September 30, 2020

Independence Day: What We Declared on July 4th

IN CONGRESS, July 4, 1776.

The unanimous Declaration of the thirteen united States of America,

When in the Course of human events, it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another, and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature’s God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.–That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, –That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness. Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn, that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security.–Such has been the patient sufferance of these Colonies; and such is now the necessity which constrains them to alter their former Systems of Government. The history of the present King of Great Britain is a history of repeated injuries and usurpations, all having in direct object the establishment of an absolute Tyranny over these States. To prove this, let Facts be submitted to a candid world.

  • He has refused his Assent to Laws, the most wholesome and necessary for the public good.
  • He has forbidden his Governors to pass Laws of immediate and pressing importance, unless suspended in their operation till his Assent should be obtained; and when so suspended, he has utterly neglected to attend to them.
  • He has refused to pass other Laws for the accommodation of large districts of people, unless those people would relinquish the right of Representation in the Legislature, a right inestimable to them and formidable to tyrants only.
  • He has called together legislative bodies at places unusual, uncomfortable, and distant from the depository of their public Records, for the sole purpose of fatiguing them into compliance with his measures.
  • He has dissolved Representative Houses repeatedly, for opposing with manly firmness his invasions on the rights of the people.
  • He has refused for a long time, after such dissolutions, to cause others to be elected; whereby the Legislative powers, incapable of Annihilation, have returned to the People at large for their exercise; the State remaining in the mean time exposed to all the dangers of invasion from without, and convulsions within.
  • He has endeavoured to prevent the population of these States; for that purpose obstructing the Laws for Naturalization of Foreigners; refusing to pass others to encourage their migrations hither, and raising the conditions of new Appropriations of Lands.
  • He has obstructed the Administration of Justice, by refusing his Assent to Laws for establishing Judiciary powers.
  • He has made Judges dependent on his Will alone, for the tenure of their offices, and the amount and payment of their salaries.
  • He has erected a multitude of New Offices, and sent hither swarms of Officers to harrass our people, and eat out their substance.
  • He has kept among us, in times of peace, Standing Armies without the Consent of our legislatures.
  • He has affected to render the Military independent of and superior to the Civil power.
  • He has combined with others to subject us to a jurisdiction foreign to our constitution, and unacknowledged by our laws; giving his Assent to their Acts of pretended Legislation:
  • For Quartering large bodies of armed troops among us:
    -For protecting them, by a mock Trial, from punishment for any Murders which they should commit on the Inhabitants of these States:
    -For cutting off our Trade with all parts of the world:
    -For imposing Taxes on us without our Consent:
    -For depriving us in many cases, of the benefits of Trial by Jury:
    -For transporting us beyond Seas to be tried for pretended offences
    -For abolishing the free System of English Laws in a neighbouring -Province, establishing therein an Arbitrary government, and enlarging its Boundaries so as to render it at once an example and fit instrument for introducing the same absolute rule into these Colonies:
    -For taking away our Charters, abolishing our most valuable Laws, and altering fundamentally the Forms of our Governments:
    -For suspending our own Legislatures, and declaring themselves invested with power to legislate for us in all cases whatsoever.
  • He has abdicated Government here, by declaring us out of his Protection and waging War against us.
  • He has plundered our seas, ravaged our Coasts, burnt our towns, and destroyed the lives of our people.
  • He is at this time transporting large Armies of foreign Mercenaries to compleat the works of death, desolation and tyranny, already begun with circumstances of Cruelty & perfidy scarcely paralleled in the most barbarous ages, and totally unworthy the Head of a civilized nation.
  • He has constrained our fellow Citizens taken Captive on the high Seas to bear Arms against their Country, to become the executioners of their friends and Brethren, or to fall themselves by their Hands.
  • He has excited domestic insurrections amongst us, and has endeavoured to bring on the inhabitants of our frontiers, the merciless Indian Savages, whose known rule of warfare, is an undistinguished destruction of all ages, sexes and conditions.

In every stage of these Oppressions We have Petitioned for Redress in the most humble terms: Our repeated Petitions have been answered only by repeated injury. A Prince whose character is thus marked by every act which may define a Tyrant, is unfit to be the ruler of a free people.

Nor have We been wanting in attentions to our Brittish brethren. We have warned them from time to time of attempts by their legislature to extend an unwarrantable jurisdiction over us. We have reminded them of the circumstances of our emigration and settlement here. We have appealed to their native justice and magnanimity, and we have conjured them by the ties of our common kindred to disavow these usurpations, which, would inevitably interrupt our connections and correspondence. They too have been deaf to the voice of justice and of consanguinity. We must, therefore, acquiesce in the necessity, which denounces our Separation, and hold them, as we hold the rest of mankind, Enemies in War, in Peace Friends.

We, therefore, the Representatives of the united States of America, in General Congress, Assembled, appealing to the Supreme Judge of the world for the rectitude of our intentions, do, in the Name, and by Authority of the good People of these Colonies, solemnly publish and declare, That these United Colonies are, and of Right ought to be Free and Independent States; that they are Absolved from all Allegiance to the British Crown, and that all political connection between them and the State of Great Britain, is and ought to be totally dissolved; and that as Free and Independent States, they have full Power to levy War, conclude Peace, contract Alliances, establish Commerce, and to do all other Acts and Things which Independent States may of right do. And for the support of this Declaration, with a firm reliance on the protection of divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes and our sacred Honor.

The 56 signatures on the Declaration appear in the positions indicated:

Column 1
Button Gwinnett
Lyman Hall
George Walton

Column 2
North Carolina:
William Hooper
Joseph Hewes
John Penn
South Carolina:
Edward Rutledge
Thomas Heyward, Jr.
Thomas Lynch, Jr.
Arthur Middleton

Column 3
John Hancock
Samuel Chase
William Paca
Thomas Stone
Charles Carroll of Carrollton
George Wythe
Richard Henry Lee
Thomas Jefferson
Benjamin Harrison
Thomas Nelson, Jr.
Francis Lightfoot Lee
Carter Braxton

Column 4
Robert Morris
Benjamin Rush
Benjamin Franklin
John Morton
George Clymer
James Smith
George Taylor
James Wilson
George Ross
Caesar Rodney
George Read
Thomas McKean

Column 5
New York:
William Floyd
Philip Livingston
Francis Lewis
Lewis Morris
New Jersey:
Richard Stockton
John Witherspoon
Francis Hopkinson
John Hart
Abraham Clark

Column 6
New Hampshire:
Josiah Bartlett
William Whipple
Samuel Adams
John Adams
Robert Treat Paine
Elbridge Gerry
Rhode Island:
Stephen Hopkins
William Ellery
Roger Sherman
Samuel Huntington
William Williams
Oliver Wolcott
New Hampshire:
Matthew Thornton

Woman’s “Top 10 Reasons I Am No Longer A Leftist” Goes Viral

Dr. Danusha V. Goska was a lifelong liberal who “could not conceive of ever being anything but a leftist.”

Her fantastic column, “Top Ten Reasons I Am No Longer a Leftist,” details how and why her philosophies changed.

From DownTrend:

How far left was I? So far left my beloved uncle was a card-carrying member of the Communist Party in a Communist country. When I returned to his Slovak village to buy him a mass card, the priest refused to sell me one. So far left that a self-identified terrorist proposed marriage to me. So far left I was a two-time Peace Corps volunteer and I have a degree from UC Berkeley. So far left that my Teamster mother used to tell anyone who would listen that she voted for Gus Hall, Communist Party chairman, for president. I wore a button saying “Eat the Rich.” To me it wasn’t a metaphor.

I voted Republican in the last presidential election.

Below are the top ten reasons I am no longer a leftist. This is not a rigorous comparison of theories. This list is idiosyncratic, impressionistic, and intuitive. It’s an accounting of the milestones on my herky-jerky journey.

10) Huffiness.

In the late 1990s I was reading Anatomy of the Spirit, a then recent bestseller by Caroline Myss.

Myss described having lunch with a woman named Mary. A man approached Mary and asked her if she were free to do a favor for him on June 8th. No, Mary replied, I absolutely cannot do anything on June 8th because June 8th is my incest survivors’ meeting and we never let each other down! They have suffered so much already! I would never betray incest survivors!

Myss was flabbergasted. Mary could have simply said “Yes” or “No.”

Reading this anecdote, I felt that I was confronting the signature essence of my social life among leftists. We rushed to cast everyone in one of three roles: victim, victimizer, or champion of the oppressed. We lived our lives in a constant state of outraged indignation. I did not want to live that way anymore. I wanted to cultivate a disposition of gratitude. I wanted to see others, not as victims or victimizers, but as potential friends, as loved creations of God. I wanted to understand the point of view of people with whom I disagreed without immediately demonizing them as enemy oppressors.

I recently attended a training session for professors on a college campus. The presenter was a new hire in a tenure-track position. He opened his talk by telling us that he had received an invitation to share a festive meal with the president of the university. I found this to be an enviable occurrence and I did not understand why he appeared dramatically aggrieved. The invitation had been addressed to “Mr. and Mrs. X.” Professor X was a bachelor. He felt slighted. Perhaps the person who had addressed his envelope had disrespected him because he is a member of a minority group.

Rolling his eyes, Prof. X went on to say that he was wary of accepting a position on this lowly commuter campus, with its working-class student body. The disconnect between leftists’ announced value of championing the poor and the leftist practice of expressing snobbery for them stung me. Already vulnerable students would be taught by a professor who regarded association with them as a burden, a failure, and a stigma.

Barack Obama is president. Kim and Kanye and Brad and Angelina are members of multiracial households. One might think that professors finally have cause to teach their students to be proud of America for overcoming racism. Not so fast, Professor X warned.  His talk was on microaggression, defined as slights that prove that America is still racist, sexist, homophobic, and ableist, that is, discriminatory against handicapped people.

Professor X projected a series of photographs onto a large screen. In one, commuters in business suits, carrying briefcases, mounted a flight of stairs. This photo was an act of microaggression. After all, Professor X reminded us, handicapped people can’t climb stairs.

I appreciate Professor X’s desire to champion the downtrodden, but identifying a photograph of commuters on stairs as an act of microaggression and evidence that America is still an oppressive hegemon struck me as someone going out of his way to live his life in a state of high dudgeon. On the other hand, Prof. X could have chosen to speak of his own working-class students with more respect.

Yes, there is a time and a place when it is absolutely necessary for a person to cultivate awareness of his own pain, or of others’ pain. Doctors instruct patients to do this — “Locate the pain exactly; calculate where the pain falls on a scale of one to ten; assess whether the pain is sharp, dull, fleeting, or constant.” But doctors do this for a reason. They want the patient to heal, and to move beyond the pain. In the left, I found a desire to be in pain constantly, so as always to have something to protest, from one’s history of incest to the inability of handicapped people to mount flights of stairs.

9) Selective Outrage

I was a graduate student. Female genital mutilation came up in class. I stated, without ornamentation, that it is wrong.

A fellow graduate student, one who was fully funded and is now a comfortably tenured professor, sneered at me. “You are so intolerant. Clitoredectomy is just another culture’s rite of passage. You Catholics have confirmation.”

When Mitt Romney was the 2012 Republican presidential candidate, he mentioned that, as Massachusetts governor, he proactively sought out female candidates for top jobs. He had, he said, “binders full of women.” He meant, of course, that he stored resumes of promising female job candidates in three-ring binders.

Op-ed pieces, Jon Stewart’s “Daily Show,” Twitter, Facebook, and Amazon posts erupted in a feeding frenzy, savaging Romney and the Republican Party for their “war on women.”

I was an active leftist for decades. I never witnessed significant leftist outrage over clitoredectomy, child marriage, honor killing, sharia-inspired rape laws, stoning, or acid attacks. Nothing. Zip. Crickets. I’m not saying that that outrage does not exist. I’m saying I never saw it.

The left’s selective outrage convinced me that much canonical, left-wing feminism is not so much support for women, as it is a protest against Western, heterosexual men. It’s an “I hate” phenomenon, rather than an “I love” phenomenon.

8) It’s the thought that counts

My favorite bumper sticker in ultra-liberal Berkeley, California: “Think Globally; Screw up Locally.” In other words, “Love Humanity but Hate People.”

It was past midnight, back in the 1980s, in Kathmandu, Nepal. A group of Peace Corps volunteers were drinking moonshine at the Momo Cave. A pretty girl with long blond hair took out her guitar and sang these lyrics, which I remember by heart from that night:

“If you want your dream to be,

Build it slow and surely.

Small beginnings greater ends.

Heartfelt work grows purely.”

I just googled these lyrics, thirty years later, and discovered that they are Donovan’s San Damiano song, inspired by the life of St. Francis.

Listening to this song that night in the Momo Cave, I thought, that’s what we leftists do wrong. That’s what we’ve got to get right.

We focused so hard on our good intentions. Before our deployment overseas, Peace Corps vetted us for our idealism and “tolerance,” not for our competence or accomplishments. We all wanted to save the world. What depressingly little we did accomplish was often erased with the next drought, landslide, or insurrection.

Peace Corps did not focus on the “small beginnings” necessary to accomplish its grandiose goals. Schools rarely ran, girls and low caste children did not attend, and widespread corruption guaranteed that all students received passing grades. Those students who did learn had no jobs where they could apply their skills, and if they rose above their station, the hereditary big men would sabotage them. Thanks to cultural relativism, we were forbidden to object to rampant sexism or the caste system. “Only intolerant oppressors judge others’ cultures.”

I volunteered with the Sisters of Charity. For them, I pumped cold water from a well and washed lice out of homeless people’s clothing. The sisters did not want to save the world. Someone already had. The sisters focused on the small things, as their founder, Mother Teresa, advised, “Don’t look for big things, just do small things with great love.” Delousing homeless people’s clothing was one of my few concrete accomplishments.

Back in 1975, after Hillary Rodham had followed Bill Clinton to Arkansas, she helped create the state’s first rape crisis hotline. She had her eye on the big picture. What was Hillary like in her one-on-one encounters?

Hillary served as the attorney to a 41-year-old, one of two men accused of raping a 12-year-old girl. The girl, a virgin before the assault, was in a coma for five days afterward. She was injured so badly she was told she’d never have children. In 2014, she is 52 years old, and she has never had children, nor has she married. She reports that she was afraid of men after the rape.

A taped interview with Clinton has recently emerged; on it Clinton makes clear that she thought her client was guilty, and she chuckles when reporting that she was able to set him free.  In a recent interview, the victim said that Hillary Clinton “took me through Hell” and “lied like a dog.” “I think she wants to be a role model… but I don’t think she’s a role model at all,” the woman said. “If she had have been, she would have helped me at the time, being a 12-year-old girl who was raped by two guys.”

Hillary had her eye on the all-caps resume bullet point: FOUNDS RAPE HOTLINE.

Hillary’s chuckles when reminiscing about her legal victory suggest that, in her assessment, her contribution to the ruination of the life of a rape victim is of relatively negligible import.

7) Leftists hate my people.

I’m a working-class Bohunk. A hundred years ago, leftists loved us. We worked lousy jobs, company thugs shot us when we went on strike, and leftists saw our discontent as fuel for their fire.

Karl Marx promised the workers’ paradise through an inevitable revolution of the proletariat. The proletariat is an industrial working class — think blue-collar people working in mines, mills, and factories: exactly what immigrants like my parents were doing.

Polish-Americans participated significantly in a great victory, Flint, Michigan’s 1937 sit-down strike. Italian-Americans produced Sacco and Vanzetti. Gus Hall was a son of Finnish immigrants.

In the end, though, we didn’t show up for the Marxist happily ever after. We believed in God and we were often devout Catholics. Leftists wanted us to slough off our ethnic identities and join in the international proletarian brotherhood — “Workers of the world, unite!” But we clung to ethnic distinctiveness. Future generations lost their ancestral ties, but they didn’t adopt the IWW flag; they flew the stars and stripes. “Property is theft” is a communist motto, but no one is more house-proud than a first generation Pole who has escaped landless peasantry and secured his suburban nest.

Leftists felt that we jilted them at the altar. Leftists turned on us. This isn’t just ancient history. In 2004, What’s the Matter with Kansas? spent eighteen weeks on the bestseller lists. The premise of the book: working people are too stupid to know what’s good for them, and so they vote conservative when they should be voting left. In England, the book was titled, What’s the Matter with America?

We became the left’s boogeyman: Joe Six-pack, Joe Hardhat. Though we’d been in the U.S. for a few short decades when the demonization began, leftists, in the academy, in media, and in casual speech, blamed working-class ethnics for American crimes, including racism and the “imperialist” war in Vietnam. See films like The Deer Hunter. Watch Archie Bunker on “All in the Family.” Listen to a few of the Polack jokes that elitists pelted me with whenever I introduced myself at UC Berkeley.

Leftists freely label poor whites as “redneck,” “white trash,” “trailer trash,” and “hillbilly.” At the same time that leftists toss around these racist and classist slurs, they are so sanctimonious they forbid anyone to pronounce the N word when reading Mark Twain aloud. President Bill Clinton’s advisor James Carville succinctly summed up leftist contempt for poor whites in his memorable quote, “Drag a hundred-dollar bill through a trailer park, you never know what you’ll find.”

The left’s visceral hatred of poor whites overflowed like a broken sewer when John McCain chose Sarah Palin as his vice presidential running mate in 2008. It would be impossible, and disturbing, to attempt to identify the single most offensive comment that leftists lobbed at Palin. One can report that attacks on Palin were so egregious that leftists themselves publicly begged that they cease; after all, they gave the left a bad name. The Reclusive Leftist blogged in 2009 that it was a “major shock” to discover “the extent to which so many self-described liberals actually despise working people.” The Reclusive Leftist focuses on Vanity Fair journalist Henry Rollins. Rollins recommends that leftists “hate-fuck conservative women” and denounces Palin as a “small town hickoid” who can be bought off with a coupon to a meal at a chain restaurant.

Smearing us is not enough. Liberal policies sabotage us. Affirmative action benefits recipients by color, not by income. Even this limited focus fails. In his 2004 Yale University Press study, Thomas Sowell insists that affirmative action helps only wealthier African Americans. Poor blacks do not benefit. In 2009, Princeton sociologists Thomas Espenshade and Alexandria Radford demonstrated that poor, white Christians are underrepresented on elite college campuses. Leftists add insult to injury. A blue-collar white kid, who feels lost and friendless on the alien terrain of a university campus, a campus he has to leave immediately after class so he can get to his fulltime job at MacDonald’s, must accept that he is a recipient of “white privilege” – if he wants to get good grades in mandatory classes on racism.

The left is still looking for its proletariat. It supports mass immigration for this reason. Harvard’s George Borjas, himself a Cuban immigrant, has been called “America’s leading immigration economist.” Borjas points out that mass immigration from Latin America has sabotaged America’s working poor.

It’s more than a little bit weird that leftists, who describe themselves as the voice of the worker, select workers as their hated other of choice, and targets of their failed social engineering.

6) I believe in God.

Read Marx and discover a mythology that is irreconcilable with any other narrative, including the Bible. Hang out in leftist internet environments, and you will discover a toxic bath of irrational hatred for the Judeo-Christian tradition. You will discover an alternate vocabulary in which Jesus is a “dead Jew on a stick” or a “zombie” and any belief is an arbitrary sham, the equivalent of a recently invented “flying spaghetti monster.” You will discover historical revisionism that posits Nazism as a Christian denomination. You will discover a rejection of the Judeo-Christian foundation of Western Civilization and American concepts of individual rights and law. You will discover a nihilist void, the kind of vacuum of meaning that nature abhors and that, all too often, history fills with the worst totalitarian nightmares, the rough beast that slouches toward Bethlehem.

5 & 4) Straw men and “In order to make an omelet you have to break a few eggs.”

It astounds me now to reflect on it, but never, in all my years of leftist activism, did I ever hear anyone articulate accurately the position of anyone to our right. In fact, I did not even know those positions when I was a leftist.

“Truth is that which serves the party.” The capital-R revolution was such a good, it could eliminate all that was bad, that manipulating facts was not even a venial sin; it was a good. If you want to make an omelet, you have to break a few eggs. One of those eggs was objective truth.

Ron Kuby is a left-wing radio talk show host on New York’s WABC. He plays the straw man card hourly. If someone phones in to question affirmative action – shouldn’t such programs benefit recipients by income, rather than by skin color? – Kuby opens the fire hydrant. He is shrill. He is bombastic. He accuses the caller of being a member of the KKK. He paints graphic word pictures of the horrors of lynching and the death of Emmett Till and asks, “And yousupport that?”

Well of course THE CALLER did not support that, but it is easier to orchestrate a mob in a familiar rendition of righteous rage against a sensationalized straw man than it is to produce a reasoned argument against a reasonable opponent.

On June 16, 2014, Washington Post columnist Dana Milbank published a column alleging that a peaceful Muslim was nearly verbally lynched by violent Islamophobes at a Heritage Foundation-hosted panel. What Milbank described was despicable. Unfortunately for Milbank and the Washington Post‘s credibility, someone filmed the event and posted the film on YouTube. Panel discussants, including Frank Gaffney and Brigitte Gabriel, made important points in a courteous manner. Saba Ahmed, the peaceful Muslim, is a “family friend” of a bombing plotter who expressed a specific desire to murder children. It soon became clear that Milbank was, as one blogger put it, “making stuff up.”

Milbank slanders anyone who might attempt analysis of jihad, a force that is currently cited in the murder of innocents — including Muslims — from Nigeria to the Philippines. The leftist strategy of slandering those who speak uncomfortable facts suppresses discourse and has a devastating impact on confrontations with truth in journalism and on college campuses.

2 & 3) It doesn’t work.  Other approaches work better.

I went to hear David Horowitz speak in 2004. My intention was to heckle him. Horowitz said something that interrupted my flow of thought. He pointed out that Camden, Paterson, and Newark had decades of Democratic leadership.

I grew up among “Greatest Generation” Americans who had helped build these cities. One older woman told me, “As soon as I got my weekly paycheck, I rushed to Main Ave in Paterson, and my entire paycheck ended up on my back, in a new outfit.” In the 1950s and 60s, my parents and my friends’ parents fled deadly violence in Newark and Paterson.

Within a few short decades, Paterson, Camden, and Newark devolved into unlivable slums, with shooting deaths, drug deals, and garbage-strewn streets. The pain that New Jerseyans express about these failed cities is our state’s open wound.

I live in Paterson. I teach its young. My students are hogtied by ignorance. I find myself speaking to young people born in the U.S. in a truncated pidgin I would use with a train station chai wallah in Calcutta.

Many of my students lack awareness of a lot more than vocabulary. They don’t know about believing in themselves, or stick-to-itiveness. They don’t realize that the people who exercise power over them have faced and overcome obstacles. I know they don’t know these things because they tell me. One student confessed that when she realized that one of her teachers had overcome setbacks it changed her own life.

My students do know — because they have been taught this — that America is run by all-powerful racists who will never let them win. My students know — because they have been drilled in this — that the only way they can get ahead is to locate and cultivate those few white liberals who will pity them and scatter crumbs on their supplicant, bowed heads and into their outstretched palms. My students have learned to focus on the worst thing that ever happened to them, assume that it happened because America is unjust, and to recite that story, dirge-like, to whomever is in charge, from the welfare board to college professors, and to await receipt of largesse.

As Shelby Steele so brilliantly points out in his book White Guilt, the star of the sob story my students tell in exchange for favors is very much not the black aid recipient. The star of this story, still, just as before the Civil Rights Movement that was meant to change who got to take the lead in American productions, was the white man. The generous white liberal still gets top billing.

In Dominque La Pierre’s 1985 novel City of Joy, a young American doctor, Max Loeb, confesses that serving the poor in a slum has changed his mind forever about what might actually improve their lot. “In a slum an exploiter is better than a Santa Claus… An exploiter forces you to react, whereas a Santa Claus demobilizes you.”

That one stray comment from David Horowitz, a man I regarded as the enemy, sparked the slow but steady realization that my ideals, the ideals I had lived by all my life, were poisoning my students and Paterson, my city.

After I realized that our approaches don’t work, I started reading about other approaches. I had another Aha! moment while listening to a two minute twenty-three second YouTube video of Milton Friedman responding to Phil Donahue’s castigation of greed. The only rational response to Friedman is “My God, he’s right.”




1) Hate.

If hate were the only reason, I’d stop being a leftist for this reason alone.

Almost twenty years ago, when I could not conceive of ever being anything but a leftist, I joined a left-wing online discussion forum.

Before that I’d had twenty years of face-to-face participation in leftist politics: marching, organizing, socializing.

In this online forum, suddenly my only contact with others was the words those others typed onto a screen. That limited and focused means of contact revealed something.

If you took all the words typed into the forum every day and arranged them according to what part of speech they were, you’d quickly notice that nouns expressing the emotions of anger, aggression, and disgust, and verbs speaking of destruction, punishing, and wreaking vengeance, outnumbered any other class of words.

One topic thread was entitled “What do you view as disgusting about modern America?” The thread was begun in 2002. Almost eight thousand posts later, the thread was still going strong in June, 2014.

Those posting messages in this left-wing forum publicly announced that they did what they did every day, from voting to attending a rally to planning a life, because they wanted to destroy something, and because they hated someone, rather than because they wanted to build something, or because they loved someone. You went to an anti-war rally because you hated Bush, not because you loved peace. Thus, when Obama bombed, you didn’t hold any anti-war rally, because you didn’t hate Obama.

I experienced powerful cognitive dissonance when I recognized the hate. The rightest of my right-wing acquaintances — I had no right-wing friends — expressed nothing like this. My right-wing acquaintances talked about loving: God, their family, their community. I’m not saying that the right-wingers I knew were better people; I don’t know that they were. I’m speaking here, merely, about language.

In 1995 I developed a crippling illness. I couldn’t work, lost my life savings, and traveled through three states, from surgery to surgery.

A left-wing friend, Pete, sent me emails raging against Republicans like George Bush, whom he referred to as “Bushitler.” The Republicans were to blame because they opposed socialized medicine. In fact it’s not at all certain that socialized medicine would have helped; the condition I had is not common and there was no guaranteed treatment.

I visited online discussion forums for others with the same affliction. One of my fellow sufferers, who identified himself as a successful corporate executive in New Jersey, publicly announced that the symptoms were so hideous, and his helpless slide into poverty was so much not what his wife had bargained for when she married him, that he planned to take his own life. He stopped posting after that announcement, though I responded to his post and requested a reply. It is possible that he committed suicide, exactly as he said he would — car exhaust in the garage. I suddenly realized that my “eat the rich” lapel button was a sin premised on a lie.

In any case, at the time I was diagnosed, Bush wasn’t president; Clinton was. And, as I pointed out to Pete, his unceasing and vehement expressions of hatred against Republicans did nothing for me.

I had a friend, a nun, Mary Montgomery, one of the Sisters of Providence, who took me out to lunch every six months or so, and gave me twenty-dollar Target gift cards on Christmas. Her gestures to support someone, rather than expressions of hate against someone — even though these gestures were miniscule and did nothing to restore me to health — meant a great deal to me.

Recently, I was trying to explain this aspect of why I stopped being a leftist to a left-wing friend, Julie. She replied, “No, I’m not an unpleasant person. I try to be nice to everybody.”

“Julie,” I said, “You are an active member of the Occupy Movement. You could spend your days teaching children to read, or visiting the elderly in nursing homes, or organizing cleanup crews in a garbage-strewn slum. You don’t. You spend your time protestingand trying to destroy something — capitalism.”

“Yes, but I’m very nice about it,” she insisted. “I always protest with a smile.”

Pete is now a Facebook friend and his feed overflows with the anger that I’m sure he assesses as righteous. He protests against homophobic Christians, American imperialists, and Monsanto. I don’t know if Pete ever donates to an organization he believes in, or a person suffering from a disease, or if he ever says comforting things to afflicted intimates. I know he hates.

I do have right-wing friends now and they do get angry and they do express that anger. But when I encounter unhinged, stratospheric vituperation, when I encounter detailed revenge fantasies in scatological and sadistic language, I know I’ve stumbled upon a left-wing website.

Given that the left prides itself on being the liberator of women, homosexuals, and on being “sex positive,” one of the weirder and most obvious aspects of left-wing hate is how often, and how virulently, it is expressed in terms that are misogynist, homophobic, and in the distinctive anti-sex voice of a sexually frustrated high-school misfit. Haters are aware enough of how uncool it would be to use a slur like “fag,” so they sprinkle their discourse with terms indicating anal rape like “butt hurt.” Leftists taunt right-wingers as “tea baggers.” The implication is that the target of their slur is either a woman or a gay man being orally penetrated by a man, and is, therefore, inferior, and despicable.

Misogynist speech has a long tradition on the left. In 1964, Stokely Carmichael said that the only position for women in the Civil Rights Movement was “prone.” Carmichael’s misogyny is all the more outrageous given the very real role of women like Rosa Parks, Viola Liuzzo, and Fannie Lou Hamer.

In 2012 atheist bloggers Jennifer McCreight and Natalie Reed exposed the degree to which misogyny dominates the New Atheist movement. McCreight quoted a prominent atheist’s reply to a woman critic. “I will make you a rape victim if you don’t fuck off… I think we should give the guy who raped you a medal. I hope you fucking drown in rape semen, you ugly, mean-spirited cow… Is that kind of like the way that rapists dick went in your pussy? Or did he use your asshole… I’m going to rape you with my fist.”

A high-profile example of leftist invective was delivered by MSNBC’s Martin Bashir in late 2013. Bashir said, on air and in a rehearsed performance, not as part of a moment’s loss of control, something so vile about Sarah Palin that I won’t repeat it here. Extreme as it is, Bashir’s comment is fairly representative of a good percentage of what I read on left-wing websites.

I could say as much about a truly frightening phenomenon, left-wing anti-Semitism, but I’ll leave the topic to others better qualified. I can say that when I first encountered it, at a PLO fundraising party in Marin County, I felt as if I had time-traveled to pre-war Berlin.

I needed to leave the left, I realized, when I decided that I wanted to spend time with people building, cultivating, and establishing, something that they loved.

Nobody is pleased to lose one of their own, but the left is sure to be infuriated by Goska calling out what really drives most liberals.

In the minds of many American leftists, even a single criticism, let alone ten, is unthinkable, and whoever made it must be a hate-monger.

Goska makes it clear that she is not a hate-monger, but a rationalist who wasn’t going to be fooled by the liberal hype any longer.

Mr. Trump Goes to Washington after Completing Cabinet Line-up

Donald Trump made the rounds in Washington on Thursday during his final hours as president-elect, thanking his congressional allies during a luncheon at his namesake hotel – after completing his Cabinet line-up by tapping former Georgia Gov. Sonny Perdue to lead the Agriculture Department.

The incoming president arrived in the Washington area shortly after noon at Maryland’s Joint Base Andrews. He was joined by his wife, Melania, and other members of his family, as he prepared for an afternoon of pre-inaugural events.

His first stop was his hotel along Pennsylvania Avenue, where he praised GOP leaders like Speaker Paul Ryan and touted his Cabinet nominees as having the “highest IQ” of any team.

Vice President-elect Mike Pence told reporters earlier Thursday morning that hundreds of personnel are now preparing to assume control of federal agencies on Inauguration Day Friday.

“Our beachhead teams are ready to land,” he said, boasting that the transition was “on schedule and under budget.”

The “beachhead teams” are composed of 536 temporary employees that serve as assistants to the secretary-designates. They can serve up to 120 days, at which point they may be retained.


“We are all ready to go to work,” Pence said. “In fact, we can’t wait to get to work for the American people to make America great again.”

Incoming White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer, at the same briefing, said several Obama administration officials in critical roles would stay on, including Deputy Secretary of Defense Robert Work, U.S. Envoy for Countering ISIS Brett McGurk and Undersecretary of State for Political Affairs Tom Shannon.

Secretary of Housing and Urban Development nominee Ben Carson, Attorney General nominee Jeff Sessions and longtime adviser Rudy Giuliani were seated to the side of the podium as Pence spoke. Pence said his primary purpose was to thank “the team that got us here to this day at the direction of the president-elect.”

“When you see a box turtle on a fence post, you know he had some help getting there,” Pence said.

Trump is hoping to have a number of his Cabinet nominees confirmed on Friday hours after he officially takes office. Several of his top nominees — including Secretary of Defense nominee Gen. James Mattis and Secretary of State nominee Rex Tillerson — have already had confirmation hearings. Republicans, at the least, would like the national security team confirmed on Day 1.

Spicer chided Democratic senators who have threatened to hold up some of the votes and have led aggressive questioning of the nominees so far. Spicer said there’s “no excuse” for what he called “delay tactics” and “partisanship.”

One pick who likely won’t be confirmed for Day 1 is Perdue, long-rumored to fill the Agriculture post but not officially named until Thursday.

“Sonny Perdue is going to accomplish great things as Secretary of Agriculture,” Trump said in a statement. “From growing up on a farm to being governor of a big agriculture state, he has spent his whole life understanding and solving the challenges our farmers face, and he is going to deliver big results for all Americans who earn their living off the land.”

Perdue, 70, would be the first Southerner in the post in more than two decades. The last three agriculture secretaries have been from Iowa, North Dakota and Nebraska.

“Beginning as a simple Georgia farm boy, making sure Americans who make their livelihood in the agriculture industry are thriving is near and dear to my heart, and I’m going to champion the concerns of American agriculture and work tirelessly to solve the issues facing our farm families in this new role,” Perdue said in a statement.

Perdue began his political career as a Democrat in the Georgia Legislature in the 1990s. After switching his allegiance to the Republican Party, he was elected governor in 2002. Perdue focused on finding ways to save money while improving customer service by state agencies — such as reducing wait times for renewing driver’s licenses. He often referred to himself as Georgia’s CEO.

“If I could choose my legacy it would be the epithet that ‘he made government work,’” Perdue told The Associated Press in 2010 before he left office. “That’s really what I’ve focused on. It’s not some big monument.”

Under Perdue’s watch, Georgia adopted tough food-safety regulations after a deadly U.S. salmonella outbreak was traced to Georgia-made peanut butter. He moved the state office that issues water permits for irrigation and other agricultural uses from Atlanta to rural south Georgia, where it would be closer to farmers. And Perdue poured millions of state dollars into Go Fish, a program that aimed to lure bass fishing tournaments to the state.

The ex-governor, whose full name is George Ervin Perdue III, was born in rural Perry, Georgia. He attended the University of Georgia, where he played football as a walk-on and earned a doctorate in veterinary medicine. Following a stint in the Air Force, he returned to Georgia and settled in Bonaire, a city of about 14,000 people. / The Associated Press contributed to this report.

North Korea’s Nuclear Capability Growing Every Day

A key U.S. diplomat warned Thursday that North Korea’s weapons capabilities have shown a “qualitative improvement” in the past year and the result is an “unprecedented level of activity.”

Deputy Secretary of State Antony Blinken, who met with his counterparts from key U.S. allies Japan and South Korea, said the North conducted nuclear and missile tests with new intensity during 2016 and that the threat it poses grows by the day. The North Koreans learn from every single test, including failures, he said.

“They apply what they have learned to their technology and to the next test, and in our assessment we have seen a qualitative improvement in their capabilities over the past year as a result of this unprecedented level of activity,” Blinken told a news conference.

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un said Sunday preparations for test launching an intercontinental ballistic missile have “reached the final stage.”

If such a missile were wedded to a nuclear warhead it could pose a new level of threat to the U.S. mainland, but it remains unclear when the secretive nation might achieve that goal. President-elect Donald Trump responded in a tweet Monday, “It won’t happen!”

Blinken said that the U.S. and its allies were not “sitting still,” and had bolstered defenses to stay ahead of the threat with additional missile defenses and radars on sea and on land.

North Korea conducted two nuclear tests last year and more than two dozen ballistic missile launches.

Japanese Vice Minister of Foreign Affairs Shinsuke Sugiyama said that North Korea’s nuclear and missile programs represent a “new level of threat.” He said some missiles tests have failed, and others have succeeded, but their accuracy has increased.

He said that security cooperation among the three allies was “indispensable.”

Sugiyama said that although some changes were expected in U.S. policy toward Asia, he predicted the importance of the U.S. alliances would endure under Trump.

Despite political uncertainty in South Korea, where the president is facing an impeachment trial, First Vice Minister of Foreign Affairs Lim Sung-nam said Seoul still plans to deploy within this year an advanced U.S. missile defense system opposed by China.

The U.S., Japan and South Korea reiterated their long-running call for the complete and irreversible denuclearization of North Korea and for the proper implementation of sanctions which they hope will pressure Kim’s government to return to long-stalled disarmament talks.

Blinken said that there were “positive signs” in China’s implementation of new U.N. restrictions on imports of coal from North Korea but that it needs to be sustained.

To date, sanctions have failed to stop the North’s weapons development, but Blinken said the experience of Iran showed that applying sanctions takes “determination and patience.”

“It’s not like flipping a light switch,” he said. / The Associated Press contributed to this report

Fox’s Megyn Kelly Jumping Ship, Moving to NBC

Fox News star host Megyn Kelly will be leaving the network at the conclusion of her contract, according to a New York Times report. The  Times report has since been confirmed by representatives from NBC, and by Kelly herself via her Facebook page.

Kelly has accepted a broad, new job at NBC News where she will take on the role of daytime anchor, Sunday night news show host and co-anchor of the network’s special political programming. According to the Times, she accepted the triple role after being “wooed” by NBC News chairman Andrew Lack.

More from the Times:

It was unclear at what time the daytime program would run, or how NBC News would ensure that all of its affiliates would carry it, given that daytime television is often filled with syndicated programs. But people familiar with the discussions said NBC was confident that it would not be a problem. The daytime program would be a mix of news, interviews and panel-like discussions covering a range of issues, not only government and politics.

The Sunday night program, which is yet to be named, would provide Ms. Kelly with a continued hand in hard news. And she would be in the mix on NBC News during major political coverage.

It is not immediately known what Kelly’s salary will be at NBC, but it is expected to be a significant raise, despite Kelly already being one of the highest paid television news personalities.

Kelly’s departure from Fox would close out an extremely difficult year for the network after it had to deal with a sexual harassment scandal deriving from the actions of the network’s founding chairman, Roger Ailes.

That scandal broke wide-open last summer after one of the network’s main female personalities, Gretchen Carlson, filed a sexual harassment lawsuit against Ailes. Kelly would later come to the defense of Carlson, saying that she too was a victim of sexual harassment at the hands of their boss. Just a few weeks later, Ailes was gone.

After Fox began its human resources implosion and Kelly came forward with her allegations, rumors began to swirl about other news networks trying to court the star anchor. According to reports, CNN and ABC, in addition to NBC, were all desperately seeking Kelly’s star power and charm to lead their networks.

Fox leaders James and Lachlan Murdoch wanted Kelly to stay, and at one point, offered her a blank check, saying that money would never be an issue with her. But in the end, it appears that the discombobulation of Fox, in light of its scandals, was enough to send Kelly elsewhere.

Fox News Channel anchors (L to R) Chris Wallace, Megyn Kelly and Bret Baier prepare to moderate at the U.S. Republican presidential candidates debate in Detroit, Michigan, March 3, 2016. REUTERS/Rebecca Cook

In addition, the Times reports, citing people familiar with the negotiations, that Kelly wanted to spend more time with her husband and children and Lack’s attractive daytime job offer was too good to turn down.

According to the Times, Kelly’s contract with Fox is not up until this summer and it is not immediately clear whether or not she will be released from her current contract or when she will be starting her new job with NBC.

The Times released their story around 12:30 p.m. EST and NBC confirmed the news just 30 minutes later at 1 p.m. EST.

“Megyn is an exceptional journalist and news anchor, who has had an extraordinary career,” Lack said in a statement. “She’s demonstrated tremendous skill and poise, and we’re lucky to have her.”

Writing a short statement on Facebook, Kelly said that she will miss her Fox colleagues but is excited for the road ahead.

“While I will greatly miss my colleagues at Fox, I am delighted to be joining the NBC News family and taking on a new challenge,” she wrote. “I remain deeply grateful to Fox News, to Rupert, Lachlan and James Murdoch, and especially to all of the FNC viewers, who have taught me so much about what really matters. More to come soon.”

In a response to a request for comment made by TheBlaze, a Fox News representative offered this quote from Fox’s executive chairman, Rupert Murdoch: “We thank Megyn Kelly for  her 12 years of contributions to Fox News. We hope she enjoys tremendous success in her career and wish her and her family all the best.”

The representative said that Kelly will continue hosting her FNC show through Jan. 6.


Carrie Fisher, Best Known as Princess Leia in Star Wars, Dead at 60

Carrie Fisher arrives at the Governors Awards at the Dolby Ballroom on Saturday, Nov. 14, 2015, in Los Angeles. (Photo by Jordan Strauss/Invision/AP)

Carrie Fisher, best known as the iconic double-bun hairdo-wearing Princess Leia in the Star Wars franchise, died Tuesday following a heart attack, confirmed. She was 60.

“It is with a very deep sadness that Billie Lourd confirms that her beloved mother Carrie Fisher passed away at 8:55 this morning,” a representative for Lourd told “She was loved by the world and she will be missed profoundly.”

Fisher’s publicist also confirmed the news.

Fisher – who also starred in a host of popular 1980s movies, was married or engaged to famous singers and actors, suffered from bipolar disorder and drug addiction and eventually became a mental health advocate. She had a medical emergency while on a flight from London to Los Angeles on Dec. 23, during which she stopped breathing. She was later taken to an intensive care unit.

Fisher was born on Oct. 21, 1956 with showbiz – literally – in her blood. The daughter of singer Eddie Fisher and actress Debbie Reynolds, Carrie appeared, at the age of 15, in the Broadway show “Irene,” which Reynolds starred in. But the theater turn cost her school time and contributed to Fisher never finishing high school.

She first appeared on the movie screen in 1975’s “Shampoo,” though her career took off when she was cast as Princess Leia Organa in the inaugural Star Wars film, which was released in 1977. She would go on to reprise the role in subsequent films, most recently appearing in 2015’s “Star Wars: The Force Awakens.”

Fisher revealed in her 2016 autobiography that she had an affair with “Star Wars” co-star Harrison Ford for three months in 1976.

In the 1980s, Fisher appeared in a string of Hollywood hits, including “The Blues Brothers,” “Hannah and Her Sisters,” “The ‘Burbs” and “When Harry Met Sally…”

Her romantic life also heated up during the decade. Fisher dated Paul Simon until 1983 and about a year later married to the singer/songwriter, again for about a year. In between stints with Simon, she dated and was briefly engaged to “Blues Brother” co-star Dan Akroyd in 1980. She had a child, Billie Catherine Lourd, in 1992 with talent agent Bryan Lourd, though Lourd later left Fisher for a man.

Fisher appeared to reflect on the relationship with Lourd in her 2004 book, “The Best Awful There Is,” in which the character Suzanne is loosely based on Fisher’s life. “She’d had a child with someone who forgot to tell her he was gay. He forgot to tell her, and she forgot to notice.”

“Best Awful” was the fifth and final of Fisher’s novels, though she later wrote three non-fiction works, including 2016’s “The Princess Diarist.” A talented writer, she helped rework screen plays for “Sister Act,” “Last Action Hero” and “The Wedding Singer.”

Fisher also continued her acting career later in life, often appearing as herself in comedic turns on television shows. Somewhat out of character, she provided the voice of “Angela” on “Family Guy” from 2005-2016. Her last projects were in two yet-to-be released films: “Wonderwall” and as Leia in “Star Wars: Episode VIII.”

Fisher also publicly struggled with bipolar disorder and abused pain killers and cocaine. She said in 2008 that she received electroconvulsive therapy treatments every six weeks at one point. Fisher became an outspoken advocate for those battling mental illness and received an Annual Outstanding Lifetime Achievement Award in Cultural Humanism from Harvard in 2016.

“I find it unappealing,” Fisher said of her mental illness in a 2004 Los Angeles Times profile. “But there is a part of this illness that is funny. I don’t understand the stigma. I understand funny. It is what I do. Because I have the sense of humor I have, things don’t prey on me long. And that’s why I have it. If I didn’t, I would be…in pain. If my life weren’t funny, it would just be true, and that would be unacceptable.”’s Sasha Savitsky contributed to this report.

Democrats Look for Answers After Devastating Election

trump_protestersHours after the arrest of 17 progressive protesters at a sit-in at New York Sen. Charles “Chuck” Schumer’s office, President Barack Obama said Democrats will be doing some healthy reflection after the pounding the party took in last week’s national election.

The progressive wing of the Democratic party, which backed Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders’ presidential primary challenge to eventual nominee Hillary Clinton, wants to double down on its agenda. It blames Clinton’s supposed centrist stance and close ties to Wall Street for the loss to Republican Donald Trump on Nov. 8.

Some of this will play out in the coming months in the competition to be the next Democratic National Committee chairman.

The President and Protesters

“When your team loses, everybody gets deflated and it’s hard and it’s challenging and so I think it’s a healthy thing for the Democratic Party to go through some reflection,” Obama, who as president is the outgoing titular leader of his party, said in a press conference Monday. “I think it’s important for me not to be big-footing that conversation. I think we want to see new voices and new ideas emerge.”

“When your team loses, everybody gets deflated,” @POTUS says.

Obama said the Democratic Party can’t waiver from its core beliefs.

“I believe that we have better ideas, but I also believe that good ideas don’t matter if people don’t hear them and one of the issues that Democrats have to be clear on is that, given population distribution across the country, we have to compete everywhere,” Obama said.

Protesters outside likely Senate Democratic leader Schumer’s office had a different view than Obama.

The 45 millennial activists, calling themselves “All of Us 2016,” made two demands: that Democrats vow to never negotiate with President-elect Trump and that Schumer step aside from his designated role and endorse Sanders to be the party’s Senate leader.

“The Democrats cannot negotiate with a racist, fascist President Trump, they must filibuster all day and all night to stop his racist, fascist agenda,” All of Us co-founder Waleed Shahid, 25, of Brooklyn, told The Daily Signal. “It was negotiation that led to calling African-Americans three-fifths of a citizen.”

The protesters sang, “We stand for our future and together we stand strong.” They also chanted, “Our future is on the line, Chuck Schumer, grow a spine.”

“Democrats lost because they couldn’t tell the truth. Schumer is entirely funded by Wall Street,” Shahid said, adding it would have turned out different if Sanders had been the Democratic nominee. “Sanders inspired the American people.”

Various protesters were arrested in groups of one and two, and taken away. This is revealing about Schumer, said Anna Bonomo, 26, of Hermitage, Pennsylvania.

“Charles Schumer decided to have almost 20 millennials arrested instead of meeting with us and talking with us,” Bonomo told The Daily Signal. “I think that just goes to prove that Wall Street Democrats like him are not here for the people they claim to represent.”

Schumer’s office did not respond to inquiries from The Daily Signal.

The Democratic National Committee did not respond to The Daily Signal’s questions about the state of the party. The DNC chair’s leadership role will be elevated with Republicans holding the White House and Congress.

Electing the Next Chairman

Interim DNC Chairwoman Donna Brazile was shouted down last week by a DNC staffer, who blamed the party’s establishment for Trump’s victory and warned of pending doom from climate change, The Huffington Post reported. The DNC staffer told Brazile:

Why should we trust you as chair to lead us through this? You backed a flawed candidate, and your friend [former DNC Chair Debbie Wasserman Schultz] plotted through this to support your own gain and yourself. You are part of the problem. You and your friends will die of old age and I’m going to die from climate change. You and your friends let this happen, which is going to cut 40 years off my life expectancy.

DNC members will choose a successor to Brazile in February.

Both Schumer and Sanders have endorsed Rep. Keith Ellison of Minnesota, co-chairman of the Congressional Progressive Caucus, to be the next chairman of the Democratic National Committee, as has outgoing Senate Democratic leader Harry Reid of Nevada.

But securing the nomination won’t be easy for Ellison, the first Muslim in Congress.

Competition for Leadership

Former Vermont Gov. Howard Dean, who chaired the DNC from 2005 through 2009 when the party retook Congress and the White House, plans to run for the job again. Former Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley, who ran unsuccessfully for president, has said he’s interested in the job.

Others possibilities are reportedly Labor Secretary Thomas Perez and New Hampshire Democratic Party Chairman Raymond Buckley.

In addition to Trump’s surprising win over Clinton, the Nov. 8 election also saw the GOP hold the House and Senate and make gains among governorships and state legislatures. Trump even won traditionally blue states of Pennsylvania, Wisconsin, and Michigan.

Sanders scolded the Democratic Party in a tweet Monday morning, though he didn’t address the protest group advocating his elevation to Senate Democratic leader.

“I come from the white working class, and I am deeply humiliated that the Democratic Party cannot talk to the people where I came from,” Sanders tweeted.

He later tweeted: “The Democratic Party can no longer be led by the liberal elite. We have to stand up to Wall Street and the greed of corporate America.”

Politico reported that big Democratic donors met with billionaire financier George Soros at the District of Columbia’s elite Mandarin Oriental hotel for a closed-door conference sponsored by the Democracy Alliance, a progressive activist organization. Soros spent millions trying to get Clinton elected. Ellison attended the meeting spanning Sunday through Monday.

Others attending the conference were House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi of California and Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren. Soros’ Democracy Alliance has contributed more than $500 million to get Democrats elected and on liberal groups since 2005.

By Fred Lucas / /

Trump Should Reverse Obama’s Executive Actions-7 Areas to Start

Obamas-PenUnder the U.S. Constitution, Congress, not the president, creates the laws. Article I of the Constitution grants enumerated legislative powers to Congress. The Constitution assigns the executive the duty to enforce the law, and Article II, Section 3 requires that the president “shall take Care that the Laws be faithfully executed.”

However, throughout the last eight years, we have seen the Obama administration continually abuse the power of the executive branch by issuing unconstitutional, unilateral executive actions to push its agenda. The “old days” of Congress creating our laws have become a distant memory.

President Barack Obama even went so far as to announce his unilateralism, saying, “We’re not just going to be waiting for legislation in order to make sure that we’re providing Americans the kind of help they need. I’ve got a pen and I’ve got a phone.”

Well, it appears that American voters have their own pens, too, and they’ve put them to their ballots now in a stunning and decisive way. On Tuesday, the American people elected Republican outsider Donald J. Trump to serve as the 45th president of the United States.

Now, with control of the presidency, both chambers of Congress, and soon the Supreme Court, conservatives across the country are looking forward to repairing some of the damage Obama has inflicted on our constitutional system.

As long promised, Trump should use the first 100 days of his administration to repeal every illegal executive action the Obama administration has issued while in office.

Here is a list of the seven areas with the most damaging executive actions signed during the Obama administration that must be repealed:

  1. Crony Exemptions to Obamacare. While Trump works with Congress to actually repeal Obamacare, he can start by issuing an order to halt some of Obama’s executive actions that created special exemptions to Obamacare for his favored constituencies.
  2. Executive Amnesty. The new president must repeal Obama’s unilateral changes to our nation’s immigration laws, which exempted certain categories of illegal aliens from being deported. (This bar on deportations was halted by a court order, but the underlying exemption still remains on the books.)
  3. Environmental Protection Agency Overreaches. Trump must repeal Obama’s multiple illegitimate expansions of EPA rules. These new rules have imposed huge costs on society and are crippling the U.S. energy sector.
  4. Appeasement of Iran. Trump must repeal the executive order that single-handedly removed U.S. sanctions on Iran. These sanctions provided key leverage to the U.S. in negotiations with Iran, and their removal has cleared Iran’s path in developing a nuclear weapon.
  5. Climate Change Bureaucracy. Trump must repeal the executive order that purports to “prepare the United States for the impacts of climate change.” This action from Obama created manifold new justifications for government spending based on inconclusive science.
  6. Life and Religious Liberty. Trump should reverse Obamacare’s unprecedented taxpayer funding of abortion. He should also direct the secretary of Health and Human Services to undertake a rulemaking process that will end the mandate for insurance to cover abortion-inducing drugs and contraception, along with “gender transition” therapies and surgeries.
  7. “Gender Identity.” Trump should repeal the Obama administration’s Title IX guidance equating “gender identity” with “biological sex.” The Department of Justice and Department of Education have wielded this guidance to punish educational institutions for “discrimination” under Title IX, simply for having separate showers, locker rooms, and bathrooms for men and women.

By making the repeal of these executive actions a priority, the Trump administration will have an easy opportunity to right some of the wrongs of the past administration.

As Henry Ford once said, “Failure is simply the opportunity to begin again, this time more intelligently.” It’s been a while since conservatives have had an opportunity like this one, and it is imperative we take advantage of it.

Brad Bishop is a senior media associate at The Heritage Foundation.

President-elect Trump Wants to Pull out of Global Climate Agreement

trump_vegasPresident-elect Donald Trump is reportedly looking for avenues to withdraw from a global climate change agreement, Reuters reports.

According to the report, Trump and his transition team are looking for ways withdraw the U.S. from the Paris Agreement, a 2015 pact that plans to further curb greenhouse gas emissions that was ratified by 109 countries, including the U.S. The pact became effective on Nov. 4.


“It was reckless for the Paris agreement to enter into force before the election,” a Trump adviser told Reuters.

The Trump team is now looking for ways to bypass the agreement’s withdrawal procedures, which would take four years.

More from Reuters:

Alternatives were to send a letter withdrawing from a 1992 Convention that is the parent treaty of the Paris Agreement, voiding U.S. involvement in both in a year’s time, or to issue a presidential order simply deleting the U.S. signature from the Paris accord, he said.

Still, other nations hold out hope that Trump comes around on the deal. However, if he doesn’t and the U.S. pulls out, a Moroccan official said it wouldn’t kill the deal.

“If one party decides to withdraw that it doesn’t call the agreement into question,” said Moroccan Foreign Minister Salaheddine Mezouar.

global_warming_hoaxThe accord seeks to end the world’s dependency on fuel sources that emit greenhouse gases by the second half of the century, which many climate experts around the world say attribute to rising global temperatures.

Trump has said throughout the election and the past that he doesn’t believe in global warming or made-made climate change.


What Mother Jones Doesn’t Get about Mormon Women

A few feminists have disparaged women like me because we did not say “I’m with her” on Election Day.

A writer for the infamously liberal publication Mother Jones went so far as to suggest that Mormon women did not vote for Hillary Clinton because we are — evidently — oppressed by our faith, uneducated and too afraid to stand for a feminist candidate.

Spouting such fairy tales, Mother Jones might as well be called Mother Goose.

“Utah can be a difficult place to be a woman,” the article says. “The patriarchal culture of the state’s dominant religion is strong. Women aren’t allowed to be ordained as leaders in the LDS Church, and they’re taught to be subordinate to men.”

This kind of condescension toward Utah women is a throwback to anti-Mormon screed depicting Latter-day Saint women — my pioneer ancestors — as brainwashed rubes.

Hillary_ClintonAt the expense of dashing Mother Jones’ feminist fantasy, Clinton’s “women problem” in Utah had little to do with patriarchy and gender but everything to with integrity, authenticity and the fact that Utah’s economy, public policy and communities actually provide more opportunity, more choices and more freedom for women.

While many rightly struggled with the decision of whom to vote for, in Hillary Clinton many Utah women saw a flawed and unimpressive candidate whose policies would ultimately disadvantage and decrease genuine opportunities for themselves, their daughters and granddaughters.

Utah women are not afraid of those who value the freedom and power to choose a full-time professional career. Utah women recognize that their own influence — whether in the community, in the workplace, in the halls of Congress or in the home — plays a far greater role in shaping the future than superficial feminist causes or identity politics.

We know what authentic leadership looks like because we live it.

Although it is still important for more female voices (and male voices) to engage in the world in meaningful ways, Utah is already fostering many extraordinary female entrepreneurs, business people, religious and community leaders, and — equally important — mothers, wives, grandmothers, sisters, aunts and friends.

The women from Mother Jones are hardly in position to cast aspersions on the women of Utah. Surely if a man did that, Mother Jones would cry foul.

They represent the great liberal feminist irony — they want all women to feel empowered and able to choose, unless, of course, those women’s choices break with liberals’ views of womanhood.


State Senator Martha Hughes Cannon

Hillary Clinton was not the candidate for Utah women, and it’s not because we are too suppressed to hold our own politically.

Indeed, Utah women have long been a driving force in shaping the state, whether in the traditional halls of power or in the far more powerful halls of home.

Utah, for example, was the second state in the nation to grant women the right to vote. Utah Latter-day Saint Martha Hughes Cannon became America’s first woman state senator (defeating her own husband).

In 1911, Mary Chamberlain, a Utah Mormon woman, became the first mayor with an all-female town council.


Mary Chamberlain

More recently, Olene Walker was the state’s lieutenant governor for 10 years before becoming governor. Far more important for Walker, however, was raising seven children. And, before her death last year, Speaker of the House Becky Lockhart provided fearlessly authentic leadership not only in the House but also in the home, where she raised three children.

Congresswoman Mia Love has just been re-elected to the U.S House of Representatives as the first black Republican woman. She, too, is a mother of three. 


Utah Speaker of the House, Becky Lockhart

Utah is headquarters to two of the largest women’s organizations in the world, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saint’s Young Women’s organization and Relief Society. These groups do more service, leadership training and humanitarian work than can be measured.

Utah women lead in countless ways and we do not judge those who choose a path in politics or business against those who build homes — after all, they aren’t mutually exclusive.

The work of all serves to create a better Beehive State. 


Congresswoman Mia Love

The publication Mother Jones is famously named for a noted labor activist who began her political organizing career in earnest after her four children and husband tragically died in the Chicago fire.

Ironically it may have been the lessons learned as a mother and wife that helped her develop the skills and perspectives that made her an effective, authentic and compassionate political leader and earned her the exalted moniker Mother Jones.

On Wednesday, after the election had been called, and while the finger-pointing feminists began their blame-and-shame crusade, an almost unrecognizable woman addressed the nation.

Nearly polar opposite to the harsh, dishonest, power-hungry candidate, Hillary Clinton came across as an authentic leader more concerned about others than herself. She was a leader who encouraged young girls to know they have value, that the country needs to hear their voices and that they can both choose and achieve any dream.

That is the type of woman Utah women may have rallied around. That authentically passionate and sincere woman was who women everywhere needed in a candidate. To Clinton supporters and nonsupporters alike, we all must realize that women’s voices need to be heard and their influence must be felt in the home, in the workplace, in the government and in the community — on their own terms.

By Sarah Matheson
Sarah Matheson is president of The American Agenda, an organization focused on engaging millennials in the pursuit of upward mobility and opportunity for all.

Harry ‘I Got My Ass Handed to Me in a Gay Love Fight’ Reid Whines About Election

Senate GOP And Democrats Hold Weekly Policy LuncheonsNancy Pelosi spoke with President-elect Donald Trump by phone to congratulate him on his victory. Hillary Clinton graciously conceded. President Obama called for a “peaceful transfer of power.”

Harry Reid, not so much.

The pugilistic Senate Democratic leader who is retiring this term issued a 473-word statement Friday railing against Trump’s election, saying it has “emboldened the forces of hate and bigotry” as the country is overcome by “tears” and “fear.”

“White nationalists, Vladimir Putin and ISIS are celebrating Donald Trump’s victory, while innocent, law-abiding Americans are wracked with fear – especially African Americans, Hispanic Americans, Muslim Americans, LGBT Americans and Asian Americans. Watching white nationalists celebrate while innocent Americans cry tears of fear does not feel like America,” the retiring Nevada senator said.

Speaking out as protests have sprung up in cities across the country, Reid cited accounts of African Americans being heckled and Hispanic Americans fearful their families “will be torn apart.”

“We as a nation must find a way to move forward without consigning those who Trump has threatened to the shadows. Their fear is entirely rational, because Donald Trump has talked openly about doing terrible things to them,” he said. “Every news piece that breathlessly obsesses over inauguration preparations compounds their fear by normalizing a man who has threatened to tear families apart, who has bragged about sexually assaulting women and who has directed crowds of thousands to intimidate reporters and assault African Americans.”

harry_reid_flips_the_birdTrump indeed has raised deep concerns among Hispanic-Americans over his calls to build a wall along the Southern border and step up deportations, and among Muslims over his widely criticized plan to suspend Muslim immigration – a plan he since backed away from.

But in the hours and days since the election, the candidate who riled up rally crowds and engaged regularly in rhetorical battle with his political foes has struck a more conciliatory tone, as those protesting his election have in some places resorted to violence.

Even his biggest critics – namely President Obama and Hillary Clinton – have urged the country to respect the election results and come together.

Clinton, in her concession speech, said: “We must accept this result, and then look to the future. … Donald Trump is going to be our president. We owe him an open mind and the chance to lead.”

House Democratic Leader Pelosi, D-Calif., spoke with Trump by phone and echoed Obama and Clinton, saying in a statement that the country needs to “come together.”  

“The peaceful transfer of power is the cornerstone of our democracy,” she said, even noting that Congress could work with Trump on an infrastructure bill.

“I congratulate President-elect Trump and his family, and pray for his success,” she said.

Reid ended his statement on a different note. He called Trump a “sexual predator who lost the popular vote and fueled his campaign with bigotry and hate.”

He said: “Winning the electoral college does not absolve Trump of the grave sins he committed against millions of Americans. Donald Trump may not possess the capacity to assuage those fears, but he owes it to this nation to try. If Trump wants to roll back tide of hate he unleashed, he has a tremendous amount of work to do and he must begin immediately.”


What the Trump Presidency Means for the Constitution

us-constitutionFollowing one of the biggest upsets in modern political history, The Heritage Foundation convened a panel of experts Thursday to examine what a Donald Trump presidency will mean for the Constitution and conservatism as a whole.

“I frankly think that what just happened in this election may have preserved our constitutional republic,” Heritage Foundation President Jim DeMint said in his opening remarks.

DeMint continued:

We know the intent of [Mrs.] Clinton, and she talked a lot about it and what her belief was of the Constitution. And we know Donald Trump has talked about the importance of the Constitution and the list of Supreme Court justices that he released gave us at least some positive indication … to carry out the original intent of the Constitution.

While the Supreme Court is one of the most important issues for voters, according to an exit poll conducted by ABC News, one panelist pointed out that the court is not the only defender of the Constitution.

“It infuriates me how we have come to the point of where we think the Supreme Court is the only guardian of the Constitution,” said Jonah Goldberg, a senior editor at National Review and fellow at the American Enterprise Institute.

Goldberg explained that politicians as well as citizens must also defend the Constitution.

“[The Supreme Court] is a guardian of the Constitution, and in certain formalistic situations, it is the last guardian of the Constitution. But anyone who swears an oath to uphold the Constitution is a guardian of the Constitution, and, the citizens from whom the Constitution derives its authority are guardians of the Constitution,” Goldberg said.

Instead of relying on the Supreme Court, Goldberg believes that Americans should see themselves as the first line of defense when it comes to preserving constitutional principles.

“[W]e’ve gotten to this place where we just basically say, ‘Anything goes unless the Supreme Court, like a hockey goalie, stops it,’” Goldberg said. “And, that is something that the conservative movement … could do a much better job at in terms of creating that incentive structure for politicians.”

trump_russiaTrump’s opportunity to appoint Supreme Court justices who uphold the Constitution will be a top priority of the new administration.

Byron York, chief political correspondent at the Washington Examiner, is hopeful that conservatives will not have to worry about Trump’s choice of justices. He noted that Trump is sensitive to the reactions of his supporters.

“I think the roots of his approach to [the Supreme Court] go back to the early days of the Republican primary when he is trying to consolidate the support of conservatives,” York said. “And he’s got Ted Cruz, whose argued a bunch of cases before the Supreme Court, he’s got governors, he’s got a lot of people who have experience in government and law running against him, and Trump is extremely sensitive to the reactions of audiences.”

York believes that Trump’s perceptiveness of public opinion will be helpful in keeping him true to his word when it comes to filling Supreme Court seats.

“He loves the rallies. He really notices, ‘Do they go for this?,’ ‘Do they not go for this?,’ ‘Did they sit on their hands when I talked about this?,’ and ‘They went crazy when I talked about this!’”

byron_yorkYork said that Trump picked up on the interest Republicans had in the primary about the future of the Supreme Court. The way he consolidated support, according to York, was to publicly release a list of judges that he said he would appoint.

In May, Trump announced that list, then in September, he released a more extensive list. During the final presidential debate in October, Trump said he would “be appointing pro-life judges.”

Confirming those judicial nominees might pose challenges, however. Even with a Republican president and a Republican-controlled Senate, Democrats could still mount a fight against Trump’s nominees using procedural tactics such as the filibuster.

Michael Mukasey, a former U.S. attorney general under President George W. Bush, is confident that this will not be the case.

“Although it is certainly not unprecedented for a nominee not to be voted on when there is a change in an administration, it is unusual to the point of being unprecedented for them to try to block any confirmation,” Mukasey said. “That is a political loser from their standpoint.”

While the Supreme Court is one of the most important issues facing the Trump administration, John Yoo, professor at the UC Berkeley School of Law and fellow at the American Enterprise Institute, said it’s not the only issue.

“It’s not just Supreme Court justices that are important,” Yoo said. “It is also who the attorney general is [and] how the Trump administration is going to interpret and enforce federal law.”

Yoo said that would “have much more of an immediate importance about the Constitution than who he appoints to the Supreme Court.”

Even though Republicans won big on Election Day, Goldberg urged conservatives to remain vigilant and hold leaders accountable.

“Once the honeymoon is over, conservatives need to be set up in a situation where [Trump] has to deal with us and get our approval on the important things,” Goldberg said.

‘THIS LOSS HURTS’: Clinton Accepts Defeat, but Vows to Continue ‘Fight’


Hillary Clinton, in her first public remarks since her stunning defeat overnight to President-elect Donald Trump, urged her millions of supporters to “accept this result” and give her Republican rival a “chance to lead” as she voiced hope the country could move past the divisions of the grueling 2016 campaign.

“This is not the outcome we wanted or we worked so hard for, and I’m sorry we did not win this election … but I feel pride and gratitude for this wonderful campaign that we built together,” Clinton told supporters Wednesday in New York City.

She said “this loss hurts,” but said her campaign “was never about one person or even one election.”

“We must accept this result, and then look to the future,” Clinton said. “Donald Trump is going to be our president. We owe him an open mind and the chance to lead.”

She confirmed that she called Trump to congratulate him overnight and said she hopes “he will be a successful president for all Americans.”

The remarks confirm there will be no question about the legitimacy of Trump’s victory or expected challenges from her campaign, which briefly hinted the night before it was still waiting for key state results.

Running mate Tim Kaine introduced her Wednesday, saying Clinton “has been and is a great history-maker.”

Declaring victory on one front, Kaine said they “won the popular vote of America.” Clinton leads in the popular vote, though returns are still coming in. Because Trump won more than 270 electoral votes, however, Clinton lost the race.

Complementing Clinton’s message, President Obama said shortly afterward in the Rose Garden he has instructed his team to ensure a “successful transition.” He also has invited Trump to the White House on Thursday.

obama_trump_concession“The peaceful transfer of power is one of the hallmarks of our democracy,” Obama said, reminding Americans “we’re actually all on the same team.”

Obama, who aggressively campaigned against Trump during the 2016 race, said “it is no secret that the president-elect and I have some pretty significant differences.”

But he noted he and then-President George W. Bush also had differences eight years ago when he took over. A “sense of unity” is what the country needs, Obama said.

Clinton spoke Wednesday after staying out of the public eye overnight, as it was becoming clear she was poised to lose the race. As a somber mood set in at what was originally planned as her victory party, her campaign chairman John Podesta took the stage early Wednesday morning to declare several states were “too close to call” and the campaign would have nothing more to say at the time, urging supporters to “head home.”

Yet Clinton around that time was calling Trump to congratulate him and concede the race, effectively ending her second bid to be the first female U.S. president. She referenced the historical implications in her public concession Wednesday, saying: “I know we have still not shattered that highest and hardest glass ceiling, but someday someone will.”

Trump briefly mentioned their phone call while speaking to cheering supporters early Wednesday morning at his victory party in New York City. Despite their hard-fought campaign, Trump praised Clinton for her service and said “it is time for us to come together as one united people.”

“I will be president for all Americans,” Trump vowed, after a brief introduction by running mate Mike Pence.

Sounding a call to “reclaim our country’s destiny,” Trump declared: “The forgotten men and women of our country will be forgotten no longer. … America will no longer settle for anything less than the best.”

While his victory stunned the political establishment, his campaign manager credited the phenomenon of “undercover Trump voters” and several other key factors Wednesday morning for their win.

Kellyanne Conway, speaking with “Fox & Friends,” said there was a “small but potent” force all along who didn’t reveal they planned to vote for the Republican nominee.

“It’s not that they’re embarrassed,” she said, but that they were “tired of arguing” about their political preference.

TRUMP Victory — GOP Controls House, Senate and White House

trump-winIn a sweeping victory that has stunned the pundits, New York construction billionaire Donald Trump has won the presidency of the United States of America.

Following an 18 month campaign, and an uphill climb against the rushing current of a hostile press, Trump has proved his detractors wrong–again.

For the first time since 1928 the Republican party will take the reigns of the US government, controlling the Congress and the White House, giving the GOP the opportunity to appoint conservative jurists to the US Supreme Court that will influence the course of the nation’s politics for decades to come.

This election is seen as a stinging rebuke against the failed policies of the left and political elitists. It is an act of revolt against government overreach and unresponsive representation.

Mr. Trump will deliver his victory speech from the Hilton in Midtown, Manhattan. Mrs. Clinton failed to attend her headquarters to concede the election, but instead sent John Podesta to send the awaiting crowd home empty handed.

By James Thompson

YES, it DOES Matter Who You Vote For

voteMany Americans feel that neither candidate is a good choice, so it really doesn’t matter which one you vote for. They feel that not voting is as valid as voting. All untrue.

A quick look at the major issues facing our nation, and the candidates’ stand on those issues tells us that this election is extremely important, and we should participate to the highest extent.

Supreme Court Appointments

Donald Trump says that Supreme Court appointments should go to jurists who will interpret the Constitution according to the intent of the Founders, and ensure personal liberty and limited government. Hillary Clinton espouses jurists who will reinterpret the Constitution to align with liberal policies. It is the Supreme Court that allows or disallows encroachments by government on personal liberties, protected originally by the Constitution, and whichever candidate takes the presidency will shape the Court for the next 30 years. I vote for Trump.

Islamic Terrorism

Trump wants to stamp out Islamic Terrorism, and scrutinize people from Islamic countries entering the US to ensure Americans’ safety. Hillary wants to be politically correct and treat foreign Islamists like any other foreigner. She also feels that Obama’s lack of action against ISIS is the proper path. She has taken millions of dollars from regimes that support Islamic Terrorism and the suppression of women and others, and become quiet in criticism of those regimes as a result. I vote for Trump.


Trump supports a strong military, investment in a depleted military resources, and stronger support for military personnel and veterans. Clinton is, and always has been hostile toward our military. I vote for Trump.


Trump feels that Obamacare is a farce, with most people losing their preferred doctors and plans, and costs for premiums skyrocketing, and must be repealed and replaced with a competition-based healthcare system. Hillary merely wants to tweak Obamacare, and move steadily toward a socialized single payer system. I vote for Trump.

Border Enforcement

Trump wants to establish a southern border and control who and what comes into America. Clinton wants open borders, and to flood America with impoverished, poorly educated people from Mexico and Central and South America who will extend the lefts’ permanent underclass, which will always be dependent on Democratic Party handout programs (extending the Democrat power base). I vote for Trump.


Trump wants to revamp our educational system, to eliminate leftist influences (UEA, Common Core) from the classroom and elevate standards through competition (giving school choice to all students), bringing real education to all American children. Clinton wants the status quo. I vote for Trump.


Trump is pro-family, with a father, mother and children, living and learning without government interference. Clinton prefers gay marriage, LGBT, and state intrusions into family relations (It Takes a Village to raise a child). I vote for Trump.


Trump is pro-life, and Clinton is pro-abortion, to the point of killing the baby right up to the moment of its natural birth. I vote for Trump.

Individual Liberties

Trump is an avid advocate for individual liberty, including limiting the scope of government and regulations, and preserving the rights enumerated in the Bill of Rights, including free speech, free assembly, the right to keep and bear arms, etc. Clinton advocates bigger government, more regulation, higher taxation, and curtailing rights enumerated in the Bill of Rights, including free speech, free assembly, the right to keep and bear arms, etc. I vote for Trump.


Trump has said some regrettable things about some women. Hillary Clinton has taken bribes from foreign governments to the tune of hundreds of millions of dollars, and is the subject of an ongoing FBI investigation for selling political favors while acting as Secretary of State. Hillary also endangered citizens and American operatives by utilizing a secret, private, unsecured email server as Secretary of State for the purpose of avoiding government scrutiny of her bribery activities. I vote for Trump.

By James Thompson

Mr. Thompson’s recent article, Mormons Determined to Give White House to Clinton, and Supreme Court to Left, recently published herein on October 24, 2016, was read by over 200,000 Federalist Press readers, and has been credited with informing Utah voters of the dangers of voting for third party candidates.


WikiLeaks: Clinton Foundation Helps Children–Clinton Children

cgi-clintonsFormer President Bill Clinton’s top aide wrote in 2012 that Chelsea Clinton used Clinton Foundation resources “for her wedding and life for a decade” and a top Foundation donor was responsible for “killing” unfavorable press coverage – all as an internal Foundation audit uncovered numerous conflicts of interest and “quid pro quo benefits,” according to emails released Sunday by WikiLeaks.

Doug Band, founder of global strategies company Teneo and Bill Clinton’s personal assistant since the 1990s, wrote the Jan. 4, 2012, email to future Hillary Clinton presidential campaign chair John Podesta and two other Clinton aides after receiving word that Chelsea had told “one of the [President] bush 43 kids” and others about “an internal investigation of money within the foundation.” Band wrote such chatter was “not smart.”

“The investigation into her getting paid for campaigning, using foundation resources for her wedding and life for a decade, taxes on money from her parents….,” Band wrote. “I hope that you will speak to her and end this[.] Once we go down this road….”

The FBI reportedly is looking into The Clinton Foundation, although the extent and focus of the investigation is unclear. Hillary Clinton, the Democratic presidential nominee, had previously said some of the “personal” emails she deleted from her secret, homebrew server – the subject of another FBI probe – were related to Chelsea’s wedding.

Band’s email, which was revealed after Podesta’s Gmail account was hacked and subsequently uploaded to WikiLeaks, came at a time of turmoil and upheaval within The Clinton Foundation. Aside from the internal audit, previous emails show a prolonged effort to untangle Teneo from the Foundation. When Band launched the company in summer 2011, he was still employed by the Foundation and Bill Clinton was listed as a Teneo adviser.

But after much haggling, Clinton’s and Band’s roles were clearly delineated: Band continued on as a personal aide to Clinton and Clinton became a Teneo client. During the back-and-forth that produced the final document spelling out each of the men’s roles, Band on Nov. 12, 2011 wrote an 11-page memo outlining how Teneo was created and how it had helped to enrich Clinton and the Foundation. In that draft of the memo, Band wrote he had “sought to leverage my activities, including my partner role at Teneo, to support and to raise funds for the Foundation.”

“I am sure I have done so imperfectly,” he added.

In another section of the memo, which was later deleted, Band wrote about billionaire hedge fund manager Marc Lasry as a “good example of the complex relationships a friend/supporter can have within the foundation.” Chelsea Clinton worked for Lasry, Lasry held Foundation fundraisers and Band was a paid adviser for Lasry’s firm, Avenue Capital, an investment company whose holding American Media Inc. publishes The National Enquirer.

But fundraisers and jobs weren’t Lasry’s lone contribution to Team Clinton.

“He has been helpful on a number of fronts, including … responding favorably to our requests to use his plane for Foundation and the Clintons’ personal purposes, killing potential unfavorable stories in the Enquirer [of which he owns a controlling share of the debt]…” Band wrote.

Less than a month after Band’s Teneo memo went out, lawyers from Simpson, Thacher & Bartlett LLP, the firm contracted to run the internal Foundation audit, emailed a draft of a governance memorandum and recommendations to Podesta, who was serving as a special adviser to the Foundation, and Bruce Lindsey, then the Foundation’s CEO.

The audit draft noted substantial issues, including a Conflict-of-Interest Policy that had not been implemented, conflicts that were not disclosed in a timely fashion and board members not following the policy when they became aware of conflicts.

“In addition, some interviewees reported conflicts of those raising funds or donors, some of whom may have an expectation of quid pro quo benefits in return for gifts,” according to the Dec. 5, 2011, draft. Another section of the document noted that “interviewees also mentioned instances in which gifts and payments received by staff had not been properly disclosed.”

There were other problems, including 1,298 “complimentary” $20,000 memberships for the Clinton Global Initiative as opposed to just 500 paid memberships. Of the “complimentary” group, “276 were coded ‘discretionary,’” the audit noted.

“Interviewees informed us that there is no transparency into how the comp list is developed,” the document stated.

The lawyers conducting the audit also noticed problems in the Foundation’s IRS Form 990, the tax return document of an organization that is exempt from income tax. While charitable groups are allowed to pay board members and staff a reasonable salary, none of the reasonable compensation calculations identified by the lawyers were ever done, the 990 form showed. The lawyers also wrote the 990 indicated the Foundation had a written conflict-of-interest policy that was enforced.

“However, we did not find evidence of that enforcement,” the memo stated.

Other problems included a “very small” Foundation Board “comprised solely of ‘insiders’”; unsigned Board minutes that “appear to have been cloned from one year to the next; “material weaknesses” in the “segregation of accounting duties, review of journal entries, audit adjustments and financial statement preparation, and lack of Board meetings.”

Clinton’s Maid: Hillary had Me Print Out Classified Materials


As secretary of state, Hillary Clinton routinely asked her maid to print out sensitive government e-mails and documents — including ones containing classified information — from her house in Washington, DC, e-mails and FBI memos show. But the housekeeper lacked the security clearance to handle such material.

In fact, Marina Santos was called on so frequently to receive e-mails that she may hold the secrets to E-mailgate — if only the FBI and Congress would subpoena her and the equipment she used.

Clinton entrusted far more than the care of her DC residence, known as Whitehaven, to Santos. She expected the Filipino immigrant to handle state secrets, further opening the Democratic presidential nominee to criticism that she played fast and loose with national security.

Clinton would first receive highly sensitive e-mails from top aides at the State Department and then request that they, in turn, forward the messages and any attached documents to Santos to print out for her at the home.

Among other things, Clinton requested Santos print out drafts of her speeches, confidential memos and “call sheets” — background information and talking points prepared for the secretary of state in advance of a phone call with a foreign head of state.

“Pls ask Marina to print for me in am,” Clinton e-mailed top aide Huma Abedin regarding a redacted 2011 message marked sensitive but unclassified.

In a classified 2012 e-mail dealing with the new president of Malawi, another Clinton aide, Monica Hanley, advised Clinton, “We can ask Marina to print this.”

“Revisions to the Iran points” was the subject line of a classified April 2012 e-mail to Clinton from Hanley. In it, the text reads, “Marina is trying to print for you.”

Both classified e-mails were marked “confidential,” the tier below “secret” or “top secret.”

Santos also had access to a highly secure room called an SCIF (sensitive compartmented information facility) that diplomatic security agents set up at Whitehaven, according to FBI notes from an interview with Abedin.

From within the SCIF, Santos — who had no clearance — “collected documents from the secure facsimile machine for Clinton,” the FBI notes revealed.

Just how sensitive were the papers Santos presumably handled? The FBI noted Clinton periodically received the Presidential Daily Brief — a top-secret document prepared by the CIA and other US intelligence agencies — via the secure fax.

A 2012 “sensitive” but unclassified e-mail from Hanley to Clinton refers to a fax the staff wanted Clinton “to see before your Netanyahu mtg. Marina will grab for you.”

Yet it appears Clinton was never asked by the FBI in its yearlong investigation to turn over the iMac Santos used to receive the e-mails, or the printer she used to print out the documents, or the printouts themselves.

It also appears the FBI did not formally interview Santos as a key witness in its investigation.

This is a major oversight: Santos may know the whereabouts of a missing Apple MacBook laptop and USB flash drive that contain all of Clinton’s e-mails archived over her four years in office.

In 2013, Hanley downloaded Clinton’s e-mails from her private server to the MacBook and flash drive.

“The two copies of the Clinton e-mail archive (one on the archive laptop and one on the thumb drive) were intended to be stored in Clinton’s Chappaqua and Whitehaven residences,” the FBI said in its case summary.

But Hanley says the devices were “lost,” and the FBI says it “does not have either item in its possession.”

In addition to Abedin, Santos worked closely with Hanley at Whitehaven and could shed light on the mystery — if only she were asked about it.

When a Post reporter confronted Santos at her DC apartment Friday, she would say only, “I don’t speak to reporters.”

According to a 2010 profile in The Philippine Star, close Clinton friend Vernon Jordan recommended Santos to the Clintons after she worked part-time for him.

Bill Clinton gave a speech in Manila as part of his foundation and took time to visit with the family of the “mayordoma [housekeeper] of his Washington, DC, home — Marina Santos.”

He was quoted as describing Santos as the “wonderful woman who runs our home in Washington, without whom Hillary will not be able to serve as secretary of state.” The article ended remarking, without a hint of irony: “Marina now runs his house so that he and his wife can better serve interests higher than their own.”

Santos could turn out to be the Betty Currie of the Clinton e-mail scandal. Currie was the secretary for President Clinton. She also came recommended by Jordan, and became famous as a central witness in the Monica Lewinsky scandal for her handling of gifts given to Clinton’s mistress.

Investigators had sought the gifts, allegedly hidden under Currie’s bed on orders from Clinton, as evidence.

The State Department and Clinton campaign did not respond to requests for comment.

New York Post; Paul Sperry, a former DC bureau chief for Investor’s Business Daily and a Hoover Institution media fellow, is the author of “Infiltration.

PAY FOR PLAY – FBI investigation of Clinton Foundation Taken ‘A Very High Priority’

Hillary_Bill_Clinton_FoundationThe FBI’s investigation into the Clinton Foundation that has been going on for more than a year has now taken a “very high priority,” separate sources with intimate knowledge of the probe tell Fox News.

FBI agents have interviewed and re-interviewed multiple people on the foundation case, which is looking into possible pay for play interaction between then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and the Clinton Foundation. The FBI’s White Collar Crime Division is handling the investigation.

Even before the WikiLeaks dumps of alleged emails linked to the Clinton campaign, FBI agents had collected a great deal of evidence, law enforcement sources tell Fox News.

“There is an avalanche of new information coming in every day,” one source told Fox News, who added some of the new information is coming from the WikiLeaks documents and new emails.

FBI agents are “actively and aggressively pursuing this case,” and will be going back and interviewing the same people again, some for the third time, sources said.

Agents are also going through what Clinton and top aides have said in previous interviews and the FBI 302, documents agents use to report interviews they conduct, to make sure notes line up, according to sources.

Officials from the FBI did not immediately respond Wednesday to requests for comment by Fox News.

The FBI’s investigation into the Clinton Foundation that has been going on for more than a year has now taken a “very high priority,” separate sources with intimate knowledge of the probe tell Fox News.

FBI agents have interviewed and re-interviewed multiple people on the foundation case, which is looking into possible pay for play interaction between then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and the Clinton Foundation. The FBI’s White Collar Crime Division is handling the investigation.

Even before the WikiLeaks dumps of alleged emails linked to the Clinton campaign, FBI agents had collected a great deal of evidence, law enforcement sources tell Fox News.

“There is an avalanche of new information coming in every day,” one source told Fox News, who added some of the new information is coming from the WikiLeaks documents and new emails.

FBI agents are “actively and aggressively pursuing this case,” and will be going back and interviewing the same people again, some for the third time, sources said.

Agents are also going through what Clinton and top aides have said in previous interviews and the FBI 302, documents agents use to report interviews they conduct, to make sure notes line up, according to sources.

Officials from the FBI did not immediately respond Wednesday to requests for comment by Fox News.

Fox News’ Bret Baier contributed to this report.

FBI: Clinton Lying – No Links Between Donald Trump and Russia

After a months-long, deep investigation into suspected foreign meddling in the U.S. election, the Federal Bureau of Investigation has determined that Donald Trump has no ties to the Russian government.

trump_russiaFederal officials conducted a wide investigation throughout the summer looking for financial connections between Trump and his operatives and the Russian government in connection with the hacking of Democrat party computers but found nothing, according to The New York Times.

Upon the conclusion of the investigation, the FBI decided that, contrary to claims by Democrats, the hacking may have been aimed at disrupting the election but was not intended to ensure the election of Donald Trump.

The allegations of Trump’s computer ties to the Russian bank were made in an article posted to the liberal website.

But news that the FBI is now discounting any such ties coming on the heels of FBI Director Comey’s decision to open another investigation into Hillary Clinton’s email scandal represents a double blow to the Democrats.

As part of the revelations, it was reported that earlier this year the FBI began investigating a possible connection between Trump and Alfa Bank, the largest private commercial bank in Russia. The Bureau was alerted to a series of electronic connections between a server owned by the Trump organization and two servers registered to Alfa Bank. The links were at first thought “questionable,” but after its long investigation the FBI determined, “there could be an innocuous explanation, like a marketing email or spam, for the computer contacts,” the Times reported.

The Trump campaign reiterated that the investigation had proven what they already knew.

Trump campaign press secretary Hope Hicks noted, “First of all, it’s not a secret server. The email server, set up for marketing purposes and operated by a third-party, has not been used since 2010.” Hicks added that the traffic on that server is not used for the sort of email communications that could be employed for any sort of collusion.

Alfa Bank also released a statement denying any ties to Trump.

“Neither Alfa Bank nor its principals, including Mikhail Fridman and Petr Aven, have or have had any contact with Mr. Trump or his organizations,” the statement read. “Fridman and Aven have never met Mr. Trump nor have they or Alfa Bank had any business dealings with him. Neither Alfa nor its officers have sent Mr. Trump or his organizations any emails, information or money. Alfa Bank does not have and has never had any special or exclusive internet connection with Mr. Trump or his entities.”

Now it appears that the FBI has confirmed these statements.

Follow Warner Todd Huston on Twitter @warnerthuston or email the author at

WikiLeaks: Donna Brazile Fed Hillary Debate Questions More Than Once

donna_brazile_clinton_cnnAnother leaked email has emerged showing Democratic National Committee boss and former CNN contributor Donna Brazile sharing a debate question in advance with the Hillary Clinton campaign — despite Brazile’s persistent claims to the contrary.

According to documents released Monday by WikiLeaks, Brazile sent Clinton Communications Director Jennifer Palmieri an email titled, “One of the questions directed to HRC tomorrow is from a woman with a rash,” the night before the March 6 CNN primary debate in Flint, Mich.

“Her family has lead poison and she will ask what, if anything, will Hillary do as president to help the ppl of Flint,” Brazile wrote.

The following night, Lee-Anne Walters, a mom whose twin boys stopped growing and whose daughter lost her hair during the Flint water contamination crisis, posed a question to both Clinton, the eventual Democratic presidential nominee, and her primary opponent Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders.

“After my family, the city of Flint and the children in D.C. were poisoned by lead, will you make a personal promise to me right now that, as president, in your first 100 days in office, you will make it a requirement that all public water systems must remove all lead service lines throughout the entire United States, and notification made to the — the citizens that have said service lines?” Walters asked.

Clinton responded with a lengthy answer that moderator Anderson Cooper had to twice interrupt in an attempt to keep to the agreed-upon time limit. Clinton’s remarks drew applause from the crowd, though she wound up ultimately losing the state’s primary to Sanders two days later.

The apparent email tip-off was included in the latest trove of messages hacked from Clinton Campaign Chairman John Podesta’s Gmail account and posted by WikiLeaks.

Brazile had been under fire over an earlier email chain appearing to show her tipping off the campaign before a town hall event later that same month. That exchange began with Brazile sending Palmieri the text of a question about the death penalty in an email with the subject line: “From time to time I get the questions in advance.”

After Palmieri responded, Brazile wrote back: “I’ll send a few more.”

Roland Martin asked the death penalty question verbatim the next night during a CNN town hall.

Brazile, in an interview with Fox News Channel’s Megyn Kelly on Oct. 19, denied aiding Clinton during the primaries.

“Well, Kelly, since I play straight up and I play straight up with you, I did not receive any questions from CNN,” she said.

When Kelly pressed, Brazile said she was being persecuted and questioned the credibility of the hacked files.

“As a Christian woman, I understand persecution, but I will not sit here and be persecuted,” Brazile said. “Your information is totally false.”

The DNC did not immediately respond to a request for comment.