Saturday, June 30, 2012

White House Salaries Released

The White House today released its annual list of everyone’s salaries.

According to Politico, the payroll grew from $37.1 million in 2011 to $37.8 million in 2012 and the number of employees expanded from 454 last year to 468 in 2012. But the salary budget is still below the level it was in 2009, when it totaled $39.1 million.

Some of the salaries will seem rather high to many of you, which is why this was released on a Friday afternoon, when no one was looking.

They do work long hours, I would note. Actually, they have no life.

I know, it’s breaking your heart. But, make of it what you will, the list is below.

Happy scrolling.

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Obama Regime Contemplates Handing Taliban Detainees Over to Afghanistan

Obama continues his relentless assault on America.

(FOX News) — The Obama administration is considering a new gambit to restart peace talks with the Taliban in Afghanistan that would send several Taliban detainees from the military prison at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, to a prison in Afghanistan, U.S. and Afghan officials told The Associated Press.

Under the proposal, some Taliban fighters or affiliates captured in the early days of the 2001 U.S. invasion of Afghanistan and later sent to Guantanamo under the label of enemy combatants would be transferred out of full U.S. control but not released. It’s a leap of faith on the U.S. side that the men will not become threats to U.S. forces once back on Afghan soil. But it is meant to show more moderate elements of the Taliban insurgency that the U.S. is still interested in cutting a deal for peace. . . .

The new compromise is intended to boost the credibility of the U.S.-backed Afghan government. President Hamid Karzai and U.S. officials are trying to draw the Taliban back to negotiations toward a peace deal between the national Afghan government and the Pashtun-based insurgency that would end a war U.S. commanders have said cannot be won with military power alone. . . .

Under the new proposal, Guantanamo prisoners would go to a detention facility adjacent to Bagram air field, the largest U.S. military base in Afghanistan, officials of both governments said. The prison is inside the security perimeter established by the U.S. military, and is effectively under U.S. control for now. It is scheduled for transfer to full Afghan control in September. . . .

Any such transfer is unlikely to include the five most senior Taliban figures held at Guantanamo, the subjects of separate negotiations with the Taliban that have stalled, a senior U.S. official said. . . .

Afghan officials and other diplomats said it is not yet clear whether the new proposal could include those five, but said it has not been ruled out. Republicans in Congress bitterly opposed the plan to send those men to house arrest in Qatar, a Persian Gulf nation that has emerged as a key broker with the Muslim Taliban. The opponents feared the men would be set free and endanger the U.S. . . .

“The possibility is strong,” for a transfer to Afghanistan that includes the five top figures, said Ismail Qasemyar, international relations adviser for the Afghan High Peace Council.

Keep reading. . .

















CPUSA Says Re-electing Obama is “Absolutely Essential”

A writer for the Communist Party USA says that “…re-electing Obama is absolutely essential,” and warns that “divisions among Democrats and a potential wave of bad economic news can combine to threaten President Obama’s reelection.”

Marxist John Case, who writes for various CPUSA publications, has written a piece, “The danger of a Romney election,” for the party publication People’s World, which warns that “Re-electing Obama is not sufficient to bring economic recovery or even relief to our people. Only a different class configuration in political power can do necessary minimum reforms to give us a chance. But re-electing Obama is absolutely essential. Now is not the time for hand washing the complexities and tactics away—or failing to triage the most critical questions from those that are less critical. We cannot win everything at once!”

In reality, the CPUSA’s endorsement of Obama for a second term is not surprising. Various CPUSA officials, including Jarvis Tyner and Joelle Fishman, have openly expressed support for the U.S. President and his agenda.

Since 1988, the CPUSA has not run its own candidates for president and vice-president, preferring instead to work through the Democratic Party. Its support for Obama in 2008 and again this year has been open and outspoken.

The Case article offers a rationale, mostly on economic grounds, for getting Obama re-elected to a second term. He claims that the Republicans intend to do on a national level what Scott Walker has done as governor in Wisconsin—reduce government spending and the power of organized labor. Case refers to the prospect of a national “Walker-like regime.” Case laments the fact that “many private sector workers,” including 25 percent of Wisconsin union members, supported Walker.

In that case, as we have reported, Obama’ progressive allies were soundly defeated by Walker and his conservative backers.

Obama’s support in the CPUSA, a political entity once funded and directed by Moscow, has become an open secret, although the major media treat the subject as something not worthy of serious discussion. This silent treatment extends to the matter of Obama’s mentor, a member of the CPUSA named Frank Marshall Davis. Members of the party have known of Obama’s connection to Davis for many years, which may account for their support of the Democratic Party politician in 2008 and now in 2012. A congressional friend of Obama’s from his Chicago days, Rep. Danny K. Davis, still associates with the CPUSA and even accepted an award from them.

Obama isn’t the only Democrat getting various kinds of communist support. Workers World Party, an openly Marxist-Leninist party, endorsed Democrat Charles Barron for the U.S. House in the 8th Congressional District in New York City. However, in that primary election, which was held on June 26, Barron lost.

The Workers World Party newspaper referred to Barron, a city council member, as “a former Black Panther who continues to connect with many sectors of the progressive movement. He has marched alongside oppressed activists and Occupy Wall Street in the fight against poverty, budget cuts, foreclosures, racial profiling like stop-and-frisk, police brutality, the prison-industrial complex, and all forms of injustice at home and abroad.” It said Barron had won the endorsement of District Council 37, the city’s largest public employee union, representing 125,000 members and 50,000 retirees, and the black-oriented Amsterdam News.

The Workers World Party was investigated by the House Internal Security Committee for its support of the North Korean regime and Arab terrorist groups. But the House Committee was disbanded by liberals in Congress.

The CPUSA writer John Case has not been without criticism of Obama, saying that the Democratic President made a huge mistake by firing Van Jones as White House Green Jobs czar after his communist background came to light. Case wrote last year that Jones’ “Rebuild the Dream” campaign “contains all the elements that save the Obama presidency that discarded him, and the party that failed to come to his defense.”

There is speculation that Jones was fired because the chain of command that hired him led to the Oval Office, including Obama adviser Valerie Jarrett and Obama himself.

Jones remains a major figure in the progressive movement backing Obama, however, and was a featured speaker at the “Take Back the American Dream” conference recently held in Washington, D.C. Participants in the conference included Communist Party activists Jarvis Tyner and Joelle Fishman.

Death of a Nation: The day America forsook freedom for the slavery of socialism

Americans are about to learn why the 11 states of the Old Confederacy decided to leave the Union back in the 1860s. State legislatures all across America, not just in the southern states, are about to feel the clinching mailed fist of the federal government. Some are bound to balk and get their hackles up and, eventually, want out.

In 1860 and early 1861 no fewer than eleven states felt that way and their people held conventions and decided to leave the Union in a “Hail Mary” maneuver to save the original constitution—at least for themselves. The people of two other states were split on secession but huge portions of both states sided with the Confederacy—therefore, the thirteen stars on the national flags of the Confederacy.

So—why am I even THINKING about secession today? Well, as an American who was born free and just days ago was enslaved by—and to—the federal government, secession is beginning to appear as a viable alternative to slavery. You can bet, if this lowly commentator is thinking it, a whole lot of Americans are beginning to consider whether it is worth a shot—to preserve, at least, SOME freedom from the state.

But then, there will be a delayed reaction by the American public to their loss of freedom on Thursday June 28th, 2012. I mark this date as a red letter day—a day which will go down in history as the day freedom died in America. It was the day when America chucked freedom in favor of socialism and slavery to the state.

Already, some of us mourn the loss of Freedom, Capitalism, Democracy, and yes, even America’s position in the world as its leader. In place of all these, America has chosen SOCIALISM the “Destroyer of Nations”.

I STILL find it absolutely incredible that a people so endowed by their creator and by their ancestors—who gave their lives to gain, secure, and preserve freedom and liberty for their American progeny—could so easily, with seemingly no thought at all as to its value, blithely, heedlessly, with no thought at all toss it all away all because a government entity (as fickle as government has proven itself to be) promises—PROMISES—to take care of them from cradle to grave.

It even strains credulity, this readiness to believe the manifold promises the government has made about health care. There is an OBVIOUS lack of proof and knowledge that Obamacare can even BEGIN to deliver on all its promises. There is ample evidence that the Affordable Healthcare Act is doomed to failure as a national healthcare delivery system because its record in those countries that have instituted it, (or plans similar to it) already, have failed, and failed utterly leaving their old and sick to die for want of medical services.

However, with an arrogance only fools have the stupidity to rely upon, an arrogance that replaced their mental competence long ago, the best and the brightest of the political left, like lemmings plunging off a cliff to certain death, joyfully continue to assure those Americans who, themselves, feel a need for a national “nanny,” that all will be well. No need to trouble oneself over such mundane matters as financing for the billions of dollars the so-called Obamacare scam will most certainly cost the taxpayers of America.

Like the misdirection of an accomplished magician they turn our attention away from such important questions as—where will all the doctors come from? America is at least 160,000 doctors short, as of today. Who will care for the sick —a doctor, a Physician’s Assistant, a Nurse Practitioner, or an EMT. Who?

These are all legitimate, extremely important questions and no one, it seems, is asking them—and no one is volunteering the answers.

No one seems concerned over the depth of government intrusion into every American’s life granted by the Affordable Healthcare Act. Obamacare takes away citizenship and recategorizes every American as a serf or, indeed, a slave.

I am ashamed of my fellow Americans for giving up their freedom, their constitution, their liberty, everything the Founding Fathers gave us, for so cheap a price and so fleeting a dream. They were promised nothing. They accepted nothing— and will be given nothing.

The disunity of America is now assured. There is nothing left of that which bound us together. the Union of American States begins its devolution today. The people of states wishing to be free will be forced to seek a path to separation from that government which is holding them captive. Oh, it will take a while, but it WILL come.

The descent of America, into the ash heap of history, has officially begun. The decline will be relatively swift and excruciatingly painful.

May God have Mercy on America, on those who warned “the other people who live in this country”. I cannot use “fellow Americans” as that phrase no longer applies. It has been shredded by the Obama Machine and by the socialist party—AKA: the Democratic Party.

Americans who have not armed themselves up to now, will hasten to do so. It is the prudent thing to do. There can be no question there will be violence within America in the near future. Those who survive will be those who prepare today.

Forward thinking Americans will ready themselves for the coming anarchy. Providence, it seems, has decided to withdraw its protection and leave exposed those who have defaced and destroyed this land from within.

Soon America will face wars within and without our borders, financial collapse, descention between the races, and open hostility in the streets of our cities. Those expecting utopia will finally learn they have been duped and no such paradise on earth is within their reach nor even within their sight. They will, finally, learn they were simply a means toward an end, useful idiots, and now that that end has been accomplished, the goal has been reached, they are no longer needed nor wanted.

We mourn the passing of the UNITED States of America. America is now the Democratic Socialist States of America. Today the biblical “pale horse” has been loosed upon the land.

America is about to enter a tribulation period unlike anything it has ever experienced in its entire history. Our ship of state is about to founder on the rocks and we have an inexperienced deckhand who believes himself a pathfinder, a navigator without equal, at the helm stirring us onto the shoals, the rocks, and the reef.

America has done some “dumb” things in her colorful history but this one will be forever marked in red in the records of our history. Thursday June 28th, 2012 will forever be remembered as the day America forsook freedom for the slavery of socialism.

Everyday People and the American Revolution

We elevate the events of the American Revolution to near-mythical status all too often and forget that the real revolutionaries were people just like you and me. Caught up in the drama of Red Coats marching, muskets exploding and flags waving in the night, we lose sight of the enduring significance of the Revolution and what makes it relevant to our world today. Those revolutionaries, by and large, were neither agitators nor hotheads. They were not looking for trouble or trying to start a fight. Like many today, they were simply trying to make it from one day to another, a task that was increasingly difficult as Britain’s rule became more and more oppressive.

The American Revolution did not so much start with a bang as with a whimper—a literal cry for relief from people groaning under the weight of Britain’s demands. The seeds of discontent had been sown early on. By the time the Stamp Act went into effect on November 1, 1765, the rumbling had become a roar.

The Stamp Act, passed by the British Parliament with no representation from the colonies (thus raising the battle cry of “no taxation without representation”), required that revenue stamps be affixed to all printed materials. It was an onerous tax that affected every colonist who engaged in any type of business. Outraged at the imposition, the colonists responded with a flood of pamphlets, speeches and resolutions. They staged a boycott of British goods and organized public protests, mass meetings, parades, bonfires and other demonstrations.

Mercy Otis Warren was an active propagandist against the British and a prime example of the critical, and often overlooked, role that women played in the Revolution. Historian Nina Baym writes, “With the exception of Abigail Adams, no woman in New England was more embroiled in revolutionary political talk than Mercy Otis Warren.” Warren penned several plays as a form of protest, includingThe Group in 1775. As Baym writes: “The Group is a brilliant defense of the revolutionary cause, a political play without a patriot in it. In letting the opposition drop their masks of decency, Warren exposes them as creatures of expediency and selfishness, men who are domestic as well as political tyrants.”

Although Parliament repealed the Stamp Tax in 1766, it boldly moved to pass the Townshend Acts a year later. The Townshend Acts addressed several issues. First, any laws passed by the New York legislature were suspended until the colony complied with the Quartering Act, which required that beds and supplies be provided for the king’s soldiers. And duties (or taxes) were imposed on American imports of glass, lead, paint, paper and tea.

Americans responded in outrage through printed materials and boycotts. In Letters of a Pennsylvania Farmer, which appeared in newspapers and pamphlets, attorney John Dickinson argued that Parliament had no right to levy taxes for revenue. He also cautioned that the cause of liberty be advanced with moderation. But as historians George Brown Tindall and David Emory Shi write, “Such conciliatory language led John Adams to dismiss Dickinson as a ‘piddling genius.’” Samuel Adams responded by organizing protests in Boston. And in 1768, Samuel Adams and James Otis circulated a letter throughout the colonies that reiterated their concerns about the illegality of British taxation and asked for support from the other colonists. When an official in London ordered that the letter be withdrawn, they refused. By 1773, Samuel Adams had convinced the Boston town meeting to form a “Committee of Correspondence,” a group of protesting American colonists. The Committee issued a statement of rights and grievances and invited other towns to do the same.

Thereafter, Committees of Correspondence sprang up across Massachusetts. And in 1773, the Virginia Assembly proposed the formation of Committees of Correspondence on an inter-colonial basis. A network of committees spread across the colonies, mobilizing public opinion and preventing colonial resentments from boiling over. As a result, the Committees of Correspondence played a critical role in the unification of the colonies. Author Nat Hentoff writes:

In 1805, Mercy Otis Warren—in her History of the Rise and Progress and Termination of the American Revolutions, emphasized: “Perhaps no single step contributed so much to cement the union of the colonies, and the final acquisition of independence, as the establishment of the Committees of Correspondence . . . that produced unanimity and energy throughout the continent.” These patriots spread the news throughout the colonies about such British subversions of fundamental liberties as the general search warrant that gave British customs officers free reign to invade homes and offices in pursuit of contraband.

We would do well to remember that, in the end, it was the courage and resolve of common, everyday people that carried the day. Courage was a key ingredient in the makeup of the revolutionaries. The following vignette offers a glimpse of one man’s strong stand in the face of the British army.

Two months before the battles of Lexington and Concord, the British sent Colonel Leslie with 240 men to seize arms and ammunition which the rebels had stored in Salem. As the troops approached town, residents halted their progress by lifting the Northfield drawbridge. Several inhabitants climbed onto the raised leaf of the bridge and engaged in a shouting match with Colonel Leslie on the other side. William Gavett, an eyewitness, reported the incident:

In the course of the debate between Colonel Leslie and the inhabitants, the colonel remarked that he was upon the King’s Highway and would not be prevented passing over the bridge.

Old Mr. James Barr, an Englishman and a man of much nerve, then replied to him: “It is not the King’s Highway; it is a road built by the owners of the lots on the other side, and no king, country or town has anything to do with it.”

Colonel Leslie was taken aback, but he pressed the issue; James Barr held firm, knowing he was in the right. In the end, Leslie promised to march only fifty rods “without troubling or disturbing anything” if the residents of Salem would lower the bridge. The bridge came down, Leslie kept his word, and the opening battle of the American Revolution was postponed. Old James Barr had taken on the British empire with a few simple words.

'Spoiled Rotten': How the Democratic Party Lost Its Soul to Patronage

It was back in 2004 when I first came across Jay Cost's work. He's one of those incredibly talented and smart people we would likely know nothing about were it not for these here InterWebNets and the rise of New Media.

I don't know how he was making a living by day, but back then in his spare time Jay was doing the smartest poll analysis online. He's conservative, yes, but his insightful and usually dead-on analysis had nothing to do with politics. He just told it like it was and the final election results proved his genius.

Something else Jay was remarkable at was writing about numbers and margins-of-error and sample sizes and averages in a way that was absolutely fascinating.

Soon after, two of my favorite sites would scoop up Jay's talents. First, he found a natural home at Real Clear Politics and now he's working for the Weekly Standard. From these perches, Jay has proven that his analytical abilities are every bit as acute when turned on politics in general, not just polls.

"Spoiled Rotten" is Jay's debut book and presents a devastating and detailed look at how the Democratic Party sold its soul. This is no polemic, it's history -- fascinating, heartbreaking history.

Below is a short excerpt from the book's introduction. If you'd like more, you can purchase "Spoiled Rotten" here.


It wasn’t supposed to be like this.

Barack Obama entered the White House in January 2009 with all signs pointing toward major liberal policy reforms. He had campaigned unabashedly as a reformer, promising “change we can believe in,” and won the largest popular-vote majority of any Democrat in more than forty years. He had an outsize congressional majority in both chambers, dominated by the kinds of northern Democrats who had long been the prime movers of liberal reform. The Republican opposition was seemingly discredited, taking the blame for a terrible economy as well as a congressional faction of so-called conservatives who had spent money like drunken sailors during their years in the majority. To top it all off, his job approval upon entering office was nearly 70 percent, higher than that of any incoming president in decades.

Within twenty months it was all over. In November 2010 the country elected more Republicans to the House of Representatives than in any election since the 1940s. President Obama’s job approval had fallen below 50 percent, and his rating among the all-important group of independent voters who swing elections had dropped into the danger zone of the low forties. The new Republican majority in the House promised a return to the party’s role as a responsible steward of the economy and the federal budget, and the reform era of the Obama administration was well and truly finished.

How could this have happened? Sure, some of it can be chalked up to the midterm blues—the sitting party of the president almost always loses seats in off-year elections. Some of it can be chalked up to the weak economy—twenty months into his administration, President Obama had to share at least some of the blame with George W. Bush. Yet the breadth and depth of Democratic losses in November 2010—with a net of sixty-two House seats flipping from blue to red, most of which came in the Midwest and the South—suggested that somethingmore was at play.

That something was symbolized by the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PP ACA), which represented for liberal Democrats the culmination of nearly a century of struggle. Harry Truman included universal health care reform in his Fair Deal package in the 1940s. Before that, Teddy Roosevelt’s Progressive party, dominated by future New Dealers like Harold Ickes, called for a national health service in 1912. No wonder Obama and the Democratic leadership in Congress wanted to use their outsize majority to remake the nation’s health care system.

But health care reform turned out to be the Democratic party’s undoing. Almost as soon as the legislative process began, moderate Democrats from the South and Midwest started bolting, finally forcing a showdown between “Blue Dogs” and liberal chairman Henry Waxman in the House Energy and Commerce Committee in the summer of 2009. Meanwhile, Obama’s job approval plummeted nearly 20 points in just seven months, and by August it stood at an anemic 50 percent in the Gallup poll. By that point, poll after poll found a plurality, if not an outright majority, of Americans disapproving of the Democratic health care plan. Of course, the Democrats did not stop there. Despite mounting public pressure, evidenced by a Republican victory in the battle to fill the seat left behind by the late Ted Kennedy, Democrats pushed forward with the bill, finally passing it in the spring of 2010 via an unprecedented legislative sleight of hand. Public opinion by that point had completely soured and was never to sweeten again on “Obamacare.”

Democrats blamed the collapse of the public’s support for reform on Republican smear tactics, while Republicans blamed it on Americans’ distaste for big government. Neither answer makes much sense. By the middle of 2009, “Republican” had become the political equivalent of a four-letter word—hardly anybody trusted the Republican party enough to believe its claims about the health care bill. What’s more, Obama occupied the bully pulpit, the most effective tool for communicating to the mass public, while the Republicans struggled to get any media attention for their message. As for the mass public’s supposed dislike of big government, how does one account for the enduring popularity of Medicare, which is “socialized medicine” if anything is? Furthermore, Americans overwhelmingly approved of many specific items within the legislation, in particular tougher regulations on the insurance companies, which are not held in high esteem.

The real problem with the health reform efforts was the controversial manner by which it was passed. Rather than propose a bill to Congress, President Obama allowed the legislature to draft health care reform basically from scratch, and the result was a political disaster. Dozens upon dozens of “stakeholders” (the buzzword the Obama administration used for special-interest groups aligned with the Democratic party) emerged out of nowhere to demand this exceptional consideration or that particular carve-out. The line of groups demanding to wet their beaks seemed endless: big businesses, labor unions, liberal activist groups, medical groups representing doctors, nurses, drug companies, and so on. And of course, wavering legislators were able to extract significant concessions, the most infamous of which was Nebraska senator Ben Nelson’s “Cornhusker Kickback” that exempted only Nebraska from having to pay additional costs for the expanded Medicaid rolls. The only ones who did not get a seat at the table were the American people, the supposed beneficiaries of the reform effort.

From SPOILED ROTTEN by Jay Cost Copyright © 2012 by Jay Cost. Reprinted courtesy of Broadside Books, an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers.

Obamacare Passed As A Tax, Obama Says It Is Not A Tax – We the People Are Being Lied To

“As a matter of policy, moreover,” Kagan writes that she “sees presidential supervision of federal agencies ‘as a mechanism to achieve progressive goals.”

It is obvious that Justice Roberts, President Obama, and the Democratic Congress believe the average American is no better than a perp in an interrogation who has no expectation of being told the truth.

The government can do anything they want and if you don’t do as they say, they will “tax” you. A tax can now be used to penalize and coerce. Oddly, Justice Roberts does not see taxation used to coerce as a penalty.

The Democratic Congress and Obama steadfastly maintained that the individual mandate is not a tax, yet it was approved as a tax, with Justice Roberts giving the most incoherent opinion.

On March 26th, the Solictor General was asked by Justice Alito if the individual mandate was a tax and he said “no.”

If the answer had been in he affirmative, the case would have been thrown out then-and-there because the anti-injunction act requires SCOTUS not rule on a tax until it has been levied and collected.

Justice Roberts, in his decision, rewrote the law, ignoring the law as it was written.

I think it is very clear that Chief Justice Roberts wanted to avoid the outcome of taking the whole law down,” said former Florida attorney general Bill McCollum, who filed the first lawsuit on the day the law was enacted in 2010. He called the ruling “very contrived.”

Perhaps Justice Roberts heard the intimidating remarks by President Obama and Socialist Patrick Leahy and thought he was protecting the court’s integrity with his confused opinion. Most likely, he wanted the bill for his own reasons. Unfortunately, he did not protect the integrity of our Constitution or the rule of law. He did not protect the American people from a government out of control.

Obama Donor Who Helped Enact Assault-Weapons Ban Ran Fast & Furious

Executive privilege for a reason — everything points to Obama policy. Go straight to CNS News and read the whole thing.

( — Dennis K. Burke, who as a lawyer for the Democrats on the Senate Judiciary Committee in the 1990s was a key player behind the enactment of the 1994 assault-weapons ban, and who then went on to become Arizona Gov. Janet Napolitano’s chief of staff, and contributor to Barack Obama’s 2008 presidential primary campaign, and a member of Obama’s transition team focusing on immigration issues, ended up in the Obama administration as the U.S. attorney in Arizona responsible for overseeing Operation Fast and Furious.

When Obama nominated Burke to be U.S. Attorney for the District of Arizona, Burke told the Arizona Capitol Times he believed he understood what the president and his attorney general wanted him to do.

“There’s clearly been direction provided already by President Obama and Attorney General Holder as to what they want to be doing, and this is an office that is at the center of the issues of border enforcement,” said Burke. . . . After Obama was elected in November 2008, Burke joined his presidential transition team, serving on the Immigration Policy Working Group.

Eight days before Obama’s inauguration, on Jan. 12, 2009 — while Burke was working on the transition team — Obama met with Mexican President Felipe Calderon at the Mexican Cultural Institute in Washington, D.C. At that meeting, Obama “pledged” to take action to stop the flow of guns from the United States to Mexico.

Obama also decided to put Burke’s old boss, incoming Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano, in a leadership role in making the gun-trafficking problem a top priority.

“President-elect Obama expressed support for efforts in the border states in both the United States and Mexico to eradicate drug-related violence and stop the flow of guns and cash,” incoming White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs said in a statement at the time. “He told President Calderón that he intends to ask the Secretary of Homeland Security to lead an effort to increase information sharing to strengthen those efforts. He pledged to take more effective action from the United States to stem the flow of arms from the United States to Mexico.”

When Napolitano became Homeland Security secretary, Burke moved from the Obama transition team to become her senior adviser. On Feb. 25, 2009, a little more than a month after Obama had made his “pledge” to Calderon, Napolitano testified in the House Homeland Security Committee. She stressed that stopping the flow of guns to Mexico was a top priority of the Obama administration and key focus of her work.

Responding to a question about violence on the border, Napolitano said the administration was going to work with the Mexican government on the issue. Then she said: “Secondly, it is looking at, government-wide, at what we can do to stop the southbound export of weaponry, particularly assault-type weapons and grenades that are being used in that drug war.”

Napolitano further noted that drug cartels were targeting Mexican government officials and law enforcement officers, and that, given the seriousness of the threat, Obama’s national security adviser, the attorney general, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF), and Customs (of which the Border Patrol is part) would all be working on the issue.

“I’ve met with the attorney general of Mexico and the ambassador already,” said Napolitano during the February 2009 hearing. “One of the things that I particularly am focused on is southbound traffic in guns, particularly assault weapons, and cash that are being used to funnel and fund these very, very violent cartels.”

Keep reading. . .

E-mails show Obama White House worked with health industry to send business to David Axelrod’s consulting firm

This is what ObamaCARE aka ObamaTAX looks like! E-mails from 2009 posted by Daily Caller show that the corrupt Obama regime worked with the health care industry to steer business to adviser David Axelrod’s consulting firm.

The emails — which have been reviewed by The Daily Caller — include the revelation that the AKPD consultants were being described as “[White House] WH-designated folks.”

“They have been put in charge of the campaign to pass health reform,” Pharmaceutical Research and Manufactures of America (PhRMA) consultant Steve McMahon wrote of a group of consultants, including those from AKPD.

The emails also show how the health-care industry was concerned in 2009 about the revelation in the media that they were partnering with AKPD.

“I want to alert everyone to a potential problem,” wrote Ken Johnson, the senior vice president of PhRMA, in an email to colleagues on June 30, 2009.

“Bloomberg is getting ready to report that ‘political consultants’ close to the White House — more specifically close to [now-former White House Chief of Staff] Rahm Emanuel — will be running our 100 million plus dollar campaign to try to pass comprehensive health care reform,” he wrote.

PhRMA lobbyist Bryant Hall responded, writing, “This is a big problem.”

Arizona: Border Patrol union blasts Homeland Security instructions.... To 'run away' and 'hide' from gunmen..

DHS handy dandy 'how to hide from bad people' pocket guide


Border Patrol agents in Arizona are blasting their bosses for telling them, along with all other Department of Homeland Security employees, to run and hide if they encounter an "active shooter."

It's one thing to tell civilian employees to cower under a desk if a gunman starts spraying fire in a confined area, say members of Tucson Local 2544/National Border Patrol Council, but to give armed law enforcement professionals the same advice is downright insulting. The instructions from DHS come in the form of pamphlets and a mandatory computer tutorial.

“We are now taught in an ‘Active Shooter’ course that if we encounter a shooter in a public place we are to ‘run away’ and ‘hide’" union leader Brandon Judd wrote on the website of 3,300-member union local. “If we are cornered by such a shooter we are to (only as a last resort) become ‘aggressive’ and ‘throw things’ at him or her. We are then advised to ‘call law enforcement’ and wait for their arrival (presumably, while more innocent victims are slaughtered)."[More....]

This really wasn't meant for the armed law enforcement officers, you see:

One DHS employee told the instruction cards were handed out to employees six weeks ago. At the time, he assumed they were only for civilian employees, not armed law enforcement officers within the department, which oversees the U.S. Customs and Border Protection.

"Requiring BP agents to follow the same steps is egregious,” he said.
Oh wait..

DHS officials maintain that the Active Shooter course was designed for all employees—civilian and law-enforcement officers-- and no one should rush into a situation where they, or others around them, could get hurt.

Nothing to see here, move along.

h/t @ConservoDad

Update: OT kinda but not considering the current head of DHS and her prior position as Gov of Arizona: Obama Contributor, Who Helped Enact Assault-Weapons Ban, Ran ‘Fast and Furious’

In 2003, when Napolitano became governor, Burke became her chief of staff. He stayed in that job until the fall of 2008, when he left to help Democratic political campaigns, including then-Sen. Obama’s presidential campaign

Read it all.

Another Hidden Video of a Day Care Teacher That is Supposed To Spark Outrage in Us

I’m not really picking up on where the outrageous part is supposed to be.

The boys mother said -

‘It got into someone’s hands who actually saw the video and was like, wait a minute, I recognize whose son this is and that’s when they forwarded it to me and said ‘I need you to see this,’” she said. “When I saw my son’s face it was just unbelievable, you know. He’s everything to me.

“He doesn’t deserve it. No child deserves it and especially not mine.”


I see a 3 year-old telling a teacher he’s going to kick her in the balls. That is the most outrageous part of this video-

Rep. Glenn Thompson: Democrats who walked out on Holder contempt vote owe Brian Terry’s family an apology

149 Democrats, including House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif), refused to cast a vote on the resolution finding Attorney General Eric Holder in contempt of Congress.

Earlier this week, Josephine Terry, mother of murdered Border Patrol agent Brian Terry, called the walkout a “disgrace.”...........

How to Save the Planet: Euthanize Your Pet

"Dear Mr. Delingpole,
You need to learn a thing or two about Global Warming. Everyday living is destructive to the Environment. Our company sells Carbon Credits which are the only hope of saving the planet...."

I get a lot of emails like this - though normally they're expressed rather less politely than the one above. But something in the email's tone told me I had to go and look at the website. It's run by someone apparently called Daphne Tremayne, who lists her credentials thus:

Daphne Tremayne is a graduate of Peconic Community College and holds an associates degree in marketing. She is an avid yoga practitioner and assistant instructor at the Gaia Yoga and Women’s Holistic Wellness Center in Stirling Harbor.

Eagerly I read her section on Little Things We Can Do To Reduce Our Carbon Footprint.
Stop Having Children

I know! I know! Children are as cute as all get-out, but have you ever really considered how much carbon one child puts into the atmosphere? Over a single lifetime, the amount is practically immeasurable. One of the best all-around things for the environment would be fewer people in the world. Until governments wake up and start passing "one child per-family" laws, the best way you can help reduce the collective Carbon Footprint is through voluntary sterilization. Most insurance policies cover the cost of tubal ligations as well as vasectomies, and for the poor, many clinics will do these procedures for free. And let's face it--there are just too many poor people in the world!

But here's my favorite bit:
Euthanize Your Old Pet

Pets have become a common feature in most homes and are an attribute of the modern, Western lifestyle. We all love our dogs and cats, but really, when you think about it, pets are a major producer of excess carbon. One of the best ways to reasonably enjoy your pet and reduce your overall Carbon Footprint is to determine in advance how long your pet should live. As a family, set a date when your pet will be euthanized. One great way to teach children the value of pet euthanasia is to turn the occasion into a family celebration. Let's say you've set March 10, five years from now, as your pet's euthanasia date. For the next five years, celebrate March 10 as your pet's special day, with a family party and perhaps a visit to your pet's future burial spot. Teach your children to think of the occasion as a birthday in reverse. A predetermined euthanasia date will encourage your family to love and care for your furry friend while it's still young and playful. What's more, pre-planing for pet termination not only works towards reducing your family's Carbon Footprint, but guarantees long term reduction in veterinary expenses.

Here's the worrying thing: there are a whole heap of greenies out there who think everything on this outrageous spoof website is no more than plain commonsense.

Two Obamacare promises are ringing hollow today:

We will build on the employer sponsored system
"If you like your health care plan, you can keep your health care plan."

Despite constantly repeating these promises during Congressional debate and after it became law, the Administration’s promises are being undercut by a report issued by the House Ways and Means Committee which finds that the health care law “contains numerous policies that will either force or encourage employers to eliminate the health insurance coverage they currently offer their employees.”

Under the law, the “employer mandate” fines companies with more than 50 “full time equivalent” workers for failing to offer what Uncle Sam defines as “affordable” and “sufficient” health coverage to all full time workers. However, since the law’s penalty for not offering this prescribed coverage is far smaller than the costs associated with offering government defined “affordable” and “sufficient” insurance, employers are induced to drop coverage. This report quantifies (and cited) what the U.S. Chamber knew would happen.

Based on responses from 71 companies, the Committee found that the companies could save $28.6 billion in 2014 and $422.4 billion from 2014-2023 if they stopped offering health care insurance and paid a penalty to the government. This would affect 10.2 million employees and dependents.

Because of this law, “[a]nyone who gets insurance through their job should be worried about what will happen next, because [the law provides] a distinct financial incentive for employers to terminate health care coverage,” said Ways and Means Committee Chairman Dave Camp (R-MI).

During the health care reform debate and after the law was enacted many expected that the impact on large employers would be minimal, believing that the law would not impose any additional burdens or costs on large employers who have historically offered coverage. The Committee report counters this assumption. In fact, many provisions impose additional requirements on large employers and will drive up the cost of the coverage that they offer, if they offer it. Regulators are fleshing out these requirements now and will continue to do so for months, if not years to come. The truth is we still don’t know just how different the law will require employer sponsored coverage to be or how much more it will cost.

Therefore, the employer mandate doesn’t pose to employers the simple choice of “Do I continue to offer the coverage that I am currently offering or pay a penalty?” It poses the subtler choice, “Do I continue to offer coverage that is and will be increasingly-more expensive and burdensome for me to offer or do I pay a penalty?”

Fox News ran a good story on the negative effects the law could have on employers and employees.

I feel like a broken record, but the more we learn about the health care law, the more we discover it’s a 2000-page law full of broken promises. It's another reason we need to work for real health care reforms that lower costs and expands quality and choice.

Obamacare and the Supreme Court: An Opportunity for Reflection

This week the United States Supreme Court began hearing arguments on the constitutionality of the 2010 Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, commonly known as "Obamacare." Whatever the justices eventually decide, most observers seem to have concluded—and most Americans seem to accept the conclusion—that the Supreme Court will have the final word on the constitutional question.

It shouldn’t. And it doesn’t.

As far as the legal challenges are concerned, the Supreme Court does represent finality in the sense that there is no other court to which the losing side in this case may appeal. That does not mean, however, that the constitutional issue will be settled. If anything, this week opens new opportunities for discussion of questions that every American ought to regard as crucial to their existence as a self-governing people.

It is an opportunity for Mitt Romney to change the tone of his Etch-a-Sketch campaign by making a serious and plausible constitutional argument. As governor of Massachusetts in 2006, Romney signed a health care reform law called "An Act Providing Access to Affordable, Quality, Accountable Health Care," commonly known as "Romneycare." The average voter understandably struggles to identify any substantial difference between "Romneycare" and "Obamacare." For months, therefore, Romney’s challengers in the Republican presidential race have bludgeoned him with this issue. Now is the time for Romney to make the argument he should have been making all along, which is that the Tenth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution acknowledges that all power not ceded to the federal government belongs to the people and the states; that the people and the states never ceded to the federal government the power to require that individuals purchase anything; and therefore that while the people and state of Massachusetts may adopt whatever health-care laws they wish, the federal government does not enjoy such power.

It is an opportunity for Thomas Jefferson to make a welcome reappearance in our political and constitutional conversations. The idea that the Supreme Court ought to serve as the final arbiter of all constitutional questions struck Jefferson as a dangerous doctrine. If it’s true that the courts have the power to decide all constitutional questions, Jefferson wrote in 1819, then instead of "three departments, co-ordinate and independent," designed to "check and balance each other," we have foolishly extended "to one of them alone, the right to prescribe rules for the government of others, and that one, too, which is unelected by, and independent of the nation." In this case our constitution amounts to "a mere thing of wax in the hands of the judiciary, which they may twist and shape into any form they please." Each branch of the federal government, Jefferson declared, "has the right to decide for itself what is the meaning of the constitution in the cases submitted to its action." In other words, according to Jefferson, if we accept the argument that the Supreme Court gives the final word on the constitutionality of "Obamacare," then constitutional self-government amounts to a sham.

Finally, it is an opportunity for the sovereign people of the United States to reflect on what it means to be sovereign. Too often we reduce popular government to the simple act of voting. Well-intended-yet-ultimately-absurd initiatives such as MTV’s old "Rock the Vote" campaign merely reinforce our misconceptions about what democracy means. Voting is important, of course, but it is far more important that voters develop habits of constitutional reflection. They must understand that the federal government exists at their sufferance. Its powers derive solely from them. This is true of the Supreme Court as well as the president and the Congress. To those Americans who are unconditioned to think in constitutional terms, this might sound like a prescription for anarchy. In fact it is quite the opposite. Popular government, Jefferson observed in his First Inaugural Address, is the strongest government in the world because it is the only form of government that commands the affections of all the people. To make our popular government worthy of the affection, however, we must do more than simply cast our ballots. Our judgment must depend not simply on whether "Obamacare" is a good piece of legislation but on whether we’ve given the federal government the power to enact it in the first place—and, if we haven’t, whether or not we wish to do so.

It is a week, therefore, not of finality but of profound opportunities—to think, to reflect, and to remind ourselves that no matter the Court’s ruling the ultimate authority rests with us.

Michael Schwarz is an assistant professor of history at Ashland University and a fellow of the Ashbrook Center.

Beck Reviews Obama’s Three-Plus ‘Years of Lies’

On his Friday morning radio broadcast, troubled by the recent Supreme Court ruling to uphold Obamacare, Glenn Beck reviewed the president’s three-and-half “years of lies,” beginning with his failed vow to close Guantanamo Bay detention center.

Obama promised the American people he would rid the halls of Washington of lobbyists, yet appointed several to high-ranking positions within his own administration, he also promised to half the deficit in his first term — another declaration that went unfulfilled.

“This is not about bashing Obama, but about presenting facts to the American people,” Beck stated plainly.

Of course the most egregious instance of a broken promise came when Obama promised he would not raise taxes on the middle class, yet his Obamacare “mandate,“ now ruled a ”tax” by the highest court in the land, results in the the most “massive tax increase in U.S. history” and directly affects the middle class.

“The IRS is now the most powerful arm of the federal government,” Beck said.

Watch below:

Bizarre: Farm workers threatened at gunpoint for ‘causing global warming’ by harvesting crops.

Every time I think I’ve seen the craziest thing yet about global warming mania…along comes something else. From the ANU College of Asia & the Pacific blog, comes this bizarre story from Thailand that shows what lengths a government will go to to slap a global warming fine on farmers.

Since being charged with global warming, villagers have begun working on farms farther from the reserve, harvesting cassava. The man in red was one of the thirteen villagers who was charged along with Ms. Kwanla.

Humans cutting down forest land to farm is nothing new. However, charging rural farmers for causing global warming is. A controversial formula is quantifying the damage villagers have to pay for their small scale farming. Now, the villagers are taking a stand against what they know is wrong.

PHETCHABUN – Early one Thursday morning, a gun was pointed at Ms. Kwanla Saikhumtung, a 34-year-old mother, because she was farming.

The man who pointed the gun was one of ten armed officers from Phu Pha Daeng, the local wildlife sanctuary in Lomsak district. After observing the villagers for three days, the officers finally informed Ms. Kwanla and twelve fellow villagers from Huay Kontha that they were trespassing on wildlife sanctuary land. They demanded that the villagers come to the police station to talk with them.

They refused. The villager that hired them paid taxes on the plot, leading the villagers to believe they had a right to work the land, and they worried about finishing their work.

The officers quickly became annoyed. One threatened to shoot any villager that resisted the officers’ orders.

“Are you really going to shoot? I’m here to harvest the corn, and you want to shoot us?” Ms. Kwanla shouted. She then bravely grabbed the barrel of the gun, pressed it to her chest, and said, “If you’re going to shoot, shoot.”

The officer lowered his gun. That night, the officers marched the reluctant villagers through the community and drove them to the police station.

This incident was the beginning of a seven-year-long legal battle, pitting Ms. Kwanla against the Thai government. She and the other twelve villagers — the youngest only sixteen at the time — were first charged with trespassing.

The real shock, however, came when they were slapped with a 470,000 baht fine for contributing to global warming under the charge of causing environmental damage.

As the landowner was paying taxes on the plot of land in question, he had the right to grow crops on it. Since Ms. Kwanla and the other villagers had been hired to harvest his corn, it had seemed that they were not breaking the law by being there. However, unknown to the landholder, his plot overlapped with the wildlife sanctuary land.

The Royal Forestry Department (RFD) fined the villagers for cutting down trees and farming, drawing from the 1992 National Environmental Quality Act which forbids “destruction, loss, or damage to natural resources owned by the State.” Their fine was determined according to a formula used to calculate environmental damage. The formula measures the increase in temperature caused by cutting down trees. Any increase in the land temperature shows ‘global warming’. In essence, cutting down trees to farm corn leads to global warming.

The Huay Kontha villagers have a running joke, “Because we pick the corn, the world gets hotter.”

The charges that Ms. Kwanla and the other villagers face shed light on an emerging trend in Thailand. Land dispute issues are becoming increasingly common. According to Pramote Pholpinyo, coordinator of the Northeast Land Reform Network (LRN), there are currently 35-40 “global warming” cases against villagers in Thailand, with charges amounting to almost 33 million baht.

Full story at the ANU College of Asia & the Pacific blog


Like a puppy who hasn’t quite got the hang of potty training yet, the administration is still struggling with decorum and behavior befitting the office of the presidency.

In a move best described as presidential potty mouth, the official twitter account of President Barack Obama posted “Still a BFD” hours after the ruling on the Affordable Health Care Act, obviously referring to the hot-mic incident at the bill’s signing. Vice President Joe Biden displayed a little diarrhea of the mouth whispering, “this is a big f—ing deal,” on live television.

Apparently, the official “tweeter” for the president failed to see the backlash from a social media faux pas courtesy of Democrat National Committee Executive Director Patrick Gaspard that occurred earlier in the day. Several hours before the president’s juvenile tweet, Gaspard took to Twitter to gloat saying, “it’s constitutional. B-tch-s.”

Gaspard later apologized, but the obnoxious statement had already been re-tweeted over 1,500 times.

Keeping the lack of class and complete disrespect for the office of the presidency going, Obama Campaign Manager Jim Messina proceeded to send a hasty email from the official campaign address just a few hours later with the subject line, “Let’s win the d-mn election.” The short content of the message repeated the vulgarity as if to prove beyond doubt the act was intentional and well-thought.

Perhaps the president, his campaign staff and the DNC could take a manners class to learn proper language and respect. In the meantime, I’ll continue to line my new puppy’s crate with the newspaper stories about the presidential potty mouth. I’d be willing to bet he’ll be potty trained faster than the president

First Amendment attorney joins effort to shut down Righthaven

Las Vegas First Amendment attorney Allen Lichtenstein has joined the initiative to shut down copyright infringement lawsuit filer Righthaven LLC.

Lichtenstein said Friday he's signed on to represent the receiver who claims to control Righthaven and who plans to put an end to Righthaven pursuing appeals of its legal setbacks.

After judges rejected its lawsuits and its assets were seized by creditors in December, Righthaven continued to operate solely to pursue those appeals. And as recently as June 22, Las Vegas attorney Steven Gibson publicly claimed to be the CEO of Righthaven and had openly hired an outside attorney to deal with the appeals.

Lara Pearson, another Nevada attorney appointed by a judge as the receiver of Righthaven assets last year, moved Monday to fire Gibson and said she would seek dismissal of Righthaven’s appeals.

Those appeals had little chance of succeeding and are subjecting Righthaven to additional liability, she said. Already, the company has been ordered to pay $318,000 in attorney’s fees to defendants who prevailed against Righthaven in the copyright lawsuits. But with no cash and its trademark and website already auctioned off, Righthaven so far hasn't paid off its debts.

The federal court in Las Vegas hasn't yet acted on Pearson's request that it ratify her move to fire Gibson.

On Friday, Lichtenstein filed court papers showing he’s representing Pearson, the receiver, and Righthaven’s interests in one of the appeals at the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco.

Gibson hasn’t indicated if he’ll oppose Pearson’s effort to fire him and force Righthaven to drop its appeals. He has indicated he disagrees with her claims.

Lichtenstein is known in Las Vegas for free speech work as general counsel for the ACLU of Nevada.

But in the Righthaven case he’s operating as a private attorney, as the ACLU is not involved.

In an odd twist, Lichtenstein for a time in 2010 represented one of the websites that had been hit with one of Righthaven’s no-warning lawsuits — a nonprofit in New Hampshire called

Perhaps confusingly, that means Lichtenstein has now both fought against and represented Righthaven. But that type of thing can happen when a company is taken over through a creditors’ receivership action.

Lichtenstein said Friday his role will be to represent the receiver in whatever she decides to do — she’s already disclosed plans to wind down the company and has threatened to sue Gibson for malpractice.

"Her job is to clean up the mess that was created,'' Lichtenstein said, adding Righthaven was a legal house of cards that was bound to collapse because its lawsuits lacked legal merit.

He said the job of representing Pearson interested him because of his passion for free speech and because of what he felt were threats to such speech posed by Righthaven.

"More speech is better than less speech," he said.

Critics said the Righthaven suits infringed on free speech by inhibiting the flow of information, even when the sharing of information was protected by the fair use doctrine of copyright law.

Righthaven, however, said the defendants it sued had harmed newspapers by using their information without paying for it.

Righthaven was half-owned by Gibson and an affiliate of the Las Vegas Review-Journal.

As a company — not a law firm — Righthaven filed 275 lawsuits starting in March 2010.

The suits claimed websites and other Internet operators infringed on copyrights by posting, without authorization, material from the Las Vegas Review-Journal and the Denver Post.

The litigation campaign collapsed when judges found the suits were based on flawed or ineffective copyright assignments Righthaven received from the newspapers, which hoped to share in revenue.

Several defendants also defeated Righthaven on fair use grounds.

The Stupid Party Expands Government Again

House and Senate Republican leaders, collectively the Stupid Party, are yet again set to expand government, government spending, and engage in Keynesian economic policies they’ve criticized Barack Obama for.

Somewhat wisely, they are releasing all this as the Supreme Court releases its Obamacare decision so no one will pay attention. Ironically, as we wait to see if the Supreme Court gives Congress plenary power through the Commerce Clause, Congressional Republicans are feeding the Leviathan on their own.

Republicans and Democrats have agreed to a massive increase in federal gluttony with a highway bill. The Republicans decided to drop demands for approving the Keystone XL pipeline and demands that the EPA stop its ridiculous regulations on coal plants that will harm our energy future. In exchange, Democrats will not fund bike paths and highway landscaping.

In other words, Democrats should not be at all worried about Republican plans for Obamacare should any portion of it be declared unconstitutional later today. The GOP will just get scared and cave.

We’re at $16 billion TRILLION in debt and as the sun rises this morning we are reminded of two things: the Republicans are not serious about paying down the debt and many outside conservative groups will politely avert their eyes arguing that we must fight Barack Obama, not stop the Republican’s complicity in bankrupting our nation.

So much for credibility in the argument on spending.

Former Abortion Rights Chief Sued by Attorney General’s Office

The one-time president of a prominent abortion-right group was sued Friday by the New York Attorney General’s office for using charity funds for designer shopping sprees, a five-bedroom house rental in the Hamptons and transporting her children to and from school.

The office of state Attorney General Eric Schneiderman filed a civil suit in Manhattan that accuses former NARAL Pro-Choice New York president Kelli Conlin of using more than $250,000 in charity funds during her tenure to for her own benefit, despite a compensation package that reached $380,000 in 2010.

Conlin pleaded guilty last year in Manhattan Criminal Court to falsifying business records. She did not receive any jail time and was ordered to pay $75,000 in restitution.

“As a result of her guilty plea last year, Ms. Conlin has been held accountable by this Office — as a felon — for her criminal misconduct. We are pleased that the Attorney General’s Office will now seek the return of additional funds using its civil enforcement powers,” said a spokesman for Manhattan District Attorney Cy Vance.

Conlin and her attorney were not immediately reachable for comment. She was traveling in Michigan and was expected to be served there some time Friday, a law-enforcement official said.

Scheneiderman recused himself from the investigation because of his father’s past association with the organization.

The suit asks that she pay restitution for the damages with interest and be barred permanently from serving as an officer or director of a New York registered not-for-profit.

Conlin served as President of NARAL Pro-Choice New York and its charitable foundation from 1992 to January 2011.

The lawsuit accuses Conlin of falsifying expense reports to conceal personal spending, holding control of outside consultants in charge of managing the organization’s books and intimidating staff members who questioned her expenses.

According to the complaint, Conlin billed for expenses including $75,000 for designer clothing and shoes from luxury stores including Barneys, Bergdorf Goodman, Giorgio Armani and Bloomingdale’s. She is also accused of seeking reimbursement for a $17,000 house rental in the Hamptons, $44,000 to transport her children from their home in Brooklyn to a school on the Upper West Side and meals at celebrated restaurants such as Daniel and Eleven Madison Park.

Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal refuses to implement Obamacare despite Supreme Court ruling

The Supreme Court upheld President Barack Obama's health care law on Thursday, but Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal, a possible Republican vice presidential contender who has refused to establish a federally mandated health care exchange in his state, said Friday that he will continue to ignore it.

"We're not going to start implementing Obamacare," Jindal said during a conference call with Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell. "We're committed to working to elect Gov. Romney to repeal Obamacare."

Under the Affordable Care Act, states must set up a health insurance exchange program by Jan. 1, 2014, and will receive grants from the federal government to implement it. Several Republican governors, including both Jindal and McDonnell, have put off setting up the exchanges in the hope that the law would be repealed or struck down by the court. Now that the law has been upheld, Jindal said he won't change course and is looking to presumptive Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney to lead the repeal effort if he takes office in 2013.

"Here in Louisiana we have not applied for the grants, we have not accepted many of these dollars, we're not implementing the exchanges," Jindal said. "We don't think it makes any sense to implement Obamacare in Louisiana. We're going to do what we can to fight it."

Despite the court ruling, there is still a chance that Republicans in Congress can repeal much of the law next year even if they don't have a filibuster-proof majority in the Senate. Because Chief Justice John Roberts ruled that the mandate to purchase health insurance—one of the key provisions of the law—was a tax, Republicans can use a procedure called "budget reconciliation" to pass a repeal bill that requires only a simple majority to pass. But this scenario relies on the Republicans' ability to win the White House, keep the majority in the House and gain enough seats in the Senate.

On the same conference call on Friday, McDonnell, also considered a contender to become Romney's running mate, said he would "evaluate" his options in Virginia now that the court has upheld the law.

"We don't even know exactly what that federal exchange would look like, so there's still some uncertainty at this point as to what the right course is, and in the next days and weeks we're going to be evaluating the case as well as the options for Virginia," McDonnell said. "I think each state is going to have to weigh that and look at the time frame to determine what to do. But I agree absolutely that the priority right now is to elect a new president and a new Senate so this law can be repealed."

McDonnell, the chairman of the Republican Governors Association, added that he has not yet polled fellow state executives in the GOP about how they plan to proceed after the ruling, but said that most are looking to the election in November for guidance.

Kids who bullied bus monitor suspended for a year, assigned to reform school

You need closure.

Following individual meetings this week with school and district administrators, each family waived their right to a hearing and agreed to one-year suspensions from school and regular bus transportation. The Greece Central School District is legally required to provide all students ages 5 to 16 with an education, therefore, during the 2012-13 school year, the students who have been suspended will be transferred to the district Reengagement Center, located in a non-school facility. This alternative education program keeps middle school students on track academically while providing a structured opportunity for students to take responsibility for their actions by completing community service hours and receiving formal instruction related to conduct and behavior that prepares them for a productive future. The program includes a strong parent involvement component.

Each student will be required to complete 50 hours of community service with senior citizens and will complete a formal program in bullying prevention, respect and responsibility. In accordance with district policy, if at 30 weeks into the school year the students have completed the conditions of their discipline and are in good standing at the Reengagement Center, they can apply for early readmission to Athena Middle School.

Too much, too little, or just enough? A year’s a stiff sentence for 10 or so minutes of verbal harassment, as nasty as it was, but the school district’s under immense pressure to be strict with the little cretins. And this incident’s playing out, of course, amid growing awareness culturally of how bad the effects of bullying can be. Crack down on this bunch and you send a national message given the spotlight on this case.

Because I know you’re wondering, the donations for Klein now stand north of $668,000. Per the Times, more than 30,000 people have contributed from all 50 states and 82 countries. Two days ago, she finally met the man who came up with the idea. Here’s the vid from WGRZ.

Thank Goodness: Obamcare Saves Home Prices in DC Again

In the end the Supreme Court of the United States didn’t untie the Gordian Knot, but as Alexander had done, they cut it instead.

And by doing so they demonstrated what we have known all along: The only new ideas Democrats- and D.C. bureaucrats- have are new ways of taxing Americans and new bureaucracies for spending that money.

I won’t read the Obamacare opinion. I’ll leave that to legal scholars.

But I know this.

A tax is a tax is a tax.

Obamcare, when shorn of its Euro-Metro sophistication, is a tax.

A really big, fat, ugly tax, with a really big, fat, ugly bureaucracy attached to it.

Thus the Democrats- and D.C. bureaucrats- have created a system that promises to raise taxes on everyone. And still not make healthcare affordable for all.

Why did they do this? Not to “save” healthcare; nor yet to “reform” it.

As I have said before, no one in D.C. gets paid to solve problems. That would give lobbyists nothing to do.

Instead, we have just created another pot of money that can be used for cronies, anti-capitalists and special interests to keep D.C. as the one major metropolitan area where home prices are steady.

Of course D.C. thinks things are great. For people in Washington the money machine is still open for business. You just have to have the right pin number.

Compare the two charts.

The one on top is the median sales price of all properties in the Washington, D.C. area since Jan 2000- which starts at $130,000. The real estate market peaked in 2007 at $460,000, yet home prices have remained remarkably steady, despite “the worst recession” since the start of time. The current median sales price for all homes in D.C. according to Trulia is $410,000. That’s about a 10 percent average annual return.

The chart below is the chart for the median sales price for homes listed in Chicago, IL. Remarkably, in January of 2000, median homes prices were at $145,000, higher than D.C. Chicago real estate values peaked at $329,000 in 2007 and now stand at $180,000. That’s about a 1.9 percent average annual return.

The rate of inflation over the same periods is just a tad higher.

What’s clear from the Supreme Court decision is that our revolution for limited government and limited taxation is now broken. 236 years ago this country was founded on the belief that governments that governed least, governed best.

I think we still believe that.

But heaven forbid that that antique idea get in the way of the Washington wealth machine.

The six million people who live in the D.C. bubble may only add up to two percent of the population, but they truly are the One Percent that we’ve been warned about.

Wall Street?

Wall Street has done worse than the average home in Chicago.

In January of 2000, Wall Street peaked at 1498 on the S&P 500. The S&P now stands at 1362. That’s a rate of return of about .80 percent, or a 9.55 percent loss during the entire period.

“In many troubled relationships, both sides deserve some of the blame,” write pollster Scott Rasmussen. “But the United States is a nation founded on the belief that governments gain their legitimacy only from the consent of the governed. In the relationship between the people and the Political Class, that means the voters are right, and the politicians need to change.”

Or we need to change the politicians.

Now we know.

P.S. We won't be France. Say it with me. Post it to Facebook

CAIR is upset about SEAL training methods

It seems CAIR is always offended by something.

The latest is that they are upset because the US Navy SEALs are using likenesses of Muslim females dressed in Shariah-compliant garb, as targets in their training.

CAIR needs to butt out of SEAL training. The SEALs endeavor to make their training as real as possible and, the fact is, in the past decade, the majority of the enemy fighters they have met on the battlefield were Islamic Jihadists. Muslims all. If that bothers CAIR, they haven’t said so yet.

Maybe that’s because CAIR is a front group for the Muslim Brotherhood and their leadership was implicated with wiretap evidence as being tied to HAMAS, an officially designated terrorist organization according to the US State Department. On top of this, CAIR was named as an unindicted co-conspirator in the largest terrorism financing conviction in US history, the US v the Holy Land Foundation…

So read the press release below from CAIR with a grain of salt. They aren’t mad at all the Jihadists that actually shoot at SEALs, they are mad at the SEALs for shooting at pictures of Jihadists. Makes perfect sense, right?

WASHINGTON, June 29, 2012 – /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ — A prominent national Muslim civil rights and advocacy organization today called on Pentagon officials not to use a target depicting a Muslim woman wearing a religious head scarf (hijab) and verses from the Quran in combat scenarios for training Navy SEALs at the new close quarters combat range at Joint Base Fort Story in Virginia Beach, Va.

The Washington-based Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) said that military facility, referred to as a “kill house,” features a number of combat scenarios, including a mosque and a movable target of a Muslim woman wearing hijab and aiming a handgun. Verses from the Quran, Islam’s revealed text, are also displayed behind the target.

“Using a Muslim woman wearing a religious head scarf with [verses from the] Quran behind her as a target for our nation’s military personnel is offensive and sends a negative and counterproductive message to trainees and to the Muslim-majority nations to which they may be deployed,” wrote CAIR National Executive Director Nihad Awad in a letter to Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta. “This is yet another example of why the Department of Defense needs to fix what appears to be an ongoing problem by consulting credible scholars and experts to review all training and training materials related to Islam or Muslims.”

Veto Threat: Administration Wants to Hike Healthcare Fees for Military

The audacity of the Obama administration never ceases to amaze. On Friday, they threatened to veto a defense appropriations bill because it, in part, does not include hikes in healthcare fees for members of the military. The House bill passed 299-120 in May. The official policy statement offers this objection:

TRICARE Fees and Co-Payments. The Administration is disappointed that the Congress did not incorporate the requested TRICARE fee initiatives into either the appropriation or authorization legislation. The Administration asks the House to reconsider the TRICARE fee proposals, which are essential for DOD to successfully address rising personnel costs. The $1.8 billion in savings are part of a carefully balanced FY 2013 Budget request.

The proposed increases in healthcare payments for members of the military members were reported by The Washington Free Beacon in February:

“The Obama administration’s proposed defense budget calls for military families and retirees to pay sharply more for their healthcare, while leaving unionized civilian defense workers’ benefits untouched. The proposal is causing a major rift within the Pentagon, according to U.S. officials. Several congressional aides suggested the move is designed to increase the enrollment in Obamacare’s state-run insurance exchanges.

The disparity in treatment between civilian and uniformed personnel is causing a backlash within the military that could undermine recruitment and retention.

The proposed increases in health care payments by service members, which must be approved by Congress, are part of the Pentagon’s $487 billion cut in spending. It seeks to save $1.8 billion from the Tricare medical system in the fiscal 2013 budget, and $12.9 billion by 2017.”

Of course, it all goes back to propping up ObamaCare…

“Administration officials told Congress that one goal of the increased fees is to force military retirees to reduce their involvement in Tricare and eventually opt out of the program in favor of alternatives established by the 2010 Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, aka Obamacare.”

If the administration had their way:

"Significantly, the plan calls for increases between 30 percent to 78 percent in Tricare annual premiums for the first year. After that, the plan will impose five-year increases ranging from 94 percent to 345 percent—more than 3 times current levels.

According to congressional assessments, a retired Army colonel with a family currently paying $460 a year for health care will pay $2,048.

The new plan hits active duty personnel by increasing co-payments for pharmaceuticals and eliminating incentives for using generic drugs.

The changes are worrying some in the Pentagon who fear it will severely impact efforts to recruit and maintain a high-quality all-volunteer military force. Such benefits have been a key tool for recruiting qualified people and keeping them in uniform."

This just makes it abundantly clear how the administration regards those who serve this country and have already given so much.

Maxine Waters: ‘I have not decided’ whether or not to call Obamacare mandate ‘a tax’

Following the Supreme Court’s decision to uphold the individual health insurance mandate in President Barack Obama’s health care law as a tax, California Democratic Rep. Maxine Waters praised the court’s ruling but told The Daily Caller that she personally has “not decided” whether or not to call the mandate a tax.

TheDC asked Waters if she agrees with Chief Justice John Roberts that the provision requiring all Americans to purchase health insurance or pay a fine is a federal tax.

“What I have not decided is whether or not it’s better to call it a tax or a mandate. What I have decided is it’s absolutely necessary that it be paid for, that if we’re going to cover all of these preexisting conditions that I just alluded to, we have to have the income by which to do it and so I have not decided that one may be better than the other,” she told TheDC. “I’m going to think about that and I’m going to review and perhaps I’ll have a different opinion on it later on but right now I’m just happy.”

When pressed on the issue, Waters would not say if the Democratic-controlled Congress intended to create a new tax when it passed the health care law in 2010.

“I don’t want us to start projecting out and start to talk about what’s going to happen in the future,” Waters responded. “The first thing we must know and understand is that this independent, very, high positioned branch of government will make their decision based on the deliberations that they’re involved in, based on their experiences, based on their beliefs and we cannot anticipate what they’re decisions are going to be.”

Obama and White House Budget Director Jeffrey Zients have said the individual mandate is not a tax. In his oral argument before the Supreme Court, Solicitor General Donald Verrilli Jr. said that same.

When questioned by TheDC on Thursday, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid would not say if they view the mandate as a tax. However, they both said the Supreme Court made the right decision to uphold the law.

“Call it what you will, it’s a step forward for America’s families and you know what? Take yes for an answer,” Pelosi said Thursday.

“I’m not about here to give you all a dissertation on constitutional law. The law has been withheld [upheld], and I’m very happy it has been,” Reid said.

Military dogs euthanized as 'equipment' under cruel law

If roadside bombs and other hazards of war don't kill military dogs, senseless government regulations and red tape might. The United States is breeding 100 puppies a year to train for bomb sniffing and other soldierly duties, but many aren't making it back to happy homes because an obscure federal law classifies them as "equipment" rather than personnel -- and makes adopting them a financial and bureaucratic nightmare. A bill to require that the military ship the heroic dogs home and ease potential veterinarian costs for adopting families is currently bogged down in Congress, as dogs continue to be euthanized. In the meantime, at least there is an occasional happy ending.

Press Secretary Says Contention that Obamacare Is Tax “Idiotic”

Press Secretary Jay Carney sought to get out ahead of the GOP's campaign rhetoric alleging that Obamacare is a huge tax imposed on the middle class.

“There's no way this is a tax,” Carney insisted. “The President doesn't call it a tax. The legislation doesn't say it's a tax. Calling it a tax is idiotic. The President has made it quite clear that the $2,000 a person has to pay for refusing to buy health insurance is a punishment for disobedience, not a tax.”

The fact that the Supreme Court decision upholding Obamacare was founded on Chief Justice John Roberts' finding that the so-called penalty is a tax is irrelevant, according to Carney. “Roberts' convoluted logic isn't binding on anything,” Carney said. “All that matters is that the Court voted to sustain the law. Whatever reasons he or any other Justice might give are irrelevant.”

To further bolster his case against Obamacare being a tax, Carney cited the waivers granted by Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius. “Secretary Sebelius has no authority to waive taxes,” Carney pointed out. “She does, however, have the authority to excuse persons from complying with the mandate. Those who think the mandate is oppressive ought to be trying to get on her good side. I don't think that castigating the Affordable Care Act for political advantage is a course likely to achieve that.”

Thus far, Sebelius has issued over 1,000 waivers—most of them to organizations and businesses supporting the Administration's political agenda.

In related news, Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal (R) suggested that, based on the Court's decision, the government might mandate the consumption of tofu or the purchase of a Chevy Volt under threat of being assessed a penalty for noncompliance. House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif) dismissed such fears as “misplaced. It is the government's job to promote the general welfare. If eating healthier food and driving non-polluting vehicles is deemed the appropriate way of promoting that welfare who is Mr. Jindal to say that the government shouldn't penalize those who won't cooperate?"

President Says Obamacare Decision a Victory for Freedom

President Barack Obama hailed the US Supreme Court's narrow 5-4 decision to uphold his signature Affordable Care Act as “a victory for freedom.”

“By affirming the legality of our health care plan, the Court has ensured that every American will be free from the worry of having no insurance,” the President said. “By compelling everyone to purchase insurance we are freeing them to enjoy the benefits of medical coverage and relieving them of the necessity to plan ahead and decide for themselves whether get this insurance.”

The President attempted to reconcile the compulsory nature of the health care mandate with the concept of freedom. “Don't be led astray by those who would have you believe that their notions of freedom are a match for what every American needs,” Obama warned. “Just think back to the times when your parents made you eat your peas. In your kid's mind you probably saw this as an imposition on your freedom. But your parents were only trying to give you the gift of good health—freeing you from the consequences of a bad diet.”

“We're doing the same kind of thing with our health care plan,” he continued. “By taking the issue of whether to buy insurance off your list of things to do we are freeing you from having to spend time figuring out what to do. That time can now be used in whatever way you want. On top of this, you'll be healthier. And can there be any question that a healthier person is freer than a sick person?”

Hospital closures inevitable and NHS operation rationing will continue, warns think-tank

NHS patients should expect continued rationing of common operations for years to come, while hospital closures are “inevitable”, according to an influential think-tank.

Prof Appleby questioned how much impact limiting access to such procedures actually had on improving the finances of primary care trusts (PCTs), which pay for treatments in hospitals Photo: ALAMY

John Appleby, chief economist at The King’s Fund, also warned services in some hospitals could seriously deteriorate due to the impact of the economic crisis.

He said it was highly unlikely the NHS budget would be significantly increased in the foreseeable future.

Against this grim financial background managers are being asked to get 5p more value from every £1 they spend, every year, partially to keep up with the increasing demands of an ageing population.

Patients have already experienced the effect of this. For example, nine in 10 trusts have introduced tighter criteria to qualify for a range of procedures deemed to be of ‘low clinical value’ - including hip and knee replacements, cataract removals and weight-loss surgery.

Doctors and patient groups have argued that these are unfair and will be more expensive in the long run.

But Prof Appleby said the “financial imperative” was so pressing that such restrictions were likely to continue well beyond 2015.

He said: “In terms of disinvesting from comparatively low value treatments, I would expect that to go on, even though it’s extremely difficult if it’s a case of withdrawing a service.”

However, he questioned how much impact limiting access to such procedures actually had on improving the finances of primary care trusts (PCTs), which pay for treatments in hospitals.

And he said the NHS needed to make “a quantum leap” to keep raising productivity year after year, to save a cumulative total of £50 billion by 2020.

Restricting some operations, plus “shaving a bit off the length of stay in hospitals and changing to low energy lightbulbs isn’t going to do it”.

Politicians had to grasp the nettle and tackle more fundamental questions, he said, such as the fact that there were “too many hospitals in the wrong places”.

“The system of care is not as good as it could be if we reorganised it,” he said.

Earlier this week, The Daily Telegraph disclosed that South London Healthcare NHS Trust, which runs three hospitals, was on the brink of bankruptcy and could soon be run by a management team appointed by ministers. Exactly what will then happen to it is unclear.

But senior figures say this is not an isolated example, and there are many other hospital trusts in dire financial problems, particularly in outer London and the south east, that could go the same way.

Asked if closures were inevitable, Prof Appleby said: “In a word, yes.”

Whole hospitals could close, he said, “or relatively small district general hospitals could attempt to withdraw from providing the full range of services and become more specialist”.

In the meantime there was the danger of a poorer and poorer service in underperforming hospitals, he warned.

“I think the worry with that is that there will be certain areas that would start to see deterioration of services to such a degree that the Care Quality Commission has to step in.”

The CQC has the power to close down wards or services until the provider meets safety standards, and can even close them down permanently.

Prof Appleby said: “That’s really serious: it’s patients having to be ferried to other areas.

“If the NHS got to that stage it would be really appalling.”

Earlier this month Mike Farrar, chief executive of the NHS Confederation, warned that without “assertive action”, “the NHS looks like a supertanker heading for an iceberg”.

A Department of Health spokesperson said: "We know the NHS can, and must be, more efficient to meet future challenges. Where the NHS can do things better and save money to reinvest in high quality patient care, it must do so. We have always been absolutely clear that being efficient does not mean cutting services — it means getting the best services to meet patients' needs and the best value for every pound the NHS spends."