"It's going bad pretty quick." The climate of anxiety and fear in Hong Kong is growing since last year's enactment of a national security law tailored specifically for the special administrative region in China.
The legislation makes any act or spoken word in Hong Kong that Beijing regards as subversion, secession, terrorism or collusion with foreign forces punishable by up to life in prison.
Migration out of Hong Kong has sharply increased since the pro-democracy protests of 2019 and 2020 and subsequent government crackdowns on civil liberties. Nearly 90,000 residents have left the territory.
Migrants have primarily relocated to the United Kingdom, Australia and the United States.
Hong Kong emigres are the territoy's best and brightest – young professionals who can quickly secure employment, or families whose parents want to provide education that prioritizes independent critical thinking.
The money leaving Hong Kong also signals the urgency with which people are fleeing. More than $1.9 billion has been pulled out of pension funds from the first quarter of 2019 to the second quarter of 2021.
"The government isn't really listening to the people."
Mark Zuckerberg has publicly said that Facebook allows its more than three billion users to speak on equal footing with the elites of politics, culture, and journalism, and that its standards of behavior apply to everyone, no matter their status or fame.
However, the company has built a system that has exempted high-profile users from some or all of its rules, according to company documents. The program, known as "cross check" or "XCheck," shields millions of VIP users from the company’s normal enforcement process.
At times, XCheck has protected public figures whose posts contain harassment or incitement to violence, violations that would typically lead to sanctions for regular users. In 2019, it allowed international soccer star Neymar to show nude photos of a woman who had accused him of rape to tens of millions of his fans.
XCheck grew to include at least 5.8 million users in 2020. If Facebook’s systems conclude that one of those accounts might have broken its rules, they don’t remove the content—at least not right away.
Whitelisted accounts shared inflammatory claims that Facebook’s fact checkers deemed false, including that vaccines are deadly, that Hillary Clinton had covered up "pedophile rings," and that then-President Donald Trump had called all refugees seeking asylum "animals".
A 2019 internal review of Facebook’s whitelisting practices, marked attorney-client privileged, found favoritism to those users to be both widespread and "not publicly defensible."
"We are not actually doing what we say we do publicly," said the confidential review. It called the company’s actions "a breach of trust" and added: "Unlike the rest of our community, these people can violate our standards without any consequences."
Facebook knows, in acute detail, that its platforms are riddled with flaws that cause harm, often in ways only the company fully understands. Facebook often lacks the will or the ability to address them.
Time and again, the documents show, in the U.S. and overseas, Facebook’s own researchers have identified the platform’s ill effects, in areas including teen mental health, political discourse, and human trafficking. Time and again, despite Congressional hearings, its own pledges, and numerous media exposés, the company didn’t fix them.
Documents include research reports, online employee discussions, and drafts of presentations to senior management, including Mr. Zuckerberg. They aren’t the result of idle grumbling, but rather the formal work of teams whose job was to examine the social network and figure out how it could improve. They offer perhaps the clearest picture thus far of how broadly Facebook’s problems are known inside the company, up to the CEO himself. And when Facebook speaks publicly about many of these issues, to lawmakers, regulators and in the case of XCheck, its own Oversight Board, it often provides misleading or partial answers, masking how much it knows.
Facebook appeared more concerned with avoiding gaffes than mitigating high-profile abuse. One Facebook review in 2019 of major XCheck errors showed that of 18 incidents investigated, 16 involved instances where the company erred in actions taken against prominent users. Four of the 18 touched on inadvertent enforcement actions against content from Mr. Trump and his son, Donald Trump Jr.
At least some of the documents have been turned over to the Securities and Exchange Commission and to Congress.
Facebook has misled the public and its own Oversight Board.
"Bombshell reporting exposes is that the so-called self-regulation efforts by social media companies have been little more than a smokescreen."
"What’s interesting here is at the very same time that Facebook, Instagram had studies in front of it showing the harms that come from the decisions that it makes. Zuckerberg went before Congress and said the research that we’ve seen shows the positive mental health effects of social media applications."
"We’ve never had an entity like social media where there’s this big of a gap between the power that they have, the control that they have, and accountability."
"We need to come forward with a comprehensive framework that gets more transparency, more accountability, some basic antidiscrimination rules, more user empowerment. So you're in control of what you see, not the social media companies themselves."
Billboards to stay up for 2 months, former state senator Scott Wagner says.
A former Pennsylvania state senator is saying that he has put up around 15 billboards locally with a photo of President Biden in military gear alongside the message "Making the Taliban Great Again."
"The pull out rushed through by President Biden had made us the laughing stock of the world," he wrote. "The Taliban are openly stating that they ran the United States out of Afghanistan – they are now very emboldened."
Biden's White House has history of preventing public from hearing him off the cuff.
This isn't the first time the White House intervened in blocking Biden from being heard by the general public. Last month, the president's audio feed was cut as he was about to respond to a reporter's question on his administration's military withdrawal deadline from Afghanistan.
In March, the White House cut the feed as Biden said he was "happy to take questions" while speaking to Democratic lawmakers at a virtual event.
White House press secretary Jen Psaki previously admitted during an interview that Biden is often advised by her staff not to take questions.
Biden raised eyebrows last week when he told a crowd, "I‘m supposed to stop and walk out of the room" at a White House event following his prepared remarks.
California Gov. Gavin Newsom has been pointing to Texas as an example of where the Golden State is headed if Republicans take over.
While Newsom and other Democrats portray Texas as a nightmare, Texans note that more Californians and California businesses have been relocating to the Lone Star State, seeking relief from California’s taxes and regulations.
California has lost 265 business headquarters since 2018, with the pace of relocations appearing to be accelerating.
In 2020 California’s population declined for the first time in history, costing it a seat in Congress.
The state’s population was becoming increasingly "two-tiered," with wealthy elites living in coastal cities and lower-income residents banished to interior areas or forced to move.
The Tax Foundation ranked California 49th in the U.S. for its anti-business tax climate, surpassed only by New Jersey.
"We were looking at it, at the North Tower and guys were saying, ‘You know, a small plane? That's a huge building, that's a really big hole and that's a clear day. This is weird.’ And we were all talking about it with some other SEALS and some intelligence people. And then the second plane hit the south tower and that's when we all knew immediately – this is an attack."
Former SEAL Robert O'Neill said one of his chief concerns is how quickly the U.S. has seemed to forget what the struggle against Islamic terrorism means.
"People do need to realize that, as opposed to yelling at each other on social media – there's an enemy out there that wants to kill all of us. And it doesn't matter, really doesn't matter, what you look like – it's your ideology. You don't believe what they think you should believe and they’re going to kill you."
"One of their sayings is, 'The Americans have the clock, but we have the time,'" he added, warning against the threat of a future attack. "They're going to adapt."
9/11 should serve as a memorial to not only those who were lost in the attacks but as a reminder of shared American values.
"My biggest concern is the division in this country," O’Neill said. "Most people are good to each other. But the anger and the division gets the ratings, and that’s what people hear. A lot of people know if they keep people divided they can stay in power and it’s wrong."
House committees are currently crafting a $3.5 trillion budget plan that will serve as the blueprint for President Biden's economic agenda.
Raise the top individual income tax rate to 39.6%. That new top rate reverses part of the Trump-era Tax Cuts and Jobs Act.
Raise taxes on capital gains and dividends for higher earners. The top capital gains tax would climb to 39.6% from 20%.
The president plans to keep an existing Medicare surcharge in place, bringing federal tax rates as high as 43.4% for some Americans.
The president also wants to eliminate the so-called stepped-up basis. Under current law, when heirs inherit an asset that has appreciated in value, they get a "step-up" in basis, meaning they receive the holding at its current market value. Beneficiaries can sell those assets and pay capital gains based only on the time they receive the asset and the time they sold it, allowing them to minimize the tax bite.
End the private-equity tax break.
Hike taxes on corporations. Biden has also called for higher taxes on businesses, including hiking the corporate tax rate to 28% from 21%, rolling back a key part of Republicans' 2017 tax law.
"The government does not view taxpayer money as your money. They view it as the government's money that the taxpayer has no right to."
New York received a 48 ranking – with one being the highest ranking and 50 being the lowest – while California received a 39 ranking
Factors measured included average workweek hours, employment rate, idle youth, average commute time, average leisure time spent per day, and others.
California has also struggled with widespread unemployment fraud. The state admits it could have paid up to $31 billion to scammers, including to organized crime organizations in China and Russia.
Most federal unemployment programs related to the pandemic expired this week, which has some business owners in New York expecting workers to now make it back to their jobs. "Now that my unemployment is up I’m ready to come back," said one worker.
This is how Socialist programs make conditions worse. People stop trying; they become increasingly lazy.
"Normally when you’re getting unemployment, the whole idea is that’s temporary, and you need to be looking for work to be able to get off unemployment," Republican Florida Governor Ron DeSantis said.
Alaska claimed the top spot for most hard-working state, while North Dakota and Nebraska came in second and third place,.
Grocery-store chains are still battling supply challenges that some executives said are as bad as what they saw in spring 2020, when hoarding left holes in stocks of some staples.
Industry executives say new problems are arising weekly, driven by shortages of labor and raw materials. Groceries remain scarce as some food companies anticipate disruptions lasting into 2022. A wider range of products is running short and logistical challenges are compounding for many retailers.
Supermarkets are sometimes receiving as little as 40% of what they order. Many grocery chains said that it is hard to predict how complete or on-time their deliveries will be due to limited guidance from suppliers. Executives say there is often little recourse when trucks show up with a fraction of what was ordered.
Food manufacturers now are confronting new problems. Resin, aluminum and other raw materials used for packaging are running short, and many producers are giving priority to their most popular items.
Industry executives said manufacturers are unable to produce enough items to meet demand, with many employees staying home
because of the coronavirus or because they have received rounds of stimulus checks.
Welcome to the the problem with Socialism. The easier it is for people to be lazy and avoid work, the more people will decide to be lazy, and productivity suffers.
The more taxes are increased to pay for Socialism, the more people decide that working harder just to pay more taxes is foolish wasted effort, and productivity suffers even further.
Meanwhile, politicians who enjoy power for its own sake promise more Socialism as the solution to all problems. Socialism is a destructive spiral doomed to failure and that culture is doomed to destruction from the beginning.
Maine became the fourth state in America to abolish civil asset forfeiture, a procedure in which law enforcement seizes property they only suspect is associated with criminal activity, and keep it, even if the person who loses the property has never been convicted of any crime.
“Civil forfeiture is one of the most serious assaults on due process and private property rights in America today,” said Lee McGrath, senior legislative counsel for the Institute for Justice, in response to the action of the Maine Legislature and its governor. McGrath said that the law “ends an immense injustice and will ensure that only convicted criminals — and not innocent Mainers — lose their property to forfeiture.”
Proponents of civil asset forfeiture (CAF) argue that it is needed to combat drug trafficking and organized crime, because CAF targets the fruits of their crime. In other words, because the alleged crimes are so serious, such niceties as property rights and due process of law should be ignored.
There have even been bizarre cases in which, because a drug deal occurred in one unit of an apartment complex, legal authorities have seized the entire complex! (Of course, it is probable that very few apartment complexes in America have never had any illegal activity such as that take place in at least one of their units.)
Civil asset forfeiture laws are legal abuse and the practice of tyrannies. They have no place under the U.S. Constitution.
States with Republican governors are leading the U.S. economic recovery from the coronavirus pandemic, while those run by Democrats – which tended to impose lengthier and stricter lockdowns on businesses – are faced with significantly higher unemployment rates.
Labor Department data published last week shows the 10 states with the lowest unemployment rates are all led by GOP governors – while the 10 states with the highest percentage of out-of-work Americans are run by Democratic governors. Just 13 states led by Democrats have recovered at least two-thirds of the jobs lost during the pandemic.
Blue states including Nevada (7.7%), New York (7.6%), New Mexico (7.6%), California (7.6%) and New Jersey (7.3%) had substantially higher unemployment rates than the national average of 5.4% in July, the data shows.
By comparison, red states – such as Nebraska (2.3%), Utah (2.6%), New Hampshire (2.9%), South Dakota (2.9%) and Idaho (3%) – were well below the national average.
Already, 23 states – all but one of which is led by a Republican governor – have ended the unemployment programs, a move intended to help businesses that are struggling to hire workers.
Even within the U.S. capitalist-leaning overall economy, the greater socialism of the blue states clearly is more harmful to peoples' lives and well-being. Socialism does not work. Freedom is better.
Former National Security Advisor says China 'badly' wants Taiwan. General Secretary Xi [Jinping] says he will reunite Taiwan with China and he’s going to do it one way or the other.
Former National Security Advisor Robert O'Brien warned the Biden administration Thursday to not underestimate Xi Jinping’s desire to reunite Taiwan with China. After the world witnessed the Taliban takeover of Afghanistan; the US needs to be "very careful."
China is running major military operations all the time. They’re spending a fortune to build up their military.
Biden was asked about how other countries – in particular Taiwan – should view the U.S. pullout from Afghanistan. Many asked if the U.S. could be viewed as a reliable ally. Biden's response: "We have made—kept every commitment. We made a sacred commitment to Article 5 that if, in fact, anyone were to invade or take action against our NATO allies, we would respond. Same with Japan, same with South Korea, same with Taiwan. It’s not even comparable to talk about."
Biden has made it clear that China is the biggest geopolitical challenge for the U.S. In February, he announced the formation of a Defense Department China Task Force to assess the future challenge from China; earlier this month, G7 member states agreed to an initiative aimed at challenging China’s Belt and Road Initiative.
Taiwan and China separated amid civil war in 1949 and China says it is determined to bring the island under its control by force if necessary. The U.S. switched diplomatic recognition from Taipei to Beijing in 1979, but is legally required to ensure Taiwan can defend itself and the self-governing democratic island enjoys strong bipartisan support in Washington.
Beijing officials consistently express skepticism that Washington would act against its own interest, risking, as one Chinese general put it, "Los Angeles for Taipei."
Last month, China's President Xi Jinping marked his Communist Party’s 100th anniversary from Tiananmen Square and struck a bellicose tone, reconfirming China’s ‘historic mission’ to control Taiwan while warning other countries not to interfere.
Clarissa Ward, CNN's chief international correspondent who's been reporting from Kabul, called what she's witnessed an "absolute mess" and offered a stunning rebuke to Biden's claim that the pullout of troops out of Afghanistan which quickly resulted in a takeover by the Taliban was not a "failure."
Later in the day, CNN’s counterterrorism analyst Phil Mudd went off on the State Department for failing to say how many Americans are left in Afghanistan. "That was pathetic!"
An analysis piece published on CNN's website also offered a scathing response to Biden's defense of the Afghan withdrawal.
"Biden is failing to adequately explain why he so badly failed to predict the swift collapse of the Afghan state. And his credibility has been sullied because his confident downplaying of the risks of the withdrawal has been repeatedly confounded by events. Seven months into his term, Biden no longer gets credit simply for not being Donald Trump," CNN White House reporter Stephen Collinson wrote on Thursday. "Biden's defensiveness, imprecision and apparent changes of position hardly project confidence or competence during an extraordinarily sensitive crisis on hostile foreign soil. Anytime a commander-in-chief does not appear in control or is in denial of obvious developments is a moment that threatens to inflict political damage."
"The President's image abroad is also taking a beating. His goal of reviving US relations with allies after declaring 'America is back' following the Trump administration have been complicated by dismay over the possibility that interpreters and other workers who helped US troops over 20 years could be left behind to face reprisals from the Taliban."
The DOJ seems to be dragging its feet in sifting through the “evidence” against the January 6 rioters, some of whom have been in custody since January.
Judge McFadden scolded the government for its backwards process. “You would not arrest [someone] then gather evidence later. That’s not how this works.” When Fifield said full discovery is in the best interest of the defendant, McFadden shot back: “Freedom also is important to the defendant.” The Trump-appointed judge raised concerns over Sixth Amendment violations. “This does not feel what the Constitution [and] the Speedy Trial Act envisions.”
The DOJ has been rather tight-lipped about what is going on with the people detained for the Jan. 6 riot, and there have been reports of mistreatment. Even Republicans in Congress can’t seem to get answers.
Clearly, these are politically-based jailings! These peoples' Right to a speedy trial is clearly being violated.
President Biden’s economic agenda has boosted wages, but millions of American workers are still being left behind as inflation has more than wiped out salary gains.
U.S. wages grew at a 4% year-over-year pace in July, but trailed the 5.4% annual increase in inflation – real wages are falling. inflation had been absent since the 2008 financial crisis.
"Call it the ‘Biden pay cut’. Rapid inflation and declining real wages are the direct result of the Biden administration’s historic spending that is overheating the economy and creating disincentives to work."
Biden has long touted his "Build Back Better" economic agenda which aims to create jobs, cut taxes and lower costs for working families.
Instead, Biden’s economic agenda plan stalled job growth, raised taxes in the form of higher gasoline prices and has eaten into the wage gains won by American families.
Both the Biden administration and Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell say that the current period of inflation is "transitory," and that rising prices will recede as supply-chain disruptions are remedied. However, Wall Street economists are concerned those predictions may be off the mark. "Inflation is likely to be more persistent and pervasive than predicted by the Federal Reserve. With consumer inflation expectations also on the rise the case for earlier policy stimulus withdrawal is building."
Outside of the Fourth of July, the Sturgis Rally must be one of the most iconic celebrations of freedom in the country. And where better to celebrate than in South Dakota, the freest state in the nation?
Many of the visitors say they’re coming to South Dakota specifically because it reminds them of the America they grew up in. Free. Independent. Unburdened by the constraints and headaches that big cities and liberal ideology forced upon them.
The rights of individuals are what birthed this nation and that independent spirit is what drove America to become the leader of not just the free world, but the whole world.
And yet, bureaucrats in Washington, D.C. and the media cast aspersions on the Sturgis Rally while ignoring concertgoers, lavish birthday parties, and the continuing crisis at the U.S.-Mexico border.
It’s a double standard that gives a free pass to so-called elites to do as they please and mandate others to do as they say. It’s a failure in leadership on their part and why more and more Americans are fleeing big cities and blue states for places like South Dakota.
Under God, the people rule -- and ride free on the open roads of South Dakota!
624 pages of records from the office of the Secretary of State of Iowa reveal how state officials pressured social media companies (Twitter and Facebook) to censor posts about the 2020 election.
Included in these records were emails from Iowa state officials to representatives of Big Tech pressuring these companies to remove Judicial Watch’s posts.
The emails show how the state agency successfully pressured Facebook to censor Judicial Watch’s post about Iowa’s management of its voter rolls.
The records show that officials in the Iowa Secretary of State office on multiple occasions contacted officials from Facebook and Twitter to try to have these companies remove Judicial Watch posts that raised concerns about Iowa’s failure to maintain accurate election rolls.
Dictatorships label antithetical views as inaccurate and spread lies about their accusers.
Politicians dedicated to freedom make the evidence available and provide their accusers with actual facts.
"How bad does this atmosphere we’re living in have to get before the people who say cancel culture is overblown admit that it is in fact an insanity that is swallowing up the world?"
"Young people have to stop flattering themselves that they’re Nostradamus and would have foreseen had they been around back then everything that is unacceptable now," Maher told his audience. "Why do we allow the people who just want to b*tch always win?… This is called a purge. It’s a mentality that belongs in Stalin’s Russia."
Judicial Watch announced today that it received 540 pages and a supplemental four pages of documents from the office of the Secretary of State of California revealing how state officials pressured social media companies (Twitter, Facebook, Google (YouTube)) to censor posts about the 2020 election.
The documents show how the state agency successfully pressured YouTube to censor a Judicial Watch video concerning the vote by mail and a Judicial Watch lawsuit settlement about California voter roll clean up.
Deputy Secretary of State and Chief Communications Officer Paula Valle: "I am not necessarily comfortable with his line of questions and the additional doors that this will open."
The questions included concerns from citizens who were targeted by the “Misinformation Tracker,”: "Both individuals wanted to know how their posts ended up being labeled misinformation and how, given their relatively small following, they came to the attention of the Office of Election Cybersecurity?"
“These new documents suggest a conspiracy against the First Amendment rights of Americans by the California Secretary of State, the Biden campaign operation, and Big Tech,” said Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton. “These documents blow up the big lie that Big Tech censorship is ‘private’ – as the documents show collusion between a whole group of government officials in multiple states to suppress speech about election controversies.”
Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C. calls Dems' spending package a 'tax and spend dream of the socialist left'.
Graham condemned the Democratic spending package and said that, if needed, he will follow the lead of the Texas House Democrats who fled their home state in an effort to kill GOP-backed voting legislation.
Graham noted that he would support the roughly $950 billion infrastructure plan for roads, bridges and ports, but stressed that "the $3.5 trillion reconciliation package designed to pass without a single Republican vote" is "not infrastructure." He added that the reconciliation package is "a liberal wish list," which contains "all kinds of new social programs unrelated to infrastructure."
Graham asserted that the only way to pay for the reconciliation package is "through a massive tax increase" and that passing the bill would cause inflation to soar "through the roof."
New York Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and three other House Democrats affiliated with the far-left Democratic Socialists of America (DSA) have so far remained silent while the DSA appears to back Cuba's communist regime against protesters demanding freedom.
Ocasio-Cortez, Michigan Rep. Rashida Tlaib, New York Rep. Jamaal Bowman and Missouri Rep. Cori Bush make up the four DSA members in Congress. All four members have yet to speak out about the ongoing protests in Cuba.
The DSA International Committee on Monday declared its solidarity with the "Revolution" – the term used by the communist regime – "in this moment of unrest."
South Carolina General Assembly is doing well on the issues
State Rep. Garry Smith reports – "Here are just a few of the major accomplishments from this year’s session:"
A Conservative Budget – We passed the most conservative budget in South Carolina history! This budget funds only the essential functions of the State while protecting taxpayers and preparing for weather or health-related disasters. For the full budget, visit
Here are some of this year’s top conservative budget highlights:
• $50 million in a Preparedness Relief Fund in the case of a natural disaster
• Investment in rebuilding tourism to recover the pandemic’s hardest-hit industry
• $650 million to local governments to allow them to cut taxes on SC residents
• 75% expansion of the state’s 4-K program and $1,000 raise for every teacher (in addition to a STEP increase) bringing teacher pay in South Carolina above the South East average
• $36 million for the growth of South Carolina’s charter school system
• A full-time nurse and school resource officer in EVERY school in the state
• 2.5% pay raise for state employees
• STEP pay raise for law enforcement officers & PTSD treatment for law enforcement and firefighters
• $8.3 million to pay down state debt
• $200 million for the S.C. Port to avoid high-interest debt
• Conservative budgeting and years of responsible planning allows for over $643 million in reserves!
Free & Fair Elections
Checks and Balances
Military Personnel Tuition Rates
Second Amendment Fortification - The “Open Carry with Training Act"
• Blocks the federal government’s efforts to confiscate or over-regulate our Second Amendment rights by making South Carolina a Second Amendment Sanctuary State.
• Relaxes the qualifications to become a CWP holder and addresses the shortage of ammunition by altering the CWP test from 50+ rounds to 25.
• Eliminates the $50 CWP fee to SLED, lowering the cost to become a permit holder and responsible gun carrier.
• Allows churches that meet on school property to choose if they will allow CWP holders to carry.
The House also passed a “Constitutional Carry Bill” providing that any person can carry a handgun, concealed or open, without a permit. It passed the House and is currently in the Senate where it can be debated as we enter into the second half of the session in January.
We have worked hard this session to protect and fortify our Second Amendment rights. South Carolina is now a Second Amendment Sanctuary State -- no federal law that requires seizure of firearms will be enforced by state law enforcement officials in S.C.
Santee Cooper Reform
Education Overhaul – We are always trying to improve the quality of education in South Carolina for both our students and educators!
• We championed legislation requiring all schools to offer five-day, in-person classroom instruction as of April 26. It also increases the current teacher earnings limitation for retirees to $50,000.
• We passed legislation that allows school districts to establish Schools of Innovation.
• STEP pay increases were reinstated for teachers and we secured a $1,000 raise for every teacher, bringing teachers’ salaries above the southeast U.S. average.
• It is important that schools educate students, but also allow children to think critically and form their own opinions. All public high schools and institutions of higher learning must require students to pass a course in the essentials of the US Constitution, the Declaration of Independence, the Emancipation Proclamation, and the Federalist Papers. Critical race theory is prohibited from being taught in K-12 schools.
• Finally, wearing a mask or receiving a COVID-19 vaccine is a deeply personal decision, so we worked to prohibit the mandating of wearing a face mask in K-12 schools. Colleges and universities are prohibited from mandating COVID-19 vaccinations or facemasks, too.
Getting Down to Business - This year we focused on reopening businesses after the pandemic and ensured they were able to thrive in South Carolina. We passed the COVID-19 Safe Harbor Liability Act, giving businesses that follow appropriate safety guidelines immunity from certain liabilities. This was an important step in getting South Carolina back to business. The “Gallo Winery Bill” amends and expands our state’s ‘quirky’ liquor laws to allow for wine tasting facilities and micro-distilleries.
This was one of the most productive years in the history of the South Carolina General Assembly. Not only did we recover from the pandemic, but we prospered and progressed by leaps and bounds, achieving many of our goals. I look forward to reconvening in September to take up redistricting and again in January for the second half of session. Until then, if I can be of service or assistance to you, please do not hesitate to contact me at my office in Columbia: 803 734-3045
American universities are at a tipping point, where their very mission is being reconsidered. In prior decades and centuries, the mission of “the academy” was to discover truth. One could not hijack a debate if their position was not grounded in truth.
Today many, if not most academics see the mission of our institutions of higher learning as social and racial justice.
One of the most esteemed members of the UNC faculty, in lamenting the depths of where the culture of colleges has sunk, told me of an instance where he had a student come up to him after class and openly lecture him on why he needed to stop making statements as fact when he was just exhibiting his white supremacy. This was an undergraduate student chastising a highly acclaimed physics professor who was teaching irrefutable scientific principles.
The single most under-represented minority among Tar Heel faculty is conservatives. Of the UNC faculty registered to vote, only 4% are registered Republican, among the lowest in the nation. This is at the leading public university in a state where an equal number of voters support each party.
How can a student be expected to respect diverse perspectives when they are only exposed to a single viewpoint in the classroom and fear being canceled if they express a contrary belief? The faculty selection process needs an overhaul. Conservatives shun academia for many reasons, especially because of a well-founded fear of how they would be treated by their peers. Department chairs need to start developing, recruiting and serving up tenure candidates that won’t raise the volume in the echo chamber with the same fervor they invest in attracting other under-represented minorities. Or stop professing to care about diversity.
The timing of the release is telling. When presidents are excited about their policy agenda and confident it will be well received by the American people, they do not release the details hours before most of the country goes on vacation. That is, however, a strategy politicians use when they are trying to avoid negative press. After taking a careful look at the budget proposal, it is not hard to see why the White House tried to bury the release of Biden’s budget.
Biden has absolutely no way to pay for his incredibly expensive plan, and that its costly provisions could result in a large-scale economic crash. The total cost of Biden’s proposal is an astounding $6 trillion, and according to the White House’s own estimates — which are almost certainly too low. The high levels of debt proposed by Biden could cause a large and potentially sustained economic catastrophe.
The budget would include raising taxes on job-creating businesses and wealthier families and individuals.
There are many problems with creating large amounts of new money, but perhaps the biggest is that it can cause inflation and devaluation of the currency now in circulation. In other words, the dollars currently in your bank account will become less valuable as the Fed creates more money.
In April, inflation increased by 4.2%, according to the Consumer Price Index (CPI), triple the figure recorded in January and the fastest increase in CPI inflation since 2008. The more the government spends, the bigger this problem would get in the months and years to come. Biden’s spending spree would all but guarantee higher inflation and/or interest rate increases by the Fed, causing severe economic problems.
"Don't fund the infrastructure on the back of working families. President Biden's tax increases do exactly that, and they're just not needed. And the bottom line is, with these tax increases in there, America becomes a net loser. We actually lose jobs off of infrastructure, which makes no sense."
"I think people forget that President Biden, as a candidate, repeatedly vowed to repeal all of President Trump and Republican's tax cuts. That is a major $2,000 a year tax increase on working families. Certainly, it makes America's businesses less competitive here and around the world with what I think kills about 6 million jobs in America. But, of course, President Biden… is well on his way to killing millions of jobs just because of his policy issues."
"And you probably know, as I did, the budget Biden Biden budget was pretty candid in it, acknowledged that once the sugar high of all the stimulus gets through, America goes back to those slow, sluggish Obama-Biden years of slow growth of two percent or less. So they acknowledge their own policies are slowing growth in America, slowing jobs in America. And obviously, we are going to impact paychecks again."
President Joe Biden has been great for Russian oil and gas producers, and for Russian President Vladamir Putin, energy dominance and political dominance go hand in hand. Biden's policy actions have only rewarded Russia.
All policies implemented by the Biden administration have created jobs, prosperity and influence for Russia’s energy sector. This has come at the expense of U.S. producers and consumers who are now paying on average over $3 per gallon at the pump.
Biden administration waived Trump-era sanctions on the companies behind Russia's Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline. Now, the pipeline will be built. Allowing that contradicts the administration's aggressive climate policy, with U.S. gas producers hit with a drilling moratorium on federal lands and tougher regulations that have curbed U.S. production, making us more dependent on foreign oil producers.
As a result, Russia's exports of oil to the U.S. are at an all-time high.
Meanwhile, U.S. oil production has fallen by 1.715 million barrels from a year ago, thanks to Biden's policies.
His tax hikes would include nearly doubling the capital gains tax rate from 20% to 39.6%, raising the top individual income rate to 39.6% and increasing taxes on inherited wealth.
The nation's debt is on track to hit $30 trillion this year due to an unprecedented level of government spending during the coronavirus pandemic.
Many moderate members of the president's own party have suggested $4 trillion in new spending is too much and have questioned whether the proposed tax hikes could hurt the economy just as it's recovering from the coronavirus pandemic.
Core "personal consumption expenditures", which exclude food and energy, in April rose 3.1% annually — Inflation fears were reignited Friday when the Federal Reserve’s preferred measure printed its hottest reading in 29 years, and economists warn higher prices could linger for some time.
Supply chain disruptions and labor shortages caused by COVID-19 have resulted in demand outpacing supply, pushing prices higher. Key products like semiconductors are in short supply after production was temporarily paused as a result of lockdowns aimed at slowing the spread of COVID-19. Those problems have been exacerbated by labor shortages that have occurred in industries due to the generous unemployment benefits that are resulting in many workers getting paid more to stay home. Supply chain and labor issues are showing no sign of improving. Chip manufacturers, for example, have warned shortages could last another two years.
However, these are temporary issues. The continued deficit spending by the President and Congress is not being recognized as the cause of inflation. But the simple fact is that by pushing more money into the economy, the value of each dollar declines — which is inflation.
Stagflation is inflation with declining economic output.
The economy under Carter experienced inflation and unemployment rates that were both in the double digits as the result of an oil price shock that began when Iranian oil workers went on strike, and American regulations prevented oil production in the U.S.
A Labor Department report released last week showed core consumer prices, which exclude food and energy, rose 0.9% in April, the most since September 1982, when the U.S. economy was emerging from its decade-long bout with stagflation.
Annually, prices were up 4.2%, the biggest increase since September 2008.
Economists are also assessing the possibility of a slowing U.S. economy. The labor market last month added a disappointing 266,000 jobs as the unemployment rate ticked up to 6.1%. Economists were anticipating the addition of 978,000 jobs as the unemployment rate fell to 5.8%.
Meanwhile, manufacturers are grappling with supply shortages caused by the pandemic.
During the '70s, Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan hiked interest rates to rein in inflation. The Fed currently has a "broad and inclusive" full employment goal, and the central bank probably will not hike rates until late 2023.
However, if inflation continues as a result of the huge Federal deficits due to over-spending, the Fed may need to raise rates much sooner.
Strategists at Bank of America predict the stagflation narrative will begin to take hold in the second half of this year, not in 2023.
A million new jobs were expected, but the actual tally came in nearly three-quarters-of-a-million jobs lower; just 266,000 jobs created.
Unemployment unexpectedly rose to 6.1%.
The Colonial Pipeline, which transports nearly half of the East Coast's fuel supplies up from Texas, had been turned off, the victim of a ransomware cyberattack.
Palestinians have had violent clashes with Israeli police at the Al-Aqsa mosque in Jerusalem, escalating tensions that had been simmering and occasionally boiling over for weeks. Hamas began launching rocket attacks into Israel, which responded by bombing Gaza.
Republicans are accusing Biden of tilting too far toward the Palestinians and failing to verbally criticize Hamas. Democrat leftists hit the White House for supposedly coddling Israel, with Rep. Rashida Tlaib, D-Mich., accusing Biden of "enabling" Israel with foreign aid.
That violence had spread to the streets of New York, where dustups between pro-Israel and pro-Palestinian supporters occurred in front of the Israeli consulate.
U.S. Customs and Border Protection revealed Tuesday that migrant encounters jumped yet again this past April: over 178,000 in all, nearly a tenfold increase from 2020 and still above levels seen in the 2019 surge at the Mexico border.
Border agents in Texas had seized $4.6 million in methamphetamine and cocaine, while a member of the National Guard had found an abandoned bag of "AK-47-style pistols" in the border region. Only 43% of those surveyed approving of Biden's immigration policy.
Senate Democrats pressed ahead Tuesday with their plans to overhaul the nation's election laws -- after many states, such as GOP-guided governments in Florida and Georgia, enacted different changes for their own constituents.
Regarding COVID-19, the once-unimpeachable Centers for Disease Control and Prevention was accused of making dubious recommendations to a populace ready to get back to normal. "I used to have the utmost respect for the guidance from the CDC. I always considered the CDC to be the gold standard. I don’t anymore."
The beleaguered Biden could muster little in the way of a defense.
"Memo to President Biden: Life moves pretty fast, and now the world is on fire."
"The apportionment population results released by the Census Bureau are strikingly different from the population evaluation estimates released just months ago on December 22, 2020. Remarkably, the differences benefit traditionally blue states – which gained population compared to the estimates – over red states which tended to lose population compared to the estimates."
"For example, New York was estimated to have a population of 19,336,776, but was attributed an apportionment population much greater than that of 20,215,751, a difference of nearly 900,000 individuals. Likewise, states such as New Jersey and Illinois experienced large population increases of hundreds of thousands of individuals compared to the December estimates, while states such as Arizona, Florida, and Texas experienced large decreases from the December estimates."
According to some estimates, Texas was set to gain three seats. It gained two instead. New York was projected by one estimate to be on the edge of losing either one or two House seats. It lost one seat but was 89 residents short of not losing any, according to census officials. "This trend calls into question whether there was any political interference with the apportionment results released by the Census Bureau."
The House Republicans' letter was the first high-profile allegation that the Biden administration may have interfered with the census.
The long-awaited announcement is poised to reset the balance of power for the next decade in the House of Representatives and the Electoral College, where each state's share of votes is tied to its census numbers.
United Airlines alarmed customers and prospective travelers on Tuesday when it proudly vowed to ensure its lineup of pilots will become more diverse with a new quota for women and racial minorities.
The airline, which is based out of Chicago, had already deviated from its mission a day before in the eyes of some travelers. On Monday, United tweeted an attack on laws, such as the one recently passed in Georgia, designed to bolster election security.
Take it from a pilot: for your own safety, stay away from United Airlines.
California banned congregants from meeting inside their own homes, citing the COVID-19 pandemic to justify infringing on the First Amendment’s freedom of religion.
the U.S. Supreme Court last week issued an injunction against that order. The decision was 5-4, with Chief Justice John Roberts dissenting with the liberal justices. See this PDF for details on the decision.
The Court recognized that any time the government burdens religious activity with special rules, it must bear the burden of strict scrutiny.
Three more states have advanced bills that ban biological males from competing against women and girls in sports. The bill in Montana awaits a final vote, while the bills in Kansas and West Virginia have been sent to the governors.
Several states, including Idaho, Mississippi, and Arkansas, have already enacted legislation that protects women’s sports. As of this writing, 32 states are trying to protect fair competition for women in sports. Idaho led the charge in 2020 when Governor Brad Little signed the Fairness in Women’s Sports Act into law; however, federal judge blocked the law, contending it is likely unconstitutional.
The British Journal of Sports Medicine released a study which concluded that even after taking these drugs for a year, biological males still outperformed biological females.
Agreement by all parties on a detailed plan for maintaining the secrecy and security of absentee ballots cast in Fulton County Georgia has seen the Fulton County Superior Court on April 13 give the go-ahead for the images of some 140000 to 1500000 absentee ballot papers in Fulton County to be produced within 5 days for examination by two experts nominated by the Petitioners in proceedings commenced under Civil Action 2020CV343938 (“Civil Action”).
Claims made by six hand count auditors in the Civil Action allege they had observed:
* three boxes containing I00% Biden ballots and three boxes containing 98% + Biden ballots
* ballots that were not marked with a writing instrument but appeared to be marked with toner
* ballots that were different in the stock or paper used to other ballot papers
* ballots that were not creased
* nine unsecured ballot bags
Letlow will be joining the House in the seat originally won by her husband, Luke Letlow, who died in September from COVID-19 before he was supposed to be sworn in. Julia Letlow won a special election in March.
The purpose of this training [...] to accuse our community of systemic racism that needed to be disrupted and dismantled to root out this type of white supremacist thinking.
Superintendent Scott Ziegler claimed, “LCPS has not adopted Critical Race Theory as a framework for staff to adhere to.” In explaining the school district’s “equity priorities,” he said, “They are not an effort to indoctrinate students and staff into a particular philosophy or theory.”
A look at the training tells a different story. Equity “conversations” are centered on all the buzz terms popular in CRT: systemic racism, white supremacy, white privilege, implicit bias, and microaggressions. The “conversation” assumes these are truths, and any attempt to call these terms into question is ignored or dismissed.
We are specifically told at our meetings not to direct the conversation to other factors that may inhibit student achievement like “economics” or “family structure.”
Not surprisingly, the approach is rooted in Marxism. We are engaged in a trickle-down indoctrination targeted at teachers with the aim of filtering the “equity” mindset down into the classrooms.
President Biden is seeking to convince the American people that Congress needs to pass his next big-ticket economic plan, touting the sweeping, $2.25 trillion measure unveiled last week as a once-in-a-generation investment in the nation's economy and infrastructure.
"Independent analysis shows that if we pass this plan the economy will create 19 million jobs," Biden said, between now and 2030.
But the economy is on track to add about 16.3 million jobs, whether or not Congress passes the infrastructure bill. That would mean the proposal itself will add about 2.7 million jobs, while adding tremendous debt.
The Republican National Committee (RNC) is taking aim at the congressional Democrats' wide-ranging election and campaign finance reform bill, describing it as a "hyper-partisan power grab."
The "For the People Act" ‒ known as H.R.1 in the House and S.1 in the Senate ‒ now faces an uncertain future in the Senate. Democrats, who hold a razor-thin majority in the chamber, say the measure will be a top priority when the Senate session resumes in early April. "Democrats are attempting an egregious power grab through H.R. 1 that will fundamentally alter our entire election system and dismantle the integrity of the vote, but we will not let them get away with it," RNC chair Ronna McDaniel said.
H.R. 1 is the "Democrats' blatant hijacking of our election system that would give unfettered power to unelected D.C. bureaucrats and trample on free speech."
"Stop Ballot Trafficking – Radical Democrats are trying to take over our elections! Fight back."
"the goal is to censor those with whom the authors of the bill disagree."
"This monstrosity of a bill betrays the Constitution, dangerously federalizes state elections, and undermines the integrity of the ballot box. As a former chief election officer, and now an Attorney General, I know this would be a disaster for election integrity and confidence in the processes that have been developed over time to instill confidence in the idea of ‘one person, one vote.’"
"States have principal — and with presidential elections, exclusive — responsibility to safeguard" how they hold elections under the Constitution.
The attorneys general argued that this "exclusive division of power" outlined in the Constitution "differs markedly" from the Election Clause in Article I of the Constitution, "which says that both States and Congress have the power to regulate the 'time, place, and manner’ of congressional elections. That distinction is not an accident of drafting. After extensive debate, the Constitution’s Framers deliberately excluded Congress from deciding how presidential electors would be chosen in order to avoid presidential dependence on Congress for position and authority. The exclusivity of state power to 'define the method' of choosing presidential electors means that Congress may not force states to permit presidential voting by mail or curbside voting, for example."
Biden always had tax-hike plans for the middle class. He also supports a drastic overhaul of retirement accounts that would amount to a tax hike on folks earning over $80,250.
Hiking the corporate tax rate is a perfect example. Congress and President Donald Trump, with the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, brought our corporate tax rate down to the globally competitive 21%, on par with the average of wealthy nations. Biden wants to increase it back to 28% and tack on a minimum 15% tax on the book income of large corporations, effectively disallowing many deductions. Add in the state income taxes, and you’ll have most U.S. corporations facing the highest of any nation in the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development and the G-7.
Biden’s corporate tax hike would slash 159,000 jobs and that an average 0.7% wage reduction would harm the bottom quintile of workers, who would see a 1.45% decrease in after-tax income. Prices would likely go up, and retirement accounts would be smaller than otherwise.
There simply isn’t enough wealth among the wealthy to finance their plans, and we know this from looking at the countries that already do what Biden and the Democrats want to do. The middle class is where the money is.
Biden continues in the falsehood that he’s only taxing the over-$400,000 crowd. We know that’s not true. He knows that’s not true. It’s time Biden admitted he’s raising taxes on the middle class.
“This is no small thing, to restore a republic after it has fallen into corruption. I have studied history for years and I cannot recall it ever happening. It may be that our task is impossible. Yet, if we do not try then how will we know it can’t be done? And if we do not try, it most certainly won’t be done. The Founders’ Republic, and the larger war for western civilization, will be lost.”
“But I tell you this: We will not go gently into that bloody collectivist good night. Indeed, we will make with our defiance such a sound as ALL history from that day forward will be forced to note, even if they despise us in the writing of it.”
– Mike Vanderboegh
The Democrats know full well that most of HR-1 will be shut down by the Supreme Court. But they expect that there will be enough disruption and destruction in the meantime to serve their Socialist ends.
D.C. Circuit Court Judge Laurence Silberman went on an unprecedented written tirade against the press, in which he argued that the Supreme Court should revisit the landmark 1964 New York Times v. Sullivan ruling that granted the media broad First Amendment protections from being sued by public officials.
"The increased power of the press is so dangerous today because we are very close to one-party control of these institutions," said Silberman.
"Although the bias against the Republican Party — not just controversial individuals — is rather shocking today, this is not new; it is a long-term, secular trend going back at least to the ’70s," Silberman wrote. "Two of the three most influential papers (at least historically), The New York Times and The Washington Post, are virtually Democratic Party broadsheets. And the news section of The Wall Street Journal leans in the same direction. The orientation of these three papers is followed by The Associated Press and most large papers across the country (such as the Los Angeles Times, Miami Herald, and Boston Globe). Nearly all television—network and cable—is a Democratic Party trumpet. Even the government-supported National Public Radio follows along."
He accused Silicon Valley of filtering news "in ways favorable to the Democratic Party" and fueling censorship, citing the suppression of the New York Post's bombshell reporting on Hunter Biden in the final weeks of the 2020 presidential election.
Silberman also sounded the alarm about the "serious efforts to muzzle" outlets like Fox News that aren't under "Democratic Party ideological control."
"It should be borne in mind that the first step taken by any potential authoritarian or dictatorial regime is to gain control of communications, particularly the delivery of news. It is fair to conclude, therefore, that one-party control of the press and media is a threat to a viable democracy."
"The First Amendment guarantees a free press to foster a vibrant trade in ideas. But a biased press can distort the marketplace. And when the media has proven its willingness — if not eagerness — to so distort, it is a profound mistake to stand by unjustified legal rules that serve only to enhance the press’ power."
If Democrats cannot be successful in an unbiased press, then there must be something horribly wrong about them.
The civil rights movement was about giving everyone an opportunity to succeed and treating everyone fairly.
The Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. envisioned a just and equitable America, in which citizens treated each other as persons rather than as carriers of an indelible racial imprint.
Today, the progressive left has bet against King's vision: we are not persons, we are our racial identities, and anyone who rejects that view is guilty of racism.
That approach is about perpetuating division and divisiveness, to increase political control by would-be autocrats. It is not about rights and equality.
King himself would be called out and targeted for "anti-bias" reeducation if he were alive today. The Civil Rights Movement of which I was proudly a part has been betrayed by a twisted progressive ideology that hyper-racializes our country.
We see this same pattern of weaponizing race emerging throughout our elite institutions.
"Every single individual in this country is entitled to just as much respect, just as much dignity, as every other individual."
The White House revealed that a handful of staffers were let go over past pot use, even though Vice President Kamala Harris has publicly admitted to smoking weed in college.
'I think it gives a lot of people joy. And we need more joy in the world,' says the Socialist, who fails to mention that Socialism has caused misery for hundreds of millions of people subjected to its oppressive tenets and actions.
Former President Barack Obama lashed into “woke culture”. “This idea of purity and you’re never compromised and you’re politically woke, and all that stuff — you should get over that quickly. The world is messy. There are ambiguities. People who do really good stuff have flaws.”
“I do get a sense sometimes now among certain young people, and this is accelerated by social media, that the way of me making change is to be as judgmental as possible about other people and that’s enough. That is not activism."
President Joe Biden and Democrats in Congress are jamming their agenda forward with a sense of urgency, an unapologetically partisan approach based on the calculation that it’s better to advance the giant COVID-19 rescue package and other priorities.
Democrats are showing little patience for the GOP objections and entertaining few overtures toward compromise, claiming the majority of the country supports their agenda. But with fragile majorities in the House and the Senate, and a liberal base of voters demanding action, Democrats are operating as if they are on borrowed time.
The start of the first congressional session of the Biden administration was supposed to be a new era of bipartisan deal-making. The Senate evenly split, 50-50, and the House resting on a slim majority for Democrats set prime conditions for Biden to swoop in and forge across-the-aisle compromises.
But the rush through Biden’s first 100 days is shaping up as an urgent era of hardball politics, with Democrats prepared to go it alone, even if that means that changes to the Senate filibuster rules are needed to work around Republican roadblocks to legislation.
House Resolution 1, which touches on virtually every aspect of the electoral process, was approved Wednesday night on a near party-line 220-210 vote. It would restrict partisan gerrymandering of congressional districts, strike down hurdles to voting and bring transparency to a murky campaign finance system that allows wealthy donors to anonymously bankroll political causes.
The bill is a powerful counterweight to voting rights restrictions advancing in Republican-controlled statehouses across the country in the wake of Donald Trump’s repeated claims of a stolen 2020 election. Yet it faces an uncertain fate in the Democratic-controlled Senate, where it has little chance of passing without changes to procedural rules that currently allow Republicans to block it.
State lawmakers across the U.S. have filed more than 200 bills in 43 states that would limit ballot access. In Georgia, the House on Monday voted for legislation requiring identification to vote by mail. On Tuesday, the Supreme Court appeared ready to uphold voting restrictions in Arizona, which could make it harder to challenge state election laws in the future.
The stakes in the outcome are monumental, cutting to the foundational idea that one person equals one vote, and carrying with it the potential to shape election outcomes for years to come. “H.R. 1 is not about making elections better,” said Ken Cuccinelli, a former Trump administration Homeland Security official who is leading the effort. “It’s about the opposite. It’s intended to dirty up elections.”
Warren Buffett's annual letter to Berkshire shareholders (PDF; sends to your Downloads folder) was released on Saturday, and as usual the first page compares the annual performance of Berkshire against that of the S&P 500 (^GSPC) since 1965. Berkshire shares have seen an average annual return of 20.0% compared to the S&P 500's 10.2% gain during that period.
To his credit, few people are more vocal about Buffett's mistakes than Buffett himself. But a successful investor shouldn’t be judged by his or her mistakes. Rather, they should be judged by the degree to which they are able to achieve their long-term goals.
President Biden's $1.9 trillion coronavirus relief bill could automatically trigger billions of dollars in cuts to Medicare and other federal programs, according to new findings published by the Congressional Budget Office. In a letter to House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, the non-partisan agency estimated that Medicare would see a $36 billion cut, while up to $90 billion would be slashed from other spending programs. That is due to Congressional Democrats are using a tactic known as budget reconciliation to muscle through the aid package using a simple majority, allowing them to avoid a Senate Republican filibuster. Under the Pay-As-You-Go Act of 2010, known as PAYGO, new laws that increase the national debt automatically force offsetting cuts in other safety-net programs.
Losses for tech shares were blunted by gains for financial companies as investors rotate away from pandemic-era winners to smaller companies poised to benefit from an end to lockdowns.
Investors are concerned about the risk that accelerating inflation is just around the corner and trying to gauge what that might mean for markets. “Interest rates are rising for good reasons right now and it’s because markets and the bond market are expecting us to return to good growth. The problem comes in when interest rates start rising for bad reasons -- and a bad reason would be that they expect inflation to start getting out of hand.”
Trump's team says liberals could be impeached for their past comments under Democrats' standards.
"Every single one of you, and every one of you," David Schoen, a Trump attorney, bellowed at Democrats in the chamber at the end of an 11-minute video featuring clips of each of them saying "fight." Videos starred just about every prominent Democrat, including Rep. Maxine Waters, D-Calif., encouraging liberals to harass Trump officials, and President Biden saying if he were in high school again he'd go behind the gym and "beat the hell out" of Trump.
Trump's legal team blasted the proceedings as an unconstitutional, "sham impeachment" motivated by Democrats' "hatred" for the former president. They said Trump's political speech is protected by the First Amendment.
His lawyers said it's "absurd" to think Trump was trying to promote insurrection on Jan. 6 based on his rhetoric that day and long history of promoting "law and order" and denouncing mob violence throughout his many other political rallies. "Nothing in the text could ever be construed as encouraging, condoning or enticing unlawful activity of any kind."
Former White House adviser Stephen Miller warned on Wednesday that President Biden is “destroying thousands of good-paying energy jobs” across the country through his energy actions, which he argued will “handicap every sector of the U.S. economy.” President Biden's climate change executive actions will raise the price of energy over time for every household in America “and make our economy less globally competitive.”
Biden signed a total of 17 executive orders within minutes of entering the Oval Office for the first time last month and, in total, has signed more than three dozen executive orders, actions and directives so far. The orders reversed a number of Trump administration policies and covered areas Biden identified as his priorities on the campaign trail, including climate change. In addition to halting the Keystone XL oil pipeline project in the series of orders aimed at combating climate change, Biden temporarily suspended the issuance of oil and gas permits on federal lands and waters.
"President Biden is destroying thousands of good-paying energy jobs all across this country undermining the economic recovery, not just today, but for years to come.” The oil and gas industry “is one of the most important growth industries in the United States of America.” “It’s what gives us a competitive edge over other countries,” Miller said. “This is a giant self-inflicted economic wound and the people suffering today in New Mexico, in Louisiana, in Montana are just the beginning."
OPEC, which met its match in Trump, sees Biden as a business booster
President Joe Biden has a plan to make OPEC great again by raising the price of oil and thwarting competition from U.S. and Canadian oil producers.
On his first day in office, he made decisions that spread joy across the OPEC nations by revoking the permit for the Keystone Pipeline, which would help make Canadian oil less competitive on the global market allowing the cartel to maintain or even gain global oil market share. That eliminated at least 11,000 oil and gas jobs in the U.S. and Canada that should now be picked up by OPEC.
The administration also temporarily banned the issuance of new permits and leases for drilling and fracking on federal lands. The U S. Chamber of Commerce warns that a ban on fracking would eliminate 19 million jobs between 2021-2025 while reducing U.S. Gross Domestic Product by $7.1 trillion over the same period.
This is a welcome shift for the poor OPEC cartel that had fallen on hard times in recent years. Not only did they take a huge financial hit from the historic drop in demand from COVID-19 last year they have also had to compete with U.S. and Canadian oil and gas producers for jobs and market share for their energy exports.
Biden's policies will also be a big win for Russia and President Vladimir Putin.
President Biden’s climate czar, John Kerry, admitted Wednesday that the US reducing its emissions to zero wouldn’t make much of a difference in the global climate change fight — before pushing domestic manufacturing of electric cars and solar panels in favor of energy production.
“He knows Paris alone is not enough,” Kerry told reporters at a White House press briefing, referring to Biden re-entering the US in the Paris Climate Agreement in one of his first acts as president. “Not when almost 90 percent of all of the planet’s global emissions come from outside of US borders. We could go to zero tomorrow and the problem isn’t solved,” Kerry conceded.
Kerry also acknowledged that it would be difficult to bring the world’s top polluters to the table, including China, which produces 30 percent of the world’s carbon emissions.
Biden has denied that oil and gas jobs would be lost in his curbing of domestic energy production, even though his last “climate action” scrapping the Keystone XL pipeline will result in thousands of layoffs. West Virginia Attorney General Patrick Morrisey said Wednesday that Biden’s energy plan would take a “wrecking ball” to oil, gas and coal jobs in states across the country. “I think he is kicking the American people when they’re down economically."
A feature-length documentary released by Kremlin opposition leader Alexei Navalny has racked up more than 100 million views. The documentary, "Putin’s Palace," alleges that Russian President Vladimir Putin owns an extravagant billion-dollar palace on the Black Sea that was built using slush funds.
After Navalny's arrest, tens of thousands of protesters took to the streets in Russia last weekend in support of him with some shouting "Putin is a thief!" But even as the U.S. and other counties call for his release, he remains in custody.
The palace was partly funded by a tax-payer hospital project. Two Putin associates reportedly overcharged hospitals for medical equipment and laundered at least $50 million toward a company that was building the palace. Rumors about the palace had circulated for years before Navalny’s documentary went viral.
"Our clearing firm gave us a call and said we're going to have to stop allowing new opening positions in the three names, AMC, GME, and KOSS. Highly volatile, and what happens is this is not a political decision. And unfortunately, it got political."
"in reality, what's going on is that there is a two-day settlement between if you buy the stock today, those brokerage firms that you bought that stock on have to fund that trade with the clearing central house called DTC for two whole days. And because of the volatility of stocks, DTC has made the cost of the collateral of the two-day holding period extremely expensive. Our clearing firm simply cannot afford the cost to settle those trades. We cannot use customer funds to front that cost due to regulation. So the brokerages or the clearing firms have to go into their own pockets to do it. And they simply can't afford the cost of that trade clearance. That is the reason why these stocks are coming off. This has to do with settlement mechanics of the market. There is no way that a customer would not be able to sell a position they hold. We are simply stopping opening of new positions. Liquidations can happen at any time. This is general market mechanics. We have customer protections in place. We would never stop a customer from being able to get out of a position. But currently, we are stopping customers from getting into a new position. If you look on Monday, GameStop was trading below $100. And now it's trading in several hundred dollars. So the cost of clearing those things have gone up by 3x overnight. So this is something in real-time that we have to deal with in real-time."
"New brokers like Robinhood, like Webull, that reduced and tried to remove as best we could all barriers for entry. We think that every investor should have an equal opportunity to have access and have the best tools available so they can make the best investment decisions and go on their financial journey.  Our app actually went from, I believe, number eight yesterday to number three in the overall app store was where it peaked. We did see a huge influx of applications. And we continue to see them now, even though we did stop trading of the Reddit names at about 11:00 AM Eastern today. But it does open up Webull as a platform to new users, and they can see the benefits of Webull."
"The regulators are going to be involved. There is an outcry because a lot of the retail, they don't actually understand the dynamics that happen after a trade. I think when you say the regulators stepping in, it will happen on both sides. It's going to happen on looking into should a hedge fund be allowed to get a 10 times leverage and short 140%, 150% of a company. Should that be allowed in a regular-- you know, in a healthy market. On the other side, should it also be allowed to have mob and herd mentality of rolling into stocks? And should these things be curbed?"
Senator Rand Paul said in a Twitter message that the vote showed the House’s impeachment case – charging Trump with "inciting an insurrection" in connection with the Jan. 6 riot at the Capitol – was "dead on arrival."
"One of Bernie Sanders' supporters came to the ballfield, nearly killed Steve Scalise ... but nobody talked about impeaching Bernie Sanders. Maxine Waters has said, 'Get up in their face' -- so has Cory Booker -- 'Become a mob, we want you to mob them at restaurants and cause mayhem.' That sounds like an incitement to violence but nobody's talking about impeaching Maxine Waters, nobody's talking about impeaching Bernie Sanders or Cory Booker for saying 'Get up in their face.'
"So it's a significant hypocrisy and double standard that they're putting forward and they should be called out on it. Nobody should be shy about calling them out on their hypocrisy."
"Impeachment is for removal from office and the accused here has already left office," Paul had argued prior to the procedural vote. "Hyper-partisan Democrats are about to drag our great country into the gutter of rancor and vitriol the likes of which has never been seen in our nation’s history."
Many Democrats voted for HR 9, which would have required the US to stick with the Paris agreement's provisions
"By rejoining the Paris Climate Agreement, President Biden indicates he's more interested in the views of the citizens of Paris than in the jobs of the citizens of Pittsburgh. This agreement will do little to affect the climate and will harm the livelihoods of Americans," said Senator Ted Cruz
Sen. Marsha Blackburn, R-Tenn., said Biden's energy policies mean the U.S. is headed for "$5 a gallon at the pump and higher home energy bills."
Even before former President Donald Trump abandoned the Paris agreement, groups including the Global Energy Institute and conservative-leaning Heritage Foundation warned the climate accord could decimate jobs in the energy and industrial sectors.
"Based on regulations and emissions reduction targets set by the Obama administration, Heritage economists estimate that by 2035 there will be: an annual average loss of nearly 400,000 jobs, a total income loss of more than $20,000 for a family of four, and an aggregate GDP loss of over $2.5 trillion – all for a few tenths of a degree Celsius in abated warming."
The Earth began cooling about 1275, in what has been labelled the "Little Ice Age". Temperatures hit their lowest point about 1650, and have been recovering ever since. While the Earth's temperature is still well below that of 1,000 years ago, the improvements have been noticeable.  See the article: The Earth is Getting Greener!.
Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell on Monday set aside his demand that a provision preserving the legislative filibuster be included in his power-sharing agreement with Majority Leader Chuck Schumer -- paving the way for the upper chamber to officially form committees and start tackling major legislative issues on the Biden agenda. McConnell, R-Ky., decided to relent Monday, he said, after two moderate Democrats doubled-down on their previous stances in support of the legislative filibuster. This almost certainly means that Democrats, many of whom have said they want to get rid of the filibuster, won't be able to do so for at least the next two years.
The filibuster places a 60-vote procedural hurdle in the way of bills passing through the chamber and is considered a hallmark of the Senate.
"The legislative filibuster was a key part of the foundation beneath the Senate’s last 50-50 power-sharing agreement in 2001. With these assurances, I look forward to moving ahead with a power-sharing agreement modeled on that precedent."
With committees formed and rules for legislation in place, the Senate will be able to tackle some of the more thorny issues it's avoided the past couple of weeks. It hasn't taken up any major legislation or controversial nominees and instead has ushered through some of President Biden's less polarizing Cabinet appointments, especially those related to national security.
Several U.S. cities and states have announced plans to lift restrictions on indoor dining at bars and restaurants – in moves that come less than week after a change at the White House.
The lifting of local-level restrictions – many of them in blue states -- was expected to give local economies a boost during the early days of the Biden administration following months of business-strangling shutdowns while President Trump was in charge. In December, U.S. employers slashed 140,000 jobs, with many of the cuts happening at bars and restaurants because of coronavirus-related limits on business.
Democratic Gov. Gretchen Whitmer – who served on President Biden’s inauguration committee -- announced the looser restaurant rules Friday, after returning from the inauguration in Washington despite having urged her fellow Michiganders to limit travel.
In some areas, bars and restaurants have been opening illegally, in defiance of coronavirus-related restrictions. “We’re not going to back down because our employees still need to eat, they still need that income,” said Oregon restaurant owner Bryan Mitchell, who was bucking state rules earlier this month. “The statement that we’re making is, ‘Every life is essential. You have the right to survive. Nobody should tell you what you can and cannot do to provide for your family.”
"Warnock and Ossoff made it a point to endorse and exclusively say ‘$2,000 checks,’" Georgia Democrat Oscar Zaro told Mediaite. "A lot of the people in my district voted blue in the runoff for two main reasons. One: Loeffler and Perdue denying us relief during COVID while profiting millions themselves; and two, $2,000 checks."
"If you send Jon and the reverend to Washington, those $2,000 checks will go out the door, restoring hope and decency for so many people who are struggling right now," Biden said at a rally for both candidates on Jan. 4.
Rogelio Linares, a Democratic canvasser during the runoff elections, called it "a betrayal of the working class. "I was lying to people that were relying on this," he said. "At the time I didn’t know it was a lie. But that was not the reality."
Biden signed an executive order issuing a mask mandate that would last the first 100 days of his presidency. Biden, acknowledging he didn't have the authority to require masks in most situations, promised to require them in federal buildings, on interstate travel such as planes, trains and buses, and to work with governors and mayors on their own mask mandates.
The coronavirus relief bill will more than double the minimum wage, from $7.25 to $15 per hour
He also reversed Trump’s travel restrictions on 13 majority-Muslim countries where terrorism was endemic, often referred to as the "Muslim ban."
The new president signed an order Wednesday declaring the "immediate termination" of funding for the border wall.
He also signed an order reversing Trump's previous order that directed aggressive immigration enforcement.
He has promised to reverse Trump's asylum limitations and the Migrant Protection Protocols (MPP).
He also revoked the permit for the Keystone pipeline.
Biden signed an order for the U.S. to rejoin the Paris climate agreement.
The most recent data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) show that of the more than 30 million doses shipped, only about 11 million have been used.
Alex Tabarrok, an economist at George Mason University who blogs at Marginal Revolution, has been promoting an idea called "first dose first," which the United Kingdom recently adopted. This approach would allocate all available vaccines to be used as first doses, while pushing off second doses for weeks (or even months) until production can catch up. "That means you can give twice as many first doses."
Alternative social media platform Parler filed a lawsuit against Amazon on Monday following Amazon Web Services' decision to suspend Parler from its cloud hosting service following last week's deadly riot at the U.S. Capitol.
"AWS’s decision to effectively terminate Parler’s account is apparently motivated by political animus," Parler claims in its filing. "AWS is violating Section 1 of the Sherman Antitrust Act in combination with Defendant Twitter. AWS is also breaching it[s] contract with Parler, which requires AWS to provide Parler with a thirty-day notice before terminating service, rather than the less than thirty-hour notice AWS actually provided. Finally, AWS is committing intentional interference with prospective economic advantage given the millions of users expected to sign up in the near future."
Parler claims that it is being discriminated against because it is in direct competition with social media giant Twitter. "Last month, Defendant Amazon Web Services, Inc. (“AWS”) and the popular social media platform Twitter signed a multi-year deal so that AWS could support the daily delivery of millions of tweets. AWS currently provides that same service to Parler, a conservative microblogging alternative and competitor to Twitter," the filing reads.
"When Twitter announced two evenings ago that it was permanently banning President Trump from its platform, conservative users began to flee Twitter en masse for Parler. The exodus was so large that the next day, yesterday, Parler became the number one free app downloaded from Apple’s App Store."
When Trump tells his supporters to make a peaceable visit to Congress to cheer on those Representatives and Senators brave enough to object to a manifestly fraudulent election, and a small percentage break away and [riot; i.e.,] do what Democrats have always done, it’s suddenly “sedition,” “treason,” and “terrorism.” Then, with their narrative firmly in place, Democrats are ready to do something else that leftists have always done: Purges.
On Sunday, Nancy Pelosi (D. -- white supremacist representative occupying a seat a black person should have) announced that on Monday the House will vote to ask Pence to invoke the 25th Amendment to remove Trump from office – nine days before his term ends. Should Pence refuse to do so (and he has allegedly announced that he will refuse), Pelosi will proceed with impeachment legislation.
The pretense for all of this is that Trump has gone stark raving mad and may even drop a nuclear bomb in the next nine days. The reality is that Pelosi’s laptop disappeared on January 7 and Trump probably has it in front of him. She is desperate to remove him from power before he does something with it.
Democrats have another plan, one that’s even worse than striking at Trump. Ignoring their repeated history of objecting to Republican presidential Electoral College certifications, they plan to use sec. 3 of the 14th Amendment to remove all federal and state elected officials who objected to Biden’s Electoral College votes. That section bars political office to people who “engaged in insurrection or rebellion against” the Constitution or gave “aid or comfort to the enemies thereof.”
Left has 'no moral authority to lecture the rest of us'
Democrats on Friday worked on an article of impeachment charging President Trump with "incitement for insurrection" in a continuation of their four-year campaign to remove him from office.
The charge is based on the breach of the Capitol on Wednesday after Trump invited supporters at a rally to "walk down to the Capitol" and "cheer on our brave senators and Congress men and women" who were about to object to slates of electors due to evidence of voting irregularities and fraud.
If "inflammatory rhetoric" is the standard, "then Trump's critics are at best ethically compromised."
Barack Obama in 2008 said: "I need you to get out and talk to your friends and talk to your neighbors. I want you to talk to them whether they are independent or whether they are Republican. I want you to argue with them and get in their face."
His attorney general, Eric Holder, said in 2018: "When they go low, we kick 'em. That's what this new Democratic Party is about."
U.S. Rep. Maxine Waters, D-Calif., went much further in 2018. "Let's make sure we show up wherever we have to show up. And if you see anybody from that [Trump] Cabinet in a restaurant, in a department store, at a gasoline station, you get out and create a crowd," she told a raucous crowd. "And you push back on them. And you tell them they're not welcome anymore, anywhere."
Rep. Cory Booker, D-N.J., said last year, "Please, get up in the face of some Congress people."
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi downplayed rioting, saying, "People will do what they do."
Rep. Ayanna Pressley, D-Mass. has said: "You know, there needs to be unrest in the streets for as long as there is unrest in our lives, and unfortunately there is plenty to go around."
Soon-to-be vice president Kamala Harris said: "They're [left-wing protesters] not gonna stop before Election Day in November and they're not gonna stop after Election Day. And that should be – everyone should take note of that on both levels, that this isn't, they're not gonna let up and they should not. And we should not."
"Left-wing commentators and activists (pretty much the same these days) have no moral authority to lecture the rest of us about violence committed by right-wing protesters. They nurtured a climate of violence over the past year by giving Antifa and Black Lives Matter their blessings.
It was January and the Democrats had a problem: things were too good in America. No wars, improved border security, lower drug prices, lower taxes, and a bull market would likely conspire to get Trump reelected in November.
Step 1: Fake Pandemic to Kill Business & Trump Rallies
Step 2: Media Manipulation in Favor of Biden to Point of Treason
Step 3. The Election – Planned Fraud & Emergency Fraud
After midnight on election night, six state governors, all Democrats, halted the ballot counting for several hours. In Nevada when they had stopped counting it had been nearly tied; Trump had led in the other five states:
Pennsylvania Trump by 682K votes (15.2%)
Georgia Trump by 311K votes (7.5%)
Michigan Trump by 307K votes (9.6%)
Wisconsin Trump by 128K votes (4.9%)
North Carolina Trump by 77K votes (1.4%)
When the six states began counting again, an impossible percentage of the votes were for Biden and most ballots had been left blank for all other races.
So by the morning after the election it was apparent that something was wrong. It appeared that hundreds of thousands of phony Biden votes had been added to the counts in six states, on average, at about 3:45 AM. Eyewitnesses would confirm this a few weeks later. At the Pennsylvania hearing, when a witness to the fraud was asked, regarding one particularly curious “spike” of 600,000 votes, “How many of those votes were for Trump and responded, “3,200,” the room burst into laughter, it not being possible for any Biden or any candidate to receive 99.5% of the vote.
All the controversial states and several others had used Dominion systems, a software company with ties to Smartmatic, the tech supplier in the Venezuelan election that brought Hugo Chavez to power. Smartmatic Director Antonion Mugica admitted in 2017 that they had created “at least one million” fake votes in that year’s election in Venezuela. Investigators found that votes from 28 US states had been sent to Germany and Spain to be counted by Smartmatic/Dominon.
It wasn’t nearly enough to steal the election, though. As Trump lawyer Sidney Powell explained, “Trump votes were programmed to switch to Biden but Trump’s votes were so high it didn’t work right because they didn’t set their algorithms high enough.” That’s why they had to stop the counts on election night. They needed to hastily add hundreds of thousands of votes in the early morning of November 4th to make up for the under-cheating by the software.
Step 4. Selling the Biden Victory Narrative with Criminal Conspiracy
The Left went into, “Why can we all just get along” mode. “A time for healing,” said the newspapers. They defended mail-in voting, the count stoppages, Dominion software, etc. Evidence did not matter to them, only selling the narrative that Biden was the victor.
Since the Civil War, this coup-dressed-as-election-fraud is the most dire threat to America’s survival as a free country.
No wonder President Trump was so angry. He had every right to be.
Gab CEO Andrew Torba revealed that Big Tech insiders are seeking employment with the free speech platform, sickened by Silicon Valley’s monopoly and authoritarian practices.
What Torba calls an “internal civil war” over the slightest resemblance of internet freedom is raging in Silicon Valley, with even the most moderate company officials supportive of free expression being bullied and shut down by tech oligarchs.
“I cannot tell you how many people… If you only knew what was inside my inbox right now. There are so many people- including senior level inside of Silicon Valley firms who are reaching out to me looking for a job right now. And I’m hearing chatter from inside of these companies from some of my sources that it’s an internal civil war.”
Torba was speaking in a Sunday livestream, breaking down the ramifications of a Big Tech exodus that has followed Twitter and Facebook’s suspension of Donald Trump’s social media accounts.
Gab has received a buff in traffic of up to 750% in the wake of the most wide-ranging Big Tech censorship purge yet- with alt-tech competitor Parler being swiftly deplatformed by Amazon’s oligarch-owned web service provider. Gab’s self-owned server structure is entirely in-house, sparing the free speech platform from any accountability or subjugation underneath Big Tech oligarchs.
The platform is aiming to supplant not only Twitter, but YouTube as well, creating a free speech-oriented video streaming service.
Conservatives noticed Friday that Limbaugh's account was no longer active, causing many to assume that Twitter had banned Limbaugh. However, Twitter told a CNN reporter that it did not suspend Limbaugh's account. Instead, Limbaugh deactivated the account.
Bongino, who has nearly 3 million followers on Twitter, announced his departure from the platform after Twitter temporarily suspended his account on Thursday. "I'm leaving the platform permanently for Parler. Twitter needs me, I don't need them. I provide them with content. Hopefully, this leads to more high-profile accounts leaving Twitter," Bongino said.
Levin also said that he was leaving Twitter for good as a "protest" against "Twitter's fascism. "I have suspended my own Twitter account in protest against Twitter's fascism. I ask all my followers to join me now on Parler and Rumble," Levin announced Friday.
Politicization problems exist in U.S. spy agency assessments on foreign influence in the 2020 U.S. election, including analysts who appeared to hold back information on Chinese meddling efforts because they disagreed with the Trump administration's policies, according to an intelligence community inspector.
Barry Zulauf, an analytic ombudsman and longtime intelligence official, issued a 14-page report to the Senate Intelligence Committee. In addition, he lamented the “polarized atmosphere has threatened to undermine the foundations of our Republic, penetrating even into the Intelligence Community.”
“Given analytic differences in the way Russia and China analysts examined their targets, China analysts appeared hesitant to assess Chinese actions as undue influence or interference. The analysts appeared reluctant to have their analysis on China brought forward because they tend to disagree with the administration’s policies, saying in effect, I don’t want our intelligence used to support those policies,” Zulauf concluded, saying this behavior violated analytic standards requiring independence from political considerations.
Happening Four Years Ago, Happening Now
“If you elect Hillary Clinton, then I'll implement all of her policies very faithfully, and if I see massive evidence of corruption on Hillary Clinton's part, then I'll keep it all a secret. If you elect a candidate I disagree with, then I'll lie, I'll leak, I'll cheat, I'll smear, I'll attack, I'll persecute, and I will refuse to implement, and I will obstruct at every single step of the way."
Chinese military-linked entities, including those behind extensive cyber attacks and espionage, funneled at least $88 million into U.S. universities over the course of six years, according to a review of federal records.
Duke University operates a joint-campus in China with Wuhan University, a public university that repeatedly carried out cyber attacks on behalf of the Chinese military. Northwestern University and the University of California Irvine have together received more than $4 million in research funding from an entity controlled by the Aviation Industry Corporation of China, a Chinese defense contractor that used stolen designs of American F-35 fighters to build planes for the Chinese military.
Institutions controlled by the Chinese government—state-owned enterprises, state-controlled public universities, government-controlled nonprofits, and other sources—collectively donated at least $315 million to American colleges between 2014 and 2019. The $315 million sum, based on federal disclosures, is likely a conservative estimate. A Department of Education audit found that U.S. universities failed to disclose more than $6.5 billion in foreign funding from China and other countries in recent years.
The University of Michigan has received $1.3 million from Harbin Engineering University, an institution that the Treasury Department included on its ban list in 2020.
"Americans must know how the CCP is poisoning the well of our higher education for its own ends, and how those actions degrade our freedoms and our national security," Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said in a December speech. "If we don't educate ourselves, we'll get schooled by Beijing."
Secretary of State Mike Pompeo on Saturday said he was lifting restrictions on contacts between US officials and their Taiwanese counterparts, a move likely to anger China and increase tensions between Beijing and Washington in the waning days of President Donald Trump’s presidency. China claims democratic and separately-ruled Taiwan as its own territory, and regularly describes Taiwan as the most sensitive issue in its ties with the United States.
While the United States, like most countries, has no official relations with Taiwan, the Trump administration has ramped up backing for the island country, with arms sales and laws to help Taiwan deal with pressure from China.
In a statement, Pompeo said that for several decades the State Department had created complex internal restrictions on interactions with Taiwanese counterparts by American diplomats, service members and other officials. “The United States government took these actions unilaterally, in an attempt to appease the Communist regime in Beijing,” Pompeo said in a statement. “Today I am announcing that I am lifting all of these self-imposed restrictions.”
Parler to be down 'for a while' without AWS, executives say: 'We are clearly being singled out.'
CEO John Matze says Big Tech seeking to 'stifle free speech and competition in the marketplace'.
Parler will likely go offline for "a while" Sunday evening given Amazon Web Services' decision to suspend the upstart social media platform after Wednesday's U.S. Capitol riot, executives said Sunday.
“We are clearly being singled out,” Chief Policy Officer Amy Peikoff told “Fox & Friends Weekend” one day after Apple suspended Parler from its App Store even as it surged to the No. 1 spot in the free apps section earlier in the day.
CEO Matze told “Sunday Morning Futures” that what is happening is “extremely scary” and that it seems like the Big Tech moves are an effort to "stifle free speech and competition in the marketplace."
Data analytics company Appfigures estimated that on Saturday, Parler downloads would surpass 1.5 million on the App Store, driven in large part by pro-Trump conservatives leaving Twitter in protest.
“We will try our best to move to a new provider right now as we have many competing for our business, however Amazon, Google and Apple purposefully did this in a coordinated effort knowing our options would be limited and knowing this would inflict the most damage right as President Trump was banned from the tech companies,” Matze added.
Socialism became more accepted in 2020 and is on its way to becoming the default economic policy for Democratic politicians, former U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley warned.
Calling socialism a "dangerous ideology" the former governor of South Carolina noted it "has failed everywhere it has been tried & ruined countless lives."
Worse, she also wrote, "it is on its way to becoming the default economic policy of the Democratic Party. This terrifying trend threatens the future of every American."
"The left believes that government knows best. If the past year has taught us anything, it’s that when govt dictates how the economy is run, Americans suffer. With the Biden admin set to take power, now is the time to renew the fight for capitalism."
"Like all Americans, I am outraged by the violence, lawlessness and mayhem," Trump said, adding that he had "immediately" deployed the National Guard.
On Wednesday evening, Trump tweeted out a statement: "These are the things and events that happen when a sacred landslide election victory is so unceremoniously & viciously stripped away from great patriots who have been badly & unfairly treated for so long," Trump tweeted. "Go home with love & peace." He added: "Remember this day forever!"
A group of GOP senators led by Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, will object to the Jan. 6 certification of the presidential election results next week unless there is an emergency 10-day audit of the results by an electoral commission. Cruz and the other senators claim the Nov. 3 election "featured unprecedented allegations of voter fraud and illegal conduct."
"Voter fraud has posed a persistent challenge in our elections, although its breadth and scope are disputed. By any measure, the allegations of fraud and irregularities in the 2020 election exceed any in our lifetimes."
The lawmakers say there is a precedent of Democrats objecting to election results in 1969, 2001, 2005 and 2019. "And, in both 1969 and 2005, a Democratic Senator joined with a Democratic House Member in forcing votes in both houses on whether to accept the presidential electors being challenged."
The senators and senators-elect are calling for Congress to appoint a commission to conduct a 10-day emergency audit of the election returns in states where the results are disputed. They cite as precedent the 1877 race between Samuel Tilden and Rutherford Hayes in which there were allegations of fraud in multiple states. "In 1877, Congress did not ignore those allegations, nor did the media simply dismiss those raising them as radicals trying to undermine democracy," the lawmakers said in the statement. "Instead, Congress appointed an Electoral Commission -- consisting of five Senators, five House Members, and five Supreme Court Justices -- to consider and resolve the disputed returns. We should follow that precedent." If that doesn't happen, the senators intend to vote against certification. "Accordingly, we intend to vote on January 6 to reject the electors from disputed states as not ‘regularly given’ and ‘lawfully certified’ (the statutory requisite), unless and until that emergency 10-day audit is completed."
if the group of GOP senators object, along with a similar effort by House Republicans, the joint session of Congress would be dissolved, and the House and Senate would then meet separately to debate any contested state’s electoral votes. Afterward, each body would vote whether to accept or reject any contested votes. Then the House and Senate would reconvene the joint session. In the House, at least 10 incoming House GOP freshmen are expected to back a move by Rep. Mo Brooks, R-Ala., to object to certification.
A state’s slate of electoral votes would only be thrown out if both the House and Senate vote to do so.
Mayor's zero-tolerance policy comes after a string of violent clashes in the city's downtown area.
ANTIFA Anti-"fascist" Fascists
Portland Mayor Ted Wheeler is promising to "push back harder" against anarchists and Antifa radicals after another riot rocked the city on New Year's Eve, admitting that months-long efforts to stem the violence have failed. "My good faith efforts at de-escalation have been met with ongoing violence and even scorn from radical Antifa and anarchists," Wheeler said during a Friday news conference. "In response, it will be necessary to use additional tools and push the limits of the tools we already have to bring the criminal destruction and violence to an end."
Police said hoodlums on Thursday night threw "multiple firebombs" at cops and launched commercial-grade fireworks at the courthouse. Rioters also smashed windows and set fires in the area, and police began using pepper spray or mace against the crowd, as well as what appeared to be rubber bullets or pepper balls.
He also noted the demographics of the rioters, who often claim to be fighting for racial justice. "Why would a group of largely white, young and some middle-age men destroy the livelihood of others who are struggling to get by? There are some people who truly just want to watch the world burn."
Sen. David Perdue, R-Ga., has accused his opponent in next week's runoff election, Democrat Jon Ossoff, of lying by failing to disclose his business ties to the Chinese Communist Party.
"This is clearly a pattern of activity from the Chinese Communist Party. They identified Jon Ossoff after his 2017 attempt to run for the U.S. House ...They identified him as an ambitious young politician on the Democratic side that they probably could get influence with. So they hired him and he worked for two years for this propaganda company of the Chinese Communist Party ... and he hid it from the people of Georgia during his primary. He might not have won that primary, had he fully disclosed that. He got caught. He didn't disclosed it, lied about it and lied about it again. And he still didn't answer Peter's question, if you noticed that. He never has answered that question."
Did China buy the 2020 election? Is this the pattern they have followed in other cases?
New North Carolina rep defied the odds in life and in politics. Rep.-elect Madison Cawthorn, R-N.C., beat out a candidate backed by President Trump and the Washington establishment to become the youngest incoming member of Congress at age 25. Winning the seat without the help of the GOP establishment has given Cawthorn a sense of freedom from the traditional power structures in Washington and a motivation to help other young patriots break the mold, too.
Cawthorn is determined to be a powerful voice for the next generation of conservatives, arguing the Republican Party must change to make inroads with young voters who think the GOP is "angry and just says 'no.'" "There is a generational time bomb going off in the Republican Party and that's because they have failed to connect with this new generation," Cawthorn said. "They've failed to iterate the fact that we are the party of freedom."
Cawthorn wants to "brand a new Republican Party" that is bold and inspirational.
"I really want the Republican Party to be bolder," Cawthorn said. "I want us to be a big tent party that says I don't care if you're gay. I don't care what your religion is. As long as you believe in freedom and believe in our founding principles, you're welcome in our party. I really want our party defined as the Freedom Party."