Florida: Former Democrat now Republican U.S. Senate candidate was convicted of check fraud

After I ran a U.S. Senate campaign and assisted in two Gubernatorial and two Congressional campaigns, U.S. Senate Candidate A. Lateresa Jones (R) asked for my help.

I agreed and met with her, her Campaign Manager, her Political Director and her bodyguard in Pensacola.

After the meet and greet I went home and conducted my due diligence here is what I found out:

  1. She was convicted of check fraud and served 2 months in jail in Denton Texas.
  2. She was a life long Democrat who recently changed to the Republican Party – an Obama supporter.
  3. She was using her campaign managers and political directors credit cards to fund her campaign without filing any expenditures with the Federal Election Committee (FEC) – no records shown.
  4. She shows only $100 in contributions.
  5. Her Campaign Manager and Political Director have just resigned after U.S. Senate Candidate Jones refused to refund them their out of pocket costs.
  6. The end of the quarter FEC filing closes the middle of this month – if no expenditures are posted for her campaign showing how her campaign is funded I’m filing charges with the FEC against her.

The integrity of the political process will be adhered to in order to protect the U.S. Constitution and the Republican Party.

I helped dismantle and expose Charlie Crist – assisting in his removal from the GOP and others – I look forward to continue the process of draining the swamp – God Bless America.

EDITORS NOTE: The author of this column Geoff Ross is a Senior Chief US Navy (Retired) and is a Republican Candidate for County Commissioner in District 1. – Santa Rosa County, Florida in 2020. The featured image of U.S. Senate Candidate Lateresa Jones (R) is courtesy of Lateresa Jones.

How an Obscure Author Made Chappaquiddick a National Story

If anyone ever truly deserved a Profiles in Courage Award, it was the late Leo Damore, the author of the book “Senatorial Privilege: The Chappaquiddick Cover-Up.

Of course, the awards are handed out by the Kennedy family, and they are all about not courage, but political correctness. But no one can dispute the fact that Damore put himself and his career on the line to write this book, and that one way or another, he paid the ultimate price—as a suicide, in 1995, at the age of 65.

I met Damore in 1994, on the 25th anniversary of Chappaquiddick. I was doing my radio show from the cottage on Chappaquiddick, and I booked some of the surviving principals.

Only Damore asked for money—$100. Every time I spoke to him, he seemed nervous, agitated. The day after the show he telephoned again, begging me to send him the money ASAP, which I did.

Fifteen months later, Damore was depressed and broke, about to be evicted from his rented house in Essex, Connecticut. As a visiting nurse and a constable (who was there to serve the eviction notice) looked on in horror, Damore pulled out a gun and shot himself in the head.

Sen. Ted Kennedy, D-Mass., died of brain cancer in 2009, at the age of 77. In his later years, it was considered bad form to even mention Chappaquiddick in polite company. Teddy himself seemed oblivious to the scandal—he named his last dog Splash.

The Kennedys’ official fanzine has always been The Boston Globe. Every sixth year, when he was running for re-election, the Globe would run stories about how Teddy was “turning his life around,” and how in an amazing feat of self-discipline, he had totally sworn off alcohol until his birthday—Feb. 22. On the day after Chappaquiddick, the Globe ran a front-page headline saying, “Senator Wandered in Daze for Hours.”

In 2003, the Globe perfectly summed up the mainstream media’s revisionist take on Chappaquiddick: “If she had lived, Mary Jo Kopechne would be 62 years old. Through his tireless work as a legislator, Edward Kennedy would have brought comfort to her in her old age.”

In 2015, the Edward M. Kennedy Institute for the U.S. Senate opened in Dorchester. One of its exhibits is titled the “Senate Immersion Module.” Immersion—you can’t make this stuff up.

Near the end of his life, in 2009, Teddy wrote a sorrowful letter to Pope Benedict XVI:

I have always tried to be a faithful Catholic, Your Holiness, though I have fallen short through human failings … I know that I have been an imperfect human being but with the help of my faith, I have tried to right my path.

Then he added, in a somewhat incongruous attempt at penance, “I have worked to welcome the immigrant.”

Somehow I don’t think Teddy was referring to Damore.

Few of the principals ever talked about what happened. The prosecutor, Walter Steele, was quickly appointed to a state judgeship—another nationwide search, as we say in Massachusetts.

As a judge, his most famous case involved allowing a convicted child predator to leave the state without restrictions, after which the offender moved to Montana and then murdered and cannibalized a 7-year-old boy.

When Steele reached the mandatory retirement age of 70 in 1996, the local New Bedford paper ran a story about him without a single mention of Chappaquiddick. But Steele did obliquely mention the difficulty of explaining to victims and their survivors how sometimes an obviously guilty party gets off scot-free: “It’s awful hard to explain to them that you think you’re doing justice.”

Do you think the Kopechnes would have understood what Steele was getting at?

The boiler-room girls you will soon be reading about have maintained omerta—silence—for almost half a century. But as Damore notes in Chapter 54, on the fifth anniversary of Mary Jo’s death in 1974, Rosemary “Cricket” Keough did issue the following terse statement: “My friend Mary Jo just happened to be in the wrong car at the wrong time with the wrong people.”

In a strange way, Damore’s life turned out like Mary Jo’s—“Senatorial Privilege,” now retitled as “Chappaquiddick: Power, Privilege, and the Ted Kennedy Cover-Up” is an unforgettable book, muckraking in the best sense of the word. But for Damore personally, it was the wrong book at the wrong time about the wrong people, and it cost him his life.

But at least we still have his book—and the truth.

This partial excerpt of the foreword by Howie Carr has been republished with permission from Leo Damore’s “Chappaquiddick: Power, Privilege, and the Ted Kennedy Cover-Up” (Regnery Publishing, 2018).

COMMENTARY BY

Portrait of Howie Carr

Howie Carr is a New York Times bestselling author, a Boston Herald columnist, and a syndicated talk radio host. He has chronicled Ted Kennedy’s career for 30 years in the Herald and in his own book, “Kennedy Babylon.” Twitter: .

RELATED ARTICLES:

Chappaquiddick: Power, Privilege, and the Ted Kennedy Cover-Up” (Regnery Publishing, 2018)

‘Chappaquiddick’ Depicts a Ted Kennedy Marked by Complexity and Guilt

The Shadow: a Review of “Chappaquiddick”

Dear Readers:

With the recent conservative victories related to tax cuts, the Supreme Court, and other major issues, it is easy to become complacent.

However, the liberal Left is not backing down. They are rallying supporters to advance their agenda, moving this nation further from the vision of our founding fathers.

If we are to continue to bring this nation back to our founding principles of limited government and fiscal conservatism, we need to come together as a group of likeminded conservatives.

This is the mission of The Heritage Foundation. We want to continue to develop and present conservative solutions to the nation’s toughest problems. And we cannot do this alone.

We are looking for a select few conservatives to become a Heritage Foundation member. With your membership, you’ll qualify for all associated benefits and you’ll help keep our nation great for future generations.

ACTIVATE YOUR MEMBERSHIP TODAY

FBI Seizes Website Linked to Sex Trafficking — Owners Donated to Hillary and Pelosi

The Daily Wire’s Ryan Saavedra in a column titled “FBI Seizes Website Linked To Sex Crimes; Owners Donated To Democrats” reports:

On Friday, the U.S. government seized Backpage.com as part of a law enforcement action by the FBI and other law enforcement agencies after the site came under intense legal scrutiny for allegations of facilitating sex trafficking and underage prostitution.

An FBI official said that there was “law enforcement activity” at the home of Michael Lacey, one of the website’s founders, at his home in Arizona, Reuters reported. The seizure banner on the website stated:

backpage.com and affiliated websites have been seized as part of an enforcement action by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the U.S. Postal Inspection Service, and the Internal Revenue Service Criminal Investigation Division, with analytical assistance from the Joint Regional Intelligence Center.

Other agencies participating in and supporting the enforcement action include the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Arizona, the U.S. Department of Justice’s Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section, the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Central District of California, the office of the California Attorney General, and the office of the Texas Attorney General.

[ … ]

The owners of the website have given tens of thousands of dollars to Democrats in recent years, including a Super PAC backed by House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, the failed presidential campaign of Hillary Clinton, Democratic candidate for governor in Arizona David Garcia, and the Arizona Democratic Party.

Read Saavedra’s full article here.

Victory for Religious Liberty in the U.S. Air Force!

AFA urged supporters to sign a petition to reverse Obama’s hostility toward Christians in the Air Force, and the voice of AFA supporters made a difference.

Over 50,000 supporters signed the AFA petition urging Air Force Secretary Heather Wilson to restore the religious liberty of U.S. Air Force Col. Leland Bohannon.

Col. Leland Bohannon was asked in May 2017 to sign a “certificate of spouse appreciation” for a retiring master sergeant in a same-sex “marriage.”

As a devout Christian, Bohannon refused to sign the document stating it would violate his religious belief of marriage being between one man and one woman. As a result, the Air Force suspended the colonel and effectively ended his career.

As a result, “Bohannon was relieved of command. Additionally, a letter sent by a superior officer recommended against Bohannon’s promotion to brigadier general, effectively ending his career.”

But Col. Bohannon’s religious liberty was restored after an appeal to the Air Force Review Boards Agency. Secretary Wilson announced Monday that the Agency ruled in favor of the religious liberty of the colonel saying:

The director [of the Agency] concluded that Colonel Bohannon had the right to exercise his sincerely held religious beliefs and did not unlawfully discriminate when he declined to sign the certificate of appreciation for the same sex spouse of an Airman in his command. (Emphasis added.)

This is a tremendous victory for religious liberty in President Donald Trump’s administration and in the armed services. The glory for the success belongs to God alone.

Christians who work together and stand for righteousness can make a difference.

If our mission resonates with you, please consider supporting our work financially with a tax-deductible donation. The easiest way to do that is through online giving. It is easy to use, and most of all, it is secure.

Air Force Throttles back War on Faith

For combat pilot Leland Bohannon, it’s been a turbulent year. One promotion shy of his first general’s star, the Air Force colonel watched his 24-year career flash before his eyes last May when he was asked to sign a certificate of appreciation for a same-sex couple. When his religious accommodation wasn’t granted, Bohannon asked a higher-ranking officer to sign it instead. Now, months after wondering if he’d ever be able to return to the military he loved, Air Force Secretary Heather Wilson gave him the answer he’d been waiting for: yes.For Bohannon, who’d been grounded, suspended, and virtually guaranteed that he’d never be promoted for his beliefs on marriage, the news of his reinstatement was almost as shocking as his temporary dismissal. As most service members understand all too well, religious hostility in the military didn’t disappear when Barack Obama did. President Trump has had to walk a long and determined road to weed out the bureaucrats still loyal to the intolerance of the last administration. And thankfully, he has leaders like Air Force Secretary Heather Wilson to help him do it.

Wilson had been clear before she was confirmed: “Air Force policy must continue to ensure that all Airmen are able to choose to practice their particular religion.” This week, she proved it — vindicating Bohannon and creating an important precedent for other branch leaders to follow. As our own Lt. General Jerry Boykin points out, that was no easy task. An Equal Opportunity investigator had already determined Bohannon was guilty of discrimination, even after his request for a religious accommodation.

“When you overrule an inspector general or independent investigator, that’s a big deal,” General Boykin insisted. “That takes a lot of time and a lot of nerve. It’s very rare.” Still, Wilson had plenty of motivation to try. Eight senators had called on the Air Force to stop punishing Bohannon’s beliefs, along with House Armed Services members like Reps. Vicky Hartzler (R-Mo.) and Doug Lamborn (R-Colo.). In December, supporters of FRC and American Family Association piled on, giving Wilson 77,024 reasons to reconsider the attack on this airman’s faith. “We not only delivered 77,024 petitions,” General Boykin said, “we delivered a message: We will not back down from defending the religious liberty of those in the military.”

Message received. “The Air Force places a high value on the rights of its members to observe the tenets of their respective religions or to observe no religion at all,” Wilson explained in a letter to House and Senate leaders, absolving the colonel of wrongdoing. “…Colonel Bohannon had the right to exercise his sincerely held religious beliefs and did not unlawfully discriminate when he declined to sign the certificate of appreciation for the same-sex spouse of an Airman in his command,” the secretary went on. “The Air Force has a duty to treat people fairly and without discrimination on the basis of race, color, sex, national origin, or sexual orientation and (Bohannon) met that duty by having a more senior officer sign the certificate,” she concluded.

For our friends at First Liberty Institute, who represented Bohannon, it was cause to celebrate – not just for this colonel, but for the thousands of men and women who are witnessing this president’s commitment to religious liberty. “This is clear evidence that the Trump administration is helping to right the ship at the Pentagon,” attorney Hiram Sasser told Fox News’s Todd Starnes. No one should be forced to check their faith at the base’s gates.

So the next time you wonder if signing a petition or calling your congressman makes a difference, think of Colonel Bohannon. You have the power to help shape the direction of this country — use it!


Tony Perkins’ Washington Update is written with the aid of FRC senior writers.


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FBI Sister Wives: Noor Salman and Hillary Clinton

3.30.18: Noor Salman, wife of Pulse nightclub shooter Omar Mateen, was exonerated on all charges of aiding and abetting and obstruction of justice even though the jury was convinced she knew her husband was plotting the attack.

WHY?

The jury foreman in the case,

“I wish that the FBI had recorded their interviews with Ms. Salman as there were several significant inconsistencies with the written summaries of her statements. The bottom line is that, based on the letter of the law, and the detailed instructions provided by the court, we were presented with no option but to return a verdict of not guilty.”

WHAT?

The interviews were not recorded? Why not?

7.5.16: FBI director James Comey made three discrepant statements during his concluding press briefing remarks:

  • Although we did not find clear evidence that Secretary [Hillary] Clinton or her colleagues intended to violate laws governing the handling of classified information, there is evidence that they were extremely careless in their handling of very sensitive, highly classified information.”
  • “Although there is evidence of potential violations of the statutes regarding the handling of classified information, our judgment is that no reasonable prosecutor would bring such a case.” 
  • “In looking back at our investigations into mishandling or removal of classified information, we cannot find a case that would support bringing criminal charges on these facts. All the cases prosecuted involved some combination of: clearly intentional and willful mishandling of classified information; or vast quantities of materials exposed in such a way as to support an inference of intentional misconduct; or indications of disloyalty to the United States; or efforts to obstruct justice. We do not see those things here.”

REALLY?

The letter of the law exonerated the defendants in both cases? I don’t think so. In both cases the FBI failed to make its case. Is the FBI an organization of bunglers? Or has the FBI been so compromised and politicized by Obama and the Deep State that it failed its mission to protect the American people and uphold the Constitution?

Thanks to the persistence and perseverance of Tom Fitton, president of watchdog organization Judicial Watch, and Senator Ron Johnson (R-WI) we know that Comey’s original memo was altered. Comey’s draft read:

“There is evidence to support a conclusion that Secretary of State Clinton, and others, used the private email server in a manner that was grossly negligent with respect to the handling of classified information.”

Reference to Hillary Clinton’s illegal private email server were removed. Grossly negligent is a criminal offense – extremely careless is not. Of course the FBI could not find a single case to support bringing criminal charges! The altered language in Comey’s memo intentionally perverts the letter of the law to exonerate Hillary Clinton. Why?

Because bringing criminal charges against Hillary Clinton would expose Obama’s corrupt Justice Department including Loretta Lynch.

The FBI was called upon to investigate both Salman and Clinton. The FBI is not an organization of bunglers – far from it. But the FBI has been politicized beyond recognition by Obama and the Deep State. So what does absolving these two FBI sister wives accomplish?

Beyond protecting Obama and his administration absolution erodes public confidence in the FBI, the rule of law, and validates suspicions of a two-tier system of justice. When the rule of law breaks down, lawlessness follows, ultimately leading to anarchy. Anarchy is the goal of the Deep State because it provides the chaos necessary to nationalize the police force.

If you want to know the motive look at the result. The aftermath of the FBI investigations and sensationalized reporting of the Pulse nightclub massacre, Las Vegas shooting, and Parkland School shooting tragedies expose a principal objective of the Deep State – gun control. The current hysterical leftist cries for gun control are designed to leave the public disarmed and unable to protect itself from a nationalized police force.

The Deep State requires a disarmed public to implement its New World Order of one-world government – ruled by themselves, of course. President Trump’s America-First presidency, with its commitment to American sovereignty, has destabilized the Deep State. Obama, the primetime spokesman for the Deep State, promised to transform America. In 2008 most Americans had no idea that his promise was a pledge to socialize and then internationalize America into a New World Order ruled by globalist elites. Now we know.

The Deep State is populated by a species of politicians interbreeding and colluding to increase the population of their own breed of collectivism called globalism. Globalism is internationalized collectivism. A system of governance that denies national sovereignty, individual freedom, and ownership of personal property. Like socialism and communism, globalism promises social justice and economic equality. But just like socialism and communism, globalism will provide a three-tier infrastructure of enslavement.

At the tip of the pyramid will be the few globalist elite power brokers living in splendor who own everything and dispense goods and services as they deem appropriate – “for the public good,” of course. The second tier belongs to the globalist enforcers who implement the will of the elite and keep the population in line. The third tier is the pyramid’s enormous base and belongs to the enslaved population duped by promises of free stuff to surrender their individual freedom.

The promises of collectivism are never the reality of collectivism. They are the deceitful political promises of Ponzi-schemers conning the public to invest in their globalist pyramid.

The Washington Ponzi swamp is the habitat of the Deep State and the rivers that supply it have lettered names – FBI, CIA, DOJ and NSA. What the absolution of FBI sister wives Salman and Clinton reveal is that politicized government agencies do not support the United States Constitution and rule of law. They support the promises of Deep State pyramid schemers intending to bring Obama’s collectivism and one-world government to America.

EDITORS NOTE: This column originally appeared on the Goudsmit Pundicity. The featured image is by Greg Angel/Twitter.

The Controversy of the Cross

The latest episode of controversy over the public display of a cross was argued in the 4th Circuit Court of Appeals when the full court upheld an earlier ruling declaring the 40-foot-tall cross, known as the Peace Cross, as unconstitutional. Unless the Supreme Court intervenes, the memorial will have to come down.

The Peace Cross has stood in Prince George’s County, Maryland for nearly 100 years as a tribute to the 49 WWI veterans of the county who died during the war. The monument bears their names on the base along with the words “Valor,” “Endurance,” “Courage,” and “Devotion.” But in the growing tide of attacks on public symbols connected with Christianity, the American Humanist Association sued to have the cross removed, claiming the Latin cross is a violation of the First Amendment’s Establishment Clause.

In their 8-6 decision, the court agreed with the atheists, saying the cross is an unconstitutional endorsement of religion. Hopefully, this is not the end of the matter — and our friends at First Liberty, who are representing the American Legion in this case, will be able to make a case for the Peace Cross at the Supreme Court.

This ongoing conflict over the cross shouldn’t surprise us in the least. After all, there’s a reason that the cross is controversial. The cross symbolizes both the condemnation we are all under because of our sin, but at the same time, it offers the cure for sin.

Jesus spoke to both the purpose and the power of the cross in John 12:32, as He was eluding to His pending death on the cross, “And I, if I am lifted up from the earth, will draw all peoples to myself.”

Like the brass serpent that God instructed Moses in Numbers 21 to lift up in the wilderness, Christ is the cure for the condemnation our sin has brought upon us. The brass serpent, the divinely designed healing for those bitten by the snakes that were unleashed on the people because of their sin against God, was lifted up so that no matter where one of the children of Israel may have been in the camp, they could look up in faith and be healed. This elevation of the healing standard was a visual display of God’s mercy and grace.

In like manner, Christ was lifted up on the cross — and for those who will by faith, look up, they will, by God’s grace, find not the temporal deliverance from the physical death of a snake bite, but the deliverance from the consequence of sin, eternal damnation.

The cross is controversial because it is the path to peace. It was through the cross, Paul said, that Jesus “reconcile[d] all things to Himself, by Him, whether things on earth or things in heaven, having made peace through the blood of His cross.”

While the humanists and atheists fail in the majority of their challenges to the public display of religious symbols like the cross, don’t expect the conflict to subside. In fact, expect it to intensify as a spiritually darkening world sees the message of the cross as foolishness. Meanwhile, we must cheerfully and optimistically contend for the cross, lifting its message high, for it is in the cross that we see the power of God.


Tony Perkins’ Washington Update is written with the aid of FRC senior writers.


RELATED ARTICLE: Atheists Raging to Bring Down Religious Symbols

Poll Finds Most Teachers, Students Say They’re Protected From School Shooters

A majority of teachers say they believe they are protected from shooters entering their school, according to a recent poll.

The Gallup poll found that 60 percent of teachers agreed their school is somewhat protected or very protected.

Gallup, however, chose to look at the down side with a headline reading: “Four in 10 Teachers Say Their School Is Not Well Protected.”

The poll also found that a majority of teachers, 64 percent, and a majority of students, 55 percent, said they are not worried about a shooting happening at their school. A total of  36 percent said they are worried, and 9 percent said they are “very worried.”

Fully 60 percent of teachers said they were prepared to protect students and staff from a shooter, while 40 percent said they were “not too prepared” or “not prepared at all.”

Schools remain among the safest places to be, but there is always more elected officials can do to make them safer, Heritage Foundation legal expert John Malcolm told The Daily Signal.

“There is nothing more horrifying than the thought that you might kiss your child goodbye, send him off to school, and then never see him again,” said Malcolm, a Heritage vice president who oversees the Institute for Constitutional Government and directs the Meese Center for Legal and Judicial Studies.

“Fortunately, the reality is that our kids are safer in school than they are in many other areas,” Malcolm said. “That is not to say, though, that school officials and elected representatives should not do more to ensure that our schools are safer from the malevolent acts of disturbed individuals intent on committing mayhem and murder.”

The Gallup poll surveyed teachers from March 5 to March 12, less than a month after the deadly school shooting Feb. 14 in Parkland, Florida, that left 17 dead and 17 wounded.

Despite heavy media coverage of school shootings, the majority of students say they feel safe, as they did in 2005—when Gallup surveyed students in a similar way.

In 2005, about eight months after a school shooting in Red Lake, Minnesota, that ended in 10 deaths, including the killer, a Gallup survey found that while students said “violence, fighting, and school safety” was the top problem at school, 80 percent said they feel safe in school.

The expressed student concern in 2005 for violence, fighting, and safety was nearly double that of the next biggest concern, a four-way tie among lack of funding/budget cuts, overcrowded classrooms, use of drugs and alcohol, and lack of student effort.

Students polled at 13 percent who said school safety was the biggest problem, compared to 7 percent who said it was lack of funding or budget cuts.

The Daily Signal previously reported that schools are safer now than in the early 1990s, with shooting incidents declining by more than half since then.

The new Gallup poll surveyed 497 teachers of kindergarten through high school across the U.S. The poll has a margin of error of plus or minus 7 percentage points.

Kyle Perisic

Kyle Perisic is a member of the Young Leaders Program at The Heritage Foundation.

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Dear Readers:

With the recent conservative victories related to tax cuts, the Supreme Court, and other major issues, it is easy to become complacent.

However, the liberal Left is not backing down. They are rallying supporters to advance their agenda, moving this nation further from the vision of our founding fathers.

If we are to continue to bring this nation back to our founding principles of limited government and fiscal conservatism, we need to come together as a group of likeminded conservatives.

This is the mission of The Heritage Foundation. We want to continue to develop and present conservative solutions to the nation’s toughest problems. And we cannot do this alone.

Before March 31, we are looking for a select few conservatives to become a Heritage Foundation member. With your membership, you’ll qualify for all associates benefits and you’ll help keep our nation great for future generations.

ACTIVATE YOUR MEMBERSHIP TODAY

EDITORS NOTE: The featured image is of a police cruiser parked in January 2013 near the entrance of Marlboro Early Learning Center in Morganville, New Jersey. (Photo: Eduardo Munoz/Reuters/Newscom)

EPA Chief Puts Science Back Into Environmental Protection

Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Scott Pruitt may be just a lawyer, but so far he has done more to bring sound science to the EPA than any scientist ever affiliated with the agency.

And, apparently, he’s just getting started.

Since taking the reins at the EPA and despite not having a full complement of presidential appointees helping him—not to mention the 15,000 agency employees, many of whom fancy themselves as part of the “resistance”—Pruitt has shaken up the EPA’s 47-year-old culture and practice of politically-driven science.

Pruitt’s first move last fall was to reform the agency’s practice of appointing its own university research grantees to its science advisory boards so they would be in position to rubber-stamp agency actions. This practice contravened federal law that requires these boards to be made up of unbiased scientists.

In one example, a 26-member board had 24 EPA grantees who had received more than $200 million in research grants from the agency. These scientists were “reviewing” either their own research or the research of their colleagues. It was pal review, not peer review.

So, Pruitt changed the EPA’s policy. Researchers now must choose whether they want to receive research grants from the EPA or serve on its advisory boards. But they can’t do both.

Pruitt also appointed new members to some of these boards. For the first time in at least 20 years, individuals were appointed who are prominent critics of how the EPA uses science—including the chairmen of the two most important science advisory boards.

Pruitt rightly recognizes these boards are advisory in nature and he is not bound to accept their advice. As such, Pruitt should be commended for wanting to get different points of view from the members of his advisory boards. In contrast, the Obama EPA boards were largely just echo chambers of a single point of view.

Just last week, Pruitt announced another giant leap toward improving how the EPA uses science. Pruitt says he will ban the use of so-called “secret science” from agency rule-makings.

Over the past 20 years, for example, the most costly EPA air quality regulations have been based on scientific data in taxpayer-funded studies that Harvard and Brigham Young University researchers have literally kept secret for decades.

In 1994, an EPA external science advisory board known as the Clean Air Scientific Advisory Committee asked for the data, but the request was ignored by the agency. In 1997, Congress requested the data and was outright refused.

In 1998, Congress passed a law requiring that scientific data relied on by the agency must be made available to the public. But an appellate court held the law unenforceable in 1998.

In 2011, Congress again began politely asking the EPA for the data. No luck. So, in 2013, Congress issued its first subpoena in 30 years to force the EPA to produce the data. Again, no luck.

The House then began passing bills—three of them in successive sessions of Congress—to bar the EPA from relying on secret data to issue regulations. But all got stuck in the Senate, including the current bill known as the HONEST Act.

So Pruitt has decided he will take the initiative and ban the use of secret science at the EPA. If agency rules are going to be based on scientific data, that data must be available to independent researchers for validation purposes.

It of course would be better if Congress passed legislation to make this permanent, but Pruitt recognizes the EPA and the public cannot wait on the hopelessly deadlocked legislature.

These are all major accomplishments. But there’s a lot more to do. The good news is that Pruitt is eager. He is rightly focused on how the EPA uses science and his plans for improving the process.

As someone who has worked on EPA science issues and controversies for more than 27 years, it’s all music to my ears.

COMMENTARY BY

Portrait of Steve Milloy

Steve Milloy publishes JunkScience.com, was a member of the Trump EPA transition team, and is the author of “Scare Pollution: Why and How to Fix the EPA” (Bench Press, 2016). Twitter: .

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Dear Readers:

With the recent conservative victories related to tax cuts, the Supreme Court, and other major issues, it is easy to become complacent.

However, the liberal Left is not backing down. They are rallying supporters to advance their agenda, moving this nation further from the vision of our founding fathers.

If we are to continue to bring this nation back to our founding principles of limited government and fiscal conservatism, we need to come together as a group of likeminded conservatives.

This is the mission of The Heritage Foundation. We want to continue to develop and present conservative solutions to the nation’s toughest problems. And we cannot do this alone.

Before March 31, we are looking for a select few conservatives to become a Heritage Foundation member. With your membership, you’ll qualify for all associates benefits and you’ll help keep our nation great for future generations.

ACTIVATE YOUR MEMBERSHIP TODAY

EDITORS NOTE: The featured image is of EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt. Photo: Joshua Roberts/Reuters/Newscom.

VIDEO: Sexism didn’t defeat Hillary Clinton — Wild untruths about emails are why she’s not Madam President

There’s a new book out by Hillary Clinton’s former communications director, Jennifer Palmieri, suggesting that sexism by American voters – not Clinton’s email scandal – was the key factor responsible for Clinton’s loss to Donald Trump in the 2016 presidential election.

Palmieri writes in her book – titled “Dear Madam President” – that Clinton couldn’t get out of the email “box” because American voters couldn’t get past their “unease” about a woman seeking power.

In fact, Palmieri goes on to suggest that the Clinton email issue was both trivial and irrelevant – notwithstanding the fact that a Reuters poll just six weeks before the election showed a significant 46 percent of Americans were “very concerned” about that very issue.

In her book, subtitled “An Open Letter To The Women Who Will Run the World” Palmieri writes:

“One thing our campaign was never able to move beyond was the vexing issue of Hillary’s emails … I think it was the unease people felt about Hillary’s motivation as a woman seeking power that made it impossible for us to very fully put this matter to bed. I have weathered a lot of political crises, but never encountered one quite like this. It was a box we could never get out of.” (Emphasis added).

Hillary Clinton’s problem was that many Americans didn’t trust her because she was caught telling untruths – repeatedly – about her email system.

Given Clinton’s recent comments that Trump voters were backwards and women voters were manipulated by men, it is no surprise to see a Clinton adviser attacking American voters rather than suggesting that voters fairly evaluated Clinton based upon her conduct.

Clinton’s problem was that many Americans didn’t trust her because she was caught telling untruths – repeatedly – about her email system. She first told us it was simply a matter of convenience to use her unsecure, non-government email system. That wasn’t true.

Clinton next told us there was no classified information on the email system. That wasn’t true.

Then the Democratic presidential candidate told us she turned over all the government emails that she had. That absolutely was not true.

And the kicker was Clinton’s attempted deletion of over half the emails she supposedly took with her when she left the State Department – 33,000 in total.

On top of that, there is the pay-to-play scandal that Judicial Watch uncovered in August of 2016 that raised further legal issues about Clinton’s conduct as secretary of state.

Palmieri’s suggestion that sexism made it impossible for Clinton to explain her way out of the email scandal insults all voters. The real concern – among male and female voters alike – was about putting someone into high office who had such utter contempt for the rule of law.

Recall that Barack Obama defeated Hillary Clinton for the Democratic presidential nomination  back in 2008 thanks in part to his argument that Bill and Hillary Clinton’s record of corruption would be an albatross during the general election.

Just a few months ago, we disclosed the classified emails from the Clinton email server found on the laptop of Clinton aide Huma Abedin’s scandal-ridden husband, disgraced former U.S. Rep. Anthony Weiner, D-N.Y. It was one more instance of misconduct in a serial violation of national security laws that would have gotten anyone else arrested.

This “trivial and irrelevant” email scandal resulted in a FBI investigation into whether Clinton was in violation of criminal laws concerning the handling of classified information. She escaped prosecution because of the political intervention of the Obama White House, FBI and Justice Department leadership.

Palmieri’s book shows that Clinton wasn’t the only person on her campaign oblivious to the way people perceived her misconduct. While Palmieri does a poor job of explaining the Clinton email scandal, she does a good job of showing how Clinton’s aides enabled her misbehavior.

CALIFORNIA: College Campus Police Crack Down on Those Who Question Mohammed’s Words and Islamic Doctrine

This is sharia enforcement on campus. It is increasingly the case that not the slightest critical word about Islam can be spoken on America’s college and university campuses. Imagine what would happen if a speaker about Christianity had police remove critical questioners. There would be an international outcry. But this is increasingly the norm: do not question Islam. It is the one topic that is off-limits to all but the most whitewashed presentations.

“Campus Cops Crack Down on Questions about Islam,” by Gary Fouse, FrontPage, March 19, 2018:

[Editor’s note: To help push back against the enforcement of Islamic blasphemy laws on the American campus, support the Freedom Center’s campaign Stop University Support for Terrorists.]

On March 14, I attended a public presentation entitled Islam 101 at Golden West College in Huntington Beach, California. The presenter was Nicole Bovey, a convert to Islam and public information officer at the Islamic Institute of Orange County in Anaheim. Bovey also works with the Muslim Speakers Bureau in Orange County (an arm of the Islamic Networks Group). The presentation was sponsored by GWC professors Kaine Fini (Anthropology) and Communications Professor Kristine Clancy (most of the audience members were her students, and this was part of her class.) The event had been advertised publicly, hence was open to the public. Altogether, there were approximately 50 people present. I videotaped the entire proceeding. The event was scheduled to run from 6:45-9:30 pm. As it was, it was cut off at about 8:30 by one of the professors (more about that later.) During the event, Professor Clancy called in campus police and she admonished a couple of the people in the audience who had asked pointed questions.

Ms. Bovey’s presentation was a very basic and very vanilla presentation of Islam, explaining what Islam is, what it means, who Muslims are, Muslims’ worldwide demographic breakdown etc. Bovey’s lesson plan, consisting of slides posted on the walls, was about subjects like the 5 pillars of Islam, daily prayers etc. She stated at the outset that she was there to clear up misconceptions about Islam. In fact, the first image on the wall was of a masked man representing a terrorist. Yet, it was clear later into the presentation that she was not going to get into areas like terrorism or Sharia law. She invited the audience members to raise their hands to ask questions at any point.

Bovey was doing fine handling soft, non-controversial questions, but plainly could not handle pointed, uncomfortable questions from a few members of the audience, including myself. One audience member identified himself as a former Muslim from Egypt, who left Islam and became a Christian pastor. When he began to contradict statements by Bovey, she became uncomfortable. Subsequently, he was approached by Prof. Clancy who asked him to step outside. He returned a few minutes later. While Bovey was discussing Zakat (Islamic charity giving), another audience member asked her about the categories of Zakat and whether any of them allowed giving to non-Muslims. She was unable to answer the question. Another man in the audience, a Muslim, stated that there was a separate channel of giving other than Zakat that could be directed to non-Muslims.

During Bovey’s description of Islamic daily prayers, I asked her about Sura 1, verses 1-7, from the Quran, which are recited in those daily prayers. I read verses 6-7 to her from an English language Koran that referred to those who had incurred Allah’s wrath and those who had lost their way. I mentioned that according to a hadith, one of Mohammad’s followers had asked who that referred to and Mohammad’s answer was that the former were the Jews and the latter Christians. Bovey danced all around it stating that she didn’t know about that and that she had her own perception of who those people might be.

At one point, Bovey called for a 15-20 minute break because she and her AV assistant had to pray. At that point I turned my camera off and was looking at my cell phone when Professor Clancy began admonishing a couple of the men in the audience who had asked the above questions stating that this was her class. A campus police officer entered the room and a third staff member, International Student Program Director Melissa Lyon, asked a couple of them to step outside. One of the men had not even asked a question and eventually he was able to avoid going outside to talk to police. I captured most of this on my cell phone both inside the hall and outside. After talking with the police, the men were allowed to return.

Later on, Yet another audience member pointed out that modern archaeological studies had failed to identify Mecca as even existing during the time Mohammad was alive. Again, Bovey was unprepared. Professor Fini identified himself as an anthropological professor and responded that there were historical sites associated with Judaism and Christianity which could not be proven to exist during certain times, but that they were accepted as part of tradition.

I was called on for another question and asked Bovey about Hudud Sharia, the punishment section of Sharia law, specifically about the death penalty for apostates who criticized Islam, adulterers and homosexuals. Again her answer was evasive. She then asked me to stop videotaping saying that she feared I would edit it. I assured her I would not. I politely insisted that this was a public event in a public institution and that I had a right to videotape. This was affirmed by the aforementioned anthropology professor. (During the break I had occasion to talk to a campus police officer, and he affirmed my right to videotape.)

As other questioners steered the topic toward sensitive areas, Professor Lyon came racing to the rescue ending the event one hour before its scheduled time. It was pretty obvious that the conversation was going in a direction that Bovey and the professors did not want it to go.

It is clear that Bovey came prepared to give a “happy face” version of Islam to her audience. She was not prepared to deal with the obvious elephants in the room. Virtually every critical question was met with evasion.

Professors Clancy and Lyon completely overreacted to the questions to the point of calling in the campus copsand asking audience members to step outside. Whatever happened to free speech and the free exchange of ideas? There was absolutely no disruption whatsoever. Yet members of the audience were told that their questions were unacceptable. Since when?

And why did Ms. Lyon stop the event 60 minutes early? Because the speaker and her hosts were unwilling to engage in a discussion of aspects of Islam like Sharia law, draconian punishments, and terrorism.

Though the audience was mostly students and mostly members of Professor Clancy’s class, we (the aforementioned questioners) were not the only non-students in the audience. This event was announced to the public. That some chose to come and ask honest questions about Islam should be part of the protocol. Is that not what colleges are supposed to be engaged in? It was stated that Bovey wanted to explain “misconceptions” about Islam. Yet when asked to do so, she gave us tap dances and evasions while the professors tried to silence some of us — and then called the campus police to shut us down. Again, this was an event open to the public.

It is evident that all of these eerie developments clearly were a perfect lesson in Islam 101 — and in which happens to a free society once Sharia starts taking over.

Will we accept this laying down?

TAKE ACTION FOR FREE SPEECH:

[1] The president of Golden West College is Wes Bryan. Contact him and ask why his institution is submitting to Islamic blasphemy laws:
Email: wbryan@gwc.cccd.edu.
Phone #: 714 895 8101.

[2] Golden West College is part of the Coast Community College District. They have a board of regents whose contact info can be found HERE.

[3] One of the audience members who was escorted out of this event by police and warned by them not to ask any more questions was Steve Amundson, the head of the Counter Jihad Coalition. Contact him if you want to help defend America from Jihad and Sharia:
Email: counterjihadcoalition@gmail.com.

EDITORS NOTE: This column originally appeared in The Geller Report. Pamela Geller’s shocking new book, “FATWA: HUNTED IN AMERICA” is now available on Amazon. It’s Geller’s tell all, her story – and it’s every story – it’s what happens when you stand for freedom today. Buy it. Now. Here.

States Win Another Major Case Against Obamacare

In a decision that has gotten almost no media attention, six states led by Texas have won another round against the Obama administration implementation of Obamacare.

Judge Reed O’Connor, a federal judge in Texas, threw out the Obama administration’s imposition of a federal fee or tax on states as a condition of continuing to receive Medicaid funds. O’Conner ruled March 5 that the fee violates the non-delegation doctrine of the Constitution and the requirements of the Administrative Procedure Act.

The 2010 Obamacare law imposed a “health insurance providers fee” on medical insurers to help pay for the subsidies provided by the federal government to individuals purchasing health insurance. However, the law specifically exempted states from having to pay this fee.

Texas and the other states who filed this lawsuit against the federal government in 2015 provide a majority of Medicaid services for their residents by contracting with, and paying a monthly fee to, managed care organizations, which then provide health care to eligible Medicaid beneficiaries.

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, a component of the Department of Health and Human Services, must approve all such state contracts for health care services. In 2014, the agency promulgated a regulation that requires that states pay managed care organizations an “actuarially sound rate.”

However, the regulation delegates the decision of what is an “actuarially sound rate” to a private organization, the Actuarial Standards Board, which sets practice standards for private actuaries.

Ignoring the statutory exemption from paying the fee that was provided to the states in the Obamacare law, the Actuarial Standards Board enacted a rule stating that the “actuarially sound rate” paid by the states to their Medicaid-managed care organizations must include their portion of the health insurance providers fee.

The Center for Medicare & Medicaid Services refused to approve any state contract that did not comply with this requirement.

We are talking substantial sums of money here. According to the judge in this case, Texas alone appropriated $244 million to pay this fee in fiscal years 2016 and 2017. Other states in the lawsuit “likewise provide Medicaid to millions of their citizens at the cost of a considerable portion of their annual budgets.”

O’Connor found that over “the next decade, the federal government will collect between $13 and $14.9 billion” from all 50 states paying the fee. According to the IRS, Congress placed a moratorium on the fee for 2017 and 2019, but not for 2018. So the fee remains on the books.

While the court found that the health insurance providers fee, which O’Connor labeled a “tax,” is constitutional, the regulation issued by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services that delegated “to a private entity the authority to decide who must pay this tax” violates the non-delegation doctrine.

O’Connor goes through a very interesting and illustrative history of the non-delegation doctrine, which “remains a cornerstone in the constitutional architecture of free government” to the frustration of “modern liberals.”

In essence, the non-delegation doctrine “stems from the very first clause of the Constitution, which reads: ‘All legislative Powers … shall be vested in a Congress of the United States.’” Thus, Congress cannot delegate or transfer to others its “essential legislative function.”

This “structural feature of the Constitution … exists to protect democratic deliberation, executive accountability, and individual liberty.” The framers “enshrined” this doctrine in “our charter because the framers, drawing from the deep wells of their Western heritage, recognized it as an axiom of just government.”

The most difficult determination of whether the non-delegation doctrine has been violated is when courts are reviewing the actions of federal agencies under their authorizing statutes. In those cases, “courts must distinguish between unlawful delegation of legislative power and lawful delegation of policy judgement,” according to O’Connor. It “is inherently difficult to draw this distinction and identify an unlawful legislative delegation by Congress to an executive agency.”

However, this case does not present such a dilemma concluded O’Connor because here, the power to determine whether a tax should be imposed was delegated to a private party. In such cases, “there is not even a fig leaf of constitutional delegation.”

While legislative delegations to executive agencies “threaten liberty by undermining democratic accountability … legislative delegations to private entities are even more dangerous” because they “create a double layer of unaccountability.”

The legislative power of Congress has been passed “to an unelected agency, and then by the agency to an unelected private entity.” And that “private entity is not subject to term limits, appropriations, impeachment, or removal, and neither holds a commission nor takes an oath to uphold the Constitution.”

In addition to this constitutional violation, O’Connor found that the imposition of this tax violated the Administrative Procedure Act, which governs the promulgation of rules and regulations by federal agencies.

According to O’Connor, the tax went beyond the statutory authority of the Obamacare law: “there is no genuine dispute of material fact that [the regulation] is ‘in excess of statutory jurisdiction, authority, or limitations, or short of statutory right.’”

This ruling wipes out the ability of the federal government to collect billions of dollars from the states that it has been using to subsidize Obamacare. And this is not the end of the story.

A new lawsuit has just been filed—in the same federal court where O’Connor presides—by 20 states alleging that Obamacare is no longer constitutional because the tax cut bill signed into law by President Donald Trump on Dec. 22, 2017, eliminated the tax penalty imposed on individuals who don’t comply with the individual mandate.

Because the Supreme Court only upheld Obamacare as constitutional based on the taxing authority of Congress, the states argue that its constitutional underpinning is gone.

Piece by piece, year by year, Obamacare is slowly being taken apart by both litigation and legislation like the 2017 tax cut bill that eliminated the tax penalty on the individual mandate.

But members of Congress would do well to return to their abandoned effort to repeal Obamacare in its entirety in order to provide Americans with a replacement that supports their needs.

COMMENTARY BY

Portrait of Hans von Spakovsky

Hans von Spakovsky is an authority on a wide range of issues—including civil rights, civil justice, the First Amendment, immigration, the rule of law and government reform—as a senior legal fellow in The Heritage Foundation’s Edwin Meese III Center for Legal and Judicial Studies and manager of the think tank’s Election Law Reform Initiative. Read his research. Twitter: .

RELATED ARTICLES: 

Without the Individual Mandate’s Tax, Obamacare Should Fall Apart in Court

Obamacare Bailouts Will Not Save Money and Lower Premiums, Despite Contrary Claims

White House Millennials Conference to Address Economy, Free Speech, and Opioids

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VIDEO: House Intelligence Committee Democrats responsible for ‘over 100 leaks’ to the media

Jessie Waters interviewed U.S. House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence Chairman Congressman Devin Nunes (R-CA) about closing down their investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 Presidential election. During the interview (see below video) Rep. Nunes states:

Jesse Watters: Congressman Schiff has been accused of leaking a lot. Have you found that to be true?

Devin Nunes: Well we have over 100 leaks from our committee. Over 100 leaks that didn’t come from the Republican side. So it had to come from the Democratic side. We can’t pin it on a particular member or staff but there’s over 100.

RELATED ARTICLES:

Trump’s Personal Lawyer Calls for an End to Russia Probe After McCabe Firing

Peter Strzok Texts Reveal FBI Investigators Missed Clinton Emails Marked Classified.

THE HALABJA GENOCIDE 30 YEARS AFTER — Kurdish victims now seek justice through the courts.

On March 16, 1988, after sustained shelling and aerial bombardments had driven most of the inhabitants of the Kurdish town of Halabja into their basements, Saddam Hussein ordered his air force to change munitions – and missions.

Instead of softening up the Kurdish town for an assault by Iraqi government troops, the air force now planned exterminate the population using chemical weapons.

One survivor, Kherwan, said he remembered smelling “an aroma that reminded me of apples” shortly before losing consciousness. “When I awoke, there were hundreds of bodies scattered around me.”

Mothers were later found lying in the streets, wrapped around their dead infants; some had died cradling their children to keep them from falling.

Today, thirty years later, the surviving victims continue to remember the horrors of that day and those they lost.

Zimnako Mohammad Ahmed was just three months old when his mother tried to carry him to safety in the nearby mountains and fell unconscious in the darkness. Iranian soldiers found him the next morning and took him to Tehran for treatment, and ultimately, adoption.

“My whole family thought I was dead,” he told Radio Free Europe. Those who survived had even erected a tombstone for him in the family grave plot.

Zimnako was lucky. He managed to return to Halabja and convince local authorities to conduct DNA tests to find his family. But hundreds of others have not been so lucky.

While Saddam Hussein and “Chemical Ali” (aka Ali Hasan al-Majid) were tried and executed by the Iraq High Tribunal for their attempted genocide against the Kurds, many of their victims continue to suffer from the effects of chemical weapons and can ill afford expensive lung transplants and other treatments.

This week, a group of survivors filed a historic lawsuit in an Iraqi court, hoping to find some measure of justice – and potentially, compensation – from the companies and individuals who built Saddam’s chemical weapons.

For the most part, the defendants are Germans and German companies. And one of them – tourism giant, TUI, formerly known as Preussag – have deep pockets.

Chicago lawyer Gavi Mairone began working on the case eight years ago, at a time when neither Iraq nor Germany had laws that would permit such a suit.

Today that has changed, and Mairone is hoping that a liability judgment in Iraq will help the victims to collect against the companies in Germany and elsewhere in Europe.

“When warned by Western intelligence and the media about how these weapons were being used, rather than ceasing engagement, these companies allegedly chose to find alternatives to continue the conspiracy and ensure the chemical weapons plants could continue to operate,” Mairone told a press conference in Halabja yesterday.

The complaint alleges that TUI and others “knew” that building Saddam’s chemical weapons plants “would require each of them to conceal their activities, falsify documents, mislead and lie to government officials, intentionally violate laws in numerous countries, and fraudulently induce other companies and persons to unwittingly assist” their efforts.

The German government twice tried to prosecute the most notorious of the perpetrators, including Karl Kolb GmbH and Preussag. But German laws in force in the late 1980s were insufficient for a conviction.

It became the most notorious and best-documented case in history of Western companies enabling a dictator to commit genocide. And yet, the guilty suffered no consequences, and the victims continued to suffer.

I documented the German “poison gas connection” for the Simon Wiesenthal Center in 1990, and two years later in my book, The Death Lobby: How the West Armed Iraq, which included a map and detailed descriptions of scores of Iraqi WMD facilities, some of them unknown at the time.

Later, I worked with attorneys who sued some of the American companies of the poison gas connection on behalf of U.S. veterans poisoned by what became known as Gulf War Syndrome.

This body of work – which included extensive, proprietary data bases I maintained on suppliers of WMD technology – came to Mairone’s attention when he decided in 2013 to push his legal action on behalf of the Halabja victims into higher gear.

I had the opportunity five years ago on this day to attend ceremonies in Halabja to commemorate the 25thanniversary of Saddam Hussein’s genocidal attack against Iraqi Kurds along with Mairone and his legal team.

Once again, it was a question of German companies aiding and abetting a genocide.

We sat for hours listening to the stories of survivors. We collected documents from the earlier trials against Saddam Hussein and Chemical Ali. We made contacts and laid the groundwork for a future lawsuit.

I was engaged to sift through documents and reports from German Customs, the United Nations Special Commission for the Disarmament of Iraq, and many other sources, to identify the biggest culprits whose guilt I felt Mairone and his team had a good chance of establishing in a fair court.

Now, five years later, that time has come. You can read the complaint here.

Dr. Gregory H. Stanton, founder of Genocide Watch, has identified ten stages of genocide, from the identification and stigmatizing of the future victims, to post murder denial and cover-up.

“Genocide is not an unpredictable phenomenon like a hurricane,” he told a conference to commemorate the Halabja genocide earlier this week. “By understanding the logic of genocide, people can recognize the early warnings signs,” he says.

Saddam’s genocide against the Kurds was many years in the making, just as were the genocides in Rwanda, and the Assyrian Christians in northern Iraq.

Dr. Stanton believes the signs of the next genocide – once again, against the Kurds – are already visible.

“In 1989, I predicted the genocide in Rwanda, five years before it happened,” he said this week. “In 2008, Genocide Watch predicted another genocide on its way in northern Iraq. The next genocide will come from Turkey, Iran, and Syrian and Iraqi government forces, and it will be directed against the Kurds.”

He believes these powers have gone way beyond the initial stages of discrimination and dehumanization, and are actively preparing for military operations to eradicate the Kurds, of which Afrin is perhaps the first step.

“The Ottoman, Persian, and Arab empires must never rise again,” he warned.

Genocide takes time. It requires planning, a great deal of preparation, and methodical execution.

But justice takes even longer. The Halabja victims have waited for thirty years already, and they haven’t yet had their day in court, while their victimizers remain free.

EDITORS NOTE: This column originally appeared in FrontPage Magazine.

Watch California Whistleblower: Illegals have ‘Taken Over Every Trade’ in Construction Business

A whistleblower who works in the construction industry in southern California said illegals have “taken over every trade” in his business, and wages are suffering.

The whistleblower made the claim while speaking with Progressives for Immigration Reform.

He said he’s been working in the industry since the 1980s, and has seen the transformation up close and personal.

Breitbart has more:

A whistleblower in the southern California construction industry says illegal alien workers have “taken over every trade” in the business while driving down wages by an estimated 40 percent.

In an interview with the group Progressives for Immigration Reform, a whistleblower who was an independent contractor throughout the 1980s and 1990s explains how the California construction industry transformed into one in which American men could make a middle-class living off blue-collar work to a business where wages have plummeted and illegal aliens dominate the field.

Blaine Taylor, the whistleblower, said the construction industry in California once offered a starting wage of about $45 an hour in the late 1980s. Fast-forward to 2018 — nearly two decades into when illegal aliens began flooding the industry — he now says that wages have fallen by more than half, standing at just $11 an hour.

TAYLOR: If I hired a framer to do a small addition [in 1988], his wage would have been $45 an hour. That was the minimum for a framing contractor, a good carpenter. [Emphasis added]

For a helper, it was about $25 an hour, for a master who could run a complete job, it was about $45 an hour.

That was the going wage for plumbers as well. His helpers typically got $25 an hour.

[ … ]

TAYLOR: The reality is that a person that was hired as a laborer in 1988, I paid $15 an hour and within a month if I could leave him on the job alone, he got $20 an hour. If I hired somebody that already knew how to do certain types of labor or certain types of operations, they would get $20 an hour.

Now, the average wage in Los Angeles for construction workers is less than $11 an hour. They can’t go lower than the minimum wage. And much of that, if they’re not being paid by the hour at less than $11 an hour, they’re being paid per piece — per piece of plywood that’s installed, per piece of drywall that’s installed. Now, the subcontractor can circumvent paying them as an hourly wage and are now being paid by 1099, which means that no taxes are being taken out. [Emphasis added]

Taylor says that the flood of illegal alien workers contributed to wages in the California construction industry plummetting between the 1980s to today.

Between 2008 and 2016, construction wages were actually lower than in 1998, representing a roughly 40 percent drop in pay. At the same time, construction materials, Taylor said, increased by about 50 percent.

INTERVIEWER: It’s really strange because as a young man, of course, just entering your working life, you’re making a living wage, and then as you got middle-aged, the wage dropped, which is like… you know most people don’t expect in their careers that they’re going to start out at the top and they’re actually going to fall below where they are when they start.

TAYLOR: Well, part of it was due to the market, but then there’s the other part that really pulled it down and that was the influx of just a flood of undocumented workers. [Emphasis added]

Meanwhile, Taylor says that illegal aliens are dominating the blue-collar trades in the California construction industry, with an illegal alien population that potentially exceeds more than three million.

TAYLOR: Unfortunately, what I have found, is that [the construction in California is] overwhelmingly being built by illegal immigrants that have basically taken over every trade. [Emphasis added]

Just to go back for a second, in the 80’s and early 90’s when I was a contractor, it wasn’t unusual to see undocumented workers doing landscaping, demolition, then it became roofing, and concrete work. So the heavier, more difficult, and dirtier sort of trades where you actually got in the ditches were the first trades to be taken over [by illegal aliens], then the rest of them began to fall.

The drywall was next, painting, framing was the last, and now electrical and plumbing has been taken over. All the trades finally went to the illegal immigrants. [Emphasis added]

In a 2017 report by the Los Angeles Times, the left-leaning paper admitted that at the time illegal aliens began flooding the California construction industry, wages drastically dropped.

“You can’t live on a wage of $11 an hour for a construction worker,” Taylor said. “There’s no hope for people. Young people, as a young man growing up in Detroit, you looked forward to hopefully working in the construction industry.”

“That was an attractive career to go into as a young person,” Taylor said.

EDITORS NOTE: This column originally appeared in The Geller Report. Pamela Geller’s shocking new book, “FATWA: HUNTED IN AMERICA” is now available on Amazon. It’s Geller’s tell all, her story – and it’s every story – it’s what happens when you stand for freedom today. Buy it. Now. Here.