Common Core: Into the Bowels of the Beast


Bob Root and Debbie from American Patriot News.

This week, Once again, several grassroots activists fighting to restore local control and to bring common sense not common core to education, headed off for the long drive to Tallahassee.  Bob Root, of American Patriot News hosted us from the outskirts of the city and we helped put his excellent papers together for distribution.

We started early the next morning, darting in to see this legislator and make an appointment with that one, chatting with staff and exploring the labyrinth of the oddly constructed capitol buildings armed with research papers, copies of our bill, agendas, directories and very high hopes.

Tuesday, 2/10/15 was the date of the Florida House Education Sub-Committee Chaired by Representative Janet Adkins.  We sat right in front so we could see and be seen.  Having attended several mind numbingly dull presentations, I admired the legislators’ ability to appear attentive and wondered what they were really thinking.

The presentation that day was about (taxpayers spending more money for) training Principals to do better.  They were lamenting the lack of good candidates and had done some research showing “61% of superintendents in Urban areas can’t find the leaders they need” from a paper, “Preparing School Leaders for a Changing World”, by Linda Darling-Hammond, who is ironically one of the architects of Common Core.

The first speaker mentioned time spent doing compliance VS Instructional time was a factor in the reason that 75% of potential candidates thought the job was too complex and 60% rated the job of Principal “unattractive.”

Their solution for all of this was…you guessed it… More Expensive Training.

My brain immediately reverted to my days of entrepreneurship in Silicon Valley where we were taught in management to look at the whole process, and not just the individual or position.  Generally such discontent arises from a systemic problem.  As an example, let’s use bowling.

If you are a bowler trying to make a good score, and there is a large hole in the middle of your lane, would you think more lessons would help you get a higher score?  Or would you fix the hole first?  Just asking….

Those people in the study were all pointing to the hole in the alley as the reason the job of Principal is so hard.  The 800 pound gorilla in the room is Federal and State micromanagement which has created a bureaucratic nightmare of convoluted reporting schemes. Common Core and High Stakes Testing is the last and largest straw that has just broken the camel’s back.  When they are losing 40% of class time just for testing by many accounts, how can they be expected to perform miracles?

Well, Senator John Legg has proposed SB 616, a bill that has no Leggs.  This brilliant senator changes none of the bureaucratic testing mandates, but adds a new one, that schools can test no more than 5% of their class time.  If tests exceed that, they have to send letters to parents for permission for additional testing.  Wow!  That’s only 9 of 180 days.  But wait, who’s going to count?   Does that count the time students are in the gym while someone uses their class for testing?  Or their teacher is proctoring for retests or make up tests?  Where will they record the amount of testing?  Who will send out the letters to parents for permission?  What happens when they don’t approve?  My head is aching with complexities pulsating in my exploding brain.

I composed my thoughts and decided I should say something, stand up for taxpayers and point out the obvious to our illustrious leaders.  We worked hard to develop a solution that has something for everyone to love.  Surely they wanted to hear about the good news.  This being a public hearing, public testimony is mandated by law.  Having properly filled in the request to speak, we patiently waited our turn.

With nearly seven minutes left in the meeting, the Chair acknowledged the fact that two people had submitted a request to speak.  But she said “we will not be taking public input at this time.”  So after driving 7 hours each way to be there to let them know any of these thoughts, we were summarily dismissed.

Do you think it’s time we all come to Tallahassee?  Check to see if your representatives will “dismiss” your thoughts about your children and what they need.  This must end.

March for the Children is scheduled for March 5, 2015 in Tallahassee, FL.


The Worst U.S. President Ever!

I won’t be around to see it, but I have little doubt that future historians and others will conclude that President Barack Hussein Obama was the worst President ever to serve in that office.

The reason is simple enough. His decisions on domestic and foreign affairs have already demonstrated his astonishing incompetence. His major contribution may in fact be to ensure that the voters elect conservatives in the next two or more elections to come. If he is remembered for anything it well may be the emergence of the Tea Party movement whose influence has been seen over the course of two midterm elections.

One cannot help but think of such things as President’s Day, February 16, reminds us of Washington and Lincoln, both of whom were born during this month. For most it is just a day on which there are a variety of sales pegged to it. For all of us, however, it acknowledges the two Presidents without whom there would not be a United States of America.

Presidents Washington, Lincoln and Franklin D. Roosevelt are routinely ranked at the top of the lists of those judged to have been of greatest service to the nation and, not incidentally, all three presided over wars that led to and maintained America’s sovereignty.

When I have read about Washington’s life, I am always impressed by the man and, not surprisingly, so were his contemporaries, the men he commanded over the long course of the Revolutionary War. The Americans of his time had the highest regard for him. It was Washington who set the pattern of only serving two terms. When the American artist, Benjamin West, told England’s King George III of Washington’s decision, the king said, “If he does that, he will be the greatest man in the world.”

In his 1796 farewell address, Washington said, “Of all the dispositions and habits, which lead to political prosperity, religion and morality are indispensable supports. In vain would that man claim the tribute of patriotism, who should labor to subvert these great pillars of human happiness, these firmest props of the duties of men and citizens. The mere politician, equally with the pious man, ought to respect and to cherish them. A volume could not trace all their connections with private and public felicity.”

Imagine a modern politician talking of religion and morality as the basis of political prosperity—least of all Obama who has disparaged Christianity and protects Islam.

America was particularly blessed and fortunate in its earliest years to have a succession of men who demonstrated extraordinary intelligence, courage, and moral integrity. Following Washington there was John Adams, Thomas Jefferson, James Madison, James Monroe, and John Quincy Adams. Few nations have been so blessed as ours.

One can only examine Lincoln’s life with a sense of wonder as he rose from humble beginnings to the role of keeping the Union intact in the face of the secession of southern states and the horrendous war that followed. Gen. Robert E. Lee surrendered on April 9, 1865 and on April 14 Lincoln was assassinated by an actor, John Wilkes Booth. His death was the occasion of the first American national funeral as cities and towns did their best to out-do one another to honor him. It took his death for people to realize the magnitude of what he had achieved.

The advice Lincoln offered in his time is just as important, if not more so, in ours:

“You cannot help the poor by destroying the rich.
You cannot strengthen the weak by weakening the strong.
You cannot bring about prosperity by discouraging thrift.
You cannot lift the wage earner up by pulling the wage payer down.
You cannot further the brotherhood of man by inciting class hatred.
You cannot build character and courage by taking away men’s initiative and independence.
You cannot help men permanently by doing for them, what they could and should do for themselves.”

Franklin D. Roosevelt and, earlier, Theodore Roosevelt, are also highly ranked among the Presidents. Both men shared a zest for the job, enjoying it. Teddy regretted announcing that he would not run for a third term (which he did with the Bull Moose Party) and FDR ran and won four times! He did so during the Great Depression and World War II.

Two other families played a role in the presidency, the Adams and, in the modern era, George H.W. Bush was the 41st President and George W. Bush was the 43rd. It is popular to disparage both men, but history may come to another judgment.

President Obama has brought nothing to the presidency except his Marxist theology. He was the least prepared in terms of experience in the workplace and his elections have been more about the manipulation of public opinion and his two terms have been an endless succession of lies.

His signature legislation, ObamaCare, has undermined the nation’s healthcare system. His solution to the Great Recession added more debt in his six years in office than the combined debt of every previous President up to Clinton and did not stimulate the economy as promised.

His ignorance of history and of current events is vast. Google “What does Obama know?” and you will find many articles that document this.

He has been protected by a liberal mainstream media, but the voters have seen through that and have turned political power in Congress over to the Republican Party.

One thing is for sure. On future President’s Days, Obama will barely be noticed when Americans look back on those who did much to address the great issues and challenges of their times.

© Alan Caruba, 2015

Powerhouse Texan says there’ll be no messin’ with Texas

DALLASFeb. 12, 2015 /PRNewswire/ — Texas native Monica Simmons has taken up the war cry of 25 House Republicans with a message for Congressman Alcee Hastings (D-FL) who called the Lone Star State “a crazy state” at last week’s meeting of the House Rules Committee.

These and countless other Texans won’t “Let It Go” and won’t “Shake It Off.” Hastings said “hell would freeze over” before he apologizes for blasting the state’s failure to participate in the Affordable Care Act.

Ms. Simmons’ North Texas neighbor Dr. Michael Burgess (R-TX) took strong exception to the disparaging remarks, and Rep. Pete SessionsDallas Republican and House Rules Committee Chair, launched into a floor speech on “Don’t Mess with Texas.”

But advertising executive Simmons is taking the high road to remedying the besmirching of her great state. “I’m shouting ‘Smile. You’re in Texas!’ to the world,” she declared.  “From Austin, to Dallas, to Houston, to El Paso—this campaign is about reminding each other how fortunate we are to be in this great state.”

Simmons wasted no time trademarking her big-hearted slogan.  “I want it to put a smile on everyone’s face across the state of Texas,” she said. And that’s not all. She believes it’s a fine companion to “Don’t Mess withTexas,” created more than 25 years ago as an anti-litter campaign slogan.  She’s in good company. Even eclectic singer Lyle Lovett sings, “That’s right, you’re not from Texas but Texas loves you anyway.”

What’s next for the “Smile” movement?  Simmons has just launched a new website,, where she’s encouraging supporters of the Lone Star State to share their Texas stories and pictures. They’ll also have the opportunity to browse from a selection of items featuring the motto to help spread the word and the smiles.

For more information visit

Obama: Media overstates terror threat as opposed to “longer-term problem of climate change”

Obama’s timing couldn’t be worse. First there was this:

“The fiddling with temperature data is the biggest science scandal ever,” by Christopher Booker, the Telegraph, February 7, 2015:

When future generations look back on the global-warming scare of the past 30 years, nothing will shock them more than the extent to which the official temperature records – on which the entire panic ultimately rested – were systematically “adjusted” to show the Earth as having warmed much more than the actual data justified.

Two weeks ago, under the headline “How we are being tricked by flawed data on global warming”, I wrote about Paul Homewood, who, on his Notalotofpeopleknowthat blog, had checked the published temperature graphs for three weather stations in Paraguay against the temperatures that had originally been recorded. In each instance, the actual trend of 60 years of data had been dramatically reversed, so that a cooling trend was changed to one that showed a marked warming….

But Obama is entirely oblivious. He readily agrees with Matthew Yglesias’ contention that “the media sometimes overstates the level of alarm people should have about terrorism and this kind of chaos, as opposed to a longer-term problem of climate change and epidemic disease.”

Also, it is not surprising that in an interview devoted entirely to foreign policy, Obama never once mentions Islam, or even “Islamist.” He does refer to “violent extremism,” which seems to be his euphemism of choice these days, as it is also the name of his Countering Violent Extremism summit, which should be renamed Countering the Threat We Dare Not Name.

Worst of all, he refers to “violent, vicious zealots who behead people or randomly shoot a bunch of folks in a deli in Paris.” No one was randomly shot in that “deli in Paris.” It was a kosher supermarket, and the people who were murdered there were murdered because they were Jews. They were murdered by people who were animated by the Qur’an’s relentless Jew-hatred and labeling of the Jews as the worst enemies of the Muslims (5:82). But that, too, is a threat that Obama dares not name.

It’s also significant that he gave this massive, detailed, extensive interview to Vox, a far-Left publication that just last Saturday was claiming that those who took issue with Obama’s reprehensible moral equivalence regarding the Crusades were just looking for an excuse to hate Muslims. That is the milieu from which Obama comes, and in which he is most comfortable. That is, almost certainly, his world view as well: that those who believe that Islam uniquely teaches and justifies violence in a way that Christianity and other religions do not are motivated solely by hatred of Muslims. This is the line that Hamas-linked CAIR and its henchmen have promoted for years. In the White House today, they have their most powerful champion ever.

“Obama: The Vox Conversation,” Vox, February 9, 2015:

Matthew Yglesias

Do you think the media sometimes overstates the level of alarm people should have about terrorism and this kind of chaos, as opposed to a longer-term problem of climate change and epidemic disease?

Barack Obama

Absolutely. And I don’t blame the media for that. What’s the famous saying about local newscasts, right? If it bleeds, it leads, right? You show crime stories and you show fires, because that’s what folks watch, and it’s all about ratings. And, you know, the problems of terrorism and dysfunction and chaos, along with plane crashes and a few other things, that’s the equivalent when it comes to covering international affairs. There’s just not going to be a lot of interest in a headline story that we have cut infant mortality by really significant amounts over the last 20 years or that extreme poverty has been slashed or that there’s been enormous progress with a program we set up when I first came into office to help poor farmers increase productivity and yields. 7 It’s not a sexy story. And climate change is one that is happening at such a broad scale and at such a complex system, it’s a hard story for the media to tell on a day-to-day basis.

7 The little-noticed “Feed the Future” initiative has reached about 7 million people already, and introduces farmers in poor countries to more advanced technologies and management practices to boost crop production.

Look, the point is this: my first job is to protect the American people. It is entirely legitimate for the American people to be deeply concerned when you’ve got a bunch of violent, vicious zealots who behead people or randomly shoot a bunch of folks in a deli in Paris. We devote enormous resources to that, and it is right and appropriate for us to be vigilant and aggressive in trying to deal with that — the same way a big city mayor’s got to cut the crime rate down if he wants that city to thrive. But we also have to attend to a lot of other issues, and we’ve got to make sure we’re right-sizing our approach so that what we do isn’t counterproductive. I would argue that our invasion of Iraq was counterproductive to the goal of keeping our country safe.

And despite the incredible valor of our troops — and I’m in awe of them every single day when I work with them — you know, the strategy that was crafted in Washington didn’t always match up with the actual threats that were out there. And we need to make sure that we’re doing the right things and doing those well so that we can also deal with future threats like cybersecurity or climate change or different parts of the world where there are huge opportunities, but [that] before I came into office, we had neglected for quite some time, Asia Pacific being a perfect example. Or our own backyard, the Western Hemisphere, where there’s been real progress in Latin America and we’ve got the opportunity to strengthen our relationships. But there are also some big problems like Central America where, with a relatively modest investment, we could really be making a difference and making ourselves safer. 8

8 This is not necessarily directly relevant to “our safety,” but it’s worth noting the horrific conditions documented by NGOs that have looked at the lives of Central Americans sent back to their homes by US officials. Here’s what the administration is doing now in Central America.


UK Muslim rape gang victims “sacrificed” so Labour wouldn’t lose Muslim votes

Many in Jordanian pilot’s home town side with the Islamic State

President Obama: Netanyahu Speech to Congress could “Sour Negotiations” for Iran Nuke Deal

President Obama and German Chancellor Andrea Merkel held a Joint White House Press Conference today. The bulk of their remarks concerned the questions on Ukraine, Russia, the EU and NATO. One question posed by Christi Powers, Washington correspondent for The Los Angeles Times (L.A. Times), dealt with alleged Administration “outrage” over Israeli PM Netanyahu’s acceptance of an invitation to address a Joint Session of Congress in Early March.

The President objected to Netanyahu’s appearance because it allegedly violates diplomatic protocols that the President doesn’t meet with foreign leaders in the midst of their domestic political campaigns. The President further suggested the Prime Minister’s speech to a Joint Session of Congress would “sour negotiations” for a final nuclear agreement with Iran. Even before today’s news conference there have been questions raised about White House objections to Netanyahu’s appearance before Congress. Further, there are questions as to whether the leaked terms of an agreement regarding nuclear enrichment would prevent Iran from achieving nuclear breakout.

Watch this C-Span video clip of President Obama’s responses to this question posed by Ms. Powers of the L.A. Times. Note this excerpt from the White House Joint Press Conference Transcript: Christi Parsons, White House correspondent, L.A. Times:

Q Thank you, Mr. President. [ …] Sir, some have suggested that you are outraged by the Israeli Prime Minister’s decision to address Congress. Is that so? And how would you advise Democrats who are considering a boycott?

PRESIDENT OBAMA: With respect to Prime Minister Netanyahu, as I’ve said before, I talk to him all the time, our teams constantly coordinate. We have a practice of not meeting with leaders right before their elections, two weeks before their elections. As much as I love Angela, if she was two weeks away from an election she probably would not have received an invitation to the White House — (laughter) — and I suspect she wouldn’t have asked for one. (Laughter.) And I think it’s important for us to maintain these protocols — because the U.S.-Israeli relationship is not about a particular party. This isn’t a relationship founded on affinity between the Labor Party and the Democratic Party, or Likud and the Republican Party. This is the U.S.-Israeli relationship that extends beyond parties, and has to do with that unbreakable bond that we feel and our commitment to Israel’s security, and the shared values that we have. And the way to preserve that is to make sure that it doesn’t get clouded with what could be perceived as partisan politics. Whether that’s accurate or not, that is a potential perception, and that’s something that we have to guard against. Now, I don’t want to be coy. The Prime Minister and I have a very real difference around Iran, Iran sanctions. I have been very clear … that it does not make sense to sour the negotiations a month or two before they’re about to be completed. …. If, in fact, we can get a deal, then we should embrace that. If we can’t get a deal, then we’ll have to make a set of decisions, and, as I’ve said to Congress, I’ll be the first one to work with them to apply even stronger measures against Iran. As the President of the United States, I’m looking at what the options are if we don’t get a diplomatic resolution. And those options are narrow and … not attractive. And from the perspective of U.S. interests — and I believe from the perspective of Israel’s interests, although I can’t speak for, obviously, the Israeli government — it is far better if we can get a diplomatic solution. So there are real differences substantively, but that’s separate and apart from the whole issue of Mr. Netanyahu coming to Washington.

Late today, the Iran Task Force organized by the Foundation for Defense of Democracies and The Council of Foreign Relations, reported technical findings that raised basic questions about whether the pending P5+1 final agreement would deter nuclear breakout. It cited former IAEA Deputy Director Dr. Olli Heinonen:

That with 9,500 centrifuges and a stock of nuclear material, Iran would have a breakout time of “no more than six months.” This is far less than the one-year breakout time that the administration has stated it is seeking. In effect, it would represent recognition of Iran as a nuclear threshold state—a status FDD believes would be dangerous to U.S. national security.

But there are others who would disagree with the President on what was behind the swirl of news stories on Netanyahu’s speech controversy.

Prior to today’s Joint White House Press Conference with President Obama and Chancellor Merkel, there was a Washington Post commentary on Sunday by David Bernstein with the provocative question, “Did the Obama Administration lie about Netanyahu?”  Bernstein wrote:

The notification issue that the White House has focused on is a bit of a red herring. The White House knew about the invitation before Netanyahu accepted it, and it hardly seems worthy of a major diplomatic incident that the Israelis relied on Boehner to convey the fact of the invitation. The problem, instead, seems to be that the Administration (a) believes that Boehner and Netanyahu’s representatives in D.C. plotted the invitation behind the White House’s back; (b) Netanyahu didn’t give the White House a chance to consider whether it wanted to veto the invitation before it was made public; (c) all against a backdrop of profound mistrust, or perhaps hostility, on the part of Obama toward Netanyahu. (Let’s recall that, speaking of diplomatic protocol, this president and his top advisors have not always extended diplomatic niceties to Netanyahu). Was the White House really blindsided by all this (is it really possible that no one in the Administration had an inkling that an invitation to Netanyahu was in the works?) Or did the Administration take the opportunity to try to drive a wedge between Netanyahu and Congressional Democrats, and to try to make Netanyahu look bad before upcoming Israeli elections?


Netanyahu rejects criticism: I am determined to address Congress

LIARS: Biden, Kerry Meet Bibi’s Opponent in Munich

Can the Convention of States fix Washington, D.C.?

WOW, we did it, we are in our new studio broadcasting our first show in a semi-finished facility!

This show features a growing movement in the USA that is focused on stopping an out-of-control Washington D.C. by returning the powers of law and money to the several states. This nation-wide movement is called a “Convention of States,” whereby 34 state legislatures must vote in an application for participation in the Convention and then all 50 states will participate.

Some citizens believe this idea can save America and other believe this Convention will destroy America.

Tune in to get the facts from Mr. Claude O’Donovan, Legislative Liaison for South Carolina as he walks us through the process.

Down and Out in the Middle-Class Economy

The truth about growth, recovery, and unemployment by D.W. Mackenzie:

The president recently boasted of the success of his administration’s economic policies, which he calls “middle-class economics.” He describes his approach as “helping working families feel more secure in a world of constant change.” Who can blame him? People like to feel secure.

Given the nature of politics, we should expect politicians to embellish their policy accomplishments and downplay their failures. But Obama’s recent claims regarding our true economic conditions have gone well beyond embellishment and evasion to outright falsehoods. It’s either mendacity or denial.

One need only look at the facts to get some perspective on the real state of the economy.

1. Economic growth

President Obama claims that “we’ve seen the fastest economic growth in over a decade” — but there is no evidence for this claim. Actual GDP growth rates have been unusually low in recent years, even as GDP measures liberally include both fat and muscle.

A casual glance at the above graph is enough to disabuse the electorate of the idea that growth has been fast or stellar. Yet, President Obama would like to craft the narrative that his administration’s policies have not only rescued the economy, but set it ablaze.

2. Recovery

The “recovery” of the last six years is even worse than the above graph indicates. While the GDP growth rate has been historically low, it should have been at historic highs. Why? The economy has much untapped potential.

Potential GDP has been well above actual GDP since 2008. Potential GDP is an estimate of what would be produced if labor employment and capital utilization were as high as can reasonably be expected. The next graph shows that there have been unsustainable booms in the past 25 years. Actual GDP fell slightly below potential GDP during the 1991 and 2001 recessions. Actual GDP reached unsustainable levels above potential GDP during the dot-com and subprime booms. Growth during these booms was limited by availability of labor and capital goods.

Growth in the past six years has barely reduced the gap between actual and potential GDP. Given the large untapped potential in the economy, GDP growth should have been faster than it was during any other expansion in the past half century, but that didn’t happen.

3. Unemployment

Real statistics reveal a boom-bust cycle in the economy up to 2008 and a persistent gap between actual and potential GDP since 2008. The lack of a real economic recovery since 2008 has had dire consequences for American workers. President Obama claims that “our unemployment rate is now lower than it was before the financial crisis,” but this statement is also false. The U-6 unemployment rate gives us a true indication of economic conditions when it comes to putting people back to work.

Full accounting of unemployment shows the unemployment rate in double digits since 2008. The lack of a real recovery has left millions unemployed. The president dodges the failure of the “economic stimulus” in his 2009 Recovery and Reinvestment Act by focusing on the official U-3 unemployment rate — a statistic that ignores millions who have simply given up looking for work in recent years, but are able.

Something new?

The president said something recently that we should take seriously, however: “When what you’re doing doesn’t work for fifty years, it’s time to try something new.”

Federal officials have been trying to “manage the economy” with fiscal and monetary stimulus for half a century. Presidents began taking the advice of demand-side economists during the 1960s, and there has been little deviation from this practice since then, even during President Reagan’s supposed “supply-side” years. The results of the policies favored by both President Obama and his predecessors are clear: management of the economy delivers a boom-bust cycle at best and relative stagnation at worst.

The real evidence indicates that we are living in the worst period of this federally managed economy. President Obama’s “middle-class economics” is nothing more than the same old demand-side economics, only on steroids. Fiscal and monetary “stimulus” policies of the past six years have been some of the most ambitious ever tried.


D. W. MacKenzie is an assistant professor of economics at Carroll College in Helena, Montana.

Sheriff David A. Clarke, Jr.: Irresponsible Groups Descended on Ferguson, MO ‘Like Vultures on a Roadside Carcass’

NATIONAL PRESS CLUB, WASHINGTON D.C.– Sheriff David A. Clarke, Jr. talks about Ferguson Missouri and how politicians and irresponsible groups came like vultures on a roadside carcass to exploit the situation. Eric Holder made a bad situation worse with his self-serving rhetoric. 9-17-14

Clarke is a lifelong resident of the City of Milwaukee and in March 2002 was appointed Sheriff by Governor Scott McCallum, and eight months later was elected to his first four-year term, earning 64%of the vote. Sheriff Clarke is now in his third term, having been re-elected in November 2006 and 2010, increasing his victory margins to 73% and 74%.

Clarke graduated summa cum laude from Concordia University Wisconsin with a degree in Criminal Justice Management, and in May 2003, Concordia honored him with their Alumnus of the Year Award. Sheriff Clarke also is a graduate of the FBI National Academy in Quantico, Virginia. This prestigious school trains law enforcement executives from all over the world, and provides management and leadership instruction. In July 2004, he completed the intensive three-week Program for Senior Executives in State and Local Government, at the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University.

Sheriff Clarke was honored in May 2013, with the Sheriff of the Year Award from the Constitutional Sheriffs and Peace Officers Association for, “demonstrating true leadership and courage. . . staying true to his oath, true to his badge, and true to the people he has promised to serve and protect.”

For more information visit:

It’s Not Just Brian Williams Who Lies

“When reporters forfeit their credibility by making up stories, sources, or quotes, we are right to mock them. When their violations are significant or repeated, they should be fired,” says Charles Lipson, a professor of political science at the University of Chicago. “Demanding honest reporting has nothing to do with the reporter’s politics, personality, or personal life. It is about professional standards and our reasonable expectations.”

Writing at, Prof. Lipson concluded by saying, “It’s essential for our news organizations, and it matters for our democracy.”

Are we seeing a trend here? Dan Rather at CBS and now Brian Williams at NBC? Well, two news anchors are not a trend, but biased and bad reporting is. It’s not new, but it does seem to be gathering momentum and nowhere has it been more apparent than the millions of words written and spoken about “global warming” and now “climate change.”

It would be easy and convenient to lay the blame on America’s Liar-in-Chief, President Barack Obama, but the “global warming” hoax began well before he came on the scene. It was the invention of the United Nation’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) dating back to its creation in 1988 when it was established by the UN Environment Program and the World Meteorological Organization.

The IPCC came to world attention with the creation of the Kyoto Protocol, an international treaty that committed the nations that signed it to reduce “greenhouse gas emissions” based on the premise that global warming—a dramatic increase—was real and that it was man-made. The Protocol was adopted in Kyoto, Japan, on December 11, 1997. The United States Senate rejected it and our neighbor, Canada, later withdrew from it. Both China and India were exempted, free to continue building numerous coal-fired plants to generate the energy they need for development.

Today, though, the President is an unrelenting voice about the dangers of “climate change” which he and John Kerry, our Secretary of State, have rated the “greatest threat” to the world. Obama’s national security strategy document was released just a day before he equated the history of Christianity with the barbarism of today’s Islamic State.

The national security document included terrorism to which it devoted one out of its 29 pages. Essentially Obama sees all the problems of the world, real and imagined, as challenges that require “strategic patience and persistence.” This is his way of justifying doing nothing or as little as possible.

Still, according to Obama, the climate is such a threat, his new budget would allocate $4 billion to the Environmental Protection Agency for a new “Clean Power State Incentive Fund” to bribe more states to close even more power plants around the nation. He wants to increase the EPA’s overall budget by 6% to $8.6 billion. The Republican Congress is not likely to allocate such funding.

As for the environment, there have been so many lies put forth by the government and by a panoply of environmental organizations of every description, buoyed by legions of “scientists” and academics lining their pockets with billions in grants, that it is understandable that many Americans still think that “global warming” is real despite the fact that the Earth is now 19 years into a well-documented cooling cycle.

Not only are all the children in our schools still being taught utter garbage about it, but none who have graduated in recent years ever lived a day during the non-existent “global warming.”

On February 7, Christopher Booker, writing in The Telegraph, a British daily newspaper, wrote an article, “The fiddling with temperature data is the biggest science scandal ever.” You are not likely to find any comparable reporting in a U.S. daily newspaper.

Citing research comparing the official temperature graphs from three weather stations in Paraguay against what had originally been reported by them, it turned out that their cooling trend had been reversed by the U.S. government’s Global Historical Climate Network and then amplified by “two of the main official surface records, the Goddard Institute for Space Studies (Giss) and the National Climate Data Center.”

Why should we be surprised that the national media continues to report on “global warming” when our government has been engaged in the deliberate distortion of the actual data? It is, however, the same national media that has provided virtually no investigative journalism to reveal what has been going on for decades.

What fate befalls Brian Williams is a mere blip on the screen of events. At this writing, I cannot see how NBC could ever keep him as the managing editor and news anchor.

What matters regarding much of the product of the mainstream media is the continuing torrent of “news” about “global warming” and “climate change”; the former is a complete hoax and the latter a factor of life on planet Earth over which humans have no control, nor contribute to in any fashion.

© Alan Caruba, 2015

President Obama’s ‘War on Christianity’

Never in the history of the United States has there been a President who has aligned himself with so many anti-Christian elements in America. President Obama promised when elected in 2008 to heal the divides in the nation and fundamentally transform it. Many took these promises as a positive, time has shown these promises have had a negative impact on America and Americans, particularly those of the Christian faith.

Anti-Christian groups in America include: Communists, atheists, agnostics, shariah compliant Muslims, homosexuals, transgenders, lesbians and members of certain religious sects. The targets of these groups include: Christians, Jews, Evangelicals, blacks and Hispanics of faith, and those who share a love for the Holy Land (Israel).

President Obama, both domestically and internationally, has taken policy stands that are nothing less than anti-Christian.

Perhaps it is best to understand how, little by little, President Obama has come to embrace those who are most violently opposed to Christians (and Jews) domestically and globally.

Here are some of President Obama’s domestic policies that are anti-Christian:

  1. The Affordable Care Act – The Affordable Care Act has impacted religious liberty by requiring faith based institutions to provide services which are against their Christian beliefs. Religious News Service reporter Kathleen O’Brian notes that Afordable Care Act religious exemptions are hard to get. O’Brien notes, “Under the [ACA] bill, anyone claiming an exemption on the grounds of religious beliefs would have to include a sworn affidavit on their annual tax return. In addition, they would lose the exemption if they sought and received medical care during that tax year.” In 2014 the U.S. Supreme Court rules against Obama in the Hobby Lobby contraception case. This ruling, at least temporarily, held back the anti-Christian ACA onslaught.
  2. Repeal of Don’t Ask Don’t Tell – President Obama is clearly in the homosexual camp when it comes to domestic policy. The repeal of Don’t Ask Don’t Tell is a prime example of an anti-Christian policy to transform our military from a Christian force for good into a secular petri dish for pro-homosexual social policies. In July 2011, reported, “Last year President Obama led the charge to repeal ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell’ that now allows open homosexuality in the military. Obama’s political payoff has altered the fabric of our military and now our military chaplains have become the victims. Christian chaplains have been ordered to go along with homosexual sin or face administrative discharge, even though they were promised that their sermons, counseling, prayers and worship could remain the same.” Commanders, soldiers and Chaplains are now subject to courts martial if they publicly profess their Christian faith.
  3. Medicare, Medicaid and “Gender Reassignment” Surgery – As recently as December of 2014, New York Governor Cuomo approved the use of Medicaid funds for low income sex change operations. In a December 17, 2014  New York Post article Carl Campanile reported, “Gov. Cuomo approved a new policy Tuesday night allowing impoverished transgender New Yorkers to bill taxpayers for sex-change surgery. The Cuomo administration issued new rules requiring New York’s highest-in-the-nation $55 billion Medicaid program — the government health-insurance program for the needy — to foot the bill for ‘gender reassignment’ operations.” Medicare also covers “gender reassignment” operations according to the National Center for Transgender Equality. The use of public funds to support sex change operations offends those of faith. The use of public funding to promote transgenderism is not a Constitutional role for the federal government.
  4. Presidential Executive Orders – President Obama has used the power of his pen to force Christian organizations and businesses to betray their religious beliefs or face stiff penalties and possible criminal prosecution. Todd Starnes from Fox News reported in July 2014, “President Obama signed an executive order Monday barring federal contractors from discriminating on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity – ignoring the pleas of Christian and other faith leaders to include an exemption for religious organizations… The executive order would prevent Christian and other religious organizations with federal contracts from requiring workers to adhere to the tenets of their religious beliefs. Christianity Today reports the order could impact religious non-profits such as World Vision, World Relief and Catholic Charities.”
  5. Department of Justice failure to defend in court the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) – The U.S. Congress passed and President Bill Clinton signed into law the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) in 1996. In September 2014,’s Terrance P. Jeffrey reported: President Barack Obama praised retiring Attorney General Eric Holder yesterday for advancing the cause of same-sex “marriage” in the United States by refusing to defend federal law. “And several years ago,” Obama said in a joint appearance with Holder at the White House, “he recommended that our government stop defending the Defense of Marriage Act–a decision that was vindicated by the Supreme Court, and opened the door to federal recognition of same-sex marriage, and federal benefits for same-sex couples. It’s a pretty good track record.” In his own statement at the event, Holder praised Obama for advancing the “visions” he said he and Obama had “always shared.” The vision always shared was and remains an anti-Christian one.

Here are some of President Obama’s foreign policies that are anti-Christian:

  1. Failure to support and defend the Holy Land – President Obama has instituted policies and made public statements attacking Israel and its Prime Minister. What many do not see is that Israel is in fact the protector of the Holy Land. The birth place of Judaism and Christianity.
  2. Obama Declares The Future Must Not Belong to Practicing Christians at the United Nations – In September 2012 Erick Erickson wrote: In his speech to the United Nations General Assembly today the President of the United States declared that the future does not belong to practicing Christians. Already, the media and the left are in full denial, probably based on their general lack of understanding of theology. This would have been a gaffe had Mitt Romney said it. But with Barack Obama, he’s just speaking bold truths. His bold truth declares that the future does not belong to practicing Christians.Pay careful attention to what he says.” Obama has repeatedly stated “The future must not belong to those who slander the prophet of Islam.” Christians have failed to fully comprehend what President Obama stated in 2012 and on many occasions since.
  3. President Obama’s Absence at the Charlie Hebdo Rally in Paris – Reuters reported, “The absence of President Barack Obama or any top members of his administration from a huge march in Paris on Sunday to honour victims of Islamist militant attacks raised eyebrows among some in the US media. French President Francois Hollande and some 44 foreign dignitaries, including leaders from Germany, Italy, Britain, Turkey, Israel and the Palestinian territories, led up to two million people in what commentators said was the largest crowd in Paris since its liberation from Nazi Germany in 1944. Islamist militants killed 17 people, including journalists and police, in three days of attacks in the French capital last week. The United States was represented at Sunday’s march by its ambassador to France, Jane Hartley. But commentators on some US media outlets questioned why Obama did not attend or send a top administration official such as Vice President Joe Biden or Secretary of State John Kerry.”
  4. President Obama’s Quest to give Iran a Nuclear Weapon – Iran has repeatedly declared it will destroy the Holy Land (Israel) and occupy Jerusalem. In November 2014, Stuart Winer and Marissa Newman reported on Iran’s 9-point plan to destroy Isreal. Winer and Newman wrote: “A plan titled “9 key questions about the elimination of Israel” was posted on his Twitter account Saturday night, using the hashtag #handsoffalaqsa, in reference to the recent tensions on the Temple Mount. The sometimes grammatically awkward list explained the how and why of Khomeini’s vision for replacing Israel with a Palestinian state. The first point stated that “the fake Zionist regime has tried to realize its goals by means of infanticide, homicide, violence & iron fist while boasts about it blatantly.” Due to the above, Khomeini argued, “the only means of bringing Israeli crimes to an end is the elimination of this regime.” (See the chart below for the details of the 9-point Iranian plan) A nuclear armed Iran will be a precursor to implement this 9-point plan.


Queer agriculture and the melon of ecstasy

Bishop E.W. Jackson, Sr. on President Obama demanding Christians not name Islam as the Enemy!

Obama’s National Security Strategy: Fight Global Warming and Promote “Gay Rights”

Obama revealed his true colors at Prayer Breakfast, and true ignorance of history

Obama Says Christianity No Different From Islamic State by Raymond Ibrahim

RELATED VIDEO: Bill Warner, Ph.D. on Jihad vs Crusades:

IRAN’S 9-POINT PLAN TO DESTROY THE HOLY LAND (ISRAEL) – Chart courtesy of the Times of Israel.

iran 9 point plan to destory israel

For a larger view click on the chart.

Bishop E.W. Jackson, Sr. on President Obama demanding Christians not name Islam as the Enemy!

Bishop Earl Walker Jackson, Sr. is an American politician, Christian minister and lawyer in Virginia. He was the unsuccessful Republican Party nominee for Lieutenant Governor of Virginia in the 2013 election. In the below video interview Bishop Jackson criticizes President Obama for comparing the Islamic State to Christians.

Bishop Jackson states, “We are not on our high horse, we are on high alert.”

From Rabbi and Professor Jeffrey Wolf:

“This is a demagogic and dumb game of smoke and mirrors. I’ve studied and taught the Crusade era for many years. It’s true that the Crusades were bloody, cruel and violent. So were the wars of Islamic conquest (starting with the massacres of Jewish tribes in the the Hijaz by Muhammad himself). So, what does that have to do with anything? The Crusades ended eight centuries ago. The Inquisition closed up shop over two centuries ago. (For the same money, we can condemn Judaism for calling for the annihilation of the Canaanites 3000 years ago—something we didn’t obey, by the way).”

“Islam is the only religion in the world TODAY, which spawns religiously sanctioned babarism and terror, and is backed by credible religious argument and endorsed by religious leaders who are not outliers. Even if 10-20% of Muslims endorse ISS or sympathize with it (as the statistics seem to show), that means 200,000,000 Muslims are on the dark side. That is not a marginal phenomenon. It is an authentic Muslim phenomenon, even if it doesn’t represent the majority of Muslims.”

Fidel Castro’s Testament by Brian Latell

Oddly, there is no mention in the letter of the release of the three convicted Cuban intelligence agents from American penitentiaries. The key figures of the large Cuban spy ring that operated in the United States had been heralded as national heroes by Fidel before his retirement. He was extravagantly associated with the protracted campaign to win their release. The regime’s propaganda and intelligence machines labored long and diligently, overtly and covertly. But Fidel has not taken a victory bow now that they are home.

Rumors of Fidel Castro’s precarious health may swirl again in the aftermath of a letter issued over his signature earlier this week. Addressed to the Federation of University Students, the retired leader is quoted briefly about the changing Cuban relationship with the United States.

After remaining silent for more than five weeks following the announcements by President Obama and Raul Castro of measures taken in pursuit of détente, Fidel finally weighed in. “I will explain,” he is quoted saying, “in a few words, my essential position.”

Ghost written or not, his message provides a hedged endorsement of the process, though not of any of the steps taken by either side to normalize relations. He says nothing, for example, about the impending restoration of diplomatic relations that he caused to be broken in January 1961.

Nowhere in the message does Castro express unambiguous approval for detente. Perhaps the nearest he comes is by stating that he does not reject a “peaceful solution to conflicts or threats of war.” Employing similar lofty language, the letter merely states.

  • “Defending peace is the duty of all.”
  • “Any negotiated, peaceful solution . . . which does not imply the use of force must be addressed in accordance with international principles and norms.”
  • “We will always defend cooperation and friendship with all the world’s peoples, and with those of our political adversaries.”

In short, the message can only be read as grudging. Castro is quoted saying, “I do not trust the policy of the United States, nor have I exchanged one word with them.” It recalls his militance and intransigence during decades of dealings with ten American presidents: “revolutionary ideas must always be on guard. . . . In this spirit I have struggled, and will continue to struggle until my last breath.”

All this sounds reliably like Fidel. But the odds are good that he did not actually contribute meaningfully to the drafting of the document. It is impossible to know of course, but it reads more like a skillful brief composed by Raul Castro’s designees.

They wanted Fidel’s stamp of approval for moving toward better relations with the United States. Emblazoned on the front pages of the major Cuban dailies, the letter got maximum exposure on the island.

After Fidel’s long silence it was also necessary for the regime to stifle speculation that he had died or was on his deathbed. And, for many, his extended silence left the impression that he was opposed to normalization with Washington. It was unacceptable for either of those impressions to persist.

Yet, no utterance attributed to Fidel would have been credible had he enthusiastically endorsed rapprochement. Since his university days –as he in fact mentions in the letter — he pursued radical, anti-American ideals. For him now, in his late eighties, suddenly to abandon decades of anti-American intransigence would not have made sense. After all, the American economic embargo remains fully in force. Other historic Cuban demands are also still unassuaged. How could he give unequivocal approval to a process still in its early stages?

Oddly, there is no mention in the letter of the release of the three convicted Cuban intelligence agents from American penitentiaries, or of the America contractor who served five years in a Cuban jail. The key figures of the large Cuban spy ring that operated in the United States had been heralded as national heroes by Fidel before his retirement. He was extravagantly associated with the protracted campaign to win their release. The regime’s propaganda and intelligence machines labored long and diligently, overtly and covertly. But Fidel has not taken a victory bow now that they are home.

Nor has he met with them as they are being lionized in the official media as representatives of a new generation of revolutionary heroes. If he is not on his death bed, or severely impaired, a photo op with them would have been a routine event. Other than for reasons of health, therefore, it seems inexplicable that he has failed to boast of the Cuban success in bringing them home.

Two days after the letter was aired in Cuba, the press reported that Fidel had met with his old friend and biographer, Brazilian friar Frei Betto. They engaged, it was reported, in a friendly conversation about national and international issues. Normally under such circumstances, a photo of the two would have accompanied the article.

But this time, the photo of them attached to the story was acknowledged to have been taken in February 2014 during an earlier meeting. The most recent photos of Fidel appeared in the middle of last year and he has made no public appearance in about a year. Will rumors of his imminent demise be stoked anew?

Brian Latell, Ph.D., is a distinguished Cuba analyst and a Senior Research Associate at the Institute for Cuban and Cuban American Studies at the University of Miami. He has informed American and foreign presidents, cabinet members, and legislators about Cuba and Fidel Castro in a number of capacities. He served in the early 1990s as National Intelligence Officer for Latin America at the Central Intelligence Agency and taught at Georgetown University for a quarter century. Dr. Latell has written, lectured, and consulted extensively. He is the author of After Fidel: The Inside Story of Castro’s Regime and Cuba’s Next Leader and Castro’s Secrets: The CIA and Cuba’s Intelligence Machine. Brian Latell is a contributor to SFPPR News & Analysis.

Who is the Leader of the ‘Free World’ Obama or Netanyahu?

The question ‘Who is Leader of the Free World, Obama or Netanyahu’ may at first sound foolish. However ask yourself, which other leader of a western style democracy has a better grasp of the danger Iran and Radical Islam poses to the free world.

The leader of the free world must be able to identify the enemy and confront it.

Obama has distanced himself from the reality that Radical Islam and Iran account for most of the terrorism occurring around the world. Obama cannot even utter the words ‘Radical Islamic Terrorism’ and as a result he cannot  be considered the leader of the Free World.

Obama’s trashing Netanyahu for accepting an invitation to speak before Congress has nothing to do with protocol. It has everything to do with Netanyahu’s understanding the threat of an Iran with nuclear weapons and Radical Islam poses to America, Israel and the rest of the free world. As a result Netanyahu’s speech will stand in stark contrast to Obama’s approach to Iran and Radical Islam.

That is what is driving Obama up the wall.

Who is Leader of the Free World: Obama or Netanyahu?

By Joseph Gelman

It’s another day, so you can be pretty sure that another anonymous Obama administration “source” is trashing the Israeli Prime Minister in yet another planted story in a friendly media outlet somewhere.

This used to be news, now it’s just sad.

What is it about Benjamin Netanyahu that has the Obama administration so insecure and borderline hysterical?

Perhaps it has something to do with the way the pesky and smooth-talking Israeli Prime Minister has gradually supplanted Barack Obama as the moral leader of the free world, on the most important issue of our time.

Where there is a leadership void, someone will fill it.

Obama and his minions’ sense it, and the jealousy/resentment seem to know no bounds.

When Netanyahu, a gifted orator in the English language, speaks on the dangers of radical Islam and a nuclear Iran, he projects a confidence and persuasiveness that the administration can’t match.

In stark contrast, when Obama speaks to these matters in his painfully couched language, knowledgeable people smell politics. They can sense the hesitation and stumbling over usage of even the most basic and obvious terminology, like “radical Islam”. Not a confidence-builder when facing the mullahs of Tehran.

While the Israeli Prime Minister has no such inhibitions… the problem for Obama is, neither do most freedom-loving people in the West. They inherently know that radical Islam does in fact have something to do with Islam, no matter how desperately the President tries to convince them otherwise. And they understand that such Islamists, be them of the Shiite or Sunni variety should never be allowed the means to produce nuclear weapons.

This dynamic is not lost upon the administration, and it is, along with ego, at the very heart of the Obama administrations apoplectic reaction to Speaker John Boehner’s invitation to Netanyahu to speak before a Joint Session of Congress.

It has little to do with a “breach of protocol.” Had Boehner invited the Prime Minister of Luxemburg to speak on European monetary policy, the words “breach of protocol” would never have come up. It’s Netanyahu himself that they fear and loath.

They are beside themselves that their appeasement policies vis-à-vis Iran are to be so publicly challenged by someone they view as of inferior status and a lot of chutzpah. And yet Netanyahu is clearly of superior knowledge on the issue, of superior communications skills, and most of all, has a superior stake in the outcome of negotiations with Iran.

Netanyahu will be speaking from the world’s most prestigious platform without the administration’s permission, directly to the American people and over the administration’s head, with the full backing of a solid majority in congress and of a very large constituency in the United States, many of whom have been lifelong supporters of the president’s own party.

It’s enough to drive any anti-Semite stark-raving mad.

Unfortunately, it’s also enough to drive this administration to the brink of DEFCON 1 political hysteria. Count on an endless barrage of negativity directed towards Mr. Netanyahu between now and the speech, and until the Israeli elections on March 17th. This will be an all-out, scorched-earth campaign conducted by the administration to get Netanyahu to back down from the speech, and to ruin his reelection prospects.

The gloves are off.


As I See It: The Obama doctrine says ‘Israel’s enemy is my friend’ – The Jerusalem Post

Obama’s Iran policy rests on false assumptions and half-truths

Israel’s Offshore Gas Discoveries are in Jeopardy

On February 3rd, there was a  Conference  in Tel Aviv co-sponsored by the Israeli Ministry of Infrastructure, Energy and Water and Maala – a group concerned with Socially Responsible Business. Globes Israeli Business and Reuters covered it, “Energy minister: Foreign companies aren’t coming to Israel.”

 Silvan Shalom, Israeli Minister of Infrastructure,  the Israel Manager of  Houston –based Noble Energy, Inc. co-developer with Israel’s Delek Group and a representative of Australian  energy company Woodside, Pty.  appeared among other presenters. They were all  bemoaning the arbitrary, some would say capricious draft ruling of Dr. David Gilo, Director General of Israel’s Antitrust Authority (IAA) , basically stopping development of the offshore Leviathan  gas field and  forcing the possible sale of the existing Tamar gas field in Israel’s Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ).  Gilo,as we have discussed  in prior posts, has confounded Israel’s energy independence and possible export opportunities with his draft consent order based on misguided consumerist  populism.  His understanding of the economics of pricing of gas as a commodity in the international markets is simplistic at best and simply panders to  misguided domestic  populist concerns over maintaining low energy prices.  His proposals to enhance competition  in the domestic  market come amidst the looming March Knesset elections.  Many  suspect that his actions were in support of the Labor-Hanuat coalition objective of unseating Prime Minister Netanyahu.  Not surprising as Israel’s founding generation, save for  Menachem Begin, were Socialist  Marxists. They created the country’s dual economy with Histadrut – the labor union dominated institution – owning  key sectors in the country’s economy that have  only been partially privatized. The exception being Israel’s much vaunted high tech sector.

Gilo’s  misguided logic is reflected in the comments of the Israeli National Infrastructure-Maala conference presenters. It was bolstered by an announcement that the Noble Energy –Delek Group partners  were on the verge of concluding a deal with Egypt to provide much needed gas from the Aphrodite field in the adjacent Republic of Cyprus EEZ.  Neither Noble or Delek accept the separate marketing proposals and sales of  both Tamar and smaller fields, originally part of an IAA deal agreed to by Gilo.

Note these comments from the Globes article:

“We don’t see foreign gas companies coming to Israel,” Minister of National Infrastructure, Energy, and Water Silvan Shalom admitted. “The foreign companies have interests in countries like Saudi Arabia and the Gulf, and bringing them to Israel is no easy task. Israel is small country, with a small gas market. In a utopian and theoretical world, companies would come, but that’s not how it is in the real world.”

“Unfortunately, our business in Israel was unsuccessful, but our connections with Noble Energy have become stronger,” Woodside VP Corporate Affairs Roger Martin said at a conference organized by the Ministry of National Infrastructure, Energy, and Water and the Maala organization.

Woodside, which planned to acquire 25% of the rights in the Leviathan natural gas reservoir for $2.7 billion, backed out at the last minute, and left Israel. “We’re working together with Noble Energy in Africa, and we signed an additional agreement with them in October for oil and gas exploration off the Cameroon coast,” Martin said.

“Our pride in making our contribution to the community was met with cynicism. They tell us cynically, ‘This is very American’,”  [Nobel Energy Israel Manager]  Zomer said angrily. “What do you want from me? What’s very American? I don’t understand this. Since when is doing good considered American? Why should companies in Israel apologize for their success? Of course Noble Energy hoped to make a profit in Israel, but it also meant to do good for Israel.”

Gidon Tomer [CEO Delek Drilling  Partnership] noted , “That state could expect NIS 250 billion  ($65 Billion) in revenues from the first stage of developing Leviathan. He added, “This revenue doesn’t take into account the immediate saving from the consumption of cheap gas. You have to look at the enterprises saved by natural gas. These enterprises are boosting their competitiveness. It’s a reduction in the cost of living.”

Alexander Varshavsky of the National Gas Authority  asserted that Israel could expect to lose NIS 3 billion ($780 million)  annually starting in 2018 from the delay in developing Leviathan. “Beyond that, it’s a blow to Israel’s credibility,” he argued.

On the matter of Gilo’s express goal of enhancing competition and energy pricing, Globes noted comments of   a conference participant who said, ‘If you want to talk about responsibility, Israel’s responsibility is to bring gas to factories. There are factories in the outlying areas that closed down because of their energy costs. At enterprises like Phoenicia Flat Glass Industries and Shaniv Paper Industry Ltd. (TASE: SHAN), it was a do or die question. Today, they’re hooked up to natural gas and saving money. That’s the most important thing.”

Should PM Netnayahu win the March 17th election perhaps a priority will be to pass legislation amending the mandate of the IAA remodeling it in on 100 year precedent of the U.S. Federal Trade Commission.  Otherwise , director General Gilo of the IAA, will thwart Israel’s economic future and energy independence.

EDITORS NOTE: This column originally appeared in the New English Review. The featured image of the Tamar deep oil platform is courtesy of Oil in Israel.

Ronald Reagan’s Free-Market Mentors by John Fund

Have you ever gone back and revisited or recalled the books or mentors who shaped your political or philosophical thinking? I got that chance this past weekend when I attended the annual summit meeting of the Foundation for Economic Education in Ft. Myers, Fla. A slim pamphlet reprinted by the Foundation for Economic Education was given to me by Dennis Miller, a school teacher, when I was 14 years old. It was “The Law,” by the 19th-century French economist FredericBastiat, and it set me on my current path of thinking.

I’m not the only one whom FEE has influenced. Milton Friedman described “I, Pencil,” FEE’s account of the hundreds of people and the raw materials that contribute to the making of that humble writing instrument, as “one of the clearest explanations of how markets work to benefit consumers” he had ever encountered. The Nobel Prize–winning economist F. A. Hayek said that FEE had helped inspire him to found the free-market Mont Pelerin Society. Ronald Reagan credited FEE materials he read in the 1950s with aiding his conversion to conservatism.

FEE says its mission is to “inspire, educate, and connect future leaders with the economic, ethical, and legal principles of a free society.” In the last five years, it has shifted its emphasis to reaching young people ages 14 to 24 through seminars, readings, and social media. Detroit’s public schools have made FEE’s Common Sense Economics its primary textbook for tenth-graders studying the economy. With a budget of only $3.6 million a year, FEE punches way above its weight in reaching future “influencers” who will populate academia, business, the media, and legal circles.Founded in the immediate aftermath of World War II by Leonard Read, a former head of the Los Angeles Chamber of Commerce, the free-market outreach group has distributed millions of copies of classic texts such as Henry Hazlitt’s Economics in One Lesson, Hans Sennholz’s Up from Poverty, and Lawrence Reed’s Are We Rome?

Take Romina Boccia, a 30-year-old German immigrant of Italian ancestry. “When I was in state schools in Bavaria, I realized that there must be other perspectives on society I wasn’t getting,” she told me. “Then someone handed me a copy of Bastiat’s ‘The Law’ on a train, and I was hooked.” She now is a research fellow in economic policy at the Heritage Foundation.

Another person who got hooked on FEE’s materials was a middle-aged actor named Ronald Reagan. The story is fascinating, as detailed in the 2006 book The Education of Ronald Reagan, by Thomas Evans.

From 1954 to 1962, Reagan worked as the host of CBS’s top-rated General Electric Theater and served as General Electric’s official spokesman. For weeks at a time he would tour GE’s 139 plants, eventually meeting most of the 250,000 employees in them. Reagan himself estimated that he spent 4,000 hours before GE microphones giving talks that started out with Hollywood patter but ended up as full-throated warnings about Big Government. “GE tours became almost a post-graduate course in political science for me,” he later wrote. “By 1960, I had completed the process of self-conversion.”

Evans, a lawyer who served in the Reagan administration before turning amateur historian, identified Reagan’s mentor at GE as Lemuel Boulware, the man behind both the company’s PR efforts and its labor-negotiation policy. Boulware believed that at the start of contract talks, GE should make an offer it viewed as fair to stockholders, workers, and customers and then stick with it, allowing for almost no changes. This “take it or leave it” approach was so successful (strikes became almost unknown at GE) that it entered the lexicon of labor relations as “Boulwarism.”

But Boulware also believed that the policy would work only if executives went over the heads of union officials and educated the workers directly about why they had a stake in GE’s prosperity. Evans notes that “a worker who learned that GE’s profit margin was much smaller than he had been led to believe or that union officials had not been truthful with him” was unlikely to join a picket line or insist on over-the-top demands. Thanks to his outreach to workers, and his surveys of them, Boulware was “reputed to understand blue-collar workers better than anyone in the country.”

Boulware’s efforts included an elaborate campaign to educate GE’s workers as well as the public on the moral and economic benefits of free enterprise. He encouraged workers to form book clubs and read free-market texts published by FEE, especially Hazlitt’s Economics in One Lesson and Wilhelm Ropke’s Economics of the Free Society. He also encouraged his managers to read William F. Buckley Jr.’s brand-new National Review.

Boulware’s free-market message so penetrated GE’s work force that Reagan, his traveling ambassador, quickly saw how important it was for him to become familiar with what the workers were reading. Over time, his own reading and his conversations with GE workers had an effect. By the late 1950s, Reagan was lambasting those “who can’t see a fat man standing beside a thin one without automatically concluding the fat man got that way by taking advantage of the thin one.” Historian Rick Perlstein has concluded that “Reagan was an integral component in the Boulwarite system.”

The lessons Reagan had learned during his GE barnstorming stuck with him. Several passages in his famous 1964 speech on behalf of Barry Goldwater came directly from his GE talks. (“There is no such thing as a left or right. There is only an up or down: up to man’s age-old dream, the ultimate in individual freedom consistent with law and order; or down to the ant heap of totalitarianism.”)

The influence of those years lasted well into Reagan’s presidency. The Timemagazine journalist Hugh Sidey recalled admiring some of Reagan’s White House speeches so much that he asked a speechwriter who exactly had written them. “Reagan,” he was told. “They were actually pretty much the speeches he had given when he worked for General Electric.” And for the GE talks, Reagan was his own speechwriter.

Of course, few of the people that FEE has influenced turned out to be the gifted popularizer of liberty that Ronald Reagan was. But FEE marches on, adapting its outreach to the digital age and the fourth generation of young people to have come on the scene since its founding. Not a bad record at all for a group that shuns harsh rhetoric in favor of quiet persuasion.

This piece was first published here at National Review Online. Reprinted with permission.


John Fund is currently the national-affairs columnist for National Review Online and a senior editor at the American Spectator.