Fox News host Tucker Carlson’s charge that the National Security Agency illegally spied on him and leaked his emails is enraging prominent liberals. Carlson sought “to sow distrust [of the NSA], which is so anti-American,” declared MSNBC analyst Andrew Weissman, formerly the chief prosecutor for Special Counsel Robert Mueller. CNN senior correspondent Oliver Darcy ridiculed Carlson for effectively claiming that “I’m not a crazy person overstating a case!”
When did the NSA become as pure as Snow White? Do pundits presume that there is a 24-hour statute of limitation for recalling any previously-disclosed NSA crimes and abuses?
The Carlson controversy cannot be understood outside the context of perennial NSA abuses. The NSA possesses a “repository capable of taking in 20 billion ‘record events’ daily and making them available to NSA analysts within 60 minutes,” the New York Times reported. The NSA is able to snare and stockpile many orders of magnitude times more information than did East Germany’s Stasi secret police, one of the most odious agencies of the post-war era.
Former Obama Administration’s Secretary for Health and Human Services, Kathleen Sebelius, announced on CNN’s “Out Front” that people who have chosen not get vaccinated should be limited in their movements, not be allowed to work and have limited or no access to children.
Sebelius said, “We’re in a situation where we have a wildly effective vaccine, multiple choices, lots available, free of charge, and we have folks who are just saying I won’t do it. I think that it’s time to say to those folks, it’s fine if you don’t choose to get vaccinated. You may not come to work. You may not have access to a situation where you’re going to put my grandchildren in jeopardy. Where you might kill them, or you might put them in a situation where they’re going to carry the virus to someone in a high-risk position.”
She continued, “That’s, I think the point where we are, is freedom is one thing, but freedom when you harm others like secondhand smoke and issues that we’ve dealt with very clearly in the past you can’t drive drunk. You can drink, but you can’t drive drunk because you can injure other people. You can’t smoke inside of a public place where you can give cancer to someone else in spite of their never having been a smoker.”
Late last month, Montana ended its participation in the extended federal unemployment benefits program. No surprise this event was little noted in the national press, since Montana’s decision to exit the program had a direct effect on fewer than 20,000 people (the total unemployed population of Montana). Yet Montana’s decision had an enormous effect on the country as a whole.
Particularly for those inside the Beltway, it is easy to focus on Washington, D.C. as the only place where policymaking matters. And with an administration desperate to centralize power as it prints ever-growing piles of money with which it hopes to bribe or threaten states and localities, such an attitude is understandable. Recent developments in states like Montana far outside the beltway, however, show how national political innovations can be driven by states with smaller populations far from the beltway swamp and present conservatives with a path for political success.
While elections in Montana often are driven by local and idiosyncratic issues as well as personal relationships (understandable in a state with some of America’s least populated state house and senate districts), Montana is and has long been a very red state. The only Democratic presidential candidate since 1948 to win a majority here was Lyndon B. Johnson in his 1964 landslide win over Barry Goldwater. It is much easier to convince and move 1 million people in Montana than 332 million Americans. And yet by moving 1 million Montanans (or 800,000 South Dakotans) or 1.8 million Idahoans, the Right can often exercise an outsized influence on the national debate.
The guessing game of how long the levitation of the Biden presidency can be taken seriously seems to be entering a new phase. The deluge of illegal entries into the United States at the southern border is now running at a rate of closer to 3 million than 2 million a year and yet we still see and hear the bobbling talking head of the Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas assuring us, “The southern border is closed.”
The media has provided almost no coverage of this calamitous invasion. A recent Trafalgar poll found that 56 percent of Americans don’t think Joe Biden is “fully executing the duties of his office,” yet the docile White House press corps continues to ask him about his ice cream and other such probing questions of national interest. Apart from a rising stock market and a quieter atmosphere, the record of the new administration is one of almost complete failure.
The oceanic influx of unskilled labor at the southern border cannot fail to aggravate unemployment and depress the incomes for the vulnerable sectors of what, under President Trump, was a fully employed workforce. The administration has reduced domestic oil production and squandered the country’s status as an energy self-sufficient state. These are all familiar issues to those who follow public affairs, but the 95 percent Democratic-supporting media preserve the cocoon of a fairyland Biden presidency, whose bumbling chief flatters himself with comparisons to Franklin D. Roosevelt.
Life in the United States and in many parts of the world was transformed in mid-March 2020. That was when the great experiment began. It was a test. How much power does government have to rule nearly the whole of life? To what extent can all the power of the state be mobilized to take away rights that people had previously supposed were protected by law? How many restrictions on freedom would people put up with without a revolt?
It was also a test of executive and bureaucratic power: can these dramatic decisions be made by just a handful of people, independent of all our slogans about representative democracy?
We are far from coming to terms with any of these questions. They are hardly being discussed. The one takeaway from the storm that swept through our country and the world in those days is that anything is possible. Unless something dramatic is done, like some firm limits on what governments can do, they will try again, under the pretext of public health or something else.
The Biden Administration continued the Trump-era rejection of almost all of China’s territorial claims in the South China Sea, warning the communist country that an attack on the Philippines would draw a significant U.S. response.
Secretary of State Antony Blinken reaffirmed the U.S.’ message in a statement Sunday, which was also the fifth anniversary of an international tribunal ruling in favor of the Philippines and against China’s maritime claims. China has rejected the ruling since it was first made.
“Nowhere is the rules-based maritime order under greater threat than in the South China Sea,” Blinken said, accusing China of attempting to “coerce and intimidate Southeast Asian coastal states, threatening freedom of navigation in this critical global throughway.”
Democratic Govs. Andrew Cuomo of New York, Gavin Newsom of California, and Gretchen Whitmer of Michigan shatter everything they touch. Ron DeSantis, conversely, seems to get everything right. The Florida Republican has emerged as America’s governor.
“We’re standing with our folks. We’re going to do the right thing. We leaned into it, and we stood strong,” DeSantis told Fox News host Tucker Carlson recently.
Rather than snip a tax, kill a regulation, and then doze off, as too many Republicans have done, DeSantis is a tireless, full-spectrum conservative. He has authorized a host of economic, cultural, and law enforcement initiatives that are buoying Florida and transforming him into the Great Right Hope.
While the tech giant Amazon has publicly endorsed proposals to raise the corporate tax rate in the United States, the company has been secretly lobbying to keep its own tax rates low, Politico reports.
Last year, during the 2020 presidential election, Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos openly supported then-candidate Joe Biden’s proposals to raise taxes on American corporations. Those proposals have re-emerged in recent weeks as a possible means of funding a possible infrastructure bill, and Biden has been advocating for other countries around the world to adopt higher corporate tax rates as well.
But recently, Amazon has been stepping up its lobbying efforts to try to convince Congress and the White House to allow the company to keep using certain tax breaks in order to keep its own rates low. The retail giant hired a tax lobbyist named Joshua Odintz, who formerly worked as a Democratic aide on Capitol Hill and then as an official in the Obama Administration. In addition to Amazon’s own efforts, similar lobbying has been undertaken by a group known as the “R&D Coalition,” which consists of several companies and organizations including Amazon, Intel, and the National Association of Manufacturers.
Over July Fourth weekend, according to CNN, at least 233 people were killed and 618 others were injured in more than 500 shootings across the country. Unbelievably, those tragic statistics actually represent a 26 percent decrease from July Fourth weekend in 2020. But overall, violent crime in 2021 across the nation—and especially in major urban corridors—has only increased over 2020’s horrific baseline. Nationwide murder rates in 2021 to date show a roughly 25 percent annual increase over 2020, and that number spikes to roughly 30 percent in our large cities. In New York City, there has been a 32 percent year-to-date increase in rape and a 42 percent increase in grand larceny.
Increasingly, Americans do not need to look very far to experience the horrific violence in an up-close and personal manner. Last week, for instance, a 22-year-old University of Chicago student was senselessly killed by what appeared to be a stray bullet while riding the subway system near the university’s Hyde Park campus. As a University of Chicago alum and former Hyde Park resident, that could have very easily been me. But such heartbreaks are not limited to the city of Chicago, America’s murder capital. All across the nation, “could have easily been me” is becoming commonplace, as Americans survey the carnage and destruction all around them.
The extended escalation in violent crime in America began in earnest in the aftermath of George Floyd’s unfortunate death. Black Lives Matter, an avowedly Marxist organization despite its anodyne-sounding name, immediately latched onto the post-Floyd national racial reckoning and instrumentalized it for its own agenda. Together with Antifa and various left-wing anarchist groups, BLM helped orchestrate a summer of riotous mayhem and bloodshed like the country had not seen in decades. Major cities were hit the worst, but even distant suburbs such as Kenosha, Wisconsin, were not spared the BLM-antifa warpath.
Governors from 15 states are sounding the alarm over an executive order issued by President Joe Biden tasking his administration to “conserve” 30% of all land and water in the U.S. by 2030.
Known as the “30 x 30 plan,” the directive is part of a United Nations Agenda 2030 land and sustainable development goal, which directs nations to conserve land and water to combat climate change.
Biden refers to the policy as part of the United State’s acceptance of rejoining the Paris Agreement, a deal former President Donald Trump pulled out of.
My father likes to say that the secret ballot means that he doesn’t have to listen when I tell him how I voted. This joke conceals a serious point: Ballot secrecy is not just a right of the individual but also a guarantee to all that my vote was not wrung from me by bribery or intimidation.
Out of a desire to make voting “easier” and perhaps exaggerated fears of public gatherings during the pandemic, most U.S. jurisdictions permitted unrestricted mail-in balloting in 2020. What did Americans lose when ballot secrecy was attenuated or vanished altogether?
Make no mistake, ballot secrecy is incompatible with secure mail-in balloting. At the polls, we each go into a little booth and make our choices in private. By contrast, no one knows where a mail-in ballot was filled out, or if a party or union activist hovered over the voter or even filled in the circles. Nobody knows what inducements, whether cash or threats, were offered to ensure that the person voted “correctly.” And if the ballot was “harvested” – turned in to the vote-counters by activists instead of by voters themselves – our suspicions deepen.
With President Biden pressing on with attacks against America’s oil and natural gas workers to push his environmental agenda, it’s past time to shed a little light on the failure he’s promoting. He may claim that his proposal to produce 80% of America’s electricity through non-carbon sources is a bold new idea, it’s actually a green failure that he’s trying to recycle…and we’ve got the receipts from two states to prove it.
Let me introduce you to California and Arizona, two neighboring states where one has embraced the Biden Green Plan for years while the other rejected it. Rest assured, Biden, John Kerry, and their army of eco warriors are hoping you ignore the following inconvenient truths.
In November 2018, Arizona voters soundly defeated Prop 127 by a margin of more than 2 to 1. The ballot measure was heavily pushed by former presidential candidate current extreme eco-leftist billionaire Tom Steyer. Similar to Biden’s plan, Prop 127 required Arizona to get 50 percent of its power from “renewable” sources by 2030. Keep in mind, these are the same voters that would elect a Democrat to the US Senate and give its electoral votes to Biden just two years later, tipping the presidential race toward the left. In other words, Prop 127, less restrictive than the Biden plan, proved to be too extreme for down-the-middle voters.
A total of 130 nations representing more than 90 percent of global GDP have agreed to a global minimum corporate tax, Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen announced Thursday.
The tax, proposed by Yellen and the Biden administration during the G7 conference, would establish a minimum corporate tax rate across all participating countries to prevent corporations from avoiding taxes by incorporating offshore, according to Barron’s. The plan is also intended to prevent countries from competitively lowering their tax rates to attract investment, according to a Treasury Department statement.
“For decades, the United States has participated in a self-defeating international tax competition, lowering our corporate tax rates only to watch other nations lower theirs in response,” Yellen said in the statement.
As the pandemic recedes and Americans re-enter public life, the surgeon general and other public health experts are urging the country to focus on another national crisis, one that has lingered for decades and worsened in recent years: loneliness.
For many, pandemic-related lockdowns, social distancing, and physical isolation resulted in their most severe experiences of loneliness. Studies have shown that an uptick in loneliness and other mental health issues coincided with the pandemic, and that lockdown requirements almost certainly exacerbated pre-existing mental conditions. But for researchers who have studied loneliness, the recent increase is only one notable event in an extensive history.
Loneliness is not just a crisis in America, but also in Europe, Canada, Japan, China, Australia and, increasingly, South America and Africa. Loneliness also occurs regardless of race, class, culture, and religion. Even before the lockdowns, tens of millions of people throughout the world felt isolated.
With the election of Joe Biden, there is increasing pressure for the United States to accommodate the global ambitions of the People’s Republic of China (PRC). Such a policy will weaken the strategic position of the United States and embolden the Chinese Communist Party (CCP), which seeks to transform the rules of international politics, and has demonstrated its willingness to employ coercive measures, including threats and open conflict, to achieve its aims.
As it has done for decades, and does so now with the Biden Administration, the CCP makes appeals for accommodation while emphasizing the need to turn away from more confrontational policies, like those most recently advanced by the Trump Administration. And as always, China’s words must be seen as tactical measures it deploys in pursuit of its objectives. Thus, it is only a matter of time before attempts to cooperate with China fail. However tempting, accommodation will not succeed for the stark reason that China does not want it.
Party Chairman Xi Jinping has made clear that what China seeks is world hegemony. And it is upon the pursuit of this hegemony that his power in the regime depends.
U.S. workers’ fear of contracting coronavirus while on the job has hit a pandemic low as the economy continues its steady recovery.
The number of Americans not working due to their fear of getting the virus while at their job dipped to 3.05 million by the end of June, according to the Census Bureau’s Household Pulse Survey released Wednesday. The figure hit its peak in July 2020 when 6.24 million unemployed Americans reported not looking for a job due to coronavirus fears, Axios reported.
“People are feeling safer about returning to work, which should help businesses staff-up to meet the tremendous demand we’re seeing right now,” Wells Fargo senior economist Sarah House told Axios.
On Independence Day we reflect together as a nation on a remarkable moment in history 244 years ago, when 56 men from 13 colonies gathered in Philadelphia to sign the Declaration of Independence. There, our founders declared with one voice: “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.”
This act of political and moral courage changed the world forever. Since 1776, the values and ideals enshrined in the Declaration of Independence and the U.S. Constitution have been exported to democracies around the globe and have lifted millions of people out of tyranny, poverty, and oppression.
Unfortunately, some in America seek to diminish America’s founding, rewrite our history, and invalidate the spirit of independence which led our founders to create the greatest, freest, and most prosperous nation on Earth.
The toxic cultural and political environment in which we live continues to slowly unravel our once shared belief in the American Dream. Many people on this Independence Day will undoubtedly go through the empty gestures of fireworks, barbecues, and family gatherings. Hardly any will reflect on the magnificent Declaration of Independence and how, despite its many flaws, it is a shining, monumental change for all of mankind. Let’s look at four such reasons:
First, it is the first major document in world history that dedicates the creation of a country to key founding First Principles: the rule of law, unalienable rights, limited government, the Social Compact, equality, and the right to alter or abolish an oppressive government. Governments and countries before then were forged by blood, conquest, ethnic group, religion, and similar circumstances. In America, we committed ourselves to groundbreaking ideals. It has been those ideals that have motivated massive changes within our society for a more just and free government.
Second, the document is dedicated to freedom. Certainly many of the Founding Fathers were hypocrites when they proclaimed liberty and held slaves. Such Founding Fathers were flawed and blind men like the near entirety of human history before them. But with the Declaration, they did something earth shattering. They opened the entire world’s eyes to a new vision – one based on liberty, in which free people would rule themselves. The promise of the vision continues to reverberate today.
There are few countries in the world that attract as many international tourists as Italy. From the magnificence of the Vatican, to the history of Rome, to the beauty of the Amalfi Coast, Italy draws visitors from around the world to experience its rich culture, antiquity, and, of course, its remarkable cuisine.
Traditionalist and conservative America once was the U.S. military’s greatest defender.
Bipartisan conservatives in Congress ensured generous Pentagon budgets. Statistics of those killed in action, in both Afghanistan and Iraq, reveal that white males, especially those of the rural and middle classes, were demographically “overrepresented” in offering the ultimate sacrifice to their country.
When generals, active and retired, have become controversial, usually conservative America could be counted on to stick with them.
There can be little doubt the United States is now in a contest with China over which will be the most important country in the world. In important respects, we are replicating the German challenge to the United Kingdom prior to World War I and the renewed German challenge of the 1930s, or the Soviet challenge for 45 years after World War II. As China grows stronger and bolder, and especially as the United States fumbles its way through periods of great distraction and internal political strife, the Chinese—like Hitler—become more brazen and provoking.
Despite his team’s loss to the Milwaukee Bucks, Kevin Durant of the Brooklyn Nets is being hailed as the greatest basketball player in the world. The title of greatest player will always be a matter of debate, like the question of the greatest basketball play of all time.
Candidates could include LeBron James’ block on Andre Iguodala in the 2015 NBA finals, Larry Bird’s steal and pass to Dennis Johnson in the 1987 playoffs, or any number of plays by Michael Jordan. When considering the greatest-play prospects, along with the greatest-ever sports rip-offs, however, Americans should not overlook the 1972 Olympics in Munich.
Mike Bantam, Jim Brewer, Tom Burleson, Doug Collins, Kenny Davis, James Forbes, Tom Henderson, Bobby Jones, Dwight Jones, Kevin Joyce, Tom McMillen, and Ed Ratleff formed the youngest team the United States had ever fielded. This pickup squad of collegians faced a more experienced Soviet squad—for all practical purposes, a professional team.
For nearly two decades, allegations of organ harvesting in communist China have emerged. Today, China’s organ transplant trade is estimated to be a $1 billion industry, reportedly fueled by the exploitation of “prisoners of conscience.”
After conducting an investigation, a seven-member international and independent China Tribunal issued a judgement in December 2018. The judgment concluded, “The Tribunal’s members are certain – unanimously, and sure beyond reasonable doubt – that in China forced organ harvesting from prisoners of conscience has been practiced for a substantial period of time involving a very substantial number of victims.”
China’s organ transplant industry began to increase dramatically in 2000. Hundreds of hospitals offered transplants, thousands of transplant surgeons were trained, transplant research was conducted by the military, and the immunosuppressant industry was subsidized by the state.
Since the Biden Administration assumed power in January, many Americans could be forgiven for feeling like they’re being held hostage, tied up in the trunk of a car, and driven to a place they do not want to go. Nowhere is this more evident than on the immigration problem, where Biden has reversed numerous policies that kept American safe, and it seems he has done so for no other reason than because Donald Trump is the one who put them in place.
Because he is beholden to the radical Left for his ascension to the White House, Biden predictably has adopted the usual anti-borders agenda including catch-and-release, demoralizing ICE, and defunding border wall construction. His expected next move, the reversal of Trump-era rules to prevent the spread of COVID-19 into the United States, is nothing short of political sabotage.
While COVID-19 may be on the decline in the United States, thanks in large part to the Trump Administration’s work on Operation Warp Speed, the same cannot be said for many of the poverty-stricken, underdeveloped countries from which those who most often show up at our doorstep originate. Just as our nation is turning the corner on a deadly global pandemic, it makes absolutely no sense at this moment to ease up on health restrictions on foreign nationals seeking entry. Only someone with Machiavellian political motives would propose such lunacy.
There are lots of reasons why wokeism spread like wildfire once America lost its collective mind during the pandemic, quarantine, self-induced recession, and rioting of 2020.
Wokeism was never really about racism, sexism, or other -isms. Instead, for some, it illustrated a psychological pathology of projection: fobbing one’s own concrete prejudices onto others in order to alleviate or mask them.
So should we laugh or cry that Black Lives Matter’s self-described Marxist co-founder turns out to be a corporate grifter? Patrisse Cullors has accumulated several upscale homes and is under investigation by the IRS for allegations of the misuse of funds from one of her foundations.
It is time for Americans to contemplate the possibility that the United States may be surpassed as the world’s most influential country. The Chinese have just won the greatest strategic victory in the last 30 years since the disintegration of the Soviet Union. However it originated, the novel coronavirus was repressed within China by recourse to draconian measures but was deliberately permitted to infect the rest of the world, enabling China to exploit the blunderbuss Western lockdowns and make a giant leap towards economic preeminence in the world.
This push toward Chinese economic preeminence was something widely predicted prior to the Trump era but clearly was not happening in the first three years of the Trump presidency, as unemployment nearly vanished in the United States, illegal immigration was almost completely stopped, and American economic growth soared, generated by an increasing workforce and sharp gains among the lowest 20 percent of income earners. Since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic almost 16 months ago, however, the United States and the West generally have suffered a severe economic slowdown, vast increases in the money supply, and an epochal spike in unemployment.
Assuming the SARS-CoV-2 virus escaped accidentally, China must be credited for a remarkable coup of strategic improvisation in translating a public health crisis into a large economical and geopolitical advance at the expense of the West. The American indulgence in an entire summer of white-hating, statue-toppling, rioting, and denigration of American history, freedom, and values astonished the world. Moreover, it helped China propagate its message that democracy leads to chaos and waste and that the United States is an unreliable and unstable country. This argument is assisted by what appears to be the practice of the Biden regime of declaring American moral shortcomings to the world as Secretary of State Antony Blinken did in his unfortunate encounter with the Chinese foreign minister at Anchorage three months ago.
“Europe will be your revenge,” are the purported words of West German Chancellor Conrad Adenauer to French Prime Minister Guy Mollet in 1956. The quip was related to America’s siding with Egypt and the USSR during the Suez Canal Crisis against Great Britain, France and Israel. Regardless of Adenauer’s precise intention, the quote underscores the fact that the North Atlantic Alliance (NATO) has always suffered fissures, even if it held together long enough to win the Cold War and longer still, for NATO and the EU to expand into Central and Eastern Europe.
Whether the Suez Crisis in the 50s, Charles de Gaulle’s unilateral withdrawal of France from NATO’s high command structure in the 60s, Willy Brandt’s overtures to the East via Ostpolitik in the 70s, or Reagan’s placement of strategic intermediate range nuclear warheads in West Germany in the 80s against the wishes of the German left, European-American rivalries and conflicts of interest have always been part and parcel of the Atlantic Alliance. And yet the alliance remains important, because North America and Europe share indissoluble bonds that cut across religious, political and cultural history. Modern democracy — despite its relativization and ‘deconstruction’ by progressive historians — was incubated in the West. For this reason alone the alliance is of value: because Western nations share a common heritage. Commonality breeds loyalty and fosters cohesion, both of which are necessary for the preservation of norms and traditions. Europe and North America have a lot in common with one another, and therefore they share a collective interest in preserving what makes them unique within the vast panoply of human political arrangements.
During Trump’s presidency, left wing media wisdom dictated that Trump had sullied America’s relationship with the EU and NATO by calling the former out as a trade rival and the latter —Germany in particular — as a freeloader on American security guarantees. But as European political columnist Jorge Gallarza pointed out in Newsweek, the prospect of a Biden Presidency — and with it, Biden’s wisdom and appreciation of the true importance of the American relationship with Europe — does not appear to have tipped the geopolitical scales towards Anglo-European rapport. In January, the EU signed a trade deal with China that could have just as easily been postponed until Biden took office to allow for the president’s feedback. Likewise, well after Biden won the election, President Macron of France pontificated — in typical multilateral idealism fashion — about Europe’s future role in world affairs as one of “strategic autonomy.” The writing was on the wall: in a world in which China is on the rise and America appears to be sputtering, Europe will be largely neutral.
We live in a divided nation. Our politics have become not just polarized, but toxic. For a country founded on the principles of individual liberty, democratic choice in representative government, and republican protection of natural rights, America has seemingly lost its way. American politics have devolved into a zero-sum game power struggle between two wings of the same establishment—with the prize being the privilege of exploiting the American working class. We are a long way, both figuratively and literally, from the raging fires of liberty that opposed the crown’s Stamp Act in 1765.
Like all empires, America’s decline, or “transformation” in the words of our 44th president, was the result of poor decisions by both elected leaders and the citizens who elected them. Corruption on the part of a rent-seeking elite and apathy on the part of the citizens have delivered us to our present situation. Although it is important to understand the mistakes that we made along the road to our failing empire, the real question we should be asking now is what are we to do about our current predicament.
In David Reaboi’s essay in the Claremont Institute’s The American Mind, he discusses the importance of ending traditional America’s favorite pastime of arguing the same ground with the political opposition over and over again—as if minds are not already made up and just one more pithy tweet or witty meme would finally produce a tidal wave of political defections. Instead, he states, we should consider the work we must do in order to salvage some form of republican society that appreciates and protects the founding principles of America’s charter and our way of life.
This past week marked the 32nd anniversary of the Tiananmen massacre.
On June 4, 1989, pro-democracy protesters gathered in Tiananmen Square in Beijing for peaceful demonstrations. Led by students, the demonstrators denounced China’s ruling Communist Party and sought greater freedoms for the Chinese people.
In response, the Communist Party sent the military to crush the protests. The Chinese government has never released any figures, but we know the People’s Liberation Army massacred anywhere from several hundred to several thousand people.
Just four weeks ago, I wrote about the rising resistance to the woke craze and critical race theory, and much has transpired since then.
Here in California, even Disneyland has not been spared the wrath of the crazies. On May 7, the incomparable Christopher Rufo reported that “The Wokest Place on Earth” now includes employee trainings on systemic racism, white privilege, white fragility, and white saviors, and also launched racially segregated “affinity groups” at the company’s headquarters.
But just five days later, Rufo disclosed that Disney “has removed its entire antiracism program from the company’s internal portal, effectively scrubbing it out of existence.” Rufo added, “This is a major victory in the war against ‘woke capital,’” and noted that a “significant backlash from the public” was responsible for the shift. While some skeptics suggested that the policy was being “tweaked or rebranded, not scrubbed,” Rufo responded, “Possibly, but small victories start to add up. We’ve set the precedent—and forced a $329 billion company to back down.”
In the mood for a depressing statistic? A new report from the financial services firm Self concludes that the average American will pay an astounding $525,037 in taxes over their lifetime—roughly 34 percent of their lifetime earnings.
But the numbers aren’t uniform across the country; they vary wildly from state to state. Based on taxes on earnings, spending, property, and cars, here are the 10 states where residents pay the highest taxes over a lifetime.
1. New Jersey
Topping the list is New Jersey, where residents will, on average, owe an astounding $932,000 in taxes over their lifetime. That’s nearly 50 percent of their typical lifetime earnings!
Americans mostly have given up on familiar institutions for entertainment, guidance, or reassurance. What now do Hollywood, network news, the media in general, Silicon Valley, the NBA, NFL, MLB, or higher education all have in common?
A propensity to lecture Americans on their moral inferiorities, a general ethical decline in their own disciplines, and a strange obsession to acquire great wealth while living in contrast to what they advocate for others. Add also incompetence. Movies are mostly bad now. The network news is blow-dried groupthink. There is no “paper of record” anywhere. Twitter and Facebook no longer even try to hide their politicized contortions of warped rules and twisted protocols.
Professional athletes are now reminders of why no one ever wants to be “enlightened” by multimillionaire quarter-educated narcissists. The public a half-century ago lost faith in academia. It wasn’t just that most new bad ideas could be traced to the campus or that hothouse professors increasingly seemed both ignorant and arrogant, but rather their product—educating students—was defective. No one believes anymore a BA is synonymous with knowledge. More likely, it is a euphemism for incurring $100,000 in debt.
It’s a joyous time of the year for millions of young Americans as they graduate high school and move on to another phase of their lives.
But as the crisis at our southern border intensifies—thousands of illegal immigrants are flowing into the country each and every day—we need to ask ourselves what this onslaught will mean to average U.S. citizens for generations to come.
Every year about 4 million American youngsters move on from high school. On average just over 80 percent of them graduate and the others, around 760,000 each and every year, just move on. Unfortunately, the economic futures of those who don’t obtain a high school diploma are rather bleak. They are made bleaker in that this cohort of individuals will, in all likelihood, be competing for jobs against millions of illegal immigrants who are willing to work for far below market wages.
It’s no secret that US businesses are struggling to find workers. Recent surveys have shown that small businesses are reporting record job openings.
Many have described the phenomenon as a labor shortage.
“Walk outside: labor shortage is the pervasive phenomenon,” economist Lawrence Summers recently observed at a conference hosted by the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta.
The attempt of America’s ruling class to convict 455 persons of “armed insurrection”—i.e. of waging war against the United States, a species of treason—for protesting insufficient scrutiny of the 2020 election on January 6 in the Capitol, while at the same time it excuses and even cheers the burning and looting of courthouses, police stations, and downtowns all over America, is not the exercise of a “double standard.”
The people in and out of government who do this are not corrupt. Instead, acting as part of the regime—the oligarchy—they are replacing the American republic and waging war to crush its remains.
The sooner Americans realize that we are being governed by people at war with our Constitution and contemptuous of ourselves, the sooner those people may be treated as the enemies they are.
The COVID-19 pandemic has changed a great deal about America and Americans. Most have acquiesced to anything and everything government bureaucrats asked for in the name of public safety. Masks have been donned, churches have been shuttered, and many of us stayed at home for months, working remotely.
This last item may end up being the largest and most permanent transformation of the United States. The mobility that comes with remote work may end up transforming middle America as left-coast technologists migrate inward. Freed from the work-based ties that bind them to Silicon Valley and New York City, they can now easily take their jobs and their left-wing politics to the heartland, ushering in a transformative moment in American politics.
Thomas Edsall, writing for The New York Times, discusses how many from densely populated urban areas on the coasts are finding that remote work enables them to have big city paychecks while living in suburban or rural areas with lower costs of living.
The United States recognizes religious freedom as an unalienable right and is committed to its advancement and protection for all.
As the world’s leading defender of the right to worship freely, the United States strongly condemns and holds accountable those nations and non-state actors who reject and violate this fundamental freedom.
In support of this mission, on May 12, 2021, the United States Department of State released the 23rd annual Report on International Religious Freedom as required by the International Religious Freedom Act of 1998 (IRFA). This report describes the status of religious freedom in every country, government policies violating religious beliefs and practices, and U.S. policies to promote religious freedom around the world. Each year, the report is presented to the U.S. Congress.
Tucker Carlson spurred a much-needed reexamination of the military in March. His monologue criticizing the military’s political correctness drew a more furious response from top brass than any foreign threat is likely to do. The generals’ response only affirmed Tucker’s points about the degraded state of our armed forces. Why do generals—both current and retired—feel the need to condemn civilians who question the wisdom of putting women in combat?
The answer is that the military, along with the entire national security establishment, is at one with the Democrat-Media complex. The image we have of generals and senior officers as defenders of tradition is wildly out of step with reality.
This fact is underscored by its contrast with a letter issued in France last week. The letter—signed by 20 retired generals, 80 officers, and 1,000 lower-ranking soldiers—was stridently right-wing. “The hour is late, France is in peril, threatened by several mortal dangers,” the letter states. Though retired, we remain soldiers of France, and cannot, under the present circumstances, remain indifferent to the fate of our beautiful country.”
The National Center for Health Statistics, a Centers for Disease Control and Prevention subagency, reported this week that America’s fertility rate dropped for the sixth consecutive year. Total births declined by 4 percent in 2020, down to 1,637.5 children per 1,000 women. The statistical replacement rate for the U.S. population, by contrast, is roughly 2,100 births per 1,000 women. Overall, the 3,605,201 births last year in the United States represented the lowest number since Jimmy Carter’s presidency.
It is perhaps too early to tell whether yet another annual incremental birthrate decline is anomalous, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, or flows naturally from existing demographic trendlines. Sociologists and demographers will pore over the data, but it is difficult to ignore the broader trend and place the blame squarely—or even predominantly—on the virus and the myriad draconian lifestyle restrictions the virus engendered.
On the contrary, many had speculated before this week’s report that the extended COVID lockdowns might lead to a one-time annual increase in the birthrate as couples sheltered in place together for months on end.
Ralph Nader made the chief executive officers of America’s largest corporations a proposition in 1996. Considering they had built their fortunes on generous tax benefits and subsidies—valued at an estimated $65 billion a year back then and footed by everyday Americans—would they consider opening their annual stockholder meetings with the Pledge of Allegiance? America had “bred them, built them, subsidized them, and defended them,” as Nader wrote, and as Obama would later more directly say: “You didn’t build that.”
It’s not every day that the subject of Soviet anti-Semitism—something my family experienced firsthand—is broached in the American media. When it does happen, however, unpleasant comparisons to certain trends in the United States are tough to avoid.
In a fascinating piece for Tablet Magazine, Julia Schulman and Michael Hsieh profiled several prominent Jewish scientists and mathematicians who encountered racial bias in admission to leading institutes in the old USSR. The subjects of their investigation defied the long odds, eventually rising to the top of their fields despite official policies excluding Jews from Soviet universities.
“We take seriously the idea that a republic cannot long survive without a virtuous citizenry,” says Brenda Hafera of The Fund for American Studies.
TFAS’s mission is to “win over each new generation to the ideas of liberty, limited government, and free markets” by offering educational programs for students and young journalists around the world.
The Democratically-controlled Senate spends thousands of collective hours conducting an impeachment trial against a president who is no longer president.
The acquittal is predetermined, as in the first impeachment effort a year ago—and known to be so to the Democratic prosecutors.
Man is by nature a tribal creature. For many thousands of years, human existence was defined by family connections, with ties of blood and marriage providing the social network that ensured cooperation and support necessary to sustaining life. Loyalty to one’s kinship group — the tribe or clan — was vital to this system of cooperation, and from the deeply rooted tribal nature of human life emerges the sense of national identity that inspires what we call patriotism.
Joe Biden’s prediction of a dark winter is upon us as many Americans struggle under oppressive Covid lockdowns with no end in sight. How did we go from a common-sense plan to “flatten the curve” to the White House calling for continued restrictions even after Americans are vaccinated? In a word: politics. From the moment the virus arrived on our shores, Democrats used it to their political advantage. They have shown by word and deed that they care less about public safety, and more about control.
In one of the most extraordinary passages of his most extraordinary book, C.S. Lewis, the 20th century’s greatest Christian apologist, wrote of Jesus Christ, that he was either the son of God, as he claimed, or a madman. In the Christmas season, believers take comfort in their faith and joyfully embrace the first alternative.
The United States has a tradition of separating church and state, but there is a competing tradition, equally venerable, that our government is only fit for a religious people, one that understands there is a divine order to which humankind ought to conform, and that, as Supreme Court Justice Amy Coney Barrett once explained, it is our task to contribute to the building of the Kingdom of God.
The Chinese Communist Party (CCP) is seeking to dominate America, not only militarily and economically, but by undermining our cultural institutions. The CCP meddling has gone undetected, in many cases, for years. But a new digital news site is aggressively shining a spotlight on the CCP’s infiltration campaign in the United States. Since relaunching in 2020, the National Pulse has been dishing up a steady stream of exclusive stories exposing China’s nefarious infiltration program.
It has been said that the oldest word in American politics is “new.” Even the United States Constitution, by far the oldest written constitution in the world, was once new, and had to be defended against charges that it was an unnecessary and unrepublican innovation. The Federalist was keenly aware of the novelty of the Constitution’s enterprise—the attempt to establish “good government from reflection and choice”—but boldly turned it to account.
We fight because we must fight. Because if our elections are so tainted that they would make a third world dictator the blush, the consent of the governed is thwarted and the very legitimacy of our government is questionable. That is why we fight until Inauguration Day. Because to do anything else, would be to give up on the American experiment
A decisive moment comes and passes, a fleeting chance for action. People rise to the occasion or not, their measure taken and place in history assigned.
We, the citizens of the United States, have reached such a moment. For those who still remember the old republic, the questions it poses are self-evident. Do we make a stand or nervelessly surrender our rights? Do we affirm ourselves citizens—an historically rare and noble title—or do we accept becoming subjects, the fate of most humankind?