Saturday, December 6, 2014
In a ruling that could short-circuit one of President Obama’s executive actions on immigration, a federal court has allowed U.S. tech workers to challenge extensions of foreign laborers’ status here.
The case of Washington Alliance of Technology Workers v. the U.S. Department of Homeland Security has “major implications” for the president’s ability to expand the number of work visas and the terms or durations of those visas, said Dale Wilcox, executive director of the Immigration Reform Law Institute.
The lawsuit was brought by attorney John Miano and the Immigration Reform Law Institute on behalf of several displaced American workers.
“The Obama administration and its congressional allies have stated repeatedly that they believed the president’s executive memos were immune from judicial review in federal court,” Wilcox said.
The decision by the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia “demonstrates that this is not true,” Wilcox stated.
Through a host of foreign-worker visa programs, the federal government “swells the number of foreign nationals in the STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) labor market where Washington Alliance members must compete. Indeed, (they were) designed with this purpose in mind,” the lawsuit alleges.
One of the foreign tech-worker gateways — Optional Practical Training — “is likely now to be America’s largest guest-worker program. Yet, it has never been authorized by Congress,” Miano said.
When Gov. Brown pushed Prop 30 in 2012, he sold his measure with the promise that the income and sales tax increases in his measure would put off sharp tuition increases in the higher education systems. Two short years later after state budgets that heralded a 4-year deal to keep tuition flat, UC solons say there never was a deal to freeze tuition. At the urging of UC President Janet Napolitano, the UC Board of Regents voted last month to raise tuition substantially — by up to 28% over 5 years — because there never was a meeting at which university officials pledged not to raise fees.
◼ Before getting to the climate quotes, I offer the following in order to provide a feel for the sociopolitical background in which modern climate science must operate. This article is not meant to impugn all who practice the art of climate science, but to provide the reader with some idea of the historical turmoil in the arena, some of the conclusions drawn by its practitioners, and the continuing pressures to create dire climate prognostication for self-serving and political purposes. - Watts Up With That?
Two quotes from H.L. Mencken:
“The whole aim of practical politics is to keep the populace alarmed — and hence clamorous to be led to safety — by menacing it with an endless series of hobgoblins, all of them imaginary.” “The urge to save humanity is almost always only a false face for the urge to rule it.”And three more quotes on knowledge and politics:
“When the search for truth is confused with political advocacy, the pursuit of knowledge is reduced to the quest for power.” -Alston ChaseAnd a little something to motivate all climate “heretics”.
“The press should be not only a collective propagandist and a collective agitator, but also a collective organizer of the masses.” -Vladimir Lenin
“Ridicule is man’s most potent weapon. It is almost impossible to counteract ridicule.” -Saul Alinsky
“First they tell you that you’re wrong, and they can prove it.Now, lets look into the motivational background of a few typical players in the green climate movement.... KEEP READING
Then they tell you you’re right, but it’s not important.
Then they tell you it’s important, but they’ve known it for years.”
-CF Kettering, Time Magazine July 11, 1969, pg 54.
The predictable furor over President Obama’s executive order offering relief to approximately 5 million undocumented immigrants has obscured the fact that his initiative is much bolder in form than in content. Obama has gone to extraordinary lengths to offer less than what immigrant advocates have for years been insisting is an absolute necessity: full citizenship.
If Obama’s initiative should prove to be the first step on “the path to citizenship” for these undocumented, it is a hobbled and halting one, and the path long and tortuous. It is difficult to believe that this or any Congress now on the horizon will be willing to affirm Obama’s initiative. Neither is it likely, though perhaps less easy to predict, that Congress will risk the political consequences of rescinding it.
It is even more difficult to imagine a president in the foreseeable future unilaterally granting this population any more than Obama has, apart from perhaps extending the order’s three-year limit. Similarly, the odds are against any future chief executive—especially a Republican—terminating Obama’s program. So rather than direct these 5 million individuals down a path to citizenship, Obama has almost certainly consigned them to legal limbo.... KEEP READING
◼ (BCN editor’s note: I love this. More Republicans like Rep. Trey Gowdy, please.) - Black Community News via Star Parker/Facebook
◼ link - Laura Ingraham
After the 2012 Presidential Debate she moderated between Barack Obama and Mitt Romney, the State of the Union host was roundly criticized for seeming to take sides.When Romney questioned Obama’s claim that he had called Benghazi an act of terror in a Rose Garden ceremony the day after the attack, as opposed to blaming it on a spontaneous demonstration, Crowley said, “He did, in fact.”
Later, Crowley told CNN’s Anderson Cooper that Romney “was right in the main. I just think he picked the wrong word.”
...A replacement has not been named, though The Wrap mentioned Jake Tapper and John King as strong contenders. Tapper would be an interesting pick, as he is one of the few traditional media journalists whom conservatives respect.
◼ Above: Hannah Thomas-Garner and Sylvia Davis - Lost Coast Outpost
Anyone with any information should call the Ashland Police Department at 541-482-5211.
◼ Missing Oregon teen found on Lost Coast, man with her arrested
On Thursday at about 8:35 p.m., the Ashland Police Department sent information to the Sheriff’s Office regarding two runaway female juveniles from Ashland, Oregon. The female juveniles were reported to have traveled to Humboldt County with a male subject named Andrew Thibert. They were reported to be traveling in Andrew Thibert’s vehicle, a white 1996 Ford Ranger pick-up with a California license plate number of 5L01155....◼ Where is Hannah? - Lost Coast Outpost
A short time after the ground search began, one of the female juveniles was located, along with two other male subjects. The male subjects were identified as Andrew Thibert, 19, of Weed and Richard Silver, 19, of Dunsmir. They were located approximately three miles south of the Mattole campground. They were transported back to the Mattole campground.
Deputies interviewed the juvenile female and the two male subjects. Deputies learned that the second juvenile female was not present, and had not accompanied them at all on their trip to the Humboldt County. During the course of the interviews, Deputies also learned that crimes of a sexual nature had been committed by Thibert. Thibert was taken into custody, and transported to the Humboldt County Correctional Facility where he was booked. The female juvenile was released to her father.
Hannah Thomas-Garner is still missing.Anyone who has information to provide the Sheriff’s Office, regarding this case or related criminal activity, is encouraged to call the Sheriff’s Office at (707)-445-7251, or the Sheriff’s Office Crime Tip line at (707)268-2539.
◼ In an unprecedented challenge to federal dominance of Western state lands, Utah Gov. Gary Herbert in 2012 signed the “Transfer of Public Lands Act,” which demands that Washington relinquish its hold on the land, which represents more than half of the state’s 54.3 million acres, by Dec. 31. - Washington Times
So far, however, the federal government hasn’t given any indication that it plans to cooperate. Still, state Rep. Ken Ivory, who sponsored the legislation, isn’t deterred.
Friday, December 5, 2014
More ABC US news | ABC World News
◼ American Hostage Luke Somers Killed in a desperate US Rescue Attempt
"The United States strongly condemns the barbaric murder of Luke Somers at the hands of al Qaeda terrorists during a rescue operation conducted by U.S. forces in Yemen," Obama said. "Earlier this week, a video released by his terrorist captors announced that Luke would be killed within 72 hours. Other information also indicated Luke's life was in imminent danger. Based on this assessment, and as soon as there was reliable intelligence and an operational plan, I authorized a rescue attempt yesterday."
"On behalf of the American people, I offer my deepest condolences to Luke's family and to his loved ones," the President said.
◼ No Yemeni Victory Lap for Obama - Larry Johnson/No Quarter
Unlike his lack of response and cover up with respect to Benghazi, Obama is demonstrating here the kind of leadership Americans expect from a President.
Based on what I have read in the press, it appears that the raid was briefed to the Yemeni Government and that someone in that Government in turn alerted the kidnappers. They were waiting for the Spec Ops guys and had time to shoot the defenseless hostages.
◼ A Note to Our Readers - ROLLING STONE
◼ Rolling Stone backs off from UVA rape stor - USA Today
Rolling Stone magazine said Friday it found discrepancies in its controversial story about an alleged gang rape at the University of Virginia and had lost faith in the piece, a shocking retreat coming merely days after author Sabrina Rubin Erdely defended the reporting.
"In the face of new information, there now appear to be discrepancies in Jackie's account, and we have come to the conclusion that our trust in her was misplaced," Will Dana, the magazine's managing editor, wrote on its website.
UVA Gang Rape Story Falls To Pieces, Rolling Stone Admits It Was Fooled http://t.co/BTzN7kikvG— The Daily Caller (@DailyCaller) December 5, 2014
Rolling Stone: Erdely and Woods lied about contacting accused pic.twitter.com/KmT62RS05j— Michael van Poppel (@mpoppel) December 5, 2014
Rolling Stone Crumbles http://t.co/7IjUKE4D0H— National Review (@NRO) December 5, 2014
FRAT FIGHTS BACK: UVA Phi Kappa Psi rebuts claims of gang rape...
'No party on date reported'...
'Did not contact alleged assaulters'...
This is parody, but spot on -> “@Salondotcom: Why Rolling Stone shouldn’t retract its UVA rape story even if it isn’t true”— Larry O'Connor (@LarryOConnor) December 5, 2014
Accuse someone of a crime? You have to face them in court. And you don't get to be anonymous. Sometimes this stinks. #UVA— Dan Gainor (@dangainor) December 8, 2014
ALSO (separate but related):
◼ INVESTIGATION: LENA DUNHAM ‘RAPED BY A REPUBLICAN’ STORY IN BESTSELLER COLLAPSES UNDER SCRUTINY - John Nolte/Breitbart
The sort that looks to Lena Dunham as a role model. RT @LeonHWolf: What sort of monster would make up a rape story like that?— eric (@eriContrarian) December 5, 2014
WaPo's Volokh: 'Barry' Should Sue Dunham: After Breitbart News’ comprehensive report debunking Lena Dunham’s r... http://t.co/ijZzj1OGU2— Breitbart News (@BreitbartNews) December 5, 2014
◼ UPDATE: Man Considers Libel Suit Against Lena Dunham over Campus 'Rape' Claim... - Breitbart
The man identified as "Barry One" in a Breitbart News investigation debunking Lena Dunham's story of being raped in college by a "mustachioed campus Republican" named Barry, has made his first official statement since the release of that report. Through his attorney, identified as Aaron Minc, Barry One has set up a legal fund to cover current legal expenses, clear his name, and to potentially file suit against Ms. Dunham.
The proceeds from the legal fund will be used only to cover Barry One's legal expenses. If there are any leftover monies, those will be donated to non-profit organizations that aid sexual assault victims.
For more than two months, and to no avail, Barry One has asked Dunham (through her representatives) to clear his name. Obviously, she has refused.
"All proceeds will be spent by Barry on legal costs and related fees associated with defending Barry's reputation," the statement reads, "including, but not limited to, potentially pursuing Lena Dunham and Penguin Random House for harm caused to Barry's reputation from the publication and sale of Ms. Dunham's memoir."
The statement adds that due to numerous details in Dunham's memoir that falsely point to him as her rapist, "Barry has already spent a substantial portion of his savings on legal fees because of the actions (and inactions) of Ms. Dunham and Penguin Random House."
False or unsubstantiated reports of rape hurt people: http://t.co/jxR6W88jG5— Ashe Schow (@AsheSchow) December 5, 2014
◼ The UVA Gang Rape that Wasn’t - Jonah Goldberg/National Review
◼ Well, that didn’t take long. - Genevieve Wood/Daily Signal
In the first standoff between Republican leadership and President Obama following the November elections, the GOP is showing signs it doesn’t have the fortitude to fight the good fight....
Boehner updated his talking points this week saying on Thursday, “Come January, we’ll have a Republican House and Republican Senate, and we’ll be in a stronger position to take actions.” It is, he said, “the most practical way to fight the president’s action.”
Practical isn’t the same as effective.
“Practical” means business as usual and “we’re backing down.” Indeed, there is the possibility the House will pass a bill next week that funds all government agencies well into 2015, including the Department of Homeland Security—the main implementer of Obama’s executive amnesty program. Despite the fact the GOP will control both the House and Senate come January, it is much harder to take back money once you’ve allocated it.
There is no good reason for the House NOT to take real action now. If they need ideas, they can take a look at the public memo put together by my colleagues at Heritage Action that clearly lays out three very workable scenarios the GOP could follow to force Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid’s hand—and putting any talk about not funding the government or a government shutdown on both Reid’s and Obama’s plate.
Heritage Action chief executive Michael Needham is right to say, “The fight is now, not next year. Americans expect real action, not a show vote.”
"Marriage is dead. Divorce means you're screwed for life. Women have given up on monogamy, which makes them uninteresting to us for any serious relationship or raising a family. That's just the way it is. Even if we take the risk, chances are the kids won't be ours. In France, we even have to pay for the kids a wife has through adulterous affairs.
"In school, boys are screwed over time and again. Schools are engineered for women. In the US, they force-feed boys Ritalin like Skittles to shut them up. And while girls are favoured to fulfil quotas, men are slipping into distant second place.
"Nobody in my generation believes they're going to get a meaningful retirement. We have a third or a quarter of the wealth previous generations had, and everyone's fleeing to higher education to stave off unemployment and poverty because there are no jobs.
"All that wouldn't be so bad if we could at least dull the pain with girls. But we're treated like paedophiles and potential rapists just for showing interest. My generation are the beautiful ones," he sighs, referring to a 1960s experiment on mice that supposedly predicted a grim future for the human race....
Never before in history have relations between the sexes been so fraught with anxiety, animosity and misunderstanding. To radical feminists, who have been the driving force behind many tectonic societal shifts in recent decades, that's a sign of success: they want to tear down the institutions and power structures that underpin society, never mind the fall-out. Nihilistic destruction is part of their road map.
But, for the rest of us, the sight of society breaking down, and ordinary men and women being driven into separate but equal misery, thanks to a small but highly organised group of agitators, is distressing. Particularly because, as increasing numbers of social observers are noticing, an entire generation of young people—mostly men—are being left behind in the wreckage of this social engineering project.
◼ Almost All Of Manhattan Shut Off From Rest Of The World… - Weasel Zippers
Ferguson Protestors In Denver Cheered When Car Hit Four Police Officers, Chant “Hit Him Again”… http://t.co/saecc2OsWl— Weasel Zippers (@weaselzippers) December 5, 2014
...The worst-run states also tended to have weak fiscal management, reflected by low pension funding, sparsely padded coffers, and poor credit ratings from Moody's Investors Service and Standard & Poor's (S&P). Illinois, the worst-run state in America, received lower ratings than any other state from both agencies...
Thursday, December 4, 2014
John Boehner on why he opposes the idea of disinviting Obama from giving a State of the Union address. It's awesome. https://t.co/g0jCrbiEP4— Ken Gardner (@kesgardner) December 4, 2014
◼ Boehner rejected that idea this way: - Twitchy
Click Volume Icon in upper left hand corner of image/vine to adjust sound
Boehner on SOTU: The more the president talks..the more unpopular he becomes. Why would I want to deprive him of that opportunity?— Chad Pergram (@ChadPergram) December 4, 2014
John Boehner on why he opposes the idea of disinviting Obama from giving a State of the Union address. It's awesome. https://t.co/g0jCrbiEP4— Ken Gardner (@kesgardner) December 4, 2014
◼ Boehner rejected that idea this way: - Twitchy
Boehner on SOTU: The more the president talks..the more unpopular he becomes. Why would I want to deprive him of that opportunity?— Chad Pergram (@ChadPergram) December 4, 2014
◼ Amnesty shocker! The secret behind Obama's 'order' - Jerome Corsi/WND
Did President Obama just set up Department of Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson to be a candidate for impeachment instead of himself if conservatives convince the Republican majorities in the House and the Senate that his “executive actions” on immigration are unconstitutional?
Wolfboy and Princess Cupcake: The complementarity of the sexes: http://t.co/iCgddMrmlt— Human Events (@HumanEvents) December 4, 2014
Ecumenism at its best was recently demonstrated at the Vatican, where dozens of faith leaders worldwide assembled to remind us of the essential complementarity of men and women in life, marriage, and parenthood. It was enough to prompt a high-five between Pope Francis and evangelical pastor James Robison....
Ask any parent if males and females are different. My wife and I have eight children under our roof, and the boy-girl differences are dramatic.
Here’s a typical Saturday morning exchange at our house: “Daddy!” my 7-year-old son yells, running toward me in camouflage hunting clothes. “I had a dream last night that I stabbed Bigfoot nine times with a spear!” Not missing a beat, his 3-year-old sister prances and dances toward me in a flowered pink dress: “Daddy, I had a dream about a ladybug!”
The 3-year-old goes by “Princess Cupcake.” She’s of the age where she dresses up and displays herself in front of me waiting for me to gush, “Wow, you look like a princess!” She beams. Her older sisters did the same thing. The first time I said that to her oldest sister, she calmly glowed to her mom, “He said I look like a princess.”
Needless to say, the boys have never done that—not once in 20,000-plus days of combined lives....
That brings me back to the differences in the sexes. These traits follow us into adulthood, marriage, and parenting. There are things my wife does that I just can’t. She happily jumps up in the middle of the night at the slightest cry. I lay there groaning. On the flip side, she has no yearning to take the teenage boys hunting in 20-degree weather with rifles and crossbows to shoot and gut and hang and skin and butcher a deer. My boys crave that, and they’re utterly mystified at their sisters’ insatiable interest in the Duggar family’s weddings.
In short, all of this is obvious, observable. Really, to deny it is to be warped by ideology, culture, politics, or some agenda.
That brings me back to the ecumenical gathering at the Vatican, where these gender differences in married and family life were acknowledged and celebrated.... - Dr. Paul Kengor/Human Events
Ali Akbar, Anita Moncrief and other activists with the Black Conservatives Fund have been making a huge difference in Louisiana during the final weeks of the campaign leading up to Saturday’s election that will end the Senate career of Democrat Mary Landrieu.
However, as much credit as is certainly due to BCF, the real credit goes to the Democrats themselves, who simply weren’t ready for primetime once Ali’s crew showed up to expose their corruption....
Damn, Andrew Breitbart would be so proud to see this day. After Saturday’s election, there won’t be anything left of the Democrat Party in Louisiana but a vast smoldering crater of failure and fear.
Sen. Ted Cruz (R.-Texas) said today that Republicans in Congress should pass a short-term continuing resolution that defunds President Obama's unilateral amnesty for illegal aliens, and then use every constitutional means at their disposal to stop that amnesty.
This, Cruz said, would include blocking confirmation of President Obama's nominees to non-national-security-related Executive Branch positions.
The federal government is currently operating on a CR that expires on Dec. 11. Congress must pass a new CR to keep the government funded after that date. If Congress passes a CR that funds the entire federal government through the end of the fiscal year (Sept. 30, 2015), it will essentially strip the incoming Republican majority Congress (which will be seated in January) of its power of the purse.
A short-term CR would give the incoming Republican-majority Congress leverage over federal policy, including giving them the power to defund Obama's amnesty through all of this fiscal year....
◼ House Votes Down Obama’s Immigration Plan - The Blaze
The House voted Thursday to nullify President Barack Obama’s executive action on immigration — but the legislation members passed stands no chance of becoming law, and only served to prove that Republicans oppose Obama’s immigration plan.◼ Breaking: House passes symbolic bill to block Obama’s executive amnesty - HotAir
Republican leaders called up the Preventing Executive Overreach on Immigration Act, which would stop Obama from implementing his plan to give safe harbor to millions of illegal immigrants, and let them work in the United States.
This was the bill proposed by conservative Ted Yoho that would, if also passed by the Senate and signed by Obama, block Obama’s authority to remake immigration policy on his own. I … thought we had a Constitution that does that, but I guess we don’t anymore. Obviously, a bill like this isn’t going to get past a Democratic Senate and a Democratic president, which means this was an empty gesture designed to show grassroots righties that the leadership shares their concerns about O’s power grab even if they’re not prepared to play hardball to stop it.
JUST IN: House votes 219 to 197, 3 voted present, to block Obama from changing immigration laws by executive authority— Ed O'Keefe (@edatpost) December 4, 2014
Now that Boehner has pushed through phony baloney #amnesty "response" we can start discussing real response: Defund or complicity.— Matthew Boyle (@mboyle1) December 4, 2014
Which GOP House members voted against Yoho's bill rebuking the Obama immigration plan? http://t.co/1O20h30ym4— Roll Call (@rollcall) December 4, 2014
House votes, 219-197, to declare President Obama's immigration executive actions 'null and void and without legal... http://t.co/NtitxuXw3i— Special Report Team (@SpecialReport) December 4, 2014
You may recall that ObamaCare is heaving its disreputable bulk back to the Court for judgment on whether the federal exchange (which 35 states use) is allowed to dispense subsidies (without which nobody can afford those mandate-bloated ObamaCare insurance policies.) The Affordable Care Act explicitly states that only exchanges run by states can give out subsidies, but the dogged defenders of this hideous law claim that was just a “typo.” Gruber has, in past appearances, strongly implied that the federal exchanges weren’t supposed to give out subsidies, but he dismissed those statements as “speak-os.” (In case you’ve forgotten how idiotic ObamaCare is, and how dishonest its creators are, that’s the exact word Gruber used.)
Liberals blew a zillion pixels on screeds that insisted we were all just misunderstanding Gruber, or he just tripped over his tongue. Why would the designers of the Affordable Care Act sabotage their own magnificent supra-Constitutional law by planting legal bombs in its subsidy mechanisms, all but ensuring the demise of the program when the American people discovered how much it actually costs?
Well, here comes the latest hugely embarrassing Jon Gruber video, a January 2012 appearance in which he confirms without ambiguity that federal exchange customers aren’t supposed to receive subsidies, and explains exactly why: “If you’re a state and you don’t accept an exchange, that means your citizens don’t get their tax credits. But your citizens still pay the taxes to support this bill. So you’re essentially saying to your citizens, you’re going to pay all the taxes to support all the states in this country.”
The slogan of the wave of Ferguson protests is “Black Lives Matter.” But progressives are far more interested in toting around the corpse of Michael Brown to their protests than in the living man he was.
Trayvon Martin, Michael Brown and countless others like them grew up in broken families, their lives haunted by fathers and stepfathers with gang ties. The only masculine culture they had was that of the thug and that culture eventually killed them.
Criminal culture is even more fatal to criminals than it is to their victims. If you attack enough people, eventually one of them will fight back. Eventually one of them will kill you....
Missouri has a black homicide rate that is nearly double the nationwide homicide rate for black people. And it’s nearly six times higher than the overall murder rate in Missouri.
...If the media were really outraged by lost black lives, they would be outraged by those numbers. If the protesters really wanted to say that black lives matter, they would fight those murder rates instead of contributing to them with their protests.
The story of Missouri’s murder rate is the story of the left. From the beginning to the end of the 1960s, murder rates doubled, rapes, robberies and car thefts doubled, assaults tripled and thefts quadrupled.
A decade in which America changed left a bloody trail of death and misery in its wake. The victims of the left’s transformation of America filled the gutters, morgues, prisons and hospitals.
When Giuliani pointed out that the police were there to protect black people, he was asserting that black lives matter. And unlike every single one of his self-righteous critics, he actually saved black lives.
The decision of his Socialist successor, Bill de Blasio, to move criminals back into housing projects was a statement that they don’t. Housing projects in the pre-Giuliani era belonged to drug dealers. Getting criminals out of housing projects saved black lives, especially those of children.
The “Black Lives Matter” protesters claim that there’s a crisis of police shootings. There isn’t. There is a crisis of young black men shooting each other.... KEEP READING
◼ CNN Makes an Admission You Might Not Expect About the Michael Brown ‘Hands Up’ Narrative - IJ Review
|(Gary Friedman/Los Angeles Times)|
◼ Forty-six percent of Californians surveyed had a generally favorable opinion of the health law while 43% were unfavorable. - LA Times via Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association/Facebook
...More than half of people, 52%, said the Covered California exchange is working well. That's down from 54% who gave high marks in May.
Thirty-nine percent said it's not working too well or not at all. Nine percent didn't know....
Nationally, the sentiment has been more negative.
Last month, 46% of people surveyed in the U.S. had an unfavorable view of the health law compared to 37% favorable, according to a Kaiser Family Foundation poll.
The latest results on satisfaction with Covered California mirror some earlier consumer feedback.
In a survey published in July, nearly 40% of newly insured people said signing up through Covered California was difficult, according to the Kaiser Family Foundation.
Wednesday, December 3, 2014
While campaigning for the White House, President Obama promised to cut taxes for 95 percent of Americans. As he put it, “In an economy like this, the last thing we should do is raise taxes on the middle class.”
And then, the president went ahead and raised taxes on the middle class, thanks to Obamacare. Starting in 2018, Americans with high-cost health insurance through their employers will have to pay a 40 percent excise tax on their policies.
The intent of this so-called “Cadillac” tax was to discourage people from selecting costly insurance policies. But the rest of Obamacare — with its many mandates — certainly does its darnedest to raise the cost of insurance.
So Obamacare may require ordinary Americans to pay ever-greater sums for health insurance — and then penalize them for following the law.
...four in five large employers are changing their health plans. Some are requiring greater employee cost sharing, while others are removing dental and vision benefits.
In some cases, they’re replacing their generous health plans altogether. For their employees, that decision amounts to a pay cut — of up to $6,150, according to AHPI.
Of course, companies could increase workers’ taxable income to make up for this effective cut in their compensation. But if they were to do so, employees would be subject to additional payroll and income taxes. According to the AHPI study, some 12 million workers would face an additional $1,050 in taxes every year.
The government is counting on employers to try to dodge the Cadillac tax. The Congressional Budget Office expects the tax to raise $120 billion between 2018 and 2024 – 25 percent of it directly and 75 percent from increases in payroll and income tax revenue....
The documents will not be released to Cause of Action, however, because TIGTA said the pages “consist of return information protected by 26 U.S.C. § 6103 and may not be disclosed absent an express statutory exception. … Because no such exception exists here, we are withholding those,” Fox reported.
“That indicates scandal,” Dan Epstein, a spokesman for Cause of Action, told Fox. “This White House, for whatever reason, was looking at anyone from big companies to little guys who all have a right to the confidentiality to their most private information. My organization, Cause of Action, had to fight for two years just to get transparency. This is supposed to be the most transparent organization in history, so why spend so long trying to make sure that these records don’t go public?” he added.
A report released by Arizona Republican Sen. Jeff Flake found numerous examples of EPA mismanagement and excess, including employees illegitimately spending $15 million on agency credit cards and $9 million the agency lost track of funding projects in California.
The report found the agency spent “$3,500,000 to fund ‘Planning for Economic and Fiscal Health’ workshops across the country… $1,500,000 annually to store out-of-date and unwanted publications at an Ohio warehouse” and another “$700,000 to attempt to reduce methane emitted from pig flatulence in Thailand.”...
“Social Security’s trustees projected in 1983 that the recently enacted Social Security reforms would keep the program active for at least the next 75 years, through 2058,” reports The Daily Signal.
With each successive annual Social Security Administration (SSA) report, however, the federal program’s approach date has accelerated, Heritage experts find.
Sessions said that the proposed language “fails to meet [the] test” established by Republican National Committee chairman Reince Priebus, who promised earlier this year that the GOP would do everything possible to thwart Obama’s executive orders.
“The executive amnesty language is substantially weaker than the language the House adopted this summer, and does not reject the central tenets of the President’s plan: work permits, Social Security and Medicare to 5 million illegal immigrants — reducing wages, jobs and benefits for Americans,” Sessions said in the statement expressing his dissatisfaction with the results of a House Republican conference meeting today.
In the meeting, “the lawmakers began coalescing around a two-part plan that would allow a symbolic vote to show their frustration with President Obama’s executive action on immigration, before funding the government ahead of a Dec. 11 deadline,” according to the New York Times....
SESSIONS: Republicans On Verge Of Breaking Campaign Promises...
CRUZ to HOUSE LEADERS: 'Do what you said you would do'...
LEFT MOCKS: 'War' on Obama's immigration order lasted about 5 minutes...
Conservatives to buck Boehner...
'Symbolic' Vote on Amnesty...
Gutiérrez presses 'millions' to get documents ready...
Mayors plan summit to implement...
POLL: Support for path to citizenship for illegals at record low...
UPDATE: 17-state coalition sues over amnesty order...
OBAMA PLANS PROCESSING FACILITY WITH 1,000 NEW AGENTS IN VA...
WASH POST: President's unilateral action has no precedent...
◼ New Black Panther Party foments hatred of whites, Jews, America - Bill Gertz/Washington Free Beacon
The communist and racist New Black Panther Party plotted to bomb St. Louis’ Gateway Arch and assassinate local law enforcement officials, but the Justice Department so far has limited its prosecution of the group to an indictment of two members on minor gun charges.
The soft treatment for activities that normally would have brought federal terrorism charges appears to be part of efforts by Attorney General Eric Holder and the Justice Department to “go soft” on the racist group, according to former Justice official J. Christian Adams.... KEEP READING
The losers from the global-warming fad are the working and middle classes, who do not have the capital to be unharmed by the restrictions on cheap, carbon-based fuels
...Finally, and most important, Obamism did not even deliver on its extravagant promises of a new ethos of ending crony capitalism, the revolving door, lobbyists in government, and government corruption. Indeed, Obama will go down in history as presiding over the most corrupt administration of the last half-century, when historians finally collate the IRS, VA, GSA, and Secret Service scandals; the erosion of constitutional jurisprudence; the serial untruths about Benghazi, amnesty, and Obamacare; the harassment of journalists; the record shakedown of Wall Street lucre in 2008 and 2012; and the flood of lobbyists into and out of the Obama administration. Eric Holder – with his jet-setting to sporting events on the public dime, spouting inflammatory racialist rhetoric, politicizing the Justice Department, selectively enforcing settled law, and being held in contempt of Congress for withholding subpoenaed documents — managed what one might have thought impossible: He has made Nixon’s attorney general John Mitchell seem a minor rogue in comparison.
Six years after the summer of hope and change, no one in the Democratic party is showcasing American foreign policy, pushing for cap-and-trade legislation, singing the praises of Obamacare, bragging about the way amnesty was handled, or pointing to a new cleaner and more transparent federal bureaucracy. What started out with “hope and change” and “fundamentally transforming the United States of America” ended up with a president who habitually misleads his countrymen, a baffling array of scandals, the discrediting of the obsequious media, and policies that not only did not work but by any historical model could never really have worked.
As proof, watch as Democrats regroup for 2016. Their unspoken commandment will be that most of what Obama did, they must either ignore or deny.
TODAY'S MUST READ
Tuesday, December 2, 2014
The Obama damage is two-fold. First, his success relied on a coalition that likely will not survive, or at least survive at full strength, without Obama himself on the ticket. Secondly, Obama drove a significant portion of white voters away from the Democratic Party.
Put those two things together — smaller Obama coalition and more alienated whites — and the result could be huge trouble for whoever the Democratic presidential nominee is in 2016....
◼ Democrats Paved the Way for Their Own Decline - Charlie Cook/National Journal
They have subordinated their traditional focus on helping working-class Americans move up the economic ladder in favor of other priorities.
◼ Liberalism in Ruins - Victor Davis Hanson/National Review Online
Obama’s hubristic promises have been followed by a total discrediting of his ideology.
Barack Obama will end his tenure with the ruin of Hope and Change. The implosion was brought about not by the marginalization of Hope and Change, but by the power of the U.S. government to reify the slogan in a way we have not seen since the 1930s.
Survey the wreckage.
The hope-and-change therapeutic approach to foreign relations ended logically with historic cuts in defense, lectures about American culpability, pink lines and the end of Syria, farcical Iranian talks, in Libya the short trip from “leading from behind” to Benghazi, the self-induced suicide of Iraq, the empowerment of Putin, a pivot to Asia that invited ridicule, and the charade of a war against ISIS.
There were only two saving graces to Obama’s misadventures abroad. One, as was also true of the alphabet stew of domestic scandals, each ensuing disaster seemed to divert attention from the prior calamity. Two, Obama was not able to halt new energy exploration on private lands as he had done with federal leasing. So followed a gas and oil renaissance that he opposed but can now claim as a great boon to American global leverage. Otherwise, what Barack Obama has accomplished, in the fashion of British prime minister Stanley Baldwin in the Twenties and Thirties, will be to avoid minor confrontations on his watch — if he is lucky — while ensuring catastrophic ones for his successors.
...The Bank of America heist is not a one-off for the Obama Justice Department. IBD reminds us that similar funding for Democrat activists has been written into the $20 billion in settlements for which JPMorgan Chase and Citibank were shaken down. This is massive fraud and extortion. The heavily regulated financial institutions are at the government’s mercy – that’s why they were making the bad loans in the first place, under pressure from politicians and the very organizations Holder is now inducing them to underwrite....◼ Holder Cut Left-Wing Groups In On $17 Bil BofA Deal - Investors Business Daily
Radical Democrat activist groups stand to collect millions from Attorney General Eric Holder’s record $17 billion deal to settle alleged mortgage abuse charges against Bank of America.
Buried in the fine print of the deal, which includes $7 billion in soft-dollar consumer relief, are a raft of political payoffs to Obama constituency groups. In effect, the government has ordered the nation’s largest bank to create a massive slush fund for Democrat special interests.
Besides requiring billions in debt forgiveness payments to delinquent borrowers in Cleveland, Atlanta, Philadelphia, Oakland, Detroit, Chicago and other Democrat strongholds — and up to $500 million to cover personal taxes owed on those checks — the deal requires BofA to make billions in new loans, while also building affordable low-income rental housing in those areas.
If there are leftover funds in four years, the settlement stipulates the money will go to Interest on Lawyers’ Trust Account (IOLTA), which provides legal aid for the poor and supports left-wing causes, and NeighborWorks of America, which provides affordable housing and funds a national network of left-wing community organizers operating in the mold of Acorn.
Read John Fund's book, Obama's Enforcer, and you'll see this also happened with the Gibson Guitar case.
◼ Today, while continuing his righteous rant against the Rams, Scarborough also castigated the three congressmen who took to the floor of the House yesterday to make the gesture. No fewer than five times, Scarborough called the notion that Brown had his hands up a "lie." - Newsbusters
◼ Scarborough Rips Media 'Cowards' Spewing 'BS' About Ferguson - Newsbusters
The Democrats have been reduced to the party of the rich elite (George Soros, Hillary Clinton, Hollywood, Jonathan Gruber-types, edit al.) and the party of the poor exploited by those elites — a lethal combination that takes society exactly nowhere.
2016 is the Republicans’ to lose. That doesn’t mean they won’t. They seem to be able to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory with remarkable ease, especially in presidential years. But they start this time with a big advantage. Liberalism, to paraphrase the late Preston Sturges (he was referring to chivalry), is “not only dead, it’s decomposed.”
Liberalism n’existe pas — and almost everybody knows it. It is completely out of ideas. Obama was the last gasp of a dying ideology. All they have left is some pathetic and teetering identity politics. That is why the Democratic Party was so flummoxed over the last few days over the words of their stalwart Chuck Schumer, when he criticized the risibly titled Affordable Care Act. The New York senator said his party (and Obama clearly), rather than trying to reform healthcare, should have concentrated on improving the state of the middle class. But crucially, Schumer didn’t say how. That’s because in his ideology, there is no more how.... KEEP READING
◼ A generation ago, John Wayne personified America. He was the rugged American who could handle his own problems. If times got tough, he was tougher. - Washington Times/Judson Phillips
That was then. Today, Pajama Boy personifies America. Instead of ruggedly facing our problems and dealing with them, Pajama Boy sits in a onesie sipping hot chocolate and whining for the government to step in and solve his problems.
The Pajama Boy mentality permeates America.... Today in Obama’s America, men are expected to curl up in their onesies, cry and wait for the government to do something against someone for saying something “hurtful.”
Two years ago, the chief justice surprised many by joining liberals on the court to uphold the constitutionality of Obama's Affordable Care Act. And he probably holds the deciding vote in a second legal challenge to the healthcare law — one that seeks to eliminate government insurance subsidies to low- and middle-income enrollees in two-thirds of the nation.
But Roberts, an appointee of President George W. Bush, has shown an increasing skepticism toward what conservatives call Obama's tendency to overreach....
When Obama announced his executive action on immigration last month, it set off another furor on the political right, where it was denounced as an abuse of power befitting a "monarch" or an "emperor."
Ilya Shapiro, a lawyer for the libertarian Cato Institute, said the immigration order is the "starkest example" of what he called the president's "pattern of lawlessness."
The question now is whether the president's immigration action will influence the thinking of the justices, and particularly of Roberts, as they consider in the upcoming healthcare case whether the president exceeded his authority....
If Obama blocks the budget to help the illegals, large sections of the federal government would shut down on Dec. 12.
The Saint Louis Murder of Zemir Begic – Not Random At All… Moments Earlier: “F**k the white people, kill the white people.”
…] Seldin Dzananovic, 24, said the teens with the hammers approached him farther north on Gravois about an hour before the attack on Begic. He said he was able to fight them off, suffering only cuts to his hands and neck.What’s that?
“I’m just lucky,” he said. “God is on my side.”
You mean the other white guy whose head was smashed by a group of “unarmed teens” wielding hammers was not the first subject of their collective interest that day? Nothing to see here, move along, move along…
And what, per se’, could possibly be going on in/around the Saint Louis area in the lead up to Mr. Begic’s encounter with the “teens” – that would have motivated a roaming group of “unarmed black teens” seeking victims?
◼ Fatal hammer attack on Bosnian immigrant not racially motivated, St. Louis police say - St. Louis Post-Dispatch [MO]
Monday, December 1, 2014
A low-pressure storm poised off the coast on Monday was expected to move inland overnight, hitting the Southland with full force on Tuesday ...“This looks like the type of storm that has widespread, constant rain,” said David Sweet, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Oxnard. “It’s very large and has a lot of moisture with it.”
...While this weekend’s rain brought cheers in the drought-stricken region, the possibility of a bigger storm on Tuesday also brought anxiety for the residents of foothill communities below the burn areas of recent wildfires – where blackened, bare hillsides have little vegetation left to hold the hillside in place.
Egypt thwarted a bid by Islamic State-affiliated terrorists to attack Israeli targets in the Mediterranean Sea last month, Israel’s Channel 2 reported Monday. The terrorists commandeered an Egyptian Navy missile boat for the planned attack, the TV report said, but were stopped at sea by a pursuing vessel, and eight people were believed killed in the ensuing battle...
Adding fresh detail to that account, Monday’s Israeli TV report said Islamic State-linked Sunni extremists “staged an accident” and were able to install one of their own group in temporary charge of an Egyptian missile boat. They set out for sea from the port of Damietta, and intended to target Israeli boats and/or gas installations in the Mediterranean.... KEEP READING
“We’ve been told that five planes are being targeted in a high profile hit before Christmas,” said one security official to the Sunday Express. “They’ve been waiting for the big one. We have many scares, but this one nearly got hand baggage pulled from all airlines. The threat is still alive and real.”
◼ Nearly 50 Latino Republicans elected to public office from across California, gathered in Los Angeles this past weekend for GROW Elect’s first statewide meeting of candidates and elected officials. - GROW Elect
The post-election luncheon was a celebration of GROW Elect’s success in tripling its number of successful candidates for office (to over 90 successful elected officials) in less than two years, and a tribute to these Latino Republicans who are providing leadership in their communities.
The event served as an opportunity for Latino Republican leaders to meet, exchange ideas, discuss experiences and inspire each other.
◼ Oops. There goes the narrative. - Robert Laurie/Herman Cain
By now, everyone knows that Louisiana Democrat Mary Landrieu marches in lock step with her party and her President. They've done their best to deny it but her record is her record. She voted with the President 97% of the time, and she's reaping the "rewards" of those decisions.
Since the President's approval rating is circling the drain, and Landrieu is headed for a probably-disastrous December 6th runoff, her campaign is trying desperately to ignore all of that. They're doing whatever they can possibly do to put distance between their candidate and their own - deeply unpopular - White House. If they're to be believed, Landrieu has gone rogue. She's now a centrist who's bucking Obama's liberal agenda.
Unfortunately, they have a little problem. His name is Don Cravins Jr., he's Mary Landrieu's Washington chief of staff, and he has a prediction to make about how Landrieu will vote if she gets re-elected....
Commentators better known for parroting the bromide that a prosecutor can get a grand jury to indict a ham sandwich went berserk when the sandwich on offer was a white cop and the grand jury refused to bite.
As Ferguson burned this week, the law books got a workout. Suddenly, grand-jury procedure was all the rage. Commentators better known for parroting the bromide that a prosecutor can get a grand jury to indict a ham sandwich went berserk when the sandwich on offer was a white cop and the grand jury refused to bite.◼ Farrakhan On Ferguson: ‘We’ll Tear This G**damn Country Up!’ - Daily Caller
As it turns out, there was no need to thumb the legal treatises of Blackstone or Joseph Story. If you were going to hit the books, Jonah Goldberg’s Liberal Fascism would have served you better. Brilliantly illustrating modern liberalism’s roots in 20th-century progressivism — a movement as comfortable marching lockstep with Stalin as it was borrowing copiously from Mussolini — Jonah homes in on the centrality of myth. It is irrelevant whether an idea around which the Left’s avant-garde rouse the rabble is true; the point is the idea’s power to mold consciousness and rally the troops.
...Darren Wilson was a white cop and Michael Brown was a black teenager killed in a violent confrontation with Wilson. Therefore, Brown was the victim of a cold-blooded, racially motivated murder, Q.E.D. That is the myth, and it will be served — don’t bother us with the facts.
Once you’ve got that, none of the rest matters. In fact, at the hands of the left-leaning punditocracy, the rest was pure Alinsky: a coopting of language — in this instance, the argot of grand-jury procedure — to reason back to the ordained conclusion that “justice” demanded Wilson’s indictment for murder. And, of course, his ultimate conviction. KEEP READING
◼ Rams players use ´hands up, don´t shoot´ pose while taking field - Sports Illustrated
◼ CNN Panel: ‘Very Cynical’ to Say Media Wanted Ferguson Violence for Ratings - Mediate
◼ When the Law Is a Drag - Victor Davis Hanson/PJM
In the Ferguson disaster, the law was the greatest casualty. Civilization cannot long work if youths strong-arm shop owners and take what they want. Or walk down the middle of highways high on illicit drugs. Or attack police officers and seek to grab their weapons. Or fail to obey an officer’s command to halt. Or deliberately give false testimonies to authorities. Or riot, burn, and loot. Or, in the more abstract sense, simply ignore the legal findings of a grand jury; or, in critical legal theory fashion, seek to dismiss the authority of the law because it is not deemed useful to some preconceived theory of social justice. Do that and society crumbles.
In our cynicism we accept, to avoid further unrest, that no government agency will in six months prosecute the looters and burners, or charge with perjury those who brazenly lied in their depositions to authorities, or charge the companion of Michael Brown with an accessory role in strong-arm robbery, or charge the stepfather of Michael Brown for using a bullhorn to incite a crowd to riot and loot and burn. We accept that because legality is becoming an abstraction, as it is in most parts of the world outside the U.S. where politics makes the law fluid and transient.
Nor can a government maintain legitimacy when it presides over lawlessness....
The midterm elections were over. The 11 campaign workers from Occidental College returned to class. But first, they heard from a school reverend.
"You win some, you lose some," Susan Young told the group. It's perfectly OK, she said, to have trouble readjusting to college life or to feel out of place.
In what is believed to be the only college program of its kind, the undergraduates in the Campaign Semester course spent at least 2 1/2 months, often seven days a week, 12 hours a day, working on behalf of candidates in contested states.
Many were resoundingly defeated, although two students worked for the reelection campaign of Sen. Mary Landrieu of Louisiana, who is in a runoff. All of the students worked for Democratic candidates; Republicans swept the mid-terms and took control of the House and Senate....
As President Obama moves forward with his plan to shield millions of undocumented immigrants from deportation, an existing program to protect young illegal migrants demonstrates the life-changing promise of executive action but also its profound shortcomings, according to experts and government documents.
The 2012 initiative has given temporary protection to slightly more than 700,000 people brought to the United States illegally as children. They say that program has helped them emerge from the shadows, making possible a work permit, a Social Security number and enhanced self-respect.
But hundreds of thousands who advocacy groups say are eligible have not applied under the program, known as Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, or DACA. Some immigrants say they are afraid they will be rejected and deported, while others are daunted by the $465 application fee and educational requirements. Still others remain unfamiliar with the program because of language and cultural barriers.
Sunday, November 30, 2014
Seventy-two years earlier on Nov. 28, America suffered its second-worst building fire in history, in which nearly five hundred people died, at Boston’s Cocoanut Grove nightclub. Some patrons were, apparently, unable to escape the burning building because exit doors had been bolted shut.
◼ Enough with The Ferguson Pandering - Lloyd Marcus/American Thinker
◼ Riots based on false narratives work until they begin to bore. - Discussion at Lucianne
◼ A Glance at Developments in Ferguson - AP
◼ It hasn't been burned to the ground. - Discussion at Lucianne
Germany’s Environment Minister Calls On Citizens To Turn Off Lights During Sex – To Protect Climate!
One clip shows a teenage girl coming home late one evening, quietly tip-toeing past the open door of a lit up living room, only to awkwardly catch her parents in the act. Embarrassed, the daughter turns off the lights.
A voice comes on:
The world says thanks. 5% less energy consumption in German households makes one coal power plant redundant. Together it’s climate protection.”
Another video shows an overweight man filling up his SUV with a jet ski in tow...
The message here, other than men being stupid fat pigs, is:
The climate says thanks. The climate is happy about every single bicycle ride.”Another video shows a woman closing the window so she does not have to hear the sounds of her power-tool operating husband being eaten by zombies.
After she closes the window, a voice says:
The world says thank you. Stop leaving the windows open in the winter time. Airing out the house all at once for a short time is better for the climate.”