II restrictions. For a clue as to how cutting edge this idea is, remember this switch to Title II regulation would put ISPs into the same regulatory regime as Ma Bell under the Communications Act of 1934.

  So what does this mean for the FCC in practice? According to FCC Commissioner Ajit Pai, “It gives the FCC the power to micromanage virtually every aspect of how the Internet works.” More specifically, Gordon Crovitz at the Wall Street Journal writes:

  [With Net Netruality,] bureaucrats can review the fairness of Google’s search results, Facebook’s news feeds and news sites’ links to one another and to advertisers. BlackBerry is already lobbying the FCC to force Apple and Netflix to offer apps for BlackBerry’s unpopular phones. Bureaucrats will oversee peering, content-delivery networks and other parts of the interconnected network that enables everything from Netflix and YouTube to security drones and online surgery.

  The administration insists these measures are necessary because — even though there is no evidence that this has actually happened — it is possible that at some point in the future, internet service providers could restrict some content and apps on the internet. Thus, we are told, control of content should be handed over to the federal government to ensure that internet service providers are “neutral” when it comes to deciding what is on the internet and what is not.

Can Goods Be Allocated in a “Neutral” Way?

  The problem is that there is no such thing as “neutral” allocation of resources, whether done by government or the marketplace.

  In the marketplace, goods and services tend to be allocated according to those who demand the goods the most. Where demand is highest, prices are highest, so goods and services tend to go to where they are most demanded. This makes perfect sense, of course, and also reflects the inherent democracy of the markets. Where larger numbers of people put more resources is where more goods and services will head.

  It is this mechanism that drives the marketplaces for food, clothing, and a host of other products. Consequently, both food and clothing have become so plentiful that obesity is a major health problem and second-hand clothing stores, selling barely-worn discarded clothing, are a boom industry, even in affluent neighborhoods. Similarly, cell phones have only become more affordable and more widespread in recent decades.

  For industries where new firms may freely enter, and customers are not compelled to buy, companies or individuals that wish to make money must use their resources in ways that are freely demanded by others. Unless they have been granted monopoly power by government, no firm can simply ignore its customers. If they do, competing firms will enter the marketplace with other goods and services.

  Although goods allocated in this fashion are — according to the administration — not being allocated “neutrally,” the fact is that more people now have more service at higher speeds than was the case in the past. Furthermore, even if firms (or the government) attempted to allocate goods in a neutral manner, it would be impossible to do so, because neither society nor the physical world are neutral.

  In his recent interview on new neutrality, Peter Klein used the analogy of a grocery store. In modern-day grocery stores, suppliers of food and drink will negotiate with stores (using so-called “slotting allowances”) to have their goods advertised near the front of the store or have goods placed on store shelves at eye level.

  If government were to tell grocery stores to start being more “neutral” about where it places goods, we can see immediately that such a thing is impossible. After all, somebody’s goods have to be at eye level or near the front of the store. Who is to decide? A handful of government bureaucrats, or thousands of consumers who with their purchases control the success and failure of firms?

  In a similar way, bandwidth varies for various ISP clients depending on the infrastructure available, and the resources available to each client. And yet, in spite of the administration’s fear-mongering that ISPs will lock out clients of humble means, and the need to hand all bandwidth over to plutocrats, internet access continues to expand. And who can be surprised? Have grocery stores stopped carrying low-priced nutritious food such as bananas and oatmeal just because Nabisco Corp. pays for better product placement for its costly processed foods? Obviously not.

Who will Control the FCC?

  All goods need not be allocated in response to the human-choice-driven price mechanism of the marketplace. Goods and services can also be allocated by political means. That is, states, employing coercive means can seize goods and services and allocate them according to certain political goals and the goals of people in positions of political power. There is nothing “neutral” about this method of allocating resources.

  In the net neutrality debate, it’s almost risible that some are suggesting that the FCC will somehow necessarily work in the “public” interest. First of all, we can already see how the FCC regards the public with its refusal to make its own proposals public. Second, who will define who the “public” is? And finally, after identifying who the “public” is, how will the governing bodies of the FCC determine what the “public” wants?

  It’s a safe bet there will be no plebiscitary process, so what mechanism will be used? In practice, bureaucratic agencies respond to lobbying and political pressure like any other political institution. Those who can most afford to lobby and provide information to the FCC, however, will not be ordinary people who have the constraints of household budgets and lives to live in places other than Washington, DC office buildings. No, the general public will be essentially powerless because regulatory regimes diminish the market power of customers.

  Most of the interaction that FCC policymakers will have with the “public” will be through lobbyists working for the internet service providers, so what net neutrality does is turn the attention of the ISPs away from the consumers themselves and toward the regulatory agency. In the marketplace, a firm’s customers are the most important decision makers. But the more regulated an industry becomes, the more important the regulating agency becomes to the firm’s owners and managers.

  The natural outcome will be more “regulatory capture,” in which the institutions with the most at stake in a regulatory agency’s decisions end up controlling the agencies themselves. We see this all the time in the revolving door between legislators, regulators, and lobbyists. And you can also be sure that once this happens, the industry will close itself off to new innovative firms seeking to enter the marketplace. The regulatory agencies will ensure the health of the status quo providers at the cost of new entrepreneurs and new competitors.

Nor are such regulatory regimes even “efficient” in the mainstream use of the term. As economist Douglass North noted, regulatory regimes do not improve efficiency, but serve the interests of those with political power:

Institutions are not necessarily or even usually created to be socially efficient; rather they, or at least the formal rules, are created to serve the interests of those with the bargaining power to create new rules.

  So, if populists think net neutrality will somehow give “the people” greater voice in how bandwidth is allocated and ISPs function, they should think again.

Note: The views expressed on Mises.org are not necessarily those of the Mises Institute. “

Thanks to Ryan McMaken and the Mises Institute

Exclusive: Here Is The New Homeland Security Report On ‘Sovereign Citizen Extremist’ Violence

” Reason has obtained the federal government’s recent report on the sovereign citizens, a largely unorganized subculture whose elaborate legal theories say they do not have to follow most laws. Members of the movement are infamous for filing nuisance lawsuits, making their own drivers’ licenses and license plates, and sometimes attempting to form their own parallel institutions of government. Some of them are also prone to violence, and it is this hotheaded subgroup that is the subject of the report.

  The intelligence assessment, which the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) prepared in coordination with the Federal Bureau of Investigation, was circulated to law enforcement on February 5 but was not released to the public. (DHS did not respond to repeated requests from Reason for comment.) CNN revealed its existence last Friday, but the network quoted only a couple of lines from it and did not post the full document for everyone to see.

  We’ve posted it here. If you’ve seen the sensationalized coverage the sovereign citizens have been getting in some quarters—CNN announced its find with the front-page headline “Bigger threat than ISIS?”—the report’s rather measured contents might surprise you.

  The document declares on its first page that most sovereign citizens are nonviolent, and that it will focus only on the violent fringe within a fringe—the people it calls “sovereign citizen extremists,” or SCEs. It describes their violence as “sporadic,” and it does not expect its rate to rise, predicting instead that the violence will stay “at the same sporadic level” in 2015. The author or authors add that most of the violence consists of “unplanned, reactive” clashes with police officers, not preplanned attacks.

  When sovereigns do plan an attack in advance, the report suggests that this tends to be “in direct response to an ongoing personal grievance, such as an arrest or court order.” It argues that sovereign citizens are unlikely to pick a symbolic target—like, say, the Murrah Building in Oklahoma City—and that in this way they are distinct from the killers who attacked two randomly selected cops in Las Vegas last year or three TSA officers at an L.A. airport the year before that. While some police assessments of the movement may give officers the impression that anyone asserting their rights or videotaping an encounter might be a sovereign citizen, the DHS report draws its distinctions fairly carefully.”

   Read Reason’s entire analysis here 

Obama: ‘Consequences’ for ICE Officials Who Don’t Follow Executive Amnesty

 

 

 

 

 

” President Obama warned workers at the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement: implement executive amnesty, or else. He made the comments in a town hall event on immigration on MSNBC.

“ If somebody’s working for ICE … and they don’t follow the policy, there’s going to be consequences to it.” “

 

Continue reading

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Republicans Fear Net Neutrality Plan Could Lead To UN Internet Powers

 

 

 

 

” The U.S. government’s plan to enact strong net neutrality regulations could embolden authoritarian regimes like China and Russia to seize more power over the Internet through the United Nations, a key Senate Republican warned Wednesday.

  Senate Commerce Committee Chairman John Thune of South Dakota argued that by claiming more authority over Internet access for net neutrality, the Federal Communications Commission will undermine the ability of the U.S. to push back against international plots to control the Internet and censor content.

  Countries like Russia already have made it clear that they want the International Telecommunications Union or another United Nations body to have more power over the Internet, Thune said.

” It seems like reclassifying broadband, as the administration is doing, is losing a valuable argument,” Thune said at his panel’s hearing on Internet governance. “How do you prevent ITU involvement when you’re pushing to reclassify the Internet under Title II of the Communications Act, and is everyone aware of that inherent contradiction?”

  On Thursday, the FCC is set to vote on net neutrality regulations that would declare Internet access a “telecommunications service” under Title II. Advocates, including President Obama, argue that the move is the only way the FCC can enact rules that will hold up to legal challenges in court. The rules aim to prevent Internet providers from acting as “gatekeepers” and controlling what content users can access online. 

  David Gross, a partner at the law firm Riley Wein who advises tech and telecom companies, agreed with Thune’s warning.

  The U.S. has consistently argued that the Internet is not a “telecommunication service” and therefore outside of the authority of the International Telecommunications Union, he explained. “If they were to find that Internet service is a telecommunications service, that would undoubtedly make the job of my successors much more complicated,” Gross, a former ambassador to the ITU during the George W. Bush administration, said.

  A top Obama administration official dismissed the comparison between net neutrality and UN control of the Internet.”

   Read the rest at National Journal and see how confident in the Obama administration’s assurances you are . It’s not like they’ve ever lied to us .

Pentagon Benghazi Documents Expose Administration Lies

 

 

 

 

 

” Scandal: Heavily redacted documents show a military response had been drafted in answer to the Benghazi terrorist attack by a group supporting “an Islamic state” in Libya. It also showed the attack wasn’t inflamed by a video.

  It’s taken Judicial Watch two years to obtain from the most transparent administration in history the 486 pages of documents pertaining to the military response to the Sept. 11, 2012, terrorist attack on our Benghazi diplomatic mission. They confirm what we have said repeatedly, that the Benghazi tale spun by President Obama and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton was indeed a lie agreed upon.

  Despite heavy redaction, they show that the real “JV team” — a term applied by Obama to the deadly Islamic State — resides in the White House. The papers reveal, for instance, that at one point the military relied on a photo from a Twitter post to determine the status of Ambassador Christopher Stevens, who was killed with Foreign Service Information Management Officer Sean Smith in the first of two attacks.

  Several hours later — hours during which a rescue or support attempt arguably could have been made — terrorists killed CIA contractors and former Navy SEALs Ty Woods and Glen Doherty.”

 

Lest we forget …

 

 

 

 

 

Read on

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 Photos Reveal Just How Meager US Students’ Meals Are Compared To Even The Most Cash-Strapped Of Nations

 

 

What is it? School lunches in the United States stand in stark contrast to the wholesome and in some cases even decadent meals served to kids in other markedly less fortunate nations

Michelle’s American Slop

” Mouthwatering photos of school lunches served around the world reveal even children in Ukraine, Estonia and Greece are treated to delectable meals each day. School children in America, meanwhile, aren’t nearly so lucky.

  Whereas a kid in France might be treated to a juicy steak and a hunk of brie, the richest country in the world’s youths are more likely to receive unidentified meat served alongside little more than a starch like white pasta, fries or a roll.

  The contrasts between America’s school meals and those in far less fortunate economies are stark and suggest Michelle Obama’s push for more healthful lunches nationwide may not be enough.”

Then we have the French school lunch …

Brie, green beans, carrot, rare steak and pudding of kiwi fruit and apples is served in French schools 

” Brie, green beans, carrot, rare steak and pudding of kiwi fruit and apples is served in French schools”

” The first new school lunch standards championed by Michelle Obama have been phased in over the last several school years.

  In addition to whole grain requirements, the rules set fat, calorie, sugar and sodium limits on foods in the lunch line and beyond. While many schools have had success putting the rules in place, others have said they are too restrictive and costly.

  Backlash against the rules have spawned a wave of social media photos along with the tag #thanksMichelleObama. If these pictures are any indication, schools have responded to the rules by cutting down on portions to reduce fat and calories rather than by using potentially more costly ingredients. 

  Meanwhile, the widely different meals from Spain, Ukraine, Greece, South Korea, Brazil, France, Finland and Italy are all fresh and wholesome, with fish, steak and vegetables featuring prominently.”

    Well , you say , France has plenty of money considering their sky high tax rates … This is so but even near bankrupt countries such as Greece feed their children better than the prisoners of our public school system …

Greek school lunches feature baked chicken with orzo, stuffed grape leaves, salad of cucumber and tomatoes, yogurt with pomegranate seeds and two oranges

” Greek school lunches feature baked chicken with orzo, stuffed grape leaves, salad of cucumber and tomatoes, yogurt with pomegranate seeds and two oranges “

Then there is Michelle’s idea of a healthy lunch …

Thanks Michelle Obama? New school lunch rules backed by FLOTUS have students nationwide tweeting '#thanksMichelleObama' along with photos of meals like this

    Skeptics would be well-advised to visit the Daily Mail and see just what the children of the world are fed in such diverse countries as the Ukraine , Brazil , South Korea , Spain , Japan and more … For crying out loud , even Cuban children eat better than American students , look here:

Rice, a chicken croquette, a piece of taro root and yellow pea soup is the school lunch in Old Havana, Cuba

” Rice, a chicken croquette, a piece of taro root and yellow pea soup is the school lunch in Old Havana, Cuba”

    Read it and weep as the foreign menus make your mouth water even as the American cuisine does the same to your eyes … For shame America , for shame …

U.S. Homeownership Rate Hits 20-Year Low

 

 

 

” The homeownership rate in the United States dropped to a 20-year low of 64.5 percent in 2014, according to new data released by the Census Bureau.

  The homeownership rate is the percentage of households that own the home in which they live. “It is computed,” says the Census Bureau, “by dividing the number of households that are owners by the total number of occupied households.”

  The last time the annual homeownership rate was lower than 64.5 percent was in 1994, when it was 64.0%, according to Table 15 in the Census Bureau’s “Housing Vacancies and Homeownership” data.”

 

 

   That “Change We Can Believe In © ” just keeps on giving … continue reading  , but to be honest this is more a reflection of a market correction back towards the sanity of less “free money” demanded of the banks by Statist programs designed to allow unqualified people to borrow so maybe it’s an inadvertent good thing .

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Eleventh-Hour Drama For Net Neutrality

 

These three political appointees hold the key to the future of the internet … WTF ?

 

 

 

” A Democrat on the Federal Communications Commission wants to see changes that could narrow the scope of new net neutrality rules set for a vote on Thursday.

  Mignon Clyburn, one of three Democrats on the FCC, has asked Chairman Tom Wheeler to roll back some of his provisions before the full commission votes on them, FCC officials said.

  The request — which Wheeler has yet to respond to — puts the chairman in the awkward position of having to either roll back his proposals, or defend the tough rules and convince Clyburn to back down.

  It’s an ironic spot for Wheeler, who for months was considered to be favoring weaker rules than those pushed for by his fellow Democrats, before he reversed himself and backed tougher restrictions on Internet service providers.

  Clyburn’s objections complicate the highly anticipated vote and add an extra bit of drama to the already high tensions on the five-member commission.  

  Wheeler will need the votes of both Clyburn and Democratic Commissioner Jessica Rosenworcel to pass the rules, since the two Republicans on the commission are expected to vote against anything he proposes.  

  Clyburn’s changes would leave in place the central and most controversial component of Wheeler’s rules — the notion that broadband Internet service should be reclassified so that it can be treated as a telecommunications service under Title II of the Communications Act, similar to utilities like phone lines.

  The full text of the rules will not be revealed to the public until after the FCC’s vote on Thursday morning.”

 

The Hill has more

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

ISIS Jihadists Kidnap 90 Christians In Syria

 

 

 

 

 

” Jihadists from the Islamic State group have kidnapped at least 90 Assyrian Christians in northeast Syria, a monitor said on Wednesday.

  The abductions took place on Tuesday after IS seized two Assyrian villages from Kurdish forces in the province of Hassakeh, according to the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights.

  The Britain-based monitor had no details on the missing Assyrians, who were taken from two villages — Tal Shamiram and Tal Hermuz — after they were attacked by IS.

  IS has destroyed churches and Christian shrines in Syria, and demanded that Christians living under its rule pay a tax known as jizya.”

 

 

Read more of the poor , misguided ISIS members’ search for gainful employment here 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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