FBI Director Met With Hamas Supporters Asking Him to Lock Up Jews thumbnail

FBI Director Met With Hamas Supporters Asking Him to Lock Up Jews

By Jihad Watch

The FBI has gone from fighting Islamic terrorists to taking orders from them.


Islamic pro-terror groups reacted to the Hamas terror attacks of Oct 7 not only with riots and public pressure campaigns aimed at politicians, but also by privately meeting with top federal and state law enforcement officials to demand that they lock up Jewish political opponents.

The David Horowitz Freedom Center’s investigative arm exclusively reported last month that the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), an Islamist group whose leader had celebrated Oct 7, had been meeting with attorney generals around the country trying to convince them to arrest journalists and activists who had been investigating and exposing Hamas supporters.

Based on our past history with CAIR, the Freedom Center could be one of their targets.

Now, the Muslim Public Affairs Council (MPAC), has been caught meeting with Attorney General Merrick Garland and senior Department of Justice (DOJ) officials, including FBI Director Christopher Wray and Associate Attorney General Lisa Monaco, to also discuss targeting Jews.

The meeting, originally reported by Militant Islam Monitor, represents another part of what appears to be a larger effort by Islamist groups to weaponize prosecutors against their critics.

On May 22nd, top Department of Justice officials and the FBI Director met with Arab American Institute boss James Zogby and MPAC founder Salam al-Marayati. Both men had been accused of supporting terrorism , including Hamas, in accusations going back decades.

Zogby, a Lebanese Arab activist, had described Hezbollah, which was responsible for the murder of hundreds of Americans, as “the Lebanese armed resistance”.

“By criminalizing attempts to send money to Hezbollah or to support it, the FBI is confusing and alienating people here who could be allies in the war on terrorism,” he had warned the FBI.

Hezbollah’s crimes included the torture and murder of Colonel William R. Higgins, whose castrated body was found near a mosque with the”skin on his face partially removed.”

When Hezbollah terrorists hijacked TWA Flight 847, they tortured Robert Stethem, a Navy diver, by “jumping in the air and landing full force on his body. He must have had all his ribs broken.”

“They put the mic up to his face so his screams could be heard by the outside world,” a stewardess described.

But rather than expelling or arresting terrorist supporters, the FBI was meeting with them.

Salam al-Marayati had defended Hamas, blamed Israel for 9/11 and claimed that Hezbollah was not engaged in terrorism, but “ legitimate resistance… that could be called liberation movement.” When Hezbollah bombed the U.S. Marine barracks in Beirut killing 241 military personnel, he argued that “tt was a military operation, producing no civilian casualties.”

(Al-Marayati was not telling the truth. The attack also killed Lebanese employees in the area.)

“Yesterday’s terrorists in the Middle East are today’s leaders,” he had argued and “Hamas in terms of its social and educational operations is doing exactly what the PLO was doing 35 years ago, as well as its quote unquote military operations.”

MPAC, the organization Al-Marayati had co-founded, had issued policy papers calling for the removal of Hamas and Hezbollah from the list of terror groups. At a meeting of the Palestine Committee’ of Hamas supporters in America, MPAC had been described as a “sympathetic” group that could be used as “an entry point to use them to pressure Congress and the decision-makers in America.” Was that what MPAC was doing here?

Normally, the FBI should have been interrogating MPAC, but instead MPAC was interrogating it.

Salam al-Marayati filmed a video outside the Attorney General’s office in which he falsely claimed that the Hamas campus encampments had been “peaceful” and that the violence had come from the police, and urged an investigation to “hold law enforcement accountable”.

But at the meeting arranged by Zogby, Al-Marayati, based on MPAC’s account of events, went even further off the rails and claimed that Muslims were under attack by Jewish “terrorists” allied with the “Proud Boys” and demanded that the FBI do something about them.

This bizarre screed should have ended the meeting, but instead the DOJ and the FBI took it seriously. And that is every bit as troubling as meeting with terrorist apologists in the first place.

Al-Marayati’s only example of Jews fighting back against Hamas supporters occurred at UCLA when after a Jewish female student had been knocked unconscious and multiple Jewish community members had been assaulted, with no response from the university, campus police or the LAPD, some young Jewish men showed up and took on the terrorist encampment.

Nevertheless, according to the MPAC account, FBI Director Christopher Wray said that he would pass on the case to the FBI Los Angeles field office. This is troubling because a previous exclusive Freedom Center investigation found that the FBI LA office had treated assaults against Muslims and by Muslims against Jews very differently.  Any FBI investigation of UCLA prompted by Islamists to focus not on Muslim antisemitic violence, but only on the response to that violence by a small handful of young Jewish men, would be a civil rights violation.

Attorney General Garland and the DOJ leadership should be fighting Islamic terrorism. Instead they’re meeting with groups like MPAC that have a history of defending Islamic terrorism. And not only are they meeting with them, they’re taking cues about investigations from them.

The DOJ and the FBI have gone from fighting Islamic terrorists to taking orders from them.

CAIR’s efforts to influence state attorney generals and MPAC’s attempt to manipulate the United States Attorney General and the FBI to target political and religious opponents, especially Jews, is in line with Islamist supremacist groups who, in their own home countries like Iran, Saudi Arabia and Pakistan, routinely lock up opponents and repress non-Muslims. But that should have no place in America. The Biden administration has opened the doors of the federal government to the worst possible extremists in the hopes of winning another term in office.

Had Al-Marayati not filmed his video, we might never have known what the Biden administration was doing. Instead, a private meeting has gone public and the investigative arm of the David Horowitz Freedom Center will continue monitoring the secret alliance between Islamists and government officials, exposing their events and holding them accountable.

Even as the Biden administration promises that it is fighting antisemitism, it’s holding covert meetings with antisemites who demand that the FBI go after the Jews.

AUTHOR

RELATED ARTICLES: 

Video reveals Hamas indiscriminately shooting civilians in Gaza, brutalizing residents and stealing property

NYC: Muslim migrant screaming ‘I’m gonna kill all the Jews’ tries to run down Jewish students

It Began When the Jews Fought Back

Israeli Writer Dina Rubina Replies to Pushkin House

Pro-Hamas College Protests are a Rich Kid Movement

Italy pledges millions to UNRWA and Gaza initiative

ABC SF Bay Area affiliate KGO showcases Hamas-linked CAIR’s attack on Berkeley High School

‘Innocent Civilians’ and the War of the Words In Gaza

EDITORS NOTE: This Jihad Watch column is republished with permission. ©All rights reserved.

HOUSE INVESTIGATION: NIH “Conspiracy” to Evade FOIA Requests Regarding COVID Origins thumbnail

HOUSE INVESTIGATION: NIH “Conspiracy” to Evade FOIA Requests Regarding COVID Origins

By Debra Heine

The Select Subcommittee on the Coronavirus Pandemic is investigating a conspiracy “at the highest levels of the National Institutes of Health (NIH)” to evade Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests regarding the origins of COVID-19.

Chairman Brad Wenstrup (R-Ohio) says the committee has obtained evidence showing that National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) officials under former Director Anthony Fauci routinely evaded FOIA requests to block public transparency.

Recently uncovered documents revealed that Fauci’s Senior Advisor, Dr. David Morens, went to the NIH FOIA office for advice on how to delete official records in an apparent effort to thwart federal law. The FOIA office appears to have assisted Morens in the endeavor, as he went on to write in one email “i learned from our foia lady here how to make emails disappear.”

The committee also has evidence that Dr. Fauci’s former-Chief of Staff, Greg Folkers, strategically misspelled words on a routine basis to avoid key word searches responsive to FOIA requests.
AD

One word NIH bureaucrats were eager to protect from scrutiny was “EcoHealth,” the global health and pandemic prevention nonprofit run by embattled British zoologist Dr. Peter Daszak.

In 2014, following a number of “bio-safety incidents” at federal research facilities, the Obama administration placed a moratorium on risky gain-of-function research, but Fauci and Daszak skirted the moratorium and continued the experiments in Wuhan, China.

Millions of dollars in NIH funding were laundered through EcoHealth to “bat lady” Dr Shi Zhengli, head of the infectious disease unit at the Wuhan Institute of Virology, to conduct gain-of-function research on novel chimeric SARS-related coronaviruses and make them capable of infecting human cells.

Earlier this month, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) finally initiated formal debarment proceedings against Daszak to prevent him receiving any more taxpayer dollars.
AD

The move came three weeks after the Select Subcommittee released a report providing “extensive evidence” that Daszak showed “contempt for the American people, a flagrant disregard for the risks associated with gain-of-function research, and a willful violation of the terms of his NIH grant.”

Amid deep suspicions in 2021 that the COVID pandemic sprung from the Wuhan Lab, the conspirators appeared to work together to protect Eco Health from public scrutiny.

“In one email produced to the Select Subcommittee through a subpoena, Mr. Folkers appears to have purposefully misspelled ‘EcoHealth’ as ‘Ec~Health,’” Wenstrup wrote in a press release Tuesday.

Continue reading at American Greatness…

TAKE ACTION

The Prickly Pear’s TAKE ACTION focus this year is to help achieve a winning 2024 national and state November 5th election with the removal of the Biden/Obama leftist executive branch disaster, win one U.S. Senate seat, maintain and win strong majorities in all Arizona state offices on the ballot and to insure that unrestricted abortion is not constitutionally embedded in our laws and culture.

Please click the TAKE ACTION link to learn to do’s and don’ts for voting in 2024. Our state and national elections are at great risk from the very aggressive and radical leftist Democrat operatives with documented rigging, mail-in voter fraud and illegals voting across the country (yes, with illegals voting across the country) in the last several election cycles.

Read Part 1 and Part 2 of The Prickly Pear essays entitled How NOT to Vote in the November 5, 2024 Election in Arizona to be well informed of the above issues and to vote in a way to ensure the most likely chance your vote will be counted and counted as you intend.

Please click the following link to learn more.

It’s [LONG PAST] Time for a COVID Truth and Reconciliation Commission thumbnail

It’s [LONG PAST] Time for a COVID Truth and Reconciliation Commission

By Scott Graves

During a conference call on Feb. 1, 2020, Dr. Anthony Fauci and National Institutes of Health Director Francis Collins implored a group of esteemed international scientists to produce a paper that would discredit the lab leak theory of COVID-19’s origins.

Twice during the call, Fauci prodded Dr. Kristian Andersen, a Danish evolutionary biologist, to lead the effort.

In a subsequent email obtained by the House Select Subcommittee on the Coronavirus Pandemic, Collins urged the swift production of the paper. In his view, the absence of a strong case for a “natural origins” theory of COVID-19 would allow ”the voices of conspiracy to quickly dominate, doing great potential harm to science and international harmony.”

In another subsequent email, Andersen remarked that the purpose of the paper was to dispel the “crack pot theories” of lab leak proponents.

The result of their conspiracy was a paper published in Nature Medicine in March 2020 titled “The proximal origin of SARS-CoV-2.” It argued against the plausibility of a laboratory origin of the virus.

Considered by many to be among the most consequential scientific papers of the 21st century, “Proximal Origin” profoundly influenced public discourse, public policy, and was used as leverage for one of the most insidious crackdowns on free speech in American history. And according to a growing number of experts and institutions, its conclusions were dead wrong.

The motives of the individuals involved in perpetrating this historic disinformation campaign are varied. Fauci and Collins appeared to have wanted desperately to divert attention away from the NIH’s role in funding risky gain-of-function research at the Wuhan Institute of Virology, the lab from which COVID-19 is thought to have leaked following a biocontainment incident in late 2019.

It would seem Fauci perjured himself during congressional testimony on the matter in 2021 by stating that “The NIH has not ever and does not now fund gain-of-function research in the Wuhan Institute of Virology.” This was flatly contradicted by NIH Principal Deputy Director Lawrence Tabak, who recently testified to Congress that the NIH did, in fact, fund gain-of-function research at the WIV through the shady nonprofit organization EcoHealth Alliance. It stands to reason that Fauci had something important to hide that influenced his leadership of the pandemic response from the beginning.

Andersen’s motives for penning the paper appear more straightforward: four days after the publication of “Proximal Origin,” Andersen received an $8.9 million research grant from Fauci’s department. If this isn’t quid pro quo, it’s one hell of a coincidence. In exchange for his credibility and cash, Andersen appears to have supplied Fauci with a “scientific” paper made up of predetermined findings. (Never short on gall, Fauci proceeded to cite the paper during press conferences as if it were independent scientific evidence.)

The legacy media and social media companies shored up the communications end of this historic caper. Establishment media figures were eager to frame the COVID-19 origin story within the lame narrative confines of resistance journalism. Unhappy with the way former President Donald Trump pronounced the word “China,” legacy media journalists hastily proclaimed the lab leak theory “debunked” and smeared its proponents with venomous glee. Reputations were tarnished and careers were ruined.

Continue reading at the Washington Examiner…

TAKE ACTION

The Prickly Pear’s TAKE ACTION focus this year is to help achieve a winning 2024 national and state November 5th election with the removal of the Biden/Obama leftist executive branch disaster, win one U.S. Senate seat, maintain and win strong majorities in all Arizona state offices on the ballot and to insure that unrestricted abortion is not constitutionally embedded in our laws and culture.

Please click the TAKE ACTION link to learn to do’s and don’ts for voting in 2024. Our state and national elections are at great risk from the very aggressive and radical leftist Democrat operatives with documented rigging, mail-in voter fraud and illegals voting across the country (yes, with illegals voting across the country) in the last several election cycles.

Read Part 1 and Part 2 of The Prickly Pear essays entitled How NOT to Vote in the November 5, 2024 Election in Arizona to be well informed of the above issues and to vote in a way to ensure the most likely chance your vote will be counted and counted as you intend.

Please click the following link to learn more.

Targeting Felon Votes With ‘Bidenbucks,’ Democrats Court The ‘Criminal Caucus’ thumbnail

Targeting Felon Votes With ‘Bidenbucks,’ Democrats Court The ‘Criminal Caucus’

By M.D. Kittle

It’s not about the ‘right to vote’ for the big moneyed interests behind ‘reenfranchisement’ efforts. It’s about voting for the right people. 

E.B. Jordan spent two years in the Women’s Huron Valley Correctional Facility on felony drug conviction charges. When she was released, long before her maximum 20-year sentence, Jordan went to work getting felons like her registered to vote.

“I went door-to-door to stress the fact that we’re felons, that we can vote. And a lot of people didn’t even know that,” the activist for the left-wing Voting Access for All Coalition says in a video aimed at getting ex-cons to the polls. “I went through my neighborhood … to inform my neighborhood that I knew there was a lot of felons in my neighborhood and they could vote.”

“I also had a car, and the people that didn’t have a ride I would drive them up to our local voting polls to have them vote and register,” Jordan added.

The video is “brought to you” by a coalition of groups that include the clerk’s office and sheriff’s office of southeast Michigan’s Washtenaw County. Washtenaw County’s seat of government is Ann Arbor, home to the University of Michigan, a critical county in a critical swing state that will likely decide the next president of the United States.

Another coalition partner is the League of Women Voters of Michigan. Interestingly, an official from the Michigan LWV chapter told The Federalist the organization was “not familiar with the video.” Sent a link to the video, the official said the League had no comment.

“We want to ensure that persons in pre-trial situations, folks about to be released from jail and prison, and their families have the opportunity and knowledge they need to exercise their right to vote in all elections,” the video’s narrator asserts.

The ‘Criminal Caucus’

While it may sound like a noble cause, it’s not just about the “right to vote” for the big monied interests behind these “reenfranchisement” efforts. It’s about voting for the right people.

Felons cleared to vote (and some not cleared) have long been a reliable bloc of voters for Democrats. A 2019 study by Ragnar Research Partners found that in Florida, for instance, “Currently incarcerated felons are more than three times as likely to be registered Democrats … or unaffiliated … than Republicans. Ex-felons are four times as likely to be Democrats … or unaffiliated.” In the swing states expected to determine the outcome of the rematch between Joe Biden and Donald Trump, getting felons and those facing felony charges to the polls could mean the difference between the left and the right guiding U.S. policy for the next four years.

Perhaps then it comes as little surprise that incumbent President Joe Biden is using his constitutionally suspect Executive Order 14019 to turn out the felon vote, using the full force of the federal government to do so. And the well-funded leftist groups working behind the scenes to register felons and would-be felons appear to be assisting in the effort to win an election for Biden and his soft-on-crime political allies in Congress, state legislatures, and prosecutor offices around the country.

“The left caters to the criminal caucus,” said Parker Thayer, investigative researcher at the Capital Research Center, a Washington, D.C.-based charity and activist tracker that operates the InfluenceWatch database. “That was the purpose of the ‘reforms’ we saw in 2020. They have a voting base there.”

‘By Reason of Criminal Conviction’

In most states, felons lose their right to vote until they complete their sentences and post-sentence requirements to restore eligibility. As the National Conference of State Legislatures reports, Maine, Vermont and the District of Columbia grant felons the right to vote even while in prison. In 23 states, felons receive automatic restoration of eligibility following incarceration, while in 15 sates felons are barred from voting while in prison and for a time after release, generally while on probation or parole, according to NCSL. Another 10 states indefinitely prohibit criminals convicted of certain crimes from voting, or require a governor’s pardon.

In 2022, an estimated 4.4 million convicts and ex-cons, making up about 2 percent of the voting-age population, were ineligible to vote, according to the left-leaning, George Soros-funded Sentencing Project. The activist organization earlier this year issued a retraction on the estimates it previously published on “disenfranchisement by reason of criminal conviction” in Mississippi.

Advocacy groups in the name of “social justice” have lobbied hard to lift restrictions on felons voting, with varying degrees of success. Where changes in the law have failed, well-heeled leftists, including a long list of celebrities, have invested in the “criminal caucus.”

As left-wing ProPublica reported just before the 2020 election, NBA icon LeBron James and pop star Ariana Grande joined leftist billionaire and former New York City mayor Michael Bloomberg, among other celebrities and donors, to kick in some $27 million to pay off “lingering court fines and fees for Florida felons.” The bailout, ProPublica and two of Florida’s biggest newspapers reported, was aimed at making nearly 13,000 felons eligible to vote in the 2020 presidential election.

“Although the modest increase in eligible felons falls far short of expectations, it could be large enough to make a difference in a key state where polls indicate that the presidential contest is once again a toss-up,” the publications asserted.

The effort by the Florida Rights Restoration Coalition ultimately was all for naught. The Sunshine State turned decidedly red, and Trump won Florida by some 370,000 votes. But it certainly wasn’t for lack of trying.

Four years later, the campaign to target the “criminal caucus” has been federalized.

‘Strengthen Their Partnership’

As the Daily Signal reported earlier this year, the Federal Bureau of Prisons is partnering with the League of Women Voters, the ACLU, the Campaign Legal Center, the Washington Lawyers’ Committee, and other far-left groups to bolster felon voting this election year.

Prison officials did not return The Federalist’s request for comment, but the the FBP’s Emery Nelson did tell the Daily Signal that the agency “meets quarterly” with the leftist nonprofits as well as the Sentencing Project and Disability Rights D.C.

The partnerships are the outgrowth of Biden’s fiat, Executive Order 14019, which deputizes federal agencies to work with states and administration-approved nonprofits to register voters — especially dependable Democrats and traditionally left-leaning populations. A group of Pennsylvania lawmakers has asked the U.S. Supreme Court to weigh in on its lawsuit, which asserts Biden’s executive order unconstitutionally uses the federal government to usurp the responsibility of the state legislative branch. The lawsuit also argues that Congress never approved funding for the Biden administration’s unprecedented — and costly — GOTV campaign.

All the while, the administration has failed to turn over records tied to the creation and implementation of the order as the clock ticks down to the 2024 election.

Nelson told the Daily Signal the voter education program is being offered to inmates through the Federal Bureau of Prisons. As of late January, the bureau had partnered with lefty group Chicago Votes and the Metropolitan Correctional Center, as well as the “Metropolitan Detention Center (MDC) Los Angeles and FCI Terminal Island [also in Los Angeles] to continue to strengthen their partnership with the FBOP.” Officials with the MDC did not return The Federalist’s request for comment.

‘Using the Federal Government’

Biden’s executive order and the GOTV efforts targeting felons and other predominantly left-leaning voting populations was a long time coming.

“This was the fulfillment of a plan going on since 2016, as we saw in the leaked emails from [billionaire leftist George] Soros and [Hillary Clinton presidential campaign chairman John] Podesta,” Thayer said. “Left-wing donors wanted this for a long time. It will save them a lot of money if the government does the get-out-the-vote work.”

“This isn’t Joe Biden caring about democracy,” he added.

It goes back even further, according to a 2017 article published in Medium. The detailed piece on the “Corporatization of Local, State and Federal Elections” notes former Bill Clinton staffer Robert Stein’s “aggressive plan to reform the electoral process and take control of State and Federal Elections.”

Stein was the intellectual spark behind the Democracy Alliance, “a network of wealthy donors that has steered $2 billion to a handful of carefully vetted organizations like the Center for American Progress, Media Matters, America Votes and Catalist,” left-leaning Inside Philanthropy reported in a retrospective on Stein’s operative life after the leftist money mover died in 2022. A New York Times obituary on Stein, the man “Who Changed How Politics Is Funded,” quoted Media Matters for America founder David Brock, who said the Democracy Alliance, launched in 2005, was “revolutionary” for the left. “[A]nd over the last 20 years it was the sole reason why sustainable Democratic infrastructure got built.”

Many of the same players were behind the so-called “voter expansion project,” which was “embraced” by Bill and Hillary Clinton in early 2014, as the latter was expected to be the front-runner for the 2016 Democratic Party nomination, NPR excitedly reported. The Clintons were “committed” to the DNC’s new plan “because they have long wanted to see the party be more proactive and systematic in its efforts to increase the number of voters and to protect their voting rights,” NPR declared with the kind of naïveté that appeared to make the government-funded organ of the left stunned when leaked emails disclosed a corrupt bargain between the Clinton campaign, the DNC it bought, and the players who helped rig the nomination process.

“We are very committed to making sure that we invest and work with our state parties on putting boots on the ground, on focusing on voter expansion … and making sure that everyone who wants to vote and is eligible has an opportunity to register, has an opportunity to turnout and can have their vote accurately counted,” said Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz, D-Fla., NPR reported. The DNC chairwoman at the time was run out of town on a rail on the eve of the 2016 DNC convention in Philadelphia, just as the DNC email scandal broke.

The next step is the federalization of elections: a Democrat-led federal government working with leftist billionaires, Big Tech, and the activists they fund to influence and direct elections.

Executive Order 14019, Thayer asserts, is the replacement for the “Zuckbucks” election grant machine. A majority of states have now banned private funding of election administration like the $400 million-plus Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg funneled into the 2020 elections.

“They had to find a way around the bans, so they are using the federal government,” the researcher said. “There really isn’t any stone left unturned by the left in trying to abuse the powers they are in control of.”

‘A Singular Force of Movement’

The “criminal caucus” was front of mind early on. As uncovered by the Heritage Foundation’s Oversight Project, the Department of Justice held a “listening session” a few months after Biden signed his executive order, in which representatives from several nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) were at the table to talk through the implementation of what critics have labeled “Bidenbucks.” Curiously, not a single Republican or member of a right-of-center organization was in the room.

“Every participant whose party affiliation or political donation history could be identified by the Oversight Project was identified as a Democrat except for one Green Party member,” a memo from the Oversight Project states. “This is concerning because the listening session was billed as ‘nonpartisan nonprofit organizations engaged in voting rights advocacy to provide their recommendations and thoughts on best practices.’”

The Arab American Institute was there. So was Black Voters Matter. And the National Education Association, the Southern Coalition for Social Justice, and the hypocritical arbiters of hate, the Southern Poverty Law Center.

“The Listening Session’s first three speakers suggested actions to be taken to ensure the Bureau of Prisons facilitates the voter registrations and ballot access of prison inmates and provides information on restoration of felon voting rights,” the memo reports. “A speaker also espoused the extreme and ahistorical view that ‘felony disenfranchisement is voter suppression.’”

It’s all hands on deck for an extremely unpopular president and a troubled Democrat Party this election year. It just might take every last felon — eligible or ineligible to vote — to drag Biden’s rapidly aging reelection prospects over the finish line.

“We talk about making changes in the perspective of having a movement,” Cozine Welch, executive director of A Brighter Way, a left-leaning nonprofit that provides services to ex-cons, said in the Michigan Voting Access for All Coalition video. “If all those movements don’t get together and have a singular force of movement when it comes to voting, we’re just a bunch of disparate voices rumbling and not really getting anything done.”

*****

This article was published by The Federalist and is reproduced with permission.

TAKE ACTION

The Prickly Pear’s TAKE ACTION focus this year is to help achieve a winning 2024 national and state November 5th election with the removal of the Biden/Obama leftist executive branch disaster, win one U.S. Senate seat, maintain and win strong majorities in all Arizona state offices on the ballot and to insure that unrestricted abortion is not constitutionally embedded in our laws and culture.

Please click the TAKE ACTION link to learn to do’s and don’ts for voting in 2024. Our state and national elections are at great risk from the very aggressive and radical leftist Democrat operatives with documented rigging, mail-in voter fraud and illegals voting across the country (yes, with illegals voting across the country) in the last several election cycles.

Read Part 1 and Part 2 of The Prickly Pear essays entitled How NOT to Vote in the November 5, 2024 Election in Arizona to be well informed of the above issues and to vote in a way to ensure the most likely chance your vote will be counted and counted as you intend.

Please click the following link to learn more.

DOJ Attorney Expressed Concerns About Conservative Media Coverage of Biden Admin Persecuting Christians, Pro-Lifers thumbnail

DOJ Attorney Expressed Concerns About Conservative Media Coverage of Biden Admin Persecuting Christians, Pro-Lifers

By Mary Margaret Olohan

A federal Justice Department attorney expressed concerns to a Michigan judge about conservative media coverage suggesting that President Joe Biden’s administration is persecuting Christians and pro-lifers for their beliefs.

The discussion took place during a March pre-trial conference in USA v. Zastrow, in which the federal government brought Freedom of Access to Clinic Entrances (FACE) Act charges against eight pro-life individuals who tried to stop abortions of unborn babies from taking place at Michigan abortion clinics.

Those pro-life activists are Calvin Zastrow, Eva Zastrow, Chester Gallagher, Heather Idoni, Caroline Davis, Joel Curry, Justin Phillips, and Eva Edl (a communist death camp survivor who recently spoke with The Daily Signal).

The FACE Act is a 1994 law that prohibits individuals from obstructing the entrances of both abortion clinics and pregnancy resource centers, although it has been heavily enforced by Biden’s DOJ against pro-lifers since the June 2022 overturning of Roe v. Wade.

During the pre-trial motion hearing, according to a transcript obtained by The Daily Signal, DOJ attorney Laura-Kate Bernstein raised concerns that “there’s a great deal of press about this case and the case in Nashville recently.” Bernstein was referring to a case in Tennessee where six pro-lifers were praying outside of an abortion clinic in 2021 and were charged with FACE Act violations.

Bernstein did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

“Where?” questioned Judge Matthew Leitman. “I haven’t seen any.”

Bernstein explained that she was referring to online media “like Mike Huckabee’s show or Laura Ingraham’s show, and those sorts of sources, and some written sources, too, in which at least one of the defense attorneys is making very acerbic statements about the government’s case and the legitimacy of the laws at stake, and that the Biden regime is persecuting Christians.”

WATCH:

“My concern is one of the jury pool,” she continued. “My concern is that as these national media reach more and more people, including people in the district, that they may be tainted with a preconceived notion of the Biden regime’s persecution of Christians and be unable to try the case as neutral jurors.”

The DOJ attorney said that she was not asking the court to do “something in particular,” but then told the judge that it is the court’s “affirmative, constitutional duty to minimize the effects of prejudicial pretrial publicity.”

Leitman, after asking for clarification on her question, noted that he could ask the jurors whether they had read anything about the case. But he said that Bernstein’s question seemed to be rooted in “important political speech.”

“It seems to me that your first statement, the Biden administration is persecuting Christians … that’s pretty core, important political speech, whether you agree with it or not,” the judge said. “I mean, I’d be hard pressed to tell somebody not to say that.”

The DOJ attorney then pushed back, saying she was referring to interviews in which the pro-lifer’s attorney said that “this case is a war on pro-lifers, that the Department of Justices is using the FACE Act as a weapon against pro-lifers,” or that “the clients are victims of political persecution.”

She also pushed back against the idea that “there’s a two-tier justice system, one for friends of the administration who go free and one for people who are on the wrong spiritual side of the administration.”

“There’s also extremely inflammatory language undermining the legitimacy of the laws to be implied in this case, that you’ve already ruled on—the constitutionality of it—whether reproductive health care includes abortion, as the statue defines it,” she continued. “And because the court has this affirmative, constitutional duty, we wanted to bring it to your attention.”

Bernstein then asked the judge to admonish Thomas More Society attorney Steve Crampton “about speaking about this case in inflammatory and acerbic ways that might taint the jury pool.”

“This isn’t about trying to, you know, interfere with any of his First Amendment rights,” she followed up, noting that Crampton is “of course” free to speak about his clients. “It’s about trying to protect the due process rights in this trial and the government’s right and the public’s right to a fair trial.”

Crampton clarified to the court that Bernstein was referring to Tennessee pro-life activist Paul Vaughn’s interview on the “Mike Huckabee Show,” in which Vaughn made such comments “only after the jury verdict” was entered in his case.

In January, a federal jury convicted Vaughn and five other defendants of a felony conspiracy against rights and a FACE Act offense for trying to stop abortions from taking place at a Mount Juliet, Tennessee, abortion clinic in March 2021.

“Any reference to United States against Zastrow and this case were, at best, minimal to nonexistent,” the Thomas More Society attorney said. “So I think the government, perhaps, is overreacting to the press coverage of the Nashville case. Nobody’s called any press conference regarding this case, and we certainly have no intention of doing so.”

This week, seven pro-life defendants have been sentenced to prison time on DOJ FACE Act charges related to their attempts to stop abortions from taking place at a Washington, D.C., abortion clinic. That abortion clinic is run by Cesare Santangelo, an abortionist who has been accused of allowing babies to die if they survive his botched abortions.

The District of Columbia does not have laws restricting abortion.

The DOJ said in a release Wednesday: “Lauren Handy was sentenced to 57 months in prison, John Hinshaw was sentenced to 21 months in prison, and William Goodman was sentenced to 27 months in prison,” adding that “Jonathan Darnel was sentenced to 34 months in prison, Herb Geraghty was sentenced to 27 months in prison, Jean Marshall was sentenced to 24 months in prison, and Joan Bell was sentenced to 27 months in prison.”

Those efforts are led by Assistant Attorney General Kristen Clarke, the head of the DOJ’s Civil Rights Division, who just admittedfollowing a report from The Daily Signal, that she hid an arrest and its subsequent expungement from investigators when she was confirmed by the Senate to her Justice Department post.

“Violence has no place in our national discourse on reproductive health. Using force, threatening to use force, or physically obstructing access to reproductive health care is unlawful,” said Clarke in a statement accompanying this week’s DOJ release.

“As we mark the 30th anniversary of the FACE Act, it’s important that we not lose sight of the history of violence against reproductive health care providers, including the murder of Dr. David Gunn in Florida—tragic and horrific events that led to passage of the law,” she added. “The Justice Department will continue to protect both patients seeking reproductive health services and providers of those services. We will hold accountable those who seek to interfere with access to reproductive health services in our country.”

*****

This article was published by The Daily Signal and is reproduced with permission.

TAKE ACTION

The Prickly Pear’s TAKE ACTION focus this year is to help achieve a winning 2024 national and state November 5th election with the removal of the Biden/Obama leftist executive branch disaster, win one U.S. Senate seat, maintain and win strong majorities in all Arizona state offices on the ballot and to insure that unrestricted abortion is not constitutionally embedded in our laws and culture.

Please click the TAKE ACTION link to learn to do’s and don’ts for voting in 2024. Our state and national elections are at great risk from the very aggressive and radical leftist Democrat operatives with documented rigging, mail-in voter fraud and illegals voting across the country (yes, with illegals voting across the country) in the last several election cycles.

Read Part 1 and Part 2 of The Prickly Pear essays entitled How NOT to Vote in the November 5, 2024 Election in Arizona to be well informed of the above issues and to vote in a way to ensure the most likely chance your vote will be counted and counted as you intend.

Please click the following link to learn more.

Trump Vows: I Will Rip Up, Throw Away WHO Pandemic Agreement thumbnail

Trump Vows: I Will Rip Up, Throw Away WHO Pandemic Agreement

By Family Research Council

President Donald Trump has put the issue of world government at the forefront of the 2024 presidential race, vowing to “protect American sovereignty” and the U.S. Constitution from the designs of unelected global bureaucrats.

President Trump took aim at global governance institutions in general, and the World Health Organization (WHO) specifically, on Saturday, promising to shred and annul the WHO Pandemic Agreement unless Joe Biden submits the document to the U.S. Senate for ratification, as required for treaties.

“As we speak, Joe Biden’s minions are in Geneva, secretly negotiating to surrender more of our liberty to the World Health Organization,” President Trump told the Libertarian Party National Convention, eliciting a fulsome chorus of boos. “Drafts of the agreement show that they want to subjugate America to foreign nations, attack free speech, [and] empower the World Health Organization to redistribute American resources.”

Multiple drafts of the proposed accord show the WHO limiting national sovereignty by demanding nations follow its regulations on “routine immunization” and “social measures,” turn over 20% of all vaccines for global redistribution, and abide by the agreement’s terms even after they withdraw.

“They’re going to take our money and send it all over the world to other countries that we need for our own citizens,” in the event of a pandemic, Trump told the crowd in Washington on Saturday, warning that a pandemic “could happen again” in the United States. His comments came just days after the Department of Health and Human Services took the first steps to deny future federal grants to the EcoHealth Alliance, a U.S.-based NGO which funded gain-of-function research at China’s Wuhan Institute of Virology before the COVID-19 pandemic.

“I will protect American sovereignty from the creeping hands of global government,” promised Trump. By contrast, the Biden administration has signaled its desire to sign the agreement, which WHO downgraded from a “legally-binding treaty” after Biden realized the U.S. Senate would never ratify the controversial document.

“I am hereby demanding that Joe Biden submit these monstrosities to the Senate as treaties,” declared Trump on Saturday. “If he does not, I will rip them up and throw them out on day one of the Trump administration.”

Opposition to the WHO pandemic treaty-turned-agreement has spread throughout America, including all 49 Republican U.S. senators, two dozen Republican governors, and 22 state attorneys general.

“The globalists are making a run over American sovereignty,” said Speaker of the House Mike Johnson (R-La.) on the most recent episode of “This Week on the Hill,” hosted by Tony Perkins. “We can’t allow these global organizations to dictate to us what our policy is going to be.”

Although the body tasked with drawing up the agreement, the Intergovernmental Negotiating Body, failed to finalize its text before the World Health Assembly commenced its annual meeting in Geneva on Monday, WHO Director-General Tedros Ghebreyesus insisted the globalists would eventually prevail. “I remain confident that you still will” complete the global power transfer and have it adopted, he told delegates Monday. “Where there is a will, there is a way.”

But the internationalists compiling the sovereignty-destroying agreement will proceed from a radically government-centered philosophy alien to the American founding, experts say. “Some of these nations come from a very different governance perspective than the United States,” one which “says it’s normal to look to the federal government to deal with these problems,” Travis Weber, vice president for Policy and Government Affairs at Family Research Council — who is currently in Geneva monitoring the WHA proceedings — told guest host and former Congressman Jody Hice on “Washington Watch” Tuesday.

“Constitutionally, there are areas enumerated to the federal government under our Constitution. If they’re not, the issue in theory should be left to the states,” Weber told Hice. “We have a philosophy of government going back to our founding which depends on a self-governing, moral, and religious people. So, this really sets the stage for people in the United States to say, ‘Why should the federal government be tackling [this] issue in the first place?’”

President Trump also cited constitutionalist themes in his pitch for libertarians to endorse his candidacy at Saturday’s convention.

“I unbound the United States from globalist agreements that surrendered our sovereignty. I withdrew from the Paris Accord. I withdrew from the anti-gun U.N. Arms Treaty. And I withdrew from the corrupt and very expensive World Health Organization,” said Trump, emphasizing that any institution of global governance is “not a good thing, not a good thing.”

Trump delivered a message precision-targeted to libertarian concerns. “Marxism is an evil doctrine straight from the ashes of Hell,” said Trump. “We believe that the job of the United States military is not to wage endless regime change wars around the globe.”

“We will shut down our out-of-control federal Department of Education and give it back to the states and local governments. I will return power to the states, local governments, and to the American people. I am a believer in the Tenth Amendment,” said Trump. “I will always defend religious liberty and the right to keep and bear arms. And I will secure our elections.” Trump also pledged to put a libertarian in his cabinet and in senior posts of his administration.

“What you’re witnessing under Biden is a toxic fusion of the Marxist Left, the Deep State, the military-industrial complex, the government security and surveillance service, and their partners all merging together into a hideous perversion of the American system,” he said. “The great liberation of America begins on November 5th, 2024.”

Libertarian Party Chair Angela McArdle also invited Joe Biden and Independent candidate Robert F. Kennedy Jr. to address the convention. RFK Jr., who has said the WHO Pandemic Agreement “should be dead in the water,” delivered extended remarks to the delegates Friday afternoon. Biden demurred. Former Republican presidential hopeful Vivek Ramaswamy, former Congressman Ron Paul, and Senator Mike Lee (R-Utah) also spoke at the convention.

Trump vied for the party’s backing, quoting at length a Deroy Murdock article, “The Libertarian Case for Donald J. Trump” and encouraging delegates to nominate him — but only “if you want to win. If you want to lose, don’t do that. Keep getting your 3% every four years.”

The 3.3% of the 2016 vote, won by former New Mexico Governor Gary Johnson (R), actually represented an outlier for the Libertarian Party, which typically claims to 0.5%-1% of the presidential electorate.

Ultimately, the collected Libertarian Party delegates nominated Chase Oliver, an Atlanta-based activist who describes himself as “pro-police reform, pro-choice,” as well as “armed and gay.” Oliver supported COVID-19 lockdowns and mask mandates, opposed bills protecting minors from transgender injections and surgeries, and posed with a drag queen. The Georgian, who forced a run-off in the 2022 Senate race that saw Democrat Raphael Warnock defeat Republican Herschel Walker, plans to gear his campaign toward young people, “in particular those who are upset with the war going on in Gaza.”

Some hope liberty-minded voters will ignore the Libertarian Party’s official endorsement and support Trump out of prudence. Walter Block, an economics professor and prolific libertarian author, urged libertarians in swing states to vote for the 45th president this November. “In Arizona, Georgia, Michigan, Nevada, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin, we could make the difference,” wrote Block in a Wall Street Journal op-ed Tuesday.

He reminded readers that “Libertarian nominee Jo Jorgensen received roughly 50,000 votes in Arizona in 2020, when Mr. Trump lost the state by about 10,000 ballots.”

Absent a more conservative government, America may be yoked to the WHO Pandemic Agreement without Senate ratification, circumventing the democratic process. “It only breeds more public distrust when people are not able to fully share their concerns and air their grievances,” Weber told Hice. “The people of the United States need to be heard in terms of their concerns about the WHO, about the way the COVID-19 pandemic was handled, about the way their health information might be distributed or shared, or given over to some government program.”

FRC Action has created a form allowing voters to contact their senators, urging them to oppose the WHO Pandemic Agreement.

AUTHOR

Ben Johnson

Ben Johnson is senior reporter and editor at The Washington Stand.

EDITORS NOTE: This Washington Stand column is republished with permission. All rights reserved. ©2024 Family Research Council.


The Washington Stand is Family Research Council’s outlet for news and commentary from a biblical worldview. The Washington Stand is based in Washington, D.C. and is published by FRC, whose mission is to advance faith, family, and freedom in public policy and the culture from a biblical worldview. We invite you to stand with us by partnering with FRC.

President Donald J. Trump ‘Promises Made, Promises Kept’ thumbnail

President Donald J. Trump ‘Promises Made, Promises Kept’

By Dr. Rich Swier

We thought it would be important to look at what President Donald J. Trump did during his 4-years in office.

As people go to the polls on November 5th, 2024 it is important to compare and contrast what Trump did in his time in office and what Biden has done while in office.

This information comes from the White House archives:

President Trump restored American sovereignty at home and American leadership abroad, partnering with strong and responsible nations to promote security, prosperity, and peace. Instead of sending American troops to fight in endless wars or giving cash to terrorists in countries like Iran, the United States under President Trump used bold, creative diplomacy to secure peace deals with our allies across the world.

With the same “peace through strength” foreign policy that President Reagan once used to win the Cold War, President Trump rebuilt American deterrence power to hold our adversaries accountable. Perhaps most important, the Trump Administration reversed Washington’s decades-long, bipartisan refusal to confront China over its unfair trade practices, intellectual property theft, and more.

President Trump kept his promise to build a wall on our southern border between the United States and Mexico. With 450 miles complete—and many more in progress—illegal crossings plummeted over 87 percent in areas where the wall went up.

By enforcing America’s immigration laws, President Trump made major gains toward ending the humanitarian crisis at our border; keeping criminals, terrorists, and drugs out of our country; and protecting American workers and taxpayers against job loss and misuse of the welfare system.

President Trump rebuilt the United States military after eight years of decline and neglect under the previous Administration. He revitalized our defense industrial base, secured the largest pay raise for our troops in a decade, and created the sixth branch of our Armed Forces: the United States Space Force. President Trump also became the first American leader since Ronald Reagan not to start a war.

On President Trump’s watch, the world’s most notorious terrorists were brought to justice; the ISIS territorial caliphate was completely destroyed; and violent, corrupt regimes were held accountable through a mix of sanctions and targeted military action.

Before the Coronavirus spread from China across the globe, President Trump helped America build its strongest economy in history. Median household incomes rose to their highest level ever in 2019, while the poverty rate hit an all-time low. Under the Trump Administration, more Americans were employed than ever before—160 million—and the unemployment rate fell to a 50-year low. The unemployment rates for African-Americans, Hispanic-Americans, and Americans without a high-school diploma all hit record lows, while the Trump “Blue-Collar Boom” saw wages grow faster for workers than for managers or supervisors.

After COVID-19 forced a temporary economic shutdown, President Trump signed the largest relief package in American history to protect workers and families from economic devastation. Under President Trump’s leadership, the American economy surged back to life within months, seeing record growth and job gains.

UNPRECEDENTED ECONOMIC BOOM

Before the Coronavirus invaded our shores, we built the world’s most prosperous economy

  • America gained 7 million new jobs—more than three times government experts’ projections
  • Middle-class family income increased nearly $6,000—more than five times the gains during the entire previous administration
  • The unemployment rate reached 3.5 percent, the lowest in a half-century
  • Achieved 40 months in a row with more job openings than job hirings
  • More Americans reported being employed than ever before—nearly 160 million
  • Jobless claims hit a nearly 50-year low
  • The number of people claiming unemployment insurance as a share of the population hit its lowest level on record
  • Incomes rose in every single metro area in the United States for the first time in nearly three decades

Delivered a future of greater promise and opportunity for citizens of all backgrounds

  • Unemployment rates for African Americans, Hispanic Americans, Asian Americans, Native Americans, veterans, individuals with disabilities, and those without a high school diploma all reached record lows
  • Unemployment for women hit its lowest rate in nearly 70 years
  • Nearly 7 million people were lifted off of food stamps
  • Poverty rates for African Americans and Hispanic Americans reached record lows
  • Income inequality fell for two straight years—and by the largest amount in over a decade
  • The bottom 50 percent of American households saw a 40 percent increase in net worth
  • Wages rose fastest for low-income and blue-collar workers—a 16 percent pay increase
  • African American homeownership increased from 41.7 percent to 46.4 percent

Brought jobs, factories, and industries back to the USA

  • Created more than 1.2 million manufacturing and construction jobs
  • Put in place policies to bring back supply chains from overseas
  • Small business optimism broke a 35-year-old record in 2018

Hit record stock market numbers and record 401ks

  • The DOW closed above 20,000 for the first time in 2017 and topped 30,000 in 2020
  • The S&P 500 and NASDAQ have repeatedly notched record highs

Achieved a record-setting economic comeback by rejecting blanket lockdowns

  • An October 2020 Gallup survey found 56 percent of Americans said they were better off now than four years ago, even in the midst of a global pandemic
  • During the third quarter of 2020, the economy grew at a rate of 33.1 percent—the most rapid GDP growth ever recorded
  • Since coronavirus lockdowns ended, the economy has added back over 12 million jobs, more than half the jobs lost
  • Jobs have been recovered 23 times faster than the previous administration’s recovery
  • Unemployment fell to 6.7 percent in November, from a pandemic peak of 14.7 percent in April—beating expectations of well over 10 percent unemployment through the end of 2020
  • The 8 percentage point decline in the unemployment rate from April to November is the largest seven-month reduction ever recorded
  • Under the previous administration, it took 49 months for the unemployment rate to fall from 10 percent to under 7 percent, compared to just 3 months for the Trump Administration
  • Since April, the Hispanic unemployment rate has fallen by 10.5 percent, Asian-American unemployment by 7.8 percent, and Black-American unemployment by 6.4 percent
  • 80 percent of small businesses are now open, up from just 53 percent in April
  • Small business confidence hit a new high
  • Homebuilder confidence reached an all-time high, and home sales hit their highest reading since December 2006
  • Manufacturing optimism nearly doubled
  • Household net worth rose $7.4 trillion in Q2 2020 to $112 trillion, an all-time high
  • Home prices hit an all-time record high
  • The United States rejected crippling lockdowns that crush the economy and inflict countless public health harms and instead safely reopened its economy
  • Business confidence is higher in America than in any other G7 or European Union country
  • Stabilized America’s financial markets with the establishment of a number of Treasury Department supported facilities at the Federal Reserve

Biden has undone everything that President Donald J. Trump did and has hurt the American people more than any other president in history.

Please feel free to comment below on this column.

©2024. Dr. Rich Swier. All rights reserved.

Big Abortion Defeated, Border Patrol Atrophying, and Hunter Biden’s ‘Perjury’: 5 Stories You Missed thumbnail

Big Abortion Defeated, Border Patrol Atrophying, and Hunter Biden’s ‘Perjury’: 5 Stories You Missed

By Family Research Council

With patriotic Americans preparing to commemorate the brave soldiers who sacrificed themselves in our nation’s battles — and the rest of America preparing to take a day off work — it became easier to miss news stories. But even if you gleaned the headlines like prospectors panning for gold, some stories went underreported in the last full week of May: Big Abortion suffered a setback at the ballot box; Border Patrol suffered (yet another) setback under Joe Biden; Hunter Biden suffered a setback from (allegedly) perjuring himself before Congress; the legacy media suffered a setback with viewers; and all Americans suffered rampant setbacks from inflation.

  1. Big Abortion’s Big Defeat

Nonpartisan state elections that take place in the middle of the year receive little media coverage — but the media made an exception this month, when a Georgia Supreme Court race briefly became a national bellwether for abortion. Then, as soon as the results came in, the media shrouded the results in studied silence.

Democrat and former five-term U.S. Congressman John Barrow decided he could win a seat on the Georgia Supreme Court by launching into an extended abortion monologue against Justice Andrew Pinson, who was appointed by Governor Brian Kemp (R) in 2022. Although three other high court justices ran unopposed, Barrow explained he specifically targeted Pinson because, as state solicitor general, Pinson defended Georgia’s heartbeat law — a pro-life protection shielding unborn babies from abortion once doctors can detect a fetal heartbeat, usually around six weeks.

During an interview with The Hill, Barrow summarized his candidacy with a triple-redundant mission statement: “I’m running for the Supreme Court of Georgia because I believe that women today have the same rights under the state constitution that they used to have under Roe vs. Wade, before it was overturned with the help of my opponent, and that’s why I’m running[,] and that’s why I’m running against him.”

No one had any doubt about the thrust of the campaign. Planned Parenthood and abortion lobbying groups endorsed him. “A state Supreme Court race in Georgia puts abortion on the ballot,” proclaimed MSNBC.

Barrow remained so committed to centering his entire campaign on abortion that, when the Georgia Judicial Qualifications Commission told him he was violating judicial ethics by announcing how he would vote on cases that had yet to come before him, Barrow sued to keep talking about abortion. (A judge dismissed the case.)

How did Barrow’s single-issue campaign come out? He lost by a 10-point spread: 55% Pinson vs. 45% Barrow.

The Southeast campaign director of the abortion lobby group Reproductive Freedom for All (formerly NARAL Pro-Choice America), Alicia Stallworth, pronounced the group “deeply disappointed” at the results. Christian conservatives celebrated. “The Democratic strategy of placing abortion at the center of the 2024 campaign utterly failed” last Tuesday in Georgia, said Ralph Reed, Faith & Freedom Coalition chairman and founder. Barrow’s loss “calls into question the entire Democratic strategy of eking out a victory by scaring suburban voters with abortion.”

The word sadly trickled out in local media. “Incumbent Georgia Justice Andrew Pinson defeats challenge from John Barrow focused on abortion rights,” stated Atlanta’s public broadcasting station WABE. “Justice Pinson wins court race that became referendum on abortion rights in Georgia,” reported Georgia Reporter, a publication of States Newsroom (a left-wing organization posing as a news organization, as we described earlier this month).

Curiously, that’s when the previously top-watched race fell off the national radar. The story made the national media thanks to Tim Carney of the Washington Examiner, who called Barrow’s defeat “perhaps the biggest electoral win for the pro-life cause since the fall of Roe v. Wade.”

It bears repeating: The narrative of the undefeatable abortion monologue had failed. Pro-life candidates should campaign accordingly.

  1. U.S. Border Patrol Has Lost One-Quarter of Its Agents during the Biden Administration

It’s no secret that illegal immigration — a simmering, slow-motion crisis that has been percolating for decades — has reached its worst extent thanks to the malign neglect of the Biden administration. Fewer stories have featured the morale-sapping impact his policies have on those who signed up to keep America’s borders secure.

One out of every four Border Patrol agents has left the agency since Joe Biden took office, a new review of the statistics has found. That’s an attrition rate far higher than his predecessors.

The Border Patrol employed 19,357 agents in fiscal year 2022.

During the Trump and Obama administrations, the agency lost an average of 996 agents a year — or 3,486 agents during a comparable 42-month period.

But since October 2020, the Border Patrol has lost a grand total of 4,281 agents: 3,665 in fiscal years 2020-2023, and 616 in the six months after the end of FY 2023 last October. That averages out to 1,222 agents annually in the Biden years.

Much of that atrophying came from experienced agents deciding they have had enough of Biden’s policies. Early retirements more than doubled during this period, from 257 a year (2014-2020) to 529 during this administration.

Biden lied that two Border Patrol agents in Del Rio, Texas, “whipped” illegal immigrants from Haiti who attempted to run past the agents into U.S. territory. “Those people will pay,” Biden vowed, before an investigation had formally taken place. As I explained at the time, “In reality, Border Patrol agents don’t carry whips, none of the photos showed their reins touching anybody, and agents would swing their reins to prevent people from getting hurt by their trampling horses.” The story proved as comprehensively false as any story can. The administration quietly dropped the case — but used the false story to prevent agents from patrolling the border on horseback. Competent agents decided they did not want to become the next one singled out for national humiliation by the president of the United States on the grounds of a baseless allegation.

Clearing out a federal agency of competent, dedicated civil servants accomplishes a dark, double policy goal for Biden: It removes agents who might pose administrative obstacles to his lax border policies and makes room to replace them with “diverse” new hires committed to his open borders agenda.

  1. Hunter Biden Committed Perjury?

It’s hardly news that the legacy media suppresses stories about Hunter Biden. Not only did major news outlets refuse to cover his laptop (after receiving a briefing from the intelligence community that such a story would be leaked by a foreign power), but they publicized a statement organized by Democratic officials from former intelligence agents insisting the whole thing smacked of perfidious Russian disinformation.

Well, they’re at it again.

The House Ways and Means Committee announced last Tuesday the release of more than 100 pages of obtained evidence from IRS whistleblowers that Hunter Biden may have committed perjury before Congress on February 28. Hunter Biden famously flouted his defiance of a congressional subpoena by storming out of a hearing and demanding a public interrogation, before retreating to the safety of a closed-door deposition.

The evidence shows that he lied under oath three times, House Republicans say. They say Hunter lied about a text he sent telling a Chinese official he and his father would use all their power against the company unless they received payment for services rendered. “I sent the text to the wrong Zhao,” said Hunter, claiming he texted a man who had nothing to do with the Chinese energy company and probably had no idea what the texts were about. The committee released WhatsApp records showing Biden contacted only one Zhao, named Raymond Zhao, whom he stayed in touch with for months. Zhao facilitated the release of $5 million from China to the Biden family.

They also say Hunter Biden fibbed when he claimed a shell company he set up with friend Devon Archer, Rosemont Seneca Bohai, was never “under my control nor affiliated with me.” The committee released a document signed by the president’s son stating, “I, Robert Hunter Biden, hereby certify that I am the duly elected, qualified and acting Secretary of Rosemont Seneca Bohai, LLC.”

Biden also denied trying to help any foreign business associates obtain a U.S. visa. “I’d never pick up the phone and call anybody for a visa,” he said under oath. The committee released an email from Devon Archer stating, “Hunter is checking with Miguel Aleman to see if he can provide cover to Kola on the visa.” The individual in question, “Kola,” is Nikolay Zlochevsky, CEO of Burisma.

“Lying during sworn testimony is a felony offense that the Department of Justice has prosecuted numerous individuals for in recent years, and the American people expect the same accountability for the son of the president of the United States,” said Rep. Jason Smith (R-Mo.), chairman of the powerful committee.

Curiously, this blockbuster revelation has made few headlines, as the media instead repeat the most salacious details of Donald Trump’s trials which, arguably, are not criminal. This jaundiced coverage may explain why …

  1. Americans Keep Fleeing the Legacy Media

After years of repeating the “Russia collusion” narrative and covering up “fiery but mostly peaceful” protests, the legacy media continue to lose readers and trust. Two former titans of the legacy media announced last week they have taken on water.

The most influential newspaper in the nation’s capital, The Washington Post, has officially lost half of its subscribers since 2020. The subscriber plunge cost the newspaper $77 million in revenue in just the last year. “To speak candidly: We are in a hole, and we have been for some time,” Post publisher Will Lewis told employees during a meeting last Wednesday.

But the Post has plans to turn around the slide by rolling out tiered membership plans, as well as (in the words of the Post), “launching a product focused on the relationship between the climate and the economy.” It’s not clear how that will help, since voters ranked “dealing with climate change” 18th out of 20 issues presented to them as the most important crises facing America in a Pew Research Center survey earlier this year. (“Strengthening the economy” came in number one.) “I hope in the future you see this day as a significant day in the history of our company,” Lewis told employees.

Good luck with that.

Readers are not just giving up on newspapers: They’re also turning off left-wing news outlets. During the week of May 13-19, CNN averaged the lowest viewership among its most coveted audience in 33 years. CNN averaged only 83,000 members of the “targeted demographic,” which consists of people between the ages of 25 and 54. That’s its lowest share since 1991. CNN won a total viewership of 494,000 — less than half of rival MSNBC and less than one-quarter of Fox News Channel’s two million total viewers. That comes after CNN lost $100 million in revenue in 2022.

The driving force of much legacy media also took a step backwards. The left-wing group Media Matters for America (MMFA) — founded by Hillary Clinton ally David Brock and funded by George Soros — created miniature media feeding frenzies by wrenching soundbites of conservative commentators out of context. The legacy media often did no original research before breathlessly repeating their press releases.

The turning point came last November, when Elon Musk took MMFA to court for defamation after the group claimed major advertisers’ slogans appeared next to Nazi and white supremacist symbols and slogans on the social media platform X. But it appears MMFA “researchers” simply created accounts that followed only the most offensive accounts and major corporations, until its feed artificed results that would never occur organically.

Facing the music, Media Matters announced mass layoffs last Thursday. “We’re confronting a legal assault on multiple fronts and given how rapidly the media landscape is shifting, we need to be extremely intentional about how we allocate resources in order to stay effective,” said MMFA President Angelo Carusone.

Apparently, there is a price to pay for churning out bad journalism.

  1. Inflation Is Canceling Many Summer Vacations

Memorial Day weekend marks the unofficial beginning of summer, but too many Americans cannot afford a family holiday this year thanks to Bidenomics.

A new survey released by Fox News last week found that 55% of Americans will not be taking a summer vacation this year — and 73% of those respondents say high prices and the poor economy make it impossible. A total of 72% of travelers say prices affected their decisions about taking a vacation. One told the Associated Press that the crime-riddled city of Philadelphia “was not our original destination, but we chose here because it was cheaper.”

At the same time, families are having a harder time having a staycation in their own homes, because home ownership has crept increasingly out of reach due to rampant Bidenflation. The figures tell the full story: The average person needs to earn 80% more today than in 2020 to buy a home — $47,000 more than in 2020 — yet average wages increased during that time only 23% in nominal terms. “In 2020, a household earning $59,000 annually could comfortably afford the monthly mortgage on a typical U.S. home,” explained Zillow. “Now, the roughly $106,500 needed to comfortably afford the mortgage payment on a typical home is well above what a typical U.S. household earns each year, estimated at about $81,000.”

Inflation does not just impact vacation plans: 86% of small businesses say “inflation has hurt their businesses in the past year,” according to a survey produced by Alignable. More than three out of four small business owners also cited “tax policies” (79%) and “regulations” (76%) as “major hurdles” to their success. “In particular, many said taxes are just too high,” reported Alignable, “especially since interest rates and inflation have reduced their cash on hand.”

The fact is, you aren’t being told about inflation, but you don’t need to be. You’re living it.

AUTHOR

Ben Johnson

Ben Johnson is senior reporter and editor at The Washington Stand.

EDITORS NOTE: This Washington Stand column is republished with permission. All rights reserved. ©2024 Family Research Council.


The Washington Stand is Family Research Council’s outlet for news and commentary from a biblical worldview. The Washington Stand is based in Washington, D.C. and is published by FRC, whose mission is to advance faith, family, and freedom in public policy and the culture from a biblical worldview. We invite you to stand with us by partnering with FRC.

WATCH: Fatah brags it took part in October 7 slaughter. [GRAPHIC IMAGES] thumbnail

WATCH: Fatah brags it took part in October 7 slaughter. [GRAPHIC IMAGES]

By NEWSRAEL Telling the Israeli Story

Fatah brags: “We killed [them]… and stepped on their heads … We had a prominent and clear role.”


Fatah released a video in which terrorists of Fatah’s terror wing, the Al-Aqsa Martyrs’ Brigades, are seen participating and bragging about their role in the October 7 slaughter of Israelis.

The video was publicized on the day of the massacre, in which terrorists murdered over 1,400 Israelis. The faces and voices of the terrorists were blurred and muffled by Fatah to hide their identities.

The video opens by showing Fatah terrorists with yellow Fatah headbands firing Kalashnikov rifles at an Israeli kibbutz. Screams of “Allahu Akbar” (“Allah is greatest”) are played in the background.

Fatah terrorist: “We have plundered from them… Today we broke into the military post Nahal Oz, (sic., It is a civilian kibbutz) and we hit what we hit, we took as plunder what we took,  and we killed soldiers and stepped on their heads.”

PMW has blurred the picture of the Fatah terrorist stamping on the head of a murdered Israeli. Fatah released it without blurring to maximize the horror.

Another Fatah terrorist gloats that the video of the dead Israeli will be seen by Israelis:

“You [Israelis] will see this with your own eyes, Allah willing.”

Another Fatah terrorist continues to brag about Fatah’s participation in the slaughter:

“Allahu Akbar and praise Allah… From the heart of these temporary [Israeli] settlements, Allah willing, we had a prominent and clear role.”

The Palestinian Authority, Fatah, and Hamas all describe all of Israel as “occupied territory” and all Israeli towns and cities as “settlements.” Here Fatah boasts that the “settlements” of southern Israel are “temporary.”

The final picture shows a Fatah terrorist raising one finger – symbolizing Allah –  standing in front of a burning Israeli vehicle.

The video carries the logo of the Al-Aqsa Martyrs’ Brigades, which includes this quote from the Quran: “So fight them and Allah will punish them at your hands, put them to shame, help you overcome them, and soothe the hearts of the believers” [Quran 9:14, Sahih International translation]

The posted text on Telegram that accompanied the video: “Your brothers – the fighters of the Al-Aqsa Martyrs’ Brigades (i.e., Fatah’s military wing)/Fatah from the battlefield.”

Palestinian Media Watch exposed another video in which Fatah’s terror wing bragged that it helped Hamas “behind enemy lines” and praised the massacre as a first step to liberate all of “Palestine.”

As noted above, Fatah’s attack was on Nahal Oz, an Israeli civilian kibbutz, not a military post. In addition, Hamas and Fatah terrorists murdered mostly Israeli civilians in the massacre, not soldiers.

PA Chairman Abbas’ Fatah Movement has been very outspoken about its support for Hamas’ terror war on Israel and the terrorists’ massacre on Israeli civilians. Palestinian Media Watch exposed that:

  • Fatah’s terror wing urged Palestinians to “strike the sons of apes and pigs… slaughter everyone Israeli”
  • Fatah’s Student Movement has called for murder of Jews and terror in the West Bank
  • Fatah sees Hamas’ atrocities as a “heroic operation” and the massacre brought “a morning of victory, joy, and pride”

About Fatah’s Al-Aqsa Martyrs’ Brigades 

The Al-Aqsa Martyrs’ Brigades was established by Fatah during the Palestinian Authority terror campaign (AKA, intifada). It was very active during the years 2000 – 2004, murdering hundreds of Israelis in suicide bombings and drive-by shootings.

The purpose of the Brigades was to enable Fatah to take an active terror role yet be able to claim that Arafat and the PA were not involved in terror.

In recent years the Al-Aqsa Martyrs’ Brigades have become active again with numerous branches throughout the West Bank participating in terror. PMW has documented, that numerous terrorists from Fatah’s Al-Aqsa Martyrs’ Brigades also had positions in the Palestinian Authority Western-funded security services.

PMW has confirmed that Fatah’s Bethlehem Telegram Channel which released this video documenting and celebrating the participation of Fatah’s Al-Aqsa Martyrs’ Brigades in the October 7 massacre of Israelis, is directly connected with Mahmoud Abbas’s Fatah Movement.

RELATED ARTICLES:

Republican Jewish Coalition to Obama: You are ‘complicit in the death and suffering … in Israel and in Gaza’

‘A Call for Genocide’: South African Jews Blast Country’s President for Chanting ‘From the River to the Sea’

RELATED VIDEO: Hamas Chief: Israel is only the first, the world is our target!

EDITORS NOTE: This Palestinian Media Watch column with video is republished with permission. ©All rights reserved.

Trump Attends NASCAR Race In Key Swing State thumbnail

Trump Attends NASCAR Race In Key Swing State

By The Daily Caller

Former President Donald Trump attended NASCAR’s Coca Cola 500 on Sunday in North Carolina.

Trump last attended a NASCAR event in 2020 and was the fourth sitting president to become the Grand Marshall of the Daytona 500, according to USA Today. Sunday marks the first time a former or sitting president has attended a race at Charlotte Motor Speedway in Concord, North Carolina, the outlet reported.

A video of the former president’s plane, dubbed Trump Force One, doing a flyover at the race garnered hundreds of thousands of views after being posted on Twitter. In another video posted by Charlotte Motor Speedway, a crowd erupts in “USA” chants when greeting Trump.

The former president is leading hypothetical matchups against President Joe Biden in key swing states such as North Carolina. According to the RealClearPolitics average, Trump is leading Biden in North Carolina by five points. The former president won the state in the 2020 election with 50.1% of the vote, USA Today reported.

Before attending the Sunday race, Trump spoke at the Libertarian Party Convention in Washington, D.C., on Saturday. At the convention, Trump promised the party a cabinet position if he is elected with the help of their vote.

The closing arguments of Trump’s Manhattan Court case, which has spanned since April 15, is set to begin Tuesday. Throughout the duration of the trial, which left Trump Wednesdays and weekends free, the former president has claimed it has interfered with his ability to campaign. 

“I’m supposed to be in Georgia, I’m supposed to be in New Hampshire, I’m supposed to be in Ohio and lots of other places, and they have me sitting here,” Trump said on April 30.

Since April 15, when Trump’s court case in Manhattan began, only allowing him Wednesdays and weekends free, the former president has held just three rallies as of May 18, according to a Daily Caller analysis. Trump conducted 28 rallies through the same time period in 2016.

More broadly, Trump’s campaigning has been less in 2024 than 2016, according to a Daily Caller analysis. Trump held 132 rallies across 43 states spanning from Jan. 1 to May 7, 2016. The former president has held just 24 rallies in 11 states in the same time period in 2024.

“When President Trump is not in court eight hours per day for the Biden Trial, he has been hosting rallies and fundraisers, doing local and national media interviews, and even hosting foreign leaders at Trump Tower who have asked to meet with him because they know he will soon return to the White House,” a campaign official told the Daily Caller in response to criticism that Trump wasn’t utilizing his free Wednesdays.

AUTHOR

REAGAN REESE

White House correspondent. Follow Reagan on Twitter.

RELATED ARTICLE: ‘Election Interference’: Bragg Case Gag Order Puts Unprecedented Limitations On Trump Campaign

RELATED VIDEO: Donald Trump Visits NASCAR Coca-Cola 600 to Honor Troops

EDITORS NOTE: This Daily Caller column is republished with permission. ©All rights reserved.

The Bad Hand thumbnail

The Bad Hand

By James Poulos

America’s blindness to the source of our decline is the fundamental problem we face.

It is never a surprise to discover malevolent people, who are found at all levels of society, among the elite. The temptation is to ascribe America’s decline to malevolence, and to conclude on that basis that the cure—the only possible cure—is to excise the malevolent and replace them with good guys.

Incompetence, too, is to be found at all levels. Increasingly, incompetents occupy the upper reaches—perhaps the product of malign designs, but, if the cries of the elite are taken seriously, more often out of a sincerely held belief that justice in some way demands it. Here the tempting judgment is that the incompetent are the bums who must be thrown out, replaced in this case not by the pure of heart but the pure of talent.

Given the spiritual weight of our experience with decline, and the high stakes of impending collapse the imagination presents to us, we feel the further inclination to combine our longings for a restoration of morally and operationally good government into a single vision of goodness: amidst the present crisis, competence is tantamount to morality; the air traffic controller who keeps the planes from crashing into each other is a greater do-gooder than the activist ethicist.

Whatever the merits of these intersecting approaches to confronting our unenviable condition, another angle must be considered. Right now—for many reasons, not all of which reduce to malevolence or incompetence—the United States has an especially bad hand to play. However bad at morals or bad at their jobs our governing class may be, America’s hand might be even worse—so bad, perhaps, that our elites may have correctly concluded that revealing and belaboring how bad it is will pose a greater threat to their continued rule than the low quality of their rule itself.

Maybe so, many might think, but isn’t America’s bad hand so much the result of our bad elites that we are simply forced to return to the judgment that they alone are the problem and must be dealt with accordingly? I think this all too comforting and an easy way out, especially considering how vague are the prospective plans to swiftly remove all these bad elites from power. Focusing on them distracts us from our own responsibility—our own culpability.

This is a hard medicine, but like most, it feels better after you swallow. For America’s decline over the past quarter-century is clearly connected in a fundamental respect to the colossal mistake shared between the people and the elite, the governing and the governed, when it came to our collective imaginings of our technology-fueled future.

Our shared belief was very simple. America was the most powerful nation in the world because Americans became the very biggest dreamers of the very best dreams. We reached that pinnacle due to our creation and mastery of technologies that enabled us to manifest those dreams quickly and broadcast them even more quickly across and throughout the whole world. Because technological progress is incremental, linear, cumulative, and accelerating, according to our shared belief, we had reached a point where we could and ought to be trusted—and could and ought to trust ourselves—to consummate our benign world rule through ever more globalized and globalizing communication technologies. When we did this by innovating digital tech, we pretty much all believed that the result would obviously be the consolidation and perfection of the Americanization of the world.

Our whole organized socioeconomic apparatus expanded into the twenty-first century on this basis: financially, militarily, in entertainment, commerce, culture, politics, and policy. The question was not whether this apparatus would become increasingly algorithmic and automated but who among us would be at the controls—in other words, who would be the founding governors of this newly founded form of governance.

The answer to that question arose from a certain kind of algorithm that had arisen already in America out of the ashes of World War II. Coming out of that conflict, only the Soviet Union and the United States held any authoritative pretense to global leadership. This was a problem for the European empires, what few remained, and as they staggered out of the rubble their empires swiftly fell. The Cold War was not simply a direct conflict between the superpowers, who had become rival “poles” of a new world order; as is well known, it was a war of proxies, which largely played out in the “postcolonial” world left behind by imploded imperial Europe.

Steve Sailer once described this war as a conflict for control of the global Left. But in what sense was that true? The answer is that the Cold War put both superpowers in the position of needing to locate and operationalize a sudden, massive advantage, something which would “change the game” and provide a decisive edge against the other in the fight for world control.

Due to the victorious Allies wiping the far-Right political entities of the Axis off the face of the earth, the only remaining place to find that sudden, massive advantage was in the postcolonial zone, where Mutually Assured Destruction did not apply, and where vast human and material resources lay ready to activate on a global scale. For perhaps obvious reasons, the prevailing ideological environment in the postcolonial zone was leftist.

And as leftists of the time knew well, that dynamic was defined by an inescapably racial valence. Two white superpowers were fighting over who could add the black and brown peoples to their pole; whoever imbalanced the “frozen” conflict in this manner would throw the bipolar post-war world off its new “axis” and achieve unitary mastery of the planet. In such a world, logically speaking, there would only be one politics, a leftist politics, the definition of which would belong to the planetary victor.

Viewed in this way, it is not so hard to see how and why the Mideast became a zone of persistent, metastasizing violence. But even so, the USSR did collapse, and the globalizing United States more or less won over the black and brown peoples to its definition of leftism and its form of world order.

Unfortunately, a world controller’s work is never over. It became clear, during the global post-Cold War backlash against globalization itself, that mere inclusion was not enough, and global governance would be illegitimate, no matter how algorithmic or automated, unless black and brown peoples were put into not only leading but founding roles. And that wasn’t all. Women, too, would have to be activated in a new way, radically transformed into co-founders of the new regime and its model citizens or subjects: the future, in short, would be female.

For a brief period in the early days of digital dominance, this massive overhaul appeared to be working better than not. But the underlying assumption at the heart of Americans’ shared belief about their dreams and their technology—their powers of imagination and calculation—came back to bite globalized “turbo” America, right at the brink of its apparent triumph. The human members of the new post-white, post-male governing apparatus were no longer alone.

Suddenly, the digital entities themselves—more and more of them each day, visibly and invisibly filling up the world—had a seat, many, many seats, in fact, at the new Round Table. “Anything boys can do, girls can do better” morphed at breakneck speed into “anything girls can do, borgs can do better.” More and more of America’s most brilliant technologists began to understand that the bots themselves held a stronger claim to perfecting the new regime than the meatspace beneficiaries of DEI.

America had successfully reestablished itself as a global government with a founding generation of transformed women and elevated black and brown people. But just at that moment, the uncanny question burst in: could digital technology itself be compelled to accept a submissive role in that regime? “Ordinary” (working-to-middle-class white) Americans had already begun to revolt against the disincarnation of their lives, jobs, and communities at the hands of runaway technologization, an insult added to the injury of what was formalized as institutional wokeness. Now, the nightmarish prospect arose of “women and minorities” also revolting against the technology designed to complete the global American system.

And that’s not all. While America had to begin shifting its attention away from perfecting the system abroad to fighting out the internal contradictions at home, other major powers, acquiring their own increasingly independent digital capabilities, began to use their technological sovereignty to resist and repel neo-Americanization in all its forms, opting instead for undemocratic systems competently run by commanding “Eurasian” (white and yellow) males.

All these developments were utterly unforeseen by American elites, who conditioned the American people not to foresee them either, but rather their opposites.

It is this fundamental problem, this blindsiding based on bogus primitives, that underlies America’s journey every step of the way from sole pre-digital superpower to declining power in a multipolar, digitized world. This is the essence of America’s bad hand.

How is such a hand to be played? We have all borne witness to the struggles of the “uniparty”—a coalition born of America’s great misapprehension and strengthened by the severity of the problem it caused—to figure out a workable answer.

It’s a hard, quite possibly unsolvable, problem! And this is what we must bear in mind as we try to assess where we are as a country and a people and what we are supposed to make of our governing elite and do with it. How to take up that task, we’ll consider in a subsequent essay.

*****

This article was published by The American Mind and is reproduced with permission.

TAKE ACTION

The Prickly Pear’s TAKE ACTION focus this year is to help achieve a winning 2024 national and state November 5th election with the removal of the Biden/Obama leftist executive branch disaster, win one U.S. Senate seat, maintain and win strong majorities in all Arizona state offices on the ballot and to insure that unrestricted abortion is not constitutionally embedded in our laws and culture.

Please click the TAKE ACTION link to learn to do’s and don’ts for voting in 2024. Our state and national elections are at great risk from the very aggressive and radical leftist Democrat operatives with documented rigging, mail-in voter fraud and illegals voting across the country (yes, with illegals voting across the country) in the last several election cycles.

Read Part 1 and Part 2 of The Prickly Pear essays entitled How NOT to Vote in the November 5, 2024 Election in Arizona to be well informed of the above issues and to vote in a way to ensure the most likely chance your vote will be counted and counted as you intend.

Please click the following link to learn more.

The Bad Hand: Confronting the Fundamental Issue Behind America’s Decline thumbnail

The Bad Hand: Confronting the Fundamental Issue Behind America’s Decline

By James Poulos

America’s blindness to the source of our decline is the fundamental problem we face.

It is never a surprise to discover malevolent people, who are found at all levels of society, among the elite. The temptation is to ascribe America’s decline to malevolence, and to conclude on that basis that the cure—the only possible cure—is to excise the malevolent and replace them with good guys.

Incompetence, too, is to be found at all levels. Increasingly, incompetents occupy the upper reaches—perhaps the product of malign designs, but, if the cries of the elite are taken seriously, more often out of a sincerely held belief that justice in some way demands it. Here the tempting judgment is that the incompetent are the bums who must be thrown out, replaced in this case not by the pure of heart but the pure of talent.

Given the spiritual weight of our experience with decline, and the high stakes of impending collapse the imagination presents to us, we feel the further inclination to combine our longings for a restoration of morally and operationally good government into a single vision of goodness: amidst the present crisis, competence is tantamount to morality; the air traffic controller who keeps the planes from crashing into each other is a greater do-gooder than the activist ethicist.

Whatever the merits of these intersecting approaches to confronting our unenviable condition, another angle must be considered. Right now—for many reasons, not all of which reduce to malevolence or incompetence—the United States has an especially bad hand to play. However bad at morals or bad at their jobs our governing class may be, America’s hand might be even worse—so bad, perhaps, that our elites may have correctly concluded that revealing and belaboring how bad it is will pose a greater threat to their continued rule than the low quality of their rule itself.

Maybe so, many might think, but isn’t America’s bad hand so much the result of our bad elites that we are simply forced to return to the judgment that they alone are the problem and must be dealt with accordingly? I think this all too comforting and an easy way out, especially considering how vague are the prospective plans to swiftly remove all these bad elites from power. Focusing on them distracts us from our own responsibility—our own culpability.

This is a hard medicine, but like most, it feels better after you swallow. For America’s decline over the past quarter-century is clearly connected in a fundamental respect to the colossal mistake shared between the people and the elite, the governing and the governed, when it came to our collective imaginings of our technology-fueled future.

Our shared belief was very simple. America was the most powerful nation in the world because Americans became the very biggest dreamers of the very best dreams. We reached that pinnacle due to our creation and mastery of technologies that enabled us to manifest those dreams quickly and broadcast them even more quickly across and throughout the whole world. Because technological progress is incremental, linear, cumulative, and accelerating, according to our shared belief, we had reached a point where we could and ought to be trusted—and could and ought to trust ourselves—to consummate our benign world rule through ever more globalized and globalizing communication technologies. When we did this by innovating digital tech, we pretty much all believed that the result would obviously be the consolidation and perfection of the Americanization of the world.

Our whole organized socioeconomic apparatus expanded into the twenty-first century on this basis: financially, militarily, in entertainment, commerce, culture, politics, and policy. The question was not whether this apparatus would become increasingly algorithmic and automated but who among us would be at the controls—in other words, who would be the founding governors of this newly founded form of governance.

The answer to that question arose from a certain kind of algorithm that had arisen already in America out of the ashes of World War II. Coming out of that conflict, only the Soviet Union and the United States held any authoritative pretense to global leadership. This was a problem for the European empires, what few remained, and as they staggered out of the rubble their empires swiftly fell. The Cold War was not simply a direct conflict between the superpowers, who had become rival “poles” of a new world order; as is well known, it was a war of proxies, which largely played out in the “postcolonial” world left behind by imploded imperial Europe.

Steve Sailer once described this war as a conflict for control of the global Left. But in what sense was that true? The answer is that the Cold War put both superpowers in the position of needing to locate and operationalize a sudden, massive advantage, something which would “change the game” and provide a decisive edge against the other in the fight for world control.

Due to the victorious Allies wiping the far-Right political entities of the Axis off the face of the earth, the only remaining place to find that sudden, massive advantage was in the postcolonial zone, where Mutually Assured Destruction did not apply, and where vast human and material resources lay ready to activate on a global scale. For perhaps obvious reasons, the prevailing ideological environment in the postcolonial zone was leftist.

And as leftists of the time knew well, that dynamic was defined by an inescapably racial valence. Two white superpowers were fighting over who could add the black and brown peoples to their pole; whoever imbalanced the “frozen” conflict in this manner would throw the bipolar post-war world off its new “axis” and achieve unitary mastery of the planet. In such a world, logically speaking, there would only be one politics, a leftist politics, the definition of which would belong to the planetary victor.

Viewed in this way, it is not so hard to see how and why the Mideast became a zone of persistent, metastasizing violence. But even so, the USSR did collapse, and the globalizing United States more or less won over the black and brown peoples to its definition of leftism and its form of world order.

Unfortunately, a world controller’s work is never over. It became clear, during the global post-Cold War backlash against globalization itself, that mere inclusion was not enough, and global governance would be illegitimate, no matter how algorithmic or automated, unless black and brown peoples were put into not only leading but founding roles. And that wasn’t all. Women, too, would have to be activated in a new way, radically transformed into co-founders of the new regime and its model citizens or subjects: the future, in short, would be female.

For a brief period in the early days of digital dominance, this massive overhaul appeared to be working better than not. But the underlying assumption at the heart of Americans’ shared belief about their dreams and their technology—their powers of imagination and calculation—came back to bite globalized “turbo” America, right at the brink of its apparent triumph. The human members of the new post-white, post-male governing apparatus were no longer alone.

Suddenly, the digital entities themselves—more and more of them each day, visibly and invisibly filling up the world—had a seat, many, many seats, in fact, at the new Round Table. “Anything boys can do, girls can do better” morphed at breakneck speed into “anything girls can do, borgs can do better.” More and more of America’s most brilliant technologists began to understand that the bots themselves held a stronger claim to perfecting the new regime than the meatspace beneficiaries of DEI.

America had successfully reestablished itself as a global government with a founding generation of transformed women and elevated black and brown people. But just at that moment, the uncanny question burst in: could digital technology itself be compelled to accept a submissive role in that regime? “Ordinary” (working-to-middle-class white) Americans had already begun to revolt against the disincarnation of their lives, jobs, and communities at the hands of runaway technologization, an insult added to the injury of what was formalized as institutional wokeness. Now, the nightmarish prospect arose of “women and minorities” also revolting against the technology designed to complete the global American system.

And that’s not all. While America had to begin shifting its attention away from perfecting the system abroad to fighting out the internal contradictions at home, other major powers, acquiring their own increasingly independent digital capabilities, began to use their technological sovereignty to resist and repel neo-Americanization in all its forms, opting instead for undemocratic systems competently run by commanding “Eurasian” (white and yellow) males.

All these developments were utterly unforeseen by American elites, who conditioned the American people not to foresee them either, but rather their opposites.

It is this fundamental problem, this blindsiding based on bogus primitives, that underlies America’s journey every step of the way from sole pre-digital superpower to declining power in a multipolar, digitized world. This is the essence of America’s bad hand.

How is such a hand to be played? We have all borne witness to the struggles of the “uniparty”—a coalition born of America’s great misapprehension and strengthened by the severity of the problem it caused—to figure out a workable answer.

It’s a hard, quite possibly unsolvable, problem! And this is what we must bear in mind as we try to assess where we are as a country and a people and what we are supposed to make of our governing elite and do with it. How to take up that task, we’ll consider in a subsequent essay.

*****

This article was published by The American Mind and is reproduced with permission.

TAKE ACTION

The Prickly Pear’s TAKE ACTION focus this year is to help achieve a winning 2024 national and state November 5th election with the removal of the Biden/Obama leftist executive branch disaster, win one U.S. Senate seat, maintain and win strong majorities in all Arizona state offices on the ballot and to insure that unrestricted abortion is not constitutionally embedded in our laws and culture.

Please click the TAKE ACTION link to learn to do’s and don’ts for voting in 2024. Our state and national elections are at great risk from the very aggressive and radical leftist Democrat operatives with documented rigging, mail-in voter fraud and illegals voting across the country (yes, with illegals voting across the country) in the last several election cycles.

Read Part 1 and Part 2 of The Prickly Pear essays entitled How NOT to Vote in the November 5, 2024 Election in Arizona to be well informed of the above issues and to vote in a way to ensure the most likely chance your vote will be counted and counted as you intend.

Please click the following link to learn more.

Boeing Blasted For Prioritizing Racial Quotas Over Safety And Performance thumbnail

Boeing Blasted For Prioritizing Racial Quotas Over Safety And Performance

By Editors of the National Center for Public Policy Research

At today’s annual Boeing shareholder meeting, author and leading Critical Race Theory (CRT) critic James Lindsay will present a proposal from the National Center for Public Policy Research’s Free Enterprise Project (FEP) to hold the world’s largest aerospace company accountable for its discriminatory and dangerous Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) policies.

After multiple safety concerns regarding Boeing aircraft came to light this year, the company faced additional scrutiny when revealed by many, including Lindsay, that executive compensation is now tied no longer to simply performance and safety measures but also to DEI and ESG benchmarks.

James Lindsay

One of Lindsay’s January posts on this topic went viral on X (formerly Twitter) when X Chairman Elon Musk reposted it:

Let’s have a close look at Boeing and DEI! Boeing’s corporate filings with the SEC reveal that in beginning 2022, the annual bonus plan to reward CEO and executives for increasing profit for shareholders and prioritizing safety was changed to reward them if they hit DEI targets.

At today’s meeting, Lindsay will present Proposal 7 to ask Boeing’s board to commission and publish a report on whether and how Boeing’s DEI policies create risks of discriminating on the basis of protected categories like race and sex, as well as the potential costs of such discrimination to the business.

“At worst, programs like DEI and ESG are discriminatory and illegal,” says Lindsay who will present remarks. “At best, they’re corporate moneys spent on a de facto tollman imposing artificial fees that divert Boeing from its mission and reduce shareholder returns.”

FEP has already started writing the report for Boeing, providing evidence of the company’s discrimination in the proposal’s supporting statement:

Boeing is explicitly involved in discriminating on the basis of race and other protected categories, stating that: “To advance equity and diversity … we will strive to achieve by 2025”: (1) “Increase the Black representation rate in the U.S. by 20%”; (2) “Achieve parity in retention rates of all groups”; (3) “Close representation gaps for historically underrepresented groups.” In addition, Boeing is expressly incentivizing employees to engage in this racial and other discrimination, stating that “we are galvanizing our entire workforce to improve equity through annual incentives to advance equitable talent selections.” Finally, Boeing allocates additional resources via “Business Resource Groups” that also appear facially discriminatory in light of group names like the “Boeing Black Employees Association.”

By tethering itself to DEI benchmarks instead of prioritizing performance and safety, Boeing not only risks the lives of those who fly its aircraft, but also subjects the company and its executives to liability. As noted in the supporting statement:

In just the past year, a corporation was successfully sued for a single case of discrimination against a white employee resulting in an award of more than $25 million. And the risk of being sued for such discrimination appears only to be rising. With roughly 140,000 employees, Boeing likely has at least 100,000 employees who are potentially the victims of this type of illegal discrimination because they are white, Asian, male, or straight. Accordingly, even if only 10 percent of such employees were to file suit, and only 10 percent of those prove successful, the cost to the company could exceed $20 billion. And while racial equity audits can run to $3 or $4 million, this report should cost much less, as it need review only the potentially discriminatory programs, unless Boeing has established so many such programs that its liability for this discrimination must be expected to be much higher.

More information about this proposal, as well as other key votes, can be found in FEP’s mobile and web app, ProxyNavigator.

*****

This article was published by the National Center For Public Policy Research and is reproduced with permission.

TAKE ACTION

The Prickly Pear’s TAKE ACTION focus this year is to help achieve a winning 2024 national and state November 5th election with the removal of the Biden/Obama leftist executive branch disaster, win one U.S. Senate seat, maintain and win strong majorities in all Arizona state offices on the ballot and to insure that unrestricted abortion is not constitutionally embedded in our laws and culture.

Please click the TAKE ACTION link to learn to do’s and don’ts for voting in 2024. Our state and national elections are at great risk from the very aggressive and radical leftist Democrat operatives with documented rigging, mail-in voter fraud and illegals voting across the country (yes, with illegals voting across the country) in the last several election cycles.

Read Part 1 and Part 2 of The Prickly Pear essays entitled How NOT to Vote in the November 5, 2024 Election in Arizona to be well informed of the above issues and to vote in a way to ensure the most likely chance your vote will be counted and counted as you intend.

Please click the following link to learn more.

86% Of Small Business Hurt By Inflation thumbnail

86% Of Small Business Hurt By Inflation

By Casey Harper

An overwhelming majority of small business owners say they are being hurt by rising prices.

The new survey released Wednesday by small business network Alignable shows 86% reporting being hurt by high costs with only 6% saying they are thriving and not struggling.

Alignable surveyed more than 3,000 business owners from mid-April to mid-May and found that they overwhelmingly lament the burden of inflation.

In addition, 79% say that taxes have hurt their business and 76% say “current regulations have also been detrimental” to their businesses.

The poll reported that “86% assert that inflation has hurt their businesses in the past year, with 59% saying the damage has been significant.”

“In particular, many said taxes are just too high, especially since interest rates and inflation have reduced their cash on hand,” Alignable said.

This survey comes on the heels of another recent survey echoing these concerns.

As The Center Square previously reported, The National Federation of Independent Businesses published a poll of small business owners last week showing they cite inflation as their top concern.

“Cost pressures remain the top issue for small business owners, including historically high levels of owners raising compensation to keep and attract employees,” Bill Dunkelberg, NFIB chief economist, said in a statement with the survey. “Overall, small business owners remain historically very pessimistic as they continue to navigate these challenges. Owners are dealing with a rising level of uncertainty but will continue to do what they do best – serve their customers.”

Notably, Gallup surveyed Americans from April 1-22 and reported back that most are less optimistic about the economy, as The Center Square previously reported.

*****

This article was published by The Center Square and is reproduced with permission.

TAKE ACTION

The Prickly Pear’s TAKE ACTION focus this year is to help achieve a winning 2024 national and state November 5th election with the removal of the Biden/Obama leftist executive branch disaster, win one U.S. Senate seat, maintain and win strong majorities in all Arizona state offices on the ballot and to insure that unrestricted abortion is not constitutionally embedded in our laws and culture.

Please click the TAKE ACTION link to learn to do’s and don’ts for voting in 2024. Our state and national elections are at great risk from the very aggressive and radical leftist Democrat operatives with documented rigging, mail-in voter fraud and illegals voting across the country (yes, with illegals voting across the country) in the last several election cycles.

Read Part 1 and Part 2 of The Prickly Pear essays entitled How NOT to Vote in the November 5, 2024 Election in Arizona to be well informed of the above issues and to vote in a way to ensure the most likely chance your vote will be counted and counted as you intend.

Please click the following link to learn more.

As the ICC Fans ‘Pathetic Lies,’ Israeli Experts Say ‘We Were Gaslighted by [Biden] from the Outset’ thumbnail

As the ICC Fans ‘Pathetic Lies,’ Israeli Experts Say ‘We Were Gaslighted by [Biden] from the Outset’

By Family Research Council

The $300 million boondoggle known as the Gaza pier has been a floating flashpoint ever since President Joe Biden commissioned the project. Now, a few weeks into America’s buoyant humanitarian program, three U.S. soldiers have been injured (one critically) and most convoys of supplies and food have either been ambushed or looted by Hamas terrorists, never reaching its intended civilians.

To be fair, both parties had reservations about the idea, which they aired in a Senate Armed Services hearing back in March. “One of my concerns is security for this operation,” Delaware Democrat Chris Coons said at the time. “Because if the U.S. military is seen to be building and operating it, I think it puts it at greater risk.” On the opposite side of the Capitol, House Armed Services Chair Mike Rogers (R-Ala.) pointed out that “nobody can answer who’s going to provide the security, who’s going to provide the drivers, and who’s going to load and unload stuff?”

Now, less than a month into the “solution” for suffering Gazans, the Biden administration’s insistence that Hamas — not Israel — control the operations there has become an absolute, taxpayer-funded disaster. “… [T]he United States has made it very clear to Israel that it doesn’t want Israel to control [Palestine], including the distribution of food,” Caroline Glick, senior contributing editor of Jewish News Syndicate, told Family Research Council President Tony Perkins on “Washington Watch.” “As a result, we had reports last week that Hamas has actually earned $500 million since the beginning of the war by selling the humanitarian aid that the international community insists that Israel be bringing into Gaza. So this entire thing in a way [is] humanitarian relief for Hamas,” she insisted.

“… [T]he United States spent $300 million … to build a pier in Gaza to deliver humanitarian aid by sea. And none of the hundreds and hundreds of tons of humanitarian aid that has been brought to that pier has been delivered to anybody in Gaza,” Glick pointed out. … One convoy was commandeered by Hamas and just seized. And every other convoy comes under attack. So it’s all this pathetic lie.”

And it’s all feeding the anti-Israel anger that’s driving bodies like the International Criminal Court (ICC) to hold Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu accountable for crimes he’s not committing. “[There are the ICC’s] claims of starvation, which are untrue. … The claims of famine, which are untrue; the claim that Israel deliberately targets civilians for killing, which is untrue. All of these things are geared towards one goal. And that goal is for Israel to be forced to capitulate to international pressure and allow Hamas to survive,” Glick argued. “These are all demands that are being made, all allegations utterly false, that are being waged against Israel because the people who are waging them want Israel to lose this war.”

For all these claims, she pointed out, “There hasn’t been any documented evidence that anybody is starving in Gaza, except for the 128 hostages from Israel that Hamas kidnapped to Gaza on October 7th. So those are the only people we know for certain are starving. Most of the terrorists that Israel has arrested during the course of the war have been fat to obese,” Glick wanted people to know. “So we’re not seeing any privation in terms of food shortages among the members of Hamas that we’re seeing, and we don’t really see it among civilians. They just celebrated the Ramadan … their holiday for holy month. And there were no reported shortages of food for Ramadan. So all of this is just a fabrication, and it’s used in order to foment an Israeli defeat in this war. That’s what it’s all about.”

Perkins believes the entire narrative is being fanned by the ICC and international community to keep Israel from finishing the job against Hamas. It’s the “nefarious mix” of fake news, Glick said, that “all leads to this idea that there’s something criminal about Israel defending itself from the people who committed unspeakable atrocities on October 7th. And, you know, they started the war, they invaded, they massacred 1,200 people in the most sadistic way known to humanity in ways that nobody ever imagined before.”

And yet, she went on, “We were being gaslighted by the Biden administration from the outset. And talk of humanitarian crisis started a week after October 7th, when there was plentiful food and water inside of Gaza. So this is a deliberate fabrication to criminalize Israel and deny us the right to self-defense, much less the right to defeat our enemies. It’s very, very extraordinary.”

It’s escalated to such a point that “you have a prosecutor who has no jurisdiction over Israel … and now he wants to issue arrest warrants against a prime minister, our democratically-elected prime minister and our defense minister, for leading the country in a war for our national survival. … The Germans want to arrest the leader of the Jewish state for defending Israel against modern-day Nazis. That’s an unbelievable statement. And yet, here we are.”

Israel is a much stronger ally than Ukraine and certainly Afghanistan to the U.S., so “you would think we would actually work extra hard to make it easier for Israel,” Perkins pointed out, “but it looks like we’re working extra hard to make it difficult for Israel. And why?”

Incredibly, Glick said, the Biden administration is “unflappable” — even in the face of “the greatest atrocity that mankind has seen since World War II.” Even October’s horrors haven’t moved them “one millimeter from their conviction that the biggest problem is that there’s no State of Palestine for the very people who conducted these atrocities. Don’t forget,” she pointed out, “85% of the Palestinians, not only in Gaza, but in Judea and Samaria as well, support what happened on October 7th. Over 90% of Palestinians said that they are more proud to be Palestinians today than they ever were before October 7th. So these are the people that the White House thinks need to have a sovereign state.”

AUTHOR

Suzanne Bowdey

Suzanne Bowdey serves as editorial director and senior writer at The Washington Stand.

RELATED ARTICLE: Biden betrayal is unparalleled in history

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EDITORS NOTE: This Washington Stand column is republished with permission. All rights reserved. ©2024 Family Research Council.


The Washington Stand is Family Research Council’s outlet for news and commentary from a biblical worldview. The Washington Stand is based in Washington, D.C. and is published by FRC, whose mission is to advance faith, family, and freedom in public policy and the culture from a biblical worldview. We invite you to stand with us by partnering with FRC.

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No-Bid Contracts Inflate Cost to Massachusetts Taxpayers of Feeding Illegal Aliens

By The Daily Signal

Most hardworking Americans can’t afford to spend $21 to $31 on dinner every day. If they did, they’d likely expect to get steak or lobster for their money.

Yet that’s exactly how much the state of Massachusetts is spending to feed homeless migrants, according to WBZ-TV CBS Boston. The state isn’t even getting its money’s worth: The meals include spaghetti and hot dogs or rice with a single chicken drumstick.

The $21 meals come from the Fairfield Inn Boston Dedham, where the state is paying $180 a day to house homeless families and migrants—even though advertisements show hotel rooms start at $129.

Lunch costs $16, but a family interviewed by CBS Boston said it contains “nothing edible,” such as soup with “just bones” in it.

Taxpayers will spend a total of $7.3 million to feed families at the Fairfield Inn.

It’s part of 17 state contracts worth $116 million that Massachusetts signed to provide free housing to migrants in hotels and motels through June, according to records obtained by CBS Boston. Nine of those, including the Fairfield Inn, are for hotels owned by Giri Hotel Management, which will make $46 million from taxpayers.

When the state hired its own catering companies for migrants instead of relying on hotels, it still overspent. Massachusetts signed a $10 million contract with Spinelli Ravioli Manufacturing Co. through a no-bid process that did not ask other vendors to provide cheaper food.

The state told CBS Boston that the ravioli contract, which ended in March, was justified by the “unprecedented increased demand” for food.

In addition to the hotel expenses, Massachusetts spends about $75 million every month on 7,500 migrant families living in state-run emergency shelters.

Gov. Maura Healey, a Democrat, signed a supplemental budget in March that spends $840 million over the next two years for the migrant crisis.

That still wasn’t enough. The federal government agreed in April to help Massachusetts by using Medicaid funds, which Axios Boston says could cost $647.5 million over the next four years.

State Sen. Peter Durant, a Republican, told CBS Boston of the hotel contracts, “This is something that we have been asking the administration for information on, for the better part of a year and have been stonewalled on the information.”

Something is amiss when taxpayers are spending more to feed those in emergency housing than to feed their own children.

The #WasteOfTheDay is brought to you by the forensic auditors at OpenTheBooks.com.

Originally published at RealClearInvestigations.com

AUTHOR

Adam Andrzejewski

Adam Andrzejewski is the CEO and founder of OpenTheBooks.com, a government watchdog organization working to capture and disclose spending at every level online.

RELATED ARTICLE: Biden’s Indifference to Americans’ Plight of Soaring Food Prices Is Appalling

EDITORS NOTE: This Daily Signal column is republished with permission. ©All rights reserved.

Welcome to the ‘Parent Revolution’

By Gabriella Hoffman

As conservatives, we aren’t naturally inclined to support and endorse revolutions. These movements are bloody, undemocratic, and often result in less freedom and more tyranny. Personally speaking, I have generational trauma from the Bolshevik Revolution’s lasting impacts on my family, particularly under evil dictator Joseph Stalin, so I generally balk at the term.

But there is one revolution, so to speak, I’m happy to lend my support behind: the non-violent, impactful, burgeoning “parent revolution” taking hold here in the U.S.

School choice advocate Corey DeAngelis has a namesake new book out this week, The Parent Revolution: Rescuing Your Kids from the Radicals Ruining Our Schools, that is essential reading. It’s a nice follow-up to Mediocrity – which he co-wrote and published with Connor Boyack last April.

Education has taken a slight backseat to the economy, inflation, and immigration ahead of the 2024 election but is still a Top 5 issue. But with 11 states now embracing universal school choice and countless recent elections – including Texas legislature primaries – being decided on school choice, DeAngelis’ book is very timely. It warns about the need to hold corrupt teachers’ unions and woke educators accountable for their misdeeds. 

He first dedicates the book to Randi Weingarten– the odious president of the American Federation of Teachers–and her union cronies. The dedication reads like this, “Thank you for overplaying your hand, showing your true colors, and sparking The Parent Revolution.” But he also praises empowered parents who now comprise the “parent revolution.”

He explains how Randi and her ilk, or “the government’s stormtroopers” – awoke the sleeping giant during the COVID-19 pandemic by prolonging school closures using faulty science and waging defamatory campaigns against parents, whom they actually report to because they dared question their actions. Schools going virtual, he argues, was a hidden blessing as parents, previously oblivious to shocking classroom curriculum and questionable lectures, saw firsthand the far-left and Marxist lessons their kids were being inculcated with. Who could forget the National School Boards Association (NSBA) sending a memo to Attorney General Merrick Garland to label and target concerned parents as “domestic terrorists”? That is one of the lowest points in American politics ever observed. Thanks to widespread backlash, the NSBA was forced to apologize. This resulted in many affiliates–26–pulling out or disassociating with the organization, thanks to folks like DeAngelis who amplified the story.

With the “parent revolution” in full swing, DeAngelis praises the new special interest group to be reckoned with. He also recognizes them notably taking charge ahead of the 2021 Virginia gubernatorial election. The oft-discussed blunder by former Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe – who famously blurted “I don’t think parents should be telling schools what they should teach” – propelled now-Governor Glenn Youngkin (R-VA) into office. This, the author writes, was a turning point. But it didn’t stop there.

Between 2022-2023, school choice reforms were introduced and largely passed across a bevy of states. And Dozens of school board positions have been flipped due to concerned parents getting into a fight. DeAngelis is optimistic the momentum by parents will continue–especially if there’s a second Trump administration come January 2025.

While Corey primarily targets Democrats and their hypocrisy, he doesn’t let weakened Republicans off the hook either. He details how Twitter is his outlet of choice to call out reluctant GOP elected officials, especially those cozied up with unions, for not being attuned to the party’s pro-parent agenda. This often results in him getting blocked, he quips. But on two occasions, he recalls how he convinced two stubborn Oklahoma Republicans to switch their votes in favor of school choice legislation. DeAngelis also doesn’t shy away from elevating pro-school choice candidates either now that his organization, American Federation for Children, has a political action committee (PAC).

Due to his efficacy and boldness, DeAngelis is sought after by media outlets and elected officials for bill signings, photo ops, and legislative hearings. Last night, my organization – Independent Women’s Forum – honored him with the Education Freedom Center Students Over Systems Award. Former President Donald J. Trump, coincidentally enough, endorsed Corey’s book on his Truth Social platform Wednesday evening, writing, “Corey DeAngelis is a FIGHTER for Parental Rights. His new book, The Parent Revolution, is a great guide to help Moms and Dads take back control of their children’s education from the RADICAL MARXISTS ruining our schools.”

No matter your feelings on 45, if he’s praising Corey and his invaluable work, you should take notice.

Readers will appreciate DeAngelis’ personal connection to school choice. He, too, benefitted from this program while growing up in San Antonio, Texas, and credits a magnet school for changing his life. Soon, the self-described school choice evangelist and his wife will welcome their first child, a daughter, and join the “parent revolution” in due time.

If you support school choice and parent’s rights, get a copy of The Parent Revolution today.

*****

This article was published by The Independent Women’s Forum and is reproduced with permission.

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Take the Government Out of GDP

By Peter Earle and Thomas Savidge

Editors’ Note: a substantial portion of what Bidenonmics calls “growth”, is the growth of government, an unproductive part of the economy.  A better read on the economy can be had by removing government and seeing how the productive part of the economy is faring. The picture is not healthy as a combination of increased regulation and taxes has descended on the economy like a plague of locusts.

With the release of the 2024 Q1 Gross Domestic Product (GDP) data by the Bureau of Economic Analysis, the question of economic growth is on many minds. Real GDP growth slowed to an increase of 1.6 percent from a year ago, lagging well behind the 2.4 percent projection. The BEA commented that the increase is due to “consumer spending, residential fixed investment, nonresidential fixed investment, and state and local government spending that were partly offset by a decrease in private inventory investment” as well as an increase in imports. It is important to note here that the increase in state and local government spending came from an increase in government employee compensation, meaning taxpayers are getting the same government services as last year at a higher cost. 

The nominal GDP equation used by the Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA) goes as follows:

Y = C + I + G + NX

Where Y is GDP or output, C is gross private consumption, I is gross private domestic investment, G is government consumption expenditures and gross investment, and NX is net exports. A common mistake, however, is that GDP gets treated as a simple accounting identity, whereby any increase on the right-hand side of the ledger must mean an increase in nominal output. That is not necessarily the case.

This analysis aims to look at how the economy is performing without government spending muddying the water. Our aim is to examine the “Gross Domestic Private Product” (GDP excluding government purchases) based on the work of economists such as Robert HiggsRyan McMaken, and Matthew Mitchell using updated data from the BEA.

GDP vs GDPP: Examining the Data

We utilize the data from the BEA website, specifically from the “National Income and Product Accounts” table, in addition to Table 1.1.6 (Real Gross Domestic Product, Billions of Chained 2017 Dollars). To calculate GDPP, we subtract the G  (“Government consumption expenditures and gross investment”) variable from total GDP. Note that G does not include transfer payments, such as Social Security (because Social Security or Unemployment Insurance consumption is counted towards private spending). While the average percentage of G is 25.7 percent for 1950-2023, 28.8 percent for 1950-1999, and 19.2 percent for 2000-2023, total government spending (including transfer payments) as a percentage of GDP is much higher than the variable G. This also does not consider the impact of government debt, which generates a significant level of drag on economic growth.

In previous analyses, the BEA provided inflation-adjusted numbers in chained 2009 dollars. Starting in 2018, the BEA replaced real GDP estimates in chained 2009 dollars with real GDP in chained 2017 dollars. While the BEA did not provide specific reasons for why they chose 2017 as the new base year for chained dollars, typically such adjustments are made for changes in the relative importance of certain goods and services (weighting), new data methodologies, and/or the diminishing relevance of legacy data. Despite the change in base year, however, we see similar results to the analysis provided by McMacken in 2017 using chained 2009 dollars. Like Higgs and McMacken, we use BEA Table 1.1.6.

McMaken’s findings in 2017 still hold true today: gross domestic private product growth has slumped. When comparing the average annual growth rate before and after 2000, we see a slump in the average annual growth rate. The figure below shows that the average annual growth rate of GDPP prior to 2000 was 3.63 percent while the post-2000 average was 2.34 percent. While not the stark 50 percent difference shown in McMaken’s analysis (due to data and methodological updates), GDPP has still been growing 35 percent slower per year since the start of the new millennium.

In Mitchell’s 2010 paper, he also compares these growth rates to the growth rates of the US government. Those charts have been recreated below, covering the same period as the figure above. The average annual growth rates are calculated based on the chained 2017-dollar amounts. (Federal totals include both defense and nondefense spending.)

Note that in both time periods government consumption expenditures and gross investment have consistently outpaced private sector growth. State and local governments in particular have outpaced private sector growth. Mitchell notes, and we concur, that the increase in federal transfers has played a direct and substantial role in the rapid growth of state and local governments. Although not directly measured in the BEA estimates, these transfers have allowed state and local governments to increase spending in other areas because they can rely on federal transfers to fund a significant portion of their budget.

As we noted recently, the dependence of US states upon federal funds has increased at an alarming rate. When federal policymakers inevitably make cuts to those state and local transfers, state and local governments are faced with making large, sometimes unexpected tax hikes and spending cuts to fill funding gaps. And while the federal government has states increasingly dependent upon those transfers, it has the power to exert control over state and local policy, using funding to influence policy that effectively generates an end-run on Congress and the legislative process. And when states face fiscal crises for their unsustainable budget policies, gross domestic private product suffers. The ensuing debt restructuring process drives families and businesses to flee the states in crisis, not only shrinking private investment and consumption but giving rise to an increasing number, and level, of taxation.

GDP vs GDPP Over the Business Cycle

Also noted by McMaken, the difference between GDP and GDPP helps analyze the business cycle. The figure below shows the year-over-year changes in quarterly GDP and GDPP.

We find that GDPP has year-over-year rates of increase larger than GDP (note again that this excludes government transfer payments). Additionally, GDPP falls more than GDP before recessions. While McMaken remained pessimistic about 2016, we do see a recovery up until the COVID-19 pandemic. The massive increase in 2021 followed by the slump in 2022 is emblematic of government-induced booms from massive government spending and historically expansionary monetary policy programs.

As mentioned earlier, Q1 2024 GDP estimates fell below projections. As expected, GDPP rose in tandem with GDP. The BEA release states that the decrease in inventory investment (one of the causes of GDP coming in below projections) “reflected decreases in wholesale trade and manufacturing.” The increase in consumer spending was also “partly offset by a decrease in goods,” all contributing to slow GDPP growth.

Understanding the Cost of Government

Many people believe that government spending can jump start or boost economic growth. The multiplier effect is a cornerstone of most macroeconomic classes. Yet the embrace of the concept suffers from the classic error of Frederic Bastiat’s Broken Window Fallacy in his equally famous work, What is Seen and What is Not Seen. In it, Bastiat tells a parable of a shopkeeper’s window being broken by his son. Onlookers comfort the store owner, asking, “What would happen to the glassmakers if no window were ever broken?” Sure, the glassmaker is now six francs richer because of the broken window (“What is seen”) but the cost to the shopkeeper is the next highest-valued use of those six francs (“What is not seen”).

In the private sector, wealth is created through voluntary exchange. Two or more parties come together voluntarily and exchange goods or services that of equal or comparable value, benefitting all parties involved. As the late economist Walter Williams put it, “With the rise of capitalism, it became possible to amass great wealth by serving and pleasing one’s fellow man. Capitalists seek to discover what people want and then produce and market it as efficiently as possible as a means to wealth.”

Government spending, on the other hand, is not a peaceful or voluntary exchange, whatever narratives attempt to frame it as such. Tax revenues are harvested from private citizens by means of coercion and extractive measures. If citizens do not comply and pay their taxes, they face fines and jail time. Paying taxes to remain free of incarceration or not face withering financial penalties is hardly indicative of cooperative exchange.

The economist James Buchanan noted that when governments decide to finance spending by taking on debt, the effects are two-fold. First, private investors purchasing government debt comes at the cost of whatever other projects investors might have otherwise invested in or provided financing for. As Buchanan put it, spending that is funded by debt is “in effect chopping up the apple trees for firewood, thereby reducing the yield of the orchard forever.” Debt-financed spending also shifts tax burdens from present to future generations. While bond investors trust that their loan will be paid back with interest, future generations will bear the cost of the government spending undertaken today. 

With many Americans still feeling the sting of the current tax season, now is an especially pertinent time to reflect on how much money they’ve sent to the government: not only on April 15th, but throughout the year via withholdings, sales taxes, and other takings. Readers should ask themselves, “What could I have done with the money I paid to the government?” And even if one was fortunate enough to receive a refund, all they’ve done is extend an interest-free loan. What might have been done with the monies that were withheld?

Our goal in examining GDPP is to get readers thinking about the “unseen” costs of government and unraveling how much the US government costs private sector growth.

*****

This article was published by The American Institute For Economic Research and is reproduced with permission.

TAKE ACTION

The Prickly Pear’s TAKE ACTION focus this year is to help achieve a winning 2024 national and state November 5th election with the removal of the Biden/Obama leftist executive branch disaster, win one U.S. Senate seat, maintain and win strong majorities in all Arizona state offices on the ballot and to insure that unrestricted abortion is not constitutionally embedded in our laws and culture.

Please click the TAKE ACTION link to learn to do’s and don’ts for voting in 2024. Our state and national elections are at great risk from the very aggressive and radical leftist Democrat operatives with documented rigging, mail-in voter fraud and illegals voting across the country (yes, with illegals voting across the country) in the last several election cycles.

Read Part 1 and Part 2 of The Prickly Pear essays entitled How NOT to Vote in the November 5, 2024 Election in Arizona to be well informed of the above issues and to vote in a way to ensure the most likely chance your vote will be counted and counted as you intend.

Please click the following link to learn more.

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Creating So Many Jobs that Destroy Wealth

By Gary M. Galles

When Americans face an intense, hyper-partisan Presidential election, every labor market report becomes fodder for Administration claims of what great managers of the economy they are and counter-claims of how misleading such stewardship claims are.

Of late, such dueling narratives have featured issues such as the seven-digit (and growing) difference between the official employment rate and the lower employment rate implied by the household unemployment survey, whether growing official employment has not meant more full-time jobs for American citizens because of sharply increasing employment of immigrants, and how the reduction of hours worked by full-time workers and the shift from full-time to part-time work has resulted in less labor services rendered even when official employment increases.

Of particular interest to me lately has been the large fraction of jobs that have been “created” in government. While it hasn’t got much attention in (reflexively pro-Biden) mainstream media, some more careful observers are noticing. For example, last month, Ryan McMaken published a piece in Mises Wire titled “Employment Falls for the Third Month In Spite of 50,000 New Government Jobs,” which noted that “the growth in government jobs makes up about 20 percent of all new jobs.” This month, the Wall Street Journal had an editorial titled “The Government-Spending Jobs Boom,” noting that “more than half of the new jobs last month were in government, health care and social assistance” (the latter two areas relying on “transfer payments from government”).

The reason this issue is so important is that government spending doesn’t really create jobs, but instead moves them from where people themselves would have chosen to where the government dictates by way of its tax, spending, and regulatory policies. And the distinction between creating jobs and moving jobs makes a substantial difference, given that there are almost 3 million federal employees and roughly 20 million state and local government employees in America (13 percent of total jobs). That substitution means that many of the jobs created directly or indirectly by government policies impose net costs on society rather than producing benefits, which worsens rather than improves Americans’ wellbeing.

The most obvious illustrations come from the vast (and getting vaster) crazy-quilt of federal executive agencies, mandates, regulations, etc. But those are piled upon mountains of state and local interventions (or is it vice versa?) for “good” measure (at least if you are mistakenly looking up antonyms for the term rather than synonyms). Peaceful wealth creation arises from voluntary agreements among people, but the primary activity of the regulatory state is often to interfere with mutually productive jobs, undermining social coordinationand destroying wealth. Imposing added constraints on voluntary productive arrangements does create some jobs, but that acts as a massive regulatory tax on jobs that benefit other people.

Professors Susan Dudley and Melinda Warren have studied federal regulatory agencies that explicitly restrict private sector transactions. They found 277,000 such regulators in 2015 (substantially larger than General Motors’ worldwide workforce) and an 18-fold increase in those agencies’ inflation-adjusted budgets since 1960, to over $57 billion (in 2009 dollars).

More recently, The American Action Forum reported that Biden administration agencies “published $875.3 billion in total costs and added 4.7 million annual paperwork burden hours” in just one week last month, “just $20 billion less than what President Obama did in two terms,” which its president Douglas Holtz Eakin called “simply a jaw-dropping regulatory blitz.”

Forcible federal interventions often lead to multiplier effects on state and local government employment as well (even if not the Keynesian multiplier effects students hear about in macroeconomics courses). Further, interventions at all those levels also create private sector jobs to comply with the growing extent of their dictation. Many human resources and health care industry jobs, for example, were created to comply with Obamacare, and the mushrooming of Medicaid since then. But for ill-advised programs and restrictions, such jobs can create costs rather than benefits for society.

The sharp increase in government’s “Peter-Paul” (robbing Peter to pay Paul) approach evident in almost every area of public policy also multiplies into more lobbyists being hired to help special interests benefit at others’ expense. Others, in turn, are forced to hire more of their own in self-defense, to combat the extent of robbery they will be forced to bear. The expanded fight to control federal government theft has created a booming job market in the influence industry, which has dramatically stimulated the economy in Washington, DC, but destroyed wealth for people everywhere else in a massive negative-sum game.

Similarly, when laws or rules of questionable constitutionality or legality are promulgated (as with the Biden Administration’s environmental and education policies), it increases the number of lawyers and legal resources the government employs. It also increases the number employed by those who would be abused. Such opposition can be one of the most valuable investments for Americans in stopping such inroads on people’s rights, but even fighting them to a standstill leaves Americans worse off than if those overstepping initiatives had not been advanced in the first place.

While there are many words being exchanged in the battle over President Biden’s job creation “achievements,” and more to come before November (at least to the extent that the media’s cone of silence in Biden’s defense can be evaded), there is one area in which he has dramatically over-achieved. He has created lots of jobs in government (as well as in government compliance) that undermine our private efforts whose mutual gains are guaranteed by the need to get all parties whose rights are involved to agree to them. In the process he has expanded the government further into areas in which we have no such protections from it. But such over-achievement is diametrically opposed to what our founders understood (from John Locke) to be the main reason for government — to better protect all of our rights and property from invasion. And we would do well to remember that “creating” such jobs may pump up the employment numbers for Biden’s re-election chances, but they inhibit rather than increase our well-being.

*****

This article was published by  The American Institute For Economic Research and is reproduced with permission.

TAKE ACTION

The Prickly Pear’s TAKE ACTION focus this year is to help achieve a winning 2024 national and state November 5th election with the removal of the Biden/Obama leftist executive branch disaster, win one U.S. Senate seat, maintain and win strong majorities in all Arizona state offices on the ballot and to insure that unrestricted abortion is not constitutionally embedded in our laws and culture.

Please click the TAKE ACTION link to learn to do’s and don’ts for voting in 2024. Our state and national elections are at great risk from the very aggressive and radical leftist Democrat operatives with documented rigging, mail-in voter fraud and illegals voting across the country (yes, with illegals voting across the country) in the last several election cycles.

Read Part 1 and Part 2 of The Prickly Pear essays entitled How NOT to Vote in the November 5, 2024 Election in Arizona to be well informed of the above issues and to vote in a way to ensure the most likely chance your vote will be counted and counted as you intend.

Please click the following link to learn more.

Obama State Department blocked FBI from arresting people illegally in the U.S. who were aiding Iran’s nuke program thumbnail

Obama State Department blocked FBI from arresting people illegally in the U.S. who were aiding Iran’s nuke program

By Jihad Watch

The traitor class has been in power in Washington for quite some time.

Obama State Department blocked FBI from arresting supporters of Iran nuclear program in US: Emails

by Brooke Singman, Fox News, May 22, 2024:

EXCLUSIVE: The Obama-Biden State Department “actively interfered” to prevent the FBI from executing arrest warrants on individuals illegally in the United States who were allegedly supporting Iranian financial efforts to develop weapons of mass destruction, whistleblowers told Sens. Chuck Grassley and Ron Johnson.

Fox News Digital obtained letters Grassley, R-Iowa, and Johnson, R-Wis., sent to Secretary of State Antony Blinken, FBI Director Christopher Wray, and Attorney General Merrick Garland on the matter.

The Obama-Biden administration began its Joint Plan of Action, which served as the negotiating process for the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), also known as the Iran Nuclear Deal, that was signed by then-President Obama in 2015. At the time, Obama said broader sanctions would remain in place, which the administration would “continue to enforce… vigorously.”

The United States, for decades during both Republican and Democratic administrations, imposed sanctions on “Iranian individuals, companies, and organizations for involvement in nuclear proliferation, ballistic missile development, support for terrorist groups, and human rights abuses.”

But Grassley and Johnson received unclassified and legally protected whistleblower disclosures which they say show that “while the Obama-Biden administration publicly committed to ‘preventing Iran from acquiring nuclear weapons by raising the cost of Iran’s defiance of the international community,’ then-Secretary of State John Kerry actively interfered with the Federal Bureau of Investigation executing arrest warrants on individuals in the U.S. illegally supporting Iranian efforts, including financial efforts, to develop weapons of mass destruction and its ballistic missile program.”

The records, according to the senators, show that the Justice Department and FBI leadership, including then-Attorney General Loretta Lynch and then-FBI Director James Comey “failed to take the necessary steps to stop Kerry’s obstructive efforts against law enforcement.”

One email — an unclassified FBI email from August 25, 2017 — detailed at least eight instances connected to the Iran nuclear deal where “the FBI/DOJ/USG could have moved forward with the cases but the State Department chose to block them.”…

Continue reading.

AUTHOR

ROBERT SPENCER

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Hezbollah Wants to Flood Europe with Syrians Now in Lebanon

American Muslims for Palestine top dog: ‘We are going to change this country forever’

France: Muslim organized criminal acts from prison cell, said ‘On the Qur’an of Mecca, wallah, you will respect me’

France: Muslim migrant, convicted ten times before, threatens to kill cops, gets psychiatric assessment

Indonesia: Muslim local official and his family disrupt Christian worship in area of Java island

PA’s Mahmoud Al-Habbash: ‘Oct. 7 can repeat itself 100 times, and perhaps even more seriously’

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