Posts Tagged ‘Voters’

Amnesty Bill Encourages Employers To Dump American Workers, Hire Illegals

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Just what we need in this struggling economy…added incentives to hire illegals instead of citizens.

With the bill advancing in the Senate, it’s now up to the House to stop this monstrosity.

Dr. Susan Berry warns:

Under the Gang of 8’s backroom immigration deal with Senators Schumer, Corker and Hoeven, formerly illegal immigrants who are amnestied will be eligible to work, but will not be eligible for ObamaCare. Employers who would be required to pay as much as a $3,000 penalty for most employees who receive an ObamaCare healthcare “exchange” subsidy, would not have to pay the penalty if they hire amnestied immigrants.

Consequently, employers would have a significant incentive to hire or retain amnestied immigrants, rather than current citizens, including those who have recently achieved citizenship via the current naturalization process.

Beginning in January, businesses with 50 or more full-time employees, that do not currently offer healthcare benefits that are considered “acceptable” by the Obama administration, must pay a penalty if at least one of their workers obtains insurance on a new government-run “exchange.” The penalty can be as much as $3,000 per employee.

Many employers have been preparing to cope with the new regulations by slashing the hours of full-timers to part-time status. Since “full-time,” in the language of ObamaCare, is averaging 30 hours per week, employers will, in general, receive the penalty if they have 50 or more employees who are working an average of 30 hours per week.

If the immigration bill becomes law, many employers could receive incentives of hundreds of thousands of dollars to hire amnestied immigrants over American citizens. In addition, these newly legalized immigrants could work “full-time,” an advantage for companies and businesses as well, while employers could lay off or diminish to “part-time” status, American workers.

Read more at Breitbart

Immigration Bill Gives New Legals $3,000 Hiring Edge

Forcing Businesses to Hire Criminals

Mark Levin: Immigration will pass unless we scare the hell out of the Republicans in the House

Conservatives Must Use Immigration Deform Like Obamacare in 2014

Five things you should know about the immigration bill that just got cloture

Senate immigration bill full of bad, so-far-ignored provisions

Ted Cruz Rips “Mad Rush” To Pass Senate Immigration Bill, “Reminiscent Of Obamacare”

Why the $40 Billion Border Security Deal for Amnesty is Worthless

Hollywood Gets Special Breaks in Senate Immigration Bill

Amnesty Bill Could Lock America In One-Party Democrat Rule Permanently

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Supreme Court Strikes Down Parts Of Racist Voting Rights Act

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This is a victory for federalism and election integrity.

Fox News reports:

A landmark Supreme Court ruling that struck down a key part of the Voting Rights Act has set up a stand-off between Republican-led states and the Obama administration over controversial voting laws that until now had been stalled.

The 5-4 ruling on Tuesday addressed a 1960s-era provision that largely singled out states and districts in the South — those with a history of discrimination — and required them to seek federal permission to change their voting laws.

The court ruled that the formula determining which states are affected was unconstitutional.

In doing so, the court potentially opened the door for certain states to proceed with voter ID laws and other efforts that to date had been held up because of the Voting Rights Act. Prominent among those are voter identification laws in Alabama and Mississippi.

Read more at Fox News

Matthew Vadum observes at Front Page Mag:

The Voting Rights Act is what unscrupulous Attorney General Eric Holder used to block states from implementing voter ID laws aimed at combating election fraud. The Left relies on fraud to win closely contested elections.

[...]  The ruling recognizes that widespread systematic voting discrimination is a distant memory. Today black Americans fully participate in the democratic process by voting, running for, and winning elective office at every level of government up to and including the highest office in the land.

But this is bad news for the race industry which thrives on making mountains out of molehills.

Predictably, leftist demagogues and community organizers across the fruited plain are howling now that a key tool they used to frustrate electoral integrity efforts has been taken away.

Read more at Front Page Mag

SCOTUS Resets Voting Rights Act

Voting Rights Act A Loss for Obama Administration, Win for Obama Campaign

Obama “deeply disappointed” with SCOTUS ruling on Voting Rights Act, calls it a “setback”

Democratic lawmaker hits justice as ‘Uncle Thomas’

DNC quickly fundraises off Supreme Court’s Voting Rights Act decision

Exposed: Obama Campaign Targeted Citizen Poll Watchers Trying To Prevent Voter Fraud In Ohio

How Chicago and Obama Globalized Voter Fraud

The left’s ongoing assault on election integrity

Was the 2012 Election Stolen?

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Amnesty Bill Could Lock America In One-Party Democrat Rule Permanently

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Back in April, M. Stanton Evans explained how current American demographics favor the Republicans in the years ahead – if they don’t blow it by caving to amnesty.  Unfortunately, that’s exactly what they’re preparing to do.

Tara Servatius warns at American Thinker:

At the moment, there is just one, singular force holding back the IRS from making an all-out, systematic assault on conservative Americans as a way of life in this country. That force is the Republican-controlled House of Representatives. Were the body not in GOP hands, the IRS targeting of a significant number of citizens for their political beliefs would have already fallen from the headlines. No hearings would be held. No one would be asked to resign. Or if they were, it would only be for show, as the agency continued to target anti-government Americans with Washington’s tacit approval.

Such a one-party system can be arranged, starting this week, as the Senate begins debating the immigration bill. It’s merely a matter of demographics. If amnesty is given to 11 million illegal aliens by Congress, the shift to an America one-party state will accelerate at warp speed.

That’s because the amnesty isn’t really for 11 million people, but for over 30 million. If amnesty for the 11 million illegal aliens currently in the country passes, within a decade, Rosemary Jenks, a lawyer with NumbersUSA tells me, at least 17 million additional people will qualify for permanent legal status, the first step in the pathway to citizenship. They will come as part of the “family unification” process that will allow today’s illegal aliens to bring their family members here. These people would be eligible to enter the country not decades from now, but in the decade after the immigration bill as currently proposed in the Senate passes. Jenks says her estimate of close to 30 million illegals and their families gaining permanent legal status within the coming decade is actually conservative.

[...]  Republicans and conservatives like to kid themselves that the values they hold in common with largely Hispanic illegal aliens of today could somehow make them competitive with this demographic if they mollified them with amnesty, but that won’t work.

What drives Hispanic voters is simple, and it was captured with shocking clarity by a Pew Hispanic Center poll last year.

A mind-blowing 75 percent of Hispanics tell Pew they want bigger government with more services. Contrast that with just 41 percent of the American public that says it wants bigger government with more services. (Some 45 percent of the general American population wants smaller government with fewer services. For Hispanics, it’s 19 percent.)

This Hispanic love affair with big government isn’t a short-term result of the Great Recession. It isn’t a temporary product of the first-generation poverty; immigrants, legal or otherwise, have always struggled through in America. This affection for big government is uniquely cultural for Hispanics, and so strongly embedded that it apparently persists for generations.

Some 81 percent of first-generation Hispanic immigrants tell Pew pollsters they prefer big government. In the second generation, it’s 72 percent. By the third generation, the number is just shy of 60 percent. Contrast that, again, with the mere 41 percent of the general American population that feels the same.

Conservative or Republican candidates have no way to win this class of voter except to offer him an all-powerful government that provides for more of his needs than the one their Democratic opponent is offering. Otherwise, they’ll lose large portions of this vote — for generations. Once former illegal immigrants start voting, an amnesty granted a decade before by a bipartisan majority will be but a distantmemory.

Read more at American Thinker

Ann Coulter says “If The GOP Is This Stupid, It Deserves To Die“:

It must be fun for liberals to manipulate Republicans into focusing on hopeless causes. Why don’t Democrats waste their time trying to win the votes of gun owners?

As journalist Steve Sailer recently pointed out, the Hispanic vote terrifying Republicans isn’t that big. It actually declined in 2012. The Census Bureau finally released the real voter turnout numbers from the last election, and the Hispanic vote came in at only 8.4 percent of the electorate — not the 10 percent claimed by the pro-amnesty crowd.

[...]  In raw numbers, nearly twice as many blacks voted as Hispanics, and nine times as many whites voted as Hispanics. (Ninety-eight million whites, 18 million blacks and 11 million Hispanics.)

So, naturally, the Republican Party’s entire battle plan going forward is to win slightly more votes from 8.4 percent of the electorate by giving them something they don’t want.

As Byron York has shown, even if Mitt Romney had won 70 percent of the Hispanic vote, he still would have lost. No Republican presidential candidate in at least 50 years has won even half of the Hispanic vote.

[...]  The (pro-amnesty) Pew Research Hispanic Center has produced poll after poll showing that Hispanics don’t care about amnesty. In a poll last fall, Hispanic voters said they cared more about education, jobs and health care than immigration. They even care more about the federal budget deficit than immigration! (To put that in perspective, the next item on their list of concerns was “scratchy towels.”)

Also, note that Pew asked about “immigration,” not “amnesty.” Those Hispanics who said they cared about immigration might care about it the way I care about it — by supporting a fence and E-Verify.

Who convinced Republicans that Hispanic wages aren’t low enough and what they really need is an influx of low-wage workers competing for their jobs?

Maybe the greedy businessmen now running the Republican Party should talk with their Hispanic maids sometime. Ask Juanita if she’d like to have seven new immigrants competing with her for the opportunity to clean other people’s houses, so that her wages can be dropped from $20 an hour to $10 an hour.

A wise Latina, A.J. Delgado, recently explained on Mediaite.com why amnesty won’t win Republicans the Hispanic vote — even if they get credit for it. Her very first argument was: “Latinos will resent the added competition for jobs.”

Read more at Human Events

How to lose 2016 in one easy amnesty bill

Bill Maher Admits The Real Reason For Amnesty: Immigration Reform Will “Just Create More Democrats”

‘First Comes the Legalization’: Rubio Contradicts Tough-Talking Immigration Ads

DeMint vs Rubio: The Heritage Foundation goes all in against amnesty

Immigration Reform Could Lock Democrats In Power For Decades

Immigration reform could be election bonanza for Democrats

Republicans Promote Amnesty While Dems Refuse To Secure Border, Recruit Illegal Immigrants Onto Welfare

Homeland Security ‘Welcome’ Materials Recruit New Immigrants Onto Overburdened Welfare Programs

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Exposed: Obama Admin. Targeted Fox News Reporters, Executives, Family Members

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Remember when President Obama publicly demonized Fox News as “destructive” to the nation because they wouldn’t play lapdog like the other networks?  Turns out he was just laying the groundwork to isolate them from public sympathy so his vendetta against them could be justified.

Charles Krauthammer, Tucker Carlson, Kirsten Powers, Bret Baier discuss DOJ targeting Fox reporter and his parents:

View on YouTube

Fox News reports:

Newly uncovered court documents reveal the Justice Department seized records of several Fox News phone lines as part of a leak investigation — even listing a number that, according to one source, matches the home phone number of a reporter’s parents.

The seizure was ordered in addition to a court-approved search warrant for Fox News correspondent James Rosen’s personal emails. In the affidavit seeking that warrant, an FBI agent called Rosen a likely criminal “co-conspirator,” citing a wartime law called the Espionage Act.

Rosen was not charged, but his movements and conversations were tracked. A source close to the leak investigation confirmed to Fox News that the government obtained phone records for several numbers that match Fox News numbers out of the Washington bureau.

Further, the source confirmed to Fox News that one number listed matched the number for Rosen’s parents in Staten Island.

Rosen’s father, attorney Myron Rosen, told FoxNews.com he found the records seizure to be “downright ludicrous.”

“My son and his wife call us all the time, and we talk about grandchildren,” he said. “We don’t talk about nuclear proliferation.”

He continued: “The fact that they had our phone records, it shows how crazy they are, how desperate.”

Read more at Fox News

The revelation has had a chilling effect on reporters’ ability to gather the information and sources they need:

Anchor Greta Van Susteran took to Twitter to express her frustration with the secret monitoring, saying friends and family won’t call or email anymore out a of a fear of being watched.

“Now that the word is out that Obama Admin seizes Fox phone records, my friends won’t call me at work and since the Obama admin also seizes personal cell and email, my friends wont’ call or email,” Van Susteran tweeted.

The news of more Fox News’ monitoring comes weeks after the Associated Press revealed the Justice Department had secretly monitored 20 personal and private phone lines used by AP reporters and editors. In addition, CBS News Investigative Reporter Sharyl Attkisson said yesterday that her work and personal computers had been compromised.

Read more at Townhall

That, of course, was the intended purpose all along:

For awhile, it looked like the White House wanted just to control “the narrative.” But its seizure of AP phone records and surveillance of Fox employees now show its real aim: to control the news.

[...]   The latest news that the Justice Department investigated Fox News reporter James Rosen and two other newsmen in the normal course of their investigative reporting on a national security matter — coming on the heels of their seizure of Associated Press phone records — suggests an administration obsessed with controlling the news itself with a heavy hand reminiscent of totalitarian regimes.

The AP flap has drawn a properly outraged response from the news agency, because the White House’s obsessive efforts to find leaks cast such a broad, indiscriminate net against reporters just doing their jobs.

Read more at IBD

Even the liberal “Daily Beast” wants to know “How Hope and Change Gave Way to Spying on the Press“:

First they came for Fox News, and they did not speak out—because they were not Fox News. Then they came for government whistleblowers, and they did not speak out—because they were not government whistleblowers. Then they came for the maker of a YouTube video, and—okay, we know how this story ends. But how did we get here?

Turns out it’s a fairly swift sojourn from a president pushing to “delegitimize” a news organization to threatening criminal prosecution for journalistic activity by a Fox News reporter, James Rosen, to spying on Associated Press reporters. In between, the Obama administration found time to relentlessly persecute government whistleblowers and publicly harass and condemn a private American citizen for expressing his constitutionally protected speech in the form of an anti-Islam YouTube video.

Where were the media when all this began happening? With a few exceptions, they were acting as quiet enablers.

[...]  It’s instructive to go back to the dawn of Hope and Change. It was 2009, and the new administration decided it was appropriate to use the prestige of the White House to viciously attack a news organization—Fox News—and the journalists who work there. Remember, President Obama had barely been in office and had enjoyed the most laudatory press of any new president in modern history. Yet even one outlet that allowed dissent or criticism of the president was one too many. This should have been a red flag to everyone, regardless of what they thought of Fox News. The math was simple: if the administration would abuse its power to try and intimidate one media outlet, what made anyone think they weren’t next?

Read more at the Daily Beast

DOJ invoked Espionage Act in calling Fox News reporter criminal ‘co-conspirator’

Obama’s War on Fox News Reporters

New York Times: Obama Leak Investigations Against Reporters ‘Chilling,’ Threatening

Even New Yorker Sides With Fox on DOJ Attack on James Rosen

EXPOSED: Obama Justice Dept. Secretly Obtained Reporters’ Phone Records

Explosive: DOJ Illegally Accessed Phone Records From Congress Cloak Room

Attorney General Eric Holder Investigated For Lying to Congress Under Oath About Targeting Reporters

Holder Personally Authorized Fox News Surveillance

Exposed: White House Threatens Reporters Who Dare To Challenge Him

White House Tries To Ban Fox News From Press Pool

White House notches up war on ‘unfavorable press’

Obama Attacks Fox News, Limbaugh For Holding Republicans Accountable When They Cave To Leftist Agenda

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IRS Targeted Billy Graham, James Dobson, Christian and Pro-Life Groups

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If you’re opposed to the idolatrous cult of the Messianic Nanny State, beware…the Obama administration has you in their cross-hairs.

John Boyle writes at The Citizen-Times:

In a blistering letter to President Barack Obama, the Rev. Franklin Graham said the IRS targeted the two non-profits he heads with an audit last year after the organizations took out ads urging people to support biblical principles on marriage and in choosing political candidates.

In the letter, dated Tuesday, Graham said in light of recent revelations that the Internal Revenue Service targeted conservative groups with “tea party” or “patriot” in their names, he does not believe the audit was “a coincidence — or justifiable.” Graham, son of famed Christian evangelist the Rev. Billy Graham, now heads the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association based in Charlotte, N.C., and Samaritan’s Purse, a worldwide relief organization headquartered in Boone.

“I am bringing this to your attention because I believe that someone in the administration was targeting and attempting to intimidate us,” Graham concluded in the letter. “This is morally wrong and unethical — indeed some would call it ‘un-American.’”

Read more at The Citizen-Times

Steven Ertelt writes at Life News:

James Dobson, the pro-life family advocate disclosed today that he was a victim of IRS discrimination, in a revelation that adds to the growing Internal Revenue Scandal.

Dobson, the founder of Focus on the Family, says he faced discrimination from the federal agency when trying to start a new group.

Family Talk Action Corporation is a Christian ministry that was formed for the purpose of spreading the Gospel of Jesus Christ; of providing Christ-oriented advice and education to parents and children; and of speaking to cultural issues that affect the family. Dobson is the president and CEO.

On September 2, 2011, Family Talk Action filed a Form 1024 with the Internal Revenue Service requesting § 501(c)(4) status. The attorney completing this form had submitted scores of similar applications over his 26 year career with none being rejected.

In January and February 2013, Family Talk Action’s counsel called the IRS reviewing agent, R. Medley (ID no. 52402), to inquire regarding when there would be a determination of the application. Her voice mail box was full on each of these calls so no message could be left. On March 6, he called Ms. Medley again and got routed to her voice mail again. This time, he was able to leave a voice mail message and requested a return call.

Medley did not call back until March 19. Family Talk Action’s attorney asked her when the IRS would issue its determination letter. Ms. Medley responded saying, I don’t think your Form 1024 (application for exemption) will be granted because Family Talk Action is “not educational” because it does not present all views. She continued, saying that Family Talk Action sounded like a “partisan right-wing group” because, according to Ms. Medley, it only presents conservative viewpoints.

She then added, “you’re political” because you “criticized President Obama, who was a candidate.”

Read more at Life News

Dobson and Graham weren’t the only targets during the 2012 campaign:

The Biblical Recorder, the official news journal for North Carolina Southern Baptists, found itself in the same situation in March – audited for the first time since the Baptist newspaper was founded in 1833.

The newspaper garnered national attention last summer after Editor Allan Blume published an interview with Chick-Fil-A president Dan Cathy. In reference to his support of the traditional family, Cathy said he was “guilty as charged.”

The Biblical Recorder also published the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association’s ads affirming traditional marriage.

And then – came the telephone call from the Internal Revenue Service.

“It raised some red flags and made me wonder why we were being targeted for an audit when we have been around since 1833 and have never been audited before,” Blume told Fox News. “Putting it all together made me wonder.”

Blume said the timing may have been coincidental – but “it didn’t seem that way.”

“There seems to be a very anti-Christian bias that has flowed into a lot of government agencies – oppression literally against Christian organizations and groups,” he said. “It makes you wonder what’s going on.

Blume said the newspaper was eventually cleared, but the audit consumed time and money.

“It was a lot of time and energy that we didn’t have,” he said. “It took some of our staff literally several weeks of doing nothing but that (the audit),” he said.

Read more at Red State

It’s also come to light that the IRS was targeting pro-Israel groups and pro-life groups:

IRS officials refused to grant tax exempt status to two pro-life organizations because of their position on the abortion issue, according to a non-profit law firm, which said that one group was pressured not to protest a pro-choice organization that endorsed President Obama during the last election.

“In one case, the IRS withheld approval of an application for tax exempt status for Coalition for Life of Iowa. In a phone call to Coalition for Life of Iowa leaders on June 6, 2009, the IRS agent ‘Ms. Richards’ told the group to send a letter to the IRS with the entire board’s signatures stating that, under perjury of the law, they do not picket/protest or organize groups to picket or protest outside of Planned Parenthood,” the Thomas More Society announced today. “Once the IRS received this letter, their application would be approved.”

Planned Parenthood endorsed Obama in 2008 and 2012.

The IRS also pressured another pro-life group about its religious activities. “The IRS withheld approval of an application for charitable tax-exempt recognition of Christian Voices for Life, questioning the group’s involvement with ’40 Days for Life’ and ‘Life Chain’ events,” according to the law firm. “The Fort Bend County, Texas, organization was subjected to repeated and lengthy unconstitutional requests for information about the viewpoint and content of its educational communications, volunteer prayer vigils, and other protected activities.”

Read more at the Washington Examiner

With this much coordination against his “enemies,” there’s NO WAY Obama didn’t know about it.

“Very Frightening”: Prominent Catholic Professor Claims IRS Audited Her After Speaking Out Against Obama And Demanded To Know Who Was Paying Her

Why Would the IRS Target Billy Graham?

Surprise!  Director of IRS Tax-Exempt Determinations Office Is Obama Donor

IRS Admits To Targeting Conservative Groups For Harassment

IRS Tried to Swing 2012 Election Towards Obama

Why is the IRS Regulating Speech In The First Place?

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IRS Tried to Swing 2012 Election Towards Obama

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At this point, I’m not the least bit surprised.

The Investors Business Daily editorial board observes:

[A]s details of the IRS scandal emerge, it’s increasingly giving the appearance of a wide-scale effort to tilt the playing field against conservative activist groups who might have been helpful to Republican candidates in the 2012 election, while at the same time coddling liberal groups helpful to Obama.

Consider what we now know the IRS did:

• Gave preferential treatment to liberal groups. On Tuesday, USA Today reported that while the IRS was hounding conservative groups and holding up their applications for tax-exempt status, it was quickly ushering liberal groups with names like “Progress Florida” and “Missourians Organizing for Reform” through the process.

USA Today found that in the 27 months after Feb. 2010, the IRS did not approve a single Tea Party application. Over those same months, however, dozens of applications submitted by liberal groups that were engaged in the same type of activities and were seeking the same tax status as the conservative ones sailed through the agency.

[...]   • Made unusual document requests. Not only did the IRS target conservative groups for extra scrutiny, it also asked for massive amounts of information that it couldn’t possibly need to determine tax-exempt status.

[...]   • Engaged in selective leaks. This week, ProPublica, a liberal-leaning nonprofit journalism organization, revealed that the IRS had leaked it nearly a dozen pending applications, including one submitted by Karl Rove’s Crossroads GPS.

Read more at IBD

Tea Party groups reported waiting up to 3 years to get approval for their tax-exempt status, while liberal groups were approved in a matter of weeks.   One Tea Party group claims that, after waiting for over a year with no response, they changed their name to one that sounded more “liberal” and were approved in 3 weeks.

Another Tea Party group in Ohio said that the IRS effectively shut down their efforts in the 2012 election:

Tom Zawistowski, executive director of the Portage County Tea Party, said donors stopped contributing to causes and candidates because of the confusion and fear that the IRS created.

“They succeeded in preventing us from doing what we were trying to do in 2012,” Zawistowski said. “Groups literally stopped fundraising in the summer of last year.”

The IRS is under investigation for the excessive scrutiny it gave conservative groups that applied for tax-exempt status, a practice that elicited complaints from the Portage County Tea Party and other groups during the 2012 presidential election campaign.

Read more at Newsmax

In addition, the IRS audited and intimidated large donors to Romney’s campaign, such as businessman Frank VanderSloot.  He says that he wasn’t the only one:

Billionaire businessman Frank VanderSloot, a major Mitt Romney super PAC donor who was subjected to three federal agency audits after being slimed by the Obama campaign, says he isn’t the only one of his peers who was audited after donating to Romney.

VanderSloot, who was also national co-chair of the Romney campaign’s finance committee, was described in an April 2012 Obama campaign Web posting as one of eight “wealthy individuals with less-than-reputable records.”

Shortly after the post appeared, VanderSloot was subjected to two Internal Revenue Service audits — one focusing on his personal finances, the other related to his business interests — and a Labor Department audit of one of his businesses. When asked about whether any of the other seven donors who appeared on the list were audited as well, VanderSloot spoke cautiously, but did say he “wasn’t the only one.”

“I talked to only a handful of them since,” VanderSloot said. ”I’ve reached out to all of them. But only got calls back from a handful and most of the responses were they’re just laying low, you know, they took their own beatings and they don’t want any more of it and they don’t want to even talk about this.”

Read more at the Daily Caller

We also know that the IRS leaked confidential documents which were used by Obama’s re-election campaign to attack Mitt Romney.

Conclusion: the IRS was turned into the mafia intimidation arm of the Obama campaign.

Are we finally ready to abolish a corrupt agency who’s powers can be so easily weaponized against innocent citizens?

Documents: IRS letters harassing conservative groups came from Washington, DC headquarters and from California offices, despite Inspector General’s focus on Cincinnati employees

IRS Admits To Targeting Conservative Groups For Harassment

Mark Levin: The Democrats are up to their eyeballs in this IRS scandal; their fingerprints are all over it

IRS Employees Donated Over Twice as Much to Obama in 2012

Romney Donor On Obama’s ‘Enemies List’ Now Harrassed By IRS, Labor Dept.

Obama’s Enemies List: Targeting Private Citizens Who Support His Opponents

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Conflict of Interest? Major Media Players Have Close Relatives Working For Obama Administration

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It’s all in the family.

James Simpson reports at the Examiner:

1973: reporters investigate All the President’s Men. 2013: reporters are All the President’s Men.

You knew the mainstream media was biased, but this is incredible. It was revealed todaythat CBS News President David Rhodes’ brother is Obama Deputy National Security Advisor Ben Rhodes, who was instrumental in rewriting the Benghazi talking points. But it gets worse. It is now learned that ABC President Ben Sherwood’s sister, Dr. Elizabeth Sherwood-Randall, is a Special Assistant to Barack Obama on national security affairs. But even this isn’t it! CNN’s deputy bureau chief, Virginia Moseley, is the wife of Tom Nides, who until February was Hillary Clinton’s deputy.

Read more at the Examiner

It doesn’t stop there, either.  White House Press Secretary Jay Carney is married to Claire Shipman, who works for ABC News.

Could it be that Obama appointed relatives of the press to his administration in order to make the media more reluctant to damage it with accurate reporting?

Could it be that the lack of reporting on Benghazi and other scandals – especially prior to the election – had something to do with this?

Presidents of ABC and CBS News Have Siblings Working at White House With Ties to Benghazi

Top Obama official’s brother is president of CBS News, may drop reporter over Benghazi coverage

Exposed: Media Matters Collaborated With Obama White House and News Organizations, Made Enemies List Of ‘Preliminary Targets’

Exposed: White House Threatens Reporters Who Dare To Challenge Him

Media: Actually, This White House Threatens Us All The Time

White House notches up war on ‘unfavorable press’

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Immigration Reform Could Lock Democrats In Power For Decades

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Last month, M. Stanton Evans pointed out that America’s demographics currently favor the Republicans in future elections:

As shown by demographer Eric Kaufman of the University of London, religious couples across all cultures are for obvious reasons (including but not limited to abortion) having more children per family than are the secular-irreligious, whose birthrates are below replacement — which means a declining population.

“After 2020,” says Kaufman, the devoutly religious of all faiths “will begin to tip the culture wars to the conservative side.”

The liberal-counterculture Democrats will of course continue fighting this war in the schools and through the media, but have only one major demographic weapon to counter the fertility gap that is working relentlessly against them.

That weapon is illegal immigration. As the population trends move steadily conservative, the liberals must bring into the country and enfranchise new voters who will reliably cast Democratic ballots.

That, and that alone, is the real issue in the battle over immigration and why the Democrats are so bent on gaining amnesty for illegals. All the rest is window dressing.

Read more at IBD

No wonder they’re pushing so hard for amnesty.   The question is, why are Republicans so stupidly eager to help them?

Immigration reform could be election bonanza for Democrats

Republicans Promote Amnesty While Dems Refuse To Secure Border, Recruit Illegal Immigrants Onto Welfare

Homeland Security ‘Welcome’ Materials Recruit New Immigrants Onto Overburdened Welfare Programs

Case Worker: Illegal Aliens Got Food Stamps by the “Vanload”

Report: Illegals Get $4B a Year in Cash Refunds From IRS

A Problem-solving Approach to Immigration

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Obamcare Funding Used To Pay Corrupt ‘ACORN’ Community Organizers

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The application for Obamacare includes registration to vote. Guess which party they’ll be pressuring people to register with?

Mike Flynn reports at Breitbart:

ObamaCare provides millions of dollars in grants to hire community activists and others as “navigators” to assist individuals enroll in health insurance provided by state or federal exchanges and, according to recent reports, register people to vote. In a new rule proposed Wednesday, HHS lays out numerous guidelines for these “navigators”, including paying them up to $48/hour for their work. The rule, guidelines and voter registration effort are a potential vehicle to resurrect ACORN or an ACORN-like entity.

[...]  Requirements for “navigators” is that they have no existing insurance licenses or certifications, conflicting with several recently enacted state laws. They also must be attuned to racial, ethnic and cultural sensitivities, understand “underserved communities” and provide translation services for virtually every language. AARP, NAACP and SEIU are prominent members of Enroll America’s advisory board.

One health expert with close ties to HHS told Breitbart News, ”The navigator program, as evidenced by the leadership of Enroll America and yesterday’s rule from CMS, will be a jobs program for unemployable Obama For America campaign volunteers and ACORN remnants.”

[...]  October 1st is the first day individuals can enroll for a program through the exchanges. The government, as a result, will have to hire and train tens of thousands of workers on the complex subject of health insurance over the next few months. Think of it as an enormous census program with less training for a more complex subject.

Read more at Breitbart

Paul Bedard remarks at the Washington Examiner:

The rules allow navigators to come from the ranks of unions, health providers and community action groups such as ACORN and Planned Parenthood. They are required to provide unbiased advice.

Yeah, right.  Good luck enforcing that!

Suprise! Obamacare Application Doubles As Voter Registration, Sets Stage For Intimidation

Obama Admin To Pay Union Workers, Community Activists $48 An Hour To Work As Obamacare “Navigators”

Justice Department Partners With ACORN’s ‘Project Vote’ For Voter Registration Drives

Flashback: Obama Shakes Down Banks For $1 Billion To Pay For ‘Community Organizers’ For 2012 Campaign

CNN Exposes How ACORN Steals Votes For Democrats

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Suprise! Obamacare Application Doubles As Voter Registration, Sets Stage For Intimidation

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In Oregon, there’s a big push to automatically register people to vote when they apply for drivers’ licenses.   Not coincidentally, there’s also a push to issue drivers’ licenses to illegal aliens.   Oregon is typically a test case for liberal policies that the Left wants to implement nationwide.

Earlier this month, Obama issued an executive order to create a presidential commission “to address issues including long lines at the polls, voter registration and voter access.”   Translation: to make sure they register everyone under the sun whether eligible or not, and never check ID to make sure they’re legit.

Paul Bedard reports at the Washington Examiner:

The 61-page online Obamacare draft application for health care includes asking if the applicant wants to register to vote, raising the specter that pro-Obama groups being tapped to help Americans sign up for the program will also steer them to register with the Democratic Party.

On page 59, after numerous questions about the applicant’s identity and qualification for Obamacare, comes the question: “Would you like to register to vote?” The placement of the question could lead some to believe they have to register to vote to get health care.

[...]  In a letter to Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius Monday, Rep. Charles Boustany Jr., chairman of the House Ways and Means Oversight subcommittee, said HHS is overstepping its bounds by a mile.

[...]  Boustany, a Louisiana Republican, said the application raises two alarming issues: What does HHS plan to do with all the information it collects on each applicant, and will pro-Obama groups like AARP and Families USA — which might be tapped as “navigators” to sign people up to Obamacare — steer them to register as Democrats. Others have indicated that groups like Planned Parenthood and ACORN could also act as navigators.

Read more at the Washington Examiner

Remember – illegal aliens are not ineligible for Obamacare, so they can easily register using this application, and their legal status will likely never be checked.

Brandon Darby warns at Breitbart:

“This is classic community organizing on steroids — with the taxpayer footing much of the bill,” ACORN whistleblower Anita MonCrief told Breitbart News. MonCrief further stated:

ACORN solidified its power in whatever community it was in by helping people with government assistance applications and voter registration. After we processed your public assistance application, we knew where you belonged to each government program. When it came time to fill a bus to the polls, the same person that helped you get food stamps or tax advice could show up and press you to go vote.  Simply put, your local SEIU chapter or spin-off organization of ACORN will receive government funds and private donations to transition as many people into the Obamacare exchanges as possible – all while keeping tabs of your voter registration data to later run get-out-the-vote efforts. In California alone, the cost of navigators is expected to be in the ‘hundreds of millions of dollars.’

True the Vote and its Latino initative, Voto Honesto, expressed unease with the new arrangement Obamacare navigators will bring, citing the risk of increased voter intimidation in future elections.

“Voter intimidation can take many forms, all of which are felonies,” Engelbrecht said. “This navigator system brings with it the unabated risk that community organizers will attach strings between the public benefit and the recipient’s vote – especially in the minds of the most economically vulnerable among us.”

The election watchdog said it would be expanding efforts in emergent communities to expose such coercive activity in election cycles to come.

“We base our concerns over reports already received from the 2012 Election,” Engelbrecht said. “Our Voto Honesto initiative met a startling number of naturalized Americans in south Texas and Arizona who said their newly-minted citizenship was threatened if they did not vote correctly. The same people who helped register them to vote at the naturalization ceremony later showed up at their doorstep as part of a GOTV effort, pushing them to the polls. That’s unacceptable.”

Read more at Breitbart

The White House is mocking the idea that anything untoward is going on here.  Of course.  Mockery is a weapon for trying to disarm your opponents and put them on the defensive.

Help Fight Voter Fraud With ‘True The Vote’

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How The ‘Motor Voter Law’ Has Opened The Door To Rampant Voter Fraud

Mandatory Voting: Is This The Obama Administration’s Goal?

Why The GOP Won’t Fight Voter Fraud: Party Is Legally Barred From Doing So

Was the 2012 Election Stolen?

Ex-Dem Congressman: Voter Fraud Is Commonplace, Voter ID Is The Cure

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How The Left Uses Alarm And Hysteria To Win Policy Battles

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Did you watch the news tonight?   According to the Obamamedia, the sequester has “forced” the FAA to close 149 air traffic towers.

Of course, there’s apparently still enough money to give $200 million to Jordan, to send Vice President Biden to Paris at a cost of $585,000 a night, and to pay federal benefits to descendants of Civil War veterans long dead.

Just not to pay for pilot and passenger safety in the skies.  Or training our armed forces.

Julie Gunlock explains the deceitful agenda behind these twisted priorities:

The president told Americans to gird for a disaster. Sequestration would result in unspeakable suffering. The elderly would starve; kids would miss vaccinations; teachers would be laid off; airplanes would crash mid-air due to a dearth of air traffic controllers. And don’t bother calling for help—no one’s coming thanks to massive layoffs of police and firefighters.

Fast forward to today. America is still standing. The public is still waiting for the wave to hit. Now President Obama has launched a charm offensive toward the Republicans who called his alarmist bluff.

Sadly, such alarmism isn’t limited to budget debates and sequestration cuts. Today, alarmism permeates nearly every nook and cranny of our culture. Americans are told to be on high alert about everything from their common household cleaners, toys, plastic bottles and canned food, to their child’s favorite pair of sandals, garden hoses, school supplies and playground equipment.

Women—particularly mothers—are the prime target for such messaging. For mothers, there’s nothing more distressing than the idea that something might harm her child. In today’s information age, mothers face a daily avalanche of information—much of it meant to terrify.

[...]   Alarmism also presents vast opportunities for politicians. If you tell a mother that a product might harm her child, she’s far more likely to utter those magic words — the words every alarmist yearns to hear — “something must be done!” Enter the helpful, eager and desperately concerned politician who will suggest regulations, bans and taxes to address the so-called problem.

Read more at the Washington Times

In this case, the alarmist is meant to convince Americans that any kind of spending cut will create so much pain and danger that they must no longer demand cuts – and allow our spendaholic politicians to continue digging us into deeper debt to the tune of over $48,000 PER SECOND.

State and feds prefer scare tactics over real cuts

Obama Sequester Priorities: No Money For White House Tours, But First Family Vacations Are A Go!

Exposed: Obama Admin. Seeks to Maximize Sequestration Pain On American Citizens For Political Gain

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Obama blames his guards for closing White House tours

Ex-Secret Service Agent: Obama ‘Absolutely Not Telling the Truth’ on White House Tours

Obama’s ‘Republican Sequester’ 2014 Endgame:  Republicans Are Throwing the Game!

Dozens of White House senior staffers making six-figure salaries amid sequester woes

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Republican Establishment Blames Social Conservatives, Tea Party For GOP Being Viewed As ‘Out Of Touch’

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Hmmm…could it be that the reason people think the GOP is ‘out of touch’ is that they keep ignoring the American people’s concerns about massive debt, out-of-control spending, the erosion of constitutional liberties, and massive power-grabs like Obamacare?

Karl Rove has founded an organization for the specific purpose of bulldozing Tea Party candidates and replacing them with those hand-picked by the GOP establishment.

House Speaker Boehner has caved on Obamacare, illegal immigration, and a host of other issues, and even says that “trusts Obama completely.”  WTH???

And he’s not the only one.  Eric Cantor, Kevin McCarthy, Paul Ryan and Mitch McConnell have all waved the white flag on Obamacare.

The conservative base has been betrayed again and again by their own party.  But who does the party blame for their losses?  Their base!

David Limbaugh observes at the Patriot Post:

I believe that the disappointing results for Republicans in the 2006 elections and probably the 2012 elections, as well, were in no small part attributable to frustrated conservatives staying at home.

The thinking among many conservatives has been that the party has consistently fallen short by failing to restrain the growth of the ever-expanding federal government and by failing to nominate sufficiently conservative presidential nominees. That is, if we would just nominate and elect Reagan conservatives and govern on Reagan principles, we would recapture majority status in no time.

The main opposing view — call it the establishment view — holds that Republicans need to accept that the reign of small government is over, get with the program and devise policies to make the irreversibly enormous government smarter and more energetic. In other words, Republicans need to surrender to the notion that liberalism’s concept of government has won and rejigger their agenda toward taming the leviathan rather than shrinking it.

I’d feel better if the ongoing competition between Reagan conservatives and establishment Republicans were the only big fissure in the GOP right now, but there are other cracks that threaten to break wide open, too. Our problems transcend our differing approaches to the size and scope of government and to fiscal and other economic issues.

Reagan conservatism is no longer under attack from just establishment Republicans; it’s also under attack from many inside the conservative movement itself. Reagan conservatism is a three-legged stool of fiscal, foreign policy and social issues conservatism. But today many libertarian-oriented conservatives are singing from the liberal libertine hymnal that the GOP needs to remake its image as more inclusive, more tolerant, less judgmental and less strident. In other words, it needs to lighten up and quit opposing gay marriage, at least soften its position on abortion, and get on board the amnesty train to legalize illegal immigrants. I won’t even get into troubling foreign policy divisions among so-called neocons, so-called isolationists and those who simply believe we should conduct our foreign policy based foremost on promoting our strategic national interests.

[...]  I belong to the school that believes the Republican Party must remain the party of mainstream Reagan conservatism rather than try to become a diluted version of the Democratic Party. This does not mean Republicans can’t come up with creative policy solutions when advisable, but it does mean that conservatism is based on timeless principles that require no major revisions. Conservatives are champions of freedom, the rule of law and enforcement of the social compact between government and the people enshrined in the Constitution, which imposes limitations on government in order to maximize our liberties. If we reject these ideas, then we have turned our backs on what America means and what has made America unique. What’s the point of winning elections if the price is American exceptionalism?

Read more at the Patriot Post

Rush Limbaugh is calling the Republicans to task for their “blame the conservative base” mentality:

The Republican National Committee released earlier on Monday an “autopsy” of its 2012 election failures and pinned the blame on the party being out of touch with voters, particularly minorities.

Limbaugh said the opposite was true. “We are in touch with the founding of this country. We are in touch with the greatness in this country and its people,” the popular radio commentator said, according to Politico.

Limbaugh said that if the party moves away from championing values, such as traditional marriage, it will lose support among its base.

“If the party makes that [gay marriage] something official that they support, they’re not going to pull the homosexual activist voters away from the Democrat Party, but they are going to cause their base to stay home and throw their hands up in utter frustration,” Limbaugh said.

Limbaugh said it was party leaders who were out of touch with its own base.

Read more at Newsmax

Jonathon Moseley writes that the problem isn’t conservative values, but a failure to effectively market them to a new generation:

The Republican Party is violating time-tested, basic principles of sales and marketing. That’s why the GOP is failing to communicate its messages. On Monday, the Republican National Committee released a massive reform strategy, whimsically labeled an “autopsy” or “reboot,” to completely overhaul the GOP. Like Democrats in 1992, Republicans are growing hungry to win in 2014 and 2016.

Here is what is wrong with the Republican Party. This author taught in a sales training seminar firm in Eastern Europe, International Trendsetters. The solutions are overwhelmingly time-tested and proven in real life. This is not theory. Republicans are chronically making classic rookie sales mistakes.

“FAB” — Features, Advantages, Benefits. You must explain how a policy benefits the voter. Bad salesmen talk about features – the radio has a better tuner. Good salesmen talk about how the radio benefits the customer – you will enjoy the music more and set a better mood for your love interest because it sounds better and clearer. People don’t buy a mattress. They buy a good night’s sleep. And maybe good décor.

On Monday, RNC Chairman Reince Priebus explained that we must talk about how Americans benefit from low taxes and lower national debt. We have to talk about how Republican policies will put more people to work, at higher salaries, improve our economy, and strengthen our country. Republicans talk about details — lower taxes, lower regulations, lower deficits. We fail to explain why those details actually matter to the voter.

But isn’t it obvious? No. Classic rookie mistake. It’s obvious to you if you spend lots of time thinking about these things. It’s not obvious to busy people who have other things to think about, which they feel are more important in their lives. Yes, you have to draw them a map.

There is an imbalance between the speaker who is extremely familiar with a topic and the listener who isn’t. The speaker needs to understand how the speaker really sounds to the listener. Republicans skip over too many steps and assume too much. The American voters are smart. But they haven’t spent as much time thinking about your topic as you have. We have to be able to empathize with the busy listener and even remember how we were when we first learned about these issues.

It is amazing that the GOP has been so bad at this, when Ronald Reagan was so good at it. If anyone is thinking of running for office, Step #1 is to listen to every speech Ronald Reagan ever gave. Several times. Reagan “got” it. Then the GOP lost it.

Next, the mind abhors a vacuum. What you don’t say can and will be used against you in the court of public opinion. People have never stopped talking about cuts in education, even while education spending soars year after year. People will assume you want to help the rich by lowering taxes. They will assume you hate immigrants. They will assume you want women barefoot and pregnant. If you don’t explain how GOP policies benefit the listener, their minds will fill in the vacuum with other explanations. If you don’t provide a reason, their minds will provide one for you.

Third, love objections. This is one of the most powerful principles good salesmen know. We view objections with dread. A voter tells you why they don’t like the GOP. Time-tested sales techniques have proven that objections are opportunities. When a prospect tells you what he is concerned about, you now have the opportunity to address his or her concerns.

This is especially true when a voter believes something that isn’t true about Republicans — if they are willing to talk to you, that is. Proven sales experience shows that when someone is willing to tell you their negative views, and talk to you about it, you have an open door to dramatically turn around their perceptions.

Of course you have to treat them as a future friend, not as a current enemy. But the overwhelming majority of successful sales are closed after the third or fourth objection. That’s right, most sales succeed after not just the first negative response, but after several negative issues are raised and discussed. But you have to care about the other person as much as you care about yourself to answer their concerns fully, fairly, and respectfully.

Fourth, “ask for the order” as RNC Chairman Reince Priebus described on Monday. In other words, you have to show up. You are not going to win over any hearts or minds sitting in your office across the street from the Capitol South Metro station (the RNC headquarters). It is common sense that you have to go out and talk to Hispanics, Blacks, and other groups.

The GOP’s “outreach” efforts have often been embarrassing. Republican campaigns appoint leaders of, say, “Korean-Americans for Bush,” then order bumper stickers and campaign pins. And that’s about it. Pretending to be doing outreach, but not really, is a Republican specialty.

Read more at American Thinker

Republican Establishment Misdiagnoses Party’s Ills

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Karl Rove, Establishment GOP Declares War On Tea Party

Mark Levin: Conservatives Must Take Over GOP, Tea Party Only Thing That Stands Between Liberty And Tyranny

GOP Doomed if Establishment Prevails

Boehner Declares War On Tea Party, Purges Fiscal Conservatives From House Committees

Is This The Beginning Of A Republican Party Split?

100 Leading Republicans Join Obama In Petitioning Supreme Court To Support Gay Marriage

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Social conservatives have statistics on their side

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Fiscal And Social Issues Are Inexorably Linked

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Unintended Consequences of Capitulating on Social Issues

Why Libertarians Should Support Social Conservatives

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Obama Admin, VA Declaring Veterans ‘Incompetent’ To Own A Gun

Veteran Stands Up For 2nd Amendment At Chicago Anti-Gun Forum

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What a slap in the face to our brave men and women who fought to defend our freedoms, including the 2nd Amendment!

Constitutional Attorney Michael Connelly, J.D. warns:

How would you feel if you received a letter from the U.S. Government informing you that because of a physical or mental condition that the government says you have it is proposing to rule that you are incompetent to handle your own financial affairs? Suppose that letter also stated that the government is going to appoint a stranger to handle your affairs for you at your expense? That would certainly be scary enough but it gets worse.

What if that letter also stated: “A determination of incompetency will prohibit you from purchasing, possessing, receiving, or transporting a firearm or ammunition. If you knowingly violate any of these prohibitions, you may be fined, imprisoned, or both pursuant to the Brady Handgun Violence Prevention Act, Pub.L.No. 103-159, as implemented at 18, United States Code 924(a)(2).”?

That makes is sound like something right from a documentary on a tyrannical dictatorship somewhere in the world. Yet, as I write this I have a copy of such a letter right in front of me. It is being sent by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs to hundreds, perhaps thousands, of America’s heroes. In my capacity as Executive Director of the United States Justice Foundation (USJF) I have been contacted by some of these veterans and the stories I am getting are appalling.

The letter provides no specifics on the reasons for the proposed finding of incompetency; just that is based on a determination by someone in the VA. In every state in the United States no one can be declared incompetent to administer their own affairs without due process of law and that usually requires a judicial hearing with evidence being offered to prove to a judge that the person is indeed incompetent. This is a requirement of the Fifth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution that states that no person shall “… be deprived of life, liberty, or property without due process of law…”.

Obviously, the Department of Veterans Affairs can’t be bothered by such impediments as the Constitution, particularly since they are clearly pushing to fulfill one of Obama’s main goals, the disarming of the American people. Janet Napolitano has already warned law enforcement that some of the most dangerous among us are America’s heroes, our veterans, and now according to this letter from the VA they can be prohibited from buying or even possessing a firearm because of a physical or mental disability.

Read more at Red Flag

In another article, he further warns:

Veterans are being declared incompetent not because they have a serious mental illness that makes them a danger to themselves or others, but because they have a physical disability resulting from their service in the armed forces or because they simply let their spouses pay the family bills.

If veterans have minor issues with PTSD, have expressed that they are depressed sometimes, or even in the case of Vietnam veterans admit that they are getting older and sometimes forget to pay their bills on time, the bureaucrats at the VA will seek to declare them incompetent. (I am a 65 year old veteran and often forget where I put my car keys, does that make me incompetent to handle my own financial affairs and even worse mean that I can’t own a firearm?) According to the VA it apparently does.

All of this has resulted in America’s heroes being declared incompetent by a process that blatantly violates their rights to due process under the Fifth Amendment to the Constitution. Then, for reasons that have not been explained these same veterans are also being denied their Second Amendment right to keep and bear arms.

Many of the veterans I have heard from were initially both scared because of what was happening to them, and hurt because it is their own government that is causing this fear. After all, when they joined the military they signed a blank check to their country to defend it and its Constitution even if it cost them their lives. Yet, now their own government is turning on them and taking from them the very Constitutional rights they fought to preserve.

However, now something else is happening; the fear and betrayal that these veterans felt is turning to anger. Their training and instincts as warriors is coming forth and they are once again prepared to fight for their rights and the rights of other Americans. I think that the Obama administration has picked a fight with the wrong dog. Veterans are fighting back.

Read more at Red Flag

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Crisis In Cyprus: Europeans Run On ATM’s, Trying To Stop Government From Stealing Their Money

Photo: AP

European bank customers just woke up to discover that the government is stealing money directly out of their accounts.  Think it can’t happen here?  Think again.

Erica Ritz writes at The Blaze:

People with bank accounts in Cyprus were shocked Saturday to learn that as part of an agreement reached with international creditors, the government has imposed a tax on all deposits to help bail out the nation and its banks.

While the island nation may be small, it’s an international favorite for offshore banking– particularly for wealthy Russians.  The tax will range from 6.75% to 9.9%, depending on how much is in the account.

“This is a clear-cut robbery,” Andreas Moyseos, a former electrician who is now a pensioner in Nicosia, told the New York Times. Iliana Andreadakis, a book critic, further added: “This issue doesn’t only affect the people’s deposits, but also the prospect of the Cyprus economy. The E.U. has diminished its credibility.”

And indeed, following the massive run on banks in Cyprus, many are concerned that a minor panic could spread to the rest of the Eurozone.  After all, it has just set a precedent for taxing private bank accounts at exorbitant rates without warning.

Read more at The Blaze

Why the sudden tax?  Because Cyprus is on the verge of bankruptcy, and this is the condition Germany imposed in exchange for bailing them out:

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The banks are closed until Tuesday, to prevent depositors from accessing their money.  ATM’s have quickly run out of cash as desperate citizens line up to withdraw their money before it is confiscated:


View on YouTube

This is setting up the possibility of a widespread run on European banks:

In a move that could set off new fears of contagion across the eurozone, anxious depositors drained cash from ATMs in Cyprus on Saturday, hours after European officials in Brussels required that part of a new €10 billion ($12.6 billion) bailout must be paid for directly from the bank accounts of savers.

The move – a first in the three-year-old European financial crisis – raised questions over whether bank runs could be set off elsewhere.

Jeroen Dijsselbloem, president of the group of euro-area ministers, on Saturday declined to rule out taxes on depositors in countries beyond Cyprus, although he said such a measure was not currently being considered. Although banks placed withdrawal limits of €400 on ATMs, most of them had run out of cash by early evening. People around the country reacted with disbelief and anger.

Read more at The Age

Felix Salmon remarks at Reuters:

Someone with €8,000 of life savings in the bank can ill afford to lose an arbitrary €540, but that’s exactly what is going to happen. The Cypriot parliament is probably not going to revolt this weekend, but any politician who votes for this bill is going to have a very, very hard time getting re-elected. This decision is important not only because of the precedent it sets with regard to bank depositors, but also because of the way in which it points up just how powerless all the Mediterranean countries (plus Ireland) have become. More than ever before, it’s Germany’s Europe. That’s bad for Cyprus — and it’s not even particularly good for Germany.

Read more at Reuters

Saxo Bank CEO says, “This Is Full-Blown Socialism And I Still Can’t Believe It Happened“:

It is difficult to describe the weekend bailout package to Cyprus in any other way. The confiscation of 6.75 percent of small depositors’ money and 9.9 percent of big depositors’ funds is without precedence that I can think of in a supposedly civilised and democratic society. But maybe the European Union (EU) is no longer a civilised democracy?

heard rumours about this when I visited Limassol last week, but dismissed them as completely outlandish. And yet, here we are. The consequences are unpredictable, but we are clearly looking at a significant paradigm shift.

This is a breach of fundamental property rights, dictated to a small country by foreign powers and it must make every bank depositor in Europe shiver. Although the representatives at the bailout press conference tried to present this as a one-off, they were not willing to rule out similar measures elsewhere – not that it would have mattered much as the trust is gone anyway. It is now difficult to expect any kind of limitation to what measures the Troika and EU might take when the crisis really starts to bite.

If you can do this once, you can do it again. if you can confiscate 10 percent of a bank customer’s money, you can confiscate 25, 50 or even 100 percent. I now believe we will see worse as the panic increases, with politicians desperately trying to keep the EUR alive.

Depositors in other prospective bailout countries must be running scared – is it safe to keep money in an Italian, Spanish or Greek bank any more? I dont know, must be the answer. Is it prudent to take the risk? You decide. I fear this will lead to massive capital outflows from weak Eurozone countries, just about the last thing they need right now. Even from the EU as a whole, I suspect, as the banking union is in place in most countries already.

Read more at Zero Hedge

Depositors are justified in their panic, given that the amount they stand to lose changes by the hour:

If initially Europe came out as utterly deranged in its Cyprus deposit-confiscation scheme, at least it was consistent. Now, it appears that Europe is desperate to appear not only completely incompetent but also unable to even make a simple decision and stick with it, following news from both the WSJ and the FT that the original confiscation thresholds of 6.75% and 9.9% for deposits below and over €100,000 is about to be revised.

From the FT: “a revised deal being discussed in Nicosia, with the blessing of the European Commission, would shift more of the burden on to deposits larger than €100,000, according to officials involved in the talks. Under a controversial deal struck with international bailout lenders in the early hours on Saturday, a 6.75 per cent levy would be imposed on all deposits under €100,000 while accounts over that threshold would be hit with a 9.9 per cent levy. The depositor levy was demanded by a German-led group of creditor countries to bring down the bailout’s price tag from €17bn…. Officials involved in last night’s talks said the changes in the levy’s rates were in flux, but they could see the higher rate increase to as much as 12.5 per cent while the smaller deposits could be about 3.5 per cent.”

Elsewhere, according to the WSJ, the deposit “tax” would be under 5% for deposits under €100K, under 10% for deposits between €100 and €500K, and over 13% for deposits greater than half a million.

While this idiotic last minute revision will only infuriate Russian oligarchs even more, it will achieve absolutely nothing to streamline the passage of the bill through Cyprus parliament where it appears to have hung without enough support: the damage has already been done, and it is a virtual guarantee that Cyprus banks will suffer a full blown bank run the second banks reopen, which may be Tuesday, Wednesday, or never, at the current pace. That line around the block at your local neighborhood Nicosia ATM: that is not, and will not, be for people seeking to make a deposit, that much we can guarantee, no matter what the final confiscation percentage is.

What is worse, however, is the painful demonstration of the absolutely and completely arbitrary decision-making process out of Europe. Sure: the ECB and the European Commission may decide to fully unwind the deposit confiscation scheme before all is said and done, but the genie is now out of the bottle, and it is very clear that in the European Disunion, a few unelected oligarchs will now determine until such time as the Eurozone finally implodes, just whose wealth and deposits are ripe for the taking. That not even Germany can make a decision and stick with it is just icing on the cake of the European Titanic.

Read more at Zero Hedge

This is the end result of the “Utopia” known as Democratic Socialism: large, powerful bureaucracies, out-of-control spending, runaway debt, forced redistribution, no respect for private property, and eventual collapse.

Europeans thought they could enjoy the unsustainable promises of Marxism without going full-blown communist.   They chose a deceptive “third way” alternative, but it turns out the new boss is equally as destructive as the old one.

This is the path that Obama insists we follow, even as Europe’s warning signs glaringly flash “turn back now!”

Could The “Cyprus Fiasco” Occur In The United States?  You Betcha!

The Great Cyprus Bank Robbery

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Europe Does It Again: Cyprus Depositor Haircut “Bailout” Turns Into Saver “Panic”, Frozen Assets, Bank Runs, Broken ATMs

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Why today’s Cyprus bailout could be the start of the next financial crisis

#Cyprus Depositors Vent Fury Through Social Media

Cyprus Bank Holiday Extended Through Tuesday As Confusion Spreads

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Republican Senator Comes Out In Favor Of Gay Marriage After Learning Son Is Gay

Portman

I don’t take my position on any issue lightly.   Especially for one who regularly expresses opinions on political and moral issues, I believe it behooves us to seriously research and consider all the facts and cornerstone moral principles before taking a position on an issue.   I expect as much from those who seek to serve in public office.   Sadly, it appears many politicians consider principles to be disposable things that can be discarded as soon as they are deemed inconvenient.

Reuters reports:

Senator Rob Portman became the most prominent Republican lawmaker to back gay rights when he reversed his opposition to same-sex marriage on Friday, two years after his son told him he was gay.

In a newspaper opinion piece on Friday, shortly before the Supreme Court is to hear arguments in two key cases on the issue, the Ohio senator said he now supports gay marriage.

“I have come to believe that if two people are prepared to make a lifetime commitment to love and care for each other in good times and in bad, the government shouldn’t deny them the opportunity to get married,” Portman wrote in an op-ed piece in Ohio’s Columbus Dispatch.

“That isn’t how I’ve always felt. As a Congressman, and more recently as a Senator, I opposed marriage for same-sex couples. Then, something happened that led me to think through my position in a much deeper way.”

Portman’s 21-year-old son, Will, told the senator and his wife in February 2011 that he was gay and had been “since he could remember.”

Read more at Reuters

As a parent, I understand how love for one’s children can sometimes tempt us to blind ourselves to truths we’d rather not face.  But it’s a temptation we must not yield to.   Truth, right and wrong are not dependent on our feelings or circumstances.

Does that mean Portman should stop loving his son?  Absolutely not!   He should love Him unconditionally, no matter what mistakes he makes or what he’s struggling with.   But loving a child doesn’t mean redefining an entire bedrock societal institution for their sake.  It means embracing them  for who they are, responding in grace to what they do, and remembering that all of us are sinners in need of a savior, whether gay or straight.

Mollie Hemingway poses the question at Ricochet:

Leaving apart the question of whether marriage law should be changed, this strikes me as a problematic approach. I mean, marriage law should be changed or it shouldn’t be changed — but it shouldn’t hinge on the sexual attractions of one senator’s son, should it?

What if a conservative senator said, “I’m reversing my views on whether abortion should be legal because my daughter got pregnant and wished she weren’t.”

One of the fascinating things about society today is that personal experience trumps everything else in argumentation. Very few people seem to care about fundamental truths and principles while everyone seems to care about personal experience and emotion. It’s the Oprahfication of political philosophy.

Should a conservative determine good policy this way?

Read more at Ricochet

Contributor “Kipling” challenges Portman’s faulty logic at Red State:

To state it bluntly, Senator Portman, Christianity, the Word of God, and the proper view of homosexuality has nothing to do with you or your changing perspective.  It has everything to do with the unchanging Word of God.  Your attempt to cloak your opinion by distorting the Word of God is not only offensive but blasphemous.  I encourage you to open your Bible and read what it says about false teachers and those who add to or take away from the Word of God.

I understand that your son is a homosexual.  As a Christian you are called to love him but you cannot condone his sin and encourage others to do the same.  Principles are higher than our individual circumstances.  Principles do not change because the circumstances  in our lives change.

He who loves father or mother more than Me is not worthy of Me.  And he who loves son or daughter more than Me is not worthy of Me.  And he who does not take his cross and follow after Me is not worthy of Me.  He who finds his life will lose it, and he who loses his life for My sake will find it.  (Matthew 10:37-39)

Condoning the sin of homosexuality will not help your son to lead a “happy, meaningful” life.  He cannot lead such a life in direct opposition to the Word of the Lord.  You have taken the easy path and it will only lead to sin and death, error, and worse.

My prayers are with you and your family but Christians must not let your attempt to pervert the Word of God to fit your own personal life go unchallenged.

Read more at Red State

Do you know what you believe, and why?   Have you actually thought through your position on certain issues, taking into consideration all the facts and core values before taking a position?

100 Leading Republicans Join Obama In Petitioning Supreme Court To Support Gay Marriage

New Poll: Majority Opposes Gay Marriage

Are Republicans Caving On Same-Sex Marriage?

GOProud at CPAC 2012: attacking conservatives as “bigots”, revealing true agenda to divide conservative base

The Marketing of Evil: How corruption is packaged, perfumed, gift-wrapped and sold to us

The Gay Playbook, And How It’s ‘Overhauling’ America

Top 10 gay marriage false ‘facts’

Obama endorses gay ‘marriage’: claims support based on Jesus, Golden Rule

Canada Offers Sobering Warning Of What Happens To Religious Liberty When Gay Marriage Is Legalized

Unintended Consequences of Capitulating on Social Issues

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