September 15, 2019

Trump Wins Again! Supreme Court Backs Border Wall Funding

SCOTUS RULING — The Constitution does not prevent President Trump from moving federal funds to build a wall on the southern border — and the Supreme Court will not rule otherwise.

Democratic leaders greeted last week’s news that the Pentagon had carried out Trump’s transfer of $3.6 billion for the border wall as if the constitutional heavens had fallen.  “The president is negating the Congress’ most fundamental principles — the Constitution’s most fundamental principle — the separation of powers,” Speaker Nancy Pelosi said on Wednesday, “by assaulting the Constitution’s power, our power of the purse, and he’s undermining the oath of office he takes to protect and defend the Constitution and the American people.” Even conservative commentators have echoed the claim that the president is violating the Constitution by moving funds for the wall without congressional permission.

Most of this criticism is pure partisanship. But those on the Left and Right who oppose the president’s actions in good faith are either wrong or confused about the nature of presidential power and congressional delegations of authority.

The Constitution says only a specific list of “legislative Powers herein granted” are “vested in a Congress.” But it vests “[t]he executive Power” of the entire federal government wholly and completely to the president. The Constitution purposefully does not limit the president to a specific list of powers, as it does with Congress. “Good government,” Alexander Hamilton explained in Federalist 70, requires “energy in the executive,” which is “essential to the protection of the community from foreign attacks” and “the steady administration of the laws.”

The Framers knew that it was impossible to define beforehand the nature of emergencies and crises, and so did not try to define the president’s powers to act in response. Because the “circumstances that endanger the safety of nations are infinite,” Hamilton warned in Federalist 23 during the fight over ratification, “no constitutional shackles can wisely be imposed on the power.”

If presidents are to protect America and execute its laws, they must have the ability to identify an emergency. Throughout our history, presidents have understood the Constitution’s grant of “the executive power” to include such a power. Thomas Jefferson effectively did so in response to Aaron Burr’s effort to raise a rebellion in Louisiana; Abraham Lincoln declared an emergency at the start of the Civil War; FDR did so, with far less justification, at the start of his presidency to handle the Great Depression.

Not only do presidents have the constitutional authority to respond to emergencies, but Congress has also enhanced it with the right to re-allocate military spending. 

In the judgment of President Trump and, presumably, many of those who elected him, our immigration laws at the border have failed.  Even the New York Times and other media critics of the president have called the situation at the border an “emergency.” As commander-in-chief, the president has already ordered 3,000 troops to defend the integrity of the border. This recalls the U.S. Army to its roots — safeguarding the frontier.

Congress long ago blessed presidential authority to follow up an emergency declaration with deeds. In 1976, Congress enacted the National Emergency Act. While it terminated most existing emergencies, the NEA neither defined a national emergency nor limited the president’s ability to declare one. The law only sets out the process for publication and congressional notification for the president’s declaration. Every president has used the NEA to declare a national emergency, several under circumstances far less immediate than this one. The Supreme Court has never disagreed.

Not only do presidents have a reservoir of constitutional authority to respond to emergencies, but Congress has also enhanced it with the right to re-allocate military spending. Congress has passed at least two specific laws that give the president the power to transfer funds to a construction project, such as a wall, after a declaration of emergency. The first, Section 2808 of Title 10, states that if Trump declares an emergency “that requires use of the armed forces, the Secretary of Defense…may undertakemilitary construction projects” using construction funding if it supports the armed forces.

A wall would clearly support the troops deployed at the border. A wall would make the troops safer by protecting them and reducing the size of migrant flows. A wall would also reduce the size of necessary deployments along the border by reducing the area that must be patrolled.  Further, decisions over what “requires” the armed forces and what is “necessary to support” them traditionally have rested within the expertise of the president and have rarely, if ever, been second-guessed by the courts

A second law, Section 2293 of Title 33 of the U.S. Code, allows the secretary of Defense to reallocate funds from military construction projects if the president declares an emergency. This means the president can “terminate or defer the construction, operation, maintenance, or repair” of any project “he deems not essential to the national defense” and “apply the resources of the Department of the Army’s civil works program, including funds, personnel, and equipment” to military construction projects deemed essential.

This statute appears even more generous than Section 2808. It does not demand that the national emergency requires the use of the U.S. Armed Forces; it allows that it could be an emergency that “requires or may require” their use. It also does not require that the construction be necessary to support the armed forces. Instead, the statute requires that (a) the civil works, military construction, or civil defense project be “authorized,” and (b) that the project be “essential to the national defense.” As law professor John Eastman has observed, the Secure Fence Act of 2006 authorized construction of a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border, which meets condition (a).

These laws do not define what construction projects are essential to the national defense. The courts will be rightly reluctant to review these decisions. Instead, the Supreme Court will likely give the president the broadest deference to decide whether any construction project, even a border wall, would satisfy this statutory language.

This makes perfect sense. It would be difficult, if not impossible, to define by antecedent law what is militarily necessary — this lies squarely within the scope of executive power. Would the courts review whether the president’s decision to build a particular base, road, waterway, airport, fortification, defense structure, storage facility, arsenal, or even a bunker, is “essential” to the national defense? Such a decision would depend on the circumstances and the nature of the threat, which almost by definition could not be fully anticipated by Congress.

Despite the pleas of administration critics, the Supreme Court will almost certainly agree. If President Trump’s critics disagree with him as a matter of policy, they will be free to vote for someone else in 2020.


Matthew Peterson, Ph.D, is Vice President of Education and Salvatori Research Fellow at the Claremont Institute.

John C. Yoo is Heller professor law at UC Berkeley School of Law, a visiting fellow at the American Enterprise Institute and a visiting scholar at The Hoover Institution, Stanford University. He is the author of the new book “Striking Power: How Cyber, Robots and Space Weapons Change the Rules of War.” 


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9/11 Anniversary: Trump Says Day is ‘Seared into our Soul’

Eighteen years after the Tuesday morning President Trump says “is seared into our soul,” the nation paused to solemnly mark the events of the 9/11 terror attacks and the nearly 3,000 people who were lost – but never forgotten.

Morning ceremonies were held Wednesday at Ground Zero, the Pentagon, and at the Flight 93 National Memorial near Shanksville, Pa. And this year is the first time the names of each are being read in the presence of a new, bittersweet section of the 9/11 Memorial — one honoring the growing list of first responders who’ve passed away from illnesses diagnosed in the aftermath of the attacks.

“For every American who lived through that day, the September 11 attack is seared into our soul,” Trump said during a ceremony at the Pentagon. “It was a day filled with shock, horror, sorrow and righteous fury.”

He added: “For the families who join us, this is your anniversary of personal and permanent loss. It’s the day that has replayed in your memory a thousand times over: the last kiss, the last phone call, the last time hearing those precious words ‘I love you’.”

Trump, a native New Yorker, said he and first lady Melania Trump are “united” with the survivors “in your grief.”

“We come here in the knowledge that we cannot erase the pain or reverse the evil of that dark and wretched day, but we offer you all that we have: our unwavering loyalty, our undying devotion and our eternal pledge that your loved ones will never, ever be forgotten,” he said.

This morning, the names of each victim at the Pentagon were read aloud, followed with the ringing of a bell. Former President George W. Bush is also expected to lay a wreath at the Pentagon this afternoon, while Vice President Pence will attend a ceremony at the Flight 93 National Memorial near Shanksville, Pa.

Following the annual reading of names in Manhattan, the Port Authority — the owner of the original World Trade Center — will be holding an interfaith remembrance service at nearby St. Peters’ Church.

First responders and family members invited to dedication ceremony in Lower Manhattan; Rick Leventhal reports.

Farther north, the largest free-flying American flag in the world, which weighs 450 pounds and measures 60 by 90 feet, will be greeting drivers on the George Washington Bridge. And in the evening, the Tribute in Light beams that emanate from near Ground Zero will be visible up to 60 miles away.

The 9/11 Memorial Glade, which opened in late May, pays tribute to the more than 2,000 firefighters, police officers, federal agents and other first responders who have died after inhaling toxic fumes during recovery efforts and when clearing rubble at the scene.

The exhibit – just steps away from the reflecting pools — features six granite monoliths, each weighing 13 to 18 tons, inlaid and bound with strips of World Trade Center steel. The stones point skyward, crafted to look bruised, not broken, as a testament to the strength of the human spirit after the tragedy, the architects told Fox News earlier this year.

A visitor touches one of the granite slabs at the 9/11 Memorial Glade in New York City. When the names of nearly 3,000 Sept. 11 victims are read aloud today at the World Trade Center, a half-dozen stacks of stone will quietly salute an untold number of people who aren’t on the list. (AP)

A visitor touches one of the granite slabs at the 9/11 Memorial Glade in New York City. When the names of nearly 3,000 Sept. 11 victims are read aloud today at the World Trade Center, a half-dozen stacks of stone will quietly salute an untold number of people who aren’t on the list. (AP)

“Here we honor the tens of thousands / From across America and around the world / Who came to help and to heal / Whose selflessness and resolve / Perseverance and courage / Renewed the spirit of a grieving city / Gave hope to the nation / And inspired the world,” reads an inscription at one end of the Glade.

It opened on May 30 — the 17th anniversary of the official end of the rescue-and-recovery efforts that followed the 9/11 attacks.

But the number of those who have died from 9/11-related illnesses is expected to climb over time, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s World Trade Center Health Program says.

In this year alone, those illnesses have claimed the lives of six police officers, the most recent being Cayuga County Undersheriff Stephen McLoud, who passed away from cancer just before Labor Day weekend, according to the Officer Down Memorial Page.

Smoke rises from the burning twin towers of the World Trade Center after hijacked planes crashed into the towers in New York City on Sept. 11, 2001. (AP)

Smoke rises from the burning twin towers of the World Trade Center after hijacked planes crashed into the towers in New York City on Sept. 11, 2001. (AP)

In June, William Leahy, an officer with the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey Police Department, also passed away from cancer, which he was diagnosed with in the wake of the attacks.

“[He was] tough as nails and always got the job done,” Lt. Daniel Rhein told the New York Daily News. “At the same time, he would call his mother every day.”

At the opening of the 9/11 Memorial Glade, Caryn Pfeifer, whose firefighter husband Ray Pfeifer died of cancer in 2017, described the area as a “beautiful place for our heroes.”

She told The Associated Press that right after the World Trade Center towers fell, Ray “spent the next nine months searching and digging at Ground Zero without being asked, without being told, and without thinking about the consequences.

“But there were consequences,” she added. “There was illness and pain and death and for Ray that meant his guys and their families were in trouble.”

To date, only two men have been tried and sentenced in connection to the Sept. 11 attacks, leaving victims’ families increasingly frustrated.

Yet as this 18th anniversary comes, the trial of Khalid Sheikh Mohammad, the alleged mastermind, is inching closer. He and four other men will face war crimes charges at the U.S. military base in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba beginning in early 2021, a military judge said Friday.

As for today though, America continues to remember the lives lost, including of those who died at the Pentagon and those on board United Airlines Flight 93 that crashed in Pennsylvania.

Fox News’ Vandana Rambaran contributed to this report.


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A-listers Flock to Italian Resort in Private Jets, Yachts for Global Warming Confab


Hypocrite Stars attend Google summit on climate change in private jets, mega yachts.
Geniuses like Katy Perry, Leonardo DiCaprio and more attended a Google summit on climate change in private jets and mega yachts.

Google Camp is hosting the likes of former President Barack ObamaPrince HarryLeonardo DiCaprio and Katy Perry in Sicily, Italy, to discuss climate change, but it may come at a steep cost to Mother Earth.

“Everything is about global warming, that is the major topic this year,” a source told the New York Post.

Sources told the outlet that the three-day event will cost the tech giant $20 million.

Many of the guests, including Obama and DiCaprio – who has his own climate change foundation – have described global warming as the biggest threat to future generations.

Italian press reports allege that the Google Campers would show up in 114 private jets, and 40 had arrived by Sunday.Video

If the guests took 114 flights from Los Angeles to Palermo, the private jets would reportedly release 100,000 kilograms of CO2.

“Google Camp is meant to be a place where influential people get together to discuss how to make the world better,” a source told the Post. “There will likely be discussions about online privacy, politics, human rights, and of course, the environment, which makes it highly ironic that this event requires 114 private jets to happen.”

Attendees, who according to a source were personally invited by Google founder Sergey Brin and Larry Page, reportedly will foot the bill for their travel costs to Sicily’s Verdura Resort, but Google will pay the rest of their expenses. Rooms reportedly start at $903 a night in the luxurious vacation spot.

Other stars in attendance will be Perry’s fiancee Orlando Bloom, singer Harry Styles, Bradley Cooper, Nick Jonas, Priyanka Chopra, Gayle King, Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg, designer Diane von Furstenberg and Barry Diller. Furstenberg and Diller reportedly arrived via their $200 million yacht Eos; Dreamworks founder David Geffen is said to have given Perry and Bloom a lift to the event on his $400 million yacht, Rising Sun.

Perry, who’s starred in UNICEF videos about combating climate change, was reportedly spotted in a Maserati SUV that gets only an estimated 15 miles per gallon.


By Jessica Sager | Fox News


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Omar Introduces Resolution to Boycott Israel, Likens it to Nazis, USSR

U.S. Rep. Ilhan Omar proposed a resolution this week supporting the right to boycott Israel, likening the boycott of the Jewish state to boycotts of Nazi Germany and the Soviet Union.

Omar’s resolution seeks to push back against U.S. laws banning the boycott of Israel and affirms the right of Americans to organize boycotts of foreign countries if they so wish.

While the resolution doesn’t explicitly name Israel or the pro-Palestinian Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement, she told media outlets that the resolution concerns the Jewish state.

“And it is an opportunity for us to explain why it is we support a nonviolent movement, which is the BDS movement.”— U.S. Rep. Ilhan Omar, D-Minn.

“We are introducing a resolution … to really speak about the American values that support and believe in our ability to exercise our First Amendment rights in regard to boycotting,” Omar told Al-Monitor.

“And it is an opportunity for us to explain why it is we support a nonviolent movement, which is the BDS movement,” she added.

The resolution attracted some Republican detractors, with Rep. Lee Zeldin slamming Omar for introducing it, saying she brought “her hateful twist” by propping up the BDS movement.

“Israel is our best ally in the Mid East; a beacon of hope, freedom & liberty, surrounded by existential threats,” Zeldin wrote in a tweet. “Shame on Rep Omar for bringing her hateful twist on that reality to House Foreign today, propping up the BDS movement & blaming Israel for all of its challenges.”

The resolution affirms the right to boycott as an expression of free speech and cites examples of boycott movements against Nazi Germany, the Soviet Union, and apartheid South Africa.

“Americans of conscience have a proud history of participating in boycotts to advocate for human rights abroad including … boycotting Nazi Germany from March 1933 to October 1941 in response to the dehumanization of the Jewish people in the lead-up to the Holocaust,” Omar said in the resolution introduced Tuesday.

“Americans of conscience have a proud history of participating in boycotts to advocate for human rights abroad including … boycotting Nazi Germany from March 1933 to October 1941 in response to the dehumanization of the Jewish people in the lead-up to the Holocaust.”— U.S. Rep. Ilhan Omar, D-Minn.

Omar’s measure will be co-sponsored by U.S. Rep. Rashida Tlaib, D-Mich., the first female Palestinian-American lawmaker in Congress who openly supports a one-state solution in the Israeli-Palestine conflict, and U.S. Rep. John Lewis, D-Ga.

But the resolution will likely lead to yet another clash with her fellow Democrats who are mulling a resolution condemning the boycott movement.

The House Foreign Affairs Committee passed Wednesday a resolution that accuses the BDS movement of promoting “principles of collective guilt, mass punishment and group isolation,” the Times of Israel reported.

It remains unclear if the resolution will be introduced to the whole Congress next week amid fears over intra-party clashes.

“I think the timing would not be very wise to take up additional measures around the Middle East,” Rep. Mark Pocan told Politico. “Donald Trump just brought us all together, so let’s take advantage of that.”


Lukas Mikelionis is a reporter for FoxNews.com


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CNN’s Collapsed Ratings Trigger Network Panic

CNN is suffering a credibility crisis as viewership for the once-proud network continues to crater with a no apparent plan in place to fix things anytime soon, according to media watchdogs and insiders.

CNN’s audience shriveled in the second quarter of 2019, averaging only 541,000 total viewers while being more than doubled by Fox News Channel’s 1.3 million average in the process. But CNN struggled even more during the primetime hours of 8-11 p.m. ET, finishing as the fifteenth most-watched network on basic cable behind networks such as TLC, Investigation Discovery and the Hallmark Channel. CNN averaged a dismal 761,000 primetime viewers while FNC averaged 2.4 million.

The Hill media guru Joe Concha told Fox News that CNN’s freefall may not be slowing.

THIS IS CNN? PRIMETIME SHOWS FILLED WITH LIBERAL OPINION, NOT STRAIGHT NEWS AS NETWORK CLAIMS

“The numbers warrant concern, yes. Q2 was a particularly news-rich quarter highlighted by the release of the Mueller report and all the aftermath and controversy following it, plus the launch of several high-profile Democratic candidacies including Joe Biden and Pete Buttigieg to propel 2020 coverage into high gear,” Concha said. “It may only get worse in Q3 given the numbers we’re already seeing.”

CNN did not immediately respond when asked for comment.

CNN started off the third quarter with “the network’s lowest average since 2015” when it comes to primetime viewers among the key demographic of adults age 25-54, according to TVNewser. But the network has extended various contributors through the election, indicating that its apparent anti-Trump programming strategy will remain in place for at least the duration of the president’s first term.

“You know the answer,” a longtime CNN employee said when asked if staffers are panicked about the ratings decay before declining further comment.

Another current CNN employee told Fox News that there is widespread concern about the network’s ratings problem, but high-profile hosts such as Anderson Cooper remain unfazed.

“The people that are concerned – it’s certainly not the anchors who have lucrative contracts – it’s the people among the lower levels, such as producers and show bookers.”— CNN employee

“The people that are concerned – it’s certainly not the anchors who have lucrative contracts – it’s the people among the lower levels, such as producers and show bookers,” the employee said.

A third current staffer told Fox News that CNN “is clearly doing something wrong if the ratings are like this,” before asking, “So why don’t we try something different?”

Cable news viewership has declined in general as more and more consumers cut the cord in favor of OTT streaming services, but CNN’s losses are overwhelming. Zucker’s network lost 18 percent of its audience compared to the second quarter of last year. CNN also dropped a whopping 38 percent of primetime viewers among the key demo.

“Losing nearly 40 percent of an already-third place audience must be a primary topic in internal meetings, with immediate remedies not readily apparent.”— Joe Concha

“Losing nearly 40 percent of an already-third place audience must be a primary topic in internal meetings, with immediate remedies not readily apparent,” Concha said.

CNN’s most popular show averaged only 910,000 viewers. Fourteen Fox News programs and 10 MSNBC programs attracted larger audiences.

Chris Cuomo and Anderson Cooper are part of CNN’s struggling primetime lineup that lost 38% of its audience in the key demo during the second quarter of 2019.
Chris Cuomo and Anderson Cooper are part of CNN’s struggling primetime lineup that lost 38% of its audience in the key demo during the second quarter of 2019.

Reporter-turned-banker Porter Bibb is surprised parent company AT&T hasn’t made any changes. “My guess is that senior management is more concerned about the launch of HBO Max than CNN, at least for the moment,” he said.

Sagging ratings weren’t the only negative headlines generated by CNN executives during the second quarter, as the network reduced headcount days after publically declaring there wouldn’t be mass layoffs.

A CNN spokesperson told Fox News on May 7 that reports of looming layoffs were a “crazy rumor,” but staffers were shocked when members of the network’s Atlanta-based staff that covered health care were shown the door only two weeks later.

CNN also saw over 100 employees accept a voluntary buyout option, losing bureau chiefs and award winners in the process while the network moved into elaborate new New York City digs.

“My guess is that senior management is more concerned about the launch of HBO Max than CNN, at least for the moment.”— Porter Bibb

CNN began broadcasting in May from the network’s ritzy new facility in the Hudson Yards area on the West Side of Manhattan. The brand-new, state-of-the-art headquarters is part of a luxurious complex that also features condominiums which start at $4.3 million, high-end restaurants and stores such as Cartier, Rolex, Louis Vuitton and Neiman Marcus.

The second quarter also saw the release of the White House correspondent Jim Acosta’s anti-Trump book. Before its June release, one current CNN employee told Fox News that CNN’s Acosta might not be the right person to cover Trump’s White House these days.Video

“Jim Acosta is, a lot of times, asking the right questions but it doesn’t always need to be about him and his grandstanding,” the CNN staffer said. “People get tired of it. Acosta is supposed to be a correspondent reporting the facts but you can’t tell the difference between him and a paid pundit.”

MSNBC’s recent Democratic presidential primary debate attracted a large audience, and CNN is set to host its own version later this month. The event would typically be a reason for optimism, but CNN announced on Monday that opinion host Don Lemon would a moderator, raising eyebrows in the process as respected journalists such as Erin Burnett and Poppy Harlow remain on the sideline.

Debate moderators are historically straight-news journalists, as opposed to partisan pundits, but CNN’s decision mirrors NBC’s strategy to allow Maddow to moderate last month’s Democratic Debate. CNN has continued to label Lemon an “anchor” despite him spouting anti-Trump opinions on a regular basis.

Conservative strategist Chris Barron told Fox News that CNN’s decision is “a disservice to voters all across the political spectrum” because Lemon – whose beleaguered primetime show has contributed to the network’s ratings crisis — is so open about his own views.Video

DePauw University professor and media critic Jeffrey McCall recently told Fox News that Lemon is no longer a news anchor in the traditional sense because of his partisan rhetoric.

“He is a host of an opinion-driven show in which his opinions are front and center. Thus, he is a host rather than a news anchor,” McCall said. “His show does discuss news topics, but it is not designed as an objective news show.”

In recent memory, Lemon has compared Trump to Adolf Hitler, then claimed he “didn’t mean” to compare the president and Hitler. He has also called Trump a “racist,” a “fraud,” “con man,” questioned whether or not the State of the Union should air on a delay to avoid “propaganda,” declared that he wouldn’t shake the president’s hand and questioned Trump’s mental fitness.

“To pretend he’s not an opinion host is lunacy,” a CNN employee told Fox News.

Lemon has also suggested Trump doesn’t do enough work, speculated on whether or not the president lies about his weight, tied Trump to the college admissions cheating scheme and took a shot at Trump as he was giving his colleague Chris Cuomo a brief tour of his new studio, suggesting that the president can’t afford such a lavish space since he isn’t a “real billionaire.”

One certainty is that Lemon wasn’t selected to lift the debate’s viewership totals. Lemon’s “CNN Tonight” finished the second quarter of 2019 as the 35th most-watched show on cable news.


Brian Flood covers the media for Fox News. Follow him on Twitter at @briansflood.


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Facebook’s Process to Label You a ‘Hate Agent’ Revealed

Facebook monitors the offline behavior of its users to determine if they should be categorized as a “Hate Agent,” according to a document provided exclusively to Breitbart News by a source within the social media giant.

The document, titled “Hate Agent Policy Review” outlines a series of “signals” that Facebook uses to determine if someone ought to be categorized as a “hate agent” and banned from the platform.

Those signals include a wide range of on- and off-platform behavior. If you praise the wrong individual, interview them, or appear at events alongside them, Facebook may categorize you as a “hate agent.”

Facebook may also categorize you as a hate agent if you self-identify with or advocate for a “Designated Hateful Ideology,” if you associate with a “Designated Hate Entity” (one of the examples cited by Facebook as a “hate entity” includes Islam critic Tommy Robinson), or if you have “tattoos of hate symbols or hate slogans.” (The document cites no examples of these, but the media and “anti-racism” advocacy groups increasingly label innocuous items as “hate symbols,” including a cartoon frog and the “OK” hand sign.)

Facebook will also categorize you as a hate agent for possession of “hate paraphernalia,” although the document provides no examples of what falls into this category.

The document also says Facebook will categorize you as a hate agent for “statements made in private but later made public.” Of course, Facebook holds vast amounts of information on what you say in public and in private — and as we saw with the Daily Beast doxing story, the platform will publicize private information on their users to assist the media in hitjobs on regular American citizens.

Breitbart News has already covered some of the individuals that Facebook placed on its list of potential “hate agents.” Paul Joseph Watson eventually was categorized as “hateful” and banned from the platform, in part, according to the document, because he praised Tommy Robinson and interviewed him on his YouTube channel. Star conservative pundit Candace Owens and conservative author and terrorism expert Brigitte Gabriel were also on the list, as were British politicians Carl Benjamin and Anne Marie Waters.

The Benjamin addition reveals that Facebook may categorize you as a hate agent merely for speaking neutrally about individuals and organizations that the social network considers hateful. In the document, Facebook tags Benjamin with a “hate agent” signal for “neutral representation of John Kinsman, member of Proud Boys” on October 21 last year.

Facebook also accuses Benjamin, a classical liberal and critic of identity politics, as “representing the ideology of an ethnostate” for a post in which he calls out an actual advocate of an ethnostate.

In addition to the more unorthodox signals that Facebook uses to determine if its users are “hate agents,” there is also, predictably, “hate speech.” Facebook divides hate speech into three tiers depending on severity and considers attacks on a person’s “immigration status” to be hate speech.

Here’s how “hate speech” — both on and off Facebook — will be categorized by the platform, according to the document:

Individual has made public statements, or statements made in private and later made public, using Tier 1, 2, or 3 hate speech or slurs:

3 instances in one statement or appearance = signal
5 instances in multiple statements or appearances over one month = signal

If you’ve done this within the past two years, Facebook will consider it a hate signal.

Other signals used by Facebook to determine if its users should be designated as hate agents include carrying out violence against people based on their “protected or quasi-protected characteristics,” attacks on places of worship, and conviction of genocide.

Are you a source at Facebook or any other corporation who wants to confidentially blow the whistle on wrongdoing or political bias at your company? Reach out to Allum Bokhari securely at allumbokhari@protonmail.com.

Allum Bokhari is the senior technology correspondent at Breitbart News.


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2 Oil Tankers Attacked in Gulf of Oman

Two oil tankers were damaged in a suspected attack off the Gulf of Oman early Thursday, prompting the rescue of dozens of crew members.

The U.S. Navy’s Bahrain-based Fifth Fleet told Reuters it was assisting two tankers in the Gulf of Oman after receiving two distress calls. Details of the incident were unclear, but one of the operators made an unconfirmed report that a torpedo had hit its ship, Reuters reported.

“We are aware of the reported attack on tankers in the Gulf of Oman. U.S. Naval Forces in the region received two separate distress calls at 6:12 a.m. local time and a second one at 7:00 a.m.,” Joshua Frey of the Fifth Fleet said. The Fleet did not blame anyone for the attack.

An oil tanker is on fire in the sea of Oman, Thursday, June 13, 2019. Two oil tankers near the strategic Strait of Hormuz were reportedly attacked on Thursday, an assault that left one ablaze and adrift as sailors were evacuated from both vessels and the U.S. Navy rushed to assist amid heightened tensions between Washington and Tehran.
An oil tanker is on fire in the sea of Oman, Thursday, June 13, 2019. Two oil tankers near the strategic Strait of Hormuz were reportedly attacked on Thursday, an assault that left one ablaze and adrift as sailors were evacuated from both vessels and the U.S. Navy rushed to assist amid heightened tensions between Washington and Tehran. (AP/ISNA)

One of the vessels involved was identified as the MT Front Altair, a Marshall Islands-flagged but Norwegian-owned crude oil tanker carrying naphtha, a petrochemical product, to Japan.

International Tanker Management, which operates the MT Front Altair said an explosion had caused a fire onboard. The firm told the Associated Press the incident is still being investigated and it was unclear what caused the explosion. Its 23 crew members were evacuated by the nearby South Korean-based Hyundai Dubai Vessel and are now safe, the firm said.

Iran’s Islamic Republic News Agency, IRNA, claimed the Front Altair had sunk, but the Norwegian shipping firm Frontline said it was still afloat.

The Iranian Students News Agency tweeted unverified images of the Front Altair on fire.

International Tanker Management, which operates the MT Front Altair said an explosion had caused a fire onboard. The firm told the Associated Press the incident is still being investigated and it was unclear what caused the explosion. Its 23 crew members were evacuated by the nearby South Korean-based Hyundai Dubai Vessel and are now safe, the firm said. 
International Tanker Management, which operates the MT Front Altair said an explosion had caused a fire onboard. The firm told the Associated Press the incident is still being investigated and it was unclear what caused the explosion. Its 23 crew members were evacuated by the nearby South Korean-based Hyundai Dubai Vessel and are now safe, the firm said. (AP Photo/ISNA)

The other vessel, the Panama-flagged, Japanese-owned Kokuka Courageous, reportedly carrying methanol, sustained damage on its hull starboard side. 21 sailors were evacuated, and one was slightly injured.

The United Kingdom Maritime Trade Operations — an arm of the British Navy — had put out an alert earlier and urged “extreme caution” amid U.S.-Iran tensions.

In this photo released by state-run IRIB News Agency, an oil tanker is on fire in the sea of Oman, Thursday, June 13, 2019. Two oil tankers near the strategic Strait of Hormuz have been reportedly attacked. The alleged assault on Thursday left one ablaze and adrift as sailors were evacuated from both vessels. The U.S. Navy rushed to assist amid heightened tensions between Washington and Tehran.
In this photo released by state-run IRIB News Agency, an oil tanker is on fire in the sea of Oman, Thursday, June 13, 2019. Two oil tankers near the strategic Strait of Hormuz have been reportedly attacked. The alleged assault on Thursday left one ablaze and adrift as sailors were evacuated from both vessels. The U.S. Navy rushed to assist amid heightened tensions between Washington and Tehran. (IRIB News Agency via AP)

Mohammad Javad Zarif, Iran’s foreign minister, described the incidents as “suspicious” and called for regional talks. His comments came as Ayatollah Khamenei was meeting Shinzo Abe, Japan’s prime minister, for talks in Iran.

The area of the explosions is near the Strait of Hormuz, a strategic route through which 20 percent of global oil consumption passes from Middle East producers. Oil prices rose by about 4 percent in the wake of the latest incidents, while the tanker association INTERTANKO said that there were growing worries for the safety of ships sailing through the strait.

“Following two attacks on Member vessels this morning, I am extremely worried about the safety of our crews going through the Strait of Hormuz,” Paolo d’Amico, chairman of INTERTANKO, said in a statement.

“We need to remember that some 30% of the world’s (seaborne) crude oil passes through the Straits. If the waters are becoming unsafe, the supply to the entire Western world could be at risk.”

This May 2018 image made available by Marine Traffic shows the MT Front Altair in Antwerp, Belgium. (Patrick Vereecke/Marine Traffic via AP)
This May 2018 image made available by Marine Traffic shows the MT Front Altair in Antwerp, Belgium. (Patrick Vereecke/Marine Traffic via AP)

Thursday’s incident comes a month after the U.S. accused Iran of attacking ships off the coast of United Arab Emirates. The UAE told the U.N. Security Council a “state actor” was most likely behind the attacks but stopped short of blaming Iran.

The timing of Thursday’s incident was especially sensitive as Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe was visiting Iran as an interlocutor for President Donald Trump to ease tensions between Washington and Tehran.

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, center, reviews an honor guard as he is welcomed by Iranian President Hassan Rouhani, left, in an official arrival ceremony at the Saadabad Palace in Tehran.
Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, center, reviews an honor guard as he is welcomed by Iranian President Hassan Rouhani, left, in an official arrival ceremony at the Saadabad Palace in Tehran. (AP)

On Wednesday, after talks with Iranian President Hassan Rouhani, Abe warned that any “accidental conflict” amid heightened tensions between Iran and the U.S. must be avoided at all costs.

While meeting with Abe on Thursday, Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei said that while Tehran doesn’t want an atomic bomb, “America could not do anything” to stop Iran if it did.

Khamenei was quoted earlier saying that Iran “will in no way repeat” negotiations with the U.S. amid tension over its unraveling nuclear deal with world powers.

Khamenei’s official website quoted him as telling Abe: “I don’t regard Trump as deserving any exchange of messages and have no response for him and will give no response.”

Bradford Betz is an editor for Fox News. Follow him on Twitter @bradford_betz.The Associated Press contributed to this report.


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Far-Left CNN Suffers Double Digit Primetime Ratings Crash in May

The news just keeps getting worse and worse for the far-left CNN, which suffered a 16 percent primetime ratings collapse last month.

The embattled CNN, which always lands is far-last place and axed more than 100 jobs already this year, had about as bad of a ratings month as is possible in May.

It’s primetime hours were only able to average a measly 761,000 viewers, while the fake news outlet’s total day viewers dove nine percent (compared to this same month last year) to just 559,000 viewers.

For comparison purposes, Fox News earned three times as many primetime viewers (2.34 million) and more than twice as many total day viewers (1.34 million). What’s more, when compared to this same month last year, Fox lost none of its primetime viewers and only four percent of its total day viewers.

The most astounding thing, though, is that CNN’s ratings are already so low, it seems impossible they could dive any lower — and yet, they always do.

Do you have any idea just how low 761,000 primetime viewers is…?

How does a nationally known brand like CNN, a brand that is decades old, only manage to attract 761,000 viewers throughout a gonzo news month in a country of over 300 million?

But his is just how far over the cliff CNN has gone… CNN has lost almost all of its viewers, all of its moral authority, and every bit of trust it once had. Over the past six years, as soon as Jeff Zucker took over, CNN got every major national  story exactly wrong, including…

  • Hispanic George Zimmerman: The White Racist Killer
  • Hands Up, Don’t Shoot
  • Trump Can’t Win
  • Brett Kavanaugh: Serial Rapist
  • The KKKids from KKKovington High School
  • Trump Colluded with Russia

And in every one of those cases, CNN got it deliberately wrong because CNN is nothing less than a hysterical propaganda outlet, a fire hose of hate, violence, and lies

Things are so bad at CNN that even though it is only competing with two other cable news networks, the fake news outlet’s top rated program, Cuomo Prime Time, crash-landed in 25th place averaging only 938,000 viewers.

That’s right, the top 24 slots are all filled with shows from Fox News and MSNBC — and Fox holds seven of the top ten.

The insufferable Jake Tapper, the guy Zucker put at 4 p.m. hoping he’d act as a primetime anchor, as a lead-in for the rest of the night, landed in a pathetic 36th place with only 706,000 average viewers, which is 55,000 fewer viewers than CNN’s primetime average.

Among CNN shows, Tapper used to regularly place in the top three as far as total viewers. Now he’s in sixth place among his fake news colleagues.

CNN’s flagship morning show, New Day, is a laughingstock with just 485,000 average viewers.

How big of a fail is that?

Well, New Day is losing by about 80,000 viewers to Fox & Friends First, which airs at — get this — 4 a.m.

Morning shows are supposed to be Zucker’s specialty, where he truly shines, and New Day is a catastrophe — but so is CNN overall in every possible metric — including integrity, decency, honesty, and humanity.

Follow John Nolte on Twitter @NolteNC. Follow his Facebook Page here.


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Colorado School Shooters are Leftist Terrorists – Thwarted by Mormon Youth and Others

Devon Erickson, the 18-year-old accused in the fatal shooting at a Colorado charter school shared social media posts that were critical of President Trump and Christians, but heaped praise on former President Barack Obama.

Joshua Jones, Kendrick Castillo and Brendan Bialy are credited with disarming one of the two shooters — an act that undoubtedly saved many lives. Castillo died as a result of his wounds, while Jones was shot but survived.

One student was killed and nine others were injured when Erickson and he and another underage suspect allegedly opened fire inside a K-12 school on the afternoon of May 7. Kendrick Castillo, 18, was fatally shot, and eight others were hospitalized. Several of the shooting victims have been released, and one was upgraded from serious to fair condition on Friday.

Devon Erickson, leftist-terrorist who attacked innocent and defenseless children at the STEM School Highlands Ranch in Highlands Ranch, Colorado, with Maya McKinney.

The two suspects — 18-year-old student Devon Erickson and 16-year-old Alec McKinney — will appear in court next week to hear the charges against them. They are both students at the school and face murder and attempted murder charges.

The 16-year-old shooter is a female, Maya McKinney, an LGBTQ proponent who identified as a male at the time of Tuesday’s shooting at the STEM School Highlands Ranch in Highlands Ranch, Colo., that left one student dead and eight others wounded. McKinney reportedly goes by the name Alec or Alex.
LGBTQ McKinney’s father is a criminal illegal alien, the 33-year-old Jose Evis Quintana, who was jailed for 15 months for domestic violence against McKinney’s mother Morgan Lynn McKinney. He was also convicted of “menacing with a weapon,” and has been deported by ICE a number of times.

Devon Erickson was a well-known bully who joked about shootings and threatened other students for years, a former friend said. Kevin Cole used to go to STEM School Highlands Ranch, where one student was killed and eight others injured Tuesday in a shooting. Two suspects are in custody and will appear in court next week to hear the charges against them.

One of those alleged shooters was Devon Erickson, 18, who was once a friend of Cole’s. “They couldn’t believe that he would actually do it, but they weren’t entirely surprised that he did,” Cole said of the suspect’s friends.

He would enter the classroom and say, “When the pencil hits the floor I’m going to start shooting.” Then, he would spend the rest of class sporadically dropping pencils, Cole said of the suspect. And sometimes, the “jokes” were more like threats.

“He would just get really close and kind of hunch himself over your shoulder as you were sitting down, and he would just whisper in your ear ‘don’t come to school tomorrow’ and just kind of crack a smile and walk back to his seat,” Cole said.

Devon Erickson not only posted anti-President Trump messages on Facebook, but shared pro-Obama posts from left-wing Facebook page “Occupy Democrats.”

It was just three days before the last day of school, and students inside the English classroom were relaxing during the last period of the day watching “The Princess Bride” when one of their classmates walked in late and pulled out a gun.

“The only thing he said out loud to the students was, ‘Don’t you move,’” said Nui Giasolli, an 18-year-old senior who was in the class at the time.

In that moment, she recalled, Kendrick Castillo, a gentle teenager fascinated by cars and engineering, lunged to stop the gunman and was shot dead. Eight other students were wounded in the shooting at STEM School Highlands Ranch on Tuesday afternoon, which the authorities said was carried out by two fellow students.

Kendrick Castillo, the gentle hero who tried to stop the gunmen was shot dead.
Latter-day Saint ‘hero’ shot twice after rushing gunman at Colorado school shooting.

Castillo’s friend, Joshua Jones and two classmates saved lives when they tackled one of two people behind the Colorado mass shooting that killed a young hero and wounded eight others.

Jones pinned the shooter with his body until police arrived, according to Lewis. He suffered gunshot wounds to his left calf and hip.

Jones is at home recovering, his family insisting that he use his crutches. He vows to ditch them for his May 20 graduation, according to Lewis. Jones always thought he wanted to become an EMT but now he’s certain, Lewis says. The teenager would like to go on a Mormon mission before his EMT training.

By James Thompson. James holds a doctoral degree, and is a political commentator and professional ghostwriter.


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9th Circuit Agrees Trump Admin can Send Asylum Claimants to Wait in Mexico

The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals late Tuesday granted the Trump administration’s request to send asylum seekers back to Mexico to wait out court proceedings temporarily.

The court order reversed a decision by a San Francisco judge that would have blocked the policy — giving President Trump a temporary victory on immigration.

The case must still be considered on its merits at a lower court in San Francisco and could end up at the Supreme Court.

U.S. District Judge Richard Seeborg ruled April 8 that the policy should be halted while a lawsuit, filed on behalf of 11 asylum applicants and several other organizations, proceeds.

Migrants from around the world gather in Mexico with goal of entering US

The American Civil Liberties Union, which brought the suit along with the Southern Poverty Law Center, and Center for Gender & Refugee Studies, said that despite the ruling, “there is good reason to believe that ultimately this policy will be put to a halt.”

“Asylum seekers are being put at serious risk of harm every day that the forced return policy continues,” Omar Jadwat, director of the ACLU’s Immigrants’ Rights Project, said in a statement. “Notably, two of the three judges that heard this request found that there are serious legal problems with what the government is doing.”

The lawsuit on behalf of 11 asylum seekers from Central America and legal advocacy groups says the Trump administration is violating U.S. law by failing to adequately evaluate the dangers that migrants face in Mexico.

Yuma at breaking point over asylum seekers, Sen. McSally says ‘crisis getting worse everyday’

Video

It also accuses Homeland Security and immigration officials of depriving migrants of their right to apply for asylum by making it difficult or impossible for them to do so.

The Trump administration says the policy responds to a crisis at the southern border that has overwhelmed the ability of immigration officials to detain migrants. Growing numbers of families are fleeing poverty and gang violence in Guatemala, Honduras and El Salvador.

Last year, the Justice Department eliminated gang violence and domestic abuse as a possible justification for seeking asylum.

The so-called “Remain in Mexico” policy was one of the primary innovations of former Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen, who left her role with the Trump administration last month.

Asylum law, conservatives point out, is intended to shield individuals from near-certain death or persecution on account of limited factors like religious or political affiliation — not poor living conditions and economic despair.

Most asylum applicants are ultimately rejected for having an insufficient or unfounded personalized fear of persecution, following a full hearing of their case before an asylum officer or an immigration judge.


Fox News’ Raymond Bogan, Gregg Re and The Associated Press contributed to this report.Nicole Darrah covers breaking and trending news for FoxNews.com. Follow her on Twitter at @nicoledarrah.


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Deputy AG Rod Rosenstein Resigns

Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, who frequently found himself in the political crosshairs due to his role in the special counsel’s Russia probe and whose departure has long been expected, submitted his resignation on Monday to President Trump, effective May 11.

Attorney General William Barr in a statement said Rosenstein served the Justice Department “with dedication and distinction.”

“His devotion to the Department and its professionals is unparalleled,” the statement read. “Over the course of his distinguished government career, he has navigated many challenging situations with strength, grace, and good humor.”

Rosenstein, 54, previously served as deputy assistant attorney general and U.S. attorney. He had intended to leave his position last month but stayed on for the completion of the Mueller probe, which Rosenstein had overseen.

In February, Fox News reported that Barr had picked Jeffrey Rosen, who currently serves as Deputy Secretary of the U.S. Department of Transportation, to take over for Rosenstein.

Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein defends Attorney General Bill Barr's handling of the Mueller report

Rosenstein was part of a small group of department officials who reviewed the document and helped shape its public release. After Mueller didn’t reach a conclusion on whether Trump had obstructed the investigation, Barr and Rosenstein stepped in and determined the evidence wasn’t enough to support such an allegation.

In recent months, Rosenstein became a frequent target of Trump’s ire, after FBI Deputy Director Andrew McCabe described private discussions about secretly recording and potentially ousting the president in the days after he fired FBI Director James Comey.

Trump accused them of pursuing a “treasonous” plot against him. Rosenstein, though, denied pursuing a recording of the president and has pushed back on claims he broached the idea of invoking the 25th Amendment to remove Trump from office. However, Rosenstein was largely spared the type of anger directed by Trump at Sessions, whose recusal infuriated the president and led to Sessions’ to his forced resignation last November.

As first reported by The New York Times last year, Rosenstein allegedly discussed wearing a “wire” to tape Trump and pursuing his removal from office in meetings and conversations with Justice Department and FBI officials. This would have been in the tumultuous days after Comey was fired as FBI director, with the president citing in part a memo penned by Rosenstein — reportedly catching him off guard.

Are Democrats overreacting to Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein's expected departure from the DOJ?

Fox News has learned one key meeting took place on May 16, 2017 at Justice Department headquarters. Several people were in the room, including McCabe and former FBI counsel Lisa Page. Mueller was appointed as special counsel the next day.

Rosenstein’s conservative critics on the Capitol Hill seized on the reports, with North Carolina Rep. Mark Meadows, the chairman of the House Freedom Caucus, calling on him to appear before Congress to explain the comments. In July, Meadows and Jim Jordan of Ohio, another member of the conservative House Freedom Caucus, introduced five articles of impeachment against Rosenstein.

Those impeachment articles accused Rosenstein of intentionally withholding documents and information from Congress, failure to comply with congressional subpoenas and abuse of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA). That effort was referred to the House Judiciary Committee, where it has not been voted upon.

Before named by Trump to serve as the No. 2 to Attorney General Jeff Sessions, Rosenstein served as the U.S. Attorney for the District of Maryland. Rosenstein took over the Russia probe after Sessions recused himself from the investigation. It was Rosenstein who later appointed Mueller to his post.

Fox News’ William Mears, Alex Pappas, Jake Gibson and The Associated Press contributed to this report.Nicole Darrah covers breaking and trending news for FoxNews.com.


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Joe Biden Announces 2020 Presidential Bid

3 things to know about the former vice president

Former Vice President Joe Biden officially announced his 2020 presidential bid.

“The core values of this nation, our standing in the world, our very democracy, everything that has made America — America — is at stake. That’s why today I’m announcing my candidacy for president of the United States,” Biden announced in a tweet early Thursday.

Biden, 76, is the latest Democrat to enter the crowded race for the White House against President Trump. A former senator from Delaware, Biden has emerged as a frontrunner for the Democratic nomination — topping the polls alongside self-proclaimed Democratic socialist Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont.

Here are three things to know about the former vice president as his campaign journey begins.

He first bid for the presidency came over three decades ago

Biden’s announcement on Thursday marks the beginning of his third campaign for the White House.

As a 45-year-old senator from Delaware, Biden launched his first campaign in 1987 at the Wilmington train station. The first campaign didn’t last long, ending after it became public that he had plagiarized a speech from a British politician, according to the Delaware News Journal.

His second bid began in 2007, but he dropped out in 2008 after failing to gain enough support. Biden ultimately went on to serve as vice president for two terms under Barack Obama.

In 2016, there was much speculation that Biden would again announce a bid for president, but he decided against running for personal reasons. His son, Beau, had died in 2015 after battling brain cancer.

His choice of transportation is the Amtrak train

Aptly nicknamed “Amtrak Joe,” Biden had long been a fixture on the rail line between his home in Delaware and his office in Washington D.C.

Biden began taking the train home every night to care for his two sons after his wife and daughter died in a car accident in 1972, according to the Washington Post.

He carried on the Amtrak tradition throughout his decades-long Senate career. Biden’s affinity for the train gained national attention when he became Obama’s running mate in 2008.

He was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom

President Barack Obama presents Vice President Joe Biden with the Presidential Medal of Freedom on Jan. 12, 2017.

President Barack Obama presents Vice President Joe Biden with the Presidential Medal of Freedom on Jan. 12, 2017. (The Associated Press)

In January 2017, outgoing President Obama surprised Biden with the President Medal of Freedom in an emotional ceremony.

“To know Joe Biden is to know love without pretense, service without self-regard, and to live life fully,” Obama said.

Biden tearfully accepted the honor.

By Stephen Sorace


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Dr. Qanta Ahmed: Rep. Ilhan Omar is a Disgrace to Islam

Rep. Ilhan Omar continues to be an embarrassment and a disgrace for me and other American Muslims with her outrageous, ignorant, anti-Semitic and now anti-American comments.

And while Omar, a Minnesota Democrat, holds herself out as a proud Muslim, she repeatedly projects a distorted and patently Islamist interpretation of Islam – a religion that in reality stands for the values of justice, peace and ethical conduct.

Sadly, Omar gives millions of Americans a false impression of what Islam is and what we Muslims believe and stand for. While she denounces prejudice against Muslims, her aberrant views on Islam fuel prejudice against me and my coreligionists by distorting who we are while defaming and dishonoring the great monotheism of Islam.

Omar’s latest absurd and insulting comment came to light just a few days ago. Describing the horrific Islamist terrorist attacks on America on Sept. 11, 2001 that killed almost 3,000 people and injured more than 6,000 others – including many Muslims – Omar told a Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) fundraiser: “CAIR was founded after 9/11 because they recognized that some people did something, and that all of us were starting to lose access to our civil liberties.”

First, Omar betrayed her ignorance, because CAIR was founded in 1994. Second, the congresswoman displayed an appalling and dismissive insensitivity to the worst foreign attack on America in our history, claiming almost 600 more lives than the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor in 1941.

Omar’s grotesque trivialization of a national tragedy amounts to an explicit denial of 9/11 – a desecration of all the lives erased that awful day. This denial is inexplicable unless she has strong and covert Islamist sympathies.

Tragically, the Sept. 11 attacks continue to take a toll almost 18 years later.

Some estimate more than 2,100 first responders who worked in Ground Zero in New York City in an effort to save lives and then find the deceased after the attacks have died of diseases they incurred. More than 10,000 people have been diagnosed with cancer related to the World Trade Center attacks and over 43,000 have been certified with World Trade Center-related illnesses.

Omar should be honest. There is no escaping the fact that the atrocities of 9/11 were not simply committed by “some people.” Islamist jihadists were responsible and they came from within the Muslim fold.

Most of the almost 490,000 Americans who either lived near Ground Zero or responded to the recovery and rebuilding efforts have never enrolled in the government’s health programs. So we don’t know how many more have suffered health problems from the terrorist attack on the twin towers.

I am a physician now working in New York and I’m affiliated with New York University Winthrop Hospital’s World Trade Center Health Program. I see the burden of Sept. 11 on a regular basis, treating brave and selfless first responders who still suffer from complex sleep disorders – including post-traumatic stress – that I specialize in treating.

President Trump responded to Omar’s comments by posting a video on Twitter mixing her words with terrible scenes of the Sept. 11 attacks. His action can be considered insensitive to many 9/11 survivors and family members – including some of my own patients – who can’t view these pictures without experiencing repeat trauma.

However, the president’s exposure of Omar’s hypocrisy and offensive diminishment of 9/11 was both legitimate and necessary.

In her dismissal of Sept. 11, Omar callously erased the deep suffering of every survivor and family I attend, and everyone else still impacted by the terrorist attacks.

Like each person old enough to remember Sept. 11, 2001, the day will be engraved in my mind for as long as I live.

I was working as a physician in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. It was 4 p.m. when I turned on my TV and watched the world come to a standstill as I witnessed (along with people around the world) the jet planes go through the World Trade Center, and soon after saw the twin towers collapse.

Mass murder on live TV – an unbelievable nightmare, like a horror film come to life.

Living at the time in the Saudi Kingdom – the epicenter of Islam – as the world learned the identity of the 9/11 terrorists, I wondered how my religion had been hijacked by suicidal killers who claimed they had a religious duty to kill innocents.

And I knew from that moment that these murderers would now become the face of Islam for many non-Muslims who know little about a religion with more the 1.6 billion followers around the globe.

Of course, only the perpetrators of the 9/11attacks and their supporters are to blame for their evil and immoral massacre. But on that sad day it became the responsibility of every Muslim to understand the heinous perversion of Islam known as Islamist jihadism and to stand against it.

In her grotesque trivialization of the Sept. 11 attacks, Omar betrays the Islam she claims to follow. She also denigrates every victim and survivor of the attacks and does me and every other Muslim a grave dishonor.

And while Omar relishes in flaunting her Muslim identity, she categorically fails in her Islamic duty. Islam is very clear in assigning responsibility for wrongdoing. Each Muslim has a clear-cut duty to himself or herself, to God and to society.

In fact, the holy texts of Islam emphasize that one’s greatest allegiance should be to justice – even if doing so demands superseding family and coreligionist ties.

“Be strict in observing justice, and be witness for Allah, even though it be against yourselves or against your parents or kindred,” the Koran says in Chapter 4, Verse 36. Omar fails on every count when her remarks trivializing the Sept. 11 attacks are seen in the light of this verse.

There is no question that the Sept. 11 attacks were an act of war launched through evolutionary Islamist jihadism, which has since become the hallmark of radical Islam.

Radical Islam – also known as Islamism – is a deviant, fictional and extreme distortion of true Islam, perpetrated by Islamist Muslims who use it to justify hatred and lethal violence that in reality have nothing to do with Islam.

Omar should be honest. There is no escaping the fact that the atrocities of 9/11 were not simply committed by “some people.” Islamist jihadists were responsible and they came from within the Muslim fold.

The vast majority of the world’s Muslims reject the cult or murder and death embraced by the hijackers of our beautiful religion, and in fact, many Muslims continue to die at the hands of Islamist jihadism. We each bear a responsibility to expose it.

Finally, let me set the record straight on Omar’s frequent complaints about how she and other Muslims are being persecuted and discriminated against in the United States today.

As a Muslim woman of color and immigrant – just like Omar – it’s logical to assume that if there was pervasive anti-Muslim discrimination in the United States I would be aware of it.

But in fact, Muslims have not experienced a contraction of civil rights in the U.S. since the Sept. 11 attacks. We continue to have the same rights as all other Americans.

Rather than being second-class citizens, Muslims born in America and immigrating here legally have full citizenship open to us. We are all allowed to both be and feel fully American and recognized as such, unlike the way many Muslims tell me they feel in European nations.

The greatest obscenity in the lie that Omar pedals is that she – along with millions of other Muslims in America – is somehow victimized. Do not believe this.

Muslims in America are mainstream and most are middle-class. Some of us are even wealthy. Many of us are highly educated, upwardly mobile and among the fastest immigrants to climb the economic ladder and earn six-figure incomes. This is in stark contrast to Muslims in Europe, where Muslims are much less affluent than the general population.

The myth of Muslim victimhood is an Islamist one. It is completely false in the setting of Islam in America and in comparison to Islam in the wider Muslim-majority world.

For me, condemning Omar’s trivialization of the Sept. 11 mass murders is an act of being fully American, being a physician advocate for my 9/11 survivor patients and their families, and at the same time – keeping in line with Islam’s clear teachings – being fully Muslim.

Omar’s words are a grotesque injustice against people who have already experienced diabolic injustice.

I thank God every day that I was able to immigrate to the United States of America, where I am now a proud citizen in a country I love and where I enjoy the blessings of  American liberty and protection of my rights under the U.S. Constitution. Wouldn’t it be nice to hear Rep. Ilhan Omar express these same sentiments?  Don’t expect it anytime soon.

CLICK HERE TO READ MORE BY QANTA AHMEDQanta A. Ahmed, M.D., is  a councilor at the USC Shoah Foundation and member of the Council on Foreign Relations. She is also an associate professor of medicine at the State University of New York. Follow her on Twitter @MissDiagnosis.


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On This Easter Morning, Let Us Remember

The New Testament of the Bible contains the story of the life of Jesus Christ. Within its pages is recounted how He was crucified on Friday, and his body was hastily removed from the cross and placed into a tomb hewn into the rock, with very little time to appropriately prepare the body for final burial before the Jewish Sabbath started at sunset.

It was early Sunday morning when Mary Magdalene and other women disciples arrived at the tomb to see the sepulcher and prepare His body. Suddenly there was a great earthquake and an angel of the Lord descended from heaven, and came and rolled back the stone from the door, and sat on it. His countenance was like lightning, and his raiment white as snow.

The angel said to the women, “Fear not: for I know that you seek Jesus, which was crucified. He is not here: for he is arisen. Come, see the place where the Lord lay.” He then instructed her to go and tell Jesus’ disciples that He was risen from the dead and that He would go before them to Galilee; and there they would see Him.

The others ran to tell the Apostles what they had seen and heard, but Mary stood at the door of the sepulcher weeping. As she wept, she stooped down, and looked into the sepulcher, and saw two angels in white sitting, one at the head and the other at the feet where the body of Jesus had lain.

They said to her, “Woman, why are you weeping?”

empty-tomb

She said, “Because they have taken away my Lord, and I know not where they have laid him.”

And when she had spoken she turned back, and saw Jesus standing, but knew not that it was Him. He spoke to her and said, “Woman, why are you crying? Whom do you seek?”

She, supposing him to be the gardener, said, “Sir, if you have borne him away, tell me where you have laid him, and I will take him away.”

Jesus looked upon her with compassion, and said, “Mary.”

Suddenly recognizing His voice, she turned herself and said to him, “Rabboni,” which is to say, Master.

Mary ran to him and embraced him, but Jesus said to her, “Touch me not; for I am not yet ascended to my Father: but go to my brethren, and say to them, ‘I ascend unto my Father, and your Father; and to my God, and your God.’”

What is the significance of this story nearly 2,000 years later? Each of us must decide its implications and importance for ourselves, and apply its lessons in our own lives as we interpret the message for ourselves. John, the Apostle who recorded this version of the incident gives us his own explanation of why he recorded it: “But these are written, that ye might believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God; and that believing, ye might have life through his name.”

Let us remember Him this Easter.

James Thompson is a Christian author, political commentator and ghostwriter.


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NOTRE DAME BURNS

Central spire and roof of Paris’ historic 12th-century cathedral collapse amid massive blaze

A massive fire broke out at the famed Notre Dame cathedral in Paris on Monday afternoon, officials said.

Black smoke could be seen from a distance billowing out from the top of the medieval cathedral, while flames leaped out from two of its bell towers. The sight stopped pedestrians in their tracks along the Seine River, which passes under the cathedral.

Flames rise during a fire at the landmark Notre-Dame Cathedral in central Paris on April 15, 2019 afternoon. (Photo by FRANCOIS GUILLOT / AFP)

Flames rise during a fire at the landmark Notre-Dame Cathedral in central Paris on April 15, 2019 afternoon. (Photo by FRANCOIS GUILLOT / AFP)

A dramatic video showed the cathedral’s main spire collapsed from the blaze. Local reports said the roof collapsed.

A church spokesman told French media that all of Notre Dame cathedral’s frame is burning after the spire collapsed.

Paris Mayor Anne Hidalgo called it a “terrible fire,” while President Emmanuel Macron said it was “sad to see this part of us burn.”

“Notre-Dame of Paris is in flames. Emotion in the whole nation. Thoughts for all Catholics and for all French,” he tweeted. “Like all our countrymen, I’m sad to see this part of us burn.”

The French capital’s police department said no deaths have been reported from Monday’s fire. The police department didn’t say anything about injuries.

Hidalgo said Paris authorities are in touch with Paris diocese.

The fire department was fighting the flames, while the area near the cathedral was being cleared.

It was not immediately clear what caused the fire. Notre Dame was undergoing a $6.8 million renovation project, with some sections under scaffolding, while bronze statues were removed last week for works.

Sources told Fox News that it appears the fire was related to recent construction done at the cathedral.

Macron canceled a planned televised speech to the nation in light of the “terrible fire” underway at the cathedral, an official at the president’s Elysee office said.

A fire broke out at Notre Dame cathedral in Paris.

A fire broke out at Notre Dame cathedral in Paris. (Mayor Anne Hidalgo/Twitter)

Additional information was not immediately available.

President Donald Trump tweeted about the fire, saying it was “horrible to watch the massive fire at Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris.”

Located on the Ile de la Cite in the center of Paris, the Gothic cathedral – which dates back to the 12th century – attracts millions of tourists each year. It was featured in Victor Hugo’s novel “The Hunchback of Notre-Dame.”

This is breaking news. Please check back for updates.Lucia I. Suarez Sang is a Reporter & Editor for FoxNews.com. Follow her on Twitter @luciasuarezsang


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Unfortunately, We’ve Reached the Point that We Need a National ID

WERE YOU AWARE THAT MOST NATIONS HAVE A NATIONAL ID?

It’s true. For a quick lesson in how many countries issue a National ID for their citizens, do a Google search for “national id” and click on images. Hundreds of nations issue ID cards for their citizens, to differentiate them from non-citizens and ensure that national benefits and rights are extended to their citizens, and that they are not removed as non-citizens.

For all of us civil libertarians, who abhor ‘Big Brother’ tracking our every move and knowing what we are doing in life, the thought of a National ID card has been a very sore subject for decades. We have simply rejected any mention of it at every turn.

Yet, we live in a nation where liberals create problems, then create solutions to those problems, which create bigger problems–perpetuating the escalating cycle of government intrusion and bureaucratic expansion.

Because we are overrun with non-citizens who seek American citizen rights and privileges–like voting, welfare benefits, employment, etc.–and because the left has been pushing so hard to make those rights and privileges available to non-citizens, we must seriously consider the reality that we must now provide all Americans with federal government issued identification. Those who hold the ID are extended the rights and privileges of US citizens, and those who do not hold it are not. It’s really that simple.

Of course, those who are in favor of open borders and who have a desire to dilute the status of US citizenship will hate the idea. They will decry a National ID as being exclusive, discriminatory, and limiting. They will tell us that there will be a few citizens who have difficulty obtaining a National ID, and therefore, no one should have it (like a Voter ID card, for example).

We are at the point that we can make a National ID card that is nearly impossible to replicate. A biometric database (fingerprint or retina scan) can quickly identify anyone who is asked to produce his ID, but left it in his other wallet.

Again, critics will argue that those who are unable to obtain a Nation ID will be discriminated against, and illegal aliens will be deported. Of course, every nation on the earth defines its borders and only allows certain people within its borders (try to visit Canada or Sweden without their permission, and you’ll see how archaic America has become), and America should be no different. To those who fear that illegals will be discovered through this process, all I can say is–you’re right. That is exactly what will happen.


By James Thompson. James holds a doctoral degree, and is a political commentator and professional ghostwriter.


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Fixing the Problems of Leftist Universities and High Student Loan Debt

I propose that the US government replace its student loan program with a very low tuition online university system.

As we wrote in our article NEA Report Card: F, the education problem has been growing in America for decades, as the costs of educating our children skyrocket and students are churned out of the public education system and universities with less and less actual education.

Man-on-the-street interviews reveal that college age Americans have little or no understanding of American history or the political process. They appear to be focused on leftist political issues, like man-made global warming, and if any of them question their leftist professors or the nonsense they spew in classrooms, they are automatically flunked from the course.

A decades-long growing battle between liberals and conservatives over education is culminating in conservative calls to either get the government and unions out of education altogether, or to entirely overhaul the system.

Of course, Democrat Party presidential candidates are upping the ante in votes-for-handouts campaigning, offering free college educations to all young Americans in exchange for making them president. None of the Democrats inform the electorate who will pay for all of that free education in the face of a $22 trillion debt, and it fails to solve the problem of churning armies of knuckleheads out of our universities. Greater government support of the current university system would only exacerbate the problems we are suffering now.

Greater government support of the current university system would only exacerbate the problems we are suffering now.

The major problems with the current system are:

1) costs have artificially skyrocketed (liberals inflating university tuition) and the taxpayer is left holding the bag for most of it while students incur decades of debt; and

2) anti-American leftists dominate the current university system and classrooms, leaving indoctrinated students with very little usable education and mush for brains.

In other words, the current system fails to educate our children while burying them under a mountain of debt.

Proposal

I propose a new higher education option, patterned somewhat after the current online degree programs offered by several universities, or similar to the CLEP and DANTES higher education programs being utilized by a handful of students.

To envisage this new online university system, think Star Trek. We have the technology, and it’s long past time to upgrade our educational systems.

In this age of digital access it is feasible to launch a program that provides students with online classes, with lectures by top experts in every field and stunning graphics, videos and demonstrations of the principles and concepts being taught. A basic 2 year core curriculum will ensure that all students receive across-the-board instruction in math, science, English, history, American politics, etc. Then specialization will occur in 3rd and 4th year online courses. This is essentially how colleges and universities are supposed to offer classes now, but they have strayed far from their mandate, entreating students with useless courses in little more than socialist propaganda, with tragic results.

Third and fourth year specialization courses in the government-offered online university should emphasize productive degree programs initially; science, engineering, language, history, chemistry, education, pre-medicine, pre-law, etc., with some liberal arts programs being added as the system is more fully developed to accommodate their greater need for interactivity.

Online students study and progress at their own pace, at an affordable cost, focused on the coursework and not on social activities or the politics of university personnel

It appears that new online programs being offered by many universities have greatly reduced the problem of cheating on coursework and exams, a major problem in the brick-and-mortar system as well. Biometrics and other identity-confirming techniques will ensure that the coursework is being completed by the actual student.

Results

Students can take these online courses at their own pace, and take the exams as soon as they have completed each course.

Many college age Americans are feeling that capitalism is failing them, because they are forced to bear the burden of student loan debt for the first decades of their careers.

Costs, which will be only a fraction of the current $500 billion, can be shared by students and the taxpayers. Students can pay a low flat fee for each course, freeing them from the current enslaving burden of student loan debt, and the federal government can dramatically cut its higher education budget and finance the remaining cost of the online university system.

This will replace the current Student Loan program, which supports and promotes a bloated, ineffective higher education system that is little more than a propaganda arm of the global socialist movement. It will also eliminate the current nearly insurmountable hurdle of student debt, cruelly hanged around the neck of most graduating students in America.

This proposal will provide higher education for anyone who wants it, and anyone who is self-motivated enough to do the work. It doesn’t get any easier, cheaper or better than this.

By James Thompson. James holds a doctoral degree, and is a political commentator and professional ghostwriter.


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Socialism’s Bloody History Shows Millennials Should Think Twice Before Supporting It

Socialism demands that we place blind trust in whoever takes the power to distribute society’s goods and services. History shows those who have this power abuse it in horrific ways–every time.

Socialism has murdered over 200 million of its own citizens in the last century to maintain its power over its people

Nikolai Bukharin was executed by shooting in Moscow on March 15, 1938. He had been revered as a giant of the Bolshevik Revolution in Russia, as one who even worked side by side with Vladimir Lenin himself. Alas, Bukharin’s Marxist chickens had come home to roost by the time he was shot like a dog during Josef Stalin’s reign of terror. His execution marked the pinnacle of Stalin’s show trials of high-level officials.

You see, Bukharin invested in building a political system that inevitably puts the reins of power into the hands of just a few strongmen who end up calling all the shots. It’s a system in which suspicion and the smell of treason tend to hang in the air.

Socialism, by the way, is just such a system. This is the case whether you call it by any other name, whether communism, utopianism, or collectivism. Oh, go ahead and slap some lipstick on that pig and call it “democratic” socialism or “progressivism” or “communitarianism.”

Lenin and his gang all started out calling themselves socialists. Social democrats, to be exact. So the fact remains: the path of socialism is ultimately paved with coercion, censorship, and, yes, terror. Does stating this make me an alarmist? No. It makes me a realist.

Socialism Is a Bait-and-Switch Scheme

Socialism and communism both involve ceding to the state control over the distribution of goods and services for the masses. This involves giving up individual rights, and giving the state a good measure of control over our personal lives. This road always leads to tyranny, no matter what you pave it with, and no matter what you name it. Socialism requires a power clique—or, as Lenin put it, an elite ‘vanguard’—in order to pretend to function.

Socialism requires a power clique—or, as Lenin put it, an elite ‘vanguard’—in order to pretend to function.

Socialism requires a power clique—or, as Lenin put it, an elite “vanguard”—in order to pretend to function. This means going heavy on executive power and rubber-stamp light on the legislative. Socialism demands that we place blind trust in whoever takes the reins of power to distribute society’s goods and services. This tiny elite, by the way, typically enjoys enormous privileges and a much higher standard of living than the hoi polloi, simply by being a part of the elite “nomenklatura.”

Sure, this oligarchy claims to distribute in the name of “equality.” That’s typically the cover story. The historical fact is that the vanguard, the power clique, eventually takes control of everything that’s produced—medicine, education, housing, food, transportation, etc. Its members then bureaucratically ration out—as they see fit—the means of human survival. In the end, you’ve basically got an elite corps of mobsters with the power to decide which folks are more equal than others.

Socialism also has a way of producing bloated bureaucracies that in turn produce ever greater scarcity. Along the way, this produces ever more corruption and cronyism. Censorship puts down deep roots because dissent cannot be tolerated or the system would collapse. Those are all prime ingredients for a closed society and surveillance state. Yet everybody is supposed to lay back and enjoy it.

Millennials for Bernie Sanders, Be Careful What You Wish For

So why should we meditate on the gruesome anniversary of Bukharin’s execution 78 years after the fact? Because Stalin’s purges and the reign of terror he invoked throughout Soviet society are actually pretty natural outgrowths of a system that puts too much power in the hands of too few people. That’s why. The current professed yearning for socialism—a system so conducive to corruption, cronyism, censorship, and coercion—just keeps rearing its ugly head.

The current professed yearning for socialism—a system so conducive to corruption, cronyism, censorship, and coercion—just keeps rearing its ugly head.

Yet the current professed yearning for socialism—a system so conducive to corruption, cronyism, censorship, and coercion—just keeps rearing its ugly head. One case in point is the open support for Stalin himself in today’s Russia. On March 5, the anniversary of Stalin’s death, a group of communists led a brazen procession to his grave to pay homage to this man who is responsible for the deaths of untold millions during his reign of terror in the Soviet Union.

We are also witnessing a new trendiness for all things socialist and communist among college youth. They sport T-shirts featuring the image of nauseatingly murderous tyrants like Che Guevara. Thanks to the popularity of the avuncular Bernie Sanders, coupled with an astonishing ignorance of history, millennials have fast become trusty mouthpieces for socialism. This is ironic, because socialism has a way of redistributing power away from the “99 percent” and puts it into the hands of the few central planners—a teensy fraction of 1 percent—at the top.

Then what? Well, too often the answer is in the title of this recent article written by libertarian Matt Kibbe: “Socialism Kills.” R.J. Rummel chronicled and documented the killing habits of socialist regimes in his work “Death by Government.” There’s an indisputable correlation between big government and terror that keeps turning up throughout history. That’s because big government is really Borg government. It just can’t get enough of itself.

We’d better get acquainted with it if we’d like to avoid it, no?

Nikolai Bukharin’s Wretched Ides of March

Bukharin’s execution, as well as all of the wild show trials with forced confessions and executions of so many high-level Soviet leaders, caused shock and disillusionment among several prominent communists in the West. (One of them, Arthur Koestler, reflected on the impact of the show trials in his novel “Darkness at Noon.”) In that last letter, he requested poison to drink rather than a bullet to the head.

Bukharin wrote more than 30 letters to Stalin while in prison, none of which were answered. But his last letter is particularly poignant. It’s an utter mess of emotions and contradictions: wailing self-pity, confession to crimes, pleas for his innocence, Stockholm Syndrome, total despair, and hope against hope. He referred to Stalin by his revolutionary nickname “Koba,” in an attempt to hearken back to their old Bolshevik days of being comrades-in-arms.

But Bukharin knew he was finished. In that last letter, he requested poison to drink rather than a bullet to the head. (According to one report, he was made to watch the executions of 16 other defendants, then shot last.) He requested to see his wife and infant son. (Obviously, not granted or answered. His wife was sent to a gulag prison camp.)

He even requested to be exiled to America, where he promised to wage Stalin’s war against by-then-enemy-of-the-people Leon Trotsky, the founder of the Red Army. (This seems a pathetic Hail Mary pass.) He also expressed regret for pal-ing around with Lev Kamenev, another high-ranking Bolshevik Stalin had purged earlier.

Here’s how Bukharin’s letter to Stalin ends:

In me you have lost one of your most capable generals, one who is genuinely devoted to you. But that is all past. It is bitter to reflect on all this. But I am preparing myself mentally to depart from this vale of tears, and there is nothing in me toward all of you, toward the party and the cause, but a great and boundless love. I am doing everything that is humanly possible and impossible.

I have crossed all the t’s and dotted all the i’s in spite of a headache and with tears in my eyes. My conscience is clear before you now, Koba. I ask you one final time for your forgiveness (only in your heart, not otherwise.) For that reason I embrace you in my mind.

One Soviet scholar in particular, Stephen Cohen, has defended Bukharin as courageous, and as one who never truly confessed but engaged in a war of words—in an Aesopian language—during his spoken defense at the trial itself. Be that as it may, Bukharin’s letter displays the full human wreckage that lay at the end of the road of socialism.

A fascinating postscript here is that Cohen came into possession of the last letter Bukharin wrote from prison to his young wife Anna Larina. Cohen actually delivered it into her hands in 1992, 54 years later.

Socialism Separates People and Causes Great Human Misery

Bukharin’s letter to Anna displays in stark clarity what a socialist system ultimately does to the most intimate of human relationships. Once socialism is entrenched, it is tailor-made to separate human beings and stand in the way of intimacy. Indeed, its general premise is that the good of the collective trumps the good of the individual, which means it is actually invested in wreaking havoc on family relationships and loyalties.

Below is an excerpt from Bukharin’s letter to Anna Larina. It’s loaded with pathos, suffering, loneliness, and all manner of contradictions. It’s a testament to the fact that in the end, we only want familial closeness with real, flesh and blood people. Not “communitarian” efficiency. Yet, at the same time, Bukharin extols the very system, socialism, that would destroy these relationships for him and for everyone:

My sweet Anushka! My Darling!

I write to you on the eve of the trial, and I write to you with a definite purpose, which I emphasize three times over: No matter what you read, no matter what you hear, no matter how horrible these things might be, no matter what might be said to me nor what I might say – endure everything courageously and calmly. Prepare the family. Help all of them. I fear for you and the others, but most of all for you. Don’t feel malice about anything. Remember that the great cause of the USSR lives on and this is the most important thing. Personal fates are transitory and wretched by comparison. A great ordeal awaits you. I beg you my dearest, muster all your strength, tighten all the strings of your heart, but don’t allow them to break.

Do not talk carelessly with anybody about anything. . . .

There you have it. Bukharin feels compelled to say that the great Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (USSR) is “the most important thing.” And be careful, oh, so very careful, what you say to anybody. Political correctness on steroids. That’s socialism in a nutshell for you.

No doubt the stated intentions are oh-so-pure and oh-so-good, like “liberte, egalite, fraternite.” It’s the sort of compassion Flannery O’Connor wrote of when she noted that “tenderness leads to the gas chamber.” That’s because, at the end of the day, socialism is a manipulative machine of human cruelty powered only by a blind greed for power. It forces people to finely mince their words, or remain silent.

Of course it operates under the fig leaf of “equality.” Because how else can it seal the deal?

Socialism Is a Well-Trod Path to Absolute Power

Somehow, a lot of folks missed the memo that a system without checks and balances on political power is conducive to creating power-mongers, and even monsters. Lord Acton famously stated: “Power tends to corrupt and absolute power corrupts absolutely.” A system without checks and balances on political power is conducive to creating power-mongers, and even monsters.

A system without checks and balances on political power is conducive to creating power-mongers, and even monsters.

Lord Acton’s warning is oft quoted, but little noted, despite the fact that history proves it correct time and bloody time again. Witness Nazi Germany, Mao’s China, Kim Jong Un’s North Korea, Pol Pot’s Cambodia, and myriad other examples. Lord Acton’s statement has even been laboratory-tested, and you can check that out in this Leadership Quarterly article.

Bukharin’s Bolshevik comrades had held him in the highest esteem. He was a prominent leader of the Russian revolution and party theorist who worked side by side with Lenin himself, the firebrand who overthrew czarist Russia and entrenched communism there. Lenin even dubbed Bukharin “the golden boy of the revolution.”

But Bukharin basically had two killers, as did all of the other cronies in the government’s power clique. One, of course, was the Soviet dictator Josef Stalin. The other killer was the ideology of socialism that Bukharin put into place—a system of unchecked power that grows monsters like Stalin.

We need to remember that, when soft socialism with its siren song of “equality” is left to its own devices, it takes ever more rigid forms. The political hubris of “progressives” who know better than you and me—and with such utter certainty—always leads to central control, corruption, cronyism, censorship, and abject conformity.

The more than 100 million victims of communism shows just how slippery a slope socialism is. Any person of goodwill who is familiar with the history and realities of socialism would do everything possible to avoid going down that minefield of a road.

Stella Morabito

By Stella Morabito

Stella Morabito is a senior contributor to The Federalist. Follow Stella on Twitter.

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20 Hate Crime Hoaxes in the Age of Trump

Jussie Smollett is far from an isolated case

Jussie Smollett’s arrest in connection to what Chicago cops believe is a hate crime hoax the “Empire” actor orchestrated upon himself included what’s become a glaringly common denominator in similar capers: Apparent hatred for President Donald Trump and his supporters. Woman from Hawaii turned a $453 investment into $42,643 by doing this

Smollett told police he was the victim of a racist, homophobic attack last month by masked men who yelled “MAGA country” — a reference to Trump’s 2016 campaign slogan, “Make America Great Again.” No video of the alleged attack has been found, and Smollett was charged with felony disorderly conduct Wednesday evening for filing a false police report.

Image source: Chicago Police Department

You may have noticed that hate crime hoaxes — many which reference Trump or Trump supporters— have been frequently popping up ever since the Republican billionaire defeated Democrat Hillary Clinton in November 2016. Independent journalist and Quillette editor Andy Ngo has been compiling a list on Twitter, but TheBlaze has been on the case as well — so here’s a little list for your hate crime hoax reading pleasure.

Buckle Up, Buttercup

1. A black man was accused of spray-painting graffiti — “Trump Rules” and “Black Bitch” — on a car in Philadelphia just hours after Trump’s election.

2. The day after Trump was elected, an 18-year-old student at the University of Louisiana at Lafayette claimed to have been robbed by two white men of her wallet and her hijab — a head scarf often worn by Muslim women. But she made up the entire thing.

3. Also the day after Trump’s election, a student at Bowling Green State University in Ohio said three white boys wearing Trump shirts threw rocks at her and called her racial slurs, but cops told WTVG-TV she made it all up — possibly over frustration with friends and family who were Trump supporters.

4. A University of Michigan student falsely claimed that on Nov. 11, 2016 — just days after Trump’s election — a white man in Ann Arbor threatened to burn her if she didn’t remove her hijab.

5. Another UM student claimed a white man cut her face with a safety pin in Ann Arbor on Nov. 15, 2016; she was charged and pleaded guilty to making a false police report.

6. Days after Trump’s election, a 20-year-old man admitted he lied when he told Malden, Massachusetts, police he was harassed by two white men proclaiming it’s “Trump country now,” the Boston Herald reported.

7. About a week after Trump’s election, two students at Williams College in Massachusetts “vandalized Griffin Hall to bring attention to the potential impact of the presidential election on campus,” the Williams Record reported. The students poured a red wood-stain substance resembling blood down the main stairwell of and wrote “AMKKK KILL” in the stairwell, the paper said.

8. In November 2016, the president of North Park University in Chicago told WMAQ-TV that hateful “Trump” notes and emails allegedly sent to a student were “fabricated,” and that the woman who claimed they were aimed toward her was no longer enrolled at the school.

9. In December 2016, police arrested 18-year-old Yasmin Seweid, a Muslim woman, for filing the false report after she claimed she was verbally attacked on a New York City subway by three drunk white men who mentioned Trump and demanded she remove her hijab.

Yasmin SeweidImage source: YouTube screenshot

10. A gay choir director admitted to spray-painting “Heil Trump” on the walls of his Indiana Episcopal church just after the 2016 election.

11. A Wisconsin college student claimed in January 2017 his door and wall next to it “had been spray painted with a bias symbol and phrases related to his religion and ethnicity.” He then confessed to making up the whole thing.

12. Police arrested a black man in Charlotte, North Carolina, in April 2017 for planning a hate crime at an immigrant-operated store in which a window was broken, a flaming object was thrown through the door, and a note was left behind that blamed the fire on white Trump supporters.

13. A racist note that prompted the student body of Lutheran St. Olaf College in Minnesota to hold a massive protest that shut down classes for a day in May 2017 was revealed to be hoax, school officials said.

14. Racist messages were discovered in September 2017 against several minority candidates at the Air Force Academy Preparatory School in Colorado Springs, but the incident was revealed to be another hoax.

15. A reported “hate crime” near Kansas State University in November 2017 — in which a black man’s car was covered in racist graffiti and prompted action by the FBI — turned out to be a hoax, as the car’s owner admitted he was responsible for the graffiti.

16. Also at Kansas State — one year later — campus police concluded a racist note left on a dorm door was placed there by the student who reported it.

17. Last April, authorities concluded a 13-year-old Virginia girl falsely reported that a black man grabbed her arm, displayed a small knife, called her a “terrorist,” pulled off her headscarf, and put his hand over her mouth when she tried to scream.

18. A black woman on Long Island, New York, told police last September she found a hateful note on her car and discovered her tire was slashed after a group of teens yelled “Trump 2016!” at her — but authorities told WNBC-TV she made up the story.

19. Just last November, officials at Drake University in Iowa said four of five racist notes found in residence halls were hoaxes, the Des Moines Register reported.

20. Last December, a black student was charged with writing racist graffiti — including a swastika and a Ku Klux Klan reference — in a dormitory at Goucher College in Baltimore.

‘People want to be a victim’

Adding additional context to the hate hoax phenomenon was Mediaite writer and podcast host John Ziegler who joined Glenn Beck on Monday to discuss the latest developments in Jussie Smollett’s alleged assault case.

“I hope that we don’t just look at this as the left wants us to, as an isolated incident or that it’s somehow unique,” Ziegler told Beck. “This is an epidemic. Especially in the realm of hate-crime situations. We now live in a world where being the right kind of victim is the American dream. People want to be a victim. You get adulation, you get attention, you get money in certain situations … being the right kind of victim is the American dream today.”

Check out the clip:

By Dave Urbanski


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TRUMP: America Will Never Be a Socialist Country

“America Will Never Be A Socialist Country”; “We Were Born Free And We Will Stay Free”

President Trump said the United States will never become a socialist country in his 2019 State of the Union address.

“We stand with the Venezuelan people in their noble quest for freedom — and we condemn the brutality of the Maduro regime, whose socialist policies have turned that nation from being the wealthiest in South America into a state of abject poverty and despair,” Trump said Tuesday night.

“Here, in the United States, we are alarmed by new calls to adopt socialism in our country,” the president said. “America was founded on liberty and independence – not government coercion, domination, and control. We are born free, and we will stay free.”

[RELATED: CNN Instant Poll: 76% Of Viewers Approved Of Trump State Of The Union]

“Tonight, we renew our resolve that America will never be a socialist country,” Trump declared.

[RELATED: CBS News Instant Poll: 72% Approve Of Trump’s Immigration Ideas]

The Expansion of Socialism

One hundred years ago most people of the world were laborers. Hard working people naturally looked for ways to rise above their humble circumstances, and in America that meant innovating and giving extra effort. Not all nations afforded their working classes the opportunities preserved to Americans by the U.S. Constitution.

Revolutions

In 1776 Americans declared their independence from the tyranny of the British Crown. In 1917 the Russian peasants and working classes revolted against the government of Tsar Nicholas II, led by Vladimir Lenin and a group of revolutionaries called the Bolsheviks. In the 1920s the Chinese Red Army led the revolution and marched across China killing anyone who had an education or who owned more than 1 acre of land. NAZIs came to power in Germany and marched across Europe.

The Difference

Americans enjoyed the liberties guarantied by their Constitution, and they were free to apply themselves, and work harder or smarter than their competition, and earn more than their parents had ever dreamed. The free-trade economy catapulted America from a backwater British colony to a world power in mere decades. Russia and China invoked socialism, which is government control of production and distribution. This form of government promises “fairness” among all of its citizens, asserting that none will rise above others (presumably at the expense of others). Socialism comes in various forms: Democratic Socialism, Communism and Fascism (where socialist government officials control the economy through corporations).

Socialism Has Murdered 100 Million

Vladimir Lenin, Joseph Stalin, Mao Zedong, Kim Jong-un, Kim Jong-il have ordered the extermination of millions of their citizens, totaling around 100,000,000 in the 20th Century. Why? Because socialism is about power and control. It is anti-liberty. When power to redistribute wealth is given to government, it must exercise that power to force its citizens to live under its edicts. Because socialism guaranties equal receipt of goods and services, regardless of effort or risk, socialist economies always stall from lack of innovation. They wither and die—without exception.

Socialism Today

Venezuela is the latest victim of socialism. What was an oil-wealthy growing economy just 10 years ago has become another victim on the ash heap of socialism. To quote a Venezuelan woman featured on a CNN report the other day, “This socialist utopia has left nearly all stomachs hungry.” Indeed, in a nation rich in oil those who can scrape together a box of rapidly devaluing currency must wait in gasoline lines from 3 days and nights to fill their tanks. This is the natural course of socialism.

Before Venezuela it was Cuba, and the USSR, and Communist China. Each of these nations enslaved their working people and plunged them into poverty, while elites who ran the government lived lavishly. It was only as each country began to allow capitalism to take root and expand that the economies grew and the people began to thrive.

Socialist economies produce shortages of every consumer item, including food. Bread lines like this are common daily experiences in socialist nations.

What About Democratic Socialism in Scandinavia and Europe?

We have heard American socialists point to socialism “successes” in Europe as they espouse such economic schemes for the U.S. They tell us that countries like Denmark and Sweden enjoy a high standard of living while guaranteeing equality among their citizens. To a lesser extent, other European nations have moved sharply left toward socialism.

Here is the reality. Scandinavian countries are small, with homogenous populations. Because they are defended by America’s military, they spend very little on defense, and divert that money to social welfare programs. They are in “voluntary agreement” socially that none will rise above the rest, and agree to high tax rates to support this philosophy. Unfortunately, the era of being defended by America is abruptly ending, and President Trump is demanding that Europe increase defense spending (rendering him quite unpopular in Europe). Also, millions of Muslims have moved into Europe and overwhelmed the social welfare systems, crashing them and draining their semi-capitalistic economies.

Democratic-socialism only survives when it is it supported by the economic engine of capitalism. As UK Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher observed, however, “The problem with socialism is that eventually you run out of other people’s money.” Indeed, when democratic socialism has drained the resources of the capitalist engine, it leaves its people waiting in long lines for scarce food and other resources—many of which will not arrive in time.

Why Do Democrats Love Socialism?

Socialism is about power and control. It is a bait-and-switch fraud scheme. It promises “fairness.” It promises forced equality. It promises something for nothing. The reality of socialism is that it transfers the wealth and power of The People to the government, with the promise of “We will now provide for all of your needs.” The people are lured into giving up their property and personal choices under this scheme. They surrender their healthcare system to this form of government, with such false promises as “If you like your health care plan, you can keep your health care plan.” President’s weekly address, June 6, 2009: “If you like the plan you have, you can keep it. If you like the doctor you have, you can keep your doctor, too. The only change you’ll see are falling costs as our reforms take hold.” As always happens, this is a lie told by the socialist government to trick the citizens into surrendering their wealth and power. This is followed by higher taxes, higher national debt, and a proliferation of government regulation.

Socialism Devalues God and Human Life

We note that anywhere that socialism has been imposed, human life and family relationships are diminished tremendously, as is the worship of our Creator. The surrender of power to the government necessitates that nothing else compete with the state’s supremacy. An iron fist rules a socialist society, and anything that threatens the state’s authority is eliminated. Because individualism is nurtured by the family social structure and a belief in divine parentage, socialism breaks down the family structure wherever possible and eliminates God from public and private life. In socialist nations like China and the USSR, we saw atheism replace faith, and the government deciding who you could marry and how many children you could have. Human life is devalued as the state replaces deity, and concepts like abortion and Eugenics supplant love of fellow humans.

All of this is dependent on government’s ability to control every aspect of our lives, of course, so socialism controls the flow of information eliminates the ability of the citizens to protect themselves from the government through the confiscation of firearms.

Does Any of This Sound Familiar?

Of course, since the Bolshevik Revolution socialists have seen America’s individual liberty and economic success as the greatest threat to the myth of socialism, and therefore, the transfer of all wealth and power to a small group of elites. This is why socialists have focused on penetrating the American media and educational systems over the past 100 years, completely overtaking them in the past two decades. Now, our children are bombarded daily in classrooms with a steady diet of socialism, as are we with every news and entertainment program on television.

An entire political party has been overtaken by socialists, and they have become so embedded that they are now emboldened to the point of speaking openly about their socialist platform. They promise “equality” and “fairness,” asserting that someone else will pay for the benefits they are promising. Of course, even the mathematically-challenged Democrats know in their heart-of-hearts that nothing they promise is true. It is all smoke and mirrors. It is all a lie, as it has always been. There is no universal healthcare, and there is no guarantied salary or college education. Even if money grew on trees, there aren’t enough leaves on trees in America to pay for the promises being made by Democrats. They add up to hundreds of trillions of dollars. Plus, as they were imposed, our economy would crash and there would be no money for even the basics—and we would soon be just like every other people that ever embraced socialism: impoverished and enslaved.

The American Democrat Party has been taken over by far left socialists, who employ socialist propaganda techniques developed in previous national takeovers. Indeed, Democratic Party leaders like Nancy Pelosi, Chuck Schumer and Harry Reid have made tens of millions of dollars while in office, while their constituents fall deeper into poverty.

Socialism is a Ponzi Scheme

Socialism is a farce. It is a fraud. It is the political equivalent of Big Foot. Every policy of the left is packaged to appear to give something to someone to make his life more “fair,” but in reality, it is nothing more than a scheme to transfer more power or wealth from the citizens to the ruling class. Every issue in politics and society fits within this rubric. Gun control has nothing to do with saving lives. Indeed, the places where gun control is strongest, where Democrats reign, gun violence is exponentially worse. Welfare spending does not eliminate poverty. Abortion does not improve women’s health. Taxation and regulation do not enrich the poor. Government healthcare does not increase health levels. It is all a fraud. A hoax. It is directly out of the playbook of socialism—promise what the people like to hear, in exchange for their wealth and power. Once you have taken their wealth and power, rule over them with an iron fist. This is the sum total of socialism.

Americans enjoy the highest degree of individual liberty and wealth in human history. It can’t be taken from us by force. Only fraud and deceit can convince us to surrender our superior way of life in exchange for the enslavement and poverty of socialism. The siren’s song sounds sweet, and promises such lovely things—but it is a lie, and our very existence is in jeopardy because of the encroachment of socialism in our nation. We must reject it and root it out. It is cancer. It is deadly. We must attack it with the force it deserves.

By James Thompson. James is a political commentator and professional ghostwriter.


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