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Soros & Lewis behind marijuana legalization?

From Kelly Riddell at the Washington Times:

With a cadre of like-minded, wealthy donors, Mr. Soros is dominating the pro-legalization side of the marijuana debate by funding grass-roots initiatives that begin in New York City and end up affecting local politics elsewhere.

Wait a minute, “grass-roots”? I get the pun, but when a billionaire secretly bankrolls groups to push his agenda, isn’t the proper term “astro-turfing”? Anyway:

Through a network of nonprofit groups, Mr. Soros has spent at least $80 million on the legalization effort since 1994…

His spending has been supplemented by [recently-deceased billionaire] Peter B. Lewis…an unabashed pot smoker who channeled more than $40 million…

What is it, with the Democrats/Left giving a pass to all their manipulative billionaires?

Mr. Soros’ Open Society Foundations have annual assets of more than $3.5 billion, a pool from which he can dole out grants to pet projects, according to 2011 tax returns, the most recent on file for his charitable organizations.

David and Charles Koch, the billionaire brothers who often are cited for their conservative influence, had $308 million tied up in their foundation and institute in 2011.

Finally, I may as well state my own view, and readers can agree or disagree. I do oppose prohibition of marijuana for the same reason I oppose prohibition of alcohol: the prohibition doesn’t work and creates more problems than it solves. Having said that, I don’t use the stuff and find its heavy users (or addicts) repellant.

Fort Hood, again

Posted by Jeff (ILoveCapitalism) at 1:18 am - April 3, 2014.
Filed under: Civil Discourse,National Politics,Social Issues

There will be plenty of time to understand what happened and make appropriate points. For now, our thoughts and prayers go out to the victims and their families.

True conspiracies?

It’s healthy to be skeptical of conspiracy theories; especially ones whose truth would require bad science, illogical motives, the implausible silence of thousands of people, etc. For example, the Rosie O’Donnell form of 9-11 Trooferism, in which absurd claims are made that fire somehow can’t melt nor weaken structural steel, that employees spanning vast security agencies of multiple nations conspired in vast deceptions, etc.

But occasionally, a conspiracy might be real, or partly so. I recently web-surfed to this interesting video from the folks at list25.com. They claim to list 25 true conspiracies.

Note: I DO NOT AGREE with, or vouch for, their entire list. For example, their item 18 (the Nayirah al-Sabah war propaganda case) specifically asserts a CIA connection that Wikipedia does not mention at all. Or their item 15 (about polio vaccine containing a cancer-inducing agent) appears to be weakly sourced.

Still, here are three of their items which were new to me – and which did seem to be supported, when I did quick Google searches for them. If true, they would be historically interesting. If untrue, please feel free to say so in the comments (hopefully with links).

25. Did the NSA in the early 1960s propose to foment war with Cuba, by means of false terrorist incidents that would kill Americans? Search for Operation Northwoods. Again, if this story is false, please let us know in the comments. ABC News reported it as true. If it was a real proposal, then President Kennedy deserves kudos for rejecting it.

24. Did technology exist, as early as the 1970s, to assassinate people ‘trace-free’? A senate.gov page says that:

At the first televised hearing [of the 1975 Church Committee]…Chairman Church dramatically displayed a CIA poison dart gun to highlight the committee’s discovery that the CIA directly violated a presidential order by maintaining stocks of shellfish toxin sufficient to kill thousands.

Some say the point was to deliver a tiny dart, and a toxin, that would decay on impact and become undetectable, after having induced a massive heart attack. I (Jeff) would add that, if the CIA had it in the 1970s, then surely others must have it in the 2000s; which must be why some people wonder about the sudden heart attack of Andrew Breitbart. (more…)

Yes, it’s easier not to think about politics

My title (point) will strike most people as obvious. But some “obvious” things remain theoretical until they hit you. Then they feel almost like a new thought.

I’ve been on a break from “the news” for over 2 months now, and I feel relaxed. Life is easier this way. What Obama and the Democrats have been up to, by way of destroying most of what has been healthy and good about America, is so sad. And out of my control, so it’s easier to think about other things.

This may lead to a small insight into the “low-information voters” who support Obama / Democrats. Politics deals with life-and-death questions. A budget or regulatory change can force any number of people into changing their lives. ‘Not thinking about it’ is probably easier for most people, including those voters.

The average Democrat voter (that I’ve encountered) has a feeling that the Democrats seem to like abortion privileges, gays and blacks; and she likes those things, too; and she doesn’t think any further about politics, because she figures that whatever else the Democrats are up to, she would probably also like. Never mind that in reality, the Democrats are the stalwarts of that Big Government – Big Banking nexus which siphons off her earning power year after year, and whose nature is essentially fascist (anti-freedom).

What’s depressing for libertarian-conservatives is that the Republicans are only a little better. The GOP are better – as in, usually they are a bit less insane. But the GOP Establishment are also captives of (or intimidated by) the same Big Government – Big Banking nexus that uses/runs the Left. The GOP and Democrat establishments unite in seeking to destroy the Tea Party – who are the main people interested in a smaller government, to restore the prosperity and freedom of Americans.

Can America Ever Recover From Obama?

I’m not being facetious here. I am asking this as a serious question. The damage done to the United States by the President and his Party – not just in this term, but over the last 40 years – may be too great for the country to ever recover. I am increasingly doubtful that it is even possible to avoid national collapse.

Our economy has been devastated by 100 years of creeping socialism and is currently functioning at or near Great Depression levels, masked only by massive public borrowing and spending and a sycophantic state media that would embarrass Leni Riefenstahl. Our public debt is unsustainable, or economy is strangled in regulations, yet Obama and the Democrats keep piling on spending, regulation and entitlements.

Left-wing social and economic policy works no better at the national level than at the municipal level; Detroit is the inevitably outcome of prolonged liberal Government.

I can’t help but notice the resemblance between present-day USA and the USSR in the 1980′s:

  • A bloated, over-leveraged national government whose expenditures have long exceeded the ability of the underlying economy to finance them. In other words, the USSR had a bloated military that consumed more of its GDP than the Government could afford. The USA has a bloated welfare state that requires massive borrowing because our economy cannot support it.
  • An aged decrepit leadership (Reid, Pelosi, Hillary) stuck in old socialist paradigms and making fatefully bad decisions out of rigid ideology. (In the USSR, it was the decision to invade Afghanistan. In the USA, it was passing Obamacare).
  • Growing internal self-rule movements. The USSR eventually split into its constituent states. Self-rule movements in Maryland, Colorado, Texas, and Calidornia suggest that similar faultlines are showing up in our own politics.

That’s basically the trap we are in. The only remedy to our situation would be austerity, a severe pruning of the regulatory/welfare state, and restoration of limited Constitutional Government. There is no other path to avoid destruction; but these things, we are told, are politically impossible.

(more…)

Obama Keeps On Dividing America

Hat Tip: Ace.

Obama encourages his followers to inject contentious political debate into the Thanksgiving dinner, and helpfully provides talking points to spew.

Because, y’know… nothing makes for a more festive Thanksgiving than a fantical liberal shrieking talking points around the dinner table.

And the Obama cultists at Slate urges liberals to be even more obnoxious.

First off, you should wait until everyone’s seated at the table before you try to get things started. That way you have a captive audience that has to watch the fireworks, and everyone is settled in for a nice long time. Getting the topic of conversation to politics shouldn’t be too hard. Stick to short, sarcastic, tendentious remarks to get things going. “I’m thankful for all that free stuff Obama gave me.” Once you’ve engaged the enemy, it won’t take much effort to pivot to whatever particular subject you feel most comfortable with. A good Thanksgiving skirmish will scamper from topic to topic wildly and without warning, but it’s best to begin by digging into one particularly contentious subject to get tempers flared.

In short, be a jerk to your family because your leader commands it. (Maybe Slate was being ironic; it’s so hard to tell between over-the-top caricatures of leftism and actual leftism any more.)

This would seem to be an ideal way to make sure families stop having Thanksgiving together. But, since leftists tend to regard the family as a hateful, oppressive, and atavistic institution, it’s not too surprising that they want to tear them apart.

Thoughts for the day

“Gaius Gracchus proposed a grain law. The people were delighted with it because it provided an abundance of food without work. The good men, however, fought against it because they thought the masses would be attracted away from hard work and toward idleness, and they saw that the state treasury would be exhausted.”
- Marcus Tullius Cicero

“Politicians get up and promise you all sorts of free stuff. They say, I’ll give you more and more stuff, and you won’t have to pay for it…My own view is that we have to tell people the truth, and we’re going to have to demand sacrifice of the American people. The idea of borrowing a trillion dollars more than we take in [each year] is not just bad economics, it’s immoral. I’m not going to do it, and I’m not going to promise what can’t be delivered.” – Mitt Romney

“We had a chance, in 2012, to elect as president a man who built his entire career and fortune on turning around financially troubled enterprises. But the voters rejected him because Obama claimed he was going to give women cancer and outlaw tampons. That is when I knew our country was f—ed.”
- V the K

On the inevitability of default

In recent days, I’ve ridiculed President Obama’s claim that not giving him a debt ceiling increase would somehow force him to default on U.S. debt payments. (Since current revenues cover the minimum debt service many times over, making any debt default the president’s choice.)

But over the longer term, U.S. default is inevitable – if we keep raising the debt ceiling.

If you’ve ever seen a bankruptcy, you know that the path to default is to take on ever more debt – to supposedly “pay your bills”, in Obama’s expression – as you fail to cut your spending down to what you can afford.

By raising the debt ceiling so that Obama can borrow even more, America comes closer to default. NOT raising the debt ceiling – that is, giving up the deficit habit now, and running immediate balanced budgets – would postpone or prevent America’s coming default.

Some may answer “Ah, but letting Obama borrow more will keep things smooth and buy time to fix our other problems.” All I can say is: People told me that in early 2009, some six trillion dollars ago (of U.S. debt). Bullhockey. It’s how an alcoholic or drug addict thinks: tomorrow is always the day to officially clean up; never today.

Under present leadership, a U.S. default is inevitable. The only question is what form it will take.

  • Less likely: We could yet have an ‘honest default’, where we admit that we can’t repay our creditors and we negotiate cutbacks to our debt – and to our spending.
  • More likely: We will have a ‘dishonest default’ where we borrow, spend and print money until the dollar is confetti, and we never officially default, but we pay our creditors in dollars that buy far less than the dollars they loaned us (or were promised).

Either way, it’s a default (our debt is no good; our creditors don’t get what they were promised). And it’s the road we’re on. “Thanks, Obama!”

More details:

  • Niall Ferguson on why “the fiscal position of the federal government is in fact much worse today than is commonly realized”.
  • Jim Grant on America’s past defaults – honest and dishonest – and the one that’s coming.
  • Seeing the inevitable, China has called for the dollar to be overthrown (removed) as the world’s banking reserve currency. Read about it in the IB Times, the New York Times (which twists the facts to blame the Tea Party, natch) or the LA Times.

UPDATE: Obama has just called on America to stop listening to ‘the bloggers’, by a strange coincidence!

So poll with highest level of presidential approval is Rasmussen??

Posted by B. Daniel Blatt at 2:13 pm - September 28, 2013.
Filed under: National Politics,Random Thoughts

We’ve often heard it said the the Rasmussen poll skews Republican, but their latest shows the Democratic president with a higher level of approval than any other recent survey:

Screen shot 2013-09-28 at 11.07.41 AM

Not since May has any survey showed him with over 50% approval.

Col. Bud Day, RIP

Posted by Jeff (ILoveCapitalism) at 2:56 pm - August 4, 2013.
Filed under: Great Americans,Military,National Politics

Eight days ago, Air Force Colonel George Everett “Bud” Day passed away. He was a hero; as Mary Katherine Ham put it, “a veteran of World War II and Vietnam, a combat pilot famous for his defiance in the face of five years of torture in the Hanoi Hilton, a veterans advocate…” – and a man who received the Medal of Honor.

Not least of his accomplishments was in the 2004 Presidential campaign, when Col. Day helped educate Americans about the lying (and treasonous) John F. Kerry. Col. Day was part of the Swift Vets and POWs for Truth, which exposed Kerry and which, to this day, suffers left-wing slander for it. (I mentioned Col. Day in an early guest post on the Swift Vets.)

Col. Day was also a staunch McCain supporter – but hey, no one is perfect. Thank you, Col. Day, for your many services to America! God bless you!

Top political donors of the last 24 years

Via Zero Hedge last week.

I’m just a li’l part-time blogger, but in the top 20, I count only one eeeeeevil corporation favoring the GOP…against twelve unions, strongly favoring Democrats. Which party is all about the “big money” again?

ZH has a longer list, wherein you’ll glean these tidbits:

  • HRC comes in impressively (I mean it) at number 100, having given $11.9 million; 89% to Democrats.
  • The much-pilloried Koch Industries only comes in at number 62, with $17.4 million.
  • The much-pilloried NRA only comes in at number 52, with $20.2 million.
  • Umm…did I miss Halliburton? Or are they not in the top 100?

Top political  donors of the last 23 years

Shooter debunks “official” version of Ft. Hood massacre

Posted by B. Daniel Blatt at 1:27 am - June 6, 2013.
Filed under: National Politics,Random Thoughts

Glenn Reynolds reports:

WORKPLACE VIOLENCE UPDATE: Christian Science Monitor: With Nidal Hasan bombshell, time to call Fort Hood shooting a terror attack? “Maj. Nidal Hasan, the Army major facing court-martial for a mass shooting at Fort Hood in 2009, plans to argue that he acted in defense of the Taliban in Afghanistan. So much for the official US line that the shootings were an act of workplace violence, critics say.”

Just take Joe Biden With You, K?

Posted by B. Daniel Blatt at 4:58 pm - April 30, 2013.
Filed under: National Politics

Screen shot 2013-04-30 at 1.56.01 PM

Was the “charm offensive” expected to achieve anything*?

Posted by B. Daniel Blatt at 12:24 pm - March 16, 2013.
Filed under: National Politics,Random Thoughts

Wonder why Yahoo! chose to include a photo of Speaker Boehner to accompany this headline.
Screen shot 2013-03-16 at 9.18.44 AM
Perhaps to imply that Republicans are responsible for the absence of breakthrough?

How, may I ask, can a charm offensive work when your team continues to attack those you are trying to charm.  It might be possible for the parties to achieve a breakthrough if one side (that would be the party attempting to charm) brought a concrete proposal to the table.

Otherwise it’s just charm for the sake of charm.  That’s kind of like a certain “celebrity” I ran into last weekend outsider Canter’s, a woman famous for the sake of being famous.

* (more…)

Meatless Monday & The Great Steak Dinner Bet Payoff
Monday, Feb 25 in Glendale, CA

Dan did a post a few days ago, but I wanted to re-invite our friends in the Los Angeles area to join me and him for “Meatless Monday” by enjoying a hearty steak dinner at Outback Steakhouse in Glendale, Calif. The official event invite is here on Facebook.

And since I’m also new Vice Chair of GOProud, I’ll be talking about our new efforts at chapter development and outreach.

For those not familiar with “The Great Steak Dinner Bet,” here’s the video from CPAC 2010.

-Bruce (@GayPatriot)

National Review Institute Summit:
John Hood Discusses Power of Republicans at State Level

One of the panels today at the National Review Institute’s Summit was “Solutions from the States.” The topics ranged from the transfer of income from high-tax to low-tax states, the impact of pop culture on conservatism and how to change it, and the broad wins at the state level that the Republican Party has had over the past several election cycles.

To that last point, John Hood – President of the John Locke Foundation – spent a few moments with me talking about how the strength of the state-based Republican Party can be translated to national prominence.

-Bruce (@GayPatriot)

The Grand Opportunity Party

This piece was originally posted by my good friend Billy at the Charleston Tea Party webpage and at RedState.  It is re-posted here in full.

-Bruce (@GayPatriot)

*********

New US Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) hits the nail squarely on the head in this piece for the Washington Post. The Republicans MUST become more effective at presenting the idea of the opportunities that conservatism provides. The GOP no longer needs to be known as the Grand Old Party, but the Great Opportunity Party. Our principles of limited government, personal responsibility, and a desire to make tomorrow better than today, are what make us uniquely qualified to address our nation’s challenges in the most productive manner. We MUST become salespeople of conservative ideals.

What is the opportunity that the GOP provides? We have a belief in the power of the individual to improve their own lot in life. We understand that it is hard work and a desire to learn that allows people to invest in their future. We KNOW that America and our founding principles are what continue to make America that “shining city on a hill” that John Winthrop spoke of as he reached the shores of this great land. I believe that we are at a time for choosing, and we must do as Reagan said, ““Four years ago we raised a banner of bold colors – no pale pastels. We proclaimed a dream of an America that would be a ‘shining city on a hill’.” We’re talking about the same bold colors today – crafting a message of opportunity and then communicating that message eloquently, forcefully, and without apology.

We offer a spirit of entrepreneurship. This idea is not only confined to those that own their own business, it applies to everyone as they seek to do their job to the best of their ability. I remember a store manager early in my career said to me, “Billy, in order for us to be successful, we need to run it like we own it.” He meant to take pride in the job that I did, and if I took ownership of the job I was assigned, I would be rewarded. This lesson paid off, as a short period of time later I entered the management training program. I continued to carry that philosophy throughout my time in the grocery business, and continue it today as I have a small business of my own. Any person can be an “entrepreneur,” whether it is the men and women that keep the office clean, the folks that make the products we use everyday, or the people that take care of us when we go out to eat. Anyone that takes pride in their job, and seeks a way to improve, is an entrepreneur.

We offer a way to invest in their future. The ability of an individual to keep the fruits of their labor is essential to investment. When we speak of “investing,” we don’t mean merely putting money in a 401(k), we mean saving to buy a place that you can call home, to buy books for your children so they may learn, to afford a family vacation so that you can make memories that will last a lifetime. Investment can take on many of these forms, but it is about one fundamental idea, “I want to make tomorrow better than today.”

We know that personal responsibility is essential to success. When you play by the rules and work hard you CAN succeed, however a burdensome government can often make this more difficult. The wages that people earn should not be used to bail out irresponsible business owners and others that have made poor decisions. The ability to fail is essential to success, I have learned far more from my failures, than I learned from my successes. If that opportunity to fail was not there, I would never have learned those valuable lessons. When people make bad decisions in business, they need to be allowed to fail, so that we all may learn these lessons to ensure success in the future. It is much better to learn not to touch a hot stove by watching someone else burn themselves, than putting yourself through that pain.

We have many other reasons for why we truly are the “Great Opportunity Party,” and this is just a start. I challenge each of you to think of ways that opportunity can lead to success, and to become salespeople of these ideals. Change begins at home, and I hope many of you will join us in this fight. We must shout our message from the rooftops, and liberate everyone from the “soft bigotry of low expectations.” We can continue to ensure that America remains that “last best hope for mankind,” but it will take all of us working towards a common goal to get there.

Oh, If Obama’s Inaugural Address Were This Sweet…

Our First President had this to say on his Second Inaugural.


Fellow Citizens:

I am again called upon by the voice of my country to execute the functions of its Chief Magistrate. When the occasion proper for it shall arrive, I shall endeavor to express the high sense I entertain of this distinguished honor, and of the confidence which has been reposed in me by the people of united America.

Previous to the execution of any official act of the President the Constitution requires an oath of office. This oath I am now about to take, and in your presence: That if it shall be found during my administration of the Government I have in any instance violated willingly or knowingly the injunctions thereof, I may (besides incurring constitutional punishment) be subject to the upbraidings of all who are now witnesses of the present solemn ceremony.

If only we were so lucky today to hear this from our re-elected leader.

First of all, it would be the shortest thing Barack Obama has ever said in public. 100 points.

Secondly, it would show that Barack Obama has humility and respects We, The People. 300 points.

Alas, the Tyrant Boy-King Barack Hussein Obama will deliver nothing like this speech today. Instead, we will hear the droning on of cliches and platitudes with no meaning and no firm plans to help American’s get back to work.

In short, the 2013 Obama Inaugural is merely Groundhog Day 2009.

-Bruce (@GayPatriot)

What President Obama Should (But Likely Won’t) Say Today

Posted by B. Daniel Blatt at 10:29 am - January 21, 2013.
Filed under: Divider-in-Chief,National Politics

We are, a broad-minded left-leaning friend said to me just before the election, more divided than we have ever been — and the winner would have his work cut out for him.

Perhaps defying her hopes, the winner, President Barack Obama did not use his victory to heal the wounds festering for many years and exacerbated by his campaign, but instead acted to further those divisions.  In the first month after his victory, he met only once with Republicans — and then in the context of a meeting with all congressional leaders.

He taunted Republicans on the fiscal cliff — and, more recently, on the debt ceiling.  Save for his speech Election Night, he has not offered much in the way of conciliatory rhetoric.  Nor has he made any significant effort to reach out to his partisan adversaries to find ways to work together.

He can make an attempt today, in his second inaugural address, to ease those national divisions simply by addressing them — and by acknowledging his part in furthering them.  He could promise to devote the first part of his second term to working together with Republicans in the national interest, perhaps making a grand gesture toward reconciliation.  He would have to show that he intends to do more than just express his commitment to confronting these divisions.

He could start by acknowledging the legitimacy of Republican concerns about the growing size of the federal government, the increasing burden of government debt and the stultifying effect of regulation.

Will he do this?  The record doesn’t give us much hope that he would offer this change.

Obama’s Soaring Rhetoric/His Divisive Actions

Posted by B. Daniel Blatt at 9:29 am - January 20, 2013.
Filed under: Media Bias,National Politics,Obamania

In a little more than two hours, Barack Obama will reach the midpoint of his presidency.  And we here at GayPatriot, along with many other thoughtful conservatives across the country (not to mention perhaps a plurality of independents) either wonder or marvel at his success at staying on.

We would have thought that after his first four years, a majority of voting Americans would have seen through his sometimes soaring rhetoric and despaired at his attempts to divide us.  They would have understood that despite the narrative he created in the 2008 campaign, he was a partisan politician first and not a post partisan unifier.

Yet, the record notwithstanding, some people, perhaps a majority of Americans, still like the idea of Barack Obama.  And the legacy media certainly made it easier for them to like him, amplifying images that made the Democrats appear to be a regular guy, relaxed on TV talk shows, brewing his own beer, watching sports.  And, in the final days of the campaign, the images of him together with the Republican governor of New Jersey showed him as identical to his 2008 billing, a man, pursuing the national interest, above the rough and tumble of partisan politics.

Americans wanted to like this man.  And the media have made it easier for them.

Those who still like the idea of Barack Obama like that idea far more than does Barack Obama himself. (more…)