TEA Party Positioned To Influence Republican Special Election In SW Florida

While politicos and pundits continuing to try and gauge how much the TEA Party’s influence has fallen off since the 2010 midterm elections, prospective Republican candidates running for office are taking a cautious approach of aligning themselves with the TEA Party movement, as the Democrat Party will be quick to pounce on them and frame their “extremist” message.

This is certainly the case in Florida’s Republican special congressional election in District 13. The seat is up for grabs after former Congressman Trey Radel resigned amid a cocaine bust scandal, and has fielded five candidates vying to replace him.

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Paige Kreegel

Former State Representative Paige Kreegel, who has significant name recognition with voters in the district, came in second behind Radel in the 2012 Republican primary race for Congress, and could have the upper hand in the race to win over the Republican grassroots.

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Lizbeth Benacquisto

State Senator Lizbeth Benacquisto, the Senate Majority leader in the Florida Senate, also enjoys district-wide name recognition, and seems to Lizbeth Benacquisto appeal to all factions within that congressional districts Republican electorate. According to some of Benacquisto’s supporters, the Majority leader has a broad network of conservative grassroots support.

Benacquisto has said that her campaign “will be outspent, but will not be outworked.” And then there is Curt Clawson.

Clawson, the self-proclaimed “outsider” and hoopster in the race, is out running a 2010 Rick Scott-style, TV ad-driven congressional campaign, who will outspend Benacquisto and Kreegel.

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Curt Clawson

During Clawson’s very first speaking engagement as congressional candidate, Clawson was asked about his support for the TEA Party. Clawson’s response:

I was busy running a company. I was not as, I wasn’t going to Tea Party meetings or a lot of other meetings-I of course was keeping up and felt it, but I have never been to a TEA Party meeting. But if you look at the philosophies, as I understand them-small government, reduce the debt, more freedom. I mean, if those are TEA Party tenants, then I support that. – Curt Clawson

Even though the TEA Party’s influence has diminished over the past several years, mainly due to individuals selfishly co-opting the movement, the conservative grassroots is still the lifeline of the Republican Party, and whomever is able to garner their support in the upcoming special election in Southwest Florida, will be the next member of Congress. You can bank on that.

EDITORS NOTE: This column originally appeared on The Shark Tank.

Obama Wants to Waste a Billion on “Climate Change”

Barack Obama will be remembered for many things during his two terms in office, but high on the list, right after lying to everyone about everything, will be his determination to waste billions of taxpayer dollars on every Green scheme from solar and wind energy to electric cars, and now on “climate change.”

He is calling for a billion-dollar climate change fund in his forthcoming budget, due out next month. As reported in The Wall Street Journal, the fund “would be spent on researching the projected effects of climate change and helping Americans prepare for them, including with new technology and infrastructure, according to the White House.

We don’t need any research and we don’t need any new technology. The National Weather Service has hugely expensive computers that enable it to predict what the weather will be anywhere in the U.S. with some measure of accuracy for up to three or four days. After that, it gets fuzzy. What will the weather be next week? Well, maybe a bit warmer or a bit colder.

As for the effects of weather events, we have centuries of knowledge regarding this. We know what happens after a blizzard or a hurricane, a drought or a flood.

When a huge storm like Sandy hit the East Coast, we had FEMA that was supposed to come in and help the victims. The federal government also came up with a couple of million for the States most affected, but it is still a problem that local first responders and utilities have to address most directly.

Obama was out in California to show his concern for the drought-stricken farmers and the administration is speeding delivery of $100 million of aid to livestock farmers, $15 million for areas hit hardest, and $60 million for California food banks to help the poor. Rep. Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) pointed out that the drought has been “exacerbated by federal and state regulations” including an environmental rule that placed “the well-being of fish…ahead of the well-being” of communities.

Like Rep. McCarthy, those on the scene point out that the drought is in part the result of the failure to restore the water flow from California’s water-heavy north to farmers in the central and south. House Bill 3964 does that, but only if the Senate will stop holding it up. Rep. McCarthy is joined by Rep. Devin Nunes explaining that California’s system of aqueducts and storage tanks was designed long ago to take advantage of rain and mountain runoff from wet years and store it for use in dry years.

As Investors.com pointed out, “Environmental special interests managed to dismantle the system by diverting water meant for farms to pet projects, such as saving delta smelt, a baitfish. That move forced the flushing of three million acre-feet of water originally slated for the Central Valley into the ocean over the past five years.”

Obama made no mention of that, but it is an example of how, in the name of climate change billions are wasted or lost, such as when the outcry over Spotted Owls caused a vast portion of the Northwest’s timber industry was decimated by the false claim that they were “endangered.”

All this traces back to the founding of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) in 1988 by two United Nations organizations, the World Meteorological Organization and the United Nations Environmental Program. The IPCC was given a formal blessing by the UN General Assembly through Resolution 43/53.

And what has the IPCC done? It has championed the utterly false claim that carbon dioxide (CO2) is responsible for warming the Earth and that all the industries and other human activities that create CO2 emissions had to reduce them in order to save the Earth. In 2007 the IPCC and Al Gore would share a Nobel Peace Prize. As an organization and as an individual these two have proved to be the among the greatest liars on planet Earth.

Cover - Climate Change Reconsidered IIDr. Craig D. Idso, PhD, is the founder and chairman of the Center for the Study of Carbon Dioxide and Global Change. He is an advisor to The Heartland Institute and, with Dr. Robert M. Carter and Dr. S. Fred Singer, authored the 2011 study, “Climate Change Reconsidered”, for the entertainingly named NIPCC—Not the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. Published by The Heartland Institute, a free market think tank that has led the effort to expose the IPCC since 2009, sponsoring eight international conferences, the report was updated in 2013 and a new update is due in March.

Writing in The Hill on January 30, Dr. Idso said “the President’s concerns for the planet are based upon flawed and speculative science; and his policy prescription is a recipe for failure” noting that “literally thousands of scientific studies have produced findings that run counter to his view of future climate.”

“As just one example, and a damning one at that, all of the computer models upon which his vision is based failed to predict the current plateau (the cooling cycle) in global temperature that has continued for the past 16 years. That the Earth has not warmed significantly during this period, despite an 8 percent increase in atmospheric CO2, is a major indictment of the model’s credibility in predicting future climate, as well as the President’s assertion that debate on this topic is ‘settled’.”

“The taxation or regulation of CO2 emissions is an unnecessary and detrimental policy option that should be shunned,” said Dr. Idso. Unfortunately for Americans, that is precisely the policy being driven by Obama’s Environmental Protection Agency, along with the Department of the Interior and other elements of the government.

So the trip to California with its promise of more million spent when, in fact, the Green policies of that State have caused the loss of the Central lands that produce a major portion of the nation’s food stocks, reveals how utterly corrupt Obama’s climate-related policies have been since he took office in 2009.

Billions of taxpayer dollars have been squandered by the crony capitalism that is the driving force behind the IPCC’s and U.S. demands for the reduction of CO2 emissions.

There is climate change and it has been going on for 4.5 billion years on planet Earth. It has everything to do with the Sun, the oceans, volcanic activity and other natural factors. It has nothing to do with the planet’s human population.

What is profoundly disturbing is the deliberate political agenda behind the President’s lies and Secretary of State John Kerry’s irrational belief that climate change is the world’s “most fearsome” weapon of mass destruction.

© Alan Caruba, 2014

RELATED VIDEO: Charles Krauthammer on Climate Change, “All of this is driven by this ideology, which in and of itself is a matter of almost theology.”

[youtube]http://youtu.be/g6Zswes9TsY[/youtube]

Florida’s Term Limits under attack: Grimsley and the petty arrrogance of power

Following the lead attack by Rep. W. Keith Perry (R-Gainesville), Sen. Denise Grimsley (R-Sebring) has launched the second salvo against Florida’s voter-initiated and -approved 8-year term limits law.

Last week, Grimsley introduced a slightly different Senate version of Perry’s bill to weaken the legislative term limits from eight to 12 years. Surely she recalls the bill passing in 1992 with 77 percent of the vote. Surely she has done sufficient homework to find recent polling showing that Floridians’ love of term limits is undimmed. Surely, she has seen the negative reaction Rep. Perry has received from the public.

FL Senator Denise Grimsley (R-Sebring)

But there is a hubris that comes from holding office too long that blinds politicians. Legislators feel that they are irreplaceable and hence are disdainful of the democratic tradition of rotation. Sen. Grimsley served eight years in the House and now wants an additional 12 years in the Senate. Oh, and she’d like a longer term so she doesn’t have to face the voters as often.

It is pretty clear why. Voters are disgusted with this kind of self-serving behavior and she doesn’t want to hear it. She hears the higher call of her career and of the special interests that further it.

Sen. Grimsley has figured out the professional politicians’ path to career success.  Once in power, keeping it is a simple process. It requires little more than taking out one’s Rolodex, reassuring the special interests that you’re still on board and accepting their checks. Nearly all PAC money goes to the incumbents. The powers of the incumbency and its daunting purse chases away meaningful competition. She doesn’t want to be bothered with the rubes of her district and their shabby interests.

In 2005-06, when self-interested politicians last made a serious attempt to ditch our 8-year term limits, there was such an outcry the anti-term limits amendment bill was repealed shortly after it passed.  Sen. Grimsley, Rep. Keith Perry and the rest of the legislature need to hear from us right now.

Check out Sunday’s op-ed by Nick Tomboulides in Highland Today — Sen. Grimsley’s hometown paper — where he takes her to task for her arrogance. For regular updates, be sure also to LIKE the Save Florida Term Limits Facebook page.

Apostle Barack. Are you kidding me?

If I’m not mistaken, the first commandment goes something like this, “I am the Lord your God, thou shalt have no other gods before me.” It’s worked pretty well for the last few thousand years, but apparently a certain college professor at Florida A&M University (doggone, why is it always Florida?) has elevated President Barack Hussein Obama to a place that is indeed above his pay grade.

According the Independent Journal Review, if you’re looking for an amusing read, you might want pick up The Gospel According to Apostle Barack: In Search of a More Perfect Political Union as Heaven Here on Earth. Heck, for just $3.03, you can get a Kindle version of the book by Barbara A. Thompson, a “highly esteemed” professor at Florida A & M University, which explores the author’s “miraculous” dream about President Barack Obama.

Here’s how Professor Thompson describes being touched:

When I began to contemplate ways to assist Barack in his 2012 re-election bid something miraculous happened. I felt God’s (His) Spirit beckoning me in my dreams at night. Listening, cautiously, I learned that Jesus walked the earth to create a more civilized society, Martin (Luther King) walked the earth to create a more justified society, but, Apostle Barack, the name he was called in my dreams, would walk the earth to create a more equalized society, for the middle class and working poor.

Apostle Barack, the next young leader with a new cause, had been taken to the mountaintop and allowed to see over the other side. He had the answers to unlock the kingdom of “heaven here on earth” for his followers. The answers were repeated – over and over – in speeches Barack had made from his presidential announcement to his inaugural address. Those speeches or his teachings contained the answers to the middle class and working poor people living in a “heaven here on earth.” For when the answers were unlocked and enacted, Apostle Barack’s vision of America would be realized.

Excuse me. I need to get that bucket handy. In the meantime, you might enjoy this commentary from ET Williams, the ”Doctor Of Common Sense.”

[youtube]http://youtu.be/Nn6XSPw2Ogs[/youtube]

The book reviewer says, “I must caution that the book comes poorly recommended, with an average 1.3 out of 5 stars from 51 customer reviews.” Well thank goodness for that!

I doubt Professor Thompson had a dream — more like a nightmare — and she certainly did not feel God’s Holy Spirit. Maybe she heard the same voices Salman Rushdie described in his 1988 novel, “The Satanic Verses” — oh, and in case you missed it, those peaceful Iranian mullahs just reissued their death fatwa against Rushdie. And we trust them with nuclear negotiations? But I digress…

But getting back to Professor Thompson, would you want your child attending her lectures? Maybe this explains why homeschooling and online/for profit colleges and universities are on the rise.

To Professor Thompson I say, the first amendment is your right and a beautiful thing. However, I would also recommend, since you are seemingly quite the Biblical scholar, to heed the words of the wisest man who ever walked the earth, (and that damn sure ain’t Barack Obama) in King Solomon, Book of Proverbs 17:28 “Even fools are thought wise if they keep silent, and discerning if they hold their tongues.”

EDITORS NOTE: This column originally appeared on AllenBWest.com. Featured image courtesy of Independent Journal Review.

Florida Office of Film and Entertainment: The Laurel and Hardy of pork barrel projects?

Dan Krassner, Co-Founder and Executive Director Integrity Florida, and Ben Wilcox, Research Director Integrity Florida, have released their latest research report: Florida Film Incentives – “Action” or “Fade to Black”?

Krassner and Wilcox state, “Florida’s production industry is lobbying the state legislature, as of February 2014, for a new $1 billion package of subsidies to sustain movies, TV shows, video games and other entertainment industry productions through 2020. As this major investment of taxpayer dollars is considered, this study examines the transparency, accountability and effectiveness of Florida’s Entertainment Industry Financial Incentive Program. While this study does not take a position about whether or not lawmakers should maintain or eliminate the incentive program, is does offer ways to improve the program if it continues.”

Key Research Findings are:

1) Insufficient disclosure. The Florida Department of Economic Opportunity (DEO) does not disclose deals made through Florida’s Entertainment Industry Financial Incentive Program on its website. The Office of Film and Entertainment, located within DEO, does not always disclose online both the specific value of the tax credit awards along with the actual production company names of the recipients.

2) Questionable compliance with state statutes. The Office of Film and Entertainment may not be properly utilizing the Florida Film and Entertainment Advisory Council in decisions about incentives and is possibly working with the Council’s Executive Committee out of the sunshine.

3) First come, first served incentive deals rather than a focus on return on investment. Rather than properly vetting all applicants and deciding on projects based on the best return for taxpayers, a first come, first served policy is used by the Office of Film and Entertainment.

4) Subjective use of family-friendly incentive bonus awards. The legislative definition of what qualifies a production for a family-friendly incentive bonus is written with subjective language and may not be applied in a consistent manner by the Office of Film and Entertainment.

5) Industry group seeks taxpayer funds for a public-private partnership based on the Enterprise Florida model. The nonprofit group Film Florida is floating a proposal to create a public-private partnership with the Office of Film and Entertainment based on the Enterprise Florida model that could receive taxpayer funding from the legislature.

Key Policy Recommendations include:

1) More online disclosure of film and entertainment incentive agreements, with production company names and details of tax credits approved and awarded, on the DEO website.

2) Ensure the Office of Film and Entertainment Advisory Council and its related committees take appropriate steps to comply with Florida’s open meeting laws.

3) Increase fiscal responsibility for incentive deals by assessing potential for return on investment for taxpayers across all industry sectors equally, instead of the current policy of first come, first served tax credit applications and industry-specific caps.

4) More objectivity and oversight of tax credit bonus approvals.

5) Avoid privatization as OPPAGA, the legislature’s internal watchdog, noted concerns about performance and fiscal controls the last time that model was used.

Click here to read the latest research report by the nonpartisan government watchdog group Integrity Florida.

ABOUT INTEGRITY FLORIDA

Integrity Florida is a nonpartisan, nonprofit research institute and government watchdog whose mission is to promote integrity in government and expose public corruption.  Our vision is government in Florida that is the most open, ethical, responsive and accountable in the world. Integrity Florida and its research have been cited by major news outlets across the U.S., including the New York Times,  Washington PostAssociated Press and the Center for Public Integrity.

FL: Sarasota County School Board wants more money to pay teachers for doing less?

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Sarasota County School Board members. Front row: Caroline Zucker, Shirley Brown. Back row: Dr. Carole Todd, Jane Goodwin and Frank Kovach. For a larger view click on the photo.

The School Board of Sarasota County is pushing for the extension of a 1 mill tax on all county property holders on March 25th. They are using school funds to lobby in favor of and promote the 1 mill tax. According to their official Report on the Uses of Referendum Funds since 2002, ”This vote allows the District to maintain existing programs, provide additional programs and continue the District’s commitment to quality education.”

In a previous column I questioned whether the School Board is really committed to a “quality education”. School Board Member Caroline Zucker responded to my column in an email stating, “There u go telling incorrect info.” I replied, “What is incorrect?”. To date Zucker has not answered my question.

Historically the revenue from the 1 mill tax goes directly into teacher’s salaries (see the District Report on the uses of referendum funds since 2002).This is why the School Board holds a special off cycle referendum at a cost to the School District of $.5 million. Doing so suppresses the vote.

However, teachers come out in droves to vote for their pay raise, and the union promotes the referendum via teachers and parents as a must have do-or-die effort to insure a “quality education.”

What the referendum does is make for a “quality union salary and benefit package” for teachers and administrators. For their $.5 million investment the School Board gets an ROI of an estimated $30+ million annually for four years. Not a bad deal but will it lead to a better education for Sarasota County public school children?

There are two issues. The first is that the School Board is all in with Common Core. This means that teachers have little or no control over what is taught, how it is taught, when it is taught and how it is tested. Parents are totally out of the picture. Common Core cuts out the ideal of local control of the education process, leading to a top down approach designed and implemented by the US Department of Education.

Terrence O. Moore, an assistant professor of history at Hillsdale College, states, “The Common Core Standards control the testing and curriculum of public schools and a large number of private schools in over forty states in the nation. Sold to the public as a needed reform, the Common Core nationalizes absurdity, superficiality, and political bias in the American classroom. As a result, the great stories of a great nation are at risk, along with the minds and souls of our children.”

So, teachers will be given what they must teach – in effect and in practice – Sarasota County teachers will be getting paid more, if the referendum passes, for doing much less due to Common Core.

The second issue is the children themselves. Which does research show truly enhances student achievement – teacher salaries or the child’s family?

Rod Thomson in an op-ed writes, “The debate over extending the extra tax for Sarasota County schools needs to be seen in light of the much larger debate over the future of our children and grandchildren and their opportunities for improved lives. In that context, the extra money taken by the school district is not just a waste of taxpayer money. It is a feel-good but ultimately empty distraction that allows us to vote for something without taking any action on the actual underlying, fundamental causes of poor student achievement and lack of upward mobility. But those root causes are hard to correct.”

“An extensive Harvard study was recently released titled ‘Where is the Land of Opportunity?‘ The four researchers concluded that the largest predictor of a child’s positive ability to move up in life is a family with both parents at home. For lack of upward mobility, they wrote, “the strongest and most robust predictor is the fraction of children with single parents. This study piles on top of a snow-capped mountain of data pointing to what all of us really know to be true — the metaphorical elephant in the living room. And spending more money on programs and salaries is simply irrelevant to the driving factor of family,” notes Thomson.

So why doesn’t the Sarasota County School Board recognize this disconnect between teacher salaries and student performance? Why they want to get reelected. Who gets out the vote for them? Why the teacher’s union of course. Are they buying votes? All we can say is that since the referendum was first introduced only one school board member wasn’t re elected – Caroline Zucker. But she ran again and was elected.

Three school board members are up for reelection in 2014. Perhaps that is why they are pushing the 1 mill referendum?

EDITORS NOTE: Stephanie Simon from Politico writes that with states such as Florida, Texas, and Washington state recently deciding not to require courses such as chemistry, physics, Algebra II or a foreign language for high school graduation, they are thumbing their noses at Obama’s call for a “rigorous college-prep curriculum” for all students, supposedly embodied in the Common Core State Standards.

The Secret Sex War Against Women: The religion of orgasim

The liberal perversion of sex is the real war against women. I expose how the liberal “religion of orgazim” has diminished women, the family and the nation. Progressives have elevated the pursuit of orgasims to a sacrid right.

[youtube]http://youtu.be/ZBFD5zeDkys[/youtube]

 

EDITORS NOTE: The featured image is by Ricardo Martins from Gent, Belgium. The photographer does not in any way endorse Bill Finley or this video commentary. The photo was taken on Pigalle an area in Paris around Place Pigalle, on the border between the 9th and the 18th arrondissements. It is named after the sculptor Jean-Baptiste Pigalle (1714–1785). Pigalle is famous for being a touristic red-light district, with many sex shops on Place Pigalle and the main boulevards and prostitutes operating in the side streets. The neighborhood’s raunchy reputation led to its World War II nickname of “Pig Alley” by Allied soldiers. The Divan du Monde and the Moulin Rouge, a world-famous cabaret, are both located in Pigalle. Note : These shops are not on place Pigalle.

RELATED COLUMNDisgraced Democratic congressman arrested in Zimbabwe after allegedly making 100 porno films and taking 2,000 naked pictures in hotels | Mail Online

Obama’s Eligibility – The Final Word

In recent days I have been drawn into yet another debate over presidential eligibility, as specified in Article II, Section 1 of the U.S. Constitution.  Given that Barack Obama has occupied the Oval Office illegally for more than five years, without so much as a whimper of protest from most American voters or the mainstream media, some may feel that any further discussion of this matter may be akin to “beating a dead horse.” Nevertheless, if we insist on referring to ourselves as a constitutional republic, and if we continue to insist that we honor constitutional principles and the rule of law, then we have no choice but to understand precisely what the Founders intended when they drafted our governing document in 1787.

What generated my recent exchange on the subject of presidential eligibility was an article in the January 31, 2014 edition of pegAlert, the newsletter of the Pennsylvania Business Council.  The article in question was titled, “SANTORUM PREPPING FOR ANOTHER RUN IN 2016.”

In response, I asked the question, “Who keeps propping up Santorum’s ambitions … other than Rick Santorum?  Unless I’m wrong, his father was still an Italian citizen when he was born.  That makes him ineligible for the presidency.”  To which a representative of the Business Council replied, “That might be so, but Santorum was born in the USA so that makes him a citizen.”

To that nonsensical assertion I replied, “… If Santorum was born in the US, which I assume he was, that does make him a ‘citizen.’  But that’s not what is at issue.  What is at issue is his status as a ‘natural born’ citizen, which he must be if he wants to run for president.  In order for him to be a ‘natural born’ citizen, both of his parents must have been US citizens.  If Santorum’s father was still an Italian citizen when he was born, then he is not a ‘natural born’ citizen…”

The final response from the Pennsylvania Business Council brought us straight to the nub of the issue.  The reply read, “Under (that) definition, none of our initial 6 or 7 presidents, would have qualified.”  Bingo!!  Without even trying, he inadvertently proved my point.

Once again I found myself confronted face-to-face with the harebrained notion that the terms “citizen” and “natural born Citizen” are synonymous… that to be a “citizen” equates to being a “natural born” citizen.  That simply is not true.  One would think that simple intellectual curiosity would lead those who share that mistaken belief to question why the Founders found it necessary to modify the phrase, “No person except a natural born Citizen,” with the phrase, “… or a Citizen of the United States, at the time of the Adoption of this Constitution…”

Even the most unthinking and uneducated among us must agree that the use of the word “or” requires an implicit understanding that those who would seek the presidency had to be either “natural born citizens,” or citizens of the United States” on the day that the Constitution became the law of the land.

On the day that the Declaration of Independence was signed on July 4, 1776, every citizen of the thirteen original colonies became citizens of a new nation, the United States of America.  And the very first child born to newly-minted US citizens on July 4, 1776, before the ink was dry on John Hancock’s signature, became the nation’s very first “natural born” citizen.

The Constitution required that, in addition to being a resident of the United States for at least fourteen years, those who would seek the presidency must be at least thirty-five years of age.  There were a great many men who met those two criteria, but the country needed a president and the only “natural born” citizens available on June 21, 1788, the day the Constitution was ratified, were children under twelve years of age.  To solve that problem, the Framers added a grandfather clause, making it possible for newly-minted US citizens, none of them “natural born,” to serve as president.  This was necessary until such time as a body of individuals, born to US citizen parents after the Declaration of Independence, reached age thirty-five.

George Washington, our first president, was born at Wakefield, Virginia on February 22, 1732, forty-four years before the Declaration of Independence.  He was a “citizen,” but not a “natural born” citizen because both of his parents were British subjects at the time of his birth.

John Adams, our second president, was born at Braintree, Massachusetts on October 30, 1735, forty-one years before the Declaration of Independence.  He was a “citizen” because he was born in Massachusetts, but he was not a “natural born” citizen because both of his parents were British subjects at the time of his birth and owed their allegiance to the British crown.

Thomas Jefferson, our third president, was born at Shadwell, Virginia on April 13, 1743, thirty-three years before the Declaration of Independence.  He was a “citizen” because he was born in Virginia, but he was not a “natural born” citizen because both of his parents were British subjects at the time of his birth.

James Madison, our fourth president, born in Virginia on March 16, 1751, twenty-five years before the Declaration of Independence; James Monroe, our fifth president, born in Virginia on April 28, 1758, eighteen years before the Declaration of Independence; John Quincy Adams, our sixth president, born in Massachusetts on July 11, 1767, nine years before the Declaration of Independence; and Andrew Jackson, our seventh president, born in South Carolina on March 15, 1767, nine years before the Declaration of Independence; were all “citizens” because they were born in what came to be the United States of America, but they were not “natural born” citizens because their parents were not US citizens at the time of their birth.

However, Martin Van Buren, our eighth president, was born at Kinderhook, New York on December 5, 1782, six years and five months after the Declaration of Independence.  Unlike his seven predecessors, he was not just a “citizen,” he was a “natural born” citizen… the first president, at least thirty-five years of age, who was born to US citizen parents after the signing of the Declaration of Independence.

What a great many patriotic, but ill-informed, Americans refuse to accept is the fact that, while the Founders intended that only “natural born” citizens should ever serve as president, there were no 35-year-old “natural born” citizens available during the first 35 years of our nation’s history. Accordingly, it became necessary to provide an exemption of limited duration covering those citizens born prior to July 4, 1776.  All were “grandfathered” and made eligible under the phrase, “or a Citizen of the United States, at the time of the Adoption of this Constitution…”

Every U.S. president since Van Buren… with the exception of Chester A. Arthur, whose Irish father was a British subject at the time of his birth, and Barack Obama, whose Kenyan father was also a British subject at the time of his birth… has been a “natural born” U.S. citizen, as required by Article II, Section 1 of the U.S. Constitution.

Barack Obama was born with dual US-British citizenship “by descent” from his Kenyan father and his American mother.  However, under Chapter VI, Sec. 97(1) of the Kenyan Constitution of December 12, 1963, Kenyan Independence Day, Obama lost his British citizenship on August 4, 1984, his twenty-third birthday.  However, his eligibility status is now complicated by the fact that, under Chapter 3, Section 14 of a revised Kenyan Constitution, adopted on August 4, 2010, he became a citizen of Kenya “by birth” and is required to obey the laws of Kenya, should he ever set foot in that country during or after his stay in the White House.

The Framers found it inconceivable that a president of the United States, commander in chief of the Army and the Navy, should ever be required to obey the laws of a foreign nation.  Barack Obama provides, if nothing else, a definitive example of why the Founders insisted that the president must be a “natural born” citizen, untainted by any hint of foreign allegiances.

Although Democrats have successfully defended Obama’s illegal presidency, based largely on the fact that he is a black man, insulated from the rule of law by the color of his skin, we must insist that constitutional mandates apply equally to presidents of both parties, Democrats and Republicans.  This means, of course, that conservatives such as Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX), Gov. Nicki Haley (R-SC), Gov. Bobby Jindal (R-LA), Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL), and former Sen. Rick Santorum (R-PA)… all born to one or more non-US citizen parents… are not natural born citizens and must be eliminated from consideration for the 2016 GOP nomination.

In the days of Washington, Adams, and Jefferson, a man of Barack Obama’s background and qualifications would have received zero consideration for the presidency.  Without question, he would have been declared ineligible.  Yet, in spite of the fact that the Constitutional criteria for the presidency have not changed one iota since 1787, millions of Americans today insist that he is eligible for the office.  By what tortured reasoning, what conceivable standard, they won’t say.

Liberals and Democrats being what they are, we can always count on them to expect to have things both ways.  But conservatives and Republicans believe in constitutional principles and the rule of law and we simply cannot allow the bandwagon-riders in our party to circumvent the Constitution.  So, sorry, Ted, Nicki, Bobby, Marco, and Rick… we love you all and you’re a great credit to our country, but you just can’t play in our presidential sandbox.

Bill Warner: A Voice for the Voiceless (+ video)

Voices for the Voiceless states, “It is a moral duty to speak and write about the greatest human rights crime today — persecution of religious minorities. There is a denial of this news. Those who should speak are SILENT in the face of terrible suffering.”

[youtube]http://youtu.be/TLs7PHFpMuI[/youtube]

 

The following is taken from the Voices for the Voiceless website:

SUFFERING

The greatest human rights violation today is the persecution of religious minorities. Christians are the largest numbers by far.

  • Half of Iraqi Christians have fled rather than die. Countless numbers of their churches have been destroyed.
  • Syrian towns that have been Christian for 2000 years are being annihilated.
  • The 1300 year march of terror against the Copts continues in Egypt today.
  • Christians jailed in Iran are tortured.
  • Christians and Hindus are persecuted to near annihilation in Pakistan.

Also Buddhists in Thailand, Hindus in India and Jews in Israel are routinely assaulted and murdered.

RESPONSE

It is a moral duty to speak and write about the greatest human rights crime today — persecution of religious minorities. There is a denial of this news. Those who should speak are SILENT in the face of terrible suffering.

  • Who are the persecuted?
  • What is their history?
  • Where is this happening?
  • Why is this persecution taking
    place?

WHY ARE YOU SILENT?

SILENCE IN THE FACE OF EVIL IS ITSELF EVIL

God will not hold us guiltless. Not to speak is to speak. Not to act is to act. – Dietrich Bonhoeffer

MORALITY

Who do you stand for, the oppressors or the victims? Silence supports the oppressors. The highest moral position is to defend the victims who have no voice. There is no justice until we hear the voice of the victim. Will you become a voice for the voiceless?

WHAT DO WE WANT?

  • Speak out about the suffering of millions in the greatest human rights tragedy of our day.
  • Talk about how we can stop the suffering and murder of the persecuted.

WHAT MUST HAPPEN

  • The death cries of the daughters, sons, husbands, and wives must be heard.
  • Good people must become willing to talk about the suffering of religious minorities.
  • Stop the silence and report the facts every time.

There is no justice without hearing the voiceless. Then you must speak and act with courage.

EDITORS NOTE: The featured image is courtesy of Erica, blogger at the University of Washington.

Why don’t Republicans follow their own platform? Isn’t the lesser of two evils still evil?

The preamble to the 2012 Republican Party platform reads, “The 2012 Republican Platform is a statement of who we are and what we believe as a Party and our vision for a stronger and freer America.” Many are questioning if Republicans at every level really adhere to their own platform. Some wonder if they have even read it.

Voters lament that they are faced with the choice of voting for the lesser of two evils. But isn’t the lesser of two evils still evil?

The Republican party platform states:

Put simply: The times call for trustworthy leadership and honest talk about the challenges we face. Our nation and our people cannot afford the status quo. We must begin anew, with profound changes in the way government operates; the way it budgets, taxes, and regulates. Jefferson’s vision of a “wise and frugal government” must be restored.

[ … ]

This platform affirms that America has always been a place of grand dreams and even grander realities; and so it will be again, if we return government to its proper role, making it smaller and smarter. If we restructure government’s most important domestic programs to avoid their fiscal collapse. If we keep taxation, litigation, and regulation to a minimum. If we celebrate success, entrepreneurship, and innovation. If we lift up the middle class. If we hand over to the next generation a legacy of growth and prosperity, rather than entitlements and indebtedness.

[ … ]

We possess an owner’s manual: the Constitution of the United States, the greatest political document ever written. That sacred document shows us the path forward. Trust the people. Limit government. Respect federalism. Guarantee opportunity, not outcomes. Adhere to the rule of law. Reaffirm that our rights come from God, are protected by government, and that the only just government is one that truly governs with the consent of the governed.

The platform mentions God eleven times. The Table of Contents lists the following: “We The People: A Restoration of Constitutional Government”; “Reforming Government to Serve the People”; “Renewing American Values to Build Healthy Families, Great Schools and Safe Neighborhoods”; and “American Exceptionalism.”

During an email discussion about how the Republican Party has abandoned social issues with Peter Feaman, the Republican Party of Florida state Committeeman, wrote:

To say Republicans have ignored the social issues is absolutely preposterous.

The RNC changed the start time of their annual meeting last month in Washington so that its members could attend the March for Life rally in Washington last month. Then the RNC hired and paid for busses to take members there and Reince Priebus attended himself.

The 2012 RNC Platform reaffirmed the party’s commitment to life while the Democrat Platform reaffirmed its extreme position on the killing of the unborn.

[ … ]

Also, in 2013, Reince Priebus created a new RNC position entitled Faith Based Outreach. He is Chad Connelly, former Chairman of the South Carolina Republican Party, now working full-time for the RNC.

Before you spew lies and distortions about the Republican Party, get your facts straight.

You want to insure the control of the Democrat Party at all levels of government? Promote your third party, then watch the country get destroyed.

Tom Trento responded with:

It is almost comical to compare the Republican 2012 Platform with the Democrat Platform, as one was written by adults and the others, by “potheads!” The disparity between the two indicates an enormous cultural shift over the last 30 years. This we know.

But sadly, and I think it is here that Rich wants to focus, many of the current GOP leadership in the Beltway are in more “functional” agreement with the Dem Platform than the Rep Platform!

It is essential to read both platforms and understand the political philosophy of each party and then compare current Republican policy solutions to the Republican political philosophy as articulated in the Platform, which I think is an amazingly wonderful document. It then becomes patently obvious that indeed there is a VERY strong Republican voice that is attacking those who want to affirm the Rep Platform (i.e.TEA Party) while that strong voice wants to water down the very principles that distinguish the GOP from the Potheads!!

There is growing dissatisfaction with Republicans who say one thing and do another. In Florida we have had Charlie Crist (former Republican governor turned Democrat), Senator Marco Rubio who became the Republican Party’s face of amnesty and Rep. Vern Buchanan, co-Chair of the Florida Delegation, who voted on October 16, 2013 to raise the debt ceiling and fully fund Obamacare.

For a growing number of voters the lesser of two evils is still evil. Over 1 million Christians either did not register or did not vote in the 2012 election. President Obama won the state by just over 74,000 votes. Libertarians are becoming the spoilers in races like the District 13 special election.

Perhaps it is time for Republicans to act and vote like Republicans, in adherence with their own party platform?

Click here to read the Democrat Platform and 2012 Republican Party platform.

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Amnesty, legalizing marijuana and gun control: Creating a “cartel of death” in America

There has been much discussion about amnesty for illegal aliens in Congress. Democrats, led by President Obama, want amnesty at all cost. I recently had a conversation with Kelly Kirshner, the former Mayor of Sarasota, FL. He is planning a demonstration to promote “immigration reform”, which is code for amnesty. Kirshner believes he is doing good, when in fact he is promoting policies that will bring violence to America.

Dr. Lawrence W. Reed from the Mackinac Center for Public Policy, created the Seven Principles of Sound Public Policy. Reed’s third principle states: Sound [public] policy requires that we consider long-run effects and all people, not simply short-run effects and a few people.

Amnesty (immigration reform) is inextricably linked to efforts to legalize drugs and control gun ownership in America. These three movements are joined at the hip and will, in the long term, lead to a “cartel of death” in America. By not taking into account the long-run effects and all people these policies will wreak havoc on our society, especially our youngest and most vulnerable.

Mexican_drug_cartels_2008

The major Mexican drug cartels. For a larger view click on the map.

Many have documented how our borders are not secure. Dennis Michael Lynch in his documentary “They Come To America” focuses on the land border between the United States and Mexico. Many ignore the border states along the Gulf of Mexico. Drug cartels, like the Gulf Cartel, use these porous borders to come to America transporting not only illegal aliens but also drugs and the certain violence that is part and parcel of the drug business.

There is a push by Libertarians, Democrats and some Republicans to legalize medical marijuana. This effort is only the first step, like in Colorado, to the full legalization of marijuana, like in Florida. By legalizing marijuana you legalize the cartels and the culture of death that comes with them and their drugs. President Obama gave banks permission to do business with marijuana distributors.

Sheila Polk in her op-ed column “Legalized marijuana: Colorado kids are paying the price” writes:

On Jan. 1, Colorado opened its doors to this nation’s first legal sale of recreational marijuana. Lost in the buzz is the documented impact of legal marijuana on Colorado children.

The reality about today’s marijuana, an addictive substance whose average potency has dramatically increased from 3 percent THC in the 1990s to almost 15 percent, should change everything that people think they know about the drug.

[ … ]

Past 30-day use of marijuana by teens 12 to 17 is highest in medical-marijuana states. In Denver between 2004 and 2010, past 30-day users of marijuana ages 12 and up increased 4.3 percent, while the increase for the nation was 0.05 percent.

By 2010, past 30-day use for this age group was 12.2 percent, compared to 6.6 percent for the country. One in six kids who start using marijuana becomes addicted.

Read more.

The below video is by the National Rifle Association. It is a different approach for the NRA in that it links the violence and the effort to demonize guns by President Obama, Michael Bloomberg, candidate for Florida governor Charlie Crist and others. We now know due to the work of bloggers and authors like Katie Pavlich, that these guns were provided by our own government in an operation named “Fast and Furious.

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ABCDEFGH[/youtube]

Polk concludes with:

What can Arizona learn from this?

Lesson Number 1: We should not rush to experiment with an entire generation of our young people by legalizing marijuana. Use of marijuana by Arizona’s 8th, 10th and 12th graders has already increased by 14.4 percent from 2008 to 2012.

Lesson Number 2: We must build an environment in which every child can learn and thrive. That must include funding public education to heighten awareness about the harms of marijuana. Every child can succeed when adults believe in them and create safe communities for them.

Marijuana is never part of that equation.

A wise warning indeed. Drugs, children, violence and guns make for a toxic combination.

EDITORS NOTE: Sheila Polk is the Yavapai County Attorney and co-chair of MATFORCE, the Yavapai County Substance Abuse Coalition. The featured image is courtesy of  activist Thomas Good, who is in costume – “recruiting” for the military as the Grim Reaper, October 2007. The photograph was taken by the subject’s 14-year-old son, Nathaniel Good. In March of 2007 the photo was reprinted as the cover shot on “Peacework” magazine, a publication of the American Friends Service Committee.

RELATED COLUMN: Swiss model helps curb heroin addiction | FLORIDA TODAY | floridatoday.com

Obama’s despotic rule: Montesquieu knew this would happen

As I look back on this past week, I have to summarize it in one word: crisis.

Domestically we face a constitutional crisis with a president who doesn’t believe he must adhere to our fundamental system of governance. If you have some time, take a read through or refresh yourself on the “Spirit of the Laws” by Charles-Louis de Secondat, Baron de La Brède et de Montesquieu in 1748.

In that simple treatise, Montesquieu presented the idea of the separation of powers, checks and balances, and coequal branches of government. These ideas were adopted by our Founding Fathers, more specifically, James Madison, as he wrote the Constitution of the United States and the Federalist Papers – which I believe President Obama, the self-proclaimed constitutional scholar, has never read.

Montesquieu said, “When the legislative and executive powers are united in the same person or in the same body of magistrates, there can be no liberty. The same monarch or senate would enact tyrannical laws and execute them in a tyrannical manner.”

Montesquieu believed liberty was impossible if the judicial branch was not separated from the legislative and executive powers. He believed if the judiciary were combined with legislative power, individual life and liberty would be vulnerable to arbitrary control. Even worse, if the judiciary were combined with executive powers, judges would be oppressive and violent.

In the worst case of all, the same person or body would control all three powers.

Montesquieu, a champion of individual dignity and liberty, raised his voice against the despotic rule of the Bourbon monarchy of Louis XIV who boasted, “I am the state.” Montesquieu knew well that “constant experience shows us that every man invested with power is apt to abuse it, and to carry his authority until he is confronted with limits.”

But as Montesquieu stood up to the despotic rule of the king, who will stand up to the despotic rule of Obama?

If no one accepts this mantle and casts down the gauntlet, the constitutional crisis we face will only be exacerbated. The cancer will further metastasize.

We are in the sixth year of Obama, and I predicted if we reelected this charlatan to a second term it would be the greatest Pavlovian experiment the world has ever known. America would reward the most abhorrent of behavior — and lo and behold, “yes we did.” America is in crisis. Who will be our Montesquieu? Who will stand in the arena as our Maximus?

EDITORS NOTE: This column originally appears on AllenBWest.com.

Who Art Thou That Led To This Destruction?

There are times when pieces signed by the editors leave me wanting to go long boiled rope futures on maximum margin in the hopes that the sheeple of this nation, and others, wake up before they’re enslaved en-masse or worse, shoved into boxcars.

This is one such time.

Germany’s Federal Constitutional Court has passed the buck on a case that will decide whether the European Central Bank can do its job. That’s good. The decision is now where it belongs, with the European Court of Justice.

The matter should have gone to the ECJ, the body responsible for interpreting the European Union’s treaties, in the first place, as two dissenting judges said. Without delay, the court should take a wide, pragmatic view of the ECB’s powers.

At issue is the ECB’s ability to buy government debt in support of financial stability and economic activity. With Europe’s short-term interest rates close to zero and deflation threatening, asset-purchase programs are a tool the ECB needs. The problem is, the treaty that created the euro casts doubt on whether and exactly how the ECB can use them. One such program, called Outright Monetary Transactions, is the subject of the case.

So let me see if I get the argument that Bloomberg-cum-advocate-for-banksters is making correct.

First, the ECB, like our Fed, is the primary regulator for banks in the EU.  As such it is charged with regulating the means by which and the amounts in which credit is extended into the economy such that said institutions do not “create money out of thin air”, as such does not lubricate commerce (the job of credit) but rather serves to destroy the value of said currency and, by intentionally creating the conditions under which defaults are inevitable, causes the transfer of assets from those who own them to those who created such credit with either actual or constructive knowledge that the loans could not be repaid as agreed.

Put another way, the creation of loans that cannot be reasonably supported as able to be paid off and are thus designed to be rolled over in perpetuity, whether the borrower is a government or private entity, is always improper and a fraud.

The reason is as follows:

A loan is always created “at interest”, that is, you must always pay more than you originally got over time.  But the funds that you must pay in interest do not exist in your hand at the time the loan is made, otherwise you woudln’t need the loan at all.  To the extent that said funds are expected to be earned over time and thus the loan will be paid back and extinguished, this is a bet on future production, and thus nothing more than pulled-forward economic activity.  While this is a gamble it is one that can be reasonably supported.  For this reason self-liquidating trade credit and other forms of lending against asset values where the loan is paid off on the original terms is supportable.

However, a loan that is not paid off, but is instead rolled over on a continual basis, can only continue to be rolled over over the long term ifgeometric expansion of credit takes place.

Since the rock we live on called “Earth” is of finite size and mass economic expansion cannot continue indefinitely on a geometric basis.  That is a physical impossibility.  Therefore, all such loans are predicated on one of two things — the theft of the currency’s purchasing power by debasement over time or the loss of the collateral to the lender when the loan cannot be rolled and thus defaults.

For this reason all such lending is an act of fraud at its inception.

Now here’s the money shot: What developed economy, including those in the EU (and the US for that matter) consists of a government that actually pays down debt on the original contracted terms?

None.

So now, having been an explicit party to a mathematically-provable Ponzi Scheme, the ECB wants the power to extend said Ponzi Scheme instead of using its regulatory power to stomp on it and demand that it stop, and the Bloomberg editors are arguing for extension of a bogus edifice.

Sorry, but no.

POLL: Sink 47%, Jolly, 37 %, Overby 12% in FL-13 Special Election

SAINT LEO, Fla., Feb. 13, 2014 /PRNewswire/ — Democrat Alex Sink leads Republican David Jolly 46-37 percent ahead of the March 11 special congressional election in the Pinellas, Florida-based 13th congressional district, according to a new poll released today by the Saint Leo University Polling Institute. Libertarian Lucas Overby would get 12 percent of the vote if the election were held today.

“Ms. Sink’s advantage is being driven by solid favorability ratings coupled with issue positions that seem to be more closely aligned with voter preferences than are Jolly’s,” said Frank Orlando, a political science instructor at Saint Leo University.  “She overcomes a partisan ID disadvantage in the district by maintaining much higher favorability among Republicans and Independents than Mr. Jolly does among Democrats.  The fact that a Libertarian candidate has robust support levels in the double digits seems to be contributing to the size of Sink’s lead.”

Democrats are overwhelmingly (88 percent) favoring Sink with only 6 percent favoring Jolly and 4 percent favoring Overby.  However, Republicans are a bit more divided on their candidate.  Only 64 percent of Republicans are backing Jolly.  Sixteen percent of Republicans say they’ll vote for Sink and another 14 percent say they’ll chose the Libertarian candidate.

After a heavy advertising campaign, both Sink and Jolly have become well-known in the district and have similar favorable ratings. Sink has a net favorability ratings of +7 and gross ratings of 51 percent favorable, 44 percent unfavorable. Jolly has a net favorability rating of +3 and gross ratings of 47 percent favorable, 44 percent unfavorable. Sink enjoys an intensity advantage among voters who say they are “very favorable” toward a candidate, with 33 percent holding a “very favorable” opinion of Sink and 21 percent holding a “very favorable” opinion of Jolly.

Libertarian Overby, who has been included in debates and has received more media attention than third party candidates often do, has hard name identification of 58 percent (30 percent favorable, 28 percent unfavorable). His net favorable rating is +2.

Methodology: The Saint Leo University Polling Institute poll of likely voters who live in FL-13 was conducted February 9-11, 2014 using a blended sample reached by Interactive Voice Response and an online panel. The sample size was 400 respondents, yielding a margin of error of +/- 5% with a 95% confidence level. 372 respondents (93% of sample) were reached on randomly dialed landline telephones using an automatic dialer, pre-recorded questions, and touch-tone telephone keypad responses. To ensure that a representative sample of younger voters was included, 28 respondents in this age group were reached using an online panel. To be included in the survey as a “likely voter,” all respondents had to affirm twice that they are 18 or older and then they had to get past three screening questions.

SOURCE: Saint Leo University Polling Institute

EDITORS NOTE: The featured photo is courtesy of the Tampa Bay Times.

ACTION ALERT: America Needs Your Help!

The Constitution of the United States was created to be the bedrock of the nation and to lay out our rights as citizens. As America’s most important document it provided the framework for our government and the means through which the people could keep the government in check. But what happens if the government institutes laws that are inconsistent with the Constitution, such as the passage of the recent Health Care bill, HR 3200?

[youtube]http://youtu.be/PbWrg-PxWYA[/youtube]

ABOUT THE SAVE AMERICA FOUNDATION

The Save America Foundation (SAF), a not for profit organization, is intent on seeing the U.S. Constitution upheld by our elected officials. The foundation informs and educates the public through free online Public Forums and through the SAF Online Education Center.

The Save America Foundation, a 501(c) 4 non-profit organization, has taken on the task of addressing this question by implementing a program of education to better inform the general public not only of their Constitutional rights, but of the means by which they can participate in the process to protect those rights.