A lawsuit? How about just cutting to the chase and pass a bill abolishing the goddamn thing in favor of a flat tax — at least until we can get a convention of the states convened wherein an amendment for a repeal of the income tax and its replacement with a fair tax can gain momentum.
This agency is the partisan police arm of an horrific health insurance charade that fundamentally changes the relationship between the individual and the government. I don’t want it ticked off at its “tormenters.” I want it gone. Sleeping with the fishes. Leave the gun, grab the cannolis.
But, baby steps, I suppose.
Isn’t that always the way?
Following remarks Senate Majority leader Harry Reid made at the University of Nevada, Reno on Monday, the Nevada Democrat told Reno’s KRNV TV his thoughts on the cattle controversy in Gold Butte. “Well, it’s not over. We can’t have an American people that violate the law and then just walk away from it. So it’s not over,” Reid said.
There is no question that there were a lot of things going on down there with breaking the law,” Reid said. “And that is not over yet. We can’t let that continue. So I’m sure it is not the end of it.”
Translation: only Congressmen, Attorney’s General, IRS employees, NSA employees, Secretaries of State, Presidents, and those who make law are allowed to be above it.
Well, that, and illegal aliens.
Uppity ranchers? Time to put a boot on their throats. Because Yes We Can.
Gee. What a shocker.
Of course, here, elites are classified by wealth, giving he whole study a kind of Marxist feel, with undertones that speak to “income inequality” (read: a condition of liberty) — whereas if there weren’t politicians willing to be directed or “nudged” by bribery or other favors from cronies in our current corporatist system, money wouldn’t much matter.
The problem is not money. The problem is that government has more and more of a say over who can get it and how, and who cannot and why. And this is the case because we now have a class of professional politician, something the founders and framers, who advocated for rotational citizen government, couldn’t possibly foresee. (Carrier air conditioning may have inadvertently given us this fresh hell, even as it is one of the greatest inventions of all times, insofar as DC was for the longest time just a horribly humid bit of swampland outside Maryland and Virginia, a place people went to pick up mosquito-borne illnesses and small paychecks as servants to the people).
Reinstituting our Constitutional protections and returning to a true free market system would greatly alter what I’m going to now start referring to as “input inequality.” Which is far more crucial to representative government than the Marxist claptrap that underpins the softened language of radical egalitarianism being sold to us by the progressives and some timid Republicans.
“University calls the amount of white people on campus a ‘failure,’ asks for ideas on how to have fewer”
Looking for ways to limit whites on campus isn’t racism, you see. It’s a push for “diversity” — because, let’s face it, all white people have the same ideas, same social experiences, same nurtured backgrounds, and are essentially carbon copies of one another, a kind of pale horde, indistinguishable from one another and therefore, because of sheer numbers, overdetermined on university campuses.
To argue otherwise just proves how racist you are. QED!
A school-wide questionnaire at Western Washington University (WWU) asked the community “How do we make sure that in future years ‘we are not as white as we are today?’”
The question, released through the communications and marketing department’s daily newsletter Western Today, comes on the heels of admonishments given in multiple convocation addresses by WWU President Bruce Shepard for the university’s “failure” to be less white.
“Every year, from this stage and at this time, you have heard me say that, if in decades ahead, we are as white as we are today, we will have failed as university,” Shepard said in the 2012 speech.
And in a recent blog post on WWU’s website, Shepard echoes these sentiments, saying those who do not agree “have not thought through the implications of what is ahead for us or, more perniciously, assume we can continue unchanged.”
Listening to this pablum, or the incoherent race baiting of people like Nancy Pelosi, who sequester themselves in the most gentrified of areas, freezing out the minority element they claim to champion but truly despise, save for how they can use them as props in election year demagoguery, leads me to believe that, yes, Chris Matthews is absolutely correct: Racism is all around us, and we’re swimming in it.
Of course, what he doesn’t tell you that it is he and the progressive race-baiters and race hustlers and identity politics front groups that make up that particular mire we’re increasingly being forced to paddle through.
I suppose one could argue that we still have a relatively free press, but what one can also argue is that — because it’s a press that has become an arm of progressive activism and big government — the freedom it has is being used not as a check on the powerful, but rather as a propaganda arm for them.
Which says to me that we need, institutionally, to begin teaching our children that the press is necessarily biased; and that any “news source” that doesn’t admit upfront to its political biases cannot and should not be trusted — nor should it be subsidized in any way by taxpayer money.
All of which is a general prelude to a story that is, in the scheme of things, rather a small one, although fitting given that it’s tax day. Chicago Sun-Times:
Nahshon Shelton didn’t want to pay the 22-cent tax on his $1.79 two-liter of Pepsi on Saturday afternoon, Chicago Police said.
So he allegedly pulled a blue-steel Intratec .22-caliber submachine gun out of his Gucci satchel inside the convenience store in the 4000 block of West Madison Street where they tried to make him pay it — and he threatened to kill everyone there, a prosecutor said.
This “is my neighborhood, I’m tax exempt!” he would later allegedly tell the cops. “Man, you know what, I’ll keep it real. I had to put them in their place.”
Shelton, 36, of the 4200 block of West Carroll, was arrested and charged with aggravated assault, unlawful use of a weapon by a felon and having an invalid FOID card.
Assistant State’s Attorney Claire Savaglio said police saw Shelton yelling at the victims when they answered a report of a man with a gun there.
“I’m going to shoot you in the head three times,” Shelton allegedly told one person.
“I’m going to smoke your ass,” he allegedly told another.
Savaglio said the whole thing was caught on video surveillance. She said Shelton’s gun had eight live rounds in one magazine, five live rounds in another and one in the chamber.
It might be enjoyable to make a game out of this piece of reporting — here, done by staff reporter Jon Seidel — in which we as readers spot the errors, but really, who has the time? So let’s just get to it. The way the story is written suggests that Shelton already had a felony conviction, meaning that he was ineligible for a FOID card. That is, as a felon, his having a gun was itself already against the law in Illinois.
Second, if you do a search for an “Intratec .22-caliber submachine gun” (blue steel or no) you’ll find that nearly every mention of such a thing is a reworking of this story by a media that is either too lazy to do any research (and astonishingly uninformed about firearms), or else has as its agenda to make the kind of gun this felon was carrying seem all the more sinister.
Here are the facts: the Intratec .22 caliber “submachine gun” is nothing more than a .22 caliber semi-automatic pistol in a gaudy mostly plastic shell.
To put that into perspective, my wife owns a nickel-plated .22 Walther as her carry piece, a Christmas present from me (because the baby Jesus would want us to be able to defend ourselves), and no one anywhere at anytime ever who has even the most rudimentary knowledge of hand guns would mistake a .22 Walther for a sub machine gun, which is a fully automatic rifle.
And not only is it onerous for a citizen (much less a felon) to legally obtain an automatic weapon of any sort, but the only way that this particular plinker could be turned into a machine pistol, which still wouldn’t be a “submachine gun,” would be by way of machining and filing, something that I doubt was done to this weapon, which, if used automatically, would have been out of ammo in less than a second. Which is why one of the very few .22 submachine guns deployed in the US is uses a drum, not a magazine system.
The fact that so many news services, including some overseas, “reported” that this felon threatened people with a “submachine gun” just goes to show, yet again, that the contemporary news media isn’t. Instead, it’s an extension of the left’s agenda, in this case, to gut the 2nd Amendment to make controlling the masses less dangerous for our new plantation overseers. Because there is no way any self-respecting journalist could get this wrong. It is, therefore, intentional.
So, then. What’s not mentioned in the accouint? Is who this guy, who was indignant about paying a tax on his soda, voted for — and whether or not whomever he voted for (assuming he votes or purports to support any political party) represents a tax cut agenda.
Because that’s the story here. If you have to find one amid the load of propaganda masquerading as journalism.
(h/t Geoff B)
I wonder: did the people — the vast majority Democrats or more avowed leftists / Marxists / socialists / communists — who actually attended the speech denouncing photo IDs as Republican tools of racist voter suppression, have to show a photo ID in order to attend the speech denouncing photo IDs as Republican tools of racist suppression?
And if so, wouldn’t that make the National Action Network, Obama, Holder, and all those who cheer when Obama suggests Republicans are aiming to suppress the vote themselves racists?
Of course they are. Some know it. Others are too dumb to realize it.
But it is what it is.
Because saying “we lied, and it worked, and now we control just about every aspect of the progressive plan to ‘de-grow’ the private sector,” is just a bit too candid. CNS NEWS:
Seven months after being subpoenaed by Congress, Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator Gina McCarthy conceded that her agency does not have – and cannot produce – all of the scientific data used for decades to justify numerous rules and regulations under the Clean Air Act.
In a March 7th letter to House Science, Space and Technology Committee chairman Lamar Smith (R-Tex.), McCarthy admitted that EPA cannot produce all of the original data from the 1993 Harvard Six Cities Study (HSC) and the American Cancer Society’s (ACS) 1995 Cancer Prevention Study II, which is currently housed at New York University.
Both studies concluded that fine airborne particles measuring 2.5 micrograms or less (PM2.5) – 1/30th the diameter of a human hair – are killing thousands of Americans every year.
These epidemiological studies are cited by EPA as the scientific foundation for clean air regulations that restrict particulate emissions from vehicles, power plants and factories.
The agency has recently come under fire for exposing volunteers to concentrated levels of particulate matter without informing them of the risks, a practice Rep. Paul Broun (R-Ga.), chairman of the House Science Subcommittee on Investigations and Oversight, called “despicable.”
The full committee, which issued its first subpoena in 21 years last August after being stonewalled by the EPA for two years, wanted the raw data from the studies so that their results could be replicated by independent researchers. (See EPA subpoena.pdf)
However, despite “multiple interactions with the third party owners of the research data in an effort to obtain that data,” McCarthy wrote, some of the data subpoenaed by the committee “are not (and were not) in the possession, custody or control of the EPA, nor are they within the authority to obtain data that the agency identified.”
“EPA has not withheld any data in our possession that is responsive to the subpoena,” McCarthy stated. “The EPA acknowledges, however, that the data provided are not sufficient in themselves to replicate the analyses in the epidemiological studies, nor would they allow for the one to one mapping of each pollutant and ecological variable to each subject.” (See EPA letter to Smith March 7 2014 (1).pdf)
CNSNews.com asked EPA whether the agency had turned over any data from the Harvard Six Cities and American Cancer Society studies in response to the subpoena.
A committee staff member confirmed to CNSNews.com that “EPA gave us what they have of both studies, which is a significant amount of data, but not sufficient” to allow independent reproduction or verification of results.
“We’re at a point where EPA has conceded that they don’t have in their possession the data necessary to fully comply, and in some cases, never did possess the data,” he added.
The subpoena was issued as the EPA moves to finalize strict new regulations that could place 90 percent of the U.S. population in non-attainment areas and impose an additional $90 billion annual burden on the U.S. economy.
However, two newer studies cast doubts on the original research.
Stanley Young and Jessie Xia of the National Institute of Statistical Sciences published a paper last year questioning the EPA’s reliance on the Harvard and Cancer Society studies, both of which found that breathing fine particulate matter (PM2.5) resulted in increased mortality.
“There is no significant association of PM2.5 with longevity in the west of the United States,”Young and Xia noted, adding that “our findings call into question the claim made by the original researchers.” (See young080113.pdf)
Another recent study by Johns Hopkins-trained biostatistician Steve Milloy that attempted to duplicate EPA’s findings also found “no correlation between changes in ambient PM2.5 mortality” and any cause of death in California between 2007 and 2010.
“Virtually every regulation proposed by the Obama administration has been justified by nontransparent data and unverifiable claims,” committee chairman Lamar Smith (R-Texas) said in February, denouncing what he called EPA’s “secret science.”
“The American people foot the bill for EPA’s costly regulations, and they have a right to see the underlying science. Costly environmental regulations should be based on publicly available data so that independent scientists can verify the EPA’s claims.”
Smith and Rep. David Schweikert (R-Ariz.) have introduced the Secret Science Reform Act of 2014, which would prohibit EPA from “proposing, finalizing or disseminating regulations based upon scientific information that is not publically available in a manner sufficient for independent scientific analysis.”
HR 4012, which would amend the Environmental Research, Development and Demonstration Authorization Act of 1978, states that “the Administrator shall not propose, finalize, or disseminate a covered action unless all scientific and technical information relied on to support such covered action is (A) specifically identified; and (B) publicly available in a manner that is sufficient for independent analysis and substantial reproduction of research results.”
Congress is expected to review the bill this summer, and it’s something that we as conservatives and classical liberals should make sure gets passed by a unified GOP vote in the House; and then if Harry Reid tries to stop it, the GOP — and in particular, those Visigothic Hobbit types who have been calling upon Congress to rein in the EPA, which has become one of the enforcement arms of the progressive march through our institutions — should hit them hard with their own tactics, talking about the need for “transparency” and then citing the two new studies as the prevailing “settled science” showing that the EPA used bogus studies to justify its onerous, job killing regulations for over 2 decades.
This also dovetails nicely with one of Mark Levin’s liberty amendments, which would allow states to vote to overturn economically burdensome regulations.
Of course, the GOP leadership tends to be softer on such messaging, fearful they’ll be labeled “deniers” with respect to global whateverthehellitscallednowwhenhumansfuckuptheworld, but again, they needn’t worry: conservatives, libertarians, and TEA Party hicks are prepared to do the heavy listing. From CEI:
The White House got it wrong. But the good news is they have a chance to set the record straight.
The trouble started when the White House put out a two-minute video that included claims that recent cold spells in the U.S. are linked to global warming. CEI attorneys Sam Kazman and Hans Bader today filed a formal request under the Information Quality Act for the White House to correct the erroneous claims in question:
“In reality, as we explain below, the evidence (including the conclusions of peer-reviewed scholarly articles) indicates that the kind of extreme cold experienced in the United States this past winter is not linked to global warming.”
For example: “[White House Science Advisor John] Holdren’s claim of ‘a growing body of evidence’ is contradicted by recent peer-reviewed studies. These studies find that that global warming is not leading to increased atmospheric winter blocking, much less causing an increase in winter cold waves or cold weather.”
View a write up of the matter on Globalwarming.org
(h/t Christine Hall)
You can read the Information Quality Act correction request here.
This to me seems like a good way to tamp down on the serial lying that gets tossed off as established truth with respect to the transnational progressive’s dream of using global climate change as a springboard for vast realignments of national wealth and power — if only because it will perhaps wake up a sufficient number of Americans to the fact that a lot of our policy is based on lies, half-truths, and “science” funded by governmental grants that, amazingly, always seem to align with governmental policy preferences with respect to anthropomorphic weather change.
Keep an eye on this one. Because from a legal perspective, this is a no-brainer: what we had in Wisconsin were Soviet-style investigations, intimidation, and prosecution, with the targets forcibly gagged under penalty of punishment. The question is, how will the courts ultimately resolve what is, in fact, an actual civil rights suit — not of the kind brought by racial charlatans like Al Sharpton or La Raza or the more radical factions of the pro-Gay rights and establishment feminist movements (which aren’t about civil rights at all, but rather about legalizing special dispensation and enforcing social conformity, essentially, anti-civil rights causes hijacking the language of civil rights), but one that indeed speaks to the First Amendment and the individual.
From legal insurrection:
Right Wisconsin reports that the motions to dismiss were denied, so the lawsuit moves foward:
Eric O’Keefe’s civil rights lawsuit against prosecutors in a Democrat-driven John Doe probe into conservative targets will go on after a federal judge on Tuesday thoroughly denied a motion to dismiss the litigation.
Judge Rudolph Randa of the U.S. District Court Eastern District of Wisconsin in Milwaukee, pushed aside the argument by the prosecutors-turned-defendants that federal courts generally must abstain from taking up federal constitutional claims that involve or call into question ongoing state proceedings.
The John Doe investigation, a multi-county secret probe into dozens of conservative groups, including conservative political activist O’Keefe and his Wisconsin Club for Growth, “does not fit into any of the categories” for abstention, the judge wrote in his decision.
“It is an investigatory process, not an ongoing criminal prosecution case,” Randa said.
O’Keefe and the Club are suing Milwaukee County District Attorney John Chisholm, his assistant DAs, Bruce Landgraf and David Robles, the probe’s special prosecutor, Francis Schmitz, shadowy investigator, Dean Nickel, and retired appeals court Judge Gregory A. Peterson, the presiding Judge in the John Doe.
The complainants charge that the investigation is nothing more than a partisan witch hunt bent on punishing Republican Gov. Scott Walker and his allies for his political successes, such as public-sector collective bargaining reform, despised by the left. More so, the investigation featuring what have been described as “paramilitary-style predawn raids” on the homes and properties of conservatives, has deprived the targets of their fundamental constitutional rights, particularly abridging the First, Fourth and Fourteen amendments.
Essentially the judge ruled that the star chamber “John Doe” investigation is just a fishing expedition, not an actual prosecution, and therefore does not have the protections from suit that an actual prosecution might have.
In this part of the decision, the Judge explains just how this star chamber acts:
Wisconsin?s John Doe procedure is an investigatory device, similar to a grand jury proceeding, but lacking the oversight of a jury. It is “not so much a procedure for the determination of probable cause as it is an inquest for the discovery of crime in which the judge has significant powers.” State v. Washington, 266 N.W.2d 597, 604 (Wis. 1978). “By invoking the formal John Doe investigative proceeding, law enforcement officers are able to obtain the benefit of powers not otherwise available to them, i.e., the power to subpoena witnesses, to take testimony under oath, and to compel the testimony of a reluctant witness.” Id.
It’s not like a Grand Jury, where prosecutors present evidence of a crime, or even an investigative grand jury, where there has to be some reasonable basis for believing a specific crime was committed by a specific person.
Rather, John Doe is a secret proceeding in search of a crime and criminals.
Which, let’s be frank, sounds like the entirety of our (increasingly armed) administrative state, who go after cows and puddles and toilets and even spilled milk — ironic, that last, because I grew up being told that there was no use in crying over such a thing.
– Though to be fair, nobody said don’t litigate against it in order to harass family farmers and maybe put them out of business, so Soros front groups can buy up and control US farmland.
That would have made for a rather long and awkward homily.
People participating in the food stamp program outnumbered the women who worked full-time, year-round in the United States in 2012, according to data from the Department of Agriculture and the Census Bureau.
In the average month of 2012, according to the Department of Agriculture, there were 46,609,000 people participating in the food stamp program (formally known as the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program). That contrasts with the 44,059,000 women who worked full-time, year-round in 2012, according to the Census Bureau’s report on Income, Poverty and Health Insurance Coverage in the United States.
For each woman who worked full-time, year-round in 2012, there was slightly more than 1 other person collecting food stamps.
In 2013, the average number of people on food stamps increased to 47,636,000. The Census Bureau will not publish its report on Income, Poverty and Health Insurance Coverage for 2013, which includes the data on women working full-time, until September.
The Department of Agriculture’s website lists the annual average number of food stamps participants going back to 1969. That year, there were only 2,878,000 people on food stamps. Since then, food stamps participants have increased by 44,758,000—or about 1,552 percent.
Since 1969, there have been three years when the number of Americans taking food stamps outnumbered the women who worked full time, year-round. In 1976, there were 18,549,000 food stamps participants, and only 18,372,000 women working full-time. Then, in 2011, there were 44,709,000 food stamp participants and 43,702,000 women who worked full-time. (The Census Bureau has not published data for the number of women who worked full-time, year-round in 1974.)
So far, 2011 and 2012 are the only back-to-back years on record when the number of Americans taking food stamps outnumbered the women working full-time year-round.
For those into trivia, those three years (and 2013 is likely to join them as the fourth) took place under the Carter and Obama Administrations.
As did the ruthless arrogance of Muslim extremists and Communist Russians.
Again, probably just a coincidence — and even if it’s not, Obama’s reelection proves that women and minorities love them some other people’s shit, and don’t much care if that turns them, effectively, into slaves of the state. Because they’ve been empowered by “self-esteem,” which allows them to justify and rationalize away their own near-permanent state of being.
The Republicans, bless them, want to help their big business cronies exacerbate the situation by allowing for amnesty, creating a new pool of largely unassimilated, low-skill Americans who are eligible for entitlements (some already are, despite their illegal status), while the left is looking for a new ethnic group to exploit and turn into permanent clients to their party.
Making both establishment political parties essentially enemies to US federal law.
The power of gerrymandering and incumbency make it very difficult to affect major legislative change at the federal level. As has been now famously noted, our House of Representatives has a lower turnover rate than the House of Lords.
So the answer lies with the states, who have a constitutional duty to take back the power that allowed for the ratification of the Constitution in the first place — the 9th and 10th Amendments, and the insistence that federal government has limited and specific enumerated powers, among which are NOT to use federal bureaucracies as extralegislative bodies to effectively and perpetually harass private industry and the individual.
Time to nut up and turn this thing around using the Constitution’s provision for a convention of the states to force the hand of career and professional politicians who benefit from any and every growth of government.
The government belongs to we, the people. It’s time we took it back and made clear that we won’t be subjects, no matter how much pablum is shoveled our way in order to justify just such a condition.
Wait, is this a trick question? Because my gut says, “uh, of course they don’t. Or rather, they don’t much care, as long as they can continue to write the tax laws that keep them flush — and then claim they’ve helped solve “income inequality,” as if all incomes should be the same, despite the amount of work, the kind of work, or the desire of the good or service.
Going forward, progressive economist and inequality researcher Thomas Piketty recommends a top rate of 80% in his new book “Capital in the Twenty-First Century,” a work much praised on the left. Clearly, then, tax rates could go a lot higher both to reduce income inequality and raise more dough for government spending programs, right?
Actually, it’s far from clear that we’re not already at Peak Tax, or at least near the summit. First, fiscal austerity last year was offset by monetary stimulus as the Federal Reserve embarked upon its bond-buying program.
Second, the top effective tax rate in the 1950s was closer to 50% because of tax loopholes in an economy experiencing some amazing one-off, postwar tailwinds. High-tax advocates like Piketty want to raise rates and get rid of loopholes, creating sky-high effective rates never before experienced in an advanced economy.
Third, high rates in states like California and New York mean “we might be pretty close to the revenue-maximizing tax rate,” Alan Auerbach, a center-left tax economist at the University of California, Berkeley, told the Wall Street Journal.
Fourth, estimates that sharply raising tax rates has little to no impact on taxpayer behavior completely ignore possible longer-term effects. What about all those folks who take risks and make career choices in hopes of striking it rich? “Significantly reducing that possibility by hitting those individuals with extremely high income taxes is of first-order importance in determining the optimal top tax rate,” AEI’s Aparna Mathur, Sita Slavov, and Michael Strain argued in a paper last year.
Fifth, it’s not the just the 1% bearing a large share of the income tax burden. Citing the CBO, the WSJ notes that “the increase in the individual income tax burden borne by the top 20%—such as couples with two children making more than $150,000—has gone from 65% in 1980 to more than 90% as of 2010.”
Given an aging society, the US in the future will need to collect more revenue than the postwar average of 17.4% of GDP. How much? Maybe at least a quarter more, and even that’s assuming smart entitlement reform. To do that without crippling growth, the US will need to shift from a progressive income tax to a progressive consumption tax. The US tax burden may be headed higher, but top income tax rates shouldn’t be.
Again, Pethokoukis makes his argument from the baseline assumption that the progressive left really wants a vibrant free-market economy. They don’t. They are radical egalitarians, which explains why they wish to remove loopholes, take from high wage earners, redistribute that money to their political clients — all while tearing down our energy grid, which in turn will stifle productivity in other ways and cause products and services to increase in price.
This, in turn, will lead to more layoffs, and so more clients for the welfare-pushing left.
It’s the road to serfdom that they’re after. Because without serfs, you can’t really get to be part of an aristocracy that lords over them.
When we reach North Korean standards, they’ll be happy. Because then they can, like, kill dissidents with flamethrowers and the like, or at least lock them away in gulags. Like Bill Ayers wanted to do. Back before he was just some guy from Obama’s neighborhood, who launched his political career.
Purely coincidentally, of course.