‘Trump wins’ on travel ban/refugee restrictions, or does he?

On the surface it might appear that the Trump Administration has won an important victory in the Supreme Court which ruled just a few hours ago on the so-called “travel ban” Executive Order, but in my view the Court has created an enormous bureaucratic mess, not to mention having re-written Refugee law! What were they thinking???

I know, I know, they will decide the case on the merits after hearing it next fall (and this decision does show where they are leaning), but from now until then there will be nothing but chaos and controversy relating to travel from the 6 countries and regarding the refugee admissions CEILING.  Remember readers, I am not a legal beagle, but the minute I heard some of the convoluted balancing of equities argument I thought my head would explode!

The gist of the decision is that Trump (the President) can halt immigration from the six (although incomplete list) of terror-producing countries unless the wannabe entrant (for any purpose) “can credibly claim a bona fide relationship with a person or entity in the United States.”

So, I guess  that means the court has decided in advance who the potential terrorists are and that they can’t possibly be someone who has a relative here already or is coming to college at the University of Hawaii (or any college) or connected to any “entity” (a VOLAG perhaps!).

Of greater interest to me is that, although Trump can have his refugee admissions ceiling of 50,000 (remember CEILING is not a target), but the ceiling can be surpassed (says the majority opinion) in the remaining months of this fiscal year  (up to September 30th) if the wannabe refugees have relatives here (what if 10,000, 20,000 and so forth have relatives here!).

Can you see the potential for fraud as all over the world, migrants wishing to get to America are scrambling to have relatives or a bona fide entity with which to associate themselves.

So, in effect the Supreme Court (led by Chief Justice Roberts) has just rewritten the Refugee Act of 1980!

The Act allows the President to exceed his designated ceiling (and here they agree it is 50,000!) only by making a case for an emergency and consulting with Congress.  Well, forget that! Looks like the Supreme Court is now determining the number of refugees to be admitted to America.

(I concede real lawyers might have a different interpretation, but reading the Court’s decision today one wonders if they read the Refugee Act!).

Here in the dissent written by Thomas, Alito and Gorsuch you can clearly see the bureaucratic and legal mess the Court has thrown to a State Department not firmly in the White House’s control, not to mention the parade of court cases the three dissenting Justices envision.

Here is the opinion.  I invite you all to make up your own minds, send comments with your analysis.

Here is the portion of the dissent that says it all:

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Refugee contractors brought refugee lobbyists to Washington (again) last week

EDITORS NOTE: Here are two other comments on this SCOTUS decision:

Jay Sekulow, chief counsel American Center for Law and Justice:

“We’re very pleased with the court granting the stay concerning the most significant aspects of the president’s executive order on immigration. At the same time, we’re very pleased that the high court has agreed to hear the case in the fall. It has been our position from the very beginning that the president – the commander-in-chief – has both the constitutional and statutory authority to issue the order. President Trump acted lawfully and constitutionally with the intent to protect the national security of the United States. We are confident that the high court will conclude on the merits that the president was acting within his constitutional authority.”

Art Arthur, resident fellow Center for Immigration Studies:

“Justice Thomas, Justice Alito and Justice Gorsuch would simply allow the second executive order – the one from March – to go into effect today. The two other more moderate conservative Justices, Chief Justice Roberts and Justice Kennedy, are on the fence.”

“[Under this ruling, however] some individuals who would seek harm to the American people or our institutions may get in simply because they have relationships with individuals or entities within the United States. But the Supreme Court appears willing to take that risk at the present time.”

VIDEO: Is There a Health Care Crisis?

In the next week or so, the U.S. Senate may vote on a health care bill that would repeal and replace some parts of the Affordable Care Act, better known as Obamacare.

This 1993 lecture in Houston, Texas by FEE president Lawrence Reed (then president of the Mackinac Center for Public Policy in Michigan) is full of important fundamentals about both health care and government. In the quarter century since then, the bottom line remains unchanged: more government can hardly be the solution to problems that too much of it gave us in the first place:

RELATED ARTICLE: Twenty Myths about Single-Payer Health Insurance

INTERSECTIONALITY: Leftist Politics Designed to Fail

America is a divided nation and supports two distinct narratives – the narrative of survivors and the narrative of victims.

The survivor mentality created America and is defined by its core values of independence, equality, and freedom. It is supported by institutions promoting growth, independence, sovereignty, and the common denominator of American nationalism. The survivor narrative is the narrative of President Donald Trump.

The victim mentality was created to deconstruct America and is defined by its core values of dependence, inequality, and escape from freedom. It is supported by institutions promoting regression, dependence, internationalism, and the common denominator of globalism. The victim mentality is the narrative of the Left and Liberalism – America’s newest religion. Nationalists and Globalists have irreconcilable differences because their fundamental premises are diametrically opposed to one another. Americans must choose between them.

Liberalism disingenuously presents itself as tolerant because it crosses all racial, ethnic, gender, religious, and socio-economic boundaries. But Liberalism only tolerates those who look differently – Liberalism is completely intolerant of anyone who thinks differently. Liberalism, like any orthodoxy, is tyrannical in its demand for conformity. Its adherents pursue Liberalism’s tenets of political correctness, moral relativism, and historical revisionism with religious zeal and narrow-mindedness.

Liberalism’s intolerance explains its inability to debate or discuss opposing ideas – Liberalism demands censorship and safe spaces instead. Liberalism’s intolerance explains its inability to withstand rational scrutiny – Liberalism provides the echo chamber of fake news instead. Liberalism’s intolerance explains its inability to have civilized discourse or follow the rule of law – Liberalism foments anarchy instead. Liberalism’s sinister goal is the destruction of American democracy and its transformation into Socialism. Socialism is the hope and change that radical socialist Barack Obama promoted when he was elected. Most Americans had no idea what hope and change meant to the man who was the most anti-American lawless president in United States history.

So, what did Barack Obama need to fulfill his dream of destroying American democracy? He needed the politics of intersectionality. He needed Hillary Clinton’s “unaware and compliant public.” He needed the empty promises of sloganism.

Intersectionality, the preferred designation of the Left, is simply a descriptor for self-defined group victimhood based on feelings not facts. If you feel life is not fair – you are a victim. If you feel you have been marginalized in any way – you are a victim. If you feel your maleness or femaleness is threatened in any way – you are a victim. If someone says something you don’t like – you are a victim. This is a child’s view of the world.

Victimhood by definition lacks power – identifying oneself as a powerless entity is a self-sabotaging catastrophic strategy that only leads to more powerlessness – childish whining about victimhood perpetuates the status of childish powerlessness.

Self-actualization and a survivor attitude are the strategies for growth and empowerment. Achievement is the mother of self-esteem – actual achievement in objective reality not the sloganism or fiction that “trying is the same as achieving” promoted in the subjective reality of intersectionality.

The escape from victimhood and powerlessness comes from individual achievement – it does not derive from demanding that the environment change to meet the ever increasing inappropriate demands of chronological adults behaving like children. Lowering standards is not equivalent to achievement – it is just lowering standards.

Intersectionality demands are the demands of children that the environment change to meet their needs. It is the wrong answer to the right problem. Achievement is what propels a child toward adulthood. Consider the child who first feeds himself with his fingers and feels empowered – then he wants to feed himself with a fork – then he wants to drink from a cup. Success encourages success and failure encourages failure.

Intersectionality says “I feel victimized because my sister can feed herself with her fingers and I cannot.” “Don’t feel bad,” says the enabling mother, “I will always feed you.”

Intersectionality says “I feel victimized because my sister can feed herself with a fork and I cannot.” “Don’t feel bad,” says the enabling mother, “I will always feed you with a fork.”

Intersectionality says “I feel victimized because my sister can drink from a cup and I cannot.” “Don’t feel bad,” says the enabling mother, “I will always hold your cup for you.”

The enabling mother is co-dependent and destructive. She presents herself as the child’s advocate but really she is keeping the child dependent on herself for her own selfish needs. She is a destroyer. So it is with governments. Governments that incentivize their citizens to remain dependent do so for their own benefit – the votes that will keep them in power. The victimhood and dependence that intersectionality incentivizes is extremely destructive. Just as the enabling mother cripples her child so does the enabling government cripple its citizens.

Intersectionality results in perpetual childhood, dependence, powerlessness, and angry feelings of victimhood over lack of accomplishment and jealousy for those who have actually achieved. Intersectionality that promotes victimhood and socialism’s cradle-to-grave dependence on the government is as crippling to society as the co-dependent mother is to her child. A survivor mentality results in adulthood, independence, empowerment, self-respect, and the self-esteem that achievement produces. A survivor mentality is what made America great and the most powerful nation in the world.

Intersectionality and the culture of victimhood is the flawed strategy of dependence, collectivism, and death because when Mama dies there is no one there to feed the baby. As Margaret Thatcher so succinctly remarked “Socialism cannot work because eventually you run out of other people’s money.” A productive society requires its children to become productive adults. A society of children will necessarily extinguish itself.

Socialism, the goal of intersectionality, is a political system designed to fail.

Social policy based on the self-defined group victimhood of intersectionality cannot succeed in the real world because the cycle of life requires achievement – eventually the child must grow up and learn to eat and drink on his/her own. The noisy cry-bullies on campuses who graduate with useless degrees in fields of “feelings” not facts will find themselves unemployable. What can they do? They have learned nothing useful for work in the real world and their attitudes make them unemployable. The universities may tolerate their tantrums while their mommies and daddies or the government is paying their tuition but employers are not going to pay for the privilege of their childish outbursts.

Restraint, discipline, and self-control are hallmarks of adulthood – the cry-bullies and anarchists that graduate college have nothing to offer in the workplace but infantile tantrums when they do not get their way or are expected to work and produce something. Effort and achievement are not the same in the workplace. If colleges and universities are supposed to be preparing young people for life as adults they have failed their mission – unless of course their 21st century mission under Liberalism is to deliberately graduate unproductive dependent angry individuals who are “unaware and compliant” – exactly what Hillary Clinton described.

Unaware and compliant are the hallmarks of childhood. Why do the Democrats want a population of dependent children who are easily manipulated and controlled? Because the Democrats know that socialism requires a completely dependent population. As long as the Democrats have the population “hooked” on government handouts they will remain dependent, unaware, compliant, and voting Democratic.

Governments that incentivize the growth and independence of their citizens are builders. They incentivize jobs, self-respect, and the self-esteem that gainful employment supplies. President Donald Trump is a builder – his narrative is that of the survivor and his message is to be an empowered adult. Ex-president Obama continues to be a destroyer – his “resistance” narrative is that of the victim and his message is to be a dependent child.

The questions that Americans must answer are these, “Do I want to live as a dependent powerless child under socialism or as an empowered adult in a democracy?” “Do I want to be a victim or a survivor?” The answers to these two questions will determine the course of America.

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What you can say, when they say ______

I’m asked all the time: What can I do?  What can I do?

This is an excellent example of the kind of thing you can do.  This is a list of talking points thoughtfully prepared by Brenda Arthur of the Charleston, WV Act for America chapter.  As a citizen activist, she put some serious time into preparing this point/counterpoint and made it available for all of you!

PROPONENTS OF REFUGEE RESETTLEMENT WILL SAY :

1. Your town is losing population. Bringing refugees will revitalize your city.

  • Truth: Saying that Importing third world poverty into our city or state revitalizes it just defies logic and commonsense.
  • The educational level of many refugees is low. They will only qualify for minimum or low wage jobs. Therefore, they will continue to qualify for some form of government assistance such as Medicaid and/or Food Stamps aka SNAP.
  • Big Business uses refugees for cheap labor thereby depressing wages for Americans with low education levels.
  • The cost of educating a refugee child is apprx $10,000+ per year not to mention the additional cost of English language assistance/interpreters and additional tutoring due to a lack of previous education.
  • Refugees often send some of their money out of the country to family left behind. Those remittances that leave the country are dollars unavailable to the local economy. This is never factored in.
  • As the refugee population grows more languages will be required to be provided by the school system. This erodes the quality of the schools and reduces teaching time for American kids whose parents are paying the bill.
  • In towns where the refugee population has grown, parents are finding 17-20 year-olds in class with their children.
  • Some school districts across the country have as many as 81 languages for which they must provide ESL teachers and interpreters.

2. Another selling point by the proponents is that “It is our moral obligation. That’s who we are as a country.”

  • Our tax dollars were never meant to be someone else’s charity .
  • We should aid refugees where they are. For every one brought here we can help 12 people there. The administration of mercy belongs to each of us individually—-not to the government.
  • Our first moral obligation is to our own people.

Arthur created this refugee crimes poster to use as a visual aid when she speaks to groups in West Virginia. You can do this too!

3. OVER 800,000 REFUGEES (since 9/11) HAVE BEEN ADMITTED TO THE U.S. AND NO TERRORIST PROBLEMS:

  • Proponents will present the picture that everything is “sweetness and light.” Not true. Many problems are occurring with refugee populations in towns all across America: Gangs, increased drug trafficking, sex slave trade, domestic violence, crime, drug resistant strains of TB, female genital mutilation, and more.
  • Cultural differences are often great and cannot be bridged. Some refugee cultures believe that “honor killing” and rape of non-Muslim women is acceptable.
  • In addition, there have been terrorist acts committed by refugees as well as many crimes. Taxpayers pay for expensive trials, and for those who are sentenced we must bear the cost of imprisonment for many years.

4. NO STATE MONEY IS INVOLVED.

  • Yet another selling point of the proponents is that THERE IS NO STATE MONEY INVOLVED. IT’S ALL FEDERAL MONEY. WELL, FIRST OF ALL, FEDERAL MONEY IS OUR MONEY.  SECONDLY, LET’S DISCUSS THE STATE COSTS: MEDICAID , STATE EMPLOYEES, EDUCATION, INTERPRETERS, AND LIKELY CASH WELFARE PAYMENTS.
  • DON’T TELL ME OR ANYONE ELSE THERE IS NO STATE MONEY INVOLVED WITH THIS PROGRAM. It’s a matter of how much.

TO RECAP:

  • Medicaid–Unreimbursed cost to the state
  • TANF–Cash Welfare payments –Unreimbursed costs to the state
  • Interpreters–Provided to students and other refugees as needed
  • Education–Cost for educating children K-12
  • State Employees’ salaries and benefits who work w/refugees

5. The vetting is very, very rigorous.

  • Former FBI Director, James Comey, Obama’s Special Envoy to the Middle East to fight ISIS, General John Allen, Former Director of National Intelligence, James Clapper, Mike McCaul, Chairman of Homeland Security in the Congress , and now we know from the leaked Wikileaks documents that even Hillary Clinton herself said at a private meeting in 2013 that the refugees cannot possibly be vetted.
  • Further, Leon Rodriguez, former Director of U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, reluctantly told former Senator Jeff Sessions’ Senate Committee in September 2016 that some of the refugees get in based solely on their testimony alone.
  • Fraud is rampant in the refugee program. Many refugees come from failed states. They have no documentation. We are supposed to believe the lie that everyone is who they say they are.
  • ISIS has sworn to infiltrate the refugee population. They already have.

6. The refugees become self-sufficient within 5 years.

  • The fact is that the Office Of Refugee Resettlement (ORR) defines self-sufficiency in a way that is contrary to the common understanding of the word. A household is considered self-sufficient if it is not receiving “a cash assistance grant”. But other welfare programs do not count under the ORR definition. Thus, ORR considers and reports them as self-sufficient even if they are receiving other forms of government assistance such as: Food Stamps (SNAP), Housing subsidies, or Medicaid .
  • Don’t be fooled. Make them define their terms.

7. Refugees pay taxes.

  • Consider that the average educational level of a Middle Eastern refugee is 10.5 years. That is not even a high school diploma. This means that the likelihood of them earning more than $9-$12 /hour is pretty unlikely. Having a low wage job is most likely. Further, even if they work and pay taxes the fact that the earnings level is low will often make them eligible for continuing government subsidies. There are other points to consider:
  • Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) is available to people whose income is low. Many, if not most, refugees would likely qualify for this.
  • Child Tax Credit up to $1000 per child would apply based on income guidelines. This credit is IN ADDITION to deductions for dependent children.
  • Once the Tax Credits are applied it is possible that they are getting back all or most of the taxes that were paid and potentially more than they paid.

So, there we have it for those of you looking for something to do.  Use Arthur’s points for letters to the editor, arguing with ‘friends’ on Facebook, or when corresponding with your elected officials.

This post is filed in two categories here at RRW:  ‘Comments worth noting’ (here) and in my new category ‘What you can do’ (here).

And, for all of you interested in Arthur’s home state of West Virginia, go here for my archive on the state.

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Study: 5.7 million noncitizens may have cast illegal votes

Rowan Scarborough from The Washington Times reports:

A research group in New Jersey has taken a fresh look at postelection polling data and concluded that the number of noncitizens voting illegally in U.S. elections is likely far greater than previous estimates.

As many as 5.7 million noncitizens may have voted in the 2008 election, which put Barack Obama in the White House.

The research organization Just Facts, a widely cited, independent think tank led by self-described conservatives and libertarians, revealed its number-crunching in a report on national immigration.

Just Facts President James D. Agresti and his team looked at data from an extensive Harvard/YouGov study that every two years questions a sample size of tens of thousands of voters. Some acknowledge they are noncitizens and are thus ineligible to vote.

Read more.

The Federation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR) in November 2016 stated, “[N]oncitizens and illegal aliens are counted when apportioning congressional districts and when allocating state electors under the Electoral College. This means noncitizens play a role in determining how many congressional representatives a state has and exert an indirect influence on presidential elections.”

FAIR reports:

Mass immigration has had a significant effect on American electoral politics. Despite the fact that it is a crime for aliens to vote in federal elections, noncitizens and illegal aliens are counted when apportioning congressional districts. This means that areas with large numbers of illegal alien residents gain additional representatives in Congress.

In addition, there is evidence that both foreign nationals who are lawfully present in the United States and illegal aliens have voted in recent elections. During this election cycle, noncitizens have been discovered on voter registration rolls in both Virginia and Pennsylvania. And the Office of the U.S. Attorney for the Western District of New York recently announced that it charged a Canadian woman with making a false claim to citizenship after she registered and voted in more than 20 elections.

Several past elections – for the presidency and other offices – have been extremely close. Accordingly, ballots cast by noncitizen voters have the potential to improperly alter the outcome of elections. Consider how close the 2000 presidential election was. Could the outcome have been affected by noncitizen voting? The answer is yes.

Download the PDF of this Backgrounder.

President Trump signed an executive order setting up a Presidential Advisory Commission on Election Integrity to try to find on-the-ground truth in illegal voting. The Advisory Commission is headed by Vice President Mike Pence.  The Commission’s mission:

The Commission shall, consistent with applicable law, study the registration and voting processes used in Federal elections.  The Commission shall be solely advisory and shall submit a report to the President that identifies the following:

(a)  those laws, rules, policies, activities, strategies, and practices that enhance the American people’s confidence in the integrity of the voting processes used in Federal elections;

(b)  those laws, rules, policies, activities, strategies, and practices that undermine the American people’s confidence in the integrity of the voting processes used in Federal elections; and

(c)  those vulnerabilities in voting systems and practices used for Federal elections that could lead to improper voter registrations and improper voting, including fraudulent voter registrations and fraudulent voting.

It would seem that Democrats and Republicans alike can rally around this effort.

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Democrats in La La Land, while Republicans are laughing their Ossoffs

Shortly after the Karen Handel win in Georgia’s 6th District race for the U.S. Congress the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (DCCC) sent out the following in an email to their supporters:

[W]e know yesterday didn’t go as we hoped.

Make no mistake, we’re disappointed, and we know you are too.

But this race should have never been this close. Republicans had to pour tens of millions into a race that should’ve easily been theirs.

That gives us so much hope as we look toward 2018.

Let’s look at what each candidate raised and spent in the Georgia 6th District race:

The fact is that it was the Democrats who “poured tens of millions” into this race. In fact Democrats poured $32 million into the 4 special congressional elections to date and lost all of them.

Most of Ossoff’s money came from outside of the 6th District. Ossoff spent 7 times what Handel spent and lost by 6 percentage points. Democrats are living in La La Land if they believe this gives them “hope” as they look forward to 2018.

But wait, not so! The DCCC believes the Congress is in play in 2018!

The DCCC email contains a link to a video made by DCCC Chairman Ben Ray Luján who declares that the Democrats have a “real shot” at taking back the U.S. House of Representatives in 2018:

In the Daily Wire column 4 Dumbest Democratic Reactions To Their Stunning Defeat In The Georgia 6th Ben Shapiro lists the following reactions to Ossoff’s loss:

  1. Republicans Are Just Evil.
  2. Democrats Must Move To The Left.
  3. We Need A Hug.
  4. Civility Will Never Work!

To date Democrats have lost 4 special elections. The DCCC and Luján made the Georgia District 6 race a referendum on President Trump and his make America great again (MAGA) agenda. The DCCC was right, it was a referendum on President Trump’s agenda. That’s why Handel won handily. The DCCC has lost every special election, against a President and Republican Party that has relentlessly been demonized in the media, by some Republicans and most all Democrats.

So the Democrat base wants the DCCC to do more of the same, expecting different results?

This reminds us of how the media and Democrats treated candidate Trump during the 2016 presidential election. They lost in November 2016. They continue to lose.

The DCCC message has not changed. Luján keeps singing the same tune. The Democrats will keep losing if they go down the path of hating Republicans, moving even further to the left, hugging one another and abandoning civility and resisting anything and everything proposed by Republicans.

Democrats are still in La La Land, while Republicans are laughing their Ossoffs.

When your opponent is committing suicide, don’t interfere.

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Study: The Surprising Effect of Marijuana Legalization on College Students

Researchers from Oregon State University and the University of Michigan studied marijuana use among 10,924 college students at one large Oregon university and six other universities in states that have not legalized marijuana. Using data from the Health Minds Survey, they looked at marijuana use before and after Oregon legalized the drug for recreational use.

They found that marijuana use increased among all college students but was significantly greater among Oregon students compared to those attending universities in non-legal states. Although the legal age for using marijuana in Oregon is 21, more younger students used the drug than older students. Surprisingly, the greatest increase took place among Oregon students who also reported binge drinking (four to five drinks in about two hours). These students were 73 percent more likely to report marijuana use compared to their peers at the other six schools.

Read The Atlantic story here. Read Science Daily summary here. Read journal abstract here.

Contaminated Marijuana Still Reaching Consumers in Oregon

Oregon has the toughest rules in the nation to keep pesticide-tainted marijuana off store shelves, yet contaminated pot continues to be sold. The state wrote even tougher rules but faced such a backlash from growers it modified them somewhat.

The Oregonian/OregonLive recently conducted a spot check to see if the modified rules are keeping pesticide-containing pot from being sold. The media outlet’s 2015 reporting on widespread contamination prompted the state to establish the rules in the first place.

The paper had ten samples tested by two different labs; three came back contaminated. A second round of tests of the same products resulted in only one showing contamination. Everyone – both the state and the industry — is frustrated with the lack of precision in the testing process.

A manager of Oregon’s Health Authority, which wrote the rules, says the state’s system isn’t a promise that every product on the shelf is pure. “I don’t think it’s reasonable for the general public to think that everything is 100 percent clean and safe,” he says. Instead, the system is designed to reduce but not eliminate risk.

Read OregonLive story here.

Senators Reintroduce CARERS Act to Repeal Federal Prohibition Of Medical Marijuana

Would you take a medicine that can contain hazardous pesticides, harmful bacteria, several kinds of fungi, molds, mildew, and even dangerous heavy metals? One whose labeled dose has been shown to be inaccurate? Whose labeled potency has been shown to be untruthful or inconsistent from dose to dose?

Fortunately, the medicines available today are so safe we don’t even think to ask such questions. Advances in science and medicine over the last century extended the average lifespan by 30 years.

Part of the reason for this achievement is the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA), which requires that all medicines be pure, safe, and effective before they can be marketed to the public. Drug makers spend millions of dollars and many years to develop and test a new medicine to obtain FDA approval. And patients who wish to take part in clinical trials to test the new medicine are told all its known harms so they can decide whether to participate.

But several members of Congress have decided such protections are not necessary for marijuana. They have reintroduced a bill to legalize medical marijuana in states that legalized the drug for medical use despite the fact that not one medical marijuana product produced in those states has been approved by FDA.

A particular irony is that the lead senator introducing the bill, Rand Paul, a libertarian who wants to reduce the size of government, is creating a situation where the states will need to create 50 FDA’s to protect the public health.

Or, states can take the view of the Oregon Health Authority manager in the story above:
“I don’t think it’s reasonable for the general public to think that everything [every marijuana medicine] is 100 percent clean and safe.”

Buyer beware.

Read A Libertarian Future story here. Read Senator Booker’s press release here.
Read Carers Act here.

New Study Estimates the Cost of Driving Under the Influence of Cannabis in Canada

In a first of its kind study, the Canadian Centre on Substance Use and Addiction calculated the number of Canadians who use marijuana (10 percent) and drive under the influence (just under half of users) and the estimated costs associated with such behavior. Data were from the year 2012.

Driving Under the Influence of Cannabis (DUIC) collisions caused 75 deaths at a cost of $8,532,200 per death, 4,407 injuries at a cost of $84,600 per injury, and 7,794 people involved in property damage at a cost of $10,700 per person. Total costs add up to $1.09 billion.

Sadly, those ages 16-34 who make up approximately one-third of the population accounted for nearly two-thirds of the victims.

Read Canadian Centre on Substance Use and Addiction press release here. Read journal article here.

Entrepreneur Explains How to Set Up a Home Marijuana Garden as The Fresno Bee Warns That ER Docs Are Seeing Frequent Cases of Cannabinoid Hyperemesis Syndrome (CHS)

Emergency room physicians have seen an uptick in compulsive vomiting since California legalized marijuana for recreational use last November. The patients’ vomiting is accompanied by frantic screaming and kicking.

The phenomenon is called Cannabinoid Hyperemesis Syndrome of CHS. It occurs exclusivity in chronic marijuana users and was not identified until 2004 when Australian doctors made the link between chronic use and CHS.

Doctors say THC and other cannabinoid concentrations are much higher in today’s marijuana and may be contributing to more cases. The only long-term treatment is to stop using pot.

Read Fresno Bee story here.

Tobacco-Marijuana Nexus Begins . . .

Imperial Brands, a tobacco giant in the UK that removed the word “tobacco” from its name 18 months ago, is looking to diversify as smokers quit. It has hired medical marijuana expert Simon Langelier, who is chairman of the Canadian firm PharmaCielo which supplies cannabis oil extracts. Prior to that, Mr. Langelier spent 30 years at rival tobacco firm Philip Morris.

Imperial chairman Mark Williamson said Imperial will benefit from Mr. Langelier’s experience in tobacco and “wider consumer adjacencies.”

Skeptics have long warned that the tobacco industry, given its expertise in crop farming and distribution, will likely join and probably take over the marijuana industry. If so, it will likely apply its Joe Camel marketing tactics targeting adolescents as new smokers to targeting teens as new marijuana users.

Read the Independent story here.

Pictured: a Nevada legislator on a study tour of medical marijuana dispensaries, sniffs sample product.

. . . And So Does the Alcohol-Marijuana Nexus

The legalization proponents who wrote the Nevada recreational marijuana ballot initiative, which passed last November, had some help from the state’s alcohol industry. Mysteriously, the law specifies that all marijuana grown in Nevada will be distributed by alcohol distributors. This is unique to Nevada.

The state wants to license others to sell pot, but the liquor lobby has sued the state claiming it has exclusive marijuana distribution rights.

Just this afternoon, the judge hearing the lawsuit ruled for the alcohol industry and against the Nevada Department of Taxation which would have issued temporary licenses to medical marijuana dispensaries to sell recreational pot between July 1 and January 1, 2018 when licensing regulations will be completed.

Read Daily News article here.

Handel wins handily, Democrats 0 for 4, pollsters wrong again

In an article titled Heavily Funded Democrat Falls Short as Georgia House Seat Stays Republican The Daily Signal’s Rachel del Guidice reports:

Republican Karen Handel soundly defeated Democrat Jon Ossoff in Tuesday’s closely watched, historically expensive race for the congressional seat once held by GOP superstar Newt Gingrich.

Handel, 55, a businesswoman who was Georgia’s secretary of state, had 127,021 votes or 53 percent with 99 percent of precincts reporting.

Ossoff, 30, a documentary filmmaker and former congressional aide who does not live in the House district, had 114,390 votes or 47 percent.

Polls had the race going down to the wire.

Ossoff out spent Handel by a margin of 7 to 1 and lost by 6%. Ossoff spent $200 for every vote he received. It’s the message not the money. President Trump’s message resonates as do his tweets supporting Handel. Presidential tweets cost Republicans nothing but win elections.

Additionally, conservative businessman Ralph Norman (R-SC) defeated liberal Archie Parnell (D-SC) in the special election for Congress in South Carolina’s 5th district.

There are four takeaway points from these four races:

  1. Trump and his make America great again agenda is a winner for Republicans.
  2. Money is no longer king when it comes to winning elections.
  3. The political pollsters still can’t get it right when it comes to predicting election outcomes.
  4. The Democrat Party is in big trouble and needs to rethink what it is doing at the local level. They are out of touch and out of office.

“This is a huge win for conservatives,” Cole Muzio, president of the Family Policy Alliance of Georgia, told The Daily Signal in an email. “A record-setting fundraising haul, busloads of out-of-state volunteers, and national unity around Jon Ossoff could not convince Georgians to vote against their own interests.”

There have been four hotly contested special elections where Democrats have lost. They have lost because voters are voting “in their own interests.” It’s the economy stupid, not Russia.

This race is just another indicator that President Trump’s agenda is in tune with voters. The question is will the Republican congress deliver on repealing and replacing Obamacare, lower taxes, eliminate the regulatory burden on businesses and build the wall.

If Republicans do what they promised the 2018 midterm elections will see America turn deep red.

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EDITORS NOTE: The featured image is of Republican candidate Karen Handel thanking supporters in Atlanta as the first returns come in Tuesday night in her win over Democrat Jon Ossoff in Georgia’s 6th Congressional District. (Photo: Curtis Compton/TNS /Newscom)

Is Freedom of Speech Irretrievably Lost?

COMMENTARY Magazine has devoted their July-August edition to an issue-length symposium in which many prominent writers, activists and thinkers were asked to respond to the question, “Is free speech under threat in the United States?” I was asked to contribute. The following is an excerpt from my piece in COMMENTARY’s symposium on the threat to free speech. Go read it all:

The real question isn’t whether free speech is under threat in the United States, but rather, whether it’s irretrievably lost. Can we get it back? Not without war, I suspect, as is evidenced by the violence at colleges whenever there’s the shamefully rare event of a conservative speaker on campus.

Free speech is the soul of our nation and the foundation of all our other freedoms. If we can’t speak out against injustice and evil, those forces will prevail. Freedom of speech is the foundation of a free society. Without it, a tyrant can wreak havoc unopposed, while his opponents are silenced.

With that principle in mind, I organized a free-speech event in Garland, Texas. The world had recently been rocked by the murder of the Charlie Hebdo cartoonists. My version of “Je Suis Charlie” was an event here in America to show that we can still speak freely and draw whatever we like in the Land of the Free. Yet even after jihadists attacked our event, I was blamed—by Donald Trump among others—for provoking Muslims. And if I tried to hold a similar event now, no arena in the country would allow me to do so—not just because of the security risk, but because of the moral cowardice of all intellectual appeasers.

Under what law is it wrong to depict Muhammad? Under Islamic law. But I am not a Muslim, I don’t live under Sharia. America isn’t under Islamic law, yet for standing for free speech, I’ve been:

  • Prevented from running our advertisements in every major city in this country. We have won free-speech lawsuits all over the country, which officials circumvent by prohibiting all political ads (while making exceptions for ads from Muslim advocacy groups);
  • Shunned by the right, shut out of the Conservative Political Action Conference;
  • Shunned by Jewish groups at the behest of terror-linked groups such as the Council on American-Islamic Relations;
  • Blacklisted from speaking at universities;
  • Prevented from publishing books, for security reasons and because publishers fear shaming from the left;
  • Banned from Britain.

A Seattle court accused me of trying to shut down free speech after we merely tried to run an FBI poster on global terrorism, because authorities had banned all political ads in other cities to avoid running ours. Seattle blamed us for that, which was like blaming a woman for being raped because she was wearing a short skirt.

This kind of vilification and shunning is key to the left’s plan to shut down all dissent from its agenda—they make legislation restricting speech unnecessary.

The same refusal to allow our point of view to be heard has manifested itself elsewhere. The foundation of my work is individual rights and equality for all before the law. These are the foundational principles of our constitutional republic. That is now considered controversial. Truth is the new hate speech. Truth is going to be criminalized.

The First Amendment doesn’t only protect ideas that are sanctioned by the cultural and political elites. If “hate speech” laws are enacted, who would decide what’s permissible and what’s forbidden? The government? The gunmen in Garland?

There has been an inversion of the founding premise of this nation. No longer is it the subordination of might to right, but right to might. History is repeatedly deformed with the bloody consequences of this transition.

RELATED ARTICLE: When socialists attack Article VI

EDITORS NOTE: This column originally appeared in The Geller Report.

TAKE ACTION: Put the brakes on the refugee resettlement program

Thanks to reader Denise for making a very cool flyer to remind you to call your Washington representatives to counter the lobbying campaign by the refugee industry this week.  They are ginning-up thousands of calls to Congress in advance of World Refugee Day tomorrow.

This is a very handy way to get the phone numbers for your representatives.  I just tried it, and in addition to my reps in Washington, I received phone numbers for my state reps too!

Post is filed in ‘What can you do’ because you asked!

RELATED ARTICLE: 117 Leftwing groups/refugee contractors oppose bill to BEGIN to reform refugee program

FBI offered Russian bribes to say he hacked DNC Emails for Trump

While the criminal witch hunt against our President continues apace over the nonexistent collusion between Trump with Russia, here’s a blockbuster front page news story virtually ignored by the elite enemedia. The FBI offered a Russian hacker cash and citizenship if he would confess to hacking Hillary Clinton’s email for Trump. There was just one problem: he hadn’t.

These rogue Obama plants within the FBI and other agencies, who are even trying to fabricate evidence to frame Trump, must be removed and prosecuted, or they could be the death of the American republic.

“FBI Probe Into Clinton Emails Prompted Offer of Cash, Citizenship for Confession, Russian Hacker Claims,” by Tom O’Connor, Newsweek, May 11, 2017:

A Russian citizen accused of being a hacker by both Russia and the U.S. has claimed U.S. officials offered to cut him a deal if he admitted to interfering in the 2016 presidential election.

Yevgeniy Nikulin, 29, has found himself in the middle of an international dispute between Washington and Moscow, at the very center of which lies U.S. allegations that Russia sponsored a series of hacks targeting Democratic Party candidate and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton in favor of Republican candidate and current President Donald Trump. On October 5, 2016, days before U.S. intelligence publicly accused Russia of endorsing an infiltration of Democratic Party officials’ emails, Nikulin was arrested in Prague at the request of the U.S. on separate hacking charges. Now, Nikulin claims U.S. authorities tried to pin the email scandal on him.

Nikulin was detained in the Czech Republic for allegedly hacking the servers of major sites LinkedIn, Dropbox and Formspring between 2012 and 2013. While awaiting trial, he claims in an undated letter reportedly given to U.S. Russian-language news site Nastoyashchoe Vremya by Nikulin’s lawyer, Martin Sadilek, that the FBI visited him at least a couple of times, offering to drop the charges and grant him U.S. citizenship as well as cash and an apartment in the U.S. if the Russian national confessed to participating in the 2016 hacks of Clinton campaign chief John Podesta’s emails in July.

Trump initially dismissed allegations of Russian involvement in the election, but has since reversed his position, while denying any personal connection to the hacks. Moscow has vehemently denied interfering in the 2016 election.

“[They told me:] you will have to confess to breaking into Clinton’s inbox for [U.S. President Donald Trump] on behalf of [Russian President Vladimir Putin],” Nikulin wrote, according to The Moscow Times.

Nikulin said he refused the deal, but U.S. officials threatened to return. He claims the visits occurred in mid-November 2016 and on February 7 of this year. Czech television has reported at least one FBI visit earlier this year, according to The Guardian, which cited an FBI spokesperson as saying the agency was “aware of the situation,” but declining further comment. The FBI is seeking to extradite Nikulin to face trial in the U.S., something he and his lawyers are trying to fight.

While the U.S. has not publicly acknowledged any connection between Nikulin and the Russian election hacking controversy, Nikulin’s arrest did attract the attention of Moscow. Nikulin is accused by Russia of hacking into and stealing from online WebMoney accounts. The Moscow-based online money transfer system claims 31 million users around the world and Nikulin is charged with stealing $3,450 in 2009, according to the state-owned Tass Russian News Agency. Moscow has also filed an extradition request.

Nikulin, a self-described used car salesman who claims he does not work with computers, denies the charges raised against him by both the U.S. and Moscow. His Czech lawyer, Adam Kopecky, said in January he and Nikulin believed the Russian national was being used as a “political pawn” amid an international feud between Washington and Moscow, according to The Guardian….

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EDITORS NOTE: The column originally appeared in The Geller Report.

The Coming Civil War

The left has been at war against America for decades. The right represents those of us who favor individual freedom and capitalism — and the left are those who want government controls and socialism.

Political violence became an essential and successful means of leftist warfare in the 60’s, the decade of destruction. The success of the violent “student rebellion” in 1964 and the so-called Free Speech Movement has set the table for the left’s warmongering and treason. It was clear from the outset that the “student revolution” violently ushered in at Berkeley in the mid-sixties would come to this. The left is evil, and they mean to destroy our way of life, our freedom and us. It took decades to norm their anti-Americanism, their hatred of freedom and individual rights, but they have reached their tipping point. And the long beaten and battered among us have had it.

The attempt to solve social problems by means of physical force is what a civilized society is established to prevent. The advocates of mass civil disobedience admit that their purpose is intimidation. A society that tolerates intimidation as a means of settling disputes—the physical intimidation of some men or groups by others—loses its moral right to exist as a social system, and its collapse does not take long to follow.

Politically, mass civil disobedience is appropriate only as a prelude to civil war—as the declaration of a total break with a country’s political institutions. (Ayn Rand)

We fought a civil war against the Democrat slave-party. And they have risen and seek to enslave us again. We will not go silently into that cold dark night. We will have to fight this civil war again.

The left is going for the kill — literally. Their target is the most powerful office in the world — the Presidency.

President Trump was elected by Americans who oppose the left-wing coup and are fed up with living under the left’s oppressive boot. Trump is our proxy. We fought back the non-violent way — through the ballot box. From the moment he was elected, the left refused to accept the will of the people. This Russian witchhunt is an “illegal and and unconstitutional mutiny.”

One of the Republican Party’s most distinguished statesmen recently told a closed gathering that a “cold coup” is underway against the president.

One of many coups — legal, cultural, political, violent ….

The Trump-Russia collusion story is nonsense, as its disseminators know better than anyone else. The object of the exercise is not to support the innuendo, but to launch an investigation which can provoke the White House into responses that might be construed as illegal. The intelligence leaks involved in framing the story alone are probably sufficient grounds to put several dozen senior officials in federal prison for double-digit terms. That consideration gauges the scale of the problem: the mutineers have committed multiple felonies, and their downside should the mutiny go wrong is not ignominious retirement but hard time at Leavenworth.

For the moment, the mutineers have the momentum. The Trump administration continues to run on a skeleton staff, with the vast majority of key positions still unoccupied. If my surmise is correct, it was unable to persuade the director of the FBI, the nation’s chief watchdog, to undertake vigorous countermeasures against the mutiny, for example, a comprehensive screening of electronic communications by the reporters who received leaks of classified materials. (more here).

The right has played nice for much too long. Last night, Laura Loomer took to the stage in Central Park and interrupted the Broadway production of Julius Caesar, a play by William Shakespeare that had been politically altered to feature the assassination of U.S. President Donald Trump.

At the moment when Trump was being gleefully murdered — an applause moment for America’s left-wing entertainment elites — Laura jumped on stage and condemned the play for normalizing political violence.

Laura was arrested held by police. The theatre company, by contrast, continues to produce their snuff show, glamorizing and normalizing violent terrorism in America. (more here)

“Stop the normalization of political violence against the right. This is unacceptable.” – Jack Posobiec

Indeed.

Laura was arrested for “trespassing,” but leftwing thugs and goons attack us at demos in support of Trump and Israel. Freedom lovers are beaten at demos against jihad and sharia by left-wing fascists who mockingly call themselves antifa (anti-fascists).

The deck is stacked against us. We must get off the defense.

SCUM
Published June 16, 2017 | By Jack Wheeler

Let’s be crystal clear on this:  the people above are directly responsible for the murder attempt on Republicans in Congress yesterday.

And not just the network talking airheads such as those pictured above, but the publisher of the New York Times, Arthur Ochs Sulzberger Jr., the owner of the Washington Post, Jeff Bezos, and the actual shooter they deranged, James Hodgkinson.

They have Steve Scalise’s blood on their hands.  Just as they have Trump’s fake blood of Kathy Griffin’s and Shakespeare on the Park’s.

Let’s focus on The Scum Flagship.  The New York Slimes continues to sponsor the Trump Assassination Play that pretends to be about Julius Caesar, ending with the actor portraying Trump lying dead in a pool of blood:
To The Point calls upon Trump supporters in Manhattan to stage a portrayal of Arthur Sulzberger as Julius Caesar bloodily knifed to death by Caesar’s assassins – at the entrance to the NYT Building at 620 Eighth Avenue.  They should then send a bill to NYC’s Communist Mayor Bill de Blasio demanding to be paid for their artistry as he does The Public Theatre to the tune of 1 million taxpayer dollars a year.

They could follow that up with CNN’s Fareed Zakaria as Caesar lying dead in a pool of blood in front of Time Warner Center at 10 Columbus Circle.  They should then express their hope that Zakaria will praise their “brilliantly interpreted masterpiece” of his killing as he did of Trump’s on May 31:

zakaria-tweet
In fact, Manhattan Trump supporters could then form an acting company to perform weekly Caesar assassination performances in Central Park, featuring the Trump Deranged Celebrity/Journalist/TV-Airhead/Fake News Media Executive or Owner of the Week.

This is such a target-rich environment they could stage a weekly performance for a different Trump Deranged Scum easily for a year and never run out of targets.  For starters, Breitbart has provided a list of 15 celebs who’ve threatened violence upon Trump, such as Kathy Griffin, Madonna, Snoop Dogg, Robert De Niro, and Stephen Colbert (Warning: disgusting language in the link).

And why limit this to New York City?  You could form your own Shakespeare-in-the-Park Caesar Assassination performances at a public park in your community to leave your local Trump Deranged TV station airhead or city official lying in fake blood.

Or, TTP encourages anyone skilled at Photoshop to depict Kathy Griffin holding the blood-drenched beheaded head of Sulzberger, Bezos, Snoop Dogg, on and on, the list is endless, and put it out on the Internet to go viral.  You could even Photoshop Griffin holding her own head…

(Actually, if you really wanted to stick it to her, you’d Photoshop her holding the bloody head of Mohammed with the caption — in Arabic, natch — “What the Pedophile Prophet Deserves.”  Send it to every Islamic website there is.  She’d go bankrupt spending money on bodyguards.)

Rush Limbaugh was exactly right yesterday (6/14) when he said that Hodgkinson is “the personification of the lunatic base, the deranged base of the Democrat Party.”

It is the Fake News Media that is 100% responsible for creating the now murderous lunacy that has enveloped the Democrat base.  Now it must be forced to accept that responsibility.  We need from them a full mea culpa apology to the American people and to President Trump.

Instead, we are getting despicable lies from the New York Slimes.  We get 2-digit IQ Fake News Libtards like Chuck Todd and Howard Kurtz desperately avoiding FNM responsibility, pleading that everyone (meaning no one) is at fault and for “no finger-pointing” – especially at them.  We get a deluge of murderous Nazi hate from “Progressive Media” lowlifes.

The last thing in the world we need now is “unity” with these Scum.

Some Dems in Congress may be shaken and sobered enough to recover from their TDS, and in them there may be hope.  Even Pelosi Galore said on the House Floor yesterday (6/14) she is praying for President Trump, “that his presidency will be successful” and “that his family will be safe.”

The President yesterday respectfully asked for unity between Pubs and Dems, which was certainly the right and appropriate message at this time.  This was eloquently and graciously expressed:

“We may have our differences, but we do well, in times like these, to remember that everyone who serves in our nation’s capital is here because, above all, they love our country.

We can all agree that we are blessed to be Americans, that our children deserve to grow up in a nation of safety and peace, and that we are strongest when we are unified and when we work together for the common good.”

Let us hope that this will ameliorate Democrat Dementia and they will cease being nothing but Loser Obstructionists.  Miracles occur, they could even become patriotic to some degree.

But we’d need some evidence – like their giving up on Plan C in their never-ending Trump Impeachment Crusade.

That said, the Fake News Media remains America’s Public Enemy #1:

trump-tweet-021717
They are not journalists.  They are purveyors of criminal hate and violence.  They have to stop being Scum and start being normal Americans again.  They have to sincerely do a mea culpa.

Until then, every one of them deserves to be faux-murdered in fake blood like Shakespeare’s Caesar.

EDITORS NOTE: This column originally appeared in The Geller Report.

The Loophole in Background Check Thinking: Criminals Obey the Law

Gun control groups expend an awful lot of ink, time and money advocating for “common-sense public safety laws” like “universal” background checks because such restrictions, they claim, will keep guns out of the hands of criminals and other dangerous people.

It’s peculiar, then, that many of these entities don’t do a better job of background-checking their own adherents and associates. Not too long ago, then-California state senator Leland Yee (D), whose staunch support of gun control measures earned him a spot on the Brady Campaign’s “Gun Violence Prevention Honor Roll,” was accused of committing various felonies, including illegal firearms trafficking and money laundering offenses. Following a plea agreement in which he acknowledged his participation in a firearms trafficking conspiracy, among other offenses, Yee was sentenced to five years in jail.

Members of the Michael Bloomberg-founded Mayors Against Illegal Guns (MAIG), now reconfigured as Everytown for Gun Safety, popped up in the news with such embarrassing regularity due to arrests and convictions for crimes, including gun crimes, that the New York Post ran an editorial in 2013 titled “Illegal mayors against guns.”

And last month, a criminal complaint filed in federal court in Illinois alleges that a certain Francisco Sanchez violated a federal gun law that prohibits possession of a firearm by a felon. The snag is that at the time, Mr. Sanchez (a.k.a. “Smokey”) was apparently working as a supervisor at CeaseFire Illinois, as highlighted in a February feature by the Everytown-funded website, The Trace.   

The affidavit in support of the criminal complaint states that Mr. Sanchez was convicted of murder and aggravated battery in 1986, and adds the more disturbing allegation that he is the “national leader of the Gangster Two-Six Nation,” a street gang “prevalent throughout Chicago” and in other states. Mr. Sanchez’s arrest occurred as part of a larger federal investigation of gang-related gun and drug trafficking in which other suspected gang members or associates were apprehended and over 100 firearms were seized.

Of course, the complaint contains only allegations, not evidence, and Mr. Sanchez and his fellow defendants remain innocent until proven guilty. However, the arrests – which took place shortly before the Memorial Day weekend – coincided with a drop in gun homicides as compared to last year’s holiday weekend.

We’ve written before about how criminals get guns, including this study at Chicago’s Cook County Jail that concluded criminals bypass legal sources in favor of guns obtained from “family, gang members, or other social connections.”

Expanded background check laws won’t stop criminals because criminals ignore the law. Nonetheless, Everytown and others of its ilk will continue to call for ever-increasing restrictions and laws affecting law-abiding gun owners in the name of prohibiting felons, violent criminals, and gang members from obtaining guns. Honest gun owners will continue to do what they’ve always done: obey the law.

Europeans Are Paying to Subsidize Jihadists by Barry Brownstein

Does the European welfare system promote hate by allowing people to avoid learning the lessons of mutual dependence and cooperation that the workplace teaches?

All Men Are Brothers

Consider for a moment how little we can do for ourselves. The food we eat, the clothes we wear, the fuel we burn are mostly obtained through the efforts of others. Would we not perish in short order without what Rose Wilder Lane calls the “brotherhood of man”?

Rose Wilder Lane was the daughter of Laura Ingalls Wilder. Rose played a crucial role in bringing her mother’s Little House on the Prairie books to life. Lane’s deep understanding of the human condition shines through in her classic book, The Discovery of Freedom.

Since we cannot survive on our own, Lane explains, “All men are brothers, of one blood, of one human race. They are brothers in one imperative desire to live, in one desperate necessity to combine their energies in order to live.” Thus, “The brotherhood of man is not a pretty phrase nor a beautiful ideal; it is a fact.”Lane adds pointedly, “Men who behave as if the brotherhood of man were not a fact, are alive to do so only because it is a fact.”

In other words, those who harm others are themselves able to thrive only because the efforts of others.

Work is one way through which we learn to create value for others. At work, we are unlikely to succeed if we don’t experience the common humanity we share with our colleagues and customers.

Become a Stranger to Humanity

Now, consider the consequences when able-bodied individuals are paid to not work.

When we don’t work because taxpayers are supporting us, it is easier to lose touch with our common humanity with others. Without creating value for others, we may never develop the facility to appreciate the “brotherhood of man” that keeps us alive.

When individuals no longer must cooperate with each other to thrive, they have perverse incentives to act against the natural brotherhood of man. In Europe, jihadists and potential jihadists are paid to separate themselves from the brotherhood of man.

Consider these facts:

  1. According to The Telegraph, the Manchester bomber Salman Abedi “is understood to have received thousands of pounds in state funding…even while he was overseas receiving bomb-making training.” Abedi never held a job in his life.
  2. Danish citizens who have been granted a “disability” pension have gone to Syria to fight on behalf of ISIS. Other Danish jihadists are receiving unemployment benefits.
  3. When the German newspaper Bild “ran an analysis of the 450 German jihadists fighting in Syria, it found that more than 20% of them have received benefits from the German state.”
  4. Before the notorious radical Islamist preacher Anjem Choudary was convicted and jailed on terrorism charges in 2016, taxpayers in England had funded his hate-filled sermons for over two decades. Choudary had been receiving more than 25,000 pounds a year in benefits and was living in a home worth over 300,000 pounds. (Note, the English pound is worth more than the U.S. dollar.)
  5. Choudary encouraged his followers to not work and instead to live off government benefits: “The normal situation is to take money from the kuffar [non-believers]. You [the kuffar] work, give us the money, Allahu Akhbar.” In Choudary’s warped world, he and his fellow jihadists are entitled to live off the labor of others.

Undermining the Brotherhood of Man

A basic economic law is that you get more of what you subsidize. The more you pay a person to not work, the more isolated, the more alienated that individual can become.

Are subsidized and alienated individuals more receptive to messages of hate? If the subsidized embrace hatred, their thoughts of hatred may go unchallenged by the realities of work life that demand cooperation, not conflict, with others.

If we understand our existence depends on our brothers, we understand the truth of Lane’s observation: “Any man who injures another, injures himself, for human welfare is necessary to his own existence.”

The jihadist living off the sweat of others has no such understanding. Jihadists may believe God is on their side, but radical jihadism is at odds with the truth of the brotherhood of man.

The great divide is not between Muslims and non-Muslims. The great divide is between those who respect the brotherhood of man and those obsessed with hatred.

Why is Europe undermining the brotherhood of man by subsidizing those who hate?

Reprinted from Intellectual Takeout.

Barry Brownstein

Barry Brownstein

Barry Brownstein is professor emeritus of economics and leadership at the University of Baltimore. He is the author of The Inner-Work of Leadership. He delivers leadership workshops to organizations and blogs at BarryBrownstein.com, and Giving up Control.

It Would Have Been a Massacre by Jeffrey A. Tucker

The horrifying scene at a practice field in Alexandria, Virginia, at which Congressman Steve Scalise was shot in a shocking flurry of gunfire, could have been much worse. Rand Paul pointed out that “it would have been a massacre” had a member of the House leadership not been there. His presence guaranteed that the heavily armed Capitol Police could take him down. Many others present expressed similar feelings. They were sitting ducks. If the offensive gunfire could not be met by defensive gunfire, the bloodshed would have been far worse.

As this case shows – and there are millions more like this one – force must be met with force to stop the violence.

The aftermath will include all the usual questions. What were the gunman’s motivations? Shooter James T. Hodgkinson’s Facebook page shows that he is a supporter of Bernie Sanders and socialism generally. Where did he get the gun? Did he obtain it legally with all the appropriate background checks? What does this scene imply about gun regulations and controls on distribution?To some degree, all these questions are beside the salient point. As this case shows – and there are millions more like this one – force must be met with force to stop the violence. If a murderous monster has the most firepower in the space, everyone else’s life is in the balance. The calls for gun control refuse to deal with this reality. To the extent they succeed in restricting people’s rights to defend themselves and others, they bear moral culpability for an increasingly violent society.

Defense Use

What happened at the baseball park was a classic case of defensive gun use. In the entire debate over guns, this is the point I find most compelling in a practical sense. Despite being raised in a gun-owning family, and having spent many hours at gun ranges and owning some myself, they are not my favorite things, which is to say I don’t really like them. I have no romantic attachment to them at all. I would rather live in society without them.

There is a strong reason for people like me to hope for a wide distribution of guns and firing skills.

And yet a society without guns is not an option. Given this, there is a strong reason for people like me to hope for a wide distribution of guns and firing skills. It is precisely because of my attitude, and others like me, that I hope that there are plenty of others out there, who have my back in case like this.The use of guns for defensive purposes makes the strongest case there is for liberalization of gun laws. Trevor Burris comments:

The prevalence of defensive gun use (DGU) is one of the most hotly debated issues in gun control policy. In the words of one study produced by the National Research Council, measuring DGU “has proved to be quite complex, with some estimates suggesting just over 100,000 defensive gun uses per year and others suggesting 2.5 million or more defensive gun uses per year.” That’s quite a range, but if it falls anywhere in that range then it is still a lot of DGU.

The dispute about the number of DGUs centers primarily on the definition of defensive gun use and the method of counting it. When the Bureau of Justice Statistics performs the National Crime Victimization Survey they ask about DGU, and they generally reach a number around 100,000. Florida State University criminologist Gary Kleck and others have criticized that method because many people are understandably unwilling to tell a government agent that they have brandished or fired a weapon in self-defense. They may not know if what they did was legal, and they may illegally possess the weapon, to name just two concerns. Thus Kleck performed surveys designed to reach just defensive gun use without creating biased concerns in his subjects. Through that method he reached the number 2.5 million.

Feeling Safe

This is why the prevalence of private owners carrying guns makes me feel safer. To be sure, there are bad actors but the best foil to them are good actors who serve as a counterforce. Once you pay attention, you see examples everywhere.

Knowing that there is no way for government to ban guns — there is a black market in nearly every country with severe restrictions — the best protection for everyone is for ownership to be widespread and distributed through the population.

So I would like to make a plea to my fellow citizens: please buy guns. Carry them. Keep them in your homes and cars. It’s especially important to do this in public places, where freak murderers could conceivably lurk. The weapons should be loaded and dangerous, capable of killing with one shot.

I want every robber around every corner to hold the expectation that anyone he mugs is carrying a deadly weapon.

I especially desire this, because I don’t want to do this. I don’t like them. I don’t want them in my home. I don’t like shooting at the range. I don’t like looking at them, shopping for them, cleaning them, or even thinking about what they do to others. I loathe violence of all sorts, and hope to never have to use it. I’m a pacifist in spirit.The only way I can really hope to get away with indulging my temperament here is if others are willing to pick up the slack. I want burglars, kidnappers, thieves, and would-be mass murderers of all sorts to believe that every home in my neighborhood is heavily armed and populated by fearless gun owners – and for them to believe that my home is among them.

I want every robber around every corner to hold the expectation that anyone he mugs is carrying a deadly weapon. I would like to sit in theaters, airplanes, and restaurants where the trolls and scum among us believe that they could pay the ultimate price for savagery.

The thing is that I do not want to personally contribute to this cause in any way. I’m not up to it.

For Every Jew a 42

A friend who grew up in Brooklyn in the 1960s said this was a common slogan in his neighborhood: “For every Jew a 42.” It was commonly understood that if the Jews had been heavily armed in Germany, instead of systematically disarmed by the state as they were, the rise of the Nazis would have been checked, and perhaps the Holocaust could have been prevented. Neither he nor his friends were particularly interested in doing this but the point was clear. Today, he too hopes to be a free rider on gun nuts. I’m with him on this point.

What the law is should have nothing to do with our own personal choices about what we like or dislike, do or do not do.

As regards guns, as with marijuana and prostitution, what the law is should have nothing to do with our own personal choices about what we like or dislike, do or do not do. This view seems nearly extinguished in our world today. If you don’t drink sodas, you are happy to ban them. If you don’t like heroin, you think others should be prevented from consuming it. If you don’t like guns, you want them banned.Stand Up For Rights

That’s not how the free society works. The preservation of freedom requires that we be willing to stand up for the rights of others to own and do things we do not like but which harm no one, or, in the case of guns, actually save lives.

For this reason, I have far more respect for the teetotaler who favors a free market in liquor than I do for the heavy drinker who favors them same. Non-smokers should stand up for the right to smoke. And so too should people who do not own guns and have no desire to own guns stand up for the right to possess and carry.

Especially in the case of guns, those of us who do not want to handle guns have a special and personal interest in defending not only gun rights but also the proliferation of weapons among the citizenry. It’s the only way that we can truly deter crime and stop crime in public places when it is unleashed.

The only real means to prevent the emergence of a world safe for criminals and government is to see the proliferation of guns among everyone else. I’m sorry, but I will not do my part in this respect. But I will defend the rights of others to do so, with a sincere hope that they will own, train, and be ready. Yes, I’m a free rider, but gun owners need to know that I’m truly grateful.