Answering Criticism, Israeli Spokesman Asks This Question That Puts The Conflict Into Perspective

Answering Criticism, Israeli Spokesman Asks This Question That Puts The Conflict Into Perspective

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Israel has faced some tough criticism from people around the world, and disturbingly from Israel’s biggest ally: the US. They have heard it from our from our Secretary of State right down to Jon Stewart. 

But Israeli spokesman Mark Regev puts it all into perspective by asking this simple question after hearing yet another prominent American – former Secretary of State Madeleine Albright – criticize his country.

via Washington Free Beacon

“If anyone says Israel’s overreacting, I’d say what would you do? What would your government do with more than 2,000 rockets raining down at your cities fired by terrorists?

 

What would your government do if terrorists were coming across the frontier in these tunnels with explosives and automatic weapons and rocket-propelled grenades to kill and maim people?

 

What would your government do if these missiles attacks were threatening to close down your main transport facilities? If you look at our response, it’s been measured and it’s been proportionate.”

Israel is threatened on all sides, and they are fighting to defend themselves. For our country to abandon them at this time – whether by our actions or our words – would be a grave mistake. It would destabilize not only their country, but the entire region.

NBC’s Brian Williams Grills Netanyahu; Recites Hamas Talking Points Calling Him a War Criminal

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In an interview with Benjamin Netanyahu on NBC Nightly News, Brian Williams not only grilled the Prime Minister for Israel’s military response to the ongoing rocket barrage by Hamas; he promptly proceeded to recite Hamas talking points – even referring to Netanyahu as a “war criminal.”

“Last night our network aired scenes of the largest hospital in Gaza having to turn away dead bodies at the hospital morgue. There was no more room. … How does it strike you as a father, as a human being?” 

It got worse: Williams actually defended Hamas, saying that “every single Israeli killed by its fighters or its rockets except one have been soldiers in uniform, on duty, fully armed and on the battlefield.”

Then came the Hamas talking points:

“Hamas tells NBC News in a statement tonight, quote, ‘It is Netanyahu and his army of war criminals that have targeted and continue to target innocent and defenseless civilians.’” 

Incidentally, Williams “forgot” to mention that Hamas places many of its rockets in civilian neighborhoods: homes, schools, even children’s playgrounds.

Or that Hamas has ordered civilians to remain in their homes after they’ve been warned by IDF Forces to leave before the rocket sites are targeted. But, hey – what difference does it make?

Mark Levin Fired Up: ‘I Would Like To Educate Jon Stewart And His Clapping Seal Audience’

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Radio talk show host and Fox News contributor Mark Levin has never been a fan of Jon Stewart. Monday night, Stewart did a short skit mocking those who defend Israel for its response to Hamas rocket attacks. Tuesday night on Hannity, “The Great One” lit up Stewart and his audience:

 “I would like to educate Jon Stewart and his clapping seal studio audience. If Hamas had the weaponry that Israel had, nuclear weapons and other weapons, Israel would cease to exist.”

In addition to the skit, Levin was also incensed over Stewart’s comments questioning “the effectiveness or humanity of Israel’s policies.”

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Oh, My: Talking Trains Cartoon Is Racist Because Only The Good Engines Pump Out White Smoke

PC Insanity Story of the Day: “Thomas & Friends,” the cartoon series featuring Thomas the Tank Engine and his other little talking train buddies is racist. The reason? Only Thomas and the “good trains” pump out white smoke, while the “bad trains” pump out – wait for it – black smoke.

So, has political correctness finally gone ’round the bend? Not according to Tracy Van Slyke, writing for The Guardian:

For every Sesame Street, there is an annoying Caillou or an acid-trippy Yo Gabba Gabba. But Thomas and Friends is the one show with enough subversive messages to make me turn it off for good.

 

Thomas and those friends are trains that toil away endlessly on the Isle of Sodor … and, on its surface, the show seems to impart good moral lessons about hard work and friendship.

 

But if you look through the steam rising up from the coal-powered train stacks, you realize that the pretty puffs of smoke are concealing some pretty twisted, anachronistic messages.

Ms. Van Slyke is particularly miffed by an episode in which one of the trains has his red paint removed – and is repainted pink. To her shock and dismay, the other trains make fun of the newly-pink “James.” But it’s her analysis of the train engines’ smoke that takes the cake:

For the record, all the “villains” on Thomas and Friends are the dirty diesel engines.

 

I’d like to think there was a good environmental message in there, but when the good engines pump out white smoke and the bad engines pump out black smoke … it’s not hard to make the leap into the race territory.

As Zip over at Weasel Zippers observed, it appears that we’ve finally reached the pinnacle of PC insanity.

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Girl Who Survived ‘Slender Man’ Attack Flooded With Support, But One Gift From A Vet Is Especially Moving

In June, a 12-year-old Wisconsin girl was lured into the forest by two of her classmates for what she thought was a sleepover. However, it lead to an attack that nearly cost her her life. She was stabbed 19 times by classmates Morgan Geyser and Anissa Weier, who were inspired to carry out the brutality by a fictional, murderous character called Slender Man.

Miraculously, the girl managed to escape from her attackers and was discovered by a bicyclist the following morning. After a lengthy hospital visit, she was discharged and able to return to home for recovery. But even after going home, she still visits the doctor almost daily.

During her recovery, the girl made well-wishers aware that her favorite color is purple and that her favorite shape is a heart. And support for her has poured in from all over the world.

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But it was one truly special badge of courage that an anonymous military veteran sent her that was more touching than the rest.

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If you can’t read the card, it says:

Take comfort in knowing you’re in good hands – God is there for you and I am, too.

 

The veteran then inscribed this message: The only heart I could find. Be strong!

Her parents say they were humbled by the heartfelt gift. Can you think of a higher reward for the courage this little girl showed?

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Some People In Colorado Are Using Their EBT Cards For More Than Just Munchies

Colorado legalized marijuana at the beginning of this year, and it has led to some unintended consequences. National Review Online reports that one such consequence is that welfare recipients can withdraw cash from EBT cards at marijuana shops.

From National Review:

For the past six months, welfare beneficiaries in Colorado have repeatedly withdrawn their cash benefits at marijuana retailers and dispensaries, according to a new analysis by National Review Online. Such apparent abuses have caught the eye of Colorado’s executive and legislative powers alike, and the state has launched an effort to curb them.

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At least 259 times in the first six months of legalized recreational marijuana in Colorado, beneficiaries used their electronic-benefit transfer (EBT) cards to access public assistance at weed retailers and dispensaries, withdrawing a total of $23,608.53 in Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) cash, NRO’s examination found.

Since TANF and other public assistance programs were not created so poor people can buy weed, what exactly is Colorado doing to crack down on this welfare fraud?

On July 11, the Colorado State Board of Human Services passed an emergency rule, effective immediately, restricting the use of TANF funds at marijuana shops, bars, liquor stores, gambling establishments, and other potentially inappropriate venues.

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The Colorado Department of Human Services (CDHS), which oversees the TANF program, has begun to convene a task force on apparent misuse of cash benefits, joining with other state agencies to work out the details of enforcement, including how to monitor transactions, what constitutes wrongful usage, and whether withdrawals at medical-marijuana dispensaries should be considered a potential abuse of welfare money.

Colorado Republicans tried to pass a bill in the state legislature that outlawed EBT withdrawals at marijuana shops, but they were blocked by Democrats.

Dr. Ben Carson Gives An Unexpected Hint As To Whether He Might Run For President of The United States

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On Tuesday, Dr. Ben Carson was on America’s Newsroom with Bill Hemmer discussing the latest appeals court ruling on Obamacare. Then, Hemmer shifted gears by bringing up a presidential straw poll which Carson recently won in Colorado. He asked Carson what his view was on running for the presidency.

He replied:

“I certainly didn’t give it much thought early on. I can’t simply ignore it.”

 

“So I am starting to think about it. But it certainly wasn’t on my bucket list when I retired.”

Last week, the Washington Examiner reported that the Draft Ben Carson Super PAC had raised over half a million dollars more than the Ready for Hillary Super PAC in the last quarter. In addition, according to CBS, Hillary’s book Hard Choices has only sold 15,000 more copies than Carson’s book One Nation.

One thing’s clear: If Carson chooses to throw his white coat into the 2016 presidential ring, he will be a serious contender.

Hillary Explains in Her Own Words Why She Would Be Exhausted as the Next President

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How is presumed presidential candidate Hillary Clinton feeling these days? The hilarious folks at Washington Free Beacon may have the answer:

Hillary Clinton, an elderly homeowner and blood clot survivor who many believe is the best candidate to challenge Joe Biden for the Democratic presidential nomination in 2016, has taken part in numerous interviews since leaving the Obama administration and promoting the release of her underwhelming memoir, Hard Choices.

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An extensive, month-long Free Beacon analysis of these interviews has uncovered evidence suggesting that Clinton is using a form of code in an effort to communicate with the voting public.

While this is obviously meant to be a humorous collection of handpicked quotes, is there more to it? Is Mrs. Clinton trying to tell us something?

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Horror Author Stephen King Annoys Fans With Insulting Political Tweets on Immigration

Many have noted a twinge of anti-Christian analogies in the horror books of author Stephen King, but his Twitter account has made it very clear where he stands on the issue of religion and on conservatism. In this case, it was a pair of tweets aimed at the Tea Party and at Christians over immigration:

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Ironically, there are very few illegal immigrants in Stephen King’s own back yard in Bangor, Maine, but there are many crazed fans who like to visit his house just to get a glimpse of their hero. Guess what Stephen has to keep them out? He’s got a big ‘ol fence!

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Of course, it’s easier to criticize those who face the brunt of an illegal alien influx from your comfy gated house in the Northeast. In fact, Stephen King has “no trespassing” signs around his home, but apparently it’s immoral for America to have them on its border. As many noted on Twitter, he’s not running to house and feed the illegal aliens streaming over the border, nor has anyone seen him donating his time and money to help them personally, as have many Christians and many conservatives.

Quite a few of his fans were disappointed and angry about his tweets:

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I’m sure King is wealthy enough that he can voice his opinion without being financially hurt by it. But does he have to be such an irrational jerk about it?

 

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What Happened To The U.S. Flags On The Brooklyn Bridge Is Either A Startling Warning Or A Vile Prank

White flags – the universal symbol of surrender – were mysteriously placed on the Brooklyn Bridge on Tuesday morning, and nobody knows who is responsible. ABC News reports:

Authorities said that at around 3:30 a.m., the lights that illuminate the U.S. flags on either side of the bridge could be seen flickering and then going out completely.

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When police investigated the scene, they found that the two American flags had been apparently bleached and large aluminum tins had been tied to cover the lights that illuminate the flags.

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Whoa. The perpetrators were up on the bridge, which is considered a high-profile terrorist target, for quite some time.

“When [the NYPD's] Emergency Services went up this morning, the gates were still up and locked,” [NYPD Deputy Commissioner John Miller] said. “For someone to go around it and go up to the tower and have right size cover to put over the light, there’s some indication of pre-operational planning.”

Whoa, again. Pre-operational planning. Could this be a shot across the bow, letting the American public know just how vulnerable we still are?

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The NY Daily News reports that a bicycle club joked that they had placed the flags there to signify their surrender of bike lanes on the Brooklyn Bridge.

Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams failed to see the humor in any of it: “If flying a white flag atop the Brooklyn Bridge is someone’s idea of a joke, I’m not laughing.”

This is definitely not a laughing matter. If whoever did this could get atop the bridge undetected and stay there long enough to take down, bleach, and re-hang two flags, they could also plant a bomb.

If this location is not as secure as we thought, what location might be next?

The 2nd Time Robbers Break Into This Grandma’s Home, She Chooses To Take Justice Into Her Own Hands

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Sixty-three-year-old grandmother Phyllis Law has been burglarized before. However, last Friday, when Law heard the all-too-familiar sound of people trying to break in her home, she decided it wasn’t going to happen again.

Law went upstairs to grab her 9mm handgun with an extra clip. She told her granddaughter to hide in the closet while her protective instincts kicked in. Law went to the living room, and got down on the floor.

She told Fox 10 what happened next:

“Next thing I know, he hit the lights and put all the lights on and I’m saying to myself, ‘This person been here before to know where all my lights at,’” she said. “This is ridiculous. He just comes strolling, walking around.

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By the time…He was right here I saw the blue jogging basketball pants he was wearing. And when he got there, I jumped up and just start shooting. I have no idea where I hit him. He fell right there, on the floor there. “

Law ended up shooting the suspect in the head. According to Fox 10, he survived his wounds. Police also indicated that there was a second suspect who was arrested nearby.

The 9mm-wielding grandmother said she just wants to live in peace. And, thanks to the 2nd amendment, she is able to do just that.

Plaxico Burress & The National Urban League Press Conference

Tony Dungy Throws a Grenade Into a Rainbow Tent by Saying the Truth About Michael Sam

Plaxico Burress & The National Urban League Press Conference

Tony Dungy’s recent remarks on the openly gay seventh-round NFL draft pick Michael Sam are creating a firestorm, but are they honest comments or “homophobic”?

The former head coach for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and the Super Bowl-winning Indianapolis Colts told the Tampa Tribune why he wouldn’t have drafted Sam:

“I wouldn’t have taken him. Not because I don’t believe Michael Sam should have a chance to play, but I wouldn’t want to deal with all of it. It’s not going to be totally smooth … things will happen.”

Dungy’s seemingly innocuous admission that “things will happen” (see the Dolphins’ Richie Incognito debacle) was enough to light up the Internet with an instant backlash. Salon slammed the current NBC sports commentator:

“Tony Dungy’s terrible comments about Michael Sam are homophobia defined.”

The news media’s explosive reaction to Dungy’s comment – obviously centering on how drafting Sam is a distraction and not a judgment about his lifestyle – just proves his point.

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The NFL recruit Michael Sam receives an ‘Arthur Ashe Courage Award” at the ESPYs in July 2014.

Tony Dungy responded to the media firestorm in comments via CBS Sports (courtesy Pro Football Talk):

“I gave my honest answer, which is that I felt drafting him would bring much distraction to the team.

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“I was not asked whether or not Michael Sam deserves an opportunity to play in the NFL.  He absolutely does.

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“I was not asked whether his sexual orientation should play a part in the evaluation process.  It should not.

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“I was not asked whether I would have a problem having Michael Sam on my team.  I would not.”

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“What I was asked about was my philosophy of drafting, a philosophy that was developed over the years, which was to minimize distractions for my teams.”

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“I do not believe Michael’s sexual orientation will be a distraction to his teammates or his organization.  I do, however, believe that the media attention that comes with it will be a distraction.  Unfortunately we are all seeing this play out now, and I feel badly that my remarks played a role in the distraction.”

People aren’t treating Sam “equally” when they put him above the typical scrutiny that other NFL recruits face. If any other NFL player was creating a distraction for a team, that franchise would have regrets – unless, of course, that player was a game-changing superstar – which Sam is currently not.

Former NFL player Antonio Pierce also faced criticism for defending Dungy. Via the Sporting News:

“It’s not about that player or about what that player stands for. It’s about the team. And I think it’s no different than when a guy comes in, he has a different race, different religion or three or four wives or eight baby mamas. It really doesn’t matter. That’s his business. As long as we play on the football field together and do something about the team and not have to talk about that individual and what he believes in every day I can live with that, but for this fact, you have to talk about it every single day after every practice, and I think it is a distraction.”

Race has not been a barrier to NFL players being drafted and playing on teams for decades. The proof is in the performance. If an NFL player can hold his own or excel against competition, players, coaches and owners will make sure that person is on the field – and others work with him towards the team’s goals.

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Dictionary Entry Linking A Political Philosophy With ‘Bigotry’ Is Sneaky Way To Influence An Entire Generation

A review of Merriam-Webster’s website has turned up some curious synonyms and antonyms for the word “bigotry.” Did you know that, apparently, “conservatism” is a related word to “bigotry”?

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From The Daily Caller:

A source writes in, “I would imagine millions of impressionable young minds go to this site to find definitions of words for school. This is supposed to be factual reference. This is extremely dangerous and powerful. I wonder what other words they have redefined.”

This source emailed Rose Martino, associate editor of Merriam-Webster.com, to complain about the offensive connection. She replied:

The basic line of reasoning seems to have been that since ‘liberalism’ is an antonym to ‘conservatism,’ perceived antonyms of ‘liberalism’ could be considered to be related words for ‘conservatism.’

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The crux of the issue appears to be that those two entries were handled by different editors, one of whom thought ‘bigotry’ and ‘illiberalism’ were nearly synonymous (while the other did not, explaining why ‘bigotry’ does not appear at the actual ‘liberal’ entry), and so added both at ‘conservatism.’

She then promised to recommend that it be changed in the next edition, but extended her apologies in the meantime.

Millions of students refer to dictionaries and thesauruses for their schoolwork. Redefining words in a political lens is a sneaky – and irresponsible – way to lure a whole generation to a particular way of thinking.

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The Silicon Valley That Elected Obama Is Now Supporting Candidates That Spell Trouble For Democrats

Senator Rand Paul (R-Kentucky) made a visit to Silicon Valley this past weekend and spoke at the Lincoln Labs Reboot 2014, which was sponsored by Generation Opportunity.

What kind of a reception did he get in this liberal stronghold which donated overwhelmingly to Barack Obama in 2012? Well, apparently a very positive one.

From KPIX5:

[Senator Rand Paul] wants to join forces with local techies.

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But how can technology and liberty flourish side by side? Paul’s answer, “shrink government.”

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“Is government inherently stupid?” the Kentucky Republican [asked] the audience at the Lincoln Labs Reboot 2014. “I say no, but it’s a debatable question.”

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Since Paul’s visit a new political term is being coded — the conservatarian… part conservative, part libertarian.

Just what exactly has opened the door for Senator Paul and Republicans to gain traction in Silicon Valley? The failures of the Obama administration and the big government agenda of the Democrat Party on issues that are important to Silicon Valley.

“I come out here, and people say, ‘we loved President Obama, we’re all for President Obama, we’re from the tech community’ but why?” said Senator Paul. “He’s not for innovation, he’s not for freedom, he’s for the protectionism crowd, the crowd that would eliminate the activity of these companies.”

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The National Security Agency scandal sent shock waves through Silicon Valley. Paul warned about its repercussions for the business climate.

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“Since the NSA scandal, there have been people losing money,” said Paul. “People selling stuff in Asia and Europe aren’t very happy with us now. There have been articles written citing as much as 22 billion in lost sales.”

The Democrat Party and President Obama have negatively affected the business of Silicon Valley, with the NSA cyber surveillance programs harming the U.S. tech industry and those overseas.

It is in Silicon Valley’s best interest to support candidates who are on its side when it comes to internet privacy for both business and principled reasons. From this common ground, conservatives could sell a broader message of limited government, and how it works to spur innovation and progress.

What should terrify Democrats is that Paul, the candidate to whom traditional liberals are turning, is also the conservative candidate who polls the best against Hillary in 2016.

Now that Americans are seeing the huge problems that big bureaucracy can cause, conservatives with a message of limited government have a real chance at flipping a group that liberals thought they’d never lose…

Megyn Kelly Breaks Down Why We Won’t See The White House Help Persecuted Christians Anytime Soon

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As ISIS continues to persecute Christians in Iraq it announced a terrifying ultimatum for those who remain: Convert to Islam, leave, pay an impoverishing tax, or die by the sword.

As awful as this is, Family Research Council President Tony Perkins, explains on The Kelly File that something just as fundamentally wrong is happening in the Oval Office:

This administration has been silent continuously when Christians have been persecuted… [it] is more concerned about offending Islamic states and Islamic nations than they are of defending the long standing policy that America has always had — that religious freedom is a human right, not just an American right… I’m not sure what’s more shocking, the atrocities of ISIS or the silence of the Obama administration.”

Respect is key to a successful relationship between nations. But, is it right to continually wave a white flag of passivity under the guise of tolerance or in the fear of  giving offense, when those nations are so blatantly not showing the same respect to their own people?

By default, a double standard has been created for what basic humanitarian rights mean, both in America and overseas. This needs reevaluation, ASAP.

Report: Terror Group Behind Benghazi Attacks Moved In Nearby U.S. Consulate and ‘Nothing Was Done’

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New information has come to light surrounding the September 11th terror attacks on the U.S. Consulate in Benghazi.

From Fox News:

Fox News’ Adam Housley reported that within three weeks of the U.S. renting the compound, a group aligned with Ansar al-Sharia – the terror organization believed to be behind the attack – moved in nearby.

 

An intelligence source told Fox News, “We warned D.C. about the guys who moved in next door, but nobody knew what to do and nothing was done.”

In addition, the source said that they asked for sandbags and a belt-fed machine gun to help protect the consulate. However, their request was denied because they were told “it wasn’t aesthetically pleasing and it would upset the neighbors.”

We can only hope that the State Department is now taking embassy security more seriously, because more security in Benghazi could have made all the difference.

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Dems Plan To Spend Week On Min Wage To Prove It Needs To Be Raised – But Forget One Important Thing

If you want to understand someone better, it helps to put yourself in their shoes. So a group of prominent Democrats’ plan to spend a week living off of a minimum wage budget sounds, in theory, like a fine idea.

The initiative, sponsored by the Live the Wage campaign, is part of an effort to raise the federal minimum wage. Those who participate will be given a weekly budget of $77, which the group claims is the average budget for a minimum wage worker.

The Washington Free Beacon reports:

“To the members of Congress who draw a six-figure government salary and say $7.25 an hour is a livable wage, I say walk the walk,” Woodhouse said in a statement announcing the campaign. “Live the wage before refusing to raise the wage. These tone deaf members might just change their tune if they had a little perspective.”

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Woodhouse’s invitation has been met with enthusiasm by Democrats supportive of the $10.10 wage proposed in the Senate. Illinois Democratic Rep. Jan Schakowsky took up the challenge in order to stand “in solidarity with hard-working families who are trying to make ends meet,” according to the release.

Participants will likely finish with a big pat on the back and an increased desire to increase the minimum wage so that fewer Americans will have to experience what they did over the past week.

However, they’re completely missing one big, important piece of the puzzle: Forcing businesses to pay higher wages actually causes them to cut jobs and, therefore, is not in the best long-term interests of working Americans.

From Michael Saltsman, research director of the Employment Policies Institute:

“Instead of a substantive discussion about whether a higher minimum wage is the best way to reduce poverty, labor unions and the mind-boggling array of groups they fund have organized an election-year publicity stunt,” he said.

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“More importantly, it ignores the conclusive findings from the Congressional Budget Office that any reductions in poverty from a $10.10 wage hike come at the expense of up to one million lost jobs.”

These participants’ time would better be used coming up with solutions that create jobs rather than kill them.

Why Even Have a Law? The White House’s Excuse for Ignoring the Huge Blow Dealt to Obamacare

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When confronted with the “huge blow” dealt to the federal subsidies portion of the Obamacare law (surprise, surprise, in its rush to pass it, the Congress didn’t write the section correctly), White House spokesman Josh Earnest had a few excuses for why the ruling will be ignored, regardless.

First of all, the White House spokesman trotted out the familiar ends-justify-the-means excuse for ignoring the law:

‘This ruling does not have any practical impact on their ability to receive tax credits right now. Right now there are millions of Americans all across the country who are receiving tax credits from the federal government as a result of the Affordable Care Act. While this ruling is interesting to legal theorists, it has no practical impact on their tax credits right now.”

Secondly, the White House pointed to the “scoreboard” – the courts threw some rulings out, and not all agreed with the Federal Appeals Court:

The second is… there are four different cases making this point that are making their way through the federal courts system. Two of them have been dismissed at the district court level, two of them are awaiting their initial rulings. This, of course, is the appeal of one of those cases, so, there is decidedly mixed legal opinion about this. But for those who are keeping score, we’re still ahead two-to-one here.

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What I do anticipate the Department of Justice will do is they will ask for a ruling from the full D.C. circuit. As you know, this was a decision that was issued just by three members of the D.C. circuit, two of whom ruled against the federal government, and one of them agreed with the government’s position.

Thirdly, the judges that threw out the cases based their decisions on their reading of the Congress’ ‘intentions’:

Now, it’s important for people to also understand, that some of those district courts that have thrown out this case have been decided by judges who used some pretty strong rhetoric in doing so. There was a judge in this case at the district level who said ‘there is simply no evidence in the statute itself or in the legislative history of any intent by Congress to support the claims that are made by the plaintiff.’ In another case that was making the same legal argument, a judge wrote that the theory propounded by the plaintiffs was ‘not a viable theory.’

Lastly, Earnest reinforces that it wasn’t Congress’ intention to screw up its drafting of the law (and violate the Constitution while doing it):

The last thing that’s important… there’s a lot of high-minded case law that’s applied here, but there’s also an element of common sense that should be applied as well. Which is that, you don’t need a fancy legal degree to understand that Congress intended for every eligible American to have access to tax credits that would lower there healthcare costs, regardless of whether it was state officials or federal officials who are running the marketplace. I think that’s a pretty clear intent of the Congressional law.

Since we’re on the topic of “intentions,” it didn’t look like the “intention” of the Democratic Party to pass a massive new entitlement when the president told the American people the law wouldn’t “add a dime” to the deficit and it would lower the average family’s healthcare costs by $2,500 a year.

It didn’t look like the “intention” of the Congress to kick people off the insurance plans that they liked, but that happened nonetheless. And it didn’t look like the “intention” of the law when people started losing the doctors that they liked.

All those things happened, nonetheless, because our nation’s laws aren’t based on “intentions,” they are based on their text and plain meaning. It looks like the Congress flat-out botched the section on federal subsidies. The White House can make excuses based on “intentions,” but why should Americans take its word for it?

Another federal court ruled today on the Obamacare law and said that the federal subsidies are just fine, so we’re likely heading to the Supreme Court on this one. Hurrah.

One more thing about “intentions” – it was the “intention” of the Founding Fathers, who established a Congress and a Presidency to begin with, that bills be passed with full deliberation in the public forum, by Congressional members who have actually read the bill and know “what’s in it,” and are then enforced by a president who follows the rule of law.

None of those things apply here, so spare the American people about the “intentions” of the Congress or the President. Just follow the law.

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Kira Davis: How Do You Change the System? One Citizen at a Time

For the last four years, I have had the privilege of traveling all across our nation and speaking to all types of wonderful American citizens. I talk about my love for this nation and my journey towards becoming an American.

Invariably, after each occasion, some wearied, frustrated attendee will work their way towards me, press their hands firmly into mine and look at me with quiet desperation as they ask, “Do you think our country can be saved? Is it too late to change things?”

Some may giggle at the intensity of such an inquiry, but I never do. I take it quite seriously. While the expression may sound dramatic, I understand exactly where it comes from. People are scared. People are worried. Hard-working Americans are watching their savings, their jobs, their health insurance, their homes just evaporate in front of them. When they dare to complain about how their hard-earned money is being spent, they are accused of being racists, bigots, anarchists, homophobes…whatever “ists” and “phobes” are in season that day.

It’s wearying. It’s discouraging. I get that. I’d be lying if I said I never had days where I feel the battle is lost. I look at how the media has become nothing but a stenographer’s pool for the White House and I wonder how Americans can ever find the truth, when the one institution sworn to report the truth has given up on even the concept of veracity.

But then I am reminded of just how great this country is, and by extension how great her people are. Even in the face of overwhelming odds, Americans have never been a people to back down from a challenge, especially when it comes to freedom. Then I can look at those strained faces hoping so desperately for me to have a good answer and say, “As long as there are people like you asking that question, it will never be too late,”…and I truly believe that.

The problem comes when ordinary people wait for extraordinary leaders to come save them. We humans have some deep-rooted need for a hero. We think that one person – a Superman of sorts – can just come along and make everything better. That would be easier. Heck, I’d love a superhero to come swooping through my house and magically make all the dirt, dust and bills disappear.

Unfortunately, its not that easy. This is real life, and in real life we are each responsible for our own actions. That is how our government works, too. Government isn’t a superhero. It’s not some other-worldly entity that functions outside of the normal parameters of time and space. Government is us…and “us” dropped the ball.

So, is it too late? Short answer -no, but you have to be the change. I know that sounds terribly cliche but there is no other way to say it. You’re a citizen, you’re a voter, you have a responsibility to hold your government accountable. No one else is going to do it for you. Take back control of your life.

To that end, one of my favorite citizen-journalist organizations is holding a contest encouraging regular Americans to confront their representatives during the August recess of Congress. Matt Kibbe of Freedomworks often says, “Government goes to those who show up.” Watchdog Wire is encouraging average citizens to simply “show up” this summer, as our legislators use the summer recess to head home to constituents.

WW wants you to head out to those events with your camera or smartphone. Ask a question, stage something clever, be funny, get your word in. Whatever you feel like doing, the point is that it’s time for us to start “showing up” if we have any hope of righting this ship.

You may be saying to yourself, “But Kira, who am I? I’m a [senior citizen/stay-home-mom/student/high school drop-out/etc.]. How am I qualified to speak on politics and government?”

To which I would respond, “You pay your taxes, earn (or have earned) a living, buy gas, use water, drive cars, eat out, buy food at the grocery store, sing, dance, smoke, drink, go to the beach, go the park, graduate from school, get married, get divorced, get remarried, etc. etc. Every one of these things, every single one is affected and/or regulated by government. Your entire life is at the mercy of government so, hell yes, you are qualified to speak on politics and government!”

So, go be an expert. I happen to be on of the “celebrity” judges for this contest (yes, they are scraping the bottom of the “celebrity” barrel, but I take what I can get!) and I can’t wait to see what happens when some of you start showing up to remind your legislators that you see who they are and what they’re doing. And that you’re watching.

And that’s what we need more of. We need more people reminding our officials that they are indeed being watched. None of what they do is without consequences for us regular citizens, thus none of what they do should be without consequences for themselves as well.

Click here to find out more about the contest. Don’t worry about quality. Just get out there, point and shoot!

You want change? Its time to start showing up.

*Kira Davis is a freelance blogger, scotch enthusiast and IJReview’s Op-Ed-Diva-in-Chief. She as interviewed President Obama and appeared on Fox News, the Blaze and the Dr.Phil Show. Follow Kira on Twitter @KiraAynDavis

Flashback: Mitt Romney Now Makes Obama Look Dangerously Foolish in 46 Second Exchange Over Russia

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Remember Barack Obama’s sarcastic response to Mitt Romney during their third presidential debate about Russia being America’s number one “geopolitical foe”? And how Romney wanted to bring back the policies of the “Cold War,” if we treated Russia like a serious adversary?

As it looks like Russia might have played a role in bringing down Malaysia Airlines MH17, defied American policy towards Syria, and is leading hostile military incursions against Ukraine, how’s that policy of giving Putin “more flexibility” after your “last election” going, Mr. President? Is it time for another “reset” button?

bush socks

President George H.W. Bush’s Guide To Picking Out The Perfect Pair Of Socks

Sock superstar and former President George H.W. Bush was asked by Buzzfeed‘s Benny Johnson what rules he follows in picking out his socks for the day. As you can imagine, his answers were both charming and hilarious.

1. “The first rule of sock club… is there is no sock club.”

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2. “Assess the prevailing mood. Sometimes a good sock can give those around you a lift, like a catchy tune or a post-convention bounce in the polls.”

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3. “When the thermometer dips, thread count matters. It is a little-known scientific fact that freezing your tail off actually starts in the toes.”

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4. “Sock length matters, too. Pasty white or ungroomed shin can be an unsettling sight for many.”

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5. “Check the calendar. Sunday church calls for a more muted, sober offering. Lunch with friends is no-holds-barred.”

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6. “Do your own thing. It’s fine to look to sock mavens like The Biebs or Al Roker for inspiration and ideas, but outright mimicry is bad form and strenuously discouraged.”

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7. “Stand your ground. When friends discover your fondness for feisty footwear, they will question your taste and possibly even your soundness of mind.”

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8. “Let the socks do all the talking. Enough. Said.”

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9. “If you are going anywhere with Barbara Bush, don’t worry about the socks, because you’ll already be the luckiest guy in the world.”

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Rules to live by! If we ever needed sock advice, President Bush is definitely the man for the job.

 

Hillary Clinton’s Fingers are So Tired From Typing Her New Book It’s Affected Her Ability to Speak

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Hillary Clinton is out promoting her new book, Hard Choices. This isn’t anything out of the ordinary, right? Wrong. Apparently, she doesn’t want to talk about any of it face to face- if it’s not on her terms.

Maggie Haberman, a senior political reporter at Politico, has been covering book releases from two opposing forces — Hillary Clinton and Gov. Chris Christie. She was asked how the two have differed, in her experience:

“It’s night and day…. She [Hillary] has not taken a single question… she is giving very controlled interviews. These are very controlled settings. There is very little that is up in the air or unexpected about them.”

Of course, it could be argued that Hillary wrote the book because she’s tired of answering so many questions about her life. But then, why go on tour at all?

Is Hillary controlling everything because she’s afraid of what she will be asked, or what she might say if she’s caught off guard- about a book that she chose to make public to the world?

Oh, well. She’s probably just tired from all that writing. Poor thing.

court of appeals

What ‘Law’? Separate Federal Appeals Court Says ObamaCare Subsidies are Just Fine

CNBC is reporting that a separate federal appeals court has ruled that subsidies to enrollees of healthcare.gov, the federal health insurance exchange, are legal.

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit upheld a federal regulations that implemented subsidies that are vital to President Barack Obama’s healthcare overhaul, in direct conflict with another ruling on the issue handed down earlier on Tuesday.

 

A three-judge panel unanimously said the law was ambiguous, and that it would defer to the IRS’s determination that subsidies could go to individuals who purchased health insurance on both federal and state-run exchanges.

This ruling contradicts the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit’s ruling earlier today, which held that the law stated the subsidies only applied to those enrolled in state-run exchanges.

The slew of legal challenges to Obamacare- and the fact that the President has felt it necessary to use Executive Actions to “clarify” the law’s provisions- all point to one thing. Congress should learn a couple of major lessons: when writing a law, read it and have ample time to debate and revise it before passing it.

WH Press Secretary Earnest Grilled For Slamming Anonymous Sources… When He Routinely Uses Them

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White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest received quite the tongue-lashing from McClatchy correspondent Anita Kumar on Monday after Earnest dismissed a Washington Post story that he felt relied too heavily on anonymous sources.

The WaPo report, published Saturday, charges that the administration was warned about the brewing border crisis but did nothing to fix it. Earnest said that if reporters wanted the story to have more credibility, they shouldn’t have used so many anonymous sources.

via The Hill:

“In the course of reporting, I think it’s important, based on my own personal view, for those kinds of quotes and those kinds of stories to be given greater weight than just anonymous sources,” Earnest said.

 

“So, what that means is, if you have anonymous sources at the White House who are telling you something and you’re gonna say to them – that anonymous source – ‘Look, I’m willing to give your side of the story a little less weight right now, because you’re telling me this anonymously.’”

But to Kumar, this statement came off sounding a bit hypocritical. As a WaPo reporter was not present, she came to their defense.

“You criticize anonymous sources, but we have anonymous sources from you all every day. We have a call today. It’s just – how can you criticize them, when that’s what you basically give us every day, except for the briefing?”

And from there, things got a bit heated, with Earnest retorting, “Except for the fact that I’ve been standing here for an hour, answering all your questions?”

Other reporters rushed to the defense of the Washington Post over the course of the press briefing. The general agreement: if the White House wants reporters to stop using anonymous sources, they should probably practice what they preach.