30-Foot Border Wall Begins Construction In California

Several days after President Donald Trump declared a national emergency, construction began on the fifth border wall project of his administration.

The U.S. Customs and Border Protection announced Tuesday that work has started on replacing 14 miles of a steel-mesh fence along the U.S.-Mexico border near San Diego, The Associated Press reported. The fence is being replaced with 30-foot high steel bollards. It is actually the second layer of barrier to be put up in the area, with the first layer nearly complete.

SLSCO Ltd., a company located in Galveston, Texas, scored the $101 million contract in December 2018. The Trump administration has already awarded around $1 billion in contracts to cover 97 miles of the southern border, with the project in San Diego being one of the latest.

Trump touted the construction Wednesday of a border wall in New Mexico.

WATCH:

Progress continues after the president secured billions more in funding for border wall construction.

Trump signed into law an appropriations bill earlier in February that doles out $1.375 billion for 55 miles of new wall, an amount immigration hardliners said was not enough. However, the president then took the controversial step on Feb. 15 of declaring a national emergency, which allowed him to allocate a total of about $8 billion in federal funds.

The emergency order has been adamantly opposed by Democrats and progressive groups.

A coalition of 16 states, led by California, filed suit against the president on Monday in an attempt to strike down the crisis declaration. A number of liberal organizations, such as the American Civil Liberties Union and the Center for Biological Diversity, have also leveled suits against the administration.

COLUMN BY

Jason Hopkins

Jason Hopkins


Energy and Immigration reporter for the Daily Caller News Foundation. Follow Jason on Twitter

EDITORS NOTE: This Daily Caller column with images is republished with permission. Content created by The Daily Caller News Foundation is available without charge to any eligible news publisher that can provide a large audience. For licensing opportunities of our original content, please contact licensing@dailycallernewsfoundation.org.

Liberals See Truth as Subservient to Doctrine, Feelings

Truth is not a left-wing value.

I first discovered this as a graduate student studying the Soviet Union and left-wing ideologies at the Russian Institute of Columbia University School of International Affairs. Everything I have learned since has confirmed this view.

Individuals on both the left and right lie. Individuals on both the left and right tell the truth. And liberalism, unlike leftism, does value truth. But the further left one goes, the more one enters the world of the lie.

Why does the left lie?

There are two main reasons.

One is that leftists deem their goals more important than telling the truth. For example, every honest economist knows women do not earn 20 percent less money than men for the same work done for the same amount of hours under the same conditions. Yet leftists repeat the lie that women earn 78 cents for every dollar men earn.

Why any employers would hire men when they could hire women and get the same amount of work done at the same level of excellence for the same number of hours while saving 20 cents on the dollar is a question only God or the sphinx could answer.

So, when New York Times columnists write this nonsense, do they believe it? The answer is they don’t ask themselves, “Is it true?” They ask themselves, “Does the claim help promote the left-wing doctrine that women are oppressed?”

 Whatever serves that end is morally justified.

The second reason is leftism is rooted in feelings, not reason or truth. From Karl Marx to Bernie Sanders, left-wing preference for socialism over capitalism is entirely rooted in emotion. Only capitalism creates wealth. Socialism merely spends what capitalism creates.

Do leftists not know this? Even if they know it, the emotional pull of socialism prevails.

Do leftists believe there are more than two sexes? Of course not. That’s why they renamed “sex” “gender”—and then redefined “gender” to mean whatever one wants it to mean.

So then, on the left, truth is subservient to two higher values: doctrine and emotion.

This leads to the question of this column: Do those on the left believe their lies?

Do leftists believe global warming will destroy the world as we know it in 12 years, as recently suggested by Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y.? I don’t know. They seem to talk themselves into believing their hysterias. But they don’t act on them.

Here’s a simple proof that the left is lying about the imminent threat of global warming to civilization: Leftists don’t support nuclear power. It is simply not possible to believe fossil fuel emissions will destroy the world and, at the same time, oppose nuclear power. Nuclear power is clean and safe. Sweden, a model country for leftists, meets 40 percent of its energy needs with nuclear power.

If you were certain you were terminally ill yet decline a medicine that is guaranteed to cure you, the rest of us would have every reason to assume you didn’t really believe you were terminally ill.

Here’s more evidence the left doesn’t believe its global warming hysteria: How many leftists with beachfront property anywhere in the world have sold it? If leftists really believe global warming will cause the oceans to rise and soon inundate the world’s coastal areas, why would any leftist not sell his beachfront home while he could not only make all his money back but make a profit as well?

Another example of left-wing rhetoric leftists don’t act on: The left tells us that colleges are permeated by a “rape culture,” yet virtually all left-wing parents send their daughters to college. If you were to believe any place has a culture of rape, where 1 in 4 or 5 women is raped or otherwise sexually assaulted, would you send your 18-year-old daughter there? Of course not.

So how do any left-wing mothers or fathers send their daughters to college? The answer would seem to be they know it’s a lie—but that doesn’t matter, since the left views telling the truth as incomparably less significant than combating sexism, sexual assault, misogyny, toxic masculinity, and patriarchy.

One more example: “Walls don’t work.”

It is inconceivable that people who say this—especially those with walls around their home—believe it. Yet leftists say it with the same degree of ease Stalin labeled Trotsky a fascist, even though Trotsky and Lenin were the fathers of the Bolshevik Revolution.

The question is not whether truth is a left-wing value. The only question is whether leftists believe their lies. And, believe it or not, I still don’t know.

So, conduct the following tests and decide for yourself:

Ask anyone you know who says global warming will destroy most life on Earth in 12 years why they don’t advocate nuclear power. If they tell you it’s too dangerous, you know they are hysterics, not followers of science.

Ask anyone you know who believes the global warming threat is an existential one and owns beachfront property why they aren’t selling their beachfront property.

Ask anyone who believes colleges have rape culture why they sent (or are sending) their daughter to college.

It is possible to love truth and be liberal, conservative, libertarian, an atheist, a believer, a Jew, a Christian, a Muslim, or a Hindu. But you cannot be a leftist.

COPYRIGHT 2019 CREATORS.COM

COMMENTARY BY

Portrait of Dennis Prager

Dennis Prager

Dennis Prager is a columnist for The Daily Signal, nationally syndicated radio host, and creator of PragerU. Twitter:
@DennisPrager.

The Daily Signal depends on the support of readers like you. Donate now

EDITORS NOTE: This Daily Signal Column with images is republished with permission. The feature image is by Pixabay.

Trump Weighs in on Jussie Smollett’s Arrest

President Donald Trump weighed in on Twitter after actor Jussie Smollett was arrested Thursday and charged with felony disorderly conduct for filing a false police report following an alleged hate crime hoax.

“[Jussie Smollett]—what about MAGA and the tens of millions of people you insulted with your racist and dangerous comments!? #MAGA,” Trump wrote on Twitter Thursday.

Smollett, known for his role on the show “Empire,” is accused of orchestrating a fake hate crime against himself in Chicago in January. He claimed that two white men attacked him while he was walking home from a restaurant late at night. Smollett, who is gay, told police that the men poured a bleach-like substance on him and tied a rope around his neck like a noose while shouting racist and homophobic slurs.

Some media outlets reported that Smollett said the alleged attackers wore “Make America Great Again” hats popularized by Trump’s 2016 presidential campaign, but Smollett said during a “Good Morning America” interview on Feb. 14 that he never said that.

That interview took place before Smollett’s story began to crumble. Two brothers, Olabinjo and Abimbola Osundairo, were arrested for allegedly attacking Smollett before being released Friday without charges. Smollett allegedly paid the brothers to carry out the attack.

The Chicago Police Department addressed the Smollett controversy during a press conference Thursday.

“This announcement today recognizes that ‘Empire’ actor Jussie Smollett took advantage of the pain and anger of racism to promote his career,” Chicago PD Superintendent Eddie Johnson said. “I am left hanging my head and asking why? Why would anyone, especially an African-American man, use the symbolism of a noose to make false accusations?”

RELATED VIDEO: Chicago Police Superintendent Eddie Jackson on Jussie Smollett.

EDITORS NOTE: This Daily Caller column with images is republished with permission. Content created by The Daily Caller News Foundation is available without charge to any eligible news publisher that can provide a large audience. For licensing opportunities for this original content, email licensing@dailycallernewsfoundation.org. The feature image is by Pixabay.

VIDEO: Vatican Sex Summit Report — Day 1

This summit has been assailed as a phony sideshow by homosexual clerics attempting to hide their own homosexual network, chief of which had been Theodore McCarrick, who the network protected for decades and in many ways is the entire reason for this meeting.

But there now appears to be much more to this story than just the homosexual angle, as large as that still looms.

Beyond his horrendous evil of homosexual predation for decades, Church Militant has learned exclusively that McCarrick may also have been clandestinely trained by Soviet Communists here in Europe during his younger years, making him effectively a Communist plant in the heart of the Church.

Through a back channel, Church Militant has obtained information from former Communist personnel who were instrumental in setting up a secret network of indoctrination and training centers throughout Europe in the aftermath of World War II, and their information directly implicates the involvement of Theodore McCarrick.

A little history to set the stage first: When Stalin gained control of the former Soviet Union in the early 1920s, he set about plans to cripple the influence of the Catholic Church in the West, if not completely destroy the Church — all part of communism’s plan for world domination and warned about by Our Lady in Fatima in 1917.

A key component of the plans involved infiltrating seminaries with young men who would work to undermine the Church’s teaching in the area of morality.

This was testified to on multiple occasions by Bella Dodd, a high-ranking member of the U.S. Communist Party. She herself claims to have orchestrated the placement of 1,100 men into U.S. seminaries.

These men, she said, following the dictates of Stalin, were immoral men, a large number homosexual. Dodd’s testimony is important because not only is part of the infiltration plan revealed, but the nexus between communism and homosexuality in the plan. The plan, however, was not contained to the United States.

As the Iron Curtain was collapsing in the late 1980s and early 1990s, press reports began circulating about how Polish seminaries had been infiltrated by hundreds of Communist agents with the information coming from KGB records.

The reality that the Church had been under siege from within for decades shook Polish Catholics to the core. And Poland was not alone. Catholic Lithuania as well saw its hierarchy penetrated by Soviet agents.

And liberation theology was sneaked into Latin America by KGB agents to undermine the Catholic Church through the Jesuit order.

So that covert Communist activity happened in the U.S. as well is no surprise. Particular to the operation was that young men native to their respective countries be recruited so there would be no suspicion about them. This is why various training centers were established in multiple countries.

According to Church Militant’s sources, one of those European centers was St. Gallen, Switzerland, where Theodore McCarrick had resided right about 1950. McCarrick was a poor kid whose father had died when he was very young and whose mother slaved away doing menial work to make ends meet.

In a 2001 New York Times profile, McCarrick spoke briefly about his time in Europe immediately following high school in New York City, a hotbed of the Communist Party USA at that time.

Admitting he didn’t have any plans for his life at the time, he says “a friend” invited him to Switzerland where he stayed for a year. He gave no details about how a poor kid from New York with no money happened to travel to Europe and remain here for a year with no visible means of support.

International travel in the day was essentially the domain of the well-to-do and was very expensive.

It is from McCarrick’s longtime sex abuse victim James Grein that we know the exact location in Switzerland was St. Gallen, and it is from Church Militant’s former Communist sources we know that St. Gallen was one of the Communist training centers to recruit young men to go into seminaries and begin eroding the Church.

McCarrick told the New York Times that it was during his year in Europe that he discovered his vocation, pointing to how the history of the Church in Europe to which he had been exposed had been a motivating factor.

McCarrick would have been the ideal candidate for Soviet recruiting: a fatherless young man with homosexual proclivities with no particular ambition in life. He fit the pattern perfectly, especially the homosexual dynamic whereby he could easily be controlled by blackmail.

McCarrick returned from Europe and enrolled in seminary for the New York archdiocese where he was ordained in 1958. If McCarrick was indeed recruited as a Soviet agent to undermine the Church, he fulfilled the wishes of his overlords perfectly.

Quickly ascending up the ranks, he sewed moral, doctrinal and spiritual confusion and harm on every level — not just his seminarian victims and other young men.

Interestingly, the high-profile book by the French gay activist which was just released today here in Rome and has caused quite a stir concentrates a good deal of attention on McCarrick. That’s noteworthy because the author worked on the book for four years, most of which was long before McCarrick became the household name he has come to be since last summer.

That means many of the author’s contacts in the Roman Curia and the 40 cardinals he interviewed pointed to McCarrick in one way or another as being a key figure.

Presuming that McCarrick was a Communist agent, imbued with Marxist thinking and a socialist world view from his earliest days, it would explain a lot regarding the direction the Church in the U.S. took during his rise to power.

The so-called “social justice” wing of the Church in the United States became dominant under McCarrick, who was a key player in helping form and guide it.

Beyond the Church itself, McCarrick was able to use his influence to secure U.S. government work for three years on the Secretary of State’s Advisory Committee on Religious Freedom Abroad in 1996 under Democrat Bill Clinton.

From 1999 to 2001, McCarrick was also on the U.S. Commission for International Freedom — both positions taking him on a dizzying array of foreign trips.

During an award ceremony, Clinton said that the “litany of countries” visited by McCarrick was more suited to a diplomat than an archbishop, a comment made in jest during a speech, but revealing nonetheless.

McCarrick secured the role of Vatican envoy to Communist China a couple of years before his fall from grace and was the man credited for hammering out the Vatican-China deal that many insist was a total sellout of the Church in China.

While these assertions might never be able to be proven, for such is the nature of cover-ups and clandestine operations, they cannot be ignored. There are too many crossovers and points of convergence, the results of which are happening all over the Church and the culture at large to dismiss.

McCarrick routinely bribed and bought favor with multiple curial officials in Rome. He was a predatory homosexual and this was well-known going back years.

He strongly advanced the cause of the social justice propaganda which has dominated the life of the Church in the United States for decades — a movement cloaked in language of love of neighbor, but one which routinely is exposed for its left-leaning politics and association with socialist organizations many of which are spin-offs from Saul Alinsky.

A couple years after Pope Francis was elected, Cdl. Danneels of Belgium, a protector of homosexual predation himself, bragged in public about how a group of socialist-minded clerics had convened in St. Gallen over the years and plotted how to get a socialism-friendly pope elected.

As it turns out, St. Gallen appears to have much deeper roots in socialism than first thought and may have developed into the headquarters for the plot to destroy the Church by co-opting it through the use of active homosexual clergy trained to try and bring about a communist utopia on earth by means of the Church’s far-flung influence.

If this is true, and it all rings true given the facts, the McCarrick case must be much explored much deeper than just the superficial treatment of him being reduced to the lay state.

He may very well have been the point man for a Communist infiltration into the Church in the United States and extending to control of even the Vatican itself.

EDITORS NOTE: This Church Militant column with images is republished with permission.

Time To Fight For The MAGA Hat!

There is a growing effort to demonize anyone wearing a hat with the capital letters MAGA.

President Trump ran on a platform to make America great. His campaign slogan was Make America Great Again or MAGA. This slogan became a symbol that his administration wanted to change the country’s direction and return power to the people.

There is a growing wave of uncontested absurdities which have become accepted slogans since Donald J. Trump was elected as the 45th President of the United States of America.

Uncontested Absurdities

What is an “uncontested absurdity?” Ayn Rand wrote:

“The uncontested absurdities of today are the accepted slogans of tomorrow. They come to be accepted by degrees, by dint of constant pressure on one side and constant retreat on the other – until one day when they are suddenly declared to be the country’s official ideology.”

A long held uncontested absurdity is the slogan that America is still a racist nation.

MAGA Hat and Racism

The newly accepted uncontested absurdity is that anyone wearing a red Make America Great Again (MAGA) hat is by definition a racist. Actress Alyssa Milano posted this on Twitter.

Candace Owens Crushes Alyssa Milano Over KKK Hood-MAGA Hat ...

Any effort to show support for the idea of making America great is evil because racism is evil and the MAGA hat is now the “new white hood.”

Before and since her tweet has there have been a growing number of attacks on people wearing a MAGA hat. Clearly there is a “dint” of constant pressure to prevent anyone from wearing a MAGA hat, anywhere at anytime. Here are a few examples:

Perhaps the most disturbing attack came against students from Covington Catholic High School on January 19, 2019. This attack was carried out by Black Hebrew Israelites, which made national news. This incident resulted in lawsuits filed on behalf of Nick Sandmann (who was wearing a MAGA hat) against the perpetrators including the media for falsely reporting on the events which took place in violation of journalistic standards.

This mob mentality to demonize the MAGA hat has even lead to what now appears to be a hoax hate crime perpetrated by singer Jussie Smollett.  Elizabeth Zwirz from Fox News reports:

Authorities in Chicago on Wednesday approved felony criminal charges against “Empire” actor Jussie Smollett, hours after he was “officially classified as a suspect in a criminal investigation” for allegedly “filing a false police report” in connection with his Jan. 29 attack claims, police said.

Image may contain: text
Image posted by Thomas Holkenbrink on the
Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez Fans Facebook page

The Daily Signal has documented 19 hoax hate crimes perpetrated since the inauguration of President Donald J. Trump.

American Greatness

Ayn Rand in “Textbook of Americanism” explains, in the simplest terms possible, what made America unique and great. She opens with an explanation of two starkly contrasting ideas.

What Is the Basic Issue in the World Today?

The basic issue in the world today is between two principles: Individualism and Collectivism. Individualism holds that man has inalienable rights which cannot be taken away from him by any other man, nor by any number, group or collective of other men. Therefore, each man exists by his own right and for his own sake, not for the sake of the group.

Collectivism holds that man has no rights; that his work, his body and his personality belong to the group; that the group can do with him as it pleases, in any manner it pleases, for the sake of whatever it decides to be its own welfare. Therefore, each man exists only by the permission of the group and for the sake of the group.

These two principles are the roots of two opposite social systems. The basic issue of the world today is between these two systems.

Socialism versus Freedom

President Trump during his “Choose Greatness” State of the Union address to congress said:

Here, in the United States, we are alarmed by new calls to adopt socialism in our country.  America was founded on liberty and independence –- not government coercion, domination, and control.  We are born free, and we will stay free.  Tonight, we renew our resolve that America will never be a socialist country.

Voltaire said, “Those who can make you believe absurdities can make you commit atrocities.”

We are now seeing atrocities committed in the name of an absurdity that the MAGA hat is the “new white hood.”

RELATED ARTICLES:

GENDER-X: New York City’s Uncontested Absurdity

How Marx, Hitler and Social Democrats have made thinking unthinkable

RELATED VIDEO: The Absurdity Of Ocasio-Cortez.

Arkansas Pulls the Trigger on Roe v Wade

While the U.S. Senate gears up for what should be a no-brainer vote on infanticide, the states are nudging their own needles to the pro-life side. Arkansas is the latest, thanks to Governor Asa Hutchinson (R) — and hardly the last.

Tuesday, with a nationwide protest over late-term abortion raging, Arkansas became the fifth state to make it clear where they stand if the issue ever returns to states. The minute Roe v. Wade is overturned, a growing number of states will already be prepared. Under the “trigger law” that Hutchinson just signed, Arkansas would immediately ban abortion if the ruling pro-lifers have been praying for ever came down.

Louisiana, Mississippi, North Dakota, and South Dakota have similar laws on the books — and Kentucky and Tennessee may be next. “It’s time for the United States to redress and correct what many believe is a grave injustice and a crime against humanity which is being perpetuated by the decisions of Roe v. Wade,” said the Arkansas bill sponsor. Under the law, abortion will be completely outlawed, except in medical emergencies. It also, LifeNews points out, allows abortionists to be prosecuted.

“In 2017, the abortion advocacy group NARAL predicted that 13 states immediately would ban abortions if the high court overturns Roe. Last year, the Center for Reproductive Rights put their estimate at 22 states,” Michaiah Bilger reports. After another year like this one, who knows how high that number could go? If you live in Kentucky or Tennessee, help us get to 24! Contact your state leaders and support trigger laws like Arkansas’s.


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


RELATED ARTICLES:

Don’t Tell Mom the Babysitter’s Fed

The Washington Post’s Claim to (De)fame

EDITORS NOTE: This FRC column with images is republished with permission.

Nancy Pelosi Wants a National Emergency to Confiscate Your Guns in 2020

Nancy Pelosi wants to give illegal aliens rights, while declaring a national emergency to disarm the law-abiding. Reject Pelosi’s socialist disarmament. 

Join the NRA.

Barr and Mueller Eradicating Our Fourth Amendment Rights

“No system of mass surveillance has existed in any society that we know of to this point that has not been abused.” – Edward Snowden

“Legal and bureaucratic impediments to surveillance should be removed.” – Former CIA Director Mike Pompeo

“Entire populations, rather than just individuals, now live under constant surveillance. It’s no longer based on the traditional practice of targeted taps based on some individual suspicion of wrongdoing. It covers phone calls, emails, texts, search history, what you buy, who your friends are, where you go, who you love.” – Edward Snowden

The last thing we need is another swamp creature, but it appears that is what we’re getting with our new Attorney General (AG).  Bill Barr is a DC insider who praised Comey, Rosenstein and Mueller during his confirmation hearings — how is President Trump going to drain the swamp if Mueller’s best friend is running the DOJ?  Barr and Mueller worked together when Barr was Bush’s attorney general from 1991 to 1993 and Mueller oversaw the department’s criminal division.

During William Barr’s confirmation hearings, Senator Lindsey Graham asked the nominee several questions.  Barr said he didn’t think Robert Mueller was on a witch hunt, and thought he’d be fair to the country as a whole.  He also said he had no reason to stop Mueller’s investigation or terminate it for cause.  Barr told Senator Graham that he was committed to allowing Robert Mueller to finish his job, and that he has a very high opinion of Deputy AG (DAG) Rod Rosenstein.  Link

Barr has now asked Rod Rosenstein to stay on for a while, and he has said he would.  How special.  Fired former Deputy FBI Director Andrew McCabe, and two other people who have testified to Congress, claim Mr. Rosenstein repeatedly offered to wear a wire when meeting with Mr. Trump.  McCabe also stated that he and other officials, including DAG Rosenstein, did headcounts of which cabinet officials might vote to declare the president “unable to discharge the powers and duties of his office” under the 25th Amendment.  Rosenstein never actually denied McCabe’s claims.

The very suspicion of impropriety should be reason for Rosenstein’s termination. 

Barr and Second Amendment

William Barr served as the 77th United States Attorney General from 1991 to 1993 during the first Bush administration.  He is also a past employee of the CIA. The Bushes represent the establishment globalists in their party and rather than vote for their party’s nominee in 2016, they voted for Hillary Clinton. 

As I stated in a previous article, William Barr exhibited anti-Second Amendment policies in his 1991 confirmation hearings.  Both Gun Owners of America and Dr. John Lott, President of the Crime Research Prevention Center, shared similar sentiments of worry with Barr’s past confirmation statements.

Video here: 

Asset Forfeiture

It is also disturbing that Barr has been a big fan of taking people’s property through civil asset forfeiture without a conviction. Many poor people in our country have cash taken from them and then the government says, “Prove to us where you got the cash and then you can get it back,” the burden is on the individual. Civil Asset Forfeiture is a terrible thing and William Barr is a big fan.

Government Theft of Promis Software

In October 1991, Barr appointed then retired Democratic Chicago judge Nicholas Bua as special counsel in the Inslaw scandal. Few people understand the full ramifications of Promis software, and the undetectable spying apparatus placed in foreign computers. In 1989, House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jack Brooks, D-TX, launched a three-year investigation into the Inslaw affair. In the resulting report, the Committee suggested that among others, Edwin Meese, while presidential counselor and later as attorney general, and Democrat D. Lowell Jensen a former assistant and deputy attorney general and former US district judge in San Francisco, conspired to steal PROMIS software from Bill Hamilton’s company, Inslaw.

Bua’s 1993 report found the DOJ of no wrong doing in the matter, despite a 12-year lawsuit by Inslaw, regarding the government theft of their software.  One journalist, Danny Casolaro, died as he attempted to tell the story and boxes of documents relating to the case were destroyed, stolen, or conveniently “lost” by the DOJ. Software piracy, conspiracy, cover-up, stonewalling, covert action…just another decade at the corrupt DOJ.

Ruby Ridge

Senate Judiciary Committee hearings for AG nominee William Barr focused heavily on Barr’s views on Special Counsel Robert Mueller. But nobody asked about Barr’s legal crusade for blanket immunity for federal agents who killed American citizens.

Barr was responsible for both the U.S. Marshals Service and the Federal Bureau of Investigation, two federal agencies whose misconduct at Ruby Ridge “helped to weaken the bond of trust that must exist between ordinary Americans and our law enforcement agencies,” according to a 1995 Senate Judiciary Committee report.

The family had come under federal siege because of Randy’s refusal to become an informant within the Aryan Nation white supremacist group. Randy had been manipulated by an ATF undercover operative named Kenneth Fadeley into selling a shotgun with a sawed-off barrel. Eight months after that transaction, two of Fadeley’s comrades in that detestable organization demanded that Randy become an informant, threatening his home and family if he didn’t cooperate.  Ruby Ridge was considered a kill zone.

In a questionnaire by the Judicial Committee, Barr was asked to disclose his past work including pro bono activities “serving the disadvantaged.” The “disadvantaged” that Barr spent the most time helping was FBI agent Lon Horiuchi who slayed an Idaho mother holding her baby in 1992.  Barr spent two weeks organizing former Attorneys General and others to support “an FBI sniper in defending against criminal charges in connection with the Ruby Ridge incident.” Barr also “assisted in framing legal arguments advanced… in the district court and the subsequent appeal to the Ninth Circuit,” he told the committee.

U.S. marshals trespassed on Weaver’s land and killed his 14-year-old son, Sammy, and his dog. The following day, FBI sniper Lon Horiuchi killed his wife, Vicki, as she was standing in the cabin doorway holding her 10-month-old baby. Horiuchi had previously shot Randy Weaver in the back after he stepped out of the cabin to collect the body of his son. The suspects were never given a warning or a chance to surrender and had taken no action against FBI agents. Weaver survived.

In August of 1995, the Justice Department paid $3.1 million to settle a wrongful death lawsuit from the Weaver family.  In 1998, they paid Elmer “Geronimo” Pratt $4.5 million for a 26-year false imprisonment and false testimony against him by an FBI informant.

Government Surveillance

The fourth amendment originally enforced the idea that each man’s home is his castle, secure from unreasonable search and seizure by the government.  The Patriot Act was the destruction of American citizen privacy.  Both Mueller and Barr are big brothers who love the “all-seeing eye.”

While serving as attorney general under former President George H.W. Bush in 1992, Barr directed the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) to collect bulk phone data on millions of people, most of whom weren’t even suspected of a crime. This program laid the groundwork for the National Security Agency’s phone record collection authorized by the Patriot Act a decade later, a misnomer if there ever was one. Barr continued to be a cheerleader for warrantless surveillance even after the PATRIOT Act’s passage. During congressional testimony in 2003, he called the bill a “major step forward.”

He went on to say that the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, the law that authorizes foreign surveillance and has been abused to surveil, “remains too restrictive” because it “still requires that the government establish probable cause that an individual is either a ‘foreign power’ or an ‘agent of a foreign power.’” In other words, Barr objects to the idea that the government should need a warrant before it can spy on citizens.  Link

Surveillance and the Patriot Act

The Patriot Act permits FBI agents to write their own search warrants for business records, and it has been used to induce the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court (FISA) to issue warrants on a made-up basis to read emails and listen to telephone calls in real time. The members of Congress who voted for it were largely unaware of the liberties they were sacrificing.  None of them ever read it.

Both the Patriot Act and the USA Freedom Act unconstitutionally do away with the probable cause requirement for warrants. Those two laws permit the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court to issue warrants based on the standard of “governmental needs” rather than probable cause. This is a profoundly unconstitutional standard, and one that has resulted in spying on all people all the time.

The Patriot Act vastly expanded the surveillance potential of the FBI, the CIA and the NSA among other intelligence agencies.  The US government contracted with Acxiom, Lockheed, Booz Allen Hamilton and many others to build new mass surveillance programs.  One program was called Total Information Awareness (TIA), which was an operation where the FBI and other agencies would build profiles, like Acxiom’s, on millions of law-abiding Americans.  Link

Mr. Barr strongly supports the Patriot Act which violates every American’s fourth amendment right to privacy.  The Constitution provides us with more protection and safety than the surveillance state ever will.

An NSA Whistle-Blower tells all in this video to filmmaker Laura Poitras.  She profiled William Binney, a 32-year veteran of the National Security Agency who helped design a top-secret program he says is broadly collecting Americans’ personal data.

Following the June 2013 leak of documents detailing the NSA practice of collecting telephone metadata on millions of Americans’ telephone calls, former Director of National Intelligence, James Clapper was accused of perjury for telling a congressional committee hearing that the NSA does not collect any type of data on millions of Americans.  He escaped prosecution because the five-year Statute of Limitations ran out.

Birds of a Feather

Barr and Mueller are birds of a feather.  Mueller has claimed one case to validate spying on all of America.  It was a Supreme Court case and the tracing of a single phone call to a single robber.  Thus, the Supreme Court held that phone metadata is not protected by the fourth amendment.  Mueller has repeatedly used this.  The case is Smith v. Maryland, which held that people did not have a reasonable expectation of privacy regarding the numbers they call, because they willingly give up those numbers to the company to connect their call.

And so, because the Supreme Court approved the collection of one robber’s phone records in 1979, Mueller insists it meant it was reasonable for FBI and NSA to collect and aggregate the phone records for every American today and forever. Link

Mueller implicitly argues that the perpetual and ubiquitous data collection of the digital and telephonic communications of law-abiding Americans is constitutional.  For thorough documentation of same, see Louisiana State Senator John Milkovich’s book, Robert Mueller, Errand Boy for the New World Order.

Conclusion

Rand Paul opposed the confirmation of William Barr.  He said, He’s been the chief advocate for warrantless surveillance of U.S. citizens. I think that the Fourth Amendment should protect your phone calls and your bank information. People shouldn’t be allowed to look at it without a warrant.”  Perhaps this one Senator knows an inside player when he sees one.

Surely, we’ve all heard foolish folks say, “Well, I have nothing to hide, I’m not a terrorist.”  Edward Snowden said, “Arguing that you don’t care about privacy because you have nothing to hide is no different than saying you don’t care about free speech because you have nothing to say.”

Americans do not understand freedom or the Fourth Amendment of our unalienable Bill of Rights.  The Jews of Europe had nothing to hide either, but it didn’t stop the Gestapo, and neither did it stop the East German Stasi.  The NSA’s algorithms and extensive databases make it far more effective than the Stasi ever dreamed of being.

S139 reauthorizes the FISA for six years through 2023 which governs electronic surveillance of foreign terrorism suspects.  The Senate passed it on January 18, 2018 by a vote of 65 to 34.  Although put in place to gather intel on foreign targets, it has been used to spy on U.S. citizens.  The bill provides provisions to protect the privacy of American citizens, but given the track record of intel agencies, it is unlikely they will follow these rules.  Will our new AG make sure they do?

Attorney Joe DiGenova believes William Barr is going to be the catalyst who will clean out the filth from the DOJ.  I hope he is right, and I am wrong. P.S.  Remember during the Trump campaign how NewsWithViews articles had virus warnings appear when you opened them?  There was never a virus, it was an attempt by google to keep people from reading truth.  Now, Google has removed their ads from NewsWithViews because they don’t like the content of the articles.  Those ads help to pay for the cost of running the website.  They know that, and that’s why they’ve pulled their ads.  We need your help now more than ever.  Please tell your friends to sign up to receive the daily emails, and remember NewsWithViews when you pay your monthly bills. 

RELATED ARTICLE: Rod Rosenstein Out, William Barr In: Time To Investigate Deep State Plot Against Trump

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In America Today, We Plunder and Call It Good

Frederic Bastiat, a French economist and member of the French National Assembly, lived from 1801 to 1850. He had great admiration for our country, except for our two faults—slavery and tariffs.

He said: “Look at the United States. There is no country in the world where the law is kept more within its proper domain: the protection of every person’s liberty and property.”

If Bastiat were alive today, he would not have that same level of admiration. The U.S. has become what he fought against for most of his short life.

Bastiat observed that “when plunder becomes a way of life for a group of men in a society, over the course of time they create for themselves a legal system that authorizes it and a moral code that glorifies it.”

You might ask, “What did Bastiat mean by ‘plunder’?”

Plunder is when someone forcibly takes the property of another. That’s private plunder. What he truly railed against was legalized plunder, and he told us how to identify it.

He said: “See if the law takes from some persons what belongs to them, and gives it to other persons to whom it does not belong. See if the law benefits one citizen at the expense of another by doing what the citizen himself cannot do without committing a crime.”

That could describe today’s American laws. We enthusiastically demand that the Congress forcibly use one American to serve the purposes of another American.

You say: “Williams, that’s insulting. It’s no less than saying that we Americans support a form of slavery!”

What then should we call it when two-thirds to three-quarters of a $4 trillion-plus federal budget can be described as Congress taking the property of one American and giving it to another to whom it does not belong?

Where do you think Congress gets the billions upon billions of dollars for business and farmer handouts?

What about the billions handed out for Medicare, Medicaid, food stamps, housing allowances, and thousands of other handouts?

There’s no Santa Claus or tooth fairy giving Congress the money, and members of Congress are not spending their own money. The only way Congress can give one American $1 is to first take it from another American.

What if I privately took the property of one American to give to another American to help him out? I’m guessing and hoping you’d call it theft and seek to jail me. When Congress does the same thing, it’s still theft. The only difference is that it’s legalized theft.

However, legality alone does not establish morality. Slavery was legal; was it moral? Nazi, Stalinist, and Maoist purges were legal, but were they moral?

Some argue that Congress gets its authority to bypass its enumerated powers from the general welfare clause. There are a host of proofs that the Framers had no such intention.

James Madison, the “Father of the Constitution,” wrote, “If Congress can do whatever in their discretion can be done by money, and will promote the general welfare, the government is no longer a limited one possessing enumerated powers, but an indefinite one.”

Thomas Jefferson wrote, “Our tenet ever was … that Congress had not unlimited powers to provide for the general welfare, but were restrained to those specifically enumerated.”

Rep. William Drayton of South Carolina asked in 1828, “If Congress can determine what constitutes the general welfare and can appropriate money for its advancement, where is the limitation to carrying into execution whatever can be effected by money?”

What about our nation’s future?

Alexis de Tocqueville is said to have predicted, “The American republic will endure until the day Congress discovers that it can bribe the public with the public’s money.”

We long ago began ignoring Bastiat’s warning when the federal government was just a tiny fraction of gross domestic product—3 percent, as opposed to today’s 20 percent: “If you don’t take care, what begins by being an exception tends to become general, to multiply itself, and to develop into a veritable system.”

Moral Americans are increasingly confronted with Bastiat’s dilemma: “When law and morality contradict each other, the citizen has the cruel alternative of either losing his moral sense or losing his respect for the law.”

COPYRIGHT 2019 CREATORS.COM

COMMENTARY BY

Portrait of Walter E. Williams

Walter E. Williams

Walter E. Williams is a columnist for The Daily Signal and a professor of economics at George Mason University. Twitter: @WE_Williams.

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EDITORS NOTE: This Daily Caller column with images is republished with permission. The featured image is by Pixabay.

Google Allegedly Monetizing Child Erotica on YouTube

The National Center on Sexual Exploitation is calling on YouTube to remove all pornography from its platform, following yet another disturbing account of apparently monetized child erotica on YouTube. This is one of the reasons Google has been placed on NCOSE’s 2019 Dirty Dozen List which names 12 mainstream facilitators of sexual exploitation.

Prominent YouTuber MattsWhatItIs made a video on February 17th, explaining his discovery.

In the description, he writes:

Over the past 48 hours I have discovered a wormhole into a soft-core pedophilia ring on Youtube. Youtube’s recommended algorithm is facilitating pedophiles’ ability to connect with each-other, trade contact info, and link to actual CP in the comments. I can consistently get access to it from vanilla, never-before-used Youtube accounts via innocuous videos in less than ten minutes, in sometimes less than five clicks.. Additionally, I have video evidence that these videos are being monetized by Youtube, brands like McDonald’s, Lysol, Disney, Reese’s, and more… Youtube is facilitating this problem. It doesn’t matter that they flag videos and turn off the comments, these videos are still being monetized, and more importantly they are still available for users to watch.

This is not the first time YouTube has come under fire for hosting sexually exploitive content. In April 2018 it was criticized for allowing a pornographic ad to appear on a trending YouTube video, and in November 2017 it was revealed that YouTube’s flagging system to prevent child victimization on its platform was reportedly malfunctioning for a year. Even the YouTubeKids app has been infiltrated with disturbing and often sexual content.

It’s an open secret that Google’s YouTube is a hub for child erotica and is used by pedophiles to network. It’s time for YouTube to make solving this issue their number one corporate priority. Too often, YouTube waits for users or the media to flag degrading and exploitive content on its platform. And then once the media buzz dies down, YouTube reverts to its whack-a-mole approach instead of making sustained improvements.

We know that the technological solutions exist that would be able to prevent this material from being posted and it would save countless man-hours that YouTube currently uses by employing human reviewers.

For instance, Dr. Michael Holm, Chief Data Scientist at Picnix, Inc., asserts “Our team is fully capable of delivering an effective, scalable AI solution for pornographic video detection, building on our seminal patent pending Iris Program (www.meetiris.ai).”

We implore Google and YouTube to collaborate with this company, and others, to find real solutions instead of putting a bandaid on it and waiting for the next blow up.

Tweet at YouTube telling them to remove all exploitative content from their platform.

Sign the petition for YouTube to remove pornographic content from their site.

Story about Unaccompanied Alien Children in Florida Shelter is Humorous and Infuriating

This is a story from UPI last week that has been languishing in my posting queue.

It’s a longish story, but worth reading if you want to know more about life (the good life) in a shelter for the “children” who have come across our border illegally and unaccompanied.

Unaccompanied alien teens
Here come the Unaccompanied Alien Children!

I’m only going to bring your attention to a couple of points, one that made me laugh, the other that should infuriate you as it did me!

The point that makes me laugh is this! 

The Office of Refugee Resettlement shelter (never mind that they are not refugees!) houses up to 1,600 youths older than 13.  However, in almost every paragraph (there are 53 paragraphs!) in the story the teens are referred to as “children.”  In fact, the word “child” or “children” is used a whopping 63 times (twice in some paragraphs) while the word “teen” or “teenager” is never used, not even once!

Just that one little linguistic trick is meant to direct your thinking so that you imagine hundreds of little children missing mommy and daddy and crying themselves to sleep each night.

And it infuriates me to read that 670 of the “children” are 17 and older and as they age-out at 18, a big hunt begins to find them “sponsors” to take charge of them so that they aren’t turned over to ICE.

Here are the opening paragraphs of the UPI story,

Feb. 13 (UPI) — A month after federal officials removed the last child from a facility in Texas, 1,600 unaccompanied migrant children are being housed at a so-called temporary emergency shelter in Florida.

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services invited UPI and other media on Wednesday to tour the facility in Homestead, Fla., which is located in a former Job Corps facility near the Homestead Air Reserve Base. It is used as a shelter for what HHS calls “unaccompanied alien children,” or UAC — migrants between the ages of 13 and 17 who have no lawful immigration status and no legal guardians able to provide care in the United States.

Since March 2018 more than 6,000 children have been placed at the site and about 4,450 have been discharged to what the department considers suitable sponsors — generally a parent or some other relative — in the United States, according to HHS.

At the time of UPI’s visit, 1,575 children were being sheltered at the facility — 1,143 males and 432 females.

Now check this out!  43% of the “children” are between 17 and 18 years old! (Or, they could be older, see my next post!)

The south campus houses 905 children between the ages of 13 and 16, including 634 males and 271 females, while all 17-year-olds at the facility live on the north campus, which houses 509 males and 161 females.

In case you wondered what happens when the “children” turn 18:

Three months before a “child” turns 18, the sponsor hunt begins in earnest.

Children who turn 18 while in custody at a shelter are considered undocumented immigrants and are released to authorities, Weber said.

There were 21 such cases at the Homestead facility last month and 90 in the past year, the Homestead program coordinator said.

A team of case managers at the facility focuses on finding sponsors for children within three months of their 18th birthday and the program coordinator receives daily reports regarding their status in the two weeks before those children turn 18.

Read the whole story, it is worth your time.

Remember, YOU are paying for all of this!  And, more are on the way!  You MUST scream at your elected officials—‘Enough is enough!’—and do it at every opportunity!  Today, you might tell the President (again!) by going to the White House comment page and voicing your opinion.

RELATED ARTICLE: Refugee Resettlement Contractor wants Rep. Ilhan Omar to Tone it Down

EDITORS NOTE: This Frauds, Crooks and Criminals column with images is republished with permission. The featured image is by Pixabay.

The Brouhaha Over Plastic Straws

Over the last few months, the subject of plastic straws has become a political football, brought about by Democrats who contend they are not ecologically friendly. Not surprising, California was the first state to bring it to our attention. Since then, the subject has surfaced in a handful of cities here in Florida, most notably St. Petersburg, a stronghold for the Democrats. Last December, the St. Pete City Council passed a bill banning plastic straws, not the voters. This is related to their ban on Styrofoam which is commonly used by restaurants to save leftovers. As of this moment, you can only get a plastic straw in St. Pete if you ask for one, but the straws will be totally banned by 2020, and replaced by paper straws.

In my youth, I remember paper straws wouldn’t last any longer than a small carton of milk. As to soft drinks, twelve ounces and up, forget it, they’re useless. People would rather drink a soft drink directly out of a can, bottle or glass than using a paper straw.

The big question though, is the plastic straw a genuine problem? St. Petersburg is respectable in size and is listed as the fifth most populous city in Florida. During the winter months the city probably doubles in size due to the influx of “snowbird” tourists who enjoy the beaches and warm weather. St. Pete is also home to the Tampa Bay Rays, our MLB franchise. As such, there is a multitude of dining facilities in the area, large and small, all presumably providing straws to patrons.

The St. Pete council believes the plastic straw is an ecological threat to the beaches, but there is little, if any, proof that this is true. This begs the question, is this a political fad or is there any legitimate science behind it? So far, the answer appears to be “No.” It is reminiscent of Obamacare and the “Green New Deal” legislation introduced by Democrat-Socialist Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (NY) which is a laundry list of items to create a Socialist Utopia, but lacking specifics, such as the costs to implement her program and precisely how it will improve the environment.

Because of this, the plastic straw has become an iconic symbol of Democrats pushing their agenda without any science behind it. Such lunacy would not play well in corporate America where you must quantify the return on investment of a proposal. In other words, the Democrats are weak on doing their homework and are acting on impulse as opposed to fact. Instead, they package their ideas and allow the news media to carry the pitch to the public. Even more disturbing is the public is not truly being consulted on this issue which is commonly used by everyone.

Fortunately, cooler heads are prevailing at the state level in Florida where the legislature is drafting bills to prevent cities from outlawing plastic straws. If passed, this will supersede the authority of the municipal level.

This rhubarb over something as simple as a plastic straw is much ado about nothing. The Democrats have simply not made their case and makes me wonder, don’t we have better things to do? It also disturbs me our government officials will entertain any hairbrain idea that comes along, particularly when it is not thought through and articulated properly. They could probably be more productive by counting the number of angels that can dance on the head of a pin.

We could save a lot of time, money and effort if legislators could learn to draft bills more intelligently, such as how businesses write feasibility studies, but I guess that is too much to ask.

To help in this regard, my next column will be, “The Elements of a Good Feasibility Study,” which is intended to provide insight in the preparation of an intelligible proposal. Until then…

Keep the Faith!

EDITORS NOTE: This Bryce Is Right column with images is republished with permission. All trademarks both marked and unmarked belong to their respective companies. The featured image is by Pixabay.

IIhan Omar & Co. Were Elected Because of Their Racism, Not In Spite Of It.

If you are wondering why the leadership in the Democrat Party have given Ilhan Omar and Rashids Tlaib important committee assignments in the House of Representatives; or why all of the Democrats running for president are silent in the face of the Antisemitic and even anti American statements of these two Congresswomen; or why they continue to hold their seats in important Congressional committees and will retain them, read the illuminating article below by Caroline Glick.

If you are a moderate Democrat it will bring you to tears. 

Caroline Glick: IIhan Omar & Co. Were Elected Because of Their Racism, Not In Spite Of It.

Rep. Ilhan Omar is an antisemite and, as the actions of the congressional Democratic leadership last week made clear, hating Jews is a perfectly acceptable position in today’s Democratic Party.

Consider the chronology of events. Last month, Rep. Steven King (R-IA) was stripped of his committee assignments following a statement he made to the New York Times where he seemed to legitimize white supremacism. (King insists his remark was deliberately taken out of context).

Last week, Rep. Omar tweeted another statement that was inarguably antisemitic. Omar argued that the only reason that Congressional Republicans seek to censure her and her colleague Rep. Rashida Tlaib (D-MI) for their anti-Jewish bigotry is because Jewish money dictates their actions.

That is, she defended herself against allegations of antisemitism by proving, yet again, that she is an antisemite.

READ MORE

RELATED ARTICLE: Anti-Semitic Muslim Rep. Ilhan Omar to fundraise for Hamas-linked CAIR

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The Abuse Summit: It’s Only the Beginning

Robert Royal: People are happy that McCarrick has finally been defrocked, but now we need to deal with other abusers and enablers. 

February is not high tourist season in Rome. Skies are gray and temperatures low. St. Peter’s Square is relatively empty. But journalists filled the nearby Press Office earlier this week – more, according to one veteran, than since the death of St. John Paul II –because of the summit on the sex abuse crisis, which begins this evening with meetings between abuse survivors and participants, and continues Thursday through Saturday with formal sessions, parts of which will be streamed on the Vatican website. A video of the opening press briefing with remarks by Cardinal Cupich, Archbishop Scicluna, and other key figures is available by clicking here.

To be frank, it’s hard to say why so many journalists are here since no one, including Church spokesmen, expects that anything very dramatic will happen over the next few days – at least not in the formal sessions. What happens outside and around them, however, may be a different matter.

When the summit was announced last September, partly because of papal missteps in handling abuse cases in Chile, it seemed that the Church was going to take some large steps forward. There have been many smaller steps for years in many places around the world, everything from easier reporting mechanisms to better human formation in seminaries to the unprecedented laicization last weekend of former Cardinal Theodore McCarrick.

Expectations ran high, not least because the Holy Father asked the American bishops, during their annual November meeting, not to vote on ways to hold bishops accountable – whether they are abusers themselves, like McCarrick, or covered up abuse by people under their authority. They were told to wait until a uniform approach could be developed in February when many of the presidents of bishops’ conferences and heads of religious orders would gather together in Rome.

But Vatican spokesmen have more recently been encouraging people to lower expectations; and the focus this week is quite different: “The Protection of Minors in the Church.” That, of course, is a worthy goal. In many parts of the Catholic world, rules are in place, but there hasn’t been serious follow through. If the next few days bring proven practices to new places, that will be all to the good.

But it’s also much less than we were hoping for. And in America, we’ve already come a long way towards responding to the part of the abuse crisis that involves priests. We have been expecting – and had been told – that the next phase would be figuring out how to hold bishops accountable. That’s been a continuing problem, not only in America, but in Chile, Honduras, Australia, Europe, the pope’s own Argentina, and the Vatican itself.

People are happy that McCarrick has been expelled from the priesthood, for example, but they want to know how it was possible for a man widely rumored to be an abuser to have moved up in the hierarchy and eventually become cardinal-archbishop of the capital of the most powerful nation on earth. Three popes and dozens of Vatican officials are now part of the story. Pope Francis has promised an investigation into the files. It’s almost a year later and we’ve heard nothing of that, not even whether there’s an active inquiry underway.


Pope Francis by Will Oliver/EPA-EFE

Meanwhile, a new book, which will be officially released Thursday, the first day of the summit here in Rome, claims that 80 percent of the upper echelons of the Vatican are gay. Some remain celibate, others act out in various ways, but they form what, in local parlance, is called “the Parish,” a network of people who either cover for one another or, given their own inclinations, look the other way.

Or at least that’s what Frederic Martel, the author, says. Martel is a gay activist in France and his motives in publishing this book at this particular moment are suspect – as are some of his wilder claims. But he seems to have conducted thousands of interviews with various figures from high-placed Cardinals to Swiss Guards, and quotes some by name.

The excerpts that have appeared so far raise as many questions as they answer. But the whole matter of the gay presence in the Church and its role as an enabler – which the summit organizers are avoiding, indeed are denying is a factor – will not go away.

Martel says (and there’s no reason to doubt it since there have been no denials forthcoming) that his access to the Vatican was facilitated by Msgr. Battista Ricca, who is Director of the Papal Residence (i.e., Casa Santa Marta) and an official with the Vatican Bank. Ricca was widely known to have had a boyfriend or two when he was a Vatican diplomat in Uruguay. And he was caught in an elevator with a boy prostitute.

It was in response to a reporter’s question about his past on the plane returning from World Youth Day in 2013 that Pope Francis famously remarked, ““If someone is gay and he searches for the Lord and has good will, who am I to judge?”

But it’s partly the pope’s judgment in such matters that has raised further questions. Not only the bishop he wrongly defended in Chile, but even recent appointments like that of Gustavo Zanchetta – a bishop accused of abusing seminarians in Argentina and a friend of the pope’s – to a specially created post at one of the Vatican financial institutions. He had to be removed while investigations are going on.

And then there’s the recent naming of Irish-American Cardinal Kevin Farrell to the position of camerlengo, the official who declares the pope officially dead and then runs the Vatican, with limited powers, during the interregnum, the period between the death of one pope and the election of another.

Farrell lived for six years in the same residence with then-Cardinal McCarrick and claimed – to widespread skepticism – that he had no knowledge of, had never even heard rumors about, McCarrick’s outrages. It’s curious that the pope would pick a potentially questionable figure for such a sensitive post.

All of this suggests that what goes on in the synod hall this week is the merest beginning to what will continue to be a large and troubling process. More on all that in coming days.

COLUMN BY

Robert Royal

Robert Royal

Dr. Robert Royal is editor-in-chief of The Catholic Thing, and president of the Faith & Reason Institute in Washington, D.C. His most recent book is A Deeper Vision: The Catholic Intellectual Tradition in the Twentieth Century, published by Ignatius Press. The God That Did Not Fail: How Religion Built and Sustains the West, is now available in paperback from Encounter Books.

EDITORS NOTE: This Catholic Thing column with images is republished with permission. © 2019 The Catholic Thing. All rights reserved. For reprint rights, write to: info@frinstitute.org. The Catholic Thing is a forum for intelligent Catholic commentary. Opinions expressed by writers are solely their own. The featured image is by Pixabay.

Dems to Trump: Quit Wall You’re Ahead

If liberals wanted to sue over the border wall, they’re about 13 years too late. Congress already gave its blessing back in 2006 when it passed the Secure Fence Act. The same goes for the president’s decision to move the U.S. embassy in Israel. The House and Senate have been on board since 1995 when they authorized it. If the Left’s being honest, its problem isn’t that the president is moving forward with the wall. Its problem is that the president is Donald Trump.

Back in 2014, the Washington Examiner’s Eddie Scarry points out, the media had no problem calling it a “border crisis.” Neither did Barack Obama, who stood in the same Rose Garden as Donald Trump did on Friday, and insisted, “We now have an actual humanitarian crisis on the border that only underscores the need to drop the politics and fix our immigration system once and for all.” Five years, one administration, and who-knows-how-many caravans later, and suddenly, this president is doing something “immoral” by addressing the situation. That’s not because the dilemma changed. It’s because the occupant of the Oval Office did.

Take columnists like Karen Tumulty. In 2014, Scarry explains, she had no problem writing about the “current crisis on the Southwest border.” Well, it must have magically fixed itself, because last month, she accused the president of “manufacturing an emergency.” California, New York, and 14 other states want you to think that Donald Trump was acting outside of his constitutional authority when he used his executive power to finish the job Congress gave the green light to over a dozen years ago. But, as Ken Klukowski told me last night on Washington Watch, nothing could be farther from the truth.

“It’s critical for everyone to understand: the president is not invoking any of his inherent constitutional powers — none of his Article 2 powers, like commander-in-chief authority. In this case, you have a president who is only acting under a specific act of Congress, a federal statute called the National Emergencies Act of 1976. It’s been used 59 times before. This is just number 60. In fact, the 59th time was earlier this month — also by President Trump — regarding U.S. relations with Venezuela, because of course the turmoil going on over there. Maybe I missed the press release, but I didn’t hear the sky fall [when he declared that emergency]. I didn’t hear a news story from the National Archives that the Constitution burst into flames. One would almost think that this is just part of the rule of law. And that’s exactly what’s going on here.”

President Trump’s request is simple. He wants to move money that’s already been approved by Congress from one bank account to another. This president hasn’t “conjured funding from thin air (the military construction and Army Corps funding has already been appropriated),” the Federalist argues, “nor is he using funds for purposes explicitly prohibited by Congress (to the contrary, Congress explicitly authorized the construction of a border wall).”

In other words, there’s no constitutional crisis here. The only reason these leftist states are suing Trump is because he wants to protect American sovereignty and security. Juxtapose that with 2012. When conservative states took Barack Obama to court over his health care mandate, it was for the exact opposite reason. Unlike Trump, Obama wasn’t in the business of protecting freedom — he was in the business of undermining it. Obviously, after eight years of Obama, a lot of people are out of practice when it comes to operating within the limits of presidential authority. But in this instance, the contrast between the two parties has never been clearer.

None of this, unfortunately, is a surprise to President Trump. “… I’ll sign the final papers as soon as I get into the Oval Office. And we will have a national emergency, and we will then be sued. and they will sue us in the Ninth Circuit even though it shouldn’t be there, and we will possibly get a bad ruling — and then we’ll get another bad ruling — and then we’ll end up in the Supreme Court, and hopefully we’ll get a fair shake. And we’ll win in the Supreme Court just like the [travel] ban.”

As Ken joked, “We can’t get through our morning coffee without the Left filing a new lawsuit against President Trump — even when he’s just doing things that President Obama or previous presidents have done. Somehow it all becomes illegal when President Trump does it.” But if there’s one thing the other side should have learned by now, it’s that this president isn’t deterred — not by them, not by lawsuits, and certainly not when it comes to doing what’s right.


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


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EDITORS NOTE: This FRC column with images is republished with permission.